Thursday, April 30, 2020


Sir Steve contacted the family court hot line with the hope that we could get a temporary change of visitation for the lil one (we have guardianship and custody)....... guess what?? We don't have grounds... that's right - possibly exposing your child to a deadly virus is not grounds for intervention... because ya know during this stressful period children need both parents in their lives more than ever.  We can't even keep her here with us for the quarantine period !

Sir Steve however MUST quarantine himself (well me too) for 14 days - so he can't go into work........ but that's ok.. that's acceptable.  THEY have been going out to the bank and shopping because the rules don't apply to them! 

I don't handle stupid well......... it makes me angry 

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

More than I can handle

So the lil one came back from her mother's yesterday.

On the weekend - they went to see her aunt who lives in Montreal - a big hot spot for this pandemic.  The very aunt who has only paid lip service to self isolating -- still going to her drug dealers - still smoking dope -- in fact on the 20th of April she went with friends to a park and smoked all day long.  Yeah THAT aunt !!!

And the lil one hugged and kissed her and NO ONE stopped her.

In fact that aunt told her she couldn't tell anyone about seeing her -- or hugging her.. not even the police!

And now she is home with us............... 

and this was quite literally the straw that broke this camel's back.

I cried... 

I feel sick to my stomach....

I am desperately trying to calm the fuck down without much success

There is absolutely no "Life is good when" in me today............

Monday, April 27, 2020

Monday Morning........

Yup believe it or not it's Monday -- again........ and for those of you who've lost track -- it's April 27th - 4 days until May 1st.

You can thank me for that Public Service Message (cheeky grin)

Our weekend was stressful -- well for me anyway.  Only as my stress goes I didn't know I was stressed until it was done........... (le sigh)

First a little back story.......
we shop at Costco - a big box store - for bulk groceries.  We hadn't been since mid February and honestly had no plans to go anytime soon.  BUT we also buy our cheap cigs at smoke shops when we do our 'Costco' run and Sir Steve was completely out and I was almost out.  

Soooooooooooooo time to start thinking about a run to Costco........ our usual Costco is in Quebec but we have been told the borders between Ontario and Quebec are closed........... so the next closest Costco with a nearby smoke shop is Kingston.

I was mentally preparing myself....... it was ok to do this cause.......
Kingston had (from what I could see) flattened their curve......... 
we were doing essential shopping (ok ok cigs may not be all that essential but for us it is!!)

But still I worried ........ and stressed.... and my anxiety levels started creeping up..

We left here Saturday morning bright and early ........ we saw exactly 2 cop cars (my big fear was we would be stopped) ... Sir Steve had researched and found out that the rest stops (Onroutes) were open ... as were the bathrooms.  We drove along an almost empty highway (except for the big trucks) with the music playing enjoying (almost) the normal-ness of it all.

We got to our smoke shop and sanitized our hands and bought 2+ months worth of cigs....... and turned around and headed off to Costco.  We were surprised we only had to wait about 10 minutes to get into the store....... we flew through and got all the supplies we needed and were out and back on the road in just over an hour!!

Arrived home safe and sound........... 

BUT then it hit me.. the stress.
Saturday night I didn't sleep well....... nightmares haunted me...
Sunday my head just wasn't in a good place.. I had knots in my stomach and low grade headache... I didn't want to talk.... I really just wanted to curl into the fetal position.

Last night we watched Stronger Together/Tous Ensemble - 90 minutes of music and words of hope from Canadian Entertainers..... it brought tears but yeah a sense of hope too......... we can get through this!!  we will make it through to the other side!  We are indeed " Team Canada" 

Today it's Monday and I am feeling calmer again.

Life is good when a new day brings new hope.

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Sunday Smiles

Just a little pandemic humour.........

and because we're still having snow here in the Great White North........

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Where are you?

Last week I had the sloth chart to measure where you are - this week I found a cat chart..... (not sure I'll be able to come up with a different one for next week -- but hey who knows ... I might just find another animal chart.)

  I think I'm a #1 this week -- 

Often this week I just wanted to curl up under a blanket and hide..... let the craziness past me by...... cause dear lord there was a whole lot of crazy this week!!!

