Thursday, 30 April 2015

The End

It’s the last day of the month, and the last day of the A-Z Blog Challenge. I look forward to this event each year, enjoy checking out other blogs and like the mental exercise of coming up with 26 specific blogs.

Without a theme this year, I had to wing it, so to speak, on a couple of the letters. When I’m stuck on something, whether it’s a book, a short story, or a blog, I think on it as I’m going to sleep and let my subconscious do some of the work for me.

This often means I turn on the light, get out the pen and paper because the ideas are coming fast and furious and I know would be forgotten if not written down right away.

Some of my ideas for these alphabet blogs are immediate; others are a bit more elusive. And for some I was brain dead. Take the letter ‘Y’. All I could think of was yarn, but I’ve written about my yarn hoarding before, and then...out of nowhere...I came up with Yosemite Sam. Don’t ask me why, I have no idea. But that’s what makes this whole thing such fun.

I wanted to take this opportunity to thank all of those who stopped by and took the time to read my blog. I appreciate all the comments and hope you’ll come back again soon.


Blue Butterfly by fluteforthought via Flickr

Zentangle is an easy-to learn, relaxing, and fun way to create images by drawing structured patterns called tangles. They are unplanned, abstract, black and white pieces of art. Many artists have taken this a step further by adding coloured backgrounds or painting their designs.

Rose by Danilla

Zentangle is a registered trademark of Zentangle, Inc. As an art form and method, it was created by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas. The process is a form of “artistic meditation” as one becomes completely engrossed in making each pattern “one stroke at a time”.

The creativity options and pattern combinations are unlimited.

Sample patterns for tangles.

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

"Going to the Mattresses"

When I’m busy with a new crochet pattern I get involved and don’t take the time to change channels on the television. I can end up watching something I wouldn’t otherwise view. This happened the other day when I got involved and watched hours of the Godfather movie marathon. What can I say? It was a very productive few hours.

I hadn’t seen any of these movies for more than fifteen years, and was intrigued by the tale of the young Michael Corleone and how he was drawn into the family business after the shooting of his father and the death of his brother.

There are famous lines in the movie that I recognized, like the phrase “going to the mattresses” as the Corleone crime family were preparing for war against the other mafia gangs. Another famous line was “Leave the gun, take the cannolis”. I have to laugh because these lines are more known to me because they are quoted in the movie You’ve Got Mail than from the Godfather.

I must admit I got a lot of work done on my afghan, but I couldn’t face anymore of the movie. Do you ever find yourself in the position of not wanting to watch, but wanting to know how it all ends? That’s why I love the internet.

While watching the beginning of Godfather II, I looked it up and read all about it. While I was there I checked out the third movie and am now fully versed in the tragedy of the Corleone family. The next time I see the mafia movie marathon listed in my television guide I can easily say “been there, done that” and select something else.

Y...Yosemite Sam

Okay, I’ll admit, I was a little stumped for the letter ‘Y’. Yarn just seemed to obvious, and, well, been there, done that.

Don’t ask me where Yosemite Sam came from, some early childhood memory of Saturday morning cartoons perhaps?

Samuel Michelangelo Rosenbaum, otherwise known as Yosemite Sam, is a loud, western figure from the Looney Tunes collection of characters. Elmer Fudd was considered too soft, and Yosemite Sam was created because it was thought Bugs Bunny needed a tougher opponent.

Sam made his debut in 1945. He was a small person, with a big mouth. He had a bad temper and frequently drew his guns on anyone who defied him.

It’s strange how the mind works, and once Yosemite Sam came to mine I couldn’t think of anything else.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

X...Xplains so much

I was having some trouble with the 'X' word, and am cheating a bit. I found this interesting chart and it explains so much in my family, (not telling where I come in the family order).

Monday, 27 April 2015

W...Word Search Puzzles

Word Search puzzles, finding words within a page of letters, written forward, backwards or on a diagonal. I like to see if I can pick the words out just by scanning the whole page, before going to a line by line search.

