Friday, December 05, 2008

Food Friday: Cookie Exchange Troubles

Cookies are wonderful. Christmas cookies take bake goods to that next level of joy. The trouble is finding the time, energy, and ingredients to make anything more than Pillsbury cookies. Kim has invited me to a cookie exchange. There will be about 8 other ladies each making three dozen cookies. I know that someone is bringing shortbread, sugar cookies, and peanut butter balls. I'd love to go but not sure what to make. Any suggestions of simple cookie recipes I could try?

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Things I am thankful for this week...

Sleep.

The chance to listen to others experience and wisdom.

Books.

Ideas.

My warm white scarf.

Those who use their gifts for God.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Sleepless Night

Last year the founders of Open Arms’ Ministries, began ‘Inn From the Cold,’ to provide one night emergency shelter in the Valley (if you know NS its Windsor to Middleton) during the coldest months of the year through coordinating local churches. The churches involved agreed to host the shelter one night a week. These churches provide a bed, warm meal or hot coffee depending on the guest mood, safe environment to rest with people willing to chat, and breakfast (or Timmy dollars) with a drive into town all in an effort to communicate love, grace, and mercy.

When I heard about the ministry at a board meeting I was like “cool” but quickly let other things consume my focus. One of the ladies in our church didn’t forget. I can not express what a joy this woman is or her great passion for meeting needs. She caught the vision and held onto it all year. When Open Arms’ began asking churches to participate this year she brought it to the board, who agreed %100. It has been amazing watching her share the need, organizing all the details for finding bedding to food and find willing volunteers. The church staffs the hosts for their night. normally three people.

The program started up November 1st and will run till the end of April 30th. Tonight was my first night as one of the churches’ hosts (with other people). It is going on 6am and I have to say this has been one of my most rewarding nights without sleep.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Humour Reflects Life

Did you listen to Larry’s Christmas Countdown yesterday? The silly thought was something like, “the great thing about artificial trees is that every year you have a complex puzzle you’ve never seen before.”

This morning two of the church trustee’s were setting up the larger Christmas decorations. Mid-morning Clair came into my office wondering if I knew where extra pieces of the church’s large Christmas tree would be keep. I followed him to the multipurpose room they were working to find his partner standing in the center of tree parts holding a pole completely surrounded by ‘pine’ branches for different lengths looking and looking very confused. I giggled (only on the inside because out loud giggling would not have helped the situation) remembering Larry’s silly thought. You can here today’s Christmas Countdown at BigIdea.com.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Larry’s Christmas Countdown

Check out the VeggieTales website for their annual “Larry’s Christmas Countdown!” button (it’s a button on the right hand side). Each day Larry makes a different observation or silly statement about this festive season.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Finished!




I’ve done my happy dance and now I am going to go to sleep

–for a week.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Celebrating 40,000 Words!


Only ten thousand words to go!
And my best ten minute word war yet:
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How Does One Kill A Sea Witch?

WrimoRadio’s question of the week was, “what were the worst poses you have written this November?” I am sure I could have submitted some doozies but the worst came out last night. I was trying to keep the words flowing but I am stuck on where to go next with the plot. My main character (a crew of five friends which include a air/dream pirate, two warriors, a girl of the forest, and a shy girl that has not had a purpose yet) must defeat a sea witch and I am not sure how one goes about killing sea witches. This particular witch lives in a deep salt water pool below found in a mountain. Any suggestions?

A friend looked up mythical history and learned magical knots tried in speacil rope can thwart a sea witch. Does this trigger any ideas? Help needed there is 1 day, 12 hours, and 4 minutes left to complete nanowrimo and 13,990 words still to be written.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Happy Turkey Day American Friends!

First Time Writing in a Week

I had a great weekend visit with my missions buddy, Selinda. We had a wonderful reunion. Thursday she shared at youth, Friday we rushed around getting ready for a kids ministry Swaziland party to celebrate them giving $1200 in offering (over a year) for food for Swaziland children. Saturday we were snowed in (and the party was cancelled), Sunday was church with the party, and Monday we said good-bye.


During the visit I didn't write and the trend continued through Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Getting back to the story just didn't happen…till today. Currently at 29,945 words, I think/hope the full 50k is still possible. There was an encouraging story on the NaNo Q/A or a woman whose computer crashed losing 60,000 words on November 20th. So she just started a new one and is currently at 35k. If she can do win so can I.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Selinda is here...and that is AWESOME.

Now we're going to eat pizza!

Snow

Last night shushy rain was falling this morning...


It is a marshmallow world!

I like this part of winter, didn’t so much care for the scrapping off of the car this morning, but I like this part of winter.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Cat Tales and Other Non-Nano Thoughts

1) I hate my cats. Well not really but this morning there was two different messes of cat sick. The first was found in the hall and the other on the living room carpet. I was sick from the clean up. Kima tried to comfort me by putting her little paws on my leg while I was gagging...it didn't help.

2) I got a coupon in the mail today for %25 off cat food, which I checked just before going to the store to buy cat food. I thought it was pretty sweet.

3) I was reminded tonight that I really needed to let some things go. I may or may not elaborate on this in the near future.

4) I cause young children to cry. Children’s Christmas musical parts were given out last night and not everyone is happy with Pastor Liz’s choices…and I am okay with that.

5) Sewing didn’t happen today but it should happen tomorrow.

6) Selinda will be here from Thursday night till Sunday. It is going to be great. The time is already filling up very fast.

7) My small group has been doing a study on Galatians called the Irreligious Christ. My head is full of thoughts and things I want to discuss but that will have to wait till after November.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Make It Monday

Tomorrow I am having a sewing morning with a lady in my church. If all goes as planned I'll have most of my Christmas gifts finished or nearly finished. I am not too hopeful; nothing goes as planned in November. Anyone else making Christmas gifts this year?

In NanoWorld:

1) I loved Jo's suggestion about looking into dream analysis. It could lead my story in a whole new direction.

2) A package arrived today from the Office of Letters and Light arrived today. I now have a writers’ group poster, ten nano sticker, and ten beautiful novelist pins just waiting to be given out.

3) I am a behind on my word. I am planning to write 28,000 words tonight to catch up. I believe that this can and will happen so much that I said 28,028 is my current word count on the nano site. Only because when I do reach that number later tonight, I will not be able to update the site at home due to the non existing internet.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Half Way and Excerpt

The words and ideas didn’t flow as well this past week. Placing the main character in crazy conflicts has helped me avoid writing boredom. This past week she has fought a sea witch, talked with a unicorn, watched her home burn to the ground, learned her mother was kidnapped, been lost on a mountain, and abducted but ruthless magic hunting pirates. All of these adventures helped me escape the second week writing blahs and pass the halfway mark. I like watching my word graph fill up:


Excerpt Memoirs of a Dream Rider


I remember my first dream. It was the night everything changed. It was the night everything began. It was the night I lived though a nightmare that continues to haunt my waking thoughts. It was pure fear. The emotion was so raw I could taste it. The intensity of experience still causes my skin to crawl. All I felt was…

Panic.

