Sunday, August 29, 2010

Double Rainbows

This is the best video I've been shown in a long time.  And I've seen a couple of real beaut's lately.  I hope drugs are the excuse but it doesn't matter cause it's just so amazing.  I couldn't stop laughing and the sheer ridiculousness of this.


Teddy gets tossed and teabagged.

The other day Eric lent the boys his old camera as they wanted to take videos and stuff.  He forgot about it with all the craziness that had taken up residence within my four walls.  When he remembered, this is what we found.

The best part of the video in my opinion is when Gage finally really makes his presence known in the last 3 seconds.  Roan teabagging the bear ranks up there too.

Boys are a wonderful creation.

Stress - 1, Eric - 0

This past week has been hectic emotionally.  Unfortunately mainly for Eric.  He had the bad luck of having his laptop completely crash on him on Tuesday night after working hours on the latest project for the book he's illustrating.  His stroke of bad luck continued the next day with his boss informing him that an extension on the dead line wasn't going to work for him and he was no longer able to pay Eric for the work he is doing.  Poor Eric doesn't handle stress too well.  Not to say I'm a saint at it, but he literally doesn't have any real skills in this department.  Me (and his mom and brother) trying to be the voice of reason wasn't cutting the mustard.  I've never seen him like this.  It was not good.  We tried to formulate a plan going forward but his self worth, self esteem and stress got the best of him.

I've spent the past few days writing up cover letters for him and researching potential jobs in the area, he's spent time on the phone to the Timber Framer's Guild trying to get contacts and advice and researching jobs as well.  I know it's only a couple of days in, but he's discouraged with the lack of response.  No patience this man, I tell ya!

Anyway, in my opinion Roan always has a way of cheering people up.  He's the best little kid ever.  I swear.  His heart is always in the right place.  I know Eric can get frustrated with him but I cannot get over how much those two are alike.  They are practically the same person with 20 years between them.  The reason I bring this up is because he spent an hour on Wednesday trying to make Eric a card to let him know he cares.  Here's some pictures of it:

I don't know if the spent bullet or shell casing was overly appropriate or completely suitable considering I'm sure Eric wanted to blow his brains out this week.   The card made Eric smile for a split second, so it accomplished its purpose I suppose.

On Friday things progressed in a better direction for Eric and it looks like his boss spoke out of context or something, but he'll get paid and they'll keep working on the book.  I do think if we have to find a silver lining this whole situation kicked Eric in the ass with a reality check and he knows what he needs to prepare for now going forward.  He's going to still continue on with the job search and maybe to do two jobs.  We know eventually this book deal is going to run out so he needs some back up when that happens.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Kitty love

These are my  kitties.  I have, in fairness, probably 3 too many.  I'd have more if I was legally allowed and could spend all day every day cleaning up kitty hair and litter boxes, but alas four it is.

These are the two I love the most.  Shhh, don't tell the others.  I've always wanted a Siamese kitty and so about 5 years ago I adopted my seal point Kanika.  She's my kindred kitty.  I love her to bits and thought I was going to lose her this year and I was beside myself with stress.  She's all better now though.  And that little smoosh in white is Mr. Oliver.  He's my sucky baby and I love him very much.  I adopted him after a failed attempt at a dog (who was I kidding?) about 3 years ago.  They love each other so much.  

These are the two newest additions to the family.  The Calico is Miss Priss, Tabouleh.  She's kind of stuck up and aloof.  She warmed up to me briefly when we had a scare with her a couple of months ago, but she's back to her old self of hating me.  So I "tolerate" her.  She's Eric's kitty. I got her for him when he was sadly missing his beloved Captain.  She's no Captain, but she's a nice replacement as he loves her to bits and she loves him.  And that black beast is Shakespeare.  Or Poet.  Or Beethoven.  Or Shaky.  Or Black Boy.  Or just Asshole.  He's utterly awesome.  Who'd have thunk that was possible with a black cat?  He's our newest guy. He picked Roan all on his own and became part of our family immediately.  He's the absolute best cat in the whole world, personality wise.  And he even plays catch.  See? I'm not missing that dog afterall!

