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cathy


Costumes and Candy. Thank God it's all over....

Monday, October 31, 2005

Cutie Patootie #2 is going to hate me for this.














Cutie Patootie #1 on his way out for treats. He'd been marking off the days on his calendar for months. Finally here.
















Checking out the goods.

Written by Cathy

HAPPY HALLOWEEN !

Have a safe and fun one everybody.

Written by Cathy

Goodnight Hugs and Kisses

Sunday, October 30, 2005

After goodnight hugs and kisses:
Mom, I don't want it to be tomorrow, cause then it will be all over and a year is a long time to wait for another Halloween.
More love and hugs and kisses to you, my son:)

Written by Cathy

Enough Halloween for Now; Time for a Mental Dump

The time changed last night. I can't tell you how much this annoys me; change in the spring and then leave it at that. I ranted last fall about this to my students and they challenged me to do something about it; fix it. Like Geraldo thought he could find Osama in a cave; I really thought I could get this changed. It's my motto; it bugs you, then do something about it. I tried. I'm not finished. I started a petition; over 500 signatures. Lots more to do. And a few days before Halloween??? Whoever came up with this didn't have kids. The babe was getting up at 6am; respectable early morning; now 5am; still technically the night. What a difference an hour makes in the life of a babe. Shitty time change. Maybe I can fix this next year. Gotta problem; I like to fix. Maybe I can sign up and go on the next trip to Afghanistan with Geraldo. Looking for Osama; not a problem. I can do that. I have such a self-inflated opinion of myself....

My mother-in-law is on my nerves again; won't drive the half hour to my house; calls and says I have something for the 4 year old; will you come over and get it? This annoys me; hello I have something for you, please come and get it...that's not the way it's supposed to work. I have something for you, I bring it to you. Hello I have a card for you come and get it...never an invite for dinner, although we often invite them. Made them Thanksgiving dinner a few weeks ago. She will have a baggie with a chocolate bar and a tootsie roll; same same same (not to be ungrateful) but really the woman is annoying.

Can not watch CNN or any other American news again. Had to stop watching because the Hurricane coverage was getting to be too much. Now the indictments. Well it took long enough. Why is everyone acting so surprised. The reason why the rest of the sane world didn't enter the war was because there wasn't enough evidence; even the fabricated bits.

And now at the risk of really offending...Evangelical Christians. American politics. The mixture is a toxic soup. A crusade. Preach peace, go to war. Preach inclusion, shun gay marriage. If I were an American, I think I would leave. Or at least do everything in my power to get rid of the Bush regime. Memory failure to be Scooter's likely defense. I think there is a collective memory failure going on in the White House right now. Mr. President, exactly why do you think you were justified in attacking Iraq? .....Well, there were WMDs....Those have been proven to be nonexistent.....Oh, yes, well, there was a nuclear threat....Well, now it appears that was fabricated by your own high level officials.....Yes, well, hmmm....gee, it was a few years ago now, I believe I can't remember. Next question....

The proximity of radical Evangelical Christianity to all of this bothers me. There is no place for the coupling of Church and State. They do not, should not, can not mix.

I would blog about Canadian politics but it's so damn boring....thank God.
Peace visitors.

Written by Cathy

Spooky Saturday

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Halloween activities abound today. We were very crafty this morning and among many other things, made ghosties and hung them in the trees. Cupcakes this afternoon. Maybe Scooby Doo tonight. Family fun. Family fun...So much easier when Mr. C. is here too.

For Jase, in Case you find yourself with a few pumpkin seeds on hand; a simple, tasty snack:)

BAKED PUMPKIN SEEDS

Pumpkin seeds
1/2 stick butter, melted
Salt to taste
Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Wash pumpkin seeds after removing from pumpkin. Soak in melted butter for 5 minutes. Cover a cookie sheet with foil and spread seeds on it, keeping seeds from touching. Sprinkle with a little salt and bake 2-5 minutes or until lightly browned. Let cool 5 minutes before serving.

Happy Halloween Weekend!

Written by Cathy

Freaky Friday

Friday, October 28, 2005



6 pumpkins
10 bowls of goop
1 pan of baked pumpkin seeds
3 jack-o-lanterns
1 tired preschooler and
2 frazzled parents
later....

Ta Da....














The days I am alone with both boys I go crazy. Out of my mind. The babe sleeps for 10 minutes (after trying to get him to sleep for 20). The 4 yr old wants my undivided attention. Will not play by himself. I am shredded. Torn every which way. Going on 3pm and still in pajamas. Oh lord...and to think that there will come a time in the future when I wish for these days back....

Written by Cathy

Update

Thursday, October 27, 2005

The tooth was filled.
Without freezing.
Faster that way.
And didn't really hurt.
A night away from everything.
Was good, actually.

Pulled a muscle in my chest !?
The pain. Grimaced in my sleep.
Mr. C. said.
So off to the parents for some help with
The Babe today.
Ended up shopping.
And spending too much money :) :(

Pumpkin carving tonight.
We have 6.
What were we thinking??
Pictures tomorrow.
Both boys at home; let's hope the day
Is better than Monday.

Survivor.
Popcorn.
Heating Pad.
Nightstalker.
JuJubes.
Ibuprofin.
James Frey.
Tonight.

Talk to y'all tomorrow.

Written by Cathy

Power Back On. Still On :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


Here's to the POWER!!!!! Let's hear it for the Nova Scotia Power Corp...

Stormy seas. I can't seem to capture the waves crashing with my camera; I click at the wrong moment. Too frustrating. Another storm. A Nor'Easter...we'll see. Didn't go outside today. Too cold, too wet. Too hard to bundle up the babe.


