Archive | April, 2016

Happy Birthday, Trish

30 Apr

heart-shaped-fluffy-cloudBlog Post #21

A friend of mine passed away on Sunday, April 10th. She was 51. Trish was a beautiful person, funny, passionate and kind. Read her eulogy here.

One of Trish’s good friends, Joanne, started a Facebook conversation— “Acts of Kindness For Trish’s Birthday”. With these words, Joanne invited us to join her: In honour of Trish’s birthday on Thursday, April 28 let’s use a piece of our love for her to do a random act of kindness in her memory. I am excited to see what everyone comes up with.

This was an especially sweet way to remember Trish, as she loved the concept of random acts of kindness and regularly sought out opportunities to carry out good deeds.

Soon there were many people eager to participate and the kindness began to flow. Below are some of the RAOK that were done in remembrance of our friend.

First RAOK for Gary and me today…bringing flowers to Trish’s favourite librarians—Amy, Susan and Irene

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My son Michael took a granola bar for his friend

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My first random act was simple early this morning, I took my neighbour’s garbage bin back up to his house. For my second random act, Yesterday we were gifted a position in a camp for Darren, so we offered to split the registration fee for one of Darren’s friends to join the camp. I look forward to more random acts of kindness throughout the day.

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I paid for the people behind me at Tim Hortons!

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I just put our neighbour’s green can away. They are on vacation, but said there is nothing we needed to do for them. I also made a point of giving a big wave to another neighbour who has been ornery to us and some of our other the hood.

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I bought two small pots of mums for our new neighbours. I was so happy that I was able to “sneakily” leave them on their doorstep.

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While I was at the printers picking up LMCA newsletters a gentleman came in and gave the ladies working there a generous gift card for something. They were thrilled… I secretly hoped the guy was part of this chain.

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I have been especially kind and friendly to a difficult coworker — and I gave a man on the street today my change, he said thanks without looking up and so I said, “hey,”and he looked at me, then I looked him in the eye and with love in my heart said, “I hope you have the best day possible.

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I am making dinner for my neighbour tonight. She will join our family so she isn’t by herself tonight. Love the spreading of Trish’s love.

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I gave my neighbour, a Dad of four (4th is a girl…finally! And only a few weeks old) a beer as he sits watching his littles play.

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Just got back from cleaning for a friend who is out of town. She will be surprised!

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Some sweetie left me a gift certificate for a pedicure on my porch this afternoon!

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I noticed a neighbour has been posting quite a lot about feeling low, I decided to leave a cheer-me-up on her doorstep. (Please don’t rat me out if you know her)

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I sent a 4 month birthday gift to the daughter of my assistant who is on maternity leave. My assistant, her daughter and myself were all born on December 28th. Coincidently while digging through our paperwork I noticed on my birth certificate that I was baptized on April 28. Some kind of karmic symmetry?

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My first RAOK was flowers for a coworker going through a rough time so I snuck back into work tonight. My second RAOK was going to buy someone’s coffee at Starbucks but I came across a homeless man with a dog in the parking lot so I bought him dinner and bought a bag of dog food for his dog. It wasn’t anonymous but it felt good.

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Hi Everyone, I have LOVED reading everyone’s accounts. Wouldn’t Trish just be tickled??? Here’s my story. I used to donate blood regularly, but stopped about 3 years ago with the flimsy excuse that, after the clinic moved, it was “too far to go”. I’m sure you all know that Trish was a dedicated blood donor until her diagnosis. So I decided I would resume donating blooding in her honour. I went today but wasn’t able to donate due to being in Mexico recently (malaria risk). Disappointing! But then while driving home, I thought about someone who experiencing a pretty deep depression right now. I made a slight detour and surprised her with a hug. We made a date to go for a walk together in a week.

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Julia’s RAOK was to invite a girl she didn’t know to sit with her in HACE today. She was looking very sad and dejected as she had no friends and everyone was saying ‘this seats taken’. Julia said it made the girl smile when she invited her to sit with her.

