Monday, December 11, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Question: Good Intentions

One of the biggest topics in theatre school concerned the nature of communication. Often our words say one thing, but our tone, body and situation would convey another. I'm not sure if this is a particular problem of the English language but I suspect that it is not. One of the more humorous situations that occurs on a regular basis is this:

While walking down a street you meet an acquaintance . Without stopping the person waves and says, "Hi! How are you?"
"Good." Is the general response. Now, just a sec. Did we answer in all truth and honesty? Likely not. Did they really want to know? ... well ... In our culture this the "how are you?" question is just a greeting ... most of the time. Imagine how startled the person would be if instead of "Good." you answered ....
"Actually, I have a splitting headache, the kids ripped my pants on the way out the door so now I have to wear my coat around my waist, I'm almost in hypothermic shock, I locked my purse inside the car, and I think I'm going to cry now. How are you?"

Should we ask the question if we do not want the answer? What do you think?

BTW thank you all for your concern. I am getting a little better. The pain is not quite so mind numbing and I have been receiving physiotherapy which seems to be working. Not quite up to scratch though and speaking of scratching ... I have an itch on my left leg ... or is that too much information?:)

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

All Drugged Up and No Where to Go

Sorry for the long absence.

Where have I been? Lounging on some forgotten shore of a desert island? Sipping tea in an underground cave with the leaders of the free world during “fire drill”? A hostage to the finest minds of our time, being poked with a pin until I reveal my secrets?

No, oh no. Not this time.

My back, in a surge of creativity, has spawned, not one but two disk bulges. Why you ask? I have no idea. I saw three separate medical professionals and was told, and I quote ‘Wow, you don’t see that every day.” Now if I had a cream puff for ever time I’ve heard that from someone in the medical community I’d be very fat and would be on my way to a new career, but as it is I am left with the sad fact that my body has a complete mind of its own and no one can quite figure it out. That’s right. I have two brains. Which is odd because I can’t seem to access either one. Darn pin number.

I have been flat on my back for almost a week now drifting in and out of a drug induced haze; an oddly dreamless but persistent fog. Since I have a bulge in my neck my hands are mostly numb, and the bulge in my lower back leaves my feet tingly so between the two bulges and my meds I have the strange sensation that I am not actually touching anything but merely floating above the ground. All the thrills and chills of an out of body experience with out having to leave home.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, my husband has been in charge of rounding up the herd every morning. I often come to the surface of my reverie in time to hear, “He’s touching me!”, “I don’t WANT to!” and “We do not feed chocolate to the babies!”. It isn’t odd that I hear this so clearly, we’ve received calls from the US asking us to “pipe down, or the soft wood lumber agreement will really go in the toilet. We mean it.” We are taking these calls very seriously. No matter what the Yanks may say, he is doing a great job. Each and every one of the children remain fed, clothed and as yet unmaimed ... well there’s no permanent damage, at least none we can see. Which is a feat for any soul. He has also managed to hold down his job. And I have yet to find him hiding in the closet mumbling to himself and chewing his hand. A good sign. We’ve also had a lot of help recently from the Church Ladies who have kindly brought us supper and even popped in to watch the kiddies from time to time. Brave souls.

So, to sum up, this is what we’re looking at:

Another couple weeks of back pain, during which time I will be fully drugged up and walking like a Neanderthal

A few rounds of Rehab after which I will emerge from the ring like Rocky, beaten, but still able to punch the air, weakly, with one fist.

Our house will complete its transformation into a Jurassic Jungle, this time, babies will rule the universe

Then ... we’ll have Christmas! (Or Easter, whichever comes first.)

Wish us Luck.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Question: Art Soothes the Savage Beast?

In light of my new injury I thought I would ask some questions about pain relief ... the art kind.

Could the enjoyment of art or the act of creating art give a kind of pain relief? I would argue that it could, to some extent. Being able to express a little of our experience gives us the chance to validate what we are going through. Reading, watching, listening to, or otherwise experiencing someone else's expression gives us the knowledge that we are not alone. Knowledge like that can be a powerful healer and motivator. In Steven King's book on writing he says that after his tragic accident, writing, his art form, helped him to get through the pain. It gave him motivation and an outlet. The bible even records how King Saul was soothed in his terrible temper by David's playing on the harp. Now, I don't know if hanging a Matisse at the dentist office would help take away the pain of a filling ... or if art therapy would help with cancer treatments but it would be interesting to throw some ideas out there!

What do you think? Can art soothe the savage beast?

Friday, November 10, 2006

Sorry about the delay but...

hey all, just another note of appology about the delay. It seems my back has become worse, I can only sit for 20min at a time so writing is slow, slow, slow and painful. However ... it is now up and the good news is it should go away soon ... my back pain that is. Hope you enjoy!

Wednesday Story: Eileen and the Wings of Glory part 6

Eileen’s throat tightened, “this is the man who has my daughter?”

Bruce turned his head and looked her firmly in the eye, “Yes. And if he has me our world will fall.”

“But how ... how did you end up with me?”

Bruce cleared his throat. “The council was divided which way to go, some believed that they could control Nestor by his bond to me, others that I should be ... destroyed, Petula alone saw another way. There are few, even of the fairy kind who travel to other worlds. Petula remembered you from all those years ago, a little girl, kind and brave. She believed there was no magic in your world, and few know the gates, ... she was certain I would be safe there.”

Eileen was certain she would fall, her brain was spinning. “But he followed you Bruce! Nestor followed you!”

“I know and that I regret but we must ...”

“Regret! Regret! It’s my daughter, Bruce! She’s only five and a man like that ... Nestor ... he could do anything. How could you and Petula put us in danger like that? I have nothing to do with your world, nothing! Sure, I rescued the fairy when I was five, but that doesn’t mean that I wanted to sign up for danger, danger and more danger! Oh, and just because I asked for a flying horse, when I was five, doesn’t mean that I want to go fight a bad guy. A bad guy no one in your world seems willing to fight! You and your ... Petula, really! You assumed too much! How nice of you to bring me into this, and now my daughter too. You are the only reason she is gone! You regret it, how very nice!”

Bruce shook his mane fiercely, “Surely you can see my situation. Besides, Petula spoke highly of your bravery, your kindness, you can think of a way to save us.”

“I can’t Bruce.” Eileen trembled, “Look at me. I’ve got dish pan hands, I’m no hero. You’ll just have to deliver yourself to Nestor, so that I can take my daughter home.”

“I won’t do it.”

“You will. It’s an order. You have to do as I say, right?”

“Absolutely your worship.” Bruce looked firmly straight ahead and Eileen could feel his muscles go stiff under hands.

Eileen patted Bruce’s shoulder, “Someone will rescue you. Petula maybe. I’m just not the one.”
The rest of the ride to the gate was steely quiet. That was just fine with Eileen, she didn’t feel like talking. The last time she had been set up was in Grade 10 when Clare put cheat notes in her desk during an exam. Up until that day Clare had been her best friend. Eileen had sworn she would never be so naive again ... and yet, through no fault of her own here she was again, and this time her daughter was in danger.

The gate rose up before them so quickly that Eileen gasped. It was breathtaking. Surrounded on all sides by white billows of cloud the gate itself seemed formed out of bits of bright sunlight. Not beams of sunlight, but tightly woven ribbons so fine it appeared to be wrought not only on the surface but in layer after layer until the eye could only guess at its depth. The gate was clearly closed as the whole centre appeared to be a solid mass of weaving all pulsating in different directions. And it was radiating incredible heat. Eileen put her arm up to shield herself.

"There’s no need for that your highness. It won’t leap out and bite you.” As if to prove his point Bruce swung dangerously close to its gleaming sides so that Eileen could feel the heat radiating like a coil on her stove against her leg.

“Would you please stop that? You almost burnt my leg.”

“Did I? So sorry my lady, I did not imagine it would.”

Eileen gritted her teeth, “And stop that too!”

“Stop what, Sahib?”

Eileen growled under her breath. Bruce was difficult before, now he was becoming unbearable. Just as well he was going to Nestor, it would teach him a lesson. Bruce touched down without warning just in front the gate. Eileen gave a little squeal as Bruce’s hooves touched the cloud, sank an inch or two into the depths and then remained level. “You’ve got to be kidding.” she murmured.

Bruce shook himself so hard it almost dislodged her, “Time to get off oh Queen of the kitchen. That is if those dish pan hands can let go of my mane.”

“What! You’ve got to be kidding! This is a cloud, and as my grade three teacher kindly pointed out you can not stand on clouds....”

“I’m standing on one. We can’t fly through the gate you know, and you won’t be able to duck through on my back.”

Eileen glanced nervously at the cloud. It was true, it did appear somewhat solid, for a cloud. Bruce’s hooves rested firmly on something that looked as much like a rock as a cloud could, but there was no telling how far that bit of solidness went. She gulped hard. “I’ll just hold your mane, ok?” She slid down his back and onto the ground, touching it carefully with one toe. It appeared to be solid. Just to make sure she stood as close to his hooves as possible. That position, as well as holding tightly to Bruce’s mane, made her feel like she was in the middle of a game of Twister.

Bruce snickered, “You really do like to make things as awkward as possible, don’t you?”

“Look, I’m down, this is as good as its going to get. Just keep moving.”

Bruce walked a steady pace with Eileen shuffling awkwardly beside him until his nose practically touched the gate. The heat was searing but Bruce didn’t seem to mind, instead he sniffed the gate delicately.

“How are we going to get in?”

“Could I have some quiet please? I am concentrating. The gate’s many layers are portals to other worlds, you simply press on the round finger guide and the door flies open sucking you in.”

Eileen squinted and could just make out a small round disk placed in a different spot on each
layer. “Oh, I see. Pressing on the wrong one could be a bit of a problem.”

