Thursday, December 30, 2004

My mom's aunt.... Her name is Iwilla (Aunt Willie for short). She is the one lady in my family that I admit I am most like. Who is she, what is she like? First I share she has always been a pack-rat (is that what we are called) and there isn't a day that goes by where I am reminded of that inherited quality I possess. She is one heck of a determined, strong, no nonsense, stubborn woman (stubborn being another inherited quality for me). When she said NO, it was NO! She has my respect as she supported her sick husband through some difficult years, carried their family and raised her son to be an amazing much respected teacher. She worked hard all her life. She was one sassy looking lady, her slim features, full head of dark curly hair and cherry blossom lips that stand out in every picture we have of her. She is an avid reader with probably at least 150 books in her home at any given time. She loves sunflowers and my children, especially Sandy. She never forgot when someone did a good deed for her and she never forgot to say "I love you" to me when we talked, and when she said it, you knew she meant it!

My Aunt Willie took sick this summer, being diagnosed with cancer. She has battled through treatment - determined to see past the cold winter days as she longed for the sunshine of the new summer to come. The past few days have seen for a weaker time and she is now waiting in peace for the next phase of her journey through life. It won't be long before she gets to personally meet Jesus with His extended hand and smiling face. He will soon embrace my wonderful aunt as He escorts her through the golden paths of heaven. She soon will be joined with my mom and they will laugh and dance all afternoon in celebration of coming home. I pray that peace is with her as she rests this evening and that when the time comes, that she soars through heaven just as she knew she would. My heart is heavy and sad that I soon will loose my special aunt and her son will loose his awesome mom.

I now once again find myself reflecting on life and what it really is - what matters and what doesn't. I take 2005 on with gusto, all hopes and anticipation of a year of change and challenge. I wait quietly for news of my aunt's new journey.


Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Well everyone is getting geared up for New Year's Eve. I could never understand what the big hipe is over this particular day. I mean, I know it's a significant day of the year - however is it significant enough for people to spend hundreds of dollars a person to be entertained and fed? I hear of people spending $200 a person to go out for an evening that on any other night would cost less than $50.00 ! If only we got geared up like that for every single day of the year!

I was driving along the other day and my thoughts drifted to a vision of myself. This vision was kind of blurry and all of a sudden I saw myself walking around one of those mirrors you see in an amusement fun park, the ones that make you look short and fat or long and skinny, even wavy all over, depending on where you are standing. I realized that the past year I have actually been the product of a mirror that was somehow showing my reflection in those ways. One day I was just as I appear and the next I was somehow distorted into the vision of a person I didn't recognize. Who was that lady with the short fat legs - didn't she once have long skinny legs?

I started to think of people and their personalities as we facilitate roles of mother, father, office manager, plant manager, courier drivers, husbands, wives, girlfriends. All of us brushing through the daily requirements of our employment jobs and the roles we carry at home. Do we ever spend time playing "our" role, the person we "really"are. The person who laughs and jokes, the one who's eyes sparkle with the excited anticipation of something that's going to happen. The man or woman who can throw everything to the wind to spontaneously just run and jump for joy. Do we often allow ourselves to let our complete guard down, banish our concerns and worries and just really enjoy life. Throw caution to the wind? Do we often let ourselves run through the rain storm with our hair flying and flapping everywhere without care?

Turning an amazing milestone in my life, I am feeling a mid-life crisis coming on. I have always wanted auburn hair, I have always dreamed of Italy and the beach house that has a small desk and computer reserved for me - the one I see myself through the open window that is open for the sea breeze to flow through spitting salt water at me. Long beaded hippie skirts look so comfortable as do capris pants and long walks along sandy beaches. I long to do something wild and crazy like call into work and take 2 weeks off, jump a plane for Europe without telling anyone until I am thousands of feet into the air (do airplanes fly that high?), carrying nothing but a nap sack. I dare myself continually to just quit work and travel for three months. To visit missionary camps, to meet a handsome Italian man, to write that book, to sit with women in foreign under priviledged countries and listen to their hearts. There is so much I long to do that my conservative reserved cautious ways protect me from doing. I wonder recently, what happened to that carefree girl I once was - when did she grow up and grab that spontaneous nature and wrap big gold bows on it and stuff it in the oversided bag that she hid under the comforters in the closet?

I often tell so many younger women to enjoy life, have fun and remember that the years fly by and before you know it - you are entering the final years of life and you wonder how did it go so fast. I wonder if on my head stone it will say "she threw caution to the wind" or "Italy will never be the same" or will it say "she wrapped herself in her cocoon staying soft and protected"..... hmmm... will my spontaneous nature return to shake up the journey of my mid-life crisis to make 2005 a year to remember......

Anyway, New Year's Eve - it's most certainly over-rated!


Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Crying and how it gets the job done! Right! I was almost finished a blog to share with you the other day when Joseph frantically called me from his bathroom shouting "mom - help, there is water all over the floor". I went to the bathroom and getting on my knees I indeed verified the water situation, as I sat right in it. I was beginning to feel slightly panicked but tried to remain composed all while talking myself into not thinking the worse. Well, it didn't last long as I discovered it was the toilet that was leaking, however I couldn't figure out from where. Finally I found a crack in the toilet tank and I sat back in frustration and cried, really cried.

Joseph looked at me with worry and I simply asked him to leave me alone for a while. What did I do? I flushed the toilet, honestly thinking about putting my head inside, and then shut the water off to the toilet. Good thinking aye?! So you ask in wonder why in the heck would I have cried over something like that? Well, It was not the entire toilet situation that made me cry. It was the fact that the "boy's" bathroom was messy despite my numerous pleas to them to clean it, my cottage deal is quickly going sour and may not close (goodbye car), the front door lock is acting up, my back patio door is frozen up strangely from the inside, the car I am driving is acting up, the dog ate a cake I was bringing to a friend' s house for dinner and the list goes on and on this week. Oh, and I wonder if I might be a single, lonely woman as I shuffle along with my cane into old age. Isn't that enough?

Well.. joy comes quick. We don't need this toilet immediately - there is another one in the house, and I think there has to be a way to fix this relatively inexpensively. If the cottage does not sell, so what - I just get to sit by the lake one more summer. And big deal if the car breaks down - there are buses and FRIENDS. And heck if I do shuffle off into old age as a single chick - think of all the laundry and cooking I will miss doing.

But you know what, crying certainly relieves pressure and frustration !

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

I can't believe it's been almost two weeks since I wrote - soon my followers will be long gone with dust kicking behind their heels. I had hit a point in my life that I was so busy that my home was a drop in centre. I'd drop in to pick up something to head somewhere, only to come home to drop into bed to jump back out and repeat the same routine. I had recently stopped and wondered how that routine happened. So, I have deliberately put a temporary cease to all my activities that have pulled me away from home. I am in a nesting stage. Resting, regrouping and really enjoying just being home. I will now have time to turn this computer on and let the thoughts process.

I think most of us hit a stage in life where we wonder where the past years have went, we realize it was a blur of activity. Are you really doing what you want to do with your life, or are you in a rut. I mean a rut that you can personally do something about. Three months ago, due to a literal crash in a wall, I turned my life around. I did things that under normal circumstances would have scared me - like quit a 14 year job - one I believed I'd retire from. I quit it without even job hunting. I left the job on August 19th with not even a slight insight into a new job. The first morning of my unemployment, I was woke to a call from someone who knew me and was put in a difficult situation, needing me to help him for a few days. Then I had a job interview three days later - to which the same day I landed the job - packed with more salary, and benefits that I didn't have with my previous employer of 14 years.

I was blessed and protected during this time period. I have grown through the experience of just stepping out in faith. This year has been a year of major trials and tribulations, but somehow by the grace of God, I have landed with both my feet on the ground. Those feet might be somewhat bruised and sore, but I landed. This I realize, is just the beginning of many changes to come in 2005.

What about you..... what is is that YOU have wanted to change, but have either procrastinated on or have been frozen with fear about? And, what do you think you will do in 2005?


Wednesday, December 08, 2004

I think I am dealing with exhaustion, yet I keep going. I feel like a dollar store version of a duracell battery. I just keep going, but the going just gets slower. I miss writing and think about it all the time, when I am driving to work, eating my lunch or staring out the window at work. I am going to get back on routine once I get the cottage work, moving and sale done. I am also going to get my home office finished - it's been in a mess since last February. (hmmm.. that's almost a year!)

Well... my charger just ran out of energy, I am going to plug it in over night and anticipate that when I wake up I shall be re-energized. I have a full schedule now until Sunday. I guess I should be thankful for such a full social life. If I was sitting home all the time, I would figure I wasn't well liked.

from wheepy and sleepy...

Friday, December 03, 2004

Yesterday I received a pleasant surprise, yes more surprises!! My brother in B.C. was talking to me via Ma Bell and he said, "I hear you had a big birthday weekend, surprises and a big birthday bash." I was taken back that he knew about it as I had not talked or written to him. I asked how he knew about it and he said "I read about it your blog spot." Yippeee... my brother reads my off the wall writing. I was quite impressed that he took the time. So, I guess just more inspiration to keep sharing, afterall a relative is checking it out. Now if I could just get them to take a ride on the comments section!

