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Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Christmas Time

It's starting to feel like Christmas again for me. After my dad had his stoke and was able to come home and live independently the excitement of Christmas seemed to have passed for me. I think it is because I feel that I received the best present dad's health and watching him recover from something that I was sure was going to change our lives forever. Yes our lives are changed but not in the way I first thought they would be.

I still have some baking to do. This weekend I will be baking pies, tarts and cheese cake. I hope to get to the shortbread before the weekend. For me you can't have Christmas with out Shortbread. I use a recipe that reminds me of my Auntie Gladys' shortbread. She made the best shortbread cookies around. She passed away suddenly in 1980 and I never did get to ask her for her recipe. I felt like I was in heaven one day when I was with my grandparents at her house cleaning up after she passed away when I found her stash of shortbread she had been baking for Christmas that year. I savored those last few cookies that my grandma gave me. I can still taste them. It was many years before I ever came close to finding a recipe that tasted as good as my Auntie Gladys' shortbread.

Yesterday I went to WalMart to pick up a couple of gifts that I was looking for. I know your probably asking yourself if I was crazy to go into WalMart at 5:30pm a week before Christmas. I found a good parking spot....bonus....found exactly what I was looking for and a few other things that I have to go back for tomorrow....stood in line at the till for only a couple of minutes...that's right only a couple of minutes. I was surprised that I was in and out of WalMart as fast as I was.

The menu is planned for Christmas Dinner and Boxing Day Dinner. My daughter Brittany has been invited to her boyfriends' grandparents place for Christmas Supper. She is looking forward to going to their place and spending time with Jordan and his family. Boxing Day

Jordan is coming to our house to spend the day with us. It will seem a bit strange for Christmas Supper that Brittany won't be home with us but that time comes when they spend holidays with others.

Next week this time Christmas will be over for another year, we'll be feasting on left overs till we don't want to look at another piece of turkey for a year. Where does the time go?

Tuesday, 18 December 2007

When you love someone......Tell them

My dad will have returned to his own home a week this Thursday. All my fears and worries have disappeared. The first night was the hardest to get through. The home care nurse called me on Saturday, telling me of her visit with my dad on Friday. She reassured me that my dad is doing really well and recovering with each day that passes. He is so fortunate to be back home and on his own after a stroke, this happens to few people.

My dad still calls me every day...I find myself looking forward his calls more than I did before. I think before I took those calls for granted as he had called me every day for the last 17 years since I moved back from Flin Flon. It wasn't until I was faced with the possibility that I may never receive another phone call from him that it scared me. Scared me more than I ever thought it would.

Now the challenge is to help my dad find a hobby to do so that he doesn't feel so bored. He said he wouldn't mind painting or carving. I am a bit nervous about the carving with him being on blood thinners but have to trust that he will do alright with it as well. He even said he would like to try putting together a model or two. He was looking at the model that my son has been working on. Will be looking for something along these lines for an extra Christmas present for my dad.

We take so many things in our life for granted and don't realize it until we either loose it or come close to loosing it. Family has always been important to me but now I realize that more than ever. My grandmother used to always tell me she loved me each night when I went to bed.....I asked her one time why? She told me that she wanted me to know how important I was to her and how much she loved me. She said I should always take the time to let people know how I feel about them before the day comes when I can't do that. She was so right about that. I have carried that tradition on with my children, my husband and my dad.....I tell them every day I love them and I am thankful for them in my life.

Friday, 14 December 2007

Letting Go!

Letting go of our children as they grow is hard especially when they take that final step to Independence and move out on their own. I also found that letting go of my dad is hard to do. My dad spent a week with us after being discharged from the hospital after his stroke. The entire time at our place he spoke of how much he wanted to return to his own home in Northside. We agreed that if the doctor said he was strong enough to return home on his own I wouldn't stand in his way.

My dad received the green light he was looking for yesterday morning. I also received some reassurance that it would be fine for my dad to return home as well. The doctor told that the medications my dad is on will prevent him from having any more TIA's. For everyday that passes that he doesn't have a TIA his risk of having another TIA/Stroke decreases. The doctor recommended that I call the Homecare Nurse to stop in and check on my dad as well so that his blood pressure and heart can be monitored. This was the reassurance I needed that it will be alright for my dad to return home.

Also Wednesday evening when I got home I seen my dad in a different light again. He is getting stronger with each passing day and is very capable of being on his own. I am a phone call away and a 20 minute drive away. Most definitely won't be venturing very far from home for a while.....don't think my nerves could take it. I am a worry wart that is for husband and kids tell me that I worry far to much about my dad, that he will be fine. Well easier said than done when your dad is the only parent you have left and you are the only child to provide the help he needs.

My dad is already wanting to go to visit my cousins in Tisdale after Christmas. He said to me I can make it. He has his heart set on going for a visit so who am I to tell him NO. I told him that if he feels up to it after Christmas we could go down for a day. One day at a time I told him, don't rush things....well he comes back with "If I don't do things, I won't get stronger" and he is right at that.

Everyday that my dad was with us for that week I could see him getting stronger and stronger. I have spoke with him on the phone a couple of times and can hear it in his voice that he is getting stronger with each passing day. With each passing day I feel better about my dad's recovery. It seems to be taking me just along to get over the scare that I received when I seen my dad take that stroke and not knowing what would come next.

The support that we have received from family and friends has been awesome. No one probably realizes how much they have helped me get through this time and help me let go and watch my dad return to his own home.

We are blessed with a wonderful family and great friends. It is at these times when a person really realizes it. God Bless Everyone!

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

A Time For Miracles

We always hear that Christmas is a time for miracles. Many of us agree but never see them or at least don't think we see them. Then one day when we least expect it we see them happen to us, our loved ones, friends or complete strangers.

This year my family received our Christmas Miracle. On Sunday December 2, 2007 my dad had a mini stroke also known as a TIA. I was never so afraid of loosing my dad in my life as I was that evening. I thank God that me and my family were visiting at the time that it happened. We had gathered for a Christmas supper with the other tenants of the Northside Lodge along with the board of directors. We had an angel with us there that night in Peggy, she called 911 got the First Responders to my dad's in less than 10 minutes, about 15 minutes not even later the ambulance arrived. We had my dad at the hospital within 1 hr of his stroke. My dad went from not being able to verbally communicate with us to being able to talk within 5 - 10 minutes. I had to stay out of the room as it was upsetting my dad to see me scared and upset.

My wonderful husband rode with my dad in the ambulance to the hospital. What a difference in treatment when you arrive by ambulance than when you drive someone in. They checked for everything right away. Dad received the medications he needed immediately. The doctors and nurses in the ER that night were awesome. They kept me informed of everything. I left that night feeling much better than when I arrived.

Monday wasn't a great day for me, my dad was admitted to the hospital. The nurses didn't read his chart from the ER so they had no idea of what was going on or even why my dad was in the hospital until he told him, you tell me I came in with the ambulance last night. frustrating that day was. I didn't see a single doctor that day so when I left my dad's room I was in tears by the time I hit the elevator and cried most of the way home.

Tuesday I met with my dad's doctor who had been up to see my dad that morning. He told me that my dad is doing very well. The CT Scan showed no neurological damage from the TIA, thanks GOD. They were waiting to have an Eco cardiogram done of dad's heart to see if the clots were coming from there...again good news no clots there.....but his heart is weak. Working about about 1/2 of a healthy normal heart with no damage, but with the proper medications they believe that my dad's heart with strengthen from 35% to 45 - 50 %, it will never reach the 65% of the blood that a healthy heart pumps out with each beat but will be stronger. This is going to take time.

I was very surprised when the doctor told me that my dad should be able to go home in a few days. It was hard for me to believe the doctor when he told me that my dad would be able to come home I just couldn't see it. My husband told me that I was looking too hard for the negative affects of a stroke, this was clouding me from seeing how well my dad was really doing. It was on Wednesday when I finally believe them, I walked into my dad's room in the hospital and for the first time since Sunday I seen my dad, his color was great, he had sparkle in his eyes, no heart monitor and no oxygen. It was my dad as I know him, not my dad who was sick and in hospital.

Thursday came and I was able to bring my dad home to my house. This is one of the happiest days of my life next to the day I married my wonderful husband and the days that my 3 children were born. Every day I see my dad improving, getting stronger. Tomorrow he goes to the see the doctor and if he says that my dad is strong enough to stay in his own apartment on his own we will take home on Friday. This will be hard for me to do, but my dad needs to be able to do things himself so that he can keep getting stronger and stronger.

