Saturday, December 29, 2012

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Looking at this photo, you will see a room that could use a little paint, some new carpet, and maybe a new window or two. Upon further study, you will find toys laying around, and maybe some stray wrapping paper that was missed in the hurried clean up. And, if you look closer still, you will see people in conversation, laughing and joking with each other, comfortable and relaxed. This is always my greatest gift of any Christmas. Seeing everyone getting a chance to just take a breath, and enjoy.

So, now that Christmas is behind us, we have the new year stepping ever closer. As always, as the New Year gets closer, a person tends to reflect upon the year past, even if just briefly, before we cross the threshold of the new.

Well, it's been quite a year for this household. Let's see in the past 12 months there have been about.............

10000 kms travelled
1000 little faces to whom I've read my stories.
600 books sold.
15 weddings/karaoke/DJ shows
12 tradeshows vended
2 career curve balls
2 new books launched
1 new grandbaby

Yep, it's been quite a year. Some things were planned, but most, of course, were not.  One of my favorite quotes is "Life is what happens when you're making other plans." Well, that sentiment was definitely proven to be true this year.

Life is indeed an adventure, and I look forward to what lies ahead. It won't all be pretty, it absolutely won't be without it's challenges, but I guarantee one thing, it won't be boring!

All any of us can do is make the best of anything and everything that life throws our way. 

The good things are easy to take in stride, they just seem to work their way into our normal routines without much of a hiccup. Some of the best things happen so subtly they sometimes can get overlooked all together. We all need to do ourselves a favor and pay closer attention to those things.

The "not so good" things tend to stick with us in a much bigger way. These things tend to want to cling to our souls and peck away at our happiness. If we let them, they can weigh us down and keep us from flying at the heights we should. 

Nobody gets through life unscathed. We all have things happen to, and around us that effect us, in both positive and negative ways. How we choose to react, shows who we are.

Personally, I choose to be happy. I've learned over time that happiness is indeed a choice. It isn't something you need to chase, or look for, or something that can be given to you by someone else. You can't find it in a job, in a dream house, or in a fancy car. Happiness just is. Choose it.

Yes, there are hard times, crap happens. You deal with it the best way you are able, do all that you can, so you aren't left with "shoulda, coulda, woulda" syndrome, and then choose to be happy, and move on.  If you've truly done all you can, there is nothing left to do, so you might as well get your happy on. Life is too short to waste too much of it in dark places.

I know it sounds simple, maybe a little too simple, but, who ever said happiness has to be complicated? Give it a shot, you never know, it might work for you too.

So, my friends, for the upcoming week........

Do my level best to assist a great group of people ring in the new year on a great note. (Happy New Year!)

Make a list of New Year's Resolutions.....(will post it next week)

Get our income tax stuff started.....

Get to work on my next book....

So, my friends, thank you so much for another year of incredible support. It tickles me to death to see new readers from new countries pretty much every week.  I always love hearing from each and every one of you.

Until next time, I'll leave you with this wish..............

May your New Year's Eve be legendary in whatever way you fancy.
May you ring it in feeling happy, maybe a little tipsy, and a lot dancy.

May you have a night of great friends and good food, with a killer soundtrack playing under it all.
May you laugh til it hurts, dance til you drop, in short, have a complete ball.

May a special midnight kiss, on that fantastic eve, be ever so magical and full of promise.
May you not recall it the next morning as being a pathetic, drunken drool fest with the slightest hint of vomit.

May you bring in the New Year with dignity and delight.
May your 2013, be nothing but brilliantly bright.

See you next week!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Three More Sleeps!!!!!


Happy Holidays!  I hope the season finds you and yours in a place filled with health, happiness, contentment, and every conceivable joy.

This photo shows our youngest grandbaby, 10 month old Jake, enjoying his first taste of his Grandma's home made ginger cookies. I hope it's the first of hundreds he will get to nibble over the next 50 years or so.

Through everything that's been going on in this neck of the woods this past year, I know that I, for one, am going to very consciously soak this Christmas in. The coming and going of kids, the grandbabies, the cooking, the mess, the games, the belly laughs, the complete and utter joyous chaos that tends to be one of our truest Christmas traditions.

This is not the house to visit if you are looking for perfectly wrapped gifts under a perfectly decorated tree, with dainties set out on fine china. This is not the home that will have the most expensive presents, or the fanciest decor, or people dressed in their Sunday best. This is not the house where you will find classical Christmas tunes playing politely in the background, as people sit around enjoying quiet conversation as they sip brandy. No, that is not this house.

This is the home where the door is always open to those who may not have a place to spend their Christmas. This is where you will find people in their comfy clothes eating the home made treats of their childhood from ice cream pails. This is the home where you will find sappy Christmas songs being played as rowdy board games are played, probably accompanied by a LOT of good natured smack talk. This is the home where you will find grown men on their bellies in the kitchen playing with the hotwheels racers they got from Santa. This is the home where there will be too much food, some cocktails, a lot of laughs and many, many hugs. Yes, this is home.

Chaotic and a little crazy at times, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

So my friends, this past week was spent picking up groceries, setting the last of my snowmen free to roam the house, and downloading some new Christmas tunes. I really recommend Ceelo Green's Christmas album and Rod Stewart's as well. Needless to say, Michael Buble and the Chipmunks are also very good!

Also this week, a kind of cool thing happened in the check out line at the grocery store. The lady behind me in the line recognized me from the newspaper! She was really nice and asked for a card and where she could get my books! That's the first time I've been recognized by someone who wasn't accompanied by a munchkin!

The next week will be spent knee deep in turkey, kids and cookies. Yay! I love having everybody under one roof, even if it's for a short time! Here's hoping the weather cooperates!

Well folks, that about does it for me for this week.

Until next time, I'll leave you with this Holiday wish..........

May you have the chance to hug the ones you love in person, with nothing getting in the way.
May those who can't come home, still be in touch, somehow, on that day.

May you step out of any stress that threatens to strangle your peace and sense of calm.
May it float away, your fragile nerves being caressed by a cooling, soothing balm.

May you allow yourself to enjoy this holiday, no one cares if the garland is perfect, or if the bows are straight, or, for that matter, exist at all.
May you see past the perfect picture in your head of what you've convinced yourself Christmas "should" be, relax and have a ball!

Until next week!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Girl Guides Can Dance!


As I sit here and look at this photo of 250 little girls between the ages of 8 and 15 have all kinds of fun, dancing, singing and running around, I can't keep help but think of the tragedy that took place at an elementary school in the United States yesterday morning.

I can't help but think of all of those parents, kids and teachers heading off to school for what they thought would be another typical, ordinary day. To learn, play, maybe dance, sing and run around a little.

My heart weeps for the broken souls this horrible act of senselessness leaves behind.

I don't know what the answer is, and I doubt there is just one.

But, one thing I do know is that I will try doubly hard not to take one single day for granted. I'll do my level best not to fritter away my time on this planet with things that are important to only me. 

Squeeze your kids, say I love you, and count every blessing. Don't put off happy things, absorb every joy. That's all we can do.

On to happier things.

The girl guide fundraiser was a great success. They had a lot of girls come to join in the festivities, and though it was with a bit of a heavy heart, it was a lot of fun to help facilitate their good time.

Oh, and just in case you want to get a large room full of tweens to pull more decibels than a herd of injured hyenas, just say the words...."One Direction".......go ahead, I dare ya.

Other than that, this week consisted of working hard toward our goal of getting our RV repair shop open and operational by Spring.  Hopefully things will be settled in that department very soon.

Oh, and I finished wrapping all of the Christmas presents!!!!!Yay!  

Okay, how many of you just swore at me a worries. I really am an anti-procrastinator by nature. Even though I come by it genetically, I think my DNA was assisted by all of those years when we weren't sure if we were going to be able to make Christmas happen for our kids at all. I learned early on to shop early, a little at a time, always paying attention to conversations for hints. Now, it's become our tradition.

So for the next week........

There will be some grocery shopping, maybe a bit more cookie baking, some baby squeezing, beginnings of prep for our New Year's Eve Show, and maybe work on a few more stories that I started a while back and haven't had a chance to visit for a while.

So, until next time, my friends, I'll leave you with this wish.....

May those who leave their homes in the morning, return safety to it that day.
May nothing or no one hinder their safety in any possible way.