Hannah’s RAOK was 1) to help a friend in math class today and 2) help an 80 year old lady pick up her keys that she had dropped and was struggling to reach

My RAOK today: I let several drivers merge, turn in front of me, go in slow traffic and I received plenty of smiles/waves for this. I also ‘filled the buckets’ of several students today who I work with in reading club — doling out compliments of what I loved, what they improved best at, and congratulated them when they remembered how to pronounce a really difficult word. I also wrote a thank you email to Julia’s chiropractor for pushing me to get her eyes checked. Thanks to her we avoided a potentially very serious medical/eye condition. She talked to me about it twice and even called me after hours with her concerns if what it could be.

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Ok, my RAOK was I bought a coffee card punch pass at the College cafeteria and anonymously paid for the next four coffee purchases.

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On the blood donation theme, blood services called last week and as I was letting the call go to voicemail I thought of Trish, picked up the phone, and ended up donating last Thursday night.

I had hoped the kids were going to randomly clean areas of the house…maybe next year!

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Today, I went to see a friend, Helen, who has a market garden store. I had not been to the store since last Fall. This is where I buy my farm fresh eggs. I took her some egg cartons. As I was leaving, to my surprise, she gave me a chocolate bar! Her special act of kindness to me!

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I worked very late today and didn’t get around to very much, but I did bring in some eggs for a coworker today. She is a quiet woman and I don’t know her that well. This was a good ice breaker and she seemed pleased. The chief at the reservation where I work is not very mobile so I brought a coffee to him today. I do that almost every day, though… and he’s technically my boss so this could be interpreted as brown-nosing. That’s the best I could muster up I’m afraid. I have enjoyed reading everyone’s contributions.

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One last one from my household… my Alicia put a trail of her jelly beans in my bedroom on the floor leading to a note saying I love you. She’s not prone to demonstrative acts! Made my sleep better!

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I am admitting I struggled with this a bit – my first time officially doing RAOK. I was super busy at work yesterday, my coworkers didnt need anything that I could see. There was a homeless man hanging around our buildings (city facilities) but I wrestled with not encouraging him to hang about our family facilities, and each time I thought about it he had moved on. I ended up by putting away the garbage bins of the nice people across the street when I got home from work. I did go for a morning walk earlier this week (instead of sitting on the couch) and smiled and said good morning to each person I passed by. Only one out of the half dozen refused to acknowledge me. I will continue with this, and at least this has me thinking hard about the concept.

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I thought of Trishie all day. I did a few minor RAOK throughout the day. At 6pm last night my friend, who’s hubby started chemo on Thursday, called to thank me for the red envelope… I said not me, and she said ‘You did a random act on me, you goof”—so I will take it, lol! Thank you, Trish, for making me look good. I believe!

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It was also a struggle for me to do a RAOK, because I wanted to truly honour Trish. I am a teacher, so I tried to have all my interactions with the school community be ROAK but I should do that every day so I felt I was cheating a bit. Then I found a wallet at a restaurant. I felt like Trish gave me a little nudge and said keep ROAKing everyday.

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I watched a guy drop a $5 bill today and chased him down to return it. He was so thankful! I told him if it’d been $100 I might not have been so generous!

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Even though I do RAOK throughout my day, most days I’ve never really aware of it. Love, love, love, this post. Hope we can make it an annual event!

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Big hugs to all of you. I think Trish would be so happy and honoured to have all this kindness shared because of her! ~ Joanne

This was a beautiful tribute and I was honoured to be included. Thank you, Joanne, for initiating this project and thank you to everyone who participated! I’m sure that this project will inspire many to perform random acts of kindness every day.

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #21

Brynne's Daily Drawing #21

Only the Lonely

29 Apr

(My daily blog posts were interrupted by  a family crisis. I am continuing on my blog post a day with this one —18 days later.}

Blog Post #20

forest1We were sitting in the hospital room, laughing, telling a joke — it was funny. We were having a moment of levity, one of the few in an anxious week. We were waiting — waiting for test results to come in, waiting to be moved to a different room, waiting for the doctors to figure out what was going on with my daughter. My two girls and I, giggling with each other — I don’t even remember what we found so hilarious. My husband had escaped us for a bit of quiet, he had slipped out to the ward lobby to read a few pages of his book in peace.

