Sunday, April 28, 2013

flowers and hearts

Radium greeted us with open arms and warm smiles this weekend. We stayed at our favorite place to stay, and we got it all to ourselves. What a treat to not hear other people snoring or showering at 6 in the morning.

Here are a few of my favorite photos from the trip. I really didn't take too many, but the ones I did take turned out well.

As if I wasn't in love with these hands already, now I love them even more. 

It took the collective minds of Thor and his mom to tell me what this really pretty lavender colored flower is called.  It's the state flower of South Dakota and it's called a pasque flower. I love how it looks like a little tulip when it's standing straight up and not very open, aside from its foliage. It's a member of the buttercup family. Really pretty, and they decorated the mountainside nicely as we went on our hike. I don't think it has any special significance here in Canada, but it was nice to see along the way.

I'm sure someone placed this heart shaped rock on the trail so that everyone would stop and take notice of it. I wonder how many times it's been photographed by now. We've walked that trail several times and I haven't seen it there before. I believe it's a new addition, but I doubt it's random, and it might just not be there next time I go, so I had to take its photo.

Jules :O)

Monday, April 22, 2013


There are a few things I have learned recently.

1) NEVER buy razors from a dollar store, no matter how many blades they have per razor and how much you can save. They will cut you. They are dull. Spend the money and buy regular ones from Walmart instead. $2 razors = pain and suffering.

2) Always buy your next pair of tweezers from a reputable drug store with a cosmetic department. Buying one from MaryKay didn't work for me. Buying one from the dollar store didn't work. Buying one from Walmart didn't even work. Add those 3 up and you've got the cost of a really nice sharp pair from somewhere like Shoppers Drug Mart that will last you a year or more. Money wasted.

3) Don't hold your gas inside. All that happens there is pain and distress. It's okay to fart or burp. Just be polite about it. Also, tell people if you are having stomach issues. It's not embarrassing, it's good information, and you might get some sympathy.

4) Understand the technology behind pillows and spend some money on a good one according to whether you are a side, back or stomach sleeper. A suitable pillow can stop snoring, and can be the difference between waking up with a headache from a crimped neck or not in the morning.

I thought I had 5 things saved up in my mind to share with you but I can't remember the 5th. If anyone ... wait, I just remembered it:

5) Massaging the arch of your feet is supposed to get your bowels moving and cure constipation. Instead of taking laxatives, try that.

I probably should have stopped at #4.

Jules :Oj

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


Here it is!

Go ahead! Order one.. order some...

**happy squeals**

Jules :OD

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


I'm almost ready to tell the world that my Moms Are Magic book can be ordered in hard copy! I've given final approval, and currently am in the works at obtaining my Tax ID Number for the States. I can't sell any hard copy books without getting one of those and sending that and another form in to CreateSpace (the print on demand company I'm using. After that, the royalties stuff will be worked out and I can finally close the door on that one and start my new book. The new one might even "out-cute" this one!

Other than that... life's calmed down in my home. No more house guests, but still feeling quite stressed out by the situation. When May comes, things will settle into how they are supposed to be and everyone will breathe a few sighs of relief.

I've been learning to play ukelele. Thor gave me a really beautiful Kala Uke over Easter because I'd been talking about wanting to learn to play one. Even though I was unsure of whether I'd be able to take to it or not, he bought me one, and I can happily say that after having it for just 2 weeks, I can play 3 songs fairly well, am learning strumming patterns and have been practicing fingering the strings too. I know quite a few chords, I've lost count, and it's cool to be able to play an instrument and sing along with it. I find that it centers and calms me, and I feel happy when I play it, so I've played it almost daily... as much as my fingers will allow. Here are some pics of my pretty little Uke.

I love my two new hobbies as of late.. illustrating and playing the ukelele. The only trouble is deciding which one to do at any given moment in time. :)

Jules :Oj

Friday, April 12, 2013

saga continues

Today I woke up with the most excruciating ear ache I've ever had. I thought a horse had kicked me in the right side of my head throughout the night somehow. I thought I must have gotten an inner ear infection, as I've had plenty of ear aches in my life and none of them have ever felt this bad.

So off I went to the walk in clinic to see what a Doc had to tell me. In fact, I was hoping he would say this was indeed an infection and that I could get rid of it with ear drops, because if he told me the alternative, it would mean having to re-visit keeping the cat here.

Regretfully, he told me my ears look great, no infection... and that I must be reacting to something within my home environment to have that amount of pain. So what could that be within my home.. there's no pollen or hamsters, and very little dust. So it's got to be the re-introduction of having a cat here, as that's my only other allergy. Bless her poor little kitty cat heart, she's so sweet and old and loving.. but I can't keep her here if she's going to make me this sick.

I thought I could handle it, because I used to have my own cat, but it seems that within the time that mine has passed away, my allergy towards them has increased 10 fold. Now I get itchy eyes, severe stuffiness, and now my ears are drastically affected due to the congestion.

