whattodowhattodo?

by Jan

I’m not pregnant but…

There are nightmares and horrors happening right now.  And somehow, I go about my day.

Seriously – I go joyfully about my day.
I have a grand life, that is full of love, safety and joy. And – I’m sick with the horror of the world. Especially with the news around women’s rights.

I’ve had two safe and legal abortions, and zero regret.

The first, when I was 19 and got pregnant, after being raped, with a knife to my throat, in my own home. The second was the day before my first wedding.

I’ve always known I never wanted to have children or be a mother. I cannot tell you how grateful I’ve been for my right to choose.

My heart breaks as I see this change. I find this to be barbaric, cruel and inhumane.

As Ken says, “The rich and powerful and acting… rich and powerful again.

I’ve said it before and I will say it again — women (and girls) have always gotten abortions, and they will continue to get abortions. Now, they will again, get dangerous and illegal ones and risk prison. Of course the men who impregnate… will just go home. La-de-da… Nothing to see here!

If I could give the young any advice at all, I’d say, Fuck college — and learn a needed trade.

Become a plumber, electrician, or abortionist.

Also, just because I live in Canada, don’t for a minute think we are safe up here from this kind of fuckery and power.

Trudeau has screwed up so bad, that it’s only a matter of time before the conservatives make a majority government. It’s already started in Ontario and Alberta.

There is a saying – As the states go — so goes Canada.

My outrage is strong, and my feelings of helplessness are stronger.

I don’t want to be an activist. I don’t have the personal fear of an unwanted pregnancy and I don’t have the ability to change what is totally unacceptable and I can never accept this nightmare.

So… What? Send money to PP? Vote? March? Scream? Shake my fist in the air? What?

Saying, I’m not pregnant, but … makes as much sense these days as saying, I’m not racist but…

This affects us all.

onelinewonders

by Jan

Just when I’m close to being back in the habit of writing. Company’s coming and the day shifts.

Believe it or not, I easily spend hours on one of these silly post.

I know, I know… if I was in better practice or was a better writer, perhaps, I could whip out a thought or a story, then move on to breakfast. But, nope — it takes me a while. (I’m not counting the time I spend throughout the day, thinking super deep, thoughts.)

And, since I’ve neither children or students, I find I need to clear and dispense, my thoughts and wisdom, either on poor Ken, or a blank page.

Sometimes, I start writing in the evening and finish up in the mornings. Honestly, I spend my mornings in bed, throwing words at the page. I have a lot of “unfinished” stories in folders, and still, I claim lack of topic, for my main reason to not write.

No matter the topic, what I’m really looking for — is the perfect combination of words to express what I think.

The greatest joy I find when reading, is being surprised by a brilliant line of prose. Seeing the written word, in ordinary form, only to find a flawless, and impeccable one liner, setting the scene, is pure bliss.

Today, because company is coming, and I’ve things to do, I’ll only spend a couple of hours on this, and cheat a little.

Here are some of the one liners I’ve read lately. Not all of them are brilliant, but they sure are fun. I also acknowledge my big mistake of not noting the author.  It won’t happen again.

“Drinking leads to the mumbles.”
“Cruelty is so simple, really. You just turn your back on your own humanity.”
“Clams don’t agree with me, so I’ll eat 2 or 3 dozen, just to be sociable.”
“I intend to stroll and ponder.”
“In winter, I’m a Buddhist, in Summer, I’m a nudist.”
“How do you teach a stranger, all you know?”
“She was backed up by oak trees.”
And my absolute favourite: “Once you’ve bought a novel in your pyjamas… all is lost.”

Oh – the written word is delicious. I never knew I was so hungry.

duckvsfish

by Jan

Becky Wayte is an incredible photographer. You can see her work on Facebook, on her Sunshine Coast Trails page.

In the mornings, I look out the window and a smile, because I know she is probably out at that very moment, capturing the beauty of the day beginning. Her sunset shots and panoramic views are also stunning. A lot of you know her work from the calendar, I send you at Christmas.

Becky also has a way with wild life photography. She is able to get a close up of a squirrel chewing a nut, or a hummingbird gathering fluff off a thistle. She’s posted several photos of bears, coyotes, and birds, birds, birds. I find them wonderful.

This last week, she took a particular photo, and asked on line if she should post it.

The reason for her question — she said the photo was “graphic.”

Becky took a photo of a Heron eating a baby gosling.

Nature.

My first thought was — thanks for the warning. I’ll pass.

I know, if it’s posted I will scroll on. I’m sensitive. I “hide” and “block” photos of animal “cruelty.” (is nature cruel?)

I don’t like to see the zebra get chased by the cheetah, or certainly not big game hunters posing by the elephant. Same goes for photos of starving dogs and matted cats. Nope – I like my head in the deep, deep sand for those visuals.

Then, the voice of reason piped up with the obvious…. again.

Ken said, If she had posted a photo of an eagle with a fish, or a bear with a fish, or a person with a fish… no one would bat an eye or think twice. I doubt she would have have even asked. In fact, she could win a cool award.