May the ones broken enough to cause such horror, seek help instead of a means to inflict such unspeakable pain.
May they find true help, embrace it, be held to it, so this kind of heartbreak may never happen again.

May those so determined to put and keep guns in the hands of so many
May they look into the eyes of the survivors, if they are lucky enough to find any.

May those left behind find a way, any way to live through their grief.
May those who went too soon, watch over them, give them hope, belief.

Until next week........

Friday, December 7, 2012

'Twas Three Weeks Before Christmas....

Well Hello!

Well folks, we are either a few weeks away from Christmas or the end of the world, depending on who you talk to.

Personally I prefer to take the less depressing route, and follow the assumption that we are not going to implode or explode or shut down or burn or whatever it is the crazy calendar people are saying is going to happen this time.

But... that's just me.

So our beach themed party in -20C was awesome! There were a lot of willing participants who doubled as good sports, so that always makes the night so much more fun. There were some very interesting photos taken, some games played, some cocktails consumed, all in all a good night!

In the last few days, I also was able to get some Christmas treats into the freezer. Peanut butter Krispie treat balls, some dipped in caramel, some in chocolate; chocolate fudge, some werther's chocolate and soft caramel cookies and some banana, orange cranberry, sugar crumble muffins.

Heading into the home stretch, all that's left is some ginger/molasses cookies, some puppy chow, and dessert for the actual meal. I'm thinking I might substitute pie for cheese cake this year, depending on my final head count, I may need both.

Today I'll be hitting the road, picking up my eldest daughter and we will make our way to the Battlefords where we will be participating in the Battlefords Lions Christmas Bazaar! It goes from 10-4 Hope to see you there!

Yep we are going a day early to get in some much needed visiting with my best friend, Dana. She is awesome! Looking so forward to it!

As for the upcoming week?

Well I really need to buckle down and get all the prep done for our Girl Guide fundraiser set for Friday the 14th. Those girls are so cute, we had such a good time with them last year, and looking forward to seeing them all again!

But, before we get there, we need to replace the lights we use for DJing. They all quit, pretty much at the same time, who knows why. In any case, they need replacing, so to Long & McQuade we must go.

So folks, that about wraps it up for another week. This week, my wish for you is taking on a bit of a different form, I hope you like it.

'Twas three weeks before Christmas, and all through the mess,
Not a creature was stirring, was trying hard to de-stress.

Was worrying about the lack of decor in the yard,
Especially when the neighbour's looks like it leaped from a Christmas card.

Was worrying about the wishes written upon kids' lists, and just how to make them come true,
The budget is tight for St. Nick this year, but we'd still love to be able to come through.

Was fussing about the tree, the baking, wanting the house perfect for holiday guests,
Been preparing deep into most nights, defying the need for rest.

Been trying to manage my time with this and with that, fighting to stay on top of it all.
How does everyone else do it, looking so effortless, like their having a ball!

Now, in all my dither, how did I possibly fail to see,
The joyful, sparkling eyes of my kids looking at me.

They see passed the old tree and decorations all of which have seen better days,
All they see is the promise of possibilities, the shimmer and shine of the holidays.

In the end nothing matters, but the thrill on their faces, time with family and friends, memories made,
Everything else is just fluff, just stuff, for which excitement quickly fades.

So, prepare for this wonderful time, but do so with joy and keep the pressure light,
Off now, to happily wrap some presents, Merry Christmas to all and to all, a Good Night!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Jamaican Long Johns?


Looks like a perfect day for a "beach" party, wouldn't you say? Well, when you live where I do, and your backyard looks like this, a beach party is exactly what the doctor ordered!

Yes, tonight I'll be doing the music for a "Jamaican/Beach/Stagette" party. It ought to be a blast, considering it's here at home, and I'll pretty much know everyone there! They are a great group, so I'm really looking forward to a good night!

The bride-to-be is the same age as our second daughter, and grew up across the street. I know it's been said a million times, but, man, time really does get away on you! It doesn't seem fair, really. By the time you are wise enough to figure what really matters, how precious time is, almost half your life has passed you by.

This is probably about the time in our lives we get slapped upside the head by "mid-life crises."  We all of a sudden get into panic mode because we realize we are half way through this rodeo and we feel like we've missed too much. 

Well, seeing as I'm sneaking up on 47, I'm smack in the middle of "mid-life."  I haven't been decked by the crises part of it yet, as far as I can tell, but it could be just around the corner. I'll be sure to let you know if I suddenly get the urge to skydive and buy mini-skirts.

Besides doing the prep for tonight's party, I did manage to get a few things knocked off my list. Today, there is more baking in the freezer for Christmas than there was last week.  The gifts that have been purchased are wrapped. The remaining gifts are being shipped as we speak!

The Christmas tree is up, and about half the snowmen are out. A nine month old,walking grandbaby makes decorating a challenge, but we're figuring it out.

Also this week, I received some generous orders for books. They should still be in time for Christmas, I hope. Still blows my mind to think of people unwrapping gifts and finding my books! Here's hoping they enjoy them! If you'd like to order in time for Christmas, there should still be time, if we hurry!

So, for the upcoming week!

More baking, more snowmen, a bunch of grandbaby snuggles, a bit of shopping, and then it's off to Battleford to take part in the Battlefords Lions Christmas Bazaar! It's going to be so much fun! My eldest daughter is coming along as a helper and we will be meeting up with my closest friend, and maybe a few more for a "girls" weekend.

We will be on our best behavior.  Stop Laughing! We Will!  Okay, we will try.... Better?

Now, my friends, I need to go and figure out how to make long johns look Jamaican...

Until next time, I'll leave you with this wish.

May the poetic frost that romantically nips at your nose, not become the kind that claims a finger or a toe.
May the lyrical sing song desire to "let it snow," not become the blizzard that makes it impossible for you to go.

May the majestic winter wonderland shown in movies, not become the house bounding agent it can sometimes be.
May the "one horse sleigh" so charmingly imagined, not become the only way to set your snowbanked car free.

May all of the beauty, charm and sugar plums conjured by these holiday songs, come true in every way.
May every romantic vision of  winter be what befalls you, all rosy cheeks, snowball fights, and open sleigh.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read these ramblings.!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

One Month Til Christmas! What?!


Did you ever wish you could just fall asleep anywhere?  This photo is proof that it is possible. Ok, it's possible if you are 9 months old and are taken for a walk in the fresh air, gliding on newly-fallen snow and the only sounds are the rhythmic crunch of your Mother's steps and the ssssshhhhhh of your sled.

I guess this is what they were talking about when they coined the phrase "sleeping like a baby."

So folks, the past week has been pretty awesome.

First, we were able to meet up with my sis-in-law from Oklahoma for a short but sweet visit.

Then, Wednesday, we had a trade show here at home and today, another in Kindersley. Thanks
to those who were kind enough to purchase books from me, my crazy stories are finding their way into a whole bunch of stockings during this holiday season. 

I had one grandma, today, who said she didn't think she could wait until Christmas to give "A Crazy Day" to her little grandson. She said she was going to hop in her car, drive to his house, and read it to him tonight!  I can't even put into words what kind of a thrill that gives me!

In the upcoming week, I think I better get crackin' on the Christmas baking. Some, peanut butter/cream cheese/chocolate chip cookies, some fudge, some orange/banana/cranberry muffins, and some other gooey, rich, creamy, sweet things that drip chocolate. it wouldn't be Christmas without them!

It's also time to start decorating the house for the holidays! Time to unleash the snowmen! Ok, for those of you who may not be aware, I have a bit of a collection of snowmen. There are some big ones, small ones, plush ones, and fragile ones. There are those that get hung on the wall, those who reside in wreaths, some that live in snow globes, and some that sit on tables. I could go on, but I can't hear myself think over the sound of my kids laughing at me through cyberspace.

Also this week, I need to prep for the beach themed bachelorette party we are doing Saturday night. It's going to be a blast! Who has more fun than a bunch of women on an ultimate girls' night?!

Well, that about wraps up another week!

Just a quick reminder to those wanting to order books online in time for Christmas! Please order soon to ensure they get to you in time! Thanks!

Until next time, I'll leave you with this wish.........................................

May Santa find your name on his "nice" list and not in the company of the "naughty"
May your every kindness be brought to his attention, and not so much when you were haughty.

