John Lennon wrote “ life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans”. Well, sometimes life’s plans sucks. And it’s not even like I had any big or exciting plans! 😂
If you saw my diary last Thursday, you will know that life is piling on a few more disasters than usual and when that happens, the stress level goes up. A higher stress level means that even the mundane things that should only be mildly inconvenient, like our printer rejecting a new toner cartridge because it’s “no longer supported”, skyrockets the pressure. Too much pressure and something is going to blow.
In my case, bring out the tissue because it’s usually in the form of a sweaty, red-faced, snot-pouring ugly cry that makes even the hardiest souls flee to the hills.
Just thinking about it makes me smile.
My plan today was to work on MY stuff, not everybody else’s stuff, but the afternoon shadows are once again lengthening and here I am. Out of time and motivation. Good thing there’s always tomorrow. And tea, hot faithful tea!
So FYI – I am giving myself permission to occasionally miss a day here or there in my blog. Call it a mental health day or an antisocial day…or a day when I feel like I’m wading in mud, and not in a fun way like Mud Hero! Lol But I will keep writing in my diary. It helps me keep the little things in perspective. A lot of little things can add up to big things if you let them. Your laughter helps me laugh too…partly because if you’re laughing, you’re just as messed up as me! 😜
On particularly rough days when I’m sure I can’t possibly endure more, I remind myself that my track record for getting through bad days has been 100%. And that’s pretty good.
Dear Diary – It’s week 7 in 2022, and the number 7 is considered, in many cultures , the number of perfection, security, safety and rest. It’s a number that appears a lot. For example, there are 7 days in a week, 7 colours in a rainbow, 7 notes in a diatonic scale, 7 dwarves in Snow White, 7 Wonders of the World, and 7 stars in the Big Dipper. The tangram is a puzzle consisting of seven flat shapes, called tans. Nitrogen (N) has the atomic number 7. And in the Book of Revelation alone, it appears 54 times. I’m studying the book of Revelation right now and I’ve had to read all 22 chapters multiple times. Believe me, it’s in there a lot.
So I’m hoping, Dear Diary, that though there’s a lot of unrest in Canada at the moment, this week will truly be one of safety and rest.
Dear Diary – I have at least 12 hours of the Olympics to watch some day. I don’t have time to sit around in my pjs eating bon-bons, watching my “stories” everyday. I PVR’d the the figure skating because I used to figure skate. I also like to irritate my family when I point out, “I could do that”. Of course, I never attempted anything triple or quadruple and I can count the number of times I landed a double jump, on one hand. It was mostly a lot of falling and sliding over and over again. There were no helmets or knee pads!
I really wanted to be a ballerina but there was no dance school in my small town. My options were figure skating and highland dancing. I disappointed my grandmother when I chose figure skating. She thought it would be great if I danced and my brother learned to play the bagpipes. My brother…did not agree!
Most of the skaters in the club had committed mothers (a few of those mothers should have been committed), so they skated year round and participated in competitions father afield. I only skated during the winter months, which meant every year I was competing against girls who were younger and younger. It started to get awkward.
My Mom did her best. She “patiently” sewed my sewing costumes as skirts were mandatory, even for practice. While I sometimes coveted the heavily sequined dresses of my peers, I also appreciated her hard work. I felt pretty and I was proud to say, “My Mom made it”!
I hated figure 8s and I tolerated dance. The pairs dance that you see on t.v. is not the same as dance as I learned. Instead, they were standard dances, like a waltz or tango, that increased in difficulty with every level. I was fortunate to make friends with another girl and we became shadow dance partners. We would dance the same movements, parallel to one another, like a shadow. We were allowed to wear matching costumes, which my Mom helped put together.
As for my solo work, I rarely got to do my whole routine with the music before a competition. Instead, I did my best to work on my elements and stay out of certain people’s way. There were star skaters and if you crossed their path, they would lynch you.
