Monday, October 31, 2005

Time to myself

Well, I didn't end up getting very much time to myself! On Sunday, I slept in to 10 after staying up late to finish the book Drew and I were reading together. Of course that turned out to be only 9am which was nice. Drew left the house around 10 after having soft boiled eggs for breakfast with me. It has been ages since I made a soft boiled egg. In fact, I think I had never made one before. The yolk wasn't quite cooked enough and I had to feed most of that to the dog... Anyways, I was slowly getting ready for the day - tidied the kitchen and dining room and was just starting on the living room and deciding what I wanted to do now that I was gloriously alone when I got a phone call. Rhiannon had been throwing up since 1am - she had thrown up 6! times! She was very weak and sad sounding and she wanted me to come and get her. Poor little Rhiannon. So what could a mother do? I bathed and ate and drove the 90 minutes to Kamloops to get her. When I got there she just wanted to leave right away. Katherine had given her a gravol for the drive home so she was rather glassy eyed. I sang to her most of the way home until she told me she had a really bad head ache. So I stopped. And that was the end of my time to myself. Hrmph. I don't get enough of that. I'm going to have to arrange for some more sometime soon.

Anyways, just a short update 'cuz I don't know when I will be able to do it again as a busy, busy week looms before me.

Ciao for now.

Sunday, October 30, 2005


I love these lyrics by KD Lang. The song is "Simple" from her CD Hynms of the 49th Parallel

Flawless light in a darkening air
Alone...and shining there
Love will not elude you
Love is simple
I worship this tenacity
And the beautiful struggle we’re in
Love will not elude us
Love is simple
Be sure to know that
All in love
Is ours
And love, as a philosophy
Is simple
I am calm in oblivion
Calm, as I ever have been
Love will not elude me
Love is simple
Be sure to know that
All in love
Is ours...
Is ours...
That all in love
Is ours
And love, as philosophy
Is simple...
And ours...

Saturday, October 29, 2005

What have I done with my time

So, throw me in the same lot as Sarah, will you?! And Laura writes way more than both Sarah and I. Unfair lumping!!

Anyways I haven't had quite as much time to myself as I thought I was going to but I'm making the most of it. Dean got up as noisily as possible at 7am and clumped around the house in his shoes and did laundry, etc. So much for sleeping in. If I fully wake up in the morning, I can't be back to sleep. No matter how tired I am. So I got up. But I took my time this morning. I had a nice shower, I made some nice tea (dandelion, parsley and uva ursi) and read to Andrew from a book we are reading together (3 Day Road by Joseph Boyden). I meandered downtown to pick up some more thyroid medication. I have been on dessicated thyroid for quite some time but the company that makes it stopped and eventually sold the right to make it to another company. In the meantime - no pills. Consequences are dire if I don't take it for even one day. Exhaustion. So a pharmacy in town started making their own from Porcine powder. I went to buy some of those this morning. I got a nice surprise. I was told that they wouldn't be covered by medical but they are. So I didn't have to pay. (Because of Kaetlyn's diabetic supplies, we reach the maximum for pharmacare and then don't have to pay any more)

Then I worked on the computer, getting the last of those lessons posted on that Chautauqua. Although on-line attendance at the Chautauqua sharply declined after Wednesday so I don't think anyone but me has seen the last lesson (or one or two other people). But the postings will be there for years as a resource so I still have to get them done. I have the last lesson to do tomorrow. I took breaks to do crocheting and to take Drew to the bike store to look at bikes and dream about his next one. He needs a really sturdy bike. He found one that he really likes and I think we will start making payments on it - like for his birthday. It is too expensive to get all at once but it is his 12th birthday coming up in a week so I will put some on it for him. I really want him to have a good bike - we like to bike together.

Then we went out to lunch on a whim. I took him to a Greek place in town. Little ghosts of Katie and Laura were sitting there with me. Remember when I took you out for lunch for your birthday? I think it was Katie and then I said you could invite a friend and the friend had to be Laura? Or was it Laura and the friend had to be Katie. I don't remember. But I remember how fun it was to take you there for that new experience. Pita and tziki (sp?). Yum. I still love Greek food. Then I crocheted some more. Worked more on my lessons. Erin came over and used the sewing machine. Drew was never able to connect with his friends today so he was hanging around all day.

Now I am tired. My eyes, mostly. They want to be closed. Too much looking at the computer screen and small stitches. I'll sleep in tomorrow and hopefully Drew will go play and I can be .... ALONE.

