Monday, August 25, 2008

Hummingbird Horror

Well, I have been wanting to blog this every since it happened but I was just bombarded with stuff and couldn't get to it... but its totally weird.

Last Friday, I was sitting in Dad's chair next to the big picture window when a hummingbird sort of buzzed by at breakneck speed past the window. He sort of came too close to the window and grazed it with his side and bounced off slowing down just slightly. We often have birds hit the big window, mostly in the morning when the reflection of the trees in the yard fills the window and confuses the birds. But this particular bounce was at noon and the hummingbird was sort of parallel with the window and had a sideways bounce.

Now that in itself is quite strange but the thing that happened next was even stranger. As he glided off the window he sped past our "weather stick" and stopped in his tracks...... tangled in a spider/cob web. I hate spiders, therefore, I hate spider webs.. That being said, I wouldn't kill a spider either and I am too creeped out by spiderwebs to ever disturb one, in case the spider jumps out from somewhere, lands on me and ewwwwww.... its toooo gross to even explain!

The particular web was quite large and didn't really look like a spider web as the strands were too thick. It was more like a cob web... you know... those dusty looking things that grow in the corners of your living room and you only see them when company is sitting on your couch!!!!

This poor little hummingbird got tangled in the thick sticky strands of the web... by his feet. In a split second he was hanging upside down... his wings spread out straight beside him and his head pointing straight down and he hung there as still as a statue. I was horrified to see this little guy hanging there.. and was in some what of shock looking at him. I couldn't tell if he was dead or not, because he was soooo still. I actually thought about taking a picture but then thought it might be too morbid.

Terry was home so we both rushed outside, me with a box, and Terry with a stick. He didn't move one feather, as Terry reached as high as he could to pick up the web... and as he lowered the web and the bird, it grazed the cedar tree, and he grabbed onto the tree. We left him there, and as I watched, his little heart was beating faster than I could even count.. and he sat nestled in a limb for a few minutes, and every now and then he would shift around until he was finally sitting upright. The cobweb was still hanging from his little feet but I didn't dare try and help him any more for fear of giving him a little heart attack. After a little while, he was gone, I didn't see him fly away, and he wasn't on the ground dead, so I figured he recovered enough to survive.

Now, that was the weirdest thing I have ever seen, and Terry cleaned off the rest of the web and the story was done. I thought! Later that night, well after dark, Michelle and Scott were home, and I was sitting in the same chair. As we chatted, I was reminded of the hummingbird and told them all about it. As I am telling the story I look up to the window and I see the spider that built the web.... and it is the BIGGEST, Ugliest spider I have ever seen... just as I tell the others to look, it zips up to the roof and disappears. Of course, that leaves me looking like a wimp and they just don't believe that it was a BIG spider. They know how I hate them... and figure I am just a baby about it all. Moments later, it returns and I direct Scottie to the window where he immediately goes into "WOW...."mode! ewwwww..... we all watch this thing re build its web and he is the size of the bottom of a coffee cup. My first reaction is to pass sentence on him ... he shall be killed! This totally goes against my grain, but man, he was just toooooo....ewww.... oh, I can't tell ya. I didn't sleep all night, thinking about it, but early on in the morning, I changed my mind. I can live with it, up there... as long as it doesn't come in the house. And it would need to knock to get in, as there are no rogue openings in my house big enough for it to come in. I am now at peace with this creature, who probably has survived many battles to grow that big. Off I go to a yard sale with Michelle and Stephanie and when we get home... Terry and Scott were proud to tell me that the beast was dead... and his mate! there were two. Oh, I felt terrible. My stomach ached for the rest of the day over those two ugly beasts until finally Terry put into prospective and told me that if we didn't rid the house of those... imagine how many would have made it in over the winter.... I feel a bit better now, and not another hummingbird will be tangled up in their web. Now, warning... if you hate them as much as I do... don't look at he picture. It hard to see how big he really is, but believe me... BIG.

This picture shows you the window, the weather stick and way up above is the spider. The hummingbird hung just above the weatherstick. The web went from the roof to the stick. Terry took the whole thing down in the afternoon, and mr spider built it back by the next day. This is the spider... as big as a toonie... that's how big!

Sunday, August 24, 2008


Not just the Olympics, either. I loved this 2008 Olympics. I loved China and Beijing... a pleasure to watch the whole thing, although I didn't watch as much of it as I had hoped, I still loved every moment. I cried with the winners and the losers, I cried at the opening and closing ceremonies..
I cried when it was over. 2012 in London... somehow, I just don't think it will be the same.