Every muscle in my body was tense. The slightest movement and the feline hunters would have sensed me. All thoughts of my mission were gone. I was trapped in a field, separated from friends, completely alone. We had knows that the cougar wraiths had caught the scent of our magic and had begun to stalk us. One wrong move and we would all be dead...

The words of Lorra, my adoptive mother, pounded in my head, “Any trip to the world of dreams in dangerous. Every journey could be deadly. Death in Reams is still death. Remember that Elly. Remember and be careful.” Remember, how could I forget? I had trained to hunt dreams since in was small child. The best of the best dream catchers of the five tribes had drilled the facts and rules into my head, repeated warnings and stressed the realities of Reams. Forgetting was impossible. With a very real wraith two meters away my imminent death was a very possible outcome of this night. There was no way I could possibly forget.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Write or Die Works

416
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Food Friday

The late nights and early mornings that comes with Encounter weekend and the nano challenge has had me consuming more caffeine than usual. To avoid beverage boredom I’ve been branching out in my coffee shop choices this month and not always ordering the same old thing. My traditional Tim’s choice is large apple cinnamon tea with two sugars and my specialty coffee shop favourite has always been a chai latte. I’ve been trying cappuccinos again, mochas, hazelnut coffee (I still dislike coffee unless it’s over powered with sugar and milk, sorry Dad).Tasha has recently introduced me to an absolutely amazing drink –London Fog. It is earl grey tea made with steamed milk and a shot of vanilla. It is so good.

My questions is what is your favourite hot beverage?


Word Count: 22,222

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thankful Thursdays and Winter Tires

I am thankful for the gift of four new snow tires on my car, which I only discovered yesterday. This is how the story goes.

Wednesday, while passing my office Scott mentioned those were some deep treads. I thought he was talking about the tire marks the youth had left from the day before. Scott said, "no, the winter tires." I was like, "what winter tires?" I was so confused because I had plans to go tomorrow to get tires. He said there were new winter tires on my car. I told him there weren’t winter tires on my car. He said there were so we both went out to check out my wheels. Scott was right my car was wearing a brand new set of winter tires.

Last week I traded vehicles with friends so I would have a van for Encounter. During that time they (and I believe others) had new tires put on my car. I love my church family! And I am so glad Scott said something because I would never of noticed on my own. I could just see me tomorrow trying to buy new winter tires…

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

People Putting the "Prod" in Productivity!

Thanks to nanowrimo and the nature of links, I found a possible cure for procrastination called Write or Die*. Quoting the creator, “Write or Die is a web application that encourages writing by punishing the tendency to avoid writing.” Sounds like it could a useful tool for anyone needing to get a specific word count in a short amount of time from nanoers to college papers. The consequences for failing to write are as follows:
  • Gentle Mode: A certain amount of time after you stop writing, a box will pop up, gently reminding you to continue writing.
  • Normal Mode: If you persistently avoid writing, you will be played a most unpleasant sound. The sound will stop if and only if you continue to write.
  • Kamikaze Mode: Keep Writing or Your Work Will Unwrite Itself

This could be great during writing sprints or word wars but I am not sure I would be able to handle segments of my writing disappearing. I plan try it out later today.

*This discovery was proudly made period of procrastination.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Bring Your Youth Group To Work Day

The kids (though a few are adamant that they aren’t kids) had no school today and I was at the church so I said they could stop by and visit me. I had nothing fancy planned, just hanging out, chatting, munch on food, whatever. I honestly didn’t think many if any would stop by. In the past I’ve invited them to stop by and they never have. I was wrong.

One was here first thing (9am) actually met me at the doors, which was actually very helpful. Two of the guys showed up an hour later. By lunch there were six in my office and at the crowd peak there were 8 plus me. It made for a good but long day. About two hours ago we decided to go to a soccer game at 9pm (It's 7:50 right now), which means most are still here. I feel like Encounter weekend has been extended and all I want is a nap.

Word Count: I was wrong about yesterday's word count guess. I hope to be to 17,000 before bed tonight.

Monday, November 10, 2008

WrimoRadio Week Two!

I love WrimoRadio, which I said yesterday. So I had to share with everyone that the next addition of WrimoRadio is up. I found this week’s podcast a huge support because it reminded me that I am not alone in this journey. The New Yorker Nanos the second week is horrible. I don’t want to write any more but I have come to for and I am going to overcome the week two slump.

Of the helpful hints the one that has worked for me so far is writing for ten minutes then resting for ten. Any other suggestions on how to keep the words coming?

Word Count: haven’t started writing today but hope to be at 16,000 before bedtime.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Noveling Thus Far

The first week of nanowrimo was everything I had hoped it would be. Words flowed and my word count graph grew. More than that last Saturday I connected with area writers at the first every Wolfville write-in with plans to get together two more times. Two editions of WrimoRaido, the official nanowrio podcast, were released. I love WrimoRadio. It is a great way to procrastinate and yet still feel productive. Also enjoyed two author pep talks (Jonathan Stroud and Philip Pullman) that showed up in my inbox. I was impressed with the list of pep talk authors this year. I’ve read books by four of the eight.
The actual story is going better than I expected. I was able to write more that the daily minimum most days. New characters I had not expected have joined the adventure, including a mountain race currently called cobins. They are neither goblin or dwarfs yet similar to both and may by the end of the novel be pyroelves. These developments made the story telling both interesting and unexpected.

This coming week will be interesting. The honeymoon of daily writing has past; I have slipped into the second week slump. This might due to the lack of sleep from Encounter weekend. Sleep depravation causes temporary dumbness. I have been staring at my story since 6:00pm (its 11:30 right now) and have only written 300 words.
Word Count: 15, 023

Home From Encounter

We went, we encountered, we drove back home. It was a good a good ‘booster.’ Similar to past years with some changes. It was my first time in the new chapel. That place is huge and beautiful (very beautiful) and huge. I am thankful for the speaker whose messages have inspired the direction for the next few youth groups. The music was good. I learned some new songs. The kids that had gone last year said they wanted Atlantic.

For me, the best part was the drive home. My van had one of those long talks that starts with a simple question and leads to so much more. There were sharing about real struggles, honest look at my high school experience, open thoughts on a wide range of topics and I got to share my passion for cross-cultural ministry very candidly. It was a great road trip. Everyone else has been dropped off at home and my bed is calling.

Word Count: there was no time to write today, a very sad thing.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Food Friday: A Redwall Kitchen or a Meal of Pies

I love the connection between life and food in books. Many of my favourite stories use food to indicate goodness or the lack of food as hardness. As a child my family read Heidi together; I had a romantic notion that eating bread and goat cheese was the best thing in the world. The same thing happened when I reread The Hobbit. Bilbo was always going on about his longings for hard boiled eggs. So much so that I cooked one…and I don’t like eggs.

Monday, friends volunteered to help me prepare for the first children’s Christmas musical practice. They came early to organize hole-punch pages and create 20 music books. They were a blessing but the action I appreciated the most was the mom, knowing I would be able to cook till after the practice brought me supper. There was a some shepherd’s pie turnip'n tater'n beetroot pie and apple pie…yum!

