As Life Rolls On

As a friend of mine always says, "We plan, God laughs." You never know what life will bring, but the ride can be a blast!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Winter 2010

I sit and think back on the winter that has just past and the spring that is now bringing forth new life and see how it is reflective of life over the last 6 months. It has been a time of stress and deep emotion, a time where the needs of my children have been great, a time of worry for several of my extended family who are experiencing significant medical issues, a time with the unexpected loss of Bruce's best friend who was very near and dear to our hearts, a time where my best friend has needed a listening ear as she deals with the devastating effects ahlzheimers is having on her mother, a time where some staff at the shelter have had difficulty with change that is greatly needed.

Yes, it has been a winter where as a mom, wife, sister, cousin, friend, and boss, I have felt inadequate and ineffective at times, after all, as strong women, aren't we supposed to be able to make things better, right? I can't count the number of times where I would have given anything to take away Jenn's grief, sorrow and pain. I would have done anything to make time stop forever so that Jason didn't have to leave on his deployment to Afghanistan (although Alyson and I did talk about kidnapping him and hiding him), I have wished over and over again that I had arms long enough to stretch across the miles just to hug James, just because, I constantly role over in my mind 'is there anything we could have done so that Wayne didn't have to die alone", I wish daily my arms were long enough to hug Liz, I pray on an ongoing basis for my brothers and cousins, yet although I know that is all I can do right now, it has still felt inadequate, I have tried to hold my head high and say what I mean, mean what I say and be a woman of integrity with my staff, but at times it has felt that no matter what is done, some will continue to push back. Through it all, I have shed many tears behind closed doors and have had many internal doubts and struggles.

Hope does spring eternal though. As a woman of faith, I have relied on God to give me strength when I wanted to stick my head in the sand or run away. My nephew Josh recently reminded me of God's deep love for us with a posting on face book: " 'For I know the plans I have for you' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.' " Jeremiah 29:11. Yes, it has been "winter" in many ways for me over the past 6 months, however:
  1. I look in amazement and great pride at Jennifer, my wonderful, bright, strong daughter who has emerged from a time of hurt and sorrow that no woman should ever have to go through and see her blossom as she is bringing the pieces of her life back together. Although there are still challenges ahead, she will continue to rise to the challenge and grow.
  2. I look in amazement at James as he reaches for the sky and continues on his life journey of living a social justice lifestyle.
  3. I look in amazement at Jason's maturity as he supported other soldiers who were confronted with the reality of deployment, while preparing himself.
  4. I look in amazement at Alyson, as she has supported Jason. She truly is selfless and strong. I feel so very honoured that she is my daughter (in law).
  5. I have watched with great pride at how Bruce has worked through his own grief and hurt over the winter, yet he has been strong for his children and grandchildren.
  6. I am blessed to have an extended family who although many have their own concerns to deal with, they have also reached out to support my children.
  7. I am blessed to have a friend that is more my sister, who God has openned doors for so that her mother is well cared for, who has her own direct line to God and supports me with prayer.
  8. I see God honouring my attempts at being a woman of intergrity with staff, as 90% are now on board with the changes we must make.

Yes, my life has been reflective of the seasons of late. Now that spring has come, that's not to say that struggles are not there. I still wish there was more I could do for my brothers and cousin. I am impatient at times with wanting the changes I need to implement at work to go faster. I still get angry and become a mother lion when my children are struggling and hurting. But that is all human nature. God has been there throughout my "winter", he continues to provide hope and a future. Thanks for the reminder Josh!

