i'm darkness and light, bubbles and faerie wings. i am sparkles and glitter, shadows and clouds. i love purple, and faeries, and books, and music.

Ramblings by Category

Ramblings by Year

september adventure

Yoshi sees ducks

Hey there, Internet! I have had an unusually active and adventurous September this year. Considering my Septembers have been purely school-focused since 2012, this has been a pretty fun break from the norm. One of the courses I was to take this semester was cancelled, so instead of having two six-week classes, I only have one – and that one starts on October 24!

This has left me to enjoy the end of summer, and beginning of autumn, and really appreciate these weekends and all they have to offer.

I did something crazy and exciting earlier this month РI sang with a band! In front of real, live people! What? Only something I have dreamed of doing since FOREVER. Seriously. It was awesome. I even developed an appreciation for Country music (which I always just blanket thought I disliked.)

Strings Attached at GPK Family Fun Day

September 17, 2016 @ Greenfield Park

My brother-in-law, and his uncle asked if I’d like to participate in a group to sing at a Family Fun Day fundraiser for local elementary schools. At first I was hesitant, and shy, but as I went to the practices I started having a lot more fun than I thought I would have had. And it was a nice change from focusing on school work yet again. I channeled my inner Jem and sang my little heart out. I wasn’t even nervous, which surprised the heck out of me. It was the first time I’d ever performed outside, too. It was a challenge, but we survived the wind and weather. And I’ll be honest – I miss my band mates. I miss the weekly practices, though I’ll be happy doing them on a non-weeknight if we do something again. I am not a person who is good at being awake after 8pm. ūüėČ

This past weekend, Shawn and I took the dogs and drove to visit my parents in Kingston. My parents weren’t able to make it to the band performance, so I said I would come visit them. We had a ton of food, and walks along the water. And I love the area that my parents are in so much. I will move out there one day. I will.

 

parentals

Shawn stayed one night, and came home by train the next day. I drove myself and the dogs home on Monday. ALL. BY. MYSELF. I’m so proud of me. Thopse of you who have been driving since you were teens are probably scoffing at me right now. But you know what? I don’t care. =P I’ve only had my license for¬†five years, and I don’t do much of the driving at all. Last year’s jaunt with Yoshi to a dog show in Cornwall was the first time I’d ever a) driven that far b ) driven that far BY MYSELF, and c) went on a trip by car without another human being. So a four hour drive home, with two dogs, was a Big Deal for me. I even learned how to use Cruise Control! Who says you can’t teach an old dog (40-year old Cat) new tricks. [Side bar: WHERE HAS CRUISE CONTROL BEEN ALL MY LIFE??]

This weekend I’m off an yet another adventure to visit my cousin Sheryl in New Brunswick! I was finally able to find some way to redeem my Air Miles (before they expire in December. I’ll not get into how much that makes me do a Very Grumpy Face. Nor will I get into how DIFFICULT it was to try and redeem any of my miles. Ugh.) So I’ll be visiting for a short, whorl-wind weekend, where we will celebrate our 40th years together. (Birthdays long past, but still in the right year!) I haven’t been to visit Sheryl since 2008OMG 2007!! –, and that trip was cut short because I was still so sick all of the time.

This time around, I’m flying both ways, and I am trying to not think about how terrified of flying I am.

So, I’ll just leave this photo here. One that I took on Saturday night, near my parents’ place. Because it’s gorgeous. And peaceful. And I love it there.

tree

And I will fondly remember this September full of adventures. So many new things I accomplished, or tackled. I think I’m doing 40 ok.

five favourite silly films

5favefilms

Sometimes days are tough. Sometimes you go too long without smiling, or laughter. It’s impossible to completely distance yourself from negativity blasting out from every direction – tv, radio, newspaper, internet… And when things get to be too much, I sometimes turn to a comfort that isn’t reading, or music.

There are a handful of silly films that never fail to make me laugh, no matter how often I have watched them. Some of them I own, others I need to remember to buy so I have them on hand when I need it. I thought I’d share five of the films that I adore regardless of how cheesy or silly they are.

