Thursday, April 30, 2009

hold up

I doubt this would work for me! Maybe if it was a bigger set of hands (or an extra set of hands!) Also, is that a set of rubber gloves?!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

please set your phone to vibrate

My step-dad, Jim had hip replacement surgery this morning, and he's doing very well. I am so relieved! I met my parents and Jim's brother and his wife at the hospital this morning at 5:45, and stayed with Mom after Jim went down to the operating room. By early afternoon he was feeling pretty good and I was able to finish a few errands, before coming home for a quick nap.

After going back to see him again this evening, we went to see Watchmen at the cheap theatre. Good movie but long, and there seemed to be a lot full frontal nudity. Not that I mind.

My moniter tanked again - for the second time! Right now we have a TV moniter fit into the desk, and it's so large that it's freaking me out, lol.

Have a good night!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

post a don't

I recently joined and have been perusing the site over the last few days. One feature that I love is that readers can upload pics of don'ts! Some of them are just outrageous!

I am off to pick up Jamie, who is at her Nanny gig this afternoon. She wants to help me shop for the food bank, and she's good at it.

Have a good one.

pay it forward

I have been so blessed in my life, in spite of all the trials I've been through.

Years ago, after Dale had already passed away, I decided that I wanted to attend a get together that the widows were planning in Branson, Missouri. I had enough for a flight and for one night in a hotel, but needed help with the rest of the trip.

That's when Joe, a widower from the U.S., stepped in. I flew to Little Rock, Arkansas and he picked me up. We spent one night at his ranch (with his three sons) then he drove us five hours to the venue of the GTG. We shared a room (no hanky panky there) for two nights, then he drove me home and the morning after that, back to the airport. He saved me hundreds and hundreds of dollars, and that trip changed my life.

Earlier that same year, another widow had helped me. We both lived in the same province and I was struggling to keep everything together. It wasn't just money, it was things like forgetting to open the mail - one of the big things that I still struggle with today. These problems led to my power being shut off, not just once, but twice! Other times, I failed to plan for things like winter coats, or couldn't plan, for things like fender benders and having to pay for a dented bumper. My friend stepped in and sent me enough funds to get through the winter, and I couldn't have been more grateful.

There have been a few times since then, that I have been fortunate enough to pay it forward. A girl who needed her internet reconnected to access a support site, donations to the food bank, the youth shelter, and a sponsored child.

Of course, my income took a nosedive this past year and I was back in dire straights again by this past March! My creative financing was starting to take it's toll and before we knew it, I was more than a week away from payday and we had no cash coming in and no groceries in the pantry. The hair on the back of my neck stood up all day, every day and I was freaking out. That's when one of my blogging friends offered to help me. What a life saver! I called him the other day to ask for permission to write this entry, because today I am going to pay it forward. I thought I would start with the food bank, but I have also volunteered to deliver food for Loaves and Fishes over the next two weeks - it's a Christian soup kitchen that also delivers to shut ins. So thank you Tim! I'm going to enjoy paying it forward.

Monday, April 27, 2009

mother hubbard's cupboard

first night in my new house. September 14, 2004

Today I went to Calgary with one of my managers and another Advisor, and I really enjoyed it. A guy from Vancouver was speaking on Critical Illness and Long Term Care Insurance, and how to position the product.

If I could actually make money at it, I would really love to keep doing it. But alas, I am still looking for anything that'll pay.

I've been hearing quite a bit about people having trouble keeping food in the house - and not just in the little family of blogs we have here. I've heard it on the radio, read it in the paper, and have seen it on the news.

My own experience so far: most meats are too expensive for us to buy, save for ground beef, hot dogs, or any cut of pork. Sometimes we can find chicken for less than $5.00/kg so we can buy that, but there have been weeks when we couldn't. A 4 litre jug of milk runs me about $5.69 and it lasts about a day and a half. Cheap bread is about $2.39 a loaf, 436 grams of coffee is about $6.00, and a litre of coffee cream is $3.02! We just switched to coffee mate, but I don't really like it.

What is the price of food in your area?

Sunday, April 26, 2009

summer fashion for real life

photo by Lawrie Brown

1. Hoisery is not always necessary.

In fact, I haven't worn hoisery, in public, for more than ten years. I love the look of opaque tights in the winter, and have seen some very dressy looks that require black stockings, but for a basic summer wardrobe, you don't need them.

In particular, if you are attending an outdoor summer wedding, I recommend a strappy shoe with bare legs. To achieve this, it is a must that your feet and legs be smooth, clean and slightly tanned. Self tanners are awesome these days, and you can even buy a moisturizer with self tanner that even a child could use successfully.