I had a nice birthday dinner yet once again Thursday evening - shared with my cousin, her man and my son. Deb's birthday and mine are two weeks apart, and a few years - she being the younger party. I received really neat news - her and Dave finally got engaged...yes, they are eventually going to jump off the diving board and tie the knot. YIPPEEEEEEEE!! Congratulations.

Oh, I have posted way over 100 posts on this site, however the counter has stopped counting?! Weird. My next project is to figure out how to get pictures on this site. I have another little blog I was thinking about running, but didn't have much success with it (check it out at: but I managed to get pictures posted on that site. I am going to try to set it up for this one now! Shall see how the weekend holds out time wise for me!


Thursday, December 02, 2004

I, being a deep thinker (often so deep I get lost), have been wondering if there is anyone else out there other than me that wants to slam on the brakes of life. You know, just stop everything that is going on in this world, our cities and neighbourhoods. Stop the wars, violence and destruction. The state of our world is critical and extremely sad. Young children proudly carrying rifles, young children being killed in the cross fire of adult domestic issues, widespread diseases, unsafe cities and homes, hatred and wars all around us. Joseph continually comments that he thinks I should be watching more t.v. and paying attention to the politics in our world - and I tried, but maybe I am like a duck in the water, I just want to float down the lake being warmed by the sunshine as I stick my head in the water to hide from the issues of our world. As much joy that I know is there, I have a very awareness of the darkness all around us - that appears to me many people don't really comprehend. I can't help but wonder if those people that drive beside me in the morning rush hour ever think like I do?

Anyway, I am thankful for my faith and the peace I receive through all the trials of this world. With my personality and thinking mechanism as it is, I would be ravaged with fear.


Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Well...the birthday has come and finally almost gone with respect to the celebration. What an event. Yes, I turned a magic age and the weird thing is I don't really feel any different, other than exhausted. My birthday started two weeks ago when the girls decided we'd have a practice run at the celebration and all go dancing. On Saturday I was invited to a late lunch with two of my long time friends Mary & Laurie (one I have been friends for 35 years and the other 37 - can you imagine?) Anyway, I was kidnapped on Saturday afternoon to a destination of Niagara Falls. It was an interesting chain of events, including taking the wrong road and ending up in Woodstock (don't ask!). We had a good evening together and returned home early on Sunday. I had been asked to brunch by my children so had to rush to get ready. What I didn't know was they had arranged a surprise birthday party with some of my close friends...counting in at 52 of them. Then on my actual birthday my daughter sent me a beautiful flower arrangement, and brought a most delicious cream and strawberry cake for dessert on the night of my birthday. My friend at work gave me a very special card - it was special because she has taken the time to know who I am and bought a special card that reflected that. It wasn't just a randomly picked card. I was so overwhelmed with excitement it has taken me days to get recover. It was a beautiful celebration with my incredibly loyal friends. I am overwhelmed by the realization of the many many friends I have been blessed with. They have humbled me with their love.

If I have accomplished anything in this life I am passing through, it is that I have four beautiful, unique and loving children that put up with me as well as the great joy of each one of you, my beautiful friends. I thank you my children and friends for being there for me.

By the way, I am the owner of a cool t-shirt that says "ALL ORIGINAL PARTS! I note, it may be true, but not by choice! lol...

LOVE YA, Cheri

Thursday, November 25, 2004 all know, I have been struggling somewhat lately with finding something "interesting" to say. Anyway, my "young" faithful friend Danielle... has helped me with the next blog and I paste it right here - as words from her own mouth.

Danielle begins:


I tried to comment on your last blog with this lengthly piece. When I tried to send it, it said that it was too long to send, so this is in response to your - not having anything to write about. Maybe you can copy it and paste it on your next entry and then comment on it. I dont know. Write back, Love Danielle

Sent: Thursday, November 25, 2004 1:45 PM

Talk about "How quickly our lives can change from one minute to the next so to make the most of it"........I heard a really sad story a couple of days ago about a not so close friend but a friend and a dear old soul. She was a volunteer at my kids school, she helped out with pizza days and with my lunch program, The Lunch Lady. She is a grandmother and would volunteer on behalf of her grandson which she basically raised herself. The sun rose on him and set on him, the apple of her eye. He is in grade 2. I haven't seen this lady at all this school year. She hasn't come to any of the lunches as of yet and a few of us had brought that up in conversation. Oh well, maybe she had bigger and better things to do. She is a retired lady. Anyways, I got a phone call from my friend and she asked me if I remembered Lois from lunch days. Of course I did. That kind of woman left an impression on you. Especially the situation she was in with the grandson and all, you dont meet too many people like her. She was the kind of lady that when she spoke to you she touched you in some way, meaning that she would have her arm around you, or hold your arm and look right in your face. The phone call was to inform me that she had a bad fall and that she broke her jaw and that she was in the hospital. Sounds horrible, doesnt it??? Well, that wasn't the worst of it. She has been in a coma since then caused by, I believe, swelling or bleeding of the brain........and she has only a couple of days to live. I can't believe such horrible things happen to such wonderful people and all in a split second. What she fell on or how she fell remains unknown between my friend who passed on the news and I. All we know is that when she passes, heaven will be a better place when she arrives but the dear old soul will be missed by many. Today I pray that her little 7 year old grandson, Robert, has the strength to make it through this very difficult time that he has before him and that he will always remember his grandmother for the amazing person that she was. This is a little tribute to my dear friend, Lois. And to remind us to live life to the fullest because we never, never know when our time is up. Try to tell everyone that you care for how you feel about them as much as often - here today, gone tomorrow. Sad but true.There you go Cheri.....a little inspiration. I await for your next blog. I have a feeling it will be really awesome.Love ya!!

Danielle...I thank you for sharing your heart, maybe it's your turn to start a blogspot!! What more can I say, as I reach for my kleenex and cry for these people...especially the little boy Robert. Remember always that THERE IS A HEAVEN and it's a beautiful place. It's just sad that we leave behind our loved ones who bear the pain of losss.....Maybe if you are an incredible prayer warrior, or maybe you have never prayed, but maybe today you could try....for Robert.

Have a good evening all.... Love, Cheri

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Nothing about nothing...Today I had a long day. I am now in my p.j.'s and anxiously looking forward to pulling back my bed covers and sticking my toes deep into the pretty yellow sheets that await me. However, out of a concern of appearing to be old and tired, I am waiting until 10:00. Lately there has been nothing more relaxing for me than crawling into bed and snuggling up to my abundance of pillows and fluffy blankets. I have to tear myself out of bed in the morning, and not because I am tired or depressed, but simply because it feels so good to just lie there.

I have been sneezing continually all week - no appearance of a cold, I don't think I have allergies, yet I continue the sneezing pattern. It's starting to become irritating, my nose is all red and irritated from the not so soft kleenex on my desk.

I have decided I desperately need to exercise. I have visions of me in my cute little gym clothes running around the track and then landing on the tred mill...I have picked out the cute little exercise clothes, I have just not managed to get to the store to buy them. Nor have I even remotely stepped out of the car to visit the gym to even find out how much it would cost to have a cheap membership. So is all I have managed to do is decide that I have to do something about it.

This weekend is my birthday and we will continue to celebrate, heck I need to continue celebrating, after all before I know it, I won't even know it's my birthday!

I know my kids want to buy me presents and they are not sure what to buy so I decided to share with them right here, gift certificates at Future Shop or Best Buy (or even Staples), gift certificates for the Christian Book store, long socks, ink for my computer printer, plastic surgery for the wrinkles around my eyes, pedicure, MASSAGE, cleaning lady for a few months - oh a trip to Texas, Mexico or Portugal.

So...writing has been boring for me lately. The brain is stagnant and I have decided I need to go to Tim's site and steal one of his articles - just to have my friends squeal in astonishment at the level of my intelligence, then my conscience got the better of me and I decided that if I was even going to consider such a tactic, I might better check out a blog spot somewhere and steal their writing...then at least the chances of getting caught are much less....

Oh well....maybe something exciting will come to me this week that I can share....Night.....

Monday, November 22, 2004

Well...the sad news today. I finally share that the cottage that I so enjoy is sold. I have been going through the past two weeks really not thinking about it much. But reality is the sanctuary I have placed myself through out the summers is now going to be the host of a new family. The Hagen /Stinson/Boot/Dobson/Homsy generations have seen their days to incredible fun, laughter, and love. We now stop to breathe, think and rest. I force myself to look to the new journey and avenues of adventure the future will hold for us. I see Italy, Portugal, Peterborough, New York City and B.C. in the vision I cast. I see a change in the history to be made in the future generations of our family. They will no longer be cottage sanctuary seekers - maybe they will be world travelers or sky divers. We do know that they will not be city slickers and hopefully not baseball freaks (sorry Blair!)

Anyway, here's to new roads to be traveled and old worn roads to be treasured. I shall promise to walk the dusty paths of these new adventures in the midst of admitted fallen tears and fear.... but the path we WILL walk......


