Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Bored Bored Bored

Ok I am not so much bored with myself but more am hating not having my own money to blow on what I want. Keith doesn't have a problem with me using "our" money but I do. When I want to buy him a gift I hate asking him to use "his" money to buy him something or have him see the purchase and how much I spent when he does his online banking. So I have been wracking my brain to come up with a business proposal that will bring me money and yet be so flexible that when I need to lay down or stop sitting or not do anything on bad pain days I can do that.

Today I got a lightbulb moment. I use to write a lot in my previous life (pre-BC days) and was quite good. I had several short stories and articles published in papers and magazines. But I want beaucoup moolah not an allowance which is what short stuff would sell for so I have decided to write a book. I started one way back when then shifted career brains and went back to work and the book got put on a back burner. I don't know if I want to finish that one first or do something completely different, whether I want to do a series, childrens, or comedic (Erma Bombeck genre)etc.

Keith hates reading.. absolutely hates it and will only do it under great duress. So I asked him if he could read any type of book that would make him want to read what kind would it be. He looked at me like I was asking him which poison he wanted me e to add to his food. He said none. Maybe I will send out an inquiry to the rest of my family and friends and ask them for their opinion.

He did say he would read it if I had lots of pictures in it. I said "How old are you?2?"

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

30 days of sustainability

So Vancouver has been doing this 30 days of sustainability since April on the concept that if everyone that lived in the Vancouver area did one new thing off the list every day they would save enough power to take care of one town for one year. I am big on environmental issues and work very hard at doing my part. So I thought cool Keith and I will take part. Most of the things I was already doing like recycling everything possible, walking as much as possible, take transit instead of the car (which I did under great duress as I think everyone here knows how I feel about the idiocy of our transit system) and so on. One of the items on the list was to only use cold water to do laundry. Now I do that. Well almost do that. I only use hot water to do our whites. Keith wears white company t-shirts for work (why they do that when they are a construction company is beyond me!) and when he gets home they are dirty.

But I did it for almost a month now and I want to go on record as saying whites DO NOT get as clean in cold water as in hot water. Even with using Spray and Wash and bleach the clothes are still stained. Not as stained as when they hit the washing mashing but not Sally clean when they come out. I can not stand my clothes to have stains on them not even white socks. I take it as a reflection of me when my husband goes to work with a mustard stain on his T-Shirt.

So sorry Vancouver but I am going back to hot water just for my whites. It's called compromising. As soon as Keith starts making sure his food doesn't hit his shirts and he doesn't work construction wearing white t-shirts we will go back to cold water wash for whites in the meantime I will take transit twice as often to make up the difference. (And grumble under my breath the whole time!)

Monday, May 28, 2007

Like Mother Like Daughter

I have been thinking about my mom lately. She isn't doing well with what is going on in her life. Her partner is gravely ill and I feel so helpless way out here. I was used to just popping over every month and visiting for a few days and now I have to save for a year to go over. I am planning on flying out there next month to spend a week. I wanted to spend more time but now have more medical appointments coming up that I can't put off so will have to make do.

I remember growing up I used to think when I grow up I am never going to be like my mom. I am never going to do this or that and I am going to allow my children to do what they want when they want. That lasted till the first one started walking and that was it. But I was young and it would drive me crazy when people would tell me I was just like my mom.

I remember getting her an answering machine one time as I got tired of calling over and over again till she would answer. And one time after I had gotten it for her I had called for days before I reached her and she said she had gone away. Ok Mom why didn't you have the machine on? Because I didn't want anyone to know I wasn't home so if someone was going to break into the house they would know when I was gone. OK Mom but you do know if you don't answer the phone they also know you are not home. Yes but they won't know when I am returning.... Stop asking any more questions!

I used to call it small town logic. Then one day we had friends visiting from out of town and we needed something and I said oh we can just go to the store. They asked how far it was and I said oh it's car far. They looked at me and said what the heck is car far? I said you know.... too far to walk and so you need the car. Keith just shakes his head as I said don't even say it!

Then another time I had been working out more intense then usual and when I got home from my walk I was out of breath. Keith asked how it went and I said it was exegen. He said what? I said exegen. He asked what the heck is that? I said .. you know.. you exercise so hard you need extra oxygen! DUH! Every one knows that! He just smiled as I said DON'T EVEN GO THERE!