2. Dressy capri's are the new casual wedding guest attire.

And for good reason! Women are so tired of shopping for dresses that are comfortable and fit well, and they have really learned how to dress up a basic piece like this. Every single weekend I am dressing pluz sized women for showers and weddings, and capri's work for almost everyone.

They can be worn with blouses, jackets, or flowy tanks, and can be worn with flats or heels. After the event, they can be integrated into your every day wardrobe.

Younger women can wear city shorts with killer heels. (City shorts = bermudas in dressy fabrics)

3. I cannot stress how important a good bra is!

Here are some rules for showing straps.

a. All straps must be the narrower kind. "Comfort" straps (which are wider to support bigger breasts) should never be seen.

b. Clear straps look good, but can be a bit of a pain.

c. Coloured straps are best. White can be acceptable sometimes (picture thin, pristine straps) but beige is always a no-go.

d. Look for wider bands across your back to avoid bunching and back fat roll-over. You don't have to be plus-sized to have this problem.

4. Get the right undies.

I love white skirts and white shorts, but I cringe when I can see someone's thong. Last summer I shopped behind a girl in white capri's with a green thong and every time I saw her afterward (small city) I pegged her as an attention whore. (That sounds so mean, but it's what I thought)

Beige thongs, full backs or control garments work good under white.

*edited to add* that when wearing white, DO NOT go tightly fitted with white bottoms. Looser is always best.

5. The most flattering kind of shorts for every body type - bermudas.

6. A store here in Canada is now making sundresses with built in bras. Brilliant!

7.Keep your summer sandals fresh.

Men and women can keep their sandals fresh by using anti-bacterial wipes to clean the insoles. Works best every two to three wears. Keep a pack of wipes in your car, or your office, because they're good for everything.

8. Think skin tones when it comes to shoes.

Especially if you have short legs! I am always tempted to buy black, but in recent years have noticed how long my legs look in light coloured shoes. Heels, sandals, for men and women alike, this works.

♣ ♣ ♣

That's all I can think of for now. Bill is sick today and we're not sure if it is from the Irish Whiskey (and Tequila) from last night, or a virus. A virus would hurt my parents, so we're waiting until a little later to leave.

against the wind

photographer unknown

It snowed again last night, for several hours! Thankfully, it has melted already. I am so ready for summer, and hope I can find a decent part-time job.

I've been thinking about my personal marketability and it just stinks being a middle-aged woman in this job market. After being ignored by several District Sales Managers for several full time store manager positions, I have no choice but to wonder if my experience is at all relevent today. Just six months ago, I would have said I was, but now I don't know. At this point I'd be happy to get a good paying part time gig just to cover the basics and pay down my credit cards. In 2010, I think I'll have a lot more success.

Today we're going out to the farm so that we can visit my step-dad, Jim. He's having hip replacement surgery on Wednesday (after waiting just under TWO YEARS) and he's a little worried. I would be as well, because he is seventy years old now, and has had high blood pressure and heart issues in the last few years.

Hopefully, everything goes well because as a family, we are not prepared at all to lose anyone. We have no plans in place for Mom, who couldn't live alone on the farm because she's eighty now, and my brother works away from May to October. My sister might be able to take her, but she's kind of a bully. We could set up a place here, but there are a lot of stairs and she hasn't lived in a city for over thirty-five years.

We're all just hoping everything goes well. We'll be heading out this afternoon. Have a good Sunday (or Monday!)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

meet maru

I originally saw video's of Maru on Dlisted, and they linked to this this blog. I thought I would share it with you, too.

there's an idea

2003 or 2004

I met with one of the managers of the insurance office yesterday. He'd said that he had a "few ideas" for me, but his idea was for me to keep my office and sell more insurance. I tried telling him that my energy levels are so low, it's hard to maintain, but for him it comes down to "will or won't".

I may not terminate my agreement this month, but I'm still looking for work.

In the meantime, I picked up a shift at the clothing store today. It kind of sucks because Bill's on call yet won't be called in (as far as we know, there is no oilfield equipment going out, nor coming in) but unlike the insurance gig, I'll be paid for any work I do.

Have a nice weekend!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

her name is lindsey, but she makes everyone call her nathan

photo by Ted Schuetz

This morning I drove Jamie and her friend Renee around the neighbourhood so that they could put up signs advertising their yard sale. The title is taken from something that Jamie said, but the rest is fiction.

♥ ♥ ♥

Someone was doing something to the house next door, and it woke her much earlier than she'd planned. She lay there listening to the scraping, buzzing and pounding while she came fully awake. She shifted under the weight of the clean sheets and blankets (bless her mother, who still believed in Spring Cleaning, and who had hung her bedding out the day before, while she was at school) and sighed because the heat from her sleeping body had created a delicious cacoon.

