Monday, June 30, 2008

Meet Pixie

About 3 weeks ago, my sister in law in Ottawa had a life changing experience. Life changing that is for... PIXIE.

Here's the story, or as close to the story as I can remember.....

Kelly and James spend little spurts of time on their deck outside, every night. On one particular night, James was out there, and he hear a strange sound coming from close by and couldn't quite identify it. He chalked it up to the remarkable about of wildlife they experience in there yard even though they are in the heart of Ottawa and have a completely fenced back yard. Not wanting to disturb the invasion (cause who knows when skunk might pop onto the deck), James went in and didn't give it another though.
The next afternoon, after Kelly and the kids got back from work and school, Kelly was puttering around on her deck when she heard the same sound. Now hearing such a sound in the daylight has a whole different effect than at night, and Kelly was instantly curious as to what it was. She and the girls started to investigate when.... under the deck they could barely see a little black ball of noise and panic all pressed up against the wall of the house. They knew it was a very young animal and they waited cautiously for a mother to arrive. Now the wait was awful, especially when you hear the heart wrenching cries of a scared little critter and since there was no way Kelly or the girls were going to crawl under the 6 inch crawlspace under the deck to get what ever it was..... they did the only thing they could...
they cut a piece out of their deck to rescue it.
After careful examination, they determined they found themselves a little kitten and it was no more then 5 days old. Eyes still closed, and hunger as bear! How do you feed a 5 day old kitten...
The kids were thrilled to have this little bundle to care for, but Kelly and James were so afraid for its survival. But within a few hours they felt there was nothing they could do but try there hardest to help this little guy survive. So, off to the vet for formula (at $8 a box) and the smallest little bottle and the every 4 hour feedings began.
They weren't sure if they had a male kitten (which would be named DEXTER, since they had to saw out part of the deck to get him) or PIXIE.... probably because of her razor sharp pixie claws!
But after a few days of 4 hour feedings, lots of hugs and cuddles, they brought the little stowaway to the vet, who pronounced her a girl.. who was less than 10 days old but doing FABULOUS! Her eyes were open by then, and she was eating very well and gaining weight each day...
She is now a month old, and is starting to change colors, as she matures. They are trying her on very diluted cat mush, but so far she isn't biting. She loves her little bottle and isn't too thrilled with solid food.
The dilemma..... the whole family is hopping on a train ride adventure this Friday to come East to my place (and other family members) and they have to leave little Pixie behind... To the rescue... gramma Marie and Papa Frank... Marie is like a "Cat Whisperer" and although she has 3 cats of her own now, she will be the best gramma to little Pixie while they are away. I am just hopeful she will be willing to give Pixie back to them, when the gang goes back to Ottawa the following weekend!

these last few pictures are the most recent, and Little Miss Pixie is doing great. She is playful and adventurous and she is still so small, they keep her in a box for her own safety. She is taken out when the kids or mom and dad are with her, but when she is sleeping she is kept in a box. Well, the newest news is, the little 8 ounce bundle can now scale her way out of the box!!!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Its here......

Its huge....... its quiet.......its complicated.....its gorgeous and its sexy!

Happy Birthday Gail

The causeway in Cape Breton was opened in celebration of my sister's birthday. The Island of Cape Breton was permanently linked to the rest of Canada all because my sister was born. Some Cape Bretons hate her for it, but most love her. They are talking about making a new provincial (or maybe just Cape Bretonal) holiday in honor of her. Well, that's the story I've been told.

It wouldn't be very nice of me to make fun of my sister today.. on her special day.... after she and my brother were so nice to me. Actually, I receive my Cross Eye'd pair today... on her birthday... I am so lucky for my sister. Its so funny, how we use to be arch enemies when we were little....truly. We fought all the time, doing dishes, sharing a room. Even my cousins, who lived with us said we fought a lot. Apparently, I was a real pest. Of course, my cousins were older and always sided with my sister....because she was an angel....NOT But when tough times fell on me when I was 17, she took me in without any hesitation for 4 months, and we became fast friends and good sisters. When tough times fell on her later on, I dropped everything at any time to help her.... Its been that way ever since. She has a wonderful family and I love them all. 3 Daughters, 5 granddaughters and one grandson.. and one amazing husband too. I am so lucky to have them in my life too. Only 4 of them are in the picture above.

