Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wednesday Word of the Week

This weeks word is:   CAREFREE

care·free   [kair-free]

1. without anxiety or worry.

2. requiring little care: carefree fabrics.

care·free·ness, noun


1. lighthearted, joyous, elated, cheerful, gleeful, blithe.

 I love this word.  Don't we all wish we were more carefree??  Last night I had a chance to act carefree for an hour.  It was a beautiful night so our photography class met at one of the local parks.   This weeks lesson was on photographing movement or action. 

So we all took the chance to act a little like children and play in the park.

We blew bubbles
We went down the slides and we jumped off park benches

And there is nothing better than soaring up high on a swing set

Even Deanne got into the act

But, you know how it is.......after too much carefree child's play, we all need to sit down for a wee rest

It's great when you can learn something new and have fun at the same time.  And I can't remember the last time I went down a slide or soared in a swing.

I think my goal for the summer will be to be more carefree. 

Soooo, having said that, I may not do a word of the week post regularly for July and August. 
I will still do them but I may miss a week or two and replace it
with a Wordless Wednesday perhaps. 
That could be a challenge because you know I like to talk so I might struggle with the
wordless part.  Lol 

I hope to be taking lots of photos this summer so I should have lots of wordless material if I can learn to shut my mouth. (well, I guess its more like my fingers since I'm typing)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

You've Got Mail

 Mail, at last.  It has been awhile since we have been able to say that in Canada.  The Postal Strike has ended and regular mail delivery resumed today. 

I came home for lunch and saw a stack of mail.  Sadly a lot of it consisted of bills.  (Go figure eh!)  That was one of the upsides of the strike.  No bills. 

We are lucky that it didn't drag on too much longer as it was really harming many smaller businesses.

Anyway, as I casually tossed aside the bills I uncovered a little gem.  A belated birthday card from sweet Lauren.   Check out the postmark.......
 It was stuck in the mail since May 27.    LOL   However, it was a fun little surprise.  Isn't it great when you get an unexpected surprise??   Thanks Lauren!

The next treat in the pile was special too....

 Awhile ago I won a giveaway from Teri over at White Sheep Farm.  There was a pretty card, a pile of 4 different wools and this

A Gift Certificate for $25 worth of wool from Wool-n-wares. 

Thanks Teri, I can't wait to spend my winnings. 

I loved all your comments on my last post.  I guess for now - rambling and unfocused it is!  You guys are the best.

Sunday, June 26, 2011


I have been doing some contemplation about alot of things lately.  I think it is good to step back once in awhile and think about what you are doing and why.

I'm not sure if its a rut or not but I am feeling a bit disconnected lately.  The past few weeks have been busy and my nice comfortable routine has been disrupted.  But I think it may be more than that. 

Time is flying by.  I can almost not believe that next week will be July.  Where did Spring go?  I can count on one hand the number of days it was suitable to wear shorts, and next week Nanny and Poppy arrive for a month at the beach.  The beach??  It feels like early May outside and it feels the same in my mental calendar.   I'm not ready for it to be July yet it is right around the corner.

I feel disconnected to this blog lately as well.  What is it??  It started out as a rug hooking blog yet it has been weeks since I did a hooking post.   It was also intended as a means to explore caregiving further yet I find it difficult to share alot of that with people.  While I do occasionally post about Mom and Alzheimer's, I can't help feeling like I might be invading her privacy by sharing too much about what we go through here. 

Many times it is just me rambling about some minor thing or another.   Lately I have added some photography to the mix.  After my last post I couldn't help wonder "Who cares if I played golf..."   I didn't mean it to sound exactly like that but really, was that worthy of a post? 

One thing I do know for sure is that I enjoy blogging more than I imagined.  I am not considering stopping or taking a break but I will be taking some time to reflect on how I would like to see this blog evolve.   I have no ideas yet, and maybe it is just a means for me to share a little bit of my world - whether it be exciting or mundane - with a group of lovely people.  Maybe it doesn't need a specific focus?  Who knows.

I look forward to reading your comments each day.  I have connected with a lovely group of people.  You are supportive and bring me more smiles and laughter than you can imagine.

I spent the early morning with the camera while in my thoughtful state, so here are few pretty blooms.  I hope you saw something pretty this weekend too.

