Tuesday, November 26, 2013

I Don't Mind Growing Older


Growing older means getting more and more comfortable in my own skin. Steadily, almost imperceptibly hating it less and less. It means deciding who to spend my precious hours with, when to protect my need for alone time, who to believe, and who to accept but graciously disagree with.

It means pinning 359 pins on my cat board if I feel like it. And laugh a lot about it.

Growing older means that sometimes a dance party involves friends with plantar fasciitis busting major moves. Mostly without getting off a chair.

But when you have to, there's an app for that.

Growing older means knowing when to go home. And knowing all the best places to just be.

It means really embracing where you've come from. Loving it. Valuing it. Being deeply grateful.

It can also mean showing up for a party to recognize that you and your sisters have all inadvertently gotten the same haircut. And being really okay with that.

Growing older means recognizing that you can still try new things. Things you're sure you can't do. Things you never dreamed of.

Growing older means noticing how amazing it is to have women to call your friends. Women who range in age from fifteen years younger, to twenty years older. Put all that in a room, and you don't even need cheese dip- the richness is all around you.

It means being aware of the fragility of it all. Perhaps remembering the year that your brother died, then your tante died, then your daddy had a stroke, and then- your cousin died. And you think again- notice the moments. Be fully aware. Make eye contact. Ask hard questions. Be willing to say the hard stuff if that's the right thing to do. Be willing to keep your mouth shut when your motives are in question. Focus on the redemptive. Live with your heart wide open. When you're worried about your kids- come home to find them baking cookies with their music blasted and remember how good it all is. How somehow, love keeps winning. Keeps floating to the top.

Growing older means finally finding the perfect jeans.

Buying all the boots, even though you work at home and won't actually leave the house until spring.

Wearing what you wanna wear. (Oh. Wait a sec, I think I've always done that).

Knowing what to let go. Feeling the pain of it, grieving it all the way, and yet recognizing its not yours to control.

Growing older means noticing that no one can fix you. That no one can give you permission. That there will always be someone in your audience who will disapprove and that maybe that will always hurt just a little.

Growing older means noticing that you never fully arrive- never stop learning, reaching, hoping, dreaming.


Friday, November 15, 2013


So, clearly I'm not one of those people who hopes someone else will remember to celebrate my birthday. At forty-six, I'm in that awesome stage of life where all permission has been granted, me to me. Come to think of it, I haven't waited around or pretended to be modest in my birthday joy for many a year. Remember six years ago when I threw myself a cougar party? wow. I'm still glowing from the reverberations of that event.

Having said that, Brian totally came through this year. In flying color.

He remembered "Doug, the antique guy in Rapid City". (Manitoba version).

So he suggested that we hook up the trailer (utility) and make the trek. See what we could see.

First spot Doug showed us? His work desk. I love it.

Fortunately, it came with heat. I'd forgotten how cold sheds are in the winter in Manitoba.

But if I was going to worry about the cold, I'd never get to enjoy Doug's school house. Packed to the brim with treasures, frozen feet and fingers notwithstanding.


And if that wasn't enough, we got to go around back.

To the quanset.

I would have taken more pictures..... But did I mention that my fingers were frozen?

Thank goodness he invited us into his basement next. A picker's haven.

I particularly enjoyed discovering Doug's wall of fame.

Turns out the man is more than a friendly face and an amazing hoarder of all things spectacular.

He's also a competitive square dancer!

After we discovered a small cache of vintage Christmas bulbs, Doug led us up the stairs.

Where I met Pumpkin. The Cat of Epic Proportion Awesomeness.

Our bond was instant and simultaneous.

Doug even let us into his spare bedroom, where my picker sister fell in love with a quilt on the wall.

That wasn't exactly for sale.

But when we were finally done admiring all the things, and hearing all the stories, Cheri had the quilt.

And I was asked to set down the cat. And back away.

I really enjoyed my birthday gift from Brian. That thoughtful trip to a place that I love.

I came away with a chippy chair, a matchbox holder, Christmas ornaments, and an ancient leather school satchel.

Brian bought a cast iron pan large enough to roast a pig in, a couple of wooden metronomes, and a corncob pipe. Because I guess he needed that.

Going to see Doug was amazing. I loved and appreciated it.

But hands down, easily, and in a nanosecond, the best part of the day was coming home.

To my kids who went out of their way to tidy up, hang streamers, and make me cards.

The cards were meaningful, thoughtful, kind, and honest.

Which are just a few of my favorite things.

Today is Friday, and there is still much to anticipate. I'm having a bit of a celebration tonight, loving on a lot of my friends.

And as far as treasure hunting goes,

my Brian, my kids, and my friends are the bestest pick of all.


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Saturday in Five Easy to Follow Steps

Step 1:

Locate a 55+ Centre.

Ideally one set up for a flea market, complete with riveting draws.



Before you start your shopping, you may want to take a rest.

It's bound to be a nail-biter. Pearl drop?


Panties Galore?


Cat ephemera?

Genuine Dead Fur stick pins?

Or just the soup and sandwich special?


Step Two:

Locate a highly secure thrift shop.


Take note of more kitty cat themes.



Then duck into the woman's wear. A truly unique experience with highly specialized wall art of undetermined origin. I'm sure that its appropriate for a church fundraising thrift store, in any case.



Step three: Embrace it. Don't ask questions. Fancy yourself as part of the art.

Step Four: Return to the sanctuary on wheels for refreshments. Pack yourself in amongst them, feel the love. Reflect. Anticipate.


Step Five: Take a road less travelled.







Once in a while say; "Hmmmmmmm...."


And imagine.

By now the sun is thinking of setting.

Our feet are cold and wet.

Thoughts of hot coffee propel us back to the road that leads to town.

And while we warm our hands on those vessels, we marvel at where our feet have taken us.

How many grand adventures they've shared.

And we part.

Dreaming of more to come.