My life in pictures, stories and open letters.

My life in pictures, stories and open letters.

Please be advised that you are entering my blog.
My blog.
The opinions herein are mine.
I am free to rant and vent to my heart's content.
If you find yourself mentioned here, then you've made quite an impression on me.
Feel free to read on if you would like to know if that impression is good, bad or ugly.
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Regardless of the option you choose, I hope you have a fabulous day!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

I Wish There Was A Chapter In The Instruction Manual For This One

Asia came to visit Livvy today. She waltzed in like nothing happened.

Like she didn't just get kicked out of school and choose to run away when I tried to talk to her about it.

Like we didn't just go three days without hearing from her.

Like we are so completely in the wrong that we should have welcomed her with open arms.

I couldn't do it. To be honest, I didn't know what to do. I didn't know what to say.

I've never been in this situation before.

But I get the feeling that I should figure out how to handle it really quickly.

Because it is probably going to happen again.

And again.

And again.

Because we will never be allowed to parent her.

And we can't not parent her.

So where does that leave us?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

What's Your Status?

Some people are very vocal about what they think of facebook and status updates.

Some think it is a waste of time. Others quite happily keep up with your life via your status.

You can be funny. I have a past client who is an absolute HOOT on his status reports. For example, "I used to be schizophrenic. But we're okay now." Whenever he updates, you know it's going to be good.

You can be controversial if you choose. You want opinions on abortion or divorce or politics, put it in your status.

You can just plain old let people know what's going on in your day. "I'm off to the dentist. Yuck."

Some think that you should never put anything negative in your status, because people shouldn't have to see that you're having a bad day, or that you're sad. "Go to a therapist" was that person's general opinion. And if your status updates are routinely negative, then yes. You just might need a therapist. Sorry 'bout that.

Last night I updated my status to read:

"If anyone is FB friends with Asia and you see she's in a tight spot, please remind her that she is always able to come home. We're choosing the tough love option, but it's hard. I pray that she stays safe and makes smart choices."

The support poured in. I had comments on my status. I had personal messages.

To me, right now, my status update is my support system. That is the amazing thing with it. Friends and acquaintances sharing their own stories with me. Just sending a cyber hug. Words of encouragement.

I don't feel so alone.

Thank you, my friends.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Wordful Wednesday

As I posted yesterday, I think I would be quite happy to do this full time. The problem for now is the evenings and weekends the job entails. While the kids are young and Leon is a shift worker, I am a little stuck in the 9-5 grind. I'll keep doing this part time for now. To keep my head in the game.

One day, though.... This will be what I do full time.

And I can't wait!

Sunday, May 09, 2010

I don't have an abundance of self confidence. I'm not a go-getter. And I'm a bit of a chicken.

But I have to tell you that I would love to take this photography gig to the next level. I love to do it and I usually love the results. I love the products I offer my clients. I love that they are happy with their pictures.

What I love most, though, is that most of my clients have come to be friends. I have clients on facebook. I see pictures that I have taken for them as their profile pictures. I look at the facebook photos and see in the background my work on their walls.

It's a great feeling.

I have clients that come back year after year. Even when I tried to convince one of them to go somewhere else, SHE had faith in me that I just didn't have in myself. (I don't do 'baby' pictures well, which is what she was needing... lol)

Now I know that I'm not overly artsy. I don't have time to take courses and learn all the new-fangled things that photographers are doing now. But what I do give is nice photos, fun photo shoots and good quality albums for a fair price.

And we have fun. And we stay in touch. And I think that rocks.

I'm so incredibly lucky!

And I just thought I would share that with you today.

Mother's Day - A Review

My facebook status yesterday was something along the lines of "I wonder how many moms are busting their asses today so they can have the 'day off' tomorrow?" Most people responded that they, too are cleaning house. If that is normally something you would tinker away at on Sunday, then it stands to reason that it is something your family will do for you on Sunday. Otherwise, it's really not that special, is it?

Now personally, cleaning house is more of an every second, third or even fourth Sunday event. So, technically, I could argue that it actually would have been done today. I would totally have been full of crap, and even I know it, so I did it yesterday. Just because. But it did feel good to have an almost clean house today.

So, not only did I have a cleanish house this morning, I woke to the pitter patter of little size 1 feet making their way to my room. I opened my eyes to a sleepy little blonde who still had her thumb in her mouth (she's my baby, don't judge me) who announced "It's Mother's Day!" I was treated to a great big hug before she went to snuggle with the dog.

Asia came in and said "What's the weather supposed to be like today?". Then "Do we have school tomorrow, or is Mother's Day a long weekend?". Bless her heart.

Leon got me tickets to our local dinner theatre and is even letting ME decide who to take....

I got up and plunked myself in front of the computer for a bit. Then we got ready and headed out for breakfast at Humpty's. I had a delightful breakfast of an apple cinnamon cheddar omelet and in Lemoine style, guessed correctly at the total bill. I'm so awesome. We are so classy, we even tell the waitress what we are doing. Yup. Thankfully she doesn't hear us discuss how the hell we're going to pay for it.