This is the only picture we have of the three kids together until later on.... and there aren't very many. We didn't grow up in a "picture taking family" This is my dad's father and this picture was taken in July/Aug 1967. My brother had is first birthday in Cape Breton.... How appropriate when they built the causeway in honor of my sister... hee hee

Happy Birthday Gail

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Cross Eyed Secret

so... I have been researching what could possibly be the secret involving cross eyed. My sister said last week that she had a secret... and the clue was that it involved something cross eyed. It was for me.... and I just couldn't think of it....
A new baby? A cross eyed Eagle? A cross eyed Cat? a cross eyed evil looking cat?

Or maybe a side by side, front loading washer and dryer set. Did I guess right? I am really good at putting together clues. I am somewhat of a crack detective! I looked at all the evidence, I did some lab work to separate all the DNA in the clues, I consulted with the worlds experts on mystery solving and then.....

I answered the phone and it was Sears.. They needed to make a delivery to my house and wanted to know when I would be available. When I asked what they were delivering, they told me it was a gift....

After some intense questioning on my part, and some intense pussyfooting around on there part, I managed to get out of them that it was a gift from my sister Gail, and my brother Tracy. More heated and intense questioning uncovered.... it was a front loading washer and dryer, complete with pedestals and a work station!

The delivery will happen tomorrow and I am more than excited. Somehow, my very perseptive sister figured out by using my 1976 Magtag washer, that I might be needing something a little newer. Its works really well, but some would think its a little old. Because it actually doesn't fit into my environmentally friendly way of living (because of its large amount of water consumption), I was planning on replacing it. But it was next in line after paying university bills, a wedding, a bathroom upgrade and a new stove.

I was so surprised and absolutely giddy when I found out, I had to call my sister right away. I haven't been talking to my brother, because he is a cell phone carrier and its hard to get him, but hopefully tonight. I ruined her surprise by all my questions to Sears but I couldn't wait a week to find out and being in a rural area, we only get delivery once a week. We were both pretty giddy on the phone, and that was more fun than gruelly the poor Sears lady who felt terrible because she was giving away the surprise.

I will take pictures of the actual "Cross Eyed" pair when it comes in tomorrow!!! It is not the set above, that was the only picture I could find....

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


My god-daughter/niece, Grace is graduating this year. she will be 18 in August and will be attending St. FX with Michelle and Scott if all goes well with Pre Cal this summer!!!!

Her prom was tonight... she has grown into a beautiful young woman.

Congratulations Grace

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Saturday, again

Have I told you I love Saturdays.... well, I do. Today was a bacon and egg breakfast day.... My dear husband... never eats breakfast. I love breakfast. I eat breakfast...every day. I don't think I have ever missed breakfast.

In October, I changed my work hours so that I started work later. This was mainly to be home in the morning a bit longer to help dad with some of his morning chores... making his bed, some minor bandaging and making his breakfast were my main tasks. The bonus for me with the new schedule was I had extra time in the morning to walk for half an hour before Dad even got up. The other bonus for me was that I had someone to eat breakfast with every morning. It use to be that dad and I had breakfast together only on the weekends. Usually oatmeal on Saturday and always poached eggs on Sunday.

Terry has been hovering for a few weeks now, making sure I don't crash... little does he know, I crash when he's not around, hee hee. Ya need to, sometimes. Anyway, since all the company has gone, and things have gotten quiet around here, Terry has decided to have breakfast with me on the weekends. How sweet. soooo, this morning, he was up at 8:00am, and was frying bacon before I even got my hair blown dry. I was primping away and all of a sudden I could smell bacon... oh, yum.