Turns out I am not the only one who likes to experience the food from my stories. My friend was explained there were two main dishes because the turnip'n tater'n beetroot piewas a new experiment. The shepherd’s pie was just in case it didn’t turn out. Their son was reading the Redwall books and this was a dish the forest creatures ate. It was very good. Those mice know their food. For more yummy forest dishes check Redwall Kitchen.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I just had a rough moment, one that took all my inner resolve to stop tears from falling. It lowered my self esteem and made me feel like this week was a waste. I was discouraged but tried to think of some good from the week. And slowly it came to me all the happiness of this week. There has been more good this week then the temporary pain of this moment. So I am thankful for the joys of this week which have been...

-nanowrimo, it is really fun for me
-friends that allow me to write at their place (and use their internet)
-people coming to the nano write-in I organized
-time crafting with friends
-hugs
-leadership support
-time with God
-tech smart friends
-good books
-yummy meals with friends
-the O'Connors (and the van they are letting me take to Encounter)
-the Van Meekerens and all the help getting ready for practice

And I am thankful for God's grace

Word Count: 12,034

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Facebook Badges

I’ve been asked to put a facebook button/badge on the church website that would link to the church’s facebook group. After a few different google searches the only information I gained was on personal badges.

Is this request possible and if so how do I make it happen?

Word Count: 10,171

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Cat Tales

With the US election finally here I feel like I should enter the arenas of politics and say something deep or witty. I tried to come up with something and can’t. All creative energy has been given to the novel. At this moment Elly, the main character has just had a narrow escape from a battle with a sea witch only to have eight spears shoved in her face. I am now working on a solution to this new problem. So I leave you with this. It is short and it made me giggle:



Word Count: 8,111

Monday, November 03, 2008

505



I always seem miss major blog milestones (significant post, birthdays, high hits, etc...). October 31st was my 500th post. I didn’t even notice till three posts later, c’est la vie. We can celebrate now:



Today is my 505th post… It’s a palindrome.

Happy Milestone Bowl of Stew(art)

Word Count: 6,226

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Reader Participation

During last year’s nanowrimo experience, Bowl of Stew(art) readers made suggestions and later voted to decided the main character’s band’s name. It was an intense battle between Viridian and Now and Till Sunday. If you gave a suggestion or voted thank you; it was greatly appreciated. I am to call upon your assistance again. Over the next days and weeks I’ll be posting different story aspects that have me stumped. For some I will be looking for ideas. Other questions will be decided by a poll.

Today’s Reader Involvment:

What are some of your most interesting, bizarre, or frightening dreams?

Much of the novel is set in a dream world where the characters experience different dreamlike realities. I am looking for bits of dreams and/or nightmare to adapt and insert into my characters adventures.

Word Count: 4,013

Saturday, November 01, 2008

And So It Begins…

Nanowrimo has begun.

Last night I sent an alarm clock so that the typing could began right at midnight. Worn out from the trunk or treat I only managed to get 163 words on to paper (aka word.doc) before my mind demanded sleep. Each one was a struggle. The capturing the essence of the story I’ve been building in my mind was a great challenge than I thought.

As I sailed away to never neverland vicious plot bunnies attacked with the wicked idea that my outline was unusable and impractical. If I had of listened to these doubts I would have erased those precious 163. I think I would have started if I had not of had this amazing conversation with my dad this morning. Instead he helped me fight off the evil plot bunnies and kept going with my story writing this morning.

This afternoon I went to Just Us Caf√© for the first ever Wolfville Write-In where I was joined by three other wonderful woman for two hours of writing, tea, and chatting bliss. I am as excited to learn the outcome of their stories as I am to finish mine. We also had one word war, where everyone writes as much as they can in a give time limit. Ours was for ten minutes with the best word count earning chocolate. It really helps the word count and the ideas to flow. I didn’t win but was impressed to have managed over 300 words in that short time. Yay for word wars! It was a good time had by all…and there was London Fog, my new favourite drink beating out the long cherished chai latte, I had two.

Word Count: 2,101 (necessary daily quota to win is 1,667)

Oh Happy Day!

Happy 33rd Anniversary Mom and Dad!
I did a very dad-ish thing to celebrate this afternoon. I took a drive on a road that I didn’t know where it went to a place I’d never been till it lead some place I knew because it’s the Valley and eventually you can get almost any where in a roundabout sort of way.

I am glad that you are together and not just because it means that Leeanne and I exist.

I love you both!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Frustration, Joy, Anticipation...

FRUSTRATION: To celebrate November 1st and the start of Nanowrimo I planned to switch to an awesome hobbit themed template. The uploading failed and in the process I lost all my sidebar widgets. It is too late to fix tonight…grrr. Anyone have template suggestions I am tired of bloggers suggestions.

JOY: Heroes Unmasked went well. The kids had a blast, there was more than enough candy, people helped clean up, and I loved my costume.

ANTICIPATION:
Novel writing begins in one hour and three minutes.

New Dilemma

The costume crisis has been averted. This morning I did some creative shopping and with a bit of recycling and have almost completed my look. Pictures will be uploaded tonight after the Heroes Unmasked mayhem is over and cleaned up.

There is a new crisis: Scott even said I could wear my superhero costume to church this Sunday IF it fit will my children’s moment object lesson. I have no idea how to make batgirl into a teaching point. The children’s big idea is “A World Changer Trusts God.”

If you have an idea please let me know, leave a comment.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Dilemma

Heroes Unmasked, the children’s ministry’s third annual fall-festival-“trunk or treat”-non-Halloween-on-Halloween-event is tomorrow night. Everything that could be set up a head of time is set up. The candy has come in, the games planned, the volunteers ready. Tomorrow is already scheduled and it is going to be a very full day.

Here is my trouble I need a hero (superhero or Bible character) costume for the night and no time or ideas on what to make…suggestions? I really want to be batgirl but no idea where or how to make that happen.

Thankful Thursday

There were roses on my desk this morning (its pastor appreciation week at our church there have been neat goodies like movies passes, Tim Horton’s dollars, etc)

New treasures from last weeks Ten Thousand Villages gift sale

Games nights, TV nights and my friends from small group

Good friends and neat emails with inspiring art possiblities (Robin this is you)

Good friends who send text messages of encouragement (thanks Aaron)

A church member loaned me her car to haul enormous cardboard boxes

Youth went well and we’ll be ready for tomorrows trunk or treat…I hope

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Waiting for the Weekend

November is almost here and I have a blank word.doc just waiting for storytelling greatness. I have the opening all worked out in my mind, I hope I can continue to remember the wording for two more days. Today, Chris Baty, founder of the event, sent out an overview of what to expect in the coming month. Here is an edited look at the first half:

October 31: Get the first pep talk email. You'll receive about three of these a week—one from me and two from our panel of esteemed celebrity pep talkers—throughout November.

November 1: At midnight, local time, start writing your book. You need to log 1667 words per day to stay on par. The site will be very slow for the first few days of the event, but with patience you can update your soaring word count in the box at the top of our site or on the "Edit Novel Info" page of your profile. Watch your stats graph fill. Send a link to your author profile to your friends so they can follow your progress. Revel in the majesty of your unfolding story. It's November 1! You are an unstoppable novel-writing machine!

November 2: Stop writing. Wonder if you should start over. Keep going. Feel better.