Saturday, November 20, 2004

Pictures. I am intrigued by the camera. A Cannon, Pentex or a Nikon camera, the heavy ones with interchangeable lenses is a piece of art in my personal opinion. I have a digital camera that manages to take some pretty awesome pictures. However, the sound of the firm click of a lens shutting as it has captured the perfect picture is a sign of a job completed successfully. It does not compare to the dull swish of a digital camera in action. Have you ever held a professional 35 millimeter camera in your hand and snapped away? I see myself in a bit of a jungle snapping pictures of the swinging moneys and running tigers and my vision carries me to my journey along a dusty path to the historic homes in the sunny spots in Portugal. The sun is shining down on my wide brimmed straw hat as I walk in awe through the villages with my cameras hanging off my shoulder and one in hand as I crouch down to snap pictures of the little children playing soccer in bare feet through the streets of their villages.

The trip of adventure is not complete without a good 35 millimeter camera in hand. I am not sure if tonight I am dreaming about me in the quaint villages I want to visit in Portugal or the desire to be an amazing photographer......

It's time to dig into some real heart stuff...stay tuned....

Friday, November 19, 2004

Birthdays. Some people think that birthday's are the best day of the year. I used to think that until 2004 when realization seeped in that this would be the year of no return. I would be entering the senior stages of life. I refused to acknowledge my coming birthday most of this year. However, the past couple of months has begun to show me that this month is a time of celebration. A celebration of ME. Yes, what awesome creature I am. So perfectly created. So, in honour of all the perfection and incredibleness, I have decided to celebrate. Tonight marks the beginning of a 12 day celebration of me, this incredible being. I celebrate before, on and after the special day. Yipppeeee....what an amazing year it is to celebrate! MOI........

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

I know, I know...where have I been! Here...just too overwhelmed with "nothing" to write. The past couple of days I have had a nagging feeling - and nagging of what...I don't know. I'll have to figure that one out. But, the most important thing I feel is that I have been reflecting on my new little 8 year old friend (now 9 years!). The little guy who shared with me that he can't run like the other boys. I have an answer...if those little boys want to run...great...think of all the things they are missing as they are running quickly to wherever they are going. When we run we miss smelling the flowers in the gardens, we miss the sun rays that shine down upon us and yes, we even miss the sun glistening off the ice on the side of the road on those icy cold days. I think this week I am going to walk, very slowly.....
Off to bed with me...headache and all!

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Today I met an 8 year old boy who shared a bit of his story with me. He said to me "I have muscular dystrophy. I can't walk and run like the other boys. Sometimes they make fun of me." As I sat looking into the eyes of this georgeous child, I thought my heart would leap right out of my chest. I listened to him talk as we walked through a hallway with other children running ahead and past him. I asked him how he felt when the other children laughed at him and he replied "it makes me angry".

This little boy has touched my life in seconds of my day. I wanted to grab him and hold him very close to me and protect him from the harshness of the world that surrounds him. As I walked with him in the midst of other running children, I felt as though for just a few moments, I had a glimpse of his world. It felt so sad. On the other hand, I felt so good that he felt safe enough to share his heart with me. Afterall, I just met him today. His birthday is next week and somehow I have to find a way to touch his life to show him that someone out here thinks he's so special.

Any ideas my friends?

Sunday, October 31, 2004

Whewwwww.... I can't believe it has been two weeks since I wrote. I do have excuses...I was off in Kentucky with the Ministry, work has been busy and my house was in desperate need of cleaning, and of course that doesn't even begin to share the magnitude of my crazy schedule, i.e. Bible study, church, socializing with the numerous friends I am blessed to have.

I looked at my stats today and note that I have written 110 entries on this site...I wonder how many of you, my dear friends, have read all 110 entries? Maybe you could share by posting a comment. I'd be very interested to know.

I was thinking as I sat here reflecting how much I think I would enjoy living in a little village on the outskirts of town. I picture myself in the front room in front of my computer, which sits directly in front of a huge picture window that overlooks grass, hills, trees and a running river.... my friends walk by with dogs or children in tow and wave as they walk the journey of a care-free almost stressless life style. Oh to imagine....

Imagine....the word sparkles in my world these days...imagine is like a sparkler lit and held up against the dark black skies of the night... how bright, beautiful and exciting !

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Today is my friend’s 40th Wedding Anniversary.

Today she thinks celebrates it without her husband.
Sandy you are not celebrating it with him - on earth anyway, but
I guarantee that there is a party in heaven with Jesus, the angels and
the family that sits with him day by day watching over you.

He smiles down at you Sandy - he shakes his head often as he watches
you dance and live life to the fullest -
Oh how he shakes his head when you set foot on the
dance floor at Sonoma’s!

He’s proud of you that you are so strong and he thanks God
that you have a positive attitude and you smile through the tears.
He cries when you cry my friend.
He laughs when you laugh, and he hugs you
when all your friends hug you.

Today he celebrates that God gave him the most beautiful wife
he could have asked for.
He is thankful that you are there with his precious
children and grandchildren.
Never forget that he sends angels to laugh, dance and cry with you daily.

Today my friend, he raises his glass to you,
his most precious beautiful bride;
The wife he cherishes and loves and he says:

"I laughed with you, I cried with you, I argued with you,
I made love with you, I ate the dinners you cooked for me,
I shopped with you, and I LOVE YOU ....

"Happy Anniversary Baby - You’re one wild and crazy lady !! "

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

My son... A while back someone asked me when I was going to write about my eldest son Brian. I had not figured out why I hadn't written about him yet and realized that probably because he is my quietest non-assuming child. He is quiet in the house, keeps himself busy with working, his sports and play station games. He's not a huge talker - unless he's just finished a ball hockey game, the Leafs are in the playoffs or if someone important has been traded, or if I have forgotten to buy cereal and milk. Other than that, he is a listener and a watcher.

However, he was not always like that. He was my hyper-active child as a youngster. ADHD takes on a new meaning when this child was born! When he was just over a year old he was jumping so fiercely in his crib that he actually crashed the entire bottom out of the crib and landing on the floor, all while still jumping up and down barely missing a step. He was so busy that I couldn't even sit him on my lap for more than a few minutes at a time, and we would pass him from person to person. At eight months old he knew the word BALL and he was crazy over balls. I'd take him for a stroller ride to the local mall and just inside the doors of Zellers they always had this huge cage type apparatice that contained all kinds of bouncing balls. He'd see those balls and scream for them.

Brian loved being outside, he loved to play on the street with the other kids and when it was time to bring him in, he would scream "blue murder" (remember that saying). The entire neighbourhood would know who it was and why! Then there was the time that he thought peeing on the neighbour's flower gardens was a game. It took quite a bit of time to get him out of his newest fasination, watering the flowers.

Brian had the whitest hair I have ever seen on a baby. He had crystal
blue eyes that twinkled constantly. His smile was so sweet. He still has a sweet smile and manages to use his eye expressions to perfection. He has calmed down considerably and no longer crashes through things. He has a thoughtful and kind heart and makes friends very easily.

I am sure he wonders how he ever ended up in this noisey, crazy family and probably gravitates more to Sandy than any of us - she's almost as quiet as him. Sheira drives him bonkers, he tolerates Joseph and actually appears to enjoy the role of big brother. Me, well apparently he doesn't bother to argue with me as "it's pointless" apparently. He doesn't say he loves us - but I know he does.

These days is fasination is his little remote car. It has gagets and batteries, and a tool box that he carries everywhere - even to his brother-in-law's pre-wedding party in Collingwood where the golf course has taken on a whole new meaning.

I am blessed to watch him grow into this neat man who doesn't really want to give up being the big kid with the toys. I can't wait for a nice young woman to come along, sweep him away from his toys and make him into a good husband and father.

Brian, has challenged me, worried me, made me proud and he has made a difference in my life and the live of his brother's and sisters. He is a special person who has grown up overnight. He's the man of our house!

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Thanksgiving... I sat this Sunday afternoon around the kitchen table watching my friends as we celebrated my most favorite celebration - Thanksgiving. I quietly began to think about the many things I am thankful for. First of all, that my friend Julie invited us to share this special dinner with her entire family. I am thankful for Charlene who became my friend over 35 years ago and that she shared her family with me and that they have opened their arms to us. YEA for Charlene, Danielle, Sandy, Julie and their husbands & children! I am thankful that my children are healthy, happy and an incredible blessing to me. I am thankful that my daughter's wedding was everything she dreamed it would be and that her husband made it a very special day for her. Not to mention that my daughters are beautiful and my sons are absolutely handsome. Oh...and of course my new son...Blair...he's pretty awesome too. I am thankful that Michelle and Chanel are still a part of our family and that these children love and care about eachother.

I was at church on Sunday getting ready to help out with some things, and I took some time to say hello to a few friends to whom I have not seen in the past three weeks. I chatted with a few, hugged my favorite little kids (whom I really missed seeing!) and waved at a few friends. As I was heading down the stairs to the front lobby, my quiet dear friend reached out to get my attention and took the time to hug me, say HI and ask how I was. This doesn't sound like anything special (maybe because he's not necessary the "sentimental" type), and I am not sure I could explain why it was so special, but it was. I am not sure he would even suspect how his efforts made my day, but I must say as much as a lot of really neat things happened that day - this was the most special. I bet you he doesn't even realize it was him !

I am thankful for my new friends - the ones that cook for me when it's been a long day, give me more support and love than I could possibly give them. And you my extra special friend - thank you for trusting & letting me be there for you in the tough times.

