Sharing My World 64

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Share Your World – January 16, 2016

Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed?

My closet door is in the rafters in the garage.  It’s one of those folding in half ones with little wheely things that screech along an overhead runner.  The runner is also gone, along with the lower left hand side holder for the pin that kept it in place at the bottom.  I sincerely hated that thing.  In its place I now have a curtain rod and a curtain flat against the opening, almost flush with the wall.  It’s pretty much always closed because sometimes looking into my closet can be a strange mix of depressing and frightening.  Nothing would want to live in there, so I have no worries about anything popping out from behind the curtain to disturb my sleep.

Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotels?

Yes I do, because they’re just going to throw them out anyway.  They’re the perfect size for travelling to places where I’m not staying in a hotel. And if I don’t go anywhere I eventually throw them out myself, saving hotel staff the trouble. When we had a dog I used to use them on him  when he had a bath.  What a strange thing to remember.

What is your usual bedtime?

Anytime between 8:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m.  Sorry I can’t be more specific.  There’s just too many variables.  What I’m binge watching on Netflix, what I’m reading, how much coffee I drank too late in the day, whether or not I can keep my eyes open. I do aim for ten/ten-thirty but it’s hit and miss.

Do you like to use post-it notes?

OMG post-it notes are the absolute best notes on the planet.  If you ever want to give me something nice, forget the flowers and go for a big package of rainbow coloured post-its instead.  I am so serious about that it’s not even funny.

When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper?

Years and years and years ago when there was really no other way to communicate over long distances other than by telephone.  I used to write to my parents sporadically because my mom was so good to write to me,  but my letters were done on the computer in large font and printed, with only the odd hasty p.s. and a scribbled signature added by pen.  I treasure what I saved of her cards and letters but I fear the handwritten note will soon be history.  Cursive writing and beautiful penmanship will be an oddity from the past.  None of us will remember how to spell anything without auto correct.  We will converse in short forms and emoticons with questionable grammar.  One day we will forget how to talk.  Ok now I’m thoroughly bummed.

Any phobias?

I don’t like large deep bodies of water.  Even as I typed that I had to take a big breath of air.  I’m sure in a former life I either drowned or suffocated.  Or fell off a cliff.  Into the ocean.  I also don’t like extreme heights.  I cope with these fears with funny little mind games and try not to dwell on how silly I’m being.

How tall are you?

I used to be 5’4″ but I’ve shrunk an inch apparently according to the people who last measured me at some medical facility or other.  Maybe my posture got worse.  Maybe my younger taller self was delusional.  Anything is possible.  I used to love wearing three-inch heels or wedges or platforms way back in the day and gazing down at the tops of short people’s heads.  My ankles were less than thrilled about that though.  Can’t remember the last time I wore anything with a substantial heel.  Would probably break both my legs at once if I tried it again.

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

The weather is completely bearable!  Hovering around zero Celsius.  There’s a bit of melting and freezing going on so the sidewalks are not exactly safe, but I’m not using them anyway.  They are my latest excuse for staying inside. One of my many varied and far-fetched excuses if you want the truth.  Some of which make very little sense but I stubbornly cling to them anyway.

I am looking forward to making Rice Krispie squares to use up the bag of marshmallows left over from Christmas baking.  But they will have to wait until we finish the brownies I baked yesterday in a serious chocolate craving fit.  They are sweetened with dates and orange juice, no added refined sugar.  So I feel maybe half the normal amount of guilt eating them.

It’s always a bonus when you can cut your guilt in two.  I should make a list of ways to do that…..

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Sharing My World 63

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Share Your World January 9,2017

If you lost a bet and had to dye your hair a color of the rainbow for a week, what color would it be?

If the choices were strictly red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet,  I would go with red. Bright fire engine apple red.  So that people would stop and stare and make funny remarks about the crazy old lady with the flaming red hair.  But if it was ok to go with any hue you can come up with, I would much prefer pink, the colour of fluffy cotton candy. And maybe not quite so many startled exclamations from strangers.

If you could choose one word to focus on for 2017, what would it be?

Writing.  Or maybe Living.  I can’t decide. They are both things I am trying to focus on, but so far I’m doing my normal lackadaisical hit and miss break-taking job of both.  Nothing happens.  Then things happen that I don’t want to write about.  I have days where I would rather just obsess over them in silence.

Last week I learned of the death of a 67-year-old man I knew through work.  He died two days before Christmas, halfway through his work day.  I joked with him once about retiring, but he said he tried it briefly and got bored because his wife was still working so he came back.  Stories like this drive me nuts.  It’s like people decide to work themselves to death.  He was too old to be working and much too young to die.  And of course it is absolutely none of my business how anyone else chooses to exist.  Or ceases to exist in this lifetime.  Sometimes it makes me sad, and sometimes I think deceased people are lucky they won’t be around to face whatever happens next.  I know, it’s messed up.  I don’t want to talk about it.

