Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Made In China

I hate shopping. Well, let me qualify that. I hate shopping for anything other than what can be found in a book store, art supply store or stationary shop. Mr. P. has been kind enough to take the girls to the mall to do their shopping in the past. He doesn't like shopping either but is a great dad. When I mentioned this to him, "do you know....I really hate shopping" he laughed and said he could tell by the fact that my 15 year old sweatpants are being held at the waist by elastic bands. (I only wear them at home after all and they are my favourite!)

We all went to the mall together because the girls just had to get something with their Christmas money from their various relatives or they were going to burst. My little Diva's like to shop for clothes and jewelry. I just don't get it, but oh well.

We were walking in a long skinny store which was sporting cheap jewelry, hair paraphernalia, stuffed toys etc. I was checking out the front of the store when I could hear a loud, but high little six year old voice from the back of the store say in disgust,

"Oh my goodness! Junk. All junk from China. Look at this, China, China, China. What crap! Even the stuffed animals are from China! It's all junk." she went on this way in a good rant from the very back of the store to the very front where I was standing and back again.

I have to say I was amused and not embarrassed. The older I get the more it takes to embarrass me.

In the past she's watched the news about recalled toys, jewelry and foods manufactured in China. Shes had her own culled due to potential dangers. She's also listened to adult conversations about these subjects. It's just funny to see a little version of me (she is the only one that looks like a clone of me too) ranting about something just like the big version does on the blog.

Oh ya, and she put her French teacher on notice before Christmas that she wouldn't eat any of the candy canes the teacher was handing out as rewards because they were full of hydrogenated oils (trans fats) and they were just junk. The teacher (a mighty large one) told her that a little candy now and then is good for you. Four of Four then lectured her on the evils of trans fats. When the teacher didn't want to listen and walked away from Four, she told me, she followed her and told her again all about what was wrong with those particular candies. Four only eats natural organic candy canes without trans fat! Doesn't that teacher read labels! (snicker!) I think we've created a monster!

Monday, 29 December 2008

Sorry, No Rant Today!

It was a close one. I had the radio on my favourite talk radio station while doing kitchen chores. I hate cooking so being in the kitchen is never a happy time for me anyways. I was listening to a continuous string of callers complaining about the public transit strike and how we should get rid of the whole publicly owned company and start again, or have the federal government step in and legislate a vote. It said that the union leader won't let the members vote since they will probably vote to go back. The old boys club will no longer control the system. I didn't get worked up. I didn't get angry. I was still feeling positive. Maybe I can go back to listening to the radio again and still stay positive! Then a commercial came on.

".....tune in on New Years Eve and New Years Day for our round table discussions on the newsmakers of 2008!" the announcer stated excitedly.

"....the resignation of Stephane Dion, the transit strike, city taxes......" blah, blah, blah.

I felt a twinge. Okay, if I'm to be honest as well as positive then....it was much more than a twinge. I started to feel a good and proper blood boil simmering. I could read the signs. My body was preparing for the inevitable anger that was to ensue. I reached over and quickly turned off the blasted thing. There. Still happy.

Someone the other day had told me that my mother of all rants had fuelled her mirth. It actually inspired her to look into the political situation since she wasn't a regular follower. I'm glad she had chosen to do this as I think we really need to keep an eye on those slimy political creatures or who knows where the country will end up. I'm also glad that she found the rant amusing. If you can't go to a blog and be amused or entertained then it really doesn't have a point. But for the sake of my happiness and sanity I'm not quite ready to get that mad again. I think I want to be ignorant of our political situation for a while. There isn't one party, including the current leaders, that I want to see running the land. I want to stay oblivious for a time. I want to stay happy.

Friday, 26 December 2008

The Day After

Well, it was a lovely Christmas season. In keeping with my new upbeat live style I'll tell you all of the things that made it so wonderful.

There was a time when I "loved" to fuss over detail. Now I satisfy that compulsion through working the fine details in my art. The Christmas tree had to be just so or it wasn't right. The gifts would have to be decked out in bows and ribbons with tags with names attached written in a fancy script. Christmas morning I'd be showered, brushed, made up and decked out before the gifts were opened since I knew it was being video taped. I'd feel bad about going to dinner somewhere and not provide something for the host. I'd pitch in and help to either prepare or clean up afterwords. Well, not so much now.

The kids let us sleep 'till 7:30 am. That's not normal I realize, but I didn't wake them to complain. After a long day of lazy, we headed out to my brother and sister-in-law's for dinner. My parents and Grandmother were also there. We arrived at 5pm sharp and went right to the dinner table. Talk about timing! I brought a squash. It had a face drawn on it from Halloween. I felt a bit funny about bringing a used squash for dinner, but it wasn't like they were going to eat the face. Since dinner was being served it was too late to cook it. Darn.