My summer is over. Officially. But what a glorious weekend I spent in celebration! Terry and I kayaked McGill Lake. It was big and windy and sunny and hot... all at the same time. The lake is quite large... not as big as Aylesford Lake but still fairly big. But there are only 3 cottages on this lake and they are all nestled together like they are all one big family of cottages. As we paddled by them I wondered which came first... the friends or the cottages. Wouldn't it be nice to have your cottage amongst your long time friends... I almost forgot to mention the skinny dipping couple we ran across when I paddled up to the place where we put our kayaks into the water. We knew there was people there (the only other people we saw the whole time) because there truck was blocking our car.... but when I paddled the corner... tahdah..... oh well, I discreetly made lots of noise as I turned my boat around and gave them time to giggle/laugh and get dressed.

Saturday morning... bright and early, Linda and I hit the Shannon River Channel for a peaceful paddle in the fog and sun. It was Linda's first time and I think I have made a kayaking fan out of her. After a 2 hour paddle down the lazy canal, we headed for the BIG SCOOP for a yummy breakfast of french toast and pancakes.

Saturday afternoon was lazy and warm, with very little getting done in my house except snoozing and baking. I had to rest up for my great night of GLOW BALL. My brother in law Tom joined us for a wonderful evening at Debbie and Brian's where I sat pool side with Ashley and judged the cannon ball contest. OOOOOOUCH.... Uncle Bobby won hands down although Cathy came in a distant second... The evening turned into a gathering of close to 40 adventurous golfers who hit the greens and started the 5th annual GLOW BALL tournament around 9:15 pm. We were armed with glow earrings, bracelets, hats and awesome ankle wraps, as well as flashlights and glowing golf balls. We drove carts in the pitch black and heard cheers off in the distance, when someone made a particularly awesome shot. Very fun night. It ended sometime after 1AM with BBQ'd hot dogs and gospel music around a washtub fire! Tom pointed out several times to Terry and I, that we have a great group of friends, and although I already knew that, it was nice to hear it again and again, sort of to reaffirm it and make me realize that I shouldn't take them for granted.

My summer has been filled with friends... there wasn't a day, not one single day, that I wasn't talking to, emailing with, or spending time with one of my friends. I first "poopooed" FACEBOOK ages ago, saying it was for kids, and a waste of time. But this summer, Facebook kept me in touch with people like Chantal who was away all summer, with Lucie, who is deployed in Afghanistan, with Jenn who moved to BC and we chatted all along her 14 day drive. I chatted with friends, family and co workers all summer, and kept up with their joys and disappointments. I have a new respect for Facebook, and now that I head back to work, I know I won't be able to write on walls, or update my status that much, but I will be keeping it on my favorites to check in with friends I no longer have to lose.

Terry and Tom went for a morning paddle before lunch, and Tom left to go home and celebrate his youngest daughter's 13 birthday. Happy Birthday Caliegh!

Can you see TWO frogs in my pond....

Monday, August 18, 2008

Congratulations to Kim

Kim with her daughter Grace......

This weekend, in Nova Scotia, was the "WEEKEND TO END BREAST CANCER".
Doesn't that sound amazing....if that could really happen

The participants who signed up for this cause had to raise a minimum to participate and walk 60 kms over two days!

My sister in law, Kim..... raised over $2500 herself. (with a little help from friends and family) and she walked through rain, cold and sunshine...

Congratulations Kim
I am soooo proud of you!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Summer blog blahs

In reading all my favorite bloggers... or not reading them I should say, the unanimous vote is that summertime is a tough time to blog. Not sure why.

I have done the most "things" this summer, I have ever done... and yet... I am having trouble blogging.

I think I will start a summer in review daily blog, as there are so many things I didn't blog this summer and.... the summer is coming to a fast end for me. I am back to work in 12 days.... that would be 7 working days....

