meandering simply

Monday, July 28, 2008

Amusing Similies

1. Her face was a perfect oval, like a circle that had its two sides gently compressed by a Thigh Master.

2. His thoughts tumbled in his head, making and breaking alliances like underpants in a dryer without Cling Free.

3. He spoke with the wisdom that can only come from experience, like a guy who went blind because he looked at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now goes around the country speaking at high schools about the dangers of looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it.

4. She grew on him like she was a colony of E. Coli, and he was room-temperature Canadian beef.

5. She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like that sound a dog makes just before it throws up.

6. Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.

7. He was as tall as a six-foot, three-inch tree.

8. The revelation that his marriage of 30 years had disintegrated because of his wife's infidelity came as a rude shock, like a surcharge at a formerly surcharge-free ATM machine.

9. The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn't.

10. McBride fell 12 stories, hitting the pavement like a Hefty bag filled with vegetable soup.

11. From the attic came an unearthly howl. The whole scene had an eerie, surreal quality, like when you're on vacation in another city and Jeopardy comes on at 7:00 p.m. instead of 7:30.

12. Her hair glistened in the rain like a nose hair after a sneeze.

13. The hailstones leaped from the pavement, just like maggots when you fry them in hot grease.

14. Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m. traveling at 55 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. at a speed of 35 mph.

15. They lived in a typical suburban neighborhood with picket fences that resembled Nancy Kerrigan's teeth.

16. John and Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.

17. He fell for her like his heart was a mob informant, and she was the East River.

18. Even in his last years, Granddad had a mind like a steel trap, only one that had been left out so long, it had rusted shut.

19. Shots rang out, as shots are wont to do.

20. The plan was simple, like my brother-in-law Phil. But unlike Phil, this plan just might work.

21. The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while.

22. He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck, either, but a real duck that was actually lame, maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.

23. The ballerina rose gracefully en Pointe and extended one slender leg behind her, like a dog at a fire hydrant.

24. It was an American tradition, like fathers chasing kids around with power tools.

25. He was deeply in love. When she spoke, he thought he heard bells, as if she were a garbage truck backing up.


Sunday, July 27, 2008

Good Night Mom

Gordon has gone to Calgary for the weekend. Last night Rachael slept with me. We were at odds over something. She spouted, "I think you're being harsh." (I love it when she says that. I feel like I've been a good mom, makes me think I've trained her well or something like that.) Anyway, I told her we'd talk more about it in the morning. I kissed her, said goodnight and "I love you" and she responded with "Good Night Mom." I repeated, "I love you" and she repeated, "Good Night Mom."

She knew exactly what I was thinking, I could tell by her little smirk. Like any well-adjusted mother would, I said, "You're gonna feel real bad if I die in my sleep."

To that she responded, "I love you Mom."


Friday, July 25, 2008


This is an absolute gorgeous true story. Everytime I watch it I want to cry and I can't stop smiling.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

just some stuff

I abhor it when people don't keep up their blogs. I'm going to have to lower the bar eh? I haven't been a model blogger have I?

Just a few things:

-- Rachael turned 13 on Sunday. She and I went on a date last night. We went for a haircut and Rachael looks beautiful. She has the thick hair in the family. I'm so envious. And she looks good in any style. She is a pleasure to hang out with. Yesterday I was thinking of her great-big-ginormous-cackling laugh when she was a few months old. Not only was it huge, but it was her first time to laugh. You've heard the story before... She was in her car seat on the kitchen table while I was sitting there paying bills and drinking iced tea. I took a drink and because of the way a cube of ice met my lips, I made a big slurp. She started this wild cackling. It was the sweetest noise in the world. I slurped again and again and again and she laughed and laughed and laughed. I had time to phone Gordon at work so he could listen, I phoned my mom and I phoned Stacie. And she just kept laughing. All I had to do was slurp. A few weeks later the same thing happened except the strange noise was me eating an apple. Crunch. Huge laugh. Crunch. Huge laugh. It's a precious memory.

