Sunday, November 16, 2008

Why I love my husband.....

The last two weeks have been rather strenuous....both physically and mentally. The death of a close friend and a week of rehearsals and concerts (both school and regular) along with the everyday job of living has taken its toll. By last night, I was whacked....enjoying the wine at the pub after the concert....but nevertheless whacked!!

This morning I got up, after sleeping relatively well, and realized that I had the total day to start to recoup and just relax...easy dinner tonite...just I had my first coffee, crawled on the couch covered myself with a large throw and read and snoozed. I was snoozing on the couch, the tantalizing smell of fried rice wafted out of the kitchen and woke me up ......DH had retrieved my coffee cup silently from beside me and refilled it, made a delectable fried rice mixture with veggies and leftover meatloaf and teriyaki sauce, put it in a bowl for me and then quietly came over and said "Breakfast is ready".......

....and that is why I love my husband!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Holey Soles Forever!!!

So...I promised a blog about my "Holey Soles" obsession.
What are Holey Soles??? You may well ask....
They are a homegrown Canadian version of "Crocs"....and oh so much better.

Quite a while ago I was checking out Rosie O'Donnell's blog, as I am wont to do and came across a photo of her wearing this really nice black outfit (coat (not jacket) and pants) for an evening out and she had finished it off by wearing bright pink Crocs. Needless to say, as things do with her, it caused quite a stir. However, she mentioned on her blog that the Crocs had been sent to her by a fan and she wanted to wear them.....full acknowledging at the time that she had absolutely no fashion sense. In any of the Canadian bloggers (read fans), after reading this, told her she should actually be wearing Holey Soles, as they were the originators of the design. So that got me to thinking.....and researching....and I found the Holey Sole site. I also found a supplier in Kamloops....Valhalla Outfitters.....and fortunately they had them on for half price.
After an initial "breaking in" process, I have worn them pretty much non-stop for most of the spring and summer (maybe even earlier) They are SO comfortable.

I have worn them to symphony rehearsals and because I always have a problem finding comfortable black shoes to wear to the concerts, I started musing about possibly wearing a black pair of Holey Soles. Two concerts ago, I wore these to the concert, changed into a pair of black stretchy slippers and then back into the Holey Soles....during the intermission and after the concert. My colleagues in the horn section jokingly suggested I should get a pair of black ones as I liked them so which I replied..."Funny you should say thoughts exactly!!"

So....I checked out Valhalla Outfitters and they no longer stocked them...they just had odd sizes in odd colours that they were trying to get rid of. Art Knapps, also, no longer stocked them.
Well...I guess I was just going to have to order them tedious (snicker snicker!!)

When I went to their new redesigned website....I found a plethora of new styles...Woohoo!!!
There was a pair of black ones....with no holes....more like a sport type shoe, but still black and slip on.....just the ticket I thought!! So then I explored some more and found more colours of the new updated style that I already had.
So to make a long story short....I ordered the black ones, a pair of red ones and a pair of navy blue ones. There are many other colours, but I think I will hold off until the spring or summer. Amazingly enough....I ordered them on Wednesday...and they arrived on my doorstep at 8:10 in the morning on Friday.......I was totally impressed!!
So....after all are the pictures of my Holey Soles.....

...and here is a picture of my new "symphony" Holey Soles....with removable insoles, no less in case you want to put in arch cool is that!! I have worn them to two concerts now and they work perfectly....even with black socks!!
I am always on the lookout for shoes that are easy to fit and comfortable....I have large feet....large in every way....wide, flat and long.....women's size 12 - wide. So when I find something that is easy to put on, colourful, lightweight and it fits....well....I just have to have them. I do wear dress up shoes when absolutely at C & J's wedding in September, I bought a pair of silver sandals....and the instore shoe repair guy stretched them for me....I was actually able to wear them for a major part of the night....
I also wear Clark's Wallabee's - the original ones....and I used to wear Birkenstocks....until Holey Soles came along. The Wallabee's are for winter and Holey Soles for the summer....there ya go....

My Holey Soles obsession!!


Wednesday, October 08, 2008

A night with the Vinyl Cafe......

So I went to the theatre tonite to see Stuart McLean and the Vinyl Cafe. If you ever listen to CBC, you are well aware of Stuart McLean. For those who don't's a worth while listen....CBC Radio 2 at 10 am on Saturdays...and CBC Radio 1 at 12 Noon on Sundays. Don't ask me where Radio two and Radio one are....they are different for each region....I do know that in the Lower Mainland, Radio 2 is 105.7...not sure of Radio one though....

The show was wonderful.....down home clean humour and lots of laughter and good times....and good Canadian musicians. I am going to now look for CD's by Dala ...and Daniel Michelle....both excellent. Dala is two ladies who have performed together since high school and Daniel Michelle is a funky fellow...interesting guitar licks and lyrics in his songs. was a good evening...and we topped it off with a glass of wine at home...relaxing.

One can be a real people watcher at these events though.....a couple of things I observed.....
...a three generation group .....2 very large ladies, one a mother, one a daughter and one very small grandmother....who as it turned out was 92. She sat between them almost dwarfed...which begged the question......where did the largeness come from???? She was postively tiny....but enjoying herself immensely. Interesting...hmmmmm. Ok...I know one could think of that as being not very nice picky....but...I'm big...I can do that..:-)
The other thing is listening to people around you.....sometimes you just want to butt in and correct or dispute...or just join in the conversation...but you don't. You just listen...and then wait until the end of the show to see who on earth was saying what was said.....!!
I also wonder about men with toupees....There was such a man sitting behind us. It wasn't was very obviously a why does he wear it. I'm sure there are number of reasons, probably all very sound and appropriate...but when it looks so atrocious....hmmm...what was his wife thinking!!! Ok...I'll take a shot for that too..

Anyways...all in all a good evening.....

So I have a post up and coming regardng my Holey Soles and all!!!
...and hopefully I will get that done tomorrow....before we are..... to Victoria on Friday morning EARLY.

I can't wait to see T&D...even if it's only for a short time....I miss them so much....
I so miss my kids and their sig. others......they are all so very dear to me......and I am in a constant state of "awe" at how they are progressing and dealing with "life" . So much better than I did.....but then times were different least that's my excuse!!

Ok, I have had two glasses of wine....and I will get positively maudlin if I don't watch it. ...but hey....I'm a mom...what can I say.

As I look at my mommy cat peering out at me from her present location in the paper shelf in the computer room, it occurs to me that I am making far too many typos and it's time for bed..... to read a few pages of Anne Lamott....and then can only hope!!


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

.....continued (as promised!!) on the last post, I be continued. Here is the continuation...such as it is. I may repeat myself....but what can I say....I'm sixty!!

We headed down to Osoyoos on Monday, Sept. 8, going down through Keremeos so we could hit a couple of wasn't open (that would be Orofino) but we went to Crowsnest and started our stash there. It has grown substantially over the years and now sports a restaurant, and B&B.
We arrived in Osoyoos at about 3pm having been preceded by our friends D&B who were going to spend a few days with us. This "travelling with another couple" thing was a new experience for us and really a lot of fun. They love wine almost as much as we do and so our sojourns to the various and sundry wineries throughout the South Okanagan and Naramata were full of lots of laughter, good conversation and of course wine tasting. We parted ways on Thursday around noon in Kelowna after sampling yet a few more wineries and having a wonderful lunch in Peachland at the Blind Angler. During our time together, apart from the wine stuff, we lazed on the patio, swam in the lake and our two hubbys got sucked into tubing behind a speedboat.....and we have some pictures to prove it!!! Unfortunately I was napping at the time but apparently the experience for them was quite exciting!!! We have decided to do this again next year if possible, so I am quite looking forward to it.

