Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Remembering October

Ok, I am totally jamming out tonight. Alan Cross is on the radio with a listen to the history of ska. For those that are not familiar with ska, it is akin to reggae and rocksteady, but boppier. It is also an older musical form. There is a very distinct off beat and there is almost always a heavy influence in the brass department (trombones and trumpets) as well we saxophone, guitar, bass guitar and drums. Big artists were Desmond Dekker, English Beat, The Specials, Prince Buster, Toots and the Maytals, the Skatalites, Madness, The Clash continuing on up to more recently The Mighty, Mighty Bosstones and No Doubt. There has been several different waves of ska, from the original styles that came out of Jamaica in the 1950s and 60s, to the British Two-Tone Invasion in the 70s with other waves in the 80s and the 90s finally making some headway into the US. I want to share something, but am struggling as to what might work best. I love older ska, which has a certain heavy hand in swing, but grew up with The Specials and English Beat. "Mirror in the Bathroom" was a frequent request at high school dances. I think that I will go back to some of the origins though with a taste of Desmond Dekker, arguably one of the kings of ska that had a wide influence on the music of the day and musicians that fall under other umbrellas from reggae, to punk  with many things in between. Enjoy!

PS. You were right Patti. I went to bed and had another poem running round my head. I will share this one with you and the good folks at OneShot.

October Goodbyes

Her words whipped away
in the October air;
Unseasonably warm for
   this day.

Water fell to Earth
piled high in preparation,
but not quite ready for
   this moment.

A pop and a fizz
slowly saluted you while
tears, words, flowers and lager offered
   this goodbye.

Strength carried her
on unseen wings
into tomorrow's world
   with sorrow.

Gleefully released little ones
scooped clodfuls of dirt up
under parent's watchful eye
   with sweet sadness.

Children's laughter and scrabbling fingers
remembered, responded and rejoiced
filling memory's hole
   with joy.

The wind kissed her limp hair
with soft hands that waved goodbye
to a wife's sagging shoulders
   for eternity.

*Blessed be the children for they go where we fear to tread with innocence and love. Their purity and innocence lighten any moments from birth to death...


Naked as We Came

I wrote a poem that I am not sure I like.

I am too tired to fly to Africa tonight.

I cannot seem to get into my photo album to regale you with a new picture of something uber-wonderful to share with you and perhaps be inspired to write about.

I did go visiting some wonderful blogs this evening though (Just about Wednesday and OneShot is up and running already). I came across this post over at my friend C's blog and nodded my head all the way through it (something about everything to say/nothing to say and nowhere to start, so lost). Is the changing of the seasons sucking the life out of our feeble brains? I think not with seeing all the rest of the posts out there.

I shall turn into a pumpkin in approximately 2 minutes though, so regret I have not enough to share.

perhaps I will just share a song with you today. Iron and Wine is a staple for me when I need a musical comforting hug. Enjoy.

Monday, September 27, 2010

We Need to Talk About Kevin

We Need to Talk About Kevin;
By Lionel Shriver
(© 2003 Harper Collins)

It's that time of year again. Yes, I am speaking about my book club. We took a break for the summer, but our first meeting back is this evening. The wine will be chilling and appetizers always appetizing. So as I finished the book about a week ago, I thought I would get back into the swing of things and write a book review today.


Our first book of the year is "We Need to Talk About Kevin", by Lionel Shriver. I mentioned the book the other day in a post, but now that the book is finished, I can give you a broader picture of it. As I noted before, the book was a little dark in genre. The story opens with Eva Khatchadourian writing a letter to her estranged husband. She beseeches upon him to somehow forgive or understand her side of the story in the gruesome massacre of  seven students, a teacher and a cafeteria worker by their 15-year old son. She has not only had to deal with the ghastliness of this incident, but also the following trials that served to destroy her dignity, force her to sell her beloved travel guide company that she started from the ground up, and of course ultimately leads to the imprisonment of her son. Guilt at her flaws as a Mother is laced throughout this letter, and all the ones that follow.