The Emperor's New Groove

The Emperor’s New Groove

(Disney, 2000) I think this is possibly my most favourite Disney movie even though I have always said¬†Snow White was my favourite. There’s something about TENG that makes me gasp-for-air-laugh every single time I watch it. There’s not one character I don’t like. The villains are hilarious. (“Why do we even¬†have that lever?!”) ¬†I think it helps that I have always found llamas amusing. But this movie is my ultimate feel-better-about-life comfort comedy, from Kronk’s self-sung theme music, to Kuzco’s silly llama shenanigans, to the the little old man who warns you beware the “groooooove”. This movie is just giggles galore. (IMDB link.)

Bring it On

Bring It On

(Beacon, 2000) If I’m not watching¬†The Emperor’s New Groove to cheer myself up, I’m probably watching¬†Bring It On.¬†I fell in love with this movie the second I saw it. I’ve even watched all of the other sequel-type cheer movies, but this one is my heart movie. I can’t ever watch this one too often. It is so much fun! (except for the barfing scene. Ugh.) (IMDB link.)

Josie and the Pussycats

Josie and the Pussycats

(Universal, 2001) So much camp! So cheesy! So punny! But So! Much! Fun! This is a total parody movie, but by golly does it make me laugh. I also bought the soundtrack because I kinda love the music from this movie. This really isn’t the most intelligent of movies, but it’s sugary fun. And you sort of have to tune out any idea of the comic book group, because this is so far off from that creation that you wonder why they even used the name. Still, it makes me laugh. A lot. (IMDB link.)

MegaMind

Megamind

(DreamWorks, 2010) This movie joined my top 5 favourites by total accident. I had avoided watching it for so long, and then when I was off on med leave a few years ago, I put it on since it was free on Netflix. I had zero expectations of getting through the movie, let alone liking it. It’s a surprisingly hilarious movie. I have only watched this twice, unlike the other movies that I turn to when I need a laugh, but it’s coming up on time to watch it again. The humour is a lot more subtle than I thought it would be. There are many laugh-out-loud moments in this film, too. One of the best things is finding a delightful movie when you least expect it. (IMDB link.)

Tangled

Tangled

(Disney, 2010) If you had asked me the first time I watched¬†Tangled if it would ever end up one of my favourite movies, I’d have laughed at you. The first time I watched the movie I was extremely underwhelmed. I didn’t like it much at all. And then I noticed people talking about it all the time, and quoting from it, and talking about Flynn Rider’s “smoulder”, and I’d laugh. And I’d think, “hey, yeah, that WAS funny” Not to mention I¬†did love the horse. I eventually watched the movie again – and loved it. I loved it a LOT. I have watched it a few more times since then and each time I watch it I find something else more charming, and more funny that I missed the first time. I am now totally Team Tangled. (IMDB link.)

Hmm, I just noticed that these films all seem to have come out around the same time. Three between 2000-2001, and two in 2010. I guess those are golden years for humour. Most of the stuff that comes out now isn’t nearly as entertaining. But that’s ok. I still have these films to pick me up when I am home sick, or feeling blue. They all make me laugh out loud, and help me get through the blahs.

you’re a good mom


I have never wanted kids. I’m not a fan of kids. I wasn’t even a fan of kids when I was¬†a kid. Kids make me anxious. They are honest, blunt, judgemental, and emotional. (And like…do they have to point out the giant zit on my nose to everyone? Do they think I’m a loser? OMG do they think I’m cool? Am I not cool??)

I never played Mom With Kids, as a child. I played many other games – Doctor’s Office Receptionist, Grocery Store Cashier, Librarian. Those were the games I played. I had lofty goals. (I didn’t know back then that to be a Librarian you had to go to school for a billionty years. No thank you.) Occasionally I played School. There I was the teacher to my seated stuffed toys, but really all I wanted to do was write on the chalkboard. Chalkboards are fun and I loved getting to use one. I never really asked my stuffed toy students to participate. I just wrote things on my makeshift board.

But others do want children. And they have them. Or they struggle to. And so many people have children who probably shouldn’t have had them. You read the news, you know what I am talking about.

But this post. This post is for the friends I have, whom I love and adore and admire, this is for them. And to each one of them I say:

You’re a good mom.

You are. Truly.