I thank God everyday for the blessings he has given us and for the blessing of healing that he as given to my dad and for blessing the doctors with the knowledge of how to treat my dad's condition.

Yes Miracles do happen at Christmas, my dad is living proof of that for me and my family. We received our miracle when things looked the blackest we found a shining star. My dad means the world to me and to my family, we are very close the 6 of us. We all received the best Christmas present 3 weeks early this year, my dad coming home.

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Faith in God

It seems that as Christmas approaches we think about those friends and loved ones that have passed on. This year my husband and I said good bye to his Uncle Claire, one of my co-workers Sharon Fitch, my Aunt Faith and now a very dear friend of ours Padre Geoff Hopper.

As sad as it is to say good bye to these people I feel confident in my faith in God that they are all in a much better place. My cousin told me a phrase this summer while were visiting the graves of our Grandma & Grandpa Sharpen and our Uncle Ralph Sharpen -- Absent from the body, Present with the Lord. This phrase has given me much comfort as I have had to say good bye to loved ones. It doesn't make it any easier to say good bye, but it does help in knowing that they have gone on before us to a much better place where they are re-united with loved ones gone on before and that they now feast at the table of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

I think of my Grandma & Grandpa Gardner and how much I miss them but I have the comfort in knowing they are with the Lord, watching over me and my family. I know my mom watches over me & my family along with Grandma & Grandpa Sharpen.

My best friend Cheryl, died at 16 years old. She faced her destiny with such bravery and a strong faith in God. I remember her telling me the last time I seen her that she was going home to be with the Lord very soon. She was so looking forward to seeing her loved ones that had gone before her and to meet Jesus and walk and talk with him. She told me I won't be sick any more I will be with my loved ones. When I hugged her for what I knew would be the last time I had tears in my eyes, she told me don't be afraid for me. It will be many years but we will see each other again and I will be there to great you. When I walked out of that hospital room knowing that the next time I seen Cheryl it would be at her funeral I was sad.

Over the years my faith in God & Jesus Christ helped me realize that one day we would see each other again and I would re-united with my loved ones as well.

Monday, 26 November 2007

The Grey Cup Comes Home to SASKATCHEWAN

In our house we started watching the pre-game show at 3pm and we never stopped. It wasn't as intense of a game as I expected. The noise in the Dome sounded much like a bee hive until kick off time.

The beer was cold, the wings hot and the anticipation of the Grey Cup coming home to Saskatchewan - High.

Sunday was also my husband's we celebrated in style. I think I surprised my son at one point. He never realized that I was a true Rider Fan. It was the 3rd quarter and the ball is going down the field to Flick, how had butter fingers for most of the first 3 quarters. I jumped off the couch yelling catch the #@*^# ball. Yes I surprised my son. Hey my yelling worked Flick caught the ball and held on to it.

Yes there were some exciting plays during the game.

It took 18 years for the Grey Cup to return to Saskatchewan. In 1989 the last time Saskatchewan won the Grey Cup my middle daughter Brittany was 2 days old in the nursery at the Holy Family Hospital. They had all the babies wrapped in green that day. My room was the only one with the game playing on the TV, nurses kept popping in to find out the score and keep up on the game. Kent Austin was playing with the Saskatchewan Roughriders then, now he is back as head coach. First time as a head coach and he takes his team all the way to 1st Place in the West Division after finishing 2nd during the regular season and then bringing the coveted Grey Cup home to Saskatchewan.

Congratulations Saskatchewan Roughriders.....You did it!

Monday, 19 November 2007

We're Going to the Grey Cup!

Rider Nation is celebrating. Yesterday Saskatchewan Rough Riders took 1st Place in the West Division against the BC Lions.

We're going to the Grey Cup Baby!

A long standing rivalry just took on a new twist, with Winnipeg Blue Bombers taking 1st place in the East against the Toronto Argonauts.

Sunday November 25, 2007 the Saskatchewan Rough Riders will face off against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the game of the season......the GREY CUP! I look forward to cold beer, hot wings and a great football game on Sunday.

The unfortunate part in the Winnipeg / Toronto game was when Glenn broke his arm.

This is first time that both prairie teams will face each other in the Grey Cup! This is a game for the books, either way it will be a great game to watch.

My prediction is the Rough Riders with a 10 point spread!


Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Hunting Season

Hunting Season is upon us. As my family can attest to I can get a bigger trophy buck than either my husband or my son and I don't have to spend hours out in the cold tracking and luring those fine creatures in. Nope I just have to drive down the road and the jump out and no top of my car, BAM....done bagged me a buck. At least that is how it happened in 2005. Not exactly the way I would like to see a buck up close and personal like. A set of antlers coming straight at me, everything in slow motion what seemed like minutes was only a couple of seconds. Yes I have bagged my share of deer with vehicles both in and out of hunting season.

So my son Michael bought his tag, stocked up on shells, dug out his hunting suit and made his lunch for the day is off to see what is out there. This morning he was up before 5:30 am, earliest I have seen him out of bed in a long time, probably hunting season last year. Michael is venturing out today with my cousin Bryon on their quest for a big buck. Something about being able to come home with big buck that makes a man feel like a MAN; Big buck, nice rack....that is antlers for all you that might be thinking otherwise...get your minds back on

Wonder if they would be singing Elmer Fudd's tune.... A hunting we will go, A hunting we will go.....probably not, at least not out loud.

Happy Hunting Boys~

Monday, 5 November 2007

Graduation is around the corner

Time flies by so fast these days. In just 7 months from now my daughter Brittany will be graduating. Before I know it will be here.

Saturday my husband and I went with Brittany to look at Grad dresses. I thought my husband was going to fall when he seen the prices of some of these dresses. When I graduated in 1984 the prices were high but not as high as they are now but they haven't increased as much as they could have in 24 years.

Brittany has her eye on a couple of dresses that she really likes. She has been to the other shops in town and hasn't found anything that has struck her like these two have. I told her she should stop looking and we'll go back in a couple of weeks and see if she still feels the same about either of these ones she likes. By then they will have more new styles in as well.

I can hardly believe that Brittany will be graduating....seems like only a couple of years ago I was sending her off to Kindergarten.

Friday, 26 October 2007

Mean Girls

If any have watched the movie "Mean Girls" it portrays how mean these creature can be. I think back to my days as a teenager and ya we could be mean, but not any where near the level that the teenage girls of today take it.

I am seeing this first hand with my daughter who is afraid to go to school, to be home alone or even be shopping by herself all because of one girl. The irony of it all is that they were friends. My daughter found out that she was talking about her behind her back, confronted the girl who of course denied it. This was confirmed to my daughter once again by a very reliable source so my daughter told the girl she didn't want to be her friend. Now the scorned girls as she sees it has been threatening to send people out to our place, or attack my daughter at school. This MEAN GIRL has recruited about 6 other girls that have told my daughter that she messed with the wrong bitch and is going to pay for it.

I have spoken with the RCMP on this matter, my daughter is to meet with them today. The RCMP have told us a couple of routes to take and in the end if this girl breaks them in any way even by having someone do the dirty work for her there will be charges laid to those that do the dirty work and her for getting them to do it. It has even got to the point that my daughter is thinking of moving away so that she can go to school, get her grade 12 and Graduate.

This girl was phoning our house and my daughters cell very 10 - 15 minutes from her home, her place of work and her boyfriends place. If she calls again from her place of work I am going to call her boss and have a chat. I was trying to avoid that to protect my daughter as I didn't want to give this girl another reason to go after her, I am at the point that I will call and hope she gets fired on the spot.

I did find out about call trace *57 this puts a trace on the call after you do this to the same number 5 times it is disconnected by SaskTel. The girl has started calling from blocked id, my daughter is afraid to answer her phone if she doesn't know the number. Today I am having her cell phone number changed.

I don't remember ever being this mean as a teenager.

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Home Decorating with Corinne & Lesa

We all have seen those home decorating shows such as "Trading Spaces" and "Whose Designs Is It". Well the other day at lunch I went to the mall with a friend, Lesa. The plan was to get away from the office environment and look around the mall.

Our first stop was Zellers which ended up being the only stop. We started out in the house wares sections. Lesa picked up a couple of items she needed, before long we realized we needed a cart. Did you know that Zellers has joined the ranks and is now charging $1 for their carts. I guess to many have disappeared over time. So anyways Lesa says I need a shower curtain lets go check them out....we spent the rest of our time in the bath section. By the time we left Zellers, Lesa had nearly everything she needed to re-decorate her bathroom.