"We Need to Talk About Kevin" is a work of fiction, but takes a very real look at potentially what makes a young mass murderer. Through letters to her husband, Eva paints the often difficult path she struggled with in raising a child that seemed disturbed from birth. From their son Kevin's birth, she laments on her lack of bonding, his incessant screaming and his seemingly critical eye on her. While she struggles to maintain that it is not all her fault, she illustrates over and over again her failings as a Mother. Eva recounts her life with her husband prior to them having children and constantly bemoans the losses she has had to suffer starting from the moment they conceived.

While portrayed as self-centered, I believe that Eva is too hard on herself and her overly critical eye. There are certainly incidents which seem regrettable in her child-raising abilities (to say the least), but as parents I believe that we are all often overly critical of our own ability to raise another human being at times. No one is perfect, but Eva seems to think that without perfection she is an abysmal failure. Perhaps given the final outcome of her son's life, she could have done more, but in her circumstances, parenting was a two-person job. It is apparent that despite the twisted mind that Kevin develops, he does have a certain measure of respect for his mother and very little for the father whom he patronizes with false platitudes from a very early age.

Can one person truly be to blame for another's faults? I have to wonder at the nature vs nurture balance, when the nurturing of Kevin does nothing to give him a base to enter society.

When Eva connives to have a second child to test whether it is truly her fault that Kevin is so twisted, I lose sympathy for her. I understand that she yearned for someone to love and to love her back, but she does not gauge the effect that this will have on the rest of her family. Her experiment to see if it is her maternal instincts that failed or if Kevin is truly just a bad kid, without even a thought to what might happen to the new child is selfish (and plausible? not so sure). Her beloved husband is not even consulted in this step and I wonder really at how beloved he really is with this flagrant lack of respect for him. He doesn't ever seem to forgive her for this and I wonder again, why they stayed together at all (except in part for story's sake).

While the story is well written, I have to say it was not a favourite of mine. I found Eva too critical and cannot cite lack of warm fuzzies from her own childhood as a great excuse. If we are to wonder at her upbringing as a possible cause to the calamities that befall Eva, I think perhaps this avenue should have been revealed more. I also wonder why Kevin's Grandparents are brought into the story at all, as they do not serve to advance the story or ignite other reasons as to why Kevin is so disturbed.

Regardless of my feelings, I understand that the story has been well received and is touted as an excellent take on the delicate topic of Columbine-style shootings in school. As my children were on the cusp of starting school, it didn't really make me want to let them go though. There was the barest hint of a positive note at the end of the story though, for which I am grateful in all of my silver-lined world.

Hope you are enjoying what you are reading... 

Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Sleep Over

free, fun
scrubbing, splashing, singing
wash off day's memories

close, secretive
reading, tickling, sharing
whisper in the dark

exasperating, cute
playing, wiggling, giggling
never going to sleep

Friday, September 24, 2010

The Maytag Repair (Wo)Man

As I rap, clap, tapped on the washer
it just rang, clang, banged back at me.
No foul-mouthed fix,
nor long-sleeved tricks
could charm it back to be.

I push, shove, bumped on the side.
I pull, push, turned on the top.
No water did stream
or so it would seem,
as the lid slipped my fingers and did drop.

My 'driver twist, spin, whirled on the screws
a faceplate lift, wiggle, scraped as I removed
Wires splayed a'plenty
connections tight as any
so what have I done proved?

Not certified, authorized nor qualified
To identify, evaluate, nor repair.
Take away my tool-belt
before I leave a big welt
on confidence that reigns on false airs.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Soup's On!

After dropping the kids off at school this morning, I had an appointment downtown. Upon leaving my meeting, I found myself walking right into my favourite Farmer's Market. Not one to pass up on the colourful bounty of Fall, I hummed and hawed over the produce and picked up some fixings for soup. With the brightest colour of the garden patch catching my eye, I decided upon Borscht for lunch. Sweet fall beets are yummy in my books (and with my children being at school I don't have to listen to them moaning that they "don't like it!"). While I sometimes follow recipes, when it comes to soup I wing it, so here is today's take on it;

Thursday's Version of Borscht

So you start with some beets. I picked these up at the farmer's market this morning. Can we say Fresh!