The thing is, I like real words, not lists of Greek gods, foreign or historical places. I find the themes on each page interesting. Like the one I finished last night. “Really Big Shew” I guess you’d have to be of retirement age to recognize this...from the Ed Sullivan Show. The words were things like variety, host, stars, television, New York and of course, the Beatles.

I found two pages I should save for my brother...Harley-Davidson and The Humane Society.

These puzzles can be good for the vocabulary, something that’s handy for a writer. There’s the list of words for Want to Help? Words like mentor, rescue, volunteer, guide, grant, expedite, boost, bolster or assist.

Then there’s Stick Around. There are some good words, interesting alternatives to stay. Here are a few. Abide, bunk, linger, park, pause, remain, reside, roost and of course, sit tight, sojourn, stop and tarry.

These puzzles are my sleep aid when I can’t settle. The search for words tires my eyes and lets my mind slow down by concentrating on one word at a time. After a few pages I’m ready to sleep.

I love the “For Better or For Worse” cartoons and they have a number of games on their web page for all ages. My favourite is the Daily Roundup. It’s a mix between a crossword and a word search. You have to find the five mammals starting with the letter ‘D’. It’s fun, give it a try.

Saturday, 25 April 2015


A couple of years ago, my brother began volunteering at the Humane Society, as a Cat Socialiser. He went in once a week and gave various cats some freedom from their cage, and some one-to-one attention.

It was there that a special bond began...between my brother and one particular cat named Vinny.

If I remember all the details right, this cat was born in the shelter, had lived all of the two years of his life there, where his home was a cage. His litter mates had been adopted, and only Vinny remained.

As much as the animals at the shelter are treated with love and care, it can never replace a ‘forever home’.

Hearing Vinny’s story was what finally persuaded my brother and his wife into adopting a cat. I hadn’t realized that this was the first pet either of them had ever had, in their adult life at any rate. Until the last few years, there has always been some kind of animal, cats or a dog, in my home, and that seemed the norm.

Boy, did they ever have some challenges and some surprises ahead. The timing seemed right for all concerned, and in just a short time Vinny has settled in, and found his place, his home.

My brother is a Photoshop genius, and having a cat has sparked his imagination and inspired him to showcase his ‘buddy’ in some very humorous scenarios. Not that Vinny understands the concept. He doesn’t seem to take direction very well, doesn’t want to cooperate by posing. I think it’s more a snap, snap, snap, hope for the best and edit in Photoshop kind of thing.

I’ve been without a pet for almost ten years now, and take any opportunity to get my “pet therapy’. There’s something about the no-strings-attached love that a pet offers that can make a bad day seem better, and an otherwise empty house full of an unconditional welcome home.

Giving a shelter animal a chance to do that for you seems a win-win for all concerned.

Friday, 24 April 2015


A character in a book I was reading, scorned the high stiletto type heels that were in fashion, said the shoes must have been designed by a man. Her male companion agreed. Why? Because they appreciate the side effects, that a woman’s legs look great and her ass jiggles when she walks.

Well, I think the same can be said for underwire brassieres, the designed by men part. There’s some of that jiggle factor, as the wires keep the ‘girls’ uplifted and barely contained in those barely there demi-cups.

Women move about, twist and turn, bend and reach, and their bras move with them. From the very first wearing that wire starts to tear through the fabric, until that day it protrudes and stabs into you. Ouch. That wire hurts and it has to be taken out for the bra to be comfortable.

I don’t see a great deal of difference, but if one wire goes, they both go. Wouldn’t want somebody to suddenly tell you that one boob was higher than the other, if it does make a difference. I always poke a hole in the other cup and push the second wire out. I’m okay with a bit of droop if it means I’m pain free.

And when you think about it, wireless is the way to go now-a-days.

Thursday, 23 April 2015


Tchotchke...a small bauble or miscellaneous item. According to the Urban Dictionary, it’s a small piece of worthless crap, a decorative knick-knack with little or no purpose. It can be pretty, sentimental, or might even be useful.