After they left, things were quite quiet, so we relaxed on the Friday and hit a couple of more wineries on the Saturday and then did nothing but veg on the Sunday...leaving on Monday morning to head home.

For those of you that care...we managed to visit 16 wineries. I know, I know....I was surprised as well, it just didn't seem that much. Throughout the trip we had been on the search for Malbec.....and on the Saturday we scored some at Inniskillen. It is a wine that is making a comeback in BC slowly. Argentinia has kind of adopted it as it's own....but it was at one time a popular wine in BC...then it went the way of Marachel Foch.....but thankfully some wineries are now making it on it's own....instead of using it in blends. Red Rooster makes one as does Quinta Ferriera and Inniskillen. There may be more, but those are the ones we found on this trip. The only one with some available was Inniskillen. So that's as much technical wine talk as I can manage.....I will list the wineries if anyone really wants to know...but trust me...there are still many more to see!!!

The whole visit was good in that there were people there that we had met last year and they will also be there next we have now become "regulars" at the motel......I just love it!!!
The only downside was that we were not in our usual room and, although the room was the same layout as our usual one (it was next door) our door was right next to the door of the "party" room and every time we left the room, we were assailed by clouds of cigarette smoke from the myriad of people who congregated outside this one unit. They were also very noisy and "in your face" and drinking almost non-stop. It was a family group spread over three units. Hopefully next year, this won't be a problem as we went a week later this year than normal (due to the wedding) and next year it will be our normal time, which is the day after labour day. They (the "rowdies) left on the Sunday morning and we all breathed a collective sigh of we had one day of peace and quiet and clean air outside our unit. It took the housekeeping staff almost a full day to clean the units and air them out.....sigh.

So...all in wasn't quite the relaxing week I had hoped for, but there were definitely many pluses to take away the pain of the minuses :-).

Now it's back to the grind...we have already had one concert and there is another in two I'm now practicing regularly. We made 16 bottles of grape juice on Sunday (Concord, Ortega and Marchel Foch) and canned 20 jars of peaches on Monday....all at brother B's. Now I have a few things to pesto and basil prepared for freezing, possibly some zucchini pickles....not sure....and I have some work to do in my workshop....Nutfolkery possibly???
DH has gone on a cooking, baking binge and made stew, shepherd's pie, tomato sauce (for freezing) apple pies (that was dual effort-he and me) and he is going to make apple cobbler tomorrow I think.

What I two weeks to do nothing but recover from the first two weeks of September!!!!


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The first two weeks of September......

It's been a chaotic, hectic, busy, wonderful, thrilling, emotionally draining, painful (as in dancing too much pain) and then relaxing, giggly, humorous and at times really annoying, but in the end fulfilling two weeks (Since September 1st).

Our sweet and lovable son got married to an equally sweet and lovable young lady on September 5 in Aldergrove. We headed down to Aldergrove on September 1st to help with last minute preparations and do a little babysitting and in general be there if needed before the wedding. It was a totally different experience than when our daughter got married five years ago. I'm not sure how it was different (other than the whole bride's parents/groom's parents thing), but it was a totally different dynamic.....which again shows the difference between the two siblings. Interesting to say the least......
The rehearsal, the rehearsal dinner (which we were hosting at Char's in Aldergrove...amazing food by the way!!), the wedding, and gift opening all went off without a hitch. A lot of fun was had by all.

...some high points.....

*The bride was beautiful and just glowed with happiness and the bridesmaids looked wonderful.

*The groom....well, what can I say, he's our son....but he was handsome and just as happy as his lady, I don't think the smile left his face all night!!

*The song jointly composed by the bride C and her friend A. for the groom and sung by A. during the signing of the register after the ceremony.

*The entrance of the bride and groom to the reception...beautifully choreographed with great music and a smoke machine ..... hilarious !!

*The groomsmen were handsome and debonair, and special mention to groomsman J for playing with our grandson whilst pictures were being taken.....M, the best man did a great speech, just perfect for the occasion....and speaking of our grandson....he looked absolutely adorable in his tuxedo, being escorted down the walkway by his grandfather, DH, who I might add looked amazingly hot in his pinstriped charcoal vested suit with lavender shirt and matching patterned tie....(whew.... I almost had to fan myself!!)

*Hearing my son make mention of my dear 97 year old aunt who couldn't be there and everyone applauding her

*Hearing our son sing to his bride accompanying himself on the guitar along with groomsman J on the Tjembe. I have never heard him sing by himself before and I was just blown away. It was beautiful and the bride was in tears!!

*The Mother/Son dance with J.......a wonderful experience...whatta guy!!!!

*Spending time with friends and relative whom we don't see as often as we'd like and catching up with news

*Having some down time during the week with a good friend who came to the motel to have a glass of wine and update the toe nail polish!!

*An unforgettable sight to me was to see my lovely 80 year old cousin up on the dance floor kicking up her heels with the younger people AND keeping up with them.....what a grand lady!!!

*The spontaneous choreographed moves to the song "Fever" by Peggy Lee....complete with snapping fingers of the groomsman and the groom leading up to the removal of the garter....what a hoot!!!

*Another special mention here of my grand-nephew Jeff from St. Albert who also spent time playing with and entertaining our grandson, keeping him occupied during the picture taking time (between ceremony and reception) when the wedding party left briefly for pictures elsewhere....and grandson was missing his daddy!!!

*The music was good, the food was good, the drinks were fact it was all good and a wonderful occasion!!

When we arrived back at the hotel....I was hurtin' .....but a couple of Tylenol w/codeine and a good night's sleep helped to ease things and we were able to head out to the gift opening in the later morning. After that we picked up Chauncey at the kennel and headed back home to Kamloops.....bagged and in pain (me anyways), but happy.

We basically spent Sunday the 7th relaxing and doing laundry and making a list of things to take to Osoyoos with us on our annual trip to wine country.....we were to leave on Monday the 8th.

To be continued.....


Thursday, August 21, 2008


It is my 60th birthday today.........ecstatic to have made it this far!!! :-)
Because of this auspicious event....I have been honoured, nay thrilled to have had visitors over the last weekend and a bit.
We were (at least I was!!) totally surprised when T&D showed up at 1am on Saturday morning to stay until Monday. What a treat!!! They have not been here since August 2006 just before they left for Massachusetts. It was a glorious weekend....full of good food, excellent conversation, good wine and in general just "hangin' out" stuff. Unfortunately, due to schedules, new jobs etc....J & C couldn't make the trip, but we were able to chat with them on the phone on Saturday.

The four of them gave me the "Jamie at Home" cookbook from Jamie Oliver and a new set of Heinkel knives....oh so sharp and easy to use!!! I also received some lovely goodies from D's mom and dad, totally tailored to my personality (they are beginning to know me so well :-)).

So, on Saturday, T found two scrumptious salad recipes in the new cookbook and proceeded to dazzle us with her culinary skills. Along with marinated lamb, beef, and chicken BBQ'd on skewers, it was all very tasty. We also indulged in champagne and blackberry liqueur and delish Desert Hills wine...Chardonnay and was superb!!!

