Thursday, April 25, 2024

Gratitude and Glimmers #83

Give yourself a gift of five minutes of 
contemplation in awe of everything
you see around you.
--Wayne Dyer

Welcome to another post of glimmers: moments, sights, sounds, happenings that give a little glow or glimmer of happiness in my soul. Glimmers spark gratitude. You can read more of these uplifting posts from like-minded people if you hop over to LeeAnna's blog, Not Afraid of Color.

1. I loved being in the path of totality during the April 8 eclipse. We sat on our back deck for an excellent view. Pelee Island, 20 km due south of our deck in Lake Erie, was the first Canadian land to experience it. Essex County, which is where Kingsville is situated, was the first spot on the mainland in Canada to experience it. It was pretty surreal how dark it got, to the point of my solar-powered fairy lights on the deck and tree coming on, solar lights in the garden coming on, and neighbours' light-sensitive and solar-powered lights all coming on for just under three minutes. A few dogs barked, Rufus growled, the birds roosted and went pretty quiet, and then as it lightened up, they started chirping as they do before dawn.
I also watched it on CBC livestream and that in itself was fascinating as reporters in various cities gave their experience. It amazed us both how quickly it made it to Gander, Newfoundland! The moon travels at 2400 km/hour I learned!

2. I like YouTube, and curating my own playlists. Recently while playing my Classical Music playlist a piece just captivated me, Symphonie Lumière by Sarah Class. I went to iTunes to see if I could purchase it and found it was part of an entire album by Cantamus called Aurora, for just $5.99. I had a little left on an iTunes gift card Brady gave me for Christmas 2022, so I bought it! Here is Symphonie Lumière, a song on the Aurora album. Listen and be transported.

What a wonderful album. And of course I went down the Sarah Class and the Cantamus rabbit holes...where have she and this choir been all my life? Such ethereal beautiful music; Sarah was even commissioned by the King to write a piece for his coronation which was then sung by Pretty Yende - what a heart-swelling voice! And the Cantamus Girls Choir has been around since 1968, and is the "best UK-based youth choir". I am so very grateful for my sense of hearing, for my healthy ears and for my deep love of music. I owe this to my mum, who I miss so deeply at times like this... However, as my eyes were brimming over with the beauty of Sarah's music and Pretty's voice, and missing my mum, it came to me, most likely from her, that she probably had already heard of and enjoyed Sarah's music. This album was released in 2001, and she's released many more since.

This piece, Resonate, is another beautiful one, as is the accompanying video, and reason for it in the first place. 

Following the launch of the hugely successful World Land Trust campaign in 2020 to save the last 2% of the Chocó Forest in Ecuador, where the emotive impact of Sarah’s soundtrack from Natural High, helped raise over 925,000 pounds for the charity, World Land Trust have asked Sarah to write a new piece for this year’s special campaign to protect Guatemala’s Laguna Grande. In eastern Guatemala, mountain streams flow into the Sarstún River and fill the stunning Laguna Grande Lagoon before emptying out into the Caribbean Sea. This is the home of jaguar, eagle and up to other 700+ species; Caribbean Guatemala’s most important breeding grounds for manatee and a crucial stopover point for 100+ migratory birds. This is a last of its kind landscape in an area that has already lost 80% of its lowland forest and by funding its purchase and protection by World Land Trust partner FUNDAECO, we are saving these forests from a likely sale to logging companies.

You can donate to World Land Trust at that link; "the last 2% of the Chocó Forest in Ecuador" just guts me. What we have done and continue to do to this planet is beyond abominable. But we can make a difference, by donating to worthy causes like this one, which I have done.

