Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Separating Need From Want

Lately I've noticed that I've been using the word 'need' a lot. I have never given this much thought until I took the time to actually study my use of this word. I (and I'm sure I'm not the only one guilty of this) often mistake 'want' for 'need'.

This summer Eric and I have been doing work around the house. Giving it a facelift. There's much more to be done. The word 'need' was entering into my vocabulary a lot with these projects.

"We need new chairs in this room."
"That wall really needs a new big picture or painting hung just so."
"Our yard needs a fence."
"I need to get a new bed spread."
"We need to replace this carpet."

I could go on and on and on.

The truth of the matter is, I need none of these things. I would really like to have them but I need none of them. I really need to work on this concept. There are few things in life that I actually need. I need exactly what I have. I need my family. I need my friends. I need food and shelter. I need the love of my husband. I need to pay my bills on time. These are all things that I have. Aside from a little dental work maybe there's really nothing more that I need. Isn't that fantastic? Wow. I've never really looked at things in this way before.

I have to learn that all the things that I want will come over time but for now I have all that I need.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Next Blog Please

Is anyone else addicted to the "Next Blog" button on the Blogger Nav Bar? I often hit it to see where I end up and an hour later I realize that I've been going madly from blog to blog for quite a while. I read snatches of blogs here and there and if they look interesting I stick around and read more.

I haven't found too many worth bookmarking but there is the odd treasure out there.

A Useless List of 49 Questions.

I found this list on another blog (It's all about me. No. Really.)that I was reading. Apparently it's making the rounds. I just thought it would be fun. I don't get the peanut shell question though. If anyone can shed light on that let me know.

1. Your name spelled backwards.

2. Where were your parents born?
Ontario, Canada
3. What is the last thing you downloaded onto your computer?
Mozilla Firefox
4. What is your favorite restaurant?
Too poor to go out to eat.
5. Last time you swam in a pool?
10 years ago -- maybe. Chlorine makes me sneeze.
6. Have you ever been in a school play?
Yep. Second flower on the left.
7. How many kids do you want?
8. Type of music you dislike most?
Misogynist (sp?) Rap Music.
9. Are you registered to vote?
10. Do you have cable?
Satelite -- Thank you very much.
11. Have you ever ridden on a moped?
Absolutely not.
12. Ever prank call anybody?
When I was 12 -- back in the days before call display.
13. Ever get a parking ticket?
14. Would you go bungee jumping or sky diving?
Doubt it.
15. Farthest place you ever traveled.
Caribbean Cruise. Wonderful!!!

16. Do you have a garden?
Yes and oh so proud of it.
17. What’s your favorite comic strip?
Used to be Calvin and Hobbs. Now? Who cares?
18. Do you really know all the words to your national anthem?
I think so. Even in french.
19. Best movie you’ve seen in the past month?
NOT NOT NOT Kung Pao. (Is funny for the first few minutes and then it gets old)
20. Favorite pizza topping?
Double Cheese, mushrooms and bacon.
21. Chips or popcorn?
Chips!! Unless the popcorn is from Kernals... well no... still chips.
22. What color lipstick do you usually wear?
None usually. If a special occasion? I wear Truco or Mac. Colour just depends.
23. Have you ever smoked peanut shells?
24. Have you ever been in a beauty pageant?
Ha ha ha ha ha.
25. Orange Juice or apple?
Apple all the way.
26. Who was the last person you went out to dinner with and where did you dine?
My old roomate. We went to Summerhay's.
27. Favorite type chocolate bar?
Crispy Crunch or Skor. Can't decide.
28. When was the last time you voted at the polls?
Last election. I think it was June.
29. Last time you ate a homegrown tomato?
Last night.
30. Have you ever won a trophy?
Mh. I don't think so. How sad is that?
31. Are you a good cook?
Sometimes. I'm working on it,
32. Do you know how to pump your own gas?
Of course. Who can afford full serve?
33. Ever order an article from an infomercial?
No. But I've been tempted.
34. Sprite or 7-up?
7-up. It's the only Pepsi product I'll drink.
35. Have you ever had to wear a uniform to work?
Unfortunately, yes.
36. Last thing you bought at a pharmacy?
Polysporin. Bought it last week. The one in my cupboard had expired in 1999.
37. Ever throw up in public?
Do public bathrooms count?
38. Would you prefer being a millionaire or find true love?
Got true love already so can I have the money too?
39. Do you believe in love at first sight?
Not sure.
40. Ever call a 1-900 number?
41. Can exes be friends?
Yeah but it's hard.
42. Who was the last person you visited in a hospital?
My Gramma.
43. Did you have a lot of hair when you were a baby?
Yep, curly dark hair.
44. What message is on your answering machine?
A bilingual message from my husband. "You have reached......" Very boring stuff.
45. What’s your all time favorite Saturday Night Live Character?
Dieter maybe or that Chris Farley character. "I live in a van. Down by the river......"
46. What was the name of your first pet?
47. What is in your purse?
Wallet, Cell phone, hair clip, chapstick, space pen, allergy meds, paint sample cards.
48. Favorite thing to do before bedtime?
Read a chapter in whatever book I'm currently reading.
49. What is one thing you are grateful for today?
My husband who is the most wonderful person on the face of the earth.

