Friday, 7 March 2014

Sleigh Rides in Winter

Winter is not all snow banks, white outs, closed schools and shoveling.  Once a winter our small Mennonite Church travels to the home of Gail Veitch and Elvin Martin for a most enjoyable day.
Sleigh Ride

Elvin Martin raises Mules and owns a number of buggies, cutters and wagons which he uses in parades, weddings and for the pure joy of friends and neighbours.

Gail and Elvin also run Bed and Breakfast at Chesley Lake a B&B that is part of
Elvin Martin's Farm and Mules
This year we took our granddaughters their cousin and Great John.  It was Great John’s first winter sleigh ride.  Mother made him wear the bright orange hat that you see in the pictures.
Elvin Martin's Farm and Mules
Following a wonderful afternoon of grooming the mules, riding in the sleigh or wagon, tobogganing down the hills or tables games inside, we all gathered for a pot luck of finger foods.
Sleigh Ride
 A great intergenerational activity for either a family or church group.

People talking over coffee

Visit Bed and Breakfast at Chesley Lake if you are planning to visit Grey County and are looking for a wonderful rustic place to stay.
Sleigh Ride

Grandma Snyder
                                                          ©2013-2014 twosnydergirls

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Kale, Brussel Sprout Salad

 Vacation Salad

We are on our yearly winter vacation and within five days of arriving I am tired of restaurants and the boring salads that are offered.  This is a crisis because we are here for a month!
Brussel Sprouts
 Luckily we are in a Villa with a full kitchen so off to the Piggly Wiggly we went where we purchased fresh kale and brussel sprouts and the rest of our salad ingredients.
We oven roast brussel sprouts in coconut oil and balsamic vinaigrette.  Rather than sprinkling the brussel sprouts once they are on the roasting pan we mix the vinaigrette and oil in a bowl.  Prior to this we have prepared the sprouts and placed them back in the refrigerator.  
Oven roasted brussel sprouts
By placing cold sprouts into the bowl of vinaigrette and oil each the oil adheres to each sprout and they roast to a golden brown.  You can eat them hot as a side vegetable or place in the refrigerator to add to salads.
Kale Salad with brussel sprouts



  • Kale washed, cleaned and steamed for 50 seconds in the microwave.  If the kale is still tough kneed it until you achieve that bright green colour and soft texture
  • Tomatoes diced
  • Cucumber diced
  • Avocado diced
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Sweet peppers diced
  • Chopped nuts
  • Turkey bacon cooked crisp and crumbled
  • As a dressing we use a little of the balsamic vinaigrette.
 The cornmeal muffin is from a mix that we found at the Piggly Wiggly Pamela's Cornbread & Muffin Mix Gluten-Free and Non-Dairy.  If was easy and delicious I highly recommend this mix.

Grandma Snyder
©2013-2014 twosnydergirls

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Young Love In Our Senior Years

 Have you ever watched young people in the throes of their first experience with love?
two seniors in love
There is something soft and magical in the way they touch each other.  How they look, really look into each other’s eyes.  Seeking out a love to equal theirs in their lover’s eyes.

It draws you in and I experience joy in those moments.  Joy for the young couple and for our world that such pure love remains alive.

I have experienced many of these moments of late watching Mom (78) and John (82) be together with each other.

Approximately three years ago not wanting to be alone after life separated them permanently from their partners, both Mom and John engaged in a moment of harmless dreaming.  They went online at Christian Mingle.  Their choice of online web dating site was driving by their Christians beliefs.  They created profiles, and waited.

Mom endured nine months of ‘pings’ from men who were either too young or where something just did not feel right about them.  Then when she was just about to give up John contacted her.

two seniors in love
John on the other hand found Mom’s profile within days of signing up on Christian Mingle.

Both wanting to be cautious and very much aware of the ease at which people misrepresent themselves for malicious purposes corresponded via email for almost a year with an ever increasing  frequency until they were in contact daily. 
Wanting to get to know each other in a more personal way they started communicating via phone once a week and this then lead to their daily practice of have coffee and devotionals together via Skype.

Now totally confident that each was who they presented themselves to be John took the relationship to the next level he planned a visit with Mom. 

Mom had been open with us about her online relationship and John had been with his children yet Paul and I felt compelled to be present the day that John arrived for his visit.
Since that visit I often find myself watching them and being drawn into the joy of their ‘young love’.  

I give thanks every day that the internet brought John and Mom together.  They are both happier and will live longer more engaged lives because of it.

Only God, the internet and a belief you are never too old for love brought Mom and John together because 11 hours, an international boarder and 677 miles/1089.53 kilometer separate them.

As they continue to age we will continue to support their traveling to visit each other at least twice a year for extended visits.  When apart they will pick up their practice of being together via Skype, ending each day with “I love you”.

Grandma Snyder


Monday, 3 March 2014

Is There Buried Treasure?

Is there really buried treasure to be found?  Yes there is and spending your life, head down searching for it comes at a cost!  You miss what is happening all around you in that same moment.
Man with metal detector on beach
Today I watched a man, head down, head phones on listening for the telltale ping of metal under the sand - he look bored and he totally missed the treasure that was above the sand.  The sights,  sounds, smells all around him.
Man with metal detector on beach
The damp pleasant feel of wind against his skin.  The pulsing roar of the waves that is the heart beat of the Atlantic Ocean as it propels itself against the shoreline.  
Waves on Atlantic Ocean
The sound of gulls and doves as they soar over head or wait on the beach.  The smiles and words of greeting as people meet each other on the beach.  The joy of children running and playing in the sand.
I know that place of desire, the allure of the hunt and I know the overwhelming anguish when the realization of moments wasted, forever gone descends.

When I watched the beach it was the children that embraced the moment fully.  They played with abandon, took in all of the sights, and freely sought out wonder in every shell and stone on the beach. 

They were unencumbered by worries for tomorrow, and the regrets of yesterday that rob us of these moments of joy and wonder.

Is there really buried treasure, yes and is it buried above ground for all to find if we dig through all of the things that prevent us from being mindful to look around and see the world we are walking in.

Grandma Snyder
 ©2013 -2015 twosnydergirls

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