Thursday, January 31, 2008

Smudge's Busy Day

Goodness Smudge had a lot of work to do yesterday, but she plowed through it diligently and with good humor. What a girl!

First of all she had to help Bunny fluff his fur.

Then it was time to help Grandpa with his coiff. She took great delight in this activity.

Now on to the next task, practicing her Pat-a-cake skills. Cute, cute, cute.

Time to work on her own "Do". Give me that brush Grandma and let me do it myself.

Now that personal grooming is all taken care of, it is time to help Grandpa work on the computer.

Hmmmm, let me see, what's next?

Oh yes, learn how to feed myself so I can grow big and strong, and have lots of energy to put in another busy day tomorrow.
A baby's work is never done. What fun!

The Stuff of Dreams

When I got up the other day, this is what I saw out the bedroom window. The moon was high and bright in the sky, and the clouds looked like mountains. It made me stop and think for a minute and ask, - Where the heck am I? Is it morning or night? Maybe I am in a waking dream and I am really in Vancouver! Oh, wouldn't that be lovely. At the A-Team's apartment in that fair city, we had views of mountains and ocean right outside our windows every morning- for real. What a treat!

Back here at home we have neither mountains nor oceans. Sigh! How wonderful it was to see something completely unexpected, mountains outside a familiar window the other morning. I did have to make an extra effort to stop and look though. I didn't just open the curtains and walk away without looking because I thought I knew what was there. I had to be in the moment and really look.

I made a few attempts to get a picture and none of them turned out that clearly, but at least you get the idea from these two. I didn't know if I would post them on my blog or not, but when I read the quote on my calendar yesterday morning I thought they just might fit in here.

People's dreams are made out of what they do all day, the same way a dog that runs after rabbits will dream of rabbits. It's what you do that makes your soul, not the other way around.
Barbara Kingsolver

I hope you find new and exciting landscapes waiting outside familiar windows in your life today, and your day is full of the stuff of dreams.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

On her own two feet

I am sure some of you out in blogland are mighty tired of pictures of the Smudge, but family in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and South Korea are lovin' them all. So, for all you loved ones scattered here there and everywhere, here are a few more just for you.
Yes, she is standing on her own two feet. What a smart girl she is! She hasn't deigned to crawl yet, but she rolls everywhere she wants to go, and would rather stand than sit!

Thesha is busy taking her course at work, so Smudge has been here for a few hours everyday this week and Grandpa and I are enjoying this time with her.

She is growing and learning new things everyday. Holding her own sippy-cup, playing pat-a-cake and waving are all becoming regular events.

Oh, Thesha will be dropping her off any minute now, so must run. Will talk to you all again soon.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Hope is a Sideroad

Thesha and I went shopping in Ottawa the other day and I did backseat duty to keep Smudge entertained on the rather long drive. We took back roads into town and when we hit Hope Sideroad I was reminded of this blog Thesha posted when she was going through the deep dark days of infertility treatments. What a long dark heartbreaking journey that was. My eyes welled up with tears and my heart beat a little faster when I looked at Smudge laughing a giggling beside me now as we drove along that very road the other day.

Nine Months Old
Smudge if now nine months old and she is a wonder. I look at her in awe some days and marvel at this perfect little person who was only hoped for at this time two years ago, and only a smudge on an ultrasound last year. Oh the wonder of birth and creation.

If you are on a long dark journey today, I hope you find this Sideroad which leads you to the bright patch on the road just up ahead. Keep on, keeping on.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Winter fix!

For a baby, the trouble with winter is the bulky snowsuit. Poor Smudge can hardly bend in the middle when we get her all bundled up. Her hands and feet disappear in the depths of the very necessary thing when the thermometer is reading -25, her head gets lost in the hood and her little chin is smushed by the collar.

In the picture below she is enjoying a stretch after being strapped in the dreaded car seat for half an hour, but all she can see is the ceiling. Not fun!
So, a trip to the mall is the perfect fix for this problem. Snowsuits and coats are stowed in the back of the stroller, baby, mom and grandma are comfy, and we are ready to stroll.

Oh the luxury of going for a walk like this in the middle of winter.

Mom needed a new pair of running shoes, so the shoe store was our first stop. While mom tried on shoes and talked to the salesman, Smudge made a new friend, Preston. They seemed fascinated with each other and had a grand time interacting while the moms shopped. I think Smudge is trying to tell Preston to take his coat off and be comfy.