Friday, August 27, 2004

Thanks for the Coffee

It's on mornings like this, when I'm feeling particularly fuzzy and tired that I give thanks for whoever created coffee. What would I do without my morning coffee kick? I usually limit myself to one steaming travel mug full of coffee a day but there are mornings when it just calls for a special trip to Tim Horton's. Can I give thanks for Tim Horton too? The savior of morning doldrums and hangovers. The pickerupper of our tired selves.

You can keep your Second Cups and Starbucks. A Tim Horton's coffee is all I need.

Once I decided to make the pilgrimmage over to Tim's this morning there were relieved faces all around. I ended up getting a tray full of coffees for the rest of the tired masses as well. It seems that we all need a pickmeup today.

Now, I can get on with my day.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Bad Start is Better Than No Start

I managed to sleep a full 8 hours last night. Sleeping is one of my favourite things and I never get enough of it. I've come to the realization that I, in fact, need more of it than others. I'm always tired. By the end of the week I'm exhausted.

Anyway, I'm getting sidetracked. As I was saying, the day started off well enough as I had a good night's sleep. Everything went smoothly until I went to leave. After opening the garage door I got in the car to back it out. That tends to work better if the car actually starts. I couldn't believe it, but my 2 month old car wouldn't start. My first thought was "No bloody way!". My next thought was how am I ever going to get to work? I live a 1/2 hour outside of town and Eric is gone. @#$#@$@!!!

I ended up spending the next 1/2 hour on the phone with roadside assistance and Eric and the dealership. I was fit to be tied I'll tell you. The tow truck was pretty quick in coming. Thank goodness for small miracles. Anyway, the long and short of it is that he got it started with almost no problem. This, after I tried 10 freakin' times!!! I hate that. Why is it that cars seem to need a man's touch to behave. It drives me crazy. Anyway, he said that the clutch wasn't catching properly. He pumped it 2 or 3 times and it caught and started. Now, it seems to be working fine.

I was only a 1/2 late for work. That's no problem because I'm rarely late and rarely leave early.

What a rotten start to the day. Let's hope it only gets better!

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Missing Him

Eric is gone this week. Off to Toronto with work. This is the first time that he's been away since we were married. I don't mind so much when he goes out of town for a week or two, it's when it stretches out to a month or more that I get upset. His company has a way of doing that to us. The first time he ever went out of town he left at the end of January for 2 short weeks. Well, he didn't start working in town again until the following July. Mind you, he always is able to come home on the weekends so at least we're not separated for months at a time. So you can see why I have trouble trusting when his company says he'll only be gone for a week or two. I've heard that before.

So it's been quiet around the house this week. I miss him terribly. I'm so used to having him around that it feels odd to be alone. That realization strikes me because I have spent a good deal of my adult years "between relationships" and alone. I never minded spending time on my own. I did whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. When I met Eric I thought it might be hard for me to transition from being my own person to being part of a couple. It wasn't hard at all. It felt natural to spend so much time with him.