Cut up for the soup pot

and then you chop up some carrots (also purchased at my favourite farmer's stall last weekend)

Onions and garlic add to the flavour as well, so get them in there! I bet you can guess where the onion came from (Yup, farmer Rick again! Geez, you're good) That pile of garlic is purely home grown though. I pulled up a bunch of my garlic about a month ago and have been drying it outside. Into that pot you go! No, I am not using all the garlic on the right hand side (Vampires begone!). Just three little ones will do.

All chopped  and ready to go
Don't forget your bouquet garni. Here I have used thyme, parsley, oregano, a sage leaf and a bay leaf. It is all from my garden, but the bay leaf. I do have a Bay tree that I have brought inside for the winter, but there were some dried bay leaves handy, so I am using one of those up today. If the term "bouquet garni" is unfamiliar to you, essentially it is a collection of fresh herbs tied with string and thrown into your concoction for flavouring. It is removed prior to consumption, but flavours your soup, stock or sauce that you are making without leaving behind visible traces of it. Wikipedia has an entry here. I try to use them as often as I can (cus I love feeling foie de foie) when I have fresh herbs available. This time of year my herb garden is chock full, so herbs go in everything I cook. Nuff said.

Thyme, parsley, sage, oregano and bay

Voila! A bouquet garni.
Throw them in a pot with stock and simmer. Sprinkle in some salt and turn the pepper mill over the soup pot a few times. Stir it up. Now go write a blog post or something, as it needs to burble for a while.
oops, don't forget to smash disconnect the smoke detector while your soup is boiling away. Mine goes off if I look at it for two seconds (freaking sensitive piece of @#$!%#@). I have just turned the fan on myself, so as the neighbours don't call the fire department (again - oops, last house and another story).

As an afterthought, some of the beet leaves got washed and tossed into the pot too. Mmmm, it is starting to smell good now! Tummy is rumbling, but the beets aren't cooked through yet. Run a load of laundry downstairs to fill a few minutes.

Ok, it's got to be ready by now! I'm starving. Pull the sour cream out of the fridge. It is the traditional addition to borscht and I just happen to have some handy. 


Leave me be so I can eat my soup!
Happy Thursday all :)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

First Moments

new babe
on legs none too sturdy
still blinking away
memories of birth, seemingly early


stunned in moments 
too fresh to comprehend
with a walk round the hay patch
and audience's eyes to lend


Ah, Mama stands close
spent, yet dutifully present
ready to give life eternal
to child's needs in this moment

Your privacy
lost in ticket sales
by unscrupulous flashes
of visitors over the rails

Whilst camera's eye
does pry
can we deny
the eyes of the young
with purity of soul
dipped in a white halo
with vision?

This wobbly newborn drew me in with awe at new life, juxtaposed against the spinning madness of a local fair. I was smitten. 

Tomorrow's poetry fare over at OneShot is already up and running, so head on over and take a peek at the offerings this week. 

Monday, September 20, 2010

Tender Blossom

I pry me open
gently with tender notions
of future's soft hands


Sunday, September 19, 2010

Touching the Sky

Screams of virulent laughter
fill earthly aching ears
while lights bedazzle
Glossy faces
 that shine on a high
of cotton candy dreams
and adrenaline peaks


Our trip to the fair today 
was inspiration for
If you think that you can craft a Sunday 160
only using 160 characters (including spaces) go visit him and give it a try.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Mountain's Revenge

Dawn had not yet broken, but I certainly felt that I was; broken that is. A glance at the bottle I had been imbibing from the night before pulled a groan from my lips and made my head pulse. I was still feeling the effects from the whiskey, but feared terribly the imminent hangover that threatened. Going to bed relatively early could not prevent that, when my sorry 26er accused me of my indulgences. Five AM seemed extraordinarily punishing for my transgressions though.