After breakfast, we hit the road for Glad Gardens near Cambridge where I sauntered, oooo'd and ahhhhh'd, touched and smelled, peruse labels and consulted my list for over an hour. Then I started picking up things. A yellow iris (Swedish style, very slim leaves), a fun looking dark green, almost red thing, that I have, but I wanted another one to give to Robin. Then tons of shade plants for my clay pots. I have some really pretty combinations last year, so I looked at pictures and made a list and sort of a map. After the first hour, one of the gardeners who work there came to chat, and he ended up giving me some great ideas and cool combinations. I have these cool hanging clay pots and I haven't really been happy with them the last 2 years... so he gave me some good suggestions for them. Tomorrow is planting day... a whole month later than normal but I don't care. I can't wait to put them together.

After we unloaded the car of plants, had a quick lunch and made a few phone calls, we piled into the car again and headed to Halifax for a marathon run of errands. We met a lady in Mount Uniacke whom we were buying a Thule car rack from. We found her on Kijiji and it was a good deal. We needed a roof rack as we are planning to buy Kayaks too and the rack is a necessary accessory. Then we were off to Cole Harbour to buy saddles for the roof rack that hold the kayaks. We found this guy on Kijiji as well. We got there just on time to ward off another kijiji shopper, sitting in his car trying to convince the owner to sell them to him, even though we were on our way to buy them (2 hour drive too at $1.44 a litre). Anyway, we bought them and the man through in some straps and two water tight storage bags too. Great deal. Next we went to Old Creek Kayaks and canoes to price out kayaks. This guy is a Thule dealer too, so we ordered the fit kit from him while we were there. We loved his kayaks, and this is the second visit we had with his store, and this time I even hopped into the little river next to the store and tried out a red/yellow one. Called Aquafusion, 13 ft long and that's all I know. Anyway, I ran it into the rocks to my left as everyone watched, and that was pretty embarrassing. . I usually have pretty good control of kayaks, and couldn't understand what I was doing. Once I got into the lake at the end of the river, I had better control. Once I headed back up the river to the store, I realized what my problem was. The River was pretty fast moving and only about 15 feet wide...very narrow channel and I have never paddled a current. When I headed back up the river, I felt like I was crawling up hill..!!! The guy at the shop laughed as he saw me struggling and said he calls this the "Trendmill" for arms.... He made me feel better about the rock crash saying everyone does that cause of the shape of the river.
We left there with an estimate for two kayaks, all the safety stuff we need, paddles and skirts. We have to go back next weekend, and get the fit kit for the Roof Rack (this is different for every make of car, which is sold separately). The fit kit on the rack now is for a 1991 Honda Civic..not even close. When we go back, we will probably buy the kayaks. We talked about them all the way home... and are pretty excited. He gave us a good deal, with some free stuff, and a "two kayak" discount too.
The drive home was pretty exciting... we left Bedford just as the rains came, and the lightening was spectacular. I hate thunder and lightening, except when I am in a car. Its the only place I truly feel safe. We drove through pounding rain for about a half hour and then the clouds melted away to sunshine in the Promise Land. Our Valley. I love our valley... we are so lucky to live here.!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Beans Beans and More Beans

In late spring, I received a really nice gift from my blogger friend Ann. I happened upon Ann's blog by accident about a year ago and the very first entry I read was how her impatiens had popped up that spring for the 5th year in a row. I love garden blogs and I was shocked that someone out there could actually have impatiens as a perennial. Well, I didn't hesitate one second, I sent off a comment asking where she was and how she could possible have them come back each year.

So funny when I think back, but Ann was sweet to me and we have kept in touch with each other through blogs and cards. She is very thoughtful and kind, and her strong belief in God is refreshing.