My Pond

There aren't too many of my blogreading friends that don't have a pet, or had a pet. I am down to 2 pets (not counting the fish on my kitchen counter that refuse to die!) But, in the summer I usually have one more. He is the best pet I have ever had. He is my frog. I never feed him, or bath him, walk him or brush him. But he gives me so much pleasure each day. Sick, I know. Its a game each time I leave my doorstep to find him. And there hasn't been a day in a while that I am not disappointed. He is always there. Either on the lily pad, on the rocks or floating (not upside down) in the little pond. Can you spot him (he's in the water)

My little pond is no bigger than 4 feet across and it filled with two lily plants (one the baby of the other) that sit in the pond through all the seasons. it is so ecologically stable that it produces flowers every week (from each plant, not always at the same time) and it houses my little unnamed frog. But this week we discovered we have two little frogs. Different sizes and and different markings. Soooo, the game is bigger now, because I am always looking for two. I don't always see two, but I always see one of them, and often two.


Sunday, August 10, 2008

99% Done

What a productive weekend!
Floors.... done (almost)
Tom (my brother in law) came for the weekend and helped Terry with the hall and dining room. They started Saturday afternoon and with very few breaks they finished on Sunday afternoon. We are so excited to get the house put back together. The WE is Mollie and ME.... This whole floor thing has stressed ole Mollie beyond fun. She isn't eating anymore... that HOW BAD IT IS! Vet wants her to lose 10 lbs so we decided the NEW FLOOR diet would work best... too bad it doesn't work that way for me!
Terry and Tom having a sandwich break...

Mollie... very happy its all over! (and very happy that I am home now) I have been gone to Halifax to help Kim with her bake sale.

Hallway... done

Dining room...done

Livingroom done....

Please excuse any mess, or upheaval you may see around the house in these pictures. I literally got home, and the floors are almost finished but friends and family want pictures... here they are, including the mess!

Bake sale
Kim (sister in law) is running in the "Weekend to End Breast Cancer" and needed to raise $2000. She has been working on it since January and this is the last week. So, I know I have baked my brains out for her bake sale and quite a few friends also baked for her, and today we had a bake sale at two separate locations. We started at a church hall for an hour and then on a neighbourhood corner where Kim and friends live (and use to live) Never got one picture. Burned out my camera batteries on Bella's feeding frenzy... Bella is the new puppy that is in the Trigg household and she is a 16 week old black lab puppy. Bake sale was a big success, making almost $340 with ticket sales and book mark sales and the baking... pretty cool, eh.

I got some really cool ideas for a few little fundraisers for my "Run for the Cure" in October!

Friday, August 8, 2008

The albatross is lifted.. a final time

For anyone who has known me over the past few years, you must already know that I have had an "albatross" around my neck. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner tells the story of a mariner who takes on something that was too big for him. He is forces to wear a dead albatross (one that he himself killed) around his neck as punishment for killing it. Its a long depressing poem that I studied in school and even though I don't remember much of it, I do remember that albatross.

My albatross was a scrapbooking project that I started 6 years ago. My sisters middle stepdaughter, Michele, gave birth to triplets... in 2002. I was in the height of scrapbooking at that time and promised a baby album that chronicled their first year. I loved doing this book.. at first. Then an album for Stephanie's graduation became my all consuming focus. Then the summer hit, then back to work, then getting ready Christmas, then winter... then another album for my sister. All along, I puttered away at the babies' album. It was over two years in the waiting at this point. I started to feel bad about not getting it done, but then another album needed to be created... Michelle's graduation album. then the summer, and so on and so on....

After 4 years of not finishing it, it became an albatross... just something hanging around my neck, filling me with guilt.

My dearest friend Debbie, who scrapbooked with me, and who also created an album for her graduate, Ashley in 2005 kept my spirits lifted and kept the ball rolling. After our girls books (which were huge and a ton of work) were done, we still got together each Monday, and tried to work on our respective albums. Mine was a mental block if there ever was one, and to spend one night looking for pictures, coming up with a plan, scanning what I needed, choosing colors, and fonts and journaling and then to put it all together for the next week was painful some weeks. We couldn't do every Monday, and when we missed a few weeks, we were both back at zero trying to remember where we were!

Ok... that's the history. This summer, I decided that it was not going to go on any longer. I knew I would see my super three in August and that was when they should see their book. But as always, I found other things to do instead of scrapbooking!.... Until last week. Then it just hit... it was uncontrollable how badly I wanted to give them their book on the long weekend in August! While Terry ripped up floors, upstairs, I was planning, cutting, choosing and constructing pages downstairs. I only needed to get 6 double pages done. I worked morning to night and actually did an extra 4 pages, because there were pictures that just needed to be scrapped!