No matter, it was rise and shine. Time to face the day and ready myself for the hike ahead of us. The plan; to hike into Chimanimani National Park and camp for two nights in the wilds. I showered with the false hope that this would somehow make me feel more human. While it didn’t hurt, it only served to make me more presentable to my fellow group of hikers. Of course we all were a little ragged from our evening on the piss the night before, but we were still game for adventure, so piled into the vehicle to head out.

We arrived at base camp shortly thereafter and signed in. It was policy that you signed in when entering the park and advise the office of how long you would be staying. If you were late to return, search parties would be sent out to look for you. Despite feeling a little disconcerted by this news, we advised them we would be gone two nights and paid park fees accordingly. From here we would continue by foot, as there were no vehicles allowed in the park. Our trek began.

Our rag-taggle group included Oliver, Rob, Miki and myself, plus a group of three other travelers from the lodge. Later, we would also meet up with three other Canadians, but for now; Allen fashioned himself as our leader and directed our route with arrogant aplomb. I was happy to fall into the pack, slugging at my water bottle for all I was worth.

While the climb up started reasonably enough, it gradually took a steeper and steeper incline the higher we went. I found myself lagging further behind and noticed my breathe had become labored. I remembered stories that my Mother told of her asthma as a young woman and wondered if I too had miraculously developed this affliction while trying to scale these mountains. Mt Binga, the highest peak in the range that spanned over 50 kilometres, measured in at 2,437 m or 7,993 ft, which might as well have been to the moon and back for me at that point. My friends that had occasionally stalled to wait for me, soon disappeared and I struggled on by myself. I stumbled and cursed this vile idea of a nice easy hike that would leave me with my heart sprung open on the side of a mountain. I wanted to stop, lay down and die. There was no going back though. By now we were miles from base camp and I was all alone in the universe, but for the buzzards that swung lazily over my head.

Finally, I found myself clinging to a rock wall. My fingers clutched at hidden niches in the craggy face of boulders. My backpack threatened to pull me off into oblivion, but I gasped and heaved and swung myself up onto a ledge. I stood panting, cursing my body, the mountains, the world, then my gaze flicked down to the world beneath me. Within the panorama, I spied my fellow hikers way down the hill, sitting below a boulder patiently waiting for me. I went limp, then burst into hysterical laughter. The mountain had beaten me and forced more out of me than I thought I had. I had survived though.

After catching my breathe, I made my way down to my friends. The worst of the climb was behind us, as was the worst of my hangover. Chugging back more spring-fed water nourished my body and soul and with that we re-grouped and headed out again. Before long we were pushing through chest-high grasses on a level plateau. The rock cairns that had directed our path became harder to see, but we finally made our way through the field and spied our home for the night. A short scramble up a little rocky path led to the yawning mouth of a cave.

We would spend the next two nights bedding down in this serene cave lit by the stars and moon, and nourished by a stream that gurgled at the back of our dark chasm. Arriving on the little ledge, I gladly threw off my pack in order to investigate. The caves were frequently utilized by hikers and there was grass strewn about for bedding purposes. A make-shift fire pit was in evidence as well. With the stream handy for fresh water to drink and cook with, we had all the comforts of home. After a hard day of climbing, I fell into an exhausted sleep with a smile that played across my lips with my triumph. 

The next two days filled me with indescribable bliss while exploring this magical place. We woke to cold and mist, but luxuriated in the quiet of this world. From my sleeping bag, I could see the surrounding grasses and rocky hills that encircled us. Tranquil repose filled our morning on the stony ledge, but with the mid-day sun burning off the mist, we headed a little further afield for some more hiking. The most delicious meal of our combined canned potatoes, tomatoes, brown beans, veggies, udon  noodles, a handful of rice and curry seasoning hit a high note in my culinary books on our return. Our communal meal and breaking of bread was like a prayer in this little piece of God’s country. Even the trek back down the mountain could not break the spell that I was under. Stopping to drink from a crystal clear stream, reminded me of the pristine beauty of this African park that I was privileged to call home for two nights. I might have broken, but Chimanimani put me back together again

Friday, September 17, 2010

Eggstraordinary You

Are you a good egg?
clean and unsullied by life's ways.

