Showing posts from July, 2014

UBC Day 29 - Take a risk!

How will we know how great we could be if we don’t try new things and work towards difficult goals? Who knows? We might surprise ourselves and discover talents and strengths we didn’t know we had. We owe it to ourselves to take that risk. 

Isn’t Alan Alda great? I always loved him as Hawkeye in MASH.

As he wisely says in this quote, we don’t have to know what we’re doing and we can learn and make mistakes as we go along. I find that so freeing as I’ve often been inhibited from taking a risk because I thought I had to be an expert at something right from the beginning. 

Long ago, when computers were clunky things that took up the whole room, a computer gave me music as an elective on my grade 9 timetable. I had asked for typing. Instead of changing it, I decided to take the risk of trying it and it turned out to be my favourite course in high school.

When I first picked up the flute, I could barely get a note out of it. I’d blow and blow into it until I was dizzy and hyperventilating. But …

UBC Day 28 - ABC of me and Quintet of Radiance Award

Often writing is such a lonely pursuit and you wonder if anyone is even reading your efforts or even cares in this busy, frantic, distracted world. You sweat over each word and revise again and again, while all you hear is the gentle chirp of crickets in the background. You wonder what you’re doing it for and if it really matters. 

That’s why receiving an award is much appreciated. Being acknowledged by fellow blogger/writing friends is always such a boost. Thank you to Carol Graham (Great last name by the way! ;)) for nominating me for the Quintet of Radiance award. What fun! 

Check out Carol’s wonderful blog Battered Hope.

Carol is always thought provoking, uplifting, funny, entertaining and touching in her posts.

One of the rules for this award is to describe yourself using the letters of the alphabet. You know how much I love writing rhyme so of course I did my alphabet about me in a poetic rhyming style. Woohoo! Narcissism rules. OH YEEEEHHHH! Just …

UBC Day 27 - A Letter to a Brother

For today's blogging challenge, I have taken my inspiration from Write Tribe's post about 48 Commonly Mis-spelled words

I decided to use every word mentioned in the list in sequence to write this letter from an older brother to his delinquent younger brother. I seem to like that theme as my previous Idiom story had a similar idea with an older sister scolding her younger sister.

I managed to squeeze in all 48 words and make a story out of it. PHEW!

Dear Josh,
I am sending you this email in hopes that you will accommodate me for a change. I know it’s a lot to ask, but I need to talk to you.
Don’t give me that Arctic chill like you always do, Little Brother. I know you’re so busy and all, but I’m sure your calendar isn’t that jam-packed.
I want to meet you at the park next to the cemetery. You know the place. Remember that night when Bob got kn…

UBC Day 26 - What makes a successful blog?

My blog can often be silly, sad or sappy Some folks might even think it’s crappy, But I don’t care, I’m having fun For me, I’ve only just begun,
Words flow freely from my mind Freeing me from the daily grind, This is my time when I like to play I can be serious the rest of the day.

What makes a good blog? I was reading this article this morning about boosting blog traffic
The post made me realize that I don’t do any of this. Does that mean I’m a failure? I guess it would depend on the definition of what a successful blog is.
I have a small readership. I often blog about silly things and write silly poetry just for fun.  I post cute photos of my pets and pretty photos of Nature. 
I write about things that touch me. I write about life's lessons that I've learned the hard way and how I'm still learning and evolving each day.
I don’t always have useful content. I don’t have an email list. I don’t use keywords that Google can find. And I don’t ma…

UBC Day 25 - I am grateful for Nature

Everyone knows that Gratitude is a theme I like to write about a lot and so does my friend, fellow blogger, Laurel Reagan who has a weekly Gratitude list on her blog, Alphabet Salad.
Here is a little poem I wrote about being grateful for Nature.
I’m grateful for each thing that grows, I’m grateful for flowers, plants and trees, I’m grateful for dirt beneath my toes I’m grateful for the summer breeze,
I’m grateful for the birds that sing I’m grateful for their lovely song, I’m grateful for each beak and wing I’m grateful we have birds all year long,
I’m grateful to see Nature all around From up in the sky to down on the ground!

