Archive for the ‘Blogging’ Category

h1

Reflections

May 28, 2012

Yes, on what I wrote last week…… saying I was looking at the bigger picture. Over the weekend and today I’ve been ruminating on the BIGGER picture and trying to get out of my own head a bit…. considering the fundamentals not the economics and conflicting b.s.

Loyalty, love, commitment, perseverance, unity, honour.

Now I feel a little ashamed of myself for having thought otherwise.

http://youtu.be/l99pFxUXsPQ

don’t look directly at the sun

One of these days I’ll get it right; one day at a time.

 

h1

Looking Up

May 6, 2012

Long time no see and all that. Truth is I think I’m becoming a Facebook addict. Way too much time checking in there.

But anyway I thought I’d check in and provide a quicky update as to changes to frame of mind and such. Due to a combination of a variety of factors I seem to have improved – somewhat to quite alot; depending on the day. Contributing factors include but aren’t limited to: compliance with taking meds as directed; increased physical activity (almost none to regular, light exercise); seasonal changes; slightly increased opportunities for socializing; proactive mental attitude and self monitoring; regular check-ins with my MD.

One other major factor was that job competition – it gave me something to invest time in, in a positive way. The focus and prep and anticipation was key for a while there. And I handled the outcome – placing second – pretty well. Had a few crumby hours there but that’s to be expected. Gotta say it’s difficult suiting up and going back to my regular job most days since. ūüė¶ But it pays some bills……

Lynda continues to go through periodic rough stretches in terms of dealing with Craig’s death. The second anniversary is coming up in another 7 weeks or so. It’s bloody torture for me in that I can’t assauge that grief or ‘make things better’ and go away like¬†some bad nightmare. It also seems that she is reluctant to be proactive in dealing with her grief as it’s another way in which she feels she would be¬†saying a final goodbye to him. She WANTS to hold on to him so she won’t consider counselling (group or one-on-one); or talk with other parents who have lost children via accidents or health conditions. Anyway, we have that coming down the pipe and I hope we can just quietly observe it this year without all his friends showing up and making a drunken circus¬†out of it.

 

h1

Bra Tree

March 9, 2012

The Power of PinkIn conjunction with raising awareness¬†and funds for¬†breast cancer research a couple of staff decided to do a bra donation drive. Those that aren’t in good repair get fully recycled and diverted from landfill. The ones in good shape are being shipped to Africa for distribution. There is also a money matching scheme which is dependant on the total weight of the donated bras. Word spread around town and the drive has been extended past this week for an additional two weeks. Just through word of mouth some women at¬†various large employers in the area have been networking and dropping off bags and bags of bras…… there are tons of them around now. This picture doesn’t do justice to the quantity of them.¬†Just goes to show the ‘Power of Pink’ and how one small idea can bring about positive¬†results.

Me?, you ask? This has been an incredibly busy week for me. I’ve been up early each morning with one thing or another scheduled to be done before heading off to work. Frankly, I’ll be glad when tonight’s¬†shift is over and I can get some rest. There were two visits to the Dr – one for my annual physical and one to check in re the anti-depressant dosage. We’re doubling up on dosage and checking back in a months time to see if there has been any discernible change.

I just returned from a union meeting which wasn’t too impressive. While our negotiators managed not to cave in on any concessions that management wanted we also didn’t make any gains. If we vote to¬†strike our foreign-owned company might just close the doors as they have done in Germany and France. Nice alternative, right?

One positive thing that has occupied about 8 or 10¬†hours of my time this week is re-writing my CV because my sister forwarded¬†a job posting to me for an Addiction Counselling position. The competition closes Monday evening so I’ve sweated bullets over this thing trying to get the best I’m able down on paper. I’d love to get back into the biz again. This position is a government job at the nearest ‘super-jail’. Woo-Hoo!! Good pay (more than double what I make now)¬†and loads of benefits, too! Shazzam¬†& Zoweee!!