She didn't want to leave it, but threw aside the heavy comforter anyway. Still nude, she walked into her private bathroom and sat down to pee. In the next few moments her hands were washed and her teeth brushed, and she stood in front of the full length mirror, perusing her body while the tub filled with steamy water.

She had perfect breasts, which seemed ridiculous and incredibly ironic, considering her other problems. Problems that hadn't really been realized until she was sixteen and trying to have sex with the first boy she ever loved. Such pain! She didn't panic at first, because didn't every girl experience some modicum of pain at the start? As time went on, she knew it was something more and her doctor confirmed it. Now several years later, and she was trying to decide which way to go.

She could stay a woman, but actual intercourse was going to be an issue throughout her entire life. The surgeons had said (over and over) that reconstructive surgery could only do so much. There would always be pain, but she loved men. She adored her breasts, and the thought of removing them panicked her. She reached up and cupped them both, admiring how full they'd become just in the last year. Apparently college was good for them, and if she'd gained the freshman fifteen, so be it.

Of course, the only other option was to become male.

Apparently she had some evidence of male sexual organs, although she'd never truly felt "male", unless you counted the fierce competitive nature she'd shown during basketball season. And volleyball. Okay, track too. But who was to say that was a male thing anyway?

Sighing, she slipped into the tub and put the matter out of her mind. If anything was going to happen, it wasn't going to be for (at least) another semester. Just for today, she was going to stay Lindsey.

Just for today she wasn't going to worry.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

green river, running red

circa 1990, 25 years old

Currently, I'm reading a book about the Green River Killer, by Anne Rule.

Most of the victims were prostitutes between the ages of sixteen and nineteen, and this still freaks me out. In 1983, when the majority of the killing was happening, I was eighteen. And it's not as though my life was any different than those of the girls in the book, except that I was living in Alberta, and they were near Seattle.

I'd been raised by my highly depressive and alcoholic mother when she split up with Dad, but she took us to the farm instead of the city, and that might have been a deciding factor. We endured some sexual abuse through a family friend, which also happened to a lot of kids on the street. I left home at seventeen to live with my BF, but we both worked, then a year later, got married. However, that ended when I was nineteen and I scrambled to make a paycheque and find a place to live.

In my very young days, I sold my kitchen table and vacuum cleaner and sometimes my clothes, and I waitressed and bartended and found jobs where staff lodging was included in the pay - which is why I worked in Nordegg and Red Earth Creek. If I was in a bind, my mom or my sister would help me out.

By the time I'd had Jamie, I was almost twenty-four, and the pic above was taken when I was twenty-five. By then I'd left Jamie's dad, set up an apartment with donated furniture, worked 50 hours a week in a restaurant and had my child care costs subsidized by the Alberta government.

Each day as I read more of the book, about more of the girls, I wonder what it was that made the girls turn to prostitution. I think I was lucky on two fronts - the first being that while we all smoked a little weed and drank a lot of whiskey, we didn't do cocaine, ecstacy or meth. The second was that while I've always had boyfriends, they were never the type to say, "Hey Kate - maybe you could turn a few tricks. You know, because you love me."

For those that suffered it, my heart goes out to them. It must have been a lonely burden. To be honest, I'm looking forward to the part of the book that explains what was going on in that killers mind, and what happened to him at trial. The proceedings happened after Dale's death, and back then I'd stopped watching TV, or reading papers. I have no idea if he's still on death row today, or already dead.

On a brighter note, our family has started receiving the Child Tax Benefit again, and we went out to stock up on groceries last night. It feels so good to have a full refridgerator!

Have a good Wednesday.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

17 again

Maybe close to fifteen. This was the year I used my mom's Sears card to order high heeled brown leather boots, and she let me keep them. I was so surprised! (and I never did it again)

another old pic

Jamie, circa 1989, Sylvan Lake, AB

This is back when Jame was my little buddy. She was such a happy baby! It was just a few months after this pic was taken that we had to leave her dad and get an apartment in town. Two months after that, I would have met Dale.

old pics

Here's Dale talking to my sister's son one Christmas. It's probably 1993, or 1994.
He was said to look like a cross between John Stamos, Young Mel Gibson, and Clinton Kelly, from What Not to Wear. Dale and Clinton Kelly had the same mouth, so whenever I watch it, the memories rush back.

The last pic was taken in July of 2002, a few months before his death. One of his final wishes was to visit Gary and Glynis on Vancouver Island, so we flew out and rented a car. After we arrived up island, he took Gary for a drive, even though Dale didn't have a license anymore and wasn't permitted to drive due to his failing health. We figured, what could they do? Even if he was caught, he wouldn't live to answer to the charges.

Jamie is cleaning out the basement to have a garage sale and came across a lot of these photos. When I look at them now, it seems like they took place a lifetime ago.

