When in Doubt: Wave Hands Like Clouds!

So until I can get a loaner brain I am hanging out with babies and family pets and avoiding complex questions, like, do I need to wear clothes?  The last time I felt this confounded I had recently fallen on my face metaphorically, I won’t expand on the subject, suffice to say, falling on your face can take time to get over, even when its metaphorically.

I could however ride my bike, not a metaphorical or even a stationary one like those being ridden by the spin class behind me in my heading picture, but a REAL bicycle  and so my youngest and I rode around Ottawa taking in all the great parks and canals and free stuff that our wonderful capital city provides.  After riding until we felt tired we would get off our bikes, lie on the grass and slurp on some box juices and watch the clouds.

There is a wonderful state under a big sky when you feel as if you are falling, or flying or floating.  And nothing moves in your mind faster than the clouds, in fact it almost seems you are thinking the clouds.

This is Wilf.  He is six months old.  I think he noticed the same thing.

Which brings me to the Tai Chi movement, move hands like clouds. I am still sitting zazen, but I am finding tai chi helps the most.  After doing a short set in the morning I can move my head from side to side without feeling dizzy. When I was studying Tai Chi with a group in Ottawa I met many people, including a man who had been severely brain injured by a drunk driver, who found Tai Chi good for their brains.

Played “The Walking Dead, Best Defence” Game!

I love zombies. I love a good scare that won’t lead to any actual pain. I got hooked and then unhooked and then hooked again on the Walking Dead t.v. show. But what I have never been unhooked from is the love of a good board game!

This game is deceptively good and while you might have anterior motives to the group, in general you have to work together. Your power to lead is tested too as once a round you are the Sheriff. 🙂  True to form Andrea was always whining about keeping her daddy's gun! And yes, it has Daryl. pffffffffffffff
walking deadI didn't like all the cardboard pieces and so have taken on the job of making tiny zombies for the next game!

Limitations:  Unless you buy an expansion for the game it is only four players. The choice of characters is limited and some of them are dead now. 😛
walkinddead
We played for a few hours in “beginner mode”. We successfully survived! These guys are serious board gamers and they all gave the game the thumbs up!

I can see how it would become really challenging with the restrictions on disclosure in the more expert modes but when learning the rules which can be a confusing, definitely start at beginner!

first born.

My first born.

I thought was very wise and mature until I had a baby. Before I had my son, things just happened and I did stuff. Sometimes I knew I had done well and sometimes I knew I had not. After I had my first child my heart was irrevocably torn open. It was wonderful and terrifying.

One of the things I realized was the universality of this love.  Suddenly pictures of mothers holding their sick, vulnerable or starving children were not of people in some far off place. They were pictures of me and their children were all my child and I felt helpless in a way I had never known before.

5495_600 The Christian story of a teenage mom giving birth to a kid in a barn essentially without a “real” father with only some crazy story to separate her from all the other moms out in the cold is a stark contrast to the excesses of the holiday, but it is compelling to the open heart in a way like no other.

100 words

Midway, Canadian National Exhibition:
Stroller pushers and sticky handed candy floss flossers.

Ring toss tossers,
Swing the hammer swingers.

Show-off muscle builders, and
“Try again to win the giant Panda for your pretty gal” geezers.
The spin-around-ride riders and the roller coaster fanatic-ers: 
the first time and next time and “never again”ers.
The “Guess your weight” guessers and the “Don’t you dare” darers,

The bump into-ers and the “Watch it!” accusers.

The tummy aching throwing-up-ers
Cry-baby mommy worriers,

and the “going home now” goers,

The let go of balloon losers.
And

The big, red balloon
as it gracefully

 floats away.

“Single parents deserve a fountain”

I have this draft titled “single parents deserve a fountain” and no text, nothing written, until now. I have looked at my drafts and thought, “how odd, what was I thinking?” No doubt it is a phrase captured from something I read or heard that I wrote down to ponder later.

I don’t make lists, but I collect phrases that stir me. I suppose they are as useless as a leaf collection. As a child my leaf collection was made up of maple leaves, only maple leaves. I liked the different colours. Oak leaves had a lovely brown but Maple leaves, abundant where I lived came in a wide variety of colours.

The purpose of a collection is that it be studied, that it offers a comprehensive array. There is possibly nothing dumber than a collection of only one type of leaf or phrases without reference to where or who and what context…

“Single parents deserve a fountain”. Hmmm. I think of sitting at a fountain, outside in a public park in summer or inside a mall in winter, children dipping their fingers or perhaps their toes in the water, shouting gleefully as the water shoots up in sudden display, fascinated when they break the magical strand of an arching flow, while I am counting backpacks and socks and tossed hats to be sure nothing is missing, worrying about having enough snacks for the long trip home or having to spend money somewhere that I might not have, feeling the feeling that my bones are poking through stretched skin from exhaustion and briefly, ever so briefly sinking into the hard bench and laughing senselessly at the joyful display. I think of lovers meeting at a fountain, old people gathering on benches, the hopeful tossing coins and making wishes.

I have made my life a collection of un-authoritative recollections that are quite similar to a million recollections all over the world.

The other day I heard my ninety year old mother lament to a friend, “I’m not an authority on anything anymore.”

We all deserve a fountain.  We need to sit and breathe the mist.  Life is fleeting.

Planet Word

my lovely daughter all grown up!

She still likes to read!

One of the great things about raising kids in Ottawa (and even small town Ontario) is that even if you are poor you have access to books. We had a television but to get more than one channel someone had to stand on the back of the couch holding up a metal clothes hanger attached to a wire attached to the back of the set.  We read a lot.

I am happy to say that all three of my adult children read constantly.  I don’t even think going to school is as important as learning to read and then to navigate a library index.  This is something I have to thank my parents for too.  I grew up seeing people reading. My father went to the library every Saturday and always picked out several novels.  I liked picture books. Dr. Seuss was my favourite. I struggled to learn the rules and no other rule breaker could make me laugh the way he could.

I was a quiet kid but learned to love words.  And my love of words started in the community library’s children’s section.

Oh and just a quick mention:  I am watching “Fry’s Planet Word” on TVO and loving it!