Co-bra

Here’s a really bad shot of one of the gals at work. She broke her hand in a fall and when it was set it was at a right angle making it resemble a snake. Her sister got out her crafting supplies and added eyes and a tongue to complete the look. Snazzy, eh? The brown-skinned gal laughing in the background is my smoking buddy Sherry – sweet woman, she is.

We’re looking forward to having Owen with us for all or most of next week while he’s on March break. Lynda and I are brainstorming ideas to keep him occupied during his visit. We were talking about how when we were kids we were given a stick, a rock and a pack of matches and sent out to play. My, how things have changed.

Have a good weekend all. See you on the flip side.

h1

Marching In Like a Lion

March 1, 2012

so, it should go out like a lamb.

Fluffy Dusting

In the last 24 hours we’ve seen it all – high winds, heavy wet snow, sleet, freezing rain, rain and back to no wind and light fluffy snow. The driving has been fine as roads were just wet but I thought I’d be blown away walking between my car and the buildings on campus yesterday. Getting away from work last night was a bit of a chore¬†because it took a good 10 minutes of steady scraping to relieve¬†my windows¬†of their casing¬†of ice.

Hedge-a-snowy

This morning it is absolutely still with light snow drifting down…… silent and beautiful.

This morning didn’t get off to a good start though. I heard the phone ringing before I got out of bed and thought whatever it is will wait. It turned out to be a call from my¬†manager wondering where the keyset for my building might be. Yikes – turned out to be in my work pants pocket. So, I’ve made one trip to work and back already today; and extended apologies all round. I guess my record for perfection has taken a dent. ūüėČ

Time to get cleaned up and do it all over again.

 

h1

Happy Leap Day

February 29, 2012

Leap Day is sort of odd. I know the ‘why’ of it but to plunk an extra day into the year, once every four is strange to me.¬†This one is shaping up as a doozy. It is 10:30 a.m. and it was cold, windy and cloudy when I got up a couple of hours ago. Let the dog out, had a smoke, made coffee, had my cereal and I’ve been browsing around FaceBook, posting, sharing and commenting for an hour or so.¬†I break to make another cuppa and go out for another smoke and it’s snowing like 60 out there. Yowzah!! I still have about 3 hours to go before leaving for work so it could be an interesting drive getting there; nevermind getting home if this should keep up. Ah well, deal with it when the time comes.

Reflected Sunset '2'

I enjoyed a break from the routine last week at work as it was reading week for the students. It was only our most distant and international students who stayed around campus so there was very little foot traffic through my building after service hours were over. I was able to set up my mp3 player with it’s new external speaker to enjoy hours of glorious music. The speaker uses vibration resonance instead of the usual old cone tecknology – you set it on any solid surface (table top, counter)¬†and it uses that to resonate the sound. It is about 3 inches high and 2 in diameter; sounds great.¬†Here’s what¬†my 5 watt version¬†looks like:

Mighty_Dwarf

On a couple of nights I took along the new laptop and watched a movie or concert video. One was ‘A Prairie Home Companion’ based on the long running radio show of Garrison Keillor’s. It has a great ensemble cast including: Garrison Keillor, Lily Tomlin, Kevin Kline, Meryl Streep, Woody Harrelson, Lindsay Lohan, John C Reilly, Tommy Lee Jones and Virginia Madsen. I loved everything about it.¬†I didn’t often get a chance to listen to the radio show but always enjoyed it when I did. The movie portrayed it all very much as I had imagined it. ( a $3 bargain from the flea market – woo-hoo!)

The other movie I watched was one I downloaded via Torrent – ‘O Brother, Where Art Thou’ – the Coen brothers updated take on ‘Homer’ featuring George Clooney. A remarkable film in and of itself with a twisted storyline and great soundtrack produced by TBone Burnett.

Another evening was spent with David Gilmour at the Royal Festival Concert Hall (2002)¬†running through a variety of his and¬†Pink Floyd’s repertiore and a number of covers. Loverly stuff, really well presented and performed. It was a nice break while it lasted but the students are back this week so no more playing around and goofing off for me.