“Ha.” Bruce chuckled wryly, “A bit. No one travels these anymore because people either disappeared or were turned so entirely inside out they were pretty much dead.”

“Pretty much?” The thought of being inside out and not quite dying just about turned out the last of her lunch.

“Professor Colsnop of the Fairy Institute was one of the last through the gates. He still does a lot of work translating old texts. It’s quiet and no one has to smell him. The stench is pretty bad... That’s odd.”

“You’re telling me.”

Bruce gave the door another large sniff, top to bottom this time, “No, not him. It’s just that I can usually smell the other side of the gate. Each one smells different. Some gates smell like bees wax or brine, there was one that smelled like sulfur. Yours smelled like apples, which is odd considering there doesn’t appear to be any. Mine should smell like the dregs of Claptrap, probably because the fairies are always making so much of it. With all of their parties it’s a wonder they get anything done. Anyhow, the smell is gone.”

“Maybe it smells different from this side of the door?”

“No, that’s not it. There’s no smell at all. It is as though someone has taken all the scents right off the gate itself. There isn’t one left.”

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Question: Music, Self Expression?

Does a look at your music collection express to the world who you are? Wow, I'm not sure what mine would say ... lately I've been leaning towards cheesy dance music ... but it is an interesting thought. I assume that if someone buys a musician's work it must resonate with them emotionally, mentally or otherwise, and yet, can another person's art be a true reflection of who we are? Do we love music for the memories it brings to us, for the understanding it gives or just because it makes us happy? Interesting.

What's your favorite song, album or group? Does music and art have the ability to express who you are or where you've been?

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Waaaay Too Carried Away

Hello All!

Well, you might have noticed a few changes around here.

Unless of course you are reading this in braille. If you are, just so you know, there have been a few changes, starting with my name ... I will now go by Cleopatra Mimosa the Second. No, really, you can call me Cleo. No, really, I'm just kidding.

If you will now open your eyes I will direct your attention to our lovely new template, notice how green, how lush! The perfect pick me up for the winter blahs ... and believe me it is winter already where I am. We even have snow.

I am so, so, so loving the ease of use factor with the new blogger. Did I mention that I'm loving it? Well, I am, loving it. What took me hours of trying to figure out code before just took me twenty minutes of clicking on boxes and saying, "Yes, please." Not that I'm bitter about the loss of time before, oh no, not really (Grrr.) but this is much, much better. It should save me lots of time, and now that I can't stay in one place for longer than a few minutes it will greatly improve my mood ... or if not that, at least save me a couple minutes.

What's that you say? Why can I not sit still? Am I busy? Am I testing a mobile office? Do I actually have ants in my pants? No, gentle reader, so kind of you to ask, but this time I do not have ants in my pants. I have actually hurt my back. Ouch. The pain has been building up over the last few weeks so now I am using my free time trying to coax my back, back into submission. I will need to go stretch it out in a minute. I am getting professional help, thanks for asking. What? No, just for my back ... even though my fingernails could use a good manicure.

So, to recap, I've just changed the look of my blog, my back has given out entirely and my children have chewed through the coffee table. What's that? I didn't mention the table? Well, now you know. That's right, the twins have molars and will use them ... so don't try anything funny.

I guess what I'm trying to say is be sure to give me lots of leeway, ok, Wednesday Story is on Thursday, I completely changed my blog, and now, I'm grumpy, that's right grumpy like a troll, what can I say. I have no sense of where is too far and how long it should take me to get there. Don't say I didn't warn you.

Wednesday Story: Eileen and the Wings of Glory Part 5

By the time they sent out the call it was too late.

Bruce let out a mighty neigh, “Those who died from the dragon’s fire were lucky, there was a huge famine, coupled with a bad winter. To their credit the second kingdom rallied aid. Queen Mestlin herself rode Netal over the passes to protect the supply train. Netal later told me she could see bursts of flame over the villages but there was nothing they could do. The dragon appeared to be baiting them, he would light the fires in the village and then, just as Netal rose to the first cloud she would see him diving on the train from high in the mountains. The train lost three wagons before everyone caught on. It broke her heart but the Queen could not risk leaving the train even for a moment. Even so, with the dragon circling they had to double back again and again. Winter had begun in earnest by the time the train reached the first of the villages and for many, it was too late. Then word reached the Queen that her cousin, who for many years had plotted against her, was now taking advantage of her absence and advancing her army towards the capital. The Queen had no choice but to leave at once, and the people despaired.

And with perfect timing, now that the people were desperate and alone, Nestor arrived, like a god entering his temple, his armour shining like the sun, his sword cruel and long. Some even say the steed he rode had Pegasi blood in his veins ... but that is preposterous!” Bruce shook his head hard and gave a loud neigh. “He rode into the capital, killed the dragon in a short but spectacular battle, and set up shop. The people insisted, ... insisted he take the throne. And that’s when the real trouble started.”

“Oh.” Eileen grimaced, “How much worse could it be?”

“Much worse. Nestor implemented, for the people’s safety, a curfew, and his own men, who appeared like magic from the hills, patrolled the streets of the capital, to ‘search the sky for dragons’. At first they were all hailed as heros, although those cowards had faced far less than the people had in a week. Then disappearances began. Whole families, in the night. They were said to be eaten by dragons, though no sign of one has been seen since. People all through the kingdom, whomever were left, were catalogued and numbered, many were sent to live in different, safer, regions. Beautiful women and boys were sent to the capital for safe keeping but were never seen by their families again.

In the midst of all this the time came for the Pegasi bonding. Although Nestor was king the council of fairies greatly feared his ambition. Coupled with the power of the pegasi he would be a terrible force. He could rule the world.”

Eileen’s throat tightened, “this is the man who has my daughter?”

Bruce turned his head and looked her firmly in the eye, “Yes. And if he has me our world will fall.”

Monday, October 30, 2006

Snazzy New Features

I just moved over to Blogger in Beta and I am so tickled with this new feature (tee hee). Check out the bottom of my posts, you will find a "label" identifying the kind of post I've made, Wednesday Story, Sunday Intellectual Question, Funny Story, Playing with People ... and on and on ad nauseum. Simply click on the label and you will find yourself viewing all posts belonging to that category. Read them all, or just collect the Capital Letters to trade with your friends, the choice is yours.Why do I LOVE this? I no longer have to feel guilty about not updating my lists in the the column to your left. I now have room to feel guilty about something else, like the fact that I'm sure there's other new features but I have no idea what they are or how they work. And I used a plural in my title. Now I'm responsible. Thanks Blogger.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Question: Spooky Stories

I am a big chicken. I scream at jumpy things, I can't go to sleep until I am sure all the doors and windows are locked, and I have been known to lay eggs. Well, I don't actually lay them, I buy them in a carton and put them carefully in my fridge, but it's pretty close! If I watch a horror movie, or even a "thriller" I have nightmares for weeks and can often recall the details clearly years later ... Evidence: the silly "horror" movie my friend's big brother rented when I was seven. I can still see clearly a little kid in the woods jumping in his sleeping bag away from a plastercine monster. Even though I know it's fake, and plastercine monsters who are slightly out of focus around the edges do not haunt the forests of Canada (but possibly Borneo, lots of strange things happen there) I still don't want to sleep without a tent in the middle of the woods. Given the number of bears, wild cats and feirce porcupines up here that is probably a good thing.

This leads me, finally, to a question: Why do some people, like myself, translate even the silliest horror movie into jumpiness and long term fears, while other people are able to watch the movies "just for fun"?

Is there a horror movie moment or campfire story that just won't leave you alone?

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Wednesday Story: Eileen and the Wings of Glory Part 4

Eileen staggered out the screen door, her hair still steaming from the explosion and gave a little wave with the Scum Remover can. She wasn’t sure she could let it go. All the muscles in her body were so tense they wouldn’t release on their own. “Hey Bruce. This stuff actually does take out scum.”

Bruce dropped the branch of the African Fig that he was chewing, “what happened to you?”

“Cleaning.” Eileen’s muscles suddenly released and she melted down onto the sidewalk.

“Really? Petula had said there was no magic in this world. Hmm. Do you always clean this way?”

Eileen just stared. “Always.”

“If I had known rinsing would be this big of a deal I would have told you to forget it.” He nudged her several times with his nose. “No time for sitting, we’ve got to go right away. Your daughter is in terrible danger. We’ll start flying and figure something out on the way.”

After several truly embarrassing attempts to get on Bruce’s back, all of which ended with Eileen either falling on the ground or sitting backwards, she was finally holding on for dear life watching the ground lift away below her feet.

Bruce pulled his head forward and shook, “Not so tight Eileen! You’re going to rip my mane right off!”

Eileen didn’t feel so good. She had never been air sick, but then, every plane she had been on had sported a floor ... and a chair. “I don’t think I can. I am going to be sick, or fall off, or both. Oh dear!”

“Oh no you’re not!” Bruce yelled , his hide forming goose bumps under her hand.

Eileen grimaced as the whole world as she knew it became so small she could put it in her pocket.“This is not going to work. There must be another way. Surely there’s a door in a closet or hole in a lake or something else. Anything else. You could fly. I’d meet you there.”

“Absolutely not, I go where you go. I am lotted to you alone. I can’t change what the fairy council has done. For a little girl who wanted a flying horse, you would think you’d like flying ... or at least riding.”

Eileen clenched her teeth together, “I was five.”

The next twenty minutes passed in more or less silence. Eileen tried desperately to loosen her grip on Bruce’s mane and took long soothing breaths in the hopes that it would calm down her tummy. When a small flock of birds came bursting out of a cloud in front of them Eileen waved her free arm frantically hoping they wouldn’t hit her in the nose. It was at that moment she realised she was still holding the scum remover. How embarrassing. If anyone saw her waving around a cleaning bottle they would think she had gone mad. Actually, if anyone saw her flying on the back of a Pegasus that would be the least of her problems. She quickly tucked the cleanser into one of the pockets on her apron.