Then it was time for the zoo! Our tiny little Edmonton zoo. It was fun. We only got a couple of hours there, but it was a good time, and they had a spa set up to give moms mani's and massages. Deeeeelightful! We waited and watched for Lucy the elephant. (Yes, the same one that Bob Barker has been spouting off about for the last year or so.) She was out walking the grounds with her trainer of 21 years and sadly did not come back for her spa treatment mud bath until we had to hurry back to mom and dad's for our Mother's Day BBQ and my brother's 40th birthday.

Shortly after 2pm we were speeding toward my old stompin' grounds to pick up Asia's boyfriend and go to Mom and Dad's. We enjoyed a wonderful lupper (lunch/supper) and sang to my incredibly old brother, then were making our way to Leon's parent's house for more BBQ'd goods.

The day finished with a giggling little tiny person refusing to go to sleep, and was topped off with a chocolate coffee toffee frosty from Wendy's. Yumm!

I hope your Mother's Day was equally wonderful!

Happy Mother's Day


Real Mothers don't eat quiche;
They don't have time to make it.

Real Mothers know that their kitchen utensils
Are probably in the sandbox.

Real Mothers often have sticky floors,
Filthy ovens and happy kids.

Real Mothers know that dried play dough
Doesn't come out of carpets.

Real Mothers don't want to know what
The vacuum just sucked up...

Real Mothers sometimes ask 'Why me?'
And get their answer when a little
Voice says, 'Because I love you best.'

Real Mothers know that a child's growth
Is not measured by height or years or grade...
It is marked by the progression of Mommy to Mom to Mother.....

The Images of Mother

4 YEARS OF AGE - My Mommy can do anything!

8 YEARS OF AGE - My Mom knows a lot! A whole lot!

12 YEARS OF AGE - My Mother doesn't know everything!

14 YEARS OF AGE - My Mother? She wouldn't have a clue..

16 YEARS OF AGE - Mother? She's so five minutes ago.

18 YEARS OF AGE - That old woman? She's way out of date!

25 YEARS OF AGE - Well, she might know a little bit about it!

35 YEARS OF AGE - Before we decide, let's get Mom's opinion.

45 YEARS OF AGE - Wonder what Mom would have thought about it?

65 YEARS OF AGE - Wish I could talk it over with Mom.

The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure she carries,
or the way she combs her hair.
The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes,
Because that is the doorway to her heart,
The place where love resides.
The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mole,
But true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul.
It is the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she
Shows, and the beauty of a woman with passing years only grows!

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Society Embarrassed by Aging


Obsession with youth appears in obituaries

There is a big increase in the use of decades-old photos showing the deceased as a strapping soldier or fresh-faced bride instead of the senior citizens most were when they died.
There is a big increase in the use of decades-old photos showing the deceased as a strapping soldier or fresh-faced bride instead of the senior citizens most were when they died.
Photograph by : Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images

Shannon Proudfoot, Canwest News Service

Article tools


Our obsession with youth is obvious where least expected, new research suggests -- in the obituary pages.

In a new study, Keith Anderson, a social-work professor at Ohio State University, combed through four decades of newspaper obituaries and the photographs accompanying them.

He found a big increase in the use of decades-old photos showing the deceased as a strapping soldier or fresh-faced bride instead of the senior citizens most were when they died.

Anderson sees this as evidence of our society's growing obsession with youth and inability to see beauty in age.

"We don't select our own obit photographs in general, but the families do. It does point to what the families see as mom or dad at their best," he says. "As a society, I don't think we see someone who's 80 years old as at the prime of their life, which is a sort of ageist perspective."

Suzanne Scott, executive director of the Funeral Service Association of Canada, says funeral directors she spoke with believe it has more to do with families choosing a photo that represents the best of their loved one's life.

Anderson found that death at an older age made it more likely a younger photo would be chosen and women were twice as likely as men to have age-inaccurate photos, which he says points to the "double jeopardy" of ageism and sexism faced by older women.

© The Vancouver Province 2009

I think that your loved ones will post a picture of you at a time when YOU felt your best.

A young, strapping soldier, defending his country. Short of being a husband and probably father, THOSE were his years. That is what he was proud of.

A picture of a young woman, in her nursing degree photo. A time when education wasn't important for women, and she probably had to work extra hard for what she got. Perhaps those were her best years.

I don't think a family looks at photos of their dearly departed and thinks, "Ew! Look at her age spots! We can't use that ugly thing!"

Personally, when I go, use a young picture of me. I don't like me right now. I would hate that THIS was a person's last impression of me. Use a picture where I was young, slim, pretty, carefree, and yes, happy. With no bags under my eyes or jowls like my English Mastiff. These extra 40 pounds are torture. Please, if I die tomorrow, don't use a now picture.

And for that matter, only play '80s songs. Because clearly I'm okay with living in the past.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

An Open Letter To New Moms

Okay, so here it is. In all its glory. Exactly what I think of parenting.

The Prompts:

1.) Open letter to new moms.