My Mom missed my first competition and my Dad had to take me. I still have the note she left for me. Unlike the Olympics, We had to wait for all the skaters in my level to skate, and then wait for the list scores to be posted. My Dad treated me to a hot dog from the concession stand. I won my first silver medal.
The other mandatory thing I hated was the Club fundraiser – we had to work in groups to put on a show. One year, I skated to Rock Around the Clock; another, Dolly Parton’s 9-5. Mom had to make my costume for that too.
Dear Diary – I was supposed to make a special delivery last week but we postponed it because the weather dude predicted freezing rain. It turned out to be the most beautiful day so far this year! It was sunny and warm, not a cloud in the sky. The next delivery date was postponed as well, this time for snow. At least that time, weather dude was closer. It snowed, then rained, and snowed, then rained… We finally met after church in a Tim’s parking lot, but it was -20C so we didn’t get to visit. I’m hoping next time, it’s 20+!
Dear Diary – Saturday afternoon, Youngest Son came and hovered behind me. When I finally asked him, “can I help you?”, he asked “what’s for dinner?”. I probably should have asked him what he was making me. I replied, dismally, “frickin’ chickin’. Again”. He piped up, “Or…” as he dropped a Pizza Pizza gift card on my sewing, “we could use this”. He said it was because I had complained commented earlier in the week that I was sick of chicken. Or, it could have been self-preservation since my passion for cooking has ebbed. Either way – Pizza! And I didn’t have to cook!
I read recipes the same way I read science fiction. I get to the end and think “well, that’ not going to happen’!
Dear Diary – That inevitable holiday between Christmas and Easter has passed. Or should I say, the holiday between Christmas chocolate and Easter chocolate. The “day of love” lands in the middle of a month smothered in a thick, scratchy blanket of gray skies. It’s a month wherein the heavens can’t decide if it wants to rain or snow, so we get a mixture of snush. Sludgy trenches of slush and rippling pools soak through our heavy boots, unless it freezes. Then we skate and our knees and sizeable bottoms experience blunt force trauma in a most-inelegant way. Whoever thought that celebrating romance had to have been so blissfully enamoured that he or she didn’t notice the world around him or her. At least not here in Canada.
I have not been a fan for a long time, probably because I’ve been fraught with bad experiences. But it’s still a chance to bake without with less guilt. It’s one day and chocolate goes on sale the very next day. I wore my traditional black and delivered chocolate cupcakes to a friend. We ordered Chinese food for dinner and I made raspberry mille feuille for dessert. My guys gave me chocolate – Youngest said wrote this charming note: To Mom, from your . I’m going to need to shop for XL pants, but I definitely felt the indigestion love.
Dear Diary – A number of Covid restrictions lifted today. Maybe that’s why we’re currently under a snowfall warning: high winds, heavy snow and freezing rain. Hurray!
Yesterday, to celebrate, I went shopping at Fabricland. Still hobbling with a sore ankle (from old age apparently), I took my friend with me. She proved extremely helpful. I passed her bolts for fabric and she took care of the carrying and walking to cut what I wanted. Bonus, it let me shop in peace without being shown things that I don’t want. I walked out of there (dragging one feet like Igor) with a bag full of goodies! And to my absolute delight, since I’m naming my Etsy store (some day) “Sassy Green Lemons”, I actually found Sassy Green Lemons:
Dear Diary – I learned a new word: dysania. It’s the chronic condition of finding it difficult to get out of bed in the morning. I like it!!
Denial. Anger. Bargaining. Depression. Acceptance. The 5 Stages of Waking Up
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!
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 Highlandbull, 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.”
Dear Diary – Last Friday was “Go to work naked day”!
You didn’t honestly think I was going to share THOSE photos, did you? This Friday, a girl friend and I are planning a pj day and we’re posting those pics! Care to join us?
