Keys

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I have one set of keys. Car, remote car starter, house and mailbox on two key chains hooked together.  That’s it. I like to hang them up at the door so I will remember to never leave home without them.

All the rest of the keys and other hanging things belong to W. Except for my spare set of car keys, but he uses them and I never do, so they don’t count as being mine.

This is what our mess of keys looked like before I got all ambitious this weekend and made new key holders.

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The bottom board is something I put together years ago when I first started painting. It is made from a drawer front, weighs a ton, and was hung up on one center nail. If you didn’t hang your keys just right it went off-balance and either hung crookedly or fell off the wall. Once it went down the basement steps. Funny how you put up with annoying things for a ridiculously long time and then one day just decide to do something about them.

My daughter has offered to paint our house interior, and although I was contemplating updating the guest room/library first, now I think we should start with the back door entrance.  Taking these three junky things off the wall was a start.  Putting up NEW junky things will probably get me in trouble.

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W thinks it’s funny that there are so many hooks.  So I asked him to identify all the important hanging things we’ve been looking at every day for a dog’s age if not longer.  We have handcuff keys!  No handcuffs anywhere, but we are prepared if they suddenly turn up.  He used to be a wildlife enforcement officer, in case you’re thinking the handcuff thing might have a slightly more kinky explanation.  There are several key chains with no keys on them, keys we believe might be for one of the filing cabinets, some which could be for padlocks, and several about which we do not have a flying clue.

One of these key holders will go in our garage sale, probably with miscellaneous mystery keys included. I only did the second one because the first one didn’t have room for everything.  Keys are like plastic containers with no lids, or lids that don’t fit on anything.  The day after you throw them out you discover you need them for something.

So they get to hang there for a while and I will tackle another junk corner somewhere else. In other exciting news, our dishwasher door has a broken spring and falls like a lead weight if we let it go, so we went searching for the appliance book to see if parts are still available for it and threw out a dozen booklets for things we no longer have.  The dishwasher is 18 years old!  Today is my son’s birthday and he is 40!  Reverse those two statements in order of importance.

My point is, what is the point?  Okay, I admit I don’t really have a point today.  Except maybe to advise you to take stock of all your keys.  Make the mystery ones into a decorative wall hanging.  Give your grown children something to roll their eyes at.  Then if anyone wants to know how you spent your weekend you can make them sorry they asked.

Farming for a Living

There’s no such thing as a slow news day in a small town.  Not when you have long-term residents willing to tell you their story and dig up a couple of old photos to go with it.

This “news” article was published in the People section of the Port Elgin Beacon Times on July 28, 1999 when my dad was 85.  There are a few mistakes in it, the funniest one being where they say our youngest sister is “Barbara” which isn’t even close to her real name.  That’s okay, she likes to remain anonymous.

Dad was the 8th of 10 children, not 9, but his youngest brother died in a bicycle accident when he was just a boy.  Maybe dad chose to skip over that part.

Hope you enjoy this little slice of history.
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I lived here until I was 5 or 6 so my memories of it are vague. There was a hand pump in the kitchen for water, and we had baths in a big wash tub on the kitchen floor. The next farm-house we lived in had hot and cold running water and a bath tub upstairs. Now if people have fewer than four bathrooms in a house they are likely to complain. How times change.

Art du Jour 90

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What do you think? Too wild? Would you want to live in this chaotic little city?

I don’t know whether or not this is finished yet. It’s one of the biggest canvases I’ve ever worked on so all that work makes me feel like I should be done.

And then I frown at it for a while trying to decide what’s missing.  But whatever is missing, there’s no room for it!  So I’m finished, right?

Anyway, letting it hang for a bit.  I used up a LOT of paper scraps creating my little village on crack.

Sharing My World 48

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SHARE YOUR WORLD – 2016 WEEK 5

If you had a shelf for your three most special possessions (not including photos, electronic devices and things stored on them, people or animals), what would you put on it?

In my bedroom there is a little white shelf which used to have a desk under it and so was useful for holding desk related stuff.  Now the desk is moved and the shelf has become a catch-all, but today I cleared it off and found three special possessions to put on it instead so I could share my (slightly reorganized) world with you and answer this question.  You may already be familiar with my alien giraffe.  Next to him is my Starbucks dog sporting various pieces of jewelry that I am saving even though their value is purely sentimental.  And then there’s my cow piggy bank which I love mostly because it’s not a pig.  A long time ago I filled it up with loonies and toonies saving for my trip to Scotland. It’s been mostly empty ever since.

