I’ve been chronicling changes I’ve been making for about four months. One of those changes was to finally set up my art studio in a room downstairs that has a picture window and therefore alot of light. I’m happy to report, I’ve done it. Not everything is sorted and I have a few things on my wish list still but it looks more like a studio than it did and the only things in there are art related (as long as we don’t count the huge tv from 2002 that needs a new home). So, now I am distracted. Although I love writing, and even changing, I’m putting this blog on hold until art moves into the background again. Many thanks to all who have followed my changing adventure. I move on to follow my heart (and the $100 I got for my birthday for art supplies). – Marie
Blog Pause April 27, 2014
It’s Time to Ensure You Know What to Insure April 24, 2014
Picture this: Oldest child needs a place to store a few things while he works in the wilds of British Columbia as a grizzly bear guide. He takes some stuff with him and leaves a bunch of stuff here. But said kid doesn’t live here most of the time, even though this is his permanent address, so whose insurance is supposed to cover his stuff in my basement? And if some of their stuff is with him somewhere else for six months, how is that stuff insured? Most importantly, how do I ensure his stuff will someday leave my basement again? Basements are notorious for kid seepage. It can be highly damaging to the parent-child relationship though I am fairly sure there is no insurance for that problem.
Change of the Day: Call an insurance agent to clarify when oldest child’s stuff will be leaving again. And, ask who covers what for how much in the meanwhile while hoping all the while that it isn’t me.
Bracing For the Future April 23, 2014
You know how some stars are known for their gap-toothed smile? Think of Micheal Strahan or 70s model Lauren Hutton. Looks good, hasn’t hurt their career, it’s even a trademark they’re known by. My smile is slightly different. The gaps are BESIDE my front teeth, not between them. I’m missing my lateral incisors. I blame my older brother. He had extras.
I was in for a dental check-up today and casually asked about braces. “Hmm,” said my dentist, “Easy to do but might take a long time.” This left me a little uneasy for a moment. Then I asked him if he meant a long time like an pregnant elephant who’s is overdue or a long time like waiting for your tax refund to arrive. Answer? Eight to ten months. So, no elephant involved and I may be able to use my tax refund to finance the braces.
Change of the Day: Make an appointment to at least discuss the distant possibility of maybe, perhaps, getting braces. Then, get ready for a big show business career.
The Bane of the 80s April 22, 2014
Nothing screams 80s like spiral bound photograph albums with pages made of plastic and sticky paper except maybe the photographs we put in them. “Don’t do it! My delicate pictures will be ruined!” So, once those were banished from most homes, along came scrapbooking and acid-free paper. Cute. Fun. Time-consuming. Something to do on a rainy day in May…in about 20 years.
Hey, parents are busy people. Before digital become de regueur around 2000, millions of pictures were taken and printed and left to gather dust in “photo boxes.” We promised each other we’d organize them “someday.” Someday came and went and the pictures are still waiting to be organized. In my defense, I did select a large number of my favourite photos and left them in a pile on the kitchen counter to put into date order. When I went back to sort them, they were stuck together like tar and feathers. Somebody, who shall remain nameless, spilled a glass of water on them and failed to dry the photos off. Thus ended my attempt to bring calm to the chaos of the family photos. Nameless should be lucky they didn’t end in that moment as well. Grrr.
Change of the Day: Sort the remaining photographs into chronological order. And, keep them off the counter.
Planning An Escape April 20, 2014
I have so many Airmiles that I can circle the world at least once. I may even be able to fit some stops in. However, I have a problem deciding where to go and, harder still, who will pay for the rest of the expenses.
I could always use the Airmiles differently. Perhaps spend some on airfare and the rest on a hotel. And a rental car. And tickets to things. And it looks like I am staying home and going to Victoria for the night.
I’d better not ever go to jail. Apparently, I am really bad at planning an escape.
Change of the Day: Look into what my Airmiles will actually allow me to do without spending alot of money. And then, make some more money.
The Biggest Power Tool In My House Is A Mixmaster April 19, 2014
I need a workbench for my studio. Ideally, it would be at least three feet wide and six feet long. It has to be very stable and it would be nice if it had at least one shelf. Should be workbench height and come with someone to carry it into my studio for me. Can be a basic plywood top but steel would be almost a wonderful as someone else paying for it.
