Today, fill your cup of life with sunshine and laughter.

29 March 2010

Sleeping in on the Weekend

Quote of the Day
I know I'm no glamour girl, and it's not easy for me to get up in front of a crowd of people
It used to bother me a lot, but now I've got it figured out
that God gave me this talent to use, so I just stand there and sing.
~Ella Fitzgerald~


With a 7-year old boy and his dog in the house, there's rarely sleep-in time on the weekends, because he has a no-fail internal alarm that gets him out of bed at 7 am, no matter what. The scenario on Saturday morning rarely varies.

"Mommy?" whispers from the doorway. "Mommmmmmy??" Mommy plays possum in the hopes that he'll go back to bed. Fat chance of that ...

"Mommy, I'm awake." closer and a little louder. Mommy shifts marginally under the covers and mumbles something indistinct.

"Mommy? I can hear you breeeeeeathing." singsongs from uncomfortably close range, just before his fingers drag my left eyelid up over my eyebrow. Mommy flinches back, blinded by a harsh shot of nasty morning light and mumbles "Morning sweetheart" before burying face into pillow, clinging desperately to the illusion that this is all a bad dream.

Tormentor climbs onto the bed, bouncing hard enough to elevate mommy's entire body and slam it back down then lifts the covers, watching with interest as mommy's exposed flesh erupts in goosebumps before crawling under and snuggling close to melt the icicles off his toes.

A moment later, dramatically, breath hot on my ear "Mommy I'm staaaaarrrving. When's breakfast?"

"Cereal's in the cupboard ..." Mommy's voice trails off as things get comfortable again, momentarily.

Bounce, bounce, thud. Footsteps receding down the hall as mommy snuggles deep under the duvet again, honestly believing that she has won a little ground.

"Squeak squeak squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeak ..." mournfully intones just before a very large, cold, wet, snuffly nose jars mommy's head completely off the pillow. Daisy is the family pet, a 13-year old, 90-lb husky who has never been able to bark or whine like a normal dog. The piercing sounds that emanate from her can be enough to shatter glass when she feels she is being ignored or otherwise abused by neglect.

"Sweetie, can you let the dog out?" Mommy's feeble groan from under the covers.

Footsteps pound down the hallway. "What?!?" Sadistic son's damnably cheerful treble voice shrills into my face as he leaps onto the bed. Mommy curls into a fetal position, twitching from the sharp knee embedded in my lady bits, wheezing breathily "Let the dog out ..."

"Okay, Mmmmommy!" Off he bounds, tireless energy personified, hollering over his shoulder something that sounds like "I spilled the milk ..."

Moaning in defeat, mommy decides this might be something that needs investigating. Pushing back the covers and simultaneously reaching for the fleece robe hanging neatly on the floor, I haul myself off the bed and immediately shriek in agony, clawing at the sole of my foot to extract the shard-like Lego blocks which have somehow escaped from my son's bedroom during the night and made their way into mine, with obvious evil intent.

"Mommy ..." intones a reproachful voice from their co-conspirator "You broke my robot blaster!"

"Get me the vacuum cleaner, kid." Mommy gasps as the waves of red-tinged agony begin to recede. "Someone has booby-trapped my bedroom and I need to clean it up before my blood stains the floorboards.

Giggling maniacally, the resident terrorist scurries to remove the evidence before it can be confiscated by the mommy-police. Still blurry from exhaustion, mommy scans the floor for any lurking torture devices. All clear, and mommy lurches down the hall to check the state of the kitchen. Daisy, mooch extraordinaire, is stretched out on the floor, furry forearms floating in milk. She lifts her cereal-box-embedded head and squeaks in welcome ...

No matter how I paint this scenario, my son's unfailing cheerfulness and positive attitude makes me smile. He just turned 7, has been through a life-altering health change last summer and fall, and his spirit has never flagged. Life in my house may not be perfect, but it's happy most of the time. What a change from only a few years ago.

25 March 2010

Random stuff because it's a random kind of a day ...