May every holiday party you attend be a ton of fun, not a dull one in the bunch.
May none of them have myterious hors d'oeuvres, only yummy things to munch.

May your travels between festivies be safe, with nothing hindering the ride.
May you foresee any and all obstacles, and successfully set them to the side.

Until next week!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Trade Show, Sing, Laundry.... Repeat


As I was poking around in my picture files, deciding what to toss at my ramblings this week, I came across these shots. I caught these on the way home from our karaoke show in Luseland last week. I almost didn't use them, but then thought of those of you out there who live where frost like this probably doesn't happen.  So, for those who live without the thrill of shovelling snow, or the adrenaline of getting stuck in a snow bank when it's -40C, here is a little taste of the prettiest side of winter.

Well, the past seven days have gone by pretty quickly.

Saturday night, we had the show in Luseland. It was a full house with a good number of people willing to get up and sing, a lot of fun being had by all, with only one injury. That being the little flat screen tv we use for shows, injured, but still functional. Not the end of the world.

Monday.... We took a trip to Saskatoon. McNally's needed more books, (an email that still thrills me!), and our youngest daughter and her wee Jake came back with us.  They are going to be staying with us for a bit. (ahhh endless grandbaby snuggles)

The rest of the week was spent getting caught up on laundry and prepping for the trade show today in Rosetown and the karaoke show we have tonight.

The trade show today was great. The fact that people will actually be receiving something I wrote as a gift, well, it kind of overwhelms me. It's just another "I can't believe this is real" moment.

During the show, I had a chance to visit briefly with a neighbour. Through our conversation I teasingly asked her if she would be attending the karaoke show we are doing tonight. I say teasingly, because we don't tend to get a lot of great grandmothers at our shows. Of course, she graciously declined my invitation, but her reason went far beyond what I had anticipated.

When I asked her if she was going to come out and sing us a tune, the reply was one that I had heard a million times, " I don't sing." It's the reason she doesn't sing, that broke my heart. You see, when she was 8 or10 years old, she was in her church choir, where she was told she had a terrible voice and was asked to leave. You could see the hurt in her eyes like it happened yesterday.

That "choir director" probably never gave her horrible words a second thought. She was "just" a child, after all, she'd get over it.

The fact that all of these years later, eyes mist in the retelling of the tale, shows how cruel words become part of who you are.

Careless cruelty stole the songs of her childhood, and continues to hold them ransom to this day.

So, tonight, we'll be heading down to do our karaoke show, and celebrate everyone who wants to sing.

As for the upcoming week.....

Well, tomorrow, we are hoping to have a coffee and a visit with my hubby's sister. She lives in Oklahoma, so we don't get to see her very often.

Wednesday is another trade show, here in Milden. (I love it when they're nice and close!)

Thursday is off to Rosetown for the "running of the errands."

Saturday is a great trade show in Kindersley, Sk. at the Elks hall. We'll be there from 10-4, come and check it out!

That, my friends, about does it for another week So, for now, I'll leave you with this wish.

May any unkindness that threatens to leave your lips, never fall on the intended ear.
May you realize cruelty breeds not respect, only more cruelty and fear.

May you keep in mind the footprint words put upon that precious soul.
May you be careful of the way constant criticism takes a toll.

May you know it takes infinite praise to undo a fleeting moment of thoughtless temper.
May you give those young hearts around you a childhood they'll lovingly, fondly, remember.

Friday, November 9, 2012

To Our Veterans...Thank You Seems So Small

Hi there,

Friends, here in Canada, this weekend marks a time when we take a moment out of our busy, hectic, runaround lives to show some gratitude toward those who have, through incredible sacrifice, made those busy, hectic, runaround lives possible.

Many of us have Grandfathers, Fathers, Uncles, Aunts and Mothers who fought for the freedoms we are so incredibly accustomed to. Personally, I feel we owe it to them to make sure the generations that follow ours keep the tradition of gratitude alive. I think it's important for our young people to understand how different life would be if these brave people, many of them barely past their teens, hadn't fought as hard, sacrificed as much, or had substituted apathy for passion.

I have not gone to fight, nor has my husband or daughters, therefore I can't even pretend to know what it must be like to watch any one of them board a plane, knowing where they are going, what they will be facing, being heartsick with the feeling that they may not return.

I can't wrap my head around a scenario where one or more of my loved ones would be put so deliberately in harms way. Just as difficult, is the thought of leaving those I hold dearest behind. Leaving them to fight, leaving them to fight for them.

I can't imagine having someone you love missing the things that makes their lives, well, "theirs" for so long. Missing weddings, births, birthdays graduations, first steps, first teeth, first loose teeth, daughters' first dates, first bike rides, anniversaries. Life.

I can't think what it must be like to return, if you are lucky enough to do so, pieces of you shattered by what you've had to endure. Returning to a life where you are kind of expected to jump right back in where you left off, only the person who returned is not the one who left. How can you be?

So to those, past and present, who have fought and continue to do so, we thank you. It seems so small....thank you. That is why we need to continue this day of gratitude...because "thank you" is so small we need to multiply it through the generations so it becomes and remains loud enough and fierce enough to be felt by all those for which it's meant.

So on to ramblings much more frivolous in nature...............

Well, this week we have, and continue to get spanked by Mother Nature. Now, I'm not talking about the kind of beating that fell upon the east coast a couple of weeks ago, by any means. This is more along the lines of a finger slap by Mother Nature's nasty drunk uncle, Jack Frost.

Yep, it looks like any delusion that the early fallen snow would disappear and we would get another glimpse of a whisper of that soft autumn breeze,has been cruelly ripped away like treats from a Charles Dickens orphan.

So, we might as well settle in for a looooooonnnnngggg winter. Hey, it could be worse, I have a warm house, a soft bed, food in the pantry, good company,  and a vivid imagination......anything's possible.

The last few days........................................................

Wiped  down song books(don't look so puzzled, drunk people spill things....alot!)

Rehearsed acapella(didn't want to unload and reload all of the equipment)

Rearranged furniture in my living room.....(hubby always enjoys that sooooo much)

House cleaning and laundry (try not to get toooo jealous)

The next week........................

Karaoke gig in Luseland tomorrow night. (Come check it out if you're in the neighbourhood!)

Trip to the city on Monday (McNally needs more books! Yay!)

Get things prepped for Farmer's market trade show in Rosetown on Saturday, Nov. 17th (come say hi!|)

Get things ready for karaoke gig in Milden Saturday, Nov. 17th (not a typo)

Oh yeah, and maybe have to tunnel my way out of my house.

So, that about does it for this time around. Until next time I'll leave you with this wish............

In Remembrance......................

May I find the courage to sign my name to fight, to protect, to serve my nation, shaking hand...done.
May I get through without them finding out my real age, for they say seventeen is too young.

May I find the strength to stay awake, to watch friends die, to stay alive, to fight.
May I get through this hell of explosion, mud and blood, forever dark, never light.

May I find the strength to face my family, broken though I am, both in my body and my soul.
May I get through adjusting to my paralyzed circumstance, for recovery is taking it's toll.

May I find the strength to carry on, find a new way to live, a different way to be.
May I get through to the other side of this darkness in my soul, to the light, to be free.  Please send Holiday orders in as soon as you can, it takes 3 weeks to get a shipment of books, and my shelves are getting a bit naked. I'll need to know in time, if I need to order more.

Thanks so much for, once again,taking the time to read these ramblings.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

A Cop, A Jester, And A Penguin Walk Into A Bar........

Well, hi!

Before I begin rambling on about the shenanigans of the past few and next few days, I'd like to take a minute to express to all of those who were touched by hurricane Sandy, that, though I can't possibly truly understand what you are going through, my thoughts are with you.

It just doesn't seem to matter how technologically advanced, how smart, how creative, how much ahead of the game we think we are, Mother Nature can still raise her mighty hand, and spank mankind harder than a child swearing in Church in the fifties.

The incredible fortitude and strength it will take to rebuild, not just the buildings and roads, but the spirits of those whose lives were turned upside down, seems so monumental, so overwhelming, so nearly impossible. Nearly.

It was wonderful to hear stories, as soon as the next day, of neighbours helping neighbours. They were sharing power, food, and clothing. To hear the stories of heroism, regular people putting themselves in harms way to save others, went a long way in rebuilding a person's faith in the fate of mankind.

