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Wendi Stewart - Wendi with an 'eye'

Wendi lives in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley, but the farm on Rainy River in Crozier will always be her home. MEADOWLARK, her debut novel released September 15, is published by NeWest Press of Edmonton. She is the mother of four daughters who did the unforgivable: they grew up. http://wendistewart.writersresidence.com

City life just isn’t for me

I’m back in the city again, waiting for grandson #2 to arrive.

It’s an exciting time, for sure. Yet I want him to stay put for just a few more days until we wrestle all the items off the “to do” list.

But the truth is, no one ever is completely ready for a first baby to arrive. The thoughts of will I survive labour, and do I know how to be a good mother and will he be okay, all swirl around and tend to occupy every cell of the brain.

Come into my parlour

I like to stay in B&Bs when I travel; more specifically, B&Bs of the historic kind, where you leave the current world behind and you sleep inside walls that could tell a story.

Walls that have seen lives come and go and stand firm against change.

Some communities are rich with B&Bs and others not so much. I’m not sure where Fort Frances falls in on the supply of B&Bs.

I’ve stayed in B&Bs that are modern, contemporary spaces—an exotic oasis from the chaos. But the ones that call to me are the historic gems.

The magic of wind-dried laundry

There are many entries on my list of things that please me—my list of favourites, from frogs singing at night to my beloved dandelions in May with their magically-curling stems, floating perfectly still on the surface of a lake (preferably Rainy Lake) on a hot summer day, bushes filled with berries, and the sound of a pileated woodpecker hammering out his happy tune.

But today, on a windy sunny summer day, my favourite of favourites is fresh sheets just off the clothesline and on to my bed; sheets smoothed tight and pressed flat with my hands.

The power of being quiet

I’m an introvert.

I pretend I’m not; have covered up that truth pretty well over the years—often over-compensating for the quiet I love best while keeping hidden my need for silence and alone time.

My generation were told early on in life that only the bold would succeed, pointing to the likes of Dale Carnegie and his self-improvement strategies and the empire that Tony Robbins has built on “selling” self to those introverts who think they should be extraverts.

The power of being quiet

I’m an introvert.

I pretend I’m not; have covered up that truth pretty well over the years—often over-compensating for the quiet I love best while keeping hidden my need for silence and alone time.

My generation were told early on in life that only the bold would succeed, pointing to the likes of Dale Carnegie and his self-improvement strategies and the empire that Tony Robbins has built on “selling” self to those introverts who think they should be extraverts.

Saying good-bye to my pony

I said good-bye to my pony last week—a task I had been procrastinating about for months, maybe even a year.

Just a few weeks ago, we were commenting on Forewarned’s rotund belly and sleek coat, and wondering if he might be able to do another winter (because winters are very hard for him at his age).

He must have heard us and took matters into his own hands, or hooves if you prefer. Long story short, Forewarned has been laid to rest to the right of the garden, just next to Stinky, Samantha’s cat who left us last August.

Out of sight, out of mind

Homelessness. We who have homes tend to think of homelessness as an inconvenience to witness, sometimes, if not always, judging those who live on the street, classifying them as lazy losers, an eyesore in the downtown areas of our cities. I wonder how we would adjust our point of view if the world slid out from under us for even just one night and we had to exist on the street without comfort or shelter.

Live simply to be my new motto

I was looking at a magazine in a waiting room the other day.

I should preface this tale with the fact I’m not a particularly good waiting room-type person. If I was a student of waiting, I would require remedial assistance, with no awards of any kind in my future—not even the kind of award that recognizes I showed up (participation I think they call it).

Though in all fairness to me, I’m much better at waiting than I used to be, so I suppose there is always hope.

Raise mug to coffee shops

I was thinking about coffee shops the other day as I found a corner to tuck myself into in my favourite sanctuary and put on my headphones to listen to Yiruma play the piano in my ears while I created images with words on my paper.

I pretended it was my Thea playing the piano; that she sat right behind me at a grand piano while I worked. And her music kept my thoughts flowing, instead of where she really is, far too many miles away.

Henry Ford had it right

I used to work for a lawyer for a good many years, and aside from preparing wills and dealing with corporate paperwork, my job was administering the financial details of estates.

And as such, I had regular dealings with financial institutions.

As a result of these “regular dealings,” I had a large sign on the wall of my office that clearly read in large black letters: I HATE BANKS!