Monday, April 20, 2009

little pets

This is the type of thing I really miss about B.C. - all the little islands. I've been looking at pics all day, and can't wait until we take our next trip. We haven't taken a honeymoon yet, so I was thinking that a little B&B weekend wouldn't be a bad thing, especially with Em away at camp this summer.

If I work two part time gigs (instead of looking for any other management) it might be doable.

Emily is thinking of getting a guinea pig. Have any of you had one? Any advice?

when I think of those days, it's in sepia

Tillcum Bay Marina, near Sechelt BC

I came across this photo of the place I lived until I was almost nine. The bottom of the pic shows part of the Tillicum Bay Marina. The inlet was lined with a large swath of white rocks, and was shaped exactly like a horseshoe. My dad kept his boat anchored there, and his friends all worked or lived nearby. I remember buying those individual bubble gums in the store, two for a cent. My brother, sister and I fished off the docks a lot, dangling our feet in the water to stay cool. Once, a group of large dog fish swam beneath my feet, scaring the crap out of me (they look like small sharks!)

Beyond the marina is Sechelt Inlet, where we dropped traps for crabs or went digging for oysters. We'd set up camp in the sand, draping boards and blankets across the huge boulders. We'd fish and swim and fool around all day until evening fell, then we'd light a fire and cook what we'd caught or dug up. My mom would play guitar, and we'd fall asleep under the rock tents, listening to the adults drink and sing.

You know, I don't remember ever packing up and coming home. I wouldn't be surprised if they woke us up at 4 am and got us home still high on beer and boiled crab.

It was a different time then.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

up in the air

photo by Dave Massey. Thanks Doug!

I worked at the clothing store yesterday, but it wasn't very busy and gave us all time to chat with one another, especially since the manager wasn't working. One of the other girls said that after the manager had referred me for the management position at the new store, she also referred one of her other previous employees, a boy named Grant that used to work with her. He's twenty-three and had actually worked his way up to manager in Vancouver with this same company. It's a high end unisex store, and if you had to choose between a 23 year old with less experience, or a 44 year old with more, who would you choose?

I would choose the young man.

So, I guess I'm back to square #1 and have no idea where to turn next.

I am still thrilled to be staying on with my current company, as an associate advisor. Since the guy I'll be partnering with has a high first year commissions level, I'll automatically be paid more than three times what I currently make off my own level. Maybe I can stay PT at this other store job, as long as the manager doesn't mess with me. I'm a little disappointed she didn't say anything at all about this guy Grant...and maybe I would have persued something else a little harder if I'd known. Live and learn!

Hope you all have a good Sunday.

Friday, April 17, 2009

simpsonize yourself

If you happen to be bored at work, or at home, try this! It's not a very good screenshot, but the best I could do since I am in a hurry.

Happy Friday!

becoming kate

photo by Dan Gheban

One thing that I love about having a blog, is being able to write whatever I want, whenever I want. I am just so glad that I followed that link! I'd been posting on the widow's message board but was getting tired of it. Not so much the newbies, who went there to find validation and support, but the more seasoned widows that fancied themselves overly important and started flame wars to prove it.

Anyway, many of you will remember Kamai40 from JS, who was widowed the year after I was. She posted a link on her sig line at widownet, and I followed it. The idea of an online journal was especially nice, since I had fallen for Bill and needed a place to document all the drama of my LDR. I liked it so much, I kept it when he finally moved here, when we got Em, when we got married, and all through the trials and tribulations of selling life and health insurance.

But I wasn't always becomingkate. When I was first widowed, my username was kate2108. I had chosen "Kate" because I felt that the person I was before didn't exist anymore, now that Dale was dead. You know how after being coupled for awhile, you're never just "Kathy" anymore, but "Dale and Kathy"?

Going back to just Kathy was one of the hardest things I'd ever done, and while I had a full time job and a teenager and an apartment, I wasn't truly living in real time. In the six, seven, eight hours I spent online after coming home from work, I changed myself to Kate. I was kate2108 because my wedding anniversary to Dale was August 21, 1993.

Later, when the first WN crashed, I changed my username to becomingkate. That was halfway through 2003, and my transformation was just beginning. I didn't want to be the resentful bitch I was when Dale was drinking, and I didn't want to be the martyr I'd been when he was dying. I wanted to be known as someone in transition - someone who was recovering, but good natured and funny. Tough, but sexy, and loyal. Someone trying to be a better person, a better Mother.

It was sometime in 2005 that I felt I'd finally become the person I wanted to be. Bill had been calling me Kate since we'd met, Em called me Kate instead of "Mom". Just recently, she was being a smart aleck and said "Okie-dokie, KATHY?" and I replied, "Hey! Show some respect."

"Whattya mean?" she asked.

"I'm your Mother, you can't call me Kathy. Kate means MOM to you, Missy."

