Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Little Bits

You know, it's not that I don't have anything to say at all. It's just that it's all rather finite. For example:

All this fuss over the new Icelandic prime-minister's sexual orientation, the North American media bleating about her being the first openly gay leader of a country. Oh honestly. I'm so entirely fed up with the sexual preoccupation of our culture, that the most newsworthy thing about a political leader is his/her sexual preferences and peccadilloes. Could we PLEASE stop peeping into bedroom windows and focus on what kind of record our leaders have politically? Is it too much to ask that some sort of veil of modesty could be decently redraped over that part of life?


I'm a little discouraged about how not off-the-ground my massage practice is. Which is foolishly premature of me, since I only put the ad in the paper last week and this is an extremely cautious sort of area about anything new. But oh, I miss the work so much, and I'm (gulp, blush) really good at it. I've been able to restore function to recalcitrant shoulders and feet and hips, and that's no small potatoes in a working class town. It's real. I've had an osteopathic student sharing techniques with me that give me so many extra, and very effective, tools to help people with. Oh well. It'll come. I went to talk to the physio in the next town this morning about sharing space with her, and she's pleased about that. She'll make a little extra income in her off-time, and I'll get the extra exposure and referrals. Hopefully I'll be busy soon!

In the meantime there's a lot of snow that still needs shovelling, and doors that need hanging. And massage sheets that need some serious degreasing. Lord, does that stuff build up!


You never know until you don't have it how important storage is. We have closets and pantries galore. What we don't have, O my brothers and sisters, is bars and shelves in them!

Thus, I'm awfully excited about this:

Something up and out of the way!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

38 Things

38 Random Things About Me

(The original meme was 37 Random Things, but I thought since I'm 38 this year I'd augment. Thanks Deb!)

1. Do you like blue cheese? I've never been brave enough to try.

2. Have you ever smoked? A few times when I was a teen-ager. It's a tough vice to really dig into when you're allergic and athsmatic.

3. Do you own a gun? No, but my son has something he shoots pigeons with.

4. What flavor Kool Aid is your favorite? Urg.

5. Do you get nervous before doctor appointments? Sometimes.

6. What do you think of hot dogs? I try not to think of hotdogs too inquisitively...

7. Favorite Christmas movie? Muppets Christmas Carol.

8. What do you prefer to drink in the morning? Black tea with milk.

9. Can you do push-ups? Probably. Massage therapists get pretty strong in the upper body. But I don't wanna. The floor's COLD!

10. What's your favorite piece of jewelry? I don't wear any jewelery.I used to have a necklace that I rather liked, but Poppy stole it, that little fashionista.

11. Favorite hobby? Quilting.

12. Do you have A.D.D? Eh? Isn't that a malphemism for "energetic and motivated"?

13. Do you wear glasses/contacts? Yes, glasses.

14. Middle name? I've got one. It's never been a good fit. My father didn't have one though, which is odd because he was born Catholic and they tend to have more names than they know what to do with.

15. Name thoughts at this moment? I think I just shared my name-thoughts. I have other name-thoughts, I suppose. Give your children names they can live with. Don't be silly. No Pocahontas MacGregors, svp. (If you named your child Pocahontas MacGregor, don't read that bit, and certainly don't tell me so.)

16. Name 3 drinks you regularly drink? Water, tea... I don't have a third. I'm a two-drink kinda gal. I had some blue-berry pomegranate juice last weekend, though.

17. Current worry? Oh Lord.

18. Current hate right now? That's a little more passionate than I feel before noon.

19. Favorite place to be? Hmmm...

20. How did you bring in the New Year? In bed with a hot water bottle. It was -35 and blizzarding. We were supposed to have company but it got postponed by a week.

21. Where would you like to go? Somewhere a bit warmer than here, but not hot.

22. Name three people who will complete this? Goodness, now I'm psychic?

23. Do you own slippers? Nope. I have inside Birkies and outside Birkies. I've been thinking a bit about sewing some sort of warm Birkie-liners though. Haven't quite come to any conclusion on that yet. Maybe they're called socks. My current sock situation is distinctly unsatisfactory.

24. What color shirt are you wearing? A very worn and faded blue flowered t-shirt under my sweater and shawl.

25. Do you like sleeping on satin sheets? I haven't tried it, but I can't say it's very appealing. They look COLD.

26. Can you whistle? Can I stop?

27. Favorite Color? I tend towards blues and purples, but I love them all when they're mixed together. I guess that's why I'm a quiltress.

28. What songs do you sing in the shower? I often catch myself singing "Down in the Valley".

29. Would you be a pirate? Very unlikely.

30. Favorite Girl's Name? Mahalia.

31. Favorite boy's name? Melchizadek. Apparently in Cornwall, Melchizadek takes the form "Zadek". Cool, huh? And btw, I didn't call my defenseless children either of these. Though I seriously considered Mahalia, shortened to Mae or Maizie. Mostly because I love Mahalia Jackson, may-she-sing-forever.

32. What's in your pocket right now? Nuffink.

33. Last thing that made you laugh? Reading "Eats, Shoots, and Leaves". And I've probably got the puncutation on that wrong, but there you go. Don't tell Lynn Truss, lest she pursue me with her pencil.

34. What vehicle do you drive? A rickety red minivan.

35. Worst injury you've ever had? Dislocated elbow and shoulder.

36. Do you love where you live? No. But it's good enough for now.

37. How many TVs do you have in your house? I've heard that there's one in the basement. Personally I hate television. Occasionally I'll watch a movie. Though now that I've said that... my kids introduced me to "Corner Gas" through YouTube, and I love it! I'm glad I get to watch it without all the commercials. It's a comedy show about Saskatchewan.

