If I owned an Inn

If I owned an Inn

Monday, 9 November 2015

Walking, walking walking...

It all begins with walking.  Every morning, as the dawn breaks, we will meet in the silence of the kitchen, fire crackling to warm our muscles, deep dark coffee to stimulate the senses.  We will assemble, pull on our boots, button our coats, bury our sleepy heads in luscious scarves and with mittened hands stride out to greet the day.  With eager dogs circling our heels we will begin our walking meditation, taking care to place feet gently upon the earth to do no harm.  And with every step, with every deep inhale of breath, life will stir in our bodies, in our minds and in our hearts, until we are bursting with the break of day.

This will be the first exercise of the day.  Back from the bracing, face-tingling, sting of morning, Lindsay will divide us into those who will charge the cross-fit obstacle course;  those who will dissolve into hatha yoga; those who will embrace lake waters, and those who simply want to dance and sing.

Even those sleepy heads who hide, blankets pulled up to nose and miss the morning walk will be encouraged to join in round two of morning exercises.

Victoria will encourage milking of the cows and goats, Petra will lead the walking-book-discussion and Jessica will applaud anyone who will stand with her in the kitchen, preparing mise-en-place for breakfast which will follow shortly.

Monday, 17 August 2015

All that food!  All that indulgence.  Now is time for Exercise!  (Yes, with a capital E).  So here enters darling daughter, Lindsay, Crossfit Queen!  Yoga Enthusiast.  Gentle Encourager of The Plank.  She will guide us all (me included) with enough testing of the muscle; impact of the bone; circulation of the blood and oxygen to keep us all healthy...with a smile and warmth borne of love and caring.

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Executive Chef

of course, is darling daughter, Jessica.

She weaves her magic each day, creating meals to tempt the palate, but also to nourish both body and soul.

Nutrition is paramount, with ingredients culled from our gardens and local provenders.  Animals are treated humanely and blessed before slaughter.  All butchering is done in-house.

Our vegetables, fruit and herbs are grown organically, and only what is in season is used.

Jessica designs her menus daily and we eat family style at breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Picnics are encouraged, and guests are invited into the kitchen to prepare their own and snacks when the desire arises.

  The only rules are:

If you use it...please clean it and put it away.

If you use the last of an item, please write it on the chalkboard in the kitchen so that replacements can be arranged.

Each week, at her own design, Jessica holds a cooking class.  She selects the item to be instructed, and all students participate in preparing that item to be eaten by all guests at dinner that evening.

Handmade aprons will be provided for you which you may take home with you.

Seasonally, and again at her own design, Jessica will lead tours to our local suppliers, to see where and how are animals, fish and produce are grown.  When appropriate, foraging tours will also be arranged, be it for wild herbs, edible flowers or mushrooms.

Our chef has a deep abiding love and respect for food.  She cannot help but share that with all she meets and every morsel she cooks.

Contemplating an Event at Hotel Gratitude?

Then, let me introduce our Master Event Designer

Ms. Tally.

Let me say first, NO is not in her lexicon...

Be it roses from Bogota;

or orchids from Bangkok.

Poilâne flown in that day from Paris;

or a tailor from Jermyn Street,

A saddle maker from Utah

or dresses made from gossamer.

...it can be done...nay it WILL be done.

Her affectionate southern style will win you heart over in seconds as she brings you 

aurora borealis,

Glenn Murphy, Oisin O'Callaghan and Ronan Scolard to sing their version of I'll Be There For You,.

She will even turn your pumpkin and mice into a four-in-hand.

And a wedding you whisper?...well that's a topic all by itself.

...Did I tell you Magic is her middle name?

Sunday, 19 January 2014

...and Petra is our Librarian and Christmas Specialist*

A voracious reader, she consumes books at a rate uprecedented.  She keeps the shelves stocked with Classics, Giller Prize Winners, Edgar Nominees, Canada Reads Entrants, the Weird, the Wonderful and everything written by her favourite author Tim Winton.  Guest are encouraged to bring their favourite books and leave them behind for the enjoyment of future readers.

Nothing precious about books in her Library.  You may bend, you may dog-ear pages, she will even loan you a pen to underline and leave your comments on the flyleaf.  (Page tearing however will be strongly discouraged...note from The Management.)

You may read books in bed (booklights supplied in every bedside table), at the table, in the canoe on the pond.  Petra encourages book clubs, book discussions, and offers to mediate book arguments (book throwing however will be strongly discouraged...another note from The Management.)

Book scattering is permitted - leave a page open anywhere on the premises to inspire all who wander by and read and red lipstick will be left next to selected bathroom mirrors, so that said quotes can be transcribed onto mirrors for further inspiration.  (Vinegar-water spray and clothes also supplied for gentle removal when appropriate.)

Petra - the only no-rules-yes-you-can-speak-loudly-in-my-library Librarian on this Planet.

*Christmas Specialist Duties to be outlined in a future post.

Friday, 17 January 2014

Staff...now there's a loaded topic.

To begin with, it's a loaded word.

Staff...that which supports, holds up, stands erect.

I would like to think of the people who are here at
Hotel Gratitude
as more than people who work here.

Hotel Gratitude is their home, where they get to express themselves in their own unique fashion, and share their multitude of talents.

So,  without further adieu, here are the people who will be taking care of you when you come and stay at our unique property.


where would my life be without my sister.

The other part of my heart.

She tends our gardens.  Our flowers, our vegetables, our herbs.
All the natural elements that go into making our home its most beautiful.

The trees, flowers, shrubs and herbs attract the birds, bees and insects that balance our environment.

She tends the vegetables we feed ourselves and you with.

She sings to the bees as they make their honey, and whispers to the seeds as she lays them in our most fertile soil.

All the while wearing her most fabulous of Wellington boots!

And she silently weaves her magic in her greenhouses, where she grows the tenderest of berries, the most exotic of fruit and the most exquisite of orchids that she places lovingly in each room.

She will tend our animals, treating each one as the beautiful, loving creatures of the earth that they are.

Victoria...our master gardener, animal-husbandry expert extrodinaire!

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

You will be our finest guest, our only guest, our most important guest.