Today is the 5th anniversary of when my mother passed away. I am not sad about it, as I know that she is at peace and is where she always knew she'd be...Heaven. She spent years believing yet still wondering if there was a heaven and now she has her answers. However, I did carry somewhat of a heavy heart today thinking about how much I miss her. I am not sure I could explain it, but it's this shadow, an emptiness since I lost her. It's a lost diamond in the gold bracelet that's missing. Things just don't quite shine the same without her. I am so thankful that I was given such a beautiful mother. She was the kindest, gentlest and most special person I know. Her zest in life was quiet and yet a powerful one. Mom loved Christmas and we loved watching her at Christmas as she was just like a kid when it came to presents. She loved it so much that every year (even when professing being broke) she bought herself a Christmas present! Without fail, mom would ask each of us what we got her, what did it look like, what colour was it, and what would she use it for. This was always a fun time for me as when she would ask for hints, I would give her the most craziest of hints (never even close to what the present was) and she'd spend days trying to guess what I got her. When she finally opened the present she'd laugh and say, that's not what I thought it would be, "it's not even purple, and I can't eat it!"

I miss her, I love her, I cherish her memory and I cry often when I feel lonely but most of all, I am THANKFUL for her. It was HER that taught me by example to love people, be tolerant of people and always watch for the underdog. She was a quiet, most humble woman who showed perseverance and gratitude continually. I am sure I did not always make her proud, she was a tough act to follow, but I tried. I have incredible stories to share about this woman - some that would make you laugh and cry at the same time.

So, this Thanksgiving, I am truly THANKFUL for my mom and the many people who became my family when life was a little empty.


Wednesday, October 06, 2004

The Wedding... For those of you who have been waiting and asking, I share that the wedding was incredibly beautiful and perfect. My daughter was the most beautiful bride I have seen. She was a perfect at midnight as she was at 9:00 a.m. She glowed. The groom was handsome and cried...YES!! He gave his 17 1/2 minute speech and broke down (slightly) a few times. Weather was ordered to perfection.

The limo service on the other hand was the only not so perfect situation and I am sure they will rectify the most smoky incident...details to follow..

I shall share more later, but it's been a long two weeks and I "long" to head to bed.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

The Wedding.... is quickly approaching. Tonight they had the rehersal at the chapel in the Old Mill where my daughter and future son-in-law are getting married. It's a really exciting time in their lives and I hope they enjoy this time. The beginning of a future together travelling down a new journey of life. I am happy for them and have much to look forward to as they establish roots and start their own life together and hopefully with children. In four days I will be an official mother-in-law. I hope I will be a good one, the kind that keeps her ideas and thoughts to herself. I keep reminding myself that I am "aging" after all I am old enough to be a "mother-in-law"!.........


Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Good Morning Tim and Danielle... I am so excited to see that is all I have to do in order to get comments from one of my little to just stop blurbing! So, I honestly tell both of you that I appreciate your faithfulness... I did in fact write a beautiful blog last night but when I went to publish it, my computer froze and I lost the entire writing. So tonight I try to re-create my beautiful thoughts.

I was particularly thinking last night that I must face the fact that I am getting "old". I think when you become a mother-in-law, you are in fact in the new category of "age". So, in a few days I get to bless this lucky guy and become his official mother-in-law. I wonder if he realizes hows lucky he is. I wonder if he will have thoughts of buying an aquarium and stalking it with those little pirahna fish. You know, the ones that bite fingers off when they are poked in water? I remember my brother sharing that he was going to do exactly that in hopes that his mother-in-law felt the urge to stick her fingers in the water! Just for the record, it was Glen not Rick who thought of that.

So, Sunday I have the honour of walking my most beautiful daughter down the aisle of the church on one of the most important and special days of her life. I have no doubt that this 7 lb baby I brought home from the hospital 29 years ago will be the most incredibly beautiful bride ever to be seen. She is just as beautiful inside her heart and soul as she is outside. I also get the honour of watching my other incredible three children join in the wedding. Brian will be one handsome dude in his tux and I can guarantee you the single girls will be all over him. You can also bet that I won't see him in a tux until he gets married. I am most anxious to see my handsome son all decked out for his sister's wedding. Then there is Sheira - she is going to be one of the smashing brides maids - she will be standing proud and pretty. She will most assuredly be there with a huge smile and dancing personality. And of course the child my eldest children call the favoriate -Joseph. He's going to be one sizzling young man in his tux... his spiked hair will give him all the charm and sophistication possible. He's going to be the M.C. and that is going to be very interesting. I can't wait to watch my talented child in action!

Tim, my thoughts wandered to you last night as I was thinking about the vision of you walking Abby down the aisle to the man she chooses as her husband. Your thoughts will be working through thoughts of prayers that this man will take care of this precious little girl of yours, that he would be a good husband and father and that he would love and respect your beautiful daughter as much as you love her. Scary isn't it, that this day will come and probably much faster than you can ever imagine. Trust me.

Danielle... you my dear girl will watch your three handsome sons stand at the front of an alter proudly watching their young bride walk down the aisle with their fathers in anticipation and excitement of marrying the love of her life. You will wonder if she will make a good wife, love your son as you do and provide a beautiful warm home for her family.

Weddings, the beginning of a new life, an amazing journey, a road of fun times, hard times, rocky paths and horizions of sunshine and rainbows......

Monday, September 13, 2004 is good. Sometimes it is tough to put change into action. To clearly find the direction, have the willpower to make the change and stick to it is not a simple task. Once you have taken the first steps on the path to change, each step after will be much easier. Change is promising, rewarding and a growth experience.

I usually write on this site very late at night and often don't convey my thoughts crystal clear - and often when I look back on what I wrote, I find spelling and grammar mistakes - often to my horror. However, I have not implemented the "change" to getting up at 6:00 a.m. to write this. Apparently 28 days of doing something consistently makes it a "habit"....! Enough talk about anything at 6:00 a.m.!


Friday, September 10, 2004

As I am getting ready to go to bed I have stopped to read my Bible and I felt compelled to share some scripture with you, my friends. This is scripture from Psalms 143;

Theme: A prayer in the midst of hopelessness and depression. Our prayers should fit into what we know is consistent with God's character and plan. David wrote this.

Verse 4: "When my spirit grows faint within me, my heart within me is dismayed."

Verse 6: "I spread out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land."

Verse 8: "Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul."

Psalms 144 (also written by David) says in Verse 7 "reach down your hand from on high; deliver me and rescue me from the mighty waters."

I am not sure why I felt compelled to share these particular scriptures when my heart really has been feeling the need to write on self-esteem, but I am sure there is a need for someone to hear that there is hope for our tired souls. The sun shines brightly just beyond the turn, we will see it once we just take that walk towards it.


Thursday, September 09, 2004

Part Two.... Insecurities

This August at a women's retreat we were teaching at in Illinois, our Ministry was asked to take part in the Sunday morning services (two of them) in a capacity of sharing the vision of the Ministry as well as singing one of Jason's songs. I was excited for this opportunity to sing with my friends who have incredible voices. Where we were in front of a filled church singing - what an amazing experience. I didn't get a tap on my head and my mike wasn't shut off - and there were no stampedes rushing out the front door of the church. The song was carried beautifully and I apparently managed to carry a tune, gently. I did it! I closed my eyes and sang my heart out to Jesus and it sounded like the purring of a gentle kitten.

All this sharing was inspired by Tim's writing - to which I share here (hope that's O.K. TIM?) Tim talks about being told to participate in the high jump session of his high school's track and field event because he was "taller" than the others.

"I just ran and jumped over it. I cleared it too. As I headed back down the line I heard people giggling at me, yet I think they were quite impressed that I could just jump over it and land on my feet on the other side. I didn't win that day because in the end my technique just wasn't good enough. I could only do so much with the training I had received (which is to say, no training at all). As usual I found myself near the middle of the pack."

I guess what inspired me was that Tim stepped out and just did it. He heard giggles after, but he had confidence knowing that he did it - and despite his apparent lack of "technique", he jumped and landed!

I realise I have jumped and jumped and jumped and I finally landed - right smack dab on the altar of a church singing to the most important person - Jesus! I encourage you, if there is something you passionately want to do but are held back by fear of failure, stop there and JUST DO IT! The time and place will provide you the reweards of just stepping out and doing it!

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Insecurities.... Oh how I have a few.... and I certainly carry memories of moments where I was feeling completely inadequate. I was reading an article on my friend Tim's site a while back and it really sparked some memories for me. Not necessarily painful, thank goodness, but instead are now quite humorous to me. I particularly remember in junior public school at the beginning of each new year meeting to "try out" for the school choir. I longed to sing as far back as I can remember. With my bright blue eyes and shiny blonde hair freshly brushed, I'd rush to the gymnasium with the flurry of other children to sing for the teacher. Imagine this... the music starts and the gymnasium floods with voices belching out, as the teacher walks behind listening to the children in each line. The gig back then was a tap on the head meant you had to sit down as you didn't make the cut. I could feel the movement of our teacher behind me and closed my eyes in hope that she would not tap my head again this year. I guess I didn't hope quite hard enough...I got tapped, again!