38. What's your latest project? I just decided this morning. I'm going to make a quiltlette, about 2'X3', to cover my legs while I drive. And maybe a sort of partial hat/earmuff thingy, also quilted. I guess we'll see how that works out. Winter's really getting to me.

There ya have it. Feel free to borrow and morph at will!

Monday, January 19, 2009

I think, therefore I ohm.

It's all new in this house, in an unfinished-newness, and that means all the doors came primed but not painted. As the official Paintress, Queen of Can and Brush, I've taken this project as my own.

Whilst I paint sometimes I think. Mostly about brush-strokes, truthfully, but sometimes I think about Life, and Being, and all that other cosmic-carry-on.

(Not to be confused with Cosmic Carrion, which is an entirely 'nother proposition, though I think I'd like to explore it someday.)

Anyway, lots of thinking about doing and being, and where one leaves off and the other begins, or if that's even a helpful distinction. I've always had a horror of being paralyzed. The voices I grew up with dwelt rather heavily on how it was enough to "be", and that we shouldn't derive our identity from what we "do". Perhaps it was better addressed to a workaholic, materialistic culture than an unfledged 13 year old girl in the pew, because my main impression was dread. What if I were paralyzed, and couldn't do anything except blink my eyes - who would I be? Why should it matter, if I just "was" rather than a sum of my doings?

It does matter. It matters. What I do is what I am.

I'm still thinking about all this, is-ness. Haven't quite hit the sweet spot yet.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


It was so beautifully warm and soft today that I took a break from painting doors and doing dishes and went for a little walkabout with the cat. Nothing much to say about it, but this is where I live, on the plainest plain. Lord, it's so flat here!

And yes, we have a cat. She showed up about 2 weeks after we did and adopted us. Patch named her Roxanne, but mostly she's "Puss" or "Pudski" or "Catski". And yes, we're still allergic, but she's an outside cat and a good spirit and a good mouser, so she's very welcome to our goodwill and meat-scraps.

Things work out. So far. At least, that's my impression today.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Another stab at integration...

It's so easy to set up dichotomies, and I fall into it without realizing. Even when I think I'm deliberately creating a way out, usually I'm just forking another path, creating another pair. This or That. Yes or No. Right or Wrong.

It's not choosing. It's letting go of the choice and choosing it all, gathering all the broken pieces into my heart and watching the kaleidoscope form. And re-form. And transform. And all the sharp edges meet and hold each other, spinning and twisting their eternal pictures and stories, and there's no bleeding, just beauty.

I choose it all. Even when I can't contain it, I still choose it. Maybe especially then. I can only choose to sacrifice my meagerness and dichotomies, deconstruct instead and recognize that I'm only a momentary wave on this ocean. Even when it hurts.

For every thing there is a season
And a time for every purpose under heaven...

Sunday, January 11, 2009

'Bout Them Cookies...

I just realized that my gluten-free gingersnap recipe is on my old hard-drive - and since my computer's lobotomy last weekend I don't presently have access to it. Hopefully next weekend. Sorry!

In the meantime, well, cooking, cleaning, shoveling, organizing, painting trim, a little therapy work... stuff. Stuff, stuff, stuff.

Sniff, sniff, sniff... the midwinter cold is upon us. Such a hacking and sneezing and horking is heard in the land. Hopefully this week upcoming will mark the end of that season and the beginning of great geysers of energy.

Until then, a peaceful Sunday night to all.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A little crisp...

It's been a week of -30C, sick kids, and snow.

After plowing the 1/4 acre parking lot beside the house (forgot to take a picture of the new plow, maybe tomorrow), I staggered back out with the camera and took some photos of the beauty of it. In spite of all the work it brings, the snow is terribly kind in that it covers up the horrific mess that is ours. Not deep enough to mask the burnt-out motorhome at the back property line yet, but if it keeps on the way it has been, we should have six feet in six weeks.

Funny how -20 feels positively temperate after a little run of real cold. It was -40 here not very many days ago. Tonight I was wrestling the garbage outside and realized that I'd gone out with no jacket, no scarf, nothing but my shirt sleeves.

Well no. The rest of my shirt too. And my jeans. But good grief!

Thursday, January 1, 2009


I saw my grandmother over the holidays. She's 98 now, doesn't look over 80. That's pretty amazing. There are a lot of people in her home who are a lot younger than her, and few of them are as mobile.

I brought her some fabric. Every few months, when she makes her way to the bottom of a bin of the fabrics people give her, she swears off sewing, says she's had enough. I can certainly see that the appeal could wear off when it's all you do apart from eat and sleep. Her eyes are getting very bad besides, and it's pretty difficult to sew on a machine when you can't see much.

She was showing me some of the trickery she uses to get around that. Threading the needle is a bit of a challenge for most of us, and she's doing it more or less blind. So here's what she does - puts a white scrap of fabric under the feed-dogs, blackens the end of the thread (about the last six inches) with a marker, and then coats it with clear nail polish to stiffen it. In a couple minutes she can poke it through the needle's eye and keep sewing again. I can't imagine how she wrestles the bobbin thread. She's always been a very resourceful lady. Her quilts and assorted whatnots are an eyesore, but she sends them off to Africa where it doesn't seem to matter as much. And it probably doesn't, really. I'm over-fussy.

But she gets tired of it. She gets tired of everything. She's ninety-eight. Imagine if all your age-peers had already been dead for fifteen years. Imagine if you couldn't hear any conversations, couldn't see well enough to read, or sew, or whatever.... imagine that.

My new-year's wish for my grandmother is that the Angel of Death will finally remember her and take her away to wherever she's headed. Who knows? It may even be the Mennonite heaven she's been waiting for. Wherever it is, I hope she gets there soon.