This is what a Canadian mother must bundle her babe in to keep his tootsies warm and dry. Muck Lucks Mr.C. calls them. Thinks he'll start doing the kosak in them. Later today, I am going to get a cavity. A paradigm shift has occurred in my universe. I am looking forward to it. A moment to sit without children. Who cares what the purpose. I'll take a hole in my tooth. For a few moments of peace :)

Written by Cathy

11:00 p.m.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Power went out at about 8:05 p.m. and has just been restored. Amazing. The storm is crazy. I'll take pictures tomorrow around the house and post tomorrow night. We can't see a thing because it is so black outside but we can hear the rage. The fury. Nature is freaking out around us. I can not imagine what it must be like to go through a really intense hurricance...don't want to know.

We called Nova Scotia Power right away. How long ago did your power go out, ma'am? Me; About 30 seconds ago. I had the phone number written down by the phone, just in case. Remember me; prepared for Armageddon??? A crew will be dispatched right away. We see or hear nothing for an hour. Mr C. calls back and tells them we have a 3 month old and 3 year old, shaving a digit off both for good measure...the woman reassures him that a crew has in fact been dispatched. I am in the bathroom with my lantern feeling very Little House on the Prairieish and wondering if my hair can really go tomorrow without being washed (we are on a well, which means we can not use water when there is no power...) when I see the lights of a power crew truck. We watch them from the window; amazing, the job these guys do. They earn every cent. Up in the bucket; blowing a gale and rain coming down in sheets. The lights turn on. Halleluja. But shit, we missed the Amazing Race....

How pathetic; this is all I miss...when people have recently lost their lives, their homes, their cities, their communities, their pets, life as they knew it. A small taste, not even. Really makes me think about all of them.

My hair could have been stringy tomorrow. I missed my favourite tv show. The house could have been a little chilly. Mr. C. would have gone to work in wrinkled clothes. We would have eaten donuts for breakfast. There wouldn't have been a hot cup of coffee. Big freaking shit.

Tonight I will pray for everything I have; the hugely wonderful things I have and hope and pray that the people who suffer from the wrath of recent storms will soon feel full again.

Hit Publish Post before the power goes again....

Written by Cathy

8:00 p.m.

The flu shots went well. The weather sounds bad but it's completely dark, so we can't see a thing. We can hear the waves pounding the beach and howling around the house. I think the worst of it is passing us now.

4 year old got his book order from preschool today...so much fun; perfect thing to go through on a dark and stormy night. Amazing Race on soon. Tomorrow is going to be a busy day; lots of things planned.

Good night stranger friends.

Written by Cathy

1:45 p.m.

Nova Scotia Power is reporting that most of Shelburne County is out of power and it will not be returned until at least 11:30 p.m....we are just two counties north, so still waiting to see. The wind is stronger and the waves are heading out to sea rather than coming in. I expect them to turn tonight but probably not until after it's dark, which is too bad because I love to watch the surf. Tomorrow should be a chopppy day, too, though. We are going for our flu shots later and will be out in it. Probably won't post again until tonight, if we do have power. If I don't post, you'll know we're out...we live outside the city, so if the power does go it could be for awhile...

Written by Cathy

11:30 a.m.

No recent updates from either the CHC or NHC. It's raining and windy out, but nothing serious. Still no strong surf, as you can see from the picture. Wind gusts picking up now just as I'm typing. I just heard 10,000 without power in Massachusetts. Might happen to us too.

There will be a new update from the NHC in a half an hour. More to come....

Written by Cathy

Wilma racing north

I believe that we are going to be spared what could have been an extremely bad storm, and just get a really bad storm. What was the eye is tracking offshore so we shouldn't get any hurricane force winds, but the storm is still so intense and huge that we will get tropical storm force winds and heavy rain. It's only a light wind outside right now and the water is moving to the east, so there is currently no surf to speak of.

I think we will really start to feel it late this afternoon. Right about the time that we are all going to the doctor to get our flu shots. Ugh. I worry about power outages becuase it is so bloodly inconvenient, expecially with a baby. I am also a little worried about flooding, but there is low tide tonight, so hopefully not.

More later....

Written by Cathy

Rant Number 3, I believe this would be....

Monday, October 24, 2005


Trying to Scream but it Just Comes out as a Yawn,yeah...

It started off with my 4 year old getting up at 5:30 a.m. and Mr.C. not sending him back to bed. Needless to say it set the tone for a very cranky child. Later in the morning, we packed into the car to go to Walmart to get some hurricane supplies, because we might be getting a visit from Wilma. The tracks are showing her staying off the eastern provinces but who knows...it has intensified back into a Cat 3. The God Damned Canadian Hurricane Centre is good for nothing, and so I am relying on the National Hurricane Centre for updates....they are amazing. I am annoyed at our forecasters, some of whom I know personally, which is really frightening because I know just how inept they actually are.

While in the WalMart, I proceded to drop an entire carton of eggs on the floor, look around to see if anyone saw, and then left them there, and picked up one of every non-perishable food there was on the shelves as if Armageddon were tomorrow. We return to the parking lot to find one of these sandwiched a few centimetres from the drivers side of my car:



The driver looked something like the bitty above. I couldn't get the car seat into the car so I had to crawl across the backseat and then climb into the front seat. The old bat just looked at me and then didn't she almost run me off the road a little later...God damn seniors shouldn't be driving... Decided to go to the library and got stuck in a ten second torrential downpour as I was carting both children into the place. Soaking wet. Cranky. Chatty mothers with their brats. Ughhhh.

Once we're home, I am hopeful for a bit of relaxation; I had bought my 4 year old a new DVD at WalMart and thought that would give me a bit of a break to feed the baby and get a bit of tidying done, and maybe put some kind of thought into dinner. The DVD skipped. MooOOoom, it's skipping. I have written a Geography Textbook, can make computerzied maps, operate many types of software, completed a PhD, but I still can not operate the God Damned DVD player. Mr. C. calls; baby is screaming, preschooler freaking out. Is this a bad time? I sense the regret that he has called only to find out that chaos is reigning and I am out of my mind. I think I hung up on him.

