Friday, June 28, 2013

Book Report - A Wrinkle in Time

Title: A Wrinkle in Time
Authour: Madeline L'Engle
Length: 203 pages
How long it took me to read: Three weeks

What it's about: Fifty years ago, Madeleine L’Engle introduced the world to A Wrinkle in Time and the wonderful and unforgettable characters Meg and Charles Wallace Murry, and their friend Calvin O’Keefe. When the children learn that Mr. Murry has been captured by the Dark Thing, they time travel to Camazotz, where they must face the leader IT in the ultimate battle between good and evil—a journey that threatens their lives and our universe. A Newbery Award winner, A Wrinkle in Time is an iconic novel that continues to inspire millions of fans around the world.

The ending is the most important part: The ending was the best part, a) because that meant that I was finally finished with this book, and b) there is a good message.

Last word: I didn't like it, but it's a good enough book and I can see why it's a classic. It just wasn't my cup of tea.

Spoilers after the jump:

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

They're Ba-ack!

You don't have to count them, there's a lot
I caught Orso furiously licking his paw the other day, and I knew I had to take action immediatley. TWENTY-SIX seed pods later, we were done.

I have seen the seed pods in the laundry and the carpet, and when I brush Orso, and in his tail. (ha ha, he has foxtails in his tail!!) I had been checking his paws from time to time and picking out a few here and there, but never as many as twenty-six. Sheesh!!

I am so sick of not having a back yard. I am so sick of the weeds. I am seriously going to burn the thing down.

Also, poor Orso has no where to frolic and laze under a tree or anything. Sad face for Orso.

Also, it's so embarassing that we've lived in this house for seven years and still don't have a back yard. I have so many visions of how pretty it will be when our yard is done. Sad face for me.
Look at my happy boy! All de-seeded.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

I always feel like, Somebody's watching me

Maybe it was the fact that DH, Dewey, and I were watching Michael Jackson videos last night.

Maybe it was the fact that I knew EVERY. SINGLE. WORD (including Vincent Price's rap) to Thriller and where the verses took place in the video.

Maybe it was the fact that I was explaining to Dewey how I used to choreograph my brother and sisters and put on major lip-synching productions when I was a kid and he was a little impressed by and a little embarassed for me.

Maybe it was the fact that we were reminicsing about Michael Jackson and sad for his death and I remembered how I had saved up my babysitting money to buy my first album ever and that was Thriller.

But it was probably because this was the first song I heard on the radio when I pulled out of the driveway this morning and I just wonder:

What happened to Rockwell?

He was a musician, and Michael Jackson was friends with him, so he sang on this record with him, which became this monster hit, but then what? I had never heard of Rockwell before nor after this song, but I know he recorded music. I feel a Google/Wikipedia search coming on...

On another note: I have always been afraid to wash my hair only because I'm afraid I'll open my eyes and find someone standing there. This song did not help matters. My shower is glass and completely see through so that I can see if anyone dressed up as their mother and weilding a large knife is coming at me.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Weekly Check-In

Physically: Not tired. A little sore from yoga, which is a good thing. I have the energy I need, but I still wish I had more.

Emotionally: Okay, I guess. Missing Huey and then fighting with Huey is never fun.

Spiritually: I've been better, but I could be worse.

Goal: Last week's goal was to drink 2 oz of water for every oz of soda I drank. I had success with the one for one goal, not so much with the two for one goal, however, I went two days without any soda at all, so this is a win.

My goal this week is to go to yoga twice.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Book Report - Speak

Title: Speak
Authour: Laurie Halse Anderson
Length: 224 pages
How long it took me to read: Two days

What it's about:
The first ten lies they tell you in high school.
"Speak up for yourself--we want to know what you have to say." From the first moment of her freshman year at Merryweather High, Melinda knows this is a big fat lie, part of the nonsense of high school. She is friendless, outcast, because she busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops, so now nobody will talk to her, let alone listen to her. As time passes, she becomes increasingly isolated and practically stops talking altogether. Only her art class offers any solace, and it is through her work on an art project that she is finally able to face what really happened at that terrible party: she was raped by an upperclassman, a guy who still attends Merryweather and is still a threat to her. Her healing process has just begun when she has another violent encounter with him. But this time Melinda fights back, refuses to be silent, and thereby achieves a measure of vindication. In Laurie Halse Anderson's powerful novel, an utterly believable heroine with a bitterly ironic voice delivers a blow to the hypocritical world of high school. She speaks for many a disenfranchised teenager while demonstrating the importance of speaking up for oneself.
Speak was a 1999 National Book Award Finalist for Young People's Literature.