Friday, October 28, 2005


I hope you all are checking John's tag board as I have been making blog updates for him with sweet tales of his childhood. Bare bum Charlie!

And I guess this counts as 2 posts in one day?


Well, the prospect of spending a week end alone stretches before me. Rhiannon and Kaetlyn are going to Kamloops to visit Dean's sister's family. Dean will be in the Kootenay's playing his guitar. Drew will be here but he has a really active social life so mostly I will be alone. Alone. The possibilities are endless. I have enough ideas to fill a month. I'll have to narrow it down to 2 days. It will probably entail a hike of some sort and some thick chunks of salmon and other good and delicious food that most of my family doesn't like. Maybe a movie or two while I crochet.

Relationships are the hardest work the I, personally, have ever done. Sometimes I think I am absolutely no good at it. Sometimes I am just plain tired and worn out of it. I want too much, demand too much. Feeling that way lately.

Trying to figure out what to do for an income for the winter months when there is no window washing. I was hoping to be able to have an income from the Inner World School but that is not going to be enough, yet. Which, I guess, is realistic considering we haven't even been open a year. I am busy crocheting my hats and I have a couple of craft shows that I will do and a couple of stores that will buy them. That will bring in a bit of money. Got to figure out something soon - it is only a matter of time until there is no more window washing.

I do have something to celebrate, though. Rhiannon slept in her bed ALL night last night and another previously this week (is the end of a child infested bed in sight?). We are going to walk down to the store and get a package of stickers. She gets one package for each night. A night's uninterrupted sleep is worth way more to me than a single gold star! (see what you are getting yourself into, Sarah?) I remember an RS lesson once where the teacher, speaking of having children, said, "Who would sign up for 3 months of sleep deprivation?" I shot my hand up. Only 3 months?! I'd sign up for that in a second. 3 months. Try 5 years.

Thats all for now, folks.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005


I have been sitting in front of the computer for hours now. I've been working on that on-line thing, posting my new lessons. It is going ok, I think - getting some good feedback. But it is demanding... My eyes hurt and I feel funny like I do when I spend too much time in front of the computer - not enough exercise.

It is beautiful out today - mystical. It was foggy this morning and the sun has been on the edge of breaking through all day but hasn't yet (at least not the last time I was upstairs). I had to run an errand for Dean when he was home for lunch and it was a spectacular drive on the east side of OK Lake to pick up a squeegee where he left it. I was on a hill above the lake and still in the fog but barely. Below me, the lake was clear of the fog and the sun was catching just the edges. The tops of the hill on the opposite side of the lake were obscured in fog. Just the steep edges going down to the lake were visible and very green due to all the recent rain.

In our yard, the leaves are luminescent in that strange light of the fog - almost like they are lit up from within. I wrote a poem about that a few years ago. This was written about the view from my bedroom window in the house I lived in then (there was a crab apple tree). This was just when mine and Dean's friendship was turning into something more.

November Nightfall

Dull twilight under a ceiling of autumn’s clouds
Stretched thick between forest dark mountains
Sombre backdrop for brilliant amber leaves
Twinkling on the ends of thin, bare branches reaching heavenward

Grey in-between light spills into the room --
The cold colour of grief
My world decolourises
Only the leaves like golden jewels become somehow luminescent.
(November 1997)

Friday, October 21, 2005


I realized writing my blog last time, just how sad I was. I had a little cry and then I went to where Erin was working, brought her a treat and got a hug. I needed a hug from her and I needed to hug her. I told her I missed her on her birthday. It is just not right not seeing your own child, who was once a part of your own body on the day to celebrate their birth. She is working in Rickys (sp?) now. She jumped ship in the mall, as it were. She was very unhappy at Mariposa since her old manager left. Rickys is a better place, anyways, I think. The clothes aren't so sluttty looking.

So we had her birthday dinner last night. I made lasagne for her - still her favourite dish. I think I have had to make that for her birthday dinner for the last 4 years... And we had two cakes that she picked out with Dean. A boston cream and some strawberry chocolate cake. Which I have just had some of for breakfast and now I feel sick. Her and Dean went to a movie afterwards.

