Saturday, December 31, 2011

A Letter To 2011

Dear 2011,


Wow! What a year you were! I can't say you were always good, in fact, some days, you were a wretched, wretched beast, but you know what? I learned something from you each and every day. How awesome is that?


You were a very moody year, 2011, especially in terms of weather. You came in like a cold, angry bitch, and dragged us through a tough winter and cold, wet spring. But then you redeemed yourself. You gave us a wonderfully hot and sunny summer, a gorgeous fall, and, well, I can't even believe that it's winter now. It was above zero on December 31, nice work.


Thank you, 2011, for the last 365 days we spent together. You brought me enormous personal growth, both emotional and spiritual. You brought me into contact with some great people, and opened my eyes to people who were already there, and I saw them in a new way.


During 2011, I started this blog, and rekindled my passion for writing. I had no clue how much I'd missed it until I started again. I discovered a passion (ok-obsession) for photography, and I wish I'd found it sooner. Or not.  Maybe I wouldn't have appreciated it if you hadn't brought it to me. Thanks, 2011!


You also taught me to trust others (and myself) enough to let out my creative side. You found opportunities to put me together with people who would help me nurture that part of me that had gone so long ignored. This has been your greatest gift to me.


I had a lot of good days while you were here. Partly by circumstance, but mostly, because I CHOSE to have good days. If there was one thing I learned this year, it was that every day is a gift, and we can create the outcome. We can wallow in all the negative stuff that life throws our way (and you did a great job at that, 2011), or we can look deep within ourselves, and our situation, to find some glimmer of hope, and something we can learn from. Life is all about growth, and never has that been so clear to me as this last year.


You went by to quickly, it seems, but I understand. You're probably tired too.  Thanks for stopping by, and farewell. It's been a great year, but I'm moving on.  Love you!


Cheers!
Tara

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

This Is Why You Should Not Let Me Name Things.

Greetings!

I've decided to start another blog.  I'm going to keep this one, but it's my personal one, and I have a lot of passions/opinions that I want to get out there.  That's great and all, but I'm not sure my personal blog is the place to do it.  I'm pretty good about saying what I need to say, but this is more or less my "happy place," and I'd kind of like to keep it that way.

They say you should write about what you know, and what you love.  To that end, I've decided that I am going to start a blog dedicated to my love of my hometown, Winnipeg. I've been thinking about it, and gathering ideas, and I'm really excited.  I've got some things I want to talk about, and ideas as to where I'd like to take the blog, but I'm not going to over-think it, because I want it to progress organically, and see what happens.

So. I have my blog idea, and I've got some design ideas, and all I need is a name.  One would think this would be a fairly simple task.  I am a creative person, this is true, but I am also a bit of a perfectionist.  I can think of ideas, then I worry that they suck. Most of the time they're pretty good, but I think I just obsess too much.

I've always been this way too.  I struggle to name everything.  My pets, my blogs, my stories.  I'm actually glad I adopted my child, because if it had been up to me to name him, I think he'd likely have a stupid name like "Breckin" or something.  This is where I apologize to all the Breckins in the world, but it really is a dumb name. 

I'm really excited about the blog to be, and I hope you will be too.  Look for it soon... if I can ever think of a name. 

Cheers!
Tara

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Story Of David

I know that some of you know this story already, but some of my newer friends may not, and I'm often asked to retell it, so I thought I'd post today the story of how my true love David and I became a forever family. 

First, a little back story.  I am unable to conceive children on my own.  I lost one of my ovaries at the age of twelve to a large, gangrenous cyst that almost killed me.  At the age of 24, I lost the other ovary, and I seldom discuss details of that time, just because I still find it hurtful.  And, really, the fact is that the fine details really aren't important to the story.  So, I found myself, at the age of 24 in menopause (and suddenly able to relate to all that women have been complaining about for years).  

The loss of my fertility was a big one for me, as it is for so many.  The biggest dream I ever had in life was to be a mother, and suddenly (and it was emergency surgery, so it was definitely sudden) there it was, being ripped away.  I didn't know what to do, or what to think, and my body was doing all numbers of nasty things to me.  There were some dark times.  This was the winter of 1999.