With a second trip the next day back to Zellers Lesa was able to get everything else needed except for a soap dish. Yes the bathroom is now the nicest room in her house, so she says. I remember when my bathroom was the nicest, newest room in my house. You know you've made a difference when your teenage boys notice that the bathroom looks nicer than before.

Home Decorating with Corinne & Lesa, an new series for television, probably not but a lot of fun for two girls needing to get away from the office scene.

Friday, 12 October 2007


Snow......that fluffy white stuff that we all like to see around Christmas showed up yesterday afternoon. Here it is not quit mid October and we are seeing signs of winter.....Yes I know this is Saskatchewan and I should know to expect anything when it comes to the weather.

I remember back in 1997 or 1998 when it snowed something like 3 feet of snow at Thanksgiving. The snow was up the railing on my deck. Our power went out for 72+ was getting pretty cold in the house. My youngest daughter decided to go outside to make snow angels, she didn't even have to lay down to make them. She walked out on the deck, leaned back and made a row of perfect snow angels. Her sister and brother helped pull her up so not to wreck the angels. Our 1977 GM truck looked more like a semi than a half ton after all that snow. My husband's god daughter had spent a night with us before the power went out, she couldn't understand that the power being out meant that the lights wouldn't work....she say I know the power is out but could you turn on the lights its dark in here. We finally had to tell her the lights were broken for her to understand. That snow lasted until spring, made for a long winter.

Snow.......according to the forecast it should be gone by tomorrow. It is hard enough to adjust to it being dark before 7pm, I'm not ready for the fluffy white stuff just yet.

Wednesday, 10 October 2007

Life's Goals

Yesterday as I sat in the waiting room of the doctors office with a migraine I was reading a magazine that had stories about the lives of people affected by 9/11. One article was wrote by the mother whose daughter was working on the 104th Floor of the North Tower that day. She tells of how her and her husband watched on TV as the North Tower collapsed, knowing that their daughter was gone. A feeling that I can't even imagine, nor want to ever imagine.

4 years after the mother fears that she is loosing her daughter all over again...this time she fears that her daughters memory is fading until the day computer wouldn't start up and she used her daughters laptop. Unsure of hot to turned on the laptop as she looked at the keyboard it was like her daughter was standing there with her guiding her in how to turn on the laptop. She explored all aspects of the daughter laptop, the pictures, games and more until again she felt like her daughters memory was slipping away from her until she decided to open a folder titled "Top 100". Thinking this was a music file and running out of things to explore of her daughters life she clicked on it opening it, only to find her daughter in there, not music or photos or games but her life, arranged into a number list of goals. On her list were things like: "Be a good friend", Keep in touch with people I love and that love me"....the list of numbers rose to 37 before it stopped.

The mother realized that her daughter was home with them and with God. Her daughter would be with her in the way she lived her life from now on. A small list was able to help a mother deal with her grief.

After reading this story it got me to think about my life and the goals that I have accomplished and those that I would like to accomplish, my dreams of unseen places and things I have left undone. I have decided to make my own list and not just keep it on my computer but in my bible, close to my heart and to God.

Sunday, 7 October 2007


As the smell of honey glazed ham, cabbage rolls, pumpkin pin and turkey fill my house we await with baited breath for supper. This is one of the few occasions where my family has the opportunity to gather together for a meal. Someone always seems to be off to here or there. My dad will join us for supper as always, I wouldn't have it any other way. I am truly thankful that we have this opportunity to gather together not just for the meal but for the love & friendship that family brings to each other.

Today it seams more than other days we reflect on what we are truly thankful for, our health, family, love, car to drive to school, a new job and many more things. If I was asked to list what I was thankful for I would need a while to list the things but the top things that I can list that I am not just thankful for but grateful for are that the Lord Jesus Christ is my Savior, the love of my family & friends for I am blessed with a wonderful family and many friends, my health for with out it I wouldn't be able to enjoy the many things I do, for my job for with out it me and my family wouldn't have the luxuries that we do, for my dogs, Timon and Rocco they have helped me to better understand "Unconditional Love". These are just a few of things that I am thankful for.

For me today is also a time to remember my loved ones that have passed on, to be thankful that they were a part of my life and for the many things that they contributed to my life, helping me become who I am today. As I cook my turkey I think of my grandma Gardner....I cook my turkey they way she taught me, my stuffing recipe is the one that she used so many times with a couple of additions. My pastry recipe is the same that my grandma used to make her pies. A lot of my secrets to cooking Thanksgiving Dinner or Christmas Dinner come from my grandmother....the many things she taught me over the years.

From my home to yours have a wonderful Thanksgiving.


Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Things......Humour in a Box

The other night we had friends over to watch the football game and supper.

After supper and the dishes were done we sat down to a game of "Things Humour in a Box". The game is played in rounds with the number of players being the number of rounds. Each person takes a turn to be the one to read the questions and start the answering. This is a game that you can play over and over and never have the same answer.

Questions like:
• THINGS...™ people do when no one is looking.• THINGS...™ your parents forgot to tell you.
• THINGS...™ you can never find.• THINGS...™ dogs are actually saying when they bark.
• THINGS...™ you shouldn't tie to the roof of your car.

The object of the game it to guess who wrote each answer down. For each correct guess you get a point and also knock that person out of the running to gain points in the round. The person who wins the round gets 3 bonus points as well.

That night 6 of us played two rounds.....we had a blast. It is amazing how much my husband and I think alike. A couple of times we answered with the exact same answer. Everyone enjoyed themselves.

One one of my turns to be leader as I was reading the answers to the questions aloud I was laughing so hard I was crying....well try reading the answers with out laughing is nearly impossible at times especially when the question leaves it wide open to anything for an answer.

Now I am looking where I buy this game. Our friends got theirs as a Christmas gift one year, she found one game last year at a game kiosk in the Mall in Saskatoon last year. I did find a Canadian Website where I can order the game so I don't find one in PA or Saskatoon this year I will order one from the web.

Things.....Humour in a Box, if you get the chance to play the game I am sure you will find it enjoyable and humorous.

Tuesday, 2 October 2007


I never thought I would see the day that my children would be afraid to go to school.....and it wasn't because of a test or unfinished homework....but for their physical safety. Friday September 28, 2007 many students of Carlton Comprehensive High School stayed home out of fear for their lives......Carlton has a student body of about 2000 kids....from what we have heard there was only about 300 students in school that day. My youngest daughter received a phone call from a friend telling her that she wasn't going to school because another girl was told by her volleyball coach that it wouldn't be a good idea to go to school on Friday.

What caused this mass fear in students, parents and everyone. The weekend prior an 18 year old student from Carlton was killed by 5 youth 14 - 16 years old......there was talk about gang turf wars, gang initiation, that after a court appearance of two of the youth charged there was going to blood shed.......the clincher was that there was going to be a retaliation for the death of the youth...with threats of a school shooting not just at Carlton but at each high school. With rumors like this going around it is hard to act as if nothing is wrong....I think we need to hear that they know for certain these are rumors and nothing will happen....but they couldn't tell us that nothing would happen only speculate that it would be alright.

I called the school on Friday morning to talk with a principle about this issue. Apparently I wasn't the only parent with concerns, I told them that I was keeping my kids out of school for the day and that yes these are probably just rumors but what if it is true and something happens. I heard from someone who seen it themselves around 9am they went to pick up their son from school to find police posted at each entrance to the school, from what we heard they were there for the start of school, lunch time and after school. The fear was unbelievable, kids were being called, receiving emails and text messages from their friends saying don't go to school.....its not safe...there will bloodshed today......The police stated on the radio that these are rumors but they are taking them serious, doing extra patrols in the area, talking with staff and students to stay on top of the situation. It is hard to keep everything business as usual in cases like these.

I have been afraid of many things in my life but nothing like the fear I felt on Friday for the safety of my children and the others in the school. We always hear about school shootings and gang wars on the news and we always think it will never happen here but it can happen here. Thank God it didn't happen here on Friday. I am sure like many others I was in constant prayer that day for the safety of my kids, the staff & students at Carlton not just for Friday but for every day.

I am grateful that nothing happened and it seems it was only rumors. I am grateful that the Prince Albert Police force recognized that at the time they deemed them only as rumors but they still increased their patrol at the school and was watching out for the safety of everyone.

