Not Cool Mother Nature!

April 26, 2015 at 9:40 am (Weather) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Or is it Old Man Winter I should rail at!

Spring was sprung!

Spring was finally here. The grass was starting to green. The birds were waking me up with their early morning sing song. All was as it should be.

Then BOOM! Winter walked back in the door.

Snow Steps

It snowed all day yesterday. Big wet fluffy snowflakes perfect for snow people and snow balls.

Old Man Winter and Mother Nature would have got pelted with many snowballs if they had dared to show their faces around here yesterday.

Plop

Perhaps they were upset because I forgot all about Earth Day on Wednesday.

Perhaps they just like to mess with me.

I breathed a sigh of relief when the ground stayed brown on my birthday and so they sent the snow to my big sister instead to ruin her birthday party.

Well, the joke’s on them. We’re not celebrating till next weekend when it will be brown again (it might even be green).

Through the Screen Door

The snow turned to rain over night (messy, messy, brrr).

The temperatures continue to rise.

Still, not cool, Old Man Winter and Mother Nature!

Stop laughing!

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Not An Early Bird!

April 19, 2015 at 8:15 am (Meme) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

I got up at six am this morning!

I am not a morning person!

My cat, however, figures once the sun is up everybody needs to be up!

She can’t watch bird TV all by herself you know.

I use to be legendary for how long I could sleep in. It would be noon and I would still be abed. It would annoy my mother greatly when teenage me would lie abed and not get up to answer the ringing telephone (when it got to the tenth ring I knew the only person who could be calling was my mother).

I don’t usually get up early. If I’m awake after midnight it’s because I haven’t gone to bed yet. The last time I was awake at four am was because our plane home from Alaska didn’t land until after midnight and by the time the parents were dropped off and we got home it was almost five am and the sun was contemplating rising.

The best early morning I ever had was when my ex got me to rise early to go canoeing on Beaver Creek to watch the beavers. It was spring and the beaver kits were plentiful and very, very cute!

I miss sleeping in, luxuriating half-awake curled up under warm blankets for hours and hours.

I am not an early bird. I will not get the first, freshest worm! (Ugh).

I am, however, learning to enjoy cat naps with the cat. No wonder she is up early as she naps most of the day.

I did not go out today to catch the first light. It was too early. It was too cold. Instead I give you a September Sunset picture and leave you with these words of wisdom.

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, look to tomorrow, rest this afternoon.” ― Charles M. Schulz, Charlie Brown’s Little Book of Wisdom

September Sunset

 

 

 

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Travel Theme: One Colour

April 12, 2015 at 9:20 am (Meme) (, , , , , , , , , )

Last week was actual sunshine (yeah) with metaphorical lollipops and rainbows and actual donuts (fresh from a traditional bakery).

The one blip to my birthday week was that there was no fortune in my fortune cookie from my solo birthday lunch. (Insert sad face here)!

So, I went back the next day to see about getting another cookie (I couldn’t stand a year with no fortune) and she gave me two.

Then Saturday, my sister and I ate out and I got another two.

I now have an abundance of fortunes.

The fortunes are:

Happiness surrounds your events this week.

You tend to be straightforward and honest.

Stand up for what you believe in even if it’s not popular.

You will exceed even your own expectations.

Not at all a monochromatic week, that is, it was not solely black and white, but also included varying tones of light and colour.

Thus we come to this week’s travel theme and present you with photos in shades of brown and tan.

Easter Bunny tracks add a spot of colour to the brown grass as it slowly awakens.

Easter Bunny tracks add a spot of colour to the brown grass as it slowly awakens.

Kitty

My somewhat tan kitty in her favourite matching chair basks in the sunlight.

Colour, sunlight and fortunes. A perfectly, pleasant week.