Quote of the Day:
Beware the lollipop of mediocrity; lick it once and you'll suck forever.
~Brian Wilson~


I'm on a horoscope kick so I'm tossing it in here. Wonder if I should pay attention to any of it? I'll do pretty much as I want anyway, but maybe they're onto something. Maybe I should ask the voices ...

Although you may think that this is a good day to come out of your shell, it may not actually be as easy as you think. You could find yourself trying to cut through a thick emotional blanket that descends over you. It's even more difficult if you are so sensitive to someone else's feelings that you worry about what you might say. However, it's less important to monitor your words than to maintain your boundaries so you don't mix up other people's fears with your own.


Welcome home, Donna! This is an amazing story that is only beginning to unfold.

From the local newspaper: Donna O'Rielly, who disappeared without so much as a trace almost a month ago, should be in the arms of her family this morning after her dramatic escape yesterday from the basement apartment of a 62-year-old Moncton man who police arrested shortly after the missing woman got away from her alleged captor.

This all took place only blocks from my home. In a quiet city like this, such things are nearly unimaginable. Fervent prayers of thanks are going up all over the province for her return to her family. We cannot imagine the circumstances of her month in captivity, but the story will be told and retold, if for no other reason than to serve as a caution for those who believe "it doesn't happen here".


This week, in all their wisdom, the D of E scheduled middle school report card marks and parent teacher meetings on the same day. AND moved it to the middle of the week. So teachers have two more days to teach, exhausted, after two 12-15 hour days. Somewhere, somehow, it made sense to someone. Either that, or we have one sadistic, teacher-hating sonuva-b running things in our picturesque capital city. Thoughts, anyone?

The B-man is testing for his blue belt in Tae Kwondo this afternoon. Since he started learning this martial art last October, he has averaged a test every 9 weeks. Apparently, that's something special. All I know is the kid lives and breathes it. He comes home from his classes and goes to the basement to practice his forms. Last month at the Canadian Junior Nationals, three of the top five competitors in the sport were from the B-man's studio under the same master, who tells me that my son is exceptional. Master L's wife has said to me on numerous occasions that she wants her sons to be like the B-man in their attitude and character. Am I proud? I am humbled. My son brings tears to my eyes at times: of pride, of laughter, of anger, of frustration ... he's just a normal 7-year old kid, after all.
In exactly one month, my school band will be exchanging places with another school band for two days. It's a huge event in our band's annual calendar and the kids are very excited. But are they working hard enough on their scores? I wonder sometimes. Will they be ready? Ready or not, the exchange takes place on April 22-23. Until then, I'm going to be a little tense.
This year, 10% of the graduating class from my school have applied and auditioned to enter various university music schools to pursue a life career in such music fields as performance, musical theatre, recording technology, composition and education. In some cases, following the heart in this matter is a battle on several fronts, as music is still considered a risky endeavor for employment and financial independence. I have attended every audition to support these young women and men as they step into their futures. To say I am proud of them is a gross understatement. And, if I am completely honest, there is a certain personal satisfaction in my own accomplishments as their teacher, knowing that I was able to nurture a lasting love that does not need to be expressed in words. My heart is full of wonder and anticipation for their futures.
In tribute, I chose a song that remains close to the hearts of my band members as the turning point ... I do what I do for kids like them.

24 March 2010

A Deep Breath ... Exhale ...

Quote of the Day:
All the good music has already been written by people with wigs and stuff.
~Frank Zappa~

Struggling with a dilemma right now and I'm not sure how to resolve it. Or even if I should. Sometimes things work out better if you just let them resolve themselves. I'm not sure though, so I did a little research through a trusted and reliable source: Horoscope [].

There may be noticeably less stress today as the nurturing Cancer Moon picks up on harmonious trines to optimistic Jupiter and innovative Uranus. Although we may be presented with an opportunity to free ourselves from complex emotional entanglements, the Cancer Moon still encourages us to hold on to the past. Even if we are not fully satisfied, it's still safer to maintain the status quo than risk our current comforts for an uncertain future.