What was one thing you learned last year that you added to your life?

I learned a whole lot about cleaning up and sprucing up and redecorating an old house.  Mostly I learned it’s a lot of work and I don’t ever want to do it again.  I also learned you should do it completely for yourself without trying to please anyone else.  It will just make you sad when the next people move in and decide to gut the place.  So I have added serenity.  I have subtracted mountains of clutter.  I have greatly simplified our next move.  If I die before then there’s way less crap for the living to sort through.

If life was ‘just a bowl of cherries’… which fruit other than a cherry would you be..?

A peach.  You have to work your way through the fuzzy skin to get to the good stuff.  Obviously I have no clue what this question means.

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

I am grateful for my knee recovering from whatever its problem was.  I still walk around being cautious and aware of it, just in case.  And probably looking sneaky and weird in the process.

I am grateful for surviving a back-to-back full moon and Friday the 13th.  Although as many sources predict, next Friday could be infinitely more frightening.

Next week W goes for his one year follow-up on his hip replacement surgery.  Other than that madly exciting event, I’ve got nothing specific to anticipate.

More lists, though.  I’m not done with the lists. I will work on being slightly less morbid.  Yay for that, right?

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Mystic Sunday

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Keeper of Ancient Light.  Sounds plausible.

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I am a guardian and security is what makes me feel emotionally happy, but I express my needs and thoughts in a practical way.  When it comes to love I will be committed but when I get angry I become destructive so don’t test me.

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Some Tarot cards explained.  I totally identify with the Emptress.

Don’t say you didn’t learn anything today. Happy Sunday.

Old Lady Things

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Today’s list was inspired by the temperature outside and a rare bout of insomnia.

Old Lady Things I Am Ready For Already

  1. Bunny Slippers.  Big fat pink ones.
  2. A walk-in sit-down shower.  Ok, I’m not really sold on the sit down part of that yet, but my knee does not like stepping over the side of the bath tub these days.  And it’s not even a very high side.  I’ll be wanting ramps instead of stairs soon.  An elevator would be nice.
  3. One of those robotic vacuum things that bangs around your furniture picking up dirt while you sit on the couch wishing it was less stupid and more thorough.  But if I had one I would likely want to get a cat to ride around on it.
  4. A bunch of flameless candles unlikely to burn the house down if left unattended. With a remote control.  Might as well go all out.
  5. A granny shawl.  Actually two.  One for my shoulders, one for my lap.
  6. A personal shopper.
  7. A personal masseuse.
  8. A chauffeur.
  9. A pool guy.  And yes I know we don’t have a pool.
  10. A tiny home.  I watched a minimalist documentary.  I think I could live that way.  Probably have to give up the pool guy though.

Seriously right now I would settle for just some big ass warm and fuzzy slippers because my feet are freezing.  And I am wearing thermal socks.

This is what my life has become.  I need a nap.

 

Places I’ve Called Home

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Way back in the day before color when farms were in black and white and sepia.

I almost called this list ‘Places I’ve Slept’ but thankfully saw the problems with that almost immediately.  Titles are hard.  Unless you don’t give a hoot about accuracy.  Anyway, here we go, a list of the various locations I’ve been referring to whenever I’ve said “let’s go home”.

    1. From birth to about age six I lived on a little farm in Ontario down the hill from my maternal grandparents farm, close to Lake Huron, beside a stone and cement bridge which spanned a raging creek.  I was little.  It looked raging to me.
    2. More permanent farm number two, about 8 miles from Port Elgin, the town I decided to call my hometown because I went to high school there.  This is the home I kept coming back to for most of my adult life, the place where my parents lived most of theirs.
    3. The Orchards house in Stratford where I boarded (a shared bedroom with a tiny little balcony) while attending Teachers College.
    4. A two bedroom apartment in St. Catharines shared with 3 other working girls.  I was a substitute teacher, on call to fill in anywhere in the city.  (This is when I met W at a residence party at the university) (it wasn’t all about work)
    5. The Wilkes house in St. Catharines where I boarded in a little smoke-filled bedroom while attending Brock University.  I was the one supplying the smoke,  convinced it helped me concentrate while writing boring English and Philosophy papers.
    6. A tiny little garage sized house in a backyard in Kenora, our first home as a married couple, close to one of W’s aunts who liked to feed us.
    7. Basement apartment in Dryden on Charles Street,  close to one of MY aunts who also liked to feed us.
    8. High rise apartment in Guelph where W went back to University and I worked at the campus bookstore, all in the interests of one day being able to feed ourselves.
    9. Basement apartment in Guelph for married University students.  Our daughters first home.
    10. Government house in Cambridge Bay, N.W.T.  Our sons first home.
    11. Row housing in Inuvik, N.W.T. The old ones close to the hospital, not the new ones on the other side of town.  We had utilidors and board walks.  And dust and mud and the scrawniest Christmas trees in the history of the world.
    12. Government house in Pond Inlet, N.W.T., right beside the Arctic Ocean.  The view from our front window was of the mountains on Bylot Island and random icebergs floating by or trapped in the ocean ice.
    13. Government house in Yellowknife on Bromley Drive, a paved street!  We were on our way back to civilization.
    14. And here we are, (and have been since the late 1980’s) in our very own mortgage free abode in sunny Alberta, the province my kids call home.