My mom friends have children of all ages. Some friends I met before they had children, some I befriended who had young children, or older ones. I myself have a mother. I watched her raise me and my sister. ¬†I have watched these women with their own children and at some point I have heard the phrase “I’m not a good mother” uttered from every one.

But it’s a lie. Don’t believe it. Ever.

I have watched you comfort your children when sad, hurt, or scared.

I have watched you discipline your children when they do something wrong, dangerous, or mean.

I have watched you encourage your children to always be themselves, teach them to be polite, and to be kind to others.

I have watched you cry, pace, rage for your children as they face challenges like exams, oral presentations, scary medical stuff, bullies, or even because they wanted to dress themselves that day and you were worried about them being picked on.

I have seen, firsthand, the love you have for your children. You want to protect them from all harm, and monsters under the bed. And you do everything you can to keep them in this bubble of safety.

And sometimes things go awry. Sometimes they fall and bones are broken. Sometimes they don’t listen and harm might befall them. Sometimes the world is just a terrifying place and there are so many things you cannot control. And I have seen you doubt your ability to be a good parent because you can’t protect your offspring from the world.

It will never be perfect. Nothing is. You have given your children a solid base for them to grow from. Eventually they make their own decisions because they are tiny humans who have suddenly become bigger humans. And those values, and lessons, and all the love you’ve poured into them for their entire lives… All of that will influence those decisions. You will always be a part of them. After all, you were also once the child of a mother. You had parents who raised you and you turned out okay enough to have your own children.

I have watched your children grow up. Some I have seen grow in person, and some only through photos and your own words to me about your child. And I don’t really care¬†about children. I don’t like them much, so if I happen to be all mushy gushy over your child? That’s a legit reaction and interest. I won’t fake interest in children just to be polite. I just won’t talk about them. But I’ve met, and know, so many amazing kids – of all ages – whom I am so proud of. And I genuinely want to know how they are doing and what they are doing.

And I know you’re a good mom because otherwise I’d probably stop caring about your kids because they annoy me. Heh. But seriously, I know you’re a good mom because I have seen these tiny humans, that you insanely let grow INSIDE YOU LIKE AN ALIEN (gah!), turn into bigger humans who are full of love, and intelligence, and ideas, and dreams and imagination. And I kinda sort of love them.

You’re a good mom because you love your children and you want what’s best for them, and to keep them safe, and loved.

There will always be downs that go with the ups. You will always probably feel like you’re fighting an uphill battle. But you love. And care. And protect. And every human has their own energy in the world and that’s important. You’re doing your best, and that doesn’t mean you’re doing everything perfectly. Because perfect is a myth.

I’m no expert on raising a child. I can hardly take care of myself most days. I can’t keep a plant alive in the house at all. I do pretty well with raising my dogs. But that’s nothing compared to a young human. Young humans are tough. (Seriously, do they think I’m cool? What if they don’t think I’m cool?! Am I a loser?? GAH!)

Siblings will fight. (Expert on that one.) Children will scream to high hell at their parents. They will eventually utter the words “I HATE YOU AND WISH I WAS NEVER BORN!” That’s all smoke. We did it, too. I think it’s like a rite of passage.

I have a mother. She has also wondered if she could have been a better mom. (SPOILER ALERT: the answer is no. She is a wonderful Mummy.) ¬†And I know mothers. That’s the extent of my knowledge on the motherhood front. But I don’t think you have to BE a mom. to know when you SEE¬†a good mom. There is always doubt in everything you do. I think that’s part of human nature. But to you, my friends, I have watched you. I have heard you. I have known you for all different lengths of time, but I see you.

And you, my friend, are a good mom.

You are. I’m extremely proud to know you. And I probably don’t totally dislike your kids.

stuff in my head while i’m trying to fall asleep

stuff in my face while im trying to sleep

WARNING: being alive is bad for your health. 

Ever notice how every couple of years there are new warnings about what’s bad for you, and will certainly kill you instantly if you don’t stop doing whatever it is RIGHT THIS FREAKING MOMENT, YO!

Yeah. I don’t take anything at face value anymore. You blink, and there’s some new scientific research that contradicts the scientific research from the day before. It’s like technology — as soon as a new computer is announced, it’s obsolete. 