Anyway, Ann sent along a fun little box of seeds from her Hyacinth beans. Pretty pink pods on them. She has blogged a couple of times about her beans, and I had expressed an interest in them, and she had wanted to try my Scarlet Runners which you can see to the right. (Pic taken last August) The are pretty tall bean stocks with bright orange flowers that the hummingbirds just swarm. Anyway, I am so excited to try Ann's beans, along with some other mystery beans from Texas.

So, I have planted them along with my Scarlett Runners, with Morning Glories in between. The Glories came up from last year's seeds, sort of like Ann's Impatiens. All I had to do was transplant them into the spots I needed them to be. It has been a week, and ALL of my beans are up and reaching. Terry had to put the string up tonight and we are both pretty excited to see the new beans and how they stand up to Valley sun and Rain.!

The beans were planted last week in between the Glories.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Auntie Jill

While I was away this past weekend, my dear friend Jill (Midnight's mom) (you can read her blogs at iblog..) took care of Mollie. My Mollie is 8.5 years old. She is quite unique, if I must say so myself. She is insanely intelligent, which is sometimes really creepy. She has a vocabulary of about 100 words, and understands whole sentences. I know its hard to believe, but its true, and all you have to do is spend a day with her to understand.
Anyway, I have never had to leave Mollie with anyone. Partly because my dad has been living with us for Mollie's entire life, and partly because we don't go very many places that we would have to leave her behind.
This weekend was not the time or place to bring her along, and my Jill (Mollies most favorite person in the world) offered to take her home.

I never gave her a thought while I was away, but when we got home to an empty house, it was strikingly quiet.

Now Mollie herself, got home around 8:00pm and although she was very excited to get home, once she greeted us, she was quite happy to hop back in the car with Jill and Meleigha! Once Jill convinced her to get back out of the car.... Mollie moped around the house the whole evening and didn't even sleep in our room that night. She was very sad to leave Jill's house of activity to come home to our mundane and quiet home.

I think she truly misses all of the gang at Jills.... kelly, Chico, Meleigha, Mel, Jill and Midnights' smell. Thank you so much Jill. She was so happy with you guys and I know she will look forward to any time we hop in the car and head in your direction. Thanks for the awesome pictures too.... I think I might frame them!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


One of the fun things about going to my Aunts is to see all her projects. My mom and her sisters are famous for their generousity, and creative energy. Seeing my the work my Aunt has displayed all around her home made me miss my mom, but also remember all her fun and bright craft projects, ideas and obsessions!! This sweet little house greets you when you walk up her door step. This beautifully painted basket of flowers (on a rock) is painted for my uncle Lawrence. The picture just doesn't do it justice at all. This entire wall hanging is paper pieced quilting. there are millions of pieces to this wall hanging, I know, I have the pattern. And when ever I get tempted to try it.... I pass out. When I come to... I have come to my senses!!!

Just your ordinary stain glass quilts.... HA... so absolutely gorgeous and vibrant. I didn't take a picture of half of the beautiful quilts. I am not even sure why. Lost my head, I think... all the lobster and ham......

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A weekend of Journeys

We spent a lot of time in the car, but that didn't really feel long. Our first leg of our trip was just to Moncton, and that was short because we met Michelle and Scott in Truro and we "wagontrained" it to Moncton. "My" Sandra was our bed and breakfast stop for the night and we spent the evening chatting and catching up with her, Paul and Andre. We all got to meet our newest family members.... Sweetie and Starbuck, since they certainly couldn't leave the little piggies home along for 2.5 days!~ Andre was instantly in love with these little cuties, and so did their two dogs (but not in that cousinly love.... more like the "BACON" loving kind of love). Sandra had her hands full for the weekend playing referee and guard of two pigs.

The next morning we headed up the east side of NB and "texted" with my sister who was heading up the centre of the province and we were met in the Miramachi for a coffee and then we followed each other all the way to Campbellton.

My Aunt Mae left instructions with me that we were not to eat on the way up because she had made us a lunch... and it was a yummy lunch....ham.... home made bread.....pickles, cheese...etc...

