Thursday, 4 February 2021

Comforts and Small Joys to Pass a Canadian Winter in Isolation

We had a wolf moon last week- the first full moon of a new year. Early morning stepping onto the front veranda for wood I was surprised by how it looked so brilliant and illuminated the landscape.  This photo taken around 7:30 am. and look at those colours...cobalt? purples?  What colour(s) do you see|?

I am toting a lot of wood these days, part of the routine here in winter.  I'm pleased my joints aren't creaking though I think my arms may be an inch or two longer by the end of the winter. Never fear, I know exactly my limit with the hoisting and carrying. 


 We'd talked about doing this and decided it was time... We registered with the goodfood folks to get a box with three meals a week delivered. I still have to cook them but besides choosing from a menu, don't have to think about the groceries for them, or that interminable question what will we have for supper. Several have been enough for two nights for us especially with a salad added or an extra veg or bread, etc. We've enjoyed all of the 6 meals we've had so far, even his nibs saying they are tasty. This has buoyed me up as I was feeling tired of my own cooking. The meal below was oven roasted veggies on quinoa with a cream sauce that was very tasty. Maybe this will see us through till the present stricter lockdown is lifted.


  I do wonder what do the folks who don't have hobbies do during these days. Though I guess the internet and tv do offer loads of entertainment. I know a couple who are enjoying movie marathons, in their case, all their old favourites. That sounds like a great idea. We watched this movie on Netflix and enjoyed the calm, understated way the story got told. Always liked both the main actors, Ralph Fiennes and Carey Mulligan. 

My shawl is this big. The very simple knitting pattern, Seed stitch, offers an easy rhythm while relaxing in front of the tv. Btw, several of you wondered and here's my answer- if I can do this, you can do it. Knit and purl patterns are easy to learn.  Shades of that sky above...

I finished this piece Find the Good Every Day by Erica Michaels on 32 count linen, two threads over two. I changed a couple things... chose a lighter colour for the background scroll and omitted the edging which I began and didn't care for. There has been a massive resurgence of the past time of cross stitching with many folks either trying it for the first time or returning to it after years away. It's been wonderful to read their accounts of newfound comfort with needle and thread.

 I also did what a lot of cross stitchers do when stitching an alphabet...put the initials of family members in a different colour, in this case those of my two girls and their two sons. 

I always loved receiving mail. When I lived in isolated communities on the coast of Labrador and in the Far North, the arrival of the mail plane was a joyful event. In one Labrador community, if the mail plane made it before Christmas it meant the children had gifts from Santa who would put their gifts on that plane. One time the plane arrived on the day school was closing for the Christmas break. When we heard the unmistakable sound of a plane's engine, the children, all 23 of them, ran outside and began waving, laughing and hollering at it. We watched, so happy for them and clapping too.
 Children have such joy in them and to share it was one of the best things about being a teacher. (By the way, I am friends on Facebook with one of the students who was there that day. She was in Grade 1 at the time and is a retiree herself now.)

But getting back to present day mail. Two books arrived...This one by Jen Kingwell called Quilt Lovely featuring 15 different projects, came very quickly from Amazon, the only place I could find it.    

I've had Jen's Glitter pattern noted for a long time, another great scrappy pattern. 


And this one from the Blackbird Designs ladies who straddle the two creative worlds of quilting and cross stitching.  The Bells on Christmas Day features five patterns for cross stitch of a primitive and sampler kind of style. Here is the link to their blog and a design called Frosty's Night Out that is very cute.

Nattering here...Hubby in his new Eddie Bauer fleece lined shirt, more happy mail.  I told him it's called a shacket, and he said why not call it a jirt.  He points to how hard it is to warm an old man (he doesn't shy away from calling himself that) citing how many layers he is wearing...in this photo, four, even as he's planted directly in front of the fire.  


Later that day, it was bitterly cold but bright, eye-blinding sunshine as we ventured out for our walk and I said to him, look at that sun. Turn your face to it and let it warm you.  Take it in.  Though things are different in our world just now, this sun is the same old warming sun as far as I can tell. 
Another small but not insignificant joy is linking up with these fine folks....Not Afraid of Color, My Corner of the World and It's a Small Town Life.

32 comments :

Carol Andrews said...

Thank youJocelyn for sharing your list this week. Your reference to hauling wood reminded me of my years living in northern BC. Your mail plane story had me chuckling thinking of the children’s joy. I loved the colors in your wolf moon photo. I enjoyed watching the moon that night with a beautiful backdrop of BC mountains (forgot to take a photo 🤔).

Nancy J said...