Coffee is good for you. No, wait, it’s bad for you. No, wait! It’s GOOD!! Really! no, wait! It’s not coffee that’s good, it’s wine, or chocolate, or eggs — but not raw eggs! Those will kill you DEAD! Like, waaaaay dead. Unless they don’t because they won’t really kill you because they’re fine in small quantities. 

Rinse, wash, repeat. 

I was making cookie dough this past weekend to snack on. (Shut up) and the raw eggs thing popped into my head. And I though, meh. I mean, it’s not as if I was going to eat every single egg in the carton like some crazy person. And I figure the CUP of BUTTER, and 2 1/2 cups of sugar (the best part of dough) would likely do me in before any of that tiny egg did. And yeah, I grew up without eating cookie doing being A VERY BAD THING. (Not that it was a good thing, feeding your children cookie dough. Or like, most of the cookies that were made.) 

And so I snacked on that dough*  (in a reasonable quantity) and I thought, to hell with death by raw eggs! I’m brave! SPARTA! And all that shit. I didn’t die as a kid, so if this kills me now, so be it. I’ve lived 40 years. I have LIVED. I’m good. Death by raw eggs in dough seems like a better option than others out there. 

Because these days all you need to do is open your eyes, or ears, and you’re assaulted from all sides by what’s bad for you and will kill you and give you cancer or more cancer and give your cancer cancer. And I’m kind of fed up of warnings that come in the form of OMG DOOOOOOOOM UPON US ALL!!

Seriously. Calm down a little bit. Or a lot. Because being calm might be one of the safer options when trying to not raise the ire of the universe of things that are out there to kill you. 

Nobody wants to do anything anymore. I don’t think the children of today are being exposed to enough things to let them build up an immune system. Yeah, I was a sickly kid (and no, it wasn’t because I used to get to lick the spatulas after we made cookies or cake), but I wasn’t epi-pen allergic to everything under the sun. Including the sun. 

What I get most annoyed by are those who believe everything they read in the paper, or online, or from over-shared, click-bate Facebook posts and the proceed to lecture, judge, never shut up at you for doing something they JUST READ is blah blah blah IMPENDING DDOOOOOOM AND DEATH UPON YOOOUU!

And hey, you know what’s dangerous? Living. Because eventually you get to the end of life and you -gasp!- die. So maybe try to not be alive too often and you might be lucky enough to avoid death. Meanwhile, if you really can’t avoid it and need to be alive, go ahead and make yourself some cookie dough to snack on. Lick the cake batter off the mixer (not while on, or plugged in!). Have a glass of milk, juice, beer, wine, gin. Whatever. Have a cigar. Have some salt. Enjoy butter. 

Just don’t be an idiot about these things. Because — SPOILER ALERT! — we are all going to die eventually. Stop worrying about all of the little things and enjoy your life. Be smart about most of it, but enjoy it. Because if you read all those articles about what’s bad for you and will result in DOOOOOOM, they all go to the same place:

Being alive is bad for your health. 

So if being alive is eventually going to kill you, enjoy the time you’ve got going for you now. If I can make it to 40, I think I’ve been doing pretty alright. 

*Yes, Daddy. I did actually make two full sheets of cookies as well. 

seven things on a sunday

Seven Things on a Sunday @ Beyond Elsewhere

1 – I will never get tired of staring at the night sky. A dream goal is to move to a way more rural area (not, like, totally rural, but away from any big cities) and have a skylight in my bedroom. There’s something about staring at the stars, when there are no other lights around, that takes my breath away. I love the sky. So much. (But I love it from the ground, I am way too terrified up in a plane to appreciate the sky while IN the sky. Not for me. Nope.)

2 – I hate wearing shoes. Unless I’m wearing a specific pair of slippers in the house, I would much rather not wear shoes (or socks). I can’t stand having my feet imprisoned! Which is an odd thing for someone who can’t stand feet. (They gross me out. Yucko!) I don’t know why it’s bothering me so much this summer, but I spend way too much time trying to figure out what shoes to wear when I have to go out. Not because of look, but because of how they feel on my feet. I would much rather walk around barefoot if I can. Especially in the back yard, and garden, much to the chagrin of my body, because I’m allergic to the grass and then end up with a rash, or hives on my legs. But it’s worth it to feel grounded. Well, maybe not right before bed. *itch*scratch*itch*GAH!