For a number of years, I was on hormone replacement therapy so that I could keep my uterus healthy in the off chance I decided to try fertility treatment.  I knew that adoption was also an option, but for the longest time, I left it on the back burner, and thought of it as a second best.  

I'm not sure exactly what changed.  In the late spring/early summer of 2003, I started experiencing baby fever.  Badly.  All I could think about was babies. I was 28, still not married, and unable to get pregnant.  It was almost like a light bulb going off.  I was going to "research" adoption.  My first move was to go online and see how to go about the process.  I called the number for the Child and Family Services adoption department, thinking I would ask for information, and maybe they would send me a pamphlet or something, to help with my decision.

What they sent, was an application.  I decided it was a sign.  I filled it out, gathered the appropriate documentation, and sent it in.  And then I waited.  Adoption is quite the process.  It's a series of action, then waiting, and then action, then waiting.  There's a lot of waiting.  And it's nerve wracking.  But it's worth it.

They say, all told, when you adopt through Child and family services as I did, it takes roughly a year to get on the waiting list.  It took me about eleven months.  I'm pretty good about doing what I need to do when I want something badly enough.  Once you get on the list, who knows how long you wait.  It all depends on whether you want a newborn, or are okay with an older child or special needs child.  I opted to go the route of a toddler/special needs child.

Now this is where it gets good.  Usually, parents have their own worker, and kids have  another.  In June of 2004, I got a call from my social worker.  My application was approved, and it was time to finally sign off on all my paper work so I could be added to the list of waiting parents.  Great! I could be added to the list and start waiting!

But there was another thing, she explained to me on the phone that fateful day.  There was a child whose file had recently fallen on her caseload.  A 17 month old boy who had been in foster care since birth, and had recently been officially named a ward of the state (his birth parents were given a year to see if they could get their lives on track and regain their ability to parent).  She hadn't listed him as available yet, because she just "had a feeling" that this child was meant to  be mine.

This meant it was even more important to get me sign my paperwork and get me registered.  She drove all the way across town to meet me for coffee at my workplace so I could get everything done.  Then, a few days later, drove all the way back with the registration papers.  In the meantime, she "accidentally forgot" to register the little one for adoption so that no one else would see his file until I was one the list and allowed to see it.  That same day, we also set an appointment for a few days later to review the file.

The morning before my appointment, I got a call from my social worker, saying that the child and I had both hit the waiting list the previous day, and that another worker was thinking of presenting the file to another family.  Could I possibly come down? I called my Mom in an excited state, and she had me at the office in about 20 minutes.  I don't even think that is possible considering where she lives! Ha!  

At the office, I was shown an 8x10 photo of a brief bio of a very cute little baby whose name was David.  My worker told me she had a really good feeling that this little boy was meant to be mine.  She gave me some time to think, and upon her return, asked if I wanted to meet the foster mom (but not the child) to ask about him in order to help with my decision.  I had pretty much decided, but didn't want to appear too eager, so I said yes.

The foster mom was a fantastic woman, and answered any and all questions I had.  I knew that this child would be mine.  I agreed to adopt David that day.  Now, because he is older, there is a bit of an introduction process, so it was either start the next day, or wait a month, since the social worker was about to go on vacation for three weeks. I opted to wait a month, as difficult as it was, because I knew I had to arrange for vacation time and parental leave, as well as get stocked up.  I sent the foster mom a few photos of me, which she was to put out for David a few days before we met to get him used to the idea of his new mother.  She broke the rules and started right away telling D all about his new "mama."  We even met for a doctor appointment during this time, and David was all over me and calling me Mama.  By the time we "officially" met, he was very used to the idea.

The process was very smooth.  I visited the foster home, at first to watch his routines, and then participate in them to make it easier.  After a few days, I took him out on small trips alone, and then the foster parents brought him to visit his new home.  Finally, on September 14, 2004, David came for his first overnight, and we signed the placement agreement the next day with much fanfare.  I knew that I was going to love this boy forever.  The adoption became final on May 12, 2005, not quite two weeks before my 30th birthday.  Who can ask for a better gift than that?