And I meant it.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

afternoon delight

photographer unknown

I've been trying to write something all day.

Well, since I didn't wake up until 11:00 am, make that all afternoon. You know, this is one of the things that bothers me. I was asleep by 11:00 pm last night, so why did I sleep twelve hours?

I suppose it won't happen once I start setting an alarm, but it is still strange. You know, when Dale was alive I used to sleep four to five hours during the night, and maybe have a two hour nap after work - that's because the house was always in such chaos.

After I got up, Bill called and said he was coming into town to wash bins at the Jumbo Wash, so that meant he could come home for some makin' out. Errr, I mean lunch. After he had some chicken, he went back to work and I did a load of laundry, cleaned up one of Lola's mistakes, and sat down here.

That's when Jamie came upstairs and turned on the TV. That means it's time for me to go to work.

Hope you all have a nice Thursday!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

stranger than fiction

These two fascinate me.

I'm not a fan of Cruise, although I quite liked Risky Business and A Few Good Men.

It's the Scientology that keeps me from going to any of his movies, and since he's such a good actor, it's really a shame.

Still, these two, along with their daughter, continue to feed my curiosity. The movies, the money, the power - I'm pretty sure that he interviewed her for the position she's in now. I wonder if she'll ever have her own career, or will he create it for her? How much do they know about the cult, and the slavery? If she ever left him, would he let her have Suri?

With so much power behind him, it's likely that no one will ever really know what goes on in their real lives. Maybe that's for the best.

more than paper

The more connections you and your lover make, not just between your bodies, but between your minds, your hearts, and your souls, the more you will strengthen the fabric of your relationship.
- Barbara De Angelis

Whenever Bill and I are out and about running errands, we often listen to CBC Radio just to see what's going on. Must be an age thing, because I wouldn't have been caught dead listening to CBC Radio in my youth! At any rate, we were out and about last night. Bill's hair needed trimming and we needed to pay the cell bill, so that I can get calls about the jobs I've applied for.

In between, we went for coffee and wandered around Canadian Tire before getting in the truck to head south so that we could get some vegetables and stop at the bank. That's when we heard the story of this girl who'd been living with her boyfriend for nine years, and was interviewing all her friends and family. It seemed as though each time someone in her circle got married, she'd long to do it herself. She started wondering, why did she want to marry? What was it about marriage that she wanted? At the same time, her longtime boyfriend was digging in his heels, trying to avoid the subject with her, or used the "it's just a piece of paper" explanation.

Is it really? Well, my first thought is, if you don't believe in marriage to start with, the only difference is going to be the piece of paper. I used to say that in my early twenties, after my first marriage failed. For the record, my first marriage failed because I didn't marry for the right reasons. My second marriage ended when my husband died, but if it hadn't been for the alcoholism, I would have considered it a successful marriage.

My marriage to Bill is my third one, so obviously, I have come to believe in it.

Marriage is the ultimate partnership. When it comes to love, family, money and sex, a marriage is the ultimate in commitment. I'm sure there are people that would say a person can commit without marriage, and I suppose that is true to a degree, but ultimately, if you're not willing to say the vows and sign the contract, something is holding you back. In your heart of hearts, you know the reason why.

If you're married but it's not working, that doesn't mean you have to become jaded and consider it a bad thing altogether. One day, you might be surprised, if you meet the right person.

To marry or not to marry, only you can say. But to Bill and I, it's much more than a piece of paper. It's a declaration, and it was one of the nicest things we've ever done for one another. Say what you will about the legalities, but to me it's not about that. I guess it all comes down to a feeling. A connection.

I'm such a romantic.

Monday, April 13, 2009

mr. and mrs. clean

It's Easter Monday, and a little rainy, so we're doing more cleaning today. You might have noticed a ladder in the top right hand corner - Bill's been up there, cleaning the ceiling fan, the cross, the window sill and the top of our entranceway closet.

Just before Bill moved in, when Jamie was seventeen, she had a house party here one weekend while I in Calgary visiting him. She called us in the morning to break the news, which involved RCMP, some damamge to my bedroom door and bedroom window. When we got back, we found empties on top of the closet, and a joint!

Thankfully, it was minor, and Jamie no longer pushes her boundaries. At least, that I can tell - she's pretty good about asking for anything she needs from us, rather than taking it behind our backs. It's so nice that we can trust both kids.

Do you all have the day off today, or did you have to work?

Sunday, April 12, 2009

I dream


I have wanted to visit Greece for years. Especially Santorini. The villas, the food, the bazooki music - it's so romantic. I have wanted to visit there for so many years, Bill has promised me that if I happen to die before we can go, he will take some of my ashes on a trip, and scatter them in the water.

Hopefully, we'll get to spend a few weeks there some day, and I won't have to wait until I'm dead. If I save for a proper retirement, we'll be staying for a month!

have a lovely Easter

photo by Hermann Uwe

Happy Easter!