My amazing kids (Alyson was working)

My adorable grandkids Owen & Ethan

Monday, February 01, 2010

Gotta Catch Up With Cathy & Barb

OK, so I'm really behind on blogging. Simply put, my priorities have been diverted elsewhere of late. That being said, let's see how long it takes me to write this list and post it:

  1. How old will you be in 5 years? 56 years young (after all, age is only in your mind, right?)

  2. Who did you spend at least 2 hours with today? sanity at the end of very busy and at times stressful weeks.

  3. How tall are you? About 5' 31/2'. I think I've started to shrink a

  4. What do you look forward to most in the next 6 months? Openning up the trailer for the season

  5. What's the last movie you saw? Can't remember the last time I was in a theatre. The last DVD movie I watched though was Elizabeth

  6. Who was the last person you called? Jennifer.........our daily check in

  7. Who was the last person to call you? Work, what can I say, I'm always on call

  8. What was the last text message you received? From Jennifer telling me to call her on her cell

  9. Who was the last person to leave you a voicemail? That would be someone looking for a job (my work voicemail)

  10. Do you prefer to call or text? Call. I only text if absolutely necessary

  11. What where you doing at 12:00am last night? Reading a novel

  12. Are your parents married/separated/divorced? Married

  13. When is the last time you saw your mom? December 27. they left for Florida a couple of days after that

  14. What colour are your eyes? Green. I don't know why, but they used to freak some people out when I was a kid

  15. What time did you wake up today? 7:00 AM.......and very reluctantly I might add

  16. What are you wearing right now? PJ's (like to get them on early to be comfy)

  17. What is you favorite Christmas song? Might sound cliche, but I love Silent Night. It's OK when it is sung with an orchestra, band or some other musical accompaniamnet, but when it's sung accapella, with people holding candles in a dim or darkened romm, brings me to tears every time

  18. Where is your favorite place to be? At the trailer, with family around

  19. Where is your least favorite place to be? In a crowded room with people I don't really know

  20. Where would you go if you could go anywhere? Scotland, England and Belgium, to see the places my family originated from

  21. Where do you think you'll be in 10 years? Right where I am much work to do.......some many social justice issues to address.........

  22. Do you tan or burn? Definately tan. I tan so quickly that I've really started to monitor my time in the sun so that my skin doesn't start looking leathery

  23. What did you fear was going to get you at night as a child? the closet monster, who would then drag me off to the arena (don't ask)

  24. What was the last thing that really made you laugh? The twins........running at me as I was lying on the floor, them saying "one, two, twee", then dive bombing on top of me

  25. How many TV's do you have in your house? 2 in the winter, 1 in the spring, summer & fall, when we take the extra one to the trailer

  26. How big is your bed? Queen

  27. Do you have a lap top or desk top? Both

  28. Do you sleep with or without your cloths? At home without, when I'm away from home, with

  29. What colour are your sheets? Blue

  30. How many pillows do you sleep with? One

  31. What is your favorite season? I love all seasons, but for different reasons. Now that we have the trailer though, I think I would have to say summer

  32. What do you like about fall? The colours, the smell of the leaves on the ground, the crisp air, a full week at the trailer when almost everyone else in the park is gone, campfires on a cool night, family time at Thanksgiving, the girls big week long scrapbooking trip, apples, pumpkins, fresh local produce, etc, etc, etc

  33. What do you like about winter? Fresh snow, a cold day with the sun shining, bundling up in cosy sweaters, Christmas with family, building snowmen, hot chocolate on a cold day, hibernating.

  34. What do you like about summer? Rolling in the grass, the sun, the lake, the beach, the trailer, campfires, bike riding, gardenning, the birds singing, the loons at the lake.......I could go on & on

  35. What do you like about spring? The buds on the trees, planting my gardens, the longer days, spending time outside, the smell after a spring rain

  36. How many provinces have you lived in? Two - Ontario & Alberta

  37. What cities/towns have you lived in? Brampton/Caledon, Calgary & Kingston

  38. Do you prefer shoes, socks or bare feet? Bare feet all the way, even in the winter

  39. Are you a social person? Although I appear comfortable and social, people may be surprised to know I am actually an introvert and relish my quiet and me time

