Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Dec 2011

Remembering Christmas in Ajijic...

Our first snow of the season came last evening. It was skimpy and wet. It hardly seems like the season it's trying to represent. Food banks and toy drives report donations are down and blame the weather. Apparently we simply don't think Christmas is coming yet if there's no snow.

I offer memory of the 2006 season in Mexico. If we can build a longing for southern suns, then it must be time for Christmas... and all the appropriate donations.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Nov 2011

The season for farmers markets...

Farmers are busy these days, harvesting before the ground is covered in snow. Of course they may have missed the boat in New York where they've already got a white cover. Time for us all to grab some roots and start simmering our fave warming soups.
As usual in November, I invite you to remember Kurt Vonnegut on his November 11th birthday. He would have welcomed some beets in 1945 when he was a prisoner in Dresden during the devastating fire-bombing. Let's all curl up with one of his books and slurp some beet soup.

Send me your fave beets recipe, whether soup or something else. Here's one I like that adds some other roots...onions, garlic & ginger: Beet & Ginger Soup Recipe

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Oct 2011

Holding on to some last vestiges of summer...

When I lived in Texas (and later when I lived in Australia) I didn't spend much time watching the seasons. I did notice the sage in bloom before a rain (that's Texas) and the weed that I indulged because it was the only green in my Sydney back yard. That weed repaid me by producing tomatoes. From that you might infer I don't garden. You would be correct.

In Canada, however, I find myself trying to stretch the summer, or at least my conscious awareness of it. I do this by paying close attention to colours.

Every morning as I ride the subway over the Don River I carefully grab a seat facing west. This gives me a great view of the sun striking the west bank of the river and all the trees upon it. I noted the first instance of yellow leaves a good 4 weeks ago. Every day there have been more and many are starting to morph into orange. They're still mostly green, but the move is on. True oranges and browns will surround us soon.

And at my house, I wake up every morning and look out this window where I'm still finding this glorious evidence that it's not over til it's over.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Sep 2011

A Labour Day reminder...

Since the 1880s Canadians have celebrated the contributions of labour and specifically the development of the 8-hour day. The concept involved the recognition that workers should be able to work only 1/3 of each day. This was designed to leave 1/3 for sleep and 1/3 for recreation.

Funny how commuting, grocery shopping, housecleaning, cooking, laundry and activities of that ilk all seem to count as "recreation."

I implore you, this labour day, take the hint from this little street's sign near my office. Stay away from work AND all that boring recreation. Just relax and have fun.

Oh, and put away those white shoes.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Aug 2011

Sun! Sun! Sun!

At last we have a summer to brag about: my excuse for a tardy calendar.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Jul 2011

Happy Canada Day!

April showers did bring May flowers. In Toronto we also had May showers and June showers. This Canada Day introduces us back to sunshine and all the flowers and swimming pools and barbecues and baseball (Jackson) and tennis (Lucas)... and fireworks tonight to emphasize the announcement of it all.

Starting today, I invite you to kick off your shoes and remember the school's-out-barefoot-days of your summers past. I started by remembering my own tender-foot determination of those first summer days. You????

I'm celebrating by adding a little maple leaf from the flag in honour of Don Watt.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Jun 2011


Last week I was in NYC watching Dr. Kate don cap and gown and receive her PhD at Lincoln Center. I watched with my good friend Susan, aka Kate's New York mum. Kate and I walked on the High Line and of course we found time to eat some of her favourite foods: tacos, pizza, pseudo chicken nuggets, and sag paneer. After the ceremony we three girls trekked to Harlem for the best cheese enchiladas in the world. Then we visited the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine and the sculpture-laden Bestiary garden next to it.

We stayed with Susan in Astoria/Queens/Long Island City... just a few blocks from the Noguchi Museum. Isamu Noguchi worked in metal, stone (see the calendar), and light. You've probably seen his Akari Japanese paper lamps, which he called light sculptures. This museum is one of my all-time faves. And the Socrates Sculpture Park is just across the street, overlooking the East River and Manhattan.

Yes, there was some shopping. Mostly this trip was for the Kate sighting and a delightful visit with Susan; she was the nurse who looked after me when I was giving birth to Kate. I've known Susan exactly one day longer than I've known Kate.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

4 May 2011

Happy Luke Skywalker's Day!
Remember to charge your light sabre and chill your cerveza.

Monday, May 2, 2011

May 2011

Philosophy for All of Life in One Taxi Ride
For real. Toronto last Friday. Nuf said.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Apr 2011

You probably remember Dr. Kate from my August post...
Well, after finishing that Ph.D. last August, she moved to Berkeley where she's happily doing post-doc math things. This month I'm introducing you to her cat, Batman. Here, Batman's exploring Kate's new rug. It's called Little Field of Flowers and it's designed by Tord Boontje and made from wool felt by Nani Marquina. Batman and the Field live with Kate in her perfect Berkeley apartment behind the garden I showed you last November. As usual Kate's introducing me to lots of new things: the Field re-defines my concept of "rug." I do have a better basis for understanding this than I do string theory... and I hope you will join Batman and me to expand your rug-universe, too.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Mar 2011

My world returns to black and white...
Yes, we had a few days that tempted us into thinking winter was ready to retire, but Sunday morning brought this new scene at my home... and further delay to vivid Kodachrome moments.
In the meantime, Pantone has announced their Colour of the Year for 2011. They're calling it Honeysuckle (aka PMS 205 U for my fellow graphic peeps). The honeysuckle I grew up with was cream with little edges of yellow, but I'll take Pantone's pink interpretation as a beginning for a spring palette. I put in a little swatch here to get us all started. My little postmark bee has already donned new spring wings. You?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Chinese New Year 2011

February 3 finds a New Moon in Aquarius
and signals the Chinese New Year: Year of the Golden Rabbit

This year’s combination of metal as an earthly sign and the rabbit as a heavenly sign results in the year of the Golden Rabbit for the first time in 60 years. This Rabbit is associated with compassion, sensitivity and flexibility and is expected to bring stability -- sometimes through change.

The New Moon in Aquarius always reminds us to make a difference within our group and community networks.

And as every New Moon represents new beginnings, maybe you'd like start something new by making your own New Moon Wish. One of the most imaginative ways to understanding a New Moon is through creative intention setting, using a process known as New Moon Wishing. Jan Spiller coined this phrase in her book ‘New Moon Astrology’ (2001 Bantam). Some people keep a New Moon Wishes Journal.

The year of the Golden Rabbit seems like a good time to start mine.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Feb 2011

The days may be getting shorter...
but they're still long and dark and winter's fully entrenched. We've had snow and snow and tonight's forecast is for snow: the worst storm of the season. Every dark cold evening as I walk from the Jane Subway Station to my new west-end digs, I pass old landmarks from my past. One such is the Odeon Theatre. Built in 1948, it went dark about seven years ago. One night recently as I walked I discovered its new light: this new sign installed above the marquee. I stood across the street and rejoiced.

Look! It's been renamed in honour of the near-by river and it's slated to re-open soon. Maybe even this month???

The dark days of winter won't seem nearly so long with a near-by flick. See the Thai Classic Cuisine sign reflected in the Humber's window? Seems like a suggestion for a tasty combo. Stay tuned for more news as it happens.