Sunday, September 30, 2012

whoooops! (fall)

Holy smokes, I did not notice how things slowed down over the summer. In July and August and even early September, I could carry everything I needed to remember and do in one pocket. Now I need a knapsack with extra compartments and tie-ons, and I'm cramming every corner full. Fortunately, I am remembering my amazing energy, creativity and optimism, and putting those into full gear.

Work at the office has geared back up. Fall programs have started up for the seniors and for the children, and everything is going well. I have some new staff members on my team, and it's great getting to know them, and making sure they are getting what they need for a successful start. Over the summer I interviewed for the job that I have been filling for 4 and a half years on an acting basis, and now it is mine permanently. Hooray! I don't have to wonder, every December, if I will be coming back to this work that I have grown to love. I am so happy, I might even re-organize the file drawers in my office. Whoah!

Things are getting busy at our church. I was elected to the Church Board in the Spring, and have just assumed the role of Board Secretary. We are preparing several events for the fall, including work towards transformation. As a congregation, we are moving towards a new, sustainable shape for our faith community. We lack the resources (people and money) to keep on going at our current location, just us. It's likely we'll join up with another nearby congregation to take a new shape altogether for both groups. I'm helping with the meeting and talking and discerning around that. By Christmas 2013, we should be on our way to something new, so this will be an exciting year. In the meantime, we continue our many ministries. I'm still leading the sandwich ministry group, making and delivering sandwiches to the downtown east side once a month. We are also preparing to host the homeless shelter again in November, this time at a new location, so I'll be driving out to Port Coquitlam a few frosty mornings in November, to make and serve breakfast and put away the beds and clean up after our guests go out for the day.

Shoreline Writers is moving towards publishing its 12th chapbook. It's hard to believe we have created so many books. Each one is a snapshot of where we have been as writers and poets that year. I am proud of all of them. I have just two poems for our 12th book, but I am helping to edit the work of 4 other members, so I feel like I am contributing to the success of the whole publication. I have been invited to be on a panel to discuss publishing at the Port Moody Library in October:

Get Published! Advice from the Experts
Port Moody City Hall Galleria
Saturday, October 20, 2012
Admission is free but you have to reserve a seat. Call 604-469-4577

A couple of days before that, Rosemary Nowicki and I will be performing our spoken word works at a fundraiser for the Elizabeth Bagshaw Women's Health Clinic.

Party Like it's 1988
Heritage Hall, Vancouver
Thursday, October 18, 2012
Tickets are $30. There food and a silent auction and a cash bar.
For more info about Elizabeth Bagshaw Clinic go here.
For tickets go here.

And, I have joined a choir. Here's info about that!

And finally, Andy's Mom's apartment has sold, so we have a couple of weeks to move everything out and have it ready for the new owners who will move in very soon.

Life is good. There's lots in my knapsack right now. I'll try to make time to pull bits out of the pack from time to time, spread them out on the floor and write a blog post about them. In the meantime, if I don't call you, call me!

question: what's in your pocket/satchel/pack this month?

mompoet - I love to go a-wandering along the mountain track...

Saturday, September 15, 2012

at the lake with the ladies

It's our annual ladies away weekend. This year, we decided to come to Samish Lake, near Bellingham, Washington. We are in a lovely lakeside house that we rented for a few days. We have been hiking, swimming, cooking, eating, reading, sitting in the hot tub, playing cards and laughing.

Last night my friends surprised me with a much-belated 50th birthday celebration. They decorated the house with streamers and balloons and served supper with an "anything but a cup" drinking rule, so I had to drink wine from a gravy boat. That was fun.

We are having a luxurious time, reconnecting after a busy summer, and remembering how good it is to spend time together in a beautiful place.

question: where do you like to go? and with whom do you go?

mompoet - happy

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

warm beets and beet greens salad

While we were visiting with Pam and Dave on the Sunshine Coast, we got some beets at the Sechelt Farmers' Market. I used them to make this positively yummy lunch:

Here's how I made it:

a bunch of beet green leaves, washed and torn into small pieces
chopped red onion
chopped yellow pepper
coarsely grated carrot
ripe cherries, pitted and cut into chunks
handful of sliced filberts, toasted first in a skillet and allowed to cool
sprinkle of goat cheese crumbles
olive oil and balsamic vinegar (4:1 ratio) with salt and pepper to taste
cooked beets

Start first by putting the beets on to cook. I boil them in their skin, then slip the skin off at the end. Beets take a long time to boil - allow at least 30 minutes, even for smallish ones.

While the beets boil, you can prepare the other ingredients. Combine the veggies, nuts and cheese in a bowl big enough to allow for tossing. When the beets are ready, add the dressing to the salad and toss to coat the veggies with dressing. Then lay the still-warm beet slices on top.

It's very good, I promise.

I used filberts because that's what I could find at the tiny general store in Garden Bay. You could use other nuts or seeds. I used the cherries because I wanted something sweet. Other fresh or dried fruit would work too. I used the vegetables that we had bought at the market. I think you could vary this lots of ways. Make sure you keep the beet greens and the beets or you might have to give the salad a different name.

question: do you like beets?

mompoet - I love beets