We switch to VHS. Pop in a video. Can't get that to work either. I wish Dad were here. No words annoy me more. Hmmm me too. I mutter. Babe is fussing; spitting up for the gazillionth time, 4 year old crying...Mr. C. finally gets home. 4 year old gets a can of the Armageddon/Chef Boyardee spaghetti from a can. This spaghetti doesn't taste good. Me: I know. Eat it anyway. Mr. C. and I order donairs. I'll be up with nightmares or worse all night....

Did I mention I have PMS (sorry guys)...
With this kind of luck, you may not be hearing from me for days if our power goes out tomorrow.


Written by Cathy

Sun: 0 Rain: 3

Sunday, October 23, 2005

The score for the past three Sundays. Stuck indoors again. With a 4 year old boy who has too much energy! And then Monday turns nice, when I am home with him and a 4 month old and we can't play like we can when Mr. C. is also here.....but ours is still a love shack:)

A funny story from church today. True story. This minister said something along the lines of everyone needs to be bold (in their faith). My son was actually listening and looks at me and says EVERYONE mom, even ME??? I look at him and say yes, a little confused that he is even asking this. A look of panic and fright comes over him and he says But Mom, I don't want to be bold. I tell him that being bold is a good thing, that it means brave. Even you will be bold? Yes. I tell him. He is staring at me with his intense look in his eyes and he touches my hair and softly says Mom, I really really do not want you to be bold. I suddenly realize that my dear sweet son has mistaken the word bold for bald. For a fleeting moment, in his mind, the minister had asked the entire congregation to shave their heads bald....




Written by Cathy

Clarifying a few mysteries

Saturday, October 22, 2005

1. Name someone with the same birthday as you.
Michael Jackson

2. Where was your first kiss?
At a party in Germany. I was an exchange student. And yes, my first real kiss did not take place until I was 16.

3. Have you ever seriously vandalized someone else's property?
No.

4. Have you ever hit someone of the opposite sex?
Yes. Elementary school. Walking home. Can’t remember his name, but I know I made him cry.

5. Have you ever sang in front of a large number of people?
Karaoke in a floating restaurant in Hanoi, Vietnam two years ago. It was not a pretty sight.

6. What's the first things you notice about the preferred sex?
Eyes, and intellect. Yes, its’ substance can be seen.

7. What really turns you on?
Taking too long to think about the answer to this one…I’ve been married too long. But yes, of course, I still love you :)

8. What do you order at Starbucks?
Medium Lightnote (not Tall or Grande; you know how much their lingo bugs me) for this time of year. Vanilla bean frappucino in the summer.

9. What is your biggest mistake?
Me make mistakes?...doesn’t happen….:)

10. Have you ever hurt yourself on purpose?
No.

11. Say something totally random about yourself.
I was the youngest faculty member ever hired at my University.

12. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celebrity?
No.

13. Do you still watch kiddy movies or tv shows?
Only because I have to.

14. Did you have braces?
Yes. Clear ones. What a mistake. I couldn’t eat chocolate for two years for fear of staining them.

15. Are you comfortable with your height?
Yes. 5’7”

16. What is the most romantic thing someone of the opposite sex has done for you?
My husband singing Harry Connick at our wedding.

17. When do you know it's love?
When you see him with your children.

18. Do you speak any other languages?
German, Spanish and a little French

19. Have you ever been to a tanning salon?
Yes, when I was young and stupid.

20. What magazines do you read?
People, Smithsonian, The Economist, Vanity Fair, National Geographic

21. Have you ever ridden in a limo?
No, come to think of it, I have not.

22. Has anyone you were really close to passed away?
My grandparents.

23. Do you watch MTV?
No. We don;t have the channel.

24. What's something that really annoys you?
Stupid people. Arrogance. Jealousy. (oh, and slow drivers) My in-laws. Let's just leave it at that. I could write a book about the things that annoy me.

25. What's something you really like?
Japanese food, red licorice, diet coke, the smell of Cuban cigars, working in the garden, reading a great book, travelling

26. Do you like Michael Jackson?
Even though I share his birthday, the man has a problem with his birthday suit and young boys. (And his face is falling off).

27. Can you dance?
I learned Scottish Dancing as a kid, does that count? But yes, I think I can dance. No ballroom stuff or anything, though.

28. What's the latest you have ever stayed up?
Days…

29. Have you ever been rushed by an ambulance into the emergency room?
No.

30. Do you actually read these when other people fill them out?
I tend to skim…Kinda like you're doin' right now.

Written by Cathy

Easy Come Easy Go

If you hadn't noticed, I am going wild with the music videos (scroll to bottom to watch, if you wish). Bohemian Rhapsody; awesome. I wish I could see the Musical in London. Ahhh....

Mr. C. has taken both boys for a walk this morning. It is about 5 degrees but the sun is shining and it's the first nice Saturday in weeks. I am going to clean the house and get some much needed gardening done. Wonderful weekends.

I am such a paradox, which can be best illustrated by what I am flipping back and forth between in my reading:
1. today's newspaper (to satisfy my need for real news)
2. most recent People magazine (to satisfy my need for fake news)
3. My Friend Leonard, James Frey (to find out what becomes of James, since I finished his first)
4. Black Like Me (Thank you, Tee) (just because it is so amazing)
5. Tao teh Ching, Lao Tzu (just because it resonates so true to me)

Tao
Number 16
Attain to utmost Emptiness.
Cling single-heartedly to interior peace.
While all things are stirring together,
I only contemplate the Return.
For flourishing as they do,
Each of them will return to its root.
To return to the root is to find peace.
To find peace is to fulfill one's destiny.
To fulfill one's destiny is to be constant.
To know the Constant is called Insight.

If one does not know the Constant,
One runs blindly into disasters.
If one knows the Constant,
One can understand and embrace all.
If one understands and embraces all,
One is capable of doing justice.
To be just is to be kingly;
To be kingly is to be heavenly;
To be heavenly is to be one with the Tao;
To be one with the Tao is to abide forever.
Such a one will be safe and whole
Even after the dissolution of his body.