Now back to our normal life.....but it will never be normal....the way it used to be. I know my kids are watching more and like I told them if they feel there is danger get out of there without thinking twice.

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

West Nile Virus

Lately I don't know why but I am always feeling tired. I am getting 8 hours or more sleep a night but when that alarm goes off in the morning I have the hardest time dragging myself out of bed. I have noticed that I have been this way ever since I was sick in August. I was home from work for a week with what ever it was I had and the next week after was still not quite right. I have tried to recall the last time I was that sick and for the life of me I can think of only one that was close but not like I had this time.

Up to 20 per cent of those who become infected will display mild symptoms including fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting, and sometimes swollen lymph glands or a skin rash on the chest, stomach and back. Symptoms can last a few days to several weeks. These are some of the symptoms that I experience when I was so sick.

About one in 150 people infected with West Nile Virus will develop serious illness, with high fever, headache, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and/or paralysis. These symptoms may last several weeks, and neurological effects may be permanent.

The incubation period for West Nile Virus is three to 14 days and there is no specific treatment. People with mild symptoms such as fever and aches tend to get better on their own. Those who contract the severe form of the illness will be hospitalized.

So after reading this about WNV I called my doctor and made an appointment to be tested for WNV.

Saskatchewan has the highest rate of WNV in Canada for 2007. Last I heard on the news there was over 1000 cases of West Nile in Saskatchewan with about 1800 cases in all of Canada and 4 deaths related to WNV. When ever you see these commercials on TV about WNV they always say if you experience any of the symptoms for WNV to contact your physician, it would be easier to know if you are experiencing these symptoms if they would list them so one would know what they are.

Had I known what the symptoms were for West Nile Virus when I was so sick, I would have had my daughter take me into the doctors then and had the tests done instead of now.

Monday, 17 September 2007

Sunday Drive

Yesterday afternoon my husband and I decided to go for a drive. So we headed down towards his hometown of Yellow Creek. It was a beautiful day temperature was 24 C which we haven't had in a while. We checked out our Canola crop, our renter took a test by the looks of it combined about 100 feet or so. Crop is looking good. We figured we'd stop by to visit Todd & Michele but no such luck as they were away. I was hoping to see the new baby....a boy!

So we said we're going to stop and see our friend Darryl. Darryl and my husband were good friends through school and after and now Darryl is battling Cancer. We hadn't seen Darryl in just over a year and we keep saying we have to get down to visit him and Della one of these days. The days come and they go and we just stayed at home. So yesterday was the perfect day to go for a drive and visiting.

Like most people we are great procrastinators, it is so easy to say we have to go visit these people or these people one of these days and it never happens until either a wedding or funeral and we always say we should try to get together just because.

I am glad that we met with our friends yesterday afternoon. Hopefully we will be able to get another visit in with them and others at the fall supper in October.

Saturday, 15 September 2007

Back Skating.....

This morning my youngest daughter was quite excited as it was the first day of our regular Figure Skating Season. She has decided to skate 5 days a week this year. Meagan missed attending summer school this year but is alright with that in the end. Sometimes things just don't work out the way we plan. One thing that I can say for certain is that I am very aware of what my daughters addiction is...that's right addiction......and it is skating. Many people say oh that is so expensive and I just say no its peace of mind, I know that this addiction doesn't require rehabilitation or a criminal record like other addictions do. Meagan is at her happiest when she is lacing up her skates. She puts up with the blisters and sore feet for the first few days as she says that's nothing as long as I can skate.

Meagan has had the opportunity to meet and work with a couple of Canadian Champions. In 2005 she met Jennifer Robinson and in 2006 she met Jeff Buttle and his coach Lee Barkell. Our skating club brought these skaters into to do a seminar with the kids. Last year when Jeff Buttle was here there was time that both Jeff & Lee worked with the skaters one-on-one. Meagan had been struggling with her Double Salchow, Jeff worked with her and before she new it she fine tuned it and was well on her way to landing it successfully.

With her skating comes preparing for competitions, choosing music, remembering your programs and allot of discipline to train hard so you are prepared for those couple minutes on the ice in front of the judges.

Meagan is her own worst critic when it comes to her skating. I have learned from experience to not say anything when she comes off the ice until she says how she felt about her skate. Made the mistake one time telling her how well I thought she did and to her it was the worst skate of her life and I should have known that because I am there for all her practices and know what she is capable of.

Meagan has made many good friends since she has been skating. She has awesome coaches and enjoys her time on the ice. Sometimes they have to remind her to breath before she steps on the ice at a competition. That's right BREATH......Meagan forgot to breath part way through her program a couple of years ago at competition. She got so into what she was doing, she new what she had to put into her program but forgot the choreography of her program, she was concentrating so hard to put everything in the right place that breathing just wasn't on her mind at the time. She ended the program with probably the best spin I have ever seen her do. She place 3rd and brought home a Bronze Medal that day.

Meagan has been blessed ever since she started going to competitions by placing in the top 3 many times. She has a collection of Gold, Silver & Bronze medals from various competitions over the years.

Meagan has truly accomplished many challenges with her skating. I know this year I will busy sewing a new dress(es) for program(s).

Meagan has set a new set of goals for this year and I am sure she will work hard to accomplish as many of them as possible.

Planning for the future

At 17 years old it is difficult to try and determine what you want to do with the rest of your life. When you are nearing the end of your high school years it becomes more important to try and fit the classes in that won't limit your post secondary education classes.

The one thing Brittany my oldest daughter has a desire for is to model and the dream to one day live in New York City NY. Together we watch America's Next Top Model and Canada's Next Top Model. So one night Brittany started looking into Modeling schools in Saskatchewan. Well she found one agency located in Regina that will be having a one day modeling session. Sort of an introduction to the world of modeling. We have sent an email to register her, now we are just waiting for confirmation that she will have a spot in the class. Regina isnt' that far to drive and it will be a good way for her to find out more about something that she is so interested in.

This morning Brittany told me of something she would like to do after she graduates from high school. Something that I would never have expected. She is thinking she would like to travel abroad and teach English as a second language. She knows a girl through her best friend that is doing this. I found a class through the U of S that offers a one month course for just this thing. She is going to look into this with her school and with this girl she knows.

Like Brittany says I can't just hope to be a model, I have to have a back up plan as well. Teaching English as a second language will be a great way to experience another culture. I am glad that she is setting some goals for her future and starting to plan out a start to her future.

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Life is Too Short

Human nature can be classified as strange at times & at other times it is what it is.....Human Nature~

On the evening Tuesday September 12th my sister-in-law called me around 9:30 pm, my first reaction was I wonder who died. Now you probably wonder why I would think that right away...well first off it was later that night and it was a week day and usually Marie calls when Allan is at home so they can catch up on things. As it turned out their Uncle Clair passed away in the early hours of that morning. In many ways it was a blessing that he passed from a heart attach as he suffered from ALS. Uncle Clair had suffered with it for 4 years, but he still worked up until his last day. We are all grateful that he won't have to suffer with ALS as it is a cruel disease and from my understanding of what I read can be very painful. There is no cure for it either.

So Friday Al and I head to Humboldt for the funeral. You have to know Uncle Clair was one of my husband's favorite uncles and mine too. Even though we didn't see him and Aunt Ann often other than a wedding or a funeral we thought a lot of him and feel bless to have had him in our lives.

Like most funerals family come from all over. We drop what we are doing to be there to pay our respects to the deceased and support the grieving family. So why is it we are always too busy to just drop what we are doing and go for a doesn't have to be for long, it can be for a couple of hours or a day but we should just do it before we are there to pay our respects. It doesn't even have to be a physical visit......just pick up the phone and call. I know from my own experiences with my family we are going and going and going, by the time we have a few minutes to pick up the phone to call it far to late so we put it off for another day. Well another day comes and it goes and still we haven't made that phone call or stopped in for a visit.

Life is too short to keep putting off till tomorrow what we can do today..... Before we know it we will be heading off to another funeral somewhere for a friend or a family member and saying the same things, "Why is it we can always meet up for a funeral or a wedding, but never seem to have the time to just get together for the visit with each other."

We enjoyed visiting with my husband's family that night. We feel very blessed to have the wonderful families and the good friends that we have. We enjoy our times spent with family and friends, we just need to try and spend more time with them when we can hopefully the next time we spend time family or friends it will be just because.

Human nature being the way it is we say we are going to try and change things but we seem to just get back on that fast track we call our lives and go full speed ahead.