One of the hospitalists came in — she was young, sweet, conscientious — and a favourite of my daughter. We paused at her entrance, expectantly, hoping for answers — good answers. She began to speak — she had looked at the MRI, it showed something unexpected — it looked bad…she stated  the dreaded word — CANCER.

My world collapsed. Just like that.

I heard her voice as if she were in a tunnel — my heart dropped into my belly, I couldn’t see — I felt as if I would start to scream, rant, faint… I suddenly realized that my husband wasn’t there and it was crucial that he be there, that he hear these words, witness our destruction.

That day was bad…

That is an understatement — it was the worst day…

I felt everything change — colours dimmed, time slowed — I felt emptied out, hollow, one-dimensional — I was devastated, afraid, hopeless, lost and alone.

My heart was in my throat, I could feel it beating — it hurt — a deep, plunging, aching hurt. I couldn’t fathom it, I couldn’t think — my brain was frozen — I had no thoughts, just feelings.

The following 24 hours was a quieter extension of that worst day. The deepest emotion I felt, was loneliness. It was surprising, since I was surrounded by people who loved me — my husband, both of my daughters, many, many friends who wanted nothing more than to wrap me in tender embraces of comfort and support.

I felt alone, a deep loneliness — a quiet, dark, numbing pain. A gaping void engulfing my entire being.

I failed to understand how the world kept turning, how people could be walking about, not realizing the utter uselessness of the intricacies of life. I felt like I was made of stone   — cold and heavy.

Alone. I realized that I had never truly experienced loneliness. THIS was loneliness — the feeling that no one could comprehend the depth of my despair. THIS was loneliness — the hopelessness that I could not even begin to express. The weight that restrained my ability to accept the comfort, love, and support that was offered — the wretched feeling that I was lost, lost to everyone around me.

Lost. Alone. Lonely.

Then numbness — for five long days — I hid the loneliness behind an encompassing numbness that allowed me to function, comfort my daughters and my husband, smile — even laugh. A numbness that protected my heart, my soul.

But we were lucky — my daughter was lucky — after her surgery, a miracle. Her mass was pronounced benign. The relief was immediate — I felt a burst of joy and gratitude as I hugged the doctor tightly.

But the loneliness lingered — I felt strange — it still feels strange. My world has changed, has shifted a little out of balance.

It has been 11 days now, since we received the good news (although, we are still waiting for the final pathology report) and I am slowly returning to normal, my world regaining its equilibrium. My girl is healing, recovering quickly and getting stronger each day. I am eternally grateful for this.

I know I will be okay. I am forever changed by this experience, but I am coming back into myself. The loneliness is receding, fading and I know that eventually the feeling will be gone. I will be left with a new understanding of what loneliness, heartbreak, hopelessness, and potential loss really mean.

There is the solitude of suffering, when you go through darkness that is lonely, intense, and terrible. Words become powerless to express your pain; what others hear from your words is so distant and different from what you are actually suffering. ~ John O’Donohue

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #20

Brynne's Daily Drawing #20

 

 

Learning to Play the Waiting Game

11 Apr

Blog Post #19

I am learning to play the waiting game.

Sitting in a hospital, watching nurses, orderlies, assistants, doctors bustling through the wards. Checking in on patients, carrying clipboards, stethoscopes, wearing gloves, sometimes masks. Speaking in those quiet, hospital tones. While we sit and wait. Watching our sweet girl sleep fitfully on the narrow bed with the rails up. The monitor showing data from the wires hooked up to her chest, her finger. Worrying…

The waiting game.

The doctor has ordered more tests: CT scan, bloodwork, urine sample, blood pressure taken, temperature taken, checked her urine output. The nurses check her IV, answer questions with vague, positive  words, wheel her to her next test. She’ll be back soon, the results will be back soon, the doctor will be back soon.

