Monday, October 1, 2018


My goal in October is to post every day.

(And my other goal is to actually DO the things on my TO DO list, not just add to it, everyday.)

(These may end up being conflicting goals.)

(Let's see how October plays out...)

THIS post will be a September catch up post.
No one will find it interesting except possibly future me, when facing the end of August in say, 2032, I may wonder how I handled the end of summer back in the olden days.

Well, future Jane. You did a lot of things. With people you love. So it wasn't all bad.

Mon Sept 10: Pokemon Catching/Walking/Talking in Fort Langley after work with Heather. This activity? Fills my personal tank up. So grateful that Heather is a good sport about spinning/catching/evolving and gifting. Way more fun doing this with someone than going solo.

Tues Sept 11: It was Kim's birthday, so after work we went to see a movie then had a gourmet meal of Cheeseburgers and McFlurry's at Main Street McDonald's. So thankful she's in my life; her perspective, her humility, her commitment to things she believes in all make me want to try harder. 

Wed Sept 12: Patty's boy got married, and Marg lived through a hurricane/fire/no power in Hawaii this summer, so we needed to catch up over dinner. I am in awe of the strength my friends have in the face of storms. (People storms and weather storms.) Oh that I might be as courageous and resilient as them. And then we saw a movie.

Thurs Sept 13: Alex is moving back to Nice, France! Inca moved into a basement suite in Vancouver! These are big events. So we met for dinner. So honored to be friends with each of these amazing young women. SO much integrity. Their pursuit of God's best for their lives is inspiring. 

Fri Sept 14 - I haven't attended in about a decade, but on THIS Friday night after work, I made my way out to the Tradex Centre to hang out with My People at the MCC Fair. Within 2 minutes of walking in the door, I met a half-dozen friends and relatives from my way-past. My reason for going, however, wasn't to schmooze with old Menno's, but to eat perogies and have one last visit with my cousins John and Maria, before they left for Germany the following morning. Surprisingly, or not, we found each other amongst the thousands of Mennonites who were also there to eat perogies. We made a plan - I'd go stand in the line that snaked around the building and get my meal, while they, who'd already eaten, would save me a spot at their table.

Me: First I need to get in the ticket line-up to buy food tickets.
John, fumbling in his pocket and pulling out some crinkled papers: Here.

He'd just handled me enough food tickets to get a meal.
EVERY SINGLE MOVEMENT IN THAT GESTURE WAS MY DAD. He was channeling his Uncle Pete in body, face and smile. Even his crinkly eyes reminded me of my dad.

I had a moment.
I was at my dad's Disneyland. He LOVED these annual gatherings of his kin. Highlight of year for him. Yes, part of it was that all his most favorite foods were under one roof. He ate, non-stop for hours. But the other part of it was his desire to be related to everyone in attendance. If he didn't know you personally, he'd try to figure out a way to make a connection.

It's really too bad my dad had dementia and then that stroke.

I missed him on Friday.

Afterwards, I drove up to the lake.

Sat Sept 15: End of summer cabin clean up. I hired my mom's cleaning lady to help me. She arrived at 9 am, and we both worked non-stop for 4 hours. Then she went home and I had a nap. I am not used to cleaning for 4 hours straight.

I kept going into the night, doing laundry and dealing with recyclables. And then at 9 pm, I started reading.

Sun Sept 16: I read all day. Then drove back to Surrey after supper.

Monday Sept 17: After work it was BOOK CLUB! I hosted at my mom's house. I love these evenings. And this first one of the season was a good'er ... Sue brought a special guest; her boss. Who just happened to have met Margaret Atwood! And she also had taught two university courses based on Atwood's books! Crazy. Awesome.

Tuesday Sept 18: I fully planned to go to the gym after work. But I had some errands to run first. And then make myself some dinner. And then I sat down on my couch and tipped over 'round 9 pm. When I woke at 10:30. it was too late to go ride an exercise bike, so I started to watch Alias Grace on Netflix.

Wednesday Sept 19: I received two free advance passes to see Little Women, a new movie that is not the Meryle Streep one. I took my other Kim, and it was (surprisingly) good. The Big Sad Event tugged at my heart and released the string on the dam that holds back tears. I'm not proud that I had a good cry. No one else did. I'm gonna just go ahead and blame it on the hormones. It's in theatres now, so go see it if you need to see Jo March have a number of temper tantrums.

Thursday Sept 20: I have four pairs of flip flops and three pairs of boots. I need something to put on my feet during the fall. So I went to the Mall. And came home ten minutes later with a(nother) pair of black pants and a green top. Sigh. I really hate shopping. I ended the night by finishing up the Alias Grace series. That is just not a feel-good show. 