But last summer when my mom was down and I had my daughters and granddaughters around me I thought to myself I guess my mom did a pretty good job. When someone told us as I stood by my one daughter how alike we were I was so happy. To me she is so beautiful that if they thought I looked like her that must make me pretty good too :)

Thanks Mom for the good genes and I guess now that I am "more mature" small town logic isn't so bad! This picture is of my mom, my girls and their girls and me!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Wacky Whistler Wednesday

So it is play catch up on our last week at our condo in Whsitler!! What a blast! And I mean that whole heartedly :) We got to be a part of the 1000 day kickoff celebration so that was cool. The grandkids got to sit in an actual luge so that was very exciting for them. We had a couple of nice days and a couple of drizzly days but that never stopped us from window shopping. I did actually convince my daughter to go up to the gondola and she finally agreed to it only to find out we could only go up part way then transfer onto a chair lift for the remainder of the ride up. ANNNND!!! TO top it all off we actually got to see a family of black bears right under our feet!!!She would not go on it at all so Keith and I took the rest but the two toddlers and off we went on the rest of the ride. COOOOOL@!!

Spent quite a bit of time sitting in the hot top relaxing my muscles which is always a good thing. The 3 year old taught the 2 year old how to open doorknob and for 5 days we kept saying Miranda don't slam the door just as she would open it again and slam it over and over again lolol.

Coming back into town we stopped at Brandywine Falls and took the kids on a short hike to see some falls and they were quite excited about that! I am glad to return to my bed tonight and no little girls saying Nana cmon!! Enjoy the pictures@!!

Cousin update

This is the latest I have managed to find on Darrell. This Mr. Ellislade needs to get his act together. If it was his family member that was missing I can guarantee you there would be fires planted under his staff;s butts to get in motion. Had they told the public he was missing the day he went missing instead of days later there might have been a greater chance of finding him. And what is this crap about the woman who had Darrell's wallet and credit cards and taken money out???? HELLLLOOOO!!!You have been in the sun too long if we are going to believe that crap.

this is the web page of the latest report for the Staff Detective of this bummer of a case.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Cat Scan Results

Well I just got back from my doctor's visit. Good news is my brain is still there :) Not so sure for my mind though :) The results are no tumour or skull fractures which is a huge relief. What there is though is degeneration and bone spurs and disc bulging of my C4-7, The headaches are coming from the spurs pressing on my cranial nerves. I am going to be seeing a physiotherapist that deals strictly with cranial injuries so have to get an appointment for that. I also need to wear a cervical collar for different times in the day to give my neck relief from having to hold my head up as the weight of it is too heavy most of the time. I have to be careful not to wear it too much as my neck muscles will weaken and play host to a whole new set of problems. She did increase my sleeping pill dosage as I have not slept properly in months with all the headaches and extra back pain. I was lucky if I could get 2-3 hours a night which was just making things worse. Hopefully that will help in the short term. That's about it for that.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Bathing Suit Blues

As we are going to Whistler for 5 days of R&R on Thursday this week I wanted to go out and get a new bathing suit. GROAN.. the dreaded event. I have a drawer with 1/2 dozen suits that are technically the right size but fit horribly. Having lost 150 pounds in the last 3 1/2 years and now having a so called "normal" sized body you would have thought this process would have been easier. WRONG!

After an entire mall search and numerous "Try this one" from numerous salesladies I finally listened to my daughter who was with me and tried on a tankini. I loved it! I loved the idea! My problem is I am tall and even trying bathing suits that are marked as "TALL or LONG" they were still too short in the body for me. That Cloutier height again! Although I can't totally blame my dad's side of the family as my mom at 5'8" was the short one and her one brother was 6'7".

But I digress. The first tankini I tried on was the PERFECT color and fit really nice. I did the bend in every direction and twist and turned in the dressing room much to the glee of my 2 year old granddaughter who kept saying "Nana silly!" But it stayed in place and nothing rode up and moved. And it was $29.99 to boot!!! All the other so called long/talls at the bathing suit specialty stores were sitting around a hundred dollars.

Then I did a search for Whistler on things to do this weekend and apparently it is the official kickoff for the 2010 Olympics and there will be celebrations going on and all the top athletes will be there!! WOOOHOOO! I am so packed and ready to go!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

More Steel

This is my latest stainless steel acquisition. If Keith had his way our entire house would be in stainless steel!! Does he think I live in an institution or something?? But on the other hand I found some wipes that are made for s/s appliances and it protects from fingerprints and marks which is a lot better. I hate having any marks on anything so when I found this I was very happy. I had gone to get some Lysol wipes and found it. So now I only have to wipe it down once every few days instead of every few minutes lol.

Friday, May 11, 2007

One month later......

Yesterday made a month that my cousin Darrell Cloutier was last seen alive. Today makes a month he has been officially missing. I am still angry at the way this seems to have been swept under the carpet with the authorities. They refuse to make any comments on charges that may or may not be laid on the woman who was found with his bank and credit cards. Hello!!!! How on earth can you plead not guilty when you are caught red-handed???