  40. What was the last thing you ate? Swiss Chalet Chicken

  41. What is your favorite restaurant? The Keg

  42. What is you favorite ice craem? Heavenly Hash (mmmmmm, chocolate)

  43. What is your favorite dessert? Pumpkin Chiffon Pie with just a little bit of whip cream (lol)

  44. What's your favorite kind of soup? Clam Chowder

  45. What kind of jelly do you like on your peanut butter & jelly sandwhich? I don't like peanut butter & jelly

  46. Do you like chinese food? Yummy

  47. Do you like coffee? Anyone who knows me well knows that you don't talk to me in the morning until I've had one

  48. How many glasses of water do you drink on average in a day? Not enough

  49. What do you drink in the morning? Coffee

  50. Do you sleep on a certain side of the bed? The right side, because Bruce likes the left

  51. Do you know how to plan poker? Not really. I just watch Bruce and the boys play

  52. Do you like to cuddle? I like to cuddle with the twins, and to get hugs, but other wise I'm not much of a cuddler

  53. Have you ever been to Australia? No, but there's a big conference coming up there next year that I'd like to attend if I can

  54. Do you have an addictive personality? Yes, I get hooked on things (like a certain kind of food), and in my wilder, younger days, could not leave any booze around without drinking it. I've learned how to deal with it

  55. Do you eat out or at home more often? At home

  56. Do you know anyone that has the same birthday as you? No, but does being born on D Day count?

  57. Do you want kids? I have 3, all grown now, 2 grand kids and 2 grand puppies too. I could handle more though

  58. Do you speak any other languages? Some french, however I am not that confident when I speak it

  59. Have you ever gotten stitches? On my face, under my left eye after I was thrown by a horse into a tree and my eye got caught on a branch as I was coming down (can you say ouch!)

  60. Have you ever ridden in an ambulance? Nope.

  61. Do you prefer an ocean or a pool? Ocean

  62. Do you prefer a window seat or an aisle seat? Window. I'm somewhat claustrophobic and being able to look out the window helps me feel less so (I know, sounds contradictory)

  63. Do you know how to drive stick? All my cars have always been stick. I prefer it

  64. What is your favorite thing to spend money on? Scrapbooking stuff

  65. Do you wear any jewellery 24/7? My wedding ring

  66. What is your favorite TV show? Law & Order and Greys Anatomy

  67. Can you roll your tongue? yes, I have that gift

  68. Who is the funniest person you know? My daughter Jennifer

  69. Do you sleep with stuffed animals? If you consider Bruce a stffed animal, then yes

  70. What is the main ring on your phone? The Entertainer

  71. Do you still have clothes from when you were little? Jennifer has a swaeter of mine from when I was 14

  72. What red object is closest to you right now? My family room chair

  73. Do you turn off the water when you brush your teeth? No

  74. Do you sleep with the closet doors open or closed? Definately closed (so the closet monster doesn't get me)

  75. Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of bees? OUCH! NEITHER! I don't think I could choose as they are equally bad

  76. Do you flirt alot? I don't think I do, however I've had many people tell me that I do

  77. What do you dip a chicken nugget in? Either sweet & sour sauce or BBQ sauce

  78. What is your favorite food? Does chocolate count? Otherwise, shrimp, a good steak, and a very fresh salad

  79. Can you change the oil in a car? If I had to, but I don't have to so I don't

  80. Have you ever gotten a speeding ticket? 3

  81. Have you ever run out of gas? Have run on fumes many times, but never had

  82. What is you usual bedtime? I'm not a good sleeper. I usually head off to bed between 1:00 - 3:00 am. Up at 7:00 am.

  83. What was the last book you read? "The Book of Negros" by Lawrence Hill. I'd highly recommend it.

  84. Do you read the newspaper? I check it a few times a week to see about things that might pertain to work

  85. Do you have any magazine prescriptions? No, but one of these days I'll get off my butt and get one for Canadian Scrapbooker

