Friday, 31 August 2012

Fantastic Friday!

  I’m going to head outside today and soak up the sun instead of developing a long list of favorites…..

    Let’s Swap Out Ten and Deliver Five!

1- HEAT WAVE…nothing says summer like a hot-summer-day!
2-The quiet, inside and out, when three boys head to the golf course!
3-My floppy sun-shielding hat! No sun damage to this face…today!
4-A luxurious lounger to spread out on, and a day without appointments.
5-Great tunes and the lovely accented voice of my most recent favorite DJ. Always thankful for wireless internet, without it there would be no accented DJ!

Oh wait! Maybe I do have a few more in me! Why not, I have self-control in so many other areas!

 6-Later when I’ve had my fill of vitamin D, I can turn on the tele and watch some tennis!
7-Because they likely deserve an extra shout-out! Thank God for Grandparents!
8-A good book I’ve been saving for such an occasion as lounger time!
9-Knowing if golf is slow, I may also sneak in a nap! Pure luxury!
DRUM ROLL PLEASE! Or maybe the delightful sound of an AirHorn!
10-Coffee was piping hot and waiting for me when I woke up! Thank you, sweet husband!

  There you have it folks….one last summer Top Five + Five!! If you are slapping together big plans for this long weekend or just planning to chill at home, be safe and enjoy!
  Wherever your adventures take you, don’t forget to take pleasure in the small things!

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Hello there!

I’m feeling rather inspired. Maybe holidays are encouraging it, or maybe I’ve simply taken small chunks of time to develop my thoughts.

Summer is a busy time. It’s busy because my kids are out of school and look solely to me for entertainment. The days are long because they haven’t reached the point where they will sleep in, but they have reached the point where they are able to stay up late…later than me, though that doesn’t take much. From the first light of day they are filled with requests; Mom can we have friends over, their favorite thing to ask, even before I’ve dragged myself out of bed. Mom, Mom, Mom, MOM! I love them to bits and adore the job I have as their Mom, but sometimes I forget that I am a person too, and when that happens…..

So as I’ve expressed before, it is for me the simple things that I find and turn into an indulgence.

I’m going to tell you about one of my favorite spots.

A special place where everything else vanishes? Have any of you had one of those moments; a moment where all the chaos around you, the clutter in your head, and all the voices that have placed weights on your shoulders just vanish. If not, bear with me, I’ll get to it, and if you’re interested, I’ll happily share my spot with you!

I was out for a run this morning. Nothing special about that, right! The route I take matters little, though as I am a notoriously boring creature of habit, I usually end up on the same streets. The elevation is different than my normally flat path at home and few gradual slopes come into play more than I’d like to admit.

I feel the stress seeping out of me with each stride. I’m not checking my watch to be sure I’m on pace, I’m no longer listening to the music pumping into my ears, I forget about the minor burn the incline produces and I’ve abandoned all efforts to regulate my breathing. I’m just running with one thing in mind: I’m almost there, almost at my spot.

My anticipation makes it all the sweeter. I’m aware of everything around me. I savour the feelings, and as words are very possibly my most favorite thing, I run through as many adjectives as possible.

To my right is freshly cut grass that sparkles with dew and circles a recently dragged red shale ball diamond. I smile because there are memories on the field that beckon me to revisit. Memories that are still alive and pivotal to the girl I am. Not today though, I keep moving.

To my left is the serenely peaceful green of the 3rd hold of the golf course. It’s lush looking, and because the sprinklers are on to water the fairway, there is a cool mist floating my way. It smells fresh and new, like the day may hold an unlimited amount of adventure if I were brave enough to accept the challenge.

Straight ahead and adding another dynamic to the feast of senses I’m experiencing is a golden yellow field of wheat. Each nourishing kernel is reaching towards the sun, basking in it’s final days of growth. It’s stunning, not only because beyond that is a patchwork of different colors and designs as the hills rise and fall beyond one another, but because each tall blade grew from a tiny seed into it’s full purpose. It’s potential has been achieved. It has run the race and is steps from seeing the glory of that potential fulfilled.

I’m nearly there, I only have to round the corner. When I do, no matter how many times I’ve seen it, no matter how may days in a row I run this path, I know what will happen. I’m ready. I look up and I take a step out from behind a row of shrubs.

