Sleigh Bells for Easter

March 25, 2008



Here are a few of my favorite online haunts:
[This is the site I visit to fantasize about living in Toronto again, which is almost every single day during the winter]

Jonathan Cainer's Zodiac Forecasts
[This is where I visit in the morning, when I need a positive spin on things past, present and future.]

Living Local
[This is where I go to see what Canadians are up to, sometimes I even buy things from the businesses listed there.]

Environment Canada Weather
[This is the site I visit every morning, and before every road trip during the winter]

Another winter storm is sweeping into our lives. 25 cm of snow is expected to fall before tomorrow morning. Already the flakes are crowding all surfaces, consuming all the colour in the world.

This is the eighth week of the Eight Weeks of Winter Tour de Force. It is still the dead of winter, for all intents and purposes. Snow cover, snow banks, snow falling, bad roads, poor visibility, snow, snow, snow! Ha! Or should I say Humph!

Attila knew it was coming, this storm, so he has stockpiled firewood in the screened in porch, to last us through the next day or so. For some reason I am cold, and wander around in heavy socks, quilted slippers, layers of clothing all topped with my Cowichan sweater; and still I shiver into a ball when I stop moving. I think it just might be the intensity and duration of the winter catching up with me, overtaking my senses completely.

It is an odd year, no doubt about that. Easter came early, as early as it will come in my lifetime. Winter is staying late. This means that winter and Easter have overlapped. The Easter Bunny had to come in by dog sled this year. No daffodils, crocuses or green blades of grass; we had sunshine though, something to be grateful for.

Terra and Lares made the trek north to visit us on Good Friday. We had a wonderful time, talking, cooking, eating, drinking, playing cards... Terra and I baked our second pie together, an apple pie, and it had to be the best pie ever baked in my kitchen. We make a good team in the kitchen, do Terra and I. Attila and Lares chose the apples, Ida Reds, which were perfect in the pie. Attila prepared a turkey dinner fit for royalty. I even made a loaf of Chocolate Bread for Terra, which turned out very well.

Actually, I am still recovering from my over-indulgences last Friday!

Today, I am trying to keep myself busy, very busy, so as not to notice the developing storm. I have a loaf of bread baking in the oven, a batch of granola in the Crockpot and have worked my way through two loads of laundry. It smells good in here!

The family history book I have been working on is coming along nicely. The more I do, the more I see that I want to do. At some point I will have to pick and choose what to include because it has become clear that one book will not hold the lot.

To amuse myself while I work around the kitchen and at the computer, I have downloaded a text version of St Ives by Robert Louis Stevenson from The default computer voice, Alex, is reading it to me, out loud. At first it was a bit difficult to get used to the speech patterns, and I had to listen carefully to catch Alex's meaning. However, the more I listen the less effort it takes to listen to the digital voice.

I hope that the computerized voices continue to improve in quality, because it is nice to have another voice around speaking words written from the heart. I despise radio voices; to me they sound like the non-interactive tomes of big-brother, droning on, filling the atmosphere with partial truths and agendas. I think I am almost alone in this disdain of the radio (and much of television), as almost everyone I know and like listens with pleasure. It is just that I cannot.

Top of Page

Wordly Distractions
Spring Snow Storm, Well Blizzard Really
March Storm

St Ives
by Robert Louis Stevenson
read by Apple Alex
(a computer voice reading a Project Gutenberg text version of the book)

On The Screen
Kinky Boots

"...nominal freedom was of little use to masses kept from starvation by the alms of the government, and drugged into brutish good humour by a vast system of public spectacles, in which the realms of nature and of art were ransacked to glut the wonder, lust, and ferocity of a degraded populace."
From the Preface to
Hypatia or New Foes With An Old Face
by Charles Kingsley

Light Snow
Temp -3.2°C
Pressure 101.7 kPa
Visibility 2 km
Humidity 72%
Wind Chill -10
Dew Point -7.6°C
Wind Speed SSE 30 km/h
gust 45 km/h


Page by Page: A Woman's Journal
by Maggie Turner

Canadian Maggie Turner writes and publishes poetry, photography, and a personal journal online. Her work reflects the current way of life in Canada, embracing Canada's past, present, and future in a unique portrayal of everyday life. Maggie's voice is one of the many that actively depict the rich diversity of Canadian culture.

Photography: "a term which comes from the Greek words photos (light) and graphos (drawing). A photograph is made with a camera by exposing film to light in order to create a negative. The negative is then used in the darkroom to print a photograph (positive) onto light-sensitive paper.
Source: University of Arizona Glossary

Poetry: "a form of speech or writing that harmonizes the music of its language with its subject. To read a great poem is to bring out the perfect marriage of its sound and thought in a silent or voiced performance. At least from the time of Aristotle's Poetics, drama was conceived of as a species of poetry."
Source: Creative Studios

Journal: " "Though a journal may be many things - a treasury, a storehouse, a jewelry box, a laboratory, a drafting board, a collector's cabinet, a snapshot album, a history, a travelogue..., a letter to oneself - it has some definable characteristics. It is a record, an entry-book, kept regularly, though not necessarily daily.... Some (entries) will be nearly illegible, written in the dark in the middle of the night.... Not only is it a record for oneself, but of oneself. Every memorable journal, any successful journal, is honest. Nothing sham, phony, false...." (Dorothy Lambert from Ken Macrorie's book, Writing to be Read )
A journal is a way to keep track of your thoughts about what you read... as well as what you did on any given day."
Source: Journal Writing

A Blog is an online journal created by server side software, often hosted by a commercial interest.

"The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger[4] on 17 December 1997. The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase we blog in the sidebar of his blog in April or May 1999.[5][6][7] Shortly thereafter, Evan Williams at Pyra Labs used "blog" as both a noun and verb ("to blog," meaning "to edit one's weblog or to post to one's weblog") and devised the term "blogger" in connection with Pyra Labs' Blogger product, leading to the popularization of the terms."

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