  86. Do you watch soap operas? I'm never home when they're on. When I was younger and when I was home during the day, I'd watch the Old and The Breastless sometimes

  87. Do you dance in the car? Sometimes, and believe you me, it's not pretty

  88. What radio station did you last listen to? CBC Radio 1

  89. Who is in the picture frame closest to you? Surprise, surprise, the twins

  90. What was the last note you scribbled on a piece of paper? The list of priority things To Do for work tomorrow

  91. What is your favorite candle scent? Apple Cranberry

  92. What is your favorite board game? Scrabble, because I beat Bruce at it most of the time we play

  93. When was the last time you attended church? The end of December.

  94. Who was your favorite teacher in high school? High school wasn't the greatest for me when it came to teachers. Frankly, there's no one that really stood out for me.

  95. What is the longest you ever camped out in a tent? 2 weeks........and that was almost 38 years ago

  96. Who was the last person to do something special for you? Bruce. He made cleaned the house on his own so that I could "veg" after a very looooooooong week

Friday, August 07, 2009

The Graduate

Several weeks ago, James had his commencement for graduating with his B Ed (with disctinction). After getting his Honours BA in History, James returned to school for another year to pick up some more courses so that he could have a "second teachable" for if he went onto getting his teacher's degree. He then went to Korea for a year, returned to Canada and worked with street kids at a Youth shelter in downtown Toronto for a year before going back to get his B Ed. After alot of hard work, he has reached his academic goal. He has graduated at a time however when, due to the recession, there is a hiring freeze in the education system in Ontario. He has not let that deter him however and he is back working with the street kids at the shelter in Toronto, honing his skills and giving back to society.

James has put alot of thought into his life journey, and it has truly paid off. He has become a very mature, responsible man who still has that "little boy" inside of him. He has always been our very sensitive one, the one who was easily hurt by others, yet also deeply felt the pain others went through. As such, he has a deep empathy for those around him who are marginalized by others and by society as a whole. I watch him now as he reaches out to others who society has forgotten. I watch him as he brings kids out of their shell who no one else can reach. I watch as he empowers kids to make informed decisions. I hear as he challenges kids to think outside the box, to think for themselves, to search for answers. I watch and listen as kids respond to him and see how he has become a teacher, a mentor, a friend.

Many years ago, when I was workin in the classroom, James said to me, "Mom, I could never be a teacher, I wouldn't have the patience." Several years later, when I started working with the homeless and those living in poverty, he said' "Mom, I could never do that, I wouldn't have the patience."

Well my son, it is clear that to me that God has given you the gift of patience. He has given you the gift of teaching, and more importantly the gift of reaching out to others. You truly are an inspiration. I stand in awe of the man you are, and I thank God daily for the example and mentor you are to others, and to me.

James with his Nana & Papa
Bruce & I with James

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Trailer Pics

The trailer has been delivered and it's useable now! YEAH!!!!!! Next year we will need to look at a proper deck and the skirting around the bottom, but that will come with time. We've got the basics now (dishes, a pot, a pan, a set of towels), so we're able to get there whenever we want. Jason, Alyson, Courtney (our neice) and I were there last weekend (Bruce was called into work because of the VIA rail strike). The sun poked it's head out in the mornings, and rain came later each day, but that was alright because we had a roomy trailer to hang out in. Here's some pictures.

From the back corner of the lot

Looking through the front picture window into the living room

Looking at the side into the dining area
The master bedroom
Willow looking at the birds out the kitchen window
Jason's new boat

Thursday, July 23, 2009

It's Official!