Dear Diary – I’ve been tied up in knots these days, and since I’m tied up anyway, I decided to do some tying of my own…and make pretzels.
I really like The Great British Baking Show, except it makes me want to bake fancy things far beyond my ability or patience. The middle challenge for these bakers is technical, and usually some important information is missing from the recipe, requiring them to use their knowledge and intuition. I lack both. (If I’d had intuition, I would have known that attempting pretzels wasn’t the best thing to tackle in my current emotional state). My recipe also lacked important details like…what the dough should look like when it’s properly kneaded, how to twist the pretzels, and most imporantly, how many pretzels I’m making!
It wasn’t as tricky as I expected, but it was quite the workout. I think my dough was a bit too dry which didn’t help. I had to knead it for 10 minutes.
This is where being short is a disadvantage. Anyone who has baked bread knows that it’s easier to knead when you are standing or leaning over your dough. But in order to do that, I have to stand on a footstool and take care not to push the dough too hard, lest the footstool slide and I take a tumble.
By the end of the first 5 minutes, I had worked up quite a sweat and my eagle eye was glaring at the clock, willing it to jump ahead. After 10 minutes, from my judgment (or lack thereof), the dough was almost there. Ugh!
Once it proved in the warmth of the oven’s light, the next challenge was figuring out how many lumps to cut and how to form it into pretzels. The twisting was easy if you stand on your head just the right way – but moulding a long, serpentine tube was ridiculous! Instead of rolling, the dough slid on the counter. If I stretched it, it started to flake. One end looked like a pencil, the other a sausage. I rolled and rolled it between my hands like I was starting a fire with sticks. My hands tired, the skin stung and reddened like a tomato. All the while, Little Guy was standing in abject fascination at my ministrations. And that was just for the first 2! I don’t how many I made. The first to be formed, started rising into grotesque gnarls so I re-rolled them and divided them into 2. I glazed the finished products with egg and sea salt and baked until brown.
When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on.
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Dear Diary – I’m ashamed to admit my emotions got the better of me last weekend. I was emotional. I felt sorry for myself. But mostly I was angry. Very angry. I try to avoid them, other people’s posts of life “as normal” – skiing in cottage country, coffee at Starbucks, visits with extended family. It’s not fair. It’s not right. If we all did our part, might this all be over by now?
I’ve been “doing my part” by staying home; we suck up the cost of ordering in groceries. I wear a mask if I go for a walk, but it’s been too chilly to go far. Brr….. I miss my folks and my kid. I miss fast food and shopping malls. I really miss Tim Horton’s. I feel trapped at home with 2 men who eat and fart, and tease me for being short.
God reminded me to look at David. A humble guy in a field, placed in a position of honour with a king, a musician, a warrior, who ends up running for his life through no fault of his own. Surely he wondered how God could have let this happen. David was God’s chosen and anointed. He’d been promised a kingdom and he was living in a cave, “on the lam”. Talk about unfair!
David chose to respond by pouring out his fears and compaints, baring His soul with tears before the Lord. Then he would rehearse his trust in God by pouring out his praise and worship. A man after God’s heart. God didn’t make David’s path easier, but He did make David stronger so that at the right time he could become a great leader of a nation, foreshadowing the coming of the King of kings.
Lord, give me a heart that recognizes that you are all that I need.
Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong…be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him….Refrain from anger and turn from wrath…it only leads to evil….The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in Him;though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him.
From Psalm 37 (NIV)
Dear Diary – My supplies were gathered, and my fabric washed, ironed and ready to go!
Step 2: Trial and error. Two weeks ago, a pillow slip threatened to push me over the edge, but I refused to be bested by a pillow! I perfected my ripping out skills, dried my tears and humbled myself long enough to watch instructional Youtube videos. I discovered the first problem was the fabric I used was too short, just like me. So I wouldn’t ruin another swatch of fabric, I practiced making 2 types of covers with an old baby sheet covered in blue and yellow paint.