Thursday, 6 September 2007

Enough is Enough Already

Enough is Enough already......okay I do believe that we have had more than our share of rain this last while...the month of August was nothing like summer usually is and September doesn't seem to be getting off to a great start. It is like we are teased with a day here and there of sun shine and warm weather.

Last night like a fool I worked a midnight Bingo....didn't get home until 2 am...alarm goes off at 6:30 am so the 4 hours of sleep that I was going to be getting was precious....well be darned if I just don't settle in nicely for some much needed rest when the pitter patter or should I say splitter splatter of rain wakes me from my much needed slumber. Normally I like the sound of the rain but not when I am only getting half the sleep I need. It took a minute for me to realize that it was the sound of the rain that awoke me at 3 am, wasn't sure what it was at first someone drilling holes in the walls of my house or what.

When I looked outside this am I was greeted by rain and lots of water lying on the road. It took me just over 15 minutes to drive the 4.5 miles to the highway that normally only takes a few minutes. Not wanting to end up in the ditch I am driving slowly and carefully when all of a sudden the school bus is behind me and right on my rear end especially where the road is quite soft and in places where the road is decent the driver pulls back to a comfortable distance. Nearly called in to the school unit this morning but decided to leave well enough alone for now...still might call.

Well I hope that couple of nice days we had over the long weekend wasn't fall......I am hearing rumors of the Great White Combine may be coming next week.....I hope that we don't get the dreaded snow next week, even if it doesn't stay I don't want to see any of the fluffy white stuff until just before Christmas.....I am still waiting for what my grandparents used to call Indian Summer to arrive.....

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

Rider Pride

Saskatchewan Roughriders are having an awesome GM, new Head Coach, some new players and the best fans in the country. The Saskatchewan Roughriders played their first season in 1910 and they are on top of their game and currently in 1st place in the West. In the 97 years that the Roughriders have been around they won the Grey Cup 2 times first in 1966 and the last time in 1989 and were the Western Division Champions in 1951, 1966, 1967, 1969, 1972, 1976, 1989 & 1997.

Many say that the Labor Day Classic game between Saskatchewan Roughriders and Winnipeg Blue Bombers was
preview of what we will see at this years Grey Cup. The game was awesome, wish we could have been there to watch it. Winnipeg 1st in the East was a good match for Saskatchewan, our guys had to work for the win and they did. The Roughriders were sold out for the 4th time this year and their game against the BC Lions on September 22 is also sold out. Former Rider George Reed was in attendance for the Labor Day Game.

Looks like we may even have a home play off game......Tickets to a Roughrider game are a hot commodity. Games are being sold out. The heart of Saskatchewan Fans is huge. Nice thing when the games are sold out, those of us that can't be there to watch the game in person can watch it from the comfort of their living room where the beer is cold, the excitement is building and the food always on.

On game days my husband and I are glued to the tv set. I am sure they can here us cheering all the way down in Regina on Taylor Field at Mosaic Stadium. Our son is also watching the game from his home in Lampman and cheering just as loud. Even our two daughters get into the football game.....they would have liked to be in Regina for the Labor Day Classic as well.....maybe next year....we'll have to buy our tickets earlier this year so we don't miss out like we did this year.

The Banjo Bowl to be played in Winnipeg on September 9th should prove to be a good game. The Blue Bombers will be looking for revenge after being so close to a win last Sunday. My husband and I will be watching and cheering for the Riders on the 9th. The beer will be cold, the wings will be hot and the excitement will be high. Go Riders Go....Go Riders Go

The Saskatchewan Roughriders keep racking up victories and each week the wins continue to get more miraculous.


Thursday, 30 August 2007

Back in the Land of the Living

It has been a while since I wrote.....

Our holidays were busy but nice....the trip to Lloydminster, to Nemeiben Lake for some fishing, Tisdale for a wedding which was very a mini family re-union. I guess any time when family members get together that don't see each other very often is a re-union, we ended our holidays with my Aunt Esther & cousin Kerry Hedegus from Kamloops stopping at our place for a visit on their way back home. We enjoyed our visit in Tisdale at the wedding and then back at our place. The same day they left for home about 2 hours later I took sick.....sicker than I can remember being.

Usually it takes a couple of days resting in bed then another day to get back to normal......ya right....not this time. I was in bed from the Friday until Wednesday the next week and still not great Thursday or Friday. I was off work another week, not the reason I would like to be off work but what can I do. One of the girls called my office phone, when she heard me on my voice mail she thought maybe I was calling from the grave (giggles). I sounded as bad as I felt and that wasn't very good. Even coming back to work on Monday I wasn't just right, you know a little bit off (and not off my rocker either) (giggles).

Coming back to work on Monday was also a sad day, as it was the funeral of a co-worker that last her battle to cancer. It gives me comfort to know that she is with the Lord and not suffering any more, her pain is gone. Actually when I first met Sharon I worked for Forest Service Branch and she was my Employee Administrator with Human Resources and now I am working as an Employee Administrator with Human Resources.

Saturday, 18 August 2007

Day trip to Waskesiu - PANP

Yesterday Al and I took my Aunt Esther and Cousin Kerry up to Waskesiu to the Prince Albert National Park. Al and I hadn't been there together since before we were married, about 20 years ago. Aunt Esther and Kerry hadn't been there for close to 33 years ago. We did find the cabin they stayed in at Bakers Cabins. These cabins are named after the provinces of Canada and the United States. They stayed in British Columbia at that time they were living in Saskatoon and shortly after they moved to British Columbia.

As we approached the beach I spotted a squire just sitting on a stump. I was lucky enough to get close enough to capture this photo without zooming into him. Photo to be posted later when I get my camera back from my daughter.

From the cabin we walked down to the lake shore. I couldn't very well come all the way to Waskesiu and not walk in the lake. It was colder than I expected for this time of year but was nice to just walk down the beach a ways.

The squirrel wasn't the only wildlife we seen. As were driving we noticed a deer just off the road grazing. We stopped and were able to get up to take some video and still photos of her. Suddenly a rustle of leaves caught our attention when her fawn walked out of the trees to his mother. The fawn still had his spots. It was truly beautiful to watch the two of them interact so close to us. Opportunities to witness mother nature up close and personal like this don't come along very often.

On our way home we stopped by to visit my dad. We had a couple of drink there then took some more photos and then we were off for home. As we were coming down our driveway we seen 5 more deer grazing in the hay field. Again we were able to get some good photos and video of the buck that stayed around to check us out as well.

My cousin made drinks for all of us as we sat around visiting until the wee hours of the morning. I really enjoyed my visit with my Aunt and my cousin. We were able to get a good visit in at Brooke's wedding and again at our place. We are already planning our holiday for next summer to visit them in Kamloops.

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

Family Gathering

I spent the weekend of August 11 in Tisdale with my mom's side of the family. We all gathered to share in the celebration as Brooke & Candis were married. Brooke is my cousin Dwayne's son.

My Aunt Ethel and my cousin Ronnie were out from North Vancouver BC. My Aunt Esther and my cousin Kerry were out from Kamloops BC. We all met up on Friday night at the Tisdale Hotel. There was Al and I, my cousins Marilyn, Marlene, Kerry & Ronnie and my Aunt Ethel & Esther. It was wonderful to catch up with everyone again. I hadn't seen my cousin Kerry since my wedding 19 years ago and my cousin Ronnie I met only once before and that was about 30 years ago. The last time I seen my Aunt Ethel was 17 years ago at my Uncle Ralph's funeral and my Aunt Esther I see last summer when she was out to Tisdale to visit. For my husband and children this was their first time to meet meet my Aunt Ethel and cousins Ronnie & Kerry.

This past weekend was very much like a Family Reunion. The morning of the wedding wasn't looking too promising for an outdoor wedding. It was cloudy, cool and bit of rain in the morning, by the afternoon the sky cleared up and sun was shining, it turned out to be a wonderful day for the wedding. After the service my aunts introduced me to many of my mom's cousins and childhood friends. Many of them I met years ago, some I remembered and some I didn't. They all told me how much I look like my mom. Even my kids & my husband were telling me that I look like my Aunt Ethel in many ways and in other ways I look like my Aunt Esther, which I guess says they look like my mom.

Sunday we met the aunts and cousins at their hotel. Aunt Ethel and Ronnie went to visit relatives of Uncle Jim's, my aunts husband. Aunt Esther, Kerry and us went out to the South Star Church & Cemetery. This is where my Grandma & Grandpa Sharpen, Uncle Ralph and other relatives are buried. We spent nearly 2 hours at the Church, walking through the cemetery finding relatives graves and talking about family.

