2018 New Year Musings

Bling - sparkle clock

New Year Musings

We all get the exact same 365 days. The only difference is what we do with them.” 

 Another New Year welcomed, and suitably rung in with all the glitz, glamour and fireworks we seem to ascribe to the event.  I have often thought of the New Year as being a bit like an Etch-A-Sketch.  We draw and write all over the year and then on Dec 31st, we flip it over, give it a good shake and start with a blank screen.   

I don’t make resolutions per se.  I do make wishes that I try to turn into something that I can do something with or about over the course of the year.  Call them goals or resolutions if you must but for me it seems to work.  Whenever I start off a statement with “I resolve to…” I am heading down the path of disappointment. That only took me 65 years to figure that out about myself. 

Make a Wish


When I look back on the year past, I do so with an eye on accomplishments and things that went right; perhaps in an attempt to duplicate success.  I don’t spend a great deal of time lamenting what didn’t happen or what I wished I had done – for me that serves no purpose.   

For things I would like to accomplish in the year. I do write them down and post them somewhere where I can see them and be reminded of them.  This process works for me as I need a constant reminder to stay focussed and not get too sidetracked with things that seem like way more fun but are not as rewarding (financially or emotionally).  Fun is important, don’t get me wrong, a short trip to the casino does wonders to lift one’s spirits. 

NY blog 2018 goals 

This approach over the last 20+ years has lead me to where I am today – living the life I love, doing what I want and following my heart’s desire.  So, when it comes to your goals be creative, be daring, work towards that dream you have in your heart and start on the road to those goals (aka resolutions, wishes, statements of intent whatever you want to call them).  Don’t procrastinate or try to make them perfect, just get started and see where it leads.   

Flip over the Etch-A-Sketch with 2017 on it, shake it good and hard, then start off with a blank screen and get busy wishing.

A new year is like a blank book. The pen is in your hands. It is your chance to write a beautiful story for yourself.”




2013 Garden of Weeds

All winter long I dream of summer in my garden.  February/March sees me tenderly planting seeds to get things growing for the greenhouse.  April the ground is cultivated and tilled and the excitement grows as my garlic pushes its eager face up through the straw mulch.

Basil Seedlings for planting

Basil Seedlings for planting

In May and June the garden starts in earnest with planting of potatoes, beans, peas, peppers, squash and my beloved heirloom tomatos, by the hundreds.  So clearly during the month of July, after taking off my garlic scapes, I must have blinked.  I turned around and wondered aloud “Where did the weeds come from?”.  Admittedly we had copious rain and lots of warm sun this year but my garden now looked like Jack and the Beanstalk had taken up residence. 

Bindweed, pigweed and weeds that I’m sure have names longer than the tap root I was about to yank out.  Seriously, I couldn’t see my tomato plants for the waving heads of weeds.  I am loath to remove the milkweed as the flowers are so beautiful and fragrantly reminiscent of lilac and I welcome the Monarch butterflies and bees to my garden.  The rest of the weeds however had to go. 

Beautiful Milkweed Flower

A solid week working methodically row by row (the garden is on the mammoth side) wheelbarrow loads to the weed pile, I could feel the gentle breeze blowing between the rows, sun warming and ripening fruits and there was a restored sense of calm to the summer garden.  Two weeks since my weeding marathon and the new growth on the veggies is extraordinary.. 

I am waiting for a boy scout to arrive and present me with a merit badge for forestry as the tomatos are now almost 5 feet tall and ripening fruit faster than shooting stars. 

All is good in the summer garden.

Ernie’s Plump straight from the garden

Take a Hike Canada!

Take a Hike Canada  

 And I mean that in the best possible way. Sunday May 6 2012 marks the 10th Anniversary of the National Hike for Hospice Palliative Care. People all across Canada will be lacing up to shuffle, walk, hike or run for the cause. Here in my little community we will be hosting our very first walk and we are off to a flying start in terms of fundraising.

End of hike motivation tray

I’m lacing up with a group of other ladies from my cookbook club and we have christened our team The Sweet and Savory Tarts …. yeah, I’ll leave that to your imagination. We hope to shuffle our way thru the 5km walk (no volunteers for running the 10km on our team)

So with a view to making this fun and comfortable on my feet I felt new walking shoes were in order. Gads, clearly it has been sometime since I purchased running shoes as I walked into the store to be met with a wall …yes, a whole wall of shoes (some in rather startling colours and configurations I might add). What ever happened to Keds, PF Flyers? I know I’m challenged technologically but I also appear shopping challenged when it comes to shoes.