My breath is gone. Simply stolen. In my head I hear a choir, a rich and full sound echoes in my head. (Can you hear it? Do you know what I’m talking about?) Beyond the fields and rolling hills, rising up from the earth I see the most majestic mountains. I want to stop, stay frozen in time, the moment seems to require it. Everything around me simply slips away and something new fills me. I’m lost in time. I’ve been known to weep, to cry out, or simply fall to my knees and allow the emotions I feel to overcome me. I receive answers here in this spot where I let all fall away but the awe striking beauty my Creator has allowed me to be a part of.

It’s my spot, and it reminds me of something so simple yet sometimes so difficult to remember; I am small, I am loved, I have a special place amidst all that surrounds me, and though the unending change that swirls beneath my feet never ceases, I am grounded and drawn to look up and beyond to that which never changes.

I’m going to make my way there again shortly. It’s one of my favorite things! It’s my spot!



Monday, 27 August 2012

Whoohohohoo! Good morning, Monday!

  So, how was it? Did you find yourself behind the wheel as I did? Did you escape your weekly grind, let your hair down and just drive?
  Maybe not, well you’ve nothing to fear! There’s still one last long weekend before the books officially close on another summer!
  For now just cozy up and let me tell you a short story (as dramatic as it may be). Perhaps it will lend a greater appreciation for this week’s feast for the ears.

  There were four people in our car this weekend. Each person with a very unique personality, each very different from the person opposite, in front of, or beside. Now how long would you guess the warm, excited, cohesive acceptance could last? Well it lasted and the only tense moments came when someone other than the driver tried to mess with the music selection.
  Does this happen with you? I am going to assume the role of driver for a moment and state: No one is allowed to mess with the music selection apart from the driver. It’s a perk of the job. Enough said.
  Usually it suits me fine; more often than not, I am the driver, which is the way I prefer it. But circumstances prevented it on this occasion, and I found myself relegated to the bench, forced to sit and watch the game rather than being in it, where making the tough choices becomes a pleasure. It was hard. Painful at times. But I prevailed.

  At first it was like being forced through detox. My ears were ringing, my temper flared, my head was pounding, and on occasion when a particular sound became too much to handle, I was forced to close my eyes and breathe. After a while, I gave in and chose to adapt, to alter my attitude and push through. Happily enough, though there was the occasional setback, the time flew by, and with only the rare need to skip ahead, I embraced the soundtrack that wasn’t of my choosing.
  I’m ok! Let me assure you, I made it through. My scars will heal, I will get back on the horse and ride another day…..

  I had a lot of time to think. Some journeys beg for a change of pace; change being the operative word. Some lend themselves to a different perspective, and further, some push you farther by asking you to give something old or new a visit, and to be perfectly honest, I’ve never been a fan of revisiting the past.
   Country music is not my favorite, but it can’t always be about me! Ha! I’m also forced to admit that sharing the musical controls in a giving, accepting, and generously-positive-attitude sort of way, made the drive better for everyone, including me.

  This week’s selection, however, for me, seems to defy all genre. I don’t think of it as country, I don’t hear it as country, which is weird because it obviously is. I’m simply aware that my walls fall, crashing to the ground, slowly being rebuilt in a new and interesting fashion.
  I love the Zac Brown Band. I think they are brilliant, both musically and lyrically. Their work makes me laugh, cry, ponder, and believe. I am equally compelled by them when I’m cooking, sitting back for a listen, or pushing myself through a run. I am an obvious and shameless admirer of their talents. My favorite tracks are Martin and Whatever It Is, oh and why not one more? As She‘s Walking Away.
  I survived the drive, the random flashbacks to years past, and guess what? I’m no worse for ware! I haven’t been converted to the point of trading in my mirror ball dress or 4 inch heels from last week in exchange for cowboy boots, wranglers, and horses. But I may just take a spin on the dance floor and show some folks that I do still have a two step dance ready to come alive in me….though it’s buried deep.

  Enjoy these fabulous tune, and don’t worry, I’ll be back soon with a beat that will get your feet moving in a more spastic fashion!

