Friday, December 22, 2023

This and That

 I just read a news report that imports of UK cheese are going to be curtailed as of December 31. Apparently it has something to do with an import agreement and Britain pulling out of the EU. I wonder if all of Britain is going to be affected?

People are getting frantic as the big day looms. It's quiet around here.  We enjoyed our quiet honoring of the Solstice. M. gifted me a wonderful book. It's about all of the customs from "olden days" that have survived into modern day. Of course the year starts with the Solstice/Christmas customs in December.

We got about eight inches of snow a couple of days ago. It has been pretty cold, minus TWENTY Celcius last night. I expect it will be a white Christmas on our patch, even though Monday will apparently be above freezing.

M. and I are going to enjoy a Tourtiere for our Christmas Day meal.  I use a recipe from my dear old friend Betty P., who was French Canadian. Her spices and seasonings were quite subtle compared to many of the recipes you see. 

I'll spend the rest of the afternoon enjoying a corny Christmas movie and knitting a pair of red mittens (in case we get any surprise visitors!)

Thursday, December 21, 2023

Oh Happy Day


The poochie and I are heading into the woods in a few minutes to collect balsam boughs to do our Solstice Table. I'll collect all the candles and light the tree.
Do you know how many of our "Christmas" traditions are rooted in ancient Yuletide celebrations that are thousands of years old?
The candles/fire, greenery and feasting are all ancient rituals.
The church didn't appreciate the folks holding on to their pagan Solstice/Yuletide celebrations so securely. "Old" European Christmas was the first week in January. Some Pope decided that December 25, in the middle of both celebrations could pull it all together.

We are looking forward to the days growing longer again.
Here's to better days ahead.
Happy Solstice! 

As the sun sets over my hill

I light the candles

And the tree

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

Well that was nice!

 We had quite a good dump of snow overnight, and for awhile this morning It was like a snow globe all shook up when I looked out my bedroom window.

M was home today. He was going to take me for a quick whip around a couple of shops. We both had prescriptions to pick up and he needed to do his business banking. We hit the Metro cheese bar, but our energy ground to a hault after that. It was time to drive home with the sun in our eyes.

Our only luxuries in life are good coffee and great cheese. We have found a great coffee roaster in the nearby village of Killaloe. It's called Engine House. They have a number of varieties with names like Boxcar and Still Standing. We recently came upon a TV program from 2022 about cheese. The host and his family have a huge cheese market in Toronto. Each episode he visits a different country or province and explores their cheese culture. We took note of some names, then hit the cheese bar at the local Metro store. We found three new to us varieties and one old favorite from the UK. We sampled two after dinner tonight. It has been years since I last had blue cheese, and I remember how much I love it.

Monday, December 18, 2023

Quiet time

 All of my Christmas preparations are done.

I can knit and read at my leisure.

Daughter and I were out running around for awhile on Saturday, but honestly, we could hardly wait to get to our homes and just put our feet up!

We had friends in for finger food, drinks and some laughs on Saturday evening. We always have a really nice time with this neighbour couple.

The pup and I went for a nice walk in the bush. We have quite a large fisher hanging around so I have to be vigilant. The feral cat is still hanging about, as is Buddy Fox, the young male. I have an idea where his den is.

It was warm and poured rain for most of the day. It's windy as the devil and snowing now.

So that's all the news that's fit to tell. Quiet times....

Wednesday, December 6, 2023

A trip to town

 I needed to send the Christmas boxes off at the post office this morning. My pal Paula and I arranged to meet and do a yarn swap. I'm always on the lookout for alpaca and she is happy to take the sock and cotton. It's a win win for both of us.

Natural beeswax candles are hard to find this year. I put a plea on the Facebook and a friend from way back told me she had some at her store. I headed there from the post office and cleaned out her supply of tapers. Hopefully she can make more?

Third stop was the UPS depot and a quick run through the mall. I needed more packing tape and a vegetable peeler. I bopped into this odd little department store in the mall and much to my wondering eyes, and tired bottom, found something I've been looking for. I need a new chair. Especially a rocking chair with nice padding. I found a beauty and it is SO COMFORTABLE. I told the man about it. Maybe it will show up beside our Christmas tree?

It was -16 when I headed down the road this morning. It's now mid-afternoon and the temperature hasn't gone about -10. Our lane got the snow cleared. There is ice on the Ottawa River this morning. Oh Winter you devil!! (But it's going to get rainy and warm in the next couple of days)

Monday, December 4, 2023

Let it snow!

We sure got a good dump of snow through Saturday night, all day Sunday, last night and a bit more this morning. Communities along the Ottawa River east of us closer to Ottawa got double what we got.  It's that wet, sticky, difficult to deal with snow. But isn't it pretty? 

We aren't going to bother getting the tractor and blower out for this one. The temperatures are going up some over the next few days. Once we drive over it a few times it will pack down anyway. 

We went out for groceries this afternoon. The roads were bare and wet. The stores were pretty busy with lots of kids. The school buses were cancelled because of the bad roads this morning. Amazing that the parents can take them shopping but can't take them to school isn't it? 

My friend sent this sweet photo of her cat sitting in front of the wood burner in their family room. Isn't she a pretty girl? She's had her for a month (from the SPCA) but kitty hasn't revealed her name yet.  The SPCA had assigned her a name but my friend didn't want to use it because it was the same name of her wee dog that she recently had to euthanize. 

My eldest daughter and her husband always send along a beautiful Christmas arrangement. Too bad you can't smell it. The scent of pine and cedar is wonderful. I've never had a florist arrangement with such a strong scent before.  I take the flowers outside to photograph on the porch in natural light. 

Sunday, December 3, 2023

Lazy Sunday afternoon

 We have weather warnings coming at us from all sources today.

M. just got the car moved INTO the garage when the freezing rain started at 11AM. It didn't freeze rain long before turning to needle fine snow. The Pup and I waited until it turned to a nice snow about noon, then suited up. 

I walked into the woods with great gusto. There are so many rabbit tracks!! Some winters they seem to be quite scarce.  Unfortunately there was not a thing on the camera card which I find peculiar. I should have at least caught me changing the card.

The snow is falling quite hard now. Heavy snow will trip the camera for sure.

I had hoped to go to The Makers Market today, but not hitting the roads in this heavy snow. I'm going to finish up some more knitting projects.