But…  a baby duck or soft bunny as breakfast? Nope…. No one wants to see that.

No one cares about fish – but… oh, the baby ducks!

Nature is nature, and people are weird.

I’m still not going to look at the photo, but it was interesting to hear a truth, and a perspective I didn’t know I held.

portapoodleparty

by Jan

I like being retired, and so far, Ken and I have managed to find ways to stay entertained.

Most mornings, we ask each other if there are any plans for the day. For the most part the answer is no. Of course, recycle day and garbage day get acknowledged. We look forward to the days we get massages or when Patti comes to clean the house. (we live quite well.) But, for the most part — we make few plans, and somehow the days fly by.

Saturdays, we usually go to yards sales, and the Saturday Market.

As we were leaving the market yesterday, we saw a super cute, curly, and white doodle-y puppy. Ken and I are those people now — we fawn over dogs. We will stop to get our hands sniffed and if okay, we pet ears.

“Who’s this sweetie? She’s a real cutie — what kind of doodle is this one?”

We find, a lot of dogs we meet are a mix of poodle and __________ (fill in the blank.)

Sure enough, this one was a mountain Bernese mixed with a poodle.

We got gooey over the puppy, but I don’t think the owners appreciated us, saying something about breeders being able to charge more money on a dog called something other than mutt these days, and everyone went on their way.

It used to be, when a dog jumped the fence, and messed with the neighbours dog, kids would be in front of the grocery store with a box full of puppies, trying their best to give the mutts away.

Today, “breed” with a poodle and your new puppy is automatically priced at over a grand!

Then… I’m not sure if it was me, or Ken, but one of us mentioned that the poor poodle dog, will fuck anyone.

We agreed, the poodle —  a sweet, and noble, beautiful dog; a dog that doesn’t shed, is super smart, is now the literal bitch of the canine community.

Golden doodle, snicker doodle, labra doodle, berma doodle, schnauzer doodle, and on we go. I even met a King Charles-doodle. (it was really cute.)

As we got in the car, we continued … If a poodle and Portuguese water dog (our favourite type of pup) did the deed… would you then get a porta poodle or a porta potty or… yeah… we kept going.

Thirty-six years of marriage — Ken and I are still able to crack each other up! We laughed the entire way home.

Aren’t you glad I started posting on this bloggy thing again?

publicspeakingatshows

by Jan

We went to a quilt show yesterday. Members of the Sunshine Coast Quilt Guild showed their work. It was lovely. Hundreds of quilts were hung and Ken and I spent a couple of hours enjoying the show, and admiring the work.

The show was held in the Gibsons Arena. A large arena in community centre. The big floor where the show was held is used for hockey in the winter, and other sports year round. At the entrance, I noticed a few signs reminding parents that as the children play — to be nice. Yes, reminders for the parents to be nice while their children are playing!

Perhaps they needed a sign for the quilt show as well… because, while seeing the quilts was fun, listening to the women talk as I walked by was another story!

Perhaps I missed the signs that said, “If you can’t say anything nice, come sit by me!” and “I don’t repeat gossip, so listen up.”

As I walked around the show, I heard more than once a few catty women, speaking in whispers that were not as quiet, as they may have hoped.

…Did you see so and so won! i can’t believe it. Who is doing the judging? Her seams are terrible and her points don’t match. OMG, just terrible … Oh, hi so and so… Congratulations. Amazing work!

It was funny in the moment, but also very sad. Once again, a point was made of the perils of gossiping in public. You never know who is going to hear you.

We all have our opinions and preferences and sure enough, I have mine. There were amazing works at this show and others, that for me… were not my cuppa tea.

Still, to display your work takes a courage I don’t have.

Perhaps the sign that reminded parents to “be nice” could have been in bigger print, because we all need a reminder at times to, “Say what you mean, mean what you say, and don’t say it mean!”

rambleonandonaboutnothing

by Jan

I’m awake too early. It’s that time of year where we can sleep with the windows open, but that also means we can hear the birds start in at the crack of dawn. Tweet – tweet! Okay – I’m awake!

I haven’t written here lately and I miss it. Still, I don’t have much to say other than to ramble on. I find my mind moves towards possible stories when I go for my daily walk, and I’ve had a few funny observations that I think would be good to share. But, then… I get home and get sidetracked or like a fun dream, I quickly forget.

Here is one story that cracked me up the other day.

I was walking down the Crowsten Connector the other day when a lady on a bike was leading her two children on bikes. Instead of the “hello, nice day!” I was expecting… What I got instead was her yelling,
“Don’t run over the lady!”
I guess that’s better than… Ready, aim, fire!

Today, the Sunshine Coast Quilt Guild is having a big quilt show. I’m excited to go.

It will be nice to see all the creations. This is a big deal and a big show on the coast with over 100 quilts on display. I’ve not joined the guild here, and I doubt I ever will, yet going to the show is one way I can participate and be inspired.

