Tuesday, May 23, 2017


I got myself in the long weekend mode last Wednesday by going to Costco and buying meat. (And floaties. And 2 kayaks.) (In the end, after an hour of frantic family messaging, Clint decided to buy the kayaks from Canadian Tire in Vancouver. Easier than me trying to transport 2 boats, 100 pounds of groceries and miscellaneous fun stuff by myself.)

 Unexpectedly, I decided to just drive it all out to the lake after loading it all into my truck. Then, randomly, I just decided to stay the night. And drive back to work in the morning IN THE SAME CLOTHES I WORE THE DAY BEFORE.

No one died, no one lost an eye. You can wear re-runs without the sky falling in.

And even though I still worked on Thursday and Friday, my head was in staycation mode.

Thursday after work, I joined Jenn, her daugher Yaunna and her friend, Leslie in watching The King Arthur movie.

I had this to say about the experience (posted to Facebook):

So tonight I saw the King Arthur movie with Jenn, her daughter, and her writing friend, Lesley, whom I'd never met before. Jenn is cool and I haven't seen her since last summer and I wanted to not be a dork tonight but I was a bit nervous because I haven't seen her since last August. And her daughter and friend were along and you know how it is. I was the last to arrive, the previews were playing, and the server asked if he could get me anything. (We were in a VIP theatre.) I placed my order. He asked for my scene card, and wondered how I'd be paying. I pulled open my purse (I am not a purse person; this one was a gift, it is a black purse with black lining, and I'm sitting in a dark theatre. (I usually leave my purse and keys in the truck (keyless entry) and tuck my phone (which has my Visa and driver's license inside the case) into my bra. (I may look lumpy but it's safe from pickpockets there.) My Scene card number is recordered in the note section of my phone, so I don't have to carry the card. I tell him I just need to get my phone, but I can't find it in that bloody black bag. I am pulling crap out of All The Pockets; things are falling off my lap and into the abyss. Jenn gives him her scene card, and I keep searching. Time is ticking. I am sweating. Jenn just offers to pay. I know my phone is in there, but my fingers are not feeling it. I am embarrassed. I am feeling like an idiot. And then. Then I pull out a hard boiled egg. From my purse. No one saw that coming.The server looks at it and says, "I'm gonna have to confiscate that, no outside food allowed." Jenn suggests he better be Employee of The Month for bringing that gem back to his boss. I have become *that lady who rummages around in her oversized handbag and pulls out old hairnets, used kleenex's and boiled eggs. It's all downhill from here.

Moral of the story: If you just can't pull off 'being normal' - dazzle them with eccentricity. That egg diffused the situation nicely.

Thursday was also my dad's birthday. He woulda been 81. It was also his twin sister (Margaret)'s birthday, Val's husband's (John's) birthday, and it was the Birth Day of John and Val's 8th grandchild ... Kaitlynn Carly! (And according to Facebook, it was the wedding anniversary of about a million people.)

So Friday after work I was the 13th wheel at John's birthday evening:

And from there, I drove to the lake. 

I spent Saturday reading (a library book, that I started and finished) (and puttering and cleaning) until the kids arrived around 9 pm, starving. We BBQ'ed, ate a late dinner, then sat around the table and played a new-to-us game that Drew brought up: Dixit. 

So fun. 

Amy won. 

Yes, I recommend this game. 
Much fun. Easy to play. One round is quick... like half an hour or so.

I was the first person to head upstairs, at midnight. My three boys were all sitting at the table, playing a game online, together, each on their own laptop, talking furiously and laughing. Dani had made herself a fluffy nest in the papsan chair and was reading and Amy was stretched out on the couch, studying. These are my people, all together, all relaxed, all home. Awesomeness x 1000.


When I came downstairs the next morning, just before noon, I was greeted by 5 kids giving me my Mother's Day gift; they were cleaning and setting up the lawn furniture and getting the cabin ready for SUMMER:

Once everything was set out, the boys played Frisbee. Danica and Amy read.

Girls are unfazed by the activity around them. 

Then it was time to try out the new toys. Clint had taken one for a test ride on Sat evening when he arrived, and sent us this pic from the other shore:

So Dani gave er a spin on Sunday afternoon...

Followed by Max and Drew who decided to race them:

Clint had tools in his hands most of the day ...

His gift to the cabin was a pair of security cameras/motion detector lights THAT CAN BE OPERATED FROM/VIEWED FROM AN APP ON MY PHONE. I love technology. 

My mom joined us for dinner on Sunday evening which we ate on the deck. And it was just the most perfect evening. We sat around the table and talked for hours and the weather was awesome and the food was a delicious collaborative effort and the conversation meandered all over the place and my heart just kept smiling.

While I did dishes, Clint started a fire to burn odd wood pieces and IT FELT LIKE SUMMER.

Oh, what would we do without wifi?

After it got dark, we all ended up inside for another rousing round of Dixit. Amy won again. The kids then watched Second Hand Lions, and I went to bed to read. It's the richest, most excellent sound in the world, listening to people you love talk and laugh in the room directly beneath you.


I was up and out of the house by 9; I had a list of things we needed, so I drove into Sardis and spent another paycheck. I got back at 11, then made cheese biscuits for those who were up. At noon I made French Toast for brunch, and shortly after that, the exodus began.

