Thursday, June 30, 2011

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful when events go well and everyone is happy:

After weeks of planning the 2nd Annual Thrift Shop Formal is done...almost all cleaned up and I am tired but happy. I'm in a post-event-mind-goo state but once I am thinking again I'll share all about the fun we had.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Before and After

"Who are YOU?"

"This was not an encouraging opening for a conversation. Alice replied, rather shyly, `I--I hardly know, sir, just at present-- at least I know who I WAS when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since then.'"

-Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
from the chapter titled Advice from a Caterpillar
I woke up looking like this:

Which really wasn't a surprise since that has been the look I have woke up with the past three months. However, that is not how I'll look when I go to bed tonight. I have been considering a new cut or dying it for the summer. It started as a silly wondering. I wonder what I'd look like with a pixie cut or crazy long hair. It was an idea I would normally ignore.

But the idea grew, for the past two months, I teeter-tottered between 75% to 94% certain a big hair change would happen before summer. But I still didn't put the ideas into motion. Last month Best Friend was even willing to take me during my visit....and I chickened out (I was about 64% sure of the idea at the time). I liked my hair and the color. That doesn't happen often. I didn't want to make a drastic style choice that I would regret. I hear my dad saying "you know the difference between a good and bad hair cut? -two weeks."

Tomorrow is my youth group's 2nd Annual Thrift Shop Formal Banquet. The concept is everyone buys their formal (and/or ugly outfit) from a second-hand store. This might be my favouritest event EVER! The theme this year is Alice in Wonderland. I am beyond excited. I love the outfit I've put together. The dress is awesome; pictures will be share later. I paid $10 for it and found the original $250 price tag still inside! I've also crafted a neat headpiece.The preparations for the banquet gave me reason to "journey down the rabbit hole" and try a new look. The uncertainty left this morning. I called and made an appointment after work and...


And the before and after pictures side by side

Tomorrow it is off to Wonderland!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Not Good-bye

Best Word, my writing group, met last night. The fourth Monday of the month is a sharing/submission night. It's show and tell for writers. There is also a month theme or prompt. Writing that its the criteria have a chance to win the "Best Word Book". June's theme was farewell or good-bye. This was my submission:

An Abby Story

"Five more minutes," Abby moaned as she squeezed her closed eyes tighter trying to fight against the light. She turned her head away from the sunlight streaming across her face. "Just five more minutes."

Maybe if she could fall back to sleep she would return to that deliciously bizarre dream. It had been filled with elves, giant-talking pigs, and dragons. Abby has been on quest with a dragon. Her last moments had been of the two of them crashing through the forest. There had been something about dragons-bane or maybe not. It was all beginning to blur now; dreams are like that.

Abby preferred the idea of returning to the dream rather than facing reality. The dream had been filled with adventures. Crashing a dragon seemed better than completing her to do list. Already she could feel the tension of her mundane worries through out her shoulders and the familiar ache and kinks in her next from sleeping poorly. Only the pain was stronger than normal; this was going to be a rough day. She rolled to one side trying to entice sleeps return instead fireworks of pain erupted across her body. Her scream shattered the silence filling the space. She screamed till she realized that the earth had responded to her cries with violent shaking. Abby's eyes flew open as she flailed to find something to cling to. An earthquake. She was in excruciating pain and was going to die in a bone-rattling earthquake.

The tremors had stopped. The world seemed to return to stillness. Abby was very very awake now knowing sleep would not return. She just lay still staring up at the sky. As she looked up a few things became apparent to her. First, she was outdoors. Above her the sun was being filtered through the leaves and branches of trees older and larger than any redwood. Second, there were a number of broken branches that made a dragon size hole. As she studied it she just knew that the elfworld, the quest, and the trouble of dragons-bane had not been a dream and the crash landing had been very very real.

"Farwin? Farwin, are you alive?" The earth beneath her shook again. This time she had the sense to know it wasn't an earthquake. She was laying on the dragon's belly. The ground moving was just Farwin groaning. Abby waited for his reasurring voice -it didn't come.

"Farwin!"

"Farwin!" Abby was beginning to panic.