It was a beautiful sunny day here yesterday and today. Thank goodness! I love to see the sun! It lights up all the coloured leaves and makes fall beautiful. And you see, here in the Okanagan, winter if full of 'valley bottom cloud'. Because it has to be very, very cold (-20) for an extended period of time for the lakes to freeze. That's only happened once since I've been here (11 years). So in the below zero weather, the lakes steam and we get valley bottom cloud, day after day after day. So sunny fall days are particularly valuable and appreciated.

Today I am nervous. I think I have said before that I signed up with SelfDesign for homeschooling this year. There is a village that we are a part of and they are having a 'Chautauqua' - a virtual one, of course. And I volunteered to do one on the Inner World. So that means that I will post lessons and host a discussion. I am fine with the lessons for younger children as I have run all those at the school. But the lessons for the older kids are 'untried'. So I am nervous. (what if they don't like me?) I was working on my lessons earlier but people kept wanting to chat with me so I exited and decided to check the blogs before I went back to work. Hopefully no one will notice me this time. hehe

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


Well, I have been a mother for 19 years now. 19 years ago I was still in the hospital recovering from the unwanted shot of demerol. It feels weird this year without Erin living here. Kind of anti-climatic. She was doing things with her friends which is normal, I suppose but I miss her. There has been a kind of sadness/lonliness fuzzing around my edges. Perhaps that is why I ate 2 Bounty Bars and an entire bag of carmel corn puff (at least they were organic...). Ah well, I had done so well up until then since Thanksgiving. Maybe it is just another reminder of the nature of raising children - they grow up and leave you. She is coming over tomorrow night for her birthday dinner. Lasagne - her favourite and then her and Dean are going out to a movie together. Her present is boring, too. She just wants me to put money on her new sewing machine. *sigh*

It has been so wet here. Rain, rain, rain. It is starting to smell like Vancouver outside! It is hard to get windows washed in weather like this. I am starting to suffer from financial stress.

Gotta dash and take Rhiannon to her violin lesson.

Chick out

Sunday, October 16, 2005


Hmmm, can you tell by looking at my filing cabinet and desk that I have spent most of my time organizing it this morning. Well... no. But I have a headache and that crampy feeling from being bent over for too long... It is discouraging and probably why I put off doing it for months at a time. But all the things that need to be filed and put away in that area are piling up and getting ruined and lost. I hate it, though, when you can't tell you've done anything. I like to see RESULTS! Ah well, much work to do before I will get to see those.

I am sure one of the reasons that it took so long is because I was going through old letters and cards. I have such cute drawings and letters fom Jordan, Evan, Laura, Katie and even Sarah (well some scribbles that Mom said were from you). One day I will scan some in and send them around. My priceless treasures.

It has been a quiet, quiet week end. Went for a delicious dinner at my friend, Bozenka's on Friday evening. Erin, Justin, Drew and Rhiannon and I. Dean was already gone to play in Revelstoke and Kaetlyn had gone to Kamloops for the week end. It was fantastic food, great conversation with many interesting people. But then very quiet the next day and today. Last night Drew went to sleep over his friend's house so it is just me and Rhiannon. Quiet but not free to do whatever I want. I ended up going to bed at 9. I was going to start on the organizing then but I was too tired. Somehow I am still tired today after 10 hours of sleep. Must be that time of the month thing.

It is very yellow outside my dining room window. The walnut tree is a beautiful luminescent yellow and so are the leaves that have fallen so the yard just kind of glows. Pretty. Now that summer is no longer a forlorn scent on the wind but is completely gone, gone, gone, I can enjoy fall a bit. Still dread the coming of winter, though. All that extra fussing. Although the cooking is nice. I line the wintry smells of soup or chili cooking that fill up the whole house.

Well, enough of my meandering blather. I'd better go get dressed. It is 2pm, afterall.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

The Sister's Bike Hike

Where is the written record of the sister's bike hike? The last I heard, Bethany passed it on to Amy and that was in August. Where is it? Amy do you need another copy? I have Beth's update on my computer, I can send it to you. Have you already done it? Have you passed it on? All my previous questions have not been answered. I need to solve the mystery. Where is it and what has happened to it?