Perhaps one amongst many?
content to be surrounded by others of all shapes and sizes.

Or just a little out of the ordinary
with spots and mottled markings
to mark you as individual 
and just plain 'ole You

A little scrambled,
but best handled over easy
looking at the sunny-side of life.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Changing of the Seasons

The seasons, they are a changing. Yes, the distinct chill in the air was heralded in with the first of September. It was summer one moment and with the passage of Labour Day, it was Fall. While I wave goodbye sadly to hot summer days and steamy nights where my skin is the only covering that I care to wear, I try not shed too many tears. For I have many loves in the Autumn as well. The changing of seasons allows me to dig out warm sweaters that offer soft hugs. Harvesting goes into overdrive and farmer's markets are awash in colourful produce that I cannot resist. The prospect of toasty fires in my neglected hearth makes me smile. Really, a nice glass of Cabernet Sauvignon cannot be matched to warm up the insides while the fire crackles. Long, hot luxurious bathes are more enjoyable with a chill in the air as well. Ahh. 

One of my favourite things about Fall is the changing colours in the trees around me though. The colour bath buoys my soul and I fill it, knowing that it will all fade to white before I know it. I took advantage of a break in the rain last weekend to wander in a nearby forest. Despite the city continuing on in its noise and busyness just outside the boundaries of this green-space, it all fades away under the forest canopy. I need to breath in the living world around me and pull the energy offered into my soul. I know that I have not fed this need in too long a time. My appreciation of this gift is met with serene smiles. And I breathe.

My children feel it too; I can tell. They stoop down, collecting acorns, leaves and twigs; all potential craft  items. T's eyes constantly scan the ground, until her pockets are bulging with her finds. Even R gets in on the fun, pointing out an apple that she insists I take a picture of.

I love these moments that we have together, carefree and full of life. Friends joined us on this day to take in a breath of Mother Nature. The children laughed and ran throughout the trees. I can certainly understand their joy. 

What's not to love?
I suspect that my wandering is not done for the year, rather that I have wetted my appetite for more. The bliss I feel amongst nature's gifts is just re-kindled into a flame I am drawn to. I must put my nose back to the grindstone of daily life for now, but I share one more image with you that brought peace and smiles to a world that was sorely needed. Enjoy your day and get outside to breath in the crisp air that nourishes us. Be well my friends.

A view that took my breath away

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

transient lovers

transient lovers
passed slowly in the night
drawn by body's warmth
like moths to a light

weaving word coquettish
graceful was thine dance
static smiles; minus passion's lust
just hollow eyes to fill stilled glance

whither did I stay there?
why the draw so strong?
-a slave to electric urges
held captivated too long

aching arms akimbo
mine heart mumbles out a beat
with lips drawn thin I relinquish and know
that for romance I must call defeat.

gilded wings might come to call
and beg for fun from me.
Aye, tomorrow may,
these dreams I admit to pray,
but for now my passion is me
   and thee

I am late to the table, but my friends at One Shot put out a wonderful gathering of talented poets to pool their creativity amongst. If you have ever wanted to put pen to paper  and spruce some words up into a poem you will love this supportive network. Don't take my word for it though; go enjoy yourself!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Tuesday Torrents

I have been having a bit of a mental block recently. I have opened my blog up, looked at it blankly and moved onto checking emails, FB, work, etc. Creativity = nada. zilch, nil, nothing. Last night I did some laps in blogland, hoping that perhaps inspiration would hit me, but around about eleven I gave up and shut the computer down. Done like dinner.

