Thursday, August 30

The iPod Case AKA Maxi Pads

I had to run to the drug store for some lady products yesterday. It made me laugh how "decorative" the boxes are and how brightly coloured the wrapping is. I actually though to myself, who are you fooling? We all know what your purpose is, and there is no way to make that prettier.

After I got home from work, I emptied my purse and started making dinner. I places the little box on the counter beside my purse and the newspaper and turned around towards the sink. My oldest son Ethan comes and sits at the island..

"MOM?" and this was said in a kind of whiny, annoying, complaining tone.

I turned around, "What?"

"Why do you get a new iPod case?"  And he is pointing to the box of pads.

I laughed until I was crying! I guess they are fooling some people.

The only thing funnier was his face when I told him what they really were!

Today:

I am grateful for the wonderful day at work I had yesterday!

I am grateful for the long weekend.

I am grateful for all the lovely emails I get. I will always be humbled and thankful for the support I have received and continue to receive along the way!

J

Tuesday, August 28

One Year

Today It has been one year since I went on the air as an actual host. I don't think I have ever really felt like a "host"...I don't even really know what that feels like now. But regardless it has been a year since the bumper that Chris would push said "The Chris Love show with Joelle".  I can't believe how fast a year has come and gone. And it all happened because of one simple day being brave and trying something new.

It has been 12 months since I really started looking at myself differently. Seeing potential and feeling like it was okay to dream...all because someone else saw potential in me that I did not even know was there.

It has been 365 days since I fist woke up and felt joy going to work.

It has been 52 weeks since I first called some of the greatest people in the world coworkers, and now friends.

This is possibly one of the biggest years of growth I have had in my entire life, second only to the year following a child. I have learned more about myself in the last 12 months then I have in a very long time. I feel alive again. My smile is back and I have forgotten what it was like to not have it. I love my life, as simple and humble as it is. I believe in myself, and I like learning more about who I really am and where I'm headed everyday.

I am no longer scared.

I have given away all the guilt I once lugged around like boulders in a backpack. I no longer feel the need to strive for someone else's ideal of  better that always felt unattainable, unrealistic, and unauthentic. I am just me, and I really like that. If I don't want to do something, I just don't do it, plain and simple. And likewise, when there is something I want to do, I just do it. 'Cause once you have turned your whole world upside down and inside out, little things don't feel scary anymore.

I understand responsibility now WAY more than I ever have in my whole life, and it doesn't scare me anymore either. I only have myself to blame for things now, and that is a very sobering place to be. Everyone should feel that.

365 days and I feel real. I am whole and healthy and so very very happy.

One year since I became me again. And I wish you could see how big my smile is right now. The tears streaming down my face are happy tears.

Thank you, from the deepest part of my soul, thank you for making that phone call and changing my entire world MH. For believing in me.

One year!

J

Today:
I am grateful, I am grateful, I am grateful!



Monday, August 27

Music Monday And Cats.

I hate cats. Always have. I find them rather useless. I am a dog person myself. I don't have a dog right now, but I have always figured if I was going to ever get a pet for the kids, it would be a dog...until tonight.

My (used to be) friend Sam has kittens that need a home. I say "used to be" because if it was not for her and these  kittens she brought home I would not be needing to think this over right now. I would never have seen their cute faces, and my kids would not have played with them. But because she did, here we are.
 I think we might be ready as a family for a "real" pet. Something with a little more substance. I destroyed the crabs Seth got for his birthday and the fish were a total slaughter (I still feel horrible about that one) but a cat, a cat is a rather hardy animal that would more then likely live if I forget to feed it every day? Not that I am going to forget to feed it, I am just saying.

What am I thinking? Seriously? ...Big Breath...my kids deserve a pet, that's what I'm thinking.

This is one of the ones I think I like best...sigh...kill me now!


For music this week I am picking some older ones that are forever my favorites. Lyrics matter to me, always have. And these are ones that have resonated with me for a long time.

Have a great week.








And this one by Maroon 5 is possibly my favorite song right now



Today:
I am grateful for this time I have had to spend with my kids before they go back to school and life gets crazy again.

I am grateful for this last week of the drive Rob and I get to do before we go back to weekends.