I was seated beside my almost 96 year old Grandmother, Rita. Yes, if you've read my blog in the past, she is the one who wears leather, rocks to Billy Idol and keeps telling us how lovely our dog is as if she had just met him for the first time, every 5 minutes.

We've started a new tradition in recent years. Every Christmas dinner I bring the crackers. That's the blow up, filled with a prize, corny joke and stylin' party hat kind of cracker, not the needing a glass of water 'cause I just stuffed my face and boy that horseradish dip is hot kind. My mother also bought crackers apparently because two is not enough for everybody.

I opened the first cracker as everybody was vying for time to belt out their corny joke. I reached for my second. Apparently Rita didn't realize this year we all had two or more lying beside each plate. Let me just say when I let that baby blow, Rita just about hit the ceiling. It's amazing how fast a 96 year old can move when she wants to. Nothing wrong with that woman's hearing!

I enjoyed sitting beside her and seeing her pleasure at visiting my brothers brand new home again and again and again. Just as she has every other time she's visited for the past two years that he's lived there. She's happy to see him settled and doing well, but just keeps forgetting she's been there before.

For the first time ever in the history of a family dinner, we managed to make it through without taking about hemorrhoids, penis', farts or other bodily functions.

We moved to the living room and took pictures as we do on every occasion. We always have to get a picture of everyone with my Grandmother because....well, you know. She's 96 almost! She'll probably outlive us all. If she's anything like her mother, she'll be here for a long time to come. It was great to be able to spend that time with her.

I got to sit on the couch with my "5th" child who picks on all of the other real children until they're all hopping on top of us and he's "accidentally" hitting me with his elbow. Last year we were at his office party for the kids when he started playing knuckles with one of the bigger kids. He held his hand over top of me so that the child would hit me instead of him. When I had the shock of a hard smack out of the blue I looked over at him at smacked him as hard as I possibly could (Mr. P I mean!). He yelled like a baby and feigned surprise that I would abuse him like that. By this time all of his coworkers were staring at Mr. P and his shrew of a wife. That wasn't the first time either, yet I somehow found myself seated beside his yet again.

We made it home safely and managed to make it through the whole night before the next bought of stomach flu hit the next child in the family. It was a happy Christmas! Hope yours was too!

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Well I'm back. I wasn't sure if I was leaving the blog, or just starting with a new positive outlook. I got tired of being cranky. Venting on the blog was just fueling my wrath. I decided maybe it was time to quit for good.

I said a prayer the other night. It seems like all around us here in my country we are seeing the worst side of everything and everyone. On a personal level we had quite a bit of money stolen from our account due to a compromised debit card as did a very large amount of other individuals over the weekend.

I stood in line at Starbucks trying to pay with said debit card. It kept getting denied. Apparently the police had notified the institution and they froze all the accounts with suspicious activities. I didn't even know our account had been compromised until all this happened. A young very kind stranger stepped forward, once I told them to cancel my rather large order, quietly paid my bill, wished me Merry Christmas and darted off. I tried to stop him, it was much too generous of him, but he wouldn't back down. This was a shock I was not expecting. My view of people has been less than positive lately. In one single second a perfect stranger made me see how wonderfully kind and unselfish people can be! I say to him THANK YOU!

My daughter hurt her finger and by the time she arrived home on the bus it was swollen to double the size of her others and immobile. I'll skip the stupid and potentially dangerous instruction that the teacher on yard duty suggested to her. I was irate to say the least. We made it from start to finish in and out of the hospital in 1 hour and 15 minutes! That's got to be some kind of record for Canada. The doctor was incredible and had her loving her visit so much she wanted to come back sometime;-0 THANK YOU to the kind Doctor!

I was standing in a very kind and generous bakery owners shop exchanging one of my art pieces for the one that will hang for the next little while. A gentleman walked in whom I recognized instantly as an established painter who has one of his works also hanging. I had never met him before. He immediately walked over to the new painting I had just hung and moaned, dipping down towards the floor slightly. We thought he was having problems walking since he is an older gentleman and appears to be unstable on his feet. Turned out though he was moaning with pleasure as he looked at the painting "Oh Rats!" He continued to moan loudly and mutter to himself in French. The owner graciously introduced me, I was incredibly shy about the whole thing. He gushed, complimented and kissed me. He also shook hands like a young African-American teenager, but maybe that's a French thing too. Adventurer would know. I told him how much his positive comments meant to me since he is an artist. I THANK BOTH THE BAKERY OWNER IMMENSELY AND HIM!

God has shown me the good and bad since I prayed. The good definitely outweighed the bad!

Monday, 15 December 2008

Time for new beginnings.


Saturday, 13 December 2008

I was lying in bed this morning thinking about what I did. I sent a Christmas card to my elderly prim and proper Aunts about Frosty picking his nose. Sigh. What the hell was I thinking. Then I remembered one of my cousins pictured looking so lovely in a nurses uniform. This is the card he sends if they get sick.