Monday, October 10, 2005


I agree, Pea, time for a Thanksgiving post. We had a very cozy, perfect thanksgiving. Layne arrived on Friday afternoon. We headed straight for the wood pile at Bell Pole to get 2 loads of wood before they closed. Layne was most generous to let us use his beautiful new truck to do that. After the aforementioned burnt pizza dinner he and Dean indeed went out to practise. They got home very late - I was asleep. The next day we all slept in - especially Layne as he had only a couple of hours the night before. I got up and went shopping to get the stuff to make a brunch. We had pancakes, bacon, orange juice, a fresh pineapple and cinnamon buns - yum. I went with him to run a couple of errands and then we got munchies and a bunch of movies and cocooned for the rest of the day with the whole family. Erin and Justin came over as well. I made fresh salsa - I LOVE that - I could eat it straight with a spoon. And it is so easy. Why don't I make it more often?! We watched Million Dollar Baby and the a quirky british one - Once Upon a Time in the Midlands. Dean loves those kind of movies.

The next day we lazed around watching more movies and Layne helped me fix some things on the computer. While watching movies we began work on the apple pies. We sat and peeled and cut and cored. Then I made the crusts (Dean helped). Once they were baked, we headed over to Eddie (singer in the band)'s parents place in Enderby. Eddie's older brother, Mike (Dean's good friend) was in town with his partner and son so they organized a pot luck get together for all Mike's friends. So we all went - Dean and I, Layne and the kids (except Erin, of course). It was a really nice evening - Mike has really great friends - great, stimulating conversations. And good music, too. Eddie's dad is a pianist - taught music in the school. He has a gorgeous grand piano. Layne sat down and played and played - great sound filled up the whole place. The singing could barely be heard above the piano. We got home around midnight.

So at midnight, I started the preparations for our own thanksgiving dinner that was to happen the next day (today) while Dean and Layne watched a Saturday Night Live dvd they had rented - Will Farrel - very funny. We needed to have our turkey by noon today for Layne to leave on time to get into Nanaimo in time to sleep to recover fromt his week end... So I cut up the potatoes and put them in water, made a greek salad and cut up the bread for the stuffing and stuff like that, that could be done ahead of time.

This morning I set my alarm for 7am (after getting to bed after 1am). I got up and made the stuffing and stuffed the turkey and put it in the oven by 8am. The sun was coming up and it was a great sunrise - very beautiful - yellow sunlight spilling onto red and yellow leaves. Then Layne and I went for a bike ride. He rode my old bike and I rode my new one. He was worried I was going to go too fast - but he has monster muscles in his legs and just powered up those hills. It was a beautiful morning. We rode down to the lake and sat on the sand and visited for awhile. The water was so still. We could see fish jumping and ducks foraging. We could see the yellow leaves of the deciduous trees against the dark green of the evergreens down the shores of the lake. (We were at the north head of lake Okanagan). We rode home and it was showtime. Now all the last minute things that all happen at once no matter how well you are prepared. The turkey was cooked on time and was delicious (although I have had moister turkeys). The stuffing was perfect - just the right mixture of crunchy and soft. We had brocolli and cheese, the salad, mashed potatoes (Dean does the mashing) and yams. Dean's parents arrived right at 12:00 with a pumpkin pie and a strawberry rhubarb one and some ice cream. We said a thanksgiving blessing and at a great meal with cranberry and gingerale to drink.

Layne left - we were all sad to see him go. And that is it. Thanksgiving is over. I had a nap - but not long enough! I'm still tired. (and full)

Friday, October 07, 2005

A little bit of this and a little bit of that

I know I need to post, I have been thinking about it for days but no topic has made itself evident. I have just been busy. Busy in a mom kind of way. Homeschooling my kids, taking them to lessons, teaching at the school, planning for the school, preparing to teach at the school and then just housework kind of things. And that is filling up all my time. No interesting stories have arisen, I am afraid.

Layne is here - he arrived here today. I am a bit annoyed at Dean as he is so glad that Layne is here (not that part but the next part) and he acts like Layne is an old friend of his, come to visit him. He has a long list of plans that don't include me. (that's the part that annoys me) I reminded him that Layne is actually my brother and came to visit me, too! We'll see how effective that was. They are gone now to a Redfish practise. Layne has gone along to 'jam' with them. It won't be very late as it is in Steve's parents' basement. But then they are planning on going out.

We went and got two loads of wood with Layne's truck today which was really great. We are building up a good store of wood for the winter. We probably have 2 - 3 months worth now. More if the weather doesn't get too cold.

The weather has been miserable here. It has rained for 3 days straight which is really unusual for her. It makes me think that I would not be able to handle life on the coast again as I have really longed for the sun.

