Spring Gillard

Fuming Rights

I came home late from class last night and choked my way through a hallway of smoke to get to my suite. My neighbour is a chain smoker. At the Annual General Meeting, the owners voted down a bylaw that would have banned smoking anywhere in the building, including in individual suites. I should say […]

Sunday Thoughts

All men’s miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone.

– Blaise Pascal

Seems like a very good quote for a Sunday. I was a French lit major and read Pascal’s Pensées, in French, during my undergrad. I loved the collection by the French philosopher back […]

Putting Energy to Good Use?

I got my Toshiba VCR/DVD player and my little JVC CD/cassette player fixed over Christmas. Yes, I’m a Luddite. I don’t want a digital box, I don’t want a PVR, despite all the strong-arming going on by the service providers. I don’t need to watch more TV than I already do. Although, […]

All Weather Words

There is talk lately of retiring the word sustainability and shifting to resiliency. Merriam-Webster defines resilience as:


: the capability of a strained body to recover its size and shape after deformation caused especially by compressive stress


: an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change

Canadian ecologist C.S. […]

Impermanent Culture

I’m interested in linguistic shifts. We are in one of those moments right now with the word sustainability. More on that in a future post. First, an earlier language shift, one that will be important to that discussion.

In the 1960s, Austrian farmer Sepp Holzer introduced permaculture; the concept was developed and popularized by Australians, […]

Much Ado About Teflon

I was at Winners/Home Sense with my friend Megan a couple weeks ago and spotted a lovely red pan, made in Italy. I am trying to replace all of my Teflon pans. I did some research and found a good product review list on that I carry around with me. This one, called Tecna, […]

Cypress Composts!

I was cross country skiing at Cypress last week – on one of those gorgeous blue sky days. I took a cocoa and muffin break in the Hollyburn Lodge and when I was done, tossed my cup and wrapper into the nearest receptacle. Later, on a lunch break, I overheard the cashier […]

Three Sisters Farm

As you might suspect, the name, Three Sisters Farm, was inspired by the Mayan (and other indigenous peoples) tradition of planting corn, squash and beans together. The three companions nourish and support each other. The beans wind their way up the tall corn stalks, stabilizing the corn plants and fixing nitrogen in […]

Pizza Pizza

My friend Linda invited me over for a pizza making party. She is an amazing cook, once very active in the local Slow Food chapter and she’s Italian, so she was clearly qualified to be leading this cook off. We were going to make blue cheese and fig jam pizzas, a recipe […]

New Things

A friend of mine gave me a Swedish dishcloth in my Christmas goodie package. Who knew there was such a thing? On the tag, I read: “This marvelously absorbent dish cloth from Sweden is a wonder in the kitchen.” Apparently after using it I would never return to sponges or old rags. I […]