Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday Haiku

Tee hee, giggle, woot!
The Stylish Blogger Award
is mine! I share it

is more like it. Thanks
to Sisigirl for the nod.
The consensus is

I appear to be
That's not news to me

'cause I'm a mom and
we have that in common with
bloggers and nurses.

I'm off the topic
now I know, but I'm running
out of rhetoric.

The fame must have gone
to my head, I'm babbling.
It's kind of nice, though

to be loved for my
brilliant mind instead of, well -
you know - my body.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Pet Peeve of the Day

My pet peeve of the day is people who over enunciate after I've said, "pardon me?" Do they really have to do that?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

{Virtual Coffee}

Holy Crap! If we were meeting for coffee today I would probably swear a lot because it's been so ridiculously cold here these last ten days or so. Every day has been a red light day. Which kind of means the laundry is piling up and we have started to turn our underpants inside out to get another day of wear out of them. Here is what the inside of my front door lock looks like (remember this is INSIDE. I know it looks like a mushroom growing but it's frost)

And this is what our thermometer looked like yesterday morning

There was no mercury in it, and the mercury was trying to dip LOWER than the cradle allowed. Oh, and our thermometer with the spring in it sprung - it's hanging off it's hinge. Gratefully last night the temperature went up to minus 19. Yesterday morning I heard mutterings amongst my fellow commuters of minus 43. Yeah, that's even off the register of our Canadian thermometers. It's the kind of cold where your coat material freezes on contact with the air, making it crunchy and hard to bend at the elbow. And then there's the instant freezing of the water in the corners of the eye (my perennial favorite). Toes? What toes? I don't think I've felt mine since last Tuesday. And while I'm on a full blown rant let me tell you my whole house smells like feet - wet, sweaty boots and sour snow pants. Just when is a body supposed to wash these things when you need to wear them every day and oh yeah - the little detail of not being able to put them in the dryer or else they lose their waterproof-ability.

If we were meeting for coffee today even I would be drinking mine hot. Because although today feels like a day at the beach at minus 15, I can't shake this chill.

If we were meeting for coffee today I would tell you about a mystical experience I had last Thursday. Riley was playing outside after school, trying to increase his frostbite to amputation when he came banging on the door, begging me to come outside and "look". He had spotted an owl perched in a tree in our backyard. The goddesses of photography were with me because I had my camera at the ready with my zoom lens on already (trying to capture the woodpecker I had seen earlier). I got a few snaps of him but spooked him when I got greedy and tried to get closer.

I had never seen an owl outside of captivity before. I had seen a pair last summer in the country but it was night and I really just saw their shapes. We got a full frontal with this guy and when he flew off - yikes - so other-worldly. I could barely think of anything but for a few days. Which led me to googling the meaning of owls, their presence on a spiritual level. I learned a lesson in doing that because there was a huge disparity in information, from one site reading that owls are believed to guide recently departed souls to a few other sites saying that if you see an owl you will be guaranteed to drop dead within hours or days. That whole idea comes from their night vision and taking it a step (or too many steps) further. What I can say for sure was that it moved me deeply witnessing it in the "wild" (as "wild" as suburbia can be deemed) and that there are no words to describe how it left me.

If we were meeting for coffee today you might notice that my poinsettia plant from Christmas is in the bin.

I just can't be trusted with houseplants. Anything that survives me will survive nuclear holocaust. Although if you look carefully, through all the abuse it is still sprouting new green growth which is really kind of inspiring. I often think I am being deprived of life giving sustenance and don't sprout nearly as many new leaves as this insistent little beggar.

If we were meeting for coffee today I would give a big thumbs down for Future Shop. Yesterday I was looking for a particular Wii game for Riley and iMan for their upcoming collective birthdays - thought I had found it online since their website said a particular store had THREE copies of it and after I hiked there on my lunch hour in this -30 degree weather I found out the store had NO copies, even after badgering two employees to help me look. I need to ask - what is the point of the button that helps you to see if it is in stock at a certain store if, when you get there, the product really isn't in stock? The paranoid side of me says it's just a scam to get you in the store to buy something else. I am personally boycotting Future Shop since their sales staff always treats me like dirt. I am not alone in thinking that store should send their employees for classes in customer service.

If we were meeting for coffee today I would have to leave early because it's snowing again. After enjoying those cerulean blue skies of arctic frigidity, now that it is above -20 it is flaking out there. There should be a natural law that says when it's minus too much, snow falling is punishable by eternal summer.

Go and have a peek in Amy's door for some more coffee. There is usually something good to eat there too.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

What I've Learned, Week 18

watercolours, scrapbook embellishments, stamps, inks and pencil


Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday Haiku

Oh, little froggie
we thought you were free-floating,
instead you had croaked.