Well, those of you who read Jenn's blog will know that it's now official............the boy's adoption is final! They are now legally Legge's. Bruce and I went with my mom and dad to support Jenn and Kevin when they went to court on Tuesday. Kevin's parents, along with Shannon (Jenn's best friend and the boy's God mom) were there to. It wasn't a big pomp and circumstance ceremony, but it was very emotional for many of us. For me, as Jenn's mom, it was such a joy to see that after coming to grips with infertility, how she has relied on her faith that God had a child for her and Kevin. She has been richly rewarded with two beautiful little boys, who have the most delightful personalities and are the joy of her life. Bruce and I are so happy that we have been here this past year to support Jenn and Kevin and to become active grandparents. To see the boy's faces light up when we walk in the room, to have them clap and say "yeah" when they see us............we truly are blessed.
Ethan Josef Legge

Owen David Legge

Has a nice ring to it don't you think?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Young Update

It's been a while since I blogged. I often formulate great blogs in my mind, but never do get around to posting them. Life here though continues to be busy, and good. Work has been great. I love the challenges and am seeing great progress in our programs and staff (more on that in a future post). Bruce and I are truly enjoying being back in Ontario. We are getting to see our kids on a regular basis, we got to be there for James at his convocation (more about my thoughts on that in a future post), and we have developed a wonderful relationship with the twins as we see them growing.

Last week, we did our usual and booked a cottage for a week (in Barry's Bay, just outside of Algonquin Park), leaving it open for the kids to come up when and if they wanted. It's a wonderful, peaceful area as 90% of the land surrounding the lake is crown land, so it is unspoiled and will stay that way with no future development. Everyone came and spent a bit of time. It was a great week. Here's some pics:

Alyson and Willow with Ethan and Owen
Charlie and Willow commiserating

"Mr. Sandman" Owen

Ethan having a great time in his "boat"

Chillaxin' in the pool

The Young men by the fire
SBG (Spoiled By Grandpa!)

OK, OK, so I spoil them too

Sunset on the lake

Looking up from the road to our site where our new trailer will go

That's right folks! We loved the area so much that we bit the bullet and bought a trailer. There was 1 spot that had come available on a quiet private road in the resort park. It has water views, and there are about 8 trailers that share the dock and small beach area. It is tucked away from the rest of the "resort" where the playground, large docks and more public beach are. It's beautiful. The trailer is a "cottager" trailer that is 14 ft wide, has 2 bedrooms, a full bath and a large open concept living room, dining room and kitchen with full size appliances. It comes fully furnished. It should be in place on the lot by the end of this week, so LOOK OUT WEEKENDS, HERE WE COME! Our own "Happy Place" in God's paradise!
View of the lake from our lot

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Word of the Year

The last 2 years, my sister Barb has chosen a word that she feels she will try to "attain" or one that will reflect her life over the coming year. I've taken that challenge this year and broken it up into 2 .......... a word for my professional life and a word for life in general.

The reason I broke it in 2 is that I have taken the word for my professional life and used it to challenge the staff of the shelter. We are in the midst of a big expansion as we are building Second Stage Transitional Housing for women and their children. This housing will provide the ongoing support that the crisis shelter is unable to provide as women try to regain control of their own lives once they have fled an abusive relationship. As such, the word I have chosen for myself and have challenged staff with is "innovation", innovation as we assess how we current conduct programs, which means a willingness to think beyond "this is how we've always done it" and think outside the box, truly listenning to the voices of the women who use our services and develop creative solutions and options for women as THEY take the first steps to regain their lives. Innovation around developing a program in the Second Stage Housing where the residents have an active voice in how the program runs, and how they are able to hold each other accountable for ensuring a safe environment. Innovation on how we educate the community on family violence and women's issues. Staff seem to have grasped onto the challenge. We are heading into a staff planning retreat in the next couple of weeks and there is alot of buzz around the word "innovation".