Step 3: I held my breath, crossed every appendage and forged ahead!
Step 4: Do a happy dance! (Bonus: dancing warms me up – it’s freezing up here)
I’m walking on sunshine, woah! And don’t it feel good! Hey, alright now, don’t it feel good…
Dear Diary – It seems I wasted a whole week fighting with a broken sewing machine. It started being goofy a week ago but I didn’t notice until I had completed at least 5 new masks. I had to rip them all apart. Somehow I managed to complete Big Guy’s birthday present right before it quit completely. I investigated with a screwdriver. Everything seemed to function as it should except a small tug would pull the whole seam apart. And now one tiny screw, smaller than a pepper corn, would just spin and spin inside its hole. I messaged my Dad and headed to the post office. The deadline to get this gift to Big Guy on time was tight. Adding insult to injury, as I stepped out the front door, I nearly tripped on the packages of my new Spring fabric. I had orders to fill and no way of filling them.
I am naive. I thought that seeing as we’re all struggling with something during this season of Covid, that we might be gracious and helpful with one another. Not so!
I went to the post office in a drug store and while I was there, I decided to snag some sale stuff, namely food! With groceries being delivered every other week, I find it a struggle to plan out two weeks worth of meals for 3 people (4 if you count Hubby’s second stomach). It’s not just quantity, it’s the hankerings and cravings, and evening grazings.
I didn’t want to use a basket; I didn’t have gloves with me. Instead, I loaded up my arms. But I had one item too many. Every other step, something else fell off the pile. It meant I had to kneel down and set something on the floor to get a finger free to retrieve the dropped item. Only, inevitably, something else would slide off the pile. Or slide off when I was halfway up, knees screaming, face grimacing, sweat pouring. Countless people stopped to watch this ridiculousness before steering around me in a wide berth. I cussed quietly under my breath: “Son of a motherless goat…Come on you stupid box!”. Sarcastically, I softly asked aloud: “really?” I whined: “why?” I sighed, deeply from the back of my throat like an exasperated old geezer. Still, amused onlookers smirked. Finally, before I either a) burst into tears, or b) burst into a string of expletives that would rival a seasoned sailor, I kicked the last treasonous box the remaining stretch to the self-checkout kiosk, drawing still more stares. I didn’t care.
Obviously, we are not all in this together!
I called Dad when I got home because my Dad can fix anything. Except broken hearts caused by stupid boys, but if he could fix that, he would have. If we were allowed to leave our homes, I could have met my parents halfway and traded sewing machines.
Before I ran my errand, Hubby had surveyed the scene of the crime and noted that whatever the screw screwed into appeared to be MIA. So Dad talked me through disassembling the machine. I felt like I was defusing a bomb. Though calm on the exterior, I was shaking inside. Sweat started to bead on my forehead and I slowly removed a screw so small I could hardly pinch it’s head between my thumb and forefinger. I pulled the pin and lifted out the metal ring. Sure enough, I discovered a tiny arm and a tiny nut loose inside. Then I dropped the tiny arm. “Don’t move”, Hubby commanded. I had to set the phone aside while we searched. Then Hubby helped me put it all together, and reinsert the ring. The situation was defused and we were celebrating.
Though I wasn’t quite back in business. Problems continued to dog me. Thread snarled in a bird nest fashion. Stitches wavered or laddered again. Days later after endless ripping, I repeated the operation. I hadn’t quite put the tiny arm in right after all. NOW I’m back in business!
Dear Diary – It required determination, concentration, and perseverance, but for the first time in almost a year, I put my hair in a regular ponytail! It’s been over a year since my last haircut, excluding trimming my own bangs so I don’t fall down the stairs, and it’s getting rather long. My frozen shoulder has meant it’s also a disaster. It drags in my food, gets caught in my coat zipper, and bunches into a rat’s nest every night. I know everyone is struggling with “hair care” these days.