David and I have been mother and son for seven years now, and there is not a single day that I don't thank that social worker for bringing us together and following through on her gut feeling.  David could not be any more my child if I gave birth to him.  He's so much like me that it's scary, and I can say it's definitely meant to be.  Never before have I truly understood the phrase that an adopted child is not born in your womb, but rather born in your heart.  David was born in my heart, and in my heart he will forever remain.  I love you always, my boy.


If you made it through, congratulations! I know it was long.  Thanks for reading my story.


Cheers!
Tara








Friday, November 25, 2011

One of Those Days

Ever have "one of those days," where it starts out bad and you wonder what could possibly happen next? Yep.   Today is one of them. 


I had a lot of stuff to do this morning before we headed out, and I know I should have done at least some of it last night, but of course, I put it off, which is always a recipe for disaster, isn't it?  Then, literally as soon as my alarm went off this morning, I got a text with some distressing news about someone I know (but it turned out relatively okay in the end), which added a tiny bit to my workload, but that is okay, because it could not be avoided.  I was more worried about the person than anything.


Basically, I started the day at a bit of a disadvantage, and it kind of spiralled from there.  Add to that a sky which is a lovely shade of dark grey, and a lack of motivation, and it's really no wonder I felt so blah.


Anyway.  I did what I needed to do (hampered slightly by stiffness from a fall I suffered yesterday after I was attacked by an icy sidewalk), and headed out to parent teacher.  And wonder of wonders, the day actually started to look up!


We got to parent teacher a bit late, but we got there.  It's so much fun to see all that my child is learning and how much he's changed.  I learned he is struggling a little bit in math (which is surprising when your mom is a big math nerd), but we got some good suggestions to help that.  Here's the awesome thing:  the kid who struggled so much with his reading last year, to the point where he needed intervention, is now the top reader in his class!  He's got mad comprehension skills!  And his spelling is awesome too!  Words cannot express how proud I am of this boy and his dedication to learning.


After that we went to the library so he could get a library card, and take out a book or two.  We had limited time, and it was hilarious to watch him zipping through the rows of books trying to pick something.


At this point, Gramma announced she was coming to get the boy, and we zipped back home (thank you, downtown skywalk system) to meet her.  She was happy to hear he did so well, and decided she should send mommy off to have lunch on her!  Yay!  She also filled me in on the boy's Christmas gift, and I know the boy is going to be VERY surprised, since I told him Santa would likely not be bringing that item to him.


After lunch, I decided to come back to the library and do some research, because, sometimes it's nice to have a change of scenery.  The day got even better after that, because I ran into a friend, and we sat and had a bit of a visit.   Didn't get much research done, but I am actually okay with that.  I suppose I should really go home soon, but it's been nice to be out.


That's been my day today.  Started out badly, but all it took was one little thing to shift my perspective, and it's turned out to be quite a lovely day.  I love it when that happens.  


Cheers! 
Tara







Thursday, November 10, 2011

Busy Little Monkeys

Greetings, friends!
It's been a while since I posted, so I figured it was time for an update!  Big big stuff going on here, and I hope life is treating you all well too!


Been in a little bit of a funk, lately, but I find myself coming out of it, even though I am sure the head cold I've been fighting hasn't helped my mood either!  The transition from the work I've always done to finding something that's more suitable for a slightly vestibularly challenged individual has been a bit rough. I know I can't do the job I was doing, but I'm slowly figuring out how to transfer the skills I've gained into a new career. It's frustrating, sure, because I've never really NOT worked, and sometimes I let it get to me.