The waiting game.

It seems like time is ticking by so slowly — we wait to find out answers — why is our girl sick, what is wrong? How can she be fixed when no one knows.

Even when there are answers, more questions arise — “once we have the CT done, we will know more” When the bloodwork comes back, we will know more. MRI will tell us more…

The waiting game.

At least, it seems like a waiting game to me. I want all the answers right now. I want my daughter to be dancing around my living room, singing loudly, chattering on about inane things, anything. I don’t want to play the waiting game.

I take a deep breath, I read (again) the texts and emails from friends sending me and my daughter heartfelt messages of strength, comfort, love.

And I look again at the nurses, orderlies, assistants, doctors bustling through the wards. Checking in on patients, carrying clipboards, stethoscopes, wearing gloves, sometimes masks. Speaking in those quiet, hospital tones. But now I see, them reassuring family and patients, bring ice chips, warm blankets, pain meds, easing pain and fears. Tending to needs. Care giving.

Pink Flower

I may be waiting, but that doesn’t mean that they are waiting. They are doing.

So I will learn to play the waiting game.

I will wait for test results, tests to be done, meds to be brought, pain to be relieved.

And while I am waiting:

I will notice the extra care the nurses show when they patiently listen to my questions. I will hear their soothing answers, telling me as much as they can.  I will appreciate the time the doctor takes to make sure we understand the processes, the results, the next steps. I will see the assistants carefully moving patients in and out of room with smooth, practiced movements. The orderlies who bring the meals. The cleaners that keep the halls and rooms immaculate. I will reassure my daughter that everything will be all right, that she is well taken care of, that things are happening as they should.

I will give thanks that my daughter is in good hands and is receiving excellent care. I will be grateful that my friends and relatives are wrapping us in loving thoughts of comfort, healing and strength. I will add in my fervent prayers to theirs.

I will wait.

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #19

Brynne's Daily Drawing #19

 

 

Why Should I Be Thankful?

10 Apr

Blog Post #18

Today was a difficult day.

My friend, Trish, passed away early this morning — it’s so sad but a blessing as well, because she is no longer in pain or suffering. I am saddened by her passing. I will miss her. Thinking about her family and friends and the grief they are now experiencing is hard.

Then this afternoon, we had to take our daughter to emergency as she became severely dehydrated from a stomach flu. She has been kept overnight for rehydration, observation and tests.  We were there for hours before we left her there sleeping fitfully as we returned home tired and spent.

These two events made for a stressful and emotional day.

As I was sitting in the Care, Assessment and Treatment Zone (CATZ)  of the hospital, I watched all the people come and go — doctors, nurses, patients, relatives, friends — the place was busy with everyone going through various emotions, stresses and even surpisingly joys. This made me think of gratitude.

I am sad that my friend is gone leaving a hole in the hearts of those who knew and loved her — but I am forever grateful that she was in my life.

I am worried about my sweet girl lying in hospital bed tonight, but immeasurably grateful that we have access to excellent and affordable health care.

My worry lessened and my grief ebbed a little as I felt gratitude for everything in my life — good and bad. I was reminded  of the following quotes:

sunset

“Gratitude should not be just a reaction to getting what you want, but an all-the-time gratitude, the kind where you notice the little things and where you constantly look for the good, even in unpleasant situations. Start bringing gratitude to your experiences, instead of waiting for a positive experience in order to feel grateful.”Marelisa Fábrega

“If the only prayer you say in your life is thank you, that would suffice.”Meister Eckhart

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #18

Brynne's Daily Drawing #18

Back To Nature

9 Apr

Blog Post #17

Today was absolutely gorgeous! Blue skies, bright sunshine and a lovely summery feel.  A perfect day to get outside and enjoy some fresh air.

We ended up at Tynehead Regional Park — a beautiful 260 hectares of resplendent meadow and forest, a natural habitat for songbirds, owls, hawks, coyotes, beavers and other wildlife. The park is also home to the Tynehead Hatchery. Situated on the banks of the Serpentine River, the hatchery includes incubation and hatching tanks, a coho rearing  pond, and maturing tubs. Tynehead Hatchery is completely run by volunteers who maintain the facility year-round and release 250,000 salmon back into the river every year.