The ending is the most important part: The what it's about tells it all. The ending is great. What you are hoping and cheering for comes to pass. The ending is absolutely satisfying.

Last word: Everyone should read this book. The message of this book is that when something terrible happens to you, you can rise above it and fight back.

Spoilers after the jump:

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

One of the Best Moments of my Life

I just don’t know what I’m going to do when Huey is a real teenager. This last year has been a real struggle with him. My perfect, angel boy who helped with everything and always said yes has been talking back or not talking at all, slams the door in my face and has given up in school. He used to have perfect grades. Now he’s failing. He won’t do anything we ask him unless we threaten him within an inch of his life.

Many times I have had to pull over on my drive home because I am thinking about this and my heart is breaking so much that I am sobbing.

One night, DH and Huey were fighting and he was lipping off to DH and I just had it. I was stressed to the gills and snapped. I was yelling and freaking out to the point that DH had to hold me to save me from myself and I couldn’t stop crying. I thought that DH was going to have me committed. Both boys were in their rooms crying and terrified.

After I finally calmed down, I went to both boys to tell them I was sorry. Dewey and I hugged and cried and kissed and made up. I can’t remember quite what I said to Huey, but it was something to do with what a terrible mother I was because when I was a kid my mum yelled at me and I swore I would never yell at my kids and I was so, so sorry.

“No, Mom, you’re the best.” That’s what he said. And he hugged me hard. And I cried so hard.

I can’t tell you how much that meant to me to hear that, especially at that moment. I go back to this moment over and over again. I can still hear his voice in my head telling me that I’m the best. I will never forget it.

I love that kid so much. I miss him terribly as he shuts me out while he tries to figure out how to be a man, so I will stand on the sidelines, loving him until my heart explodes and then loving him even more.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Michael Jackson Pick-Me-Up

I was having a particularly bad morning. I just couldn't get myself going.

I have no excuse. I didn't need to get anyone ready except for myself. No lunches, no 3 wake-up calls, DH was home, so I didn't even have to take care of Orso.

Still I overslept, and couldn't get going.

When I pulled out of the driveway, this song was playing on my radio. Sirius, I love you.

Mama Say, Mama Saw, Ma-Ma Koo Saw.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Weekly Check-in

Physically: A little tired and a little stiff, but okay

Emotionally: Feeling grateful and hopeful.

Spiritually: Where I need to be

Goal: My goal last week was to go to Yoga as much as possible and to drink 1 oz of water for every 1 oz of soda. I was only able to get ot Yoga once, and it was a struggle, but I'm really glad I did it. I was successful with the water drinking. I discovered that I cut out the afternoon soda really quickly because it was really hard to have to drink all that water after the second soda which is a super good thing!

I'm still reading my scriptures every night.

My goal this week is to drink 2 oz of water for ever 1 oz of soda that I drink.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Currently - June

Loving - Writing.
Reading - A Wrinkle in Time - by Madeline L'Engle. It's taking too long for a children's classic.
Watching - Mad Men, The Good Wife, Pretty Little Liars and The New Girl. It's amazing I have time for anything else!

Anticipating - Spending time at Lagoon A Beach
Listening - Song for Zula by Phosphorescent. On a loop.
Planning - Painting projects to work on during the summer.
Working on - Mending and reconstruction projects thanks to my organized craft room.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Book Report Beautiful Chaos

Title: Beautiful Chaos
Authour: Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
Length: 516 pages
How long it took me to read: A week and a half

What it's about: Third in the series of the Beautiful Creatures Novels. Ethan Wate thought he was getting used to the strange, impossible events happening in Gatlin, his small Southern town. But now that Ethan and Lena have returned home, strange and impossible have taken on new meanings. Swarms of locusts, record-breaking heat, and devastating storms ravage Gatlin as Ethan and Lena struggle to understand the impact of Lena's Claiming. Even Lena's family of powerful Supernaturals is affected - and their abilities begin to dangerously misfire. As time passes, one question becomes clear: What - or who - will need to be sacrificed to save Gatlin?

For Ethan, the chaos is a frightening but welcome distraction. He's being haunted in his dreams again, but this time it isn't by Lena - and whatever is haunting him is following him out of his dreams and into his everyday life. Even worse, Ethan is gradually losing pieces of himself - forgetting names, phone numbers, even memories. He doesn't know why, and most days he's too afraid to ask.

Sometimes there isn't just one answer or one choice. Sometimes there's no going back. And this time there won't be a happy ending.