Look around your place, I’m sure you’ll find samples...souvenirs from a vacation, something cutesy from the dollar store, some little thank you gift more sentimental than valuable.

There are all sorts of names for this kind of thing: trinkets, trifles, playthings, baubles, bric-a-brac, bagatelle, gimcrack, gewgaws and on and on.

Sometimes a tchotchke can grow into a collection, and that can be a dangerous thing. Many of us like to collect items with a common theme. For me it was angels, my bookcases are full of very nice, very arty angel statues, many given to me for some special occasion.

The problem is once people know you collect something, they know they can always gift you in that theme, and then your collection grows beyond your space. I like the items displayed on my shelves, had to buy a curio cabinet to house all the rest, from the more valuable to the cheap.

I remember my brother once had a collection of penguins, which I gleefully added to. I think it started with a card he got and somehow went crazy from there. I seem to recollect that people were sending him cards and little baubles until, whether he wanted it or not, he had a collection.

My brother and I are alike in many ways, that tendency to collect, hoard seems too harsh a term. I also collected arty seal sculptures, gave them all to my son when I switched to angels. I’m out of the collecting game, my space is too limited, but I enjoy adding to the bauble collectives of others.

Cats are my new collection, for others, of course. My brother is a ready victim, as he has his first pet, a cat, and he’s into a cat theme now. I have a friend who is also very fond of cats, so it works for her too.

Just a warning, if you admit to a fondness for any specific topic, whether it be fairies, cats, candles, whatever, be prepared to be inundated. If you have reached a stage in life where you have your home settled, can get for yourself almost anything you need, friends and family are always looking for something to get you, and before you know’re a collector.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

S...Sounds Outside my Window

I’m sitting here with my morning coffee, enjoying the breeze through the open window. With the breeze and fresh air come the sounds.

I can hear my neighbours call out greetings as they come and go. The sun is shining and it’s a beautiful day, the warmest yet I think.

The sirens are sounding, hard and long. Fire and ambulance? I fear it’s not a good day for someone, somewhere.

The whistle of a train sounds in the distance. I love the repetitive sound of it on the rails, though others may not agree if the tracks are close to their backdoor. I grew up near the airport and know what it’s like to miss bits of conversation or the voices on the television because a plane was taking off or landing.

The breeze is sounding in the brass wind chimes at my neighbour’s door.

Was that a chain saw? Maybe trimming trees that didn’t make it through these last storms unscathed or a proactive removal of dead limbs before the cold and freezing temperatures of another winter.

If it were Sunday, I would be listening to the music of the church bells. And if I was downtown I could hear the tower bell in the town hall signal the hour.

The sounds of life, after months of closed windows and bad weather keeping everyone inside and isolated. I say all the sounds of spring.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015


If only. If only, if only. Two words that evoke a sense of yearning, of a road not taken.

Much like: could have, would have, should have.

“I could’ve been a contender.”

I would have been there for you.

I should have listened to my mother.

Words that may impart a sense of regret, remorse, or resignation.

A sense that life...could have, would have, and should have been...different...if only.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Q...Quiet Places

There are places I like to go, depending on my mood, where I can be alone, and just be quiet. No phone, no television, maybe some music, maybe just the sounds of nature or the anonymous activity of town.

Our town has a fabulous beach park, with a pier jutting out into the lake. Occasionally, on a summer day, I drive out on the pier and park, on the one side I can watch the people on beach, or on the other, the boats in the marina. It can be busy there, so it’s a people watching place.

On the far side of the marina is a quiet spot where the waterfowl gather, the geese, ducks and seagulls. They are always good for a show and a demonstration that different doesn’t mean they can’t live together and get along.

I like the small cemetery in town, surrounded with large shade trees. I can park on the road and enjoy absolute quiet. I turn the radio off out of respect, and enjoy the solitude and silence.