Coho Rearing Pond

Coho Rearing Pond

Serpentine River

Serpentine River

tynehead2

Serpentine River

This afternoon, walking around the park, exploring the hatchery, and taking photos,  I felt so  in tune with nature — soaking up the sun, the scents of the earth, the magnificence of the trees, and the delicate fragrance of the meadow flowers.

It was quiet, only the rustling of the leaves and the occasional trill of a bird broke the serenity of the trail. Some parts of this walk seemed other-worldly — lacy, mossy greenery dripping from gnarled and twisted branches; overhanging veils of moss cascading above the curving path. The quietude emanating a spiritual air.

Strolling through the park

Strolling Through the Park

towering tree

Towering Tree

Tynehead Regional Park

Tynehead Regional Park

Beautiful Red Cedar

Beautiful Red Cedar

When I am in the midst of nature, I feel a powerful sense of rejuvenation and an incredible joy fills my being.  Time seems to slow down and I feel my connection to all living things. I am awed and humbled by the full majesty of the world around me. I know with certainty that I belong here and am a part of everything I see. I am grateful for the quiet, the beauty, and the peace that is Mother Nature.

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #17

Brynne's Daily Drawing #17

 

 

 

20 Things You Would Never Guess About Me!

8 Apr

Blog Post #16

Seriously, why did I decide to do a blog post a day?? It’s HARD!!  So hard to come up with a new idea every day.

I read somewhere that lists are great things to post on a blog and today as we were on our way to visit Bruce’s mother, I had a brilliant idea — I would compile a list of 20 things that I love! When I got home and thought about it, the idea morphed into 2o things about me. I googled that title and found out it’s a thing. Of course it is! So much for original thought, right?

Well, the day is almost over, I only have about 15 minutes to publish this piece so I’m going with the list. Read below to discover 2o things about me — in no particular order.

1.  I love peanut butter and banana toast — I eat it at least once a week.

2. When I was six, I was upset with my mom for not naming me Jane.

3. My love affair with reading began as soon as I learned to read. Whenever my younger brother and I would go to the public library to check out books, I would take out as many as I could and make him carry them for me. I would be so excited about my books that I would sit down on the sidewalk and read one right there, while my brother waited for me to continue on our way home. As mad as he would be, he would never leave me. Could that be why he hates to read?

4. I love the song “Hello, It’s Me” by Adele — her voice — what else is there to say.

5. I have two cats — Phoebe and Tigger. Below is a photo of them when they were kittens. They are now 17 years old.

kittys

6. I love the colour lime green, but never wear it because I think it looks hideous on me.

7. When we were first married, my husband and I were both unemployed. I was secretly worried that we would become homeless people and having a full fridge made me feel safe and happy.

8. My mom loved to sew and she would make us matching “mother/daughter” dresses. I don’t think I appreciated that as much as I should have. I can still picture them in my mind today.

9. I love coffee especially made in a French press. My favourite café coffee is from JJ Bean — I drink more Starbucks coffee (my second choice), but that is because there aren’t any JJ’s near me.

10. I love the TV show iZombie, but I have never watched an episode of Walking Dead.

11. I used to think (feel) that I was 5’7, but I’m actually 5’4. I still get surprised when I realize that I am SHORT!

12. I love to sing and dance — but I’m terrible at both.

13. When we subscribed to the newspaper, I used to do the daily crossword. It was always a big thrill when I could complete the Saturday puzzle – it didn’t happen very often. The Saturday puzzle is always difficult!

14. I am named for both of my grandmothers, Katherine and Grace.

15. One of my pet peeves is when people don’t put their grocery carts in the cart stall properly. Honestly, people, how hard is it to walk your cart right into the stall and push it into the next cart. This is especially irksome to me at Costco, where sometimes the carts roll into the roadway.
shopping carts

16. The book club I belong to will celebrate its 20th anniversary this year. We read 10 books a year — we will have read 200 books when we meet in September!

