Saturday, November 24, 2007

I've Found Family!

It's been very busy in my life and finding time to sit down and write on this blog is like trying to find out who killed Mr. Battle with what and where!

Another mystery, what happened to my mother's family and where are they all, is now starting to unravel. A simple post on a geneology bulletin board in 2005 has led to a young man named Paul Sharman contacting me - my grandparents are his great great grandparents through my mother's sister, Mary. So he is the same generation as my grandchildren. He's hooked me up with another relative through my mother's sister Carrie - apparantly I still have a first cousin alive in the old neighbourhood, Bermondsy, London. He's 82 and his son Thomas (and wife Janice) have contacted me as well.

I'm so very excited! Now when I go to England, I'll have family connections to make - visits and new friendships to build.

All because of that little paragraph on a bulletin board on the internet.

Ya gotta love the net.


check out my new cousin twice removedl:

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

It's been so long....

I know, I've been neglecting this spot and some are quite disappointed in my lack of verbosity these days. However, I'm back and willing to spill more of my guts for all and sundry who browse my way.

This has been a tough summer/fall. No doubt about it. I've been brooding about it, not happy at all. But, it's only another drop in the bucket, which is on its way to tipping over. God must know what He's doing, 'cause I certainly don't know what I'm doing.

The other day the family came over and it was a cacaphonic melee. You couldn't hear yourself think, let alone talk or anyone else for that matter. We took some pics and here are some of them.

This, of course, is Evan and Mailea with their nana. These two are so funny together - Mailea a bossy boots tries to reign in the impossible flying Evan. It's really cute too see them together.

My mom really missed us when we were away. She wants me there because I'm her anchor - however, she fared well considering her worry about me. That break is so important. Here we are clowing around in the kitchen. She is never happy with any picture of herself. Neither am I.

Ed and I have been through a lot together this summer, and it has strengthened our bond. I still want to smack him most of the time, but now its a much more loving smack than usual.
I can't say that I've been content for a while in this life I have here, however, I am learning to grow through it.
Hopefully, I'll figure out what God has for me without too much more of a struggle or just waiting until it happens. We'll see.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Lazy Days at Camp Sunrise

Well, here we are once again, at our favourite holiday location - Camp Sunrise. Our trailer is a comfy, cozy little home away from home where we laze around and eat when we feel like it and sleep when we feel like it. Aaahhhh, if only life could be like this forever. But alas, the money runs out and eventually we must return to the busy and complicated existence. But for now, we won't dwell on that!

Evan is sure enjoying the water. Like his older brother Derek, he loves water and I think is part fish. I'm sure if I offered him Gillyweed to be able to swim under water for an hour, he'd just love it.

I bought a wonderful book in Gibsons the other day - Charmed Knits. A book full of wonderfully bewitched patterns for the knitting wizard in all of us. I love it. Nathan asked for a wizard's robe - which will make a lovely housecoat around the house! A wizard's wand pouch will add to it and give him the opportunity to dress his part for halloween!

I love the last book of the Harry Potter series. J.K. really pulled it all together nicely and brought out images of the gospel that resonate within each one of us - making the ultimate sacrifice for others! I think I'll review it for one of my columns.

Anyway, I'm back to being a lazy vacationer, enough writing for now!


Saturday, June 30, 2007

Birthday Season

Yes, it is birthday time again! Time when we go broke! Five birthdays in one ten day period!!! Alethea, Hosea, Evan, Sheena & Sarah - the whole gang was here. We sat in the tent Ed had put up on the deck for the boys and with all the little kids we played "I've got a secret" under a blanket. The little ones thought this was so cool.

Birthdays are so special. We only have them once a year but it is a time when we can get together with people we love and let them know how much they mean to us. It was so nice to play with the babies and kids, I've missed them by working so much these days. One day I'll have the time to spend with them, but I'll have to make a point to plan it soon - semi retirement! I wish!

Anyway, life goes on and on and on!

I'll post pics soon as I get them on the computer!


