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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.

They have all gone now

I laid in bed the other night, waiting, knowing it was the last night of our visit; the last night of my children returning to the nest so I could pretend they had never left.

I know they are meant to leave, are meant to stretch their wings so the air can lift them from the branch, but part of my “mother soul” is stuck on repeat and I still want to tuck them into bed and hear their stories and lean in for the whispers of what matters to them and fall asleep knowing they are safe.

Like planting a garden

It is so easy to focus on what goes—and is going—wrong in society. With our instant news feed, it is virtually impossible not to be aware of the weakening of democracy.

What I tend to forget, when I shudder at the political failings in our own country, is that “progress is never permanent, will always be threatened, must be redoubled, restated and reimagined if it is to survive” (the words of Zadie Smith, a British writer penning her thoughts on optimism and despair).

My kingdom for a dump of snow

All my daughters are with me in Nova Scotia for a lovely family reunion visit. Of course, now it is in the past tense, because Thea had to return to Alberta after a much too brief a visit.

My four grandchildren are here with their mommies and I am in heaven.

Or I thought I was.

We may have made a wrong turn, because it is so hot, unbearably hot, stifling-hot, suffocating-hot, sauna-hot, not-enough-superlatives-to-describe-hot.

Some things are just perfect as is

I love Jason Bateman.

Well, I don't love love him but I love the character he is in all his movies, and I like to think (and I do so with reasonable certainty) that he is cast as the dependable good guy because he is just that.

So when the director shouts out “Action,” Jason merely has to be himself.

There are so few things we can count on these days—and we need to be able to depend that some things won't change without our bidding. For example, Diet Coke.

When I was drinking Diet Coke, which I'm not. Well, not that often. Hardly ever (but I digress).

'It's A Beautiful Day In The Neighbourhood'

I was a fan of Mr. Rogers, even when I was old enough not to be.

I was thirteen when Mr. Rogers hit the air. I had grown up with the likes of Captain Kangaroo and Mr. Green Jeans with Mr. Moose and Dancing Bear who hit the airwaves in 1955 and ran for thirty-eight seasons. And I looked up, way up to see The Friendly Giant and his comrades Rusty the Rooster and Jerome the Giraffe, while the giant welcomed me with his recorder playing Early One Morning, a song I can still sing.

'Man in Motion' still is inspiring to all

I heard Rick Hansen on CBC Radio the other morning when I climbed into my car. He was a guest on “The Current” with Anna-Maria Tremonti.

When I turned the radio on, before I heard him discuss the rights of the disabled and before Anna-Maria mentioned his name, I knew it was Rick Hansen, recognizing his gentle, kind voice filled with the sound of caring in it—and I was glad to be reunited with Rick as if we were friends from long ago bumping into one another on the street.

Slowly learning the mantra of success

I confess that I'm not particularly fond of cooking, though on some occasions such as Christmas and Thanksgiving, I've been known to put on a decent spread and most of it quite edible.

To the best of my knowledge, I haven't killed anyone off with my culinary skill (or lack thereof) and there have been no lawsuits or court appearances. I didn't have to flee the country and assume an alias, as well as wear a wig and Groucho Marx glasses.

Bless all the children

I am in a state of emotional rage and I'm struggling to focus on the simplest of tasks—tasks as simple as flossing or walking.

I can't think straight and all I can think about is the images of children taken from their mothers at the U.S.-Mexican border, oftentimes removed with lies to garner co-operation, babies and toddlers torn from their mothers.

Love the art of Marjorie McDow

I have friends visiting from Dawson City, the kind of people you meet and feel instantly as if you have known them your whole life.

So off we went the other day to Fishermen's Cove on the Eastern Passage of Nova Scotia, a small historic village on the Atlantic Shore just a short drive from Halifax.