On Sunday we headed down to LacLeJeune to swim in the lake and lie on the grass and in general just have a pickynick and relax in the sun (and shade). When we got back we all kind of vegged for a while, napping etc...and then headed out for a wonderful dinner at The Storm Restaurant on the river to celebrate T&D's 5th anniversary. They are just so cool together.....
After that it was back to the patio to drink more wine and talk some more. Our patio got used more this trip than ever and it was great. Our neighbours must have wondered what the gales of laughter were coming from our back yard at midnight.....

All in all, a perfect celebratory weekend.....

And then.....
On Tuesday, our old neighbours from Langley arrived on their way through to Saskatchewan and we spent the afternoon and evening together and they stayed overnight heading out Wednesday morning. Lots of use of the patio here as well. Our dinner was bbq'd pork loin chops (thick, lean, boneless) along with fresh made pesto.... my special recipe which I just make on the fly with basil from the garden (assorted varieties), garlic, extra virgin olive oil, parmesan, mizythra, and feta cheeses, and walnuts (I just couldn't find the pine nuts) and a dash of balsamic vinegar. I never use specific quantities, just all to taste, but it made quite a bit and was excellent with fusilli pasta.....and a mixed green salad with chopped cucumber and tomatoes on the side...using assorted organic dressings.
We then had a french white wine and a home made Shiraz and Cab Sauv. I think we finally hit the hay around 11:30.

So we have been taking things easy since then and tonite my DH is taking me out to an as-yet unknown restaurant for dinner for the birthday celebration. Exciting to say the least!!!

As I mentioned to seems that as we get closer to J & C's wedding our life seems to be getting busier and busier.....I can't imagine what their life is like....although they do give me updates fairly regularly. It's not that our lives are ACTUALLY just seems that way...probably because I'm living vicariously through them in their preparations.....

It will all come together on September 5th....I have faith !!

...and then it's off to Osoyoos to unwind for a week before the symphony season starts again.

For now's all about today!!!


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Loneliness...... this morning, I was feeling, for some reason, a little "off".
It occurred to me that the problem was that I was lonely.....
Now, I'm not one who usually admits to loneliness....or even actually feels lonely. I'm pretty good with my own company. I mean, give me a good book, computer, french horn, music, and a cup of tea and I'm good to go. was a surprise to me when it dawned on me that I was actually lonely this morning. I did mention to DH this morning that I found that August was going incredibly slowly.....dragging almost.
So I figured the reason for this attack of loneliness was as follows. At the particular moment I was feeling like this, everyone that is important in my life was away from me. DH was at work, my two brothers are away, one in Ireland until the 27th and one down on the coast until the 18th, both of my kids are on the coast, one on the island, one in Abbotsford and all my friends are down on the coast as well. We don't have a lot of...well actually we don't have ANY close friends in Kamloops.
Now I'm not whining....I mean, I talked to my daughter yesterday and my son on Sunday and of course DH has been home. It's just at this particular moment, I was feeling somewhat bereft.....
It will pass, as these things do....
In the meantime I will tackle the stove top (very messy..) and make a list of things I should do.....possibly do some gardening (although that's at the bottom of the list). That should keep me busy until it's time to go pick up DH and ....Lord be praised!! laptop from the computer store. It will all be good.....soon.
But.....August IS really going slowly....too much exciting stuff happening at the end I guess....hard to wait!!

Friday, August 08, 2008

Happy Birthday Cale!!! would have been Cale Caputo's birthday.....I know this because my son informed me of the fact last night. Who is Cale you ask (at least some of you, I'm sure)?

Cale was my son's best friend, future best man, and band mate and all round brilliant musician.
He died in a car accident on May 21st 2006 at age 21. Cale had become a part of our family, hanging out with Jared at our home in Langley, calling me "Mom", playing with our dog, helping us in our move to Kamloops....he was a regular participant in our life. The first time I heard him sing, I was entranced by the sweetness of his voice and when One Chord Struck was formed, I was totally blown away by their music. I always found it interesting having conversations with Cale on the phone about the state of the Vancouver rock music scene. His observations showed an insight and understanding well beyond his years. It was his life!!

It's always a tragedy when a young person dies, and even more so when it's sudden and unexpected. It took me a long time to come to terms with his loss and my son is still dealing with it in many ways. As it gets closer to his wedding, it becomes more apparent to him that something or more specifically someone will be missing. So, when J told me it was Cale's birthday and to say a prayer for him....I thought about this and decided that a blog about my vision of what Cale is doing now would be entirely appropriate, as my prayers tend to be rather disjointed and only for my ears. I do much better with a story line!! So listen up God!!

I believe that God saw Cale and his music and decided that when it was his time, he would put him in charge of the celestial youth "jazz" it up so to speak. He had an innate ability, call it talent, for writing beautiful and meaningful songs and poetry......something that I'm sure would do well in a heavenly setting.

So.....wherever you are Cale, happy birthday and I'm sure the angels are singing your music beautifully....with your voice first and foremost among them!! We miss you down here in "mortal land" but I am positive that you are still doing what you do best.....your music and just "being Cale"

Much love
Jared's Mom

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

another milestone.......

A short post today.....just to celebrate achieving yet another goal in this challenge of revamping my lifestyle...(note I DO NOT say losing weight.....that is a phrase that is only used in passing in my a result of the lifestyle change) I will not give facts and figures....suffice to say that I am now over 30lbs down, feeling relatively good and eating very diet foods in my world.....a few low fat in dairy...and low sodium in broth....but other than that I love my food. Just not a lot of it!!

I have discovered foam belts and barbells at the pool and am having a wonderful time figuring out new exercises to do with them. It's funny though....I use the belt around me (basically to make it easier to keep the extremities moving without sinking) for the first part of my swim....and then I take it off to just do my normal swim. One doesn't realize how much the belt keeps you afloat...'cause when you take it off, you sink like stone if you're not careful!!! It's funny...I end up doing my laps a lot lower in the pool than when I start....:-) It's fun though.....I am managing 40-50 minutes three times a week.

So that's it....I had lamb tonite....nothing fancy...just marinated and baked and served with veggies and Italian Bread.....but it tasted so good. The two glasses of red wine helped as well....
Life is getting better.....definitely!!


Saturday, July 19, 2008

I'm baaack!!

A number of things have happened or at least have occurred in my life. First of all, I'm close to 30 lbs lighter....and actually enjoying the regularly swimming etc. I have done some gardening, planting, weeding etc....and my energy level seems to be increasing. I still have pain...and I am still keeping track of my food intake and will for the next 100 lbs, but all in all it's a positive change.

I am in the process of backing up and eventually re-formatting my lap top. This, to some people would be a ho-hum no big deal event. However, for me, it is yet another step in my learning to master the eccentricities of the said laptop. It has been snoringly slow and getting more so in the last little while, so when I asked London Drugs about adding RAM, (more moving around space for those of us who are not overly computer literate), he suggested that I reformat the computer first. Now when you reformat you basically re-install Windows and other stuff and in the process it gets rid of the stuff that's on your computer. So.....the magic work "back-up" appears and I found out that Microsoft has a wondrous "back-up wizard" and I'm all for anything that's a "wizard". So I downloaded it and am finding it somewhat confusing, but it has caused me to go through and uninstall a lot of peripheral programs that I wasn't using. That was mainly because the first time I started to back up, it said it would take 4 hours or more. Anyways, to make a long story short, I have backed up my email and browzer profiles (using yet another downloaded Mozilla backup program) and now I have to tackle the rest. I have decided this is multi-part a definitely WOOHOO!! will be heard when it's all done.

