Me, spilling out all my thoughts, inner and outer, on just about anything! Lots of poetry, short stories from past experiences, anecdotes about teaching elementary school, music, relationships....garage sale type thing...Something For Everyone!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The Ups and Downs of Life

This is dedicated to any people who get a little depressed at times, especially in the dark and dreary days of November. We all experience ups and downs, but I have known a few people who have Bi-Polar Disorder and it really can wreak havoc with their lives.
Here's hoping for some sunny hours ahead for all of us this winter!
Polarities of Our Lives

we all teeter up and totter down
at different times,
we swing from high to low
we climb steadily to the top
and sometimes we free-fall to the bottom,
from mountain peaks
to valley gorges,
summit to foot,
ascending, descending,
from great heights
to depths of despair
from effervescent happiness to sullen sadness,
pendulum swings
this way
then that -
the roller coaster ride
is free
maybe it’s really a carousel
of round and round,
our own amusement park
and we never ever have to pay admission,
(but we sure pay the price)
we can take another ride,
"laugh in the dark"
but we’re not always laughing,
(sometimes it’s a long tunnel)
emerging finally
into the light -
that is a certainty,
and The Affirmation is our full smile -

we are balanced once again.

Mother of Invention, seeing the light!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

An Inconvenienced Convenience Store

Last week, just as I was taking dinner out of the oven, the power went out.
Of course, I hadn't a clue where the flashlights or candles were. The emergency lighting came on in our office and my husband came in to get his headlamp and candles for the massage therapist so she could finish up a patient's treatment.

We had our dinner by candlelight and then decided to go in search of a coffee somewhere in town. Our whole area was out and many people were walking the streets just to see what was happening. Turned out we had to drive to the next town to reach any coffee shops that had power.

Upon approaching our house, we saw the police blocking the road and were stopped by 5 militia in full camouflage, carrying rifles. We have never seen this before in our town! Something big was underway. They told us to turn around and detour.

"But we just live in that second house in!" we said, pointing.

"Just turn around - you can't go past here," they waved their rifles.

"Our driveway is right here!" we argued.

Finally they okayed it but told us to go right into our house. That's when we discovered that our house was open. We had locked it but when our one cat appeared at the door wanting in as we were leaving, my husband unlocked it, let her in and just shut the door without re-locking it.

The whole tone and words used by the police, as well as the fact that the forces from the local army base were there suddenly hit me.

"Did those guys have rifles?!" I asked my husband.

"Yes, I'm going out to find Mooky," (our other cat) he replied.

"Wait! No! You're just not gettin' it are you? There's obviously been a robbery or something and we're locking our doors! And you're not going anywhere!"

I was starting to get a tad worried that maybe someone was hiding out in our house. It was the perfect escape route from police - they could nip down along the river that runs through town at the end of our yard, come up to the house and BINGO! Ours was open and ready for them to enter!

After an hour, the blockade was removed and traffic was moving in both directions once again. The power came back on an hour later and it was not until the next day that we heard the details of what had transpired.

The Mini Mart almost directly across the street from us had been robbed by two 17 year-old guys who were armed. With the aid of dogs, one was caught and they were searching for the other one when we were stopped.
Of course, being a small town, everyone had their own story to tell of encountering police who told them there had been a robbery and to get a move on, go straight home and lock their doors.

Why didn't they tell us that? They probably should have escorted us home. It could have had a much different outcome.

The Korean couple who run the store are the sweetest people in the world. Unfortunately, their type of business is highly targeted in a power blackout. They were advised to lock up and go home next time.

I know what I'm doing next time - staying put...Tim Horton's be hanged!

**Tim Horton's is the Canadian equivalent of Starbuck's**

Mother of Invention, organizing all my flashlights and candles for future use!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Ode To A Little Weight Loss!

