Thursday, June 28, 2007

Mother and Child reunion

I just got back from 2 weeks “back home”. I have been used to where I live for 19 years now. I went home to a town of about 150 people if you count all the pets and people that are home for a long weekend. I had forgotten the different kind of life you live in a small town. Everything moves at a much slower pace. Rush hour traffic means there is a tractor and 2 cars on Main Street at the same time. By the end of the first evening we had just finished watching the 10 o’clock news and my mom decided she was going to bed. The living room is off her bedroom and as I couldn’t watch TV, I too went upstairs to bed. There was no cell service there. There was no high speed internet in the area let alone dial up or even a computer. The x-ray machine at the airport for some reason had erased all my data in my PDA so I had lost all my phone numbers, calendar items etc. So I lay in bed thinking now what do I do? But I soon got sleepy from the early morning trip and dozed off. I woke up and thought something was wrong. I listened and realized all I could hear were birds chirping. No sirens, no traffic, no noise.. just birds.

It was very early for me. I normally don’t go to bed till 2 am and am up and down most of what is left of my night. I have 2 debilitating illnesses that make sleep near impossible. I am treated by my doctors, specialists, massage therapists, physio therapists and acupuncturists. As I got out of bed I noticed that I had actually stayed in the same position all night. Wow.

I went downstairs and was met with a good morning and a bowl of porridge. I am 50 years old. I haven’t had porridge since I left home at 17. But I ate the whole bowl. By the second day I wasn’t wearing my watch. There was no point. I had no schedule to keep. I helped in the flower beds transplanting bedding plants and moving others. We went for walks around town. All 6 blocks long and 3 blocks wide worth of town. It would take us 40 minutes or so to walk every single block but only part of the time was spent walking, the rest of the time was spent talking to neighbors who were curious at who the stranger was with Pauline.

All cars that did manage to come by us on our walks were met with the other drivers waving hi. The excitement of the week was going to the big neighboring town for the weekly shopping expedition. This other town happens to be my home town that I was born and raised in and is also only 10 miles away. I travel that just to go to the store at home when I was just there because I forgot something. But with my mom, she only goes once a week. We drove by the farm that my great-grandparents started when they moved to Saskatchewan from Quebec. We drove by my high school and I was reminded of all the basketball games our girls team won that I played centre on and the boys football games they won that I was a cheerleader for.

As I dropped her off at the hair salon (better known as the beauty parlour there) I went to the cemetery to do some searching. I love family history and work hard digging up tangled roots. I had arrived at my mom’s with a gift of a 15 generation pedigree chart for her. Most lines were complete that far, and the rest were about half way done. I needed some dates and I had an elusive great-grandmother that I had no info on. Usually on my yearly treks home I take bouquets of flowers to put on my father’s gravesite. This time I started at the first row and went by every single headstone in every single row. I stopped at each ancestor’s gravesite and spent a minute thinking of a memory of them. If it was someone I had never met, I just said a prayer for them and thanked them for coming to this new land that they had tilled so that I could have a life here. I took pictures of every ancestor’s headstone for my book of remembrance.

I finally ended my search and went looking for my mom. We went for lunch and I came across one of my best friends from school that I had lost touch with. After much hugs and high pitched high school girlish squeals, we caught up a bit. I asked for her email address to keep in touch and she said “Sally I don’t even have a computer let alone an email address. We are still in the dark ages out here.” I thought how do you survive without it???

We had our lunch then continued on our errands. At the bank as we stood in line I commented to my mom that I could not remember the last time I had walked into a bank. She asked how I did my banking. I tried explaining online banking to her. Then had to explain ATM’s for her. As we went on, I saw that the pharmacy was closed. The hospital was now closed. They were down to 2 restaurants; well they call them cafĂ©’s there instead of the 3. I saw vacant stores and it saddened me.

We then drove to the home I had grown up in. My mom had sold it when my dad died as it was too much for her. A couple of years ago the town, bought it for the property and they burnt the house down. As I looked at the empty lot, I saw the tree that my mom and dad had planted. I remembered that day. Every time we played in the back yard we would jump over this little twig of a tree. Then one spring day one of my brothers went to jump over it and it connected him quite smartly if you get what I mean. We never tried jumping over it again. Now it stood high in the sky, its branches outstretched as if it was trying to still protect us. I walked over the lot and talked about the garden that we had planted every year.

There are about five people in this world that talk pretty much nonstop, my mom, my sister’s daughter, my daughter, one of my granddaughters, and myself. But on the ten mile drive back to the new house I was strangely quiet in my thoughts. Every night I was there I was usually in bed by 10:30 or so. I had to work temperatures in Fahrenheit to my mom as she refuses to learn Celsius and even at 95 degree nights I still laid in bed with 3 blankets and a quilt covering me. I slept soundly every single night, through the entire night. I woke up every morning refreshed and able to move on my own. I could dress myself and even come down the flight of stairs on my own.

