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Dear Diary – Oh, the joys of country living. At night, the bugs gather around the lights and when anyone opens the door, they rush in like teenage girls at a BTS concert. The most bothersome are big black beetle with exoskeletons that rival cockroaches. They couldn’t simply be smacked with the fly swat. In fact I watched Little Guy beat one until he was red in the face, and the bug just crawled away, laughing. They also liked to ping along the ceiling and drop behind the chair by my bedroom door, lying in wait.

Earlier this week, I captured 2 by covering them with a glass and leaving them until morning. But Friday night, as I settled into bed with a book, I kept hearing rattling by my door. I thought it was Little Guy playing a prank, but when I opened the door, the living room was dark and quiet. I soon discovered one of these big black beetles in the room. It pinged off the ceiling and hurtled to the floor, so I went on the hunt. I didn’t need it pinging off my face in the night or laying eggs in ears.

I found it hiding under a pile of quilts, so I ran to the kitchen and grabbed a cup. But just like spiders, once you take your eyes off it, it disappears. I hunted in desperation for another 20 minutes until I realized how ridiculous it was and went to sleep…on the couch. It was a rough night. Something kept setting off the porch light outside, and the kitchen ceiling fan ticked lazily. Little Guy wandered out at around 4 a.m. The pop of his door startled me awake and I gasped, which startled him.

It’s very hard to sleep with someone standing over you, watching you sleep. I did my best to ignore him and eventually he padded off silently like a cat. I think he went back to his own room.

I woke stiff and sore in the morning…and I still have a bug in my room.

Dear Diary – I finally got my hair cut. It’s been 21 months since my last hair cut. My hair was so long that the hairstylist made me stand for the initial snips. While I feel like a million bucks (and at least 10 lbs lighter), I am still broke and my clothes don’t fit.

Dear Diary – I started the week with high aspirations and ended it exhausted and defeated. I think I should stick with sewing face masks and nothing else. Or give up entirely and sing kumbaya in the corner while gently rocking.

Since I STILL don’t know what I want to do when I grow up, I thought it would be cool to expand my sewing repertoire. I would love to have an Etsy business, to be able to work at something I enjoy doing in the comfort of my bathrobe home. I have tried papercrafts before, but most people don’t understand or appreciate the effort or cost of supplies in crafts, and therefore were unwilling to pay $3.00 for a handmade card when they could buy one at the dollar store for a buck! Once upon a time, I sewed old-fashioned pillow-case dolls, and it was the same story. And I certainly know better than to try sewing clothing. I have successfully sewn dresses, but if you looked closely, I had to fudge a bit here and there, and my patient father repaired tear-stained seams more than once.

I decided to try sewing specialicized hand bags. I chose 2 “easy” patterns from the internet to start. I made the hard one first, a circular bag that lies flat, and pulls together with a drawstring to make a little sack for your makeup, prescriptions or jewelry. For a first attempt, it went pretty smoothly. The prototype has more pinholes in it that a strainer, but it still…

Next up was a Japanese Knot bag. Instead of a few hours, it took days. I spent more time ripping it out than sewing. Even my father spent time ripping it out while I wept in the corner in the fetal position. Whoever said this was an easy pattern, lied! While the toiletries bag also involved some ripping, it never resembled…whatever this is!

It looks Sponge Bob’s friend, Patrick, had an unfortunate encounter with a steamroller

If insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result, then I am not insane. Because I didn’t do the same thing over and over again…just the result was the same, over and over again! Still, determined to make my dreams come true, I took a day off to go shopping, for more fabric.

That action alone either shows I’m a resilient and hopeful woman, or bat crap crazy!

On the fifth day, a Saturday, I started the day fresh. Dad had ripped out the latest catastrophe the night before and pinned it together for me…again. All my new fabric was washed and pressed. Surely I could get 2 done today.

Somehow we still got it wrong. I was so upset, I was wailing, and I was no longer wailing words. As I neared hysteria, my mother shoved a piece of dark chocolate in my mouth like a pacifier. And once I calmed down, we looked at the website for the 43rd time. It turns out the step-by-step instructions missed an entire step, thereby setting me up for certain failure. OK, it wasn’t entirely the instructions but after ripping, tugging, stabbing, freaking out all week, I finally produced this:

Now I have beautiful fabric, but lack the heart for mass production. Or anything, really.

Dear Diary – It was nice to have company this year. Little Guy and I stayed up too late to watch the meteor shower. I saw more falling stars than ever before, and they were longer and brighter. They were worthy of “oohs” and “aahs”, and I was so stoked to get to share this with him.

I made a few wishes too..but I still haven’t woken up a younger, blonde bombshell!

Dear Diary – Mom and I picked up a few things at the frozen food place in town. As we were leaving, Mom commented: “it was busy, but then there are people camping… and it’s nearly the weekend”.

“Mom”, I said, “it’s Tuesday”!

This is what Covid has done to us.

Dear Diary – The conversation took a dark turn during our card game, when my Mom asked, “do you know what I seem to be doing more as I get older?”. As is often the case, every family member’s mind turned to gas. This prompted me to share this story…

I had an older friend who, as she aged, started passing wind on a regular basis, usually in short staccato bursts. One time, we were in a tiny elevator and she let one go. She tried to talk loudly over it, but how could I not notice a rump trumpet that blasted like a semi? Not only that, but the room filled with a transparent green haze that made my eyes water and my throat constrict. I squeezed my eyes shut and started fanning my face for air, willing the elevator to rise faster. She continued to play dumb and asked me what was wrong. I mumbled, “you farted” as quickly as possible because I didn’t want to taste what I was smelling. “oh,” she said, “I didn’t think you’d notice”.

I’m pretty sure elevator patrons an hour later, noticed!

By the way, gaseous expessions were in no way related to Mom’s answer.

Dear Diary – I can understand cats and dogs, a wallet or bicycle, but this is crazy. I saw this ad in the classsified of a local small town paper.

It listed the two towns where it could be roaming free and wild. How wild? I can just imagine.

Apparently, losing a bull isn’t such a rare thing. When googled, I discovered police were looking for the owners of a lost bull in another area in the province only a few hours away, less than 2 months ago! They described it as “Found: one Highland bull, no tag or collar, not co-operative, well fed, horns very pointy.” You think?!?!

So the moral of the story is…the next time you go for a wander in the woods, keep your eyes open for livestock. And that’s no bull!

“Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction.”

Cowboy Proverb