Apologies to those who don't like the music, but you can simply turn your speakers off.

Written by Cathy

Strange but True

Friday, October 21, 2005

Can you describe a strange but true moment in your life? Maybe you have many.
I think that I do. So I challenge you. No really. I'd like to hear.
I will eventually get back to the journal thing (can you tell I have a short attention span!)

Here's a strange moment that happened to me just this year.
I gave George W the finger outside the building I work in while screaming F#*K You, BASTARD...

He was visiting my city. Last minute change of cavalcade route.We get the word moments before the cars arrive. I run outside with several colleagues. They wave and smile. I am overcome with hatred, and am pissed off at this sad excuse for a leader of one of the World's most influential countries. I don't think, just act. I see his smug fake smile and I wag my F#*K YOU fingers at his car window. He grins back. My colleagues stare. At me.

You see, I am an Associate Professor. No really, it's true. But perhaps not quite so typical. Whatever typical might mean. My students also scream and I am suddenly their hero. It is now a story to be passed around. It was a shot of adrenaline.

Later, GW tells the media that he is thankful to all the Canadians who came to wave "...with all five fingers." Hee Hee, not me:)

Written by Cathy

First Art on Canvas


Crafty Today
Dinner Out Tonight
Another Beautiful Day
Jakie Calls It
Smiley Face
TGIF To You.

Written by Cathy

When I was a young girl..la la la la la la la.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

So did you hum the right tune to the title???
Enough people answered yes from the last post, so this is what I'm going to do....
I was going to randomly go through past journal entries, but for the time being I am going to stick with 1988. Europe. Exchange student. But first, here's a bit of context:

When I was sixteen a German exchange student came to live with my family. It was the end of a long summer (1987) and we went to the airport with the ____family, who was also getting one. Two boys. Exchanging with two girls. Us. Sixteen year old girls getting two German guys to live in their homes for six months. We were giddy. I was nervous, moreso than my friend ____. She was more comfortable around people, more outgoing. I was more introverted and shy. People mistook me as being aloof. Boys made me shiver. I worshipped from afar. Having this guy come was huge for me. I was excited and crazy scared all at the same time.

More context eventually, but for now:

Fastforward.

Berlin, Monday, March 21, 1988
We were supposed to leave the house at 12:00, but we didn't leave until about 3:30 because Rolf [my exchange student partner a.k.a. German guy] decided at the last minute to bake donuts and he hadn't packed yet. He's such a goof. Then when we finally left, Rolf forgot to pack a vacuum cleaner to bring for his sister, so we had to turn around, get it, and re-drive the half hour. The drive was quite boring and there wasn't much to see. I really enjoyed the West/East German border, though. We had to go through about 4 check-points until we could finally get into the East. And you should see the barbed wire and solemn soldats with their rifles and tanks and so on. We had to go through the same thing when we got to Berlin. Spot lights flood lights the works. We got to Annette's old and a bit dingey, but I'll survive apartment, and ate (gross gross gross food - something called quatze or qwatze for dessert - Yuck!). Then we all went to bed - talk about scrunched up! 4 in one room!

More tomorrow...

Written by Cathy

From the ancient archives

I have always been a writer. I have written in a journal since I was in grade 4. I have misplaced some of my journals, but still have most of them. I thought it would be amusing (to me, anyway), to select random diary entries from years past and post them here.

So, I begin with August 4, 1988
The setting: A small town in Switzerland
Me: An exchange student on vacation with my host family; I am 17 years old. I have been in Europe for over 5 months already.

"Woke up at a reasonably good hour, and since the weather was looking crappy, Dodi, Rolf and I went to a place where you could see cheese being made. The shuttle bus left at 10:00, and took us from Lenk on a very bumpy road. 2115 m (approximately) high. A couple of times I thought it was going to tip right over the cliff. Anyway, the cheese-making thing was really neat. There were only 8 of us all together. The family lived in a typical wooden house, with 46 cows attached onto the back part separated only by a normal door. We saw the whole works, and later got to try some cheese that was 7 years old (the older the better, supposedly) and milk direct from the cow, which tasted really good. (I had 3 giant glasses full, and later had to try out the plumpskls [?]). Anyway, the weather was damp and misty and foggy, cold the whole time. We walked to Buhlberg, and were absolutely soaked! Called Rolf's mom, she picked us up. Back at 5:15. Mrs. v.K. is a big fat pain in the ass. [?]"

Wanna hear more???

Written by Cathy

Stay-at-home Mom



I want. Need.
To make something
Perfectly clear.

At home.
with a babe.
Stay-at-home
Mother
.
This job
is bigger
than any other.

Teacher Professor
Philosopher Mentor
I know.

Because
I am both.




Written by Cathy

Might as well screw everything up, while you're at it, Bushie...

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

MORON

Written by Cathy

Just Peace



The sun is shining without a cloud in the sky. First time in over a week. The house is peaceful. Wind rustles the fall leaves outside. The first fishing boat of the season glides through the Bay. The baby is sleeping. He's having a good day. Swimming lessons tonight. Pure joy. I love to watch my 4 year old, recently turned fish. Two moms with three boys. I love to watch them too. Fascinating. More peace.

I have been on a great reading streak lately. Reading James Frey My Friend Leonard right now. Amazing. Here's what I plan on chewing next:
Gabriel Garcia Marquez Love in the Time of Cholera
Kim Edwards The Memory Keepers Daughter
Jennifer Weiner Goodnight Nobody
Lao Tsu Tao te Ching (again)
Leo Tolstoy War and Peace (again)
Carole Radziwell What Remains

Peace.

Written by Cathy

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

I play by the rules,
But there is no manual,
To my heart, my thoughts, my mind.

So how do you play?
If you ask,
You have broken rule number one.

Just know.
And think.
And understand.

Compassion Sincerity
Intellect Understanding and
Passion

Above all passion. Pure passion.
No drama, no weakness.
No melancholy, no emotion.

Be there. Be these things.
Otherwise, you destroy me.
Annoy me. Bring on my rage.