My desire to sing has really been a touchy subject over the years since public school. I remember sitting with my cousin Debbie when I was about 26 as we belched out the words to a Meatloaf song (the name of the song escapes me). We taped our duo and upon completion we played it back. To my utter dismay I still missed the gig, I didn't have it. The sound of my voice made even me laugh.

Then there was the time that I had the courage to sing at Karraokee in Niagara Falls. This time I did not choose to sing, I was set-up by a friend.... as I was heading to the stage, I managed to grab the hand of a total stranger (male with long blonde hair that looked like he could sing). He gallantly joined me (and thank goodness - to my good fortune he was apparently in a band and could sing). We introduced ourselves to each other and began to sing one of those 8 minute songs (and again the name of the song escapes me). Apparently it didn't take long for the D.J. to turn my microphone off so the crowd could hear only my newly attained friend's voice. I thought I did well until I finally discovered the D.J.'s move.

You would think I would stop there... no I didn't. I had been singing for months alone in the car along to a song my friend Kim sang on her husband's newly produced CD (and by the way if you want to listen to an excellent Christian CD - check out and decided that as I sang along with Kim, I could manage to keep a good tune and actually sounded half decent. So finally, a glimmer of confidence begins to bud. Last April at our women's Christian retreat in Niagara Falls, our "techie" TULIP guys were getting my mike adjusted for my session while our worship band was rehearsing and somewhere deep inside of me as I stood in that banquet hall, I had the thought that I could sing like Britney Spears. So with head gear on I very carefully and in a low pitched tone joined in and sang with the band for brief moments. Thank goodness some sort of conscience nabbed me and I stopped myself from jumping on stage and belting out the song with the other ladies.

The story does not end here, but as my blog spot publishing has been giving me trouble, I have to do this in two parts....stay tuned for part two tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Change... I don't like change. I wasn't like that many years ago, it seems to be a new personality trait I have developed over the last five years. Little changes are only somewhat of a hindrance. I get bored with routine, such as getting up at 7:00 a.m. every morning, blindly making my way to the shower, talking to myself in order to wake-up, stepping out drying off and proceeding to complete the "make-up" process. Boring! Yet it's a routine that does not leave much room for change - I have to shower and I have to put make-up on! Just to share, I don't really get up at 7:00 a.m. however I am going to have to now as Joseph is in high school which is bringing about much earlier hours. Earlier mornings - this is a good thing I keep telling myself.

It's the decision making of big changes that I dislike. The idea of major change produces extreme anxiety for me. Job change, moving, buying, selling, decision making all fluffs my feathers beyond comprehension. I like things as they are, then I don't have to weigh the options, second guess the effects and concern myself with the mistake of a possible change. I was taken back in complete surprise the other day when Joseph shared with me that he "doesn't like change." I didn't think a fourteen year old boy would even think about "change." I think once he gets into the routine of his new changes, he will love it. Me, I think I will also "love" the new changes..... maybe.....

I have however learned that we need to make changes after careful weighing of options, especially the ones that you have no control over, and just walk on the new journey looking straight ahead - no looking back - even if you are stumbling over the stones and slippery roads on the new journey. We won't grow if we allow ourselves to make changes. We become stagnant without change. My neighbour's aunt shared with me a month or so ago that in her opinion, we must always strive to change the places we live, the places we work and the way we think. She reminded me of the way I used to be when I was a young spontaneous, carefree young woman. Aunt Mary (as well call her) is somewhat older than I am and a very wise woman, who has given us inspiration and confidence !

In making changes, be reminded we will stumble if we take our eyes off the road ahead just to look back. The path on the new journey may not be easy, we may fall flat on our faces coming up with cuts, bruises and scrapes. Don't let those little aggravations bring you to a halt on the journey. Look forward to the new journey with anticipation, excitement and hope. Don't be tempted to take your eyes off the path to look back. I shall keep reminding myself of that as I continue to make changes I thought I'd never make. Don't let fear stop you from making decisions that you know you have to take - for whatever reason.

Have a blast today!

Friday, September 03, 2004

I am speechless tonight. I have not spent enough time quietly sitting, reading and thinking to even have thoughts of something that may inspire the gang who faithfully read this site. I know you are somewhat dissapointed in my lack of creativity, but promises being showered your way for an amazing train of incredible life changing thoughts will come your way next week.

Turning in to prepare for a weekend away..... Night....

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Escape..... I just spent three days at the cottage in an attempt to escape the realities of this fast paced life in the city. I was almost relaxed and ready to sort through some issues when reality bit and I had to pack up and come home. You might not be able to imagine the peace and contentment of sitting by an open fire listening to sounds of crickets echo off the lake while the odd cry of a loon drowned the crickets out. Occasionally a ripple in the water could be heard as the crackling fire kept me warm. The only stress was watching a couple of 14 year old pyromanias (sp?) poke at the fire in anticipation of a village burndown! I have been blessed beyond what I deserve to have been able to enjoy those few days. Ripple ripple...thanks for the moments!

Friday, August 27, 2004

Imagine....once again. She envisions herself standing on a street peering into a store front window in the busy streets of New York City. She sees herself, the young woman who had stars dancing in her eyes with a big enchanting smile embracing her young pretty face as her long silky hair flying freely in the wind. She's laughing and having a blast with her friends. She is the fun girl - the life of the party. She has little fear and nothing holds back her wildly free spirit. She turns around and in the next store window a mature not so excited woman is standing back watching the young woman dancing with enthusiasm as she bounces from window to window with her friends in the midst of bright flashing lights that makes NYC so alive. They admire the store front dressings in this incredible city with such exhilaration.

From the next store window is a quiet well dressed woman who is enchanted by the group of young ladies, especially the fiery blonde. She is noticeably subdued, reserved and it is evident she is reminiscing about the incredibly vibrant young woman she once was. She faintly smiles as she remembers her sparkling personality left long behind. When did she disappear? How did she vanish? Did she get lost in the crowds? Didn't anyone miss that special person she once was?

She realizes that somewhere along the journey something broke her spirit, she lost her natural self-esteem and allowed life to water down her free spirit. A romantic heart broken only too many times, faded belief in herself, self-doubt and disappointed feelings linger in her thoughts.

The journey through life dampened her spirit, tired her and smothered the burning fire in her heart. One day or an accumulation of many, something happened and she crashed into a wall. Dangling alongside of the wall, she managed to push out from the wall and reach for a new path. She walks fearful of the bumps and bruises, but in search for that path to re-building the vibrant spirit that once carried her everywhere. She's scared to grab it and run, but she's even more scared not to. She's tossing the bundle to the side of the dusty road and letting her tired worn legs carry her on a new journey. With hands held out blocking the sun that warms her yet blinds her, she waits in anticipation of the wind to once again catch her hair and toss it until it's tangled and messy......

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Imagine...... As I sit at my desk with the window open, I am listening to the soft sounds of crickets in the midst of the city. I guess we can't really call Oakville a city, but it certainly isn't cottage country. It is so relaxing to hear those reassuring sounds, reminders that nature surrounds us even in a town of black asphalt, cement buildings, shopping malls, fast food stores and racing cars. How often do you sit and actually pay attention to the sounds around you? Do you hear the airplanes soaring above late at night and wonder where the people are headed? Do you hear racing cars at midnight and wonder why those people are not at home cuddled up to a loved one? Do you hear birds flying in flocks over head and wonder what their flight plan is? Do you hear the distant sound of barking dogs and wonder where their masters are? What about complete silence? Do you find complete stillness, even momentarily, strange in the midst of a busy city? Do you ever wonder how many people live in the town you reside in? How many children are being born, or how often do you think about the pain of families who have lost a loved one? What about the joy of young couples getting married? Do your thoughts ever go to the elderly people who are lonely with no family to visit them? How often are your thoughts consumed only by the little world immediately around you with little focus outside of your own circle? There is so much life going on around us that we can't begin to even imagine. Imagine! What a powerful word, what an adventure that word can bring us . Imagine you can stop what you are doing, sit back and take a glimpse into the lives of people in Japan, Holland, Georga, Florida, downtown Toronto or the jungles in the world. Can you just imagine what life elsewhere would look like? Yes, I am once again pondering how beautiful it is to fold my arms, lay my head down as I take in the sun's rays and people watch. See you in Japan, maybe....
I had a friend share with a few of us the following inspiration. I share it today with you.


Ladies.... You’ve got it...because you ARE fabulous and beautiful. Be happy !
If you forgot this like I have the past many years -I am here to remind you!

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

And then there is SHEIRA! Yippeee! What a chick, what a daughter. She's a riot. She's like a rock for me - my friend. What a personality - she's just like me, or at least how I used to be... on fire and passionate for whatever cause she believes in. Look out if you do or say something that offends her. She's a fiercefully loyal friend. She's funny, friendly and never ceases to put a smile on my face. She has often ticked me off so badly that I could scream and yell at her until my throat is sore. She can turn around after the screaming match, reach out to hug me and say sorry. Love DOES mean having to say "you're sorry."

I have enjoyed spending the past few days in the grace of her company. We went mall browsing looking for bargains we couldn't even afford, and had fun doing it; sat together for lunches and dinners. She must be bored by now! This chickie talks to everyone in the retail stores...clerks and customers. She talks to them with such flair and intensity that you'd think she was truly interested in every single aspect of their lives. I can't begin to count how many people she has initiated conversations with these past few days. I am sure she has left an impression on every single one of them.