Friday, April 24, 2020

It's Friday!!

What a busy week the lil one and I have had..... 

Last weekend in my quest for new and interesting ways to home school - I resurrected (from memory) a theme I used with huge success from my teaching days - Around the World.  It's a fun way to introduce geography and social studies.

So on Monday the lil one made her passport....... 

and we talked about Canada -- she coloured a map -- and we did a little work on directions - North South East and West. 

We talked about Indigenous people... and Canada's national animal the Beaver..... we watched videos on beavers and learned all about their dams and lodges.  She even made a beaver!

Last night we made beaver tails (a sweet yummy pastry) for dessert.  Usually beaver tails are deep fried - but I found a recipe that didn't deep fry but baked in the oven instead.  (I'll confess the oven baked version wasn't quite as good as deep fried - but definitely healthier).  The lil one learned about fractions with the dough -- one ball divided into 8 equal balls.  

 Our finished product.............

On top of all this learning about beavers and Canada we did math and reading and writing and grammar.  We spend about 3 hours a day home schooling! I try to fit in some exercise in one form or another.  When it rains we do dancercise and when it's nice the lil one goes out and rides her bike up and down our street... while the dog stresses on the deck that she's gonna get eaten by some monster!!

The lil one is my happy pill.... keeping me occupied and busy and focusing on something other than this pandemic!!

Life is good when you have your own happy pill.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Conquering Frustration

GAH!! what a week of frustrations -- AND it's only Thursday!

It started with problems with our internet service... the speeds have been intermittent and we often lose all connections.  Our provider has been working on it -- they have checked and double checked everything in the house and announced the problem was not in our house BUT 'out there' somewhere....... they would work on it.  (le sigh)
So we have been limping along........... 

Then I made the mistake of commenting on a post on FB by our provider about what wonderful service they had............  and that was the start of a whole new set of frustrations....... They told me I needed a new modem (you did notice that I said they declared no problems in our house right??!!)  So they mailed me a new modem and I had to install it...... and then call the office to have it activated.  The installation was a breeze - the phone call to activate not so much.  

The first attempt at calling resulted in my sitting on hold for 20 minutes and then having my call dropped.  Call back to be told there is an hour wait... so I elected to have them call me back.  An hour later some dipstick did indeed call me back.  He didn't listen to me telling him I just needed him to activate the modem.. he insisted I do a factory reset and call back in an hour.  GAH!!!

I called back in 30 minutes and selected a call back cause there was still an hour wait.  Finally got the call back from a knowledgeable tech who activated our modem in less than 5 minutes!!  YAY!!  

Now we had to get all the computers synced to the new modem........... and the printer.

I tried to sync the printer yesterday after an hour I gave up....... nothing worked!

Sir Steve - who always has success syncing the printer - worked for about an hour last night with NO success.  I was so frustrated I was seriously thinking of just buying a new printer.

(I NEED my f**ing printer for all this home schooling I'm doing!!)

 BUT I am stubborn............. really really stubborn!  AND I was not going to let some bloody printer beat me!!  (and can I say ' I am bloody angry at our service provider for this screw up - cause the new modem hasn't made one iota of a difference in our speed problem!!)  So this morning I dragged my laptop into the 'office' and hooked the printer up again by cable........ and decided to update the printer drivers.  Somewhere along the way of installing ...... the program asked me if I wanted to set up the wireless connection manually OR did I want the program to set it up.

DUH!!!  of course I wanted the program to set up the wireless!!!

A whole lot of whirring and whizzing and it was done!!!  I tested it and the printer is now talking to my laptop........ YAY!!!  

Life is good when you can overcome frustrations and fix the problem!

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

The Struggle is Real

We have had struggles over the last couple of weeks with the lil one's weight.... again.
(for those of you who don't know or have forgotten - we started a struggle a year ago to bring her weight down because we were worried - as was the doctor - she would develop diabetes)  With us the lil one eats healthy and exercises and she loses about 1/2 pound a week.  She comes back from 3 days with her mother and has put on the 1/2 pound and often more.  (like after Easter she put on - believe it or not - 1 pound!)