The last thing that I have achieved is to have a private blog set up for ladies in their fifties, heading towards their sixties or actually in their sixties. I was finding that there were issues that I had to deal with when entering this age group and it occurred to me that others might also have to deal with....and talking about it (albeit in typewritten form) is sometimes helpful. So far we only have two team members and hopefully more will want to join us. I'm still trying to figure out the ins and outs of how a team blog works....but so far, I believe I have to invite people to be's a work in progress. If anyone reading THIS blog, knows of someone who might want to become part of the other blog "Moving on Up" as it's called, please let me know.

For now though, I have some interesting reading to do, a laptop to address, and a DH to pickup from work....eventually.


Thursday, June 12, 2008


So, Wednesday was our anniversary....31 years to be exact....and as a coincidence, Cirque de Soleil was performing in Kamloops that very day!! I thought it entirely appropriate that we should attend their performance on this night....and it was totally worth every respect!!

DH was working (he has started back at the Art Gallery part time) and he finished at 5. The performance (which was called Saltimbanco) started at 7:30. We had planned that I would pick him up and then we'd go to a restaurant near the arena for dinner before the show. It all seemed to be going smoothly until I drove by the "restaurant" in the morning after dropping him off and noticed that it was no longer in existence!!

We actually had no plan I picked him up, relayed the news and we headed home for him to change and also to decide a plan of action. As it finally turned out, we parked next to the arena at around 5:30 and then hoofed it up to Senor Froggy's for some Mexican Fast Food. Now I'm normally not a fan of said fast food, but it was not too bad. Actually quite all in all it worked out...not the romantic dinner that we had envisioned, but was definitely cheaper!!

We had heard the show had a interactive segment before the actual starting we arrived early and got to our seats....which were just a tad narrower than my behind. The interactive segment started around 7:20 and was a lot of fun and when the performers scurried backstage the lights went down and the show began.....

I was transfixed!! I had heard wonderful things about Cirque and had always wanted to go to a live was truly amazing!! The colours and patterns and costumes were just a feast for the senses and the acrobatics, juggling, bicycling, dancing, music.....all brilliant!!

This is the website for Saltimbanco and if you click on each act the ones that have pictures can be enlarged. There's not too many pics, but they can give you some idea of what it looked like.
We had great seats...about half way up from the floor in the middle so close enough to see expressions and still far enough away to get the whole picture.

I could go on and on about it....but those of you in Vancouver have a chance to see another Cirque performance....Corteo!! I encourage anyone who can to go see it. Adults and children alike...totally awe-inspiring. It's interesting that Saltimbanco was first performed in the early nineties and had been brought back in 1997.....and then in the last few years it has been designed totally to be performed in an arena instead of their usual tent. Watching the trapeze duo perfom on one trapeze high up (higher than a tent we are told) was really quite nervewracking considering they had no safety lines....just a cushion for a soft landing!!! They were swinging through the air with one sitting on the trapeze and the other with her feet hooked on by the instep. The crowd gave a universal gasp as she slid down to that position and hung upside down. Ahhhhh!!!!! That act was the most awe-inspiring to be sure....but take nothing away from the rest of the too was jaw dropping!!

The cool thing was that there was a comedy section as well that involved a member of the audience and he proved to be a perfect choice. He was a tall broad man but he kept up with antics of the "jester" figure mime (called Eddy) showing a few antics of his own, much to the glee of the audience....and I think "Eddy" was pleasantly surprised!!

After the show.....feeling totally inspired and refreshed....we came home and sat quietly chatting and looking out at the lights of the North Shore with a nice glass of wine to finish off the evening.

This was like an anniversary morning. Got up late (DH didn't work until 4pm), DH made fried rice and sausages for brekkers along with great coffee and we sat outside and had coffee and read later on in the morning. Totally...a very nice day.....after a spectacular evening!!


Saturday, May 03, 2008

My life as it continues to proceed

Oh Wow.....I just saw the last time I much for my proposal to post daily or at least every other day. It's just that I come down, check my email, read blogs....see my blog and think...."I really should update it....yes I really should". I then proceed to talk myself out of it with excuses of "too busy" (yah right!!) "nothing to blog about" (there is lots....just haven't co-ordinated it yet) "not in the 'blogging' mood" (that is probably THE most honest excuse...not a good one...just the most honest) I am downstairs at night now, not really in a blogging mood, but determined nevertheless to write SOMETHING!!

Since my last blog entry, I have had a horrendous yet hatefully helpful visit to an orthopedic surgeon about my knees. The fellow had no tact, no bedside manner, no clue as to how people operate inside their heads and no ability to listen and so he decimated me in a ten minute appointment. Details are not really necessary here, just know that I took three days to recover from the humiliation. However, much to my chagrin, it did kick my butt into gear to start doing something about my weight and overall health. Yaaaayy??? Well, yes it is definitely from my family's point of view a YAYYYY!!!

So....I have registered online with (I heard about them from my dear daughter, who is also a Sparkperson) and considering it is free, it is probably the most sensible thing I have done in a while. I decided to go that route because (as my DH will tell anyone who will listen) I spend a good deal of my time on the computer anyways, so why not keep track of my nutrition and fitness on that same computer. So far it's working....and I'm lovin' it. I am now swimming three times a week and wonder of wonders, playing my horn (practice and rehearsals and concerts) is counted as cardio.....who knew??? The thing I like about this is that I can participate as little or as much as I want. I'm not a fan of doing a lot of "forum" stuff, but I will read information and research to educate myself in this project that I have taken on. I may participate in the forums eventually, just not now.....too new. So....that is my "Project Tubbytoes" named after my nickname for my older cat who also has a rather large tummy. I won't say the traditional "I will keep you posted" because if I do, I won't. If I remember, I'll mention it, otherwise you just have to wait until you see a picture of me from my son's wedding in September!!

I have taken to keeping a little list of things I have to accomplish in my life. I have a little diary type book, that has been used for a number of things (unfinished), so I have taken the last few pages of it and keep updating and crossing out things to do.....otherwise, nothing gets done or at least the important stuff doesn't get done, because I tend to forget or find other things to occupy my head. Email replies are always top on the list. I have a number to catch up on. Again...we run into the problem of "mood". I think of it but then decide that I have to be in the mood to write the replies....similar to the same mood that applies for blogging. I think that the response to this type of thinking is "mood, schmood ...get to it and stop procrastinating!!"

Other than all of the above I am happy that spring is finally arriving in Kamloops.....we actually sat on the patio and had coffee and read the other morning!! I have one more concert in the middle of May and then I'm done for the season. We have had two trips to the coast in the past two weeks, the last one being now it's time to settle down and get the garden sorted!

A trip to the nursery is in order before too long to plan our garden.....we have some herb plants growing under lights in DH's workshop and one of the basils is called Stella....we are hoping to manage to get some of them down to T&D at some point before summer so they can plant them in their little garden plot. I think I planted somewhere in the region of 10 different varieties of basil....could be less, but still a lot. Hubby's been watering them so I have to go and check and see how everything is doing. [Note to self - add that to my list of things to do!] Hopefully some of the herbs can be planted in our garden before too long....not the basil for a while, but there are others that will work .

