Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Maggie Turner Answers 5 Questions

Not long after I first learned that people were keeping journals online, I came across the webpage of John Bailey (Old Grey Poet), who lived in Britain with his partner Graham and their grand Maine Coon cat. I followed John's blog and when after several years he decided he'd had enough, he stopped writing there. Maggie Turner and I, faithful readers, have been missing him ever since, but at least we have each other! Maggie's journal has been at the top of my reading list for many years now.

When I discovered her webpage, she was living with her husband and their cat in Ontario's lake country in a house heated by a masonry stove. They recently moved to the city, into a small house named Mist Cottage in memory of their cat, whose life came to an end at the same time as the couple's country life. They are still adjusting to the changes, still unpacking, and Maggie is still approaching every detail of her days methodically, with great care and practicality.

One of the things I like about Maggie's blog is that she writes about everything she (they, often) is tackling, so that I feel I am getting an actual taste of her daily life. I admire her ambition when it comes to repairing and renovating; nothing seems to daunt her. She diligently does her research and then takes the first step and carries on till completion (while I, in comparison, often don't take that first step because the number of them seems overwhelming). She is frugal as well; money is never spent carelessly, although quality is a priority. Maggie shares those kinds of struggles and that keeps me in her corner, rooting for the pair of them as they march thoughtfully through their life together.

1. What flowers, if any, will you plant this spring?
I want to plant scarlet runner beans, which are not flowers exactly, because you can eat the beans.  The flowers on the scarlet runner beans are so pretty growing along the fence. I can look at them out my kitchen window in the morning all summer long; the colour hits me like sugar in my morning coffee.
I want to plant nasturtiums, because I love the leaves as much as the flowers, and I can eat the flowers, but I never do.
I want to plant borage for the bees, and because I find it beautiful.

2. Do you have a #1 must-see, can't-wait-till-later blog right now (not a relative or close friend, though it can be themed and does not have to be a personal blog; of course, my blog is disqualified so my feelings cannot be hurt -- hee!), and why does it keep you coming back for more?
A must-see blog!  Truthfully, all of the blogs I follow are must-see blogs, if I know there is a new entry up I am chomping at the bit to read it.  The most-read blog would be "The Walden Effect", only because Anna and Mark both post daily.

3. What are your other common stopping places on the Internet? Please list up to five and give me their urls. I'm sure you've got at least that many.
My most visited stopping places are the weather web sites.  I check them as soon as I get up in the morning.  I favour both:
Environment Canada    and 
I check for new blog entries every morning.
Frequently I am using my account at to work on my genealogy book, and checking to see what the market is doing in my areas of interest, which is how I found the little house we live in, and our Camps, two plots of land we purchased for camping.
The rest of my time online is spent randomly researching ideas, like how to remove mildew from a trailer canopy, trying to reap the benefit of someone else's experience.

4. When you go to a potluck meal, do you have a best dish that you usually take? If so, what is it and do you share your recipe? If so, please do.
Ah, the potluck meal.  I used to love potluck meals.  I think the last time I participated in a potluck meal I took along Guacamole and corn chips, that was over 23 years ago, I don't remember what recipe I used.  These days we make Guacamole by adding tangy salsa to mashed avocado, it is quick and very tasty.
I stopped going to potluck meals because I found that if I relaxed and enjoyed myself, I had a tendency to try one of the tasty dishes.  I have anaphylaxis, which I acquired suddenly in 1984 (quite the year for such a development, shades of George Orwell).  I am deathly allergic to a preservative that is used in a lot of packaged foods, and is even used in the packaging itself.  Eating at a potluck dinner is like playing Russian Roulette.  I love life, I don't eat at potluck dinners, no matter how sure the cooks are about what is in their food; I lived through one mistaken memory about ingredients and won't chance another.
Since all that is left to enjoy at potluck dinners is the excellent company, I do focus on that, and that is where my problem lies.  I relax, I enjoy, I forget vigilance, pop a lovely looking bit of food into my mouth, and there I am, wondering if I am going to make it, sometimes heading for the hospital just in case.  Not fun.  The other down side of potluck dinners for me is that when I don't eat people want to know why.  I explain.  They feel bad for me, bless their souls.  Not fun for me, or them.  I try to focus on social events that do not involve food, and I am here to tell you that there aren't many events like that... humans love their food!

5. What's your idea of a fabulous holiday? Is it one you have already taken, or one you hope to take before you die?
My dream holiday is to travel with my little travel trailer, across Canada, visiting people I've met online, distant relatives I've only corresponded with, Museums, Archival Libraries, Music Festivals, National and Provincial Parks, and towns where my ancestors and distant relatives settled.  I'd like to journal the whole experience.  Then I would like to come home to my cozy little house.  I hope to live long enough, and stay healthy enough, to see Attila retire and have the opportunity to follow our dream.

And there you have it Kate, thanks for asking!


Would you like to visit Maggie's blog for yourself? CLICK HERE.