Sir Steve spent almost an hour talking with the mother on Monday turns out the lil one pretty much helps herself to snacks whenever she wants them - even right before meal time!!  Mother claims she can't stop her cause if she tries the lil one 'throws a hissy fit' !  REALLY??!!!

Turns out the lil one's bed is NEVER made cause it's too much work to take all the stuffies off !! and when I say she has LOADS of stuffies on the bed I am not exaggerating!! The observation has been made - by people in the know - that there are so many stuffies there's really no room for the lil one to sleep.
 (and the sheets aren't washed)

The lil one doesn't want to do school work and 'throws hissy fits' -- and mother lets the school work go..........

I have noticed the lil one's hair (which is long - hanging below her waist) always looks and feels dirty when she comes back to us......... but the lil one tells us she has a shower and hair washed every Sunday night.  We discovered mother is using body wash to wash her hair??!!!!

Some people honestly shouldn't be parents ........... god help us all - I have seen too many kids who were being dragged up by parents who should never have had children....... never did I think in my wildest dreams that I would be co-parenting one of those lil kiddies.  It can be such a helpless feeling..... especially when the courts stick to the 50/50 custody is best for the child............ le sigh. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

So Very Sad

We had a massive shooting in Nova Scotia on the weekend.  Some guy killed 18 people.  I watched the news yesterday morning and it was like something inside me just broke ya know?  

It just all felt too much.

It was a sad day.
It was a day of tears.
It was a day of pain.

Hopefully today will be better.

Monday, April 20, 2020

Small Pleasures

We had a weekend of simple pleasures....... 

Last week I called our butcher shop and asked if they would take a phone order - prepare it and freeze it - and we would pick it up on Saturday.  They said 'absolutely'. There was something reassuring to give them a huge meat order and to know they had everything and that it would all be prepared and ready for us to pick up.

the best part was ....our butcher is out in the country - about 45 minutes from here.  Usually the drive up there is an inconvenience -- time spent in the car that we would rather spend doing something else....... but these days --  a drive in the country in the sunshine was sheer joy!

When we got home..... settling in for the rest of the weekend -- I looked out the front window and WOW!!!! there was my son in law getting out of the car.  I almost couldn't believe it -- thought my eyes were deceiving me....BUT NO... my son in law and daughter were standing outside our home!!!  They had brought some gorgeous pink tulips and a 'loot' bag filled with lil pleasures - a gingerbread boy cookie for the lil one ... a HUGE chocolate bar ... a red belt for me...  

We had a short visit - them on the sidewalk, Sir Steve and I on our deck...... it felt a bit weird ... how I wanted to run down the steps and hug them both... BUT it most definitely brightened up our weekend!! 

And then on Friday night I had this brain wave....this light bulb moment!

The lil one is so enthusiastic about this home schooling that I am always trying to find new activities for her to do.... and I had this brain wave... a memory of a lesson I used when I was teaching.... a way to make geography/social studies fun and exciting...... A Trip Around The World!

Of course I have no resource material hanging around -- I've been retired from teaching for more than a few years....... but Google is my friend!!!  I spent the entire weekend hunting down printable sheets .... ideas ... videos... recipes..... 

I now have about 10 countries ready for us to visit.  I even have a mini passport for her to fill in/colour and ready to stamp for every country we 'visit' !! I have a world map that she can colour in as we make our way around the world.  I have crafts and flags from each country.  I can't wait for the lil one to come home today - so I can share this new adventure with her!

Life is good when small pleasures bring joy to your life!

Saturday, April 18, 2020


Yesterday - while we were waiting for the mother to come and pick up the lil one for the weekend - the lil one came to me and said
"I wrote a 'sort of' poem for you"

(years go by so fast
school stays still with no kids
but with you I forget it
because I love you )

I read it and broke down.......... we hugged tightly.... my world got a little brighter.

Life is very good when you can make a difference in a child's world............