They had levelled off now and Bruce turned his head ever so slightly, “Well, you must be doing a little better, you’re not riding like a sack of potatoes anymore.”

“Thanks.” she said.

“A few more days should have you in shape. We have about twenty more minutes until the gate so now might be a good time to come up with plan. I don’t think we should fly right in ... too dangerous. He might just kill you and take me and the girl ... we’ll land a days walk to the south. He doesn’t watch the borders much, not enough men yet that he can fully trust. Now, how are we going to defeat Nestor.”

Eileen took a deep breath, “Look. I just want my daughter. No offence but, I really can’t get involved with your politics. He wants you, you go with him.” she patted him reassuringly, “I’m sure he’ll have nice grass.”

Eileen nearly fell as Bruce reared in the air, “Nice grass! Nice grass! Nestor is evil! He’ll do anything to gain power. That is why the fairy council sent ...” he cleared his throat anxiously, “I can’t and I won’t”

“Oh, yes you will. He can’t be all bad.” she bit her lip hard, “Besides, you could run away.” Something tickled the back of Eileen’s brain, “Hey, what ‘fairy council’? I did not rescue a council of fairies I know that much for certain. What is going on here?”

Bruce sighed, “I wasn’t supposed to tell you. Alright, it seems only fair now that your daughter has been taken. You did rescue Petula when you were five, but she had no intention of rewarding you with me.”

“See! Ha, ha! I knew it.” Eileen tossed her head, accidentally letting go of Bruce’s mane. For a moment she seemed suspended in air and then finally, she grasped the thick strands of mane once more.

Bruce didn’t appear to notice, “Ah hem. No, instead she gave you the figurine you found at the end of your lane.”

“Oh, I loved that one. It was a lovely horse with wings, all crystal. It made the best rainbows when I set it on my window sill. I wonder where it has gone?”

Bruce snorted, “Yes, on reflection quite a suitable replacement. Anyhow, the pegasi of our land are rare, only four are bred every fifty years, we are highly trained, tightly guarded and when we are mature we are only lotted to one of the four rulers of our world. We are lotted for life and must do what they command.”

“Oh. How did you escape?”

“Escape! I didn’t escape! Never in all my life have I ...” what sounded like a growl rumbled in his throat. “You have no idea. It came time for the pegasi to be lotted but there had been trouble in the third kingdom. The king and his pegasus, D’Argon, died while performing a simple manoeuvre for the crowd on Ascension Day. They were doing a lay up into the clouds when D’Argon suddenly lost air and plunged into a tree. They both fell to their deaths. D’Argon was a great Pegasi, strongest of his fold, those sent to the third kingdom always are, they have to be. He had years left to his pasturing it seems incredible that something so simple could bring him down. Then the Queen died of a broken heart, and soon after their little boy disappeared during a walk with his nurse in the woods. The nurse disappeared too. All very suspicious. Everything had an explanation, mind, but taken all together it was suspicious. Then a dragon started troubling the kingdom.

“Dragon?” terrible nightmares fled through her head. While other children had brought flashlights into their bedrooms to ward off monsters, Eileen had made a nest under her bed to protect herself from dragons. “As in real Dragons? I thought it was just, make believe.” but then everything make believe was suddenly real. Why not that?

Bruce sighed, “Even here many do not imagine they exist. They are rarely seen. Dragons usually hate populated areas, and are incredibly lazy.” Bruce laughed, “There is a dragon who lives at the tine, Nimbleflame, the fairy council had brought him to protect the breeding grounds ... but you would be lucky to wake him with an army. Fairy Tusca dotes on him and feeds him too many cows. However, the dragon in the third kingdom acted like none before him. He had an unquenchable thirst for carnage. He raided for days on end. He openly attacked many of the noble keeps and carried off anything of value, including the young boys who never returned. Now, a fully trained king or queen with their pegasus and quarter of knights, could have ended the dragon, or at least bound him to a place far away, but the kingdom was defenceless. Many of the knights who could have stood a chance against the beast were attacked and killed before they could band together. It was almost as though the dragon knew everything, who to attack and when. The winter winds were almost at our door by the time a single knight arrived at the tine. He was barely alive. The dragon had hunted him over the mountains. He had been burned and left for dead by the beast but still managed to crawl to the council chamber in the hope that the fairies could band the kingdoms together to save his. He died in the end and the fairies, with their politics at their feet, argued away the remaining weeks before winter. By the time they sent out the call it was too late."

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Question: School Curriculum

The education of our children is a touchy topic, and why not, it involves our most precious treasures. We all feel strongly about what we want them to learn and the things we want them to avoid. There are those who trust the school system to do this for them, there are those who teach children at home, and a whole spectrum of parental involvement in between. Personally, I feel that most schools, depending on the teacher of course, do not encourage classical reasoning and thought. It was often my experience that in order to receive good marks I needed to parrot what the teacher said as opposed to formulating an argument and proving it reasonably. So, I would definitely add classical logic to the curriculum. That, and I would still like to take a course on grammar ....

What courses would you add to the curriculum and why?

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Wednesday Story: Part 3 - Eileen and the Wings of Glory

The morning had to get better.

It didn’t. Eileen arrived in the bathroom just in time to see what looked like a scrawny, dirty little man, disappear down her bathtub drain. There, scrawled into the grime on the tub wall read,

“The Pegasus for the girl. Or you will miss her baby brown curls. Nestor.”

Stuck to the bottom of the message with a wad of chewing gum was a pink ribbon still holding a few strands of brown curly hair. It was the same ribbon Bonnie had worn to school.

The room spun, “Bonnie! My Bonnie!” Someone had her, some one who wanted ... Propping herself against the sink she pulled herself over to the window and pushed it open, “Bruce!” Bruce stood by the fence, the long stem of a prize astilbe hanging out of his mouth. He was ignoring her, “Bruce!”

“I need proper nourishment, many a pegasus has died from ...”

Eileen gripped her hair, “Bruce, someone has my daughter!”

Bruce turned, eyes wide, ears back, and galloped to the window, “What?”

“Someone,” she glanced back at the grimy words, “I can’t quite make it out ... Nestor? He has my daughter. I don’t even know who he is.”

Bruce blew hard through his nostrils, “Nestor. He found me.”

Eileen’s eyes fixed on Bruce, “What do you mean, he found you?”

“You had better come outside so we can talk, quietly, his Pipe Haggers are quiet efficient.” he glanced through the window at the writing on the tub. “And I’d rinse that off right away, it’s very corrosive.”

Eileen gently took down the ribbon and hair and laid it on a towel by the tub. It seemed that the slightest gust of her breath would blow the strands of Bonnie’s hair away and leave her with nothing. Her own parents had seemed so strong when she was little, so invincible. Every danger melted away with the sight of their pant leg. She wasn’t invincible, come on, she could hardly get the soap scum off the tub. Now, here she was with a flying horse and a Pipe Hagger, whatever that was. She was a housewife, for goodness sake, with rough hands and a round bum to boot, what could she do? She glanced down at the ribbon again. Bonnie was so small, even though she was five Eileen still rocked her to sleep at night. “Momma’s coming little one. Momma’s coming.” she murmured.

Gripping the Super Scum Remover in both hands she aimed at the letters and squeezed the trigger hard. A blast of white foam coated the tub in swaths that slowly dripped together, gathering speed on the way to the drain. For a moment she could see the letters turning into a blotchy mess and then ... BOOM! Eileen staggered back as the air was filled with rancid smoke and bright streaks of light. When she finally opened her eyes, there was her tub, clean and bright, just like the day they had bought it. It was stunning.

Eileen staggered out the screen door, her hair still steaming from the explosion and gave a little wave with the Scum Remover can. She wasn’t sure she could let it go. All the muscles in her body were so tense they wouldn’t release on their own. “Hey Bruce. This stuff actually does take out scum.”

Bruce dropped the branch of the African Fig that he was chewing, “what happened to you?”

“Cleaning.” Eileen’s muscles suddenly released and she melted down onto the sidewalk.

“Really? Petula had said there was no magic in this world. Hmm. Do you always clean this way?”

Eileen just stared. “Always.”

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Question: Food Choices

It has been brought to my attention that Mahi Mahi is just fancy island talk for dolphin. Now, I'm pretty sure that a platter of Flipper meat served with a tossed salad wouldn't be a big seller, but is it really the same thing? For that matter, what about hot dogs? I have heard many stories about exactly what is inside that little bag of mystery, and yet, shamelessly, I still eat them.

Does knowing what is in your food make it impossible to eat?

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Wednesday Story: Eileen and the Wings of Glory Part 2

Brandishing the bear high above her head Eileen ran screaming out the back door, down the steps, and came to a complete stop. This wasn’t just any horse standing in her yard. He was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen. His hide was so white it glowed in the sunshine, and as the wind ruffled the leaves on her neighbour’s maple, the hide rippled, changing texture and colour like facets of a diamond. Perhaps most astonishing of all were the soft white wings folded along his body. Eileen wasn’t sure she could breathe.

“That’s a most unusual way to greet someone. Is the bear a gift?”

Her jaw dropped open and refused to close. The horse loudly sniffed at the sunburnt grass, took a big bite of the nicest green patch, ruffled his feathers and continued, “Well then, might as well get on with it. Eileen McGovern? It is you isn’t it?”

Eileen blinked twice.

“I’ll take that as a yes. Special Delivery.”

“Um ... pardon?” the words barely squeaked out of her mouth.