Dear Diary – Isn’t it great when our kids teach us something we didn’t know before?
This week I learned that Chef Boiardi (marketed as Chef Boyardee) was not just an iconic mascot. While known now for his overly salty, squishy pasta in-a-can, he was in fact a renowned Italian chef. He opened his restaurant, Il Giardino d’Italia in 1924. He never forgot what it was like to struggle in a new country. During the depression, pasta could be made and dried at low cost. Chef Boiardi would jar his homemade sauce in milk bottles and provide it, along with dried pasta, to hungry families in his Little Italy neighbourhood in Cleveland, Ohio. during the depression. During the war, his canning factory was commissioned to produce army rations. After the war, Chef Boiardi sold his factory, rather than lay off workers. He remained a consultant and spokesperson until 1978. His likeness continues to smiles from every can.
Every person you meet has a lesson to teach, a story to tell and a dream to share.
Robin S. Sharma
Dear Diary – Tuesday it snowed. It wasn’t the volume of snow that was the problem but the way the wind billowed it over banks and swirled it over rooftops, like a swatch of white satin. It clumped on the screen in my sanctuary, obstructing my small view. It was chilly outside (and inside) but my heart was warm. My precious Big Guy was celebrating a birthday and I was happy to tuck in and let the memories billow and swirl. I re-read the post I had written in 2014, My Child, written from the perspective of my heavenly father over that part of my story, and my heart swelled with joy and thankfulness. It has been a strange journey, certainly not the life I had planned so many moons ago, but a good one nonetheless. God is good, even when my small view is obstructed.
Dear Diary – Yesterday I delivered 18 masks to my friend who knows everyone! It’s great to have someone else deal with people. I get to just tuck in at home and create! With my inventory restocked, I turned my attention to pillow covers for my sanctuary. How hard can it be to sew a square cover for a square pillow?
Yes, the bag of chips did make me feel better. I’ve lost an hour and a half of my life, have sprouted 14 new gray hairs, and still have a swatch of fabric and a headache, but my “tearing out” skills are amazing. Practice makes perfect!
Today is a new day. I think I’ll scrapbook.
Bad news don’t ruin my appetite Don’t let the papers tell me if it’s wrong or right I just do what I do and I do it, day by day, by day, by day. I live life, might take it slow Make mistakes but Oh! that’s the way it goes I just know what I know and I know it, day by day, by day, by day
Dear Diary – I saw the mailman walk by the house this morning. That’s enough social interaction for today.
Dear Diary – A “state of emergency” was declared as of last Thursday but with the exception of school closures, everything pretty much functions as before. We’re supposed to stay home except for “essentials”: medical appointments, grocery and pharmacy pick up, and walks around the block. Arguably, essential means different things to different people. Here was my conundrum: Michael’s, a craft boxstore, is still open, for curbside pick up or delivery, and I’m in need of “spring” fabric. I had planned a trip to Fabricland in January but it is closed. Some would argue that it’s essential I leave home to buy fabric for my business. Others could argue that my business isn’t feeding my family, and therefore isn’t essential. The same argument can apply to furniture stores, home reno stores, etc. In reality, our restrictions are less severe than last March, although Covid is rampant in our province. What do I do?
I’ve ranted before about the disadvantages of online shopping, and fabric is a small market. Thumbnail photos don’t accurately reflect the product. I spent 5 hours on Friday sourcing fabric to stretch my bucks! In addition to colour and print, I had to consider cost, shipping dates, and measurements. There was no standard means of measuring – I had to calculate cost per metre based on inches, yards, centimeters, and feet. Math…no pressure!
I ordered from Michael’s first, swallowing the $15 delivery charge. Then I ordered from Wal-Mart, which had free shipping…but is shipping each fabric swatch… one. at. a. time. Yesterday I received 3 tiny packages of elastic in a large envelope that was so well taped, I got my 20 minute work-out!