One Valentines day he sent all of his elderly, prim and proper Aunts a Valentines Day card with him in the buff (well, in a flesh coloured pair of bikini underwear so he says;-) lounging around with a large potted fern in front of his dangly bits.

I come from an interesting family to say the least. A very large extended family made up of characters such as this. And I wouldn't have it any other way!

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Grandma "C" e-mailed this to me and I had to post it because it's something that actually made me laugh. (I appear to be having another cranky day;-0)

A Christmas Story for people having a bad day:

When four of Santa's elves got sick, the trainee elves did not produce
toys as fast as the regular ones, and Santa began to feel the
Pre-Christmas pressure.

Then Mrs Claus told Santa her Mother was coming to visit, which stressed
Santa even more.

When he went to harness the reindeer, he found that three of them were
about to give birth and two others had jumped the fence and were out,
Heaven knows where.

Then when he began to load the sleigh, one of the floorboards cracked, the
toy bag fell to the ground and all the toys were scattered.

Frustrated, Santa went in the house for a cup of apple cider and a shot of
rum. When he went to the cupboard, he discovered the elves had drank all
the cider and hidden the liquor. In his frustration, he accidentally
dropped the cider jug, and it broke into hundreds of little glass pieces
all over the kitchen floor. He went to get the broom and found the mice
had eaten all the straw off the end of the broom.

Just then the doorbell rang, and irritated Santa marched to the door,
yanked it open, and there stood a little angel with a great big Christmas

The angel said very cheerfully, 'Merry Christmas, Santa. Isn't this a
lovely day? I have a beautiful tree for you. Where would you like me to
stick it?'

And so began the tradition of the littl e angel on top of the Christmas

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

These pictures are for Bella Rum and her Dad who want snow over at

6 years ago mid-December I was outside jogging in the evening in shorts and a t-shirt. Yes, in the same city. It was a struggle to get a sprinkling of snow even for Christmas in years of late. Last year and again this, there is no shortage of the stuff! Then it rains, as it's supposed to today when it goes above zero, then freeze and turn into ice pellets and then snow again. It was -28 celcius (-18.4 F) yesterday with a brutal wind!

By the way, that shot is of the street. What street? Exactly!

Monday, 8 December 2008

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!

To all my Blogger friends, consider yourself Christmas carded.

This is the mock-up for this years card. I'm going with one this year because....well, frankly I'm lazy. I didn't hand draw, colour and put sparkles and stickers on 60 plus cards this year because....well, frankly I just don't feel like it. A month of creating original individualized art by hand was enough for a few years.

What does the theme for this card have to do with the real reason for the season? (That would be Jesus people!) Not a darn thing. It's hard to make a funny Jesus card in good taste, so you get frosty this year.

Off topic....funny story....
I was playing Scrabble with my 13 year old and 11 year old. One of One (13) read a word out loud that Two of Two had placed on the board.
"POOUND, huh, that's not a word Two!" she scolds.
"Um, One, that would be 'POND'." I correct.
"Oh" she says, now embarrassed that she can't read this simple word, "I couldn't tell with the "O" upside down with that!"

Friday, 5 December 2008

Okay. I'm not angry anymore. I'm sad. I don't know why. I expect after such a blow out it's my body just readjusting.

I sat down at my art desk and started up on the beach picture I had previously put aside. I imagine I'll be looking at this one for the next few months. So much so that I'm going to want to slap the kid every time I have to look at her. I won't though...you know, bad anger and all that.

My work is now hanging at the shop in Aylmer. The owner had her's framed herself and it looks beautiful in the frame she chose. That's not one I've posted anywhere for privacy purposes. I think that it's my favourite.

I've launched my art site. You can see the link in the sidebar. So much for anonymity.

Also, if you live nearby and need hay there's a link to a friends farm. Funny story associated with that:

The kids and Mr. P. went out to visit friends at their beefalo farm. There had been an auction up the road and there was leftover livestock that no one wanted. Four roosters. Mr. and Mrs. Beefalo took them in. The Mrs. warned the kids that one in particular was quite feisty and liked to attack ankles much to her chagrin. Avoid the roosters!

Within a short period of time there were 4 crazy roosters racing around the yard with 4 little girls in chase. Not long after that there were 4 kids cuddling and holding roosters much to their (the roosters) delight. Then the children disappeared. It was getting late and all were invited in to tea in the farmhouse. Well, the people were at least. Not the roosters. They were left behind outside with free run of the farm.

Foggy Bottom Farms has a farmhouse in the form of a long bungalow with low windows. On this particular day Foggy Bottom Farms had a long bungalow with low windows, 4 little girls snacking inside and 4 silly roosters glaring in those low windows crowing, frantically pacing and kicking up a fuss demanding the kids return and take up the chase.

Sadly the roosters couldn't take up permanent residence. They went to other farmers once they found out how much fun it was to dig up the vegetable and flower gardens.

Who knew roosters were so much fun!?

P.S. Isn't that drumstick just calling too you?