The ending is the most important part: Another Cliffhanger? This cliffhanger was worse than Beautiful Creatures! What the HECK Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl? Yeah, the ending is definitley not a happy one.

Last word: I recommend this book just know that the title suits it - it's chaotic and hard to get through because things are kinda dark and you think you know more than the characters and it takes them way too long to figure things out, which is so frustrating, but it turns out you were wrong anyway. Make sure you have Beautiful Redemption on standby so you can immediately go into the next book. I have to wait and I'm pretty mad about it.

Spoilers after the jump:

Thursday, June 13, 2013

I Make Fire

Gotta love the Dewey fire bomb
I am a total pyromaniac.

When I was growing up, the soul source of heat in our house was two woodburning stoves; one in the basement, and one upstairs. My brother and I were in charge of the fire in the basement. Both of us are total pyromaniacs. My mum would be walking around upstairs and have to holler at us because the floor was hot. We would get it up to ninety degrees in the winter and be walking around in the basement in our shorts.

Needless to say, I am really good at making fires.

We went camping over Memorial Day weekend and got a late start. We didn't get to the campsite until dusk. DH put Huey in charge of starting the fire while he unloaded and I took care of Orso. Huey, the boy scout, was having a difficult time, so I traded him. We didn't have any kindling or newspaper, but Huey had chopped some wood for kindling. We just needed some tinder. He had a tiny, tiny fire going, so I ripped off some dried out sage branches from the bushes nearby, added the McDonald's bag, blew a littly, added some bigger and bigger branches, and soon enough we had a roaring fire.

By the time DH was done setting up the trailer, we were ready for s'mores. It was awesome. I stayed up long after everyone went to bed just to watch the fire die.

I was so happy to know that I still got it.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

One of the Best Moments of my Life

One of the longest days of my life was April 17, 2008, the day of Dewey’s surgery to remove his primary tumour. We were very fortunate to have the best surgery team who gave us updates from the surgery room, and that his 4-6 hour surgery lasted less than three hours. You can read more about this here.

After Dewey was out of surgery and in the PICU, we were able to see him. Dewey has really long, beautiful, dark eyelashes. Due to the chemotherapy, all of his eyelashes fell out. He was down to one prior to surgery. They put this goop on their eyes so they don’t dry out. When we entered the PICU to see Dewey post-surgery, he was hooked up to all these tubes and his eyes were still closed. The first thing I noticed was his final eyelash on his shoulder. I was so sad.

The wonderful thing, other than he was still alive and we were still kicking cancer’s butt was this; every once and awhile, his eyes would flutter open. Whenever this would happen I would get in his face and smile my brightest smile to let him know that I was there. Every time, once his eyes focused and he knew I was there, he would relax and close his eyes again.

I knew he needed me, and the minute he knew I was there, he was reassured and would return to healing himself. I felt connected to him on so many levels that day. It felt like he was coming back to me every time his eyes focused on mine.

He did in fact need my presence. Hospital rules in the PICU are that the parents are not allowed to sleep in the room. (I really hated the PICU) They have these “sleeping rooms” that are pitch black that they sent me to, but had to come and get me every couple of hours or so, because every time Dewey would wake up and he couldn’t see me, he would freak out and not calm down until he saw me. The minute he could see me he would chill right out and go back to sleep. It was a rough night, but I knew how much he needed me, so I was okay with it.

He told me later that he had a dream that he was in a white tunnel, but he could see my face and hear my voice and that’s what kept bringing him back to me.

I love that kid so much and I would die of a broken heart if he wasn’t in my life. I am so thankful to be blessed enough to have him still with me. I am certain I nor my family would have survived if he was taken from us.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

What would I do without the Radio?

Back in the olden days, before the internet was born, I had very limited means to introduce me to new music. Basically, I had the radio.

My first foray into the music world was the influence of my best friend’s older brother, who introduced me to “Glass Houses”. We also had neighbours who would blast their music and a few of my friends had older siblings.

When I was nine, my grandfather passed away and I inherited his clock radio. It had a sleep function (and an analog, not digital clock), so I would fall asleep listening to CKLG. I loved listening to the radio and dreamed of being a radio personality one day.

When I got older, I started going to church dances and was introduced to alternative music. What a golden time for me! I learned all about The Smiths, The Cure, The The, etc. It was so wonderful and I will be forever grateful to Hanu, Don, Mark, Taylor, Bryce, Kate, Ted and a bunch of others for bringing this genre of music into my life.

Once I was introduced to alternative music, I had to learn about more bands, so I started reading music magazines like Smash Hits and Spin. I also read The Georgia Strait which is a local music newspaper in Vancouver. Sometimes when I’m homesick I’ll check it out online.