Friday, 24 August 2012

  Are you clinging desperately to these last few days of summer? Are you enjoying the deep August sun or have you already begun to spin your wheels setting up schedules, arranging car pools, stocking the pantry for those convenient lunch bites? Maybe you are one of the lucky few who have yet to “get away” on holidays, and you’ve chosen the next week to do so. Whatever your situation may be, nothing is ever officially over until you embrace it in your own way.

   Here's what I suggest, even if it only takes you 20 minutes from your front door.  What could be better than choosing to honor the end of summer with the image of a getaway, a holiday, or better still… epic road trip!

   Here’s this week’s TOP TEN!

10 reasons I LOVE a road trip!
1- Hours upon hours of concentrated re-connect time with the one you love.
2- No one needs me to do anything for them but get us there safely, and there is always something really good waiting there.
3- There is something about the open road and the way it sucks your troubles away.
4- My country, Canada, is beautiful.
5- As you leave miles behind you, you slowly begin to relax, let your mind drift and slink lazily into holiday mode.
6- There is always a strange and bizarrely beautiful opportunity to pull over and take a photo.
7- It’s an opportunity to treat yourself to a cup of coffee, or four.
8- Road trip = sound track. I love a soundtrack, a theme song, a travel mix. Every journey deserves a dedication. If you have a theme song, every time you hear it, even years into the future, you always remember the holiday that went with it!
9- I can sing all day, because I have nothing else to do! (This makes me insanely happy)
So dig up your driving shoes, put air in your tires, fuel up your tank……let the road take you on an adventure!

Happy Friday!


Tuesday, 21 August 2012


  You ever have days where you feel it’s going to be impossible to keep your head above water? The lists you keep have grown too long for the pages, the people wanting a piece of you have formed a line too long tackle. You woke up and found yourself living in a one-step-forward-two-steps-back universe. And to top it all off with a flourish, all those good intentioned, smiling faced friends choose that moment to offer an endless source of perspective. Only perspective comes in a package that looks very little like a compassionate embrace and more like a patronizing, harsh advice wielding voice that says loud and clear; we’ve all been there, and I know what it feels like, there's nothing special going on with you.

  Well boy oh boy oh boy! We’ve all had these moments, right?
  Well here’s what I continue to learn, over and over, when I stumble into this sort of, if I can be so dramatic to say, vortex of a day.
  The list will be there tomorrow, the people most often can wait. Very rarely is anything on your list so important that imminent danger will strike if it’s neglected; nor will it affect the universal balance. No one will be the wiser if your list grows instead of shrinking like you need it to. You can’t do everything, nor are you expected to be able to.
  Are our own expectations of "me" not usually so much greater than the people's we feel expect of us? (Or is that just me because I’m a first born, perfectionist, people-pleasing, yes man, who needs to see everything line up just so?)
  Ahh, well. Now before I cross to the dark side….(because it’s so much better living in the LIGHT!)
  I’m going to suggest putting the lists away.  (Stop fretting about punctuation and use of language.)  Take a moment to breathe, to refocus, to hear the voice inside that is begging you to cut yourself some slack. Answer that phone, because it may be a voice your heart needs to hear, a salve your fragile spirit can use to heal, and the laugh that can change your perspective.
  When you extend yourself a piece of grace you may also see the beauty all around that can recharge you from the inside out. Watch the sunset, dance in the rain, sit near a crackling fire, take a bubble bath.

  It’s in the simple….remember you are important too.

Monday, 20 August 2012

Ellie Goulding :: Anything Could Happen (Instagram Fan Lyric Video)

Hello Monday!

I love this girl, I have for a while! I'm loving this sneak peek she's shared from her upcoming album. 
Let this sound perk up your brain and start your week wanting to dance! It's how it makes me feel; I want to dig up a sassy mirrorball dress, darken my eyes with way too much eyeliner, raise my arms and dance, dance, dance.
Who said Monday had to start out slow?

Friday, 17 August 2012

Happy  Friday!

   I am in a round about way going to pick up where I left off earlier this week, though I will do my best to keep my commentary to a minimum……

   Another summer week has flown by, and though the days tend to bleed into one another and distort any record of time, the days do continue forth on schedule, and that is something to be thankful for.

