Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Carrying Fashion Boots to Montreal

While packing for our week-end visit to Montreal, I had a Holy Spirit nudge to bring along brown high-heeled fashion boots—boots I've only worn twice since buying them five years ago. (I have difficulty balancing on heels any higher than a Montreal bagel.)

So I tucked the boots into my bag and didn’t think about them again until we were ready to come home. That’s when I wondered why I had felt prompted to bring the boots. I certainly had no desire to wear them. With all the weekend walking up and down the streets of Montreal, a blister had developed on my little right toe causing me to limp in my sneakers.

Maybe I was meant to give the boots to someone. But who?

When home, while emptying the boots out of my bag, I asked the Lord, “What was that about?”

“Obedience,” came the quiet answer.

This brought to mind Abraham’s act of obedience—if you can compare being willing to sacrifice an only son on a mountain to being willing to take a pair of fashion boots to Montreal—done simply because God said so.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Montreal Bagels are The Best

A while ago someone in Hamilton had the audacity to challenge Montreal to a best bagel contest. Montreal won.
When we were in Montreal last weekend, our daughter Amanda led us to the very best bagel shops in Montreal and we were able to experience the best bagels for ourselves. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

For Betty Anne

Betty Anne, I saw these characters in a store window on
Rue Saint Denis, Montreal.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

A Spring Walk on Mount Royal in Montreal

Marty, Amanda and Lizzy posing at the lot where we parked our vehicle.
Away in the distance is the biodome.
We wandered the mountain for several hours.

A view of the city from the other side of the mount.

Heading down to Beaver Lake.

When we got back to the van, the windshield held a $52 parking ticket. Why hadn't we noticed the signs about paying for parking?

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Medium is the Message

“So, what can you tell me about what’s happening in the world?”

Lately, every week or two I’ve been visiting 96-year-old Mrs. Z. in the long-term care facility. When I drop in she has to ask who I am because she can’t see me—she is rather blind, although I have never heard her admit this. Usually the light is bad.

Her question about the situation in the world is always accompanied with a smile.

Sometimes she also asks if she actually phoned me to come. She doesn’t phone me at all anymore.

Mrs. Z. likes world news, political news, possibly local news or sometimes even my family news. She appreciated hearing about the Olympics, the prorogation of parliament, the possibility of an upcoming provincial election, and the war in Afghanistan.

When I’m with her, I realize exactly how little attention I pay to precise details.

When are the PanAm Games scheduled?

What month are the G7 leaders meeting?

Is that G7 or G8?

What’s the name of the guy who warned the Canadian government about the danger of handing over Afghan detainees?

What caused the economy in Greece to go belly-up?

Who are the red shirts and why do they want an election in Thailand?

Sometimes I’m tempted to make up the details, but that would be lying. When I’m in my nineties—or any age—I don’t want people lying to me.

I’ll just have to follow the news more carefully.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

March Break Listmaker Game

“I’m bored. Give me something to do—not chores please.”

On the second day of March break week Lizzy is bored.

I asked her to make a list of ten things she would like to do. That ought to keep her busy.

Within minutes she had a list involving shopping, soccer, a sleepover, a tan and my birthday wish list—she wanted to see it.

With her listmaking complete, Lizzy and her friend have scooted off to the nearest Tim Horton’s and I’m stuck wondering what to put on my birthday wish list.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Emotional Baking

When something is bugging me I bake. This is an emotional outlet and makes the family happy.

Trading Writing Tools

I'm back to writing with a pen on paper. My laptop is in the shop. It needs a new battery, or a new charger, or both.

There is something pleasant about using pen on paper. The changes I make with a pen are very visible. I can see what I first wrote and can choose to change things back—not that I want to—but the thought that I can is comforting.

On the unpleasant side:
1) the ink smears onto my hand, probably because I'm left-handed;
2) also—and I blame Word’s automatic correcting features—my spelling has degenerated;
3) and I will eventually have to decipher my writing when I try to type this into a computer.

I want the laptop back.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Climate Change

A few weeks ago, Lizzy asked me what I thought about climate change. I told her what we do as humans on this earth can only very slightly change the climate and that climate is part of a bigger equation that we can’t do much about. So, I wasn’t going to worry about climate change.