“I believe you wished for a flying horse.” Bruce spit the wad of grass on to a paving stone, “Well, here I am. My name is Bruce, a pegasus, I come from a long line of distinguished stallions ...”

“I’m sorry ... I wished?”

Bruce shook his mane and blew out his lips, “Yes, yes ... let’s see, 12th of May 1974, you rescued fairy Petula Mendelsa Ripplebottom Crocus from a jar of fireflies. She said, “How may I repay you?” You said ...”

Eileen’s eyes opened wide,“... A flying horse.”

“Exactly, a flying horse. So, here I am.” Bruce pulled another carefully selected wad of grass from the lawn and chewed it delicately with his front teeth.

“But, I was five.”

Bruce looked Eileen up and down and shrugged, “So?” With a twist of his mouth he spit again, this time hitting Bonnie’s little pink tricycle.

“I was five and now I’m thirty seven! And ... that’s disgusting.” The green gob of half eaten grass began its slow decent to the ground. “I don’t need any more messes to clean up, you know.”

“Pegasi aren’t exactly pots of gold. You can’t just smelt one in your basement. So, here I am and here you are ... wish complete, debt repaid, so on and so forth. . . aren’t you going to say something?”


“Good. Darien gets the Prince of Belise, Shofla has the Queen of Mestlin and I get Eileen of ...”

“467 Rowan Crescent.”

“Hmm. Yes, exactly. Lucky me.”


Bruce glanced over the fence and into the Hendrew’s yard and into the most spectacular garden in all of Burnstock. Bruce just shook his mane, “Do you at least have some oats? I’m starving.”
Eileen paused. This couldn’t be happening. She barely remembered the fairy, and to be honest, in the memory she looked suspiciously like Tinkerbell.“Well, you see, there must be some mistake. I wasn’t expecting a horse ...”

Bruce’s upper lip peeled back, “A pegasus, if you please.”

“Right, well, I didn’t even think the fairy was real. I was five, I thought I made it up. And now as you can see I really can’t have a horse ...”


“In my yard. I just can’t. There’s no room and, I’m really busy, and ...” As Eileen paused, a serene calm washed over her face, she started to laugh, “just a second, I get it. Squeezing her eyes shut, she placed one plump hand over her heart and began to chant, “I don’t believe in Pegasus, I don’t believe in Pegasus, I don’t believe in Pegasus.” She opened one eyelid just the slightest. Bruce, the pegasus, was still there. “Dam! Ok, I don’t believe in fairies, I don’t believe in fairies, I...”

“Are you alright?”

Eileen’s eyes flew open,“How can you still be here?”

Bruce rubbed his hocks casually with his nose for a bit, then swung around so he was looking firmly down his nose at her. “Just because you believe something is real or not doesn’t matter a straw. A thing is real because it is. Honestly!” he turned around and gently preened his feathers with his teeth, “I was serious about the oats. Your grass is, well, below standards. And then I’d like a nap. Travelling between worlds isn’t easy.”

Eileen’s could feel her headache returning with a vengance, “Look, my day hasn’t exactly gone very well, and really, you caught me a little off guard, it has been thirty four years.”

“Thirty two.”

“Whatever. And to be honest, if she had asked me today I would have asked for something else. Like something to clean the house.”

Bruce rolled his eyes, “That was harsh.”

“Can’t you just go back to the fairy who sent you here?”

For the first time Bruce looked truly offended. He stretched out his long neck high in the air and pawed at the grass, tossing loose clods of dirt into the air and onto Eileen’s clean windows.

“Certainly not! A pegasus has never been sent back to the breeding tine. Ever. It would be a disgrace. I am lotted to you, I may only go where you go.”

“Oh.” The air outside was feeling a little too thin and Eileen had a sudden urge to scrub something, really hard. Even the scum in the bathtub looked good right now. “Try some grass, I have things to do.” she flicked her flowered apron with annoyance and marched up the stairs, throwing the screen door back with vigour. The morning just had to get better.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Thanksgiving

This weekend in Canada we are celebrating Thanksgiving. It is a time to reflect on the year and all the people, and things we are thankful for. We also eat a lot of turkey.

Today’s question is a simple one:

What are you most thankful for?

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Wednesday Story: Eileen and the Wings of Glory

I have been working away on a "short" story that I hope you will all enjoy. Now if you will endulge me as I give you one of my most favorite genres ...

Eileen McGovern knelt on her chubby knees, her round bottom high in the air, scrubbing the bathroom tub with all the strength she could muster. True, there was not as much elbow grease left in her scrubbing, but she hated housework, and under the circumstances this was as good as she could do. After a whirlwind summer of soccer practice and art camp, Jamie, Clarke, and Bonnie had finally headed off to school leaving Eileen to scrape clean the summer grime. Flicking her drippy brown hair out of her equally brown eyes she squeezed more Super Scum Remover on the drain area. The yellow band around the tub reappeared no matter how much she rinsed. The scum was out to get her.

She could feel her hair creeping slowly down into her eyes again and a ribbon of sweat dripped steadily onto her nose. Eileen tossed the sponge at the tub, “What a joke. All this work and I’m still not done.” After a full week and a day of straight cleaning, speaking to herself was as exciting as it got. She made a fist and pressed it into her back, catching a glimpse of the ceiling out of the corner of her eye. “What a mess!” she screamed. There was mould up there too.
Things had been going badly all day. She had forgotten to pack the lunches the night before, Clarke refused to wear anything but a grubby jersey, and Bonnie had clung to her leg during the entire walk to school. To top it off she had locked herself out of the house and had subsequently been stuck for half an hour in the basement window, wondering if she could wiggle her way into the house before the neighbours called the police. It was not a good day.

“Argh!” Her head felt like a balloon. The Super Scum Remover was supposed to leave everything sparkling. “But notice,” , she said rubbing her nose furiously, “there’s no ‘stinky’ symbol next to the explosive symbol on the side of the can!” It was time for some fresh air.

Hard as it was to ignore the layer of dust on the window sill, she steeled herself and threw her shoulder into the bottom of the frame. The window slid up with a grunt, and she breathed in. There was no fresh air at all. Outside something pressed up against the screen, blocking all the air. Something big, and white.“Just one more fantastic surprise! Great!” Eileen flicked the screen to push the thing away. The thing moved. On its own. Trembling she watched as the white thing turned around and a pair of brown eyes came swaying into view. It was a horse. She blinked twice. Yes, a horse. Actually, that was a bit of a surprise.

She took a big breath in and squeaked,“I’ve been in the bathroom too long.” Racing to the door she quickly turned on the fan. “All those chemicals! It’s no wonder.” She cautiously looked over her shoulder; the horse was still there.

The horse tilted his head, “Eileen McGovern?”

Eileen blinked frantically. She rubbed her eyes. She looked around. “Clarke? Darren?”

“Actually, the name’ s Bruce I...”

Eileen slammed the window down so hard it shook. Then, quickly shutting the door for good measure, she ran into the hall and leaned panting for breath against the wall. “I must have mixed the cleaners.”

She glanced into Jamie’s room. The shades of paint splashed on the walls were very trippy indeed but that was just the way Jamie liked it. All the clothes were still strewn across the floor, her stereo sat cockeyed and open above her bed, and her stuffed bear, the large one that her boyfriend had won at the carnival, was sitting very still on the middle of her bed. It didn’t appear to be talking. Just to be sure Eileen walked across the room and poked it. The bear didn’t move. She breathed a sigh of relief. “I’m not hallucinating that much.”

Actually, the bear felt rather soft and more than a little comforting, so, feeling rather silly, Eileen clutched the bear in front of her, and tiptoed to the bathroom. She took in a few more deep breathes just to clear her head and slowly opened the door. Through the frosting on the glass she could just make out a large white shape, moving gently side to side. It still looked remarkably like a horse. Like the rear end of a horse. If it was a real horse, which she doubted, it was wedged into the yard pretty tightly. Eileen and Darren could only afford a semi, and even then the yard was barely more than a glorified path to the garage. Who ever thought this prank up had some serious time on his hands! Still, if it was a real horse, which, again, was highly unlikely, it would come with some real poop, which, in turn would mean more cleaning. Her hands clenched tightly around the bear’s throat, “not today buster!”she yelled.

Brandishing the bear high above her head Eileen ran screaming out the back door, down the steps, and came to a complete stop. This wasn’t just any horse standing in her yard. He was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen. His hide was so white it glowed in the sunshine, and as the wind ruffled the leaves on her neighbour’s maple, the hide rippled, changing texture and colour like facets of a diamond. Perhaps most astonishing of all was the soft white wings folded along his body. Eileen wasn’t sure she could breathe.

“That’s a most unusual way to greet someone. Is the bear a gift?”

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Worst Childcare Item

This question is inspired by the terrible clutter I have found myself in. How, after all the research, did we end up with toys that my children do not play with ... and products that are not only bulky but also refuse be operated by the sleep deprived? By far the worst baby item we have ever bought was the diaper genie. Sure it may have worked wonders for some other PHD holding smarties but we just couldn't get the thing open, or once it was open, we couldn't get it closed. It ended up a glorified waste basket hanging half way open all day until we could stand the stench no longer. It has since been sold in a yard sale and been replaced by grocery bags that are quickly tied up and wisked outside before people pass out.

What is the worst baby or childcare item that you have ever purchased for yourself or someone else? (This could include annoying toys bought for unsuspecting friends...naughty :)

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The Queen of the Socks

Ah, yes! If socks were dollars, I would be wading in cash. Instead, I am knee deep in multi-coloured tootsie tubes. I’m afraid to emerge ... I know there is more, hiding, upstairs.

