Wednesday, October 30, 2019

A Little of This and That

Hi friends,

I hope all is well with you. I'm basically okay but have been feeling more tired than usual and fighting against a cold.  I did go and get my flu shot.  I usually like to get it as early as possible but was a few weeks late this year. There isn't a lot of excitement going on right now but there are a lot of small things to be done.  It is a time of taking stock, getting appointments out of the way, completing little odd jobs here and there and thinking ahead to Christmas.
I seem to have enough energy for doing only very basic things like every day meal preparation, hand washing of dishes, doing the laundry, reading the Bible and praying for the needs of others, keeping abreast of the Kenyans I am helping (see side bar top right), only the necessity shopping and buying or making Christmas gifts and deciding what to do over the holiday. I've also been on You Tube a lot as I'm over subscribed to various channels.  When one doesn't feel like doing their own work, you can watch others do theirs, lol. Actually I learn a lot by watching and hearing other people from all around the world.

One of the things I don't like about living where I live is that when it comes around to Christmas season it is very difficult to get in to see or participate in the Christmas program of your choice. People really plan ahead here and by this time in the season it is very difficult to get into the venue of your choice.

I thought I was early in thinking about which Christmas concert, play or event to attend. Christmas is almost 2 months away but already seats are limited on choice dates and venues. After some back and forth over options, a friend and I decided to try and get tickets for this event:

The choir, soloists and chamber ensemble
will perform J.S. Bach’s joyous cantata for
Christmas, Herz und Mund und Tat und
Leben, which features Bach’s famous Jesu
Joy chorale. The choir will also perform
shorter seasonal works for Christmas, plus
carol singing with the audience.

Here is a You Tube video of some of what will be in the program (different performers).


We are looking forward to the concert. We will have a quiet Christmas again this year. I'm trying to get to the point of a very quiet, relaxing Christmas with days to enjoy music, warm lights and the joy and hope of the season.  Consequently, I don't have big plans for Christmas but have already put together most of my gifts for a few family member and friends (yet to be wrapped of course). There are still a few gift items to think about. I tend to keep gift gifts small and (hopefully) meaningful.  I've also discussed with my nephew the idea of taking an overnight trip after Christmas to visit his sister. It is always nice to make this trip if weather permits.  We can enjoy the season in a visit with loved ones but also see the season decked in snow.

In my NT Bible reading I am now halfway through the Book of Romans. I've also completed the following books since my last post and I can recommend both of them depending on your interests.  I've noticed a  French theme runs through my reading in 2019.  It wasn't planned that way but likely stems from my trip to Paris earlier this year.

Written by an American widow who moved to Paris after losing her husband.

Written by a Canadian journalist who immigrated from Africa.
Currently in my reading pile.
Written by a well known, sometimes controversial, Canadian psychologist.

Written by 2 American housewives who made a career teaching about healthy living.

Now I leave you with a beautiful sunset as I'm participating in Skywatch Friday.
You can click each photo for a larger view.

See you soon in Blogland.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Marking the Year in Reading & Looking Back

This year my reading goal was 25 books. Once I reached that level any extra reading I did was to be enjoyed whenever I had time. I am now up to 44 books (those in the picture below) and I have no end goal. Right now I am trying to read and learn from some fashion and cooking books. The only problem is usually when I want to do that there is a queue of people who want the books too and sometimes one cannot renew them. Our library system allows 2 renewals if you are not caught up with too many people needing the book so altogether you can borrow a book for 9 weeks.

In addition to reading the library books I am reading chronologically through the New Testament. I try to read about 5 chapters a day.  Right now I am in the last chapters of the Book of John.  I am also reading the Book of Revelation. I haven't much read the Book of Revelation since I was a child and it isn't a book that many churches teach about. Once I've read this Book a few times on my own I will go over a third time with a Bible Study series on the book. I think it's important to be prepared in better understanding as I look around me and I hear the events happening the world over.

It was Thanksgiving the other day and I shared some Fall colours in my post. You can look here for Fall colours in 2019.  I thought it would also be fun to see what October looked like last year by way of comparison.  The following photos were taken in early October 2018. I remember the day well. It was a gorgeous, sunny and warm day. The Fall colours were not yet that in full array.

The Go Fund Me campaign button is now ready in the side bar.  This is to help
Eunice with hospital and medical needs. For those who are new to this campaign you can read all the details at the link (in the side bar at top right).

Thank you for visiting.

I hope to see you again soon.




Friday, October 18, 2019

Thanksgiving Dinner, Fall Leaves and Eunice

In my last post I mentioned that Canada celebrated Thanksgiving last weekend and that I was under the weather.
Thank you to those blogging friends who prayed for me. I am feeling better and am on the mend.


I mentioned also that I was to make dinner for family. I did and took my time. It was a relaxing day and we enjoyed a quiet celebration.

My brother pronounced the turkey as the best I've ever made.
I think what he really liked was the crispy, golden skin. 

You can see all the liquid at the bottom of the roasting pan. It isn't all grease from the bird.
When I was growing up my mother always added water to the roasting pan.  I copy her approach. It helps to steam cook the bird and keep it moist. It also provides more drippings and liquid for making the gravy.

Roasted Brussels sprouts and carrots tossed in olive oil and coarse sea salt.I didn't make so much of this because I didn't want them as left overs. I also omitted green salad because no one ever eats it at the holiday meals.