So that's my feline family and they are the best things ever!
Hugs and Hisses!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Seasonal Love Letters

Dear Autumn (-like) weather:

I secretly love you.  I always have.  I know I don't tell you it often enough or frankly even admit it, but I do.  I want to curl up in bed with you, read a book, chill OUT! I like taking walks with you too... 

I just wish you weren't so 'kind' to that annoying friend of yours, Winter.  He always seems to be following you around.  Even when you show up by yourself to the party, eventually he comes.  I can't believe you haven't figured out yet that he's cramping your style.  You should ditch that dude and hang with the ever lovely ladies, Spring and Summer.  Now they are fun times! 

I love our brief alone times.  Please consider finding a way to break up with that pesky friend of yours and we'll be able to freely spend many days and nights together without me having to constantly look over my shoulder.

Give this some thought.
Love Always,

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Pursuit of Happiness

It's hard to stay cool when he smiles at me.

I don't get many things right the first time.  In fact, I'm told that a lot. Now I know all the wrong turns, the stumbles and falls, brought me here. 

Friday, August 20, 2010

Happy Birthday Sawyer-bean!!

It's my favourite girl's birthday weekend!  It's such a nice change shopping for a little girl.  Everyone (including myself) close to me has boys.  Except Miss Sawyer Bean here:

I got her a little baby doll (with a cute pink stroller) that she can feed and change.  Ya, I'm lame.  I dig this shit.  I had boys remember?  And of course, because she's a little tom boy I got her an annoying Thomas the Tank toy that was driving Roan mad in the car all the way home. I found something I else I really really REALLY wanted to get her but I'll hold off on that until Christmas.  She needs to grow a little.  And I figure I can find it while I'm at Disney in November.  Which on a side note, I'm uber excited for! 

Summer Nights

I find comfort in sitting on my backyard patio drinking beers and daiquiris with friends and having good times.  It's been a great summer.  I wish this weather would stay forever.

Josh and Chantale

On a side note, I'm making plans for my birthday dance party.  Saturday, September 18, 2010 at the Rokbar in Hamilton to dance my face off with my ladies and the twins.  I'm so excited.  I've already started to compile my list of personal song requests.

I always have so much fun with the people above.  Life is really pretty decent when you surround yourself with fun people. 

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Over and out ghostrider!

So for the past 10 years or so I've been secretly or not so secretly dreaming of becoming a police officer.  Yup, giving up my career in funeral services (for now any way) and pursuing a career in law enforcement.  Obviously it has been mainly a dream as I have yet to change careers thus far.  Frankly I want to become a cop and move right up the ranks and become a detective.  I want to solve crimes not just work the beat.  I know that's not how the system works.  Probably the main reason I've not pursued it and only dreamed of it.

Anyway, last week I had a pretty thorough and detailed conversation with my friend John who is a Military Police Officer up in Petawawa and we talked about what is required of me in order to even just apply at the NRP.   He said he'd contact a couple people he knows who work in the region and inquire on my behalf about doing a ride along.  So yesterday I got an email from an officer telling me I was set up to do 3 ride alongs in Niagara Falls and that he would get me the paperwork I needed to fill out to me this week.  I'm so stoked you have no idea.

I'm not sure if this will be what it takes to push me off the fence and go through with trying out or if this will be enough to satiate my desires to be a cop.  Either way I'm gonna embrace it and love it!  I know Eric and my parents aren't too happy about this.  But I need to go through with it to see if this is my next step in life.  I need to scratch this itch.

Imagine me as a cop on a bad day when I'm in a mood (with weapons)?  Oh poor citizens.

I should probably learn the phonetic alphabet.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Roan Pwns Drums

Eric taped Roan playing drums the other day. My kid makes me laugh the hardest. Three years y'all! Three years! (Not quite. This kid has no concept of time.) Get a look now before the billion people clog Youtube trying to catch a glimpse of a future rock star.
He's the best little 9 year old ever. But I'm probably biased.