It's going to be a very quiet day for us. Emily is going to stay the night with Bill's sister, who lives about an hour west of us. She moved out there about two years ago, although we don't socialize with her. I met her once, about six months before Bill and I were married, but they'd drifted apart in the last ten years with her in Newfoundland and him living out here. I find it ironic that she ended up so close, but it's nice that Em can go stay with her - especially since they all have such heavy Newfoundland accents! I bet Em really misses that.

Last night I was having a hell of a time understanding what Bill was saying. When that happens, I usually ask if he's been speaking to family, because his accent gets really thick. Or as he would say, tick. The phrase I asked him to repeat was "I hadda bat." I kept thinking, "bat? What bat?" but what he meant was, he'd had a bath. Oooohhhhhh! To be honest, I think that the way he speaks is sexy.

Occasionally, he imitates my flat Albertan accent, but when he does it he uses proper English and good grammar and I end up sounding like the Queen of England, LOL.

He's working this morning, and as luck would have it, he's working near his sister's home, which is why Em is going with him. I hope he gets home by lunchtime.

Friday, April 10, 2009

I love a rainy night

I'm sitting here in the dark, watching for lightning. There has been a few big ones, followed by the deep rumble of the thunder. And rain! It's so exciting, after the long Alberta winter.

I just love this part of Spring.

good friday

It's been a lovely, quiet morning. Bill is home, which means I had to give up the computer until he was finished reading the news, but then he went outside to work on the truck and rake the lawn. The snow is finally gone!

There's not a lot on the agenda today. Emily had a sleepover last night, making that the second night in a row she's spent away - the night before last she was at band camp, which she really enjoyed. Jamie has to fill out some paperwork to get her Indian Status, which will help her get the grants and bursaries she needs to pay for college.

Later on, we'll watch The Passion of the Christ, which is so sad that Bill will get tears in his eyes. We'll tease him, but he'll be good natured about it :)

Hope you all have a great Easter weekend!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

38 Things

Thanksgiving, 2004

About me.

1. In grade six, I got 100% on every single spelling test but was upset when the teacher didn't notice at all.

2. I went boy-crazy when I was thirteen years old.

3. My parents bought my best friend and I a case of Strawberry Angel sparkling wine when we were fifteen and let us get drunk at a family bonfire.

4. The house where we lived as children was a log home with a wood burning stove.

5. We had a black Lab named Candy who was trained to retrieve ducks.

6. In the log house, I remember laying on the green carpet with my head resting on Candy, watching Lawrence Welk on a B&W console TV.

7. In HS, my favourite jeans were Fancy Ass jeans.

8. Throughout my life I have had four Signifigant Others. Pat, from 1980-1985 John, from 1986-1990, Dale, from 1990-2002 and Bill, from 2004 to present. As you can see, I prefer being coupled. Bill is the love of my life.

9. My nails grow fast and stay long.

10. I've had the same hairstyle since I was little.

11. I love Pepsi.

12. I quit smoking May 4, 2007.

13. I have a long scar on my abdomen from when I had my gallbladder removed when Jamie was two weeks old.

14. I love gold, and I love diamonds. I have never truly liked silver or white gold.

15. I subscribed to my first fashion magazine at the age of 12.

16. My first pair of high heeled shoes was a pair of Candies stiletto slides in 1979.

17. I was never athletic, but always dated athletes.

18. I believe that I am highly intuitive.

19. I wear a size 9 shoe, unless it's a high heeled boot - then I wear a 10.

20. I have scars on my ankles from rock climbing as a kid.

21. I have arthritus starting in my left index finger.

22. I have a mole on my neck. A British soldier once said that a beauty mark was put there because otherwise, I was entirely too perfect.

23. It worked.

24. I must shave my legs every single day, or the itching drives me mad.

25. I wear contact lenses but want Lasik surgery.

26. I hate that my mouth is small and I don't smile naturally.

27. I haven't worn pantyhose since 1991.

28. My heritage is 100% aboriginal (Haida) but my parents are white.

29. Apparently, I was stolen from my birth mother and placed in foster care by the BC government. The movement has since been dubbed "The 60's Scoop"

30. My first job (other than babysitting) was working at a lake resort, in the concession.

31. I could drive when I was 12.

32. I lost my virginity when I was 14.

33. I'm worried about pain management when I'm old

34. Of the lovers I have had, four have committed suicide.

35. I'm tenacious, and usually reach my goals

36. The most money I have ever won in the lottery was $40

37. The song that Dale sends to me most is "Sweet Child of Mine" by Guns'n Roses

38. I'm looking forward to spending the next 30 years with Bill.

I was tagged by Kim. Play along if you have time.