Friday Sept 21: After work I met Marj, Maxine, Terry, Sandra and Rose to celebrate Marj and Terry's birthdays. Haven't seen most of these friends since early July, so it was wonderful just to sit n catch up with them all. In the past few months, two granddaughters were born, three pregnancies were announced, a couple major overseas trips will be taking place, and a wedding happened. Life is not boring. 

Saturday Sept 22: Heather and I walked along the Fraser River Promenade during the most spectacular Autumn day, EVER. It was the New West Fall Festival and the tug boats were doing Water Ballet or something. Such a fun afternoon.

And then I drove out to Abby to go to church. My attendance was been abysmal this summer, but I'd heard this message and it was from God to me through Jeff and seriously you absolutely must listen too. Watch here.

Watch now.

I sat at my desk at work and bawled when I heard this.
Could've been hormones.
Or it was something my soul needed to hear.

After church, I picked up Maureen and we went out for supper. And talked. And talked, and talked. And then prayed. In my truck. In front of her house.

And then I went home and packed.

Sunday Sept 23: My alarm went off at 5:30 am, and I left for Bellingham at 6:10. Unexpectedly there was a 45 minute line-up at the 176th Street crossing. Which had me a bit anxious. I wasn't planning on this. I got to the booth with my answers clear in my head, my passport opened to the right spot, and my windows rolled down.

Him: Why are you here?

Me: I'm going on a vacation.

Him: Where to?

Me: Palm Springs.

Him, sarcastically: You're driving?

Me: Nope, flying from Bellingham

Him: Your itinerary?

Me: Itinerary? I'm flying down today, and coming back on Thursday.

Him: I need to see your itinerary.

Me, absolutely not expecting this: Uh, a boarding pass? Will that do?

Him: Did I ask for a boarding pass? I said itinerary.

Me, scrolling through the Allegiant app on my phone: Uh, OK. There must be a tab for his on the app...

Him, reaching into the open window behind me, and unzipping my suitcase: An email? If you booked flights, you would have received a confirmation...

Me: Yeah, but I'm not sure if I saved that email. I booked these flights weeks ago, then downloaded the app...

Him, pulling things out of my suitcase and looking through my prayer journal and toiletries: I need to see your itinerary.

Me, finally locating the email, opening the attachment: Oh, here it is!

I show him my phone: Here, flight 700 today. And then flight 701 on Thursday.

Him: Uh huh. Don't come to the border without it in hand next time.

Me: I'm so very sorry, I had no idea.

I drove on to Easy Park where I was leaving my truck for the next few days, and they shuttled me to the airport. I went straight to the security area where I was pulled to the side and had my suitcase and purse emptied and searched in detail.

Eventually they realized I wasn't the drug mule they suspected me to be, and let me through.

I was the last person on the plane.

And fell asleep before lift off.

Mon Sept 24 - Wed Sept 26: I spent 72 beautiful hours in 42 degree heat with Julie at her house in Palm Dessert.

Thurs Sept 27: And just like that, my time was done. I can't thank Julie enough for her generosity in welcoming me to hang with her in the sun. I LOVED every second of it. She dropped me off at the airport in the morning, and by 4 pm I was back in Surrey. And that evening? I attended a Bible Study I'd signed up for during the summer. It's a Precepts (in-depth) study and the topic was Covenant. And I'm so looking forward to the next 10 Thursdays. It's been YEARS since I've studied the Bible. 

Friday Sept 28: After work, on a stunningly beautiful, wonderfully warm day, Dani and I drove into Vancouver for the final showing of As You Like It at Bard on the Beach. 

It was set in 1960, in Vancouver, and was a musical. Beatle's songs. And it was AWESOME. Perfect. There are days when I feel like the luckiest woman on earth and this was one of those. I am So SO Sooo very thankful that this girl is married to my boy. 

Saturday Sept 29 - Sunday Sept 30: Read-a-thon, at the lake, with my book nerds. Twenty four hours of reading, sleeping, eating and a bit of talking. We all have 'our' spots. We all have our books. And we all are completely at peace to be in a room with each other for 4 hours and not say a word. 

I read one a half books, both biographies:

Which were both a little heavy. It balanced the sweet novel I read in Palm Springs, tho, so it all evened out in the end:

(The edge of the world was in Ireland, so now I really want to go to Ireland.)

And that's it. 
That's how a middle-aged, single, working woman, with very independent, busy children, does September in this season of her life. I may get another daughter-in-law or two some day in the future. I may get to experience the joy of being a grandma. I may end up with health issues. So this freedom I have right now? Is just for right now. 

Three things I'm thankful for:

1. Sunshine AND A LONG WEEKEND on the forecast. 
2. Sermons (I just listened to the one I linked to above, again) that fill me with hope.
3. September. It was a good month. 


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