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Dream Team

The Dream Golf Team had a fabulous day.   Why was it a dream team?  Well, it was me and 3 men.  And they spoiled me. Lol 

The weather was perfect.  Bright and sunny with just a slight breeze, enough to keep the bugs away.  The only thing missing was we all forgot sunscreen and I have a slight burn.  Actually, its like a farmers tan - knees to ankles and arms.  Looks kind of funny now.  No tank tops until it evens out.

It was my 2nd year golfing with these guys.  I arrived and one of them already ordered my lunch.  It was waiting for me at the clubhouse.  The 2 golf carts were reserved and pre-stocked with refreshments.   And not once did I have to go fetch a stray ball. 

I am thrilled to report that none of my balls went for a swim.  I almost never get over the big pond on #4.   Its not a long hole but that stupid pond in the middle always psychs me out.  But today I landed my tee shot right on the green!   And yes, I did a little happy dance. 

I did, however, fall victim to the dreaded gully on #7.  My ball ended up in the gully (where the snakes live....eeeek).   We left it there. 

We finished the course with a par score.  Not bad!  We had about 80 participants and ended the day with a barbeque back at the clubhouse.  

I'm tired, happy and a teeny bit sore.  Now its time to catch up with all of your posts.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wednesday Word of the Week

This edition featured word is  :   Hostess

host·ess     [hoh-stis]


1. a woman who receives and entertains guests in her own home or elsewhere.  

2. a woman employed in a restaurant or place of amusement to receive, seat, or assist patrons.

3. a woman who acts as master of ceremonies, moderator, or interviewer for a television or radio program; host.

4. a woman employed by an airline, railroad, bus company, etc., to see that passengers are comfortable throughout a trip, usually receiving and seating them, and sometimes serving them refreshments.

5. a woman who manages a resort or hotel or who directs its social activities.

6. taxi dancer.    (OK this one cracked me up so I have to add a supplementary definition)

Taxi Dancer


a girl or woman employed, as by a dance hall, to dance with patrons who pay a fee for each dance or for a set period of time.   (So just to be clear ---- There will be NONE of that going on  LOL)

So starting in about an hour, our municipality is rolling out the Welcome Mat to host the Annual Spring Conference of the Association of Municipal Administrators.   Approximately 90+ will be arriving and expecting us - the organizing committee to be the Hostess with the Mostess.   That's me, right??

The Swag Bags are filled, the venue is prepared, the hospitality room for tonight is stocked......
That is Root Beer (of course)  ;)

The next fews day will be jammed packed.  There are lots of great sessions and speakers booked and quite frankly, I am looking forward to getting out of the office for a few days.   The conference ends around noon on Friday and then immediately following that is a tee-time at the golf course.  I have the Dream Team.  More on that another time.

PS. Update on yesterday.  Auntie is doing OK - just a little slower and no lifting or sudden movements. Thank you all for your concern.  And not long after I posted yesterday I got a call changing the time of my class so I was able to get Millie all prettied up at the groomers.   So the moral of that story is things eventually work themselves out.

OK, Gotta go be all hostessy

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Flying by the seat of my pants

Buckle up boys and girls ---  It's gonna be one of those weeks.

Most of the time we function on a fairly regimented routine at home.  With me working and Mom's care, a schedule is a lifeline.  And 99% of the time it works like a charm.   But this is the week that 1% creeps in and the whole system goes into chaos.

It is only Tuesday and I am officially "Flying by the seat of my pants".

The 3rd week of the month is typically meeting-heavy at work but on top of that our municipality is hosting a conference for about 90 delegates from around the province.   I am on the host committee so having a few things left to organize and confirm before they arrive tomorrow.   And in between helping out and attending the conference I still have to review the 90+ page document for this weeks Council meeting.    Add in photography class tonight and Millie's groomers appointment (which coincidentally overlap - not sure whats gonna happen there)

Oh, and the icing on the cake --- Auntie has had an injury.  Details are sketchy at best.  (she lies to me about stuff like this and I am forced to investigate and interrogate until I am satisfied)   

I had to work late last night but I called home after supper to check in.  She sounded funny but I thought maybe Mom was giving her a bit of a hard time so I let it go.  When I arrived home several hours later she was as growly as a bear.  Later as she got up to get a cup of tea I noticed she was holding herself a little funny and walking kind of slow.  So the interrogation began....

So, what I think happend (still not 100% sure) is that she tripped/slipped in the kitchen and fell hard against the kitchen sink, landing on her ribs.   I can tell when she moves she is having pain but remember - she lies!  (Just because she doesn't want me to worry - but guessing makes it worse) She knows if she tells me the truth I will have a fit and take her to the hospital.  And to her - that is a fate worse than death.   So in between everything else I will have to keep an eye on it. 