pimpin again

I come across new blogs all the time, and I'd like to tell you about one that I enjoy a lot. From what I gather, Pacing the Panic Room is the story of a writer and photographer who is chronicaling his wife's pregnancy. Here's his bio:

There is nothing I can write in this space that you will not learn by reading my blog. In a nutshell I have the propensity to worry, I fear heart attacks, but despite that fear could eat Papaya hot-dogs everyday for the rest of my life. Sometimes when I stare at my wife I feel so lucky I actually shine like a pot of gold. I have decided that I am going to make my living writing stories and as a working photographer, so I'm going to. For those of you that have not been reading from the start I am a newlywed Husband, a Step-Father to the super awesome Littlest Buddy, and we are expecting a baby in June :)

Today's entry is a must read, especially if you are a mom or a dad. Priceless!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

fashion citation

This pic appeared on the gossip sites a few weeks ago, so I thought that I'd keep it for a guessing game. Does anyone know who these atrocious shoes belong to?

If you do, please comment to win! The first one to do so will win something that I'll mail out this coming Friday.

spring clean

We've spent the last few days doing some spring cleaning! Not that there isn't still a foot of snow on the ground, but at least it's starting to melt in earnest.

Most of the cleaning started in the kitchen, but then we noticed someone puked on the bed (we're not placing blame, LOLA) and off we went to the laundrymat where they have huge washing machines. $8 later, and our king sized comforter was clean again. We hung it out on the balcony yesterday and brought it in to hang over my staircase last night.

This morning it's completely dry and looks great. Love that king sized bed, but man - the blankets are so heavy! I like it that Bill was around this morning to help me. He's usually gone by 7 am, but he got a call last night saying they wanted him up at Etson near midnight (daytime road bans) so he's going in later.

I haven't received any job offers yet, but we're hoping that'll be today. In the meantime, I think we're going to finish some cleaning around here. Have a good Tuesday!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

get busy living

Dale and Kathy, 1991

I received an invitation to visit Dale's Sensei in the next few weeks, so I have been thinking quite a lot about the old karate days. Of course, that makes me think of how he was sick, how I fought a losing battle trying to save him, and what my life was like directly after he died in 2002. The following entries were written in another kind of online journal, which I found in 2006. Some of my old journalspace readers may remember them.

Oct 27, 2002

More packing today, and my drawers and walls are empty. Pictures of us when we first started dating, when we married, and of his karate days. Hours of going through bills, letters, cards, and medical receipts. 6 years of living and dying in this house, and memories! It's getting harder to decide what to keep, what to throw away. This and that with notes in his handwriting, letterhead he'll never use, logbooks and manuals and maps. Binders filled with work stuff, applications he won't need. I keep hoping I'll come across some treasure...some type of letter, or note that I missed before. But, I think he didn't have it in him to write very much at the end. He went through weakness and confusion, and I wish now I had videotaped him or recorded his voice. 4 more days, and I'll have to say good-bye to the life we led here.

Oct 30, 2002

My last morning to write before I dismantle this computer and try to find a place to live. What a strange day so far...get out of bed, pack it up...get out of the shower, pack it up, get dressed, pack up my clothes. Bit by bit, everythings going, and later today I will say good-bye to the home I lived in with Dale. Good-bye to the living room we watched TV and read in, good-bye to the bedroom that I last made love to Dale in, and good-bye to the kitchen where we cooked together. I won't miss the sight of the hallway...the last path Dale took out of this house after he died. Whatever happens now, it will be a new direction that will be without Dale. The only memories I have will be in my heart, and not in every room. As I drive away from this place, I will try to put the pain of this experience behind me, and grieve for the person he was, not for what happened here. I hope the ghosts of regret stay here.

Nov 22, 2002

It's been 22 days since I could write here. I moved into a hotel for several days, waiting for some resolution with Dale's insurance policy. After 5 nights, I scrambled to get us into an apartment that was affordable and in a better van broke down, my cell phone died, and my life was dismantled for weeks. Work progressed, but I wasn't really there...maybe in body, but in my mind I was trying to keep from having a breakdown. Only now, with our phone hooked up, my van running again, and beds in the bedroom can I feel our lives starting to go forward. The last day in the old house was heartbreaking. Driving away was painful, and it took me some time to say good-bye. I think it's the only time I was actually physically sick with grief, putting that place behind me! It's funny how the apartment we now have is similiar in layout, and our things make it seem as though Dale HAS been here. His urn is in the living room, with his photos (even his Sensei still graces our walls) his sword, and Japanese wishing pot, some of his books and movies, and his work. We have 14 jobs to finish up, then after Xmas even that'll be done. Life is moving on, bit by bit, and now I wonder who I really am? For an independent girl, I never realized how important it was to be Dale's Wife. Now I'm just a single Mother, trying to survive on a daily basis. He was such a special part of me, and I worry that when I finally learn to detach, I will be just another face in the crowd.

