Friday, 27 May 2016

Exploding Luna

Friday in a quiet office on a hot day. One more hour and I will make my escape, into the heat, onto a bus, to a messy house.

There are so many tasks to be completed outside right now that my interior has gone to crap. My kitchen floor, always annoying because it is white, looks very needful of a wash. My Luna cat has been shedding black fur all over the place and it all just looks a little neglected.

Last Saturday Luna had an abscess erupt and what a panic that was. Husband up a ladder, and 3rd son and I trying to mop up the mess, contain and assess the wound and a very upset 4 year old cat with talons. Poor thing, I didn't even know she had a swelling let alone space inside it for so much stuff.

I called a co-worker who has a partner who works as a vet assistant and she talked me down off panic level. Luna was isolated in the basement bathroom with towels, a small litter box, water and food. She was not at all interested in keeping on her cone while her wound drained though.

By Sunday morning, it looked good, and she graduated to my bed with a towel. On Monday morning she was really full of energy and keeping her inside was a challenge. We just had to make it through the long weekend without needing to visit the emergency vet - which would be a token $2000 - and on Tuesday we took her to our vet who was very pleased with the area. They gave her a shot of antibiotic and she has been healing by leaps and bounds all week.

I am tired, though. Change is good, but all the same I'm more than a little burnt out.

Luna is feeling much better now.

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Springing into New Opportunities

Daughter has had such a hard time battling bed-bugs in her apartment. A rolling cycle that has been exhausting and discouraging for her and her roommates. Other aspects of her life is good though, her relationship with the red-bearded Joey is strong, and she is happy.

I've been suffering from insomnia lately. I am pretty sure it is stress related, as Husband is preparing to give notice to his present employer tomorrow, and will begin a new [old] job at the beginning of June. This is incredible news for him, as we have been seeing erratic behaviour swings from present boss for the last few months that was causing us great concern. The Gods pulled through as he was contacted by an old employer, and a good job offer was made and accepted.

Myself - I will stay for the aftermath, which will NOT be pretty, and wait until they let me go. I believe they will. So some sleepless nights are ahead, but all for good. Moving into the light again, this period of darkness - craziness - hopefully soon a thing of the past.

Last year it was moving away from the neighbour madman, this year it is severing employment from the mad king. The things I have witnessed in the last 5 years - incredible. Soon, Husband will be free.

Spring is moving so slowly this year which is both a blessing and frustration. The Victoria Day long weekend looming, the traditional weekend for planting. We will probably do some planting, especially the baby asparagus.

Change is good.

Friday, 22 April 2016

Things we Like

Makes me think of that story by Margaret Wise Brown I used to read to the children. I wonder if I still have it? I kept only a few of the books we read together.

Really this post is about stuff. Stuff we like. I like stuff, although I am a purger of things. I have a fast and furious cycle of things that stream into the house from thrift and [low budget] antique stores. It flows back to them as well, nothing hits the landfill, unless it is fibre board constructed and has broken. Old wooden furniture rarely breaks to the point that you need to toss it.

My daughter has been battling bed bugs in her inner-city apartment. She has had to learn a lot this year about getting rid of things. Her Anime books saved from when she was a teenager. Old sketchbooks. Clothes. It has been a hard lesson about tossing stuff.

Our move last summer allowed me to sift through our stuff, yet again, and some came, some did not. I think husband has a more difficult time ridding himself of stuff than I do, because so much of his stuff is maybe-I-will-use this stuff. His garage is stuffed with stuff like this and I have heard things muttered like the need to add-on to his garage, and I respond it is plenty big enough.

Because Husband will fill any garage space, no matter how large it is to start.

I don't feel guilty about bringing new-to-me stuff into the house, because an equal or larger amount is leaving. As an admitted fickle individual, I have said over and over : the only constant in my life is Husband, and of course the kids although there are not many of them left at home now.

When I was 18 my mother bought me a wicker hamper for my birthday. I had moved into the basement bedroom and it was my first grown-up space after my sister moved out. She gave me $20 to pick one out, and I went to an Asian store in my area and found the perfect hamper.

I still have it. My dresser was an antique that my father re-finished when I was around the same age. An old Singer treadle machine was my great grandmothers and an old truck has followed over the years, move after move.

Will any of my grown children want any this stuff? Doubtful. Someone will, though.

Tuesday, 19 April 2016


 Young James - staring at the birds in the cedar tree

Sunday I spent the entire day outside in the garden. I could feel my pores soaking up the sunshine, and my batteries slowly recharged. This is the first spring we are in our [new] home, and new-to-us plants are pushing through the earth - little surprises. A Trillium has shown itself in the secret garden, as well as a couple of plants-yet-to-be-identified. Sweet mysteries.

We have this long, ugly metal fence that separates our yard from the neighbour and yesterday I began the long process of painting brown. Right now it is a powder blue - peeling and hideous - and once the entire fence is brown, we will attached trellising so we can grow climbing vines and roses, and the ugly fence will vanish under the life.

It is difficult to be patient, but I am learning to enjoy the process.

Last week we went north for a quick overnight. Husband had to deliver a scale at a stone place, so I tagged along and we stayed at an off-season inn.