November 3: The first November episode of WrimoRadio goes up on the site, beaming out overcaffeinated messages of hope from Wrimos worldwide. We'll be podcasting every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from here until December.

November 8: As the first full week of writing comes to a close, you will be at 11,666 words. This is more fiction than most people write in their lifetimes, and you did it in a week. Go, you!

November 13: Nothing really happens on November 13.

November 15: After the second week of writing, you will be at 25,000 words. This is the approximate length of such legendary works of fiction as Animal Farm, Death in Venice, and Gossip Girl: I Like it Like That. You're halfway to winning!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Food Friday: Food Discovery

I am thankful for brave people who try new foods and introduce them to me. Terry saw arctic kiwis at Sobeys and thought they might be good. I had seen the same display and thought they would be interesting but didn’t want to risk it…or go over the weeks food budget. When I was over for Thursday TV night (CSI and Eleventh Hour) she shared the “new” food with me. They are sweet, bite size, and decisions.

The fruit is a little larger than a grape. They have a similar taste to the larger kiwis like how both garden tomatoes and cherry tomatoes both taste tomatoey but at the same time they are different. The outside is green and less hairy compared to traditional kiwis. If you see them at your local grocery store I recommend trying them.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for hearts that praise the Lord and testify to the life he has give –we had a great choir visit our church Saturday night and 200 people attend their concert.

I am thankful for long distance phone calls and friends.

I am thankful for coffee dates and my new favourite drink “London Fog” sooo good!

I am thankful for the wind –feeling it on my face today made me feel alive.

I am thankful for God waking up my heart –I don’t feel numb anymore.

I am thankful for God’s promises even when they impossible.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Wolfville Write-In

Nanowrimo is almost here but it is not too late to sign up. Really you could sign-up November 29th at 11:59 pm as I read on the nano site “hope springs eternal” but I wouldn’t recommend waiting. I order the writing kit for ten today. I know all you writers are anticipating earning a novelist pin. Leave a comment letting me know you are interested in participating and/or add me as a nanofriend when you sign up.

The forums are up and running again. They are deadly procrastination traps. I could easily see myself spending more time chatting about writing than actually writing. After seeing that there were other valley wrimos on the Nova Scotia regional boards I offered to organizing a write-in November 1st for any Annapolis Valley wrimos at a local coffee shop. I am looking forward to meeting up with some of local writers. If you are in the area drop by Just Us in Wolfville at 2pm.

Writing mayhem is almost upon us and I am having a hard time keeping my ideas a secret. I am still keeping quiet about my plot and character ideas but I will say the genre this year is fantasy and the title is (drum roll please)…

Memoires of a Dream Rider

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Cat Tales: Cat Nap

I listen to other pet owners tell stories of their beloved creatures sleeping in the same bed at night and I don’t understand it. I can’t do it. I love both my cats. They are sweet, wonderful, and cuddly. I enjoy a good afternoon nap with them and now that they are almost out of the kitten stage they no longer attack my feet while I sleep. But they do not spend the night in my room.

A few weeks back Kima sat at my door crying two nights in a row till I gave in opened the door and allowed her to sleep on my bed. It was the worst sleep of my life. I tossed and turned all night long. Every time she repositioned herself I woke up and time I needed to change my position I could because she was on my legs. It was horrible. I vowed never again…ha ha ha…you know what they say “never say never.” Last week she hid herself on the shelf above my bed. When I was almost asleep she pounced from the great height onto the bed. I jumped so high with fright then tried to make the journey to dreamland. It was another rough night. If you are a pet owner who shares your bed with a pet, how do you do it?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Make It Monday: Tis the Season

The Christmas Craft fairs are upon us. There were a number of sales in the area this past weekend and more in the coming days. I stopped by Horton High School’s 13th annual craft fair on Saturday. I love exploring the wares at craft sales. Who knows when you will discover that perfect gift? One girl was selling some giant frog, flower, and pumpkin shaped shortbread cookies beautifully iced in vivid colours, another table had homemade candles, still another hand painted tree ornaments. I picked up some wonderful gifts leaving only two gifts left to find (or make) and many in progress gifts to finish. This coming weekend I’ll be helping with the previously mentioned Ten Thousand Villages gift sale.

If you can’t make it out to a sale or crowds turn you off but you would still like to give something homemade try etsy.com, there really is something for everyone.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Victory

Project Runway is one of my favourite reality contests. The previews and editing focus on the interpersonal conflicts because that’s what “sells” but that isn’t what I enjoy about the show. The challenges challenging, the designers are always bring interesting dynamics, and when one or more misinterprets or just doesn’t “get it” the results can be hilarious (If you watched this season the whole Olympic confusion is a perfect example). I love the challenges, the shopping at Mood, the fabrics, and the finial runway.

Every season I have a designer or two that I root for and they never win. All that changed this season when my girl Leanne Marshall took home the prize. She had a gorgeous collection inspired by the ocean and waves. There was such a class and architecture to each piece. You can learn more about the show, winner and finial runway designs here.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Food Friday

Kim’s is organizing a Ten Thousand Villages gift sale at the end of the month. Ten Thousand Villages is an incredible organization. Selinda and I stopped into one of their shops a few years ago (Selinda if/when you read this it was that tiny shop we found on our Jesus to the Nations weekend). We were impressed by the quality and beauty of the crafts. What I have since discovered is that they are completely fair trade.

I helped Kim this past Saturday put up posters and hand out flyers at Just Us a local a fair trade coffee shop and the Wolfville farm market. Farmer’s markets are the best. I loved exploring each stand. There were homemade cheeses, fresh bread, vegetables upon vegetables, yummy coco treats, and some beautiful jewellery. As I walked about I saw how possible it would be to actually live on a local diet. I haven’t made fully decided to follow a 100-mile diet but since reading about others local food attempts I am strongly considering it. Here is an article I just found on ten reasons to eat locally.

And if you are in the Kentville area on October 24 or 25th stop by the fire hall and check out the gift sale.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful that tomorrow is a new day.

Oh, and that Revellos were on sale.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Adding a Tim

16 days till mad novel writing begins. I have a plot outlined, a protagonist, and now possibly a Tim. I was checking out the wrimo sites weekly Q and A section. There was an interview with Tim Mitchell who keeps turning up in fellow Calgary wrimos’ stories…adding to there word count. He might just show up in mine.

There is still time for you to sign-up for NaNoWriMo. Writing begins November 1st. Check out the site it is full of information, breaking news, Q&As, forums, and a podcast. So far three people have mentioned they are interested or planning to participate. I’m going to order the group of ten kit tomorrow so there is still room for people to join us.

The New Face of Canada

I went to bed last night after hearing that Libral Scott Brison took the my riding with 44% of the votes, unsure who would be the countries fearless leader.

The new face of Canada seems very similar to the old face of Canada (with a slightly stronger minority). For a closer look at Canada’s voting habits CBC.ca has a great interactive results map. You can zoom in and see the voting outcome by province and individual ridings.