I took myself around the block
It's only a short 1 mile walk
But at a really rapid pace
My long legs quickly covered space
Thinking of that measuring tape
I pledge to try and get in shape
I weighed myself - I'm not TOO bad
But truth be told, I'm up a tad
My pants feel just a wee bit tight
And zipping up does not feel right
My belly overhangs a bit
When I crouch or when I sit
A simple thing to cut back food?
Not when in a craving mood!
NO MORE to see a scale that tips!
(If only I could give up chips!)
Mother of Invention, wishing I could just lose that few extra pounds...without dieting!!!

Monday, November 20, 2006

Hey! Not So Fast!

As many of you know, I am on Long Term Disability Leave from teaching for health reasons this year. My insurance company made me apply for Canada Pension Plan Disability which is an incredibly complicated process. I filled in a 32 page booklet and sent it awhile ago.
Today I got a interesting receipt from Human Resources Canada that said:

"We have received your application dated October 25, 2006, for the Death Benefit. Unfortunately, we cannot process your application at this time for the following reasons:
(Whoa! I'm thinking, "Yeah, because I'm NOT DEAD for starters!")
It went on....

"Your questionnaire was not complete when we received it. Please provide the date requested in the highlighted area." (I'm laughing! Like the date of death perhaps?!)

You can imagine my how my sense of humour was kicking in!
"Oh crap, I AM dead! Maybe this is heaven...can't be, I'm in too much pain! I better look around for people I know just to make sure!"

They had enclosed a copy of some part of my Disability form where I didn't put a date and the control # of Sun Life for which they never even asked!

Too funny! I phoned them and got some man who had a very thick French accent and either could not speak English that well, or just didn't share my weird sense of
humour, but clearly there was no response to my jokes! I said I hoped the money would arrive before I died since I had a bit more serious shopping to do before I passed on!

I don't know how these things happen. These companies have a large number of employees and you'd think they'd get that one straight. It's the usual Bureaucratic Red Tape issues with Government we all hate I suppose.

In addition, I have to start paying for full amount of health and dental insurance which goes from $149 to $298/month and may even go retroactive to last March because my own employer had billed me as if I were working half time! I may have to cough up a lot of money soon. But it is definitely their mistake and since Payroll bills me, you'd think they'd notice I wasn't on it anymore! Yikes! I'd never realized how expensive health plans cost when my Board of Education was kicking in half the cost.

The beat goes never ends....ah, well...yeah, I guess it does!

Mother of Invention, thinking that some days, the Death Benefit look a lot less complicated!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Wish I Weren't Such A Pain!

Poetry word of the day was "pain" so here's my ode! I know the subject well!

the sharpest stab
a quicker jab
a constant ache
without a break
does boo-all
even advil
makes me ill
nothing can touch
the pain that much
muscles so sore
I can stand no more
take some risks
adjust the disks
ask the doc
a huge roadblock
will it ever end
I'm around the bend
massage is great
but it doesn't abate
I pack on ice
but no dice
the heating pad
helps a tad
the cortisone
is just a loan
for it returns
and really burns
can numb the pain
add "Rub Away"
throughout the day
sad to report
relief is short
for all I've tried
it won't subside
always there
it's just not fair
a lot of strife
such is my life...
but high alert -
it doesn't hurt
for me to type
this major gripe!
Mother of Invention, hoping to find something that works!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Up On The Roof!

Guess what's going on at my house? To the tune of the post title and $8600? Puts a whole new spin on the words, "putting a roof over our heads"!

The team of four arrived at 7:00 a.m. to wake us up abruptly. Good thing this is a young crew because our house is old and it has incredibly steep slopes. It is is 3 floors due to the full height attic. The noise has been unsettling to say the least. Ask my cats! They've been slinking around inside and out as if they're trying to hug the ground and cover their heads with their paws! They're at a loss as to where to go.

First, it was the thudding noise of simply delivering all the materials and depositing them in the driveway. Next, it was the pulling off of all the old shingles and hurling them in the general vicinity of the dumpster. A few may have gone sailing into the neighbour's yard at which their ferocious rottweiler demonstrated his definite disapproval. (After ten minutes of fierce growling, I dare say that some of these shingles might have been expertly aimed! This is one mean unfriendly canine!)
Finally, the pounding of hammers, securing the new shingles pierced the otherwise tranquil sunny day.

