When Does A Quest End?

September 25, 2016 at 8:15 am (Blogging) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )


When Does A Quest End?

When one has found the Holy Grail?

When one has slayed the dragon?

When one has rescued the princess?

When one has found the Unicorn?

When one has reached the goal?

I started this blog at the end of September 2008 with this thesis in mind:

Why? Why am I doing this? Why write a blog? Why delve into the essence of who I am? I’m intrigued by memoir and confession and living vicariously. My real life is quiet. My fantasy life is legion. My inner life, like everyone else’s, is gigantic.

My one goal when I started was to blog weekly. I’ve done that.

I’ve published 425 posts and I have 150 draft ideas sitting around waiting to be used. This will be post number 426. Its been eight years since my first post.

But most of this year’s posts have been photo challenges and small (somewhat) fun posts.


I think I may be done.

More often than not, I put off writing a blog post until the last moment.

I think I may be finishing this quest.

This may be my last blog post. It may not.

If I post again, my next post will probably be a Halloween post.

How do you know when your quest is ending?

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Pirate Fun

September 19, 2016 at 8:15 am (Fun) (, , , , , , , , , )


Today is International Talk Like A Pirate Day. This is not a language I am adept at. I’m too quiet to be a pirate.

However, I do enjoy reading about them.

For your consideration, a booty of pirate book links appear below. They are mostly for young lads and lassies.

To see Small Saul scroll down to the bottom of this list.

Here are more Children’s Books featuring pirates.

Here are Young Adult Pirate book recommendations from Book Riot.

Want to learn all about the pirate life!

Read. Read. Read.

Shiver me timbers!

Tharrr she blows!

Yo Ho Ho off you go for some Swashbucklin’ fun.*


*  This message brought to you by

Red Bess Bonney, Enchantress of the Unquiet Seas.


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Falling or Flying?

September 11, 2016 at 8:54 am (Life) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Come to the edge.
We might fall.
Come to the edge.
It’s too high!
And they came,
and he pushed,
and they flew.

Christopher Logue
English poet (1926-2011)


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The Things We Leave Behind

September 4, 2016 at 8:15 am (Life) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

The things we leave behind — buildings, people, experiences — rarely disappear altogether. When we look back, we find ruins. Remnants. Echoes.

Hope Chest

I’ve moved a lot since I graduated from Grade Twelve. At least twenty times. I downsized every time! I gave away things. I gave up things. I sold things. I lost things. I don’t miss most of those things.

I gained as much as I lost!

There are two things I miss.

Two manuscripts.

Words. I miss words.

Words that I wrote.

The first is a short story I wrote when I was sixteen; there was an unicorn and a black rose in it. For years after, I searched out information on black roses. (This was before the internet). Were they possible? Could you grow pure black roses? This was a topic I researched from 1975 until the 1990s and I still don’t know the answer. I know you can create black roses by dying them. I know that there are red and deep purple roses that will look black in certain types of light. But to grow a genetically perfect black rose; still impossible I fear.

But back to the story. I sent it into Seventeen magazine. I got back a form rejection slip with a very encouraging note written on it in someone’s handwriting. I’ve lost the note as well. I remember thinking “Now, I am a writer!”

The second of my words that I lost was a romance novel.

I wrote it as an experiment. I wanted to see if I could write 50,000 to 70,00 words. This was the length of a Harlequin romance novel back then.

My first draft. My only draft. I write shorter now: blog posts, essays, memoirs. I’ve not attempted anything longer. Maybe I will. Maybe this November. It was a typical 1980s romance. It was probably staid and priggish. My friend Twyla liked. She was the only one who read it. I did nothing with it.

Though, it might be in my hope chest. So might the short story.

I’ve moved the hope chest here, there and everywhere but I seldom explore deep in its depths. There are bombs in there – my wedding pictures, my parent’s after-divorce letters and other such emotional flotsam and jetsam!

I try to stay away from bombs even though there might be treasures also strewn within the minefield!

Thus, these things I’ve left behind may never be found!

Image result for bomb emojiImage result for explosion emojiImage result for bomb emojiImage result for explosion emoji

I was born in 1949, and by the time I was 10, I figured out that my hope chest was not aimed in the same direction as everybody else’s was. And that life was going to be very, very complicated. And that I could either be provocative and declamatory, or shy, retiring and scared. ~Dorothy Allison

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Photo Challenge: Frame

August 28, 2016 at 10:09 am (Meme) (, , , , , , , , , , )


I went back home recently; my second home, my other home – the place where my dad and his second family lived. I don’t have the words to describe accurately what this place means to me. It’s not second, it’s not other, but it’s not quite my only home either. Can we have more than one home?

One of the places that speaks to me spiritually is the Bow River Falls and it’s been too long since I was able to sit on those shores. I miss the sight of them, the sound of them, the smell of them. Not knowing when I would return, I wanted to bring them back with me. So I recorded the sound of them and paced the parking lot looking for perfect angles (sans tourists) to capture the look and feel of them.

It took a while!

I liked the way the top two trees were growing and could see how they framed the Falls perfectly. I had to wait and wait for other photographers and tourists to get out of the frame. It took forever but I had the perfect angle from where I sat on the stone border wall. So I waited and snapped other photos.

Finally I got my shot!

It wasn’t until I got home that I noticed that the trees almost form a perfect heart.

I think I’ll print out this one and frame it. I’ll think of home every time I look at it.

Other Frame Photo Challenges here.

Plus, go here for 8 tips on enjoying your national parks.


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Sunlight on Water

August 21, 2016 at 8:50 am (Fun) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )


  • A perfect summer Saturday,
  • Sunlight on water,
  • Enough of a breeze,
  • Few mosquitoes,
  • Family.
  • Home early enough to recharge before bed,
  • And to chase the cat around the house;
  • She thinks I’m a toy!