3 – I have been extremely restless lately. Especially today. I have likened this feeling in the past to a bird rustling its feathers. Nothing holds my attention very long anymore. For example, I thought early this morning that writing this blog post would be a great idea. Five hours later, I’m only just starting the third item on this list – that’s after trying to nap, taking a shower, and playing in the garden (not all in that order.) At lot of this feeling is likely due to the week-long 40C+ weather we’ve had. I’m slowly evolving into a summer season girl, over the winter, but I still cannot stand these humid, no-air, 40C and over days.

4 – I have never known comfort of my soul like I have known with Yoshi. If you follow me on any social media you’ll probably have noticed that 95% of what I post is about Yoshi. I love all my Finnish Lapphunds, past and present, but Yoshi has stood out over them all with how much he helps me with my anxiety, PTSD, and depression.

Life as a hooman pillow

I had a week off of work at the end of July, and every morning, without fail, Yoshi would use my left arm as a pillow. He would stay there for 30-60 minutes, as I drank my coffee and browsed the internet. Sometimes he would cling to my hand as he drooled all over my arm and slept. It’s a strange thing, but I don’t think I have ever felt anything so comforting as with Yoshi sleeping on my arm. He centres me. He calms me. He’s always with me. If I go upstairs, he follows. If I nap, he’s on the bed napping. When I’m down in the shower, he’s outside the door, laying with his face in the bathroom. When I come home from work, he crawls into my lap and tries to merge his body into mine, while giving me kisses. And then he just rests. If I’m crying, he lets me hold him (of course if I happen to sneeze, or cough he gets the heck outta dodge and runs away.) Yoshi is like a real life plush toy. He calms me. He loves me. And he brings me so much joy.

Me and my Best Guy

5 – When I am rich I am going to take care of rescued Capybaras. Well, it’s up there with my dream goal of having a house in the country, with a giant skylight over my bed. Because I’ll also have a nice pool to help my little rescued Capybara swim and enjoy life. I have been in love with these rodents since I first saw one at the Montreal Biodome a billion years ago. And this past summer, two Capys escaped a zoo in Toronto and were on the lam for a month. I love these critters. I follow two of them on Facebook because I am THAT much of a dork. Joejoe the Capybara and Sweetie the Capy. How can you not love them?? I require one. I think Yoshi would like one, too.

6 – I have been listening to the same playlist on my phone for almost two full months. This might not be a big deal to anyone else, but I normal change my music up regularly. I have certain songs I always want to hear, but I love to have my music on shuffle and just see what comes up. I made a playlist of up-beat songs back in June and I have had that playlist on shuffle to and from work, at work, before I fall asleep. Over and over. I’m still not tired of it. Granted, I have removed or added the odd song or two in this time, but for the most part these 23 songs have been my daily soundtrack. I named the playlist Sunshine because it makes me happy. (Artists include: Taylor Swift, DNCE, Justin Timberlake, Walk the Moon, Tegan and Sara, The Lumineers, Fitz & the Tantrums, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, Marianas Trench, and many more!)

7 – Obviously there needs to be an update about Jinx’s Garden v2.0! When we last checked in on the garden, it had just been planted. Now it’s a wild beast of a garden!

Jinx's Garden v2.0

I have never seen cherry tomato plants grow so big before. They are entangling themselves into the cucumber and melon vines, too! Maybe I’ll have some fun cross pollinated fruits. ūüėČ
Jinx's Garden v2.0 August 2016
We have two melons coming along. One of which you can see in the first image on this post – and that’s from two weeks ago. The melon is much bigger now! I have given away more cucumbers than I have kept for myself, but I do have two on my kitchen counter right now. I am sceptical about the cherry tomatoes though. The plants are HUGE and there are green tomatoes everywhere, but they are certainly taking their time turning red. I have only picked four cherry tomatoes so far this summer. Maybe the plants are just growing TOO much and so they aren’t focusing on ripening the tomatoes they have already grown? Not sure. But this new location for the garden seems to grow plants¬†very well. Woo!

And so ends my Seven Things on a Sunday for August 14, 2016. I almost ran out of Sunday before I got this posted. Until the next random time I post! Toodles, internet!