Little pixie socks for the toddler set,
action socks for the crime fighter,
princess socks, serious socks,
and glamourous socks for me.
You know the ones I’m talking about.
Cotton, with a delicate band of colour at the ankle?
Yes, glamour is my middle name.

I admit it. The laundry has slowly snuck up on me. Last week, while I was putting away the ‘last’ of the folded laundry I glanced at the basket in my kids room and considered putting a load on.

“No,” I thought, “not today. Today I’m taking a break from laundry.” and ‘poof’ the laundry pile multiplied, like happy bunnies on a beautiful spring day.

Now, my pile of laundry is so high that I predict I will be at the washing machine for the next twenty years. If you happen to be available for any one of my children’s graduations please let me know, if I have time I’ll send you my seat. Or perhaps I could send a clean sock to sit in my chair ... by then it should be technologically advanced enough to take pictures.

I have a dream. It’s a simple dream. Each member of the family would own two sets of stylish yet inexpensive clothes. At the end of each day they would fold the clothes lovingly and place them on a modern display shelf, next to one of those space age egg chairs. And a star burst clock. Oh, and a painting by Miro. On Wednesdays the whole family would line up with clothing set number one. They would place it in the laundry. There would be no need for baskets or separating, I would just turn the machine on and watch it go. Ah, bliss.

Now there are some of you out there who are saying, “This is crazy! Her scheme would never work.”

Ah, my gentle readers, how short sighted. A pipe dream? I think not. I having been testing my theory for a few weeks now. The girls have worn the same outfit for several days, just so I can tell them apart. All that remains is to weed out everyone else’s wardrobe. Now, if I can only figure out how to get my son to part with his Batman lounge suit.

For now, though, I think I will crouch down in the pile and get started. Perhaps I’ll place some underwear on my head as a tiara, wave my bottle of Tide and announce in my most regal voice, “the washer is free! Send in the socks!”

Monday, September 25, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Just War

For Canadians the last few weeks have shown an escalation in the number of our soldiers who have been killed or injured in Iraq. It seems that a "safe" operation that few considered to truely be ours is now thrusting itself into our corporate consciousness. Questions about war and peace and how go about both are all around us, so it seems only right to ask a few questions of my own.

Is there ever a good, honorable reason to go to war? Where do you begin to draw the line? In defense of human rights? To curtail a possible threat? To gain more land etc? In final defense of your country? Or never?

Martin Luther wrote a few interesting words on wether or not there could ever be a just war ... and on the responsibilities soldiers carry in a war ... let's chat, what do you think?

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Talk Like A Pirate Day - September 19

Talk Like A Pirate Day - September 19
Alright, this has to be my final Pirate instalment:
Here's their web site, it even has some stuff for kids! Have fun!

YouTube - Talk LIke a Pirate Day: "Slappy's Random Phrases"

YouTube - Talk LIke a Pirate Day: "Slappy's Random Phrases"

Here's some random Pirate Phrases to get you started. Just think how well this would work at the grocery store!

YouTube - Talk Like a Pirate Day: Phone Etiquette

YouTube - Talk Like a Pirate Day: Phone Etiquette

Ok, found another one. Kim you'd appreciate this a lot ... you may even consider answering all your messages this way!

YouTube - Talk Like a Pirate Day: "I'm a Pirate" song

YouTube - Talk Like a Pirate Day: "I'm a Pirate" song

I found these guys while wandering around the net, it's very silly and worth a moment ... especially if your kids are really into pirates, like mine. This video is a pirate "kiddie song" and even features a pint sized cabin boy.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Pocket hairdressing

As you have heard in my previous story: Perfect Hair Dreams I dream of different hair. Not wavy, not brown, not constantly sticking up at the side while it falls flat as a rodent road kill at the back, but long, curly, flowing, glistening tresses in a ravishing shade of red. Or blonde, I’m not picky.

However, a funny thing happened as I was drifting off to sleep last night, I realized that different hair may not be the answer I’m looking for. Sure, if I woke up the next morning with the glorious hair of my dreams, I would, for a few moments be deliriously happy tossing my head back and forth in front of the mirror and yelling “Would you look at my hair!” so that even astronauts on their lunch break at the Space Station would marvel, but after that brief moment I would probably gaze in disbelief at the tangled mess I had just made and realise that I had made a terrible mistake. I may be blonder, curlier and flowing out the door but I would still have no idea what to do with it. Sadly, the brush is but a mallet in my hands.

So, I’ve revised my previous wish (take note fairy Godmother) I wish to have a permanent hairdresser. One who will be with me each morning to attend my terrible tresses and who would preferably fit in a drawer. This pocket sized magician of the hair would pop out each morning,

“Now let’s see Darling, um hum, um hum, yes we can do something with it. I think a little brushed at the front and up at the back. Very n-ice. Maybe some curls. What you think?”
“Thanks so much,” I’d say, “I never would have pinned it up that way.”
“It’s nothing honey, to me you’re like Cher at a ball. Now go have fun.”

And I’d put him right back in the drawer for later until the next time I...

“Hey! I can hear you out there! Are you putting that cream on your hair like I told you.”

“Um ... yes?”
“You know your hair will be flat tomorrow and completely unworkable. It won’t be my fault if you are a ‘poofed’ souffle.”
“Ok, ok I’m putting it on.”
“And you’ll wait twenty minutes before rinsing?”
“Twenty actual minutes.”
“Come on, I’ve got to go to bed.”
“Twenty, twenty, twentytwentytwenty...”
“Ugh! Yes, yes.”
“I swear.”
“Good. See you tomorrow, honey!”

On second thought: A silent, pocket hairdresser.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Best Food Memory

Well, another week has gone by … sometimes it is so difficult to get to a computer! Thanks to all of you who have weighed in recently on the various topics I have so enjoyed your comments! Now, to the task at hand. My brain feels like it has been eaten by some very small, and tenacious, rodents. There are some serious holes happening! So, in honor of this situation I’m not going to ask anything intellectual this week … it would be too taxing … instead I’m going to ask something emotional … last I checked all my feelings were still intact.

I love ice cream, especially milkshakes. To me they are the ultimate comfort food and, with real cream, a true indulgence. Slowly licking a spoon full of ice cream and letting it melt in my mouth makes time drag to a halt. For a moment I am as pampered as a princess.

My Grandpa on my mom’s side used to love ice cream too. In fact, I can remember riding in the back of the car with him.

“Stop!” he shouted as we passed a Baskin Robins sign, “The kids want ice cream!”

I was about to explain that I hadn’t said anything, (what can I say, not too quick on the pick up) but he quickly leaned over and whispered, “Shh, play along and we’ll all get some!”

My parents stopped the car and we were given a couple minutes to run to the store. There were so many flavors, but we quickly chose, “2 large cones and a dish please!” I think our eyes popped out of our heads … my brother and I had never had a cone that big before … it was like someone had handed us a whole container! We started to lick furiously.
“Hurry up!” Grandpa said, “we can’t take it back to the car. And here…”
He pulled out his wallet from his pants pocket and handed us each five dollars. “Don’t tell Grandma I got one too.”

The funny thing is … I pretty sure she knew.

What is your favorite food memory?

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Playing With People: Office Space ... The Final Frontier

If you were to walk into any room, how would you know who the leader is? The gleam in their eyes? The fact that they are standing? Their snappy outfit? Not if my university professors had anything to do with it. No, the secret of discovering a leader’s identity is this: we always give leaders their space.

Want to toy with your leader a little? Play with that space. In fact, completely ignore it.

During a meeting sit as close as possible to the leader, move a chair if you have to. You will probably be looking directly up the leader’s nose, it’s a small price to pay. Don’t look down at your papers but enjoy a few minutes of closeness with the one in power. Watch their face intently and only look away to make a few important notes … they will think you are so attentive … a little strange … but eager to climb that corporate ladder!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Sans Electricity

Today we were without electricity until the middle of the afternoon ... hard not to go into the shakes! A situation like that makes you sit back and concider what would I do if electrical power was suddenly gone ... forever? Would I survive? I might have to wash everything by hand ... including the dishes! I've watched lots of Survivor so I would probably be great at making a fire though.

What one thing would you be best at if you had no electricity to aid your day?

Friday, September 08, 2006



I have enjoyed this site from time to time. They are a very funny bunch of guys (and one girl) and the best fun is sending in a question or two for them to answer.Check out answer 365.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Spelling Poem

I found this poem while surfing the web. Whoever came up with this is very clever! If you're out there let me know so I can properly credit you ... and pick your brain.

I halve a spelling checker
It came with my pea see
It illustrates four my bee half
Mist aches eye can naught sea.
Iran this poem threw it
So ewe can plane lee no
Its error free in every weigh
My checker tolled me sew.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Total Body and Skin Care Regimen

We all know that baby’s skin is soft and line free beyond compare. Who wouldn’t want to be young, beautiful and firm again? I have a new foolproof integrated program that combines beauty, health and exercise for a new total you. This regimen, based on the careful observance of babies, is sure to give new vitality and spark to your skin using techniques that are simple to master.

  1. To begin your morning thrash your legs swiftly yet firmly down onto the bed several times. To complete this exercise correctly raise your legs in the air until they touch your ears, arch your back and throw your legs down onto the mattress. Finish with a squeal.
  2. Prepare your morning cereal, cream of wheat or oatmeal is highly recommended. Smear half the contents of the bowl on your face and leave to sit until crusty. Eat remaining contents with your fingers. Remove with a soft damp cloth. This is a fast way to combine beauty and weight loss programs for those busy mornings. Your skin will be radiant and smooth and your will instantly loose weight.
  3. Go to bed.
  4. After a refreshing nap, crawl around on the floor. Eat whatever you find there, especially lint and small stickers, these aid in digestion and give your skin that special glow.
  5. Stand on top of the tallest object you can find, gently stretch your arms to your side as far as you can until you are standing on your tip toes. Repeat as often as possible. This exercise will not only tone those flabby thighs but will also cause your loved ones to love you more … or at least put you under twenty four hour surveillance.
  6. When your dinner is late, cry inconsolably. Throw both hands into the air and scrub your eyes vigorously with both hands. If the meal takes longer than five minutes to arrive escalate into a full bodied scream, clutch and release your fists, scrunch up your face. Think of this as a workout the whole family can enjoy. They will be on their toes, running back and forth and loosing weight. You will keep all the muscles in your face happy and healthy. Win/Win.
  7. Drink four large glasses of milk making sure to dribble a small amount down your chin and onto the front of your shirt. This moisturizes the tender skin under your mouth and gives a “youthful look” to your everyday wear.