Friday, April 17, 2020


 I have had a list (in my head) of necessary items we need to stay healthy and fed and reasonably happy.  The most important item on that list was medications...... my blood pressure meds.. my ventolin... Sir Steve's meds.  I managed to get one pump a week ago YAY!  Yesterday my drugstore managed to get me a month's worth of blood pressure meds - not the generic pills but the brand name.... which means the cost was nearly 3 times higher - but ya know what?  I have my pills and that's what's really important!

Food shortages are manageable - even the fruit issue we had has been solved.  Sir Steve ran into our local grocer the other night and managed to score some apples and oranges.  (I have to add here -- I am so touched by how people are coming together to help each other.  Last night selkie who visits here and lives about an hour down the highway from us - offered to pick up a box of fresh fruit and veggies for us from - believe it or not  - a dairy near her.  She offered to run it down to us and leave it on the front porch!!  I can tell you - her offer made me tear up!!) 

 And then this morning (cause I am feeling hopeful) I thought maybe - just maybe - the government will loosen restrictions on country cottages and campgrounds.  I mean our campsite could support social distancing - IF they didn't allow weekenders in - only seasonal campers.  We could each live on our sites -- in our glamping trailors and easily social distance ourselves.  This morning I was thinking we could put a couple of lawn chairs at the bottom of the deck for visitors - we could sit on the deck - and everyone would be more than 2 meters apart and safe.

The pool wouldn't need to be open -- all the lil ones could run under hoses like we used to do when I was young.... we could grow veggies in our gardens ...we could enjoy our campfires... I could even continue home schooling from there - well at least till the end of June!!

I don't need a lot ya know -- I am enough of an introvert that I am not struggling too much with being in the house....... BUT I would like a change of scenery ..... scenery involving lots of trees and nature 

Life is good when hope reigns supreme........ 

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Checking in.........

I'm on week 5 of self isolation -- and 4 weeks without setting foot outside the door.
The ordering groceries on line with curbside pick up went a little bit better this week - I would say I got 90% of my order.  BUT no fruit?!  Really??!!  no apples or oranges or bananas ?? !!  what's up with that?  I didn't believe it so last night Sir Steve went to our local grocer and found apples and oranges but no bananas..... makes me wonder about the supply chain and I have some concerns.

Still having trouble getting my blood pressure meds...... they apparently are produced in India and are therefore back ordered......... but they do have a small supply of the generic brand and they are sending me a month's supply.

This morning as Sir Steve and I were enjoying our coffee and morning smoke outside we heard this noise....... we looked around ....... and then we looked up .....
there was an airplane flying overheard!  I think it's been 3 weeks at least since we saw/heard an airplane.

The morning news is talking about 'good news' - apparently we are flattening the curve (not in our province - but that was expected - we were the last ones to have spring break - so maybe we'll see an improvement in a week)  and our Prime Minister said something about partially opening our borders in the next few weeks.  
WHY he would do that is beyond me - who needs to travel now?? our essential workers like truckers are still able to cross the borders ... so I wonder who else has to cross ?? 

Home schooling is going better than I ever imagined it would.  The lil one actually LOVES doing work with me...... and I can't believe how much she has improved!!  Her writing ... her math.... her focus!!  Yesterday we did some science - we cut the bottom off a stalk of celery and put it in water..... and we put a potato with eyes in water -- we'll see if anything grows.  I have formed a pretty strong bond with her teacher.. the teacher isn't very computer savvy and asked if I could help her set up online learning.  We spent a couple of hours yesterday doing that.. and she kept saying she owed me big time!!  I made a mental note... eventually we're gonna have another court date to settle custody........ and she will be a great ally - hopefully giving us an advantage. I know the mother (even though I asked her) has not done ANY french work with the lil one.  AND basically has shown no interest whatsoever in working with the lil one.  (what else is new?!)  For the record -- we do NOT want sole custody -- but we DO want custody for the school days..... so we can make sure homework is done and any remedial work as necessary.

Easter weekend was tough -- missed the family - missed seeing my grandboys and daughters.  BUT we continue to have weekly chats via Facebook which helps a little bit.