We spent 12 days laughing till we had to fight wetting our pants. We cried. We went through BOXES of pictures remembering memories of each and every one. I started collecting pictures that mom had, to take home with me. Scrap booking is a new hobby for me and I could already see the 2nd scrapbook that I wanted to do for my mom. She kept telling me I needed to take such and such home with me. The night before I left I had filled one large suitcase and 7 boxes worth of stuff to send off by courier.

Two of my brothers and their families came down to be with me and we spent some time together. I saw a new one year old nephew and a new one year old great-niece that I had never met yet. I tried spending time with each family member at the cabin by the lake as we cooked and ate together. I showed them the pedigree chart I had given mom and I watched as one of my nephews read it following his youngest son’s path to the original ancestor that came to Canada from France. This young 2 year old little Zacharie was his namesake. My dad would have loved to have known the name was continuing on after many years.

Another great nephew came running to me all tousled hair from his nap and a big grin on his face. It wasn’t until his big bear hug that his mom noticed two small perfectly muddy handprints on the back of my white t-shirt. I just smiled and said it’s ok, it’ll wash. I tried washing it when I got back to moms, twice actually but the handprints remained for some reason. I told mom you know its fine. I am going to wear this t-shirt with pride when I get back and if anyone asks I am just going to tell them it’s a love print!

I watched my oldest brother with his grandchildren and I remembered the day he taught me to tie my shoes, the day he taught me to ride a tricycle, then a two wheeler, the day he forgot to teach me to brake same bicycle; he taught me to use a bat to play baseball and how to throw like a boy. One of my granddaughter’s baseball team last year came in first in their finals. Tradition is important in my family.

The visit went by too fast. As I got on the bus at the small city an hour away from mom's to get to the city where I could catch my flight home, I waved to my mom and blew kisses at her. All of a sudden I saw her age in her face and her stance. It was like she was now the child and I the mother and I wanted to hold her and kiss her owie better. The bus pulled away and I watched her waving with one hand and wiping the tears off her face with the other hand. I waved till I couldn’t see her.

In my bag beside me, was my MP3 player, my cell phone, my laptop, my storey book and magazines, all untouched during my trip. Instead of turning every thing on, I spent the 3 ½ hours reminiscing. I thought of the teachers that spent time after school, in the evenings and weekends in their homes with us when we had problems. I remembered being able to walk to your friends and not even think of being kidnapped. I thought of my mom and leaving her keys in the car while we went to the store. I thought of the parades we had where the whole town turned out. I thought of the week long visits at each of our grandparent’s farm and how it was fun all of a sudden to do chores. I remembered the comfort of traditions and thought of just how many things I now do in my life that my mother and grandmothers did in theirs.

I continued doing this till I heard the bus driver say we were entering the city limits. I came to the greatest realization of all…. The one thing I couldn’t wait to run away from when I was a teenager is the very same thing I would do just about anything to be able to run back to. Thanks Mom. You did the one thing that all my doctors and specialists have not been able to do with all the medications and treatments I have been on. You took care of me. At your home, I wasn’t a mom, a wife or a Nana. There was nothing around me but love and peace of mind. There were no distractions and there was routine. You made sure I laid down every afternoon for a nap. You made me eat my vegetables and that I finished my plate before I could have my dessert. You let me be me without a care in the world and this is the best I have felt in years. Then I got stuck in an airport in a different city with a delayed flight and cell phones beeping all around me as passengers are trying to call homes and offices to let them know. I was 3 hours delayed in landing and ended up leaving Vancouver airport at 5 pm right at the height of rush hour traffic as 6 lanes of traffic tried to converge into 2. I could feel the tension already building in my shoulders and I have to remind myself of a better place that I just left, of a life where there are still people that follow the Golden Rule and still believe in helping their neighbors. As I conclude these thoughts I focus on your face Mom and I think of our mother and child reunion. Breathe in breathe out.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Almost sisters

I was in a bookstore a couple of weeks ago and heard the most beautiful song I had ever heard in my stopped me literally in my tracks so much that the person that was behind me walked right into me.. I had to go to the check out and asked what song that was. She pointed to a display and told me the name of the cd. So I bought it and have listened to it admittedly ad nauseum.. but I can't get enough of it. Then today as I was entering it into my MP3 I thought HEY!!! It went along the same vein of my friendship post the other day!!

I talked about how few very close friends I have had but that I would easily call them my sisters. I wish I knew how to post actual music on here (If someone knows how let me know!!) but the next best thing is posting the words. You won't get the whole effect I am sorry but take my word that it is absolutely amazing to hear. If you can imagine a chorus of angels singing this is what you would hear.