Monday, June 18, 2007

Write! Canada

I just arrived home from the Christian writer's conference in Guelph. What a great time I had. Not because it was 'fun' but because I felt like I was among a group of people who all "get" me! I know that's funny to some of you, but writer's are a different breed, I'm discovering. They read - a lot! They buy tons of books and keep little bits of information, tid bits of knowledge they share them with people whenever they can. My kids have referred to me as the "encyclopedia" - "go ask mom" is what you'll hear.

So, I'm not alone - at all. A meeting of minds took place. A meeting of souls took place. It was wonderful to hear the keynote speaker read from his own books about the Cree nation at the time of the treaty signing. It was delightful to meet other writers. I met Cyndy Saltzmann from Nebraska - she writes cute mysteries and non fiction on uncluttering your life! I instantly liked her and her personality ooozes out of her. What a beautiful person.

I'm home now. Life is returning to normal. But somehow I don't think it will ever be the same nor will I think of it in quite the same light. I've known for a while now that I'm a writer, but... now I'm a writer!


Thursday, June 14, 2007

Ok, Ok, I'm here already!

OK, so everyone has been telling me that I'm not writing on my blog. Well, it's true. It's been a while. But, BUT... I'm very busy these days with conferences and presentations and kids and well, you know my life.

So, even now I'm at a conference and it's about writing!!! Write! Canada. I'm hoping to improve my writing and work on a future that includes more writing.

So pray for me that I'll learn stuff, meet inspiring people and make contacts that will benefit me in the future.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007


Yes, that wonderful, wacky state of affairs that permeates my life - chaorder. Everyday the morning starts off with dragging myself from this wonderful place in my dreams. I have to get up. I have to get up. I don't want to get up. I have to get up.

I'm not the only one like this. There are currently no morning people living in this house. However, once up, we are off and running. Get the kids dressed, grab them something to eat, quick get out the door, "You're going to be late!!!" I yell down the hall. Hurry, hurry, hurry.

I get to work and slowly sip on my Tim's while I turn on my email. Oh my gosh, look at all that red... Ok, so I'll get started reading them but then comes the mass invasion, one after the other people enter my office, 'hi', 'how are you today','what's up' and my personal favourite 'whoa, are you ok?' So, it's almost 1030 and I haven't finished reading the emails. Check the voice mail. More interruptions. Crisis in the parking lot. Staff meeting, I'll check the emails later.

This is a normal day. There is usually very little difference from one day to the next. And it's amazing that anything ever gets done when what seems like chaos and disorder is the main course. However, there is a kind of order in the chaos - chaorder. Not only do things get done, a lot of things get done.

However, in all of this, some things get left out. I've been wanting to phone my friend, Linda, however, by the time the chaorder is over it's too late to call her. She's tucked away in dreamland by the time I get my boys settled down in the evening - the time difference is three hours.

I'll have to settle for trying to remember during tomorrow's chaorder. I've found that if I program my phone to beep and remind me to do something, I'll get it done.

With God's help, I make it through. Rather than calm down the chaos, I've taken to turning it into a sense of order. Sometimes it's just the thing to do - just go with the flow, allowing yourself to be blown by the wind wherever it takes you.

The answer my friend is blowing in the wind!


Monday, May 14, 2007

Mother's Day Musings!

Full of noise and chaos, children squealing with laughter, crying over owies, loud footsteps on the laminate floor - this was Mother's Day. We asked the longest living mother of the family what she wanted to do, and she said, have all the family over for dinner. So we did. Ed made a wonderful turkey dinner, the only ones missing were son-in-law Mike who had to work and Derek - who had the audacity to be in Hawaii during this celebration. Thank goodness the rain held off and we could send the children outside to play.

I love when my children bring me homemade Mother's Day gifts. Evan made me a wonderful picture of a butterfly with painted hand prints with a heart warming poem to go with it. Nathan made me a booklet with his picture in it and an acronym of the word Mother that he made up.

I'm dismayed that my daughter Sheena is no longer making her own cards with beautiful hand written sentiments. But with three small children to look after under four, her days no longer contain enough hours to do everything she needs. Hopefully, when her children are older, she'll take up that beautiful craft again.

