Pentecost 18

Hello Blog Friends and Happy Thanksgiving!

      Wow, Thanksgiving seems to have crept up on me as it seems only a week or so ago we were celebrating the Labour Day holiday However, looking at the changing leaves outside, watching the flocks of geese flying south and needing to layer on lots of warm pullovers, it is easy to see that harvest season is here 😊

       Around Thanksgiving last year the Day Camp committee hosted a lovely online day retreat for Team Alumni. Jenna Smith was our speaker and in between her excellent reflections we all baked a loaf of Challah. This year we decided to focus on an Advent Study program for the Alumni and hope to plan a Lenten day retreat in 2023, although I still might make a challah this weekend in remembrance of the many years I had the privilege of baking the large braided loaf that decorated the altar at St. Matthew’s Church for Harvest Thanksgiving.

      The next event on the Day Camps calendar will be our Autumn Team Gathering and that will be happening next Friday evening. Sadly, there have not been too many registrations and at our meeting this past Tuesday evening the Day Camp committee spent some time discussing whether or not Team Gatherings are yet another casualty of the pandemic. We have considered returning to in-person TGs but interestingly it seems the alumni in other provinces are the ones most interested in getting together and so to exclude them would be a hard choice. There is the possibility of a hybrid gathering but it can be quite dreary for someone alone in an apartment in Halifax or Vancouver to join online and see a whole bunch of people in my living room scarfing down a tasty supper. I think the jury is still out on a decision, but this Friday’s TG is going ahead, even if the turnout is small.

    Of course the Team Gathering situation was only one item on Tuesday’s meeting agenda. We also tackled more of the nitty gritty grant application work, discussed the upcoming Season 4 of the Day Camps Cook-Along, Alumni Advent Program and Carols & Cocoa and also spent time looking at the 2023 Program Manual, thinking of possible people to do the editing of several sections that are still up for grabs 😊.

  As is always the case, a lot of my own work on subsequent days this week has consisted of various types of follow-up from the meeting. It was SO exciting, also on Tuesday, to receive the new logo from Josiah!!! Once again he has done such a special job of designing something really special and I was able to screen share it with the other committee members who were equally pleased with it. Yay Josiah!!!!

With the logo in hand, I was able, Wednesday morning, to send out the flier describing the 2023 program “Something to Celebrate!”. I had the draft all ready to go and so just had to paste in the logo and hit send. It was important to get this out to a number of pre-pandemic contacts, as we were also anxious to promote to host communities, the Cook-Along and Carols & Cocoa.

The wording of the answers to the grant application questions has also taken up a big chunk of time as well as finalising the wording of the begging letter regarding fundraising for “Support of the Day Camp director” as, if we cannot prove that 50% of the Day Camp budget is already committed, the application will be rejected and all our work will have been done in vain. Sigh.

  In order to move ahead (albeit slowly) with the eternal editing of past blog posts I have resorted to doing that work in the evenings, thus sidelining the stack of knitting projects that still need to be completed by Christmas. AGH!! However, I’m happy to report that I have finished the sweet little pullover I mentioned in my last post and have cast on a vest for another small person 😊 . I also picked up from our neighbourhood yarn store 2 sets of double-pointed knitting needles in readiness for continuing the sock marathon as Thomason had chewed one needle of the set I was using and another one snapped in half from wear and tear so at least I can now move on to the next pair once the garments for “littles” are completed.

  Every day I also make some time for garden work, especially now that the season is winding down. I love gardening and the prospect of the coming 6 months when I turn in my rake and hoe for a snow shovel, does not appeal 😊, I have ordered a few Allium bulbs to plant and also have some hyacinth bulbs that I saved from last spring, but bulb planting cannot occur until after the last of the leaves are down, which is still a few weeks away.

  This morning, although it is currently only 7ºC, I also cleaned the exterior of several ground floor windows. The huge window cleaning takes place every spring but I do like to take a last chance to just improve the outside of some windows before the frosts set in.

  Thankfully I’m now indoors and fully launched into this Saturday’s “Bake”. On today’s list- Oak leaf-shaped shortbread, Sandwich loaves, 2 types of biscotti (the first of my Christmas stash 😊) and a pan of muffins, this last item making a perfect segue into “October Muffins” episode 2!

Banana Oatmeal Muffins

  •    1 cup ripe banana, mashed
  •    ½ cup melted butter or oil
  •    1/3 cup sugar
  •    1 tsp. salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup unbleached flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. soda
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Line muffin tins or grease well. Combine the banana, butter, sugar and egg, beat well. Whisk together the dry ingredients (and nuts, if using) and stir into the banana mixture. Do not over mix, just moisten everything. Spoon into prepared muffin tins and bake for 15 minutes in a preheated 350ºF oven. Makes 12 muffins.

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