It always seems like when I have extra work committments - something happens.  I'm NOT saying she does it on purpose BUT it is an interesting coincidence.  Hmmmmmm.   OK really I know its not on purpose.

I really can't wait for this week to end.  Friday is our corporate Golf Tournament.  More about that later but I think I will be taking out some frustration on those little balls.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Claws and paws

Nothing says summer like fresh lobster.  In fact I waiting while they were being cooked.  I got them 20 minutes out of the pot.  Doesn't get much fresher than that, does it?

I made a small potato salad, an artichoke and hearts of palm salad and a big bowl of melted butter for dipping. 

Mmmmmm, yummy.  And there is enough for leftovers tomorrow too.

The only problem is it's not garbage pick-up week so now I have to find a "creative and non-illegal" way to dispose of the shells.  Trust me - lobster shells left for 2 weeks in warm weather would not be fun.

I want to show you the visitor we had this morning.  It appears he (or she) decided that our backyard was a buffet or something.
I'm not sure but I think it is a muskrat.  There is a small creek that runs down the hill behind our house.  He was still wet so I think that is where he came from.
He was not the least bit concerned with me.  In fact, he was either posing for the camera or telling me to not disturb him. 
 He is kind of cute until I noticed a few holes dug in the back yard as I was trying to sneak around and get his picture.  After seeing the holes - and putting 2 and 2 together, he started to look less cute and more like a varmit.

He continued to ignore me and eat his breakfast of leaves.  And that is when my attention slowly drifted to the right.........and I noticed a different kind of leaves.......
My SUNFLOWER.   If  Mr. Varmit thinks he is getting a gourmet dessert by munching on my lone sunflower sprout - he has another thing coming.    If he touches it, his days are numbered.  I will show no mercy to defend my baby sprout.  

Consider yourself warned Mr. Muskrat

Friday, June 17, 2011

Suffering for Art?

It is said that many artists suffer for their art.  I certainly do not consider myself an artist, yet tonight I did suffer a little.

I gave at least a pound of flesh to a killer swarm of black flies that did their damage on any exposed skin. 

As you know I am taking a beginner photography class.  Each week we are given an assignment.  This week we are supposed to shoot something interesting about a door.  But tonight I just wanted to play.   One of the goals of this class is to teach us to use our manual settings as opposed to the easy automatic settings.  We are learning to adjust the shutter speed, ISO, aperture etc.  This was stressful for me in the beginning.  Tonight I thought I would just use the auto settings.  Well after about 6 shots I thought "Gee, this isn't as much fun".  So I went back to the manual settings.  You have more control and get crisper shots.

The LUPINS are out in full force on the Tyndal Road.  I love them so I braved the black flies (AKA no-see-ems) and took about 94 different shots.

Don't panic - I'm not going to show you all of them but here is a sampling.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wednesday Word of the Week

The word of the day is ..... Stink-eye

 stink eye

Part of Speech: n

Definition: a facial expression of distrust, disdain, or disapproval; also called skunk eye, hairy eyeball

Example: When he kept me waiting, I gave him the stink eye.

Etymology: 1962

All last night I anticipated the Stink-eye.  I knew it was coming.  This morning was the new "Monthly Management Meeting" at work.   I was dreading it (for good reason).  First I must preface by saying that I have a great Boss.  Really, I'm not kidding here. 

BUT (there's always a but) he is a bit of a work-a-holic and ridiculously organized, efficient and always totally prepared.  The rest of the management team have been having trouble keeping up with him.  This is a particularly busy year for capital projects etc and we are all maxed out.  So preparing the level of detail for the reports he was requiring had us all wound up yesterday.

I knew I was not totally prepared and I did not want to get the Stink-eye.  Have you ever got the Stink-eye from your boss??   It sucks.    I did get the old hairy eyeball but much sooner than I anticipated.  It was 5 minutes to nine and I was setting up my laptop in the meeting room.  We have a projector so our documents can be displayed on the wall for everyone to see.  I was all anxious and nervous and dag-nabbit, the projector wouldn't work.  Oh no I think - this is not good, starting off with a problem.  I dialed the tech officer's cell answer.  Crap.   I dial her answer.  Nooooooo.  I go out to the receptionist and tell them to find someone and get them in here now!  I continue to try and connect and just get an error message.  Then the boss, who is sitting right in front of me, asks if I am ready to start.  I frustratedly confess that I can't get the projector to work - its broken.