Monday, August 16, 2010

And CUT. That's a wrap.

On Thursday I received a phone call from a young woman telling me she had to look into making funeral arrangements for her baby that she delivered on Wednesday at the local hospital. I explained the costs involved in having her baby cremated and the procedures that are followed. She asked me my name, told me she had to call her fiancé at work and would get back to me.

Twenty minutes later I received a phone call from her ‘mother in law’ asking if anyone by the name of ‘Jane Doe’ has been in contact with us pertaining to a stillbirth. I explained I had talked with the mother, explained the procedures and costs and that was it. At this point the ‘mother in law’ mentioned to me that they were worried about Jane and they didn’t think she had a baby. I asked her to tell me why she might think this. Here’s the story:

Jane’s fiance John went to work at 9 a.m. on Wednesday morning. At 10 a.m. he received a phone call from Jane saying she wasn’t feeling well and was heading over to the hospital. At 11 a.m. he received another phone message saying they couldn’t find a heart beat, that their son had died and they were going to induce her. At 1:30 p.m. John received another phone call stating that he could come to the hospital to pick her up, everything was done. At 2 p.m. John arrived at the hospital to find Jane sitting alone in the waiting room in the E.R. department without a nurse or social worker with her. By the time he got the car to the front of the building she had walked out freely on her own and easily got into the car. At this point I said it sounded fishy to me as I can’t imagine how one can go from 0-10 cm dilation in the span of 4 hours let alone first have to have the proper tests done to determine that the baby had in fact passed away. There just wasn’t enough time for all of this to occur. I also mentioned that based on my experience when one is informed that their baby has passed away they usually give the mother and father a day, at least, to take all this information in before they bring them back to do an induction. I then asked how far along gestation she was. She said Jane told them she was due on August 9th, so this was a full term pregnancy. Again, I said that it was fishy. I asked about John seeing her bare belly at any point, or if he had gone to any doctor’s appointments, etc. She said he wasn’t permitted to go to any appointments and that Jane wouldn’t even tell him the Dr’s name. Mother in law then told me that John had broken up with Jane and she told him she was pregnant so he stayed with her.

I told her at this point I have no authorization to phone the hospital and that we have to take Jane at face value.

Jane then called me back asking me what could be done if she didn’t want to take the cremated remains home with her (that she just couldn’t handle that as she wasn’t permitted to ‘hang out’ with her baby at the hospital either). This was another flag as the hospital will allow the parents time to sit with their baby in these circumstances. She mentioned again that she had to speak with her fiance and she would get back to me.

I received yet another call from Jane the next day explaining to me that her parents were enroute back from their vacation and that if they call me I was permitted to answer any of their questions. Finally at this point she actually gave me her name, phone number, parent’s names and her baby boy’s name.

Approximately 15 minutes later her parents called me from the car on their cell. They had some questions about funerals and cremation and it was incredibly clear to me that they were devastated at the loss of their grandchild.

Mother in law then called me asking if I’d heard anything further with regards to this baby and I explained I had had numerous conversations with Jane and that I also spoke with her parents. She asked a bunch of ‘what if’ questions and then decided to bring her son into the funeral home so we could see him and he could sign the papers necessary in the event that there was in fact a baby as he didn’t want to come in with Jane.