I went up to the attic to get wrapping paper and was surprised to find out that I could actually see the sky between the exposed wooden slats! Just then, an onslaught of black material the size of small pebbles came hurtling through that space onto the floor. Yikes! I did a dramatic rescue of my clothes hanging up all across the width of the room on the suspended metal pole. By throwing blankets and sheets I'd quickly grabbed from the baskets nearby, no great damage was done. Just the thought of black bits of tar marking my brand new coral sundress from Coldwater Creek hastened my mission!

All this going on overhead while deep in the bowels of the basement, there were patients trying to relax and revel in the glory of deep massage treatments! Hmmmm...hopefully, none went out with migraines they never even had when they arrived!

Only a few more days they said. Well, I'd like to believe it, but as the forecast calls for a heavy rain all today, I'll be given a reprieve anyway.

Mother of Invention, thinking we should be good to go for another 18 years after it's finished.....and wondering where my cats are hiding!!

Monday, November 13, 2006


Thanks to everyone who read and commented on my Remembrance Day post. It was very special to me and I was very pleased to hear what you all thought.

My father has passed on his love for expressing himself in writing and has been a good model for me to emulate. He always encouraged me and guided me through many early grade school assignments. I was lucky to have his influence in my formative years.

A most interesting development occurred today as a result of my e-mailing the post to my nephew, who works for Maple Leaf Meats in Hamburg, Germany. As you may know, this area was heavily bombed and they virtually had to rebuild the city. Ironically, my father flew his crew over this area where they carried out several bombing missions.

In sharing this post with his German colleagues, my nephew wasn't sure what their reaction would be. He was surprised to find out that many were supportive and one in particular said, "Thank your grandfather. He helped save our country from a horrible fate and a monstrous man."

My nephew then decided to phone my dad in Canada and relate all that had transpired. You can imagine how touched he was that his grandson was proud enough to share the post, but moreover, that a young German person would thank him for the part he played in the Allied Forces. I'm sure my father must have felt validated and gratified that his efforts as a bomber pilot in a terrible war had come full circle.

And after all, isn't that what this life is all about?

Mother of Invention, completing the circle.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Right Off The Radar....

My dad's flight crew.

Very Strange.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Give It Your Best Shot!

Flu season is fast approaching. I quake at the thought of getting the flu! I'm terrible when I succumb to those germs and nearly always end up in the hospital on IV. I still must take insulin but can't eat, which can be a major problem! The serum is now here...I can't delay it much longer...

So, since the Poetry Friday word is "tolerate", here's my 1 minute scratch-pad entry....!

a flu shot is the thing I hate
my body just won't tolerate
I hesitate, hold out my arm
and try to think, "oh, what's the harm?"
but all the while I know it's true
my tricep will turn black and blue
and in a day be mighty sore
then I'll whine,"that's it! no more!"
but at the thought of flu I freak
so I'm going to get the jab next week!
Do you get the flu shot?
Mother of Invention, bracing myself for the aftermath!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Odds and Sods

This has got to be the weirdest time of year! The weather can't decide what to do; linger with fall or go full blast into winter. We live exactly half way from the banana belt city and the snow belt area of cottage country so we are affected by both.

An area one hour north of us got hit with a 1 1/2 foot snowfall last Friday but we just barely got a covering. My husband, who is a cross-country skiing fanatic, was down in the dungeon of our house where he was madly waxing his skating skis as soon as he'd confirmed that they'd opened up the ski clubs. He skied 25 km on both Sat. and Sun. and was tired but happy to be able to say he's skied twice already.
Alas, this was short-lived because last night and today were quite nice and sunny and it will be mostly gone. It was just enough to whet a skier's appetite, I suppose.

