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Groundhogs, sweethearts, and postcards from the past!

Groundhogs, sweethearts, and postcards from the past!

The regional favourite weather predicting groundhog, Shubenacadie Sam, did not see his shadow this week, which means early spring! I’m not sure about the accuracy of this form of predicting the weather (and spring is technically only a few weeks away, shadow or not) but it is a fun tradition.

Speaking of spring, Shirley and I have already started making our plans for the Gardens of Hope; it is the time of year to look at gardening magazines and dream of green and colourful scapes and of course, warmer days.

At present we are drawing up plans to add a sunroom to the Respite Cottage. A big thank you to all you that donated the funds to make this possible. Many individuals and families were able to take time for respite at the cottage, some coming as far away as Vancouver and Illinois.

Staff have been busy packing up lots of sweet treats from the store for our customers over the past few days, a sure sign that Valentine’s Day is on the way!

Our shortbread cookies are baked in the shape of hearts if you’re still looking for something to send someone you love, include yourself, by the way!

Warning: these cookies are tastefully addictive. You should probably order two boxes. Click here to take a peek.  Another favourite is the "Chocolate Covered Potato Chips," oh my, there is an addictive treat if ever there was one. We have some items representing a little piece of heaven for chocolate lovers. Click here to taste, whoops not possible to taste sorry! LOL. Ok, I taste another one for you. good. Thank you. 

As much as I enjoy the tradition of Valentine’s Day, I try not limiting my love to just one day per year. Every day is a gift but sometimes forget to treat it that way!

I love this quote by Thomas Merton, "The beginning of love is the will to let those we love to be perfectly themselves, the resolution not to twist them to fit our own image". 

I heard a wonderful news story on the radio, about an Ontario man with a collection of roughly 1,750 Prince Edward Island postcards, many of which are more than 100 years old. I think you’ll find the story quite interesting; I know I did. Click here to read.  

This makes me think about how the mail delivery system in Prince Edward Island was years ago. It is such a small place, which at one time (not that long ago!) if you were mailing something, you could get away with simply addressing the item to the recipient, with just their name and their community name. No need for street addresses, post office boxes, or postal codes! “They’ll get it to them!” 

I remember when we first started the business, Barb MacAndrew wrote an article for Atlantic Insight about us. It wasn't too long after that we received our first piece of mail, and the only thing written on the envelope was Bruce's Jam Kitchen, Charlottetown, PEI and I got it! 

I love our Island!

Over the next few months, we will be moving our blogs to a different format, and we are considering some areas to include. Bruce's Blog will probably transition to "Steeped Thoughts," where I will share thoughts about topics that intrigue me, encourage me and hopefully others as well. 

For example, I love these words by Henri Nouwen.

Kindness is a beautiful human attribute. When we say, "She is a kind person" or "He surely was kind to me," we express a very warm feeling. In our competitive and often violent world, kindness is not the most frequent response. But when we encounter it we know that we are blessed. Is it possible to grow in kindness, to become a kind person? Yes, but it requires discipline. To be kind means to treat another person as your "kin," your intimate relative. We say, "We are kin" or "He is next of kin." To be kind is to reach out to someone as being of "kindred" spirit.

Here is the great challenge: All people, whatever their colour, religion, or sex, belong to humankind and are called to be kind to one another, treating one another as brothers and sisters. There is hardly a day in our lives in which we are not called to this.

Thank you for reading, I am curious if you have any funny or interesting stories about the mail? Memorable letters you’ve received, or comical mix-ups that occurred? Or items you would like to see included in the blogs going forward. 

I do have a favour to ask as well. I need your help in finding our blog voice. 

Can you list for me, three adjectives that best describe our business from your perspective? 

Thank you in advance for your time and consideration. Don't be shy. 

Have a great week! 

With love from Prince Edward Island, 


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Melanie Taormina - February 10, 2018

Nourishing, hospitable, soulful

Linda Greswell - February 10, 2018

Hi Bruce, Shirley & Team,
Sorry, I’m a bit tardy with my response but “better late than never”, they say! It is so difficult to choose just three words to describe PEI Preserves, but here goes: the first three accolades that come to my mind first are: Quality, Excellent & Friendly Customer Service and Passion and Commitment to Community and Clients.

As a tourist (from Ontario), I have visited PEI a few times in the past and I always look forward to a special stop at PEI Preserves. It’s so relaxing to enjoy the wonderful restaurant, the beautiful shop and the scenic gardens. I love everything about the shop and the product sampling is always fun (but difficult to decide on which treats to bring back home). I love the lovely selection of tea pots and of course, the Dunoon bone china mugs. I have even enjoyed the ease and convenience on shopping on-line. This experience makes it so easy for surprise Christmas gifts as well. I’m always impressed with the beautiful packing and the speed of fulfillment of the delivery.

Well, in summary, PEI Preserves is “like coming home”, always a sweet, cozy haven to retreat to. I highly recommend a visit, you will want to come back again and again. I’m grateful for your generosity too ?. See you this Summer.

Warm Regards,
PS – the blogs are delightful and I always look forward to reading them (with a cup o’ my favourite tea in one of my souvenir Dunoon mugs. Thank you ?!

Bruce - February 10, 2018

Awe, all of you deserve a big hug. THANK YOU for sharing.

Robin - February 8, 2018

Kind Hearted
I had the pleasure of discovering your business a few years ago on a Sister’s Trip down east. I was inspired by the Hope Gardens (my mother’s maiden name was Hope), The building and grounds were Creative and Colourful and now I have discovered your Blog, always considerate and kind hearted I always look forward to your words and viewpoints!

Yvonne and Glenn Locke - February 8, 2018

caring for customers with class

Carol McFarlane - February 7, 2018

Delightfully refreshingly unique, caters to all tastes and picket books, is more than just a business with the gardens etc

Joan Cummins - February 7, 2018


Roberta Jean Beer - February 7, 2018

Preserve Co. I can hardly wait until they are open for the season, favourite place, food, gift shop and such friendly, kind people

Clarence DeCoste - February 7, 2018

Three words….warm, hospitable and yummy….thanks for all you do!

Anne Gregoroff - February 7, 2018

Okay – That’s five. I’ll stop.

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