Monday, April 5, 2010

Holidays Humdrums

So Easter has come and passed. I love this holiday - the spiritual side, the bunny, egg hunt and all the goodness out there in the world.

This weekend I had quiet moments, but I felt very melancholy. It's very difficult I realized when your spouse does not share your faith. I didn't say support your faith.
But it's only on religious Holiday observances when I feel the divide is crippling, and the lack of oneness crushing. I never feel so alone as on those occasions. It's in those moments I understand why people like having a Church family, or sometimes have family with those who are not related to them.

The only thing I feel I can do is to hold on tight to the love of my son, his joy in doing the Egg Hunt (even though he no longer believes in the bunny), and his faith in higher power(s). I also hold on tightly to my faith in the Lord, the beauty of life and all my blessings. And yet I am still sad.

Monday, March 1, 2010

It's in our hearts

Pre-Olympics. The first time I watched Sid the Kid in the Tim Horton's commercial I cried.
Really, every time I watch this commercial on my t.v. it brings me to tears. The passion. The pride. The love.
So I'm going to quote the commercial cause I can't improve on these words which sum up the emotions of my great country Canada!

Hockey is our game
but really it's much more than a game
It's a passion that brings us all together
on frozen ponds, at the community rink, and in our living rooms
It's the feeling you got the first time you stepped on the ice,
the feeling you had when you scored your first goal
Hockey is in our driveways
it's in our dreams and every post-game celebration
It's in the streets every time your friend yells "car"
in every rink across the county
It's in our hearts
Hockey is the thought inside your head saying
wouldn't it be amazing getting up everyday and playing,
doing something you love to do

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Less is more...

Yes sometimes less is more.

Here's the run down. I am generally a skeptic wearing my rose colored glasses. I just can't buy into things without a lot of suspicion and / or questioning.
Therefore when one of my friends talked about her "vision" board at a book club meeting I struggled to hide my snickers. Don't get me wrong I believe in karma and a great deal of serendipity in the universe but "vision" board was a leap even for me.

So - I have this little magnetic board in my office and I thought was the hey lets put something "visionary" up there. I stuck my coveted little (and I mean little) booklet of my beloved Mini Cooper pamphlet. Laughing to myself, I simply forgot all about it.

Twenty Anniversary - my hubby gives me a little toy remote car. Weird I thought, but definitely different. And then a card "trade in" for the real deal a Mini. As my son said I screamed and ran around the house like a little girl.

Usually my general mode is procrastination. But this time I stuck on my "vision" board simply - "I want a powered blue Cooper S that's to die for" (hopefully not literally).
Checking Craigslist of all places I see my ad. I immediately respond and find it's a dealer in Dayton. That was Friday, test drove on Wed, had hubby test drive Sat, get finances in order and voila it's mine.

I always thought it was small, but it takes up half a space in my garage. Which brings me to my point - less is more, less is everything to me as I'm am head over heals in love.

Is it shallow for me to be in love with a object, a possession?
Or too allow this possession to be my new obsession?

Frankly I don't care, maybe the Honeymoon phase will wear off. I'm enjoying the ride while it lasts.

There is even a Mini website for owners and a FB page. They say to own one you have to join the cult. I remember reading this Marketing article on cult branding so I went back and found it. It says "Cult brands live with them wherever they are, making life more interesting, more entertaining, cooler, hotter, smarter, stronger, and just plain better."
Check, check, check... all true. I think I've drunk the Koolaid.

So if give me a shout if you want a chance to drive with the more interesting, cooler, hotter, smarter, stronger me. But I warn you I might have a bottle of Koolaid in the car.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Ugliness has a new name and a pretty face

OK, yesterday I got scammed. A young man who said he lived up the street was trying to sell books to donate to a local hospital, to send the local high school band to London England.
He had all the facts right.
But when I went to look for Prestige Sales USA on the internet I found out that all over the States others have been scammed with similar stories.

First I felt totally foolish. I let him into the house - and now I was worried about him casing my place for potential robbery.

So, I called our local police and reported him. They said they would try and find him in our neighborhood; and I gave the name that he put on my form (probably an Alias). Tomorrow, I'll cancel my check with the bank. The worst part for me is that he said an older lady up the street had bought over $500 worth of books for her Grandchildren and the hospital. I hope this was just part of his scam story, and not the truth. I'll send out an email to our neighborhood as I am in charge of that stuff for our HOA, in the hope that others may cancel their checks or payments.

I'm a little wiser, and a little less trusting.
Less trusting that's something I hate to say, let alone write. It's a crazy world out there, and yesterday a little piece of it caught up with me.

Ouch! once bitten, twice shy - or you can be like me, and hopefully save the next guy from the sting.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Passing of another King...

First MJ the King of Pop and now John Hughes who is the undisputed King of 80's teen pop culture movies. It's taken me this long to process his passing because of two things: 1) I love movies 2) his movies are some of my childhood favorites. From Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Pretty in Pink, Sixteen Candles, Uncle Buck, Planes Trains and Automobiles to Breakfast Club, John Hughes seemed to reach inside my soul and understand my plight in life.

The beginning letter is as follows:

Saturday, March 24, 1984. Shermer High School, Shermer, Illinois. 60062.
Dear Mr. Vernon, we accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it was that we did wrong. What we did was wrong. But we think you're crazy to make us write this essay telling you who we think we are. What do you care? You see us as you want to see us... in the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions. You see us as a brain, an athlete, a basket case, a princess and a criminal. Correct? That's the way we saw each other at seven o'clock this morning. We were brainwashed.

