full of church

Today was a day full of church.
Well, I know its Sunday and all, but we went THREE times! There was Sunday School as usual, which is hectic enough, but I only had two show up which was unusual. So that threw me.
Also, some people were worrying uneccesarily over Christmas Concert plans, so that set my mind working.

After a quick jaunt home to eat, and feed animals, we were off again to Oromocto. Ron’s friend Duane started a church in there, and Ron was peaking today. Duane was also away, so we were in charge of setting up. We got all the way there, and realized we had forgotten the mini PA system from our regualr church! So Ron and the singer had no mike. No worries, because there was like, only three families present, including ours.

After, Ron stopped off the get a coffe, and he also picked up a box of doughnuts because we were so well behaved. Me too, I guess. I asked Addison how he thought Dad did. “I give him an A” he said, cracking a smile, “For Amatuer!” Good thing Ron didn’t hear – but he did laugh when I told him later.
The girls didn’t say much since they were a little miffed because their friends weren’t there.
After yet-another-quick-jaunt home for food, the kids and I were off again to our church because they had some special guests. They were missionaries from Africa; the Congo and Ivory Coast to be specific. They were originally from France, so their son acted as interpreter.
The girls had been all anxious to go, but sat through most of it wondering when it would be over. I did tell them they weren’t having food afterwards, but they still wanted to come.

Anyway, when they were done speaking, I swear, I would have followed them directly to the airport had they asked. But when the service was over, I didn’t get a chance to speak with them because one guy hogged all their time, and it was late, the kids wanted to go, and hey, most everyone else was gone. So we left.
And I din’t really have anything to add that is really profound, thoughtfull or even spiritual, because it has all left me. G’night!

In which I explain how we’re tearing up the kitchen and why you can now pee at my house

I can’t believe its Friday again. I meant to write pretty much every day, I did in my head, but now I’m so tired I can’t remember half of it. Tuesday usually provides lots of fodder for conversation, but the ladies weren’t half as rowdy. I also taught a class yesterday at our church. Seven ladies showed up, so I thought that was excellent. They enjoyed themselves too. Today we have to go to town for.. ummmm… I can’t really say because Mom may be reading and it involves something for Christmas.

Oh, now I remember. My kitchen is torn apart becasue we got some cabinets on Wednesday at a liquidation place. Less than $600 later, and we’re ready to have a finished kitchen. I can’t believe it, it has been so long. I took a “before” picture, but since we didn’t get the digital camera, you’ll have to wait. We’re going to integrate the cabinet that Ron made with the ones we got, rather than replace them because we still need to reach the hot water heater. I went with the white cabinets, mostly because I am so sick of looking at wood tone, even if they were finished! You may not know, but a lot of this place has exposed wood that isn’t sealed in any way. Some of it even needs like like oh, say, some insulation, vapour barrier and actual wall! Plus there’s that chipboard we put up in the living room that I haven’t painted yet. And tongue & groove boards on two ceilings.

We were discussing the possibility of finishing the living room, totally, paint and everything, for Christmas. We want to put the tree & presents out there this year. I guess God had other plans, since we lucked out on the cabinets. Coupled with my new stove (oh yeah – picked up a brand new sparkling white stove on Monday) things are looking up!

Except that the house is a total mess.

We took down the formica table in the kitchen so we would have room to put up the largest cabinet set. It was missing some hardware, but what did we expect? We’ll stop in today and ask the guy if he has some spare hardware kicking around. Worst case we’ll have to buy some extra.

Anyway, so now we have this 5 foot long “starter set” cabinet piece up where the table was. It has no back since its supposed to go against the wall, and no top since we’re suppose to put counter top on it. Well we don’t have that yet, so I rested the box it came in on top of it. At least I can still pile things on top, just not heavy things like dishes.

Some day I’ll draw you a picture, but I’ll try & explain for now. Our kitchen is one of those lovely “open concept” things which seemed like a good idea at the time. The room is a big “L” shape, with the kitchen in one end, the dining area (with the new wood table) in the corner, and our bedroom area in the other end. Funnily enough, we have used tall dressers and a china cabinet to form a “bedroom wall”. We’re supposed to stud in this wall over the winter, but who knows? We’re a close family, so its not much of an issue. Until we have company.

In other building news, I picked up a couple of interior doors for $6 each at a flea market/craft sale on Saturday. I need to slice off about 10 inches, and we were worried about how to cover up the cut end, because these things are hollow, you know, but one lady there told me how she did it. I’m also not so picky anymore. This is not turning into our dream-home-for-all-time, so we’re prepared to make do with something not perfect than to go without until we get the look we want. We wanted the bathroom door to match the barn door we made for one of the bedrooms. Too bad the doorways aren’t the same size, or I would have switched it.