I am a flash flood of emotions.
I think quickly, think deeply.
They come like a torrent.

Enter my game of life.
Play by my rules.
And I will flourish.

River of
Essence for the soul.
Just know.

Written by Cathy

Here comes another rant.

My mother and father just returned from a trip to the New England states yesterday. They were there during the torrential rain. Didn't see a single leaf. She says. She has a right to complain about the weather. What a shit week for a vacation. My father's experience; wonderful, just wonderful; couldn's have asked for anything better. My mother's experience; Everything is negative, typical. Can barely say a good thing. Did you get to the craft store you wanted to go to? I ask. Yes, but someone had just gone to the bathroom and stank the whole place up. I couldn't walk through the store without my hand over my nose, it was awful. Have I mentioned that my mother has a fascination with all things related to bathrooms, toilets, potty humour, etc. It makes her giddy. There must be some disorder related to this.

One thing she did say that was positive, however was The people were sooo nice. She goes on and on describes the conversations she has had over the course of 9 days in great detail. Well, mom, they are in the hospitality business, that's why they were so, um, hospitable, maybe. One guy gave us directions and they were so very specific and we got there without any trouble. O.K., great. My mother loves anyone who fawns over her. But who has she ever fawned over? Hmmm.

In the course of one description of a conversation she has with a small shop owner in a small town in New York state, she tells me that he has never been to Canada and he tells her that he thinks it must be nice to live in Canada, where we have no crime, and people are all so friendly. She says to him oh, but we have terrible, awful crime and the people are just rude and terrible. Well, to some extent she is right; we do have crime and everyone is not friendly. But her scale is way off the mark. Compared to large American cities, our crime is substantially lower. The 10-year average homicide rates (1987-1996) for Canada averaged 2.3 per 100,000 people and for the United States averaged 8.8 per 100,000 people. But I digress.

My mother is afraid, scared, of pretty much everything. Burglars, shootings, snakes, snow storms....when she can't find her purse, this is often heard oh my god, someone stole my purse. Meanwhile, it is found later, tucked between the towels, so burglars (and she) can not find it if they are broken into.

On a recent visit with my son, I am in the living room and changing his diaper, when I notice that I can hardly see it is so dark in there. The blinds are completely drawn. It is a beautiful sunny day outside. Why are the blinds closed? I ask. She starts talking about the night before, how she heard gun shots in the neighbourhood; hadn't opened the blinds yet. Two o'clock the next afternoon. She is thinking the blinds will hold back bullets should someone shoot through their window. We do not live in east L.A., folks. A relatively small city in eastern Canada. Granted we have crime, and there are bad areas of town, and they live on the border of one of the bad areas, but dear God, a shooting through the window???? Crazy. Plain and simple paranoid behaviour.

I alternate between being annoyed and being amused by her antics.

Written by Cathy

How do you hold back the water?

I received these in the form of an e-mail, so I can't reference the original source, but I thought they was so telling, that I decided to post them. Especially in light of the potential dam break in Massachusetts. There are so many dams and other forms of infrastructure in both Canada and the U.S. that are in desperate need of overhaul and repair. Why are these things being ignored?

Here's how the British hold back the waters from flooding London:

And the Dutch solution to protecting an entire nation that mostly rests below sea level:

The Italians are defending their city on the sea, Venice

And the richest, most powerful and technologically advanced nation on earth...USA!

Written by Cathy

Nothing Profound to Say

Monday, October 17, 2005



Nope, nothing profound at all. Probably because my brain has been in Lego, Dora the Explorer, teething Rings, craft supplies, computer games, pulling up underwear, changing another diaper, keeping the soother in, trying to get children to nap...you get the idea mode today. Both boys home on Mondays and Fridays. Tuesday tomorrow. 4 year old off to preschool. The one 4 month old suddenly seems to be a piece of cake. Mother back from vacation. Oy vay.

Our Halloween gingerbread house turned out great, though. I highly recommend the Wilton kits; the frosting was not drippy at all.

BTW, I had to add the World's Shortest Personality Test (scroll down to the bottom of my screen). I was blown away by how much I agree with this (especially the elegant and brilliant bits :). Thanks for this, Christina.

Written by Cathy

And we're home baking cookies.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Can you spot what's wrong with this picture???

Written by Cathy

The Ocean is Boiling...

Written by Cathy

schadenfreude

Saturday, October 15, 2005

I think deeply.
I feel deeply.
I wear my heart on my sleeve.
It tells all.
It hides nothing.
I am exposed.
To the elements.

My best and worst virtues.

I get hit hard.
I feel pain easily.
So too the joy.
Life is raw.
I make it that way.
I take it that way.

Nothing remains hidden.
With rare few exceptions.

You see it all.
I reach out.
I provide.
I do not expect anything in return.
Yet it would be nice to receive it.

You will not get this.
Will not understand.
Only those who are
This way.
To the core.

Will.

I find no joy in your sadness
So why do you find it in mine?

Written by Cathy

I love lists; here's one on the theme of 7 Things...

Friday, October 14, 2005

Visited OhioRuthie's site and was tagged, so here goes;

7 Things I plan to do before I die:
Visit a country in southern Africa
Write a children's book
Have a piece of artwork on canvas framed and hanging somewhere
Help get a law passed
Become politically active
Volunteer for an international relief organization
Watch my children become happy adults

7 things I can do:
Teach. Really well.
Make crafts (all kinds)
Speak German fluently
Wiggle my ears
Test water quality
Write relatively well
Play the piano (o.k.) and saxophone (barely)

7 things I cannot do:
Cook
Wait (for pretty much anything)
Anything that involves the words "extreme" and "sports"
Speak Chinese
Make fart noises with my armpit
Computer games
Difficult puzzles

7 things that attract me to the opposite sex:
intelligence
passion
ethics
success
eyes
humour
devotion

7 things that I say most often:
crap.
Hurry up.
We're out of toilet paper.
stop snoring.
In a minute...
Oh ferGodssake
all forms of baby talk

7 celebrity crushes :
Sorry, can't name 7; it's all about Anderson Cooper.