You see my brain has been swarming all over the kid's school and the issues that ensued there last week. I have had well-meaning advice from many parties and have been trying to figure out what direction I should proceed in. I don't think that anything will happen again, but I also think that something should be noted on file somewhere. Of course I also worry about stirring the pot and having myself and my children blacklisted as "problems" in our first week of school at the start of a potentially long stretch of learning there. It makes me antsy, itchy, irritated and stressed. Not where I wanted to be; AT ALL. Too bad though, I have to deal with it or let it go unfettered to the wind. 

grumble, grumble, grumble

Maybe I should just go and read my book again tonight. The story "We Need to Talk About Kevin" is not quite uplifting, but it is first up for book club this year. It is an interesting novel about the Mother of a teenager that opens fire at his high school killing several people. She is writing letters to the boys Father and recounting their life leading up to the "incident". Good fodder for anyone feeling bad about not wanting to have children and also makes you feel better about any of your own bad parenting days, but I am not sure if I am going to get a feel-good ending out of it. I will keep you posted.

Oh, and I got my bathroom re-painted and it looks FAB-u-Lous! Still working on ironing my shower curtain (Yeah, you should really know by now that I am not that much of a freak - it is cotton [ie. wrinkly] and there is a vinyl shower curtain between it and the water hence an iron IS necessary. No worries; I do have one & even know how to use it despite my Mother's lack of training in that department. For shame, for shame!). Now the rest of the house is absolutely embarrassing beyond belief with the lack of attention it has received since bath renos began. After I re-attach my banister that T ripped out of the wall on the weekend I promise to see if I can find the vacuum. Maybe I will find the floor or even a cat or two? Who know? For now, my book is calling and I bid you adieu. Be well my minions. Go well.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

A Little Piece of Heaven

My story resumes with a taste of home. A whiskey in hand, I reflected on days past from the warmth and security of Heaven Lodge in Chimanimani, Zimbabwe. Yes, truly a piece of Heaven after some of the domiciles we had been residing in recently. Mozambique lay behind us now though. It surely was not a dream, but so many of its qualities were too surreal to be believed. The poverty, landmines, potholes and pristine beaches all mixed together with extremely overt begging and acts of remarkable friendliness. Mozambique had been a lesson in living a larger life. Our final journey, ending  in a joyous dance of celebration upon reaching a petrol station, could not be squashed by a closed border for the night a few miles down the road. We still rode the high of triumph and another night in Mozambique could not disperse our success over the road from Hell. The morning sun offered us another example of the people’s warmth, with a man pointing out a nearby hostel where we could rest our head. Gratitude aside, we pushed on to a new country.
Zimbabwe held the promise of many things. My first brush with it, in Victoria Falls months earlier on the overland tour, had captivated me and I had been anticipating my return ever since.  First though, was a stop at Ann Bruce’s (Backpacker) House. Glory be, there was HOT, running water. Almost a distant memory, I reveled in this luxury. We also took in some game viewing, espying rhinoceros, giraffes, eland and ostrich, plus a magnificent sunset to round out the day. With Brett in our mind’s eye, we pushed on though. We assumed that we had time enough for a quick detour, before heading back up to Harare to meet up with him. This detour brought us to Chimanimani and a planned epic hike into the wilds of Zimbabwe. The whiskey warmed me up for the promised trek into Chimanimani National Park. I sat scribbling down my thoughts and adventures in a journal that was thankful for a sturdy table to be laid upon. With creative juices flowing, I was primed for adventure, but the lure of cards stole my resolve. I can never turn aside an invitation to the card table, so tucked my bottle under my arm and became friends with an English bloke and Kiwi couple. This night’s adventure was in runs, pairs and euchres. Modernity lured me in, but the mountains would find their revenge.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Smiles Forever Strong

First day of  new school
time for Momma to ease up
let girls be themselves

life will keep going
love will still flow freely on
smiles forever strong

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Day 2

I really shouldn't delve into this again. It will probably just get my feathers all rustled again, but... In blogland people often share tidbits about their day right? Yes, so;

wakeup to child crawling into bed with me
dry pants, so all good
alarm will go off in ten minutes
awake now.

