Happy Canada Day. Every year I am grateful for the country I live in. I am fully aware and mean no disrespect to those reeling from the recent residential school discoveries. As a country, we still have a long way to go in regards to reconciling both past and present atrocities against Indigenous peoples. This cannot be overlooked one second longer! We can and must do better. But this year more than ever, I am proud of us as Canadians for enduring one of the most challenging years we have had to collectively face in this century. I think we can agree that this past year has left us all feeling a little tattered and torn in at least one way or another. We miss our friends and family. We long to travel with ease. And, while those things are all on the horizon, I think it is important to find value and gratitude in the moment we currently find ourselves in.

It is with this in mind that I encourage you to find 3 things to be grateful for right here, right now. I’ll start.

My family – While there have been times this past year that I wanted to find a little unknown nook or cranny in my house to hide from everyone, I am so incredibly grateful for my family. We have stuck by each other, supported one another and driven each other a little crazy. By the way, there is no unknown nook or cranny in my house, trust me, I’ve thoroughly looked…a few times.

My friends – While I miss sipping tea together in my living room, or sharing a meal around my dining table, we have become really good at staying connected through backyard visits, sending surprises in the mail and online video chats. We have figured out how to play games where the delay of video chatting only added to the silliness of it all. These are good people and I am blessed to have them in my circle.

Strawberries – This may sound a little trite, but it is true. Good food is something to be absolutely grateful for. Strawberries are a definite highlight for me as we celebrate the deliciousness of the season. Years ago while working full-time in childcare, one of the children proudly exclaimed that strawberries are like the candy of fruit. I couldn’t agree more! As we prepare to celebrate Canada Day, why not celebrate with some fresh & local strawberries? While you are at it, throw in a handful or two of rhubarb!

Strawberry Rhubarb CrispStrawberry Rhubarb

3 c strawberries, diced
3 c chopped rhubarb
1 tsp cinnamon
1 c old fashioned oats
1/3 c spelt flour
2 tbsp flax seed, ground
1/2 c raw cane sugar
1/3 c. melted coconut oil or butter

Preheat oven to 375°F. Grease a 9″ x 13″ pan with coconut oil or butter. Place fruit in bottom of pan & sprinkle with cinnamon – feel free to use more cinnamon if you wish! In a mixing bowl, combine oats, spelt flour, flax seed, sugar & melted oil or butter. Spread oat mixture on top of fruit. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Serve with a dollop of freshly whipped cream. Enjoy!