In this world where countries, heck, entire continents seem to be in the mindset of looking out for number one at any cost, it's good to see that when it comes down to doing what's right, person to person, peoples' first instinct is still to help one another.

So, after witnessing one of the biggest tantrums Mother Nature has thrown in the last couple of centuries, the rest of the week seemed pretty mild, in comparison.

The Halloween gig went really well. As you can see from the photo, there were some great costumes. The crew from the Wizard of Oz were there, as were a zombie bride and her equally ghoulish bridesmaids. A human lufa, a genie, a gypsy, a couple of pirates and a few rather inappropriate members of the clergy also made an appearance.  All in all, a great time.

However, Wednesday, actual Halloween, was a bit of a let down. The weather was pretty cold, so we had very few kids come to the door. So, needless to say, the kids that did come received pretty generous handfuls of candy. Hey, they were thrilled, even if their parents might not have been, as I'm sure I wasn't the only one using that strategy to get rid of my treats.

Today, we went to Macrorie for their trade show.  I sold some books, met some new people, and came home with some home made sour cherry syrup and some locally grown and smoked trout. That is the absolute best thing about small town trade shows, there are soooooo many home made goodies that you can't get anywhere else! Like a farmer's market on steroids!

So, for the upcoming week.......................................

Keep wading through the ocean of red tape involved with starting our RV adventure, oh yeah, still plugging away at that one.

Rehearse for karaoke show we are doing in Luseland,Sk. on Sat. Nov.10th at the Royal George Hotel from 9- close. Come and check it out!

Start putting some time into my next book. I'd like to have it ready for illustrations by March/2013.

Oh yeah, and poke a little fun at all those having to change their clocks this weekend. Yep, here in good ol' Saskatchewan we don't change the time, we change time zones. We will be on central time for the winter and switch back to mountain standard in the spring.

Well, that about does it for this week, until next time, I'll leave you with this wish.............

For those who faced the storm..............

May those swept away by tumultuous waters, have peace where their souls rest, safe and warm.
May the ones left behind find a way through the grief, horror, and pain, embraced by loving arms.

May those who stand within broken walls, holding crushed memories, so cold, so lost, so.....lost,
May you find kindness and strength in your neighbours, a safe haven, a shield against the frost.

May you, in the days and months ahead, begin to feel some sense of normalcy, having typical days.
May your days become sweeter and nights get easier, in every possible way.

Friday, October 26, 2012

BOOOOOO! Happy Halloween!

Hello Fellow Halloweenies!

It's that time of year again! Time for ghouls and boys, both young and old, to dress up in their favourite costumes and party it up! From the very scientific poll I conducted last week, during my readings, there will most likely be a lot of ninjas, princesses, mario brothers  and fairies with a healthy dose of zombies and witches showing up at your doors with their gunny sacks of hope held out before them.

As for the adults, my guess is that there will be some "Big Bang" costumes, your classic Vampires and Horror movie dudes and then, of course a vast selection of sexy _____(enter pretty much any noun here).

I'm looking very forward to having a great time with the crew in Denzil, where we are doing a Karaoke show tomorrow night! We are keeping it simple with our costumes this year, I should be able to get a pic up on next week's ramblings.

So, this week has been spent rehearsing and getting everything ready for the show, voting in our civic election, and recovering from a little yucky something that took hold of me for a couple of days. A bit of a different pace from last week. I'm ok with that.

Also, this week, I had the opportunity to see the tv interview I did a couple of weeks ago. I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I was not speaking gibberish the entire time and actually came off like I wasn't shaking in my boots! Another successful step waaaayyyyy outside my comfort zone... and I'm still here.

As for the upcoming week...........

Halloween show tomorrow night!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday.......flu shot, which I mistakenly thought was this week

Wednesday.......hand out candy to all of the eager little people that show up at my door......(I'm toning down the " Halloween atmosphere"  in my house as it was a little too much for some of the kids last year....I forget that not every kid in town knows me anymore.. and some were genuinely scared which is NEVER my intention!)

Saturday....Trade show in Macrorie, Sk. from 10am - 2pm----come check it out!

So, my friends, that about does it for this week..........

Until next time, I'll leave you with this wish.............

May your wee ones not suffer tummy aches from the bounty which they are about to receive.
May your older ones, get that thrilling fright, because for this one night, in monsters, they believe.

May your teenagers enjoy their school dances, first flirtations, feeling brave in ghoulish disguise.
May any that venture into the "trick" instead of the "treat", keep it harmless, avoiding legal advice.

May you, as adults, know it's still a lot of fun, and perfectly alright, to dress up and get your goofy on.
May you do so, with abandon, snitch some fun-size treats, kick up your heels, get your costumed groove-on.

Thanks so much for the ongoing support you so readily give in this "seat of my pants" adventure!

Feel free to get a start on your Holiday shopping at   I can ship anywhere!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Road Trip Week! Big Time!


Let me just start off this week's ramblings with this............Anyone who shakes their collective heads at me and the fact that I love to hang out with kids so much, should come along on a school visit. It will be obvious are the most fantastic people on the planet! That's why!

Not only are they incredibly cute, they are insightful, bright, honest, and will ask you the exact question that is on their mind. No filtre. They have not developed their self-editing ability, and, I for one, love it.

When I look out over the sea of little faces, looking back at me, their big eyes shining with excitement and anticipation, hearing the sweet giggles ripple over the room, the participation, at first shy and hesitant, becoming down right rowdy, it fills me with something I can only describe as complete and utter joy.

The questions that follow a reading can be, and usually are, anything that comes to filtre. The teachers usually start to look a bit nervous as the kids begin their inquiries. Maybe a little afraid the wee ones might ask something that may be construed as rude or inappropriate. The teachers fail to understand that after running a dayhome for 20 years, the list of questions I haven't had from kids is probably waaaaay shorter than the list of ones I have.

This time around, a lot of the questions from the youngest of the children seemed to revolve around my sleeping habits, and what the name of my street might be. They asked how many kids I have, how old they are, do I have a pet, and the one that the teachers seem to think should offend me, how old am I, and when is my birthday. Too funny! I try to assure them that I am not insulted by the widest definition of the word. I've earned every one of my 46 years, and it couldn't matter less to me who knows.

No filtre. Love it. They want to know, so they ask. If only adults did the same thing.............

It's when the tiny hands pop straight up, their owners waiting patiently for their turn to speak, and when they get their chance, they say something like "When I grow up, I'm going to be an author, just like you!" And then, as the kids are filing out of the room, going back to class, and the teacher pulls you aside to tell you that she has never seen this group of kids this fired up about reading or writing before. This is why I do this...

It's when, as you enter the school hallway from the library and are surrounded by messy pigtails, floppy boots, and spontaneous hugs.This is why I do this......

When a shy, bespectacled tiny ten year old hesitantly walks up to you as you are readying to leave the school and asks in a voice so quiet it's almost inaudible....."if I would send you some of my stories would you read them?" This is why I do this.......

When a bright-eyed girl, in ill-fitting clothes, couldn't care less hair, and mis-matched socks looks you square in the eye and asks pointed questions as to how to get a book from being simply an idea to reading to kids in schools. This is why I do this.....

The most fantastic people on the planet....This is why I do this.

To top off the week, we went  to Eatonia today to participate in their trade show. It was so well run, with lots of variety. The organizers also did a great job in providing an environment that encouraged patrons to hang around. They had live music, a face painting clown who sang and told stories, and a LOT of food. Well done Eatonia!!!

So, after 1608kms, 6 schools, 850 kids, 500 questions and 1 trade show, that, my friends, brings me to the end of the past week.

Now for the upcoming 7 days.........

The week will be spent getting the book stuff reorganized for the next trade show......

Rehearsing for our Halloween gig in Denzil on Sat......

A trip to the city to do girlie things and drop off a vacuum cleaner......

Putting finishing touches on our costumes for said gig......

Getting a flu shot..............

Voting in our civic election..........

Try to talk my house cleaning/laundry fairies out of their strike........

Take a nap.

Soooo, that about does it. Until next time, I will leave you with a thank you for your continued support and this wish..............

May the young ones in your life feel ever encouraged in the pursuit of their true passion.
May we, as adults, set aside, what we'd like for them, like pushing accounting over fashion.

May they grow up learning that without commitment, passion becomes a hobby, not a career.
May they come of age learning to make decisions from a place of fortitude and courage, not fear.