OK, I'm starting to blither now....that's what you get when you're "not in the blogging mood".There is lots more for me to talk about I'm sure....but this will suffice for as DH has headed to bed, I shall soon follow.


Sunday, April 06, 2008

Washer, dryer, concert, grandson.......

Update: The washer and dryer arrived on Monday morning and were installed and by the end of the day I had done three loads of wash.....swiftly and quietly....oh so nice!!!

It was a concert this weekend...not much for me to play and only in the second half. They used my keyboard (lovely deluxe Yamaha Clavinova which I don't use as much as I should) and it was transported to the concert venue by truck and we brought half of it home last night in our car. The other half (the base) is in my brother's car and he will deliver it tonite. It worked very well....using the Chapel organ setting. A note here: I didn't play it....another far more talented lady did the honours and did them well!! I maintained my position in the horn section!

We were doing the Requiem by Gabriel Faure (a gorgeous piece by the way) and it went well. It was an odd (instrumentation-wise) but superlative arrangement by John Rutter using only the lower strings ( 1 solo violin,violas, cellos and basses) 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 2 bassoons, tympani, harp and chapel organ. There were two soloists (soprano and tenor) and a largish choir. I had not played it before and had only heard parts of it, never the whole piece. The smaller orchestration was wonderful and the whole piece itself was just glorious. I intend to get a recording of it, hopefully with the same instrumentation. It's amazing how peaceful and calming it is just having the lower strings.

I have been doing little in my workshop, mostly in my mind, so I'm hoping this week will prove to be fruitful!! I've been trying to get organized, but then I thought just general organization is all I need, otherwise all my time is spent organizing and nothing in creating.....which I think I touched on in a previous post.

It was my grandson's 2nd birthday's hard to believe I have been a gram for 2 years already!! We will get to see him at the end of the month, which I am quite looking forward to. He's quite a sweetie-pie....a real charmer!!!

Well, I think that's it for to read for a bit!!


Friday, March 28, 2008


We had ordered a new washer and dryer from Sears to be delivered and installed today.....
By 3:00 they still had not arrived
I phoned Sears and tracked down our salesman....
Apparently there is a jam up at the loading dock and the company that is to pick up our w/d and deliver and install it, can't get it off the truck that it came in to Sears on.
Bottom line: won't be here today and it's questionable about tomorrow...he will keep us updated....HAH!!!!
Frustrating part about it is....we are to have overnight guests tomorrow and I wanted everything washed and dried and put away and the laundry room tidied up before they came.
Now....nothing washed.....still crap (sorry..junk) in the hallway and that probably won't be moved before they arrive.
ARRRRRRGH - A pox on Sears and their totally inefficient delivery service. It seems that if you're not in a prime location (i.e. Lower Mainland) the service is the pits.....BAH!!!! I've vented, I'll try to see what can be salvaged from this mess!!!!

One more for good luck....ARRRRRGH!!!


My life in this I see it....

Creatively speaking I am in the " stop and collect and organize" mode....which gives me time to think about what I want to do and how I want to do it. I have sorted through books, and kept a few aside for some altered book experimenting and now after sorting through various and sundry things upstairs, I now have to go sort through all the stuff from upstairs that I decided to chuck downstairs, i.e. my workshop. I have retrieved an old accordion folder which I plan on labeling for use as a storage for small bits and bobs to add to collages and I also have to devise some form of storage for papers, pictures and larger additions to the collage collection.

I do realize that I tend to do more organizing than actually creating...but sooner or later I am confident that the actual creating will fact it already has, but is in a state of quiescence for the moment due to "life" enacting it's usual "get in the way" mode. I feel that if my mind is still creative then sooner or later the rest of me will follow suit. I mean....all you have to do is read this post and you can discern the activity that is going on inside my head in order to type this all non-stop (except for checking out words in the dictionary!) Sigh....whew.....I think I can stop now.....

...except to tell you that I am knitting again....I think there must be a psychological thing to this "knitting" phase that I go into more and more frequently.... I am now on my 2nd simple and quick....and I actually found a shawl pattern that is the same as the dishcloth pattern....but you just make it in wool instead of cotton and make it MUCH bigger. How cool is that!!!!! I'm also finding myself getting excited at the thought of going into the wool aisle at Walmart. It must be the colours....for sure...that must be it!! How about many dishcloths in a multitude of colours...and shawls glowing with warm and fuzzy colours...the possibilities are endless!! I do find, though, that knitting seems to soothe my soul...I have even started doing it sitting up in bed before sleeping each unwinds the me a chance to cogitate and spit the messy stuff out of my mind before I try to sleep (now THERE'S a visual!!) least that's how I see it.

Gosh I'm using a lot of exclamation life is just a collection of exclamations!!!
Who knew!!!


Saturday, March 22, 2008

Excellent weekend.....questionable week!!

Last weekend I had a wonderful if rather frenetic weekend in Victoria with D's mother. We visited with T & D and I stayed there and she stayed with another family member.
Frenetic, because we had a multitude of things to do, see, and discuss and as is usual, not enough time to do all this. However, it was good....we saw T&D's apartment, their lovely neighbourhood and yard, I achieved my ocean fix and D's mom revisted an old home, thanks to an accommodating new owner. All through this, our discussions ranged through many topics, which to my mind, is the best kind of discussion. Despite two 4 hour bus rides on either end, I arrived back home in Kamloops refreshed and revitalized......until.....

Reality kicked in....

On Wednesday, DH was downstairs getting something from the freezer, and he noticed that water was dripping from the ceiling and also running down the wall.....not in huge amounts, but enough to do damage if left unchecked. We discovered, after tracking it back, that the leak was coming from the laundry room above....specifically...the washer. (Our laundry room is on the 1st floor....not the basement, convenient but definitely problematic if there are leaks)
Now....this house was 17 years old when we moved here in Dec 2004, therefore it would be a little over twenty years old now. From what we understood, the washer (top loader) and dryer are originals with the are somewhat aged.

A little history here....when we lived in Langley, we invested in a new front loading washer to save on water (to save the septic system). This was a few years before we sold the house...but unfortunately, we had to leave it behind. I loved that washer, it worked like a charm, used less water and the dryer used less energy as the clothes were 3/4 dry after the spin cycle. We thought that we could get a new washer and dryer soon after we moved here, but it was not to be for financial reasons. So...back to the present.....

The decision was made to buy a new washer....and it was duly noted that Sears had a washer dryer combo on sale this weekend for less than what we paid for our original front loader in Langley. We settled on getting this combo, even though the dryer was still working. It seemed a good idea to start afresh with two new appliances. So yesterday we went and did the deed...and for a reasonable fee, they will install the new and also take away the old appliances. As it turns out the washer that we are getting is almost the exact same model we had in Langley.....and it is energy efficient so we can claim a rebate from BC all in all, not too bad a deal.

Everything is dried up in the basement so we are hopeful that there will be no further problems. We have noticed some raised areas in the linoleum in the laundry room and adjoining bathroom, which we think is an after effect of the leakage, as there is no moisture to be seen anywhere on the basement ceiling at this point.....keeping fingers crossed.'s all about being a homeowner. As homes age, they need more preventative maintenance, repairs and replacement parts.

Life and times in Kamloops....