My shoe angel appeared in the form of Ryan a friendly and effervescent young man. He assured me he had successfully passed all the requisite shoe fitting courses and would be able to walk me thru (his pun not mine) selecting the right shoe for my foot and purpose. He also conducted the big toe – end of shoe check with extreme professionalism. A pair was found and paid for and I was on my way.

Okay, so now I have the shoes…what next?   Best to wear in the shoes a bit I thought so I tried them on and started to walk around the kitchen. I glanced down at my feet and I was astounded with how awesome my new shoes looked. All clean and white and sparkly purple and silver – I felt rather like a superhero in these shoes. Not knowing any real superheroes to double check with I was quite certain their shoes would sparkle and gleam like this. Surely this was a good sign.

Fit for a superhero

Next logical step seemed to be to get out there and walk. Please understand I am on my feet all day and I’m sure I put in 5km easily each day walking the dog three times a day, going to and from the barn, working in the garden, chores etc. However, I wish I had captured the look on my husband’s face as I announced I was going to go for a practice walk (I thought a good 5km around the block was in order).

“A practice walk he said? You’re an eyelash away from 60 and you’ve been walking since you are 11 months old…you need to practice walking?”. I was dumbfounded for a response which doesn’t happen often so I left and went walking…practice walking.

My shoes are breaking in nicely, muscles seem to be well limbered and sponsorship is going along nicely, now I just wait for the big day next Sunday. Should be a day filled with laughter, friendship and pride for our community, knowing we are doing a good thing.

So watch for me if you are in the area…I’ll be the one walking in those superhero shoes.

 You can help support me by making a secure online donation using your credit card. Click on the link below: http://my.e2rm.com/personalPage.aspx?SID=3313999&langPref=en-CA

Want to know more about a hike in your area of Canada, check out this link


Opening The Old Barn Door

So…here I sit with my fingers poised ever so lightly on the keyboard and I’m staring at a blank screen.  My own blog — wow…always wanted one but now what? This kinda reminds me of grade 10 English Composition class when you had an assignment to write a short story based on some random word or phrase thrown out, seemingly, on a whim by the teacher.  I always had brain freeze.  Okay, let me start at the beginning and tell you a bit about myself and what I do; seems like a good enough place to start.


I am a full time organic farmer – not a big farm, just a small family farm where my husband and I can grow what we need to eat and offer up the extra when possible.  We grow heirloom vegetables and take seed saving seriously.  We have a flock of laying hens, and Katahdin sheep and raise our own meat chickens as well.  Having moved from the big city to our little piece of heaven about 12 years ago, we constantly astound ourselves with what we have learned – we didn’t grow so much as leaf lettuce when we lived in the city.  My journey to follow my dream sounds like a good idea for another blog post down the road as I really believe in following your heart. 

Plate of Heirloom Beauty

I am a full fledged tomato geek….I love them and the stories that come along with these wonderful heirloom beauties.  Like fine wine, they each have a flavor of their own and the colour array is astounding.  More in a future blog on heirloom tomatoes – I can go on and on about that topic. 

Garlic Scape - yummy goodness

My other growing fascination is garlic – I planted approximately 1800 bulbs last fall of 15 heirloom varieties.  With our early spring they have blasted off and are growing like crazy.  I can hardly wait for the scapes to appear. It is a labour of love to cut each scape from the plant and my mouth starts to water at the thoughts of pickled scapes, scape pesto etc. Sounds like another topic to me.

To provide balance in my life I share my passion for vintage postcards and paper ephemera through my Etsy shop (TheOldBarnDoor).  How I ended up collecting postcards is certainly fodder for another blog along with why bother collecting and what you can do with them in terms of crafting. 

Vintage Postcards as works of art

Vintage Postcards capture our history

Vintage Postcards capture our history

Real Photo postcards capture life's moments

Vintage postcards display nature's beauty

Gee, for someone who didn’t have anything to say for her first blog,this is a good start.  I’m so thrilled to finally have a blog.  This is a rather amazing feat when you consider that I’m still on dial up phone connection for my internet and have no cell phone service in my area – remember those days?

I look forward to sharing my passion for eating fresh and local along with my love of vintage postcards, stamp collecting and misc paper ephemera.  Oh…I love to cook too so you can expect me to ramble on about that as well. And, photography…

TheOldBarnDoor is creaking closed for now