My brother Terry always likes to write a little verse in all the cards he sends. He's a real character who likes to laugh and always has a questionable joke for me, being careful not to tell me anything too extreme!

Everyone is so different - for these occasions, I just am happy to know that my family love me and want to spend time with me. I have no need for anything really, but I'll always take a gift certificate for knitting supplies or books!

Anway, a new book I'm reading - Withering Heights by Dorothy Cannell - an amusing and light murder mystery. Just what I've needed this last few days.


Friday, May 11, 2007

Women in Leadership

Well, I've registered for another course at TWU. It's a communications course Women, Communication and Leadership. Read about the course and syllabus at this link:

The instructor is from the UK and I'm excited - I had to get permission to take the course as I didn't have one of the prereq's, however, she was more than happy to have me in the class. Let's just hope I can keep up with it. It is an intensive course over one week in August, I'll have to do some reading and writing before hand to keep up with it. It will be very interesting.

I'm also off to Guelph in June to attend Write! Canada - a Christian Writer's Conference put on by the Word Guild (www.thewordguild.com). I'm really looking forward to this conference. I've never been before - I want to learn more about writing and the industry. It will be a great opportunity to network.

What I'd really like to do is get my book going. I'm finding it hard to get the time to get into it - I really have to enter a different place in my head! But it's time to get down to business. I've got the first five or six chapters done for a children's book - Seekers of the Truth - not sure if will end up being one, two or three stories, we'll see what path it takes.

Nathan and I are going to work on some stories this summer together. It will be our project for our holildays - kind of a bonding thing. He's so good with words and I really want to encourage him with it.

Evan loves to draw and colour - so we're going to do some crafts with him this year and get his creative juices going that way - not that it takes much effort to do so!

Lots of fun things in store this summer. I can't wait!


ps. Paul, you can peek at my hair in the new photo, but I'll post it here so you can enlarge it better to see!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

My Articles Won!

I am so delighted. My editor from the Salvationist.ca sent me a note saying that they entered three of my articles to the Canadian Christian Press Awards and my articles won. You can read about it on http://www.salvationist.ca/2007/canadian-church-press-awards-of-merit/ and read the entry for May 7th. I was really tickled pink!

I've been doing a lot of contemplating lately about what I need to challenge me. Sometimes I think I need to do something different with my life. A move, or a change, perhaps. Then I think, no way, I'm not leaving here - I love what I'm doing. But I know that at some point we may be asked to do something different. What that will be I don't know.

However, I do know that sometimes we get sidetracked from our path with many temptations. One of the ways the enemy likes to sidetrack us is with pride. Yes, pride. I spoke about pride last Sunday at our service - that's because God has really spoken to me about the subject. I hate that! The path He has before us is for "us" not for others. And their path is not ours. What will be, will be God's will.

So, in light of all of these revelations, I'm going to get back on track. I did get sidetracked, I wandered off the path. However, even that wandering, in and of itself, becomes a part of the path that I follow, till it leads to growth in character and maturity in the Spirit.


Monday, April 23, 2007

Family Birthdays!

Yesterday was my grandson Isaac's birthday party. He turned two on the 15th. Today is my birthday. Slowly but surely the years are passing and I'm edging closer and closer to fifty. 48 - and I don't feel any different than I did at 30. I look different - when I look in the mirror I can see the lines on my face and when you look in the pictures I have that weight gain that screams peri-menopause. However, even though the eyelids wrinkle when I put on makeup, inside there is no change. Perhaps the change is in how I look at myself and how I feel about who I am. I don't feel any different, but I certainly think different. I'm much more settled with who I am as a person, as a woman. I'm much more confident in myself and care less what other people think of me. It's so freeing.

