One year later

It’s been one year since everything changed for everyone on the planet. How are you all doing? I am tired, as in, I am not sleeping well. I have a lot on my mind and it wakes me up or worse, I dream about it. So I am doing my best to stay present. One of my strategies for that is to read. I have read 11 books in March (there is that 11 again). Reading keeps me absorbed in the story so I can’t think about the future. Since January, I have read 21 books. I can see thinks took a turn for the worse in Late February… so I read. I read at breakfast, lunch, after work and before bed. On the weekends I read most of the afternoon.

I read somewhere on some self-help thing that reading a book a week will change your life. I suppose it can. The more I read the faster I get. I retain a lot of it but I am only reading fiction with a couple of memoirs thrown in. I read a lot for work last year and you know what? I learned I am not that ambitious that I need to spend my down time reading for work. I have chose books from Jenna Bush’s book club, tried Reese Whitherspoons’ book club and have hated all of them except for one. Oprah’s books are often too tragic. I am trying to not be tragic so I can’t read those. I like happy.

My top three reads for the first Q of 2021

  1. The Dutch House by Ann Patchett
  2. The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kid
  3. Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes

I am still baking on the regular. I just haven’t written about it lately. I made a three layer birthday funfetti cake with extra sprinkles. I made some ginger krinkles – the same ones you can buy at the Duchess and I am planning out Hot Cross Buns for Easter. I don’t celebrate Easter but I really like Hot Cross Buns and Cadbury Cream Eggs, so those will happen as a treat for me.

Treat for me.

I just realized I haven’t been doing any thing nice for me. Maybe that’s why I am feeling so crappy with the stress living in my head.

I did one thing that was fun and for me. I went downtown to the Downtown Spark Festival and saw Fantastic Planet. I love public art installations. This one was fun and interesting – I will do a post on the entire happenings including those cute chickadees and the rabbits at Amiskwaskahegan (Beaver Hills House Park) but I need to get there first.

May be an image of standing, sculpture and outdoors

Soon I expect to hear I can make an appointment for my vaccination. I fall under 2b – those high-risk non-senior adults. I am looking forward to it because I miss stuff. Like visiting Vancouver in the spring, or the mountains in the fall. Most of all I miss brunch.

Brunch… It’s a stupid name that means delicious. The hubs and I take the bottle return money and put it in our brunch jar. So far we have enough saved for a dozen brunches. Soon I will be able to take my brunch money and have it pay for a trip to Tofino for brunch at the Point. Oh man! I miss Tofino. Surprisingly, I don’t miss Disneyland.

No photo description available.

I think the first places I will visit will be Tofino, Vancouver and then head east as far as St. John’s. I also want to meet up with friends at the Sugarbowl. Just have a giant takeover of the patio in the height of summer, drinking beer and eating their popcorn. It’s funny that you don’t realize what you miss until its gone.

The Sugarbowl Cafe | Alberta Canada

As I wait for my turn for the vaccine, I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas. The anticipation of a new found freedom (ironically as we head into the third wave…) I want long summer nights on patios with friends laughing. Not talking about serious stuff. Just fun stupid stuff. I want to go swimming. I miss swimming. I want to listen to music and watch theatre in the park or even inside. I want to hug family.

Realistically I know this isn’t going to happen in 2021, but 2022 will have no excuse. Get your vaccine because its science and because you should do nice things for others but most of all you.

Stay healthy friends.

Magic

How is everyone doing? I am on day 19, but by the time this arrives in your inbox, it will be day 24. (Spoiler Alert* I write ahead and autopost) I am on my second cup of coffee. That alone should tell you how its going for me. I limit myself to a single cup every day. Love and care go into making that cup from heating up milk to stellar quality beans to the perfect pour. Perfect for me. Everyone has their way of making coffee and we all are particular about it. But here I am on cup number two, equally as perfect as cup number one and served in today’s mug which is Mary Poppins and the chimney sweeps dancing on the rooftops of London. What is better than one perfect cup? Two, two is better.

Normally Mary is my tea mug. When I drink from it I get a little bit of magic touching my lips. I am slightly concerned there will be a coffee aftertaste in my tea mug but fingers crossed I can banish it. I am looking for magic everywhere and fingers crossed it will arrive when I clean my mug.

I have had a few requests to see what my office looks like now that I work from home. I tell everyone I am in the basement, which is true, but it isn’t your typical basement. When we were looking for this house 20 years ago, a walkout basement was on the wish list. When we saw this one, I liked it because it didn’t back onto a mosquito nursery or a community park. I want privacy. I want to walk out my back door and into my garden without having people watching what I am doing. Which is nothing, but I want my nothings done in private. I completed my degree in the basement. I wrote four novels in this basement and I am working on the one that I think is publishable. All of this done in private. Privacy is magical.