"Farwin, speak to me. Are you hurt? Can you speak?" Ignoring her pain she wiggled and moved till she could slide to the ground. The impact was jarring but she was motivated by concern for her friend. Abby had to lean against the dragon just to walk around and check for injures. He was alive, he was breathing, and there was no signs of blood but it was clear he wasn't well. He was pale and fading -fading to the point he was almost transparent and Farwin still hadn't spoken. Their last conversation had been before the crash. His last words had been "dragons-bane." She didn't actually know what that was but it didn't sound good. It sounded magical and deadly.

Abby had to do something but what? She wasn't magical and this world was still too strange to know if the forest held an antidote. She gathered the supplies scattered from the crash hoping the action would help her formulate a plan. All their items were there including the magical map. As she studied in the a help icon began flashing to the North of their location. She hoped the map was smart enough to know the type of help a dragon would need. It was her only chance to save Farwin she had to trust the map. She packed anything she could carry that would be useful. Then Abby stood. With care she lifted the pack onto her still sore shoulders and faced the North. She was resolved. She was determined. She would find help.

This would not be good-bye.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Simple Woman Daybook 63

FOR TODAY: June 26, 2011
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...grey skies.

I am thinking...life is good!

I am thankful for...hot glue guns!

From the kitchen...made perogies for company.

I am wearing...new pink shirt with brown blouse over a white tank with super cute pink and brown flowered shoes.

I am creating...a baby blanket and ceramic coasters.

I am going...back to the Clayground.

I am reading...Sophie's World, The God Delusion, Stardust, B is for Burglary, Flatland, and Love Wins

I am hoping...to be productive -tomorrow.

I am hearing...foot steps.

Around the house...really must wash walls and get back on track with the decluttering FOR REAL this week.

One of my favorite things...Firefly.

A picture to share...camera found and charged now I just need to take new pictures.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Another Five

The other Friday Five didn't have their new questions up when I was posting, but they are up now. The theme is travel:

1. What is your favorite way to travel (ship, plane, car, train, etc)?
Planes, unless the point is a road trip then car/van
2. Who is your favorite person to travel with?
Missions Buddy
3. What is the best vacation you've ever taken?
The family trip this past February to Florida/Disney
4. Where will your next vacation be to?
Probably Ontario to see family
5. If you had the time and money to go anywhere you wanted, where would you go?
The Camino de Santiago, India, Japan, and then backpack all of Europe

Friday, June 24, 2011

June 24's Friday 5

Summer Blockbusters:
1) What transformation do you undergo on summer Fridays at midnight?
Fridays are normally the only day of the week I go to bed at a reasonable hour...so I would think midnight is pumpkin hour.
2) What super power do the kids in your neighborhood seem to have?
Super-cuteness
3) Who (or what!) is your nemesis in these warm summer days?
Being indoors.
4) What is your trustiest weapon against the evil heat monster?
What heat? We're still waiting for the sunshine and warmer weather.
5) What seems to be invading your life lately, and how will you fend it off?
Invading life? Knitting...and buying yarn. Lack of money will fend off the adding to yarn stash and another interest will distract me from the knitting one of these days.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thankful Thursday -Maria

I am thankful for....
Maria!

I am thankful for Maria (really the whole family who add so much to my life) for so many great reasons. We've been friends since I've been in Nova Scotia. We share an interest in child development and kid stuff, books, crafts, board games, and Jesus. Also, Danny and Maria are the host/leaders of my life group. So now I get to see them every week....um, well, every week that I actually make it to life group.

Maria is insightful, generous, encouraging, kind, fun, thoughtful, helpful and all round great friend! I love our late night chats, our walk/runs (that was a short but good attempt at being athletic and healthy), and her smile. Maria has a great smile that makes people happy!

Every year she includes me in ALL holiday-family-dinner-celebrations that I am here alone. She understands the being away from family at family-together time. Thanksgiving wouldn't be Thanksgiving with out Maria's sweet potatoes, an amazing dessert, and a late night of games or movie watching. Also, she gets me an Easter basket every year =AWESOME!

