Friday, May 31, 2013

Focus on Life Week 22~Foodie

Without even reading Sally's prompt this week, I just about died laughing.....Foodie? Me?

It's all I can do to whip up more than peanut butter toast most evenings; by the time I get home from work, walk the dog, sit down for a few minutes to rest my back, check my's at least 7:30 PM.
As my son works "afternoons", 3-11 PM, I am always on my own for supper.  

Sometimes the muse can't even get me up on my feet, and peanut butter toast it is. Sometimes I get a craving for something and stop at the grocery store to pick up the ingredients...that puts supper back to about 8-8:30 PM...sometimes I just stop at Wendy's or KFC, or the pizza joint. I try to keep that to a minimum. was Sally's prompt:

"Everyone looks at food differently, but we must admit that we all have some type of connection to food. 
What seems like a simple plate of food can turn out to be so much more.  Food can bring us together, affect our well-being, and bring us comfort when sad. So this week I ask you to capture a photo of: What 'ya eatin?"

This was the one day I cooked for myself this last week....and here it is!

A chicken and cheese burrito, grilled in the pan.....with organic salsa from Costco (yummm) and no-fat sour cream

and salad from Costco that had greens, cranberries, nuts, and feta cheese

That's about as good as it gets, I'm afraid! Despite the 232 recipes I currently have pinned on Pinterest...

Hope the rest of you have some wonderful recipes for me to drool over! Maybe I might actually cook something. *g*

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

This one's a little different...

...and even closer to my heart than most. 

Those of you who are kind enough to have been reading my blog for a while will know that I am a volunteer and team leader for the National Inclusion Project. The Project, through innovative programs and partnerships, is leading the way for inclusive communities throughout the US to provide opportunities for ALL children to play together...without barriers. 

This year is our 10th anniversary; I have been with the organization for all of those 10 years, and I am so proud of how far we have come. Thousands of children and hundreds of programs have benefited from our team's expertise, and the stories we hear every month about their experiences gladden everyone's hearts. 

This year, our 10th Anniversary Gala is taking place in Charlotte, NC on Oct 12th, 2013; as part of that celebration, a silent auction will be held the afternoon prior to the Gala celebration. More information about the Gala and ticket sales can be found HERE. If you are in the area, it is an event you will never forget, and we'd LOVE to see you there!

All proceeds from the Silent Auction go directly to the National Inclusion Project's programs on behalf of the children. More than 500 attendees are expected at the event. 

Might YOU be interested in donating an item, or a gift card in lieu of a finished item, for the Silent Auction?

Please contact me if so via this's an incredible opportunity to get your name out there to a new audience....and those kids will love you for it!  

Friday, May 24, 2013

Focus on Life~Week 21 Reminisce

My gosh, I can't believe we are almost to the halfway point of this year's photography journey...where HAS the year gone??!

Sally's prompt this week is: 

"Have you ever been in the middle of a busy day and all of a sudden you run across a certain baked good, candy, flower...or an object catches your attention... and you are sent right back to your childhood?"

Well, as a matter of fact...yes! And here is the object....

Doesn't look like much, does it? Yes, it is a rock. A pretty ordinary rock, with some leftover marks from snails, and a bit of wear and tear. 
This rock has travelled 4124 km (2563 miles for you US folks) from its origins in a lake in the interior of British Columbia, Canada to Barrie, ON with a stop of about 40 years in Calgary, AB, Canada. 
Why, you ask? Well, let me tell you.....

Cindy was my very first dog; her name was Cinders, but we called her Cindy for short...unless she was BAD Puppy of course. She wasn't very often Bad Puppy. 
When I was little, I wanted a puppy very, very badly...what little girl doesn't? But Dad said no. And then one summer day I went to our church bazaar with my caregiver, and there was this box of puppies. Warm, cuddly, wiggly, teeny, cocker spaniel/pekingese cross puppies. I fell in LOVE....and was devastated when we had to leave. About 2-3 weeks later, it was my birthday; my usual birthday gift was a Nancy Drew mystery book, and I loved those books. This year, however, there was no book waiting for me on my birthday. I thought my Dad had forgotten me..but when he came home from work that night, he took me out to the garage and brought out a box...a box filled with puppy!! He had contacted the folks from the bazaar after the fact, and one puppy remained at that point. 
I was over the moon!! 

