Shake and Bake 34: The Tickled Edition

I am so far from being a pessimist…on the contrary, in spite of my scars, I am tickled to death at life.   -Eugene O’Neill

Hulloo Hallay – I’m back today!

And glad to be so.

The greening up of the world continues, though it is currently only +4C.  The garden has been expanded. The soil is all glistening out there in the rain, waiting to be seeded with tasty beauty.  It will be a short growing season, methinks…but a season of much joy for this one who very much enjoys the digging in the dirt.

bones near Mary's Shrine at St. Peter's Abbey... Muenster SK.
bones near Mary’s Shrine at St. Peter’s Abbey… Muenster SK.

It has been a fun-filled couple of weeks.  Action packed.  Much travel.  Much talk. Much thought-full thinking  and eye-popping glories beheld.

Train rides and car rides and walks galore!

Talks with friends and family long missed.

A fantastic writing retreat with my Rough Writers that carried me almost to the finale of Sanctuary (NIP) almost…almost…




…. and so… the work continues on that front.

I’m glad to be back – back home and back online.  I’m playing a bit of catch up this week.  The routine re-emerges.  The writing has held steady (huzzah!), and the rest of the doings are slipping back into place.

The retreat came at the perfect time.  There was the writing… but there was also the walking and the weeping.  Much weeping.  In a good way.  I spent most of the 3 days outside, absorbing the sun and basking in the stillness of the Abbey and the grounds.  I took my scribble book with me, always.  I wrote.  I read.  I wept.  I sat in silence and let the chickadees land in my hair and the bunnies nibble my toes.  It was a time of re-affirmation for my self as an artist.  I celebrated the work done over the winter.  I took a good long look at what I am doing and … most importantly… I remembered why I am doing it.  Outstanding.

I hope you find some stillness this week…and in the stillness, a confidence that you are on the right track.

And now… to slip back onto the track that has carried me through the year thus far.  Let’s shake out the last coupla weeks.

The Quick Chicken (The Doings that help me with the Being):

  • Write: 12/14
  • Move: 14/14
  • Matt/Sit: 8/14
  • Music:  some singing out – loud and proud. But 0 Pree Points (my guitar gently weeps)


I aimed to take the time to SEE the world and the folks who entered my sphere… back in SK, on the train, in Sudbury, and here at home again.  To pause pause pause…suspend the moment… hear what was said…see what was meant…open and receive the words and meaning, the light and love, the sadness… all of it.  And to return the light, lend what light I can to all.

The Result:

Hmm…. I believe this intention came and went… came and went… As many do – for me, anyhow.

I’m learning.

I still find myself quite… protective of my self.  It isn’t a bad thing.  It has kept me alive, for sure.  But I do feel a shifting.  Less fear I think.  This is good.


  • – Bu the Subaru has gone to rest… meaning we have no car.  YOIK.  Blessed is the river and the boat that carries us to town and back.
  • – The time in SK cut short – because of the freaky mother’s day blizzard that killed Bu.  Meant that I didn’t see all the friends and family I wanted to… but glad so glad to have seen those of you I saw.
  • – Slight panic inside over falling behind on my MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses).  Blessed are the Moocs for existing.
  • – A funeral.  A quick and sudden leaving happened while we were away.  Thankful we returned in time to attend the service.


  • + That blessed time away at the Abbey on retreat with my Rougties – ahhhhhhhhhhhhh
  • ++ the show the show the show!  Saw Muskeg and Money in Sudbury and loved it.  Yay!  Kudos to all involved in the production and here’s hoping that North Road Theatre carries on to more and more success.
  • + Friends and family and dogs and love – oh my!
  • + Such a wonderful talk with my sister who is doing wonderful things with her life and now knows how to fix cars.  If only she were here to help put poor ole Bu back together again 😉
  • + She of the luxurious hair who I have missed sorely and all all all the faces who fill my heart to bursting.  I am so blessed with friendships – deep and sure.  I love love LOVE you guys! (and to those I missed seeing this time through – bouquets of kisses winging their way to your heart!  Next time…next time)
  • + time spent in Bay Used Books and an armload of goodies to come away with.  So many books on CRONES falling off shelves, throwing themselves into my path…hmmmm…. and poetry… and goddesses… and the Black Madonna…. much to read… much to savour.
  • + Sun and warmth and dirt to dig
  • + Being home home home – and knowing I am HOME
  • + This strange (but welcome) surety that… it will all work out… meaning… the book… the car… moneymoneymoneymoney… all of it
  • + the sun breaking through the clouds as I write this
  • + the fire in the stove warming me
  • + my smiling smiling face (and yours too – I hope)

What Worked – The Thing that needs Baking In MOST:

Letting go of expectations and enjoying the ride.

It’s funny how so many people, hearing the stories from the trip say, “Oh my gawd…what ELSE could have gone wrong?”

We do tell it for comic effect… heading out into a blizzard, having the car die on the highway, missing the train by 10 minutes, hunkering down in Foleyet for 3 days…. and then this … and then this… and then that…

But the thing is… I had a fabulous trip.  I truly truly loved it all.


Heading back to basics…. breakfast….


Amazing the things I let go of, isn’t it?  Even when I KNOW they are good for me.

Sheesh.  What is UP with that?


The Mary Rock - St Peter's Abbey
The Mary Rock – St Peter’s Abbey

May you stand out in the open

With your vision held clear and steady.

No more cringing…no more hiding.

Embrace your strength and remember

We are weaving the world



Thanks so much for stopping by.

go easy


In homage to Havi’s Friday Chickens over on the The Fluent Self — This is the place I review my week – in an attempt to track some things – like progress on my novel and… living intentionally. I shake out my week and lay it out. Let the hard burn off and the good sink in. Call it an experiment in paying attention.

Comments are cherished here. Discussion is adored. If you’d rather talk in private – drop me a line.

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Ailish Sinclair

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Finding My Bearings Now

A post-dramatic approach to breast cancer

Starting Over

Because there's never enough time to do it right the first time but there's always enough time to do it over

Ailish Sinclair

Stories and photos from Scotland

Cathy Standiford

Historical fiction, poetry, essays

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