I could never afford to buy much music as a youth, so I did a lot of research before investing in an album. One of the ways I would know if the album was good was if 3 or more songs were played on the radio. Unfortunately, Vancouver didn’t have an alternative radio station until I was in my very late teens and early twenties. I did listen to CFRO – and independent station, and CITR, the station at UBC, but their signal was very weak in Langley/Cloverdale and you had to listen at the right time, and I had a lot of things pulling for my free time. (boys, school, parties, babysitting, boys, the mall).

We used to love it when we could take a trip down to Seattle and listen to 107.7 the End and actually hear good music on the radio.

The early nineties was a beautiful time for radio in Vancouver. We finally got an alternative station! I actually had all my presets on my radio set to good stations! It was wonderful.

Now I have my best friend, Sirius XM. I occasionally listen to 101.9 the End, a local alternative station, but ADS. I hate ‘em. I want to hear good music. Plus, overplay. I want to listen to a huge variety of good music! I listen to 80’s on 8, First Wave, Lithium, XMU, and Alt Nation channels on Sirius. (and sometimes Disney Channel, shhh – don’t tell) Sirius’ rates have gone up considerably, from $7.00 a month to $30.00, so DH has cancelled our subscription. He is convinced that they will come back with a better offer so that we don’t have to cancel, but I just don’t know what I’m going to do if I can’t listen to the radio!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Weekly Check-In

Physically: Tired, but okay

Emotionally: Grumpy because I'm so tired, but otherwise okay

Spiritually: In a good place.

Goal: My goal last week was to go to Yoga as much as possible. Yoga is on Tues, Wed and Sat. Tues was our monthly Relief Society meeting, so I missed on Tues. Wed Huey had an activity that he had to be driven to, so I missed Wed. Sat Aunt Flo hit me with a vengeance, and ain't no way I'm twisting myself into a pretzel when that kind of stuff is going down.

I'm still reading my scriptures every night.

In addition to the do-over with the yoga, my goal this week is to drink 1 oz of water for ever 1 oz of soda that I drink.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Book Report - Warm Bodies

Title: Warm Bodies
Authour: Isaac Marion
Length: 256 pages
How long it took me to read: 1 day

What it's about: R is having a no-life crisis—he is a zombie. He has no memories, no identity, and no pulse, but he is a little different from his fellow Dead. He may occasionally eat people, but he’d rather be riding abandoned airport escalators, listening to Sinatra in the cozy 747 he calls home, or collecting souvenirs from the ruins of civilization.

And then he meets a girl.   First as his captive, then his reluctant house guest, Julie is a blast of living color in R’s gray landscape, and something inside him begins to bloom. He doesn’t want to eat this girl—although she looks delicious—he wants to protect her. But their unlikely bond will cause ripples they can’t imagine, and their hopeless world won’t change without a fight.
My take: I loved reading this book. It's a little gruesome - you know, zombies, but it's funny and full of hope, but the ending was weird. I totally enjoyed it until the end. I hope the movie's better.
The ending is the most important part: It ended with a fizzle, not a bang.
Last word: I recommend this book with a warning: there is a lot of swearing, and the descriptions of the Dead eating the Living are pretty graphic. This book is not for everyone, but I did enjoy it.

Spoilers after the jump:

Thursday, June 6, 2013

No more Pencils No more Books…

I can’t decide, but I’m pretty sure I am more excited about the boys being out for summer than they are.

See, they have stuff like swimming and summer school and scout camp that they have to do, but I don’t.

Here are the dos and don’ts of summer vacation:

I don’t have to wake up sleepy grumpy boys three times each and threaten with earlier bedtimes and iPod confiscation if they don’t get up.

I don’t have to make lunches/hunt down lunchboxes/make do when said lunchbox is left at school.

I don’t have to remember which day is pizza day.

I don’t have to worry about making sure school uniforms are clean.

I don’t have to worry about homework not being turned in.

I don’t have to fight with boys to get them to turn everything off and sit down and focus on their homework.

I don’t have to hear “I need help!”

I don’t have to worry about what the weather’s like and whether or not Dewey is going to ride his bike or I have to drive him to school.

I do get to wake up all by myself and have the kitchen to myself in the morning.

I do get to make myself pretty because I don’t have to worry about anyone else.

I do get to be to work on time, early even!

I do get to get in the habit of packing my own lunch so that when Labour Day rolls around I will be able to just add the making of the boy’s lunches to my morning routine and all will be good.