How open and free children are with each other. No masks at all, just openness and honesty.
"I am who I am and I like me, and I see in you someone I could like too. Let's be friends. "
How refreshing and heart warming.

Let's give ourselves a winter fix today and look at the world with the eyes of a child. Get your head out of that hood, and look, really look at anything in front of you as if you have never seen it before. Study the ordinary world to see the wonder in it. Get rid of all those bulky inhibitions that restrict you, and sit up and take notice. Get your hands and feet out there, and greet all you meet as possible friends.

Walk in the spring of this winter day and have a refreshing time. Yes, that is the perfect winter fix for our souls. Enjoy!

Friday, January 25, 2008

Rosy Cheeks

By the look of those cheeks, that tooth should be here any minute.
Things were back to normal when we went to visit yesterday. She woke up all smiles and chuckles and was very happy to see us. What a little ray of sunshine she is on a snowy January afternoon.

Hope you find some sunshine to brighten your January days too.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Today, Like Every Other Day

Today, Like Every Other Day

Today, like every other day, we wake up empty and frightened.
Don't open the door to the study and begin reading.
Take down a musical instrument.

Let the beauty we love be what we do.
There are hundreds of ways to kneel
and kiss the ground.


I came across this poem one morning when I did wake up feeling empty and frightened, and it spoke to me. So, on this day when I don't have much to say, I thought I would share it and a picture of one of my favorite places to walk on a winter day.

If you are feeling out of sorts today, take down a musical instrument, or go for a walk, and let the beauty you love be what you do.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Heart Warmer

AC and I put in a busy afternoon running errands yesterday, and weary as we were, we had to stop by to see the Smudge before heading home. Wouldn't you know she was sleeping. Drat! She cut a new tooth, and another one is one the way, so her little tummy is upset, sleep patterns are disrupted and things are upside down in her world these days.

While sitting and chatting with Thesha we soon heard sounds of upset coming from the nursery. Smudge had only been sleeping for about twenty minutes and she was up howling already. Oh dear. It is not like her to wake up like that at all. She is usually all smiles and chuckles when she wakes up.

Thesha went to the nursery and tried to sooth her, but the crying continued all the way out to the living room, where we sat waiting for her. She just wouldn't settled down...until Grandma held her!

Heart warming indeed to be able to settle an upset baby. Joy! Joy! Joy!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Last July we went to my brother's house in Peterborough for a fun filled weekend. We arrived late afternoon, but didn't even think of getting our bags out of the car until late that night. By this time it was dark, I misjudged the depth of the front step and did a magnificent "triple axle" combined with a "double lutz" off my brother's front porch, landing in a spectacular "flying sit-spin" Ker Plunk! Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!!!!!!!

I really did a number on my foot, ankle and leg. We did the RICE treatment - Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation - for the next few days, and that kept the swelling down a tad, but my leg, right up to mid calf, was black and blue. Oh dear, I could hardly walk. After spending three hours in the ER enduring multiple x-rays , combined with painful poking and prodding it was determined that neither foot nor ankle were broken, but I had a nasty sprain. Ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch!

I hobbled around for the rest of the summer using a cane. Not fun! Eventually the bruising faded and the swelling went down, but the pain never did take its leave. September found me at physio twice a week for treatment, and that helped a bit, but not much. Walking, biking, Tai chi, Line Dancing were all put on the shelf while I tried to deal with this aggravating injury.

Fast forward to January - I am still suffering with this dad-blasted ankle and don't quite know what to do. Hence the reason for this blog. Do you dear folk have any suggestions? Do I get back into my old activities and just work through the pain or do I continue to rest it after all this time? I find that if I do push myself to do something, not only am I in pain, but my toes go numb. Not good! My doctor suggested that I try Celebrex to see if that helped, but I am still thinking about that one. There was such a controversy around that drug and how it affects the heart.

A friend recommended I try acupuncture. Have you tried it? What do you think? If you recommend it, how do I find a good acupuncturist? What do I ask, look for, expect?

So dear friends, I am open for suggestions. I want to get a handle on this before biking season starts in a couple of months. HELP!

Hope to hear from you soon. Your dear friend 'Limping Lilly"

Monday, January 21, 2008

Sweet Treats

Friday found AC and I at the coffee shop for a delicious mug of Chai Tea. MMMMM, so good on a cold blustery January afternoon.