   Here’s a peek into this week’s summer fun over in our small corner of the earth.  It was another busy one, they always are, but there is always time to indulge in the everyday jewels I stumble across.


The Simple

 1-rainy days-- we painted, danced, read, I learned a thing or two! It was perfect.
 2-spontaneous dance parties-- A lot of One Direction happening in this house, because my kids are obsessed...
 3-the flag that tells me the ways of the wind and the rainbow growing in my  garden--delicious for my eyes and our bellies.
 4-hours of entertainment with stack of branches including this clever teepee created without adult assistance.
 5-an evening in the house alone!!! -- Enough said!

   I’m going to split it up here and share my current favs to blast while running, cooking, cleaning, sitting, driving…..well you obviously get the idea

 Summer Anthems

1-Charli XCX – You’re The One…because I love the words, the beat, and that I want to hit repeat on my run, or just dance around the kitchen.

2-John Mayer – Something Like Olivia…I fought the new album a long time (for many reasons), but gave in a while ago.  I’m hooked and all my reasons for holding off now seem foolish!  He has a way of slipping in a super catchy sound with the perfect words, and he never hesitates to throw in that super sexy number that makes you smile; here it is.

3-Rudimental – Feel The Love….I just like it.

4-Alex Clare – Hands Are Clever…..YUMM, it’s just sooo, sooo sexy (blush) the beat, the words, the voice….it’s a really good one.

5-Twin Atlantic – Free….It makes me want to run faster, scream louder, and overall make my point more clear.

  Well there are a few, and it was not an easy task to pare it down.  If you see me running out there, my arms will be flailing likely because I’m air-drumming like my life depended on it, screaming random lines from my favorite songs while I gasp for air and trying to maintain a rhythm in my feet.  Yep that disaster is me!  Ha!  I love it!

   All these songs are available to purchase at iTunes.  If you fancy a listen make sure you buy.  Do Not Steal these fab tunes!

Happy Friday, and cheers to the weekend!  

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Rain, rain, rain!

What was I thinking cleaning my house and spending the day baking cookies while the sun shone brightly on the other side of the window? Oh yeah, I know! I was setting myself up for a nothing-to-do rainy day.

I love the sound of rain. Especially after this summer where it happened quite infrequently. I love more, the pleased giggles and squeals that came from the basement as my crazy-town kiddos discovered toys they have not touched since winter.

There is something so wonderful about being locked away….not that I’d melt if I ventured out into the rain, which I may do in a while, (I love to run in a rain shower). However, for me anyway, it causes me to slow down, take a moment, sit down and drink that cup of tea while it’s hot, curl up in my pajamas just a short while longer, or just stand at the window and watch the magic fall from the sky.
It is refreshing; I know my garden is being fed, I can almost hear the lawn sing out in adulation at the thirst quenching drops, and the smell….have I mentioned that yet? Is there anything as nourishing to the sense of smell as the sweet first drops of rain on a parched land?
Even if it’s 10 degrees cooler and it feels like the end of summer, today I will embrace it! (See, there is that hopeless romantic flag I have been shamelessly flying!)

So, while the crazy-town kids are distracted with their rediscovered toys and before I dig out the rainy-day crafts I stashed away before the start of summer. I will indulge in a brief, imaginary, and completely unproductive sneaky, online peek at all the new shoe styles for fall! Oooo, it’s love, I can feel it!

I love a rainy day!!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Mumford & Sons - I Will Wait (Official Audio)

Ahhh, how a song can carry you away. It’s funny how you only need one bar of a song to be lifted into a different world or transported to another time. How you can smell a different moment, feel the tingle in your toes or a flutter in your belly.
Does a certain familiar song do that for you? Can it bring a memory back to life, renew a feeling you thought you’d lost, jump-start a fire in you that you’d forgotten once lived?

Have you ever left behind the person you used to be? The fierce passion you used to carry with you, the eyes that saw the world differently, the feet that knew where they were going and exactly how to get there has all but left behind. There seems to be an abandoned dull glow of embers compared to the fire you used to feel. Until! Until you hear that chord, the progression of notes, and those smooth tangling of words.