Then there it was.............................

He looked at me and said.................."Ummm, you might want to plug the cable into your laptop."  OMG I got so wound up waiting for my report to get ripped to shreds I didn't connect the cable.  I was so mortified and then the nervous giggle burst out.  He was laughing by this time too.   Then I quietly called the receptionist and whispered "cancel tech support".   

Actually that little incident did calm me down a bit and whether it is good or bad - no one escaped the Stink-eye.  I was not alone.  

Monday, June 13, 2011

Back on and locked down

I couldn't wait any longer.  I had to break down and call tech support for the internet service. 

I had to build up my courage because my last experience was less than amusing.  They guy on the other end of the phone wouldn't listen to me, talked to me like I was 4 yrs old and tried to sell me new stuff. In his opinion it was my wireless router which was not their equipment and I needed to buy his brand.  Despite the fact that I was having NO trouble with the wireless. In the end I got so fed up I hung up and frigged around with the settings myself until it worked.

So at lunch time I dialed the phone and was shocked at what happened.  I had a lady who was polite and helpful.  She said she would send someone to check the line first and when I suggested I thought it was the modem, so said she would send a new modem with the repair guy.  She said he would be at the house around 3:30pm.  I thanked her, but secretly laughed thinking I'll be lucky if he is here by 6pm because we all know repair guys are rarely on time.

Well...............he arrived at 3:30pm.  Can you believe it!!!  Apparently there was an issue with the outside line as well as the old modem. He was so great and helpful.  While he was replacing the old modem he saw the old wireless router.  He told me that the new modems were not only more powerful, they also were capable of doing double duty as a wireless router and I could get rid of the old one.  

I told him the story (which I have told almost nobody til now) that when I installed my own wireless in the house I initially had it as a secured network.  I had some issues connecting to my work laptop so I took off the security for a few days.  When I went to put the security back on ---- I couldn't remember the password and couldn't re-set it.  DUH!  So my wireless has been wide open for a couple of years.  I hated that because I didn't want the neighbors I don't like stealing my signal.  Lol

He laughed at me, but politely, and hooked it up and re-set the security.  So sorry neighbors - get your own internet.

Everything is working perfectly now.  Thank you Jamie! 

I had to add this cartoon because it made me laugh.  When you are on hold for awhile, do you talk and complain to yourself ??   Don't lie - we all grumble and gripe when we are on hold

  1. While you are here you should visit Tricia's blog for a fun new Giveaway.  Visit Hillcrest Home Prims to check it out. 

Sunday, June 12, 2011


As you can tell by the title of this post, there were a few attempts this weekend.  Notice the post isn't titled "success". 

I have been wanting a nice thick bbq steak.  Saturday I bought 3 large beef tenderloin steaks and made a nice tossed salad.  I anticipated this meal all day.  Turned on the BBQ and nothing happened.  I fiddled and fussed and could not get any gas through.  I was less than amused.  I ended up frying them inside.  They were still OK but its not the same.  So now I add "fix bbq" to the handymans list.

And I never found that perfect photo inspiration yet either.  You can tell because this is what I resorted to capturing this morning.  You know its desperate when you go to dandelions - Lol
I hope this post is not yet another failed attempt.  I have been having internet trouble at home all weekend.  It is going on and off randomly and driving me nuts.  If it still persists tomorrow then I will have to break down and call the company.  I hate dealing with tech support. 

I haven't been commenting on too many blogs this weekend because it usually goes out after I am almost finished and I lose the comment.  So I have given up.  In fact, I have lost connection about 3 times while I am writing this post.

We get so darned addicted to the technology that  a few days without it working properly and it can make you batty!   It seems like the past few weeks, if its not blogger acting up its my internet. 

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Say Cheese

It was a picture perfect day.  Bright sunshine and a slight breeze - just enough to keep the bugs away. 

After after my large morning coffee and a quick check of emails I planned to go out with the camera and find something to photograph to complete my homework assignment.   I did take about 70 shots but none that I really am in love with yet.  Time is running out.  Maybe I am over-thinking this whole thing. 

After lunch I forced myself to get my hands dirty and I filled the 2 pine planter boxes and planted new sunflower seeds.  I placed them in front of the bench in the back yard where they should get lots of sunshine all day.  Fingers crossed that the heavy rain tomorrow doesn't wash away the seeds.   And the lone sprout that grew from my failed attempt at plant starting indoors, got a place of honor.  I recieved a cute froggy planter for Christmas so I planted my super-star in it.