This weekend, we went to my sisters' cottage and to her home. I lay the book out on the coffee table and surprised the triplets and their mom and dad.

Somehow, the albatross wasn't really an albatross after all. Maybe it was divine intervention. It was so much better to have waited until the kids were 6 before they got to enjoy their baby book. They all loved to see themselves and peppered their mom with questions. Michele and Wade were excited to see things in the book that they had forgotten. So worth it.. and sooooo much better to have it when you are 6 years old instead of when your 2 or 3. The very last page of the book will have this picture on it with the words "A Gift of Love". I truly loved making the book for this family, and I am so pleased that they will have a fun book to look at and see just what little miracles these kids are!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Staff "Coffee Break"

Geesh, it hasn't been a "coffee break" for a couple of years, but we still call it that. Its usually a lunch now. Staff from our school gets together once every two weeks during the summer to get caught up on each others' news and just stay connected. Dates and locations are set, and if people can make it, they do, and if the can't, they try for the next one.
This week's break/lunch was at Wheatons and we had 14 for lunch. It was so great to see everyone out, and we had a chance to say good bye to one of our most energetic and funny teachers on staff. She is off to Comox, BC to live for a few years with her hubby and sons. (Damn the military!!) Jenn has a 13 day drive ahead of her so we wish her a fun trip.
Our lunch today covered a wide range of topics from books to movies, sex to hair removal... yes, VEET .....again! Thanks to Lauren for the use of her camera, and Nancy Childs for taking the picture. Debi MB is missing from the pic, as she was in shopping and we didn't realize she was missing until she came out. We took another one but it didn't turn out too good, as everyone was saying "SCHOOL" when the picture was snapped and nobody seemed really happy in the pic!
On the subject of books.... A piece of paper went around the table and everyone added their recommendation for books to read. I am not a big reader, but have found that I have enjoyed several books this summer and seem to have more time on my hands than usual to read.
The list is quite long and diverse, so if there are any comments you would like to add about any of these books or add some that you think are a "must", please feel free to comment in the comment section. You just have to "click" the word "comment" at the bottom of the blog entry, and type in your "two cents". Then make sure you click "anonymous" button after your comment and you won't need to enter a password or anything. Don't forget to sign your name at the end of the comment though! We are all interested in new books and comments about any of these books would be good to read!

Memorykeepers Daughter by Kim Edwards
Lucky by Alice Sebold
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
Secret Lives of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
Life of Pi by Yann Martell
The Birthing House by Amy McKay
Midwives by Christopher A. Bohjalian
East of Eden by John Steinbeck
Momo by Michael Ende
Beyond the sky and the earth by Jamie Zeppo
The curious Incident of the dog in the Night time by Mark Hadden
A complicated Kindness by Miriam Toews
Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet
The Other Boleyn Girl by Phyllia Gregory
Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin
A thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hossenini
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hossenini

In listing the above books, I was able to find links to the books for previewing (and some ebook links too, for actually reading them) so if you are interested in knowing more about any of these books, just click on the title and it will take you to the preview. Some previews are more in depth than others.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Our new floors

Well, the floor is coming along. As you may know, we ordered bamboo flooring early in March and tucked it away for a summer project. Well, we are deep into it now...Terry has never laid hardwood before, and therefore this whole project has been a slow and thorough process. Above is our new livingroom/diningroom location for the next couple of weeks. We can still host guests, and feed them at the table (although it will be tight) and anywhere you sit, you will have a footrest (which is quite fun). Terry was quick to empty the room of all furniture and then tear up the carpet and disassemble everything else but actually laying the wood has been delayed. First the weather (soooo humid) and then we got busy. This week, after researching (through people and internet), Terry started the HUGE project of putting down the bamboo! Its beautiful and sturdy and warm. The whole process has been happening slow enough that the pets were not too thrown off by this until the big power hammer thing came out. The cat left home and mollie hid in the laundry room. Its going to be a long week or two for them.

You know those stupid gifts you give your husband/father that you know they will never use? Well, Terry actually got to use the laserlight measure thingy we got him for Xmas a few years ago... yipee.... We have recruited help for the weekend, so our task now is to move all the livingroom/diningroom furniture into the livingroom and tear up the diningroom/hallway before Friday. Very exciting!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

a backlog of blogs

Well, its been such a busy two weeks... and I am so behind in blogs and there is so much I want to blog about... so I am starting with my oldest blog subject and each day I will blog an event until I am caught up.

