Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Art's manifesto

Some of you have read Art's blog and might be a little worried about him moving to Gramma's and commencing his manifesto.Don't be alarmed. He's since been to a couple of meetings (oh wait .... that may be what got him into this mood....).

This is his not-so-scary look. Do you like the toque I made for him? It was an experiment. I'm testing out several patterns I have, with different sized knitting needles. He says this one isn't all that warm. I'm working on the next one as we speak.

Poker Ride

The Endako Poker Ride went well. There weren't as many people as last year, but we were competing with rides in two other neighbouring towns on the same day. Probably not the best of planning. Oh well. It was still fun. We made some money for the Community Hall and enjoyed some fellowship. Unfortunately, there are always some yahoos who have to get drunk and crash and nearly kill themselves .... all in the name of FUN (good thing we make them sign waivers).

I was unable to get any great pictures because when there were skidoos all over I was busy inside. This is a lull in the activity, when all the poker hands are getting posted on the walls.This is the only outside picture I was able to get at LAST year's ride. We had a whole lot more snow this year.

I think Hedgehog's a gone-r

All the king's horses and all the king's men....couldn't put hedgy back together again. Poor hedgy. They must have doused him in beef gravy at the toy factory.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

trail blazers

This coming Saturday is the annual Endako Snowmobile Poker Ride. Part of the course goes through our property, so Art will be manning the "checkpoint" at Gramma's (our ghost house, up the hill). I'm volunteering over at the Community Hall, which is also the start/finish line. Yesterday Sylvia, her son Lyle and girlfriend Liz came through on their skidoos to do a final check on the route. I love how Sylvia is crossing herself, while Lyle is popping wheelies (if that's even what you call it on a snowmobile).

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Xena the Destroyer

Ya, sure, she looks like a peaceful little angel in this photo. Believe me, she's just taking a break.Notice all the toys laying around her? Well, those aren't even hers. She looted them from her cousin Brutis' toybox. She particularly goes for the ones that squeak, so we got her some of her own for the long drive home. They didn't last long. Each of these poor little guys is now in the hospital getting their guts and brains sewn back in.
Not to mention eyeballs and spleens (the squeeking device inside).I think Blackie and Chickie were feeling sorry for poor hedgehog because they appear to be guarding him here. He really got the worst of it. Even his little legs are ripped off.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

winter harvest

We've been getting more snow and the wind's been blowing. The drifting makes an eerily beautiful landscape. Here's what the garden looked like this morning (before Art got out there with the skid steer and cleared the driveway....yet again).I think I told you how the first snow (back on October 27) took us by such a surprise that we didn't have time to get the garden harvested. So, the turnips, beets and brussel sprouts have been out there all this time. Just for fun yesterday, Art did a little digging and came up with these.They are turnips. Not only are they perfectly fine, they have continued to grow. Even the greens are still green! I cooked a bunch for supper and they were fantastic. Turns out that although we've had layer upon layer of snow and ice, the ground underneath never did freeze. And I guess the snow insulated it enough to allow things to keep growing. Pretty unusual conditions and not likely to occur that way again. This has sure been a season to remember.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Let it Snow

We are in the middle of a blizzard right now. Snowing like mad and it's coming in from the east. That usually means we're in for a good one. There's about 5 inches accumulated in as many hours. A good day for staying inside and sipping hot tea.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Goodbye, my Momma

We are back home from a very solemn trip to the coast. I had to say goodbye to my Mom. She was a very vibrant woman and I'll miss her with all my heart. I think I might make a webpage or a blog in her memory.

After these recent days of much reflection and reminiscing, dealing with friends and family .... some strong and stoic ..... some on the toonier side of loonie .... I came upon this writing on a blog I visit now and then. It was exactly what I needed to hear (I replace all the "you"s with "I"s).

After reading it, I "google"d the author and found that this is a slightly condensed version. Who ever did the condensing also felt the need to remove all references to God. I put some of them back.

"The Awakening

by Virginia Marie Swift

A time comes in your life when you finally get it...when, in the midst of all your fears and insanity, you stop dead in your tracks and somewhere the voice inside your head cries out...ENOUGH!

Enough fighting and crying and blaming and struggling to hold on.Then, like a child quieting down after a tantrum, you blink back your tears and begin to look at the world through new eyes.

This is your awakening...

