Sunday, August 28, 2011

One Demolition Down! One to Go


Well let's see. It seems like this week has gone by so fast and all I did was run around like a chicken with my head cut off!  Ok, I just read that back to myself and realized that there are most likely quite a few of you out there that didn't grow up on a farm, and probably are not familiar with butchering chickens!

So let me rephrase, it seems like this week has gone by and all I did was.... run aimlessly in circles without direction or cause.  Or....... dance around like a cowboy in an old western while the bad guy shoots at his feet!

Anyway, I'm sure you get the idea. 

So, Monday, I went to work and did some shopping for what will be, my new beautiful bathroom. I know you have to be getting sick of hearing about it. To understand my excitement, you need to know from whence this bathroom came. ( I know, whence, right?)

When we moved into this house the size of the bathroom was a huge selling point, it's  about 12' x 10'. With 4 girls, a big asset. The way it was decorated, on the other hand, was something else. Let me see if I can give you a visual.

Picture it, a stained tub surrounded by walls the colour of lilacs in June. A valance hides a shower curtain covered in bright fish of all the colours of the rainbow. The valance itself is enveloped in wallpaper enhanced by a pattern that is usually reserved for only the grandest of circuses, as the purple, yellow, red and orange stripes seem to come to life! The valance has a twin that lives above the tall narrow window that is conveniently situated right next to the toilet as to provide a great view to anyone passing on the street.  The vanity, oh the vanity. Well it's large and cumbersome, made from rough plywood and with a top covered only in the brightest red laminate, that of course was adhered to the surface with the highest quality of glue so it would never COME OFF!

The remaining walls are not painted, nor do they have wallpaper adorning their surfaces. No they are covered in horizontal strips of pine, because of course everyone knows only the best circuses take place in log cabins.

Last, but not least the floor. Ah, yes, the floor.  In a stroke of decorating genius, in a thought that must have hit like an epiphany, the floor was done in, yes, you guessed it, purple shag carpet!  No, I know what you are thinking, " oh they probably cheaped out and put in that short pile shag". I can reassure you they did not! It was long and luxurious and held moisture better than any other wall to wall carpeting in a bathroom ever could!

Since we've moved in, we have done some changes over the years, as the budget would allow, but some elements of that old bathroom still remain. For instance, the pine, and the red counter top. Yeah, they gotta go.

So please forgive my obnoxious excitement, I promise it will be over soon.

In the meantime, the demolition of the basement is complete! Just a little sweeping up and then my Christmas and Halloween decorations can go back downstairs along with all of the sound equipment! Yay, I can have my kitchen back!

So the ripping up of the bathroom should commence later today!

On the book front, Puppet Lexi has been making rounds and getting played with, HARD! So far, she is standing up pretty well, and all the kids, so far, are really enjoying her. A great sign!

So this week, I'll be putting the finishing touches on the music for the wedding we are doing in a couple of weeks, and do some rehearsing for the party we are doing the weekend after that.

I also want to do more research with toy manufacturers and see what the next step is to getting Puppet Lexi out there in earnest.

I'm also working on a new story, and trying to get it fleshed out.

So until next week,

May any projects undertaken get finished without incident.
May all on your honey do list get accomplished without accident.

May everything needed, be purchased without the budget having to break.
May you have the fortitude and creative book keeping so the stress you can take.

May the finished project look even better than it did in your mind's eye.
May it turn out soooo, beautifully, you simply want to cry.

Ok, I'm done.

Remember: Tell your friends!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Readings, Renovations, and Reviews!

Hey, Everybody!

What a week! 

Monday, nothin' much. Regular work day, went home, looked at our yet unfinished demolition of our basement, and, were really just too tired to do anything about it! I did find a note, however, from the courier guy, explaining that he couldn't possibly leave my life size Justin Bieber cut-out inside my entry way without a signature. I'm still not sure why. They can deliver pretty much anything else to my house without one, but, oh well.

So, that brings me to Tuesday. Had to stay home to receive Justin anyway, so I did what I could toward our bathroom reno effort while I was there. I also started to try to come up with a way to update some standard kid songs that have been around for ever. Not having much time with each group of kids, it might be better to do it this way than try and teach brand new songs? What do you guys think?

Wednesday was my reading/signing at the Saskatoon Farmer's Market, as you can see from this week's pic. There were about 30 kids, according to the coordinator, ranging from babies to 6 year olds. It was a lot of fun and a great atmosphere. It's very relaxed and laid back, and they even provide a snack for the kids! I'd do that again in a heartbeat!

Thursday, after work, I managed to go and spend a bit of cash on some fun things for what will be my new beautiful bathroom. Now, just to get it finished so I can use them!