I would build it myself but…I’m not going to because I lack a power tool more useful than a Mixmaster. I guess I could ask for a circular saw for my birthday but what I really want is…a workbench.
Change of the Day: Find instructions for how to build a workbench. And, when you rent the tools remember to give them to someone else to actually use.
Getting To The Fat of The Matter April 18, 2014
I have been obese for about 12 years with a couple of years off for good living. I remember watching commercials when I was younger that featured formerly obese people holding up a pair their gigantic jeans. I couldn’t believe anyone could ever get that big. Now, I am that big. Unfortunately, I’ve met many people who are small. All men, though that may be meaningless. Here are my stories four:
1. I am in line at a local grocery store when the man in front of me turns towards me, gawks at me and then chokes out, “What’s it like being Khloe?” He was referring to Khloe Kardashian the supposedly largest woman of that reality tv family. Then he laughed and left.
2. I am boarding a plane on my way home from Winnipeg where friends threw me a really fun 50th birthday. I’d had a great weekend and was in great spirits as I found my seat. The guy I was supposed to sit beside switched seats with someone he was travelling with and ended up on the other side of the aisle. He runs a sport excellence program in Victoria near Elk Lake and the look on his face spoke volumes. Was I imagining it? No. When he told my friend that he was building a green building she immediately tried to get him to talk to me because, besides being obese, I am also a LEED AP and have long been a LEED educator. He wouldn’t even look at me. I said to his travelling companions that it was clear he wasn’t happy with my size and, in short, they agreed.
3. I am in the emergency room of my local hospital some years ago. I don’t remember the reason for the visit but I do remember the doctor coming around the corner of the curtain, stopping, gawking at me and then talking to himself. He looked up and laughed, then bent over and laughed. He shook his head, approached, and the rest was a blur because I couldn’t believe a professional could be so ridiculously unkind.
4. One day last spring, I arrive at work breathless and can barely walk up the stairs to my office. I do get up the stairs but I never make it to my office. I am cold and clammy and collapse into a chair. I have pain in my jaw and don’t understand how it came on so quickly. I am nauseous and confused. My co-workers see me and have no idea what to do. I can’t help much. One finally calls an ambulance and by the time it arrives, some of pressure I had been feeling has been relieved. I go to the hospital anyways. I’m not a doctor and nobody is going to appreciate me playing the hero by refusing care. I am woozy when we get to the emergency room but breathe through it to stay calm and answer questions. The nurses are fantastic, the technicians who come to hook me up to things are great, the dreaded IV goes in without too much discomfort, and my blood is taken quickly. Other than the suspected heart attack, there is no drama. Then the doctor arrives. He looks at me, shakes his head, and briskly asks me a number of questions as I expected he would. I describe what happened, mention jaw and back pain and after checking a number of test results he leaves the cubicle saying over his shoulder, “You should get into shape and not call an ambulance for a back ache.” Apparently, it was a massive muscle spasm that presented similarly to a heart attack. Again, I was struck by the unkindness and lack of professionalism. What was he thinking? Fat people should self-diagnose? That’s idiotic. If you think I should lose weight, feel free to refer me to a nutritionist but maybe tell me I’m not dying first.
Change of the Day: I want to change the callousness of random strangers but this blog isn’t so much about other people as it is about me. And, the only thing I can change is HOW MUCH BACKTALK I’M GOING TO ACCEPT. There. I feel better now.
I Have Rocks In My Head April 16, 2014
When I was a little girl, my sister had a box with a small book about minerals and some mineral samples in it. I spent hours looking at both. Even before I could read, I loved the pictures and the tactile sensations of touching the rocks. I’m pretty sure one of them had something white running through it that was soft and very un-rock like. Interesting, hard and soft at the same time applies to something other than my cooking.
I still love looking at rocks online and my favourite place to see them is the Alberta Provincial Museum in Edmonton. What I haven’t done is go to a rock lover’s meeting to explore the geology of my area. If you Google “rock lover” and “Victoria” you will either end up at a site for Ayers Rock in Australia or a website that would like to introduce you to gentlemen who love their motorcycles, sleeveless shirts and rock music in equal proportions. No match there, interwebs. Please reroute to a “geologist, t-shirt, and country music” combo.
Change of the Day: Why not look up the local rock group? And, if they’re all wearing sleeveless shirts…just walk on by.