I have been sewing up a storm! I made shopping bags, pot holders and bowl cozzies galore! These all make great contest prizes, good birthday gifts, AND I’m thinking of having a sale again with moneys going to the food bank here.

I had a successful sale last Christmas and raised $500. Just by posting on Facebook to friends. Perhaps my birthday would be a good time to do it again.

BTW – my birthday is May 20. If you don’t know… in true Hudson fashion, I like attention! I’ll be 64 – and have been singing, “Will you still need me? Will you still feed me?” It is my scare off the bears song when I hike!

BTW – #trumpyou’restillafucker! And fuck you too, all you cruel and hateful “right to lifers.”

All righty – I see why I’ve not posted in a while. I’m obviously out of writing practice! May need to sharpen my skills again…

So, on we go!

booksbooksbooks

by Jan

Facebook reminded me that four years ago, I tried to get into a book club and was told to bring my resumé to find out if I was worthy of membership. They “needed” to know what university I graduated from, and what profession I was in.

Yeah… I’ve been kicked out of better places!

I’m still not a member of a book club but, it doesn’t seem as important to me now.

I continue to read to my hearts content; a good book is one of life’s finest pleasures.

Sadly, it is just as easy to get sucked into poorly written books as well. I just finished one of the dumbest books ever. It’s what Sandie would call a “stupid girl book”. Pure twaddle.

So, I decided I’m not going to fall for such nonsense again. I asked for book recommendations from friends I admire. I also found a fantastic book of books, at the library. 1,000 Books to Read Before You Die!  By James Mustich.

I’ve been perusing the pages the past few weeks and writing down suggestions that sound good to me.

I’m a bit chuffed that I’ve already read a number of these “must” reads. I also know there are more than a few on his list that I will never pick up.

Still, I took quite a list from my friends, and this book. I will now do my best to tackle it!

At the library yesterday, I picked up Cry The Beloved Country by Alan Paton, and Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler. One is audio and the other hard cover. One I’ve heard about, and the other, I’ve not.

I admit to staying up very late last night reading Tyler’s book, and I sewed for several hours listening to Paton’s.

There’s a reason theses books are on a “must” read list.

I’m saying good riddance to the likes of When We Were Young by Karen Kingsbury and other bullshit stories.

Book club or no; I’m grateful to be able to read to my hearts content.

trustthetrades

by Jan

My mother-in-law, Tomi was on my mind yesterday. It was the seven year anniversary of her death. One of the many things I remember about her, was she talked about shopping as “trading.”

She would say, I like to trade with so and so, or I won’t trade with them because… what ever. She didn’t buy from or shop at, she traded.

In Sechelt, it is common for people to knock on your door offering everything from jesus, to fish, moss removal and yard work. We turn down jesus, but usually say yes to fish.

In the last four years we’ve traded with three different men on a somewhat regular basis. I will say, we don’t know any of them very well. Still, these trades include a good amount of trust between all of us. And, two of these relationships came from cold calls on our door.

A native man knocks on our door several times a year. He sells fish out of his car. We don’t ask where or how he gets the fish. If it looks good to us, (and it usually does) we buy some. Yesterday, he came around with some smoked salmon. He had a cooler full. Said to pick what I liked, and he’d make a deal.

I did and he did. I trust it will be tasty, it usually is.

The second guy sells firewood. First impressions, are not the greatest. Yet, he looks you straight in the eye,and  with a toothless grin, will he shake your hand, and promises he will deliver what you ask for. It’s the kind of exchange where both of us, really hope the other comes through.

It’s common for people here to grumble about cords of wood being short or crappy. No shows are common as well, yet Steve has been our go to wood guy over the year. He usually comes through when he says he will… not always, but often enough that we keep his number. He has delivered two-thirds of our deal so far. I trust he will finish.

And, while we see the fish guy and wood guy  a few times a year, we trade with our massage guy much more often.

We were the ones who knocked on his door, we heard he had good hands. We pay up front, have regular appointments set, and as up close, and persona,l as massage can be, Patrick knows more about us, than we do about him. We really trust him.

These three members of our community are all so very different from each other and from us and I’m grateful for the common thread of, that someone opened the door, and we all trust the trade

abellringsamongthefabric

by Jan

“If you wish for random serendipity, happenstance, or accident… avoid design by all means.” —Robert Peters

Do you hear the bell of enlightenment ringing in my sewing room?

Ring-a-Ding-Ding!

Now, I see a direct line between the process I use, and the product I create!

I’m not sure I’ll change anything, but this does explain a lot.

I’ll admit to a tad of frustration, when I cut up beautiful fabric, sew it back together again, and then… decide I really should cut it all up again.

While I absolutely love the random serendipity of what I do, my quilts are a direct result of happenstance and accident!

The few times I have planned or designed a quilt, I was bored by the process, and wanted to get on with it — yet those particular quilts, turned out pretty spectacular.

Go figure!

So, I’m learning.

Apparently, a little planning and design would go a long way in solving some of my happy accidents. Still, I think I will always cherish a quilt full of happenstance!

Quit laughing Ken!