Archive for March, 2011

The deliciousness of blue

Have you ever seen anything more startlingly lovely

Than a bird singing in the blue of a winter sky –

Or tasted  anything as delicious as the creamy snow

Glittering on the shelves of trees?

And have you heard anything sweeter

Than the music created by sunshine

Streaming in through a stained glass window of branches?

For more deliciousness, please visit: Skywatch.


Eating your way into spring

When you live in a cold country, you have to seize every chance to celebrate.

Friday dawned very cold and snowy: a perfect day to celebrate spring!

In Sweden, Annunciation Day, also known as Our Lady’s Day, is commonly called Waffle Day.

This is because Our Lady’s Day is ‘Vårfrudagen’ in Swedish.

If you say that very quickly, it sounds like ‘Våffeldagen’, which means Waffle Day.

And Swedes take this very seriously. It’s time to take out the waffle iron

And make the waffle mixture and cook until golden brown.

Each part of the waffle is shaped like a heart and a whole waffle is made up of five small hearts… Waffles must be the food of love, don’t you think?

(The waffle iron does all the work and tells you when the waffles are ready, so there is very little chance of burning them!)


Then comes the fun part – decorating your waffle with fresh fruit and cream.

Bliss!

So next time someone says, “What a load of waffle!” The only response can be: “Yes please!”

For more traditions, please visit: My World!


Joyful

Sometimes when you’re enjoying the colours of the setting sun,

You just can’t help but feel the joy bubbling up inside you

Until it tickles and delights

And make you want to roll around in happiness.

All we have to do is open our arms (or paws) and welcome in the joy of the day!

For more happy pets, please visit: Camera Critters.


Illumination

Even a fresh snowfall couldn’t dim the joy of this time of year: the spring equinox.

A time when the light starts coming back, ice and snow recede eventually

And long evenings unfurl perfumed with flowers and warmth.

As one hemisphere gets shorter days and the other longer ones,

This Yin and Yang dance reminds me that we all share this world

And that we are all dependent on each other for balance and harmony.

I will love the light for it shows me the way.  Yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars.

– Og Mandino

For more harmony, please visit: Skywatch.


The epitome of Swedishness

Every summer, many Swedes take a month’s holiday to relax and get back in touch with nature – and themselves.

They enjoy long light evenings in summer cottages with outdoor plumbing (and sometimes no electricity)  in the middle of the woods.

You may remember that we did this very thing two years ago when we hired some little red cottages out in the countryside.

We are repeating the experience this year – but in a little timbered cottage with an actual toilet (a dry closet) inside!

We got the keys to the house at the weekend. It was like visiting a fairytale cottage.

A few snowdrops waved in greeting while they enjoyed the spring sunshine.

A short walk away, there is a beach on the shores of a sea inlet.

Right now, it’s covered in snow and ice, but I can just imagine the sand and the sea, can’t you?

Oscar is guarding the wooden playhouse. The bigger house with the veranda (see photo below) is the guest cottage with room for four people.

The brown wooden building between the two is the guest toilet.

After all, even if you have indoor plumbing, there are some traditions you just shouldn’t change!

For more culture, please visit: My World.


Golden boy

On Friday as I left the kids at school, a gang of crying children rushed up to me to let me know some sad news.

This lovely boy, Frodo (one of Oscar’s puppies from his first litter), had cancer in the mouth and was going to be put down that very day.

Before Frodo and his family moved away, he was a regular fixture in our house, staying here for company and exercise several times a week.

I walked home from school with a very heavy heart.

Then I thought of all those tears and how he had touched the lives of so many little ones. How he was never too tired to play or walk or run.

How he was always happy to see you, no matter what.

I remembered all the joy he had brought to so many, including myself – and I felt a bit better.

This surely speaks of a life well spent and a dog well loved.

You think dogs will not be in heaven? I tell you, they will be there long before any of us.” — Robert Louis Stevenson

For more darling creatures, please visit: Camera Critters.


The vast universe of the heart

Beauty stole over the skies

In silken veils of colour.

I sensed something special was going to happen.

I watched and waited. And enjoyed the cold sunset

Until I was rewarded with a heart in the sky.

“The little space within the heart is as great as the vast universe.

The heavens and the earth are there, and the sun and the moon and the stars.

Fire and lightning and winds are there, all that now is and all that is not.”

– The Upanishads

For more beauty, please visit: Skywatch.


Bejewelled

As many of you know, my world is submerged under white snowstorm skies and a warm blanket of snow at this time of year.

The trick to enjoying a long winter is to capture its treasures.

Bedazzling diamonds glinting in the sun,

Winter twins wearing their diamond tiaras

And there – a miracle!

A ruby jewel lighting up my world.

The latest disaster in Japan shows us that life really is a miracle.

(Healing thoughts go out to all affected in the affected areas.)

For more treasures, please visit: My World.


Horse sense

“One reason why birds and horses are happy is because they are not trying to impress other birds and horses.” – Dale Carnegie

Last week, when we arrived at the ranch, Anklebiter #1’s favourite horse was out teaching a girl how not to be frightened of horses.

So we saddled up this cutie instead.

Gleysir. An Icelandic horse with wild hair.

Just look at his fabulous winter coat! No wonder he never gets cold.

Some say that the art of riding – just like the art of life – is learning how to fall.

(But for me, it’s more about keeping the horse between myself and the ground.)

For more charming creatures, please visit: Camera Critters.


Wiring the moon

Telegraph wires, laden with snow, cross the twilight sky.

Now, the moon peeks boldly through

Leading the eye to a rainbow moonscape of snow.

What you see in life all depends on your perspective.

For more deliciousness, please visit: Skywatch.


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