For my personal life, choosing a word was easy. For this year the word is "enjoy". Over the past 4 years, my life has been so occupied by work and school that I will now admit that I ceased to fully enjoy life. So this year, now that we are "home" in Ontario, I will enjoy life to the fullest. I truly am enjoying "work", as I am having an impact at the front line again with families instead of sitting in an office as an administrator. I am enjoying being able to see my children and grandchildren much more often. This is especially important as Jason prepares for deployment to Afghanistan next Januray, James sorts through his own future, and Jenn & Kevin work through the final legal pieces of Ethan and Owen's adoption. I have truly enjoyed being able to connect with Cathy & Barb and plan on enjoying many more days and weekends with them. I am hoping to be able to see Mom & Dad more and enjoy the quiet times with them. Liz and I have several big plans now that I am "home". I will enjoy simply being with Bruce in our new home in the province where we feel comfortable. I will enjoy getting to know our new neighbours more. Although I joke about the neighbourhood "Mrs. Kravitz", this is the friendliest neighbourhood we have ever lived in where people reach out to and watch out for each other.

So there's my words. I am renewed and hope that that renewal will bring about some "innovation" as I "enoy" life to the fullest.

As per my last post, here's some more pictures from Christmas. It was a 'perfect" Christmas. The only thing that could have made it better was if David & Evie and Stephen & Gayle and their families were here.

Uncle James & Owen playing "Super Baby"

Jason & Alyson rummaging through their stockings

Ethan & Owen playing with Grandpa's favorite toy (I think Bruce had more fun with this than the babies did!)

The "Young" men's poker game Christmas night

Christmas dinner at Barb's on Boxing Day

As soon as the babies arrive, guess what the Aunties do?

Don, Matthew & Cameron Boxing Day afternoon

Young Maple Leaf fans

Scottie, Ethan & Joseph

Christmas wouldn't be the same if Rick wasn't home

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Re-establishing Old and Establishing New Traditions

So, it's the first time since 2004 that all of the "Youngs" have been together at Christmas. What I've found is that everyone is eagerly re-establishing some of our old traditions, yet we are also establishing new ones. Last weekend, Jenn & Kevin took over the house so that they could spend some time with Owen and Ethan's birth family. We cleared out to give them their privacy. It's so wonderful that they have a great relationship. Our 2 little guys are very fortunate and have alot of people that really love them.

Saturday evening, James and Jason and Alyson arrived. Jenn & Kevin went home that night, but everyone else stayed through the weekend. Alyson and I baked all day Sunday (a "new" tradition I think), and the guys spend the day shopping and playing cards. We had our turkey dinner that day as well.

Jason and Alyson went home on Monday and James has stayed through. On Tuesday, James, Bruce and I went out for lunch at a great restaurant on the waterfront. Last night, we did the old "Young" tradition and watched "A Chrsitmas Carol" with a plate full of goodies. It is now 2:00 PM on Christmas day. We had a relaxing big breakfast, have just finished opening our gifts and will be leaving for Jenn & Kevin's shortly. We are all meeting up there to spend the night together and head off to the Sears Boxing Day tomorrow.

As per David's challenge, I've been snapping some pictures. Here's round 1. More when we get home in a couple of days.

Keeping the driveway clear

I've discovered Alyson is an amazing baker!

Lunch at Aqua Terra

Christmas Day

The gold and silver music tree

The family tree

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Monday, December 22, 2008

OK, So I'm A Bit Behind Everyone Else

So here's my list:

  1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? OK, so although I'm very much an environmentalist, I do love the wrapping paper thing. I love to do it up fancy with bows and sparkly ribbon.
  2. Real tree or Artificial? Artificial. We did real trees for a bit as the kids were growing up, but we found the boys always had trouble with their asthma, so we went with an artificial one about 15 years ago. I now like the idea of having it up longer.
  3. When do you put up the tree? The last weekend in November. This year we bought a new big tree for the front living room window the 3rd week of November. Of course we just had to put it up to see if the lights worked.
  4. When do you take the tree down? First weekend in January.
  5. Do you like eggnog? Not really.
  6. Favorite gift received as a child? I distinctly remember receiving a Barbie case with some Barbie clothes inside. I was thrilled. It wasn't until years later that I discovered they had been second hand, but I didn't care, I had extra clothes for my Barbie. I also remember a sense of 'excitment' when I opened a certain "Donny Osmand" record album.
  7. Hardest person to buy for? Definately Dad! Mind you, these days James is getting harder to buy for as he is unmaterialistic and always says he doesn't "need" anything.
  8. Easiest person to buy for? Jason. Anything fishing, fishing, fishing will do.
  9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes. It is one of my "prized" Christmas 'decorations'.
  10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Kind of hit and miss. When I'm not too busy, we send cards via snail mail. This year.........well it's been busy..........
  11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? A plastic kangaroo with its right ear chewed off. It still brings on giggles from our kids when we talk about it. One of those things where you have to say "It's the thought that counts".
  12. Favorite Christmas Movie? A Christmas Carol with Alistar Sims. The family tradition is to watch it every Chrsitmas Eve with a plate of goodies in front of us.
  13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Normally in October. This year it was a little later, so it was "panic city" for me as I was so behind.
  14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? No
  15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? There's so much..........turkey, stuffing, mulled apple cider, "goodies", chocolates, chocolates and more chocolates............
  16. Lights on the tree? Most definately. And they have to be kept lit whenever we're in the house.
  17. Favorite Christmas song? Oh Holy Night........especially when I hear Jason play it on his trumpet.
  18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Used to be we didn't leave the house on Christmas so that the kids could have time together and be able to play with their new toys. Things have started to change for us now that the kids are adults. It will be us travelling more now so that the kids can be home with their families.
  19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? On Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen. On Comet, on Cupid on Donner and Blitzen. Of course, we can't forget Rudloph.
  20. An angel on top or a star? An angel on the top of the "family" tree and a very large bow on top of the tree in the front window.
  21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas morning.
  22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? People who insist it is not "politically correct" to call it the "Christmas Holidays", but that we should call it the "Winter Holiday" so some such other thing. For pitty sake, Christmas is a Christian holiday, let's get that straight!
  23. Favorite ornament theme or color? I must admit, I do love our gold and silver music tree, it really is beautiful. I must also say however that my favorite tree and theme is our family tree that is eclectic and loaded with ornamanets we have collected over the years and with ornaments the kids made us when they were little.
  24. Favorite dessert for Christmas dinner? Nana Schephens' Christmas pudding with lots of whip cream. I miss Nana and her pudding.
  25. What do you want for Christmas this year? Scrapbooking stuff. Now that I've got some balance back in my life, I want to start scrapbooking more.
  26. Any special Christmas traditions? Where do I start, there's so many. I love how we take our time watching each other open 1 gift at a time and enjoy each other's excitment, there's the traditional Christmas baking, and the family time, especially the traditional Sears Christmas on Boxing day.

Monday, November 10, 2008


OK, so here's my list. Davis has challenged everyone to blog more..........I challenge everyone to do "The List". Let's see who's accomplished what.

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity (that would include my time as well as $)
7. Been to Disneyland (well, Disney World)
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo (many, many moons ago)
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch (if Scrapbooking and cross stitch counts)
15. Adopted a child (OK, I cheat here.......vicarious adoption for me with Ethan & Owen)
16. Had food poisoning (more than once.......not nice!)
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables (now that I'm back in Ontario,I can grow them again!)
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked (interesting the people you meet when you stick out a thumb)
23. Taken a sick day when you're not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset (both)
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language (does pig latin count?)
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo's David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight (and with the Aurora Borialis dancing!)
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud (mud wrestling can be fun!)
54. Gone to a drive-in theater (Ah yes, those were the days!)
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma (I think I deserve to put this one in. I've tried many times and they keep turning me down!)
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar (tried it once.....NEVER again! Blah!)
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades (I drove through them - does that count?)
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone ( a toe. Does that count?)
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone's life (walked in on a client just after he had stabbed himeself)
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit (and WON.......thank you very much!)
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Read an entire book in one day

56 out of 100............who's next?