Friday came with an appointment to put new shocks in our car, which apparently inspired a pool of sorts regarding how long the people at the service shop think our car will last. They said they haven't seen a 2005 Cobalt with this many miles on it before! Granted it has 289,000+ kms on it, but it still runs like a top! Hey, we plan to at the very least double those klicks before we're done with her!

Ah yes, this brings us to Saturday, and our very first "photo shoot." Well, let me put it this way, we managed to keep it serious for a few minutes and G-rated for the most part. Those of you who know us, know that that is some kind of record!

Thanks Gina! (Scarlet Photography), who took 2 people who are not at all comfortable in front of a camera and made us look pretty dang good, if I do say so myself! She made it a lot of fun!

Oh, I almost forgot! The Lexi reviews, so far are pretty positive.

6 yr old girl - loved her, played with her alot, had a challenge with a couple pieces of clothing at first, but was able to do it all unassisted after a little practice.

2 1/2 yr old girl- not sure of her at first, but ended up playing with her quite a bit, but needed assistance with at least some of the clothes.

I'm going to try and get a boy's point of view this week, then I have a 4 yr old girl in mind to give her a try.

Oh and if you are wondering about the whole Bieber thing? I'll explain it later.

For now friends, that is all, for I hear the basement calling. We'd really like to finish what needs doing on it today, so we can go full tilt on the bathroom.

Until next week,

May your days and nights pass without a glimpse of sorrow.
May any shadows that you carry give way to the brightness of tomorrow.

May you find laughter in memories, joy in the mundane, sweetness in all around you.
May you see clear through the clouded tunnel to the lighted silver lining, and allow it to shine through.

May you dance to the music in your life, not just tap your toe from your chair.
May you recognize early that it's the "YOU" show, and only you can be the star.

Take Care!   Tell your friends!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Summer Almost Over, What!


Thanks so much for taking the time to read these ramblings, I really do appreciate it very much.

So, as you can see, the basement demolition is still in full swing! This picture makes me a little sad, for this is the wall that stood between our girls' bedrooms. There were two girls in each room. Sometimes it was the two older and two younger, sometimes the oldest and youngest partnered up and the two middle ones became roommates. Sometimes 1st and 3rd, 2nd and 4th. They switched it up fairly regularly.

The wall colours, as they were when we had to tear them down, (and I say that because they changed colour a few times) were very interesting. It probably will make a few of you shake your heads. You see, we never had a problem letting the girls paint their rooms whatever colour, and as a result one was painted pitch black.This included all of the furniture, with a black light and the posters and whatnot that goes with that. On the walls, in chalk, was a collage of sayings from their friends, favorite quotes, and some poetry.

The other bedroom, was hot pink with sapphire blue splattered over it. The furniture in this room was painted the same, like a neon chameleon! The light fixture, a model of the solar system.

So it was with heavy hearts that my hubby and I went about ripping apart the rooms that were witness to many a late night giggle session, fights over toys, whispers about boys, under the breathe choice words for parents, and odd screaming match.

Through the years, I can't even tell you how many times each of them would propose some way to get their own room. Now they are all grown and the two middle ones are, you guessed it, roommates! And the youngest one only recently moved out of her eldest sister's spare room!

Also this week, the storage unit my hubby has been working on was completed! I was able to put all of my extra bedding, and two air beds in it with room to spare! Whoop Whoop! As soon as I was finished, I started tearing apart the monstrosity of a built in that was the former home of these linens. Oh, yes, I did enjoy the smashing of that awful thing!

This week also marks a bit of a milestone for Lexi the puppet. On Thursday, I took one puppet, with the sets of clothes I have, in to work with me to let the 6 year old little girl I care for have her for the weekend. I asked her to do me a favor and play with her for a few days, and then let me know what she thinks on Monday. I was so pleased to see when she woke up on Friday and came bouncing down the stairs, as she does, that Lexi was getting bounced down the stairs as well. Still in her jammies too! She really seems to be enjoying her. So far, the reviews are pretty promising. Hopefully they stay that way throughout the week end.

Thursday also marked another big milestone. My eldest daughter turned 25! You know, I can close my eyes and go back to that time in a heartbeat. I was 20, knew nothing, and had just gone through an exhausting 60 hour labor with a doctor that apparently had missed the class where they talked about epidurals.  But, when they laid her on my chest and I looked into that puzzled little face, it simply confirmed for me what I had known my whole life. I'm a Mom.

I have no fancy degrees, and my jobs have always worked around my kids. I do, however, have a Phd in diaper changing, a Masters in boyfriendacology, and a real knack for getting fussy babies to sleep. And as in the case of all Moms, I have magic kisses that can cure almost any owie. I wouldn't have it any other way!

