There’s Always the Weather

If you live in the Maritimes it’s safe to say that talking about the weather takes up a certain portion of your day. It’s part of what we do. Whether you know someone or just met them, it’s a topic for conversation–the cold and snow of winter (or else our unusual mild spells), dry summer/wet summer, cold springs, wet fall, warm falls–there are so many possibilities and we Maritimers take notice of them all. Mind you, we don’t always complain. We do get our share of, what some might call, perfect days from a weather standpoint. So please don’t feel sorry for us Maritimers. We are not digging ourselves out of huge snowbanks ten months out of the year. I promise you!

With that said, this weekend we do happen to be digging out from our third Nor’easter of the year. Yes, I did say third. But it’s January and we must remember that. A year without snow in January, now that would be talk-worthy for this Maritimer.

We all have thoughts about the snow. Watching from the safety of their windows, some declare it beautiful, others look at it as an opportunity to get some exercise shoveling or maybe skiing or snowshoeing. It’s just a matter of perception for many of us. We can love it or hate it, the choice is always our own.

This morning I’m sipping coffee and waiting to get back to work on my edits. I’ve been wanting to make some changes to the opening but have been working on other parts of the manuscript in the meantime, knowing that at some point the opening sentences I’d been looking for would come. It happened late last night and common sense ordered me downstairs to write it down. I obeyed. I can’t tell you how many times a sentence will to me as I’m lying with my head on the pillow, but then disappears come morning. Yes, I know better. These words/sentences are fleeting even when we’re convinced that we’ll remember come morning because that sentence is just that great.

This time I listened to that little voice inside that said, “Drag your sorry butt out of bed and write this down.” Well, those might not have been the exact words, but you get my drift–and I don’t mean snow drift.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend and send me some positive vibes as I work out the bumps in my manuscript.

Nor’easter–Take Two

I’m sitting here in my living room this morning looking out at the snow on the ground and the foggy air–yes, it looks foggy! The temperate has risen from the toe-biting cold of a few days ago to +2 c. Here in Nova Scotia we’re waiting for another nor’easter that is heading our way sometime today and into tomorrow. I’d be content to sit inside the house and revise some short stories, but we have to go out to pick something up. Sometimes you don’t have a choice.

I hope everyone in the Maritimes have their storm chips handy, although I know one person who is going out to pick up storm bananas; another person likes storm dulse. In case you’ve never had dulse ( and if you don’t live near the coast there’s a good chance you haven’t) it’s basically dried seaweed that has been called a Superfood by some as it has many nutritional benefits. Some might say it’s an acquired taste, but hey, it’s probably better for you than the standard storm chips, right? PS: dulse is tasty when toasted on top of the wood stove.

My point is, when you’re hunkering down, snacks play an intricate part, so whether it be bananas, dulse, or chips, it can bring comfort when you’re stuck inside on a stormy day.

Don’t forget to have some water drained off, and flashlights and oil lamps ready to go, in case there’s a power outage which often happens here during a storm, along with a fuzzy warm blanket and a hot cup of tea.

With winter comes storms with snow and ice and wind and sometimes rain, it’s inevitable. That’s what winter is.

Stay snug and warm and hopefully there won’t be too much snow for us to dig out from when it’s over.

Don’t Let Crappy Keep You Down

We’ve had a bit of a crappy spring here in Nova Scotia, and of course we’ve been grumbling. There have been scarcely had any sunny days in May, and April wasn’t much better. Still, we have to count ourselves fortunate that we haven’t been plagued with floods, fires, tornadoes or earthquakes. Really, what right have we to grumble with all that’s going on in the world around us? There is so much for us to be grateful for.

Last week I won two books by entering online contests. Our son also graduated from university on Friday. Then too, I won on the lottery! That’s right, a whopping 5 bucks, but a win no less. There is a lot in my life to feel grateful for.

Today, as I wandered around outside, I also felt gratitude for all the new spring flowers and blossoms that are opening up. Just think, in spite of our crappy cold damp weather, they still recognize that it is spring. They’re out there doing their part without complaint.

The same could be said for us. In life, we are often plagued with difficulties. Things don’t turn out the way we want them to. We have to work harder than we’d hoped to achieve our desires, and we become disappointed when failure smacks us upside the head again. Why can’t things go along smoothly? Why can’t we get the things we want in life?

Still, there is usually something for us to look toward with gratitude. It doesn’t have to be something huge. It doesn’t have to be something as remarkable as having one of your kids graduate from university. What’s wrong with winning a book or even five dollars? What’s wrong with the sight of spring blossoms, their sweet aroma filling the air around us?

When discouragement sets in, and we’re ready to give up, don’t forget to acknowledge the good that is already there. When rejection comes my way, it’s so easy for me to forget about all the times an editor sent word that my work has been accepted. Remember that one disappointment should not take away from all the positive things that have come our way. Yet, I will admit, it is easy to forget when we’re down there in the pit of despair.

Sometimes we just have to dig our heels in further and keep on going once we’ve tried our disappointment on for size. Got to remember that it’s okay to try on the ugly things just to see what it looks like, but no way are we going to take that ugly thing home with us to keep.

So, here are a few blossoms for you and for me. A reminder that, even though things may be crappy, life goes on. We’ll still get where we want to go eventually. The apple blossoms don’t seem to realize that the weather’s been cold and dismal here in Nova Scotia. They’re still willing to show up regardless of the weather. So, how about you?

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