I, on the other hand, have been nursing a cold since last Wed. and have been just dragging and napping! The last exercise I did was a week ago. It bothers me when I get off track and routine, especially with something so important to my health. Hope I get back on this week. Strangely enough, this is the first time I've been sick with a regular bug in a year. (Heart attacks don't count as regular bugs!) I wasn't at school to catch germs from kids most of last year and I have been going into the school recently to help, hence the cold! I had to cancel a visit with a great old friend and will do it later this month.

My Canvas for Diabetes job needs to be completed so I must hit the street again soon. I don't think I'll get too many as most of the addresses they gave me are stores and restaurants.

Meanwhile, I love the Christmas songs my choir is learning for our upcoming concerts and local "gigs"! I sing second soprano and the parts are very pretty if not tricky!

There's a mish-mash blog if there ever was one! A bit of everything....just add it to the soup I guess some weeks are just like that!

Mother of Invention, stirring the broth!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Dona Nobis Pacem

Today, many bloggers I know are posting a globe with their signature on it to show their hope for a world full of peace. This dream and inspiration came from Mimi Writes. ( She will likely have all the links of everyone who did this for you to visit so you can read poetry or stories to go with today's Dona Nobis Pacem.

I would have loved to post the globe with my signature but the technology was beyond me. However, I am with them in spirit and shall certainly sing the song, as I learned it at Pioneer Girls Summer Camp 45 years ago.

Well, not exactly. It was a canon so I'd really need two other voices to "chase" mine. Dona, as we simply called it, is one of my favourite songs from my youth. With the entire camp of 200 kids and counselors gathered in their cabin groups, huddling under blankets together, it really gave you the feeling of peace as we quietly sang this simple, yet beautiful song by the campfire overlooking the small lake. I would quiver every time. You were entranced. Everyone would be reluctant to speak or move for several minutes after the song ended. No one wanted to risk breaking this magic spell. Amazingly, in our seemingly insignificant microcosm, it epitomized and encapsulated the whole idea that the few words meant: Grant Us Peace.

This was our small summer world, granting peace to everyone beyond it.

Mother of Invention, remembering the idyllic hopeful moments from my time capsule.

Monday, November 06, 2006


My Own World

Scientists try to understand the universe
but I,
not being a scientist in the least,
try only to understand
my own microcosm within it.
And that just makes sense --
In simplicity and smallness,
clarity is found.

Mother of Invention, keeping it simple.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Rainbows of The Day!

When something neat happens, no matter how small, I always say that it was my Rainbow For The Day. At the end of many school days, we'd go around the class giving each person a turn to share what the rainbow of their day or week was. I would draw a chalk rainbow or let one of the kids do this and they would know it would be one of those days. It was refreshing (and sometimes quite amusing!) to see what simple things created a rainbow for some of these kids; a cool new eraser, markers that smelled like food, getting a badge in brownies or cubs, a visit with grandma, going to McDonalds and scoring a toy, someone sharing a snack with them, a new friend to play with at recess....the possibilities were endless. It was always a nice feeling to end the day with something so positive.

Sometimes as adults, it is also the littlest things that bring us a bit of colour in a day and probably a smile too. A compliment on what we're wearing, someone telling you how much they appreciate something you did, hearing from or bumping into someone you haven't seen in a long time, winning a raffle at a local event......

For me, it is often something a student says at school. Last week, our Mayor, a young, very handsome man brought his daughter into school. He was dressed in a nice suit and tie and he really stood out amongst the other adults in the hallway. You could say he turned a few female teachers' heads too! A sweet little in my line-up just stared at him walking by, looked up at me and asked, "Is that the President or the Mayor?" Priceless! Right on par with the President......well, we actually have a Prime Minister here but the sense of import had a huge impact on this little girl.

I just had to share that with our Mayor as he walked back past us and I don't doubt that it was as much of a rainbow for him as it was for me. I smiled every time I thought of it throughout the day.

What rainbows have you had lately?