Friday, January 25, 2013

::Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey::

If you are a Downton Abbey fan, this is a fun read. It's a biography of the real lady of the estate, which was actually called "Highclere Castle." The writers of the show drew a fair bit of inspiration from Lady Almina's life. The fact that I found the most intriguing is that it was her husband, Lord Carnarvon, who funded Howard Carter in the excavations of Tutankhamun's tomb in Egypt. It's a thrill when things I've studied and enjoyed come together like that.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

::That reflects it::

I need lists and calendars to put my life in order. I really don't know what I would do without these things. My life-organizer of choice is an over-sized fridge calendar from Costco that just happens to be covered in quotes meant to inspire. In the three years that I've daily glimpsed my life up on the fridge, I've never once stopped to read a quote. Until yesterday.
"There are two ways of spreading light; to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it." ~Edith Wharton
I do not know how Edith meant her words to be understood. Likely, she was meditating on the power to affect change through either action or emulation.

Standing there, squinting at her words, a greater message got through to a tired, sluggish woman whose been growing restless again: I'm no candle. He is. What have I been doing to reflect Him lately?

My reflective qualities have been dulled from various and sundry lesser choices that have been made over time. Lately, I haven't been quite as comfortable with my tarnished, dusty sheen. But, God knows, polishing up is lots of work. Lots of replacing and relinquishing. A worthwhile endeavour though. What good is a dust-darkened mirror in a world that is dark enough as it is. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

::Cheddar & Chorizo Soup::

ade a meal to embrace the cold weather. It's hot, spicy and full of fat.
I substituted chorizo sausage for her pimentos. And I served it in homemade bread bowls. I baked the bread into round loaves the size of small soup bowls, than cut away the top and hollowed out the middle.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

::Eleven Years::

n our eleventh anniversary, we did what we do best. We hung out with our kids on the snow. Sleds full of firewood, chocolate chip muffins and kids, we tromped and skied through the woods. Sipped hot chocolate around a warm fire, and watched snow flakes fall against the backdrop of sleeping oaks.

::Skiing on golf balls::

Home from our annual Tremblant ski trip. I really love my family. I really do not love dirty hot tubs, or skiing on golf balls. Still worth it though.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

::2012 in Photos::

I took fewer photos this year. I'm one child richer-- and busier. And I'm teaching an extra boy at home. More time spent living than capturing it through a lens. That said, here are my favourites, month-by-month:
This photo belongs here, because it's our first family photo in which a sixth little person is included. (Hidden though she may be-- rules are rules.) She's so inextricably a part of 2012, and so irrevocable ingrained on our hearts.

Last year's photos