I’m back taking the occasional picture once again….. my eyes are coming alive.

Light-Washed Wall

Time for my final morning coffee and a puff. Hope¬†I don’t get blown away out there – it’s a wall of white hustling past the windows. Catch you on the flip side.

h1

Counting Down

December 20, 2011

Speechless Pause

Day by day we’re getting a little closer to Christmas and the end of another year. I just did a quicky browse through my posts for the year thinking I might re-post a few favourite pictures as a Top 10, or Top 5. Out of slightly more than 40 posts for the year I found only a few pictures I would put out there again. Is it because so few of them have people in them, I wonder? Less emotional connection perhaps. In any case I’ll try to pull a few together here and maybe post a couple that didn’t make it to the pages here. Lemme see:

Autumn Colours

Our four-legged Godsend, Milo.

Sunset Reflection

…a warm, bright place to work full of warm, bright people.

Mountain, Sun, Cloud

… a reminder of travels and the massive grandeur of nature.

I (heart) Tree

¬†I DO have a sentimental side…. see!

Caitlyn Isabel

A joyful addition to the family…. a wee, big¬†blessing.

Visual Impact

Ridge banked by cedar

Our two-legged Godsend, Owen. Lynda’s nightly phone buddy has helped her keep her sanity.

pox upon hand

There I think that should be about 10. I’m actually surprised there are that many that still stand up for me. I’m adding¬†one more (if I can find it) of the prettiest young lady I know.

Madison

 .. and the one fave lady in my life Рunfortunate about the hand / arm placement but it was to see her having such a good time.

Auntie Lynda; 4 nieces

¬†I’ll likely be back again before Christmas but just in case that doesn’t happen I’d like to extend my best wishes for a very happy Christmas season to everyone.

h1

Play of Light

November 2, 2011

Sunset Reflection

…on the building I work in.

Hawk Imprint

On Monday a hawk snatched a pigeon out of the air, dragged him around for awhile and then dined on it… to the interest of a gang of students waiting to enter their class from this hallway. Apparently during the chase the hawk slammed headlong, full force into this window. Gotta say he must have been in bad need of a bath because he left an awful lot of dust here. ‘That’s it – a bath and some aspirin for my headache… and maybe some Tums for my belly.’

h1

A Little Skywatch Friday

October 27, 2011

Now I haven’t contributed here for a long, long time so I’ve refreshed myself with the hows, the whys, and the rules. This post goes out to my blogbuddy Kel at xfacta¬†to whose gentle proddings I have succumbed. She’s a good lady. (oh, … and BTW, my most viewed post ever was one for Skywatch … let’s go for a record!)

So here I am about a 30 minute drive east of Toronto’s suburbs on the north shore of Lake Ontario. We had a gorgeous stretch of weather¬†a few weeks ago over our Thanksgiving weekend but since then (with the exception of a couple of hours on a couple of days) it has done nothing but rain with pretty much solid cloud cover. To whit:

cold front closing in

This one was taken while driving to work using my Samsung cellphone. The clouds looked to me like a wave breaking ashore.

Later on at work I got this one:

looking a little threatening

with the clouds glowering over the tops of¬†a couple of the university buildings. But just so you don’t think it has all been like that forever and a day (tho some days it has seemed like that) we also get a few patches like this:

a sunny autumn day

 Just for good measure Рlast month I was visiting my son and his family in Calgary AB and I took this one as we neared Banff on a wee day trip.

Mountain, Sun, Cloud

Thanks Kel for the nudge. Enjoy folks – be back sooner than later next time. (p.s. – you’ll notice there is a ‘word cloud’ on the right sidebar. There are half a dozen other posts under ‘clouds’. Feel free to browse.) And check out other folks Skywatch contributions too: LINK

 

 Skywatch Friday

h1

Thanks Ma

September 16, 2011

Strange Fruit

Due to the generosity of my mom, Mabel, I’m heading west to visit my kids at the end of the month. First I’ll be staying¬†with Sarah and Zeph in Vancouver for a few days. Then a quick hop over the Rockies to Calgary to meet my new grand-daughter Caitlyn & staying with Russ, Melissa and Madison.