In my post election morning reading I found this great quote by defeated Green party Leader Elizabeth May, "We ran an exuberant, a joyful and a positive campaign. And if the kids five years up could have voted, I would have won by a landslide." I shared the quote with a friend whose response was, “Yes, and that is why we don’t let children vote.”

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Swazi Thoughts

Swaziland has been on my mind lately. I found a documentary about Swaziland’s monarchy at Blockbuster last time I was in. It was out, but I will rent it the next time. Has anyone seen it? Then the other day I was looking for a video of Swazi children I remembered Selinda up loading and found this video and I found this:



During our internship Selinda and I considered Babe Malaza’s (Pastor Walter’s) congregation our home church. I remember some of the children in this video. It is a weird feeling hearing his interview. I want to go back. The children's hope chest also has video promos for the book Red Letters, which I bought at Jesus to the Nations this year. I think I am going to start reading it today.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Make It Monday: Apple Turkeys

I’d like to introduce you to Herbert. I made him this afternoon with the Van Meekeren children before a huge, wonderful, traditional Thanksgiving dinner.

They are super easy to make and all you need is an apple, toothpicks, and some mini marshmallows preferably the colourful kind. There are no rules for its construction. The other turkey creations had more tail feathers and legs but I think that was so the makers could eat more marshmallows later.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Seeing The Outcasts

I always find it interesting when Hollywood makes a comment on God, the church, or meeting the needs. Some times they get it right or almost. For the longest time Hunchback of Notre Dame was for me the worst "Classic" of all times. Rewatching it has caused me to changed my opinion. It's still not my all time favourite movie/cartoon/Disney Classic but there are elements I liked and some that even remind me of what is important. Especially the song after Esmeralda has declared sauntuary in Notre Dame:

Esmeralda
I don't know if You can hear me
Or if You're even there
I don't know if You would listen
To a gypsy's prayer
Yes, I know I'm just an outcast
I shouldn't speak to you
Still I see Your face and wonder
Were You once an outcast too?

God help the outcasts
Hungry from birth
Show them the mercy
They don't find on earth
God help my people
We look to You still
God help the outcasts
Or nobody will

Parishioners
I ask for wealth
I ask for fame
I ask for glory to
shine on my name
I ask for love I can posess
I ask for God and His
angels to bless me

Esmeralda
I ask for nothing
I can get by
But I know so many
Less lucky than I
Please help my people
The poor and downtrod
I thought we all were
The children of God
God help the outcasts
Children of God

Music:
Alan Menken
Lyrics: Stephen Schwartz

Friday, October 10, 2008

Food Friday: A Cake Referral

Steph posted a five minute cake recipe on her blog. It sounds tasty. I was planning on trying it this weekend. Only she has warned me never to make the cake because it is too addicting.

I love fast and easy microwavable meals. Two years ago my cousin showed me this awesome microwavable lasagna recipe. I wish I still had it. Anyone else have favorite fast/convenient yummy recipes?

Warrick is Gone

CSI use to be the must see show of my week. After youth I’d go to Danielle’s to watch it. It was perfect because don’t have cable and my TV only picks up a very fuzzy Global. The majority of my TV watching is at other peoples places. Not that I am friends with people for the televisions. But after the writer’s strike last year we just stopped getting together on Thursdays. Life just got busy and hours of CSI were missed.

But all that changed last night, a church family invited to watch the season premiere of CSI. Yay! It was a happy moment mixed with a very depressing episode. Why do we watch very depressing shows? I thought entertainment was suppose to cheer us up or something. Best part of the episode was Sarah’s return. Best cliff hanger/season premiere Nick Stokes trapped in the box and buried alive.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I thank God for his grace.

I thank God for the truth.

I thank God for a mother who prays for me.

I thank God for a friend who will listen to me late into the night while I clean even if I hang up (yeah, Aaron that’s you, and you know it wasn't cause I was hanging up it's a horrible phone).

I thank God for a friend who sharpens me like iron (Steph that’s you).

I thank God for a Sr. Pastor who is supportive and has my back.

I thank God for the youth leaders who have been encouraging.

I thank God for the strength and courage to admit to my youth group that I have not been in a place to be a spiritual leader and confess that I have been wrong.

I thank God for this life, this day, this new beginning.

I feel alive for the first time in a long time.

The He in the She

Did anyone watch Bones last night? The case was intriguing, the murderer unexpected, and the comedy side corny as ever. Normally I just watch to unwind, share my thoughts with a few friends, and then forget about it. Last night’s story was different. For those that didn’t here is TV.com’s episode summary:
“Booth and Brennan go to investigate a body found in the Chesapeake Bay. After arriving, they find only the upper torso, giving the team little to work with other than remnants of the victim's breast implants. Brennan and Booth are led to a small church in Maryland, where they find that the victim was a pastor. When the team finds the lower half of the body, they learn that their initial assumptions may not have been incorrect.”

Spoiler Alert:

My mind keeps coming back to elements of the story. The victim was the beloved pastor Patricia, who six years earlier was a mega church TV preacher with a “send us your money message” named Patrick. The response of the general Christian community to gay, lesbian, bisexuals and transgender individuals has concerned me. Sites like “God Hates Fags” make me sick. If this is the message people are hearing we have failed as ambassadors of Christ. “They we know we are Christians by our love” –yet its not love they are seeing (for the most part). Then I read articles like this and wonder “how do I respond.” It is an ongoing issue I’ve been wrestling with. I recently listed to podcasts by Bruxy Cavey the teaching pastor at The Meeting House on the topic. You can find all three on the site under Teaching: Sermon Archives: Hot Potatoes (1,2, and 3). The first was “Is Being Gay A Sin?” the second “Is Gay Marriage A Step In The Right Direction?” and the final “Can Queers Follow Christ?” Right now all I can say is I am doing more thinking and questioning then actual answering.

That was one thought Bones brought to the forefront. The other was the differences in the two churches and the journey of the son. “Patrick’s” church was large, flashy, rich, conservative, and condemning. While “Patricia’s” was small community church called Inclusion. It was a home of ex cons, former drug addicts, gays, and the marginalized and sanctuary for the weary, lost, broken, different, and struggling.

After “Patrick” went missing in Thailand the police told his family he was probably dead. Not knowing his father had had a sex-change the son took over preaching responsibilities till he had a crisis of faith. Booth finds a video of the sermon in which the son “snaps.” In the middle of condemning gays he says he can’t do this any more. He calls the people on the greed, lies, and pride, claims he can not be like his father or mother, asks God to have mercy on us, and walks off the stage. The FBI finds him working as a councilor in a rehab center.

There is this beautiful moment in the interrogation room. The kid is pierced and tattooed holding a bible covered in Christian doodles/graffiti totally different from the white suit preacher he had been. But he rips off the paper at one point at it is the same Bible. Before he leaves Booth asks if the son had ever considered going back into ministry. The episode ends with the son preaching a message at his father’s small community church. There were flaws and things through out the episode I didn’t like or agree with but there were elements of redemption and God’s forgiveness that were so clear to me -all from watching Bones.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Seeking Nine Brave Souls

Have you considered participating in Nanowrimo this year? I am looking for nine people to join me on the noveling quest. Nano was a great writing experience.