May they know that with the pursuit of every dream comes both risk and reward.
May they learn to be wise in weighing both, decide, moving ever forward.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

TV Interviews! What's Next?!!?!!?!?

Hello There!

Now, before I get carried away with the ins and outs of the last seven days, I hope you will indulge me for a bit.

This week, a young girl, here in Canada, committed suicide because of bullying. She was a beautiful 15yr old, with all of life's good things waiting to embrace her. Yet, somehow, deep down in her very young, teenage soul, she could see no other way to escape the torture of the incessant, relentless bullying.

Sadly, she is not the first, nor will she be the last, if something isn't done.

In my experience, and that is the only place from which I can speak, bullying is a behavior which is taught. That, in and of itself seems like a no brainer, right? After all, children aren't born with the ability, the desire, nor the instinct to bully. By nature, as humans, we care.

This is a behavior taught by us. We, the adults of this society, need to take responsibility for teaching our children that it is ok to hurt others, on purpose.

They absorb it every day, as they watch us judge each other, as they hear snide remarks about co-workers, choice words for the person who just cut us off in traffic, belittling the someone who may seem a little different, and doesn't necessarily fit into our tidy little boxes in which we sooo love to put people.

Teaching our children empathy is so incredibly important. Just as, if not more important than teaching them their colours and letters. We seem to be so tied up in making sure our kids learn piano, karate, hockey, figure skating, gymnastics, soccer, dance, and on top of that, excel academically. Maybe we should take a step back, and set aside a little time to make sure they are learning how to care.

I know we can change this obscene trend. We just need to start, and start now. With our toddlers, with our preschool kids, with our pre-teens, with our 15yr olds. We just need to start teaching our kids how fundamentally important it is to care about others. We need to be the adults we'd like our children to be when they grow up.

We need to do better, we owe it to our kids, our grandkids, nieces, nephews, friends' kids, students...........we need to not bury any more of our children because of something we've taught our other children to do.

Sorry, I just needed to get that off my was too heavy for me to carry alone.

*climbing off of soap box*

Now, on to happier things...................................

As for the photo.....that is a pic of Wes Funk and I getting ready for my tv interview for "Lit Happens." 

It actually turned out to be pretty fun, thanks to Wes, the Shaw guys, and the other interviewees. I was very nervous going into the cafe where they held the taping.  I think it helped alot that I got to be the last one interviewed. Watching the other three go first helped tame the butterflies in my stomach.

Apparently, it will be shown on Shaw Saskatoon,  youtube as well as sometime within the next few weeks.

Now that I've done it once, I think I'd be ok doing it again, if the opportunity presented itself.  Let's all keep in mind that it's a pretty big IF, so I can sound pretty brave!

This week also brought with it some rehearsing, trailer fixing, and a trip to the Conquest trade show.

The trade show was fun, as usual. Met lots of people, and for the first time, the best seller for me today was "Everyday Wishes For Your Extraordinary Life"! Yup, I was thrilled to find out that it will be a Christmas gift for several adult children, an engagement gift for a young couple, and seems to be a popular gift for women to give to their women friends. 

Before we took off toward Conquest, we had to make a stop at the post office. I had to ship off a couple of copies of each of "Crazy", "Tags",and "Wishes" to the National Archives in Ontario. Apparently, it's required. Who am I to argue,right? Now, all of my books have a spot out there. It kind of blows my mind to think that 75 years from now, my great-great grandbabies will be able to get their hands on copies of the silly books Grandma used to write.

Now for the upcoming week.................................

Monday........drop off books for Milbanke's in North Battleford on the way to Meadow Lake,Sk. out with some kids at Dorintosh School, in Dorintaosh, Sk, then make my way to, say it with me, Kopahawakenum School at Flying Dust (going to have the kids there to teach me how to pronounce it!) with kids from Lakeview Elementary School in Meadow Lake, Sk. then attend their book fair and parent/teacher night. Green Acre School in Rapid View,Sk. See some kids at Jubilee Elementary in Meadow Lake,Sk., do laundry, make sure everything is ready for Saturday.

Friday.......Head out to visit kids at Major School in Major,Sk.

Saturday......Trade Show in Eatonia,Sk.

Gonna be a BLAST!

Well folks, that about does it for me for another week!

Until next time I'll leave you with this wish................................

May you know, in your lifetime, for every bully you encounter, five good people will become friends, loyal and true.
May you see bullies for the sad cowards they portray, misguided in believing their ego relies on how small they can make you.

May those out there who find joy in torturing those who are different, or tall, or small, or for any other ludicrous, ridiculous, nonsensical excuse....
May you stand in their shoes for a day, to taste the palpable hatred, truly understand the depth of the abuse...

May those who throw an insult at the guy by the water cooler, the girl in the mail room, the person waiting to cross at the light.....
May you be aware of the young ears around you soaking up the fact, that if you're doing it, bullying must be alright...

Saturday, October 6, 2012

The Good, The Bad, And The Pumpkin Pie!

Well, Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!

This lovely photo is one of my favorites. It pretty much depicts what was a fairly average day in our house about 20 years ago, lots of "dress-up", and general goofiness! These are my two youngest daughters back in 1992. Now they are 21 and 22 years old, and "dress-up" is an entirely different game.

Back then, Thanksgiving was a mad scramble getting everyone ready to go to Grandma and Grandpa's house. Trying not to forget anything, diapers, favorite toys to sleep with, gauging how many clothes to take, trying to predict who might and how many accidents might happen, will anybody get car sick? Hoping they will let me sleep while we are there. It might be Grandma and Grandpa's, but it still wasn't their own beds.

The meal consisted mostly of running around getting all the kids a plate, (all being too little to dish themselves out) a drink, helping one make sure none of her food was touching each other, making sure another isn't trying to pass off all her vegetables on her much less picky cousin, wiping up spills and managing to eat a few mouthfuls of cold turkey in the process, all the while trying desperately to at least get close to participating in some of the adult conversation.

Sound familiar?

Now, Thanksgiving is a time to bake a few cookies, maybe some muffins, a pumpkin pie or two, then simply wait for everyone to show up.  Then, when the time comes, and everyone is seated, I get to eat a hot meal! It's Awesome!

So folks, this week was.......well, a little all over the place.

We found out that getting the building for our shop is going to take quite a while yet. It could be the new year before things get settled.

I also received a letter from the Mistletoe and Craft show in North Battleford informing me that they were rejecting my application for the trade show this year. They've decided that this year they are wanting to get some new vendors who have never been there before. It's kind of funny, because being a new vendor was precisely the reason I was turned down by the SunDog show in Saskatoon. They like to keep their regulars.  Thankfully I was able to get two smaller shows to make up for it. One in Macrorie,Sk and the other in Battleford on Dec. 8th. I'll keep you posted.

Then, to top it off, I found out that the Saskatchewan Writer's Guild has put a limit on the amount of readings they will sponsor throughout the school year.  They are now allowing only 5 readings per author. Apparently, some authors are being invited more than others, so they are trying to spread it out. So, if you want me to come and do a reading at your school or library, they said I can still do it, we would just have to arrange it privately. I'm so glad, because that's my favorite part of this whole thing! You can email me at

I was brought to happy tears when I received a message from a teacher friend of mine as she told me about one of her little students who asked if, at story time, the teacher could read from a book she brought from home, and it was "Lexi's Magic Clothes"!  She, apparently was quick to ask the teacher to be careful as it was her very own signed copy! I can't even begin to explain what kind of a thrill that is.

The week finished strong, with an order for some copies of "Wishes" by the owner of Milbanke's Flowers and Gifts in North Battleford. Is it silly that it still makes me down right giddy when that happens?

So that brings us to this weekend. Kids will be coming with, husbands, boyfriends, friends and babies. There will be a lot of food, maybe a few cocktails, and a wii dart tournament that will probably go down in infamy!

As for the upcoming week.........

Help hubby fix brakes, doodads and whatnot on the RV in our driveway.

Rehearse for upcoming shows.

Do my first TV interview..... I'm interviewing on a show called "Lit Happens" on local cable.......incredibly nervous.(I was really hoping I could do this whole book thing while completely avoiding the whole TV thing, but I guess that's not going to happen..... this will be another GINORMOUS leap outside of my comfort zone!) wish me luck. Hopefully, I won't say anything too stupid, or knock anybody out talking with my hands. (which I do a lot, especially when I'm nervous)

Get stuff ready for trade show in Conquest on Saturday, Oct. 13th from 11am til 2:30pm. (shameless plug)

Well folks, that's it for me, this week...until next time I'll leave you with this Thanksgiving wish...........

