Strange Bedfellows

Making my bed in the morning sometimes reveals some interesting suprises. When I throw back the quilt quite often little dog chews or toys go flying onto the floor.

When we go to bed at night I always have a book, Gerry usually has a Suduko puzzle, and the girls often bring a little something of their own to lull them to sleep. We each have our own way of settling in and quieting ourselves after a busy day.

One's favorite book is another ones Suduko. One's addictive Suduko is another one's dog chew.


Today is my last day of work before eleven days off. The sun is shining and it's going to be a beautiful day. My car needs gas so that means I have to stop at Fred Meyer on the way to work, and that's the excuse I need for a Starbucks. There are fun times ahead, most of which involve grandbabies. Life is very good.

I'm trying to find something for summer reading in the sunshine. Suggestions?

The Shack

A number of months ago, The Shack was recommended to me by my BFF. (thank you, Wanda!) I promptly bought it, and it joined my stack of "to-reads". Yesterday afternoon, I picked it up and went out to my favorite summer place, my lawn swing, and sat in the sun and read.

I could not put it down.

This book challenged my thinking in many areas. It made me think about things in a way that I hadn't before. It made me cry. It gave me a renewed sense of hope. It made me feel loved.

If you haven't read it yet, I encourage you to pick it up. It's a quick read that could very well change your life.

The times, they are a changin'

There has been a lot of talk lately about social networking. It got me thinking about how much the world has changed since I was a child, and even more since my parents were children. (the cute little baby girl in this picture is my mom!)

Both of my parents have been gone for about twenty-five years and they wouldn't recognize much of what we find common in our lives today. Here are some sentences that I came up with that my parents would not know the meaning of if they could somehow come back for a day (oh how sweet that would be).

  • She is one of my Facebook friends.
  • Are you on Twitter yet?
  • I really enjoy blogging.
  • I'll send her a text.
  • I will IM her.
  • Did you see that on You Tube?
  • Don't worry, I still have two bars left.

There are so many more things that would be foreign to anyone who had not been involved in our day-to-day life over the past twenty-five years or so. It's hard to imagine what kind of changes the next few decades will bring.

Can you come up with any more sentences that would be foreign to someone from twenty-five years in the past?

Clock Therapy

A number of years ago an older woman made a comment to me about how much she enjoyed "the company of a clock". As a young twenty-something whippersnapper, I really had no idea what she meant but, because my parents raised me right, I smiled and nodded and made sounds of agreement.

For some reason that phrase has stayed with me and every once in a while it comes to mind for no particular reason. This past Sunday morning, I had one of those Ah-Ha moments that we hear so much about recently.

Gerry was sick on Sunday and he spent much of the morning in bed. Our usual routine on the weekends, well really every day, is that he goes down stairs first and pours coffee and brings it upstairs. (Especially on Sunday because there is something in the Bible about he-brews!)

Anyway, there I was downstairs in a quiet house waiting for Maya to go potty when it hit me. The house was totally quiet, save for the ticking of an old wall clock hanging in Gerry's office. I found the tick-tick-tock was oddly soothing and I realized what "the company of a clock" meant.

Our lives are filled with so much noise that it's easy to miss a little nugget like this. I thought about my own typical day. The first thing that I do when I get out of the shower is turn on the radio in my bathroom. From that point on, it's full steam ahead with activities and work and no time for quiet. Deep down I am an introvert, one of those people who can feel drained when she spends a lot of time around other people. Perhaps that's part of the reason why I feel so darn stressed most of the time. It also explains why I treasure a hot afternoon spent alone on the lawn swing with a good book.

So there it is. A lesson that has whispered to me over the years, but which I had missed the meaning of.

The next time I'm feeling overwhelmed by the noise and pressure of life, I'm going to turn off the noise and enjoy a bit of clock therapy.

Book Review - The Unbreakable Child

I have just reviewed Kimmi's book for Story Circle Book Reviews.

If you haven't read her book yet, you're missing out on a story of strength, faith, and character that will inspire you to rise above whatever hardships you may face in your own lives.

I encourage you to check it out.

P.S. Guess who is one of the newest Editors for Story Circle Book Reviews! It's a dream come true! If you are looking for something good to read, take a look at our site where you will find a wide variety of books written for, by, and about women.


Tomorrow is Father's Day. My own Dad has been gone for twenty-five years. Here are a few tidbits that I remember about my Dad.

If you asked Dad now many were in his family he would say that he had six sisters and every one of them had a brother. At first you may think that there were twelve in his family, but in reality there were six girls and one boy! Dad was the brother to each of this sisters. He used to get a kick out of telling that one.

  • Dad had many quips, quotes and little dittys that he would share out of the blue. Here is one:

    Equine quadrupeds may indubitably be induced to approach that well-known standard of specific gravity, but not necessarily be induced to imbibe thereof. (You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink)
  • Dad's nickname for me was Princess.
  • The last words that Dad ever said to me were "I love you, Princess".
Here are some other Dad's that I am blessed to have in my life.