So, when the bathroom door is up, you’re free to come over and stay a while longer, not just until you need to pee.

An average cold day

I’m getting a little anxious. I have orders piling up, and no product to ship them as of yet. Those Christmas cracker poppers are frightfully popular. Did I mention that in a Women’s Day publication they list little ol’ me as a source? My phone hasn’t stopped ringing. They are going out faster than I can get them in. I went through 10 dozen last month.

Since it is Friday, I have a house full of children. I don’t mind, I rather like it when the kids have their friends over. They usually keep each other out of trouble. Tonight there will be more children, because we will all be at Youth Group. I figured out what craft we’ll be making, and made up individual kits for everyone. Just a simple Fun Foam bee magnet.

I’m also cold. It was -10 C this morning, about 7 F for those on the “old” system. I also made the mistake of putting on a pair of leggings because none of my favourite sweatpants were clean. Whose fault is that now? Anyway, I warm up by running up and down stairs to throw wood in the stove. Now if only I can keep people from opening the doors!

Wednesday the bookmobile came around, and of course I didn’t bring home enough books. I’ve read the end to three already. One ending just left me disapointed, so you know I won’t finish it now, and another I couldn’t figure out what happened with everything else, so you know that’s the sign of a good novel. I also started two others, and glanced through the two I got for Ron. I will probably actually read his this time.

Tomorrow morning I’m planning on popping in on a local craft sale. That reminds me, Sarah booked a table for herself at another sale in December. She’s eight, remember? She keeps nagging me to let her make her items, but I’d sort of like to supervise & guide her. Must schedule in time for that.

And haircuts. The boys look extra straggly. Crew cut anyone?

In which I Remember.

I remember.

I remember my grandfather telling me stories of London during “The War”, the only war that had reference to him. Of how he was seperated from my grandmother, and their oldest child, my Uncle David. They had moved the women and children out of London to be “safer” and also Nanny had tuberculosis on top of that. At the time he didn’t know if he’d ever see them again.
He told me stories about waiting for the bus when a whizz-bang came in, shrapnel neatly slicing off the arm of the women next to him and a buddy. The bus then pulled up, and they loaded her on with instructions to the driver to take her to the hospital, fast.
He told stories about the rooming house he stayed in. One night he had just laid down, after sitting up reading. A bomb landed, and the window blew in. Jagged pieces of glass embedded on the wall behind his bed, right where he had been sitting.
He told me a story with a smile, the story of the day he walked into the underground radio room, all the lights flashing, people scurrying about, and the news it was finally over.

He told me stories from another war, stories about a man he never knew. A man who sunk to the bottom of the ocean in a submarine off the coast of Holland. A man who would never see his son grow up to hear him tell the tales to his grandchildren.

I remember my father-in-law, telling me his Air Force stories, and how he marched until his feet were flat. How he wanted to be a pilot, but somehow his bad eyesight slipped through the cracks until the final testing. Cheated at the end of a chance to defend his country.

I remember Wendy telling me stories of her father, a ship’s cook, and how he almost never spoke of the horrors he saw. She told me how the troops were fed a drink a day, to steel their nerves, and how the drink finally killed him.

I remember how these stories were told to me, with an old, wrinkled hand pressed against mine. The teller’s eyes misting over at rememberance, the notations of who in the story has passed on, the eyes not seeing the room before them. The lips pressed together, a shake of the head, a deep breath and a sigh, then changing to a more suitable topic. Stiff upper lip and all.

I remember, and I pass these stories on.

The following is an e-mail I received from my grandparents when I asked them to share some stories for the children.

Rememberance Day or armistice day as we used to call it was instigated after the first world war. Earl Haig who had served in the war,worked on the foundation and it was decreed by Lloyd George and passed by parliament to be held every November (as Nanny says) It was he who evolved poppy day, He organized works and factories who employed amputees and wounded vets to make the red poppy. It was a copy of the poppies from Flanders in Belgium. Andrea you will remember the visit we paid to Eye, Grammar School,Church etc well we used to form up (the whole school) and March from there to the town hall and have an outdoor service with a representation from the services and certainly the vets. from the 1914 war. Scouts, Guides and army cadets etc.> A bugle was blown –the last post and we dispersed for the day. For my mother and I it was a sad day…I wore my fathers medals(Adrian has these). Mother used to hate it every year, but she attended because I was there.
By the time it was all over the pubs were open and they were all packed, everybody telling each other war experiences, by 2 pm everyone dispersed.
Even during the second world war we had armistice. It was to be held the nearest Sunday to the 11th. It was a short service held in Whitehall by the cenotaph , and attended by the royal family. Yes they turned out smack in the m iddle of the bombing, albeit daytime. and the doodle bugs One big reason for it to be held on a Sunday was the disruption of traffic and workers on war work,and of course traffic is low in the city on that day.
Now Nannys entry…….Remembrance Day-first called Armistice Day in 1918 after the first world war The peace treaty was signed at the eleventh hour, on the 11th day of the 11th month!!
At school in England we would go to school in our Sunday best for the church service-singing “O God our help in ages past” wave union jacks and have my hair tied up with red,white and blue ribbons. Then we would have a half day holiday, which we enjoyed very much.