First Drew and Dani left, followed shortly by Max and Amy.

Clint stuck around. After he kayaked all the way around the lake, he helped me store the toys and furniture, deal with the garbage, eat some of the leftovers before leaving at 11 pm.

And because I s t r e t c h things out so that they last til forever, I took Tuesday off work and stayed another night.


Three things I'm thankful for:

1. Friends that help you check things off of your massive 101 Things to do in 1,001 Days List. I have a library card! And I checked one DVD and 3 books out of the library. Plus I bought a book from their sale for $1. Last Tuesday was a good evening. :)

2. Kids who show up. I love how they're 'all in' when they get together. Which we don't do more than once a month, for dinner. And other than twice a year at the lake, (Maylong and Augustlong), we don't just 'hang out'... but I love how when we all gather, they bring their A game and good attitudes.

3. I'm so thankful for the good weather. This weekend's sunshine was such a welcome gift.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017


Three things I'm thankful for:

1. Long weekend ahead with an amazing weather forecast.

2. Oatmeal. For breakfast. Who knew?

3. Fun, random, request regarding my pics of Vancouver.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Dear God

Dear God,

It's Mother's Day.

Can you comfort those who are hurting? There are so many in pain; those that are grieving the passing of their moms, those that long to be moms, those that have difficult relationships with their moms (or with their kids), those that are feeling guilt for not doing it better ...  Could you calm their tortured minds and give them peace?

By the way, thanks for hand-picking my mom for me. She's awesome; I've learnt, and am still learning, so much from her. Could you help her with the pain she deals with every day? Give her doctor some wisdom on how to treat it? Or even better, just touch your healing hand on her knees, hips, back, fingers, shoulders... and make it go away?

And thanks for the opportunity to be a mom. Whoa. Way harder than I ever expected. Where ever I fell short in preparing them for life, I'm trusting that You've find a way to fill in the gap. They're pretty awesome, I'm grateful you've allowed me a ringside seat to all that you're doing through them.

Please be with those who're struggling with drug and alcohol addictions/abuse. BE THERE, RIGHT BESIDE THEM. Speak words of life into their hearts so loudly that it drowns out the pain and fear they're trying to bury. Surround them with people of your choosing to help them heal. Send your angels to protect them from hurting themselves or others while drunk/stoned. Provide them with messengers of hope who'll walk alongside. God, I pray, You will supply them with all that they need as they journey towards a life of sobriety. Bring healing to them, their families, their relationships. Equip the local AA and NA chapters so that as new hurtin folk arrive, they will find what they need.

And God? Cancer is pure evil. Can you just get rid of it? Please heal those who've been diagnosed with it. No really, just heal them, OK?  Some miracles in this department would be awesome. And if that's not part of your plan, then, I pray You would use cancer for Your good will and purpose. Show us how You work through those who have it. Please dispatch Your angels to sit alongside those who are scared or in pain. Comfort them. Give them relief. Wrap them in Your love. Dump a barrel of hope on their heads.

Waiting. You are a God who works in the waiting. So for those of us who're waiting, have at 'er. While we wait to hear if we passed that test, if we got the job, if we got into that school, if the e-xrays are clear, if the operation went as planned, if he wants to stay married, if that manuscript was accepted, if that guy will text back, if the offer will be accepted, if that treatment will work, if she will acknowledge your apology, if they'll remember, if she'll approve, if he'll be OK ... while we wait, I pray You will teach us about the important things, and comfort us when we fall apart if it doesn't turn out as we hoped. Use the waiting period for Your purposes.

Wisdom. Oh God, we need it. For those of us who lead, teach us to be better, more effective, more caring, more approachable, more dependable leaders. For those of us who follow, show us how to be supportive, encouraging, and wise in our roles. For those in new jobs or new positions, please be generous with courage and confidence. Help us to figure things out quickly, and if we need assistance, please provide a helpful mentor or role model to show us the way.

Emptiness. Some folks' lives just grow bigger and wilder with the addition of each new inlaw and grandchild. On the other hand some folks' lives get smaller and family members move way, pass away, choose not to stay connected. For those who are feeling alone, God I pray You would bring new meaningful relationships into their lives. Provide them with a sense of community. Give them friends to journey through life with. Open their eyes to the opportunities to serve others.

I pray for our world leaders. Please provide them with wise counsel and prevent them from doing stupid things.

I pray for the pregnant ones. Give them patience while new life grows inside them. I pray for healthy pregnancies, uneventful deliveries and strength as they endure weeks of little sleep. Thank you for babies. Thank you that people still have them. Protect those little lives, please. And equip the new parents with wisdom and patience as they face the inevitable challenges.

I pray for those who are engaged as well as those who are newly wed. Protect these marriages, I plead. Set your angels on their rooftops and doorways, bouncers who turn away evil. May their love deepen and grow as they experience the intimacy that comes with sharing one's life with someone. May forgiveness reign in their home.

And I pray for me and all my usual requests. Some days I must sound like a broken record, continually at You about the same things. Do I sound like an annoying mosquito in your ear? Or are you OK to hear me ask for Your intervention and Your guidance and Your direction over and over again. Thank you for loving me.

Thank you for knowing my name,