In a neighbouring town there is a small beach park, but I go to the small parking lot east of it, above the rocky path beside the lake. The waves crash on the shore, and on a windy day it’s the perfect spot to sit, to think, to listen, especially if my emotions are as wild as the waves beating on the rocks below.

Another favourite spot is the parking lot to the dog park. The creek runs by the one side and the area is wooded, secluded, except for the visitors going into the park. One day I was parked, reading, with my foot propped on the open door to take advantage of the breeze.

I was surprised to suddenly find my lap full of dog, a big and friendly dog, wiggling, tongue lapping, just begging to be petted. Her owner was full of apology but I just laughed and gave the dog a scratch behind the ears. I watched them leave, the dog excited and prancing its way to the park in anticipation.

I live alone, so I can make my place as quiet as I need it to be, but it’s very rarely quiet. I need to fill the empty space with noise, but every once in a while, when the walls are feeling a bit too tight, I seek out one of my favourite quiet places, and they never disappoint.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

P...Preserving Memories

Years ago, when I had an MRI of my brain that indicated a large number of MS lesions, I was afraid how that would affect my memory. I wrote family histories, of my parents, my grandparents, and the kids’ father, who has been gone for twelve years.

I felt there might come a time when they would want to know the family history, the stories, and I wanted to preserve that for them.

More than seven years ago I started making a cookbook. I took all the family recipes, and those that had been tried and true family favourites, and made a cookbook, scrapbook style. Each page was colourful and often included photos and anecdotes. I then photocopied the original, four times, and put each copy in a plastic sleeve in binders.

Each binder had a personal cover page for each child, and would be theirs for their adult years. Their mothers use the books now, so the kids will know those recipes.

When I had two more grandchildren born, a month apart, I had to play catch-up and create a book for each of the new arrivals. I added to the books for the next few years, but as I haven’t cooked much in the last two years, rarely bake anymore, there have been no new additions.

I have this great need to know the grandchildren will remember me. Sad that I feel I could be so easily forgotten. I guess it’s because I can’t be the active fun grandmother I would have hoped to be. As my MS progresses, I feel like I’m fading away from their lives.

Last week when I did some filing and shredding of personal records, I found a number of recipe pages I have completed but not yet copied for the grandchildren’s books. Colour photocopying is so expensive, I think I’ll try the scanner feature on my printer, see what kind of job it does and how the cost of ink compares with photocopying.

I guess I’m not done yet.

Friday, 17 April 2015

O...Ornery Orange Orangutan

Okay, I admit I’m not really writing about orangutans. I was stumped for my “O” topic and was going to go with things orange, but could only come up with oranges, pumpkins and Cheesies. But I did like the alliteration of the title.

My subconscious must have been at work because I quickly realized that ‘ornery’ was my word.

My grandmother was born in 1899, in the hills of West Virginia. Her father was a country doctor who made his rounds on horseback. She was a wonderful woman who lived just months shy of her 100th birthday.

She’s the only person I knew who used the word ORNERY, and she used it as a term of affection. If we were fooling around or acting up, she’s look at us with that twinkle in her eye and that loving smile. “You’re just being ornery,” she’d say.

I once teased an elderly patient, by saying the same thing, and she was insulted. I looked it up to clarify.

ORNERY   adjective
1.      (Appalachia) cantankerous, stubborn, disagreeable
2.      (humorous, southern US) mischievous, prankish, teasing, disagreeable, but in a good way

My grandmother was obviously Southern in her use of the word, but being as West Virginia is in Appalachia, she would have needed to be careful who she was talking to when she said it.

I like to think of it being a Southern thing, and will refrain from its use, as these Northern folk just don’t get it. I’m just being ornery, aren’t I Grandma?

Thursday, 16 April 2015

N...No Socks

It may be spring, but that doesn’t mean it’s warm weather, but we Canadians are a hardy bunch and if the temperature is above zero, it feels warm after the months of freezing cold. Last week I saw my teenage granddaughter, and noticed she was wearing her moccasins and no socks. Then I noticed a friend was doing the same when we met for dinner.