Last night, life group night, she totally let me use her hot glue gun and make things...it was great! (I've been in a very creative place lately painting, knitting, creating in general I like it.) I am very thankful for the use of hot glue gun, the creative input, and just the time together. So yep,
I'm thankful for Maria!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Summer is Here!

Happy Longest Day of the Year! Today might be the official start to summer but it feels like summer has been here for awhile:
  1. I've been wearing flip flops and sundresses hoping to encourage the good weather to stay....it must have worked because it's stopped raining.
  2. The summer student started work two weeks ago.
  3. My favourite summer show So You Think You Can Dance has already been airing for weeks and has selected the top 20...which would be the top 18 if last week hadn't been so weird.
  4. All I think about is summer events for the youth group and children's summer programs.
No matter when it began this summer looks like it is going to be great! I'm excited for the youth group's 2nd Annual Thrift Shop Formal, seeing Steph, camping, and backyard clubs. I am hoping to hike Cape Split and have a welcome-to-my-decluttered-apartment-party. What are your signs of summer and do you have any special summer hopes or plans?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Simple Woman Daybook 62

FOR TODAY: June 19, 2011
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...dark skies and rain, lots of rain, the working theory is that Nova Scotia is crying.

I am thinking...Children matter! And in the nature vs. nurture debate I don't think it is an either or situation, both affect who the child will became. We ("the village") MUST do everything to help children reach their full potential...even when its frustrating. God grant me patience

I am thankful for...my Dad!

From the kitchen...um...it's been an unhealthy week. I miss veggie month because the challenge kept me motivated to make real meals.

I am wearing...black dress pants and a red top (two different people said I looked sharp this morning and wondered if I've lost weight....I have!).

I am creating...a baby blanket and a mug cosy.

I am going...to the Clayground.

I am reading...Sophie's World, The God Delusion, Stardust, B is for Burglary, Flatland, Love Wins, and Pride & Prejudice (audio)

I am hoping...to be productive -tomorrow.

I am hearing...rain.

Around the house...must wash walls and get back on track with the decluttering

One of my favorite things...starting new projects; they're shiny.

A picture to share...Forgot to charge camera last week so no new pictures -sorry.

Friday, June 17, 2011

The New Friday Five

Six years of blogging has taught me that I post more when I have (self-imposed) weekly blogging commitments. It could be a series like Cat Tales or my weekly Survivor updates or memes I found from other bloggers like Thankful Thursdays, Sunday Scribblings, and The Simple Woman. Not only do I post on the scheduled day I find that I have more ideas for blogging...some of which actually get written.

I also know that my blogging dips in the summer so I want to have a few more guaranteed reasons posts. So yesterday, when I stumbled upon my old Friday Fiver posts while searching for the My Father is My Hero story, I thought it would be a great time to restart the meme. Each Friday there are five new questions connected with a theme to answer. The meme hasn't been updated since 2008 but after a bit of googling I found The Friday Five and the Friday 5. Not sure which one I like more so for now I'll do both, here goes:

The Friday Five -Random:
1. have you ever really lived outside the country of your birth? why or why not?
    Yes, twice. The first was in the Kingdom of Swaziland (Africa) for my college work study/internship for five and a half months. The second time I lived in Japan for a year teaching English and helping with a church plant.
2. what was your first record?3. what do you think of your parents?4. what is your relationship with your hair?
    It is nice hair straight and manageable. It doesn't require much morning primping so I guess the relationship is loving indifference, most days, that is until it won't cooperate with my "let's look pretty" plans. In those moments I hate it. Or when it gets in my way (face) then I vow to shave it off. Also, I'm almost 85% sure I'm going to make some drastic change to it's colour or style before the end of the month. Depending on how that goes the feelings may change again.
5. what kind of pens do you like?
    Black inked pens

And theFriday 5 -Around the House:
1.Of the products you use just to keep yourself clean and presentable, what seems to be the most overpriced?
    Um...not sure.
2.Where in your house is a reliable place to get a few quarters?
    The change jar
3.A rare yes-or-no question on Friday 5: Have you ever dropped your cell phone onto your face?
    No
4.What did you last take out of your freezer?
    Pork Chops
5.How many rolls of wrapping paper do you have in your house?
    Five...I think

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Thankful Thursday -DAD!