-- Hannah is at church camp. I miss her terribly. I mailed her a letter yesterday. I know she's having a great time because she hasn't phoned yet. When she starts getting a little homesick, that's when she'll start phoning.

-- Deborah is getting tall. She is so social. She will be in the yard for hours at a time with all the neighborhood girls. It's really kind of sad for our relationship. Sometimes I feel disconnected from her. She'll walk in the door and I'll think weird thoughts like, when did you get that tall?, when did you get so tanned?, when did your hair turn that blond? She is home nearly all the time, but it's as though she's not. She's constantly with her friends. She lives for friendship and fun with all her friends. Yes, it makes me kind of sad. If it's true that good parents slowly work themselves out of the picture, then I can take comfort that I've been a good mom. Otherwise I'll just be sad.

-- Work is very good. I still marvel at how God gave me such a good job that is so perfect for me and my little family. I'm very very thankful.

-- Dragon Boating is my fabulous outlet. It's the hardest hobby I've ever had or probably ever will have, but it's rewarding. We had another festival this weekend. We didn't win any medals. We were the only all women's team there so our competition was men's and mixed teams. We outperformed a bunch of them making it into the A Division. But also in the A Division were teams that were in the Nationals. We're talking real good. We placed 6th. But just doing it is rewarding when you know you've done well. We did really really well, we were just out-muscled. Oh yeah, and the races were shorter and my team excels at distance, not sprints. Some people said we would have been 4th place had the race been longer, but that's just speculation. I've been assigned the left side of the boat. I'm right handed so this is quite the challenge for me. The left side needs my weight to balance the boat. Saying it that way sounds so much better than saying I make the right side too heavy.

-- I had to get some new clothes. My clothes were getting too big. I bought a size I haven't worn in years. Yippee. I guess the Chinese Water Torture is paying off.

-- I go for my Canadian citizenship test on Thursday. I am very excited about this. After the test I'll find out when I will get sworn in. After being sworn in I'll be a full fledged Canadian citizen, having dual citizenship (US of course).

-- Gordon is doing very well. I'm so proud of him in for his career accomplishments. I think he's amazing. He just finished putting in ceramic tile in the back entrance. It's a huge improvement.

-- My house is untidy and it has been for a few months, since dragon boating started to be exact. I'm either on the water or too tired from having been on the water. Seems the house just doesn't stay tidy for long these days. Drats.

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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

piggy in a blankie

For those who might not know, this little delight is called a "pig in a blanket." I haven't known that for too many years. I certainly didn't grow up eating those.

A couple nights ago we were at the YMCA swimming. When Rachael got dressed she came out of the dressing room and said, "There's a little boy changing in there." She said he was about 8 or 9. We think that was slightly inappropriate for a boy of that age to be in the ladies' change room.

Anyway, as she told me this, she was smiling. I asked why and she said, "It looked like a pig in a blanket."

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Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Summer Holidays Recap

The first three days we were in Great Falls. We were there briefly in 2000 and had a good time. We wanted to experience it again. It was fun taking pictures of the girls in the same spots I took their pictures eight years ago. Eight years makes a ton of difference. Last time Hannah filled her chubby fists with weed bouquets for me. Rachael played maniacally in the playground. And of course Deborah just crawled around by our feet finding treasures to put in her mouth. Obviously, they did none of those things this go around. The only similarities between their behaviour this time and last were Deborah's fascination with the trout and Hannah's thoughtful expressions as she stared into river.

After Great Falls we headed northwest to Glacier National Park. We stayed in St. Mary's, took a day trip across Going to the Sun Highway (also called Logan's Pass), went to Big Sky Waterpark in Columbia Falls, the girls went on a trail ride. My clan experienced the 4th of July in the US for the first time. It was exciting. Our campground was ablaze with festivities, but we found the Americans too subdued. We were hooping, hollering, and clapping and we were the only ones. The festivities were beautifully patriotic but the people seemed comatose. That was a disappointment.