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Things have changed so much!

I like to post these old thoughts for those that might be lacking in hope.

Bill and I are off to run some errands. Have a wonderful, sunny Sunday.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

the weekend is half over?

photo by wildlife ranger

What a busy few days!

Yesterday I went for an interview at a health insurance provider and it went very well. They won't be making any decisions for a few weeks. Then I had my telephone interview with the clothing store and it went well too. The manager of the place where I work weekends thinks it's mine for the taking, so I hope that's true. I imagine I'll hear more on Monday or Tuesday.

After I finished at the office, I had an appointment to sell some insurance, so that was exciting since I haven't done much prospecting in the last few weeks. I still have several more policies to drum up to pay for my last month's rent.

I worked at the clothing store today and I have to tell you - it sure doesn't seem like there's a recession going on. Women were spending hundreds of dollars on capris and work clothes, and we finished the week at 121% of our budget.

We did a huge percentage of that today and I'm exhausted! I'm going to have a nap, and check in with you all in a bit.

Hope your weekend is nice so far.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

busy day tomorrow

I have two job interviews tomorrow. First thing in the morning, I see someone about an admin job for a health insurance provider, then later in the day I have the phone interview with the VP of the clothing store.

I don't really want the admin job, but I figure that going will bring me good job karma :)

I appreciate all the good wishes, and I'll see you when I get back - as always, hoping for an offer!

someone needs a stylist, stat!

via go fug yourself

This is what happens when you

a) let your wife dress you

b) you're too cheap to hire a stylist

neighbours suck

photo by Marco Langbroek

Our neighbour is a coward.

I've known him for years (he used to work with Dale) and he was a coward and a dick then, and he still is.

He's the one that kept calling me "baby" a few years ago when his daughter dinged the front panel on my car. Then when Bill moved in, he started making noise about where Bill would park (it's a public street.) He flattened Bill's tires twice and once he knocked out a tail light, and he did all this because he doesn't like people to park anywhere near his house, which sits directly across the street from our house.

Twice last week, when Bill was having to leave the house at 2 am, he parked his work truck near the dick's house, and dickwad called Bill's company to complain. He said that someone dropped a letter off at his house, saying move the truck.

He just can't be honest, and has to pass the buck every single time.

I can't let it go. I'm either going to get out the sidewalk chalk, and write "coward" in GIGANTIC letters in front of his house, or send him a note that says "here's your letter, you coward."

Any other suggestions?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


photo by Monica Lopossay

Last night's interview went very well! The first thing that I noticed was that the District Sales Manager was at least ten years older than me, so I was relieved about that. The second thing was that she checked out what I was wearing (black pencil skirt, white blouse, brown belted jacket, calf length, high heeled leather boots) and nodded to herself as we were walking toward the coffee bar. Since I felt I'd been passed over by H&M due to age and/or image, this was a good sign.

We talked about former employees and who I might have regretted hiring, and those that I was proud of. We talked about operations, a lot. This store is only 3000 sq feet compared to 4000 in my old store, but the expected sales are almost a million more.

She said she was passing my phone number onto the VP to do a telephone interview and that very few had gotten that far. I hope the VP calls today.

We also mailed a letter away to Tina, Em's bio-mom. Em wrote the first page, saying she wanted to communicate through letters or emails for awhile, because she was having a hard time dealing with the stress of the phone calls. We included a letter explaining that Em had gone back to counselling around Christmas.

There were many phone conversations between you and she about trips/visits for the Christmas holidays, and Em started getting nervous.
It has always been our intention that if you would like to visit her here, we would not stand in the way of the court order but help in any way we could regarding supervised visits. However, we just can't send her to Newfoundland without knowing if she'd be alright, and to be honest, she is scared to go alone.

There were many calls that upset her in November and December. I think the biggest issue is the threat to take us to court. Once she started seeing her psychologist, it was determined that those calls threatened to upset the only stable home she has ever known. The stress of fielding those calls and trying to answer in a way so as not to upset you have caused her extreme pain and vomiting.

This letter is the result of three months of counselling and on the recommendation of her psychologist.

I was a little worried about mailing it yesterday, because that kind of thing usually brings out the worst in Tina. The last two phone messages she left indicated she was still using something - Vicodan or Xanax, or maybe sleeping pills. When she gets like that, she sounds like she's in the middle of a long narrow tunnel and speaking through marbles in her mouth. If she gets into the coke, we'll be in real trouble. That's when she considers herself all powerful, like the evil queen in Snow White.

Today I'm doing some laundry for Bill, but a little later I'll be going down to my office so that I can process some non-smoking forms for two clients.

Happy Humpday.