May you be surrounded by family, if not by blood, by choice.
May everything joyous be given the loudest voice.

May hearty laughter ring long and loud competing fiercely only with sound of an excitedly, playful squeal.
May the symphony of familiar conversation fill your home with all the comfort of a home cooked meal.

May we pause to remember fondly, those no longer here to pull up a chair, fill a plate, take part.
May we do so with a smile, a song, a story, whatever brings their memory closest to our heart.

All of my books are available for purchase at:

McNally Robinson in Saskatoon and Winnipeg

Everyday Wishes is also available at Milbankes in North Battleford

Sunday, September 30, 2012

On The Road Again...........

Well Hi!

This week, though pretty busy, was also pretty great.  The "Word on the Street" festival in Saskatoon was pretty much perfect! The weather was gorgeous, and living where we do, getting a day that feels more like July at the end of September, is a bit of a crap shoot.

I met a lot of great people, sold some books, even did a couple of interviews for newspaper and radio. Interviews that even actually were put into print and on air!  Go figure! As far as interviews go, I really think I like doing the spur of the moment ones better, there is no time to get nervous. I have one scheduled with a local cable TV show called "Lit Happens" coming up, and I have to say, I'm already getting nervous. Another jump outside of my comfort zone. But, you can't grow if you stay inside where it's all safe and cuddly and comfortable, there's not enough room. Scary or not, sweaty palms or not, shakin' in your boots or not.

Next up was the trade show in Unity. It began Friday afternoon and went until 4pm, yesterday. (Taking time for a bit of sleep!Lol) It's a show with a really nice variety of vendors, therefore attracts a really nice variety of shoppers. I guess, what you would call my ideal demographic was there in full force, Grandmas and people with munchkins! It's always such a rush watching a wee one grab their adult by the hand and pull them to my booth!

Then, last evening, we had the privilege of doing the music for a 60th wedding anniversary celebration. I have to tell you, it felt very familiar. A large family with lots of kids, where everyone was more than willing to kick up their heels! Toward the end of the evening, I was starting to have trouble finding the music that would get them on the dance floor, anymore. I wasn't sure what the heck was going on, as I don't usually have that much trouble reading a crowd.

When Randy went to the back of the hall to do a sound check, he had a bit of a chat with one of the guests, and asked if they were enjoying the music, his reply? "It's great! You guys just tired us out!"

So, needless to say, it wasn't a really late night!

It was kind of nice to be home before 2am!

So, for the upcoming week..........

Well, next weekend is Thanksgiving here in Canada, so I'll be spending the week getting ready for kids to come home.  I love having everyone under one roof, even if, these days, it's for short periods of time. It's going to be a good time. We'll have a few new faces at the table this year, in the way of new boyfriends and friends, the more the merrier!

Also this week, I'll be giving my hubby a hand with some RV jobs. I'm still not convinced that I am much of a help, but, if nothing else, I'm a good, tool-go-getter person!

There also better be some rehearsing done this week, we have some straight karaoke shows coming up,which involves a fair amount of singing on our part. Can't be having rusty pipes!

So, my friends, that about does it for another week, until next time, I'll leave you with this wish.........

May you dance, sing, enjoy, for life is sweet, and should be thoroughly tasted.
May you colour outside the lines, with polka dot skies, every colour used, none wasted.

May you have your heart beat through your chest for something that both frightens and excites.
May adrenaline driven anticipation become part of the fabric of all your days and nights.

May every day bring with it something different and unique.
May you run toward the next adventure, it's just over the hill, take a peek.

Check it out!

Books also available at McNally Robinson in Saskatoon and Winnipeg

Saturday, September 22, 2012


Hi there!

As I lean on the railing of my deck, I see the trees gracing our front yard in all of their Autumn glory. Some leaves appear dipped in fire, while others seem to be clinging to the last days of summer, desperately holding on to any bit of green. Knowing they must turn, dry, and fall to the earth, they hold on until the chilled breeze becomes too much to bare.

Not  unlike a 70 year old granny with decent legs wearing a mini-skirt. It's not altogether unattractive, but somehow, seems out of place, all the same.

Yep, the leaves are falling, kids are back in school, school activities are revving up, dance, gymnastics, soccer, football, homework, work, make lunches, figure out supper, go to work, do laundry, solve playground political issues, piano lessons, fix the leaky faucet, dentist, figure out why the "best friend" is suddenly acting like such a jerk, supply snack, arrange playdates,.........sounding familiar?

Life, it seems, can seem to take on a life of it's own. I think, at times, it feels like, somehow, we were just pulled on to this train, going at breakneck speed, not being told where it goes, or where our stop is. I know, for me, it's happened in the past.

Back when the kids were small, and my hubby was working one full time, and one part time job, and I was working three part time jobs, dayhome, grocery store, and restaurant, just to keep bodies and souls together, I would have nightmares. One recurring one was about being at the wrong job at the wrong time. (I also had nightmares about slaying a dragon made entirely of dirty laundry, but that's another story, for another time) I do remember another dream very vividly. I dreamed I was in a serious car accident, and was being taken to the hospital in an ambulance, in my dream, what was going through my head wasn't fear or panic, it was an overwhelming feeling of peace, you see, in my dream, all that kept going through my mind was the fact that, in the hospital, I might get to sleep.

Since then, I've learned that, though in life, control is an illusion, we do have the power to influence the direction our lives take. We can't foresee every blessing or every hardship, or sometimes, in the moment, tell the difference between the two, but we can, and need to participate, always. Life is not for spectators. Existing is the spectator sport.

As our Fall season of DJ gigs, trade shows and readings revs up, and with the added excitement of our new RV service venture, some of those familiar feelings of being overwhelmed really would like to take up residence with me once again. But now, instead of having nightmares, I step back, take a deep breath, and know, all I can do is what I can do, the rest isn't up to me. And I sleep. After all the sun will come up tomorrow whether the things on my "to do" list are done or not, so why sweat it?


This week brought some grandson snuggles, more experience in being the time keeper/bookkeeper/tool-go-getter/here-hold-this-er of the RV repair world, poster producing for trade shows, rehearsing for 60th anniversary gig next weekend and some gratuitous breathing in of crisp Autumn air.

The upcoming week......

"Word On The Street Festival" tomorrow in Saskatoon!!!!!! Come check it out!

Get caught up on remaining RV jobs........

Rehearse for 60th anniversary gig next weekend.................(trying to learn songs from the 50's)

Prep for trade show in Unity, also next weekend......(yep tradeshow by day, DJ by night)

Pack up and head out to said trade show and gig.

Oh yeah, I probably won't be able to get my blog up until Sunday, next week. (Unless I'm still full of caffeine, sugar and adrenaline from horrible amounts of coffee and junk food ingested, trying to stay energized for the trade show and gig. In that case, I will write it Saturday night when we get home!)

Until then, my friends, I'll leave you with this wish................

May the colours of autumn, their vibrancy, their boldness, become woven into the fabric of your soul.
May you walk with new energy, new confidence, a little sass, for there is fire in you, let it unfold.

May the chill in the air force you to breathe deeply, revitalizing everything that you are.
May the brisk breeze be at your back, helping you move ever forward, both happily and far.

May you embrace all of your colours, especially those hues less capable of enchanting others.
May you use your many shades to paint the portrait of your life, your portrait of your life, unsmothered.

Until next week.........You can check out, and buy my books at would love if you checked it out!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Coffee Wrestlin' and Hoop Jumpin'!

Contrary to what this may look like, I am NOT giving my 7 month old grandson coffee! It was a cup of French Vanilla, and must have smelled irresistible because, every time I would try to take a sip, Jake would do his level best to wrestle the cup from my hands! He's stronger than he looks!

Though it was a struggle, I did manage to keep the caffeine out of his little system. There will be plenty of time for him to develop a caffeine addiction later.