My Clare Curling Weekend... Blog Catchup #1
July 24-27 I had the extreme pleasure of participating in a very fun weekend

Clare, a french community that is 1.5 hours from my house, hosts this amazing event each year. There is a golf tournament on the first day of the event and curling for the next three. This was my very first time actually going around a full 18 hole course. I am not a golfer, in any way, but my three mates are all good golfers and it was a very cool experience. Some of my observations were as follows.... first off, the women I "golfed" with make the whole sport look very easy. The ease with which they swung those clubs made me think that I might be able to actually do it. Second, there is a science behind this game that I never really considered. The wind, the terrain, the distance you need all factor in to what number of club you need! Thirdly, the course itself was gorgeous. It was full of hills, greenery, hot spots, and breezy spots. All of that coupled with spending the afternoon with 3 very good friends.... made for a glorious day. The downfall of the day was the hot humid weather. We, in the valley are quite use to this weather, but we certainly didn't expect it down on the cool shores of Clare. But the fact that we were curling at 10pm that night got us through the whole day. After golfing, we relaxed at our beautiful rental cottage and caught up with our cottage roommates. The cottage is on Cranberry lake and this was my first time there in the summer. I have been there probably 3 times for winter curling but the whole atmosphere of the cottage was spectacular on this summer visit. One of the highlights was sitting on the little wooden dock and catching up on the events of the summer. Eventually conversation got around to girly subjects and the discovery of "VEET" was shared and I had lots of questions about this new hair removal technique. We giggled like school girls and made plans to have a VEET party sometime this weekend. Just picturing this event brought giggles to all of us. Curling was sooooo fun. First off, we dressed up in NS tartan shorts and comical Tee shirts, to show the other teams that we meant business... Taking pictures in a curling club is next to impossible because there are 4 rinks of people and the flash would disturb someone. But, on the hottest night of the summer when the outside temperature was 30, imagine trying to pull on leotards, then shorts, a sweater, and shirt... shoes and mitts! what a hoot. Then.... heaven.... we were suddenly plunged into -4 rink and working muscles we haven't really used in 6 months!! The bonspiel had 64 teams (thats 250 people) and they fed us very well.... roast pork, roast beef, lobster, scallops, homemade soups, homemade spaghetti.. and desserts each night. Our games were late at night (all between 10pm and 11:45pm) except one, which left our days free for shopping, napping and chatting. We tried to find VEET in the two drug stores in the village and no luck. Saturday afternoon, after our only afternoon game, we were trying to decide if we wanted to drive to Yarmouth (30 minutes) to find VEET or to just go back to the cottage..... we all gave up on the VEET and headed to the cottage for some lake swimming. Shortly after we got to the cottage, we had a surprise visit from our landlord. A wonderful gentleman that most of us have never met. He lives in Halifax, and using the cottage on weekends. He gave up his weekend there so we could use it, and we were very grateful. He and our cottage neighbour stayed for an hour and it was lovely to meet him and to share stories. We certainly learned a lot of answers to questions we have spent 4 years wondering about... After they left, someone commented that we were missing our lake time... to which Hazel pointed out... It could always have been worse!". If we had the VEET with us, he would have dropped by just in time to see 4 grown women lathered up (legs, bikini and pits) with VEET..... imagining that sent us into fits of laughter.. and actually it still does.!

While I was in Clare, Terry took the dog and the kayaks to Mattatal lake where Tom's cottage is. Tom, Tom's new kayak, his two daughters, Michelle, Scott and the pigs all went as well. They had a fun weekend and everyone enjoyed the kayaks...

Friday, August 1, 2008

Happy Birthday Scottie...

Little Scottie turns 21 today. Michelle found Scottie and brought him home in 2001... he was just 14 and so was she. Grade 9 prom ( I think)

Who would have ever thought that we would be so lucky and have Scott around for this long. Scott has become a big part of our family and this time next year, Michelle and Scott will be married and also finished their first degree at St. FX.
Scott's degree will be in lion taming! Nah, kiddin'

Scott, it has been amazing to watch you grow from a sweet boy into a fine young man.

Happy Birthday STH....
(Scottie the Hottie)

That name was pinned on him in 2001 when Michelle's Aunt Kelly first met Scott and it sure has stuck!

Check out Michelle's blog for pictures of the amazing cake she made him for his birthday.... wow!

One final note.... more blogs to come.... so much to tell...