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Birthday Tribbles and Bits

April 5, 2015 at 8:15 am (Fun) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

The stars in the sky were like candles on the birthday cake of a one-thousand-year-old man. (p. 318)

Easter Bunny

Cheers to:

1) Annual Traditions – every year, sometime around Good Friday, I watch Jesus Christ Superstar. This year I’ve already viewed the 1973 version 3.5 times. It is my favourite version. When it first came out my grandparents (my mother’s parents were strict Lutherans and argued with conviction that JC and the disciplines would not have had long hair and that the popular music was sacrilegious) were very much against us going to see the movie. Thankfully, mom let us go anyway and my younger brother and I spent many Saturday afternoons singing along to the LP. This Good friday, I watched a 2000 version of the play as it was produced in London (England) that is much darker than the 1970s movie.

2) New books that bring me joy and insight and remind me of old homes. Of all the cities I’ve lived in, I miss this city the most. I was English and there during the last referendum so reading about an honest recounting of the French point of view was enlightening.

After the 1980 referendum, everyone with prospects left the city. Everyone here now was a direct descendant of a dreamer. (p. 164)

Heather O’Neill, the author of this book set in Montreal, has a poet’s way with language and an unique way with similes and metaphors.

I looked in the closet for a warmer coat. … Moths flew everywhere around me, like I was in a little snowstorm. It was me. I let winter out of the box. (p. 207)

Arguments lasted longer. They hid behind couches and under the table. (p. 236)

Montreal is Canada’s New York City; it is a place for dreamers, actors, poets, and writers who have no choice but to also mingle with politicians and big business. It is a commercial city and a university town and a dreamer’s paradise as contradictory as that all sounds.

3) YouTube. Ah, but New York city has Broadway. I thank the stars for YouTube. I have been a Broadway Musical fan since forever. I search YouTube relentlessly for clips of past and present plays. It is the only place I have seen Alan Cumming in Cabaret. I so wish I could have seen Cabaret with him and Emma Stone as Sally. I settle instead for YouTube and memoirs. Alan’s new biography Not My Father’s Son is a must read for his fans! I finished it in a day and searched YouTube for clips of his vast acting credits. A very enjoyable day it was. If you’re a fan of Cabaret you must watch this documentary.

4) Memories of old loves. The Girl Who Was Saturday Night describes Montreal men perfectly divinely. Sigh! I miss him.

You could have a graduate class on him at Universite de Montreal. The prerequisites would have to be Russian Realism, The Death of the American Dream, The Bad Guy in Henry James, French Postwar Existentialism, and Seventies Independent Cinema.(p.284)

5) St. Trinian’s. I always wanted to be a St. Trinian’s girl and now to discover a new series of movies with Colin Firth in them. Ah happiness! Ah bliss! I know what I’m watching Saturday night. We (North America) need better access to movies from the UK, the good and the silly. I thank the stars that my library system is so diverse.

Happy Birthday Week to me (why celebrate just one day)!

More Tribbles and Bits here.

All quotes from:

The Girl Who was Saturday Night
by Heather O’Neill
Toronto, Ontario: HarperCollins, 2014

 

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Endless Winter

March 29, 2015 at 8:15 am (Weather) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Winter is coming!

First_Snow2 The big question on everyone’s mind right now is “Will this Winter ever end?” The answer is no. No, this Winter will never end. We have entered the next phase in the Earth’s evolution and it is Winter. As of April 1, 2015 we will have started the next Ice Age! Hoar Frost  1 According to Dr. David Suzuki “We (humans) have altered the physical, chemical and biological properties of the planet on a geological scale. We have left no part of the globe untouched.” Thus, we have only ourselves to blame for this new ice age and endless winter. One only has to look at the weather patterns to observe the depressing ever-changing weekly weather forecast. Ice Flow Next week we will have: Rain Sun Sun Rain Snow or will we have Sun Cloud Cloud Rain Snow. The only constant is Snow. The Snow will never leave. The Snow will never melt. All we will remember from now on is Snow. In the decades to come, Boston’s 110 inches will be hardly note worthy and Mississippians will be able, like the rest of us, to build snow forts year round as we all learn to love Winter. After all, we Canadians have always known that it is possible to survive the ice, the cold, and never-ending Winter. Bring it Ice Age! Wear layers. Cover your face. Leave no skin exposed. Completely disregard fashion. Winter can be fun! The only thing we know for sure is that the new Ice Age is upon us. Not going anywhere It’s time to learn how to enjoy Winter or get use to never, ever going anywhere again.