John, his mother and his sister came into the funeral home and signed the necessary forms and we sat and talked. At this point I learned that she has been diagnosed with a mental illness and that she does have a Psychiatrist but she has not taken her meds for 9 months as they might be harmful to the baby. I also learned that she provided all of her family and his family with framed photos of ultrasound pictures that were traced back to Facebook and the mother’s name was conveniently removed. The numbers on the pictures all correspond with one found on Facebook. John explained to me that when he returned after their break up and being informed of the pregnancy that he wasn’t intimate with her, that he was merely there to support her and she lived with her parents and he lived with his dad so he never actually saw her naked. I mentioned perhaps someone should call Jane’s parents and asked if they knew each other. They mentioned they really only met them at the baby shower. BABY SHOWER!!! Jesus Christ…. After all of this I suggested to John that he call the hospital and tell them he was calling on behalf of Jane Doe to let them know Hulse & English was handling the arrangements. Within 2 minutes we, the funeral home, received a call from the hospital telling up they received a call that we were handling the funeral arrangements for the baby of Jane Doe but they don’t have a baby there, haven’t had a stillbirth there at all that week, perhaps they have the wrong hospital. I don’t know whether it was good news or bad news.

At this point we were all at a loss on how to handle this situation going forward. I wanted no involvement as I’m not trained in this, yet I know I’m going to have to deal with it when she calls me again. This is when I started calling around all the community services out there and got no answer.

Jane then called me back to inquire about baby urns. I answered her questions and remained mum on the information I had just received until I heard back from a trusted source for advice. She then advised me that she wanted her privacy and even if her own parents called I was not to tell anyone anything. Each time she called she seemed to be more and more paranoid/agitated.

What I finally learned from my trusted source is that I have no legal ramifications or recourse. I have not entered into any verbal or written contract with this family and we do not have the same obligation as a doctor with regards to the whole patient/doctor confidentiality. It was suggested to me if she called back to explain we had heard from the hospital following John’s phone call and there is no record of a still birth. Thankfully she didn’t call back.

That day.

Fast forward to Sunday when Jane and her mom call the funeral home to question why the mother in law would leave a message for them stating there is no baby.  We explained to Jane's mother that the hospital had called us because John Doe called to inform them that we were handling the arrangements but they have no baby there, and no record of any stillbirth that week.  We asked the grandmother to be if they had the right hospital and she assured us they did.  But it was quite clear in her response that the gig was up. 
Today I spoke to the mother in law who called to thank me and informed me the other grandparents to be were devastated and dealing with it on their end.  I hope they get her the proper help.  At first I thought she was delusional but now I just think she's evil, cunning and vindictive. 
I'm so relieved overall that this is over, but a little disappointed because by the end of the weekend I was getting more and more pissed at the whole situation and I was hoping to have a few words with our little mama. 

I've had to sit across from many women who have had the misfortune of having to go through this exact situation in real life, not fantasy life.  And how dare she minimalize all of this to try to keep a man?  Maybe I'm terrible, but I can only hope she eventually has to go through something like this in the future to truly understand the shroud of grief one sits under when their child dies.  I honestly don't wish a child to die, but I have to hope somewhere, sometime down the line Karma will strike this girl.

Sunday, August 15, 2010


I'm hoping the Hollywood movie that is currently my life
will be wrapped up tomorrow and then I'll be able to give you a sneak preview, but for now I'm excited for other things...

My favourite time of year....
Dance fever

I have a girl crush on Leah Miller even though Eric swears she looks like Janice from the Muppets.


                                                      not hot

Last year Margaret took me to the top 10 taping of So You Think You Can Dance Canada in Toronto and it was so much fun.  We were guests of my girl crush Leah Miller who desperately wants me to be her new best friend.  (Hillary Duff who?)  I'm sure of this.   She was so accommodating to us between commercials and gave us VIP treatment (we got to eat and drink for free and meet the choreographers, most importantly Blake McGrath and some of the kicked off dancers and last years dancers, etc) .  I heart her.  And she even told me if I was a size 7 she'd have given me some of her shoes. Becoming an evil step sister a la Cinderella has never looked more lovely.  ANYWAY, all that aside, I love this show and I'm stoked it's on to occupy a couple nights of my week for the next few months.

I should try out, clearly I have mad skills.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Scene 1, take 7

I feel like I was cast with a small bit role, a la Johnny Drama, in a Hollywood movie at work today.  The most surreal event of my career is unfolding.  Started yesterday and only got progressively weirder as today played out.  I can't talk about it at the moment, but I'll find a quiet hour or so in the future to write about the screenplay when I have the will to live again.