Sisters Rejoice
Women of God, sisters of light
The power of faith is guiding our lives
The truth of His words
Burns into my soul
Giving us strength
To live what we know
With vision and hope in these latter days
We're raising oour voice and singing His praise

Sisters rejoice we have His light
It lives in our hearts, it shines in our eyes
Lift up your voice
We're a part of His plan
We're led by His hand, sisters rejoice

We are His hands, we're serving each other with love
We're seeking the lost and lifting them up
We're anchored to God in perilous times
We honour His name through virtuous lives
Chosen to lead with banners unfurled
A standard of truth to all of the world

Again I can not even begin to describe how this large women's choral group sound especially the chorus.. it gives me goosebumps just writing about it. I will have to figure out how to post the actual music though!!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

New Business

Last weekend I went to an all day workshop on working from home and fell in love with the idea!!! I am going to be starting a new business in sales through the internet. And no it is not with a multi level marketing company nor a get rich quick scheme. You reap what you sow. But I will be able to use my newly learning skills of web design (yes Kim I am trying to learn new computer skills regardless of how many times you tell me the same thing heheh) into making my web page for the company into a reality. I won't say what I will be selling as it will be three different categories but only because I need to research the website name first to make sure it hasn't been taken. I also want to research the market for each area to see where the need is the greatest.

I also will need to locate manufacturers and distributors for the product so I have no need to buy bulk therefore greatly reducing my cash flow. I will continue writing my books as I love to write and may as well get paid for something I do anyway. I have decided on 2 avenues for the books. I am going to finish writing the one I am half way done and then I will start a young children's series... as well as a youth chapter mystery series.

So that should keep me busy. I was planning on bringing work with me on my vacation in case of quiet times but then realized that I am going to be with my mom almost the whole entire trip and if you think I talk a lot you obviously have never met my mother :)

But I will at least have some things to do on the plane and bus rides.. till later!

Monday, June 11, 2007

My Finds

So I found two things I wanted to share with all of you.. first one was Excedrin Back and Body pain relief pills that I saw a commercial for on tv. I bought it when I was in the states and love them!! Why can't they sell that here. I don't get it. It's like they can't sell Excedrin Migraine. They sell Excedrin but just regular strength! If I wake up really stiff in the mornings I take 2 and after about 30 minutes I am up and running.. well ok maybe not running but at least more mobile. Lareta says they don't really work for her. I guess our back pains are different. Never mind that our doctor told us that who listens to docs lol

The next find I came across is You go to their color smart link and then pick your mood and it will give you different color palettes then you paint a room in your house according to the palette you picked. You can change the main color with the accent color etc till you are satisfied with the intensity. For those of us that live in white renters world it fulfills my need to paint :)

Sunday, June 10, 2007


I have been thinking a lot about friends lately. I go through phases of stuff like that. Sometimes I get really busy and don't think about much other then what is going on in my life at that time. But at times, something will happen that makes me think of that person or that one.. where are they, what are they doing, do they miss me. I think of things we used to do when I am doing that same thing. Or I will be watching something on tv and it will remind me of when I used to watch a show with someone.

I guess what set this "mood" this time was I got an email from a very old and dear friend of mine last night. I had not heard from her in years. But going through Facebook the other week I had gone through and typed in her name and different variations of her name. There were quite a few and so I sent them all a generic message saying hey is this you? I never expected to find her but she did reply and you could hear me cheer all over the house!!!!

But it made me think of how I tend to close off my heart to new friends over the years. Everyone of my closest bestest friends have all moved away from me (I swear I do use deodorant and toothpaste on a regular basis!!) and each time I swear I will never get close again. But somehow someone always manages to worm their way into my heart and it opens again.

So today, this post is a dedication to the women that I call my sisters. We have cried together, we have laughed together, we have shared together (and no that is NOT called gossiping!)and you have all helped me get through bad times and shared the good ones as well. Thanks for coming into my heart when I needed you the most.

This is Carmen. We truly are Spirit Sisters. And it is ironic as the first time I met her was at church and she was teaching a lesson. She seemed standoffish. I knew our son Kim knew her and her husband when they lived here so I called him that day and say hey what can you tell me about her. He said do not let first impressions fool you. She is nothing like that at all. He was right. She will defend her friends and family with a passion you can never imagine. We are so alike even though I have grandkids older then her children. We are both critical of ourselves, both perfectionists, both anal retentive lol. But I love her dearly. She was there for me when I decided to come back to church and opened up her arms to love me unconditionally. I will never forget that.