3. Brady recommended a show that he randomly found on Netflix, The Last Repair Shop, and if you'd like a pick-me-up to your spirits and a gentle reminder of the inherent goodness in humankind that I still believe in, though that belief has sure been battered over the past couple of years, especially of late, then you must spend 40 minutes of your time and watch it. Speaking of lifts for the spirit and Netflix, I finally watched A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood. So good. I'm also enjoying Son of a Critch on CBC Gem, being taken back to the 80s and reminded of big events in Canadian and often specifically, Newfoundland history. Since Brady told me about and since we both watched it won an Oscar for the best short documentary. 

4. I like reading that this American-born Canadian author from Kitchener, Ontario, Erin Bow, has won a Newbery Honor and a Schneider Family Book Award honor from the American Library Association for her middle-grade book Simon Sort Of Says. The article tells more about the book that “represents the disability experience”, and mentions another Canadian author recognized at the ALA awards, Jessica Johns, for her novel Bad Cree.

5. I love spring flowers, and every year I write about them in my gratitude post. I got many glimmers this past month:

April 14

Our magbolia tree did not disappoint. I took these April 14 as well.

I am super happy that my hellebores are so happy in their new spot in our garden. Look at the new shoots and the beautiful deep maybe blooms!

April 15

6. Good people abound. Good works abound. Our media, however, rarely focuses on these, so I got a huge glimmer to see the mural below and read the accompanying story on the CBC News website about two best friends who painted the board covering the broken window with this bright mural that features items from cocktail bar's menu. I am grateful for wonderful people like these two.

7. In a similar vein, there was a horrific senseless act in downtown Beaumont, Alberta around that same time. Video camera footage from 4 am showed a hooded individual run along the sidewalk in front of several small businesses, smashing in the windows with a crowbar. Two locally-owned restaurants and a small Pizza Hut takeout place were targeted. Later that day Belvan, a general contractor, showed up, cleaned up all the glass and boarded up the windows. Amazing.

8. Brady sent me this YouTube video with the disclaimer that he knows it has meat in it (I'm a longtime vegetarian) but he also knows I will really like it. And did I.

9. This glimmer I saw on the CBC website will speak to all of us who quilt and sew and care about our earth and what we are leaving to our children and grandchildren when we are gone...

What gives me even more of a glimmer is that this young talented woman, mother of five, lives in my own town of Kingsville, Ontario! Click on the graphic below to watch this 2 minute uplifting piece!

Even though I post it on the final Thursday of the month, I started this gratitude post, as I often do, near the beginning of the month, which happened to be March. Thus I can keep track of all the little glimmer and moments of gratitude throughout the month. I take photos all along on my phone, too, but this captures my thoughts at the time. I had half of this post written when I preempted it with the Xena post, so it’s interesting to look back at what was catching my heart then. So much of it was Brady-centred ending with the second  last one just a few days ago. He is truly my biggest glimmer. 


  1. There's also a really good NPR segment about The Last Repair Shop. I'm sure you could find it on the NPR Podcast.

  2. It's sometimes so hard to find the positives, especially these days. You have some definite gems from this month.

  3. That's so awesome that you were in the path of totality for the eclipse right at home. The Last Repair shop is a fantastic documentary - I think it won an Oscar this year (which is how I heard of it). Thank you so much for sharing your glimmers with us. We all need lights in these dark times.

  4. Oh, so very sweet, about all the Brady moments in this post. I love the young woman creating clothes and the art on the boarded up window. All perfect! Of course, flowers blooming make me so happy - it does feel as though spring has sprung.

  5. Brady sounds like a wonderful guy, and certainly a person who knows and loves his grandmother! ❤️. Your spring flowers are beautiful - my favorite time of year, too. Thanks for sharing the music - amazing!

  6. oh the flowers! happy earth day, LeeAnna

  7. Such a lovely post, Sandra, filled with wonderful things/ideas, etc. Listened to that lovely music too and what a wonderful grandson that Brady is! Your flowering is much further ahead than mine.


I wholeheartedly appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment, as they make my day! I answer every one by personal email. :-) Unless... you are a "no-reply" blogger, which can occur for a few reasons. You can get around that by writing out your email within your comment so that I can answer you.