After a quick visit with her, we all headed off to the church for a small private mass and dad's final committal, his last sacrament of life. Father Bill was kind and sweet and kept things very light, even when he had to compete with our little baby Aurora who suddenly found her singing voice and revelled in the echos of the church. ( I am not even going to mention the loud and juicy poop she had, which also echo'd throughout the cathedral, followed by two whole pews of family giggles)

My dad now rests where he always knew he would. In amongst all my mom's family, where my mom rests as well. He chose this spot himself and joked about it for years, saying he would be at my mom's feet, where he was anyway, when she was alive.

We had a great time visiting with family, eating... and laughing, sharing stories, and quilt patterns. Patience and her second cousin sat and shared baby stories about their children, Ashley with her 6 month old son Cameron and Patience with our 4 month old Aurora. I know there are some great pictures and as soon as someone sends me some... I will post them .

What is a visit to my french heritage without a table full of lobsters. Thanks to my brother who showed up with 3 dozen live suckers and cooked them for everyone. This was on top of all the yummy things my Aunt Mae had made. A feast for sure.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Butter Tarts

I became a part of Terry's family when I was 18ish. Terry's mom is one of the best cooks I have ever met. I think I loved her cooking so much because she made foods that I had never tasted before, and had never even seen before. Kibbi, yuckni & Rice, cabbage rolls, peroges, flatyre. She made pies by the triples... never just one. Always three. Apple pie, pecan pie, lemon pie, sweets and squares....

When Terry and I got married I was 22 and the first week that Terry went out to sea, Joan came to my apt in Halifax for the whole week to teach me to cook these things. Before I got married, I had learned a few cooking techniques that I hadn't before like gutting hundreds of smelt under running cold water... blah. And I learned to make pie crust too.

To be fair, my mom was also an amazing cook, but I took her good cooking for granted. She made things that others might find strange like egg rolls by the hundreds, and cod tongues and cheeks, escargots. We blanched and froze garbage bags full of fiddleheads, and we sat for hours with rolling pins cracking and de meating crab legs by the 100 lb. She was a roast and candy maker, so I learned to make fudge and chocolates from mom. And Roasts and spaghetti too.

Anyway, back to Joan. That week she came I learned to make almost everything I listed above. My freezer was full by the end of the end of the week. One of things I didn't learn from her was her amazing butter tart recipe. But she wrote it out for me, and I already knew how to make the pie crust so I was ok to try it on my own.

I lived in Halifax for a year, and in that time, Terry was gone for 90% of it, so I didn't attempt the butter tarts because I really didn't need to eat a whole batch myself. I was also working, and able to work a lot of over time so I didn't even give it a thought.

We moved to Borden in July of that year and I was unemployed and living in a sublet apt in a big building in a big city (by my standards). I didn't know anyone and I was fairly shy and nervous of strangers so I stuck pretty close to home. This is where I learned all about "Another World", Texas and General Hospital. It was my 3 hours of social time each day with Rachel and the Carringtons from Another World and Iris and Dennis Carrington in Texas. Then of course... General Hospital with Luke and Laura!

While all that was going on, I would bake.... cookies mostly. But then I decided, it was time... to attempt the butter tarts. I only had one muffin pan, but it had 12 cups in it. So I made my pie crust, cut all my tarts shells and popped them into the cups. Mixed the stuff for inside the tarts. Now I always felt that Joan was very stingy on the buttery stuff in the tarts. You know, it was mostly pie crust with a splash of that yummy filling at the bottom. I decided that since I only had 12 tarts anyway, I might as well fill up the cups to at least 3/4 of the way up to make them really GOOD tarts.

Have you ever made butter tarts.

Can you guess what happens when you do something that stupid! Well, let me tell ya. They bubble up to 4 times the size of the cups, boil over the top down the sides and into the oven and catch on fire but not before they burn BLACK onto the muffin pan! After I calmed down the smoke detector, threw water all through the bottom of my stove, and cooled off the blackened muffin tin..... I sat down with Luke and Laura and proceeded to eat the butter tarts with a knife and spoon. (the knife was to chisel it off the sides of the muffin cups). I learned a valuable lesson that day! But that was not the only lesson I learned from butter tarts.!