When you really think about it, it’s pretty crazy that a song can churn all that up inside of you. In an instant you’re back in the moment where your eyes have locked with another’s on the other side of the room; word aren’t necessary, one look says it all. You’ve stumbled into that first dream-like, perfect moment kiss. You’re walking down an unfamiliar, moon lit street in the company of a new friend; a friend you’ve placed every ounce of your trust in. A smile, too perfect to share, that will always define that moment.

A song. A simple tune more often than not meshed with words that would mean little without its notes.

I would have pushed hard against the idea of being called a ‘romantic soul’ back in the day. I was too caught up in being practical and everything that I’m not. I laugh at it now; because it turns out, I am hopeless! So hopeless in fact, when I feel the urge, or the humdrum mundane of life, I can turn a simple jaunt to the store to pick up milk into an elaborate tale. Not just a mushy-gushy love story, but the sort of tale that takes you on a trip to understanding. A world where ideals are made real, where the what if’s on your mind become the what is. The sort of romanticizing that has absolutely nothing to do with love or romance. It makes you giggle to yourself and think, if the world only knew, if they could only feel what I feel right now!

Maybe it’s the hope and belief that the unthinkable, unimaginable, and unlikely could actually be……I don’t know. Maybe you just need to get up and move your feet. Add a flare to your step, or relish the feel of gooseflesh brought on by a single note that conjures fear, or a deep, resounding, acknowledgement that you just cannot help but be moved by the sound.

Either way, I like the memory, I adore the feeling, and I love the journey I find myself on when I hear those ear perking notes.

What song takes you places? Which song brought you to where you are? Moreover, what song just makes you laugh because the memory is just too delicious not to embrace? I’ve got one for nearly every moment, and I’m sure they’ll continue to pile up because in my world there is always music.

Here’s to the music of the past, the music we anticipate getting our hands on in the future, and to today’s beautiful sounds that have caught our attention and will forever hold us hostage!

I’ve been waiting for this….I pre-ordered this album and received the 1st single immediately. I’m not disappointed! Take a listen to this, it grabbed hold of me this week, and will continue to blast through the speakers on repeat through to the weekend!

Friday, 10 August 2012


You ever have one of those days that starts out not so sparkling?  The alarm you're sure you set fails to ring, sending you into a frenzy before your eyes fully open. The kids wake you with a snarling fight, the coffee maker floods the kitchen counter, you left the windows open in your car and it rained over night….
You convince yourself that your day can only get better…..until….your fantastic new skirt starts to unravel at the waist, salsa stains your white shirt, someone thought it would be funny to drown your leather sandals in the sprinkler…..

We’ve all had days like that. We grumble but continue to put one foot in front of the other. Kind of like that saying everyone has been clinging to lately….Keep calm and…..(insert adjective of your choosing).

On the flip side, there are moments that bring clarity by shedding light on or show you the path you’re being led to walk.
Those moments turn up each day in simple packages (and at this stage I have emphasized how I Love the simple in each day).

Here is this week’s Top Ten:

1- Two days ago the tomatoes in my garden were green, today they are a golden hue of inviting, juicy, shiny, I-dare-you-to-eat-me-while-standing-in-the-garden, deliciousness. A productive reward, so satisfying!
2- Mowing the lawn while singing at the top of my lungs….so the whole world could be my audience…..(poor neighbors!)
3- Haircut…no more torched ends on this shiny new style
4- Birthday lunches (calories don’t count on that day, do they?)
5- Still getting weepy every day over the Olympics
6- A
pretty room gift from a thoughtful lady and extra-special friend
7- A fabulous new song that has defined a new character I can’t wait to get to know better
8- Hearing my guys talk about how much they love school…because I do too
9- Listening to a voicemail and hearing a friends voice on the recording…it’s been too long, my dear
10- The remarkable women in my life who somehow manage to keep it all together, wear genuine smiles on their faces, grace flowing from their hearts, and a willingness to adapt and ride to the rescue, all while appreciating each others differences

Isn’t that something! When life gives you lemons and blah blah blah!
The best things don’t have to be big or out of the ordinary. You just have to open your eyes to everything around that makes the rocky days all the better!

Happy Friday, and good luck uncovering your own simple!

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Hello there!