After the sweet treat at the coffee shop we stopped in at Thesha's for another kind of sugar.

MMMM, hugs and kisses with the baby, sweetest treat of all.

Hope you have a positively scrumptious day.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Hope is a sideroad

Thesha and I went shopping in Ottawa the other day and I did backseat duty to keep Smudge entertained on the rather long drive. We took back roads into town and when we hit Hope Sideroad I was reminded of this blog Thesha posted when she was going through the deep dark days of infertility treatments. What a long dark heartbreaking journey that was. My eyes welled up with tears and my heart beat a little faster when I looked at Smudge laughing a giggling beside me now as we drove along that very road the other day.

Smudge if now nine months old and she is wonder. I look at her in awe some days and marvel at this perfect little person who was only hoped for at this time two years ago, and only a smudge on an ultrasound last year. Oh the wonder of birth and creation.

If you are on a long dark journey today, I hope you find that sideroad which leads you to the bright patch that is just up ahead.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Day at Grandma & Grandpa's House

Thesha had a breakfast date yesterday so Smudge was dropped off at our house bright and early to spend the morning with us. Oh joy! First task of the morning was breakfast. As you can see, Smudge was quite intent on exploring what was in her new dish.
Evidently she liked what she found and managed to get it in her hair, nose, ear, and wonder of wonders, even her mouth. She had her own spoon, but soon commandeered mine too.

This is a Bunnykins dish that was given to me when Thesha was a baby and it put in years of service with Thesha and Althegal. Lots of warm wonderful memories flooded the kitchen when Smudge used it for the first time yesterday.

Later that morning I had an appointment to get my hair cut, so after breakfast Grandpa was on his own for awhile and he did just fine during his solo babysitting gig. Even managed to deal with a poopy diaper.

When I came home Smudge was helping Grandpa dust the floors.

Then it was time for lunch. Another fine mess was made, but a grand time was had by all.

One quick last minute check for cobwebs and then it was time to go home.

Floors were all clean, so Smudge and I went to our separate beds for a nap.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Middleville Celtic Jam

We got together with old friends on the weekend and went to the Celtic Jam in Middleville. A smaller than normal group gathered on stage to play, but they were enthusiastic and had fun playing for a large audience.
We arrived late and left early, so sat in the back row to soak up the music and share a few laughs.

During one song I "played" the "coffee cup". Yep, without thinking I was tapping along with the music and I guess the sound carried right up to the stage area. At the end of the song they asked "the drummer" to come up and join the group. I declined seeing as we would be leaving early, but they insisted that we join the group and play an instrument, so they passed this "folk" down to us. AC played the "folk" while I continued to play the "coffee cup".

When you shake this little gal her mouth clickety-clacks and if you hit her against your leg just right it sounds like you are playing the spoons. We had a blast.

You can make music with just about anything, so grab a coffee cup, or a couple of spoons, and have some fun.
Ready now? All together on three...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Just for you

This is for you dear friend. When I was reading your blog this morning, and was touched by your heartache, this poem came to mind. So, this is just for you.

The Journey
by David Whyte

Above the mountains the geese turn into the light again
Painting their black silhouettes on an open sky.
Sometimes everything has to be inscribed across the heavens
so you can find the one line already written inside you.
Sometimes it takes a great sky to find that
small, bright and indescribable wedge of freedom in your own heart.
Sometimes with the bones of the black sticks
left when the fire has gone out
someone has written something new in the ashes of your life.
You are not leaving you are arriving.

(House of Belonging, poetry by David Whyte)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Cool heat

Two years ago we downsized and moved into a much smaller house, a townhouse actually. It was, and still is, a bit of an adjustment at times, but on the whole, we are both loving our smaller digs and the freedom they give us. On a cold winter's day, the one thing we do miss in this new house is a fireplace. We had a small gas fireplace in the family room of our other house and I loved to curl up beside it on a cold winter morning. The only problem was, for this menopausal women, see Menopause Cake, it too soon got too hot for comfort and I had to turn it off.

Well, in our new house, I have found the perfect solution to this problem. The wonderful cool heat of this fireplace is just the ticket. It lights up the room, fills the air with crackling sounds and warms up the atmosphere without heating up the room. Oh joy!

I think it is just about time to pour myself that second cup of coffee and go curl up in front of it for awhile.