There is a personal challenge to it; it was me against me (and time) attempting writing glory. Okay, not “writing glory,” my first noval was far from glory. The event creators strongly emphases that this is all about quantity not quality. I loved being apart of the forums, word wars, the late nights, and watching my little nano word count bar fill up. Finishing nano is wonderful; the “prize” for competition is the warm feeling of success, a downloadable certificate, and bragging rights for a year.

Why nine? While checking out the nano store, I discovered “the group of ten noveling kit.” I liked it. The kit has a chart that comes with completion stickers (which reminds me of Sunday school attendance charts) AND ten “novelist" pins for those who reach/surpass the 50k goal. It was the pins that attracted me, I started thinking this could be a fun group experience. It would make it more personal. I loved last year cheering on Jessica and having her encourage me. If there was a group there would be more encouraging. Also I’d like a pin. Pins are cool. I am strongly thinking about purchasing it if people are interested.

Last year more than 100,000 people around the world participate with more than 15,000 of them succeeding. This could be your year to write a novel, earn the glory of finishing, and a pin. What do you think? If you have already signed up my user name is Little1liz.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Cat Tales

One night, a few weeks back, I decided to take a walk to Avery’s a local farmers marker, convenient store, movie rental place all rolled into one. It’s a fifteen minute walk. Kima was at the door waiting for me to let her out (Inu would have been but he was already out exploring the big wide world). As soon as the door opened and she was gone.

It was a good walk. My apartment is on a remote road. There are only a few homes and very light traffic. I was able to enjoy the trees and setting sun. The walk helped me unwind, my thoughts wandered, I worked on story ideas, solved problems, realized neither the plots nor the solution would work. It was great till I had the sense that I was being followed. I turned and there was Kima following me. Not wanting her to mimic Mary’s little lamb and follow me across a main street all the way to the store turned back and headed home.

Though frustrated about not making it to the store, returning was cute. Kima followed behind me. If I stopped to let her catch up she would speed up and pass me, then look over her shoulder with a look that said, “What's taking so long.” When we got to the yard, the neighbor’s eight year old daughter looked up from her game and whisper to a friend “Look she took Kima for a walk.” With Kima back indoors I resumed my trip to Avery’s and my walk was saved.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Make It Monday

Last winter in the midst of Christmas shopping and New Years resolution making, I noticed a trend on many of the DYI sites and craft blogs I visit of making pledges and packs to create gifts, buy homemade, boycott mass produced stuff and malls for a seasons or year. The best example is the Homemade Pledge, which states: “I pledge to buy handmade this holiday season, and I request that others do the same for me.”

The pledge got me thinking…I could do that. I could give a homemade gift to my friends and loved ones. Not only could it be homemade, it could be hand crafted by me. By mid February I had decided, this Christmas I would made everyone’s gift. It was a great idea when Christmas was months away. I think I was delusional-ly positive, at the moment I am not so sure it can happen. I have 16 projects on the go and only 36 days before Nanowrimo starts. That isn’t even the biggest issue. I have three wonderful male cousins and no idea what to make them. Now of my ideas seem right. Any manly suggestions for a suitable project?

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Food Friday: On Saturday

The menu planning I started last month has been a huge help to my eating, spending, and cooking habits. The time taken to sit down and plan has been worthwhile. The struggle is that when I sit down to choose the weeks meals I can’t think of any food options. My plans have lacked a variety of dishes.

So I am moving into phase two of the menu planning process. Sunday is now my new recipe trail day. Tuesday and Thursday are quick meals like take out or pizza. Saturday is about the leftovers leaving Monday, Wednesday, and Fridays undecided. I am trying to make a list of favorite dishes to rotate on those days. Still making the list of what those dishes will be.

What are meals/dishes would you put on the list?

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for those who listen to me when I am hurt, frustrated, and not thinking clearly. I am not sure how I would have got through the week without them.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Just A Month Away!

Nanowrimo is just around the corner. It’s the challenges 10th anniversary and you can be part. Between now and November 1st anyone (over the age of 13) can sign up to participate in this years writing frenzy. I know it seems daunting but the founders always assure this is about word quantity not quality. The time pressure actually helps all the novel dreams to finish a story with a decent first draft. Check it out: Nanowrimo.

The Second Spiderwick Writing Activity: Imagine you had a Seeing Stone or goblin-spit in your eyes and could see the world of the faeries like the Grace kids? Would you go on wild adventures too? What kindof magical creatures would you discover? What kind of mysterious places would
you find? Write about what your life would be like if you could see all the magic happening around but no else could. Would you tell your friends or would you keep it a secret?

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Final Day

I am continually amazed with how fast a month goes by. You blink and a month has gone by. I feel like it is the first week of September and I still have time to get into the fall groove, that worry about October’s fall can wait because it is still weeks away, and I am just starting the veggie challenge. I am delusional. The kids are back in school and the groove might actually be a rut, the fall festival plans are two weeks behind, and today is the last of my 30 day be a vegetarian challenge. Where did September go?

I enjoyed the vegetarian experience. It was fun. I liked the meatless recipe books I discovered at the library. I am still finding new books with cool dishes to try. I learned that I do like hummus, not all vegan meat substitutes are gross (but some are), and I still dislike tofu (but I am willing to try a different brands and types in the future). I haven’t decided if I’m going to remain vegetarian in the coming days or not. It’s become a struggle. Tomorrow won’t be different then the past month, I am not going to run out and order Wendy’s Baconator at 12:00:01. I am expecting most of my meals will continue to be meatless but I haven’t decided if all will. I still really *miss* having meat in my diet. There are also other food issues I am finding I am more passionate about like eating locally grown foods. Well, my tummy is growling I am off to make pasta.

Final thought AJ’s warning about needing to find a variety of favorite dishes was 100% true. Anytime I was in a rush, lazy, or behind on making my menu plan I had pasta with a veggie sauce. Over a longer period of time I would hate my favorite food.

Good-bye Veggie Month


Insert crave *here*

Monday, September 29, 2008

Make It Monday: PlayMais

Have you heard of PlayMais before? I hadn’t, till I was visiting my friends the O’Connors. Kim had bought the pirate set for her three year old son Timothy. He was so excited to make crocodiles and treasure chests. The stuff is great and simple to use. It only takes a little water to stick the foam like pieces together. Once wet the playmais is stuck stronger than glue. Together we made a whole imaginary world for ships, islands, parrots, and pirates. Here are a few of the things:


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Thankful Thursday

It was a rough day so I took a poll.

Here are things to be thankful for:

-Bear (the dog)
-Rock Band
-Playstation 3
-Roommates
-Birthday Breakfasts
-Sleep

What would you add to the list?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Nano Countdown: 37 days

I had an epic dream last night. It was amazing; there were spells, a daring rescue, tribes, and a lair. I woke and thought, “Hey, this could be my Nanowrimo story.” I was going to write it down, or at least the main point, when I look at the time and realized I had over slept. I jumped out of bed, changed, feed the cats, and dashed off to the church. Now it late afternoon and all I remember of the dream is that it was movie like and I felt super creative. It would have made a great story.