Surprise, then some tears.
Circle of life and all that.

the ground is frozen
necessitating improv.
Just what would you do?

A prayer and a flush
was what we resorted to.
A soul wash, of sorts.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

{Virtual Coffee}

Hidey ho neighbour! The pot is perking and the snow is falling (again) so come in and sit a spell. If we were meeting for coffee today you couldn't help but notice that our dog has been forced to wear the cone of shame (again).
It's a glandular issue and she's been spending far too much time down there. Let's just say I'm grateful I'm not the one who has to put the ointment on twice a day.

If we were meeting for coffee today I would tell you that Riley and I spent Saturday afternoon together on the couch watching a movie and spoiling our dinner with a big bowl of popcorn. And it felt good.

I would tell you about My Most Recent Embarrassing Episode, which really is turning into a weekly event. I had some clay creations ready to dip in a colour wash - a wash I made some time ago, I'll admit. I opened the jar, went to put some music on and caught a waft of a truly most horrible smell. I ran around searching high and low, suspecting the poor dog. It turns out it was my paint wash which had gone off. Oh my goodness. I had to open the window and pour baking soda down the sink to clear the room - nay, the house - of the stench.
If we were meeting for coffee today I would probably complain about the snow although compared to what some people are living around the world weather-wise, we have gotten off pretty easy so far this winter. Sunday morning was a picture postcard day, so coined by those who don't have to shovel it, scrape it or drive in the wretched stuff. We also had our first "red light" day this winter. -30 with the windchill when we headed off to work and school yesterday. Can you say, "long jjjjjjjjjohns"?
This gizmo lets us know when the temperature dips below -12. We have dual system heating which means we pay very little for electricity EXCEPT when it's -12 or colder then we pay through the nose. Just seeing the light on kind of made me shiver, good thing I had my new Patagonia wool socks on.
I got them last week at Winners (TJ Max) ridiculously cheap (for Patagonia at any rate). They were marked "irregular". I had no idea what was irregular about them until I put them on this morning. They are still warm, even if they make my feet look deformed.

If we were meeting for coffee this morning I would tell you I've been working hard at practicing self-care this year. I received a bunch of bath bombs for Christmas (also some for my birthday in September) and it dawned on me it was time to stop "saving" them.
Since Christmas I have been bombing my bath every Saturday night. I'm living the dream, baby.

But look at the time! I need to drop in at Amy's before I get the rest of this show on the road. Thanks for stopping by, you can tag along with me if you're still looking for a little company.

Monday, January 17, 2011

An anniversary, of sorts

Today is my one thousandth recorded day of gratitude. I have countless journals, each page chronicling a day. I have missed a few days over the last thousand - I can remember three nights when my luggage was lost on a return flight from Florida, and another number of nights I can count on one hand for one reason or another. Oddly enough, my hardest days do have entries even if they are slim. Some days I barely have room enough on the page, writing up the side, squeezing in the words. Other days I am forcing myself to find three things, just three. Those are much, much more rare than the days where I can no longer find room on the page. I can hardly imagine my night time ritual without it now. And it has happened one day at a time. This milestone is marked in a journal which was a gift from my oldest friend in the world, written with a pen which was another gift from my newest friend in the world. So very, very much to be grateful for.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

What I've Learned, Week 17

Even though I haven't posted a What I've Learned card for a while I've been busy with it. This card has everything on it but the kitchen sync. Maybe even the kitchen sync, and I can't even remember all the layers underneath what you do see.
collage, inks and distress inks, acrylic, Pitt, Micron and gel pens and, of course, Tim Holz masks. The collaged hand was photoshopped.
The back reads: I feel out of sync with most people, trends and styles. I find myself zigging when everybody else is zagging. I have always felt this and mostly it's been OK, with the exception of moments during the adolescent years. Now, it's always OK, it allows myself to see the "me" I feel that I am and it helps me be conscious of living in present time.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Friday Haiku

I'm turning into
a snooze bar kind of person.
Just one or two hits.

And a bonus haiku, inspired by nature:

Cold cold cold cold snow.
Cold cold cold cold snow snow snow.
Cold cold cold cold snow.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

{Virtual Coffee}

If you were coming over for coffee today, you would have to wait for the kettle to boil again because just after this nice pot of french press steeped, it got knocked over and I had to start again.
If you were coming in the door you would give a wave to our froggies who are getting in the habit of waving back
Once we settled in I would tell you I have been feeling at loose ends. Everything is back in full swing this week but despite my constant efforts at mono-tasking I am finding my mind struggling. Maybe it's because of the mono-tasking. Or because I've been spreading myself too thin. I have been percolating creatively but unable to finish one thing. I have so many ideas coming up and I get started and then get another idea that I want to get down and get started on that. I guess at some point the bits and pieces will come together. One thing that keeps running through my mind is the concept of choice and how I am choosing to spend my time - my seconds and minutes as well as my hours, days, weeks and months. It's also something that I can't quite put my finger on when it comes to describing in words so you'll have to nod and grunt and change the subject.