After ruining my only muffin pan, I ventured out of the apt and went to Woolco and bought myself 3 muffin tins with 12 cups in each. The recipe said it made 30 tarts.

My second attempt was very successful and I was so proud of them, I began making them often. I first made a plateful and Terry brought them to his workplace where they gobbled them up without ceremony and Terry arrived back home that evening full of compliments from all his staff. That felt pretty good. I made them at least once a week and I even started to double the recipe so that I was getting 50 or so tarts and would freeze some, send some to Terry's work and bring some to Terry's grandmother on the weekends. When I was invited to outings, I would bring my tarts. Finally in November that year, I too, got a job. I still seemed to have time to make butter tarts and would bring them to my work and send them to terry's work. I was becoming famous for them and they became "Donna's Butter Tart" recipe. Over the next year I made them at least once a month if not more and I changed jobs in the spring and worked for a larger group and would make a large batch and brought them in for the whole building! They were fiddly to make but I loved the attention!

That Xmas, Terry and I decided to stay in Borden for the holidays because I was more than half way through my first pregnancy and we wanted to save our money for a trip home in the summer with our new little one. My good friend and coworker Joanne decided that she would invite all the childless couples that she worked with to her house for Xmas dinner but the catch was we all had to come to her house on this particular day to help with her Xmas baking. I was to make the butter tarts, naturally! I was quite famous for them by this time! Sooooo, I made two big batches of pie crust the day before to get a head start.

On the "baking day" Terry and I arrived at Joannes and found the house full of people making different things from bread to meat pies and a little spot was reserved for me to roll out my pie crust and make my tarts. Joanne had the flour there and the muffin pans. I got my stuff all ready and then Joanne came to me and asked me what size circle cutter I needed to make my tart shells................

Ok, I stood there looking at Joanne like she was an idiot. Why on earth would I want a circle to cut my tart shells. She looked at me confused by my blank stare. I stood there processing.... a circle cutter..... makes the circles... and you pop them into the little cups..... ummm. I reviewed my technique in my head.....

cut out a square of dough, press it into the cup, then take scissors and cut all around the top of the muffin cup. take the bits of dough and make a pile for the next rolling. Humm...... I tried my hardest to not show on my face how I was feeling. for almost two years..... at least once a month and most months TWICE A MONTH.... I made 50 butter tarts by cutting squares of dough and trimming them after they were in the muffin tin... with scissors.....

Terry could tell I was perplexed. And when I squirrelled him into a corner to tell him what I had just discovered..... the miracle of a circle cookie cutter..... he looked at me like I had two heads. He told me that was how his mother cut them ... with a big round cookie cutter! And then I remembered that never, when I was making them was Terry ever home! I usually made them when he was working (shift work) or golfing. Hundreds and hundreds of butter tarts carefully trimmed with scissors....

Sunday, June 8, 2008


Since May 15, I have not been alone. And actually for a very long time I have not been alone. And most would say ... "who would want to be alone at a time like this". But others understand.

When we left my sisters last Saturday, Terry was nervous to tell me that the weekend he had planned with a few friends to golf in Truro was just next weekend. He volunteered, right away, to cancel it. Although I was touched by his dedication and concern for me.... I was thrilled to even think that I would have a weekend alone! He questioned me several times during the week.... what are you going to do this weekend... I think he worried that I might curl up in a ball and "fetal" the whole weekend. The nice thing is.... if that was what I wanted to do.... then, I could. I didn't have to tell anyone... or explain....

Here it is.... Sunday.... my weekend alone. I wasn't exactly alone at all.... but the only ones living here... won't give away my secrets... Mollie is a pretty good communicator... but not that good. She won't be able to tell a soul that I ate chips at midnight last night while watching a movie. She won't tell a soul that I had a nap yesterday afternoon (hence the "up past midnight" gig).