Spring is struggling to load here in the Great White North...... we had snow off and on all day yesterday.  Today is sunny - cold  but at least the sun is out!  And maybe a slow start to spring .. and a slower start to summer will make the self isolation easier... if it's wet and cold no one wants to be outside...... but sunshine and warmth and POW we're gonna be missing the campground .......... and long lazy days in the country.

How are things in your corner of the world?

Life is good when each new day brings us closer to the end of this pandemic.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Awesome Cuteness

I have discovered a new cuteness on Facebook....... sloths!  

Thought I would share some of that cuteness with you..... 

where are you on the quarantine scale of sloths??

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Our Celebration

Well the lil one came home after lunch yesterday and we were all ready to have our Easter Celebration with her.

Sir Steve had bought her some walkie talkies - originally we thought they would come in so handy this summer in the country -- it would allow her to bike further and I could still get in touch with her -- of course that isn't looking possible now BUT she was delighted with them!!  She left one with her father and took one to her bedroom -- she had great fun buzzing us to chat !! (like every 10 minutes!)

We had some trouble with her staying focused at school - socializing instead of working... I had given her a cheap bracelet that I had and told her that the bracelet was me sitting with her in class.  BUT it was a cheap bracelet and broke ...... so I bought her a bracelet that says 'she believed she could so she did' - that was a HUGE hit.

And then the Easter bunny made a scavenger hunt for her........ 10 hints/riddles to lead her around the house to find her basket of chocolate.  What fun she had solving the riddles and her dad and I had as much fun watching her scoot around the house finally finding " Rub a Dub Dub your loots in the tub "!!

I decided to make an Easter Egg cake -- but didn't have a cake mix -- so I made the cake from scratch!!  Wow imagine !  a cake from scratch!!  Sir Steve and I couldn't get over how much better it was than cake mix cakes....... guess who's only make cake from scratch from now on 

AND back in the fall lamb went on sale... and I bought a leg of lamb.  What a treat to have it for Easter!!!  

We missed our families...... a lot!   BUT we weren't alone ... everyone had an Easter without family /friends -- next year right??!!!

Monday, April 13, 2020

Loving Weekend

It was a good weekend

It was a loving weekend

It was a satisfying weekend

It was an OMG kind of weekend

Today we will do our Easter with the lil one...... and I will face the new week of home schooling with a renewed vigour and recharged battery.... cause that's what happens when there is intimacy and love and laughter.

Sunday, April 12, 2020

A Holiday of Hope

Happy Easter 

Enjoy your chocolate !!! 


Saturday, April 11, 2020

Things that Make me go Hummmmmm

I've been listening - intently - to all the news coming across concerning Covid 19 ... and I am suspicious of so much of what I hear and read.......... 

BUT there are 3 biggies....... 

1) Covid 19 will 'disappear' or die (depending on who is talking) once the warm weather gets here.............. 
 What about all the warm countries that have Covid 19 - like the Arab countries or Thailand or Singapore or Africa?

2)  Covid 19 can't live without a human host for very long ......... 
well then why doesn't it just disappear or die if we all isolate for 2 weeks?? OR why are they talking about a 2nd wave in the Fall 

3) I am confused by all the people making their own masks out of scarves... tshirts.. socks... and thinking they will be more protected.
Why do people think that homemade masks will do anything to protect them ... or the people around them.... when health professionals wearing the best of the best PPE are coming down with Covid 19???    

These are just some of things that make me go 'hummmmmm'

Friday, April 10, 2020


AND....... it's Easter

Some of you have commented on my home schooling posts that there is more to education than book learning.... I always smiled.. and thought if you could see what goes on around here!!!

We have built tents in the lil one's bed room... I have dragged her bike out on sunny days and she has gone riding (on our street only) while I shivered on the front balcony...she is learning to cook - made scrambled eggs all by herself one day... we have baked cookies and she has read the recipe to me... we have cleaned the house together and she learned how to scrub the bathroom sink and bathtub and to mop the floors.... the poor dog has stepped in and become her playmate.... 