This is Dusty. She came in my life back in Sask. I refused for so long to give into her friendship! My previous bestest friends had moved away and I really thought I was going to die from the heartache. She was the opposite of me. She was a female version of Keith. In fact we used to kid around that we had the wrong spouses. She was the one who had the water fights in the summer with Keith while her hubby and I sat and visited lol. But she kept annoying me till I gave into her friendship. We joke around now that we couldn't bear to be away from each other so when one decided to move to BC we all moved together. Her youngest daughter is my namesake. I had never had anyone name their child after me. This same child is getting married next month.

This is Jan. We met here in BC just after we decided to move back to Surrey from Vancouver. We were at a party and started talking. We got talking about being overweight and I told her you know what? This is who I am. If people can't see beyond my weight to be my friend that's their loss. We haven't stopped talking since. Before they moved to Calgary we used to do everything together. I miss our Sunday dinners, our movie nights and especially our Survivor nights. She too loves me unconditionally and I can unload every single burden onto her shoulders and she takes them every time without question.

This is Jude. She is my very oldest friend. We met in Regina also when Keith and I moved in next door to each other. We talked so much on the phone the men hung an intercom system in our homes so we could stay off the phone. In all the homes I have ever lived in she is the only one that has ever come to my door to say hi welcome to the neighborhood. We have survived through real heart attacks, tornadoes, floods, and loud husbands. We survived car fars and our own language that no one could understand but us. I miss her the most.

This is Betty Lou. She is the one I thought I had lost. I met her when we first moved to BC 19 years ago. She was my shopping friend and we lived in Bellingham in those days. We met in a family history class and realized we were actually related!! She was with me when we drove to Salt Lake City to take our son on his 2 year mission. She was there when we drove away and I couldn't stop crying. She was there when I tried to put together Keith's surprise 40th birthday party. She was there when I was bed ridden for 6 weeks one time and took over the household. I have missed you dear friend.

I am loyal to my friends. I know a lot of women but I am close to very few. Those I do take into my heart I would defend with my life. I trust them with every ounce of me and that means the world to me. Thanks.. You mean the world to me even when we haven't seen one another as much as we would like.

(Now I just hope I have the right pictures with the right names :)

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Stress Care Package

So I am putting together a stress care package for my cousin, his wife, and uncle to my other cousin Darrell that has been missing in the Bahamas just short of 2 months now. I would like my family and friends to post here what they would like to find in a package if they received a care package in a time of high stress???

Idiocy of oven drawers

I decided last night that I would like to meet the person who figured one day that it would be really great if a drawer was invented to go under the oven for storing all your bake ware. What an idiot! Cause you know no matter what it is you need out of there it is going to be at the very bottom of the pile!! After wrestling the contents of mine for several minutes last night to get the pizza pan out I finally took everything out and slammed it shut!

Then I realized it was dirty so opened it back up to clean it. How the heck do crumbs get in there??? I mean I can understand UNDER the stove getting gungies from sweeping but in the drawer? So I pulled it out then realized under the drawer and behind the drawer was dirty so pulled that all out to clean there. How the heck did spills get way back there? It's not like the blueberry pie that I made last week that spilled in the oven made its way down there? Nothing usually spills io the floor or if it does it usually is in front of the other counter where kids pour drinks.

I give up. So now my oven drawer remains empty of all my round, square, oblong, rectangular cake pans, my 8". 9" and 10" pie pans, my 4 sizes of cookie sheets, my mini an0d regular sized muffin pans, my broiler pans and my grilling pans. Everything is nice and neat standing on their side on an eye level shelf in my pantry closet.

Now onto the bottom drawers of my fridge!!!!!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

And the winner is..............

We are very proud to announce that our 11 year old granddaughter Britnee's hockey team won the championship!!!!!!!! They didn't lose a single game in the playoffs and the coach said to her mom afterwards that Britnee was the best forward he had ever coached or seen on a youth team!! If I wore buttoned shirts they would have been popping hehehe. So after they got the trophy the music was playing "We Are The Champions" by whoever sings that song... (if it isn't country it really isn't music so have no idea the name of the group!) so Britnee downloaded it on her MP3 player.

We went to Seattle for the weekend and all the kids had music something or other plugged in their ears on the trip there and back and most of the days and Saturday night the munchkin wanted to listen to something too so Britnee let her listen to her music and of course that happened to be the song that was playing at the time. Well Miss Miranda would not listen to any other song and learnt how to move the button so it played over and over again. After awhile Mommy pokes me in the ribs (she was cross stitching on the bed and I was reading ) and says listen to Miranda lol, The picture does NOT do it justice but here was this 2 year old saying "we are champons oooh oooh we no losers.. mumble mumble we are champons oooh oooh we no losers!!!! It was hilarious!!

Man to have had a camcorder on hand would have been priceless!