We ended our trip to Tisdale at my cousin Marilyn's house for a family BBQ.

We gathered to share in the joy and to celebrate Brooke & Candis. It also turned into a small Family Reunion. It was wonderful for us all to be together on such a happy occasion. Family they are also constant in ones life, and I feel blessed to have such a wonderful family to spend time with.

Tuesday, 7 August 2007

Crooked Trees

Al and I stopped to see the Crooked Trees near Hafford Sk. As you walk through the trees you'll see how they twist, turn and embrace each other from the ground up. They are truly a mystery.

This bluff of aspen is only about 50 sq feet not more than 20 feet away there are perfectly normal aspen growing. These trees cast a mystical, eerie & marvelous sight for all that visit this spot.

In someways I felt very close God as I walked through the trees. I can't explain it but the feeling was very serene. This is the second time that I had seen the Crooked Trees

These trees are truly a mystery. There are myths as to how they came to be from an alien space ship flying over head, to the aliens stopping for a pee break, lightening, the soil being contaminated.

There are reports of people getting dizzy and light headed as they walk through the trees, they say that only the brave will enter the trees in the light of the full moon. Local cattle stay out of the trees with out a fence around.

There is a mystery and beauty in these silent sentinels, that guard the secrets of their origin that is held deep with in their roots and the soil they live in.

They are worth the drive to go see. As you pass Hafford there is a sign on the hwy Crooked Bush follow the signs and you will find this marvelous mystery of Nature.

Laws of Attraction

It is amazing how somethings just happen in our lives when we least expect it too. I spent the weekend in Lloydminster with my husband since he had to work yet another weekend. I drove up to Lloydminster on Thursday after work and thinking how neat it would be if I ran into my old friend Robin Dobie. Robin was one of my best friends for many years. Just after I was out of high school he moved up to Lloydminster to work at the paper up there. Robin and I lost touch a few years ago. So my plan was to look him up in the phone book, I have no idea if he still lives in Lloydminster or not but figured it was worth a shot.

On Friday morning after my husband came back from the job site we decided to head out to Vermillion and area. First we stopped for lunch at Arby's, while there Al asks me if I had heard from Ted & Kim lately, our friends from Flin Flon, Manitoba. Well the conversation goes on and I tell him about the last email I received from Kim and then we are on our way for the day.

We have a nice relaxing day driving around, we stopped at this museum called "Climb Thru Time" in Paradise Valley, Alberta. This museum is housed in an old Grain Elevator. Dioramas in the grain bins make this former grain elevator and annex a unique museum experience. Team room, gift shop and train station are on the site as well. Housed in the Paradise Valley grain elevator, the museum displays fascinating artifacts and art portraying the birth of agriculture in Western Canada.

The museum starts in the 1800's with the settlers that came to the area going up through the years to current day. While walking through this museum many of my childhood memories surfaced. Like my days in the 4-H club, a banner with the Motto along with record books reminded me of my 4-H days. The display showing raising chickens brought back a memory I had forgot about. As soon as I stepped into that display everything came back to me like it was only yesterday right down to collecting the eggs from the hen house, feeding the chicks and chickens, candling and weighing the eggs to determine their size from small to extra large. The climb thru time is definitely worth seeing. Once you are up to the top you can look out the little window and see over the area.

We end with supper back in Lloydminster and relaxing back in the hotel. Our plans for the next day are to drive up to St. Walburg and take in the sites up that way. I still haven't had chance to look up Robin in the phone book yet.

The next morning as we were heading out for a day of site seeing this woman and her daughter are walking across the parking lot to their room and her daughter about 4 years old is screaming, I think I remember those days and that mom is sure keeping her cool. As I am about to get into the car Al says to me isn't that Michelle, I look back and sure enough it is Michelle. I call her name to be sure and yes it is. Her she is booked into the room next to us with her parents Ted & Kim from Flin Flon.

We head over to the restaurant to surprise our friends. Here we both have to go to Lloydminster to visit with each other. We had a wonderful visit with them at breakfast and again that night when they returned to the hotel from the wedding they were in town for. The funny thing was that morning while I was doing my make up on the bed, I turned as someone walked by the window and I could have sworn it was Ted Korte. There are not that many men that are as skinny as Ted and sure enough when we met up with them in the restaurant it was Ted.

As Ted put said it, it must be the laws of attraction as to why out of the blue Al asked about Ted & Kim and why I didn't get up when Al left for the bridge that morning. It was meant to be that old friends would have some time together to catch up....The Laws of Attraction at work.

As it turned out I did look in the phone book and found no listing for Dobie, Robin or Dobie R. I should have used Canada 411 and I would have found a listing that might have been Robin. There is no address or city given but there is a phone number that would have been a start. Oh well next time. I will most likely try the number from home and see if it is Robin's or not.

Thursday, 2 August 2007


Its been a few days since I was able to write, after today it will be a few more days. I am off on holidays until August 21st.......

After work today I am going home to pick up my dog Rocco then it is off to Lloydminster to see my husband for the weekend then we are coming home and heading up to Nemeiben Lake with our friends for a few days.

Then next weekend we are off to Tisdale for my cousin's boys wedding. It will be so nice to visit with my aunts & cousins from BC that will be here as well, along with all the other relatives that are from the Tisdale area. I am sure a good time will be had by all.

So until my next post....Have a great summer. Don't forget to Slip on a shirt Slap on a hat & Slop on some sunscreen.


Saturday, 28 July 2007

Face Book

Facebook is fairly new on the internet. I remember reading about in the Saskatoon Star Phoenix back in either March or April. It was saying how FaceBook is becoming the hottest thing on the internet, for people to be able to share photos, send messages and connect with old friends. So after a couple of invites from friends to join, I did. Membership is free. I haven't figured out yet to tell if your friends are on line yet, but I am having fun sending fun things to my friends that I have connected with.

What kinds of fun things do I send......well that depends on what applications you have added to your FaceBook profile. I have sent my friends a drink, fish for their aquarium, draw on their graffiti wall, tickle them, poke them, send flowers to their garden, bit them and turn them into a vampire, zombie or werewolf. You can take a movie challenge and if your friends take the same test it will compare your movie reviews with each other. You can have your horoscope posted daily. You can post what Causes you support, Awareness Ribbons and more. The nice thing is these applications don't take up hard drive space on your computer, they are all on FaceBook's web space.

You can search for people by searching the Networks that are available, my your high school or post secondary school. You can invite anyone in your address book to join as well.

To check out FaceBook go to create an account and you are on your way.

See you there..........

Friday, 27 July 2007

Ride On! Girls Ride On!

Today it happened......Brittany and Meagan got their first car.....2007 Pontiac G5, Back - 2 Door. Nice looking car! It is nice that the pressure is off my car for all the travelling, between the girls and my going back and forth to work there were days my car was making 3 or 4 trips to town......

Now some may think we are crazy letting two teenage girls share a car....before you say anything.....they had to sign an iron clad contract before any deal was made on the car....which they have read through, agreed to the terms and signed. They are both at the age where they need to be mature and work together......we feel this is going to be a real test for them and an excellent experience.

The girls are so happy........hey who wouldn't be when they get a new car........ The best thing is they are also learning responsibilities as they are helping pay for the car as well.

For us this is a win win......the girls are happy and so are we.......

Ride On Girls Ride On.............

Wednesday, 25 July 2007

Stay Off the Roads.......

It's now youngest now has her drivers licence. Meagan has discovered the new found freedom of having a drivers licence. Not only is it a new found freedom for her but also for her dad and I.

The day before her road test I took Meagan to practice her parallel parking......last time she had done that was when she took Drivers Education. She had never parallel parked my car before.....she did awesome....I even had Meagan practice parallel parking on the drivers Central Avenue being the only One Way Street in PA they may have her do her parallel park on drivers side. She lucked out didn't have to do a drivers side parallel park

With both my girls driving I will never see my car........they are always finding a way to get the car....but mom this way you won't have to come to town and pick me up after work.....Please just for today Please......

So beware there is a new driver on the road......get off the roads while you can..... hehehehe

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

My Daughter the Farm Girl........

Yesterday evening my daughter Brittany got a taste of what it is like to be a farm girl. While were over at my cousin Brenda's house she was able to experience a bit of the farm life.