This week we have been getting ready for Easter.  She is going to her mother's today till Monday....... we will celebrate our Easter with her when she gets home on Monday.
This week in between the school lessons.... she has made an Easter bunny - learning how to measure ................. (we didn't have any pastel coloured paper around so did our best with what we had)

We made Easter cinnamon buns for Good Friday Breakfast with 'daddy'.........

She boiled up some eggs ready to dye today..............

She made an Easter Bunny book mark.............

Today will be a dye the eggs day....... and that's about it... then we will take a 3 day Easter break .......... 

Life is good when you can find some fun in each day....

(and oh my god!!!  I just realized looking at the pictures - it looks as though she wore the same clothes ALL week - NOT TRUE!!  she has 3 outfits that are nearly identical - a tunic top - a dress and a sweater....... she decided to wear them all this week ... GAH!!  I promise ... despite the pandemic - we all wear fresh clothes every day!!)

Thursday, April 09, 2020

Guilty Pleasures

Do you have a guilty food pleasure? Something you crave that you know is NOT good for you...... For a lot of folks that guilty pleasure is chocolate.  I know it's Sir Steve's guilty pleasure!!

I do not particularly like chocolate.  Ya I know I am weird!!  I have a sweet tooth yes -- but my real guilty pleasure is fried food. 

A couple of months ago we were shopping at Costco (very large box store) and had just picked up their frozen french fries.  I cook them in the oven but it's not the same ya know?? At that time a store employee suggested I buy an 'air fryer' - saying he couldn't live without his.

I've been rolling it around in my head -- to buy one or not to buy one.  What if they weren't as good as advertised - waste of money........... What size do I get?  too small waste of money and time........ to buy or not to buy.

Well I finally broke down and ordered one on line from another of our big stores.  It was on sale which made the expenditure a little easier to swallow.  

Our 'air fryer' arrived yesterday. I will admit it was bigger than I expected (why I HATE shopping on line!  I like to see what I am buying / touch it/ play with it)  BUT I also rationalized that it would be good for bigger meals.

The lil one and I were so excited!!  We changed the dinner menu to french fries and chicken fingers.

It wasn't very difficult to work - though the temperature gauge is in celsius (GAH!) thank god for Google

I did the fries first - and then the chicken fingers......... 

I can confidently say we all agreed the air fryer gets 5 STARS!  The meal was amazing... almost as good as restaurant food with fewer calories and lower cholesterol.  This may be my new favourite kitchen gadget! 

AND there are so many web sites with recipes for air fryers....... I can't wait to start experimenting!

Life is good when you can have 'guilty pleasures'

Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Burn Out

Is it possible?? Burn out in home schooling?

I don't know 

What I do know is........ yesterday when the lil one's school added her french teacher link to our list for homeschooling - my stomach knotted.  I picked up the assignment - an in house scavenger hunt....... 
I looked at the playing card - cause that's what it was .... there were 12 squares with french words in each square along with an icon.  The print was so damn small I could barely make it out......... and each square was in a different colour -- two squares were in yellow!!!   My head started to hurt.... it didn't help that the lil one had NO idea what the words were ...... and couldn't pronounce them...... 

I sat there with the voices in my head yelling "this is toooo bloody much!!!  I am doing the math assignments!  I am doing the grammar assignments!! I am doing the reading assignments!!!!  I am doing art and gym and even throwing some dancing in cause she misses her dance classes... and NOW I have to do french too!!!!!!!!!!"

I fought back tears of desperation

Then I sent the mother a message (she speaks french) and sent her the link for the french assignments...... I told her I would not be doing french but thought IF she found time maybe she could do them over the weekend.  She said ' yeah ok ' (sounds enthusiastic doesn't it??!!) 

Then I wrote the french teacher and the home room teacher and told them the french was over the top for us..... I told them I had asked the mother to do the french work. 

I wanted to say "I quit" but I didn't and I won't.  The improvement in the lil one's work is mind boggling after only one week.  I asked her this morning if she thought she was 'getting it' better at home and she said yes because there was no one to talk to and no noise. 

I am going to try to be a little easier on myself..... 

I am going to try and see the fun in this (like the lil one does)

I am only going to do what I can.......... 

Life is good - even when the teacher has a wee melt down

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