TAG to anyone who reads this.

Written by Cathy

Warning. Read at your own Risk. Pure Ranting.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Since I dumped my heavy thoughts this morning, I thought I would end the day with some ranting. Back to my typical everything annoys me ranting. So you might want to stop here. But if you have continued to read, here goes.

I am annoyed that even though the Canadian dollar is stronger than it have been in about 15 years, we still have to pay absurd amounts of money for American products. Books, for example. Take a look at the American price; I pick up a random book recently purchased off my shelf: $27.95. The Canadian price? $37.95. The exchange rate is better than this! So fix the price. This translates into everything.

Which leads me to Starbucks. Most Canadians are die-hard Tim Hortons drinkers. Timmies double-double. We are so proud of this Canadian institution, that it is even being exported across the border to our American friends. Better than Starbucks but the price of Dunkin Donuts. Dunkin Donuts has not made its' way to this part of Canada because it sucks. Totally awful. Noone would go there. It would be out of business before it began. But back to Starbucks. We have it. We love it. The fashoinable coffee drinkers go there. I do too. I straddle both the Tim Hortons and Starbucks worlds. BUT I pay $1.20 for a Tim Hortons coffee and $2.40 for the same size at Starbucks. Why? It's better quality coffee, they care for the environment (yes that is worth at least some extra change per cup for certain) but DOUBLE the price? Because it comes from the U.S. and we have to cover the exchange rate. But the exchange rate is good, so their prices should go down to reflect this. I am no economist but this is really annoying.

And still on the topic of Starbucks, today I went there to indulge in a medium coffee (I refuse to say Tall or Grande or whatever the hell) and a peanut butter oatcake. $4.75. I shit you not. A coffee and a cookie. I dig in my wallet for change. Don't have enough. So I pull out my debit card. Oh, our machine is broken. Soooorry. Can I pay by credit card? Have badly do I need a coffee that I am asking to pay by credit card? No, it's not working either. My baby is starting to holler; time for his bottle. I give them a desperate/disgusted look and sit and feed him his bottle there in the Starbucks. I have to sit and smell the aroma and watch people order their fancy freaking coffee drinks (pumpkin spice; puhlease) while I am feeding my child. I swear he nibbled on that bottle slower than he ever has before. Time started to stand still. Went into slooow motion. It ruined my afternoon that stupid Starbucks. I then entered caffeine headache craziness. I considered e-mailing Starbucks a complaint. But for what? Their machine was broken. It happens. I should carry more money on me.

But here's the thing; I got in the car and went through the Tim Horton's drive-thru and bought my $1.20 coffee (because I had that much in change on me). Sipped the warm bitter manna from heaven and think I am officially going to boycott Starbucks. Just because I'm annoyed.

Written by Cathy

Stand Back

While scanning around sites last night, I came across several blogs that really made me stop and think. I am so fortunate for so many things. So many bad things happen to so many good people. I had a hard time falling asleep. Whatever God or Deity you believe in, take a moment and stand back from yourself and pray or think about someone you know who needs help. If you don't personally know someone, here are a few people that could stand for us to send them some positive energy their way;

Dear God,
Please be with the thousands of people in Pakistan and Asia who have suffered from the earthquake there.
Please be with the thousands of people in Guatemala and Central America who have suffered from the recent devastation from Hurricane Stan.
Please be with the people around the world who are suffereing from hunger, disease, and dangerous times.
Please continue to be with the people of the Gulf Coast as they try to bring their lives back to normal.
Please help to capture all of the dangerous predators that are stalking our children.
And if all of that is too overwhelming, start with a few individuals.
To name a few...
Please help this child to get better and let him have a long and happy life.
Please help this new mom get better and beat the cancer.

From tens of thousands suffering to individual neighbours, the world seems to be particularly precarious right now. We are on the edge of a flu epidemic and always potential for natural and man made disasters. We need to be more thankful for what we have. Today and every day I will try a little harder.

Written by Cathy

Babysitting a Puddle

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

I am not a good stay-at-home mom. I am a great mom, but it's the stay-at-home bit that makes me edgy. I am on maternity leave and will be going back to work (kind of) after Christmas. I always have to be doing something. Sitting and watching t.v. makes me fidgety. I can only sit and read in the evening. I get tired of the "eat, sleep, activity, yourself" bit. I am enjoying my baby, don't get me wrong, but I really think I'm a better mom, person, when I work and then spend my quality time with my four year old and baby. To each her own. Debates on the topic. It works for me. I love my job, I love my family. I work to live, not live to work. I have a good balance. The balance is out of whack right now, being strictly at home.

I took my 4 year old to swimming lessons tonight and on the drive home we saw truck lights ahead on the road. There were Department of Transportation trucks and signs flashing. All the rain over the weekend had flooded the road a bit and they were parked there to warn drivers. What are they doing, mom? I explain. So, they are going to babysit the puddle overnight. Yup, I guess they are. So maybe staying at home isn't so bad after all.

Written by Cathy

On the Topic of Grey Hair...

Tuesday, October 11, 2005


So I guess I'm telling a few stories lately. I am 34 years old, and I recently read that women, on average, start getting grey (Canadian spelling) hair when they are 35. So I wonder if I am entering the beginning...I really hope not for a couple of reasons, neither of which really has anything to do with vanity. Firstly, I have a bit of an obsession with pulling them out when I find one. If I do start getting more, I am more likely to go bald than grey. Secondly, I have never dyed my hair before and don't really want to. I am an au naturale type, with dark brown hair that I like it that way, thank you very much. On the other hand, I don't think I would look good with salt and pepper hair. Men can grey with dignity, although not many women can get away with it. Anderson Cooper, the sweety, has grey hair and look at him! He wrote a very funny article on the topic. I was doing some research into the topic and couldn't believe how many hair sites there are out there. This is but one among a million.