   I’ve been thinking of intentions lately. Why we do what we do, what strings and chains pull at us to cause us to make the sort of decisions we do. If we’re self-aware at a deep enough level to understand our reasons, or maybe we don’t allow the potential affects of our actions to come into play when we decide right or left. Are our intentions to please others, ourselves, or a blind hope of laying a foundation for the future. The reality is whether big or small, self-aware or in denial, we all have intentions.
   I have for the most part been a person who makes intentional decisions my entire life. I recall my husband referring to me, even in our late teen dating days, as a 35 year old ’old’ lady in a young woman’s body. I never took offense, and why should I, it was true. I’m the second guesser, the analyzer, the talk-it-to-death, loose-sleep-over-it, and if you do eventually fall asleep, when you wakeup tear it apart and hammer at it some more, sort of girl.

   Hmmm, what is my point?

   Well it looks like my body has caught up to my brain….I am celebrating my 35th birthday this week.

   I could tackle this landmark number by making resolutions; I’ve done it before like I’m sure many of you have….take that trip I‘ve been planning for far too long, speak more French, overcome a random fear-(skydiving), love more, give more, learn something new, repair that friendship that’s been floundering, be more generous with myself. I could go on.

   I could do all those things, or here’s an idea: I could scratch out my list.

   If I’ve been a 35 year old woman since I was 15, why not try something new?

   Could it finally be my time to cut loose and take some chances? Throw caution to the wind. Leap before I look. Forge ahead as a
new me. Am I ready to wear red in a black and white world?

   I think what I need is to share a bottle of wine with my favorite gals! And maybe while I think the rest to a slow death, I’ll bake myself a cake!

  Cheers, to an inspired year at 35!

Thursday, 2 August 2012

   Here we go….I’m not a fan of spiders.  I’m sure that’s got a laugh or an eye roll that needs no explanation from many of you.  I'm aware I've entered their domain when I'm in the garden.  I can handle them on the driveway where I’m not bothered and can happily step on or around them.  I can deal with them in the house, though they definitely have violated my space with their presence.  I absolutely draw the line and may experience a random overtaking of shrieks, howls, jumps, hops, and yes, the spastic dance, when I find the creeper on me.
   That said, I held a brave face and though my kids freaked out when they saw my uninvited friend, I prevailed with most of my dignity intact.
   Only hours before I was in a position to re-educate my boys on a lesson that needed expanding.  Their father and I have always tried to teach them to treat girls with respect.  That lesson applies to jumping on the trampoline, the playground, the soccer field, and pretty much everywhere you can imagine.
   When the boys were small it was easy to explain to them they needed to treat girls just so because they were fragile like flowers and more easily bruised.  Well, who would have thought that that one would come back to bite me!

   The TV is not usually on in our home during the day, but I’ve thrown that rule out the window so that the Olympics can run uninterrupted for its entirety.
   We were watching Judo of all things when the subject came up!  Little Bear asked, “Mom, if girls are fragile, how come they beat each other up in Judo?”

   GREAT question Little Bear!

    My first response was to laugh, isn’t that just typical.  Smart boy, was my second thought, ha!
   I proceeded to explain that girls were just as strong as boys, worked just as hard, and had every bit as much heart invested in everything they do.  Though I also made it clear that girls and boys were created very differently and to compare them would be very difficult, because ultimately we are not the same.
   It was a very random lesson learned over yogurt and apples but I think they understand why it’s different and somehow acceptable for girls in Judo to throw each other hard onto the mat and kick each other in the face, just as it is for boys to do the same. 

   Come to think of it, I’m sure I spoke my point more clearly to my 7 year old than I could ever repeat to you, but I’m hoping you’ve got the point!

   So back to the spider incident: Girls are strong, able to do great big things.  We can lift a crazy amount of weight, have the race of our lives, throw down with the meanest girl in town, smash a ball solidly into a small square of court, or create the most delicate and beautiful work of art with our hands.  Yes we can do all those extraordinary things and so many more.  We can even get that spider off of our arm ourselves without making a scene or instilling fear. 
   The thing is, and admitting it comes down to strength as well.  Just because we can do all these things ourselves doesn’t mean we always want to!  
   (I think I'll save that last bit for another day, just so I don't confuse them!) 
Enjoy watching all those strong women, and if you have the courage, take a quick moment to acknowledge the strong women in your life!
Have a great weekend!