Here are a few samples of what I saw this morning.

Friday, June 10, 2011


You would think that once you are finished school the word "homework" would be wiped from your vocabulary.  The truth is it just takes on a new meaning.  Once you have a home to take care of you realize that there are all different kinds of "home"work.

This is one of my assignments this weekend.  To do some yard maintenance.  (Have I mentioned how much I hate digging in the dirt?)  

Notice the cut grass laying around.....My Handyman is harder to find than Waldo these days.  He called after supper and I blasted him so he arrived about a half hour later and mowed the lawn.   Clearly it needed to be mowed (a few days ago)

  I WILL plant my sunflower seeds tomorrow.   I decided that of I waited until I dug some new flower beds it was never going to happen - so I saw these planter boxes and had an AHA moment.   I suppose it is kind of like cheating but WHATEVER!   Its not like the seeds are likely to grow anyway :)

And i haven't had a chance to fill you in on the photography class from Tuesday night.  Well, I've been too busy eating!  Lol  My first meal without braces was a huge spinach salad with lots of sunflower seeds, followed by a Wunderbar.  Tomorrow night a big thick bbq steak is on the menu.

Back to the class - there are 4 of us in the early group.  And one of them is our very own hooker Deanne so there were lots of laughs.  We spent the first lessson learning about all the settings for aperture, ISO, shutter speed etc.  She wants us to learn to shoot manual - not with the easy auto settings. 

In between laughing we asked about 1000 questions.  And when we left she gave us homework for next week.  We have to shoot something we love and then we will get critiqued.   I still haven't figured out what I am going to choose but tomorrow morning I'm hitting the road to tackle this homework. 

Tonight I just practiced a little, trying to remember what all those different numbers mean.  There are so many things I love it is hard to pick just one.    Lilacs are out -  I love those

And I love walking around cemetaries and taking photos.  This lone cross caught my eye tonight.
 None of these will be my final assignment.  Who knows what I might find tomorrow??

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wednesday Word of the Week

Todays word is:  SMILE

smile   [smahyl] 

verb, smiled, smil·ing, noun

–verb (used without object)

1. to assume a facial expression indicating pleasure, favor, or amusement, but sometimes derision or scorn, characterized by an upturning of the corners of the mouth.

2. to regard with favor: Luck smiled on us that night.

3. to have a pleasant or agreeable appearance or aspect, as natural scenes, objects, etc.: The landscape smiled in the sunlight.

I almost cancelled this weeks edition of the Word of the Week for Big Breaking News.
However, I reconsidered and decided to incorporate my big breaking news into the post.  I have had a huge smile all day.  In fact, my face is almost sore from smiling.   Can't seem to stop.
Hmmm, are you wondering what is making me smile??  ........................
OK, you twisted my arm - I'll tell you the Big Breaking News
This morning....................I had my braces removed.  Yippee, Woohoo, Hurray etc etc. 
I have my smile back.

Now I have to go and eat everything I can get my hands on.  Lol

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Random Leftovers

There wasn't a lot of exciting activities this weekend to put in a blog post so instead you get random ramblings.

I didn't get to the Garden Centre this weekend so a few more plants get to live another day. Haha  I have a couple of days off in the middle of the week so I'll do it then.  I didn't have the ambition to dig in the dirt today. 

I am reading The Help by Kathryn Stockett and can't put it down.  I'm almost finished.  I spent most of the afternoon reading.  It was so relaxing but now I feel like I wasted an afternoon by getting nothing done.  But, then again, chores can always wait another day.

We were having company for supper.  So I put a big roast in the oven and late afternoon peeled all the vegetables.  I just finished peeling when the phone rang and they cancelled.   But by then it was too late so I guess we will be having leftovers for a few days.   Since the weather is getting nicer it will probably be the last big meal I prepare for awhile.  Soon it will be easy salads and bbq's.

I did get some more hooked on my rug but I'm almost to the point where I am stuck.  I think I may have to take some pictures and ask you all for some suggestions.  I don't have a clue what to do with the middle section.  No pictures tonight though as I am charging the camera battery.  Tuesday night is my first night of the 6 week photography class I signed up to take.  I'm excited.

I found a great new iPad app tonight - FlipBoard.   And it was free - even better!  I think it is one of my favorites and it a great option for Google Reader.  The blogs come up magazine style.  If you have an iPad, check it out.

Thats enough random ramblings for tonight.