Why write a journal anyway?

Why write a journal?
Why not?

I’ve been tossing my head around this all day yesterday and this morning. I was poking around various heavy journal sites like MetaJournals and Diarist.Net, and it got me to thinking. Why am I doing this anyway?

I’m not a particularly good writer. Some days I’m not a particularly good anything. Do I have anything profound to share with the rest of you (assuming you are out there)? Is this all for me, and the reader incidental?

After all this, it occured to me it’s a little of both. I want readers. I want people to hear (read) my thoughts & ideas, to experience a small piece of my day. There was one journal I stumbled across where the main page said something like, “These are the stories I’d tell you if we were sitting on the porch at sunset at the summer cottage.”

And here, if you stopped by for a cup of tea, or because you needed some glue or something, I’d tell you a lot of what is written or planned to be written here. I share my day with everyone in person. The funny, the tragic, the unremarkable and the plain weird.

But not the deep stuff. The things I may speak of only to Wendy or Ron shall not be posted here. Those are the things that come back to bite you on the ass some idle Tuesday. I wouldn’t want some one to come up to me, printout in hand, demanding explanations. Or rather, be friendly to my face, while thinking, “The bitch said that about me!”

If I have a problem with you, you’ll know it. I’ll bring it up. I won’t get into it here. I don’t like things hashed and re-hashed all over the neighbourhood.

Sometimes my life is a sit-com, and I have a need for others to witness our life. Real life has no laugh track, it must be supplied.

Sometimes, I need to speak my thoughts out loud, to bounce them off of others before I form my opinion. Left to my own devices, I can work up a big storm in my head. That’s partly why I hate lone houswork. My mind wanders, and before I know it I’m scrubbing vigorously and slamming pots, pissed off at imagined conversations.

This may be my wandering thoughts, like above, or it may be my “to-do” list for the day/week/whatever, like the last entry. Overall, I think it will be an adventure.

a cranky Saturday

Okay, so I’m going to cheat a little here… I will write more entries out, the ones in my head from last week, pretty soon. They will not be written on the actual day they happened, but from that perspective. So I’ll be backtraking. Back-updating?
It’s probably a journalling no-no, but this is just to get caught up, okay? I’ll do better, really I will. I promise.
Note: Today really is today.

I was over at Al’s reading his entry for last night, whereby he totally deflates my balloon over the Left Behind books. I even printed the page(s) out for Ron to read. He thought it was pretty good. Jeepers.
I am not going to get all huffy and fire off a nastygram to Al or anything. I think its more my disappointment that someone else doesn’t like something I really really like.
God, that sounds so junior-high.
I’m still getting used to the idea that, just because you believe in the same God, the same Holy book, that you may have different ideas about things like religion. Go figure.

I am sure Ron & I will have discussions through the day, where we will analyze & rehash things, with him doing a lot of explaining and I will eventually come to realize Al has made a point and my knee-jerk reactions are just that.

It’s so hard to write these things out. I mean, in real-time conversation, there are nuances of the face, the tone used and (for me) hand gestures that convey what I mean. And that confused look sometimes. 🙂 I’m just trying to figure all these thoughts out that are in my head. I “see” things in there, sort of a “feely” thing. I’m so visual, its getting scary. I can see what I mean in my head, and have trouble writing it out. Hence this here journal exercise.

I am a little cranky this morning. I like to sleep in a little on Saturdays. I must have woke up a half a dozen times. The last straw was when the girls woke up, earlier than on a weekday, and made enough noise for a roomfull of giggly girls.
They were going through a box of clothes someone gave us, alternately complementing one another and planning outfits, and arguing over what piece fit who better. All in loud, high-pitched girly tones. Voices (conversations, the radio, t.v.) wake me up every time.

And after I trudged all the way downstairs here to the office, I discovered I had forgotten to put sugar in my tea.

Things to do today…
finish some tissue paper hats for orders
have that home party for Wendy (she sells candles & wrought iron things for a local MLM)
tidy up the store
do that mountain of dishes
do church bulletin tonight