Hurrrrraaaayyy Sheira....! You're a blessing to me this week...THANKS.. I LOVE YA... Mom

Tuesday, August 24, 2004 beautiful eldest child. I call her beautiful not just because she is physically beautiful, but because her heart is more beautiful than the most stunning actress. She has a passion for the elderly and when she speaks about the client she works with, she truly beams with love. I am so blessed to have her as my child and I know that I don’t often tell her this. We so often get caught up with the day to day activities of life and so unfortunately don’t stop to tell those very special people just how beautiful and outstanding they are. Sandy you are a shining star and I love you so much.

I was thinking about her as I was ironing my clothes tonight. I pulled out a pair of white and blue capris pants and immediately my thoughts and memories jumped to the day I was shopping with her last summer when she convinced me to buy these pants. I argued with her explaining that I couldn’t possibly buy and wear these pants as first of all I wasn’t sure if I even liked capris pants and second of all...these were WILD. No way was I venturing to buy these. Well, I did buy them, in fact I even wore them...over and over. I shocked a few of my friends as I am sure they didn’t really like them...but I grew to love them so I didn’t care what they thought. Shortly after, I was in a little boutique at a village near my cottage and I spied an outlandish pair of black capris that had red apple prints all over them. I wanted these pants so badly, but they were very expensive so my friend steered me out of the store telling me over and over that I was loosing it as these pants were UGLY. Anyway, we made our usual stops through this tourist town and finally headed back to the cottage. Upon arriving, Linda handed me a bag and asked me to hold it for her as she asked me to open up the bag and get something out for her. To my surprise as I dug in the bag, I found the "ugly" pants. Her fashion sense got the better of her and she treated me to the pants.

This entire venture into what I call the "wild" side of weird clothes started when Sandy bought me a pair of hip hugger "flair" jeans for my birthday two years ago. I remember opening the box and my heart sank as I looked at these jeans that I knew she spent way too much money on. How was I possibly going to tell her that I couldn’t wear them? BELL BOTTOMS - I didn’t like that one bit. I felt silly even thinking about waking around with them on. With age, I had graduated to straight leg pants, afterall we wore these "bell bottoms" in the 70's. However, after being convinced by Sandy that it was time for me to get "with it", I stepped out of my comfort zone and wore them.. To my amazement I actually looked pretty good in them and even had a few eyes turn when I wore just took me some time to stop attempting to pull them up from my hips to my waist.

Thanks Sandy for showing me that I don’t have to "age"without fashion, but more importantly I can mature and continue to step out of my comfort zone! I LOVE YA! MOM.....

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Back to normal...YES! Whatever bug that was swimming my system as taken a dive and I am feeling almost back to normal. As I sit at my desk with the window open, I am listening to the soft sounds of crickets in the midst of the city. I guess we can't really call Oakville a city, but it certainly isn't cottage country. It is so relaxing to hear those reassuring sounds, reminders that nature surrounds us even in a town of black asphalt, cement buildings, shopping malls, fast food stores and racing cars. How often do you sit and actually pay attention to the sounds around you? Do you hear the air planes soaring above late at night and wonder where the people are headed? Do you hear racing cars at midnight and wonder why those people are not at home cuddled up to a loved one? Do you hear birds flying in flocks over head and wonder what their flight plan is? Do you hear the distant sound of barking dogs and wonder where their masters are? What about complete silence? Do you find complete stillness, even momentarily, strange in the midst of a busy city? Do you ever wonder how many people live in the town you reside in? How many children are being born, or how often do you think about the pain of families who have lost a loved one? What about the joy of young couples getting married? Do your thoughts ever go to the elderly people who are lonely with no family to visit them? How often are your thoughts consumed only by the little world immediately around you with little focus outside of your own circle?

There is so much life going on around us that we can't begin to even imagine. Imagine! What a powerful word, what an adventure that word can bring us to.Imagine you can stop what you are doing, sit back and take a glimpse into the lives of people in Japan, Holland, Georga, Florida, downtown Toronto or dare if you can to imagine the jungles in the world. Can you just imagine what life elsewhere in the world might look like? Yes, I am pondering how beautiful it is to fold my arms, lay my head down as I take in the sun's rays and people watch. See you in Japan or maybe Greece on this adventure. Night....

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Weather...I am under it these days....having major ulcer problems or something... just tought I'd say HI. I shall dig my way out into the sunshine quickly. I have to muster some energy and good health to teach! lol.... I shall be back to my usual self tomorrow. NIGHT!

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

The Dog barks...and barks and barks... I laid half asleep last night struggling desperately to zonk out and find restful sleep. I tossed and turned, flipped over and back again.... for what seemed like ages. I couldn't get to sleep again, a routine that has been happening frequently these days. Anyway, as I struggled to find sleep I heard my son's dog muffling out a few grumbling barks. After the second or third bark I shouted down at him to "ssssshhhhhhh up".... he ignored me and proceeded to yelp a little more. It was then that I wondered what he wanted. Did he want water, food, company or a walk? At this point I didn't really care what he wanted as I wasn't about to get up and do anything about his needs. I did however concentrate on trying to figure out why dogs were not created with a vocabulary that we can understand. Like, why not speak in English? What was the point of creating a dog (or any animal for that matter) who can't speak the same language...or at least one we can learn to REALLY understand clearly. I hope he doesn't do his bark routine again tonight!

Monday, August 16, 2004

Why some kid believes in God..... I was cleaning out my house this week and I found some articles that I had printed and saved, which is something I often do when I read something that very significant. As I reviewed some of these articles, one in particular caught my attention to which I am going to share parts of with you tonight. As this article appears to be written by a child, I asked my son if he wrote it, to which he replied "never saw it before". Where did this come from? I have no idea, but I am going to share some of the writing as it really touched my heart. The article was called "EXPLAIN GOD".

"One of God's main jobs is making people. He makes them to replace the ones that die, so there will be enough people to take care of things on earth. He doesn't make grown ups, just babies"

"God's second most important job is listening to prayers. An awful lot of this goes on, since some people, like preachers and things, pray at times besides bedtime. God doesn't have time to listen to the radio or TV because of this."

"Atheists are people who don't believe in God. I don't think there are any in Chula Vista. At least there aren't any who come to our church."

"His Dad (God) appreciated everything that He had done and all His hard work on earth so He told Him He didn't have to go out on the road anymore. He could stay in heaven. So He did. And now He helps His dad out by listening to prayers and seeing things which are important to God to take care of and which ones He can take care of Himself without having to bother God. Like a secretary, only more important." (I loved that one).

"If you don't believe in God, besides being an atheist, you will be very lonely, because your parents can't go everywhere with you, like to camp, but God can. It is good to know He's around you when you're scared in the dark or when you can't swim and you get thrown into real deep water by big kids."

"But... you shouldn't always think of what God can do for you. I figure God put me here and He can take me back anytime He pleases. And... that's why I believe in God."

From the adult reading this article...I share why I believe in God....

"When I walk the journey of life and I stumble on the stones and rocks thrown in my path, even though my feet are tired, cut, sore, and bleeding He will always reach out to pick me up, dust me off and put that cushion under my feet until they heal enough to walk the rest of the journey."

And that ladies and gentlemen is just the beginning of why I believe in God !
What's yours! Night.......

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Exercising the human brain! I decided a week or two ago that it was time I started to pump up the brain cells and study something that may boost my brain power such as some educational intelligent reading. My good friend gave me some suggestions all to which I have ignored, justifying my actions as being either too lazy or busy to embark on such a strenuous adventure. Finally I concluded it wasn't either excuse that stopped me from the new adventure, it was just that I am truly an emotional heart person not likely too busy or lazy. I have never really been know to be lazy (although I have had times of exhaustion forcing me to hibernate). Anyway, I truly did think about switching my avenue of reading material and much thought I decided to stick to the heart stuff. I think that the hearts of many people as well as myself, need to be pumped up, encouraged and fed. The brain can wait as I have discovered when the heart is in good shape, healthy, happy, beating well and pumping oxygen to the brain then the natural progression of pumped up brain cells will re-produce. So I am back to reading the heart books, the ones that re-vitalise the emotions and thoughts as I was designed to be an encourager. YEA.... that is so much more fun! I'm hitting the books again, starting tonight.

Let the sunshine beam down into the window of each of your hearts. Night.........

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Dateless in Oakville... Well..that's not exactly what I intended on writing about, however I had to find a catchy line. Recently, I was reading a Christian Single's newsletter I get e-mailed to me. The editor had been writing on how it has become a general male opinion that today's women are too independent. Apparently today's woman does not want a man to take out the garbage, help pay the mortgage, ask for help, open the door, get too close - and the list goes on and on. Well, let me tell you, this lady would be thrilled if someone was around to take out the garbage, pay the mortgage and hug me !! I think these guys are looking in the wrong places!Anyway, there have been articles written back and forth from men on this subject with the greater percentage of men still sticking to that opinion of "today's" woman.