Monday, March 17, 2008

A wee bit of Irish for St. Paddy's day....

"Never iron a four-leaf clover, because you don't want to press your luck. "

— Author Unknown

..... and a toast!! (with a wee jar of "the creature" - better known as Irish Whiskey)

Saint Patrick was a gentleman,
Who through strategy and stealth,
Drove all the snakes from Ireland,
Here’s a toasting to his health.
But not too many toastings
Lest you lose yourself and then
Forget the good Saint Patrick
And see all those snakes again.

'Beannachtam na Feile Padraig!'
Happy St. Patrick's Day!


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

An inspiring story....

I have a favourite celebrity O'Donnell's website and blog. It's a source of humour, information, music, art and any number of other things.

I mention this because recently she talked about a site that she had discovered called Now I haven't explored it fully yet, I intend to do that before too long, but tonight I specifically went there to watch a video of Jill Bolte Taylor, a neuroanatomist (read brain scientist), who, eight years ago, had a massive stroke and remembered every minute of it.... Her talk about the brain, how it functions and the experience of feeling hers slowly deteriorating is so worth listening to....

So ....if you have a spare 18 minutes...please do so. It makes fascinating and inspiring listening.


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

123 Meme

OK, this blog is in response to a challenge issued by Daryl's Brain
entitled 123 Meme. It involves the following.....
  • Pick up the nearest book of 123 pages or more. (No cheating!)
  • Find Page 123
  • Find the first 5 sentences
  • Post the next 3 sentences
  • Tag 5 people
My answer to the challenge is as follows:
The book is Exit Music by Ian Rankin and here is the quote:

Ok, so he was stretching it, but he wanted to see how she would react. All she did was raise an eyebrow and fold her arms. "And how," she asked, "did you happen to get my description in the first place?"

Sound very "detective like"??....well it is. The book is the latest in a series of Inspector Rebus mysteries based in Edinburgh. They are gritty and complex and always a good read.
I now have to tag five people.....therein lies the problem. So I'm going to cheat here, I don't know of five different (different from Daryl's Brain and associated lists) people who have blogs, so I'm going to just leave it open....if you read this and you have a blog....go for it!!

What fun!!!


Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Just a little blog today

Not much today I fear.....

I have managed to achieve two things today....sending off a parcel and buying tickets to Cirque de Soleil. There are definitely more things to achieve, but those are the main ones.

I am so chuffed that C de S. is finally coming to Kamloops. From what I have seen of their productions....(on TV) they are spectacular and colours and costumes are just overwhelming to the least they seem so. I am really looking forward to it.

Another note....I have added Hannah Andersson to my list of links. She is a Swedish crafter, artist, photographer and much more and her blog is always fun and inspiring to read. Her ideas are always unique and give me hope that I may still achieve something in my artistic life. Feel free to check her out.

Other than that....not much else to cogitate least nothing that's fit to put into print...;-)


Sunday, February 03, 2008

Sunday Dinner....

Oh my stars...nearly another week has passed between blog posts!!

Well, I'm sitting here with my cup of tea, having made a HUGE stew for the slow cooker....and this is how I did it.

I browned the meat with garlic and fresh ground pepper, put it into the slow cooker to simmer in beef broth whilst I chopped veggies. Veggies involved were: Parsnips, rutabaga, turnip, carrots, onion, leek, zucchini, red potatoes, broad beans (frozen from the summer) red pepper, and celery.

I then nipped outside in my jammies and garden shoes, dusted the snow off the thyme and snipped some lemon and silver thyme (still remarkably good), returned indoors to combine that with my dried rosemary and sage from this years garden, fresh parsley from Save On and then I chopped it all up together....smelled delicious!!

So I was going to just put this all into the slow cooker, but then decided that mixing it there would be a disaster, so I got out my largest bowl and dumped in the meat, and all the veggies and herbs along with some "mortar and pestled" cumin and hot pepper seeds and then in Jamie Oliver style, I stuck my hands in and just mixed it all together and yes my hands were suitably washed before doing this !! After mixing, I carefully dumped it all back into the slow cooker, added some more beef broth and put the lid on and I shall not touch it again until about 5-6 pm, at which point I will probably adjust the seasoning if needed. I had already purchased whole grain buns and sundried tomato bread from Save I only have to putter and tidy up this afternoon before the bros come for dinner tonite.

Oh....and I also picked up some Jello Instant Butterscotch pudding and Cool Whip for a very quick and light dessert in my mothers parfait glasses. A little nostalgia here, as I haven't had instant jello pudding let alone butterscotch pudding in YEARS!!! So it will be pudding and tea for dessert as we watch Doc Martin.....

Have a good evening!!


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Computer problems.....and addiction???

A few nights ago, Sunday, I believe, we had a rather ferocious windstorm, which howled all the night through. During that time (at least when we were awake) we had three, possibly four power outages...very short ones....not even lasting a minute. During those outages, our main computer was on and when the power went out, we just rebooted it and all seemed well....seemed being operative word here. The last outage happened when DH was playing his game and so he just rebooted it and then shut it down for the night.

Waking up the next morning, the wind had died down to a brisk breeze and the sun was out and all was well with the world. That is...until I went to go online....nothing happened. The computer usually automatically goes online when it's started up for the day....but there was just one single light glowing ominously from the modem and no "ingoing" or "outgoing" lights flashing at all. So I did all the usual stuff....unplugged the modem, plugged it back in....unplugged the router, plugged it back in.....and then I phoned Shaw.....

So.....I waited for close to an hour for the tech support from Shaw....and yah, yah, I know, I can hang up and have them call me back and I won't lose my friggin' place in line...(the recording sounds SO patronizing!!)...but I just have a feeling that if I hang up, that'll be it....I'll never get to talk to them again!!!So....I put on my telephone earphones and waited....and waited....and waited......until finally a young man called Jeff talked to me. He gave me some options to try and then seemed to think that should work and left me to to speak. didn't I called Shaw again....and waited....and waited.....and waited...only this time, I got smart....I kept my earphones on, hung on to the cordless and did a few household chores...thereby relieving the guilt of not doing anything!! I finally got through a second time to another young fellow called Steve, I think....and he tried some more options....some even included changing some settings (that gets scary!)....but in the end...nothing worked, so he scheduled a Shaw techie to pay us a visit the next day and check things out.

I fretted (as I am wont to do in these situations) and so I thought I would head downstairs to practice. My laptop is in my practice studio, so being the eternal optimist that I am, I thought..."why don't I just open the lid on my laptop and un-hibernate it and see if it goes online??" Well....bless my soul if it didn't go right to my homepage and sat there blinking at me....Windows Messenger and all!! Whooee!!! I was ecstatic!! I calmed down enough to do at least 15 - 20 minutes of practice and then back to the laptop. In the meantime...hubby was upstairs on the main computer offline and playing his game. Nyeh nyeh na nyeh na!!!!

So here's the thing you see. I couldn't believe how excited I was to actually have the internet's an addiction of sorts which I'm sure some of you are also afflicted with to some degree. I am addicted to regular contact with the internet.....sigh.....whenever my mind goes into neutral mode, I find myself heading to the computer room. Maybe it's sort of like something to kickstart the mind working again. Is this a good thing?? Not totally sure and don't know if I care much.....'s always interesting and enlightening and whenever it gets to the point that it isn't....I shall stop, I'm sure.