I mentioned the fact that I was in such bad shape to my home coordinator for work and she offered to take the cat until my friend takes possession of her home. I thought it was extremely nice of her to offer. She and her family all love animals, and have a room they can set aside specifically for this kitty, so that she won't feel stressed by them or the other pets. She even said it didn't matter if she missed the litter box because they're renovating and will be tearing out the carpets soon anyway! It won't get better than that! So I texted my friend and asked her what she thought, but it seems that she's a bit upset with me. But I don't know that for sure, as I haven't had the opportunity to directly talk to her about it yet. We did agree that we'd move the cat on Sunday morning though. I hope she's ok with it, as keeping her here just isn't going to be healthy for me at all.

On one hand, I feel like crying because I wasn't able to come through for my friend entirely.. on the other hand, I feel happy because I really feel like this community can and will come together when someone's in need. What a roller coaster though.

Jules :O)(

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


I've been lacking bedside lamps forever. Today as I strolled through HomeSense, I started to have a little vision. It started with the remote control faux candles. Then it went to some sort of cylindrical container to host them in. Then it evolved into the concept of mirroring two cylinders. Then it needed some sort of topper. Since I've always loved topiary, I went with a boxwood ball.

I brought it all home, and started to play with it. It looks exactly like I'd envisioned it (it actually looks so much cuter in real life). I don't think it will really give off a lot of light, maybe not even enough to read by at night, but I sure think they turned out adorable. I added a black ribbon where the two cylinders met to hide the fact that they are two pieces, after securing them together with white duck tape (hidden). The best part is that with one remote, I can turn on and off each lamp separately, they don't have to both come on and off at the same time, and when the battery runs out, I can easily undo the lamp, just by untwisting the top cylinder, replace the battery and do it all back up lickety-split.

Another cool thing is that if I get sick of them being my lamps, I can just undo them and use them for pasta or other decorative things around the house. Most of all, this project got me two lamps for less than $60, and they are totally unique. And if I want to change them up a bit from time to time, I could fill the bottom cylinder with something colorful or fun.

I went shopping for birthday gifts, and came out with lamps for me (I did get gifts too). Can't wait to see how they look tonight in the dark. 

Jules :O)

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

stress and things I can't fix

I've been really occupied for the past week and a half. My friend got evicted on extremely short notice through no fault of her own, with her kids and cat, and I've been trying all that I can do to help them out. I helped them move their stuff, am storing what I can for them, and for a while she was staying with me, but after her kids came home after Easter break, I just didn't have enough room for them all here, so she moved in with my relative, who had more than enough space to accommodate them. It's too bad, too, because I was really enjoying having another adult around here, and a friend to visit with regularly.

We thought the cat had a home for the next month while she waited to take possession on a house that she was able to buy, but that became a bit of an issue, so I thought that since I used to have a cat, I would be able to just take her in for the month. We brought her here last night and I was so upset to see it all unfolding as a total disaster.

My foster guy is a really sensitive sleeper and gets wound up really easily with certain things. Combine that with an aged cat who is feeling displaced and missing her family, who showed her distress all night with howling and crying, and what you get is incompatibility. I was so sad, but I had to text my friend and say I couldn't watch her cat for her, because literally, I had to get permission to give my guy his prn sleep aide in order to eventually get him to fall asleep. Every time he was quiet for a few minutes, the poor distressed cat would cry repetitively and that would set the guy off, who would then start to yell and not fall asleep. It was just disastrous and continuous. I'm not allowed/able to go to sleep if he's awake, so the cat howling, causing the guy to get worked up and not sleep also meant me not sleeping. I was afraid the whole thing would wake up Thanan, too, but thankfully that didn't happen, however, he did comment on hearing a cat through the night when he woke up this morning.

Well, I don't know what the outcome is going to be. My relative doesn't allow pets in her home, so taking the cat there isn't an option, but the cat is expressing some serious lament still and keeps going to the rooms where the friend's stuff is stored and howling. She'll go through spurts of quiet and then at the worst times, she'll start to cry. I think I have to have her here for at least tonight again, and I'm so stressed out about how it will go. Yet, I feel so bad that I can't just make this one thing work, after all we've worked through so far.

I guess I'm not perfect, and I can't control things like this... people and animals have their own free will and respond to things differently than you would expect sometimes. I just wish I could fix this.

Bummed out.

Jules :O(

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Easter Mountains

The Mission Mountain Range, Montana - Easter 2013
I thought about trying to hook up with Quiet Paths while I was down in the States but I really hadn't thought that through in time and didn't end up meeting. But I'm sure we will this summer sometime. You can barely see a portion of Flathead Lake in the top left of this photo. I like all the colors and warmth of this photo, the spring season begins earlier down there than it does up here for sure. 

A view of Flathead Lake from the highway as you are about to roll on down into Polson, Montana... no wait... this might be closer to Big Arm Bay.. those of you who know will have to remind me. Every time I have to say goodbye to Thor, I nearly lose all sense of everything, so I'm not sure where I was there.

This was the only bit of blue sky I saw while driving through the mountains on the way home. The sun was out in Missoula when I left there, but it clouded over completely by the time I hit West Glacier until I arrived back in Canada, aside from here at upper St. Mary Lake. It was worth a pause in the 9.5 hour drive back home.

Jules :Oj