What kind of earth do we live on that makes people think it is ok to do harm to another person? What kind of upbringing did those people have that made them think it was ok to do wrong? I mean I am 50 years old and to this day if I walk in someone's house with my shoes on I can hear my mother's voice in my ear saying "Take your shoes off!"

I have prayed constantly for any knowledge, any word on Darrell. I have prayed constantly for my uncle and other cousin and their family that they might find some measure of comfort in their grief right now. If by some chance the person that did something to him or knows who did reads this, please.... Darrell has a very large extended family that loves him... please.... let his family have him back.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Campbell River

Well we found out 2 days ago that Keith might have to go out to Campbell River for 2 months. His boss called him and said they had a chance to bid on a contract out there but did not want to put the bid in if Keith wasn't willing/able to go out there. He had been asked specifically from BC government to supervise the contract as he has done several of their contracts in the last 2 years and they have always praised him and his work. Keith told them we had to talk about it before he could give his answer. His boss said that was ok he would stay on hold while we talked lol. OK. Our "talking" about it means praying about it together and doing a pros and cons list :)

I am not impressed with the out of town though I have to admit. I know it is only for 2 months but I do not do well on my own. I hate it. I really do. I don't sleep well. I have to have all the lights on in the house at night time and every little noise makes me jump. We also had made plans to go back to Sask for a couple of weeks in June so that would be out of the question now.

On the other hand, he would end up getting about $5000.00 at the end of it (on top of his pay) which would come in handy as we are really needing to get a new vehicle. Ours is an 89 and although it has served us very well, it is starting to 20 buck us to death. We are not big on getting in debt either so that money would put a big chunk away for saving for a new SUV. We also had planned on going camping with the kids here in July for a week at our favorite campground in Fort Langley and now I don't know if Curt's van would be able to pull our trailer or not.

Decisions decisions... We did pray about it and Keith felt good about it (mind you he thinks logically instead of emotionally like I do) so I told him to go ahead. I didn't get an answer either way and I am sure cause my heart was yelling NO NO NO too loud for my mind to hear anything. I don't like the idea of being without a vehicle for that length of time though...

Oh well... maybe the company won't get the bid!!!!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

The end of a long weekend

So Sunday night brought tears as two little girls went home from the weekend of dollies and staying up late and bubble baths and French braids and homemade cookies. The tears came from Nana though as I said goodbye to them. It was a real joy watching them play with their babies and play house, chasing one another around the house with their babies in their strollers running over my feet and into the backs of my heels every other minute :) And I loved every second of it. As you can see from the picture they were plum tuckered out. The bed they are on is a queen size and it took the whole thing by the time you added all the stuffed animals and special pillows and babies that you can't see under the Pooh blanket.

I came across a quote today on Motherhood and it made me think of this past weekend. I always wonder about the way I raised my children, could I have done better, should I have done this or that, should I have stayed home instead of working, did they miss having a parent home 24/7. But as I watched these 2 little girls and how well behaved they were (well unless you count them screaming their heads off when Papa kept chasing them all over the house telling them he was going to take their babies away!!) and knew that the way my children were raised directly or indirectly, shows in how they are with their children and I am very proud of them.

The quote is from Neal A. Maxwell:

When the real history of mankind is fully disclosed, will it feature the echoes of gunfire or the shaping sound of lullabies? The great armistices made by military men or the peacemaking of women in homes and in neighborhoods? Will what happened in cradles and kitchens prove to be more controlling then what happened in congresses? When the surf of the centuries has made the great pyramids so much sand, the everlasting family will still be standing, because it is a celestial institution, formed outside telestial time. The women of God know this.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Tea Time Anyone?

My 2 year old granddaughter sleeping over this weekend with her 3 year old one while the rest of the family get busy with the family busy our son to their new place. Miranda got here before Rosaleen got here and so she decided SHE HAD to set the tea things the RIGHT way and no ifs ands or buts. So I couldn't resist taking a picture of her getting the tea pasrty ready for her cousin to show up lol

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Venting on Shopping and Dining Experience

So I have been to Washington State 3 times in last 3 weeks, twice to Seattle and once to Bellingham and I have come to the realization that Surrey sucks when it comes to shopping and dining selections. We are the second largest city in the province of BC and yet unless you are willing or financially able to spend hundreds of dollars on one outfit you are limited to Zellers and WalMart. As if that wasn't bad enough, try maneuvering around the jammed packed aisles that are crammed with displays let alone get a cart around the clothing racks!! Why can't we have a Target here? WalMart came here and they were a US based company what's the difference?