The first package arrived 4 days early, sometime after 8 p.m. I picked up the “Your package has been delivered” after 11 p.m. No one had knocked and I was already in bed but I didn’t want it stolen. Anyone who up to no good in my neighbourhood Monday night, I’m sorry I scared you. I had to turn on the porch light to find the package, and I was too lazy to get dressed first. It’s rather chilly outside for a t-shirt and panties.
Normally I’m a flannel-kinda gal. But lately, the dying inferno of my youth has re-ignited, and I’m waking on fire, several times in the night! I would love a smoking hot body, but this is not what I had in mind. I am developing 2 temperature settings – hypothermia and hades! The blankets are on and off, like a cat in the middle of whatever you are doing. Legs in – too hot! Legs out – too cold! One leg out – worried monster under the bed will eat one leg. When will the madness end?
There’s hope, however. The weatherman has predicted an arctic vortex heading our way. He’s afraid for his life, but I’m wondering if it be a life-saver, providing the optimal sleeping temperature.
Dear Diary – The sky is gray and it looks like it should be snowing. I know evening will soon be upon us, and I welcome the darkness. It’s like a heavy blanket wrapped around our home, soft and warm, inviting. I should be writing, or sewing, or doing something useful, not just sitting here idly watching the giant pine tree outside the window. The branches are frantically waving at me in the wind. I know it’s a cold wind that bites through winter clothing, and swirls menacingly around the edges. I was outside earlier, and I was happy to be come home.
I feel like those branches, my thoughts constantly moving and my focus swirling about, but I never really get anywhere. I sense frustration creeping in around the edges, and I have to remind myself: patience. Just as I can’t see the wind, I see movement and know it is there. Just as I can’t see Him, I know God is moving and He is there. Not everything is about the destination; it’s also about the journey.
You take a chance every day – getting up in the morning, crossing the street, or sticking your face in a fan.
Dear Diary -It’s that time of year again: the big stink. A storm blew through just before I came back to the city and knocked thousands of apples down. They are small, hard and rife with blemishes, and in the July heat, quickly turn to cider. Last year I cut and froze bags of apple slices and I made apple jelly. I nearly melted in the process. This year I picked and froze a bag of whole apples for jelly…when it’s much cooler! Saturday was among one of the hottest days. The three of us bundled up to protect ourselves from the wasps, and filled every garbage can, bin and box I could find. Tuesday night we dragged them to the curb for a yard waste truck to pick them. Little Guy kicked the first bin, sending a thick plume of fruit flies in my face. The trick is to hold your breath so you don’t inhale them. I wonder if they can lay eggs in your brain?
The squirrels, however, are in 7th Heaven. As was the young skunk I spied strolling in the yard one morning. I wonder if he’s the fellow who started burrowing under the front steps. I filled in his hole with dirt and orange peel. So far, no further excavation. The birds have visited too: robins, cardinals, blue jays, gold finches and even a woodpecker.
We’re pretty sure this is a squirrel…
The cutest visitor was a brown baby bunny (“bb”). A mean, black squirrel chased him into the bushes. I was just “awing” when bb scampered up behind the squirrel. The squirrel stared at bb, and they nuzzled noses. Then the squirrel started chasing bb around the lilac tree several times and I realized they were playing. It was like watching a Bugs Bunny cartoon. What’s up Doc?
Dear Diary – I really thought this headline had nailed it. I was browsing through my WordPress Reader, and I thought it said this:
Record Temperatures, Long Lines and Increasing Sarcacity Will Greatly Test the Patience of Americans This Summer.
Now, I know that Sarcacity isn’t a word, but it sounds like it could be. The actual word was scarcity. But you gotta admit, unlike my blog stats, sarcasm is on the rise. Just browse Facebook posts for 30 seconds and you’ll see I’m right.