For the first time Brittany petted a calf...."Kicker Dicker"....he walked up to Brittany, let her pet him and that was it, it was love at first sight.....Kicker Dicker followed her all the way to the house and even into the garage, wanting more affection. After supper, Brenda made up Kicker Dicker's bottle and Brittany bottle fed him his supper. She really enjoyed it.....and I couldn't pass up the opportunity to catch the event on film.....

Then Brenda had Brittany dive right into the life of a farm girl by helping out with a couple of chores that come with raising livestock. She helped Brenda chase a cow into the shutte so they could vaccinate it for Foot Root.......Brenda gave the first shot then showed Brittany how to give the next one. Brittany got as far as getting the needle into the cow which she said they sure have a tough hide, when the cow flipped her head around. Brenda had Brittany back up so she didn't get hurt and finished giving the needle.

After they put the cow back to pasture they brought "Ben" the Lama out of the barn as he had tangled himself up with some chicken wire. Brittany and Brenda de-tangled Ben and Brittany led Ben back to his corral and gave him his freedom.
As you can see from the photos I posted, Brittany enjoyed her time helping Brenda with the farm animals. She especially enjoyed the opportunity to fee Kicker Dicker........ An experience that Brittany will cherish for a life time and would like to help out again sometime.

Sunday, 22 July 2007

When you least expect someone

Today was the first time in a while that I had the opportunity to sleep in.....okay my kids don't call it sleeping in but for me not getting up until 11am is sleeping in. After doing some house work I settled into to watch "Grumpier Old Men".

Wouldn't you know right after the burial scene when they spread Pop's ashes in the lake, I am crying....I hate these scenes always make me reflect on my loved ones and then I cry even harder....even when I know what is going to happen in the movie the water works still start every time. I hear a vehicle pull up, thinking the only person I am expecting is my dad and that sure doesn't sound like his car....I look out the door and there is my cousin Dwayne from Sylvania and who I thought was his son at first but turned out to a friend of Brooke's, Bo.

Dwayne and Bo stopped by for a visit on their way home from Brooke's stag know where men are men and they do what they can't get away with at home.......throw caution to the wind and forget about what time it is and just have a good time.....bonding and drinking and some fishing too. The group of them rented a house boat at LaRonge for 4 days ......the fishing wasn't that great but they had a good time and helped Brooke say good bye to his bachelor days...not that Brooke is old my any means but none the less a bachelor.

It was really nice to visit with Dwayne this afternoon and as always I enjoy the time we spend together.

Saturday, 21 July 2007

The Lazy Days of Summer

The Lazy Days of Summer is a saying that I remember my grandparents saying when I was little.....I think I finally understand what they meant when they would say was always on really hot days, days when it was too hot to do anything but sit in the shade and wait for it too cool off........

We have been having days like this over the past is funny we are never satisfied, in the dead of winter when it the mercury hits below -25 C we wish for warmer weather like summer time and in summer we want cooler weather......Living in northern Saskatchewan our hot days are out numbers greatly by the cold days it seams....or is that the hot days go by so fast.....not every day in winter is so cold that nothing wants to start just like in summer not every day is that hot but when it is we sure feel it........ Here it is half way through July already, before we know it we are going to be wondering where summer went and preparing for winter.

I understand why people in the hotter countries had Siesta time every is just to darn hot to do anything else.......

I take holidays in a couple of weeks and I am looking forward to spending time at the lake with my husband. We are planning on spending time with our friends at their cabin at Nemembien Lake.....we are going to help them side their cabin.....Siding in the early morning when it is cool......relaxing in the lake for the afternoon....some more siding and then some fishing..... Sounds like a nice way to spend some time.....and help out our friends.

Yes the "Lazy days of Summer" are here, but only for a short while....Hope you enjoy them while we have them.

Thursday, 19 July 2007

Watercolor Painting.........

I have decided to take the step to learn how to paint with watercolors. The last time I remember painting in watercolors was when I was a little girl of about 7 or 8 years old. I have been fascinated with watercolor paintings for sometime. I figure a person is never too old to learn something new and if I don't start now who knows when I will start......

I am reading a book "Easy Watercolor" that I received about 4 years ago that I flipped through the pages of then and put it back on my bookshelf. So I dusted off the covers and started reading. I am also reading on line anything I can to better familiarize myself with the world of watercolor painting. There is so much to learn........ I am hoping that I will be able to take class this fall or winter...

In every painting there is a story waiting to be told........the artist will have one story........and a viewer will have another story of their own that they have found in the painting. The powers held within a painting is amazing.

My first pieces that I am doing on my own are mainly going to be experimenting with techniques and methods for watercolor painting.

When I have a finished piece to show off I will post a picture of on my blog most likely after I take my first class......until then wish me luck with my painting......

Monday, 16 July 2007

Sunday Drive

My husband and I drove down to Yellow Creek, Sunday afternoon to check out the crops and just get away. There some crops that are late and some that are head but all in all they look pretty good. Ours crop of Canola is a bit late, just starting to bloom.....

While we were there we stopped by the Hazel Lake Cemetery. It was the perfect opportunity for me to get pictures of the headstones of Al's family for my genealogy files. We spent time walking around as there are many of Al's relatives buried at the Hazel Lake Cemetery. I was able to get photos of the headstones before the batteries in the camera died. The headstones of my mother and father in-law look really nice with the Potentilla growing behind the headstones.

After we stopped at the other cemetery where Al's maternal grandparents are buried. The last time we were at that cemetery was when we buried his Baba Twardy in 1998 I do believe, will have to check the date on that. I was able to get photos of both his Baba & Gedo's headstones as the batteries died for good this time.

We enjoyed our drive down time we hope to stop by the farm yard where Al grew up and see if we can find any interesting treasures.

Friday, 13 July 2007

Moving On Down To Southern Saskatchewan

As I think of my son moving to a new hometown....The Jefferson's theme song starts playing in my mind.....Movin' On Up To the East side......only difference is Movin' on down south.....

Letting go for me isn't that hard when it comes to my son moving to Lampman......he has moved out and back in and moved out and back again, so this time it isn't that hard to watch my son pack his belongings and prepare to start a new chapter in the book of Life. I think when something feels this right for your child to do it makes it easier on us "Moms" to let go.

My son and my dad returned from their excursion to Lampman SK yesterday afternoon. It did my heart good to hear my son tell me about how excited he is to move there. He told me it really feels like home down there and how much he likes it......he was glad to see that they have trees there as well. He couldn't say enough good things about his one night in Lampman. He said everyone is so friendly and everyone knows everyone. The population of Lampman is 650. The town was named for Archibald Lampman, poet.

I am confident that my son is doing the right thing by moving out on his own to a new place that he is excited about. He is talking about buying a house once he gets settled into a job. We have offered our services to help fix it once he purchase it. He has his eye on a couple of properties there.

He is already talking about wanting us to have Christmas down at his place in Lampman, we'll have to see what happens come Christmas.

My husband and I are both looking forward to our first visit to our son in his new hometown of Lampman.

Tuesday, 10 July 2007

Letting Go.....

There comes a time when parents have to let go of their children, we can't hold onto them forever. They need to be able to start their lives and learn from the mistakes they make as they start out on their own. To start making their own living and preparing for their future. For some parents this is harder than for others.

My son Michael is taking the step to venture out on his own, once again but this time is different. He is moving to Lampman SK, about 20 minutes north east of Estevan. I am very proud of Michael for taking this step in life......for some this will be one of the hardest steps they take, for others this step is the first of many more to come. The furthest Michael has lived away from home is Candle Lake about a 45 minute drive from our house. Now he is going to be a 5 - 6 hour drive away. His best friend lives in Lampman, they will be room mates until Michael gets himself settled into a job and can find a place of his own. This is a big comfort to me for Michael to have such a good friend there as well.

I am not sad that my oldest and only son is stepping out on his own into the world to start a new chapter in his life.....I am very happy for Michael and extremely proud of him. I will miss having him around close by where I can pop in to see him, take him for lunch or just spend time with him. Michael has always been there with a hug and "I Love You Mom". Now there will be more time between the hugs but the I Love You's will be there with each phone call and text message. Thank you SaskTel for long distance bundles, with free evenings and weekends it will be easy to talk to Michael just about any old time. Michael is moving to the most southern part of the province......almost into the USA....he will be about 30 miles from the border.

So for me letting go will be okay.......I still have my two girls at home to keep me going...... I will miss Michael and there will be days that I wish he was home but I know we are only a visit, phone call or text message away. So no empty nest just yet.