In a discussion with my daughter and another friend wherein I stated that it's been hard to find a nice guy (or even get a date to figure out if they are nice). To my surprise, they shared that maybe I intimidate men. Afterall, in THEIR opinion I am independent, strong minded and willed, aggressive, very friendly and confident and drive a nice car. Hmmm... really I thought - is that what I really look like from the outside? Then today someone shared as they looked my way, that their "partner" is intimidated by TALL woman. That comment really took me back because first of all this particular person they were talking about has always seemed to me to be one who would not be intimidated by much, let alone a tall woman. Apparently I am "TALL". Looks like I am batting to strike out on all counts. Someone please make me short, helpless, weak, timid and driving a car that actually belongs to me, which would be more in line with what I could a Pinto or something - then maybe the great date would ask me out !
lol... I drift off to Mexico basking in the sun....

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

I sat at my window earlier in awe as I watched the rain turn into flakes of thick white snow. The flakes danced through the air quickly hitting the ground and piling up. Before I knew it the neighbourhood children were running out their front doors and stooping to make snowballs. I truly couldn't believe my eyes, snow in August. I had the bedroom window open and it didn't take me long to jump off my chair to shut it as the wind was howling and snow was quickly drifting in from the accumulation on the window sill. It was truly bizarre - even the weather reports didn't predict this sudden change in precipitation. Did I get off on the wrong stop - somewhere to Alaska?! One minute I was sitting with the spindly rays of sun bouncing off my face to frost bite from the razor sharp edges of the snow flakes. When I touched the steel part of the window my fingers froze to the edges. I had to press hard hoping that some warmth from my finger tips would free this instant sticking. Yuck... snow and ice so soon being pelted upon us. Where did the summer go?

I was very glad to open my eyes and realize that I was only dreaming and that the sun is truly still shining - although faintly. Chin up all... stop complaining about this "cold" weather...... it could be worse!


Tuesday, August 10, 2004

The Toe.... A story of Godly healing!!
Well, we are all safely home from our retreat in Illinois. We shared an incredible experience bringing the TULIP retreat to the U.S. This is our first international retreat and it was successful and we were blessed with meeting so many new friends and shared many fun experiences. However, in the midst of this fun time, I had a mishap. On my way way out out of the bathroom into the bedroom at the home we were staying in, I caught my foot on the door frame, pulling my baby toe completely away from the rest of my toes - four toes pointing north and the baby toe heading east! In pain I hobbled to the bed, sat with my foot up in agony waiting for what I actually thought was a "charlie horse" to subside. The sharp pain in my foot slowly started to subside however the easterly direction my baby toe had taken, still had not changed course. I called Michelle into the room in exasperation realizing my toe was broken, with possible chances it would drop off my foot. What an ugly site, Michelle smiled with concern but her eyes showed disbelief. Long story, we were blessed that the Pastor of the church we were visiting managed to contact one of their members (who happened to be a husband /wife team of chiropractors) who immediately invited us to their office to complete x-rays. Done - with bad news that I would have to visit the hospital immediately to have a "soft" cast put on the badly broken toe, at an approximate cost of $1000-$1500 U.S. Dollars - just like me to forget an important job of getting medical insurance!! So, we hobbled back to Pastor Johnathan's house where the group of about 15 or so adults and children gathered around to peer at the gimpy toe. I decided to not venture the hospital route for expensive unaffordable medical help. The group decided that we would all pray for healing of this messy toe. With little 3 year old Mika joining in, we had group prayer ending with the girls providing medical assistance wherein they taped my toe back into place (ouch, ouch, ouch !).

I spent the next two days being whipped around in the wheel chair, (thanks Garry and Jay) and gracefully guided from conference centre to the dinner hall (thanks to the graceful Anita, Kim, Michelle, Louise and Karen!!), carried on piggy back rides (thanks Lance!) and just beautifully taken care of. Upon our return very late last night, Louise zipped me into the local hospital for medical assistance and more x-rays (where OHIP would now cover the expense). Results - the technician said that "we" did an incredible job of putting the toe back into place - and when she saw the original x-rays taken in the U.S. , she was totally shocked at the healing that had taken place. With big smiles and not so much surprise, we had shared the story of the answers to prayers for healing. I am hoping this story will stay with her for a long time as it's a beautiful example of God's healing and love!!

Tim - a picture of the toe will be on it's way in a couple of days!

Night from hobbie the knob who didn't get insurance!

Monday, August 02, 2004

Off to Illinois ! Colombia that is. We will be stopping at Chicago for an overnight stay. This is a ministry event that we are combining with a family vacation - so it's going to be a smashing time.! Not much to say today other than the brain has been absent from the body these days. I went over to the mall to pick-up my pants (which were having a zipper fixed) that I needed to take with me and I did everything but pick the pants up - and ended up at home at 6:15 remembering. So...just one more dilema. As I have much to do I bid my farewells and shall chat when we get back.


Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Morality... Tonight I was pretty tired from a long day. I am actually going through some sort of transition thing, oddly enough I am not even sure what the transition is. However, I in efforts to exercise my brain, I had decided to start reading some mentally stimulating things. Tonight I opened my journal a friend gave me about a week ago. It's such a nice leather bound book that I didn't want to write in it. In fact, I have chosen to use pencil not pen to make my notes.

anyway, what I read tonight something written by C.S. Lewis. Just opening the book to whatever spot the pages flopped open at, I coincidentally open up to Chapter 1 (1/4 of the way through the book) headed "The Three Parts of Morality". Lewis writes that there are "two ways in which the human machine goes wrong, one being when the human individuals drift apart (or collide) and the other is when things go wrong inside the individual." He carries on to say "the voyage will be a success only in the first place, if the ships do not collide and get in one another's way and secondly if each ship is seaworthy." Are you following this? In other words, if "their steering gears are out of order they will not be able to avoid collisions". If we don't get it together, we are going to crash and smash into each other.

This sounds pretty basic. I believe he is simply saying that if you drift away from those close to you - you loose accountability. Loss of accountability gives room for corrupt behaviour. Each of us need to be accountable, it keeps us in line. Also, if our wires short out in our heads, things burn out and we get the wrong message, causing us to act out of character.

Hmmmm.... That actually took me quite a while to read and decipher. The question written for our analysis is "What is the importance of each part of morality as Lewis describes them here? IF we are moral within ourselves and with others, why would it matter what the overall purpose of morality is to human life as a whole?

So, how does one answer this question? I started by breaking the question down - outlining and understanding each part of morality and I am still lost as to how to answer this question other than we need to understand the purpose so we are aware conscious and accountable to each other to remain moral. I am not sure how much that exercised my brain, but it's a start.


Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Your Opinion....  it matters!  Have you ever had a strong opinion on a topic and were somewhat reluctant to express it, even to your closest friend.  Did you ever wonder why you were reluctant, did you question your own confidence or was it the fear of the reaction you might receive from the person you were sharing it with?  I have recently been told that I am somewhat far more opinionated than I used to be.   I guess if I an honest with myself I have to admit that the accuser is probably right.  I wonder why it is that I have this new personality trait jumping out.  I am sure it's not because I have become smarter, or bolder.  I think it's probably because I am so tired of so many dumb people and things around me that I just can't help myself.  My recent pet peeve has been drivers....I just don't know where most of them have buried their heads.  Then there are the arrogant people who think they can talk to you anyway they want.  Then there are those who treat others as though they are blocks of wood sitting in a pile waiting to be thrown in the local wood stove.  Then there are teenagers who just have no respect for anyone around them. 

Then there is me.... the maturing lady who has suddenly developed a very dry sense of humour, a little more wit (not necessarily charming wit) than she'd prefer to have and a mouth that seems to open and let some pretty dumb words fall out.  And I mean fall out....blubber blubber...blaaa.... 

You see, the last few days I have been reflecting on my friend Tim's writings.  He is so profoundly smart in my humble opinion.  I have to carefully read what he writes so I can full comprehend what he is sharing most of the time.  I have decided that my silly little ramblings, although entertaining to me and possibly one other dedicated follower.. (wonder who that could be?) needs to be spiced up.  I need to get more confidence to share some really good stuff.  So.. I am going to put the brain to work and research, study and entertain you, my friends with some startling writing..... once I get back from Illinois......... maybe.....


Friday, July 23, 2004

THE TRAMPOLINE.....   Have you ever had the opportunity to step foot on one?  It's been years for me, but I did last night.  We had a riot, being at a birthday party a couple of us ventured out, kicked the kids off - age being power.  My friend and I jumped all over this thing like fools with very little talent or even balance.  Eventually both of us falling down, laughing our heads off.  This morning I was looking at the pictures our friend took and I had a good laugh once again.  I began to do what I seem to do best, reflect.  I was thinking of life and the trampoline.  Sometimes we get on a roll in life and we are jumping all over the place, bouncing fast and  furiously.  Before we know it, we are bouncing so high in the sky experiencing such thrills of excitement paying little attention to where were are bouncing to.  All of a sudden we either loose perspective or balance and we are jumping right off the trampoline onto the side of it or the ground...crashing hard, causing possible serious injury to ourselves or those around us.   Hmmm.... we should be jumping high in life, however taking care to ensure we are not so taken away by the excitement that we loose track of what direction we are taking. 