The real reason I started looking into this, however, is the fact that many of my ancestors on my father's side did not go grey at all. Kept their naturally dark brown and black hair well into their eighties and nineties. I saw this firsthand when I met a great aunt for the first time in Germany. She was 90 years old, with jet black hair. The first thing she said to me after introductions and hugs was "this is my original hair; never had a dye job". Obviously a source of great pride. My father has some grey hair, but it is still predominantly black, and he is over 70. It makes him look much younger. He could care less.

So I am hoping that maybe I have this gene; the hair doesn't go grey gene...whatever it might be. I can't seem to find out any information on it to learn an official name. Please let me know if anyone out there does. Every stray grey that I see lessons my hope that this is the case. (and I said I wasn't vain)

Written by Cathy

Rainy Days and Mondays


Did not get us down.

Written by Cathy

Thanks but No Thanks

Monday, October 10, 2005


Here is a re-cap of my day, which has most recently ended with a stomach completely over-stuffed with Thanksgiving dinner. Ughhhhh; unsnap the top button of the jeans...

Mr. C. says oh my God, our onions have gone rotten and we don't have enough potatoes. Today is Thanksgiving, my American friends. As I said in my last post, my husband was making Thanksgiving Day dinner as his personal Thank you to me; so sweet. I talk my 4 year old into coming with me, as Mr. C. will have enough on his hands preparing dinner and the 4 month old with him. We pack ourselves into the car and venture out in the pouring rain. The stores are all closed, which means I need to find a fruit and veggie stand; the closest one is a good 30 minute drive away. The parking lot is full, the rain is coming down in buckets, my child is whining. Why does it take twice as long to get a child out of a car seat when it is raining cats and dogs? I am getting soaked, 4 yr old is whining more, I pull him from the car and proceed to step in a huge muck puddle. I am cranky; don't want to be out in this, want to be in my cozy house, etc. etc. I grab what we need in addition to an over-priced centre piece for the table and go to pay. I barely look at the guy working there and am preoccupied with my son, with finding my money, with my hair dripping wet all over my face. The guy looks at me and I shit you not, says You are pretty. Excuse me??? I hope your husband isn't with you because he would probably punch me, but I just think that you're a really pretty woman. No one has ever said this to me. In such a way at such a moment. Crazy, really crazy. I stare at him and say No, my husband is home cooking me a turkey. Lucky guy, he says. How weird is this???? I pay and repeat the scene dragging my son back into the car again.

Next, we go to the Drug Store so I can buy formula for my 4 month old. I go to pay and realize that my husband has my bank card; he took it out to buy gas the other day. I had paid cash at the fruit stand. Crap; I have no way to pay...

We return home and my 4 year old and I decide to go outside and get totally wet; and I mean totally. Down to the underwear wet. Dinner is predictable; the in-laws complain about the drive to our house, eat dinner and leave as soon as it's over. I tell Mr. C. about the fruit stand guy. I expect him to say crazy, but instead he surprises me and says See, I'm not lying when I tell you you're beautiful. Sweet, and unexpected. I stil have a hard time taking compliments, however.

Written by Cathy

Give Thanks



Today is Thanksgiving Day in Canada. My husband is preparing the whole Thanksgiving turkey dinner, complete with homemade stuffing and vegetables, as his thanks to me. For that I surely give thanks. My in-laws will be over this aft., and it will be hectic, as these things usually are. It's raining to beat the band and the puddles in the backyeard are huge; I think I'll go out and splash with my 4 year old a little later.
So anyway, here's my thankful list:
1. a healthy happy family
2. living in Canada
3. great home
4. great job
5. great outlook for the future
What more could anyone ask for??

Written by Cathy

Peanuts

Sunday, October 09, 2005


I am Franklin. I barely remember this character from Charlie Brown. I could have sworn I would have been Sally. Cute quiz to see who you are most like. Thank you, Chloe, for the link to this.

Written by Cathy

Made me chuckle

Saturday, October 08, 2005



This struck me so funny I laughed out loud. And again. My husband thinks I am retarded. Silly animal pictures always seem to make me smile. Here's the link for more. On the topic of pigs, I have been reading Mercy Watson to the Rescue to my 4 year old. Over and over. He loves it and the story is wonderful; really well written. Mercy Watson is a pig. A happy little story. No Charlotte's Web sad pigness.

Written by Cathy

Have a Great Day !

Friday, October 07, 2005


Here's a site with only good news to help you have a great day ! I especially like the weather.

Written by Cathy

____phobia

Thursday, October 06, 2005

So I didn't find a phobia for emptying garbage cans, or a phobia for eating food prepared by other people, but I did stumble across these ones:

Doxophobia- Fear of expressing opinions or of receiving praise.
My mother has this one, except when it comes to me, and she has no problem expressing her opinions then.

Lilapsophobia- Fear of tornadoes and hurricanes.
At least half of the U.S. has this one by now.

Macrophobia- Fear of long waits.
Um, by another name, wouldn't you just call this impatience???!!!

Mageirocophobia- Fear of cooking.
Starting tomorrow, I am telling my husband I have this....

Arachibutyrophobia: Fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth.
Good grief, now I think I've heard it all !

Written by Cathy

What's on my mind today


You've got mail.....

1. Why are there so many knitting blogs???? Someone please explain this to me.
2. I need a spit-up counter on my site. So far I have changed my shirt three times and it isn't even 10 am.
3. I hate emptying the garbage cans in the house. It makes me feel like a janitor. All other housework; no problem. Maybe I have a garbage can emptying phobia; I'll have to look this up.
4. The three button down the shirt gap. Shirt fits great in all other areas, but crap there's that little gap. Only women with boobs would get this one.
5. Re-heating my coffee in the microwave. It tastes disgusting, so why do I do this?
6. As soon as the kids are off to bed, taken care of. I sit down for a moment to myself and one of the two cats appears from nowhere. They know. They look at you like It's my turn now. They are neglected lately, ever since the baby.
7. The contest. I am fidgetty. Waiting. I am an impatient person. I do not do well waiting for anything; good news or bad, the waiting is the worst.