Gordon cultivated a habit of calling strangers "Partner." The girls and I were quite taken aback the first time we heard it. We didn't know Gordon was a "Partner" kind of guy. It became a bit of a running joke. "Let's stop and ask that partner for directions."

We were very struck by the kindness of Montana people. A totally different ball of wax than what we're used to. By comparison, Albertans are down right reserved and uptight. Often on the trip when we'd get back in the car, we'd discuss how nice the partners were that we'd just met. Once we got cut off by a speeding truck. To that I said, "He's not a very nice partner."

On Logan Pass (Going to the Sun Highway) a couple times family relations got strained. This road is narrow, curvy with radical drops off the mountain. I gave Gordon explicit instructions to keep his eyes on the road and I'd happily describe the amazing views we passed. He insisted on driving AND enjoying the views. At one point he backed up to recapture a scene. To this I yelled, "Is anything behind us?" and he calmly answered, "I don't know, I didn't check." He loves to say that kind of stuff to me.

The highlight of the trip for me was watching the girls be so easily entertained by inexpensive simple fun. I simply love watching them make fun out of the ordinary. I just asked Deborah and Hannah their highlights from the trip and they both said, "just spending time with the family." How can I not love that?

Montana is so so gorgeous and diverse. We were in rolling mountains, plains, and the rocky mountains. It was marvelous. Pristine lakes, clear rivers, powerful ice cold waterfalls, and clean earthy smells were treats we enjoyed over and over and over.
But my favorite was the stars. From our cabin porch I couldn't wipe the joy and contentment off my face as I enjoyed the stars. On our last night there, I went for a walk around the campground at 2 am. I wanted to capture the wonder once more. It was phenomenal. It looked like God opened up a jar of silver glitter and strew it across black velvet. I was enraptured.

Glacier had enormous hiking opportunities that we were ill-prepared for. The next time we'll plan better for those. As it was, we had no backpacks with us and Hannah didn't have appropriate foot-gear. A lesson learned...

Our cabin was a two room quaint little beauty. Gordon and I had the front room and the girls the back. Once the girls walked in on Gordon when he had on nothing but underwear. Without missing a beat they turned around and Rachael gutturally expressed, "Scarred for Life."

Hannah kept us entertained with "voices." She makes up the silliest, funniest things. I wish everyone could catch a glimpse of her zany humor.

Our holiday concluded at the Lethbridge Dragon Boat festival. I was anxious about it all week, feeling unprepared since I was missing two practices right before our big competition. We improved our score by a few seconds every race. For the final, we won gold by a 2 1/2 second margin. It was so incredibly exciting and an absolutely amazing way to end a holiday.

Now we're home and enjoying the week off work, both Gordon and me. It's always great to be home.

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Summer 2008 Holiday

I'll soon be writing a few things about our holidays. But for now a quick video will have to suffice.

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Monday, July 7, 2008

Summer 2005 holidays

Here is the video that I posted last week that didn't upload correctly. This is our 2005 summer holiday. I hope you watch it and smile.

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Deborah's 9th Birthday

The day before we left on holidays we celebrated Deborah's 9th birthday. Here is a snapshot of her party/sleepover. It was a wonderful time. She turned 9 on July 2.

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Sunday, July 6, 2008

We're Home

I hope you remembered we went on holidays. We just returned and I'll be telling you all about it, (and showing a video of course) early in the week. However there is one tidbit of news I simply couldn't wait to tell. Are you ready for it?

WAHINE KEI WAKA WON GOLD in this weekend's festival in Lethbridge Alberta. We were amazing.

This picture is us crossing the finish line. There were 5 teams that made it to finals. We were enough ahead of 3 of them that they didn't even get in this picture. Finishing time, 2:30.10 (500 meters).