Posted by: Kate | December 22, 2014

And Here We Be

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Me. In my element of waves and rocks and beach. Walking with my guys, ever watching. Ever composing in my mind poems and essays and scrapbook pages. Content. Amazed at how we got here, this little family. Awed by the journey.

Reflective these days, before the rest of the family appears for the festivities. Hoping you are all well, and feeling both love and loved.

Posted by: Kate | December 17, 2014

Musings on Reading

My whole family has been sick this past week, and I’ve been reading and knitting. Thanks to my Kobo I can even do both at the same time!

As I’ve been reading I’ve been noticing how I can tell what decade a popular fiction novel was written based on the descriptions of the main characters and their situations. Smokers as the lead man? Definitely pre 1995. Women wearing nylons? Also pre 1995. Desperately searching for a pay phone? Pre 2000. Board shorts at the beach? After 2000.

I find it fun to see how, although the underlying themes of fiction so rarely change, the trappings change so drastically, and can so quickly seem quaint, or out-moded, or simply strange.

Posted by: Kate | December 11, 2014

On the Shore

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I love that our beaches are not a wide expanse of tame sand. Those beaches are nice and fun to visit, but our local beaches have a wealth of character and treasure that sand beaches don’t offer. I especially like the giant tree trunks that wash up on shore. Who knows where they fell in and began their ocean journey, but often enough one ends up on a local beach, stranded at high tide and left to change the beach scape once more. It makes every beach walk an adventure.

Posted by: Kate | December 7, 2014

Moments

The moments of the week-end are like memory snapshots – frames I centre in my mind. Driving in the truck with my guys, all jamming out to music. Putting up the Christmas tree. Turning a heel on a sock. Laughing at the beach. Watching my guys automatically search for beach glass for me as we walk. Life is lived so fully in those moments, each one grabs at my heart in some way.

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Posted by: Kate | December 1, 2014

Traditions

“Mom”, said the text I got on Friday, “you know it’s almost the first right? You know you need to get the stuff for my calendar, right?”

We just never know what little things are going to become traditions. The simple advent calendar I made Bushboy the year he was two was created to last a couple of years, because maybe I’d make him a new, better one. I just knew I didn’t want one of the cardboard ones from the store, I wanted something we could put more than just candy in.

Now 12 years since we first hung the simple felt count-down calendar, it has moved into the status of a tradition. And so it still hangs, filled with candies and some empty pockets for notes leading to special treats throughout the month.

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I didn’t have traditions in my house around Christmas. So I really love that this one, in all its simplicity, has stuck. What simple traditions does your house have?

Posted by: Kate | November 18, 2014

Salmon Stream

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The rivers of Vancouver Island are birth rivers for one particular creature – the Pacific Salmon. Every fall, thousands of island school children make their way to a local river to be taught the cycle of life of the salmon. It is a rite of passage, and one I still remember.

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Now as an adult I appreciate more the difficult and amazing journey the salmon make. I also appreciate the work of local volunteer groups to make sure our rivers are clean enough for the salmon to return and spawn.

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Walking a salmon spawning river in the late fall is an experience for all the senses. You can see the large fish swimming up the river, sometimes in water so shallow their fins stick out above the water line. You can hear the splashes as they work their way against a current and through the rocks and ripples. But most of all, you can smell the rich scent of decay, as the dying bodies of salmon, spent with spawning, litter the banks and shallows of the river. It is an immersion into nature at its most complete.

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Posted by: Kate | November 15, 2014

Serenity

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This is what grounds me, what brings me my peace. Any time of year, any type of weather. Since I was a young child, the ocean and beaches of Vancouver Island have provided me with a calm and sense of belonging I have not found anywhere else. When I stand here, even for only 5 minutes on my way to somewhere else, my day is better. My worries are less, and my mind is quieter. This is my serenity. I sometimes forget, but my body and mind never do.  It’s always the right place for me. Breathe deeply. Yes.

Posted by: Kate | November 12, 2014

November Days

Sometimes in November we get perfect fall weather – crisp, cold and bright. This week promises just that, and yesterday Mr. Kate and I snuck out for a walk along the river.

If you live anywhere on Vancouver Island, except for maybe in the two largest cities, then your life is somewhat attuned to the rivers of the island. They go from a trickle in the summer to flooding in the fall and winter rains, altering landscapes and affecting homes. Here in Campbell River we have our namesake river, the Campbell, along with many other smaller rivers. Always fun to walk along.

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Walks like this can’t help but rejuvenate me, making me feel more centred, more calm and more content. All good things!

Posted by: Kate | November 9, 2014

Fall Colour

Fall on Vancouver Island is an unusual time. The nights get darker, the rains pick up, the wind swirls. But the landscape – it becomes more vibrant than it was in August, when things are dusty and dry. Unlike the rest of the country, we don’t go brown and dead in the winter, before the snows come. Instead, we green up. Sure, the deciduous trees have lost their leaves, but the grass is long and thick and green, the evergreens glisten with their dark green boughs, and the hedges and ferns and bushes glow in their many green shades.

The garden also still has colour, as the last flowers fade into the early nights. It is one of my favourite times of year to get out in between rain showers and take photos.

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Posted by: Kate | October 29, 2014

Knitting Commitments

With Fall zooming by I am having to seriously think about what I am committing to for holiday knitting. Two pairs of socks for my mum, no question. Two more pairs of socks for people at work. Dish cloths of course.

Hats? Scarves? So hard to decide. I have one other project for sure but can’t say here what it is.

Luckily I made a lot of jam this summer, so I think food gifts will be featured. And two calendars.

But this was about knitting commitments, so …

four pairs of socks; two scarves; one mystery gift; and dishcloths.

I can do this.

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