Written by Cathy

The impression of a mother....

Wednesday, October 05, 2005


My mother is an impression. An illusion. She is there but she isn't. A cliche to say a shell. But yet a shell of a mother. She is an extraordinarily selfish woman. Consumed with her perspective. She sees nothing from another. I have not spoken since Monday. My disaster of a day. Yesterday was great; we did not speak. Today the phone rings. I don't answer because I am feeding the baby. Call display. It was her. I delay the call. It is her Birthday, although we celebrated it on Sunday. I need to call to wish her Happy Birthday. So I do. Where were you? She snaps. I was feeding the baby. I say with a hint of annoyance. Oh. She is annoyed. Why, I do not know. I can never know. She is unpredictable yet disturbungly predictable at the same time. Happy Birthday I tell her. Yes, hrmpf...She can not receive well wishes. Brushes them off like pieces of lint. What are you going to do today? I ask. Clean, what else? I have to clean....and she launches into her typical litany of all the things she has to do. She is going away with my father for a small vacation on Sunday and someone is staying in their house to house-sit. She feels that she has to clean as if the Pope himself were staying in the house. Another contradiction; she rarely cleans for her and my father, yet if someone is coming to stay she cleans like a woman possessed. A show. An impression. She can't look bad. To strangers. She is talking and I am thinking but not really listening. I am watching my wonderful baby play on the floor near my feet. Could I ever ever be this way with him I wonder? I can not imagine it. What kind of woman is this person, my mother, to be this way with me?

She launches into another litany but this time it is focussed at me; her and my father did not get home until after dark after they left my place on Monday. It took them an hour and a half to get home, she says (it should take about 30 minutes). A crew was re-painting the lines on the road. They got yellow paint on their car because my father drove into the freshly drawn yellow dividing lines. She is speaking with a tone that can only be described as accusatory. Blame blame blame. It's your fault we didn't get home until so late. Dinner should have been sooner; you shouldn;t have made us stay....It's your father's fault for driving poorly, it's the crews fault for being there when we were coming that way....she is speaking faster and getting into a frenzy. Only someone with a mother as crazy as mine can understand...I have not spoken a word for some time; just listening, because that is really all she wants; to vent to steam, to pour out her hatred and anger. My baby is getting fussy and needs to be put into his crib for a nap. I tell her this. She says oh, all right then, hrmpf. bye. She can not even understand this most basic of motherly requirements. How did I survive this woman? What was she like when I was very young? I do not remember.

I am not a shrinking violet. I am a strong and forceful person. Very successful in my career and in life. Yet when it comes to this woman, I do not dare to say a thing. I do not want to bring on her wrath. If I did there would be no relationship, with her that would perhaps be fine with me but it would also send my father away with her and I could not face that.

Written by Cathy

INXS

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


Today has been much better even though it is just a regular stay at home day. The calm after yesterday's storm. INXS, one of my all time favourite bands, has just released their new single (Pretty Vegas) today. With J.D. Fortune, their new lead singer, from my home province! Check it out. I can only hope that they will include Nova Scotia in their 2006 tour plans, given that J.D. is from here.

I'm also looking forward to watching the Amazing Race tonight. I haven't decided yet if I like the fact that it is a family version, but so far I love the family with the two small kids; they are a riot. And the father-in-law with his sons...so great.

Written by Cathy

Today Sucked

Monday, October 03, 2005



I am totally consumed with the essay contest I am working on. I've never entered such a contest before. Not typical for me. But this one was made for me. I alternate between thinking that I will absolutely without a doubt win to thinking that I have turned overnight into a total nutcase and that I don't have a hope in hell.

It doesn't help that I had a crapper of a day. It started out great, but then the parents came over this afternoon. My mother. Oh my God. What a crazy. I really am at a loss for words. She is so self-absorbed. She can't lift a finger. My father kneels down and takes off her shoes for her. Oh Lord. It is so hard to take. She is so lazy and did I mention crazy?

I cook them dinner, balancing my 3 month old and 4 year old, making a nice quiche and running outside to gather fresh flowers all at the same time. She sits on the couch and reads People. No offer of help, nothing. Like everything about her and I; nothing. My father is bewildered. He knows this is not right, but is so caught up in her tailpipe that he does not know what to do. Has not had an independent thought for some time now. She asks when will supper be ready? I say close to 6. Oh well, I need to get home to let the cat out, and and and and . In other words, 6 is too late. I get things ready to have dinner on the table sooner. Not to appease her but to get her out of my house again. Maybe slightly to appease. Why can't I stop it? Mr.C. is coming home for 6. They leave by 5:50. Walk away from the table without picking up a plate. I am left with a house full of chaos. Mr. C. gets cold quiche. He sees them driving down the road as he is coming. Wonders why they are leaving so early. Thinks that it has finally happened. I have exploded and told them off. He thinks we will not see them for a year now.

Another day maybe. Out of a hot bath and onto the computer. Ahhhhhh.

Written by Cathy

Jakie takes a picture

Sunday, October 02, 2005


A valley Mac and me. Taken by Jakie. What a photographer, my son. Another beautiful fall day today. Martha Stewart is going to be in the area next weekend. Rowing a pumpkin carved out for a boat. I kid you not. Only Martha. The organizers are concerend because they need to find a pumpkin big enough to hold her. I didn't know she was so tall; over 6 feet, I am told. I would love to see this spectacle, but the crowd might be crazy. Had a big family bbq today. Probably the last one this year. The weather will be turning colder soon. Truely a beautiful weekend.

Written by Cathy

October 1

Saturday, October 01, 2005


Thought I'd start the new month with a photo I took today. We (husband and two sons) went apple and pumpkin picking today. Complete with corn field maze, haunted house, farmers market, petting farm....a beautiful fall day today.

Written by Cathy


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