How quickly we throw off our socks, that confining feeling we equate with winter. I suppose of all the garments we might go without, socks are a quieter and safer rebellion.

Years ago, at my writing group, we were given the topic spring, for our 150 word challenge. The following is what I wrote, and thought it fitting.

My toes are tingling.  That itchy, fidgety, tingling sensation that can only mean one thing.  It is almost as if they are yelling “off damn socks”.  It's spring, time to cut loose from the confines of winter, to get rid of the boots, the sneakers, the socks.  I can almost feel it and wait in anticipation, for the freedom, the absolute frivolity, of flip flops.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015


A moment is an indefinitely brief period of time, but a brief time of importance. And as such, there is the possibility to have an indefinite number of moments in any given day.

There are the generic, every day kind of moments, like when your feet touch the floor in the morning and you know you live to see another day, or that first sip of coffee to jump start you awake. These are moments of satisfaction, for a job well done, be it personal, like finally cleaning out the hall closet, or work, for finally getting that report finished.

But there are other moments, moments of such importance that they stay with you forever and a lifetime. They can be life changing moments, like when you say “I do”, when you first see your newborn’s face, when you hold the hand of a loved one and say goodbye. Those are the moments we cherish, and never forget.

The best moment of the day is ever changing, the secret is to make every moment count, to make every moment the best one of the day.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

L...Lost Socks

It’s one of those mysteries of life, that place that lost socks go, never to be found again. I live alone, do my own laundry, have a specific spot for the ‘to be washed’ stuff, and though I am not particularly fussy about the wash, I do check the washer and dryer for anything left behind. And yet I still have lost two socks.

A few years ago I bought a package of black socks, eight pairs all the same, so no problem with mixing and matching. Then I bought two new pairs, black, with a relaxed cuff as the others were tight on my ‘fluid retention’ days.

Now you might ask, with all these same coloured socks, how I know I’ve lost a couple of socks. It seems the last pair I matched after the laundry had one with a regular cuff and the other with a relaxed one. Might still work for me as my left leg swells some, bad knee and all, and the socks all look the same...basic black.

My grandchildren have lost socks and seem to have given up on wearing a matched set. I think they consider the odd pairing to be a fashion statement. Oh, to be young and brave. I still remember the day I was at work and realized I was wearing one black sock and one navy, which is probably what moved me to do the all black thing.

Somewhere, in some alternate universe, those lost socks are all gathered, laughing as we mortals, forever doomed, search for our sock’s lost mate.

Monday, 13 April 2015

K...Kit and Caboodle

I read this phrase in a book the other day. It’s old, something I’ve said, but not something you hear from the younger generation. I did some research.

Kit...A set of objects, as in a tool kit archaic term meaning a group or collection of things or people.

Found this Peanuts cartoon by Charles Schultz that I thought was cute, and appropriate.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

J...Jumping into Puddles

A few weeks ago I was walking along the sidewalk, a woman and her young son ahead of me. He saw the puddle at the edge of the pavement, partially covered with a thin sheet of ice. It was too much to resist. He stamped his foot in the puddle, breaking the ice, covering his boots in mud.

I could see his mother shake her head as she pulled him away and continued on. I also saw him look back, for there was more fun to be had, little boys being what they are, and puddles being so interesting.

It made me think of my own son, and I remembered when he was little and I wrote a poem for him.

Little Boys

They say that little boys are sweet
that they are oh so fine,
But I can tell they’ve never met
that little boy of mine.

When rain pours down and leaves behind
little puddles in the street,
No pool or puddle has been missed
by my boy’s little feet.

And when I send him out to play
in clothes all nice and clean,
Home he comes all dirt and grime
and knees all coloured green.

When supper’s done he clears the plates
for that’s a simple chore,
And when he wipes the table clean
the crumbs land on the floor.

When at night he has his bath
I really have to scrub,
To get off all the dirt he leaves
in a ring around the tub.