If we were meeting for coffee today we would undoubtedly talk about the weather and we would probably agree that although it's a little chilly, we have yet to see -30 which is quite common for our city in January.

I would tell you about yet another earring I lost yesterday but I've come up with a great idea - to start the lost earring depository. I have a drawer full of my previously favourite earring(s), of which I have one of each having lost its match to scarves and winter hoods and turtlenecks and I know I'm not alone. Imagine if we could put together all the single earrings and create a bank. It would work like this: you send in your one lonely earring and get to choose another from the bank. It just might work.
Gotta run now, but if you'd like a second cuppa, head over to Amy's and see who is hanging out.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Friday Haiku

I've said it before
and I'll say it once again,
I am a bread whore.

Right now I have this:
fresh bagels, flatbreads, half rye
(I'm not quite done yet)

some squishy white bread,
whole grain miche and sandwich style.
That's just the fresh stuff.

I won't dare mention
three or four-week old crumpets
and mini-pitas.

Do tell, there's random
crusts still in their plastic bags
and not yet moldy.

I am a bread whore.
Would you care to join me for
some toast, tea and jam?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

{Virtual Coffee}

Well come on in, the coffee is getting cold! I'm not even getting a glass today, I'm doing the whole "pot" this morning.
If we were meeting for coffee today I would tell you that I got a pleasant surprise on New Year's Eve - the news that I wouldn't have to drag my sorry self in to work yesterday. Yay! When I was asked/told to work on Monday the 3rd I was pretty disappointed and I let the idea ruin far too many hours in my head. In the end I had the day off so it was a prime example of worrying over something unpleasant too far in the future.

If we were meeting for coffee today we would probably say, "Happy New Year"! and laugh about how long people say that to each other throughout January. I would tell you iMan and I shared a half bottle of fine champagne on New Years Evening and I still have the bubbles to prove it.

At some point I would get quiet and admit to you that I have done almost no post-2010 reflection and almost no 2011 planning. For the first time in years, nay - decades - I have let the old year slip out and the new one in with just letting it be another day. I would tell you about the wonderful things I have been reading in blogland about other people's intentions and word of the year and goals and dreams and zippity-doo-dah. But I have not been feeling it here in my heart or in my bones and that is alright too. I have always felt that any day in the year is a good one to take up a resolution or even choose a word that will carry me though. I would tell you about one thing I did which was write down three things I am ready to let go of, then I burned the paper. I also wrote down three things I wish for myself and have hidden them around my living space to energize me. I guess that kind of counts for new year planning but it felt very un-new year like to me. I recently saw this - 101 goals in 1001 days and I'm thinking about it... I would tell you I first laughed out loud when I read under the heading "Taking Risks" that 'giving up alcohol' and 'giving up caffeine' rated equally with 'volunteer in a foreign country'. I would tell you I'm not even sure I could come up with 50 goals let alone 101 but I really am thinking about it.

And 101 goals may not fit in well with the article that resonated the most with me this past week, this one on mono-tasking by Karen Maezen Miller. Or maybe it does if I just focus on one goal at a time.

If you were at my place for coffee today you couldn't help but notice some new life in the house.

Last Friday we brought home 5 African dwarf frogs and it's now day 5 and they are still alive!

We would watch them for a while, watching us back.

We would laugh as we watched them pose and float and swim to the top of the aquarium for air.

I would tell you that what they are doing here
isn't really what it looks like (mating for these guys requires a lot more gymnastics).

If we were meeting for coffee we would probably argue a little about the weather because I have been really ecstatic over the extreme thaw we had the past week - enough thaw that I found a few worms in the driveway on Sunday

and you would chide me because it kind of ruined the kiddies sledding and outdoor skating possibilities over their holidays.

I might be able to convince you to come with me and do some bowling this afternoon. Last week we found this amazing little bowling alley that really is a piece of land that time forgot.

A grand total of 8 lanes, all duck pins, gleaming wood floors. They let us wear our socks instead of renting shoes and I couldn't believe how this place is pure vintage but original vintage, not re-done as vintage.

THREE ashtrays per seat! I tried to take some shots with my phone but all but one came out blurry. We had a whale of a time. How about it? The only update is a cappuccino machine - are you in? Or will you go over to Amy's Lucky Thirteen to see who else is hanging out for coffee?

Sunday, January 2, 2011

What I've Learned, Week 16

The front is simply scrapbook paper, embellishments, circles collected in my hole punch and a bit of acrylic paint; the back was cut from my sketchbook, an experiment in spray inks and snowflake embellishments used as a mask. I decided to keep the facts to three as I could go on and on.