Thursday, January 28, 2021

Gratitude #48

"When you're present in gratitude, you can't be anywhere else." - Jay Shetty

Here is my list for January of things for which I'm grateful. A group of us link up each week or month, whatever you like, with LeeAnna at Not Afraid of Color, who kindly continues to host. These post are uplifting, both to read and to write.

I love reading, ergo I love books. I've read five so far this month! I like fantasy, and I love YA (Young Adult) Literature. Somehow, in the Libby (digital library) vortex of searching for authors, I came across Holly Black, whose Tithe trilogy I read years ago when I was still teaching. She has a new trilogy out, The Folk of the Air, and I read all three in no time at all. Yes, they are that good. I lived in them for the entire time. Don't you love when a book keeps circulating in your brain while you go about your everyday life? You keep speculating as to what will happen, and revisiting what already did, but living in that world? 

I started off the year in good style with The Murder Stone, another Louise Penny Inspector Ganache book. Yes, I'm slowly reading them in order; one more and I'll be caught up to where I started, with #6! I lived in this book too, loving the rich descriptions, as always, of the incredible food, and in this book, the surroundings of the Manoir Bellechasse. And, in a totally different vein, non-fiction, I just finished Jann Arden's Feeding My Mother, which I highly recommend. It's both hilarious and heartbreaking. It's her journal of 2.5 years in her parents' lives, during which her mother is diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Since her parents live literally 100 feet from her door, Jann finds it deeply bonding when she starts having them over for supper each night. There are delicious, yet simple recipes within the book, several of which I plan to make. I like, no I love Jann Arden. I've seen her twice in concert, and I love her TV show, Jann, in which she stars, and for which she is a writer. In this book, Jann imparts a lot of wisdom:

So, if you noticed I haven't been as visible, or visiting as much, I've had my nosed buried in books... and in scraps...

I am grateful to ashtangis such as Laruga Glaser and David Robson whose classes were filmed at Purple Valley in Goa and uploaded to YouTube so I can practice to their beautifully-led Primary Series.

I like Jay Shetty. I'm so glad, and very grateful, to my friend Liz for telling me about him. I have his book, Think Like a Monk, on hold at the library but I'm something like #35 in line, so I may just buy it. I've been doing his daily meditations since before Christmas. Only 12-17 minutes in length, they are uplifting, energizing, and, as he says, food for your brain. He gives many kernels of wisdom, and once in awhile I remember, or else I zip back through the video once it's done, ha, to write them down:
"When you open up your hands, you create gratitude.
When you open up your mind, you create growth.
When you open up your heart, you create generosity."

I like freezers. This past week I made blueberry, with a little raspberry and cranberry, crumble. Yum. It's so wonderful to eat fruit that I froze in the summer now, when it's cold outside. In just six weeks it will be spring! Okay technically just over seven.😊 I like that it's getting noticeably lighter too!

In the vein of light, I am so happy at the results of the US election. I didn't watch any of it, preferring to ix-nay the vast majority of political stuff, but I will admit that the day after, when President Biden was signing a bunch of POSITIVE executive orders, fixing things, starting to right so many many wrongs, I had a bubble of hope in my chest... I like, and I am also glad that call #1 went to our Prime Minister Trudeau. Bridge building begins.

I love scraps, and I do love rainbow quilts. I am happy that Angela used such a happy pretty colour as pink for January, because I've been having a ball with it. Check out my Pink Projects Popping Up Partout post.  I'm also quilting an RSC 2019 project and have one from 2020 on the design wall. If you missed updates on Instagram, here is a photo for your viewing pleasure. 
May I say that I also love my sewing studio, and that I love sunny days, something we haven't had much of this past month here in southwestern Ontario, although the temperatures have mostly been a little above average. That warmth doesn't make me happy, much as I detest cold weather, because it reminds me all too well how much damage we have done and continue to do to our beautiful planet.

This was taken on another gorgeous sunny day earlier in the month. I love my lake, being able to be so near to her, for gazing, listening, contemplating, appreciating. I like my legs and my good health, and my RykĂ€ running shoes, shoes made especially for a woman's skeletal structure. 