I truly can't remember ever spending a weekend alone, except the summer of 1992. I am sure I have.. because that would be just weird... to be my age and someone who loves solitude...and have never had a weekend alone. But I just can't remember. Or maybe I don't remember because I didn't enjoy it as much as this weekend.

I reserved this weekend to just sit, and reflect... cry if I if I creative or just laze. You know how much I love my Saturdays.... and I truly loved my Saturday yesterday. I talked to my two sister in laws on phone and MSN, talked to my mother in law on MSN, talked to one daughter on Facebook & MSN. I talked to my brother for almost an hour on his cellphone about everything that had happened over the past two weeks. I think he is missing having someone to talk about dad with... I spent Friday night with my friend Debbie... whom I haven't really sat down with in weeks... just to talk, catch up... be normal. I did cry... a lot. I talked to the air... or my dad... who knows. I told him all the things I really wanted to tell him when he was sick in the hospital. But if I had told him then, he would have known he was dying, and while I know he knew... why keep bringing it back to him. I guess that's the way our family is.... why rub your nose in it, when we can keep things light and stress free.. But that's ok, because I did get to tell me the things I wanted to... he just wasn't awake. I organized some long overdue scrap booking stuff... I had a lovely supper and evening with my friend Robin. We traded garden gifts and shared a Steak and Lobster dinner at the mess. I had the steak which they served me raw. Weird, eh. Then in a split second I figured it out.... we had to go on the deck and cook it ourselves... duh. That was fun too, because I don't usually do the BBQ in our house, so I was totally impatient and clumsy with the big BBQ tools. There were several "men" there to rescue me, and put the sauce on when needed, etc... so I just stood and gabbed with strangers while they did all the work. In the end, I think I ended up with someone elses steak off the BBQ but that's ok. We were all like family in the end!

Robin and I sat with very old friends of mine, Noreen and Mike (they were involved in the lottery mess) and we traded stories, favorite books and the evening just flew by. I also had a good look around, since we are planning a wedding in that room next summer, and made contact with Carol the sweet little Irish bartender who knows everything. She hooked me up with Paul, the mess coordinator, and Paul and I have a date to talk wedding on June 20. I also hooked up with Lindsay R... who will plan a finger food menu for me.... since he is in the food services business!

Sunday morning routine... for years..... poached eggs and toast with my dad. On Friday, I couldn't fathom how this Sunday morning would go.... routine.... scary when broken. But I had a good weekend.... cried it all out.... no longer on the end.... and Sunday morning is warm with memories... and I am filled with thankfulness that I had the luxury of poached eggs and toast for as long as I did with my dad. What is there to be sad about.... but just the same... I had a toasted peanut butter and Jam and BACON sandwich......Just to be different. And it wasn't as good as I thought it would be... but I had to try it... right!

Sunday... my blogging day..... well, for today anyway. Notice that I have changed my layout and I have added a new element. The blogs I like to visit now have an update feature and you can look and see when or if they have updated instead of running though the maze of blogs going from one to the other to see. Of course, that is always fun.. .but when they haven't blogged in a week (Chantal....) that daily disappointment is not there... its just a date. So.... gals, I am watching you via my blog.....and everyone will know that you HAVEN'T blogged in weeks...
I have added two other bloggers who I have read for a long time but haven't shared. Knitnut is a wonderfully opinionated writer from Ottawa, who had a wonderful cat who looks like my cat, and she had good and through provoking opinions on politics and city happenings. She keeps me in stitches and has made me aware of important issues like the homeless people of Ottawa (and other cities) and has given me a different way to look at the lots of issues. Jo(e)'s page is filled with family stories, wonderful pictures, and writings from a world of creative people with great attitudes. Her fear of snakes and water (but only in her dreams ) is more common than she knows and I am drawn to her characteristic use of "descriptive titles" for people and places instead of using their names...