Layers are sometimes the answer to keeping warm, on my medication after the stent surgery, I feel cold every day, even in our summer. In January , and this month too, I have worn a down vest or the matching jacket, and find a fine Merino scarf helps so much. Maybe your man would try a scarf ( Need A nickname for that, try SCORF ????) as well as his new attire. Neck warmers or as they are sometimes called " Neck Gaiters" are also a huge help, I make ours and for the family too. Mail during your lockdown would be so welcome, and a real book is a treasure . Love your moon, Indigo is a colour that came to mind as I looked at that glow with the dark tree outlines.Keep warm, and keep safe.

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

we will get that bitter cold all next week and I am dreading it as so very unused to it now. All of your books look good and I will look on Amazon for details on what they are about. The early moon looks so pretty.
my husband is so picky with food I would love to try those meals as it would add to my variety of home cooking which I am so tired of but he is so picky he turns his nose up at most and would be a waste of money.
love your shawl

grammajudyb said...

Really enjoyed your blog post ! The early morning sky is amazing! I see cobalt and purple also. It’s funny, my “old man” isn’t the cold one in this house. It’s me. I’ve taken to wearing an undershirt ( like a tank top, but lighter). I ordered from a company in Vermont! So , layers for me too!

Libby in TN said...

The Wolf Moon woke me it was so bright here. I didn't realize Jen is the designer of Glitter. I've always admired that one and look forward to seeing what/if you do.

Jenny said...

Such a wonderful photo o the moon, I've never heard of the name wolf moon before.
Lots of people are purchasing the food boxes these days, so pleased you are enjoying them. I know what you mean by the never ending question what's for dinner.
Parcels in the mail is always exciting. Keep warm, and spending time on your hobbies, as you say, where would we be without thema?

Ruth Hiebert said...

I love those rich colors of the moon in the sky. It is good to hear that you are finding joy in the simple joys of life.

audrey said...

I love layering in the winter months, it just makes me happy. So glad you splurged and treated yourself with the meal help! It really is the little things that keep us going during difficult times.

LIttle Penguin Quilts said...

Your sky photo is beautiful, Jocelyn! I, too, have sure appreciated my hobbies throughout this year of staying home. Your "Find the Good" cross-stitch piece is so lovely. A good thought for these days, too. Enjoy your new books!

Siouxzq64@gmail.com said...

I enjoyed the moon at 2 am in the morning. Since it was so late in the month I was thinking it was a blue moon. Guess that doesn't happen until March 31st. LOL your hubby and his old man....my dad wears an undershirt, t shirt, usually a thermal Henley, and a heavy carhart jacket, in the house, by the fire, and he will be 80 this year. Love your cross stitch. What a great idea a meal service kit, freshen up your menu. So many awesome likes, and memories. Thank you so much for sharing.

Home Sewn By Us said...

Hi Jocelyn! Oh, that moon and the deep blue sky. Gorgeous. I've been playing 7 Little Words each day and think of you while I'm enjoying it. Those fresh veggies look yummy. Oh, those four layers and being parked in front of the fire sounds wonderful to me. I can never seem to get warm enough and my best friend is just the opposite - she's always warm. ~smile~ Roseanne

PaintedThread said...

Good likes. That morning moon is stunning. We watched The Dig and really liked it, too. Rob is now watching tons of stuff on youtube about Sutton Hoo. Those box meals look interesting.

QuiltGranma said...

That wolf moon is so beautiful! Love what you've been working on.

Brian said...

Your photo of the wolf moon is very pretty. Hey, that food sounds pretty darn good and our Dad likes that fleece lined shirt!

LA Paylor said...

love these especially his nibs black lab shirt... I wear cuddle duds and outer layers in the house too.
Your books make me want to get them, the glitter pattern is very cool. Your photos are awesome as usual. I'm tired of my cooking too

Su-sieee! Mac said...

I was surprised to read that you took the Wolf Moon picture in the morning. I saw the moon around the same time but our sky was on its way to being lit. I love being reminded we live on a round world. :-)

Jackie said...

Harvey watched that movie and really enjoyed it.

I see a touch of pink and gold around that moon.

God bless.

MissPat said...

Ah, staying warm in winter is a challenge. My feet and hands are always cold. Today the sun was shining brightly and it felt so good sitting in my chair by the window, until it started getting lower in the sky. Yesterday, I did such a good job of layering that I was sweating by the time I finished shoveling the driveway and sidewalk. I haven't done any cross stitch in years and believe I still have several unfinished pieces. Going to get very cold next week and more snow on the way.
Pat

Karrin Hurd said...