No matter who cooks the bird I always go for the wings when it's time to eat. The wings are my favourite whether I'm eating turkey or chicken.  I stuffed the bird with bread stuffing and made extra for cooking on the side. I ignore all the expert opinions about stuffing the bird as a big 'no no'.  No one ever got sick in all the years my family and extended family and friends cooked a stuffed bird.
To round out the main meal we had mashed potatoes, gravy and cranberry sauce.

We had pumpkin pie and/or bread pudding topped with whipped cream for dessert.
The pie was not home made but the pudding was.

There were plenty of leftovers to eat during the week and I've saved some bones for soup stock.
I hope to make some turkey pot pies soon too.


We've been having so much rain off and on for well over a month.  We did have a break in the rain for about a week and a half.  It is so beautiful here when the sun shines and the glorious blue sky and the red leaves of autumn abound.

I love the canopy made by the leaves in the above photo.

Looking at and taking photos of the sky through leaves is one of my favourite things to do.


In other news,
my friend Eunice was tested to see how well her body is absorbing and utilizing the medicine she is on. The test results are now in and there has been improvement in the oxygen in the blood.
I'm so thankful for that.
She has improved but there is still a ways to go with her recovery.
Medicine and special food as well as oxygen and blood when needed (less frequently now) is very expensive.
I am still trying to raise awareness and raise funds. Take up is very slow but there isn't a deadline. I will keep
trying until there is a definite outcome for Eunice

Please take a moment to share it on Facebook, Twitter, your blog or email. 
It only takes a moment and you will be helping to save a life.
If you are able to contribute that is even better and we thank you so much for your giving.
Whatever you do, please do something.

I have added a photo of Eunice and  a link to the side bar for anyone who would like to come back later and link to the campaign.

Thank you 
and have a wonderful weekend.

Joining in with Skywatch Friday this week.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Thanksgiving 2019

Hi friends,

It's Thanksgiving weekend here in Canada so I'm popping in to wish my Canadian readers a wonderful and Happy Thanksgiving weekend.

It is a quiet and more relaxing weekend for me though I am making the traditional turkey dinner. It is always sad to me when I meet many newcomers to Canada or immigrants who have come in the last few decades but they do not ever partake in a traditional turkey dinner at Thanksgiving or even at Christmas. Even vegans in Canada do celebrate thanksgiving with substituted dishes of course.  Whenever I am up to it I do try to invite people to my home for a traditional meal but the past two years I haven't felt up to it.

Even right now I am feeling tired and a bit run down. For some reason the Fall season doesn't agree with me physically.  It is a pity because I absolutely love the cooler (not cold) weather and the gorgeous colours in the leaves.

I hope you are all enjoying a beautiful weekend wherever you are in the world.  I hope you will also find something for which you are thankful even if you are not celebrating an official Thanksgiving like I am.

I've been away from this space a bit longer than I intended.  These days I am trying to get as much rest as possible and it takes a lot to deal with people with serious health or another needs who live half way across the globe.  But I will be back to more regular blogging soon.

Despite not feeling up to par, I want to close with a list of things I am thankful for at this time.  The list is always long but I will try to keep it a bit shorter for you *smile.

* Better health for a long time friend who was given very bad news by his cardiologist about 2 weeks ago.  He was told he would die imminently as the medicine he has been on hadn't been successful in restoring heart function which was now only 33%. Today he was called by his General Practitioner who said he had "great news".  Another test (I forget the name but it involves dye) given just last week indicates his heart is now at 55%. That is a real miracle and we give thanks.

*  I'm thankful I live in a country where there is freedom to vote for the leadership of your choice and that we can vote on election day without worrying about our safety (our national election is on October 21 for our Prime Minister and our federal ministers). We cannot take these freedoms for granted as things are getting more difficult in free countries each year.

*  I'm thankful that the Lord provides my daily bread and that I can choose (or not choose) to study his Word.

*  I'm thankful for young friends that feel free to discuss their spiritual walk and challenges with me and that they readily thank me for listening. Not only do I help them but they help me understand that I am in God's will concerning being a mentor for them.

*  I'm thankful that after several weeks of almost non-stop rain we've had a few weeks of mostly sunny days and blue skies.

* A friend in Kenya needs a Police Certificate called "Certificate of Good Conduct". They need such a document in Kenya for all kinds of purposes. He thought it would take a month but when he went to apply it only took 3 days and he didn't even have to go to Nairobi to do it!

* Another friend in Kenya has been studying for his English language test as part of his applications for graduate school in Canada. Praise God he has written several tests this week and we pray for great results.

* A friend from Tanzania has successfully defended his thesis at the University of British Columbia and can now call himself doctor.  I was invited to witness the event.

*  Another friend in Kenya has written and successfully passed his licensing examination for medical practise. He will graduate on November 10, 2019.

* Ernest in Kenya still has a leg plaster but his health is improving greatly due to a dear friend who contributed food money so he can eat nutritiously.

*  My friend Eunice has been in hospital for over 8 months now. We have a Go Fund Me campaign for her medical care, nutritious food needs and family needs as they don't live in the city where she is hospitalized. Though we haven't raised much of the funding needed, I thank God we have managed so far and that her health has improved. We are now awaiting results of tests to show how effective the medicine has been and what further course of action is needed. In meantime we continue to pray for the support needed. Check/click here if you are interested in the background.

There is so much more I can list but I will end it here. I hope you enjoyed reading and would love to hear what is on your gratitude list.

Until next time I wish you joy.

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