17. I’m not a big drinker, but every now and then I love a nice glass of a robust, gutsy red – like Bishop Cellars 7 Deadly Zins.

18. I love a good bargain and when it’s bargain on shoes — well that’s heaven! My favourite shoe sale is Ronson’s Semi-Annual Every Shoe for $39.99 Sale!

19. When our daughters were young, we did a family art project every summer. One year when the girls were 8 and 11, the four of us (my husband included) sewed I Spy quilts.

20. Every year, at some point in the Christmas season, I watch Miracle on 34th Street (the original) and It’s A Wonderful Life — my all-time favourite Christmas movies. Every year, I cry watching It’s A Wonderful Life.

That’s my list — what’s on your list of Things I Don’t Know About You?

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #16

Brynne's Daily Drawing #16

 

Bonus Drawing!

Brynne's Daily Drawing - BONUS DRAWING!!

A Girl’s Gotta Eat

7 Apr

Blog Post #15

(This blog post is actually a review that I wrote on Yelp. I am reposting this article here, because, well, I’m a bit tired and a little lazy. But the sushi is worth a reblog!!! The restaurant is located at Strawberry Hill Shopping Centre – 122 – 12101 72nd Avenue, Surrey, BC)

Agedashi Tofu

Kami Sushi in Strawberry Hill is our favourite Japanese restaurant. We have been there several times and we have had an excellent experience every visit.

One recent Friday evening, (Friday is our usual date night – sometimes shopping, usually dinner, always Starbucks), we had a hankering for Japanese, so we made Kami our first stop.

We were met at the door by a smiling hostess who showed us to our table. The servers at Kami are always friendly and helpful. They are attentive without being intrusive, always ready to refill teacups and answer questions.

We decided to have a light meal. This time instead of ordering our usual fare — appetizer, two gourmet rolls, a side dish plus seafood udon — we chose three items to share: Agedashi Tofu, Sashimi, and Yaki Udon.

We were not disappointed — our dishes arrived in a timely manner, and they were elegantly plated — almost too pretty to eat (but we were hungry so had no problem digging in!).

The tofu dish was delicious — deep fried – but not greasy, crispy on the outside, delightfully hot and soft on the inside, served with a tasty house dipping sauce — this is one of my favourite ways to eat tofu. Definitely worth a try, if you like tofu or even if you have never tried it.

The sashimi came with two pieces of salmon and three pieces of tuna. The fish was fresh and had a nice firm texture. It was beautifully arranged on a bed of daikon and garnished with a single shiso leaf. And in a word…heavenly! (A note on the Shiso leaf — Shiso is the Japanese name for the herb, Perilla, a member of the mint family. I had never tried to eat a garnish before, but the leaf looked so inviting that I tore a tiny piece and tasted it. To my delight, it was piquant, a bit spicy with a unique, fresh flavour that is difficult to describe. I think it would add a delicious zest to any salad or vegetable dish. I hope that I can find a market that stocks this lovely herb!}

The Seafood Yaki Udon was excellently prepared, and mouth-watering. I loved the udon noodles, and the seafood in the mix was so delicious. I enjoyed this dish a lot, the only small criticism I have is that there could have been a bit more seafood. However, that may have been due to availability.

If you are looking for a great Japanese restaurant that specializes in Japanese fusion cuisine, try Kami at Strawberry Hill — I highly recommend it!

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #15

Brynne's Daily Drawing #15

Saying Goodbye

6 Apr

Blog Post #14

My friend is dying.

She is, at this very moment, in a palliative care ward, in a hospital, slowly leaving this world. She is surrounded by her loving family — husband, son, daughter, her parents, her siblings, her closest friends. They take turns sitting with her, speaking to her in reassuring tones, trying to ease her distress.

She is close to the end. Her “selfness” is fading. She is in distress — she senses something is very wrong, but she cannot discern what that wrongness is.