I miss him with all my heart but I can recognize that being alone isn't so bad. I get to watch whatever I want on TV. Dinner is a simple affair when I'm alone. I can go to bed early and not get woken up at 2am when he decides it's bed time. The whole bed to myself! There's no bathroom sharing in the mornings. Those are the perks and I really do think that it does us all good to spend time on our own.

The downsides? There's no warm body in my bed to snuggle up to when I feel chilly. I miss him waking me up in the mornings. There's no one to open up the garage door for me. Dinner is eaten in front of the TV as opposed to at the table with conversation on the side. If I want to talk to someone I have to pick up the phone. I can't hear him laughing at something funny that he saw on TV or in an email. No kiss goodbye in the mornings. I could go on and on....

He'll be home in 2 days. I hope they're short days. I can hardly wait for Friday.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Time Will Tell

A friend of mine went to a funeral recently. On the little remembrance card was a poem that the woman who had passed away had written. It goes like this.

Time Will Tell

The cosmetic signs of aging
Don't bother me a lot,
It's what goes on inside my head
That gives me cause for thought.

I hope my brain's not filled with cobwebs
That take me to another place,
Where I can't enjoy my family
Because I don't recognize a face.

I hope I keep my sense of humour,
And be compassionate and kind,
And realize that age does not give me license
To say whatever's on my mind.

I hope I don't out live my welcome,
And when my work on earth is done,
I'd rather be a pleasant memory.

--Dori Ellard

I think that these words are so wise and touching. The third verse, in particular spoke to me. I wish that more people would realize that they do not have license to say whatever they want. Things you may say in passing may be more hurtful than you know. Language barriers or age are no excuse. If we could all work towards being a "pleasant memory" the world might be a better place.

Let's Pretend....

And just where is the year going anyway? I feel like I'm still getting used to writing 2004 on my cheques and it's more than half over! What is up with that? It's almost September which means that the too short Canadian summer is almost over. Fall is almost here which means that the whole country kicks into high gear. Before we know it Christmas will be upon us and then I gotta get used to writing 2005!

I spend all winter wistfully dreaming of summer. It's not the heat and humidity that I dream about it's more the feelings and attitude that summer evokes. Remember when we were in school? At the end of June, the summer months would stretch ahead and promise endless possibilities. Sunshine and free time abounded. Excitement grew until we packed up and headed to the cottage for a couple of weeks. It was fantastic. It seemed like it was a prize that we earned for spending the rest of the year in school.

Now, I look forward to summer just as much but I have little or no time off. Where's my prize now? The weekends go by too fast and then summer is over before we know it. We run around trying to cram in barbecues and weekends away and gardening and outside projects but there's never enough time.

To top it all off commercials and advertisements are rushing everyone into back to school shopping. Can they lay off a bit? We don't need to be reminded and so cruelly jarred from our summertime bliss. I'm not even going back to school and the back to school fever depresses the hell out of me. The poor kids and teachers.

Have you been to the stores? Not only are we assaulted on all sides with lined paper on sale and pencil crayons in the bargain bin. There are already aisles full of Hallowe'en decorations and costumes. Holy cow. A workmate hit the local Costco the other day and they've already got a full aisle of Christmas Decs out!!! Are they nuts?

So, please, join me in making this last week and a half of August seem long and leisurely. Let's all ignore the commercials and billboards. In fact, let's just turn off the TV altogether and pretend it's still July. Kick back and look around you. Ignore your "to do" list and watch instead as the trees wave their still green leaves and the flowers soak up the sunshine. Fire up the barbecue and cook a big summer steak. Grab a popsicle from the Ice Cream cart and watch people walking their dogs from the shade of your porch. After all. It ain't over till it's over.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Surfing Blogs

Every once in a while I go in and look through the "recently posted blogs". Usually I am very impressed. Blogging really has become an outlet for many. I have found that it has enabled me to identify with lots of people.

Many of the blogs that I have perused have surprised me more than a little bit. Is it because I never really believed that people felt the same way as I do about things? Or just that it's hard to see the depth of most of the people we come into actual contact with everyday. Blogging has a way of making us bear our souls and share thoughts that we normally wouldn't share. Why is it easier on a blog? I find it easier to reveal myself to a stranger than someone I know.