I am grateful for the power coming back on this morning in time for me to have a shower before I have to go meet Noras teacher.

J

Thursday, August 23

This Years Bee Evacuation Attempt

Every year I get bees. I have no idea what it is like, but apparently it is the Frigging Four Seasons for the insect population under my cement front step. The bees come back year after damn year! We have all been stung and have learned to be extra careful when we walk up to the door as to not make any of them angry. My past attempts to get rid of them have included:

-hanging fake wasp hives
-boiling water
-expand foam sealer
-sticking the water hose down there
-wasp spray
-smoke
-and covering the hole with dirt.

This year my friend Chelaine said she saw on pinterest (eye roll) that steal wool jammed down there would help. So off I went to get 3 packages of steal wool. Not only did it not work, I infuriated the little bastards and they were dive bombing me while I shoved it down there. Plus, I even did it very late at night thinking they were asleep... false, they have night patrollers who keep watch for such behavior!

 NOTHING IS WORKING!!! And my poor neighbors son was stung the other day.

So I decided to use shaving foam. I have no idea if it will work, but after all these years and trying everything I am just grabbing anything and giving it a go, partially to see if it works, and partially out of boredom and desperate need for cheep entertainment.


I just went out and added another layer of shaving foam while...So we will see tomorrow how this works. Fingers crossed.

Today:

I am grateful for Melissa, I got your sweet card in the mail and I wanted to say thank you. That was too kind and I really appreciated the kind words!

I am grateful for short shorts.

I am grateful for all the goodness in my life. I appreciate things more because not everything is easy...I like when not everything is hard at the exact same time...but I am loving my life non the less.

J



I Am Happy How We Are Right Now

I got home from work tonight and rushed to make dinner so I could spend some time with the kids before bed. My favorite thing to do with them is walk. I love going for walks with the kids. Something magical happens when the kids and I walk, and by magical I mean conversational magic.

I often wonder if they pick up much from me...but ooh I do not worry about their ability to gab. They for sure got that from dear old mama!

Tonight when we were walking my older two, Ethan and Gabe, were on either side of me with Nora and Seth trotting off every which way exploring.

Ethan began the questioning: "Mom? I heard you talk on the radio the other day about how you want to only date taller guys, is that true?"

Me: "Yes, I like taller guys."

Gabe: "She wants to be protected from being killed."

Me: "Not exactly." (laughing)

Gabe: "What else do you want the guy to have?" "Will he be nice to us?"

Me: "OF COURSE!" "I would never allow anyone to be mean to you!" "I would kill someone who hurt you!"

Gabe: "Like really kill them, or just hit them with a bat and shoot them with a cross bow?"

(My kids are really into the hunger games right now)... I want to make it very clear we are a very non violent family, but we have a ton of sarcasm here...

Ethan: "I also heard you say you don't know if there is anyone out there that can handle you, what did that mean?"

I just want to inject that HOLY CRAP kids listen to me better when I am on the radio, WAY better than in person!

Gabe: "She meant that whoever she dates better be cool enough to hang with us too"

Me:"That is exactly what I meant. I was simply saying that we are a pretty cool bunch and anyone wanting to be with us will have to be pretty cool too" "But just so you guys know, I'm okay if I never find anyone like that, I like our life and I am really happy how we are right now."

Seth rides by : "I am really happy too"

Nora: "Me too, I am really happy with my shoes"

Ethan: "Ooh mom, there is someone like that and you will meet him. He will be tall and will make you smile and laugh too!"

Me: "How do you know that Ethan?"

Ethan: He starts to do this swagger like walk... "Who WOULDN'T want to hang with us?"

Gabe and I started laughing, and they held my hand as we walked home.

Today:

I am grateful for having children. They keep me humble and grounded.

I am grateful for knowing who I am and where I am going.

I am grateful for my new tape measure.

J




Tuesday, August 21

Every Woman Needs A Man Like This!