The more I think about it, the more I like getting older. I worry a little about my health, but not so much about age. I want to look good and I denfinately need to do something about my fitness and my weight - but I'm not too worried. Some women really hate getting older. I'm not sure what the fear is, except that I know for me, I'm a much more analytical person - logic. So I look at the whole experience differently than others might.
As my grandchildren grow and multiply, I find that I'm looking at life in a new way. I wasn't ready for grandchildren and being a working mom and very busy, I don't have as much time for my children, let alone six more added to the group. If you look at the family picture to the right on this blog, you'll notice that there are now 17 people in it. That's a far cry from six years ago when there were just nine, including my mom. However, since then the girls have married and had more children and my brother has now come to reside with our family. It's a mixed bag of family members who now gather to celebrate different birthdays and holidays.
However, it's a lot of fun too. There is so much noise and chaos, at times it's awful, but at other times it's fun. It's crazy. The kids love it. It's going to be so different for the grandchildren and our youngest children who will be much more conditioned to the noise and confusion.
My bd celebration is tonight at Swiss Chalet - I'll post some beautiful new pics of my beautiful new hairdo for tomorrow. For now, I'm going to go and rest and relax - my birthday has fallen on my day off!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

My New Haircut

Well, I got a new haircut, but I can't show you yet, don't have a pic taken. I think I really stunned everyone - I had a lot cut off. Wen't from mid length curly/messy look to short, cute & perky bob - straight! Well, it's getting nicer out and I'm getting tired of looking messy. I'm going to be riding my bike, too, of course, and I need my hair to be 'athletic' looking. But really, honestly??? I just wanted a change on a whim - and gosh, why not! Hair - it grows. Well, for some it does, not poor Michael - he keeps shaving off what little he has left!! Poor boy. He reminds me that hair is a priviledge.

My hubby doesn't seem too happy though. He's making funny faces at me and said I remind him of the neighbour. I'm afraid to ask if he means the husband or the wife. My daughter said it looked "Chic" but she prefers the soft curls. If I said that to her after a haircut, she would cry. Good thing I'm made of strong stuff!

But my mom - well, she loves it! So no more "Are you going out with your hair looking like that?" comments. Or my personal favourite "God, you look like hell! Don't you have a comb?" Yes, this is my born again Christian mom - who unfortunately has dementia. Well, I tell myself that it could be worse than having "golden girl Sofia" living with us!!!

Well, that's all for now folks! I'm so busy these days, I'm finding it hard to sit a write and my mind is so distracted that when I'm writing, my mind wanders off before I realize my fingers have stopped typing!!!


Sunday, April 15, 2007

How to Not Mess Up the Great Commission too Much.

This is a really cute piece - found the link on www.joenoland.com

Check it out - childen are the key to the future! Love it!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

BMX Boys

It was about time. The boys have grown and the last bike we bought for Nathan was when he was four. He's nine now and who can blame him for not wanting to face the summer at camp with a too small bike? Evan, well he's never had a new bike - only hand me downs, which is not a bad thing - his last one was built by one of our clients at the centre. Anyway, it was time to go shopping. We got a great deal at Canadian Tire from Ed's Rotary buddy, who could resist. The price was right and the bikes were so cool. I even couldn't resist and got myself a 6 speed Raleigh with a comfortable seat. I was so excited, I've already been out with the boys tearing up the neighbourhood.
The boys really like their bikes. Evan is so funny. He is real scattered as he rides along, not noticing where on the road he is. Last year he scared the heck out of one of the neighbours by riding out in front of her car. She came to the door all shook up at the fact that she had such a near miss. Evan lost privileges that time. He's still all over the place, so it's going to take some time to get him in line. But he is enjoying himself and with his toothless expression, lisping away, he begins to relate the most fascinating tales of bike phenomenon.
Nathan is a serious biker. He was fascinated last year when we were at the PNE watching the BMX races and stunt bikes. I'm not too afraid that he'll kill himself, but he is the kind of kid that really likes to do well at what he attempts. The serious kind. The dedicated type. Even though the bike just fits him now, he claims that a bike thats bigger won't work for him because it is the bmx style that he's really keen on. So hopefully, he'll not grow too much in the next year or two.
Well, bike time conjures up so many lovely memories for me - riding around and around the block impressing my parents with my various skills - look, no hands. Look no feet. OH NO! Crash! Yep, right into a parked car, head first over the handle bars, smack dab onto the hood of the car. No bike helmet in those days - can't believe I survived childhood. Hopefully, I'll be a bit more careful on this new bike. I know one thing for sure, it beats 20 minutes on a stationary bike in a smelly gym, staring at the same spot on the wall. This way we have the wind in our hair and the smell of the grass, trees and freshly bloomed blossoms, along the dikes, through the country roads - a glorious experience and a darn good cardio workout.
Here's to lost pounds!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Life is Short, Enjoy It!