This is my workspace. It is the opposite of my workspace at my job. Here I am surrounded by things that inspire me. I have four photos of my children. A letter from Judy Blume she wrote to me (THIS IS MY MOST VALUABLE POSSESSION), I have a Club 33 pin and a box of flip art by Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men. I have a working T.A.R.D.I.S. and a Toy Story kaleidoscope. I have a Tiffany blue and silver bowl my sister gave me when I graduated the second time around. I keep it filled with toys, lip balm, wireless earbuds and really good pens. I have a tiny polaroid of me and my siblings on my 51st birthday. (I worry that will be our last photo together.) I have a street made of lego and a miniature bow tie quilt made from 1930’s replica prints. The entire room is inspired by Mickey Mouse. The colours are Black, White, Red and Gold. The art on the walls are Disney animation, mostly artist sketches and Mark Messier and Wayne Gretzky prints. My office is made of magic. What is more magical than Disney, Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier and Doctor Who? Shout out to my coffee!

Magic keeps me inspired to do things.

I find magic in coincidences. Those times when you are chatting about something and suddenly it shows up in your life. Or unexpected magic like when a friend you haven’t spoken to since grade 10 messages you and says remember me? That happened Thursday. We worked together at the local ski hill and that brought back a flood of fun memories! Or when you wake up and your kids are still sleeping and your dog has taken the hubs for a walk and you get the kitchen to yourself for a whole hour to eat breakfast in silence. Or when you are reading a book and Glennon says something smart and you think YES! A MILLION TIMES YES!!!!! Or when you say yes instead of no and attend a Zoom Class and the teacher VALIDATES YOUR IDEAS!!!!! Pure Magic!

I gave up waiting for magic to happen and having expectations for things to be a certain way. Giving up was the unexpected key. Tiny little magical things happen every day, you just have to recognize them when they appear. Then be grateful you have magic in your life because THEN, more comes. It truly is magical.

Stay healthy friends!

Edmonton Tourist: Hiatus

Where I wish I was…

The world is a strange and curious place lately. I hear healthy people say things like “everyone is overreacting” “Why is everyone panicking?”. I am part of the demographic that is at high risk for infection. This means I am thinking carefully about where I go and who I spend my time with. The last time I had an infection, my daughter called it the time I died. I was so sick my kidneys shut down, and organ failure caused other significant issues. I only ever remember being that sick one other time, and that was when I had red measles when I was a kid. I was so sick the doctor CAME TO MY HOUSE. My dad thought I was dying. Honestly, I thought I was dying. Being that sick is not something I recommend. I am the main provider for my family. Three other adults depend on me to support them while they go to school and look after the home. I rely on them, and no one wants to let each other down.

My intuition is telling me to slow down and self-isolate. This means all non-essential social gatherings and events. What makes it essential? I don’t really have an answer for that, but I am sure I will recognize it once it happens. I am still going to work because, so far, the risk is low. I eat at my desk and don’t visit the cafeteria. I am NOT A HUGGER, nor am I affectionate – so I have that going for me. I am a bit of a germaphobe, not as bad as my workmate, but pretty damn close.  Honestly, I feel better than I have in ages, years even. I am not overly concerned, but I will be taking precautions.

I am going to use this time to catch up on reading, and I have a stack of books that are begging me to read them. I am going to bake and freeze things because baking is fun. I love making bread, savoury and sweet things. Comfort food will be nice to have since eating at fun bistros, and restaurants will be one of the places I avoid for a while. Soon my garden will need me, and I am looking forward to growing things. I have a lime tree in my front room that needs some TLC, so I need to do some research on how to love it a little bit more. My blog is going to change for a while. I hope you understand. The support you give me is amazing, and all the notes and emails you send are appreciated. Let me know where you are going and send me photos! I am making a list of places I need to visit once this craziness calms down.

Do I expect everyone to follow suit? No. I am not the WHO or a credible health organization, but I do read their updates and listen to Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw’s daily updates. This is important information for my area and maybe yours but pay attention to credible sources. I need this for my job but its good to know for my home life. The time for “not believing in science” is over. Facts are important and will save lives.

The bottom line is to listen to the facts and make good judgements. Subscribe to your library’s ebook borrowing system, eat good food, drink clean water and wash your hands for crying out loud. Stop being gross not just during this world pandemic but forever, okay?

This will pass.

Stay healthy everyone.