Now, on a totally different subject;

Life, this week, I am almost certain, is supposed to teach me patience. Not the kind of patience needed to handle kids, or the kind you need when anticipating an exciting event. Nope, this week, I think the patience I am supposed to learn is the kind needed when trying to teach an elephant to tap dance or teach a flea to play the tuba. I think it's the kind of patience necessary to scrub a cathedral floor with a single strand of hair, the kind required when painting the golden gate bridge with a toothbrush. I think you get my point.

Without boring you with details, I will tell you this. The launch of the new venture that my hubby and I are trying to start is taking a LOT more steps than we had anticipated. Seriously, we've jumped through more hoops than a geriatric circus dog! We are getting close, but it seems every time we get close to the starting line, it gets moved. Like I said.....patience.

Otherwise, the week went pretty well. It began with a birthday celebration for our son-in-law and our daughter, Sarah. Then the dates for doing readings in Meadow Lake were confirmed. I wasn't able to get posters done, so I'll be taking care of that on Monday.

Also, I received an awesome comment on my book "Everyday Wishes For Your Extraordinary Life."
When asked what she thought of the book after she was done reading it, the reader replied "You're never really done reading that book."  Hands down, one of the best compliments I've ever gotten.

So, that about covers the week filled with coffee wrestling and hoop jumping......

As for the upcoming week..................................

Tomorrow my eldest daughter and her hubby will be coming out for an afternoon of football....Go Riders!

Monday involves poster making and gathering information required for our next hoop jump. guessed it.......hoop jumping

Wednesday, Thursday, Friday.......prep for the "Word On The Street Festival" in Saskatoon (Sun. Sept 23rd in front of the downtown library on 23rd St. Bring the munchkins!)

Saturday...... rehearse for 60th anniversary party on the evening of Sept. 29th (trying to learn some songs from the early fifties)

So that, my friends, is about all there is this week.  Hopefully, by next week's blog, the hoop jumping will be complete!

Until next time, I will leave you with this wish..............................................

May positivity come at you like raindrops in a hurricane, with such force, it's impossible to ignore.
May any surplus bounce from you to others around you, splitting, spreading, covering more.

May any hesitation to completely embrace new challenges disappear into the whipping wind.
May any sense of feeling unworthy be carried off too, for that's what drags you down in the end.

May you see your dream, not just as a dream, somewhere, someday, always just beyond your grasp.
May you see your dream as a reality, here, now, something solidly held in your hands

Until next week......... check out my new and improved website!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Awning Kites, Bestsellers, and Bookings!

The first true sign of Autumn!

This lonely, golden cluster of foliage is the beginning of the end of summer in good old Saskatchewan. The nights are already getting chilly, to all those who live in warmer climates, chilly, around here, means a few degrees above freezing.

Don't get me wrong, I love Fall! Every season brings with it it's own charm. Autumn brings kids playing in piles of leaves, sweaters, nice long walks without mosquitoes, and living where I live, the hum of combines, and grain trucks, as the farmers try to pull in the harvest before the frost gets to it first.

Although the days are getting shorter, and the sun is starting to withhold her heat, I look forward to the coming months, and the surprises I'm sure they'll bring.

So folks, this week was definitely an interesting one.

I did manage to assist my hubby in removing and installing an RV awning. What I learned?

A 16ft RV awning has definite potential as a giant kite!

Also.....that the fact that my hubby is almost a full foot taller than I, makes a big difference when carrying a detached awning away from an RV. His strides are longer, he is able to hold it higher, therefore, keeping it off of the ground and thusly, preventing it from beating the crap out of him.

I, however, was not as successful. Oh well, a few bruises and a scrape or two never killed anyone. Next time, I will be smarter. Next time, hopefully, we won't be doing this kind of repair in 45km/hr wind!

This week also brought some pretty cool news. "Everyday Wishes For Your Extraordinary Life"  made the top ten bestseller list for hardcovers at McNally Robinson. On the children's bestsellers list;
"A Crazy Day" is #1, and "Tags Go In The Back" came in at #4! Yep, there they were on the list, nestled nicely between the 2nd and 3rd books from the Hunger Games Trilogy!

I can't even tell you what kind of a thrill that is! I can't believe it! I know it's probably only going to be for a single week, and I know it's one store, in one city, but it's still somewhere I never thought I would see any actual book actually written by me, ever.

This is real. Wow.

Another thing I have a hard time wrapping my head around, is you guys. It never ceases to amaze, baffle, and completely thrill me, when I come on here, and see readers from Canada, Russia, the Untied States, the United Kingdom, the Philippines, Indonesia, Belarus, Switzerland, Germany, Vietnam, France, and more.  I appreciate you all so much, and am so grateful for your support.

When I sit back and think back to a mere 3 years ago, when writing seemed like some far off dream that I would love to at least try "someday".......... I am a very lucky person.

Also, within the last few days I have one sure booking for a visit to the school in Major,Sk. on Oct. 19th, and a couple of tentative dates for that same week in Meadow Lake,Sk. Oh, and we also were booked to do a Halloween karaoke show on Oct 27th, in Denzil.

Yep, fall is here, and things are revving up!

Well I think that about does it for another week.

For the upcoming days...............................

For the next two with grandbabies, visit some daughters, eat some birthday cake. (Second daughter and son-in-law, Happy birthday Sarah and Jody!)......

Assist hubby in few more RV jobs.....

Get posters made for trade shows...(now that I was actually able to get the jpegs on a flashdrive...not the most tech savvy, ok?)

Find easels for said posters.

Do some advertising for the word on the street festival coming up in Saskatoon on the 23rd.

Get some fall cleaning cleaning fairies must be on strike.

So, my friends, until next time, I'll leave you with this wish........

May you see the value in basking in life's joys now, and not leaving them for "someday."
May you see that most of the time, in our quest for happiness, we often get in our own way.

May you understand that the search for happiness, is a journey contained completely within our soul.
May you know you need not look outside yourself for peace, joy, value, to be whole.

May you give yourself permission to be still, rest, rejuvinate, without a glimpse of guilt.
May you fight the urge to "do", and just "be", and let yourself be filled.

Until Next time!

Feel free to become a follower, check out my website, and "like" my facebook page!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Blue Moons & Book Signing!


"Once in a blue moon............."

Ok, the top photo was taken the evening of August 31st/2012. This, apparently is a "Blue" moon. I missed the explanation as to what makes this particular moon blue, so I am confused. It pretty much looks like the full moon I saw last month, and the month before that.

Now, the writer in me really wants to make it a story about how it's "blue" because it's the last full moon of the summer, so when he becomes full again, the air will be colder, school will be in full swing, and there won't be nearly as many people outside to greet him. The weather will have turned colder and the night air will carry with it a chill too chilly to allow the children to be outside to play with him, and besides, it will be past their school bed times........ that's why he doesn't come around very often.....he needs to give his heart time to heal between wonder he's blue!

Okay, that may not be the official, scientific explanation of a "blue moon", but if you ask your average 4 year old which version they think is true........................

So, anyway.........

This week I was able to secure a table at the Conquest trade show in October, the other two I have my eye on should be nailed down by the end of the upcoming week.

Also this week, I assisted my hubby in removing and replacing an Air conditioner on a customer's RV. Okay, assisted may be too strong of a word, but my skill set does include going to get tools, and handing them up the ladder, as needed. Oh, and I am made of pretty sturdy stock, so lifting of said air conditioner is also in my wheel house. Yep, more than just a hat rack.

That pretty much brings us to today.

Today was my book signing at McNally Robinson. The bottom photo at the top of this blog is a shot of one family of little girls who went home with a handful of books. (That really is me behind the table, I swear, my hubby just cut off my head when he took the pic) (Freudian???????hmmmmm)

I think it went pretty well. I met a lot of new people, saw some familiar faces, and made a new friend named Shem. He is going in to grade 3 and the novelty of school, shall we say, has lost some it's lustre. He has very generously invited me to come to his school in Regina to read to him and his friends. I'm going to try my best to make it happen.

The McNally people were happy with the sales, so that always makes me feel a bit relieved.  I guess that always kind of weighs in the back of the mind, and the front, too, if you let it. I mean, nobody wants to be the person seated at the entrance of the store, for all of the world to see, and not sell a single book. Thankfully I wasn't that It doesn't mean it can't happen.

So, for the next week...........

"Assist" in removing and installing an RV awning.......

Make and adhere more correction labels on the back of my books (helps to have the right website on them)

Secure tables at the other two trade shows......