The Shaw techie did show up at 9:30 yesterday morning and found that our ethernet card on the main computer had been "fried" by the power outages...which is odd because we have 2 surge protectors. However, he did say that it was an older card...probably on it's last he very kindly replaced it and now we have internet on both...count them BOTH computers. is good!!


Sunday, January 27, 2008

The BEST news and stuff.....

So I got great news yesterday.....I phoned the hospital to check on my aunt and found that she had been sent home. I called her at home and she is feeling much better, but still has to take it easy. Now she has help coming in to make her life easier, now she can get back to her painting and writing and now she can concentrate on staying healthy and enjoying her life, her family and her friends.......thank goodness!! It has been a worrisome time but yesterday a great load was lifted from my heart. Thank you God!!!

Yesterday and today I have been trying to catch up on things, but seem to be getting mired down in small details.....ah well...such is life. At least I don't have to make dinner tonite as my bro has suggested we all go out for Chinese food and he will foot the was an offer we just couldn't refuse :-)

But......before that happens, I have some practicing to do and a kitchen that needs tidying up, and a shower to take.....(yes....I AM still in my jammies at 2 in the afternoon on a Sunday....sigh)

One last thing... last night was not a good night sleep-wise for either DH or myself...too much coffee after supper I think. In any case, to while away the time awake, I came out and found that the first thing I thought of to do, was......knitting!!! I had some mohair wool that I found with my mom's stash from years ago and a pair of VERY large needles. So I'm making a narrowish, shortish, mohair scarf to wrap around my neck in the very cold weather.....white and fluffy and a very loose knit!! I have bigger projects to tackle knitting-wise, but I couldn't resist the wool!! The fact that it was the first thing that came to mind surprised me......who knew???


Friday, January 25, 2008

Working man and To Do List ........

I am again the wife of a working man....albeit a part-time working man...but nevertheless a working man.
I now have to decide what to do with my day....ALL BY MYSELF!!!
....which actually isn't a bad thing....just takes a while to get used to...

I have now gotten into the habit of jotting down the things I need to do and I'm whittling away at the list well as making additions to the list each day. There are some givens in my day. They time (which includes email, blogging and checking out other blogs or favourite websites)......practicing for a minimum of 30 min a day, more if possible....keeping the kitchen tidy (I am making great use of the dishwasher).....making the bed (which consists of fluffing the duvet and straightening up the pillows)...and that's about it. Housecleaning I do usually once a week (with help if possible) and that's usually Sunday before the bros come for dinner and major housecleaning happens whenever we have overnight guests or visitors who don't know us that's a retirement thing you know, our own version of energy conservation...our energy!! :-) However, I digress.....

After I do the "givens", I then feel free to tackle the list ....or not.....or just mooch around in my workshop or just read. As some people would say...."it's a great life!!" Now...some people would also say that I could do all this whilst DH is home, and I probably could. However, there is this built in desire, need, wish, whatever you want to call it, to co-ordinate my day with his when he's home. That usually consists of shopping and other errands, TV watching, and reading. So...the secret is to "make hay while the sun shines" so to speak...... do my own thing when he's working, so we can schedule "together" activities when he's home. I detect a slight trace of organization here?? One can only hope....


Sunday, January 20, 2008

Good News and Bad News ( for me)

So to start seems that so far my beloved aunt has fought off the dreaded Norwalk Virus....thank goodness. I phoned yesterday and she seemed to be on the mend. I shall check tomorrow. Hopefully we will be able to get down to the coast the week after next to see her in person.

Another blog topic....
Today, I got on the scales and horror of horrors, I have exceeded the amount that I swore that I would never exceed again and those that know me well, will know what that amount is. So the question that occurs to me (as to many others in the same predicament I'm sure) why is this?
Why, when you know that you are well overweight and you know what you have to do...why can't you do it???
For years, I have asked myself that question, and for years, I have come up with varied answers.....not's someone else's fault.....I'm depressed....and on and on....well, it's all a load of cr*p. It all boils down to the fact that I just haven't managed to motivate myself enough to take on this huge commitment to eating properly for an extended length of time...i.e. the rest of my life!!

So the question remains....what can one do to motivate oneself??? What can deter the creeping hand into: the cookie jar, the fridge (and many varied cheeses), the (drool..)biscotti..(bad bad Costco!!), and anything else that appeals at the time. For's all about the SNACKING!!!

There's a bigger issue going on here and I haven't quite figured it out. It's all about the whys and wherefores of eating habits and how to change them....but then again, isn't that usually the way of things with weight control?? To be quite frank, the only person that would understand this whole problem is one who has to deal with it too. Even doctors don't really understand...I mean, how can they, when I don't understand it myself....sigh.

I have yet to come up with a definitive solution, but it's a cause for concern and one that needs to be addressed.....sooner than later!!

In the meantime, I'm going to try to keep myself busy and well watered to shave off the few pounds over the (shudder!!) upper limit so I can at least start from an even number......:-)


Thursday, January 17, 2008

Somewhat encouraging news......

It seems that my aunt, along with other patients, is in non-visitor mode for the time being as there is an outbreak of the Norwalk Virus in her unit. Not good......however....

She did have one visitor today I am told, (dressed in gown and mask) and the report back is that she is very "with it", so it strikes me that my fiesty but very sweet aunt is fighting back!!

I was encouraged to phone regularly to see how she's I will

In the meantime...I am still praying...


Please God.....

I'm feeling conflicted....or at least my emotions are....

On the one's been DH's birthday and we have had a wonderful dinner and then laughed ourselves silly at American Idol .....

On the other hand....I was notified today that my dear 96 year old aunt is in hospital recovering from heart failure brought on by pneumonia....and is now suffering from gastrointestinal problems. She's being assessed to decide how she can still live at home....'s a conflict because I don't know whether to laugh or cry. You know...when you are having a good time, but then you have that nagging feeling that something isn't quite right and then you remember.....

I will be getting more information tomorrow, so there is nothing to do but wait...something I'm not terribly good at doing.

All I can do is pray....which I will do fervently!!


Monday, January 14, 2008


On this concert weekend, I started driving again.....well actually I did drive on the Lower Mainland for a short time over the holiday, but for actually driving on a regular basis....this was the weekend for it.

I had been banned from driving by my optometrist and DH because I had virtually no clear vision in my right eye....and my depth perception was out the window (so to speak). However, on December 4, I had surgery to correct the problem and though it's taking a while (and will take longer) to get back to somewhat normal, it's much better than it was.

So the opportunity arose this weekend for me to take the wheel and fend for myself, travelling to and from rehearsals. It was a slightly unnerving experience at first. I almost missed a set of traffic lights and I found myself going slower than usual and trying to watch everything. One doesn't realize how quickly a one time regular activity, when stopped for a period of time, can become new and fearful. In the words of someone famous..."It's a jungle out there!!" However, after the first day, calmness and serenity settled in and I remembered how much I really enjoy driving. It was hard to give it up, even though it doesn't take up a large part of my life. For the most part, DH does the driving, but the fact that I couldn't even if I wanted to was a bit hard to take. It just removes that feeling of independence.

I'm sure that DH is happy too, so now he can stay home and do what he wants instead of ferrying me around everywhere!!!

So independence is is sight....and freedom for DH.....and life is good!!


Friday, January 11, 2008

Music and ice roads......