Follow this routine daily for best results. You will enjoy all the pleasures of youth with my new program. Be sure to send in for the follow up “Life Skills Makeover and Recovery” for the low, low price of only $500 (which can be broken down into bi-monthly payments of $11.95, amortized over the next 25 years.) It also includes a nice designer hand bag and wheelchair seat cover. You’ll need it.

(This study was tested on four children and is deemed to be right at least two out of four times. Unless the moon was full and they were cranky.)

Monday, September 04, 2006

Safety First

I don’t know what is wrong with my body but it appears to be magnetically attracted to furniture. Those of you who are adept at science are right now saying, “Come on, lady, most furniture is made out of wood” Well, my body is made out of flesh but it doesn’t seem to make any difference. Magnetic, I tell you. My husband will attest, he has seen the bruises. He, in fact, was the one who suggested we should put fluffy slippers on all our furniture legs … especially on those crazy rollers under the bed. I think it would look silly. After all, most of the furniture we own would look great in penny loafers.

However, I am considering taking a cue off my children in order to keep my body from disintegrating before I’m 40. With a few simple safety precautions my house will be much more livable. For instance:

Wrapping the pointy ends of all furniture in layers of foam and duck tape. Make sure to mark said duct tape with florescent stickers so that I will not walk into them in the dark.

Wearing a helmet at all times, including, and especially, in the shower. After all, one can never be too safe around that much water.

Slide into my kitchen chair from the top and strap myself in. If I can manage it, buy a snap on table tray to sit in front of me. This way I won’t be able to wack my knees against the table or the chair beside me. It may cause some problems when my kids need more milk, but hey, they have to grow up sometime.

Wear shin guards over my pants. Look into making them more “fashionable” with some crazy fabrics.

Wrap myself in toilet paper so I can simply bounce off any offending object.


These and many other possibilities are being carefully considered to aid me in my daily life. Please, if you have any more suggestions, pass them on, but don’t be surprised if I can’t get back right away. My elbow is magnetically sealed to the coffee table.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Best Job

What, in your opinion, would be the best job ever? Why?

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Kitchen Time with Cara: Mac n' Cheese

Mmm. Nothing is better for a cozy dinner than cheesy macaroni … unless it is Chinese take out … or ice cream straight out of the container. Everyone seems to love this recipe, except for those people who hate creamy things, and really what is wrong with them? I like the fact that it is super easy. You can also dress it up by baking it in the oven for a few minutes and throwing some bread crumbs on top. Who wouldn’t like tossing bread crumbs around? And it is even better reheated on the 2nd day. Here it is, enjoy.

Microwave Mac n’ Cheese

2 Cups uncooked macaroni
2 Cups hot water
1/3 Cup butter or Margarine
¾ Tsp. Salt
¼ Tsp. Pepper
¼ Tsp. Ground Mustard
1/3 Cup Flour
1 ¼ Cups Milk
8 ounces cheese cubed

In a 2 qt Microwave safe dish, combine the first six ingredients. Cover and microwave on high for 3 ½ minutes, stir. Cover and cook at 50% power for 4 minutes until mixture comes to a boil, rotating a half turn once. Combine flour and milk until smooth; stir into macaroni mixture. Add cheese. Cover and cook on high for 6-8 minutes or until the macaroni is tender and sauce is bubbly, rotating a half turn once and stirring every 3 minutes.

Yield: 4 servings. For a change you can ad ¾ cup of bread crumbs mixed with 2 tsp. of melted butter and parsley to taste. Bake for 15 minutes at 400.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Gift that keeps on giving

I don’t mean to shock you … in fact you had better sit down … but I have made another great discovery.


Yes, yes, I am so untechnological it’s hard to live with myself but … I have just found the on/off switch in my Blogger menu that allows me, to allow you, which then allows your dearest friends, and so on and so forth, to pass around little bits of me electronically.

“Just what I always wanted,” you say.

I do what I can.

So, let me draw your attention to the little tiny envelope perched ever so smugly at the bottom of each post. Email. So much better than snail mail. See, the email envelope even looks faster, with its little arrow pointing off the page as though it had somewhere else it needed to be, yesterday, and you are holding it up by reading slow. Yes, very smug, I’m sure you will agree. Simply clicking on the baby envelope will allow you, gentle reader, to forward the link to this post or indeed any post the envelope is attached to, to any number of your friends … or enemies … you pick, who am I to judge? Your ‘cough’ persons of interest can be as entertained as you are … or thoughtlessly tortured beyond their wildest dreams. Depends.

Though how anyone could fit a couple words let alone a whole post inside such a small envelope is beyond me. Ah, the magic of the internet. Its sweet mystery amazes me.

I wonder if it knows how to change lead into gold?

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Fantastic Fun

The most wonderful thing happened today. There was a coke fountain right in the middle of my kitchen. Yes. It’s true. An actual, spurting fountain of coke.

I was so excited. The last time I saw something of this magnitude I was six years old and enjoying my sandwich in the gym. A little boy across the room started screaming and all the other kids shuffled their bums as fast as they could in another direction. There, right where the boy had been was a giant, glorious stream of pop, flying straight into the air. It almost touched the ceiling.

“He shook it a lot.” Whispered a little boy.
“Yuck! I’m all sticky! My dress is ruined!” the girl next to me moaned.
“Who was that boy?” I asked, “I want to marry him.”

It’s true. Since that day I have been trying, with no success, to figure out how to get a can of pop to shoot straight into the air. Call it a hobby. Perhaps it is one of the sad side effects of being too curious. Good thing I’m not a cat.

Well, today my husband decided to carry up three cans of pop from the basement … which he then promptly dropped on the kitchen floor. The pop in two of the cans started to spurt out everywhere … all over the table, walls, me …
“Open your mouth!” I yelled “It’s a coke shower!”
“Are you crazy? Look at the mess!”
“Wee!” I said, skidding through a bubbly puddle and into the cabinets.
“Well, make fun if you want. Everything’s all sticky, and now we’re going to have to clean up.”

You’d think he’d be excited. I married the cool kid with the coke.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Money, Money, Money

If you had $1, 000, 000 at your disposal what you do with it?

Friday, August 25, 2006

Neither Shall She Eat

When my husband arrived home and announced that he was going out to visit a buddy… tonight … a deathly foreboding filled the air. I wasn’t sure what it was, or even exactly when … but it was going to happen. Sure enough, moments after he exited the premises a chain of events leapt into action that threatened my very being. Well, at least my stomach. And, as my kids know, my temper is attached to my stomach.

  1. With no one to cook steaks on the BBQ (One person operating an open flame with 4 small children in attendance is not recommended) I would have to figure out how to cook the defrosted meat fast or come up with another meal. “Oh well”, I said, “forget the steak, I can still use the barley from the side dish and make a different main.”

  2. The barley burns. Yes, burns so badly that I will be scraping carbon off the bottom of the pot for the next ten days.  “Oh well,” I said, cringing at the advancing time, “I’ll be 15 minutes late but we’ll have pasta instead.” I stand by the pot so it won’t burn and feed the girls bits of muffin. The pasta cooks unscathed. I lovingly garnish said dish. Call the children.

  3. The older two come up stairs screaming. She pushed him; he tried to turn off the button on the TV… that’s exactly how the Gulf war started. I get her calmed down and turn to talk to my son. My daughter takes that moment to “respice” the pasta. The pasta now tastes like the salt lick on Uncle Bills farm. I load everyone in the van. “That’s ok,” I said, “we still have half an hour before the babies go to bed, we can get things at McDonalds.”

  4. After more screaming and pushing from all the children we are on our way. The children are happy with their meal and start to tuck in. I get a couple fries and the pop from my son’s nugget meal. I decide to go get a bagel instead. Toasted with Strawberry Cream Cheese.

  5. I eat said bagel. It is burnt on the inside and, somehow, the cream cheese is almost entirely residing in the middle hole.  “That’s ok,” I said, “My pop is still pretty good.” The babies start screaming. I take everyone home, making several trips to the car to retrieve all the children and food baggies.

  6. I arrive back inside to find that my daughter has now drained my pop. Great … she’ll be extra hyper.

So, if you’ll excuse me now I’m going to find something to eat that does not involve heating elements. It will most likely be bologna straight out of the fridge. Wish me well.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

My Landlord

I recently decided to try renting someone else's blog. There are so many weird things you can do on the "net" so I guess living in two or three places at once is not so strange ... not really. Question though, Kat, there's a couple burnt bulbs and an old furnace at my place ... can you let me know when you can get to it?

Check out Kats blog in return. She's a great writer and very funny so it's worth the visit.
Kats Knoll

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Life at the Big Top

I think I'm going to give the van a paint job.

That way when I'm racing to get all the kids in the car, and I'm frustrated because child number one won't stop pushing the over head light, child number two has decided his life will not be complete unless we either stop at McDonalds RIGHT NOW or give him his sister's sunglasses, and children number three and four are both crying because I lost their soothers in the rain puddle outside ... my life may feel like a circus ... but my van looks like one. It would be perfect.