I am just loving summer more and more.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

I’m Mad at all my Old Boyfriends

New Order
Skinny Puppy
The Smiths
The Cure
The Specials
The English Beat
Iron Maiden
Public Image Limited
Suicidal Tendencies
Harry Connick Jr.
Echo and the Bunnymen
Guns ‘n’ Roses
Quiet Riot
The Rose Chronicles
Black Sabbath
Blue Rodeo
The Offspring

All artists that were introduced to me by old boyfriends.

Sioxie and the Banshees
Duran Duran
Nic Cage
Charlie Sexton
The Sundays
Cocteau Twins
Sonic Youth

All artists that I discovered through girlfriends or on my own.

I’m just mad because there is so much good music out there and I was spending so much time trying to impress boys by listening to what they were listening to that I missed out on some awesome stuff.

Nic Cage. I always knew about him, but never really listened to his stuff until recently and I feel like I’ve missed out on years and years of good music that I could have been enjoying all on my own. A lot of the times when I hear music from the old boyfriend list, I think of that person and it bugs me.

Don't get me wrong, most of the music from the boyfriend list is really good and I probably would have listened to it anyway. I also have a really eclectic range of tastes, because a lot of different types of people influenced my likes in music. I’m not sure I would have been open to some of the things I’ve listened to in the past if it hadn’t been for a boy, but is my life any better or worse because of it?

I just wish I could have discovered these things on my own instead of learning about them just to impress some stupid boy.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

You Catch more Ants with Sugar

Don Draper
I was talking to my mum last night and I remembered this thing that I used to do when I got punished when I was a kid.

I would suck up.

That’s right. Whenever I got punished, I would feel so bad for being naughty, that I would be extra good in order to make up for the bad behaviour. I would work harder at school, I would clean my room, do the dishes, vacuum, dust, do extra chores, etc. I never stomped around like a spoiled teenager, punishing my parent for punishing me, like a normal child. I would put on my halo and be the best kid I could be.

And then my mum would be so pleased with my behaviour that she would let me off early.

Every. Time.

The first couple of times were flukes because I actually did feel guilty for behaving poorly, so I would do what I could to make up for the wrong-doing. After I noticed a pattern, I knew that if I sucked up and cleaned the house I would get off early.

This one time when I was eighteen, I went for a motorcycle ride with a friend-soon-to-be-boyfriend that my parents didn’t know. We ended up being gone all day and no-one knew where we were. (We were at Harrison Hot Springs – it was awesome) I had been designated driver the night before, so my friend’s car was parked in the driveway and no one knew where the keys were, (they were on the top of the fridge) and no one could get a hold of me. Since I had been at my ex-boyfriend’s Halloween party the night before, my mum called him to see if he knew where I was and he was paging (this was the era of pagers, remember those?) the guy I was with and he kept ignoring his pages because he wanted to be with me and not talking to my ex/his (former) best friend. I didn’t get home until after dark, arrived on a motorcycle, and hadn’t checked in. I was in so much trouble I was grounded for a month. (what? I was wearing a helmet!)

So new boyfriend came over and hung out at the house (my parents hated him) while I cleaned and made dinner and folded dinner, etc. He couldn’t believe my tactic, but I told him it would work. I only ended up grounded for a week. Maybe it was because they didn’t like new boyfriend hanging around. (He was only twenty, but he looked like Don Draper, and they didn’t like that)

One time my sister was being a real jerk because she was grounded and I told her about my little trick. She was appalled. “Why would you do that? She’s just gonna punish you now because she wants you to be her slave.” She couldn’t believe that acting nice would get you out of being grounded early. I never once served a full sentence.

I have tried to teach this to the boys, but they’re not having it. Dewey might be a little more open to the idea, but Huey thinks its bollocks.

So in the conversation with my mum last night I told her about this and she never ever clued in that this was my tactic. She was just pleased with my behaviour. I think this is hysterical. She blamed herself for being such a softy, but to me it seemed fair; slave labour for early probation. I’m not kidding. It worked every time.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Weekly Check-in

Physically: Normal. Off caffein (again), so not so tired because I'm sleeping properly. It's all good

Emotionally: Normal. A little angry and edgy, but sometimes this is normal. I'm totally stressed about Huey, but I'm trying to have faith and not try to control the things that I have no control over.

Spiritually: On the right track.

Goal: My goal last week (last two weeks, sorry) was to read my scriptures before bed every night. We went camping on Memorial day weekend and I didn't get to read my scriptures, but other than that, I read my scriptures every night. I'm so proud of myself.

My goal this week is to go to Yoga as much as I can.