In bed at night when he’s asleep
I look upon his face,
And realize that no one else
could ever take his place.

They say that little boys are sweet
that they are oh so fine,
And I can tell they’ve surely met
that little boy of mine.

Friday, 10 April 2015

I...Ice Cream Floats

I was out for dinner with my son and his family, and saw the kids favourite drink was root beer. It’s not a drink I have very often, as I’m very much a dedicated Diet Pepsi fan (sorry, John, but diet Coke has too much sodium, and I retain too much fluid already LOL).

The only time I have root beer is if I’m at A&W, which I am at least once a year for the annual MS fundraiser. If you’re going to drink root beer, it might as well be the best.

When my kids were small a favourite treat was a root beer float. You remember, vanilla ice cream added to a glass of root beer. As I write this, I can’t seem to remember, do you add the ice cream to the root beer, or put the ice cream in first, add the root beer second?

Now, all I want is a root beer float. Power of suggestion, right?

I think I’ll bide my time, wait until summer and treat the kids to one when the family is all together. Good memories, and good times worth repeating.

Thursday, 9 April 2015


The weather is still cool enough to need a jacket or sweater, and my favourite warm-up item is my black hoodie with the front pocket pouch.

It’s oversized, long enough to cover my butt and therefore keep my back warm. I like the long sleeves and often pull my hands up inside, for extra warmth. I remember when my kids used to do that, a habit I found annoying at the time, and now find comforting.

If not the sleeves, I put my hands in the pouch, for the same effect. The pouch also comes in handy, better and larger than pockets for holding, carrying stuff.

My hoodie is at-home wear now, as the sleeves are frayed, and there are paint stains on the front from previous art projects. I’ll need to buy a replacement, but haven’t found the right one just yet. There’s no rush, as I have this quilted denim jacket, also showing signs of wear, that has been my mainstay change of season garment for years.

Comfort clothes, where would we be without them? I think I’m going to have to go shopping to replace these items. But I’ll do it slowly, one item at a time, to lessen the loss.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

G...Good Luck

I remember this old saying, something about “if it weren’t for bad luck, I wouldn’t have no luck at all”. It turns out these words are lyrics from the song Born Under a Bad Sign, 1967, lyrics by William Bell, music by Booker T Jones.

I’m sure we’ve all had times when we’ve felt exactly like that. I’m singing a different song, must be under a good luck spell lately.

I dropped a glass on the floor (laminate over concrete) and it didn’t break.

My toast slid off the plate and landed jam side up.

Another old saying about “a watched pot never boils”, so I walked away from the pasta boiling on the stove and returned just before it boiled over and prevented a nasty mess on my stove.

Found a looney in the bottom of the washer...paid for the dryer.

Found that mistake in my crochet before I was so far ahead I’d have to rip the whole thing out.

And thanks to that man that pulled out of the parking space right by the door, saving me time and effort.

I’m looking at the sunny side of life. More song lyrics.

Johnny Cash and the Carter Family

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

F...Feline Friends

I used to joke that I was going to be that crazy old lady in the neighbourhood, the one with all the cats. I got Tommy in my thirties and Guido in my forties, but before I could add to our happy family in my fifties, I lost both my buddies. So no more cats.

Cats are thought to be independent, but my guys were very affectionate, seemed to know when I needed their feline version of a hug. They slept on the bed, sat by my side and were great companions. I miss them.

I seem to be friends with people who are cat lovers, some with multiples, or whole families (Carol). It seems you either love them, or you hate them. My Dad leaned more to the hate side, more of a dog person (as long as it belonged to someone else). He always felt the cats knew he didn’t like them, and that was the reason they seemed to gravitate to him and would never leave him alone. Their version of cat humour, I guess.

My Mom loved Tommy, said how much she’d miss him when she moved to Florida. I found a stuffed cat that looked just like him and sent it to her. When she died, he came back to me. He sits on my shelf and I’ve resisted giving him to any of the grandkids.