So here I am, another Monday, another day off. Last week I took two days off in a row - ac tually, two weeks in a row! Good for me! Yes, a well deserved pat on the back! I know, it's not everyday you can do that, especially for us workaholics and perfectionists. However, today I deserve it. Mind you, I don't deserve much else - I'm miserable today. Grumped at everyone. Could have been the fact that I was up late last night mopping up vomit - yes, you heard me - YUCK!

Well, Nathan has been sick with stomache flu and he's passed it on to Evan. It seems that the flu bug just doesn't want to leave us alone. I'm taking Nathan to the dr's this week to have him checked out - he's been sick a lot this year and missed a lot of school. Hopefully, we can get him on the mend soon. I'm not sure how much more stuff Ed and I are gonna want to wipe up!!! Poor boy!

Well, life has a way of taking the mickey out of you sometimes. It's been a trying time - looking for balance and peace. I noticed that for the last few years, February and March are not good months for me. It seems like the busy time from September till now ends up with me very tired, flared up and feeling generally lousy. I usually check out in May and count the days till vacation. This year we get five weeks holiday and I can't wait until I can relax at my trailer and snooze under the canopy listening to the breeze. Those dreams will sustain me till then.

I bought a new book today - a new author. I was at Chapters spending my gift card from Derek for Christmas, and I was quickly browsing through the mystery section and noticed a book - "The Various Haunts of Men" by Susan Hill. Hopefully, I'll like it. The last time that happened I ended up with over seven books by Stephen Booth - he's turned out to be one of my favourite mystery writers now.

Life has a way of making sure you keep your sense of humour. Today I received an email from someone about balance. Instead of forwarding it, I'm going to print it here:

A lecturer when explaining stress management to an audience
raised a glass of water and asked: 'How heavy is this glass of
water?' Answers called out ranged from 20g to 500g.

The lecturer replied, 'The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends

on how long you try to hold it. If I hold it for a minute, that's not a
problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right
arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance.

In each case, it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the
heavier it becomes.' He continued, 'And that's the way it is with
stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or
later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to
carry on. '

'As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden. '

'So, before you return home tonight, put the burden of work down. Don't carry it home. You can pick it up tomorrow. Whatever burdens you're carrying now,

let them down for a moment if you can.' So, my friend, why not take a
while to just simply RELAX. Put down anything that may be a burden to you
right now. Don't pick it up again until after you've rested a while

Life is short - Enjoy it !

  • Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.

  • If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague

  • Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time, because then you won't have a leg to stand on.

  • When everything's coming your way, you're in the wrong lane

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

God Forgive Me....

I think that I need to ask God for forgiveness. I'm sure I've done something - can't figure out what, but I have this guilty feeling. What could it be? Well, I did cheat on my diet - again. Actually, I also really got mad at Evan and raised my voice, a bit harsh. And I was a bit grouchy at my brother today. Oh, yeah, and also, I've been really impatient with people lately.

So I guess I figured out what was making me feel so guilty!

Do you ever feel like you can't get anything right? That's me lately. Sometimes I feel like one big let down, I disappoint others, my family, myself. I feel like I'm going to God over and over to ask for forgiveness. For the same things.
Well, thank goodness that God's storehouse is overflowing and His grace flows freely. I need it so desperately at times.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Will it ever end...

Have you ever felt that something had its clutches in you and you couldn't break free? Has it ever felt that it was raining on you, all the time and not on anyone else?

Rain, Rain go away, come again another day... no, wait a cotton pickin minute - what am I saying, don't come back - ever!

That's what I've felt like with various health issues lately. I got over the flu only to come down with a terrible cold just a week later! So now here I am in bed, stuffy, yucky nose stuff and a scratchy sore throat, no energy, trying to keep going in spite of it all.

I think it might have something to do with working six days a week since September.