That scene of the moon is beautiful. We just saw The Dig last week. Great movie!

gladiquilts said...

Hi Jocelyn. What enjoyment to start my day today with your post! I call that sky “midnight blue.” We heated our house with wood for many years when our kids were growing up but finally put in an oil furnace - I don’t miss the work and the dirt! We still have an occasional fire in the fireplace for fun. My passion for quilt making hasn’t let up enough for me to get back to cross stitching or knitting, but maybe some day....
I’m lucky that Al and I share the cooking duties equally so we’ve hung in there, but I must admit we are close to burning out with this pandemic and really miss restaurants and dinner parties with friends so much! Totally agree with the “little treats” idea! Enjoy your day!

Lynn said...

Very happy for you about the meals, great plan. I really enjoyed The Dig too. Your stitching is wonderful, always enjoy your blog, thanks.

Nana said...

I always wonder too, what do people without hobbies do these days? Getting bored. Wish I would have time to follow all my hobbies, hahaha.

Nana

Chopin - A Passionate Quilter said...

Great Post Jocelyn! My hubby is cold natured, me I am hot natured! Love the cold when we can get it. The Blackbird books looks interesting. I am trying to get started on some Cross Stitch, but having to finish a few other things first.
We are watching all the old DVDs at night and I keep Gunsmoke or a mystery on during. the day in the Studio while I work on my projects.

Your knitting looks pretty - love the color.

And your pictures - They are absolutely beautiful!

Our 2021 is going great - we are back to a normal life (without the ability to go to the Casino yet...) a great time for me to catch up on 2020 projects and other UFOs.

Have a wonderful week-end. Hugs

Out To Pasture said...

Loved your Wolf Moon photo, Jocelyn. Also enjoyed the movie, The Dig. Quite a dramatic moment when the trench caved in!

Magpie's Mumblings said...

Well, I learned something just now! I have wondered why you sometimes see the alphabet on samplers worked with some letter either in a different colour or a different font and now I know!
It will be interesting to hear a further review of the GoodFood box program. If you are getting good reviews from the rest of the household it must be good. I've wondered if the first few boxes you get are really great and then the quality dwindles off after they think they have you hooked. A few years ago we signed up for a local fruit/veg box program that supposedly featured local in-season produce. The first few were good and then quantity dropped off and we ended up getting things like bananas, a couple oranges (neither of which grow even remotely close!!) and some wilted lettuce. We didn't get anything that was in season either. You'd think we'd a least get strawberries in June or corn in Sept. but no. It's made us hesitant to participate in anything similar.
Your books look so intriguing, particularly the Christmas one.

Michelle said...

Your first photo is just stunning! Nothing like wood heat, although it is a lot of work. I like the sound of your meal system. I get tired of eating my own cooking, though I am glad my family still likes it. lol Thanks for linking up and stay well!

Jenn Jilks said...

That's cute! His nibs!
I should have gone out to capture the Wolf Moon, but I didn't!
You sure keep busy, no wonder you have ordered in food. It's not a bad deal.

Linda said...

I think I spend more time on your blog posts than any other blog. I check out all your links, I look up maps (had to Google Labrador), and sometimes I order books and blame it on you! Love the photo of the Wolf moon, the pretty cross stitch and your knitting, and the one of your husband trying to get warm. He and my husband have that in common; even though we live in a warmer climate he still gets chilled when it goes below 60 degrees!

Frédérique said...

Lovely moon's photo, and this color is wonderful (like your sweater is!). Enjoy sewing and quilting, it's a lucky to have this hobby during these times!

K Reeves said...

The moon was magnificent this last week! We are finally in winter mode here, have to make the chickens a warm breakfast and monitor their water 3x daily right now, while we are in the frigid category (5 above to 5 below, Fahrenheit) it is snowing too now, so we are getting a speck of moisture which is much needed. Your dinner delivery sounds like a day brightener for sure, so sorry to hear you all are still in lockdown mode. We never had that in SD, but it was still weird when school was closed, I can only imagine what you are feeling! Hope you have some lovely blooms inside to cheer you, potted daffodils or an amaryllis.

betty-NZ said...

I believe you found the secret of getting through the mess in the world--enjoy the little things!
Your handiwork is, again, amazing to see and I love it!
Here's hoping that all the lockdowns will be over with soon.

Thank you for being a part of 'My Corner of the World' this week!

Jeanne said...

I totally get being tired of your own cooking! The loan wolf moon colors have lots of purples and blues, matching your shawl. I'm glad you are enjoying your hobbies!