Not exciting, but definitely reflective...!  Have a great day.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Here I sit....totally distracted from what I was doing - eating Caramilk Chocolate birthday cake.  It's my lunch break and instead of working through it, I thought I'd take a moment to write.  I just read an article from my friend's site that was the real reason I got distracted.  He was reflecting on a friendship he cherishes with a couple I also  share friendship with - so my understanding on his reflection is enhanced.  His reflection  brought some tears to my eyes and time of thought on such great friends.  Anyway, through the moments of emotions, my thoughts were taken far from the article as I started thinking about  an old girl who's at the foot of a patch of grass...she is facing a huge mountain .  One step forward and she is going to scrape her nose all to bits, yet one step taken too shakily she is going to fall right off the grassy patch into a possible ever ending canyon.  However, steps taken backwards are taken into the darkness of never never land.  So, the old lady is testing her faith, endurance and hopes that the steps are taken with all confidence that the mountain will be gentle and only slightly scrape her nose and that the steps that could throw her into the canyon are far beyond her protected steps.  Maybe, just maybe that old lady will come out revitalized with just a few wrinkles faded. 

Stay tuned....

Tuesday, July 20, 2004 I go again...slacking.  I have to admit to a streak of laziness these days. Well... maybe not laziness...possibly exhaustion...whatever..!  I went to the show Saturday night and watched an apparent "chick-flick" in the company of a nice humble male, to whom I am grateful for being such a good sport - although he did admit to enjoying the movie!
First time I have been to the show in months...actually since I saw "The Passion" three times in the spring.  Well,  Saturday night we saw "Notebook".  Has anyone seen it?  It's somewhat of a slow moving production, but quite nice.   The story line, without giving away too much of the story line, is a love story laid out before us through the voice of a gentle man as he reads from a   journal.   There was some humour, a couple of relatively tastefully portrayed steamy love scenes and a good bag of tears.  As one can figure, the noise of rattling purses, kleenex unraveling, sniffling and tears were brought on by the heart wrentching tales of love and lost love. 
I can admit it did make me somewhat teary eyed however what really made the droplets of tears fall onto my cheek and down onto my lips was one particular scene wherein the female star had realized she had not lived out her passion of painting, realization of course brought to her attention by her handsome lover.  A scene shows her sitting near naked, wrapped in her lover's blanket as she overlooks through the windows of his home to the beautiful rolling green grassy fields and hills in the country as she begins to paint ever so passionately.  I realized how I can't even remember if I had a passion to leave behind... and then a flash of reminder flew by me as I realize I do have passions that I have forgot to live.  So... I shed a few tears, came home, spent time reflecting and went to bed.  The thought won't leave my little nimble brain these days and have been doing what I do best, analyzing how one stops what they are doing... and truly work out what is important in life. 
Often we spend too much time running to make a living, that we don't stop and smell the roses in that garden we spend hours pruning.  We sit right there on the grass with our garden tools in hand, sun shinging down, pulling weeds, mowing the lawn, pruning trees and watering the gardens without ever stopping to smell the fragrance of those beautiful roses and flowers in our gardens.  Do you actually remember smelling the fresh scent of the cut grass that you just cut?  Were you not there at the hand of that lawnmower as it buzzed it's way across the grass?
Ohhhh....memories.... once again just to sit in my little cabin on the beach with my computer and music.... writing away....(oh did I forget to mention - making money while I wrote?)

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

New York City... I know that I have said I was going to write more on the friends thoughts, but today I have to talk somewhat about my visit once again to the Big Apple. The friends topic is still on fire and I will have more to say about that! I had quite the experience in NY City with my daughter last week, actually I should re-phrase that to say "experienceS". As we were standing in SOHO (the fashion district of NY) waiting for a red light to turn green, we heard police sirens screeching their way through the area when before we knew it there were a couple of police vehicles pulling up directly in front of us, preventing us from crossing the street. Within minutes there were 7 police cars (one being a NY City Police Youth department van) and two big yellow NY taxi cabs pulling all around us (talk about freaky). We watched police officers getting out of these vehicles and a couple of undercover police officers jumping out of the taxi cabs. I noticed one officer pointing discretely to a group of young boys and the other officer nodding his head in affirmation. Within seconds these young boys were up against the wall with their arms up in the air with hands firmly planted on the wall, legs spread and the usual television drama of badges being flashed and frisking activities. It was quite the intense scene and it drew crowds of people. As I scanned the crowds and looked back to the boys being arrested, I saw one young boy turn his head and look around. I peered into his young face and was very disturbed to note that he couldn't have been any older than ten or possibly 12 years old at the most.

At some point in time my daughter urged me to cross the street and continue our journey through NY. I carried this vision of this troubled young man with me. I thought of him and the many young boys and girls that are trapped in a cycle of crime and destiny of despair. The questions of how does this happen to such young children seemed of less importance than how do we reach these children and either prevent this destiny or even a harder task of reaching them and pulling them out of that pit and give them new teaching, guidance, support, and love to encourage a life on a new journey. I wanted to run to the church in Brooklyn that seems to be giving youth a safe haven and just give my time to the youth right there in this big city that I can only imagine is full of youth in desperate need. Youth crime is everywhere in our world, but in huge cosmopolitan cities it is rampant and sad. If one would only put their arms around that ten year old boy and protect him, pull him from this journey and pain, guide and love him beyond his imagination.

I reflect on my drive in NY City (not Manhattan!) as I was driving along a main highway and being in the left lane, watching the broken lines between my lane and the right lane and all of a sudden the broken lines stop and within maybe 50 feet the two lanes merged, without notice. I thought of that merging, and realized that often these youth end up on that broken line that merges into a journey they didn't even expect to see happen. It just did with ease and no planning or notice of the change of destiny.

I am left with this feeling of despair for troubled youth and thankful for my child's youth group and the leaders that dedicate their time to guiding, reaching, teaching and loving them. Our children are so blessed by these youth leaders.

Just needing to share my heart with each of you. If you have a teenager in your midst that looks like they need just a bit more....reach out and share with them, it could be a gift they may never receive.


Sunday, July 04, 2004

Relationships.... This weekend I had my feelings hurt (boo hoo, I am female!). I came home and as I was getting ready for bed I tried to sort out why I would be experiencing these specific hurt feelings, afterall this person isn't close to me anymore. Don't get me wrong here, I understand the psychological issues of hurt feelings (and feelings in general), I was just trying to reason why someone would have hurt MY heart. I fell asleep with many thoughts roaming my little head. Then, this morning in church the sermon was none other than..... relationships! I had waited anxiously the past few weeks for this specific sermon as I knew it was slotted for today. The pastor of our church was away on holidays and the pastor of our church plant in Brampton delivered the message. I have to mention that he did a superb job, and through his message I now have the ending for my personal message for the Women's Retreat in August!

I took many notes as this sermon was written for me! The pastor reminded us of the need to share close relationships with others. We call these people in our relationships, friends. We are all looking for friends in our lives that will;

* Listen to our hopes and dreams;
* Know our faults and fears and love us anyway;
* Stand with us in times of adversity;
* Laugh when we laugh and cry when we cry;
* Be an advocate in times of need;
* And cheer us on when life gets tough;

Apparently many of us do not enjoy the gifts of these relationships. Fortunately I do! The sermon is quite in depth and I won't share everything in this blog tonight as I am far behind on things I need to do in order to get ready to go out of town, however, I guarantee I will be sharing more on this sermon as it was really good! What I want to share tonight is how I was able to sort out my hurt heart today and hope that if you are reading this today and may be experiencing some hurt from a relationship, that maybe something I share here may help you.

I am very fortunate as I have many friends in my life that fit the above categories. Friends who truly go the distance for ME, without question. I am not sure why I am so blessed with these friendships, and wonder if I am so deserving, but somehow on the journey through my life I have met and kept some incredible friends, a group of friends that keeps growing!

The sermon directs our thoughts on the types and degrees of friendships we experience in our lifetime. Some friends are "fair weather" friends, others are not quite role model friends, and there are the "forever friends". The "forever friends" are the ones that go the distance with us. They take our hearts in their hands with care and love and full intention of protection and encouragement.

I scan my thoughts to these different degrees of friendships and I realize I was subconsciously expecting all of my friends to relate and treat me in the same manner. How can I possibly expect someone who is a "fair weather" friend, or a friend to whom I have not allowed to get beyond my outer walls into the inner walls of who I am, to relate to me on the same level as my "forever friends"? I can't possibly expect those friends to fulfill any relational performances based on the same way my "forever friends" relate to me, the relationships are not the same and on the scales they do not balance.

So, in order to deal with hurt I must look at the level of the friendship I have with the specific person who has hurt me and take that into consideration when I allow my feelings to be hurt. If I have not let someone get close enough to me to be my forever friend, (or if they have not wanted to), I can't expect to experience the same level of caring from them.

I think because I have been so truly blessed with many "forever friends" that I just hoped that all of my friends would be "forever friends" not just "fair weather" friends. Yes, I am a dreamer...a selfish one I must admit!

Thoughts for the week.... guard your heart! Love your forever friends with all your heart. Give carefully to your fair weather friends so that you don't get hurt, and pray that those fair weather friends may find some spark that would allow them to want to be your forever friends! Forgive your friends (fairweather or forever) for any hurts they may cause.

Remember, your forever friends are eternal friends.