My children would tumble out of the van ...

"Why look!" Someone would gasp. "That boy is rolling around on the pavement. What a cute acrobat!"

"And that little girl," another would say, "she's dressed in a ball gown and a pirate outfit, what a clever clown."

"I don't know if they're as good as that tight rope walker there," a man would bellow pointing to one of the twins pulling herself to standing on the tire rim, "or the complusive eater," pointing to the other twin eating someone's discarded cracker and a small sticker right off the ground, "they're great, and they look alike. It's like watching one of them do two things!"

Then I would pass around the hat and take home enough spare change to pay for University.

Yes, I think a paint job would be a good idea. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Playing with People: Smiles

When I was little I had one friend who could get me to do almost anything. Honestly, she just had to open her mouth and my brain would immediately shut off. Of course, she would play tricks on me all the time. Her best one, and one that I laughed at a lot later, was getting me to read the menu at McDonalds.
     “Hey Cara, what does it say on the bottom of the menu there?”
     “Can’t you read? It says Smiles, free.”

She knew she was about to reel me in. I never could resist a good deal.

     “Why don’t you go ask for one?”
     “What, a smile? It’s just a joke.”
     “Oh, no. This is different. It’s special.”

Boy was I excited now. Something other than the Treat of the Week was free and I was about to get one of my very own. I skipped up to the counter. Peering down at me was a very tall teenager. I wouldn’t let that intimidate me, no siree bob.

     “Welcome to McDonalds, make I take your order?”
     “Yes, I’d like a smile please.”

She looked at me and smiled.

     “Ok, could I please have one?”

She glared but her mouth smiled even larger.  

     “Please? Could I have one?”

She wasn’t even trying now.  “Look kid. Very funny, ha, ha. Stop asking.”
I couldn’t understand, I wasn’t laughing. “But it’s right up there on the menu … Smiles Free.”
“I get it kid. Go away.”
“But can I have it? It’s like a treat of the week, only better.”     
She would have walked away if she had not noticed my friend and her brother giggling away at me just off to the side.
     “Sorry kid,” she said, “smiles are just smiles. Have a treat of the week … and go kick your friend in the shins for me.”

Monday, August 21, 2006

Kitchen Time with Cara

I thought I would post a couple of favorite recipes.

My family receives a small rotation home cooked meals and the rest is supplemented by pizza, a fine dish for any occasion. Sometimes, they are subjected to strange concoctions that I think should “go together”. My Irish blood believes that things thrown randomly into a pot will come out favorable, robust and standing straight up on the plate. Unfortunately, most of the items the Irish considered “random” were potatoes … which instantly decompose the moment they are brought to our house. So my concoctions do not always quite work. However, I can read, thanks to my grade one teacher Mrs. Skelton, and I am reasonably good at measuring, after much encouragement from my mother, so I stick to the culinary geniuses behind any book or recipe card.

Here for your enjoyment is the first of several good, reliable recipes. Trust me, I know.

Pancake Deluxe
By Susan Scace from Take Me With You Please: A “How-To-Cope” Book for the Newly Independent

My mother gave me this book for my first year of university. It is full of invaluable tips on etiquette, cleaning, laundry and cooking. I love this pancake recipe as it is fast to put together. You do not have to stand there flipping pancakes, the sweat pouring down your face while your family eats all but the smallest pancake. No, you can actually join them for dinner, or breakfast, whichever, because it’s all done in the pan. I generally use a deep cake pan which I place on top of a cookie sheet so I don’t have to clean any spills in the oven (yes, I did spill some in the oven the first time I made it.) To save time I put the butter in the pan and place it in the oven while it heats to 425. By the time the oven is heated the rest of the mix is usually ready to go into the pan and the butter has melted and turned lightly brown. Enjoy!

4 eggs beaten
¼ Cup Butter
1 Cup Flour
1 Cup Milk
1 Tbsp. white sugar

Preheat oven to 425 F (220 C) and melt the butter in a 9” pie plate in oven. Beat Eggs. Stir flour, milk, and sugar into beaten eggs. Pour into melted butter in pie plate. Bake 15-20 minutes at 425 F (220 C). It is ready when the sides have risen and browned. Remove and fill the centre with fruit. Sprinkle with icing sugar if desired.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Love and Lost

For my first question in a long time I thought I would take my cue from the poets:

Is it better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all?

I think we may be of varying opinions depending on our stage in life but that would make it all the more interesting. Let me know what you think.

Friday, August 18, 2006

A for Affort

Spell Check was invented for me. It’s true. On the day I was born the doctor took one look at my bulging blue eyes and called in a squad of computer geeks, a squad so secret that their location was only known to their mothers.

He said, “Boys, this little girl is going to need all the help she can get.  Spelling, Grammar, word count, you name it. It’s an impossible job but do what you can.”  

In those days taxes were low, interest rates high and government funding for odd problems at an all time boom. So, they applied for the appropriate grants and five years later they got right on it. It was difficult manipulating the cumbersome supercomputers of those days, who admittedly, were testy and none too bright (come on, anyone can add on their “processors”) but the geek squad persevered. They created the Super Computer, then the larger COMPUTER and finally became so frustrated with sleeping in a dusty corner while the computer took up all the better floor space, they created the smaller “portable” Icon computer. They worked hard. Though briefly distracted by their creation of the game “Q-burt” (rightly so, anyone would be distracted by the combination of such skill and beauty) they finally invented the Spell Checker.  Word Processing was merely a derivative. The whole program as well as the operating system that housed it was then sold by the Canadian government to Bill Gates for five dollars.

It was kind of them to help me out. Anyone who has read a fraction of my replies will find them riddled with odd spellings. When in doubt I feel it is always best to add a few extra letters. I could take letters away but it looks more ambishious to add.  I firmly believe in A for effort.

There should be a rule about adding letters.  Like s after s makes word success.  As in assesssment or supersseed.  

Or words hard to say should be spelled that way. Like Catapullted,  Pedelumn, Anemmony, plus any words used by banks, lawyers or scholars with unusually large brains.

Unfortunately no one has seen fit to write these rules down on any official documents … no matter how many letters I have written to Canada Revenue. Come to think of it they were all hand written. Hmm. Never mind. Thank you Geek Squad for making writing possible… you can come out of hiding now.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Salute to Summer

My parents always told me that time flies fast when you get older … like time flies fast when you’re having fun. You just can’t pick the kind of fun you’re having! I can’t believe the months have literally passed me by with hardly a pause for breath!  How can it be that summer has already crawled off into fall and I have hardly sat still long enough to write a simple post? Sigh!
Summer: with its sunny days, steamy pavement and drippy cream cones. Summer: of the early mornings, short nights and freckled faces. Summer: when everyone sucks their tummies in to put on those dreaded bathing suits. Hands up those who would vote to bring back the bathing dresses of the 1900’s!
Sweet, sweet summer we salute you.

We salute:
     The Air Conditioning Unit: Thank you for taking all our hot air with grace.
     The Flip Flop: Humble, yet stylish and convenient foot attire. You cushion our soles from the grit of life.
     The Hammock and Lounge Chair: Oh graceful swans of the patio, you turn our days into sweet, sweet slumber and tattoo our limbs with rope burns and basket weaves. So trendy and yet so comfy. Thank you.
     The Giant Bottle of Aloe: When we have soaked in too much of the searing sun and transgressed against our bodies, you heal our wounds. Never do we hear you complain about your shameful duties, you always steadfast, always sure. Live on in our medicine cabinet forever.
     Ice Cream Bicycle Guy: You make us run so fast to gain the prize always carefully balancing exercise, and economy, with calorie loaded treats. They tempt our tummies while you tone our tush.     

We salute all the heroes of summer: the noble beach ball, honored Bucket Hat, victorious Patio Umbrella. You fill our days with such light (and shade).

Goodbye. Parting is such sweet sorrow.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: Hate and Revenge

Now that I’ve done the “love” topic (and by the way you can still respond to that one) I’ll have to look into hate. I don’t know about you but when I was little I was told that “hate is a strong word” so I was taught to curb my usage of it even for little things like, “I hate school,” and “I hate this dinner.”  Even so, in adulthood I find true hate unavoidable. There are so many things that happen in this world that seem to justify hate and to justify revenge. People are gravely hurt, injustices abound, cruel individuals ruin lives or even kill to gain petty things for themselves. Many belief systems declare that taking revenge is justifiable, that the hurt self must be appeased in order for healing to begin. This revenge is often bound by regulations and rewards. Others preach forgiveness as the only path to healing.  

Now, it’s true no matter what you believe, revenge happens and so does hate. So, for this week, you can either comment on your beliefs regarding revenge and hate or you can give us your most clever story of revenge. Is it a “dish best served cold” or is revenge best immediately? Should it be quelled or allowed to run free? I’ll see if I can post some stories of my own.

Thursday, June 15, 2006


I found the first part of this poem tucked away in one of my poetry books. It was obviously written before I had any children of my own. I am pretty certain at least one child of mine has graced the floor of the local supermarket. Oh well.

I read in this week’s Macleans that “British psychiatrists have calculated the annual cost at about $12,200 extra for kids with anti-social behaviour.” Most of that is money is just for cleaning up after them, “only $20 per person is spent on mental health treatments for minors”. Never mind the cash you would need to spend at the spa just to unwind!

The poem was fun to clean up and the sentiment still stands … I really don’t want a brat… and I guess I can’t afford to have one either!


I do not want one
(Who does?)
A child who rolls on the floor
Kicking and screaming, man overboard
I do not want one
No thanks.

