July 20, 2014

Twenty Eight plus One!

Hi everyone!

Our eldest daughter turned 29 last week but has been quite vocal that she has dreaded this birthday and wished we'd all stop trying to celebrate it! We did a quiet dinner, then tonight had family over, which in the end, she did enjoy. With smiles and cheers all around, she gracefully blew out her candles. 


To tease her, we decided to use last year's 28 candles, then added in the extra yellow one, with a star on top and two sparklers. Thankfully, she was good natured about the joke. For now, we've all agreed that she is remaining 28! Can't wait til she hits 50!!


It was her son who declared that she had to be "28 plus 1" for the year .... smart boy, our Mr. B!!

Did you ever have a birthday you dreaded?

July 19, 2014

Frugal Friday!

Hi everyone!

Life has been a bit busy lately, so we haven't gone thrift shopping for quite a while. Between packing boxes, decision making with our builder, working on summer daycamp planning and moving offices, truly, there hasn't been time. But yesterday, after all our work was done, dh asked if I wanted go shopping to try and find some capris as I was complaining how hot it was to wear jeans and shorts at work doesn't quite seem professional, even in a casual environment. So off we went, hoping to find at least one pair to get me thru on the days that jeans are too hot and dresses that aren't always functional in a kid centered, creative but messy environment. 

 

Of course, we needed to start by looking in the china section and came across this sweet and tiny creamer. Perfect for a cold winter night when it's just the two of us having a "cuppa" before bed. Today, all the green tags were $1, so this item was a bargain, down from the $4 that was marked on the sales tag.


Not a green tag item but perfect for my new office, to match the big picture my boss gifted to me on Thursday. For all three prints, I paid $1. 


Another treasure ~ a gorgeous and very colorful English cottage. Oops, forgot to wipe the dust off! For a sweet $1, I'm happy to hang this pic up with all the tiny ones we've found along the way.


Dh found this one in the back where they hang curtains and bed linens. He remembered I was talking about making a curtain for our the laundry room at our new house but would have to find some material that had green, lavender and gold together. Ta da! Another green tag find for $1, marked down from $10.


And then we found capris! These are brand new, a bit big for me but with the tie on the waist, I can pull them in. Brand name? You betcha!! Calvin Klein as a matter of fact. And the price? $5. The original tag said $65. Never worn. I always wonder why when I find items that are in perfect condition or have the price tags still attached. What made someone not use or wear the item? But their loss is my sweet gain, so not too much thought has to go in to it. Just happy they didn't throw them in the garbage!


Love how I'll be able to tie up the bottom legs as loose or as tight as I'd like. I like to have options!


A pair of black capris, gently used, not a mark on them and so comfy. Brand name I am not familiar with, Crisca, but for $5, I'm not sure anyone is going to ask me who the designer is! Price again? $5.


And this last pair is American Eagle, a brand I love and for the green tag price of $1, a price I couldn't argue. These appeared to be brand new as well and I know I'll be wearing them often this summer. 

So there we have the Frugal Friday finds for our recent trip to the thrift store. Not a bad haul for a quick shopping spree on a hot and muggy afternoon. In total, we spent $15 out of the $20 that was budgeted. And found 3 pairs of capris!! 

Have you done any thrift store shopping lately? 
Any great finds?

Gratitude!

Thank you for listening to me on a very down day. 


Sometimes, the opportunity to 
vent is all that is needed. 

The rest of the week went so well, better than I could 
have asked for and I wanted to stop for a  moment 
and say "Thank you" for your ear and your time. 
So truly appreciated!!

July 14, 2014

How do you do it?


Hi everyone!
 
I've never been good at promoting what I do and what I need. I may appear to be an extrovert but truthfully, I'm a closet introvert. I have guts and determination and can appear so confident. But I'm not always and it's a struggle to work on a daily basis to find my niche and feel comfortable with reaching out.
 
Right now, I'm working on boosting the traffic to my blog as well as trying to gather more families for my summer programs as well as trying to gather more families for my fall programs as well as trying to gather participants for our first bereavement conference as well as trying to gather bereaved families for our 2nd annual memorial walk. None of it is currently going well at all. Throwing in the towel would be my next move, except that I'm awfully stubborn and quitting is never on the agenda.
 
And yet, I find myself not getting the numbers needed. When I visit other blogs and see the number of comments, I'm intrigued and I'll admit, slightly jealous. Which is totally not my character. I truly write for me, for history, so numbers shouldn't really matter, right? But for some reason, they seem to be important, a measure of acceptance perhaps that I crave but continues to elude me.
 
I love and cherish the dedicated readers I have but can't figure out how to get my blog "out there".
 
When I see the success of other programs that have similar offerings, I wonder why my numbers, while good, are never huge. Our evaluations and quotes from clients show we have a strong, viable program, that is unique. As the only one of it's kind offered in Western Canada, you'd think we'd be overrun with numbers.
 
But truthfully, we're not and I can't figure out why.
 
I am intrigued by the vast numbers of volunteers, sponsors and attendees others have received for their conferences and their walks. But again, can't figure out beyond the typical promotion (web, emails, posters, media) to spread the word about our events.
 
What am I doing wrong? Or not doing enough of?
 
Maybe it's fear.
 
Maybe I'm not savvy enough.
 
Maybe I'm too short or not beautiful.
 
Maybe what I think others want is not really want they want.
 
Maybe no one wants to read what I have to say, or attend my programs, or need a conference.
 
In the end, I'll figure it out, 'cause that's what I do. But I would love your ideas on how to get there. In this season of hot weather, many deadlines and too many decisions, my head is swimming and making sense of the chaos isn't making my posts very attractive!
 
Share, do please share.
I'll cherish anything you can offer.

July 13, 2014

Blessed Sunday!

Hi everyone!

I have always loved the idea that Sunday should be a day of rest. A day to enjoy the little blessings all around us. A day to spend with family and friends. A day to relax and do fun things after a long week of working hard. Always a favorite day in my books!


Our Sundays have become extra work days due to our impending move but today, we decided that we needed to get back to a more relaxed day. We're on track with our sell and move tasks and truthfully don't want to burn ourselves out, so today we began our new Sunday routine. I quite liked it! We slept in just for a short time, then after a light breakfast, we ventured out to the acreage to see the progress on the new build. So excited to see the decking has now been installed over the engineered beams. We have a floor! This coming week, the framing of the main floor will start. Next weekend's drive should be really exciting. And the weather is sunny all week, so hopefully, no delays. 

After we got back to town, we stopped at the store for a few ingredients for dinner then headed home to do a bit of gardening. With the heat, it was hard to do too much, but I'm happy to get the majority of the weeds out of the back gardens. The front will have to wait until it's cooler but at least they are small and not over bearing. We then lounged on the deck for a couple of hours, reading and scheming, napping and gazing. Relaxing all around. Dh made a lovely bbq dinner and then we watched two more episodes of "Orange is the New Black". All of season 1 is now done; on to season 2! Other than this blog post, I've not been on the computer all day. Definitely an outside to enjoy the warm weather day!

How was your Blessed Sunday?

Groovy Saturday!


Hi everyone!

Our weekends have always been a mix of busy activities, followed by relaxation and letting go. Now that we are in the process of getting this house ready to sell while our new home is being built, weekends have become a bit more hectic trying to fit in the extra tasks that need to be completed before we list. Compounding this time frame is the fact that I usually work on Saturdays. But we have created a pretty good schedule and so far, as my graphic says, our Saturdays have become "groovy"!

This Saturday, I went to my office just a few minutes from home to provide counselling services for some clients then spent a bit of time rearranging our art cupboard and my office. Two summer daycamps are just around the corner and I really need to have my work spaces organized and clutter free before the kids arrive. Once those items were crossed off my list, I headed home to paint the second coat in the living room, staircase, hallway and front door. As much as I was not crazy about the neutral color at first, I'm loving it now. Such a "groovy" color! A quick dinner and shower then we were off to be part of a fundraiser in the city that was planned to help raise money for my dh's Fringe theatre show in August. Goodies, drinks, a silent auction, panel discussion from the cast, a photobooth and a comedian, who is a friend of ours. It went well, we had fun, made money and everyone was happy at the end of  the night. 

So that was our "groovy" Saturday. A busy day, productive work and fun to end the evening!

How was your "groovy" Saturday?

July 11, 2014

Full Moon ahead!!

Hi everyone!

After the wackiest day, I came home and turned on my computer, only to discover that we're on the cusp, once again, of a super full moon, set for tomorrow night. If only I had known that earlier, today might have been avoidable! From a major miscommunication that led me to tears (privately but painful to the end), to miscues, that left me feeling alone, in a big world! I hate this feeling, especially, because in the end, as the counselor for some many, when I have days like this, there is truly no one for me to talk to. So I brave it out alone, shed my tears and carry on. 

Blech!


The good for today, because there is always good, even in the baddest of days, was celebrating this beautiful young lady's birthday! She crept into our lives, on that sunny, bright morning twenty nine years ago, quickly and quietly, with big dark eyes and masses of black hair. Her eyes turned blue, her hair fair and curly. Now a fierce single mama, she makes us proud each and ever day. How could a day so wrong not end without a happy and proud moment like this!

How was your day before the Super Full Moon?

July 10, 2014

A Day Off isn't always a Day Off!


Hi everyone!

I was granted a very lovely day off today from my boss. Yesterday, I spent some time figuring out what to do with my time. My work buddies and my family had all sorts of ideas, from staying in bed all day to going to a spa, treating myself to a shopping spree, or going for a drive in the country. 

The truth is, I could do all those things any day but to have a day to myself to complete some tasks that I can never get to, without any other obligations, without any disruption and without anyone else around is pure heaven to me. So that's what my day off ended up being!

I started with going back to sleep after my dh left for work. Waking up to a silent house was wonderful. Traipsed downstairs and spent 2 hours reorganizing the kitchen, then the family room, the laundry room and then my office, all in my jammies (thankful no one came to the door). I then dusted, swept, washed baseboards and floors, and put away all the construction/reno materials into a corner, out of sight until our next round of work on the weekend. Started some laundry, then headed up for a very long, leisurely bath. Dressed and headed over to my office for a quick meeting with the other tenants about the previous owner's attempts to get all of us to pay some rather costly repair bills for repairs that never happened. Great meeting, we bonded and after the business part was over, we all decided a summer bbq was in order. Love this building! 

Stopped to pick up something for dinner to bbq and found a great sale, so I bought extra for the freezer. Came home to have some lunch, watched a show, then did more laundry, did some long, over due writing and then spent a couple of hours sorting paperwork and receipts. Tonight, I did more and now I'm heading off to bed, satisfied that my "to do" list is a lot lighter. More sorting tomorrow and a chance to work with my teachers for a while after two counseling appointments with clients.

A good day all around. For someone else, this may not have been an idea day off, but for me, it was worth the work and the time!

Are you ever granted a surprise day off?
What would you do with your time?