You realize it's time to stop hoping and waiting for something to change, or for happiness, safety and security to magically appear over the next horizon. You realize that in the real world there aren't always fairy tale endings, and that any guarantee of "happily ever after" must begin with you... and in the process a sense of serenity is born of acceptance.

You awaken to the fact that you are not perfect and that not everyone will always love, appreciate or approve of who or what you are... and that's OK. They are entitled to their own views and opinions. You learn the importance of loving and championing yourself... and in the process a sense of new found confidence is born of self-approval.

You stop complaining and blaming other people for the things they did to you - or didn't do for you - and you learn that the only thing you can really count on is the unexpected. You learn that people don't always say what they mean or mean what they say and that not everyone will always be there for you and that everything isn't always about you. So, you learn to stand on your own and to take care of yourself... and in the process a sense of safety and security is born of self-reliance.

You stop judging and pointing fingers and you begin to accept people as they are and to overlook their shortcomings and human frailties... and in the process a sense of peace and contentment is born of forgiveness.

You learn to open up to new worlds and different points of view. You begin reassessing and redefining who you are and what you really stand for. You learn the difference between wanting and needing and you begin to discard the doctrines and values you've outgrown, or should never have bought into to begin with. You learn that there is power and glory in creating and contributing and you stop maneuvering through life merely as a "consumer" looking for your next fix. You learn that principles such as honesty and integrity are not the outdated ideals of a bygone era, but the mortar that holds together the foundation upon which you must build a life.

You learn that you don't know everything, it's not your job to save the world and that you can't teach a pig to sing. You learn that the only cross to bear is the one you choose to carry and that martyrs get burned at the stake. Then you learn about love. You learn to look at relationships as they really are and not as you would have them be. You learn that alone does not mean lonely. You stop trying to control people, situations and outcomes. You learn to distinguish between guilt and responsibility and the importance of setting boundaries and learning to say NO. You also stop working so hard at putting your feelings aside, smoothing things over and ignoring your needs.

You learn that your body really is your temple. You begin to care for it and treat it with respect. You begin to eat a balanced diet, drink more water, and take more time to exercise. You learn that being tired fuels doubt, fear, and uncertainty and so you take more time to rest. And, just as food fuels the body, laughter fuels our soul. So you take more time to laugh and to play.

You learn that, for the most part, you get in life what you believe you deserve, and that much of life truly is a self-fulfilling prophecy. You learn that anything worth achieving is worth working for and that wishing for something to happen is different than working toward making it happen. More importantly, you learn that in order to achieve success you need direction, discipline and perseverance. You also learn that no one can do it all alone, and that it's OK to risk asking for help. You learn the only thing you must truly fear is fear itself. You learn to step right into and through your fears because you know that whatever happens you can handle it and to give in to fear is to give away the right to live life on your own terms.

You learn to fight for your life and not to squander it living under a cloud of impending doom. You learn that life isn't always fair, you don't always get what you think you deserve and that sometimes bad things happen to unsuspecting, good people... and you learn not to always take it personally. You learn that God is not punishing you and everything isn't always somebody's fault. It's just life happening.

You learn to admit when you are wrong and to build bridges instead of walls. You learn that negative feelings such as anger, envy and resentment must be understood and redirected or they will suffocate the life out of you and poison the universe that surrounds you.

You learn to be thankful and to take comfort in many of the simple things we take for granted, things that millions of people upon the earth can only dream about: a full refrigerator, clean running water, a soft warm bed, a long hot shower.

Then, you begin to take responsibility for yourself by yourself and you make yourself a promise to never betray yourself and to never, ever settle for less than your heart's desire. You make it a point to keep smiling, to keep trusting, and to stay open to every wonderful possibility. You hang a wind chime outside your window so you can listen to the wind.

Finally, with courage in your heart and God at your side, you take a stand, you take a deep breath, and you begin to design the life you want to live as best you can."

    Valentine's Day

    Here's what I had for breakfast this morning.

    Friday, February 09, 2007

    There's a pain in my heart

    This is my Mom's obituary in today's Victoria Times Colonist. Even though I wrote it, it sucked the wind out of me when I saw it actually published.

    Wednesday, February 07, 2007

    I'm on a blogging break

    For any of you who might be missing my posts and are wondering where I went ..... I'm not too in the mood right now. My mother passed away a few days ago, so I am busy dealing with all that that entails. I will be back soon.