When I got married, not only did I get an amazing husband, I also got another Dad. My father-in-love has a gentle and loving spirit and he is one of the most patient men I know.

He raised fine children, one of whom I am proud to call "husband"!

Brandon was another gift I received when I married my husband. It has been a joy to watch him grow into the man that he has become. He is an excellent husband and father and I am proud to call him "son"!

Gord won my heart forever when he married my daughter. As I watched him look at her in her wedding dress, and saw the tears fall down his cheek, I fell in love with this young man. He treasures my daughter. I will never forget the look on his face as he hurried down a hospital hall saying "It's a girl...and she's beautiful!".
Father's Day is the perfect time to tell all the "Dad's" in your life how much you love and appreciate them!

We interrupt this blog..... bring you some information on a great offer.

Matilda Butler and Kendra Bonnett of Womens Memoirs are offering their The [Essential] Women's Memoir Writing Workshop five DVD set at 25% off for friends of Story Circle Network. I am a board member of SCN and if you're my friend you qualify!

If you have any thoughts about writing your on memoir, I encourage you to take advantage of this limited time offer. I've taken a class from Matilda and Kendra and I can personally attest to their skills as teachers and encouragers. The material that they provided in the class that I took through SCN went far above my expectations, and the feedback that I received on my work was invaluable.

I ordered my set last week and received it yesterday. I can't wait to get started!

Hair stylin'

I had my hair done his week. Along with a slight trim, I had highlights put in. I really am a blond at heart despite rumors that I have turned into a brunette since we moved away from the sunshine. By the way, I did an internet search this week and found out that the city we moved away from two years ago is not only the hottest city in Canada, it is also the sunniest city in Canada! But I digress.
I've known women who could go to the hair dresser on their lunch hour and return to work looking lovely. Others have gone to the hair dresser before a special event in the evening. Not so for me.
When I leave the hair dresser I make a bee line for home because I have WORK to do. The cut may be perfect but I have not found many hair dressers who could style my hair. I know that my hair is ornery at times. In it's natural state it's rather fine and lifeless. I have a cowlick you wouldn't believe.
True, it's taken me fifty years to come to a sort of truce with my ornery mind-of-its-own hair. These days, I'm not afraid to scrap what I'm doing and wet it down and start over again. I still don't have as many good hair days as I would like, but we're coming to terms with each other.
Perhaps I don't explain myself well enough. I don't want my hair to be flat on top, that's just not a look that is good for me. I need poof up there! It doesn't help that I usually end up telling my hair dresser that it looks great, in my mind thinking that I just want to get out of there so I can fix it myself.
All is well that ends well, however. I'm happy with the cut and I love the color. I like this new salon and the hair dresser I've started going to. I just hope she can learn to style my stubborn hair.

Keypunch Operator

It's graduation season and that got me thinking back thirty-three (!) years to my own high school graduation.

It was May 25, 1976 and it was another lifetime. My first "real" job after graduation was at a mining company working as a keypunch operator. A keypunch operator? Yes, a keypunch operator. They're an extinct breed here in the twenty-first century, but we were a vital part of business back then.

Our work would come in to us in batches. A batch could either be a set of time cards bundled together in an elastic band, or a set of invoices paper clipped together. The time cards were always my favorite thing to do. They would be loaded into the keypunch machine and one by one they would feed into a window directly in front of where I sat. Employees would have written the number of hours they worked each day and I would key those numbers so that they would punch little holes in the appropriate place on the card.

When one of us finished keying a batch, the punched cards would be put back into our in-basket to be verified at a later time. Verifying was simply keying the same thing over again to identify any mis-punched holes which would require that a new card be created.

Keypunching was the kind of work that allowed one to shift their brain into auto-pilot. When one got good enough at keying there was little thought required because the fingers would automatically move to they keys based on the numbers that the eyes saw. There was a lot of deep thought that one could do during keypunching.

My best friend today was a keypunch operator in her past life as well. We both have said that keypunching was one of the best jobs we ever had.

Fast forward to 2009 and the time card employees at the company where I work key their own time into the computer. Keypunch operators have gone the way of the Edsel and the do-do bird.

I can't help but wonder about some of the high tech jobs that young people are taking today. Which ones will go the way of the keypunch operator in the years to come?

The Week in Review

I was back at work this week after enjoying last week in grandbaby paradise. While I would still much rather be there than here, it turned out to be a good week after all.

The weather was warm and wonderful and I enjoyed a few hours after work on my lawn swing soaking up some vitamin D.
The brown USPS van arrived with some books that I had ordered from Amazon. Always a treat!
We got a Wii and a Wii Fit! Truthfully my knees are killing me from the step aerobics I've been doing but I'm excited about the possibilities with this thing. Gerry and I have played tennis and bowling and I've started on my own fitness program.
I met with a web design instructor at one of our local schools. He graciously provided me with some books on DreamWeaver. I'm working on a website for a community garden.
And finally My Own Velvet Room was mentioned in the Story Circle Network National e-Letter this month!
What did your week hold?