I am thankful for....
Charles Stewart....my Daddy!

I love him! He is the bestest! He really is! If you haven't had the privileged of meeting him you'll have to take my word on the matter. I've already shared one of my absolute favourite daddy-daughter memories 2007 here (the post was originally titled "A Father Moment" I did some minor editing this afternoon). It's the story behind my favourite Christmas tradition and the mending of broken heart after a friendship betrayal -not every dad would do that.

And if he argues the point of his greatness, which he does from time to time, don't believe him. Often, when asked why he's said no, his standard response is "because I am a mean, horrible, and nasty man." It's not true! My Dad is my hero.

He is wonderful, and adventurous, and generous, and spontaneous. He's done everything he could to help me be a healthy mature adult while showing me it's still okay to be silly and child-like and not to know what you're going to do when you grow up. He's given me the best advice about life, love, and boys. And during those painful moments when my hearts been crushed he's said the only things that helped like "that guy was a jerk" and "punch him in the nose." Who would I be with out all our talks and the on going "Charlyology 101: daddy's thoughts on life" class?My Dad tells the best stories and writes the greatest lyrics to the best songs you've never heard. Classics like "going down south with a toad in my mouth" (which also happens to be all of the song's lyrics). He has given so much for both Lee-Ann and me to experience as many of the world's wonders as we possibly could. He even plays board games with us. That might not sound like much but it really is because while we love board games he has the opposite feelings for them.
Dad, it's all true. Please accept this as my father's day card...because there won't be one in your mail box before Sunday (and I can't even blame the postal strike -the card is sitting next to me at the moment) I love you much. I miss you. I have one issue. While looking for pictures of us together, just us, this one was the the only picture I could find. I think this is a very grievous error that must be rectified quickly. I think you and the whole family should come visit this summer so we could take pictures. Also because I love you and you here means hugs galore!

So yes, it is Thursday and I am thankful for my Dad! If you missed it:
He is my hero and the bestest and I love him very very much!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Simple Woman Daybook 61

FOR TODAY: June 12, 2011
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...green forest.

I am thinking...this day is going to be good

I am thankful for...Jay and Becca and God's grace.

From the kitchen...I made or more attempted oyakodon, I couldn't find dashi stock or even dashi-no-mono so I modified by using an instant miso soup mix. The mix almost made the whole dish too salty but it worked.

I am wearing...a new skirt that is black but has butterflies and flowers with a new pink tee over a black tank with black flats....I might need to invest in pink heels next.

I am creating...soot sprites, a tea cup hat, and a baby blanket. I finished the mohair shawl and cat this past week.

I am going...to the Clayground this afternoon to paint ceramics.

I am reading...Sophie's World, Searching for God Knows What, Stardust, B is for Burglary, Flatland, Love Wins, and Double Crossed (audio)

I am hoping...the sunburn pain lessens sooner rather than later.

I am hearing...laughter.

Around the house...if it works out I hope to wash the walls this week. I had thought tomorrow but it looks like I'll be in the city.

One of my favorite things...sunny market days, good yard sale fines, and unexpected joys.

A picture to share...
This was from my first Clayground adventure a few weeks ago.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Thankful Thursday -Becca

I'm thankful for...Becca!

She's wonderful! I mean, wonderful doesn't cut it. How to you sum up a person in a few words. Our friendship is very dear to me. We meet the summer of 2005. She was going into her senior year of high school and I volunteered at New Hope as a youth leader before spending a year in Japan. She was part of the group that gave me Melvin the Moose! (You can find a few more, but not all, of Melvin's adventures here)

When I came home we reconnected and a beautiful friendship grew. For four years she was one of my key youth leaders. She spend a summer working at the church as the summer intern assisting in the children and youth ministries (or as Jay retitled it "Liz's minion"...hee...hee...hee....I have minions.) And last year she set out on a huge adventure moving all across the country to be an intervarsity intern. I can't expess how proud I am of her. It is exciting to watch her grow in her faith and seek God and actually do what He says. And now Becca is HOME!...at least for the summer. We're going to have a movie-girls night very soon.