I like battery-operated candles.
They provide such an ambiance. Hygge. Cosy. Warm. All is well.

I'll close with another few sentences from Feeding My Mother.
Living in gratitude involves a lot more than saying you're grateful. It is a way of existing. In poker you often hear the phrase "all in." Living in a real state of gratitude means just that: every second has to be all in


  1. I so enjoyed this post. A few months ago I also began to start my day by simply sitting up and saying Thank You--to the universe, for the day, for being alive. In this time of pandemic, it has made a great difference in my attitude and in how the day goes. So much to be grateful for.

  2. Such a beautiful post filled with light and yes.. all in.

  3. We all have so many things to be grateful for. I try to maintain a grateful heart.

  4. Thank you for the thoughtful, well said post! Thanks too for the reading suggestions. I’m a YA fan also! I’m going to look for Holly Black’s series!

  5. So much thoughtfulness in this post, Sandra. Interesting that the title to the Louise Penny book is different than the book I have, where the title is A Rule Against Murder. I had to go look it up, thinking I had missed a book (but knew I couldn't have)! Love that little sea glass candleholder :-)

  6. Like Wendy, I couldn't recall that Louise Penny title, so I looked it up and sure enough the US title is A rule against murder. So much to reflect on in this post, so I won't comment on everything. I will check on Jay Shetty and see if our library has that title and also try to locate his meditations. I have been disappointed in battery operated candles as they never seem to be very bright. Maybe you just need to group a few together to get the right effect. I like the aroma of burning candles, but don't have many places to let them burn. Too much clutter in my house and most of it isn't mine, so clearing it out is problematic.
    I'm actually about to finish the Table Scraps challenge by the Joyful Quilter. Maybe I've turned a corner in getting back to quilting.

  7. Love your quotes about gratitude today! Like you and many Americans, I'm beyond grateful that our system survived the assault on it, and so happy to return to a sense of normalcy with President Biden at the helm. There is still a lot of work ahead of us, but I have hope! The photo of your sewing studio is just lovely - now we all want to come visit! And I also love those blocks on your design wall - what a pretty layout!

  8. Wow; as always you give me lots to think about and research. Will have to go find the books and the videos. You know already how much I love your two RSC quilts. I also love battery operated candles; if you forget and leave them on you only get a flat battery - not good but so much better than the potential alternative. Thank you.

  9. So many great loves - thank you, Sandra!

  10. I agree with you on freezers! That quilt on the wall is beautiful. It will be lovely when it's done! I'm almost caught up with the Louise Penny books myself. :-)

  11. Thank you. Just what I have needed, and there is the message.

  12. Ah, Sandra, I'm grateful for you as you remind me that gratitude is something to enhance and improve upon day by day. Thank you!

  13. Hi Sandra! I agree with Barb - I'm grateful for YOU. Thank for the wonderful, thoughtful, insightful, and motivating post. The only thing missing was Rufus and Belle to round out the party. {{Hugs}} ~smile~ Roseanne

  14. A lovely post Sandra & sometimes it's the little things we should be grateful for instead of only looking at the the big things in our lives. Thank you for reminding us with these posts, something I'm grateful for.
    Take care , stay safe & hugs from down under.

  15. Always fun to read your likes and loves. As someone in the US, I am also happy about the election results, and that's an understatement! I imagine the inauguration was not the must-watch event for Canadians that it felt for us, so if you haven't seen the poem by Amanda Gorman, 22-year-old youth poet laureate, you should look for it, her performance is about 5 minutes long. She was amazing!

    I also love Holly Black! I stood next to her at a conference once and had "I'm standing next to Holly Black. I'm standing next to Holly Black!" running through my head the entire time.

  16. Thank you for sharing your thoughts this week and the words on graditude. It's so easy to get caught up in just daily stuff and forget to be grateful for the good and simple things in life.

  17. such a lovely post. Thank you very much. I try to always remember how grateful I am for the goodness in life. & that connection with textiles. Thank you again.

  18. What kind of fabric covers your design wall? I’ve been looking for a grid but everything I find is not very wide.