The last few weeks i have been attempting a lot of repair projects around this 'ol house of mine. Most I have pridefully tried to do myself, or with limited help from any guys. I would say for the most part my attempts have been successful , but not all. There have been a few doozers, a handful of situations that have been really painful and awful. Situations where I left feeling bad about myself and angry that I was not treated with the same respect I had given. I felt stupid and frustrated that I did not know more so I could just do (whatever the project was) myself. Yesterday on the drive show I spoke a little bit about how amid these degrading and rude situations there have been a few instances in the past few weeks where I have been treated exceptionally well by a man in the service industry and I have decided I wanted to share my experience further. I wanted to help anyone else in a similar predicament.

A couple of situations stand out more than others, but I thought I would narrow it down to my car buying and car fixing experiences to make my point.

When I was trading in my truck it was a rather quick decision. I knew I had to fix the situation I was in and I needed to do I ASAP. I had an idea of what I wanted and I was determined to have it done that night. The first dealership I went to I went alone (because I wanted to do it myself). I walked around all the cars and made it very clear (by my body language) I was looking for a car. A older man came outside to talk to me and asked, "Can I help you sweetie?" I detest such terms of endearment, especially ones so derogatory, but I ignored it to not be rude. I told him what I was looking for and I asked If I could test drive this little car I was standing in front of . It was new, small and I knew it would be good on gas (because I used my iPhone and goggled it) it had low KM's and it was a standard. To which he replied, "You sure you don't want to try this one (pointing to a doge charger), it's prettier and is easier to drive?"," It's an automatic and goes really fast." I am sure I don't need to tell you he had a fake tan, rings on almost every finger and had a pungent smelled of dollar store cologne either...but he did.

I will spare you the rest of the story cause to be honest it only angers me, but I am pretty sure you are getting my point! And as a ying to that yang story, I wanted to share the name of a mechanic I was told about in Stony Plain who was very kind and treated me like a person when my vehicle needed repairs.

Myron did not talk down to me or in a condescending tone.  Not only did he call me by my name and not a body part, he did not put the word "sugar" before it either.(And yes that has happened)
When I went in and needed him to fix things he only fixed what actually needed to be fixed and he even kept the parts out after everything was done so when I came back to pick up my vehicle he showed me that parts  that had been replaced and explained why.

Every woman needs to have Myron on their speed dial in case of emergencies. He was reliable and kind, honest and respectful! I will happily give every woman (and man) his number for their cars and trucks! I hope everyone goes to see him and his brother if they have any mechanical need. Good people like this guy deserve business!



Today:

I am grateful for feeling like there are still good men out there.

I am grateful for having a working car!

I am grateful for having boys and being able to make sure they are raised to know how to treat women. For having a daughter who will not accept anything but respect because her mom would not allow anything but and her brothers made sure of it.

J


Monday, August 13

Music Monday And I'm Feeling Rather Accomplished!

I am mid August and I have almost finished everything on my "TO DO" list. This past week I finished painting and the house is sorted and organized for the children to return. Laundry is caught up and the actual laundry room is organized and sorted. The house is cleaned and I even have some of the things for the back to school haul. I found and hung curtains in all the childrens bedrooms (no longer will I have pinned towels up to block out the sun..I know, really classy) and I think I have gotten rid of everything that was cluttering up my basement. I am feeling rather accomplished.
 It is amazing to me how much peace I feel when my space is clean and orderly. When I am feeling like things are out of control, I just need to spend a day cleaning and I feel like the world is right again. I could never be a hoarder, there are many things I could be and am, but a hoarder is not one of them.

My friend Chelaine found me a table for my deck so I can seat everyone for dinner parties again. I can't even begin to explain my joy. I have wanted to throw a dinner party this summer so badly.
I also changed the colour in my hair from red to purple. I was ready for something different. I think it is a little more subtle...as subtle as unnatural purple can be in a black head of hair. I like it, and it makes me feel pretty.


The music I am sharing this week I found shopping, getting coffee, and driving. I love hearing something and scrambling to shazam it on my iPhone before it's over and I miss it. I appreciate the challenge every time!

I heard this one while driving to work this past week. I fell in love almost instantly!




I heard this one while shopping in my favorite store.




I downloaded this entire album while waiting for my Chai in Starbucks. Something happened to my insides when I heard his voice. The whole album is wonderful.



J

Today:

I am grateful for Costco. I have not had to get groceries for a few weeks and holy crap I needed a haul.