I burned dinner really, really badly today. I made little pizzas from premade crusts that I get at a local bakery. Rhiannon was my helper. The first batch went well but then the second one, something on the bottom of the oven caught fire. It was just a very small little flame - like a candle so I thought nothing of it - made a mental note to clean the oven tomorrow. But I guess it greatly heated up the bottom of the pans. Although you couldn't tell from the tops, the bottoms became solid charcoal. 6 pizzas. *sigh* I hate wasting food! So I cut off most of the bottoms (now they are extremely thin and crispy crusts). The kids weren't too impressed and I must admit that the charcoal taste is a little overwhelming. I can still taste that sour burnt taste in the back of my mouth.

I watched a really good Canadian film last week - "My Life Without Me". I really liked it. I liked the way it was filmed; I liked how it was about ordinary people in ordinary circumstances; and I liked the message of hope and acceptance. I watched Monster In-Law last night. Rather corny and predictable but I really enjoyed Jane Fonda. I thought she was really funny. I thought it would be fun to watch with Dean's Mom - I know she would laugh. Alas, we don't ever seem to do things like that.

I heard from Martha this week. Always hard when I hear from her. I have such a tender spot in my heart and I wish with all my heart that I could rescue her. I know that I can't and that it wouldn't even be good to do it, but I wish I could. I wish that she was still little and I could just hold her for a long, long time. It is hard to see her pain. I wish it wasn't so complicated to make it all better. I am sure she will be okay in the end. She sounds strong and clear headed. But I know it is a hard road ahead. I'm proud of her. It takes alot to do what she is doing.

Well, there you have my rather rambling post...

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Time with Laura and Layne

Well, it has been a wonderful and very, very full week end. Laura and I went to the National Ballet's performance of Swan Lake. It was sooo beautiful. The music was beautiful, the costumes were beautiful, the dancing was beautiful - it was such a lush sensory experience. I love ballet and it has been so long since I saw a proper one - since I left Winnipeg. It was not the traditional choreography of Swan Lake but a new one written in 1999 and this was the world premiere, apparantly. It was not as athletic as others I have seen but it was very, very beautiful. The choreography was often asymmetrical which was very interesting and matched the music so perfectly that it emphasized your aural experience as well. The swans were amazing! I could go on and on. That was Friday night. We went out for Thai food first so I had my very first pad thai. Delicious! Although, I embarrassedly gyped the good waiter out of his tip in confusion. I occasionally, shamefully turned that over in my mind and blushed anew everytime I thought if it. Unfortunately I was a block away before I realized it...

Dean came with me to Vancouver as he was playing at the Media Club. I got Laura and I onto the guest list and we went there right after the ballet. But we missed Redfish playing - the ballet took 3 hours (although it felt like 2 at the MOST). We had no clue about the time as we were watchless and were quite surprised when we got there and they were completely done. Dean was disappointed that I missed seeing him play there. Layne was there, too. Laura and I didn't stay long - all those loud sounds kind of wrecked the elegant vibe of the ballet. We talked laying in the bed in the dark until after 3 in the morning.

Layne hooked up with us the next day and we hung out while Laura went to confrence. Mostly they went to a music store (instruments) and I wandered around adjoining shops. I made salmon and potatoes for supper at Laura's after a marathon game of trivial pursuit. Dean won - but Laura was very close and I sucked - as I always do - I am much to much of a 'big picture' person to remember all those trivial details! The guys watched that most lame of comedy shows "Life Aquatic" and Laura and I looked through her pictures. We looked and talked and laughed until 4am and I still didn't finish all her pictures (I worked on a few more this morning, Laura). I learned one thing - that you can tell how much Laura loves Katie - she has takent he most beautiful pictures of her - that really capture her beauty. I snagged a few copies of Katie and Laura and one of mom. Such a talent Laura has for taking artistic pictures! There were great pictures of all of you, of course but I was most taken by the pictures of Katie.

We thought of Katie running the marathon on Saturday - I was so impressed to read her time on John's blog. Imagine running so far in only 4 and 1/2 hours! Wow! Katie, I hope you are really, really, really proud of yourself! I am so very lucky to have such amazing sisters.

Some of my favourite things from the week end (besides the ballet, of course) was having Laura do my hair. I never got to have a sister do my hair before - I was the hair doer. I loved the feeling of it. And getting to lay in bed having looooong talks about everything. I always felt a little alone at the top of the family. With 3 younger brothers who formed a unit that I never really fit into and Katie and Laura were too young for us to have an equal relationship. So it was so wonderful to just be able to talk.

So there is an update - I've got lots to read now.