This week Lizzy informed me that when her teacher asked, “So, what did your parents say about climate change?” she answered, “My mother doesn’t believe in it.”

This caused a slight change—awkward pause—in the classroom climate.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

My Cat is Eating My Plants

Does this mean there is somethin missing in her diet? Should we be feeding her more cat food?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Mighty Miracles and Works of Power

As He was approaching [the city], at the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of the disciples began to rejoice and to praise God [extolling Him exultantly and] loudly for all the mighty miracles and works of power that they had witnessed…. (Luke 19:37&38a Amplified)

…So that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men (human philosophy), but in the power of God. (I Cor. 2:5 Amplified)

I’m forever expecting God’s mighty miracles and works of power to break out.

When I pray for someone, I’m surprised if the person still has the problem next time I see them. I’m surprised a lot.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Spring Skiing

The snow was an icy crust and there were hundreds of footprints frozen into the ground, but we went skiing.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Blooming reviewed

Janet Sketchley over at God With Us: Finding Joy did a review of Blooming. I like it.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Washing a Packet of Five Gum

Five Gum

These Machines

This is what happens to a packet of Five Gum left in the pocket of a sweater washed and dryed in this laundry equipment.
Note: except for the colour change...that didn't happen.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Sometimes We Don’t See the Signs


Maybe the do-not-enter signs were covered with snow. Maybe we didn’t look in the right places.

Sometimes in life we head off in the wrong direction. It takes a police cruiser experience to wake us up.
The other night someone was having a three-cruiser experience right outside our bedroom window at 2:15 in the morning. The light flickering across my ceiling woke me up.

Getting Caught Going the Wrong Way

(continued from previous post)
I pulled the van over beside a snow bank and rolled down my window. A young police officer, disgust all over his face, strode up to the van.

“We are SO lost.” I said.

“That is a one-way street. There are a plethora of signs at the entrance.”

I hadn’t seen any signs beyond the no exit sign, but thought it best not to admit to blindness.

Where you from?”


He nodded. My answer seemed to explain something to him.

“Where are you headed?”

“We’re looking for a place to eat.”

“Well, you won’t find it here.” He motioned at the residential homes all around us. “Head down to the end of this street and turn right. That’s the main street. You’ll find all kinds of places there.”

“Down to the end of this street and turn right? Oh, thank you sir. Thank you! Thank you,” I called after him as he disengaged.

I rolled up my window.

“I didn’t see any signs,” said Lizzy.

At the end of the street, we found our Tim Horton’s.


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Going the Wrong Way on a One Way Street

We didn't bother asking anyone for directions: we had two whole hours between games at Lizzy’s basketball tournament and we had a GPS (global positioning system). That's how Lizzy and I found ourselves driving around St. Catharines looking for a Tim Horton’s at noon last Saturday.

Our GPS didn’t know Geneva Street was off limits due to construction. Our GPS kept telling us to turn left to head back to said street. We stopped listening and ended up navigating slushy snow-covered residential streets. At one point I drove past a sign which declared no exit. I was all set to turn the van around, but then I noticed a narrow, freshly plowed alley—snow piled high on one side and freeway fence on the other.

Without hesitation I entered the alley. We rounded a corner. Ahead I could see a do-not-enter symbol on a sign just past an adjoining street. I saw a police cruiser coming at me from beyond the do-not-enter sign. At that point it occurred to me that I was possibly traveling the wrong way down a one-way street. I signaled left onto the adjoining street. Maybe the police wouldn’t notice. Rather unlikely.


Monday, March 1, 2010

What the Olympics Did for Me

What a great way to spend February…watching fellow Canadians live their dream.

The elation.

The disappointment.

The courage.

The pain.

The joy.

The agony.

The superhuman effort.

The beauty.

The despair.

The relief.

The unity.

It was all there and I felt like I was part of it. When I went cross-country skiing with Amanda on Thursday, we were Canadian athletes on a practice run. When I went to Lizzy’s basketball tournament on Saturday, her team was playing for Gold and came home with a Silver.

Life suddenly mattered more. The games stirred up joy in taking ownership, in caring about outcomes, in participating with my heart.

I want life to matter. I want this blog to matter. I want the book I’ve written to matter. I want the book I'm writing to matter.

I want God to say, “Well done good and faithful servant!” every day of my life.