Hope you find a cool warm spot to sit this morning too.

Talk to you all later.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Walk in the clouds

"Look at your feet. You are standing in the sky. When we think of the sky, we tend to look up, but the sky actually begins at the earth." Diane Ackerman

This quote was on my calendar the other morning and it made me stop and think. I thought you might enjoy this new way of looking at your feet too. We are standing in the sky. Isn't that neat?

Step out and enjoy your walk in the clouds today.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Girl's Afternoon Out

The rains stopped, the winds died down and the sun came out, so Thesha, Smudge and I headed out for an afternoon of window shopping. We walked the streets of this delightful small town, oohed and aahed over many things, tried on a few, bought a couple, talked to store owners, patted the resident dog, Carter, at this store and had a fun afternoon.
Quaint little towns with unique stores are so much nicer than big malls. Thesha and I often visit this area to shop because we feel like we are visiting friends not just stores. After our walk-a-bout it was time for coffee, and we had a favorite spot we headed for. Surprisingly - not Tim's!!! In this town Grounds is the place to go. Good coffee, wonderful tea, delicious muffins, fabulous artwork, one of a kind jewellery, off the wall pottery, and amazing stained glass, all displayed beautifully. It is a wonderful combination of comfy seats, good food, great drinks, and eye candy. Smudge was quite taken with the stained glass figures looking over her shoulder in the coffee shop.
Smudge had yogurt and Puffs while Thesha and I sipped Chai Tea. Yum!

Enough of sitting in the chair like a big girl, time for a snuggle with mom.
Bright memories were made and a good time was had by all. Hope you had a bright day too.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Sittin' Pretty

Wow! Day two and already another post. This is promising! Thanks for all the cyber hugs and hellos.

After days of rain and high winds, we finally are being gifted with a day of sunshine and quiet. I can see green grass and bare concrete outside so it looks like spring, but 10cm of snow are called for tonight. Yahoo! I love the snow. I want winter to be winter so we can snowshoe during the day, snuggle in at night with hot chocolate laced with Bailey's, and curl up in front of the fire with a good book feeling all snug and warm while the snow falls outside. Love it, love it, love it.

I don't love AC going out to shovel the stuff in the morning though, but Good Neighbour eases that worry and I am free to relish in the joy of a good snowstorm. So, let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

I usually have a winter project on the go to keep me busy on a cold winter's night or dull afternoon. At such times you will find me crocheting or knitting something or other. This year Bug and Puff asked for leg warmers for Christmas so I spent many an afternoon and evening working on said items.

On this snowy afternoon Smudge came over to help with the project. What fun! Notice all the cushions spread around just in case she takes a tumble? She wasn't sitting on her own for the longest time, but that is in the past now.
She sits up like a big girl these days, and rather enjoys the whole new view it gives her of the world.
While Gramma and the girl are having a conflab on the floor mom is having a cuddle with the Rockster while she tests her brain age on Grandpa's new DS that he got for Christmas.

Yes, we all enjoyed a warm and fuzzy afternoon. Thesha, Smudge and I have a date for this afternoon too. We are going window shopping, and then will stop at a quaint little cafe for a hot drink before heading back home. Total fun to make a warm memory on a cold day.

Hope you find something heartwarming to do on this cold January day too.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Return from Mars

A New Year has begun, and I am trying to get my act together, and once again touch base with all my friends in blogdom. So many of you have passed along greetings, hugs and best wishes through AC - thank you - that I thought I would pick up the torch.. ah...pen..ah...keyboard, and send hugs back to you too! Always nice to get a cyber hug and a hello huh?

What better way to get back in the groove than to post a pic or two of this most precious Grandbaby. Isn't she the cutest ever?

Mom had an appointment in the big city yesterday so I went along to do back seat duty with the Princess while mom drove. This little one does not like the car seat - AT ALL! She wants to wiggle and squiggle and squirm and MOVE. Buckles, belts, buttons and other gadgets on these new car seats really hamper this most active baby. After about ten minutes she is ready to howl - LET ME OUT OF HERE!

As you can tell from these most delightful pics - I did a good job at keeping her entertained for the journey there and back again. What fun grandparenting is. I am lovin' it.

Thanks again for all the hugs and hellos while I was letting my laptop gather dust. Here's hoping for a "dustless" new year. I will talk to you again soon.