coffee, coffee
upper bathroom not clean yet, so still heading to basement to get clean
get clean
NO!! Don't run the water!!! You will scald Mommy! AhHHHHhhheeee
towel dry
brush teeth to prevent bad words from falling out of my lips
get dressed in my finest painting garb,
now turned to pants with the instantaneous change in seasons since Labour Day

Look at children
Look at clock
with 45 minutes before we have to leave to walk to bus
they have on rubber boots and coats
ready to go
waiting for tardy ole me
with 43 minutes before we have to leave
a little excited they are indeed.

drag out hair drying, shoe finding, my lunch packing
leave 20 minutes early
offer home-made oatmeal chocolate chip cookies to the handy neighbour (yes, very yummy!)
slowly amble towards bus stop with 17 minutes to spare
wait, wait, wait
see bus approaching and mist up a bit
watch 60 some-odd kids push and shove onto bus, with the littlest ones inching on last
my two
seperate seats
driving away

I stay strong
go to work
leave work to pick up children

between my house and the bus stop my cell phone rings
"Are you R. L.'s Mom?"
my baby
"She's not on the bus"
heart racing "WHAT?"
at the school, but daughter number 1 shall be arriving momentarily via the bus
"A slight mix up"

Frantic Mother Bear flies into rage
collects eldest in vise-like grip sprinting home to the van
races to school mindful of other little feet on the road
finds evidence of daughter
eventually finds daughter with help of Vice Principal
NOT Happy Mommy
They can tell
I make sure

after the shaking subsides
I make dinner
safe in our bastion of care
meal not eaten to spite
yet again
nothing exciting or new for them
except gym class

phone lines were burned up with my venting
to safe spaces
to figure out what went wrong with today
and how I can make tomorrow a better day
a better new day

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Almost off "The List"

new floor grouted now
beautiful bathroom to be
baseboards still, then done?!

oh, plus add water
to taps that are not quite there.
Soon my worthy spa

Soon serenity,
splashing children in tub and 
Project off the list

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

letting go...

I am so spent.
gritty eyes not willing 
to look forth into
 the day any more.

how many years
 until I can do the fist pump
to the bus stop on
the first day of school?

Not today, yet.
Nor tomorrow at my guess,
but perhaps I will
by the last day of class.

Hey, what the heck. This Haiku-esque poem counts as enough for the night.  Both my babies started school for the first time today. My little white lie was that I was excited for them and that was why moisture was dripping off my chin. They don't need to know that this is another stop on the grief journey for me,
but I will survive...

I have already.

The school bus brought them home at the end of the day.

It will take them to school on their next day

and the day after that

and after that...

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labour Day

Tis Monday; Monday September 6th or Labour Day in North America. One day before Tuesday September 7th or the first day of school for my babies. Both of them. ACK! Oh, I know that most of you lovely people have been there and done that. Knowing that you all survived does help me to keep myself together today. I have to admit that I have been flitting around pretty constant though. We made oatmeal chocolate chip cookies this morning. I have chicken thighs in the crock pot. I have a roast beef in the oven for dinner tonight. I also have more chicken marinating for dinner later in the week. Yesterday I made spaghetti sauce and meat loaf. The spaghetti sauce will be going to my friend's house  who is recovering from her surgery last week (a little has been saved for us for a meal as well). I have cleaned lunch bags, counters and done several loads of laundry today. Can you tell that I am a little anxious? Nah!

I have double checked bus routes and schedules. I plan to drive the kids to school tomorrow, but just might let them come home on the bus. I am comfortable enough with my nervousness to rebuff all the suggestions that I should relax and put the kids on the bus right off. Not going to do it. Nope. With three school amalgamating into one, I just don't think that Day 1 of school will be 100% smooth. We did  have a brief stop and visit to their class rooms on Friday, meeting T's teacher en route. I feel better, but I don't think it will hurt for me to take them tomorrow. Because realistically you know it is all about me. Yes, I realize that my darling children will be the ones attending school. I am the one that is releasing care of my most precious possessions to complete strangers though. No, I do not think of them as possessions, but they are my life. I am their only parent and I think that I am just having a hard time releasing care. I am used to being the be all and end all of their worlds. This is a bigger step into the wide world of their life outside of mine. Yes, that is it. They are growing up. sigh...