I found a blog the other day by a guy who put into words something that I never could. It clicked when I read it. Wow, isn't it amazing that some guy far, far away has been thinking along the same lines as me? And how about the girl who lives on the west coast that I can identify with so well? Isn't it special to have this opportunity to make new connections and possibly friends?

But mostly, I am just impressed with the depth and emotion and truth of what I read when I surf through these blogs. What did we ever do without them?

Saturday, August 14, 2004

I Am A Disaster

I'm having such a bad day. Right now I am really wishing that I had some of those wonderful "happy" pills that people on TV always seem to have available. As it is, I had to settle for a Bloody Caesar and hope for the best. I'm hoping that it will calm me down a little bit.

Do you ever have those days where everything you do or touch turns out badly? I'm having one of those days and have felt so close to tears all day that those "little" things often turn into big things.

We (my husband and I) are painting the bedroom this weekend. Well, I feel like I have run into problems everywhere I turn. I am just not meant to paint today. If I try to help anymore than I already did I fear that I will blow my stack. I should amend that. I have already blown my stack once today so I would, effectively, blow my stack for the second time.

Poor Eric is up there painting alone. He tried to coax me off the couch but I know that I would just have a freakin' breakdown if I dribbled paint or made a mistake. I told him that he would get it done quicker without me and he seemed to accept that, not really knowing what else to do I am sure.

I wish that I had as much patience as him. Not only that, but annoying or frustrating things just seem to roll off him. Would that it were that way for me. One bad thing can affect my whole day. He just grins and moves on. I really admire that. How can one attain that mindset? Is it something you're born with?

I guess it's a good thing that the powers that be saw fit to pair me with him. If I had married someone more like me it would be crazy. As it is, he seems to be able to gauge my moods and usually knows the right thing to do or say to "appease" me.

Well I have to admit that I do feel a little bit better now. Writing seems to be cathartic or calming. Talking (writing) it out seems to make everything a little more clearer or something.

Maybe I'll grab another Caesar and go see how the Painter is doing.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

So Much For That

I had big plans for a lazy, relaxed, non-productive weekend. It wasn’t meant to be.

After sleeping in until all hours on Saturday we cleaned the whole upstairs of the house.I showed Eric some paint swatches that I have been collecting for a little while and after discussing the merits of different colours we decided to head for the paint store. We managed to spend all our money for the next 2 days in one afternoon but we came out with numerous tins of paint, new curtains and rods and a various array of useful equipment.

Now my living room is "Lily Pond" green and a dusty, slate blue. I think that it looks pretty good! I’m so happy because I’ve been very displeased with the general whiteness of my house. The previous owners managed to make all sorts of pinholes in the walls and hung hideous wallpaper borders in almost every room. It took us all evening just to patch and sand the walls!

This week we’re going to concentrate on repainting the trim and then next weekend we’ll paint the bedroom. I just am so pleased with the changes. It may keep us poor but it’s fun.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Better Hair Day

I got my hair cut!!! I forgot to mention that in my weekend highlights. It's much more manageable now and looks okay too!!

What a Great Weekend!

Back from the long weekend. We had a really great time. Eric did all the things around the house that Son-in-Laws are supposed to do. All efforts seemed to be much appreciated by the folks. It was a pretty fair trade I figure. They not only fed us well and spoiled us rotten but spoiled all my friends too.

It was great to see all my friends that could make it over on Sunday evening for a BBQ. It was so much fun. We consumed a lot of alcohol and a lot of food. Stayed up until the wee hours and even had a few extra house guests for the night. Woke up to a pounding headache but the big breakfast fixed that. (3 huge cups of coffee didn’t hurt either)

So we’re back and getting into the swing of things here. Eric has got lots of work to do and I’ve been managing to keep busy too. Tonight I planted a big bunch of chives that my parents dug up from their garden for me. Hopefully they’ll do well in the place that I chose for them. Also, I put in some Forget-Me-Nots that had originally come from my Grandfather’s garden and have been flourishing in my folks’ garden. I really hope that they do well. I love Forget-Me-Nots. I’ll look forward to next spring to see if they take hold or not.

It was really great to be home. Thanks Mom and Dad for all your hard work and your generosity.