This is a good thing.....Michael moving out into the world on his own. I couldn't be happier or more proud of him than I am right now..........I know he will be alright and the he will make it on his own, after all he is my son.

Monday, 9 July 2007

Quality Time......With Those We Care About

Spending times with our friends and extended family sometimes seem difficult. We are too busy, not enough time in a day to do the things we'd like to. We all have excuses or reasons however you want to look at it. It comes down to we just have to make the time to spend the time with our friends & extended family. Make the time to spend with those you care'll be glad you did.

Yesterday my girls and I spent the afternoon with my cousin and her son at their place. We spent most of our time in the pool having a blast.......when you first get into the pool it was cool but once you got into the water was nice. Before I knew it water guns were being filled and water was squirting everywhere! The water was flying around like crazy......we were emptying those water guns faster than we could fill them......then Brenda and Meagan started with empty coffee cans. At the rate the two of them were throwing water back and forth it wouldn't have taken them long to lower the water level on the pool. I am sure the neighbors a mile away could hear our laughter.

Wesley had a blast squirting all of us........his aim is really good.....shot me in the forehead at close range. Brittany was our photographer as she wanted to catch some sun rays instead of water droplets. Although Wesley and Brenda couldn't leave Brittany out in the water fight, they made certain that she was squirted a few times just for the fun of it.

Shortly after getting out the pool Meagan and Brittany headed into town, as Meagan had to work and Brittany was going to the movies with a friend. Brenda and I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening together.

After supper Wesley and I bottle fed "Kicker Dicker" - a calf that has no mother. I haven't bottle fed a calf in probably 30 years..... "Alphi" was the last calf I had bottle fed......that little guy had a crooked nose and missing teeth, he was bottle fed from birth. He was a family pet in many ways.....we bottle fed him twice a day, when he seen me heading towards him with bottle in hand he would come grandma named him "Alphi" after all his first bottle was made with Alpha canned milk and water....that was all we had on hand until the next day when my uncle was able to purchase some supplement from the feed store. One day "Alphi" was loaded up into the truck and taken to town.....we (my cousins and I) all thought that "Alphi" was going to get his nose straightened. We were fine with Brenda and I were saying we never asked why "Alphi" didn't come home after he had his nose straightened.......we know now that "Alphi" did come home just not in the same form as when he left......

Saturday, 7 July 2007

Fun In The Sun

The cooler temperatures of the lake didn't stop my daughter from getting out on the tube and the water skis.

With a new tube that is more like a knee board with a tub around the front and sides.......they had a blast. There are fins on the back so you have some control over the steering of the tube. No matter how how my husband tried to whip them over the wake to dump the kids they stayed on for the ride. Meagan even tried to dump herself off the tube and found it very difficult.

This photo of Meagan on the tube is taken with a Canon DVD Mini Camcorder..... a nice clear photo for moving at close to top speed. Meagan looks so relaxed sitting in the tube motoring around the lake.

Meagan hadn't been on water skis for two years and first try she was up. She did really good until she tried dropping a ski......then it was wipe out time. The only picture I had of Meagan on skis was taken as we hit the wake of another boat just before she wiped out and the picture turned out really blurry.

We came home with sun burns and memories of a great time at the lake........along with some good photos and video footage.

Thursday, 5 July 2007

Deadliest Catch

With the Canada Day weekend behind us, I have found a few moments to write.

Saturday June 30, 2007 along with my husband Al, my daughter Meagan and dog Rocco we headed to Nemeiben Lake to spend the weekend with Jack & Brenda at their cabin. The weather was drizzly and dull. Upon arrival at the dock we are met by Jack & Brenda who tell us of the wind storm that came through that morning. The water was rough crossing to their cabin but we all arrived with gear in tow safe & sound.

3 Brave souls Jack, Al and myself decide to venture out onto the water for an afternoon of fishing......if that is what you could call was more like survival of the fittest and the lake wasn't taking me down. If you have ever watched the Deadliest Catch on the Discovery Channel you would gain a new appreciate for these men that brave the Bearing Sea in pursuit of King Crab after experiencing a rough day on Nemeiben Lake. What we experienced wasn't that dangerous but dangerous enough. The best part of our time spent on the rough waters of Nemeiben Lake was the fish that we caught....we threw a few back to the depths of the lake so they could grow some more before we venture back to try and catch them. After sitting for a while I thought I would stand and let my legs stretch out....that didn't last big wave a couple feet high and I decided that it was much safer to sit and fish than chance swimming with the fish. Even with the drift sock down we moved around about 1.5 miles per hour......

With the weather not cooperating we managed to catch 4 fish to feed 8 of us supper.....anyone that would of seen the three of out there would think we were crazy.........crazy for fish. We experienced our own version of the Deadliest Catch that afternoon.

Sunday, 24 June 2007

Block Party

I have heard about them many times, but never had the opportunity to attend a block party......I guess that is one disadvantage to living in the country. Anyways yesterday my husband was golfing in a tournament for SK Dept of Highways, which his team ended up winning the tournament by 11 under....Way to go guys..... After golfing we gave Jimmy a ride home, he lives up in the new development behind Carnival Bingo and the block he lives on was having a block party. They invited us to come down and sit around the fire.....

It was an awesome time.....everyone on the block gathers at the end of the cul-de-sac. Earlier they had a potluck BBQ, the kids were all doing things was very much like one big family getting together. It was a great time to meet new people and feel welcomed by everyone not just our friends.

A block party provides a great opportunity to meet new neighbors that have moved in or just to get better aquinted with your neighbors.

Saturday, 23 June 2007

Tips for Writing your Memoirs

  • Memoirs are written specifically for others to read: Memoirs usually cover a certain period of the author’s life. Memoirs are way of passing family stories, secrets down through the generations to come. A way to keep these treasured memories alive for forever
  • Title: You can give your memoires a title at any time during the process from the start or after you have finished.
  • Outline: If your memoir will cover several years, simplify the planning by breaking it down into one year chunks. Set the scene by noting the challenges and successes, transitions, and important people in your life, as well as the significant world events, during each time period.
  • Envision each event: Before you start writing a scene or event, picture it in your mind. “Watch” it a few times, and feel it – include the emotional and sensory factors to make the scene come to life.
  • Background Information: Include brief mention of pertinent background information, i.e., early life family events and difficulties – economic, emotional and physical, jarring changes, births and deaths, and other life-shaping situations.
  • Dialogue: Include dialogue, being true to the special voice of each person. If a policeman, nursery school teacher, and account each experienced “a close one,” they would describe “it” very differently. Be true to the person about whom you are writing, but avoid using stereotypes. Maybe that accountant spends dozens of hours a month as a Big Sister or visiting the severely disabled.
  • Hook: Start each scene or chapter with a hook – a hint at the primary battle, challenge, or unexpected outcome. But don’t leave your reader hanging. Include the basic who, what, where, when, and possibly how at the chapter beginning, shortly after your hook.
  • Endings: Don’t let your scene dribble away. Provide your reader with a specific, satisfying conclusion, then stop! Your snappy conclusion looses all of its punch if you keep blathering on.
  • Conclusions and transitions: Some effective closings include a question, an “Aha!” sentence, a door finally closing or opening, or a specific lesson learned. For an highly effective ending, tie the conclusion in with the introductory sentence at the beginning of the chapter or scene.
  • Repeating: Be judicious in repeating a word or phrase over and over and over and over. That kind of writing makes for boring pages. If you’re writing about a car, don’t use that word in every paragraph. Search for effective substitutes, such as the Camry, the family wagon, your wheels, or Betsy! Look for alternatives.

    Repetition in dialogue also dilutes the richness of a passage. There’s a line between reinforcing a verbal mannerism of one of the characters and belaboring the point. Grandma may have said “y’all” a lot. But the reader doesn’t want to read it in every sentence. Chances are she said “you children” or “you men” sometimes, too.
  • Flashbacks: Scenes sometimes move along more effectively if you use a brief flashback, rather than including a long description that interrupts the pace of the story.
Your memoirs doesn't have to be a collection of just your favorite memories. Ask other family members to participate. How you preserve these stories is up to you......I am preserving my memoirs in the from of a Family history scrapbook including photos, certificates, recipes, cards & letters as well as many other things.

Ever since the story "Roots" and "Centennial" were on TV back in the 70's I have wanted to tell my families story. These two mini series inspired me to try and do just that tell my family's stories.