Well, I'm in the middle of a double concert weekend with rehearsals starting at 4 this afternoon and then again at 7:30 tonite and then 1 pm tomorrow with concerts tomorrow night and Sunday afternoon. We had rehearsals on Wednesday night and last night as well. It's a good concert....with the Viennese theme...a soprano and a tenor and lots of Viennese waltzes and operetta music to celebrate the New Year. This type of concert is fun to do because it's the type of music I grew up with. My dad used to sing a lot of the operetta stuff and either myself or my brother accompanied him on the there are lots of memories flying through my head this weekend.

I am coming to terms with the fact that our son is going to drive a truck on the Ice Roads in the Northwest Territories at the end of this month. I'm finding, as usual, that the name of the game is more information and less worry. Consequently I have been perusing sites about ice road trucking, studiously avoiding anything that relates to the History Channel series about same. For those that know me, I know that's a change, and a positive one at that.....but now I'm finding I prefer to read the real information, statistics etc....rather than a sensationalized version of it.
In any case, I did find a site that has a map of the route they'll be taking and updates on the road conditions I expect I shall be following that assiduously. I'm still concerned and worried, but more a normal worry than "freaking out" worry. So I guess that's a good thing.

Next week I shall hopefully be getting into some sort of routine around here. I really need to get into my workshop and make use of my new art supplies and books. I will be starting back swimming again, all going well, and hopefully that will be an incentive for further progress.

For now's lunchtime!!!


Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Problem solved and the music begins.....

I am feeling like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders this morning.....

I finally got my new MP3 player to work with my laptop. I guess it pays to peruse various and sundry forums about the offending software. In actual fact, it was not the software that was the was Windows Media Player. I had to re-install WMP 11 again...and voila!! I have since uploaded 5 CD's and will do more as time permits. I am so looking foward to this....a chance to hear all my glorious music on the run so to speak!!

I'm finding that my tastes in music are expanding somewhat as I get older. I have always been rather eclectic in my musical tastes, with the emphasis being on classical music, however, lately I have been checking out new CD's by artists that I've never considered before. Joni Mitchell, Annie Lennox, and Celine Dion. I even have heard some music of Amy Winehouse that intrigues me....

I think I'm looking for music that inspires and expands the mind and music that makes me raise my arms and go YESSS!!! There's also the music that makes me do a "happydance"...or in my case .."a stilted hardly moving the legs but moving the arms around madly and jerking the upper body happydance". I have also developed a taste for Irish and English folk music, John Tamm being a new discovery. If you've ever watched the Sharpe series on PBS, he's the one who sings "Over the hills and far away" ....just a great natural voice. It's all fun and now with the MP3 player I can keep the music flowing!!

But....the fact that I solved the problem with the laptop makes me feel incredibly pleased with myself. It was frustrating....but now it's done there's a bit of "the little train that could" feeling to it. This is how I react when I solve a problem with the computer.....childish..maybe, giddy..maybe, but nevertheless.. a deserved kudo to me :-)


Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Exercise and Passport photos...

Yaaayy !! I am back the next day to blog again....I just amaze myself!!

So to start, I have another gem from Real Simple.....

"I rode the exercise bike this morning for an hour and a half. If it was a real bicycle, I would have been in Belgium by now. "
— Allison Janney in The West Wing

..... and that definitely WOULDN'T be me.....however it struck a humorous chord with me. I've often thought that an exercise bike or a treadmill would be a good investment....however, DH doesn't agree with me. He says that it would never get used....although how he knows that is a question in itself. I think that swimming will work for now....and if I ever do feel like walking I will do the rounds on the indoor track at the rec centre with my MP3 player plugged into my head. I think that walking with someone is a good thing, if you don't have to think or mull over anything....just chat. I find that swimming laps in the pool is a good time to think through problems or issues that need clarifying....just back and forth slowly and methodically breathing in those wonderful swimming pool fumes ;-) It's even better when you have a paddleboard and you can rest your chin on the board and stretch your arms out and let your legs do all the work, or alternatively, rest your upper body on the board, with your arms wrapped around it and again let your legs do the work.

This morning DH and I have been filling in the applications for passport renewal....after which we will take them down to the Canadian Government "Service Centre" along with our old passports and hopefully before too long we will get our new ones. It's interesting that when we had the photos for our old ones taken in late 2002 or early 2003
(can't remember exactly when)..I was smiling.....not a good photo, but nevertheless I was smiling. Now, however, one is not allowed to show any expression whatsoever on your face. In fact the lady taking my photo at BCAA told me I look "awfully sad" I lifted the corners of my mouth a tad and then I just looked serious.....or expressionless I guess. We had our originals taken in 2002 after 9/11 but it seems that since then rules have gotten even tougher as far as pictures go. I guess they like to see a picture of you as you will look to them when you approach Passport Control.....either scared ----less, or really p----d off!!! It makes it so much easier for them to match the picture to the person...:-)
On that note, I will finish my epistle for today and proceed with the rest of the day...or whatever's left of it!!


Monday, January 07, 2008


So I can't believe it's been over a month since I last posted. I always WANT to post, but then when it comes down to actually put words on screen, my mind draws a blank. So I'm letting the thoughts flow for now.

It's been a hectic and somewhat chaotic *season*.....but nonetheless enjoyable!!
It's all about family and seeing family and talking to family and renewing familial ties. Exhausting yes...but oh so inspiring!!

The Kamloops side of the holiday was unexpectedly a lot of fun. I say unexpectedly because I was quite prepared to celebrate Christmas quietly with DH and NO KIDS and suck it up. As it turned out, we had rather well-spaced visits throughout the time from extended family members with an afternoon of art thrown in for good measure.

We did make a 5 day visit to the coast for our Christmas with the kids and their sig. others and our grandson and also for a New Years Eve "do" to celebrate the marriage of our nephew!! Lots of visiting and some shopping and catching up was included in those five days.

Our little Bichon Chauncey also had some time to renew acquaintances with friends at his favourite kennel....although I think the excitement got to him a bit as he had a bout of tummy trouble (polite words for puking doggie!!)on the way home and at home. That cleared up though and he is as right as rain now....

I am now in the process of R&R. I was supposed to start back to swimming today, but I suddenly realized yesterday that I need a few days to recover when I have busy times. It's an ongoing element of my life which I tend to forget about sometimes. I have a concert weekend coming up, so I'm getting up to speed with my practicing and in general trying to get my "art" house in order . Also....I was given an MP3 player for Christmas and I'm trying to find the time to upload the music I want.....and....I have photos to deal with ....posting for download etc... So this all has to be done at a rather subdued and slower pace.....and hopefully by next Monday I will be up and running (figuratively speaking) to hit the pool for some laps. I'm also fighting this overwhelming urge to get back under the covers and snore the day away!!!

I'm thinking lately that a somewhat more frequent blog might be in order. Not daily...although it can be....but more often than I have been in the past. It's all about stimulating the brain to think of things to say. It's so much easier to curl up and read what others write....easier but not very productive. I read or heard somewhere that if one wants to write, one should do so every day...even if only a few sentences. Interesting concept that.....I expect some of my blogs will go as follows....." Here are my few words for today.....Blah Blah Blah.....Slainte!!" I think though, that it's all about the discipline of sitting down at the computer and writing a few words EVERY DAY.....grab the coffee cup and head downstairs or into the computer room and eke out some random thoughts....bizarre though they may be (well maybe not TOO bizarre)....and soon it will get least I hope so.