Strange things to treasure I suppose, but they make me smile.  What’s the point of possessions if they don’t make you feel happy?  And if they all went missing tomorrow it would not be a devastating loss.  They are just things, and things come and go.  Except maybe for that giraffe who could possibly be one of a kind.

If you had a box labelled ‘happiness’, what would you put in it?

I would never try to put happiness in a box.  Happiness should be wild and free and as changeable as the weather, otherwise how would we learn to appreciate it? It might sometimes seem illusive but it is also boundless, and always better shared.

What do you want more of in your life?

Winning lottery tickets please.  Even just one would be fine.  A big one, not those silly free plays.  I was going to say “cowbell” but thought the ticket thing sounded slightly more sane.

Daily Life List: What do you do on an average day? Make a list of your usual activities you do each day.

This reminds me of the time Vanna White (the letter turner on Wheel of Fortune) wrote a book about her life in which she described how she does sit ups, what she eats, and how she likes to crochet.   The bio has been described as brilliant and brainless.  I didn’t read it because I didn’t care what she was up to in her private life.  I will completely understand if you also don’t care about mine and skip this part.  I will probably get bored with it before lunch myself.

  1. Stumble in to the bathroom half asleep and take my thyroid medication.  It works best if it’s taken on an empty stomach first thing in the morning with lots of water.  I think all that is true but I may have made some of it up.
  2. Stumble in to the kitchen and make coffee.
  3. By now I have stopped stumbling about and feel sufficiently competent and alert enough to take and record a fasting blood sugar reading.  If old people did not have medical issues to deal with they would have absolutely nothing to talk about.
  4. Sit down and drink my coffee while checking out on my iPad (in random order) Words With Friends, Facebook, Clash of Clans, crossword puzzles, blog notifications and e-mails.
  5. Breakfast!  Sometimes W makes us bacon and eggs.  Sometimes he doesn’t and I have to fend for myself.
  6. Shower, hair, varying degrees of makeup, take the rest of my meds, get dressed, dishes, laundry, walk, trampoline, lunch, write a blog post, reply to comments, read blogs I follow, make or add to a grocery list for W, decide on some random thing for dinner, clean something.  Oh, wait, you said every day.  Scratch that last one.
  7. Start or finish something in the art room. Even if it’s just getting things organized and sorted.  Look on Pinterest for inspiration.
  8. Wonder where the afternoon went.
  9. Eat, do more dishes, check blood sugar in there again somewhere once or twice, drink some decaf, play some games, try not to think about snacks, watch some Netflix.
  10. Go to bed and read whatever strange thing I currently have on my Kindle.  Teeth brushed, face washed, blah blah blah.  Whew.  That was exhausting. I hope you were able to keep up with me.

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

Our eldest grandson had a wrestling tournament here in the city this weekend, so while he and dad and younger brother and grandpa spent their Saturday at that, the girls and I finished up art projects and wasted time on electronic devices.  Well I never claimed to be a great role model. Anyway, it was lovely to have them all here for a couple of nights.

This weekend I had my MRI done (they schedule these things for weekend evenings) so I’m grateful to have that over with.  Not that it’s anything unpleasant except for the hospital gown and the shower cap thing they put on your head, and the headphones and the small enclosed space and the twilight zone noises.  And being asked before the procedure if you have a living will, so that you can dream up all kinds of potential MRI disasters while you’re in the machine.

I am looking forward to getting the results, although not to the appointment where that happens because I foolishly booked it for 9:00 a.m.  Have I really been away from work so long that nine o’clock in the morning seems like an ungodly hour to be out and about?  I mean you’ve seen how busy my average daily schedule can be.  I’ll probably have to work in a nap somewhere that day.  Hey, one more thing to look forward to.

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Art du Jour 89

Even though this is not my art, it is the product of my art class, so it qualifies for the art du jour category.  My two amazing students (granddaughters O and M) when given free rein in the art corner always come up with some creative, artistic and interesting results.

They have done a lot of stickers and stamps and drawing and painting on paper, but this weekend graduated to mixed media on canvas.  I think I’ve got them hooked.

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They had some help with the ink splashes (it’s pretty messy) and the addition of texture, but the rest – collage and colour choices – it’s all theirs.  I got to hang them on my wall for a day, but now the art and the artists are headed home.

I hope whenever they look at them they remember what fun we had putting them together.