Although your intentions may be straightforward, your behavior doesn't necessarily demonstrate your true feelings today. You could be moodier than you let on, for the hypersensitive Cancer Moon can give you a lot to worry about. But you realize that others tire quickly when you express your concerns, so you may consciously choose to keep any negativity to yourself. Remember, even suppressed feelings can impact your day, so find a way to share your uncertainty without blaming anyone else.

Sooo ... I should keep my concerns to myself whilst expressing them in a diplomatic manner? Got it. Glad I cleared that up. Sheesh!

And now for something a little different ... Elmer Fudd as one of Canada's Finest.

22 March 2010

Let's See How Long I Can Keep This Up ...

Quote of the Day:

You got to have smelt a lot of mule manure before you can sing like a hillbilly. ~Hank Williams~

(Okay, it's random but it made me laugh.)

Hello again.

It's been so long since I came online, the existence of this blog had slipped from my mind. What kept me away was so much more important, I guess. For a long time, survival was my focus, just getting from one day to the next. Most of you (if there's anybody out there, that is ...) probably didn't know what was going on because, face it, I don't share very well. That's just me. People love me despite my tendency to hold back, though. Go figure. Anyway, I'm working on that. You know: take a step, backslide, try again. But I digress ...

So, beyond my little boy's health issues (pretty much controlled now with medication, thankfully), I was having some coping issues of my own. With recent urgent issues with work and family, I had put everything else aside and had no life of my own anymore. I was a ticking timebomb stress-wise so it became a priority to find something that was uniquely mine. For me. The whole concept boggles the mind, doesn't it? After all, the single mother of a 7-year old shouldn't need anything else, right? Right??

It was a struggle to create an environment which permitted me the freedom to have time for myself but I was insistent. First, I gave up computer at home. Completely. It was eating up far too much of my free time and wasn't doing anything for me health-wise. I was using it as a replacement for a social life. Difficult as it was, I gave up the habit.

The money I saved by getting rid of my internet at home was invested in a newspaper subscription and the B-man and I pored over the classifieds to find activities that were A) social and B) inexpensive or better, free. There's a wealth of stuff to do in this city. Three evenings a week, the B-man and I would embark on our prescribed adventure.

On Wednesdays, we take a mother-child swim class with 20 other family groups. We've met some wonderful new friends, improved our swimming skills and gotten some much-needed exercise.

Fridays, we join a group of B's peers and their parents at a local high school to play chess. I've played since I was a kid, but haven't had partners in some time, so it is a great opportunity to revisit the strategies and thought processes of the game. B-man loves games and enjoys this as an opportunity to flex his competitive cerebral muscles, as the kids enjoy a tournament every week with medals to all who defeat their opponents. I'm amazed at how quickly his skills have improved but I really shouldn't be surprised. He is Indiana Jones going after the Holy Grail in regards to those dollar store plastic medals.

On Saturdays before lunch, we have revived a tradition from years past, exercising and socializing dogs at the animal shelter. The SPCA always needs volunteers and B is big enough now to work with the dogs too, under my supervision. This has had a very positive impact on our lives, as B rarely has nightmares about his seizures since we've refocused outside the family.

In addition to three outings a week, I have allowed adult time for myself. On Tuesdays, my mom comes over after supper to take care of the grandchild and dog while I go to Codiac Symphonic Band rehearsal. It's been a while since I was a musician in the band rather than the director and it's fun to be with people I have known for years making music. It's not even all about being me and not simply the B-man's mommy.

Finally, on Saturday evenings, I date. Yes, you heard me right. It was an inadvertent side-effect of meeting all the new people through our activities. There are some very sweet single dads around, who are in exactly the same boat as I am, finding a life for themselves beyond their children. Dating these men is safe and no-pressure because, like me, they are just looking for "me time". We share babysitters to cut costs, and we have a good time just being with another adult for a while, without the responsibility of children underfoot.

So that's what I've been doing. What's new with you?