As Cindy grew, she also grew into her Cocker tendencies...she would retrieve ANYthing someone would throw for her, and my Dad and I and my friends spent endless hours down on the beach (we lived right on the shore of the lake) throwing things for Cindy to retrieve. Once you started...Cindy wouldn't let you quit until she dropped from exhaustion...or you did!

As teenagers, my friends and I got frustrated with her, because we couldn't tan in peace, and one day we decided we'd throw something into the water for her to see if she'd swim out to retrieve that....oh yes! She swam right out there, and brought back that stick. She thought this was a fantastic new game! It did keep her busy for a few minutes longer LOL, so we liked it too.
But soon, with her new enthusiasm, that grew old for us kids, being teenagers, we thought we'd fix her wagon....(no, no cruelty involved). 
The beach is quite a rocky one...  Here's a picture of the public beach just down the road from our house....Sandy Beach Naramata BC. There's a strip of sand just at the edge of the water, about 6 ft wide, but otherwise the beach is just rocks. So we chose a nice sized rock from the beach, and threw it into the water about 20 ft out, for Cindy to retrieve. And yes, as you've probably guessed by now.....she did! We watched her swim out to where the ripples were originating, dive head down into the water, which was about 5 ft deep at that point...and come up spluttering with that rock in her mouth! We could NOT believe it...and when my Dad heard, he couldn't either...until he did it himself, and she brought it back. 

She actually became quite the town sensation with this trick. She could always pick "her" rock out of hundreds on the shoreline, and she would always retrieve it without fail, no matter how far you threw it out and how deep she had to dive. As she grew older, she loved to swim on her own as well, and grew adept at swimming underwater. Our house was about 100 ft away from a public beach, and we always knew when Cindy was out swimming from the screams of snorkelers coming face to face with a dog underwater LOL!! I truly think she LOVED to scare people to death that way.
Here's Cindy at about age 3....notice the rock to the right in the picture:

When Cindy was about 8, we were forced because of economics to move away from this lovely place..and my heart was broken when Cindy, the country dog who had rarely ever seen a car except ours, was run down in the alley behind our house in Calgary by a driver who didn't even pause. 

Here's Cindy at her happiest, with my Mom in about 1959:

Thanks for the memories, Sally! Please do check with everyone else and their reminiscences HERE

Friday, May 17, 2013

Focus on Life~Playing Catchup

I missed you all last week! But my trip to North Carolina made up for it in a small way....

I'm going to post two weeks on Focus on Life this time round, as I missed last week's here's 


Sally's prompt: 

"If you feel you know what you want to get out of life, and you have the desire to make that happen, then you have hope"~Jennifer Cheavens

I think this has been the longest NON-Spring in history....I had almost given up on it ever happening this year....but I think we might be there! My next door neighbour's cherry tree, which only two-three weeks ago, was encased in ice. I thought it was done for.....but it had Hope!

and this week's subject is....

Look Up!

Sally's prompt:

"This week let's change our perspective and look up! There is a whole world above us that we sometimes miss seeing because we simply forget to look up."

Here is what I found when I looked up last night! It played a little game of hide and seek with me, but I caught it at last...

Be sure and visit the rest of my friends to see what they noticed, looking'll find them HERE 

Friday, May 3, 2013

Focus on Life Week 18~Abstract

Well, today was eye doc day....a clean bill of health, which is awesome (I was a bit worried this time); but it does mean spending the entire day indoors as my eyes are HUGEly dilated. 


So....I spent my day off playing with pictures for our Focus on Life this week. Here's Sally's description:

"All things have form, colour and lines; we just need to step back and step away from the literal image you see through the lens. Take into account the lines, colour or form and look for a more figurative composition. <clip> Take this week and step out of reality and change your view of things!"

I took no new pictures this week...but I have used pictures that were taken for our project, but not yet used on the blog...and I had my way with them! 

Here they are....thank you Pic Monkey !

I cropped, I rotated, I HDR'd, I Cinerama'd, I bokeh'd, I spotlighted....I had fun!

Here are the original pictures, in the same order:

Please check to see what everyone else has created HERE

I will apologize in advance, as I will be out of the country for just over a week, and will miss next week's prompt and publish date...I'll catch up with y'all in Week 20!