Tuesday, 14 August 2018


It is Women's month and a perfect month to share with you my tribute to an amazing woman.
She was wonderful.  She had the look of Olivia de Havilland.  She drew looks wherever she went with her dark hair and perfectly set eyebrows above the bluest eyes you could imagine.  Yet it was never her beauty which lingered in your mind when she left, but her presence.  She walked upright and proud with grace and confidence.  From childhood she was taught to work hard and selflessly. Growing to womanhood during the forties and fifties she was often noted for her stylish clothes and was the envy of her peers.  She made all her own clothes in the style of the latest fashions, and despite working long hours and travelling by train to her work, she was always beautifully dressed.  Yet her hands told the story of a woman who knew what it meant to work hard.
 She put her children and family above her own needs and she was her husband's most adoring fan, raising her children to idolize him.  She was a romantic, yet very practical.  She had the voice of an angel and an unshakable faith, teaching her children how to believe.
She loved the sea, carnations and movies.  She loved chocolates and Turkish Delight.  Sundays were filled with the delicious flavours of  rich, delicious home-cooking.  She drove her car like a racing driver and walked through life with uncompromising principles.  But more than all these attributes it was her kindness which would be remembered by all who crossed paths with her.  It emanated from her like a welcoming fragrance, reassuring you that as long as she was there everything would always be okay.  Her smile was gentle, filled with joy and humility.
She was truly woman, unique and intriguing.  She was one-of-a-kind.  She is still that never-ending song that echoes through every day of my life.
...and I called her Mom.

Friday, 10 August 2018

This Moment

Its quite a chilly day in August.  Just when we thought winter was on its way out it turned back to give us another little pinch. Most of the people I know cannot wait for the winter to pass and I myself long for the warmer days, especially when I walk into my deep-freeze kitchen.  However, it is sad that in the process we do not appreciate the beauty which makes Winter a season to be treasured.
There is a serenity in a winter landscape.  Beautiful, bare trees are etched against crisp pale-blue skies and the sun is twinkling on frost covered lawns.  The sharp touch of the frosty air on my cheeks, white vapour escaping from my nostrils and my fingers tingling right to the fingertips invigorates my thoughts.
So often we are so focused on what comes next that the beauty of today, this moment, slips by us unnoticed.  Often we are wrapped up in the past with its pain and failures that we pay little attention to the present.  Even our worries about the future rob us of the simple pleasures to be found in this moment.  Every moment is a capsule of perfection and every breath a miracle.  We are surrounded by beauty.  Petals dancing in the wind, the dust motes floating in a beam of sunlight, the curl of a kitten's tail against your leg and the smell of freshly turned earth are all precious moments of beauty which pass by unnoticed in our rush to get to the next important thing.
Maybe the beauty of Winter is in the moments we linger just a little longer over a cup of coffee, savouring its heat, and noticing these glimpses of beauty that is best enjoyed at the very moment they are happening.  Maybe we should all take a deep breath, feel how it fills up our lungs and feel the warmth of it as it flows over our lips.  Just for a moment forget where you have to be in the next five minutes or what you have to cook for supper, just be present in the moment and observe, really see, where you are right now.  Do you feel the fabric of the chair you are sitting on, do you hear the hum of the florescent light and the heat of the fire warming the room?  Do you hear the laughter of your teenage daughter as she talks on the phone to her best friend or feel the warmth of your puppy snuggled against you?  Don't let the moment pass by unnoticed.  Be aware of it and treasure it.  Be alive right now and be blessed. 

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

She's a Woman

It's a brand new month and this month we celebrate women.  Whenever I think of the word "woman" certain thoughts and ideas spring to mind.  Many of these ideas are probably very stereotyped and most men and women will have similar thoughts about this word.  Since the late 1800's women have actively taken action to draw attention to the rights of women, and although women today enjoy the same rights and privileges as men, there are still many instances of unfairness.  Many women are still the victims of abuse and violence as well as discrimination.  I am, however not writing this to continue the debate of women's rights, but rather to highlight the wonder of being a woman.  Although society has come a long way, quite often women still have to compromise their wonderful qualities in order to prove themselves in a male dominated world.

Here are six of the many qualities women possess which make them simply amazing.

First of all, women have natural nurturing qualities.  They give easily of themselves and reach out to people in need.  Women are known for their kindness.  However one would be mistaken to view this quality as weakness.  Women never respond kindly to being taken advantage of.

Women are great motivators.  They instinctively understand how to encourage and inspire those they interact with.  This quality enables people to give their best in any given area.  When people are inspired they work together for the greater good of the project.

Although women are often spoken about as the weaker sex, women possess great internal strength as well as courage..  Women's intellect combined with their bravery helps them to take calculated risks.

 Through the ages women have had to face difficult challenges.  They have had to fight for their rights.  When the men had gone off to war it was up to the women to face the hardships at home and take care of the families, the farms and to make sure there was something for the men to return to.  Women have learned to both persevere and adapt.

Relationships are the web connecting individuals.  Women understand the importance of healthy interpersonal relationships and are often the ones keeping families together.  They will make every effort to mend broken relationships both on the home front and in the workplace.

Women are not afraid of their feelings.  They are often more in touch with their emotions and thus are able to provide comfort and bestow kindness to those around them.

It is wonderful to be a woman.  Don't be shy to celebrate your "woman-ness".  Revel in the beauty of being a woman.  We have the best of both worlds.  We are soft and kind, yet powerful.  We are dreamers and achievers.  We can be anything we dream of being, there are no longer limits to what we may or may not do. 

Have a wonderful Women's Month.