Frosty morning in Bracebridge

The snow hiding in the shadows.

It was a refreshing escape, which helped to offset stupid tough times at work. 
It's all about balance.
I suck at balance.

Thursday, 31 March 2016

The Curious Pathway to Menopause

Menopause has been a sweet little trek so far... I honestly thought I had arrived. One year after my last menses and the echo of familiarity ; sore breasts, bloatedness. These tired ovaries had another go, and out of the blue menses descended.

This was right after I removed all supplies from my main bathroom, and sent me scurrying to the basement, so see what was there: All the tampons I didn't like. You know, the plastic applicator ones that we all used in the days before we cared about the environment.

I worked my way through that box, day after day until it became apparent that I'd have to re-stock, and then restock again.

It made me think a lot about my reproductive lifetime. I realized that I had been mourning the loss of my cycle; it has been steadfast-regular for 40 years. I had missed it. As I bled I became aware that the lack of my cycle had made me feel less than.

I don't remember the last time I breastfed, because it simply ebbed away. Having this [maybe] last menses allowed me to really focus on all the sensations.

At 53, yes the end is in sight. I thought I was there. But it was a strange crone-reprieve.  I know I'll be working through this, as I rediscover my femaleness.

All in all - an interesting time.

Friday, 12 February 2016

Balancing the Blues...

Yesterday I had a day off work and I felt myself becoming blue... I was tired from not sleeping well the night before and wanted to just chill and read, but was agitated because I didn't want to waste my day sitting on the sofa. My free-alone time is precious. I forced motivated myself to make this very simple little cafe curtain for my kitchen window. It was soothing to work with the beautiful fabric and it even got me out for an errand so I got some exercise as well.

The fabric itself was quite dear - my 1.5 metres came to around $30 [gasping] but the fabric shop is owned by two very hard-working young women who offer fantastic courses and gorgeous patterns and I feel compelled to support them when I can. Their fabric selections are incredible. To offset the cost, I went to Value Village and found some white liner fabric which was only around $4. I have a lot left over. Balance.

I see my childhood in this curtain...

I quite love the vintage images, and Husband was all over the little scale in the midst of the other pictures. The half curtain did not use much, so I used the rest for a table runner. I think the blue in the fabric has inspired me with new kitchen paint colour ideas too...

I'm giving up on Weight Watchers. The meetings have frankly sucked. I need to move my body 30 minutes a day. I need to drink less wine and drink more water. Those are my key problems. I don't eat sweets. I barely eat any bread. It's the three W's that will help me : Water less Wine & Walking. So soon we will be outside all the time. Quite soon we will be digging and planting and walking up the escarpment after work as the light returns. I simply have to chill a little longer.

Aside from knitting and sewing [a little] I am deeply engulfed reading Insurgent, book 2 of the Divergent series. We saw the first movie the other week, and when I realised there were 3 books I quickly ordered them from the library. I love a fast paced young adult novel. Especially in this post-apocalypse genre.  

Lovely Lu & Eldest gifted me with a large Lodge cast iron frying pan that her father bought in an auction. I scoured it with coarse salt and an onion yesterday and oiled it. Turned out pretty well, it was only a bit rusty. I find the Lodge surface pretty coarse compared to my very old cast iron, but it worked out rather well and I made a big chicken veggie one pot dinner last night.

Brutal cold is setting in. It will be brief, with the temps higher next week again. Dreaming of hanging clothes out on the line. Dreaming of evenings outside again.

Friday, 5 February 2016

The Smell of Winter

We've been eating a lot of poultry this winter - every week at least one chicken per week and then the carcass into the pot for stock. I found organic chickens on sale one week for under $10/ea and the following week a small duck for around the same price...

The broth bubbles, filling our house with the smell of winter.

The week before, I cooked a turkey that I had in my freezer from the time when my oven at Old House did not work.

There is a lot of broth in glass dishes in my basement freezer.

In my downstairs fridge [whatever did I do without it?] a broth made from the duck awaits my soupy inspiration.

Co-worker brings a can of microwave Campbell's quite often - and I wonder when was the last time I ate soup from a can? Certainly I grew up with Campbell's Cream of Mushroom and Chicken Noodle... my favourite was Vegetable Beef with a grilled cheese...

Slow cooking. Last night I made vegetarian chili with mixed beans and sweet potato, it was lovely.

Young James is doing well. He has had 2 nights out of the bathroom, and today I even left my bedroom door open because he was sleeping oh so sweetly at the end of our bed. He has been staying close to us at night on the sofa, so I hope that he can move on from his ordeal with no lapses. Luckily he likes the special food, as do the girls, and is relatively easy to pill.

Crouton needs to have some special senior food though, since the urinary food might mess with her kidneys.

My kidneys are also under scrutiny - my five year post-cancer ultrasound was this morning. My specialist ordered an abdominal ultrasound this year, I'm not sure why, but whatever. Ultrasounds always hurt - I think I am uber sensitive in my rib area now.

I'll see my doctor on the 18th - always a dicey time of year. Another year alive, another year so thankful.