Right now though I am still needed. Elbow pads are requested for a bit of bike riding so I must go. My babies still need me today. I need them more than they realize, so must go.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Beauty of Reflection

I am still a little speechless. The Beauty of Reflection; So wonderful on so many levels. The smile on my face and in my heart speaks volumes to me. To give you some idea as to what I am talking about, gaze into the beautiful sunset above. It is a special place for a special someone who has honoured me today. Marilynn at Celebrating a Year has a beautiful retreat space that she had the pleasure to escape to not once, but twice this past summer. From her words and pictures, I understand why it is a piece of heaven for her. She has chosen an image of this place, that is dear to her heart, to honour myself and a few others with some accolades. It was not something that was handed to her with strings attached to pass it along. Not that there is anything wrong with awards of that kind, but she just offered blessings because she felt like it. No voodoo or superstitions to befall anyone here. She was revelling in the community that she has experienced here in the blog-o-sphere and wanted to share and give back. To be included in her list really touched me and made my day. Marilynn always has lovely pictures to admire on a daily basis, as well as some stunning poetry to share. She even graces us with some exquisite mandolin music on occasion, played by her own hand. Wow! People like her push me to challenge myself with new styles and forms of expression.  Her award on just any old ordinary day, just made mine. I  too appreciate all the kindness that have been shown me from some of you brilliant people. So I send out a huge thank you to Marilynn today. I like your corner of the world and am thrilled that you like mine. If you are interested in hearing some of her music check out her my space page and be treating to mandolin AND bandolin playing at its finest. 


Happy Sunday All! 
Just one more quick note. Another shining star in my world is a bathroom that is resembling one again. While not completely done, I do have a toilet on the main floor again. And it even seems to flush properly again. Wheee! Life is good. Hope your long weekend brings you all you desire too! Now, at the magical hour of 9:21 I think I will retire. Two late nights with a dear friend has left me too pooped to pop. There are a couple of books that are calling my name, but my pillow threatens with sweet slumber as well. Good night...


Friday, September 3, 2010

The Boys are Back

It is just an ordinary day in my world. A Friday. The kids are in bed. I sit on my couch. The dishwasher hums in the background. A friend is coming to join me for the weekend. She will arrive this evening, but right now life is just life. Today has had its ups and downs, same as any other. This song reminded me on so many days that for all the ups and downs that life holds, really it all amounts to a day in passing. It's all your state of mind. 

So today I share a video from one of my favourite bands; Great Big Sea. These boys are from Newfoundland, Canada and are a hell of a lot of fun to see live. I just found out they will be in my home town in a few months for another concert and am sorely tempted to splurge out on tickets again. Anyone want to join me for a night of smiles and bouncing?

Thursday, September 2, 2010


that You can just hold on for
one more moment,
one more day.
You cling to the rock of your discontent
waiting until the weekend arrives
to free you from the vestiges
of a life lived in limbo
on the granite face of time
stopped for none.

FLASH, yup it's Friday. 
Well just about and close enough in my world. 
There is 55 words that I swirled onto the page
to try my hat at G-Man's fun. 
Have a great weekend and 
Happy Labour Day

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Not All

Days pass,
steady in their march.
Days pass
standing tall,
I lean into their grace.

Some days
bowed to memory,
bent with responsibility,
shoulders sore with strain;
some days
   I break.

I break
as I need to.
I break
and pour forth
all the tears hidden in
carefully concealed caverns.

I break
full of emotion
overwhelmed by today,
this moment

This day
shuddering shoulders squeeze
so inglorious with spit and snot.
I shake the sorrows out
This day

in my weak and wilted way
I lie down
giving up control.
I am not all.
I am just me
doing what I can do
getting stronger for the journey


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