When he was small, my youngest son had a habit of filling his pockets with treasures he encountered in his daily adventures. I didn't always understand the value he saw in his chosen objects -- really, how many rocks and sticks could one boy keep? In his eyes, though, each one was beautiful and important. Life is just like that on a larger scale, isn't it? We gather up the precious bits of our experiences and save them all to learn from and enjoy later. Perhaps you'll find a little something here that you'd like to keep in your own pockets. Thanks for visiting.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Ice Skating and a New Year

We've been enjoying a wonderful week-and-a-bit of holidays around here.  There has been a lovely mix of anticipation and excitement, happy visits and meals with dear members of our extended family who live fairly close by (and cheerful phone calls with those who don't), and relaxed moments with just the four of us spent enjoying new books, new games, and new activities.  I always really appreciate the opportunity to set aside our usual busy schedules and normal routines for a little while in favour of unhurried dinners, leisurely mornings in pjs, and opportunities to just "be" with the people who mean the most to me.

A few days ago, Matt and the boys took a drive by a park in our neighbourhood on their way home from getting haircuts, to see if the outdoor rink there was ready for skating.  They saw a man flooding the ice, which made us feel optimistic as the four of us returned to the park with our skates later that afternoon.  Sure enough, there was a fresh new ice surface glistening in the sunlight as we approached the rink on foot, and the four teenaged boys who were there before us were just getting ready to leave.  We had the whole rink to ourselves for the next hour, and it was glorious to glide so freely over the smooth surface in the fresh, cold air, creating graceful arcs and swirls in pretty patterns as our skate blades left their mark on the frozen glass.


As we get ready to say goodbye to 2013 today, it strikes me that the end of one year and the beginning of a new one is quite like the ice that afternoon.  The moments and feelings and lessons of the past are layered one over the other, forming a solid base of wisdom and understanding that we can stand on, while a new year stretches pristinely before us, a fresh, untouched layer upon which we are free to create unique and beautiful designs.  Seeing 2014 in this way, with all of its many possibilities, fills me with hope and exhilaration.

New Year's Eve would not feel right to me without some quiet reflection on the significant moments of the past twelve months.  In looking back through my posts here from the past year, there are several that stand out as favourites for me; they reflect the experiences and revelations that have helped me to grow as an individual, a mom, a recipe developer, and a writer.  These are some of the moments that touched my heart, filled me with excitement or a sense of accomplishment, and made me laugh out loud.  I hope you'll enjoy reading through them again as I have today.

Reflections on Life and Family


Robin Reflection

Autumn Stories


Best Loved Recipes

Are you surprised to see that the most visited recipes on my site this year all involved chocolate?  No?  Me neither.  ;) 

Banana Split Freezer Pops

Chocolate Coconut Layer Bars

Chocolate Banana Pancakes

Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

Comic Relief

Give up! (But Don't)

Natural Consequence

All in the Name of Science

Twilight Zone

Thank you to each and every one of you who have come to this space to share these moments with me in the past year. Your presence and your thoughtful comments have meant so much; they've encouraged me, taught me, and made me smile.  I hope that 2014 will be a year filled with personal happiness for each of you.  May you glide out onto your fresh ice surface with joy; may you navigate the bumpy patches with grace and hope, knowing that they will make you somehow stronger and wiser, and may you bravely create your own beautiful designs that reflect the truth in your heart.  Happy New Year!


  1. Wishing you a very happy New Year, Lisa and all the best for 2014!

    1. Thanks, Summer! I wish the same to you and your beautiful family, too! :)