I’m glad we stopped our wandering ways.  I always worried that our kids would turn into little nomads with no roots.  Both of us had parents who stayed put even after we moved away and I wanted that stability for our kids too.

After all these years and all these places I still consider Ontario home and have vague dreams about one day going back there to end up somewhere close to the place I started.  I don’t know if it will ever happen, and really it doesn’t matter.  Home is just a thing you take with you wherever you go, leaving little pieces of your heart behind in every place you’ve ever been settled and happy. Nothing is forever, and we got good at packing up our memories and moving on.  I expect that skill will come in handy again one fine day.

 

The Ripsnorter Post

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The other day when W asked me what I was doing I told him I had to go see what my space people were up to.  How’s that for a ripsnorter of an answer.

“Ripsnorter” was the word of the day last whatever day it was, I can’t remember and it doesn’t matter, but it stuck in my head because my dad used to like that word to describe something he thought was particularly great.  Or terrible.  Or bizarre.  I liked the “ripsnorter of a storm” nights when he woke everyone up and herded us all downstairs into the living room where we waited for one of our big old maple trees to be struck by lightning and crash through our roof.  Best not to be on the top floor if that happened.

I think he might have called my sister Ann a little ripsnorter when she would jump into the pig pen with the dog making him bark and move the pigs around, generally causing mayhem in an enclosed space. It’s a wonder she didn’t get trampled.  She has calmed down a lot since then.

We have had such a mild and pleasant winter until just lately when the temperatures decided to plummet.  And I mean plummet in a completely ripsnorter-y fashion.  I am wearing big socks and a hoodie and drinking hot coffee mostly to warm up my hands.  Even turned up the heat at one point.  And I’ve hauled out my winter coat.  I think old bones feel the cold more intensely.

Or perhaps physical inactivity is a contributing factor, for example, sitting under a blanket watching multiple episodes of “Dark Matter” on Netflix and having a hard time remembering what the series is called and referring to it as a space show.  With space people.  They all woke up from stasis on their space ship with their memories erased.  Sort of like I feel some mornings before getting out of bed. What day is it?  Why am I singing “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence” in my head?  Why is this floor so damned cold??

The best character is an android. I love her. She has ridiculous hair.  It’s a ripsnorter of a hair do.

Also i am busy doing some Christmas baking even though I can’t eat any of it.  The fudge is done and also some rolled up concoction consisting mainly of chocolate and mini marshmallows and coconut which my kids once named the Christmas turds before they were unwrapped and sliced in to more appetizing cookie like shapes.

Shortbread today I think.  Then some butter tarts.  I came across a recipe for cranberry meatballs so I tried those last night.  Kind of sickeningly sweet, so maybe more of an hors d’œuvre than a main dish.  And this year I am going to make some kind of a steamed pudding and make everyone try some.  That’s the one thing I miss from my childhood Christmases.  Being absolutely stuffed but still digging into a plate of hot Christmas pudding covered in a rich butter and brown sugar sauce.

Neither my kids nor W liked it so I quit making it.  My moms version was the ripsnorter one for sure but I will make one less like a Christmas cake and tell them it’s something called sticky toffee pudding cake.  ‘Tis the season to be cunning and devious.  I love how steamed pudding makes the kitchen smell and steams up the windows, which will turn to ice which will make W freak out.

He has ripsnorter freak outs.  He will vehemently deny this, but its true.  After my baking I will be tired and grumpy so I’m looking forward to my space people having way worse lives than I do cheering me up.

In other unrelated non-holiday news, I have gone for my pulmonary breathing test from hell where I had to wear a clothes pin thing on my nose and mouth breathe into a tube for 30 minutes in various strange ways as instructed by some guy who has a very weird job for sure.  I will venture out into the cold again tomorrow to get some shopping done.  Less than two weeks to go.

Hope you’re having a ripsnorter of a December.  Stay warm.

Really Rudolph?

Amazon just sent me an email saying based on my recent activity perhaps I might be interested in this –

img_2867Holy.  Should I buy one?  It’s only CDN $6.95.

I’m trying to think what kind of activity I was involved in for them to come to this conclusion.

Behold the roomy rudolf tea strainer in raspberry red.  Perhaps I searched for an item beginning with the letter R.

Although my sinuses are happy I’m drinking hot water laced with lemon and Truvia at the moment, normally I am just another coffee addict with no love for anything even vaguely similar to tea.

And this does not look like Rudolph.  It very suspiciously resembles a moose.

I’m afraid Amazon will just have to try harder to get me to part with seven bucks.