UBC Day 23 - The Early Days of the Internet

Remember that sound of the dialup as it connected on the phone line? I always liked the dumb dee dumb part at the end followed by a sound like someone whispering Oyvay. Ah, the nostalgia. Sigh.

Dial up was so slow and cumbersome. It tied up the phone line and things loaded so slowly. Email addresses consisted of long numbers and letters that no one could ever remember.
If you wanted to download anything with photos or graphics, it took forever and sometimes it didn’t work at all.
Even so, I remember thinking how magical it was to have the world at my fingertips. As a person who grew up in the precomputer days of the 1960s and 70s, I still find it magical!
Many times, when my older son was small, he would sit in his baby chair rocking back and forth. He would start to whine, growing more and more impatient as he waited for me to get off the Internet.
There was no Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest back then. No such thing as blogging, chats and webinars either. I remember joining forums and li…

UBC Day 21 - Roach Rental

This 100 Words story is inspired from two sources. 
The first one is the Write Tribe's 100 Words on a Saturday prompt of  including the phrase "It does feel like home, doesn't it?"

The second is this photo of our bathroom after the workers removed everything in preparation for renovating today. 

Two cockroaches admire the room.
Gladys: I love it, don’t you Fred?

Fred: It does feel like home, doesn’t it?

Gladys: It’s charming and rustic. It’s all I’ve dreamt about.

Fred: I’m so glad we finally found something.

Gladys: I know. I was worried we wouldn’t find anything since our last place was torn down.

Fred: We’ll settle in here just fine, I can tell.

Gladys: It’s a perfect place to raise little roaches.

Fred: Little roaches? Gladys, you’re not..are you?

Gladys: I’m going to drop my egg capsule anytime now. Isn’t it wonderful? Fred? Fred? What’s wrong? Wake up!

UBC Day 20 - How I Tackle Blogger/Writer's Block

I am writing this post in response to Write Tribe's prompt about blogger's block.

1. If I’m stumped and approaching the writing too seriously, I try being playful and silly by writing rhymes and poetry. It’s all about tricking the muse into coming out to play with me.
My muse is elusive, there is no doubt But often I can coax her out, With promises of chocolate and coffee, too And a good dose of silliness to see us through!

2.Getting off the computer for a while and getting some exercise in a natural setting is a great cure for blogger's block. These outdoor adventures always help me feel refreshed and ready to write again.
Here is a photo I took looking across the St. Lawrence Seaway at New York State. Nothing like looking at water to refresh and rejuvenate.
3. Reading other bloggers' work always fires me up. Here is a post highlighting my five favourite blogs.…

UBC Day 19 - Black Sheep of the Family

I don’t like being the one to let the cat out of the bag but I am your big sister and I watch out for you. A little bird told me how you’ve been seen with that awful man again. 
I hate to be a fly in the ointment but I did tell you he was a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Like a moth to the flame, you went ahead and got involved with him anyhow. You thought he was the bees knees even when I told you that you that a leopard can’t change its spots.
Stop that grinning like a Cheshire cat. Don’t you realize what a kettle of fish this is? You really opened a can of worms this time.
Didn’t Mom ever tell you about the birds and the bees? Now it’s too late. The poor baby. I feel sorry for it and it’s not even born yet.
Don’t you have anything to say for your actions? You should get off your high horse. You think you’re the cat’s whiskers just because you’re the youngest daughter. Mom and Dad always spoiled you. The truth is that you’re no better than the rest of us.
Oh, stop it with the crocodile tears…

UBC Day 18 - My Five Favourite Blogs

I am doing this post in response to Write Tribe's Wednesday prompt asking about our five favourite blogs. I like many more than just five so it was hard to narrow it down, but I finally managed. Suzy’s blog is full of simple wisdom on how to live your life with more joy and contentment, and less worry and guilt. I always get inspired each time I read one of Suzy’s posts or see her inspirational poetry and lovely photos. I feel like I’ve had a therapy session. Thanks, Suzy. You help me put things in perspective and get into a positive frame of mind. How much do I owe you?;) I enjoy Laurel Reagan’s blog Alphabet Salad. It’s always so eclectic with uplifting, thought-provoking posts and wonderful artwork and photos by Laurel. I love those zentangles, Laurel. They’re so much fun! Debbie Doglady’s blog is fun and upbeat. She often posts about her many travels accompanied…