He’s my reminder of them both, and a quiet comfort when I see him sitting on the shelf.

Monday, 6 April 2015


I’ll admit I was a bit stuck for a topic for ‘E’, and went to bed thinking I was going to have to make do with this sandwich my Mom made with English muffins and eggs. When I woke this morning, my subconscious obviously at work in my sleep, I had my topic.

This is full disclosure, one of those moments of a Mom, out of control and stressed to the max, but still no excuse. I was recently divorced, finding my way as a single Mom, working, worrying about money, my kids and everything else. It was a time I felt like I was carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders.

I can’t remember where we had been that night, but in my memory we were coming home late, and I wanted to get the kids into bed so I could just sit and relax for a few minutes. When I entered my son’s room his bed was covered in clothes, dirty, clean, folded and supposed to have been put away, I don’t know. The clothes were my final straw. How could he sleep with all that ‘stuff’ on his bed?

I proceeded to gather it all up off the bed, giving my best Mother’s rant about keeping his room clean etc. and threw everything on the floor at the same time my son leaned down to pick something up.

The clothes, and the etch-a-sketch that was buried in them, hit him on the back of the head. He cried out, there was blood, and I realized that stupid toy, that I had inadvertently thrown, had cut him on the scalp.

Instead of having the kids in bed and some ‘me’ time, I bundled them up and we took off to the emergency department for some not so quality ‘we’ time.

I was so upset, had visions of the Children’s Aid coming after me as they stitched up my kid. The staff at the hospital were great, no accusations, a lot of understanding, and no stitches required.

Looking back, I wish they had stitched that damn cut, it might not have scarred that way. Not that a tiny scar on the back of the head is a big deal, but the hair never grew where the injury occurred and with my son’s very short hair, it’s a constant reminder.

We have a great relationship, my son and I, and we laugh when he tries to make me feel guilty for that scar. He saw a key chain ornament one time, a perfect replica of the etch-a-sketch toy and almost bought it for me, as a joke, but realized that was maybe hitting to close to home.

I’m glad that we can laugh at that moment and accept, for none of us are perfect, especially Mothers, though we try very hard to make our children think we are.

Saturday, 4 April 2015


I love to lie in the dappled shade, kissed by the sunlight smiling through the window.

photo found on

Friday, 3 April 2015

C...Creases on my Cheek

When I looked at my face in the mirror this morning, I knew I had slept soundly, and without moving. The creases on my cheek matched the design of the quilted cover on my bed.

I like to pull the covers up over my shoulder, over my hands, and usually sleep with one hand under my head. Hence the matching quilt lines on my face.

It made me think of my Mom. She was an artist, and a night owl. I understand that kind of behaviour, since I’m the same. There’s something about the quiet and privacy at night that supports creativity.

Daytime peace and quiet has such a greater potential for being interrupted, phone calls, friends dropping by unannounced.

I always knew when Mom had taken a little ‘catch-up’ nap in the afternoon, while the three kids were in school and Dad was at work. There would be the tell tale marks on her face from the chenille spread on their bed.

Long time gone, but not forgotten, love you Mom.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

B...Blueberry Hill

You might think, if you’re old enough, that this is about a Fats Domino song, and obviously I’m of an age to remember. But it’s not; it’s about a burger place of the same name that used to be in Bloor West Village.

Years ago, when my kids were small, we frequented that restaurant as they made the best burgers. One day we were there and the place was crowded with cyclists as there was some bike race or something going on in High Park.

There were two levels in the restaurant, only steps apart, with the washrooms on the higher level. The upper level was small with only a few tables, the end wall solid glass with a view out over the patio. One of the cyclists walked out of the darker bathroom into the bright sun shine and walked right into that glass wall, shattering it and cutting himself fairly severely in the process.

There were only high school kids working and everyone went into a panic. I told my kids to sit where they were and went to help; I was a nurse after all. The man had a deep laceration to his calf and had slashed his one wrist and was bleeding copiously.