Becca is great. She is sweet, and thoughtful, and compassionate, and resourceful, and intelligent, and caring, and sensitive, and wise, and genuine, and supportive, and my sanity at time, and real, and fun, and truly huggable. I love her!

Sunday, June 05, 2011

The Simple Woman Daybook 60

FOR TODAY: June 5, 2011
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...grey skies.

I am thinking...

I am thankful for...volunteers and organized craft rooms.

From the kitchen...breakfast every day and veggie meals. It is really nice having a clean kitchen; I actually want to cook and eat at home.

I am wearing...polka dot dress with awesomely cute red heels.

I am creating...a baby blanket and a shawl.

I am going...either home to nap, cook, and wash walls or to a children's play.

I am reading...Don't Judge a Girl by her Cover, Magic Kingdom for Sale -SOLD!, Sophie's World, Searching for God Knows What, Stardust, B is for Burglary, Flatland, and Love Wins

I am hoping...to find my pillow.

I am hearing...the children.

Around the house...I've been home since Tuesday and the place is still clean! Working on creating new habits so it stays that way.

One of my favorite things...local music.

A picture or two from the last week...

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Thankful Thursday -Steph

I am thankful for...
Stephanie Perry
She's wonderful, insightful, caring, loyal, wise, passionate, sweet, compassionate, creative, endearing, generous, honest, and very dear to me.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

TV Talk: Finales and Cancelled Shows

In TVLand the change from winter to spring means two things: season finales and cancellations. I watch the seasons’ wraps up and grip about how they’ve ruined the story. At the same times I hold my breath while the networks cut programs from their schedules waiting to see if my shows survived the slaughter. Strange maybe, but TV news and blogs are one of my hobbies and guilty pleasures.

I love the kooky sci-fi shows, so normally my favourites are dead before they even air or on the wrong side of the bubble. This year wasn’t too bad. I was only disappointed by two cancellations, Human Target and Off the Map. They were fluff shows and I will miss them. The upside about a beloved show being cancelled is the loss frees up space and time for some of the new fall allows new shows.

Finales are the other side. They can be frustrating. Each year the writers must wrap story aches up while giving enough of a cliffhanger to hold viewers interest over the summer. It often means each scene is overstuffed with drama and everything explodes all at once. Here where the finales that stood out to me (on a scale of 1-5). SPOILER WARNING:

Redemption Island = ?: After blogging about who was voted off week after week, I still don’t know who won Survivor. The finale aired in the midst of my “not sure what to say about 1000 posts” blogging hiatus and I just haven’t watched it yet. I’m not even sure I want to watch the end.

Grey’s Anatomy = 3.2: I remember not liking it. It wasn’t a bad episode…it just wasn’t amazing. I wasn’t even expecting the writers to top last year’s shooting or even the George’s accident. I hated the closing monologue and all the relationships falling part just so there could be drama in the fall. I’m not sure I’ll watch Grey’s in the fall.

Bones = 4.5: It felt, at first, anti-climatic after the conclusion to Booths manhunt. But I liked the kookiness of the pair being undercover, the guest appearance of Brennan’s dad, and the birth. The lighter tone was good after Nigel-Murray’s death. And then, in the last moments, BAM, the writer’s get you with Brenna announcing “I’m pregnant. The baby is yours.” Season seven is going to be interesting.

The Mentalist = 4.9: wow…wow …WOW! It was a good wrap up to the season with some nice use of twists and dragging out the reveal. I knew Jane was going to meet Red John (friend told me) but I didn’t see it going like that. Oh My! Where do the writers go from there?

Castle = 4.9: It was another night of “wow, really, wow” I missed “I’m guilty” cues from Montgomery so that was a surprise. Then the climax, which could be the Beckett getting shot or Castle’s love confession. It stunned me that they actually shot Beckett, how are they going to “save her” but at the same time she is half the show so you know she’s going to be fine. I guess the real question is, who will be the new captain?

With the last of the finales done, the TV seasons change from wrap ups to the dry wasteland of summer programming. There will be reality shows, reunions, and the shows that weren’t good enough to plug into midseason slots. I am looking forward to SYTYCD, Merlin, and catching up on Fringe, Eureka, and the new season of Warehouse 13.