My week was topped off on Friday with a complete afternoon of playing hooky with my baby sister. We met for an extremely leisurely lunch, and then went for an absolutely frivolous mall crawl right up until I had to run to pick up my hubby from work! Not one errand was ran, the entire time. Crazy!

So for the upcoming week,

Still compiling music for the wedding in Elbow.
Basement and Bathroom
Reading/signing at the Farmer's Market in Saskatoon on Wednesday morning.(10:30am-12:00pm) Come say hi!
Getting photos done with the hubby on Saturday. ( Excited and nervous, we've never had pics done before! Not even at our Wedding!)
Oh, and work.

So until next week,

May your "back to school" shopping come and go like a Summer breeze.
May you find everything on the lists, in one store, with the easiest of ease.

May you find all of the "cool" clothes on sale, along with the notebooks, pencils and pens.
May all of the "best" shoes miraculously become the cheapest in the bargain bins.

May you remain calm in the process of school shopping, and not have to explain why that belt can't possibly be a skirt.
May you magically be able to convince your teenage son that the crotch of his jeans shouldn't actually drag in the dirt!

May you not know the heartbreak that comes when the last Dora or Transformer backpack has already been sold.
May you be able to convince them that your old Cosby Kids one is really better, cooler, like gold!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Plan B's and Penny Passing

Hi all!,

Well, here I am again in the wee hours of the morning, and again, not able to sleep. So, you guessed it......time for incoherent gobbledeegook!

Aside from the basement shenanigans, I think the culprit keeping me up this time is the whole guitar thing. It's really kickin' my butt. My hands simply don't seem to bend that way. I'm still not giving up, but I think I need to be realistic about coming up with a plan B for the music part  of the time I'll be spending with kids up north. I'm going to work on writing some songs that can be accompanied by rhythm instead of guitar. Maybe I can pick up a few shakers and clickers and whatnot and the kids can do the playing? I don't know for sure yet, but I do know I need to nail something solid down soon if I'm going to get any real sleep in the near future!

Also this week, I received an email inviting me to do a reading at the North Battleford Library in October. I'm so excited. Reading to kids is still my favourite part of this whole thing! 

I've also started putting music together for the wedding we are doing next month. It's going to be an eclectic group and they will need an eclectic assortment of tunes. From the Andrew Sisters to Axel Rose, from Blake Shelton to Bruno Mars and alot in between! Will be a challenge, but a fun one!

As far as the basement and bathroom reno shenanigans go, they are progressing pretty well. I bought a chunk of plywood on Thursday for the beautiful storage unit my hubby is building for me. While I was at the store, I picked up a couple of paint cards to get inspired about what will be my new beautiful bathroom colour. On the pamphlet was a colour wheel. After some inspection, and much thought, my grandson informed me that I should have a red and yellow spiderman bathroom. I love the way his mind works!

As a for instance, he was playing the other day, and came up with scenario where Optimus Prime ( a bad guy transformer ) and Strawberry Shortcake went on a date, and Shortcake had to save him from some evil doer. Sooo funny!

My posted picture this week features my hubby and our grandson in deep conversation. During his visit, he and Grandpa went on quite a few of these thought provoking walks. According to Grandpa, Ethan should have peace in the middle east, a solution to the economic crisis in the US, and a cure for every type of cancer figured out by kindergarten.

In my travels this week I did find capes for "Super Lexi". I looked for goggles as well, but all I've been able to find so far are about $17 each. Not real feasible for what I'm after. Another plan B may be in order.

While shopping, I had a shy little girl approach me as I waited in the endless hell, otherwise known as the Walmart checkout line on a Friday afternoon. I wasn't sure what she wanted at first, as she was just kind of standing there, staring at me. Eventually, having passed the inspection, I suppose, she gave me a penny. She then told me it was for good luck, but in order to get the good luck, I'd have to pass the penny on to someone else. If I didn't, I would have just bad luck. Needless to say, I thanked her for choosing me, and wasted no time passing along that penny!

So onto the upcoming week!

Of course, music/guitar.  More wedding prep. Work on the house (sarcastic yay!).  Work on getting the Lexi puppets ready for a play test ( genuine yay!)

Well that's about it for this week. I hope these ramblings made some kind of sense.

Until next week,

May you be passed a good luck penny and recognize it, even if it's in disguise.
May it shine so bright you can't miss it, even dressed as a word from the wise.

May you find your good fortune in passing it on to others, paying it forward, as they say.
May you, in doing so, experience the simple joy that comes from brightening someone's dark day.

May all of your luck be good, and fill your life with positive things.
May any bad luck miss you on it's way through, not leaving the slightest sting.