The end letter is as follows:

Dear Mr. Vernon, we accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it was we did wrong, but we think you're crazy to make us write an essay telling you who we think we are. You see us as you want to see us... In the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions. But what we found out is that each one of us is a brain...
...and an athlete
...and a basket case
...a princess
...and a criminal

Does that answer your question?... Sincerely yours, the Breakfast Club.

There you have it teen angst at it's finest. We are more than a sum of all parts we scream. We are more than you (our parents) can comprehend! We haven't figured out what we want to be or do in life. Leave us (me) alone!!!

I'm writing this down as I snicker because I know in a few short years I'll have one of those human beings walking around in my household looking at me as if I'm an alien from another planet. An alien whom doesn't speak his language, understand his culture, or him.

At least I know that on any given day, even as a parent -

I can be logical, clear headed, sometimes even right (a brain)

I can be fashionable, stylish, even selfish and self centered (a princess)

I can kick butt in karate or badminton (an athlete)

I can scream uncontrollably or completely fall down in a puddle of slobbering mess (a basket-case)

And sometimes shameful wasting my talents in lieu of sleep (a criminal)

Thank you Mr. Hughes for understanding!!! Hopefully I can follow your lead with my son.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Don't be...

When writing my last Fairy tale post, my wandering mind thought of Fiona. There has been many famous Fiona's in the world of singers, such as Fiona Apple, and Fiona's in film and books such as Shrek, Lemony Snicket, The Giver and even Josie and the Pussycats; but there has only been one Fiona-Fee.

Fiona was her name, but everyone nicknamed her Fiona-Fee.
She was a little girl that was in my son's preschool. She was very American but she had a love for everything British. She was a mix of girly-girl, tomboy with a pinch of quirky. My son and her related to each other- not as a crush but as kindred spirits. Fiona-Fee and my son definitely marched to the beat of their own drums. This was special because at the time he did not connect well with other children or most adults.

I caught a snippet of one of their conversations one day, which was shear delight, where she was telling him "Don't be Sheepish" . They say opposites attract and where mine was very anxious and cautious Fiona would throw caution to the wind, leaping head on to the next big adventure.
I think I even saw him flash her a shy-smile at that comment.

Fast forward to the Nativity pageant at Christmas. The kids drew their parts from a stocking.
You guessed it my son drew the role as one of the sheep.

Sometimes the universe has a sense of humor. Blimey.

Since that time we moved school districts and we lost touch with Fiona-Fee. I hope our paths will cross again someday.

A hero, a quest, and a magic key

Once upon a time there were two people who moved from a little island to a big city, where they found each other. Shortly after they had a little girl, their only, whom they cherished.
The girl grew up to be strong and independent, her life filled with joy, friends and grand princess adventures.
Ten years later two sisters arrived. The Queen, the girls mom, mind now became clouded. The Queen now was a prisoner of her own undoing. The little girl, in duty, was in charge of the household and taking care of her little sisters, and the Queen. Her Daddy worked very hard toiling in several jobs as there were very poor.
Overtime the little girl was wrought with loneliness and despair missing her adventures and friends. She turned to the written word and moving pictures as escapes, but secretly wished for someone to rescue her. One day, a boy came from a far away land. He offered her a secret magical key. The key, he said, would unlock great powers, but only when the time was right. The boy, the dragon-prince, shucked off his mortal coil vanishing forever. For a time the Kingdom plummeted into grave darkness.
The little girl guarded her secret key. She was often frustrated to find that she could not unlock it's hidden powers. All seemed hopeless, until one day she realized maybe it unlocked the powers that she already held within. The key gave her the courage to question and ask for what she wanted, the patience to wait for the universe to present answers and choices, and the faith to leap into the unknown.
Did she live happily ever after.... (TBC) To be continued

As you probably guessed I am the little girl. My childhood hero - the dragon prince was Bruce Lee. A unlikely hero for a princess, but there it is.

He opened my mind to the beauty that was Martial Arts - the power of the unspoken movement. Like kata, dance or unspoken gestures nothing provokes a more emotional response in me. Like many, I so admired his passion and discipline. He became my hero also because he was an avid reader, had a sharp intellect and
also questioned the "Status-Quo". He didn't teach the Martial Arts Dogma's at the time such as karate, jujitsu etc. but took pieces from each developing his own personal style. I came from a strong Irish Catholic background where questioning was not encouraged. Bruce showed me that questioning was acceptable, and the basis of life and faith was to make choices.

My quest -
I took up karate in my twenties but for many reasons the timing wasn't right.
My son was born with sensory, anxiety, and withdrawal issues. The Occupational Therapist suggested that I get him into martial arts or wrestling. From the first moment he stepped into the dojo he seemed transfixed and transformed. Eventually karate gave him a key to reach from his world and connect back into mine. I knew this was my sign that the timing was right for me to also try this sport.
At the time there were only kids ages 16 and under taking the class. I asked the Sensei if I could take it as an adult. I remember him asking me if I wanted to get more fit, or lose weight as my motivation for taking karate. I thought, nope, I want to become a black belt. Last week I
reached that goal. Now my real journey into this sport begins. And I won't take that step alone as there are now 15 other adults taking the classes with me.

I am grateful for people in my life who inspire me, as they are many. But Bruce will always be the most special as he was my first hero. And although I has not met him in person his imprint has changed my life forever.
Did the girl live happily ever after? Happy enough, and that's the key.