Even without the dream I am pressing on. Nanowrimo will be here before we know it and this year I will be ready. The rules state that you can’t begin writing till 12:00:01 am local time November 1st. But they also state, “Outlines and plot notes are very much encouraged, and can be started months ahead of the actual novel-writing adventure. Previously written prose, though, is punishable by death.”

While looking up something else online today, I found seven creative writing assignments for children on the Spiderwick Chronicles site. They sound pretty fun. I’m going to try the first one tonight. If it works out I might even use it as background history in the novel.

Activity 1: In The Field Guide, the Grace children find suggestions on how to prove that a brownie is lurking about (sprinkle flour on the floor to look for footprints) and how to repel faeries (wear red). Write your own methods for catching and/or repelling mischievous magical critters. Be sure to use your imagination and be creative. For even more fun, draw a picture of the creatures that you met.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Food Friday

Traditionally “food” hasn’t been a subject I thought about. If asked I could give a ice breaker answers to my favorite foods, my choice of last meal, or food I would be willing to eat every day. But to think about food, what was there to think about? I would never have thought about blogging about it, maybe sharing a good recipe or restaurant experience but not a post about food. What is there to say about food?

I started rethinking my food habits earlier this year while reading the 100 Mile Diet: A Year of Local Eating (the US edition is called Plenty: One Man, One Woman, and Raucous Year of Eating Locally, it also has different cover art). If I didn’t post about it when I finished reading it, I loved the book. I loved how both authors wove their lives into each chapter while sharing their challenges eating locally grown food. You can learn more about their site at 100milediet.org

After finishing I began reading Plant, Animal, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver (with Steven L. Hopp and Camille Kingsolver). The concept was the same; eat locally grown foods for a year. It was interesting but a slower read, the library due date came and went and I was only half through it. I plan to sign it out again and finish it some day. What interesting to me while the topic was same they presented a whole new look at the topic and issues.

Then last month, Jessica got me thinking about what I eat, how North America farms, and vegetarianism. To the point I am day 19 into a 30 day vegetarian challenge. What I've learned is that there is more to food than just eating. Leads me to a question for you the reader:
When buying food what do you care about most?
Freshness
Cost
Locally grown
Organic
Health issues/benefits
Vegetarian/vegan choices
Convenience
Other
Free polls from Pollhost.com



If you said “other” please leave a comment explaining your choice. Thanks!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Youth ministry is going really well. I feel encouraged. The leaders involved are my heroes. And I am thankful that God answered my prayer and got me through the lesson even with me still being sick.

God is so cool like that.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Make It Monday: Knitting Ideas

Neither Monday nor Tuesday went as I had planned. I’ve come down with some type of head-cold that is going around the area. I’ve been drinking my mom’s favorite miracle medicinal solution –flat ginger ale. But I had to skip the chicken noodle soup. What do vegs eat when they are sick?

If I had of been able to post on Monday I would have shared this cool knitting site I found, Meta Post Modern Knitting. It has trends, patterns, a blog, and great links. There are a few different patterns I’d like to try. I just need to finish the two projects I currently have on the go.

Also for knitting fans, I strongly recommend reading Stephanie Pearl-McPhee’s books. I finished reading “Things I Learned from Knitting” last night. It was a very humorous look at the crazy hobby we enjoy and the lessons it can teach.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Six

1) We started a new Sunday morning children’s ministry program and curriculum. It follows a multimedia large group small group format. There were still a few kinks to work out after last week. We didn’t do a big kick off or launch. I spent the afternoon today working through the PowerPoint and other elements of tomorrows lesson.

2) I have finished watching every Battlestar Galatica I could find…I want more. There are too many unanswered questions. Sadly the next episodes won’t be released till 2009.

3) I began and finished reading Remember Me? by Sophie Kinsella (also wrote the shopaholic series) yesterday. It was chick lit. but it didn’t feel like click lit. Lexi the main character wakes up from a car accident forgetting the last three years of her life. She finds herself a completely different person married to a multimillionaire but no clue who he is or how her became this Cinderella, and she discovers everything isn’t what it seems…I liked it a lot. It was a nice junk food read.

4) The youth group had a golf tournament fundraiser today. It was well done, organized, and successful. The youth had roles, the golfers enjoyed themselves, and lunch was amazing. The best thing, the idea, planning, and executing was all done by two of the adult youth leaders. It was their baby and they rocked it (wow that sounded cheesey). They are my heroes!

5) The amazing golf lunch was an all out turkey dinner…I was in the church all morning as they prepared. Today has been the hardest day as a vegetarian yet. I am not sure if I am really up for this lifestyle change. The turkey smelt so good. I had carrots, corn, peas, and mashed potatoes (no gravy) for lunch…but of how good the turkey smelt. They were also lots of leftovers. I have a huge pot of carrots, corn, and peas to take home. There is almost enough to last me a month; if only it would last that long.

6) I watched part of a football game this evening; it was between the two high schools our youth group kids attend. I cheered for the underdogs. When I left at half time the score was 14 to 0. There seems to be a lot of waiting in football.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Food Friday

I have good friends, great friends. Two such great friends are Kim and Brent. This couple invites me into their homes, shares meals with me, and talks about every subject under the sun. They have introduced me to new foods, hobbies, board games and ideas. I love spending a late night playing Settlers with them. On one such occasion the conversation of favorite beverage came up. I shared my deep love for Fanta Pineapple with them. This was a while back. Recently, the same night as the husk tomato adventure, they bring out a bottle of pineapple Crush. They saw it at a convenient store and thought of me. It is not exactly the same as Fanta’s version but it is still pretty fantastic.

What’s your pop (soda) of choice?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for simple surprises like a friend dropping by my office with tea. I am thankful for honest conversations on complex topics. I am thankful for things that seem wrong going better than expected. I am thankful for this day.

It is a good day.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Storytelling

Fifty-one days till NaNoWriMo, the write a novel (of 50,000 words) in a month challenge begins. I got a story idea this week that is getting me excited to write again. Plots and characters have been filling my mind since December 1st 2008, the day after last years challenge ended. But I decided this year not to tell anyone anything about my story before it was on paper. Last year I found the details I had already shared out loud harder to write. I hope the secrecy helps the creative juices flow. So far so good, I even have a title…but you have to wait till November for it to be unveiled.

I began watching season four of Battlestar Galatica today. I’m still loving the series. There are so many aspects I enjoy and respect. I tried to sit down and reason through what I liked about it. My list so far is:
-The characters are whole and complicated. They make good and bad choices. Some times the hero of one episode will disappoint you in the next.

-The plot is appealing. Post-apocalypse, who hasn't wondered what they would do or how they would survive.

-The twists and surprises and not just because they are unexpected but because some times it’s the exact opposite of what I want to happen…makes things interesting, like the end of the mini series when cylon No. 8 was revealed or the events on New Caprica.

So here is a question, what are your favorite stories and why?

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Cat Tales

Mid July we (mom was visiting) noticed that both Inu and Kima were having some health issues. I got some meds from the vet which helped one of the problems. Then talked to other cat owners and decided to change their food. The troubles went away. Kima has become picky this week and not really eating the change so I’m mixing a higher priced brand in with the meow mix. Got me curious, what do other cat owners fed their pets?