I was joined by another nurse who was in the restaurant and we got towels from the staff, had them call 911 and proceeded to apply pressure to all the wounds. I held on as tight as I could to the man’s right wrist, stopping the flow, and listened to him talk about not being able to feel his fingers. He was feeling pain and shock, and getting more alarmed about his hand as he was a graphic artist.

The other nurse and I talked to him and tried to keep him calm until the ambulance arrived, comparing notes on where she worked, where I did etc. When the ambulance came and carried him off, I returned to the table where my kids had, for once, listened to me and had not moved.

I wasn’t in the mood for my burger anymore and wrapped it up to toss it away. The kids were silent, and staring at me as if I were some alien who looked like their mother, but wasn’t.

They knew I was a nurse, had often been to the nursing home where I worked, but they had never seen me really being a nurse, helping someone in an emergency.

 It was only a few minutes of my time, and it was worth it, the good feeling I get for helping someone in need and for the respect I earned from the kids. I recently read the words Blueberry Hill and this memory came to me so strong I knew it had to be my ‘B’ posting.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Book #21...Origin in Death

Book #21...Origin in Death

A famous doctor is found murdered in his office. They have a video record of his last appointment, know she is the killer, but the name, address, everything about her is a fake. Eve looks at the doctor, sure he was targeted, and goes in search of his secrets.

She comes up against Doctor Mira, who knew the dead doctor both personally and professionally. It’s the medical version of the police department’s blue line. Dr. Mira cannot accept or believe the victim was guilty of any wrongdoing.

Reading these books in sequence, I realize there are many events from previous books mentioned. This is to be expected as the story time frame from book #1 to the current book #21 is only a couple of years.

I particularly like how some of these references are made. Morris, the Medical Examiner and Eve are standing over the second victim. He says “a locked door mystery, and you our Poirot, minus the moustache and accent”. Eve knows the reference, and Agatha Christie, because...she viewed some movies made from her books after the case based on Witness for the Prosecution.

Roarke, a successful businessman, is used to being in charge. He recently discovered he had family in Ireland, and was shocked to find they welcomed into their home, when he expected to be hated...sins of the father. The Irish clan are coming to New York for Thanksgiving, and Roarke is nervous, and very unsettled. What does he know about family?

We meet CHER REO, an Assistant District Attorney, and AMARYLLIS COLTRAIN, a detective new to the city, and a romantic interest for Dr. Morris.

Love is bounding as we see relationships flourish between Peabody and McNabb, Louise and Charles, and Mavis, Leonardo and soon to be baby.

This story is very complicated and has a very dramatic ending. We see Eve battle what she believes to be right, and the more unfeeling letter of the law.

A...Arts and Crafts

At my old place I had a long and narrow storage locker, with shelves running across the top and plastic drawer bins underneath. The three drawer bins were specific for sewing, scrapbooking and painting. I also had a large box filled with frames, art work and canvases.

The shelves held all my yarn and all the other craft supplies that I felt were essential to my crafting life. I won’t even go into the stuff in the bedroom closet, on the bookshelves or under my bed. When I moved I thought I had thinned everything down to the bare minimum.

What I kept was stored in 25 photo boxes, and they are stacked on the shelves of the new and smaller storage closet at the new place. I still have some drawered plastic bins, and some files to hold all my paper.

What I’m trying to remember is what did I actually get rid of? My son has all my fabric in those vacuum seal bags and my daughter has all the art work.

It’s time to “shit or get off the pot”, so to speak. Spring cleaning will be spring clean out, as I will either make use of each item...or get rid of it. I am determined the cupboards will be cleared out and organized before winter comes round again.

My new mantra, which is much like the old, is “I will not buy craft supplies. I will not buy craft supplies. I will not buy craft supplies.”

Unfortunately it works out more like this. “I will not buy...oh, look at that...I love that colour.”

Maybe the mantra should be...:”I will not enter the craft store. I will not enter the craft store. I will not enter the craft store.”