Yeah, a couple of days after Caitlyn was born Mom said, ‘ You really ought to get on a plane and go meet her, you know.’ I just raised my open hands and shrugged… as in, ‘how is that to happen considering my bank balance?’ ‘Hell, I’ll send you; I’ll send you and Lynda, too.’ God, it’s nice to be related to someone who considers family connection to be so important. I’m honouring her offer and going while I can. Lynda won’t leave home and travel anymore so I’m going solo.

While in Vancouver I might try and hook up with an old friend I re-met recently via FaceBook. She was a server in a bar where I was a nightly regular when we were both in our early twenties. It would be good to get some face time and do some catching up over coffee or a meal. My friend is suffering in the mid to late stages of tick-borne Lyme Disease and any plans will have to be later on in the day. She says getting moving in the morning is the hardest thing she faces while waiting for her meds to begin to work.

It’s been a year since the kids and I were together – at Russ and Melissa’s wedding a year ago Labour Day weekend. Sarah and Zeph were there and of course the kids mom Vicki, my best ex-wife. A little earlier last summer Sarah had visited here for about a week on the occasion of my stepson Craig’s funeral. I’m really looking forward to checking out the changes in Zeph and Madison – at their young ages the changes over a year will be huge.

Late Bloomer

Once again, here it is Friday already and I’m glad it’s here. The strike action at my workplace continues and I’m finding that being around a bunch of anxious people for hours at a time¬†is making me just as anxious as them. Osmosis-like. It’ll be nice tonight to see them all out of the building and have the place to myself. Conger up a zen moment or two with a big ‘OMmmm’.

Tomorrow Owen and his father are coming for an overnight visit…. woo-hoo! Now that the weather has cooled off maybe we can go for another of our walking adventures. Something to look forward to. Last time Owen was out Lynda asked him if he knew what that high-pitched sound was. ‘Oh, that’s a cicada.’ “And how do you know that?”, asked Lynda. ‘Pops told me when we were out walking. They only do that once it hits 80 degrees, you know Gramma.” Such a good kid; listens too.

a skywatch for Kel

Gotta go Рadios. 

 

 

h1

Media Break

August 10, 2011

Swoosh

So,….. I haven’t been around again for a bit.¬†I find I’m getting really¬†tense so I’ve taken a bit of a break from the computer, TV news and the hard news at the front of the newspaper. Between wars, uprisings, financial meltdowns, factious politicians and their parties, yadda, scandals,¬†yadda, trials,…. I’ve had enough for awhile.

Feel free to share some good news. That’s all I want to hear about these days.

Into another memoir; this one called ‘Running With Scissors’ by Augusten Burroughs. I didn’t like the way it started off; the ‘voice’ it was written in but I’ve gotten used to it and am enjoying it now at about a quarter of the way through. (It sounded more like narrative fiction than personal reflection {to me}).

Work – Stayng at the same location but new shift hours beginning next Monday. See how that goes….

Previous workplace – They are to finally re-open the facility after Labour Day. All the same¬†counselling personnel are returning so no opening for me & that’s okay. I’m not going back to my old night position. But I had a major WTF moment when I heard who they had hired as the new manager. Still trying to pick my jaw up from the floor, still shaking my head. Can NOT believe it. What are they thinking?????

objects may appear wet

 Owen is coming for another week long visit. Woo-hoo!!

The chip truck (my stepson’s)¬†was broken into last week. Glass everywhere and a bunch of cases of pop missing. A couple of days missed from working it but back in business now. Must have been the proverbial ‘gang of yoots’. (as per Joe Pesci)¬†