Monday, September 08, 2008

Make It Monday: A Terrarium

After killing yet another plant last month I was ready to give up on the green thumb thing. Then saw a Thread Banger video on terrariums posted last week. I decided to give growing things one more chance. The supplies were easy to gather: a large cookie jar, aquarium stones, carbon used in fish filters it was suppose to be charcoal but the carbon was the best I could find, potting soil, and plant.




And this is my finished terrarium, the ornamental pepper that I bought was larger than the jar I bought. I’m looking for some smaller plants that will fit better.

Day 8: I was finally able to upload the pictures of husk tomatoes.

My first week as a veg is over. I’m still liking it, missing bacon, but finding it an ongoing adventure. Yesterday I ate at Brent and Kim’s, they made meatless lasagna. They are making it easier at discovering new veggie recipes.

I had a good veggie surprise today, my neighbor knocked on my door today to give me fresh tomatoes from their garden. She also let me know I could pick blueberries off their bushes. I’ve lived here two years and had no idea there were blueberries on the property. I picked a whole huge bowl, they are very yummy. Some will be for snacks but I’m freezing half.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Food Friday: Food Discovery

Breaking News: Thank you everyone who shared your concern about my cat. Inu came home this morning. I think he was hiding out at the neighbors place. He seems to like them more than me…maybe they have better cat food. I am just glad to know he is safe.

Earlier this week Kim and Brent introduced me to husk tomatoes this week. We took a great picture of the bucket of tomatoes but for some strange reason my computer won't read my camera or let me upload the pictures. I found a great picture on Alejna's website Collecting Tokens. The balloon like husk pulls back to reveal a tiny, green tomato smaller than a cherry tomato. They are very yummy, I would describe the taste as berry sweet, very little reminds us of tomatoes. I really enjoyed them.

Fun Food Fact: Did you know that tomatoes are really a berry? I didn’t; this neat tidbit was found on this tomato filled fact page. You learn something new every day.

Day 5: I had lunch at Tim Horton’s today. The veg options were limited to bagels, a hearty vegetable soup, and a veggie sandwich. I went with the sandwich; they put lettuces, tomato, cucumber and cream cheese on it. Who ever heard of putting cream cheese on a sandwich? It tasted fine but felt wrong. Supper tonight I’m trying a frozen veggie pizza.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I didn't want to get out of bed today. I wanted to just stay in bed and hide from the world. Nothing bad has happened, there is no crisis, no disastrous situation, I just wanted to give up. It is the same numb feeling that led me to type a three word post “I am lost” in the past. The feeling has been creeping up on me all week. In the midst of it I called a dear friend…it was wonderful. After we hung up my mom called…it was wonderful.

Today I am thankful for the invention of the telephone.

Day 4: I have a new veggie challenged. Thursday is normally a rushed take-out night because of youth. Tonight there was even more to do because I had a extra person to pick up. I ended up buying a salad from Sobeys. What other ways can a veg eat on the go? I don’t want to have a salad every Thursday night.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Two for the Price of One

Ever have a moment when a conversation, book, or observation sends your brain thinking in two opposite directions. It’s a common occurrence in my head. I find it most frustrating when the ideas are connected to something I want to post. So instead of trying to weave the unrelated ideas together I’m just going to post them both. Today you’re getting two thoughts on the topic of “reality shows.”

1) I like most reality shows. This could comes from living in TP for two years in college. The lounge TV was most commonly set on TLC. Hours were spent watching “What Not To Wear,” “Trading Spaces,” and the baby story, dating story, wedding story, proposal story, and on and on.

Since college I’ve been introduced to UK reality shows like the original trading spaces, “Super Nanny” and “How Clean is Your House.” I have to day the UK’s reality shows are better than ours. They have better concepts, better hosts, and better episodes. Even when the same person is a part of the American counterpart I still prefer the UK version. I wonder why? It might just be the accents but I doubt it.

2) I've been watching "How Clean Is Your House?" Which got me asking myself, “Do the people really change?” The earliest episodes had the two clean queens visit the house one year after they had “helped” grim offenders start over. The houses and owners had resumed their pervious states, neither had really changed. The next few episodes had the ladies visit after a month. The house was mostly clean but the dishes were piling up, the sinks weren’t as shiny, and the clutter was growing. Then the show started visiting after two weeks. The house was still beautifully clean. The show ends with a warm fuzzy feeling that we can break bad habits because people do change. If change happens it would have to takes more time a one day clean sweep. Can people break habits and if so how do they really change?

Day 3: Becca and I shared a huge plate of veggie nachos for a late supper. The meal was yummy but I was sad I couldn’t order potato skins…they are covered in bacon.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Cat Tales: The Cat Came Back

I’m worried about Inu. Both my kitties have become outdoor cats. They come in to eat, some times stay for some cuddles or a nap. Then they are at the door wanting let out to explore the world. Saturday night I let both Inu and Kima out; Inu hasn’t come home. I miss my cat.

In other cat news: Kima and I have a new obsession. Drum roll please:

Battlestar Galatica!


It’s amazing, wonderful, brilliant, fabulous and amazing, wait I’ve already used amazing. The show is an excellent drama and it's in my favorite genre sci-fi. And yes, it is really more my obsession than hers. But since Friday night she has sat through all of the mini series, season one, and most of season two with me. There were a few times I think she took a cat-nap but for the most part she was either crawling on me or sitting somewhere close by. Which I think is great because she is normally anti-cuddles. Battlestar has brought us together

Day 2: Kim and Brent invited to join them at Pizza Delight. This was my first “I’m a vegetarian eating out” experience. The store just started a new pasta menu that looks wonderful; the chicken-something yummy-bacon-pasta almost tempted me. But I went with an even better choice “Chunky Vegetable Greek” pizza. It was so good, who knew I liked Greek pizza.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Vegetarian for a Month

Starting today I am following a vegetarian diet for the next thirty days. For those who have concerns about vegetarian diet not providing all the bodies’ nutritional needs please do not worry; I’ll be following a form of lacto-ovo vegetarianism. I won’t be eating meat, poultry, or fish but I am still including eggs and dairy in my meals. I’ve also been reading many guides, cookbooks, and nutritional plans to help prepare for this transition. I am making a 30-menu plan that will have a variety of foods that provide the essential nutrients. Truth is, I will be eating better the next thirty than I normally do.

There are a number of different reasons someone would choose to be a vegetarian. The big ones I’ve found were a love for animals and/or a desire to need animal cruelty, health issues, and a way to protect the environment. My reason is some what smaller, my friend Jessica asked me to try it. Jessica were friendly acquaintances in college, through blogging I believe we’ve become friends, we both similar loves and interests, and last year she joined me in the insane pursuit of nanowrimo. Thirty days without meat wasn’t too much to give up for a friend. And so it begins…

Supper Day 1: Spaghetti with mushrooms and green pepper sauce.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Make It Monday: Make It Organized

I’ve been working on being organized this year. I started with my office at the church. It was a long process. I didn’t think to get a before transformation picture. So I made a floor plan and took pictures in mid-cleaning process.
I half to give a special thanks to my mom who helped me go through the last few piles which had seemed impossible to sort through.

Here it is my office today: