Saturday, April 30, 2016

beautiful day

Carm headed to the links today for his first round of golf this year. He left spry and enthusastic; he came home aching, but still enthusastic.

some books from the thrift store

I puttered my way through the day, doing some odds and ends around the house and getting into the garden for a bit, until I realized I was stepping on plants that had barely pushed through the incredibly dry soil. I put down my clippers for now and will go at it again in a few days when the growing things are more visable.

This post is a bit of a test. You see, last year in May my blog photos stopped being included in Google Photos and I don't know where the heck they have gone. I think the location changed because of how I edited my posts (using Google Docs, then pasting into Blogger). I know that at some time in the future Google+ photos and picassa photos will either disappear or be moved into Google Photos (no +). It is all rather confusing and I sure don't know how everything works.

It is hard to believe, but a year ago I would have been spending the afternoon on the swing. Not so this year, would need a puffy coat to sit in the shade.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

lions in the grass

This spring has been cold… sure we had a few warm days in the teens, but most days have been cold, and nights even colder. Last night it dipped to -4C - no windows open overnight and Kabira was bundled into her outfit/pajamas. The sun has been shining though which makes it all bearable.

Despite the cold, plants are poking their tips out of the soil and looking towards the sun. In fact, today there were dandelions blooming in a few sheltered spots. We don't normally see their sunny faces until Mother's Day. I went outside, in a heavy jacket, to take a photo of the bright blooms.

I think a bit of my head fog is lifting, well… maybe.

Of course there must be lots of Magic in the world," he said wisely one day, "but people don't know what it is like or how to make it. Perhaps the beginning is just to say nice things are going to happen until you make them happen. I am going to try and experiment.”
~Frances Hodgson Burnett

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

sunny afternoon

Kabira enjoyed a bit of sun this afternoon. We saw the day from inside a shopping mall where we were looking for phone case. I'm posting this from my phone... hence bad grammar and spelling.

Sunday, April 24, 2016


Yesterday we drove to a nearby city (1.5 hrs away) to help my brother and his wife move into their new house. We were especially happy to do so as it meant that they are 1/2 a world closer. In New Zealand they were about as far from here as they could get and now they are a mere 1 1/2 hours away. I'm very happy :-)

I had my phone along as I wanted to be accessible to Pat, our new pet sitter. As it turns out she did call, but I didn't have my phone nearby and missed her calls and messages. Well, bother. The phone is too big for my pocket and I don't really want my purse slung across my shoulder as I go about my business - what do you all do? I need some ideas!

I went online looking for a solution and saw some phone holsters on the Walmart site. At first glance they looked like exactly what I was looking for… then I opened the link… they were for GUNS. Walmart sells gun holsters online. There are some times when I feel SO Canadian, and this was one of them.

Today I've been playing around with my phone: testing the battery, seeing how the Bluetooth headphones work with music and a phone call, trying out 'map my walk' app. You know - putzing around being unproductive. It is a beautiful day so I've had the dogs out a few times (so that I could map my walk!).

Friday, April 22, 2016

a handful of tech

It is crazy how a little piece of plastic and glass can get my rapt attention for so long. Together, Carm and I got the wifi interface between my phone and laptop working, and once I had a good long length of time that I didn't need either device, I started the sync for my music. It took a few hours to transfer 3200 songs, but I think it is well worth the wait.

We had thought we'd just run with my old 'pay as you go' plan until a good deal at Virgin came up. We made a quick trip into the city to get a new SIM (the new/old are different sizes), and wandering the shopping centre we were lured by phone kiosks and started to get serious about getting the phone up and running. I could barely contain my excitement, what can I say - I'm a goof. We walked out of that mall with a fully functioning smart phone and smiles on our faces.

We had to rush home as we were having company for supper. Our good friend Dave was by for an evening of food and conversation.

Today I did some final, well almost final, configuration of my handy toy… oops, did I say toy? I really meant incredibly required device.

Years ago, and I mean years and years ago, way before smartphones were even twinkles in inventors eyes, I wished and wished for a device that would have my camera, mp3 music player, and phone all in one. And if it could do some computer things it would be even better. The hunk of plastic in my hand is way better than I'd ever imagined - can you believe it has taken me this long to get one!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

new toys

It has been an exciting last few days. It all started on Saturday when we put the slides out on the camper, a sign that spring really is here. We quickly did some basic cleaning and made the bed - just enough done so that when we go into it we can feel like we are home. To complete the busy day we had Cathey over for a visit.

Sunday, Carm went to visit his mom while I chilled and puttered around the house. We planned to have supper in the camper but got an invitation from Trudie to join them for supper. Of course I didn't turn her down!

I don't remember what we did on Monday - my brain is still not operating at peak performance (not even close!). Oh, wait. We met with Pat, a retired lady who does pet sitting for friends

Tuesday we drove to a nearby town for some groceries and to pick up some wicked KFC for our supper. Finally the weather cooperated again and we were able to christen the camper for 2016. With some music on the stereo and supper on the table, we enjoyed an evening without TV. I had forgotten over the winter how much I love being in our little villetta.

That brings us to today, a day full of wonderful treats and excitements. First thing this morning I sent 3 photos of Spike to Frank, an artist. He's going to do a painting of Mr. Naughty. I am so excited about this that I dreamt about it all night. I can hardly wait to see the first brush strokes.

Later in the morning the brown UPS truck drove down our laneway. The smartphone had arrived!!! For those of you that know me, you know that I'm a gadgeteer but common sense and adherence to an actual requirement had kept us from getting one. Now, finally, we've thrown good sense out the window. The giant one plus two phone is charging, but still we managed to get it partially set up and even got some of my apps installed onto it. I can't wait to get my hands on it for real!

I even added this sentence with the crazy little keyboard.

Thursday, April 14, 2016


There was a turtle sunning itself at the edge of the pond all afternoon. I first saw it a few days ago, just after a day of snow - it must be desperate for the heat. As far as I can tell, it is a Midland Painted Turtle. We've seen Snapping Turtles in the pond in previous years, but I haven't seen one yet this year.

Spring must be on its way.

The birdfeeder continues to be a big attraction. We've had flocks of goldfinches, purple finches, red capped somethings, numerous unidentified sparrows and finches, and the usual winter visitors. I find myself stopping at the window often through the day to see who's feeding. It is a nurturing, mindful activity.

We took a trip into town yesterday for my doctor appointment and a deek into Costco for a few things and a cheap hotdog lunch. Afterwards I found myself wishing we'd gone for Pho instead, but I wanted to have time to drop into my parents so we took the quick lunch option. At Costco I picked up the photos of Spike that I printed - once I get myself organized I'm taking them to an artist to have a painting done of Mr. Naughty.

Monday, April 11, 2016

hanging on

We got hit with another few centimetres of snow last night. This seems to be a trend since we first thought we'd have an early spring in mid March. It surely can't last much longer as it is now mid April. I haven't even had the slides open on the camper yet!

It seems we are often busy, with family activities (Saturday was Erik's hockey game), and gosh, I don't know what else. I don't think I've been just sitting around, but honestly, my brain isn't working at top capacity - the sludge is getting worse - so I can't remember. I haven't written anything, not even writing practice, since my last blog post.

Oh, I remember one thing. We had Dave (who has visited a few times in recent months) for supper. We made roast beef with all the trimmings. My meat and oven thermometers worked wonderfully (how did I manage so long without - oh, I know… I didn't and we had many badly cooked roasts). Dave had brought a giant English Trifle and we opened a bottle of 1997 port to have with it. The pairing was ambrosia. I can't remember a meal that I enjoyed so much. Unfortunately, the yorkshire pudding didn't turn out that great - I was trying too hard since Dave is a born Yorkshire man and I wanted mine to measure up to authentic.

Sadly, we got the news on Thursday that my great Uncle Olaf had passed away. At 95 years old he had a good run. A hardy Norwegian that towered over everyone, he had a good sense of humour and kept his wits till the end. That generation of the family is dwindling quickly.

The silence depressed me. It wasn't the silence of silence. It was my own silence.”  
~Sylvia Plath

Thursday, April 7, 2016

somewhere over the rainbow

My brother Graham plays this song when anxiety or depression threaten to ruin his day. It is gently uplifting, just the thing for a rainy winter/spring or whatever the heck it is out there sort of day it is out there.

Monday, April 4, 2016


My mind has been full of sludge these last weeks. It started out with a hint of slowness that didn't much impede my writing, but as the weeks have gone on, it has taken a hold and thickened into porridge. I can't get it together enough to write, or even read, and don't really care. I'm not worried that this is a permanent state - I've been here often enough to know it will pass. I don't feel depressed exactly, just tired, like everything is too much work.

I read an article several days ago written by a woman who was noticing the slow approach of depression. For her, it started weeks earlier, a slow progression of symptoms that eventually culminated in depression. I had never thought of it this way - I haven't paid enough attention to add up the symptoms as a slow evolution to illness. I wondered if that was what was happening with me. A slowing of the mind, nearly paralyzing waves of anxiety out of the blue, an increased need for sleep. If it is, how do I break the cycle? I'm being careful to get out of the house, I'm really watching my thoughts… well, I don't know what else to do except wait for it to pass.

All that being said, I'm going to take a break from the writing groups, just for now. I think removing the pressure to write and the guilt when I don't, will ease me along to a clearer head. I won't think of it as a failure to perform, but a vacation from something I love.

The rest of this post is just going to be a boring itemization of the things we've done this week. I like to look back years later and remember.

Last Sunday (Easter Sunday) we had a lovely supper with my family to celebrate Easter and of course Carm's birthday. Monday we had supper at Trudie & Leo's, along with Jerina and David. After we finished the main course we came back here for burnt sugar cake and an evening of visiting. The conversations got lively at times!

Wednesday I met some of the writing women for breakfast, after which Carm and I drove to town to visit another pool place. Thursday morning was writing group, then at night we went to the Keg with Bruce and Tina. Friday morning I helped Mary with some blogging stuff and then Carm and I went to Country Kitchen for lunch, followed by a shop at Liquidation.
Saturday we had supper at Trudie & Leo's. Sunday I visited with my family, Mom and I went to the fabric store to get something for the bedskirt in our bedroom.

So as you can see, I'm working hard at keeping busy.

In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.

And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.”
~Albert Camus