UBC Day 17 - If Only Life Was A Musical

If life was a musical, I’d always be singing Music would follow me around, Trumpets would announce me and bells would be ringing What a joyous sound!
I’d be Maria on the mountain with the wind in my hair

I’d be Eliza selling flowers in the street,

I’d be Mary, with my umbrella, flying in the air

I’d be Orphan Annie looking so sweet,

Why can’t life be a musical? It really isn’t fair I’d sing my heart out all day long, anytime, anywhere!

UBC Day 15 - Have a Beautiful Butterfly Day!

I adore butterflies. They are such a delight to see with their bright colours as they flit about the garden. How I wish I could fly among the flowers and high up in the sky like they do. Hard to imagine that such a delicate creature can fly long distances and endure harsh winds, rain and varying temperatures.
I’m sad that I don’t see as many butterflies as I did in my childhood. Maybe there are less of them or maybe I’m not looking as hard. As an adult, I do find that my mind is often preoccupied and I miss things that an observant child would notice.
I can’t resist buying butterfly scrapbook paper, butterfly stickers etc. If it’s got a butterfly on it, I like it.   I bought these lovely 3D butterflies at Dollar It yesterday and had to try them out on a craft project. 
Butterflies are also a symbol of hope for Bereaved Families of Ontario. Recently I had the privilege of playing my flute for their Butterfly Bereavement Ceremony, along with my friend, Sharon who plays harp.  
Each bereave…

UBC Day 14 - Take One Positive Step Forward.

I've been in a bit of a rut this week. Writing this poem was therapeutic as it reminded me that I need to take action, even one small step. Taking action is the key.

When the future seems too scary and bleak When you just can’t seem to move, When you don’t know where to find what you seek When you feel they all disapprove,
Take one positive step forward, one tiny step That’s all that’s required by you, Taking action of any kind Will help to see it through,
Taking action starts the journey, Even if it might feel strange, Before you know it, you’re up and moving And on the road to change.

UBC Day 13 - Today is Embrace Your Inner Geek Day!

Today we pay tribute to our inner geek and to all the geeks of the world. 

Even my Malamute Loup A. Graham got caught up in the excitement of the day and insisted on a special photo shoot for the occasion.
Geeks have always had a bad reputation for being social misfits who dress badly. They prefer interacting with machines to people and are considered obsessive and weird.
I say we need to celebrate the Geeks of this world and appreciate their valuable contributions. Think of all the famous and successful geeks who have changed our world such as Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs and many others. 
Without geeks we’d have none of this wonderful technology like this laptop I’m working on. Or the nifty programs I work with to do my writing and edit my photos.
Without them, we’d have no Internet with all the cool sites to interact with like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, email and so on.
We'd have no cell phones and no GPS systems to guide us on our way.
I’ve never thought of my…

UBC Day 12 - Dark Clouds

I haven't been in the best of moods the past couple of days. Nothing puts a dent in my creativity faster than fatigue and worry. Mix those two things together and my Muse is nowhere to be found.

Slowly I'm pushing those dark clouds away to see brighter skies once again. It's a continuous process that takes daily effort but is well worth it.

In the meantime, I wrote this poem, inspired by those gorgeous clouds I took photos of the other night.

Hope you all have blue skies and that any dark clouds quickly pass by!

My thoughts are like clouds up in the sky Flitting and fleeting, they float on by, Some thoughts are silly, so light and airy But some are dark and downright scary,
They rob my sleep and cause me sorrow Making it seem like there’s no tomorrow, Stratus cloud thoughts, so heavy and sad Weighing  me down and making me mad,
Hovering above, they don’t want to leave They never give me any reprieve, Negative thought clouds, full of worry Stealing my joy in an awful hurry,

UBC Day 9 - Each Day is a New Beginning

I tried out a site called to make this poster above. I am trying out different poster and quote making sites instead of always using Picasa. My verdict is that Picasa is pretty good and does the job just fine. I didn't find behappyme had much variety or flexibility. Still, it's good to try new sites to compare.