Light a fire under the butts of my house cleaning fairies....they get lazy this time of year.

Flesh out a few new stories that have taken up residence in my head.......

So, my friends, I think that about does it for another week. 

With "back to school" in the air I'll leave you with this wish..........

May you be able to smile through your shiny eyes as you unhold the hand of your first wee one on their very first day.
May you have the fortitude not to turn into a snivelling mess until you're alone, in your house, out of the way.

May you help shine their first days to a glistening gleam, as they are bound to tarnish as years go by.
May you help build a strong foundation on which they can stand, and withstand, for not all days will be easy as pie.

May you listen twice and speak once when they come to you, bubbling over with excitement from their day.
May you hone this craft as they get older, and the bubbling becomes smouldering, brooding, and they don't have nearly as much to say.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Downturns, Upturns, and Twirls!

Well, Hello there!

What a week!

First, the wedding in Elbow............. gorgeous! That's about all I can say. What a beautiful group of people, an absolute gorgeous setting, as you can see from the top photo, and just a down right good time. 

We have been doing this for about 12 years now, and have seen our share of weddings with many different themes and many different vibes. Some are very proper and kind of stiff and others go the laid back route. This was a pretty perfect balance of the two.

The bride, though a trooper, became tired of wearing her 40 or so pound wedding dress, and not having really planned for a change, was very resourceful! The guys of the bridal party had long ago given up the shirts from their tuxes, as it was a pretty hot day, so, the bride confiscated her new hubby's shirt, a sash from one of the chair covers and her friend's sweater. After a quick change in the washroom emerged in her lovely ensemble. Men's shirt, purple sash belt, and her friend's cardigan for a little extra length. Voila! The new comfy bride was ready to dance once more!

And dance they did! Another 6 hour wedding dance! As I began playing the final song, a romantic ballad they had used at the ceremony, I thought for sure the new bride and groom would take advantage of this sentimental moment. But, that just wasn't them. The bride, in her new fashion forward attire, along with her new husband grabbed another couple of chair sashes and began to dance and twirl and prance around the other couples on the dance floor who were taking advantage of the romance. It was so funny, they looked like alternates for the rhythm gymnastics team twirling and swirling their sashes, entwining couples whenever possible.

Too funny!

The week then took a quick downturn as I had to resign from my "job" lookng after the wee ones I cared for. With my hubby no longer working in the city, it just didn't make sense for me to drive 12 hours a week to work 12 hours a week. Not on it's own.

That, my friends, I'm not going to lie, was very tough. I'm going to miss those munchkins like crazy! The Mom was very understanding, as I knew she would be. We both knew she wasn't going to need me forever, but niether of us were prepared to let go just yet. I know we'll stay in touch, and they will always hold a very special place in my heart. Those twins were so tiny, and now they are strapping 21/2 yr old boys, bright, walking, running, talking a blue streak, and on their way to being potty trained. Their sister, a little, shy, 4 year old sprite when I started, is now seven, and is the one who grounded me from doing crafts. They'll be fine. And, in time, so will I.

Upturning again, the the "Art in the Park" tradeshow, today. Well, it ended up being "Art in the Hall", as the weather didn't exactly cooperate. We had pretty wicked winds, which doesn't really go well with tables of jewelery, baking, quilts, photographs, and books! It still was a great day. Saw a lot of familiar faces, even more new ones and sold some books too!

Now, for the upcoming week........

I found out about another couple of tradeshows that could work out quite well, I need to get details and hopefully signed up for those.

We will hopefully be getting a solid answer about our new adventure...

Help hubby remove and replace an air conditioner on an RV........

Maybe make a quick  day trip to see my mom........

Get ready for my official signing for "Tags" and "Wishes" at McNally Robinson in Saskatoon, on Saturday Sept.1st at 1pm.......(Yes that was blatant advertising, in case you missed it)

That's about it for this week......

Until next week I'll leave you with this wish.........

May you approach life's challenges with the mindset of a seasoned athlete,taking everything in stride.
May you withstand the stress and pressure with relative ease, using your instincts as your guide.

May you understand very few races in life are sprints, most are lengthy, with no real win or lose.
May you see the gift of strolling each marathon, in the sand, wearing cast iron shoes.

May you come to know that with rushing to the finish line, so much can go by, unnoticed, unseen.
May you not only feel the pull of where you are headed, but the importance of where you've been.

Until next time.....Check out my website  All four books are available!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Bad Pics and Red Tape!


You know, sometimes, there is nothing like the complete and utter vastness of a prairie sunset to put things into perspective.

If you let it in, the sheer beauty of it can take hold of your soul, making you believe that anything is possible.  That if, this day, even if it's been a bad one, the worst one, a devastating one, can end in such breathtaking measure, then, as the new dawn rises, it can only bring with it, better things.

Every new day brings new opportunities, new challenges, new people, new experiences. Not all encounters carry a life changing impact on a monumental scale, but, I believe, they are life changing, every single one.  Every single thing that happens during the course of a day happens in succession to bring us to where we need to be at any given moment. Stop lights, hesitating to pick up a dropped hat, making the walk light just before it turned, maybe even missing getting in line before the lady with the heaping cart and screaming baby. I believe everything happens for a reason, and not just the big things.

Now, if a person began to focus and obsess about the complicated interconnection of the intricate lace that is life, we would end up not really living, and therefore, I believe, completely miss the whole point.

We can't enjoy life if we obsess about every minute detail, but, I think it is important to keep in mind the impact we have on others on a daily basis, even if it's the lady with the heaping cart and screaming baby.

Well, that's it for this week in Country Girl Philosophy 101. the past week........

If you happened to pick up a copy of the Rosetown Eagle this week, you saw the article that came from the interview I did last week.  You may recall I thought I hadn't said anything too crazy..... well I'm now not convinced that that is correct. The article is accompanied by a picture. I'm not the most photogenic person, so getting a good photo is a long shot at the best of times. Throw in a few nights of little sleep and some nerves?............ Well, let me put it this way, even the most aged and crazy past supermodels have nothing to worry about.

The reporter did do a good job with what he was given to work with, though. Hopefully I will do a better job with my end of interviews in the future, if given the chance.

Well, "Tags" and "Wishes" have been out for a week now. Online sales are a bit slow. I'm thinking it might be due to the fact that the website was down for so long. It is working now, thankfully. So I'm working on getting the word out about it again.

We did find a solution to the wrong website being printed on all of the books. On my hubby's suggestion, we picked up a label maker and went nuts with it. We aren't anywhere near finished putting the new stickers on all of the back covers yet, but we are making a dent. All in good time.

Oh, and on our new adventure front, I really am not being dramatic about it, we are simply foraging our way through what seems to be an ever more dense jungle of red tape.  It's a lot of hurry up and wait. It might take another couple of weeks to find out.

So.... for the upcoming week........

Tomorrow, we are off to a gig at a wedding in Elbow. It's an absolutely gorgeous place for a wedding, the one we did there last year was such a good time. I have no doubt that this one will be as well. The people are so warm and welcoming, you walk in feeling like one of the family.

Then, it will be time to get things ready for the Trade Show season coming up. Art in the Park is first on Aug.25th right here in Milden. I'll have a table to sign and sell books, plus we are providing the background music for the afternoon. I'm looking forward to it, it should be a fun day.

The rest of the week is kind of up in the air..... going to have to go by the seat of my pants on this one. 

Though life is a bit unsettled right now, I feel in my bones that on the other side of this storm lies a lingering peace. I look forward to it.

So, my friends that about does it for this week.

I want you to know how honoured and humbled I am by the fact that you take the time to read these crazy ramblings each week. From Russia to Indonesia, from Turkey to Germany, from Latvia to Malaysia and everywhere in between, thank you.

Until next time, I'll leave you with this wish........

May you encounter the kindness of a stranger and pay forward a good deed.
May you feel impassioned by a cause and wholeheartedly help fulfill the need.

May every step you take have mindful purpose, whether in seriousness or in play.
May you be careful of the lives you touch, making sure it's in a positive way.

May you never be the darkness in the room, always striving to be the light.
May you keep in mind darkness breeds only more darkness, nothing good, nothing bright.

May the fortitude to walk away from those with nothing but harsh words overtake your stride.
May you, instead, stroll with those filled with kindness and laughter, those filled with a healthy pride.

Until Next Week!

Check out my website! It's Working!!!!