Well, it's time to get serious about my health, my weight and my work habits. I'm not sure how I'll manage it but I know I can't do it on my own. I'm going to have to ask Jesus to help me with this one.

But I have such a hard time doing that, it's just not funny. I've grown accustomed to having my own way about things. I struggle with God's will for my daily life. Not the big stuff, just the everyday little stuff. But I know that God wants to use me in a much more effective way, I just cannot seem to get how to do that.

So I'm going to have to ask Him to do this stuff for me. If I can trust Him with the big stuff I can trust him with the little every day things.

Help me Jesus!


Thursday, February 22, 2007

Get over it... Soon... Please...!

I thought that I would be over the flu by now. However, that is not the case. I've been really headachy the last couple of days, cold, shivery, you know... well, went to work anyway. What's with me? I have such a hard time laying back and taking it easy. I get restless. When I'm on vacation I'm fine - but during the work year, just staying home makes me restless. And it's not as if there isn't anything to do at home - there's lots. I just have a hard time with it.

Poor Nathan. He's been suffering with hives - all over. We had to take him to the dr and apparantly he's having a histamine reaction to the virus. THen he relapsed last night too - however, the atarax the dr gave him knocked him out that he doesn't remember being up in the night and being sick. Weird.

Anyway, I'm praying for our famiy to get over this.

Hopefully, soon.


Sunday, February 18, 2007

The Great Rip Out

I made a poncho for Mailea last year. It was way too big for her, she's such a tiny thing. So for a year, it's been her wrap around play poncho. Not good enough, I insisted that Sarah give it back to me and I'll redo it.

What? Rip the whole thing out?


So she did and then I did.

First I started with the edging. I had to do some snipping, which meant I had fluffies everywhere from the yarn - Sirdar's Snuggly Bubbly, a yarn with little nubbies every inch or so. I was good with that though. Not as bad as the dog hair lately. Once I got through the edging, I was ready to find that elusive end and begin to take it apart.

The only way to do it is to rip. Just grab it and rip away, rolling it all back up again into a ball. Roll after roll, rip after rip. Now I've started all over again. This time in the right size for Mailea. Even though she's six, she measures only a 22 chest size which is what they usually give for a two year old. She's a good head smaller than the others in her class but no one will know what size the poncho is, it will be made just for her.

Ripping out the poncho made me think of a prayer I know well...

God grant me the serenity

to accept the things I cannot change

Courage to change the things I can

and the wisdom to know the difference.


I Got Flu :o(

Well, it looks like even this post won't work right. Must be the flu doing it. I haven't been this sick for a long, long time. I mean, I didn't even know which end was up. It started with Sarah's little Sean on Thursday afternoon, then David. Later, in the middle of the night I started to throw up and right on my heels was Nathan, who later collapsed at the end of our bed to be near the ensuite bathroom. Later when the day began Ron came home telling the same tale, except he didn't make it home before it hit. Then later it was my mom - and I began to worry because of her age - older people always get it worse. Thank goodness she had her flu shot, she didn't get it quite as bad as the rest of us.

It hit me like a Tsunami. One minute I was fine, the next minute the head's in a bowl. My goodness, at least now the chicken noodle soup is staying down (or in) and we're all on the mend. We're watching though cause little Sean had a relapse this morning after everyone thinking he was over it.

Next year I'm making sure I don't forget my flu shot.


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Syd & Allie Show

My two babies are finally together again! Seeing Allie Cat and SydSyd together is just wonderful. SydSyd is not sure at all just what to make of Allie Cat and I think she's a bit jealous when Nana is holding her. Allie Cat is just sweet though, just like her mom, gentle and lots of smiles and cuddles. SydSyd is just like her mom too, well, Sarah, we won't go into that, will we!

I'm so happy that Sheena and Mike and their babies are home now. It seemed forever and a day that they were gone and now here we are all together again. And let me tell you that when we're all together - it's absolute chaos. But together with chaos is better than not together at all. I will put up with chaos - I'm actually getting used to it. When I'm really tired it's hard, but if I'm well rested I'm up for it.

Say good bye, Syd & Allie, see you again soon!