I like this quote by Eleanor Roosevelt, a most inspirational woman.

Each new day is stretched out in front of us; clean, new and unspoiled, ready for us to make our mark on it.

Even if yesterday was a complete mess and we failed miserably, today a new day beckons and there is a chance to start again.

You're are not the same person as you were yesterday either.

With new thoughts and new strength, you get another chance to create the you that you want to be today.

How will you spend your new day?

UBC Day 8 - Pebbles in Your Shoe

This poem was written in response to Write Tribe's Wednesday prompt based on Vidya Sury's book review of the book "Pebble in Your Shoe by Jim Fannin

How many of us have pebbles in our shoe that keep us from becoming the people we want to be? 
Do you have pebbles in your shoe? You’re not alone if you do, Guilt and anger, frustration and worry Can fill up our shoes in an awful hurry,
As can jealousy, envy and guilt Like a clogged river full of silt, Pebbles can cause us so much pain Opening blisters again and again,
Rejection is one we writers know It drags us down and we feel so low, Pebbles soon turn into boulders Like heavy weights upon our shoulders,
It’s time to let those pebbles go Do it now before they grow, Possibilities are waiting just for you If you can learn to empty your shoe.

UBC Day 7 - The Three Cs

The Three Cs that I can't live without would be:



And Chocolate,

For this post, I'm focusing on three other C words since I found this great quote that I put into a quote image maker called

I love fooling around with photo editing sites and now I have a bunch of quote poster making places to try thanks to

I rather like the results and what a great quote to remember and live by.

UBC Day 6 - Queen of Your Own Life

I’ve been subscribing to Queen of your own Life’s Facebook Page for some time now. I love the beautiful Queen posters that Kathy and Cindy create daily with the gorgeous vintage photos and positive messages.

These lovely posters help me get in the right mindset to face the day. I enjoy sharing them on Facebook and know they resonate with women everywhere.
Thank you, Kathy and Cindy for reminding us that we are all queens who deserve a life of happiness and fulfillment.
Here is a link to their Facebook page and their website. and
Here are a few thoughts I have of what it means to be a Queen of your own life: Although we may not be able to control everything that happens to us, we can control our attitude.We deserve love and respect from others, but especially from ourselves.We are stronger and more resilient that we realize.We have a purpose and have many strengths and talents to share with the world.We should …

UBC Day 5 - In my next life I want to be my cat, Kobie

In my next life, I want to be a cat like my cat, Kobie.

He can sleep anywhere at any time of day, and never feels any guilt about it.

Kobie has a playful attitude and enjoys the moment.

Self pity and self doubt don’t exist in Kobie's world.
Kobie never worries about whether he’s measuring up to anyone else’s expectations.
Kobie basks in the adoration of humans catering to his every whim.

Kobie is impulsive and a real self starter. Sometimes it’s too much of a good thing.

Kobie's only worries are whether the food dish is full and the litter box is clean. What a great life!
Yes, in my next life I want to be a cat like Kobie, most definitely!

All this talk about wanting to be a cat makes me think of that great song from the "Aristocats", "Everybody wants to be a cat." I just had to share that, too. And this one has the words on it. Everybody sing now! 

Have a Kobie kind of a day, Everyone!

UBC Day 4 - You have sight but do you really see?

For a deaf and blind person, Helen Keller saw and understood more than many sighted people.
How many of us truly see what’s around us? We have the gift of sight but fail to see for whatever reason. Perhaps we’re too busy and distracted, too tired, too complacent and too apathetic.
We could learn a lot from children who delight in seeing and interacting with everything around them. They see so much that we miss.
When was the last time you really looked with that first time feeling of newness and excitement?
Surely as adults, we can recapture that feeling if we try hard enough.
Why not give ourselves permission to be in the moment and just be? 
Put the “to do” list away for a while and ditch the guilt. 
Go and see what you've been missing.

I am participating at Write Tribe 

and the Ultimate Blogging Challenge for July. 

Love those challenges! They're the best!