To buy women's shoes in size 11 again unless you want to pay hundreds of dollars on one pair (and I NEED way too many shoes to do that!)you are limited to shopping at Payless which of course means you have to follow the current fads of 5 inch wedges. Get real. I didn't like wedgies the first time they were in style in the 70's! So you have that or sneakers. Oh yes both of those will look real great with my suit and pantyhose.

Then you get the whole dining experience. Or lack of it. If you want to go for a steak dinner you get the choice of the Keg. If you want real seafood you go into Vancouver. There is one choice for a place to go for "coffee" and dessert at Death by Chocolate. Oh wait I lied.. there is also Tim Horton's I suppose. We stopped at a place called Old Country Buffet on Saturday in Bellingham on our way back from Seattle. They have a huge selection, everything was hot enough to burn your tongue, the trays were refilled before they were even half emptied, the dessert bar was almost as big and you had 3 main meat entrees, prime rib, baked ham and steak not counting the fried chicken, BBQ ribs etc.

We have one buffet in Surrey and yes it technically has a large selection but once you picked through the national dishes that are covered in sauces you can't name and anything deep fried, battered or breaded you come up having your token plate of limp green salad and potato salad swimming in what I assume is supposed to be mayo.

Why can't we have a open stall market like North Van or New West has where you can go along and get all your grocery items that are fresh? I was really excited at the beginning of this year when I found out a new strip mall featuring a "large" retail store, and restaurant was opening just a 5 minute walk from my front door. WOOOHOOO! That feeling of exhilaration was short lived when I found out this retail store was a Save on Foods grocery store and the restaurant was yet ANOTHER Tim Horton's. The grocery store is now flanked by a different supermarket withing a couple minutes of it and there is already a T.H. kitty corner!! There is now going to be a video rental store but there is one already at the end of that parking lot.

Puhlease! Come on city council!! Can you not limit the idiocy that some merchants have at requesting the same old same old? Do we not have quotas on how many donut places there can be in one square mile? Why can't we have real stores like Micheals or Linen's and Things or Ikea? Something useful? Why can't we have Red Lobster or Chili's or Outback if you are bent on allowing chains to open?

This city is so lucky that this is home to me otherwise I would be out of here! And as soon as I become President of the world and inheriting wealthy I am going to open up all those places. Stick that in your pocketbook where it hurts.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Exerisise in Frustration

I am so frustrated with life right now. I have had basically no news on Darrell since last week. My mom is feeling very left out of the loop and only gets what little I can pass on to her. For now all that is happening that I know is my uncle and his other son have returned back home to Calgary.

I am a mother of 5 and I can't even begin to feel the anxiety of separation, the feelings of guilt of desertion, the feelings of sheer hopelessness and the ability to keep a stiff upper lip. After all no news is good news right? Meantime I was so mad yesterday I threw a bag of groceries across the room when I walked in the door! How uncharacteristically of me. But I feel hopeless. I want to go to Nassau and smack those police across the backs of their heads to get them moving.

If they had gotten the message out to the public of Darrell missing then there would have been a greater chance of finding him by now. I am sorry for their tourism economy being hurt by missing visitors but maybe instead of hiding the facts they can do something about the crime level. People just don't go missing and leave their wallets and car behind. Not 3 weeks before you depart to go home.

Sigh... life really sucks big time right now. On a different note.. I finally got an appointment for my cat scan for this Monday the 7th at 9pm. My doctor had been on holidays and when I was in last week to see her replacements due to the increased headaches and intensity of them, she must have past the message to my doctor. All I know is they are staying open till 9PM for my appointment. Long after normal business hours. What a great doctor I have.....I am not looking to the day that she wants to retire.

Life is spent counting how many more days before this rain is done with. We get one sunny day but then 3 more days of rain. I see the Rheumatologist tomorrow and I know he is going to ask me if I am ready to move to a drier climate yet and my answer will still be the same. NO.

I have been working extra shifts at the Family History Centre just to get my minds off things and trying to keep busy. We have our youngest son and his family moving this weekend to a place about a 5-6 minute walk from here!!! I am so thrilled. So their little girl is spending the weekend here to keep her from being underfoot and I'll bring our other 2 year old granddaughter over for a sleepover and they argue about who is charge of the new babies and crib I bought for them to play with.

Well that is about it for now. Hubby is now working night shift at BCIT to correct something that a subtrade did wrong over a year ago. Keith told the company they were doing it wrong and they said oh it's ok it will pass. It didn't . But because there are faculty and staff there during the day he can only work after 10 pm. That's ok letsa me get caught up in all the shows I have on tape.

Till later.. thanks for listening :)