I am grateful for having such good friends.

I am grateful for my intuition.  The constant reminder to always listen to it, and the confirmation that it is seldom wrong.

Sunday, August 5

Tattoos And Food!

This was the first year I have ever gone to the heritage festival in Edmonton. Most of the time I am in Strathmore for the August long weekend Rodeo. It was quite the experience. The food seemed nice, although I only tried 3 things. There was so much to see and do it was hard to take it all in. Plus the weather was blistering and there were so many people to watch, it made for a very long day.
Here are a few of the highlights.



this dancer was from Ghana


I could have watched the dancers from Ghana all day, they were my favorite. The music at the Ghana section was hands down the best as well. Everyone was so happy, it made my body move just watching everyone having a good time.

But my favorite thing that I did today was get my henna tattoo. The woman was amazing and I just love it!





All in all it was a fun day. After it was all done, I came home and watched the Olympics.

Today:

I am grateful for new things to do in the city. I enjoy trying new things and having new experiences.

I am grateful for little distractions. I am constantly amazed how my mind can wander back to things it shouldn't.

I am grateful we live in a place where people can celebrate their cultures openly. I loved how many children were there learning the beauty in diversity.

J

Saturday, August 4

I Am Home And Finally Clean.

I have just finished getting cleaned up after a week at the beach. Of course I showered there, but it's different when you are camping. The details often get overlooked when your shower requires money to operate it and the stupid coin slot is outside of the actual shower. Forcing you to do things that are normally done leisurely, to be done in record time out of complete fear you might be one of those poor women who runs out of shower time with shampoo in their hair. I was one of those women once, a long time ago. I was so embarrassed because I could not see anything, so I was forced to go out of the shower in the buff and try and feel my way to the money timer.
 If you are a seasoned veteran to the dreaded camping shower you leave an extra quarter on top of it for just such an emergency. But those first timers who are not familiar with the camping shower, leave their money in their purse, because they think, "I can do it with one quarter". But this can cause further embarrassment because when the water runs out they have to go dig for cash in their birthday suite where everyone else is getting dressed.
The only way this doesn't happen is if a) you have a friend there also who would love you enough to run to put your quarter in. I was never so lucky, I only ever had my mother and It would be a cold day in hell before she would hurry to help me out. Hells no! She would make me wait until her shower was over and her hair was blown dry..she's not a woman who can be rushed. Or b) you learn to cut corners while showering and do it as fast as possible and just accept that you won't look your finest during the week of camping.

Hence why it just took me a full hour and a half to pluck, wax, trim, exfoliate, cut, wash, scrub, shave, shampoo, condition, dye, oil up and paint everything back to the way I was before I left. Holy crap being a woman is not easy! But I am now home and clean and am feeling pretty again.

It was a delightful week and I feel great. The bags are from under my eyes, I have a royal tan, I read a book I have wanted to read for a while and I got to think about a lot of things. And most importantly I played with my kids! We had a wonderful time on grandma and grandpas new boat.



 It was our first year with the new wake broad that my parents got the kids. I figured they would do well. I am a little shocked at how well they all did their first times though.






Nora had fun swimming, next year she can give the board a try.


My cousin Chris came too for a few days. He is 10 years younger, but it was so nice having someone to talk with. I really appreciated the time we had to catch up and laugh. I really value this special time I have been given lately to get to know my younger cousins better. Chris and I even took my parents boat one night and drove it across the lake to the fancy restaurant on the golf course for dinner. We had a wonderful time laughing and telling stories. I was crying listening to him tell me his houseboat adventures and trying to choke down the drink concoction they made for him was enough to send me into a snorting laughter. It was nice to get out and really laugh again, even if just for a night.



It was a great trip and like always my special place did what I needed it to. It made me feel better and helped me rest and refocus.


Today:

I am grateful for my uneventful drive home...except for the squirrel I ran over on the highway. I felt pretty bad about it.

I am grateful for my parents who kept the kids for another week so they can have more fun on the boat. And for my aunt who is staying there to help with the kids. I am a lucky girl to be so loved and supported by strong, beautiful and powerful women.

I am grateful for feeling a little more like myself.

J