She is dying and those beside her and those of us who are holding her in our hearts, are waiting. Waiting for our dear one to be freed from pain and suffering. Waiting for her to find a blissful peace in the sweet release of death.

She was diagnosed with terminal cancer nearly three years ago. Then came chemotherapy, drug combos, and endless appointments, tests, more doctor visits and tears — a lot of tears.

She lived her life. She created things — artsy/crafty things. She had coffee and lunches with her friends. She celebrated her 50th birthday. She traveled with her husband and her family — trips to various points in Canada, mini vacations exploring the country — Quebec, Alaska, Haida Gwaii — enjoying it all, having fun. Living.

She came to bookclub. She shared with us, her experiences with the Disease. The changes her body was going through, her fears and her hopes. She told funny stories about it all — sometimes darkly humorous, but we all laughed — because they were funny. She helped us through the shock of her diagnosis, the curiosity of the medical protocols and procedures. She helped us come around to the realization that the truth was — she was dying.

We were there for her — we listened, we brought food to her house, we visited. We held her in our hearts and our arms. We laughed and were joyful. We grieved with her and for her. We cried with her and for her. We were thankful for every moment.

Now we are waiting. She has been in the hospital for six days now. Death will not be rushed. But we are praying for Death to come easy — to come swiftly — to come peacefully.

We are praying for Death to come.

We love you, Trish…

Sunlit Trees

If I Should Go
If I should go before the rest of you
Break not a flower nor inscribe a stone
Nor when I’m gone speak in a Sunday voice
But be the usual selves that I have known
Weep if you must
Parting is hell
But life goes on
So sing as well.
– Joyce Grenfell (1910-1979)

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #14

Brynne's Daily Drawing #14

Why I Love Ted!

5 Apr

Blog Post #13

These days when I feel sad or worried about the state of the world, I like to watch a TED Talk.

TED Talks — “ideas worth spreading” — are short, compelling  talks on widespread topics from activism to youth and everything in between. You can find everything you need to know about TED (including what the acronym stands for) on the organization’s website: TED Ideas Worth Spreading.

TED gives me hope about the future of our world . The short talks (usually under 18 minutes) amaze me with the exciting and innovation things that are happening around the world today, right this very minute. I am blown away by the inspiring individuals that present TED Talks.

Apples

In this talk that I am sharing here, Caleb Harper, director of CitiFARM at the MIT Media Lab, is shaping the future of farming with his development of  “food computers” which are connecting growers with technology with impressive results. My friend, Dani, from Yesterdays Garden would be thrilled to know that Harper has grown sauce tomatoes that haven’t been in commercial production for 150 years, in his computer farm!

Are food computers the answer to the growing global food shortage? Can technology feed the world? Watch this TED Talk — you just may be surprised at what you find out!

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #13

Brynne's Daily Drawing #13

I’m Watching An Animated Short — It Must Be Monday!

4 Apr

Blog Post #12

I love animated short films — it always amazes me how filmmakers can say so much, so beautifully, in under 90 minutes.

Today, as usual, I was scrolling through my Facebook news feed, reading articles here and there, learning what my friends were up to, laughing at all the funny things they posted and checking up on newsy items from around the globe.

One of my friends had shared a video of an animated short film that was posted by an entertainment FB page,  “Alternative Disney” The name of the page intrigued me as I have long had a love/hate relationship with Disney movies. (That’s a story for a whole other blog post!)

Curious, I clicked the link to watch the movie.

A Bit of Background:

This little film “The Present” was a thesis project by Jacob Frey at the Institute of Animation, Visual Effects and Digital Postproduction at the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg in Ludwigsburg, Germany. It was based on a comic strip by Fabio Coala.

“The Present” is a simple story about a boy who receives a gift from his mom, while he is engrossed in a video game. This short film is just a smidge over four minutes long, but it has a big impact. It has won over 50 film awards, including Best Short at the 2015 Filem’On-Festival in Brussels.

I recommend  keeping a box of tissues close at hand. Enjoy!

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Brynne’s Daily Drawing #12

Brynne's Daily Drawing #12

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