“We’re in a giant car heading towards a brick wall and everyone’s arguing over where they’re going to sit.” David Suzuki

It’s time to stop arguing before this article becomes truth. Have a good April Fools’ Day everyone!

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Springing In

March 22, 2015 at 8:15 am (Weather) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Ice Over Stream
Spring is sprung!

Spring arrived Friday evening just before sunset.

Snow is expected today.

Thus is Spring.

lio150320

 

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Pi Day

March 14, 2015 at 9:26 am (Fun) (, , , , , , , , , , )

3.141592653 = March 14, 2015. 9:26:53 AM

Pi Day is today.

Well, that depends on how you format your dates – month, day, year in this case. According to my computer (bought here in Canada) I’ll never celebrate Pi day as my format appears to be day, month, year! As we all know, there are never 14 months in a year so I’ll never have the opportunity to celebrate Π.

However, both date types are used in Canada – in French and in English and it seems, the default date format used by Microsoft Windows for English Canada for all-numeric dates (short-dates) is DD/MM/YYYY.

So, I guess I’ll have to either celebrate Albert Einstein’s birthday instead or set my computer to display my dates in the month, day, year format! I could do the later because, it seems, both formats are perfectly A-Ok here in Canada.

Pi day is, of course, celebrated by math enthusiasts around the world and even celebrated by math phobics like myself.

How does one celebrate Pi day?

By making pie of course.

I plan to bake myself a cheesecake pie!

Is cheesecake pie?

Is cheesecake cake?

Does cake need to be iced?

Can a cheesecake be considered a pie only when it is round?

What is pie?

According to Google, a pie is “a baked dish of fruit, or meat and vegetables, typically with a top and base of pastry.”

Oh dear, nothing about cheese!

And according to this Google search, pies must have a crust and my most favourite pie to eat is crust-less, meringue-less, Lemon Meringue pie! Okay, I’ll admit this is just a lemon pudding and not pie but damn, it is tasty.

Celebrate Pi day with pie or with anything else circular.

Celebrate Π.

Not Yet Pie

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International Womyn’s Day

March 8, 2015 at 8:15 am (Rants) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Today is International Women’s Day.

Restore our Anthem from Restore Anthem on Vimeo.

Recently, on CBC radio the topic of our national anthem‘s gender non-inclusiveness, once again, resurfaced.

For those of you who only remember the lyrics when the music swells, here they are:

The official lyrics of “O Canada” are:

O Canada!
Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.

With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!

From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

The non-inclusiveness is “in all our sons command.”

The question put before the CBC audience was should parliament officially change the lyrics “in all thy sons command,” and replace them with “in all of us command.”

To me this is a no brainer. Of course, the lyrics should be changed to include all of us!

It seems, I am (as usual) in the minority here! Nobody (men or women) who called in supported the change in lyrics. This shocked me.

I am a proud Canadian. My heart swells with the music as the national anthem plays but still I feel the words conspire to exclude me. I am not Canada’s son. I am her daughter.

History is herstory too.

I’ve been a feminist for over forty years, this includes most of my life so far.

It’s a little depressing how so little seems to have changed.

History is herstory too.

Shouldn’t our anthems and symbols and history books reflect all of us?

I say yes. What say you?

Caterpillar 00

 

 

 

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Travel Theme: Environment

March 1, 2015 at 8:15 am (Meme) (, , , , , , , , , )

Thursday, February 27th was International Polar Bear Day and Polar Bears International marked the day with a petition urging world leaders to take decisive action at the UN climate change summit in Paris this December. You can read more about the petition here.

To help spread the word, Ailsa at Where’s my backpack? took a look through her travel photos for shots that suggest environment in some way and urged us to do the same.

I give you sky, land, and water.

Sky, Land, River

Live Long & Prosper

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The Basement

February 22, 2015 at 8:15 am (Memoir) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

I hate basements. No, I’m not sure hate is a strong enough word.

I loathe basements! If I built my own house it would not have a basement. As it is, I only go into my current basement to do laundry as that is where the basement appliances live. Well, at least until I get too old to handle stairs and can afford to move these appliances upstairs.

So, to recap … basements ughh! Basements bad!

Basement Appliances

I grew up in a house with a tiny, claustrophobic dirt basement. Basically, it was a hole in the ground with a house atop it. It was accessed through the kitchen. Down there was the washing machine and various jars with glutinous forms glowing in the basement’s dim light. Here we stored the summer garden’s bounty (in jars and pits) to get us through the winter. We were poor, we canned everything we could – my mother’s mother even canned chicken as she had grown up (of course) before refrigeration and knew how to do this. Canned chicken is good eating!

The farm houses my grandparents lived in also had claustrophobic dirt basements. We never went in them. When they moved, their new houses had bigger cement basements that aspired to be rec/wreck rooms for the grandchildren to play in – we were too old by then to be really interested in hanging out downstairs as the gossip upstairs was always more interesting.

Cold Room

That first basement was avoided at all costs but on occasion I had to go down and fetch something for supper. There were salamanders and worms and spiders down there. There was a noisy, child eating wringer washing machine down there. I knew that washing machines ate children because my best friend missed half of kindergarten when their machine sucked her tiny arm through the wringer.

The basement was dark. It was damp. The light was turned on with a pull chain and you had to go all the way down the stairs to do this. If someone closed the door before you got there you couldn’t see anything at all. Many times, someone closed the door.

Someone, hah. Siblings – older sisters and younger brother – don’t we all have them!

They weren’t mean just sadistic as all children (me included) tend to be. I’m sure all of us, Gandhi included, have shut an annoying sibling up somewhere dark and noisy and scary! Though dark and quiet and scary is no picnic either!

Furnace Circa 1950s

Dark and scary. Dark and scary amidst scurrying spiders, revolting reptiles and supposed ghosts. With only a steep staircase between you and escape – no windows anywhere and why can you never find the light string when you need it most. Stupid siblings.

Why couldn’t I be an only child? But then I’d have had nobody to play with and during a tornado I’d have to hide in the basement with only a frog for a friend. I read, in a book about the Depression, about a farm child who only had a frog to play with. The frog laid quietly on its back and let her dress it in a tiny doll dress. Is this normal frog behaviour or was the frog shell-shocked by the tornado and just glad to be somewhere safe out of the wind and rain and this giant thing was, at least, trying to keep it warm and here it (the frog) thought contently “at least, I am warm and safe in this tiny, dark basement!”

My half-siblings didn’t have a basement. They lived in a trailer. A crowded, shaky trailer. What would they do if a tornado happened by? Where would they be safe from big, strong winds? Would they blow away like Dorothy did? I guess, a basement can be useful for some things. Like for hiding in. Unless you’re in a horror movie.

Do not hide in an old stone and dirt basement with only one exit if you’re ever in a horror movie. Okay! Got that!Basement Stairs

So, to recap – basements are bad! I loathe them!

But, they can also be useful for hiding in but not if your life tends to impersonate a horror movie.

Okay, maybe, basements aren’t 100% loathsome! Maybe just 95% loathsome.

I still prefer not to have one.

February’s posts were inspired by the Ray Bradbury Noun List. I hope you enjoyed them.

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