How cruel,
How cruel!
No luscious sweets
Just cans of yucky sugar beets
No candy bars or gummy feets
His parents are
So cruel

Give him more,
“He’s just misunderstood”
Give him cream and candy puffs
Licorice cups and fluffy fluff
Sweet and Sour Mountain cuffs
But do it till he’s way past stuffed
Roll him out the sliding doors
(After all he’s on the floor)
Roll him past the cars of green
Squeeze him in your flash machine
Belt him in and roll away
So he can scream some other day.

I do not want one
(Who does?)
No thanks.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

My Video Daily - Crazy Frog - Jingle Bells - video

My Video Daily - Crazy Frog - Jingle Bells - video I'm hoping this works properly. This is the Crazy Frog Jingle Bells clip. Watch out though because it goes directly into other music videos after and often plays ads before. Enjoy

Crazy Frog - Google Video

Crazy Frog - Google Video

Here we are with another crazy frog video. This is his early audition tape!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Discussion: What about love?

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What does the word love mean? In Ancient Greek there were several words to describe the various states of being, today we have one word and we use it for many meanings, Affection, Lust, Faithfulness, Parental kindness, even nice feelings for inanimate objects or experiences all fall under the same term. Most often the word love expresses a vague emotion that, naturally, varies in meaning with the speaker. Talk about confusing.

So let’s chat:

What is love? What does that word mean to you? Should there be more than one word used to express love clearly? Let me know what you think.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

I am Back!

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Here I am back from the far off land of No-Internet, having crossed the burning deserts of Too-Little-Sleep, and braved the death defying cliffs of Van-With-Children I am happy to announce to you all that I am still alive. Yes, while it is true that I have been mostly absent of late I hope to rectify that quickly with a vigorous outpouring of mental gymnastics. Not too vigorous though, I wouldn’t want to pull a hamstring. So, strike the mental gymnastics. Instead, what I will now offer is an enthusiastic sorry and some pathetic cat mewing noises, none of which you can hear, I know, but after all what is imagination for?

Well, what has kept me? To sum up, flood, pestilence, long desert wanderings, punctuated by short bursts of familial bonding. Yes, that’s right, my home has turned into a symbolic rendering of the Children of Israel. If I had done my education in Performance Art, Jewish Studies or was a teen in the 70’s I might be really super happy, however, I only learned how to put on stage plays. That said it may prove useful some day. Now that I have summed up, let’s break down:

  1. February to April is a very busy time for our family. My husband is at work a lot and there is usually a few extra crises’ that need to be dealt with. So we were surprised to find ourselves, the week before Easter, with ne’er a crisis in sight. In fact everything was so well in hand we indulged ourselves by speaking the following sentence:

“Actually, things are going pretty well.”

WARNING!! Speaking the previous sentence out loud brings great destruction upon the speaker and those in close proximity. So don’t even try it. Really, don’t. It is wildly rumored amongst scholars that speaking this simple phrase was the direct cause of the Fall of Rome, Napoleon’s defeat at Waterloo, and the extinction of the dinosaurs. Some unfortunate soul merely mouthed these words at the launching of the Titanic and sent countless hundreds to their deaths. This has been a carefully guarded secret in the hopes that one day the world itself will fall and scholars (being the only ones who knew not to say anything) will rule the world. They are probably coming to lynch me now. Book and movie to follow.

As you are probably aware the moment we spoke these fatal words time shifted and we were thrown headlong into a series of events that will eventually undo mankind. Or at least give a couple of us a hard time. At that moment the phone rang offering my husband a job far away. While, admittedly, the offer was very nice, it now gave us a lot to think about during the chaos of my husband’s busiest week. Due to time constraints most of that thinking was moved to replace sleeping. Ah, we sighed, that was ok, for next week we could rest … why wait for next week …

  1. Just a few days later our basement flooded. In approximately two hours we had enough water for a small splash pool in my office. Admittedly, a nice, interesting addition to a place that already had plenty of distractions, but I’m not that into foot baths. Insurance company, construction guys and friends waded through our house for a few hours, helped us move stuff upstairs and then left, leaving us with a promise that we would never be parted, at least not until the end of the summer while drywall dust flies merrily about our heads.

  2. We packed the kids in the van for the 8 hour (read 10) drive to visit relatives for Easter. After all, I’m not sure I could find my roast pan. We arrived back home after a whirl wind visit were we attempted to break our Olympic visiting record of 5 individual visits per day.

  3. Our construction guys are fast, our construction guys are clean but do they know that chicken pox is also on the scene? My oldest goes to school for one day and arrives home with many, many spots. We frantically try to contact all the relatives we have just visited to let them know she was contagious. I call the school, friends, and the Canada Tax Bureau. We fly the plague flag at our door.

  4. No sleep. Miserable child. Parents climbing the walls.

  5. 2 weeks later … two year old, and nine month twins get chicken pox. They really get it. No couple of marks here or there, they are covered. No sleep, miserable children, Spy Kids Episode 3, 24-7

  6. My husband has to go to a conference … for 4 days.

  7. I get strep throat. Funny though, I just thought I was sleep deprived.

  8. My husband comes home. He has strep throat.

  9. Everyone is healthy in just enough time for my son to have his birthday party. One I almost entirely forgot about. Surprise! The presents we bought for him have been carefully packed by the construction crew in any one of a number of nameless boxes in the basement. I try to make a cake while the twins, no longer crying from the pox but now teething, try to chew their brother, the birthday boy. It takes me, I’m not kidding, three days.

  10. Pack the car we’re visiting the folks.

I believe this must be the end of it all, mostly because we had a good time on our little trip down south. So, in conclusion it is very important to NEVER utter the aforesaid phrase. And, if you must think it, think softly.

Enjoyed this post? Try:

Stop my Life I want to get off

Monday, May 29, 2006

Sunday Intellectual Question: Shoes

Ok. I am offically veering off the intellectual freeway, past the muddy cow path and into the bush, however, I like the question. After all I'm supposed to be in charge here. (I'm supposed to be in charge of a lot of things ... all of which remain to be seen!)

I've heard several times that you can tell a person's personality by their shoes. I'm not sure I buy into it. It could be because I wear runners. Do you agree with this philosophy? If so could you explain how it works? (So I can wear nicer footwear when we meet!)

Do you have a story about your favorite shoes and what you loved about them? I'd love to hear it!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Wednesday Poem

In lieu of a story this week I present a few of the poems I wrote while we lived in England. Hope you enjoy!

To Take the Nightmares

Good night,
Sweet dreams.
The sweetest of all imagined.
Rosy-cheeked baby smiles,
Floating feathers on water,
Bilious clouds, imagination crammed

New and full of hope,
Of kind words and love unmet
Of kisses, arms wrapped gently around
Open and unafraid
Of Peace held by sweet forgiveness.

Close your eyes
Dream beautiful gardens, butterflies, sun setting waters
The smell of lilies
The petals of a rose

Goodnight my loved one

Relentless March

Feel the tingle of history
It walks up your spine
A legion
Tapping your shoulder
Laughing at your bewilderment
Hear the tales of things undone
And at your horror
Condemn those
Like others who will condemn you
Dream it pure
Dream it evil
But captured in a mirror
Look in
And see your own shadow

English Weather

The Clouds dance by
Swiftly in a race to beat the wind
Sky so blue
The land grows dark and fierce
Sun touches my face
For he has been at hide and seek all week
He pokes behind a cloud
Hitches a ride to the next corner
He believes I cannot see him.
Foolish Sun.
I could believe for an instant
But not forever.

Liked these poems? Try:


Sunday, May 21, 2006

Doll Making with eLouai

How much fun is this?

Through Kelly I found this great Doll making site:
eLouai's Candybar Dollmaker 3. (I have no idea what happened to Doll Makers 1 and 2. I can only hope that they are unharmed and living on small farms in South Dakota far from the reach of people who wish to "update" them.)

However, Dollmaker 3 is fairly simple to use. Ta-da! In a matter of moments I have made my own doll. Consider, if I had attempted to make my own doll at home. The aforesaid doll would still be laying in my basement with half a leg sewn together. Or in light of recent flooding, soaking up the brown residue with its face. Doll making on the computer is so much more feasible. And I will no longer be plagued by bothersome Doll Rights Activitists. That's a plus.

I present to you now the exact representation of myself.

elouai's doll maker 3

That is, if you take into account that she's too young, too stylish and way too short to actually look like me, its a reasonable facimille.

At least, the eyes are the right colour.

Notice the three little pigs jumping through the flowers at my feet? They were the only things I could find that moved fast enough to stand in for my children. And there are only three pigs. I know that children do not actually qualify as accessories and should not, for instance, stand in for the antique jewelry set you wanted to wear with your evening gown, but since they are continually around my feet they do hide my non-designer shoes, and that should count for something. While you're looking at the picture you should also replace the hand bag with a diaper bag. A big one. I have yet to figure out how to fold 2 diapers, 1 pull up, wipes, juice and snacks into a tiny Hello Kitty purse. If I manage to do it I'll let you know. All that aside, of course, she looks exactly like me...exactly.

I am sure you are itching to make one of your own so here's the site:

Sunday Intellectual Question: The Da Vinci Code Questions

The Da Vinci Code seems to be a hot topic these days. A number of the people who love the book and it’s ideas have said that “the questions opened their minds”, “made them think”. Thinking is good. One shouldn’t just stumble around hoping the person talking the loudest also happens to be right. One should definitely ask questions, but questions themselves are tricky things. I don’t think they are benign entities giving any number of  answers out of the ether. Questions can provoke thought, spark lively debate, and bring to light truth. However, questions can also point straight to the answer giving little room for thought at all.

Should questions themselves be examined? Should they be made to prove their worth before being answered? Can even leading questions be useful for learning? Ah ha! Now, let’s see if anyone finds this question worth answering!