But this is what I learned today as a result of my role...

Called Niagara Regional Police only to be given the phone number for the Victim's Services Crisis Line, who then gave me the phone number for the Canadian Mental Health, who then gave me the phone number for the Crisis Nurse at the St. Catharines General Hospital, who then gave me the phone number for the Distress Line which was then busy busy busy every time I tried to call.  Bullet to the brain.  With this kind of system I'm surprised I don't have more suicide cases at work.

My head hurts.  I need alcohol.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Let them eat cake

Today was one of my employee's birthday.  He is currently away on vacation.  Like I need a reason to have cake. 

Happy Birthday Rob!  Sorry you weren't here!

Summertime in the Arcade

This is hands down the winner of "my song" for the summer of 2010.  This makes me want to go dancing with my girls.  Every time I hear it I smile and it makes me feel good.  I'm not normally a huge fan of Arcade Fire either, but they've won a place in my heart with this little ditty.

My mother always said, 'It's a wonder you have any friends at all."

I'm a lucky girl.  I have wonderful friends who are tolerant and understanding and thoughtful and who truly get me.

I know a lot of people and I have so many of these people that I genuinely enjoy spending time with.  I always have fun while I'm with them.  (Life is just too short to have it any other way.)  I would still class these people as friends, but they aren't really who I'm talking about. 

I mean my bestest friends.  The ones I can tell secrets to, and make stupid comments to who and they would never judge me.  The ones I can call up after not talking to them in weeks and we pick up where we left off.  The ones I can sing off key at the top of my lungs with, or go without a bra in front of.  You know those special few we hold deep in our heart?  And at the same time, sadly, I take advantage of.  By that I mean I neglect my friends.  I miss them so much when I don't see them enough yet I allow the routine of a mundane life to get in the way of spending time with them. 

I know as we get older and have our own families and jobs that we do less and less together as things don't overlap quite like they used to.  It makes me sad, but I'm not the only person this happens to.  I know this...  I need to make more of a concerted effort to try harder going forward.  This coming from a person who is faced on a daily basis with the reality that life is short and we have to make the utmost best of it while we're here. 

There are so many things I want to make the decision to change but this is at the top of the list.  I need to make sure my usual laziness doesn't interfere.  My friends were the MOST important things in my life.  Over the years other things have worked their way up this ladder and that's ok, I just need to make sure my friends know they are still in the top three.  I need them to know I cherish every moment I do get with them no matter how small and I value their friendships, I adore the memories I have with them and I long for creating new ones all the time.  I'm proud of my friends and I know they are proud of me, no matter how absent I can be. 
Me and Ms. Margie T.

Sunshine (Jodi) and Lolipops (Me)

Me and my pessimistic partner in crime, Lesley.

She was born as my sister, but I choose Dawn as my friend.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A New Beginning

So tonight while I was perusing my friends' blogs I thought, "Am I interesting enough to have my own blog?" Do I ever have anything interesting enough going on in my life that other people would want to read?"  Probably not, but my boyfriend has his own blog and he has had it for almost two years now and his theory is that going ahead in his life, he'll always be able to look back at the important, funny or terrible things that happened to him along the way and remember with words and photos.  It's a pretty great idea.

So I thought, I'll give it a whirl.  While I don't expect to have anyone follow it except Eric, I've probably ruined even that happening by posting a music link on my page.  I'm still not sure if the music link begins automatically or if you have to click it.

I guess my thought is that if I can keep this running through out the rest of my life it would be a pretty sweet thing for the future generations of my family to be able to read and look through.  I'd kill to have any insight into my great grandparents' lives.  Sometimes, much to my chagrin, I have to admit that technology can be a wonderful thing.

So here goes.  I make no promises about how frequently I'll update, but I can tell you this:  It annoys the hell out of me when my friends don't update as frequently as I check their blogs.  So I'll do my best not to annoy myself.