(inspired by Tiffany from The Secret Is In The Sauce).

Dear Foolish Young Soul:

Please know that while you are terribly excited and scared right now, soon, so very soon, you will hold your wee bundle in your shaking, nervous arms.

And please know that all your fears are about to come true.

He or she will poop and puke on you. But really, those are the least of your problems. That babe is going to keep you up nights, and you're not going to know why. You won't know what the hell is wrong when she is screaming her fool little head off. When her little privates are red and swollen and look like they hurt like a son-of-a-bitch, let me tell you here and now, they do, and short of letting her lay out buck naked and trying every diaper rash cream on the market, there's not a thing you can do about it.

But then she falls asleep in your arms, and she's snoring just a little bit, and you'll forgive her for peeing on your carpet.

Then they get a little older, and have ZERO social awareness. They won't care if they are in church or WalMart. They won't give a hoot that everyone on the entire planet is looking at them ... and YOU ... and thinking "Thank the good Lord above I am not the parent of THAT!"

And then, one rainy day, you'll come out of the grocery store and see her looking at a puddle. Just staring at it like a grown woman looks at a diamond ring. And you'll tell her to go ahead and jump in. Running shoes and all. And she'll look at you with great big eyes, like you are the best mom in the world. Trust me, stripping down a kid who just spent five minutes clomping around in a puddle the size of the ocean, and driving home with her giggling because she's buck naked in her booster seat, makes you forget the candy tantrum she had in the store just moments before.

When she's 7, she'll pick her nose on stage during the school play and she'll go to church in a cute little dress with no panties on. She'll swear at a kid during recess and you get hauled into the office, you'll want to disown her right there and then.

But later on, at bedtime, she'll read to you in a sing-song little voice, with her bony little shoulders moving and grooving to her own little beat, and you'll be convinced that the other kid started it - and even had it comin'.

The sad news, though, is that the precious little bundle that amazes you now, will one day turn into a typical teenager. She'll tell you to shut up. She'll be on the phone all the time, IF she's home. Her room will be trashed. She won't help with the dishes. She's just plain old mean and angry all. the. time.

I'm sure there will be a positive spin to put to this later. I just don't know it yet. Right now I'm thinking the reward, like the snoring baby, the giggling puddle jumper, and the reader, will be when the teenager moves out.

But I'll be sure to post another open letter when I know how it turns out. It's a thing of nightmares right now.

Just enjoy these little years. They are truly the best. And if you figure out a cure for teenopathy or learn a thing or two about bitchology, please, for the love of me.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Wordful Wednesday

This is the picture that inspired my Wordful Wednesday.

And my poll on the sidebar.

On Sunday we went to a local restaurant for a buffet lunch for my Uncle's 70th birthday.

Thankfully my parents helped out, and Leon was at work. Otherwise I would never have been able to afford it.

The kicker is that the bill included tip.

The food was alright. But the food doesn't make the tip.

The service does.

And the service sucked.

We sat in a room, with dishes piled around us, empty water glasses and no one in sight to ask if we needed anything. It was a buffet. We served ourselves. And nobody spoon-fed me. Which is kind of what I would have expected, seeing as they weren't doing anything else for a tip.

I got the bill for me, Cassie and Liv, and it came to a whopping $69!! (The fact that Liv ate 1/2 a french toast and one chocolate covered marshmallow is beside the point, I suppose....)

I couldn't figure out how it came to so much, and so I inspected the bill. It included a $9 service charge. Which was, I gathered, their tip.

In hindsight, I should have left my money for the buffet, and not the tip. They can't FORCE me to pay a tip, especially at a buffet, right? (No, seriously ... Am I right?)

When you factor in all the tip they made in our little party of about 15 or 20, for no services rendered, they made out pretty sweet. Almost as sweet as the chocolate fountain, in fact.

Which was exactly why I giggled just a little bit when I found Liv huddled up to the chocolate fountain, eating right there, handful of chocolate strawberry after handful of chocolate covered marshmallow!!

Had I been thinking, I would have joined her.

(And a note to my fellow Edmontonians, I don't recommend the Moose Factory. And if you DO go there, don't add a tip to the bill like my mom did earlier in the week, not realizing it was included. Because they will NOT be honest with you when you try to tip them again. Dinner for three was $150!!!! Including both tips.)

Now, go vote on my poll, wouldja?

And then go back to the next person on Awesome Angie's Wordful Wednesday post!

Monday, May 03, 2010

Suddenly The Brain Is Wondering: "Where The Hell Did My Blood Supply Just Go??"

Wow, did I get a kick out of reading this.

They seriously did a "study" on how our brains function when we are
  • Interupted by a person of the opposite sex
  • Interupted by an attractive person of the opposite sex, and
  • Interupted by an attractive person of the opposite sex that is found to be attractive by the "study" participant.
Is anyone else wondering why the hell funds would be wasted on a study such as this? Should we not already have guessed at the outcome?

Seriously, what will they think of next??

Oh, by the way, women passed with flying colours.

You. Do. Not. Intimidate. Us.

Just sayin'.