  • An Introvert’s perfect getaway,
  • Love me and let me be me!

PSA: like to list! Join Li.st.

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Viking Fun

August 15, 2016 at 1:28 pm (Fun) (, , , , , , , )


One of the fun souvenirs I got at homecoming were these viking ducks. The viking is our town’s mascot because many of our founder’s ancestors were Norwegian.

It would appear that the pirate viking (he has an eye-patch) is an artist – notice the paint brush he is holding. I bought him because I liked his orangery red hair.

We got one duck free with our homecoming bag. I think that was the blond on the left with the axe. The white haired viking, on the right, with braids and a spoon may be female. Who can tell with rubber duckies! The other ducks cost me a dollar each. Cheap fun at that price!

My eldest sister is not a fan of our viking mascot. Mostly because every image of a viking that the town uses is male. I agree we need a female viking representing our female athletes.

Someone like Lagertha perhaps.

Aren’t Rubber Duckies fun!


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Sports Bragging

August 7, 2016 at 8:15 am (Meme) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

I squealed when I saw this week’s travel theme! Yes, yes, yes! I’m in the mood for some bragging.

I play very few sports so this bragging is not about me. It’s about my friend. She’s heavily involved in the Quidditch community. Yes, I said Quidditch as in the sport that Harry Potter plays on flying brooms.

She recently attended the Quidditch World Cup in which Australia came first. Way to go Australia! The Quidditch Canada National Team placed 4th out of 21 teams at the IQA Quidditch World Cup. Pretty good if you ask me!

What to see how Quidditch is played; follow this link to YouTube videos of Quidditch World Cup 2016.

My friend not only plays Quidditch, she also coaches and refs. She was at the World Cup mostly as a ref, I do believe.

I’m in awe. She brings imaginary sports to life. I’m more of a non-athlete. Sometimes I’ll watch ice skating on CBC. Occasionally, I will go and watch a sports game if nieces or nephews (or grand-nieces/nephews) are playing.

I never really got encouraged into any sports. I played a bit in elementary school but by the time I started grade eight I was relegated to the sidelines (like scoring in baseball – I can still fill in and read baseball score cards)!

Sports are harder to pick up as you get older. I do like walking. I do a lot of solitary walking but sometimes I wish I had my friend’s bravery to try something new and spectacular like Quidditch.

Quidditch Refs

Photo credit: Alix Marie d’Avigneau


This is not my picture. I cribbed it from my friend’s FaceBook page. (I may have to remove it but I hope she’ll be okay with me using it).

Congratulations to all the Quidditch athletes world-wide.

Keep on being innovative!

“Although people rarely died playing Quidditch, referees had been known to vanish and turn up months later in the Sahara Desert.” ~J.K. Rowling

“I’m sitting in the bleachers, watching longingly as all the boys and umbumped girls in my Personal Health and Fitness class play Muggle Quidditch. I don’t even like the game very much, I think it’s silly, but I so miss physical activity that I’d be thrilled if I could run around the gymnasium with a broom between my legs, chasing after the human snitch wearing a gold pinny.” ~Megan McCafferty



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Book Quotes: Shiny

July 31, 2016 at 8:15 am (Book Commentary) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Like a magpie, I am a scavenger of shiny things: fairy tales, dead languages, weird folk beliefs, fascinating religions, and more. (Author’s note)


…she was the one artists would want to draw…She was the one who would someday know a dozen ways to wear a silk scarf, how to read the sky for rain and coax feral animals near, how to purr throaty love songs in Portuguese and Basque, how to lay a vampire to rest, how to light a cigar, how to light a man’s imagination on fire. (p. 24)

It wasn’t a Gothic cemetery; there were no mossy angels weeping miraculous tears of blood, no crypts or curses or crumble. No poets or courtesans were buried here; no vampires slumbered belowground. … Even the dead loitering here spoke of dull things, like the one who worried she’d left the stove burning when she died. (p. 45)

(Goblin Fruit pp. 1 – 55)


Lips Touch: Three Times
by Laini Taylor
Toronto: Scholastic, 2009 Lips Touch

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Travel Theme: Pairs

July 24, 2016 at 8:15 am (Meme) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

These are pictures that I took when I was experimenting with capturing ground coverings, garden design and other such details. I thought they would work well with this week’s travel theme.


This is a pair of neighbourhood bears. This picture is from last year. The display has been added to since. I must get a new picture. I love the white tree on the left and the happy bears always make me smile.


This is a pair of grey frogs surrounded by grey ignoring each other. I wanted to see how much of the detail I could capture in a grey on grey on grey picture without resorting to black and white. I like the way the picture turned out. Next time I might manipulate the frogs some but I didn’t feel comfortable doing so then as this wasn’t my garden. However, it does belong to my mother’s cousin so she probably would let me play with it.


Here we have a bug couple (a couple of bugs). Look at the tiny detail on her shoes and what is he holding? Is it a flask? I see a green flask and a yellow love note. Again this Bug couple makes me smile. I love to take pictures of objects that make me smile.🙂


“…the springtime of life isn’t a chain; it’s a pair of wings.”

~Sok-kyong Kang, “A Room in the Woods,” in Bruce and Ju-Chan Fulton, trans., Words of Farewell: Stories by Korean Women Writers (1989)

“When a pair of magpies fly together / They do not envy the pair of phoenixes.”

~Lady Ho, “A Song of Magpies” (c. 300 B.C.), in Kenneth Rexroth and Ling Chung, trans., eds., The Orchid Boat: Women Poets of China (1972)

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