Dear Diary – This week I sang at an outdoor worship service, all good old-timey songs. I endured grocery shopping with all the city folk who don’t know how to follow arrows. I went through the Tim Horton’s drive thru twice, and enjoyed a sticky doughnut to celebrate my late friend’s birthday! She would have approved.
I sold 6 face masks to 2 friends, and I enjoyed getting caught up. I pulled out some Fall fabric – might as well look fashionable!
Mom tells me my Dad bought some Christmas fabric. Stocking stuffers anyone!?!
I went looking for my 2019 tax documents, which I never found, and ended up cleaning out 2 boxes filled with tax forms starting in 1997! I earn the same salary! $0! I also did another drawing lesson. I’d better keep my day job.
We had to tidy our laundry room for the gas guy and I’m taking bets on how long it will take us to fill the space with useless junk. The odds are not in my favour.
I’m heading back to my folks, with or without Little Guy, but my laptop is coming with me, so he might be too. We repurposed a Scrabble board for a game my Aunt made using another repurposed board that went missing. My Mom found the missing board the next day! Murphy’s Law.
Dear Diary – Every morning this week I’ve been getting up and tuning in to our church’s online Vacation Bible Camp. I was involved in writing and acting in the skit portion. I have to see the humiliation firsthand. I had a great time and I’m thankful for the great team of volunteers who each brought their “A game” to make this happen! PTL!
See the whole show – all 5 days – google Wilderness Escape Markham Missionary on Youtube. Tell me what you thought!
Dear Diary – I haven’t written much this week. I haven’t done much this week. Mostly gentle sobbing at the sewing machine.
I have never been an adept sewer, particularly with the sewing machine. I can hand stitch tiny seams like nobody’s business, but I always fought with the machine. I feared I was failing Home Ec in Grade 8 because I couldn’t put a pillow together. My Dad had to help me. I sewed a few dresses in college, with discreetly tacked puckers around the edges, and I made pillowcase dolls for a few craft shows!
Mom’s friend ordered 6 medium masks (which was the recommended size for women) with ties: 2 pink, 2 purple, 2 green. Easy peasy! So easy, that I made 14 in an assortment of colours.
When she came to pick them up on Saturday, she tried one on and started to hem and haw. Which print looked better on her? Was a medium too large? Were the ties removable? Did I have elastic and how stiff was it? I tried to patiently navigate every question. Mom even grabbed a hand mirror so she could see herself. By the time my last nerve was frayed, she decided she’d rather have 6 extra small masks with elastic…in different prints!
While she dined on the deck, I sewed like a psycho. Threads were flying, the table piled with swatches and pins. The sewing machine itself, rumbled and revved like a car at the starting line in a drag race. I even roped my long-suffering father into cutting out the pieces to save me some time!
By the time I pressed the final one, I was slick with sweat. She was happy. She picked out 3 from the pile and I traded ties for elastic. I was done.
Then she pawed through my pile of fabric and selected 5 so I could make masks for her granddaughters. “Now”, she said, and I inwardly cringed…
Granddaughters get bling!
Could I make her 10 extra-small masks using the fabric and elastic she purchased on her way over, but instead of a double layer, could they be a single layer? Could I whip one up so she could see how heavy it would be? I whipped one up while she watched, modifying the pattern on the fly.
She called 2 days later, concerned that all the seams were rolled to prevent fraying, except the center seam. Could I fix that?
This simple request, and it should be simple, has literally cost me hours. I’m cranky. My family moves away from me when they see me coming, mostly likely muttering under my breath. More than once I’ve nearly had a complete meltdown. I’m talking ugly, snot-producing crying like a 2 year old. One such occasion was because I was overheated, frustrated, and my humidity-infused frizzy hair was hanging in my face. Every time I had to rip my glasses off to see what I was doing (or what I was ripping out), I was ripping out hair too. I desperately wanted to put it in a ponytail, a bun, anything off my face and neck, but my frozen shoulder is not cooperating (or keeping me cool)!