I am making spaghetti sauce and soup today.... and after cleaning out my fridge yesterday (yes, even that was fun) I have to go to the farm market to get a few supplies before that can happen.
Terry will be home at supper, and that will end my weekend alone. But that's ok, because, even though it was nice to accountable to no one, I missed Terry and thought about him a lot and our new life together. A new adventure, which I am looking forward to.

Monday, June 2, 2008


What a wonderful ending to a stressful week. It seemed that the week would go on forever.... too many people... sad faces, broken hearts.....questions...decisions....endings....good byes.

But on Wednesday, last week, the entire entourage of family piled into their cars, armed ourselves with walkie talkies, piled in the dog (not the worlds best traveler), and we hit the roads for a 6 hour drive to Fredericton. We chatted via texting (a wonderfully fun activity you can do on your cellphone) and we radioed.... it was a real convoy. My brother kept us alert as to where the "bears traps" were, my sister was an hour ahead of us, and gave us entertaining traffic reports. The kids stayed within sight of us, so we were constantly commenting back and forth.... wildlife spottings, pet reports, pee break needs, road conditions, etc.

It was so absolutely refreshing to be free of the house, the hospital, the sadness, the pain. A road trip filled with laughter and mischief, (and the constant coughing by yours truly)

We arrived at my sisters in plenty of time to put together a nice grad party nibbly supper to celebrate Stephanie's graduation. We waited for Terry's mom and sister to arrive (around 7pm) and then we had a great celebration... with our new baby Aurora, the three triplets, and two of Gail's daughters, and all the rest of us!In all the mayhem of the weeks before, Michelle found time to put together a 7 minute video of Stephanie's' life so far, sort of a video of snapshots... with some great pics and funny titles. It certain made Stephanie nervous, and then after it was all over, and everyone had a great laugh, and a few ahhhs, then there seem to be a round of threats.... towards Michelle and a pending graduation and year. Sounds like the war is on...and the line is drawn. I am staying out of it. (sorry... can't share the video..;.Stephanie would kill me!!)

Graduation morning dawned cold and dark. I have been to other graduations where it was so hot, you cooked waiting for your child to walk across the platform. But not today....11 degrees (52 degrees Fahrenheit)...brrrr. We had great seats, sort of high up, but a nice view of everything. Gail's camera has incredible zoom so we were able to get great pics/videos. Stephanie dyed her hair with brilliant streaks of green so we could pick her out of the crowd, and although it helped, it was also easy to see her as she was in the front row. After we settled into our seats, Scottie opened the program to find Stephanie's name.... the first page he opened to had Stephanie's name right there. He announced to the gang that Stephanie not only received her honours in her joint majors, but she had received "First Class Honours" which is the highest achievement you can do. Not only that but she was one of 6 with double majors in the First Class Section, and the only one to achieve the "Classics" major, which requires high scores in two languages. We were all very excited and wondered why she hadn't shared this with us before now.... come to find out, she didn't know until they gave her the name card and her placement number. She was in the front row of 500 students. It had been such a crazy couple of weeks, and she never thought she would get such a high standing, so she never looked. How fun for her. And we were so excited for her. She set the standards so high for herself by selecting "Classics" as one of her two majors. She struggled and worried and second guessed herself. And then to exceed even her own expectations, was a nice ending to a very crappy couple of weeks.

Gail made a really fun lunch for everyone and we had some fun photo shoots of Stephanie, even though she wasn't too she hates pictures of herself. But the funnest part of all, was the "haircut" after lunch. Stephanie had planned on getting a fancy hairdresser cut her hair, along with the brilliant color addition. But for some unknown reason, the hairdresser didn't cut it. He told Stephanie to leave it long... to which Stephanie didn't argue. But my niece Patience (a talented hair stylist in St. John) spared no mercy in cutting Stephanie's hair, to a very sophisticated cut.

Congrats, Stephanie... we are all so very proud of you!!