No more of that. I'm going to focus on what I can do, and while I am in  transition, I'm going to try to get a couple things going on my own, because, if you want help, you need to be able to help yourself as well.  To that end, I'm going to start putting more effort into my blog, and for those who don't know, I've also opened a webstore  here to show off some of my favourite photographic works, and as a vehicle for people to catch up with their favourite sock monkey Frootloops!  In the future, I plan to sell my photography directly, but this is a good place to start while I'm still learning and growing as a photographer. I am self taught, so it's a process for me, and it's quite enjoyable.  The feedback I've had thus far has been really helpful too, so thanks, everyone.


Now, for those of you who don't remember, Frootloops is my little sock monkey friend who loves having adventures.  He's a very fun little guy, and quite photogenic as well. In May, he went travelling, and had the opportunity to visit some fantastic people and places. He went to New Hampshire, Connecticut, Oregon, and even Australia!  He's more travelled than me! 


He recently returned home, and, in his travels he found a wonderful woman, Coco and they became engaged!  En route to Australia, they also welcomed a daughter, Trixie!  Ah, they were busy monkeys indeed.  Now that he's home, he's been busy trying to prepare his family for the upcoming Winnipeg winter, and he looks forward to showing off his hometown.  He also got to meet the little girl monkey I adopted while he was away, Honeycomb.  It's a big happy family.


Frootloops and family have a lot planned this winter, and are excited to share their adventures with you all. If you want to see what they're up to, catch them on Facebook here.  Like the page to get the updates!  


Cheers, 
Tara





Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Small People, Big Issues

Tonight, the boy and I began "the talk."  You know, the conversation that a lot of parents dread, yet know they will have to have someday?  Yes, THAT talk.  I knew it was coming, and yes, I'm pretty sure that I've been fearing it since he learned to talk.
  So, tonight it happened, and you know what? It wasn't that bad. In fact, it happened so organically that I don't even think I realized it was happening until it was over!  That's always been a fear of mine... how will I ever know how far to take the conversation?  What if I screw up?    Anyone who knows me knows that I'm fairly neurotic, so it should really come as no surprise that I've been worrying for years about having this subject come up.


I can't even remember what we were talking about, to be honest.  Somehow though, the conversation turned to the cats.  The boy seemed very concerned about the cats, and whether they were adults or still kittens.  Now, I am not sure why he was concerned, but he was.  Then he started asking about a cat we used to have, our beloved cat Fuzzby, and he said he thought maybe the cats we have now were still kittens, because they were nowhere near as large as he was.  So, I explained that Fuzzby was just a really big cat.


This answer didn't seem to satisfy him, and he wondered why he was so big.  I told him that sometimes, when cats get neutered, they get fat.  I went on to tell him that you get your boy cats neutered so they don't make any babies.  And I'm pretty sure this is where the conversation went off the rails.  And how.


Now, anyone who knows us knows the boy shares my flair for the dramatic, and in that fashion, he sits straight up and says, "OH.MY.GOD. BOYS MAKE BABIES TOOO?!?!"  I let him digest that for a moment and confirm that yes, it takes a girl AND a boy to make a baby.  And he looks at me, and I'm wondering if I should go farther or leave it there for now, but he just says, "Ok, so a boy gets with a girl and they make a baby together. Ok."  And that was pretty much it.  Conversation started.


I'm quite pleased with how it turned out, and now that it's begun, I think any further discussion will be easier, because we've laid a bit of ground work.  I plan to be honest about it, because I think a lot of times, in an effort to protect our kids, we tend to underestimate how smart they really are and how much they can handle.  I've learned, to that they'll let you know when they've heard enough.  


Ah, the joys of parenthood.  Best.Job.Ever.





Monday, September 19, 2011

Falling in Love... with Fall

Good morning, all!


It's that time of year again.  Fall has arrived (well, almost).  The leaves are changing colour and falling from the trees, the bulk of the summer heat has left us, and the days are getting shorter.  


While weather-wise, I will admit, I am not a fan of fall, I have to say that I see it's appeal.  The colours around us are so dynamic and the leaves on the ground, if raked into a pile, lead to endless fun for  the kiddies.


This time of year is great too, because the routine returns to our lives.  The kids have gone back to school, and while we can't just pick up and go any more, it is good to be back to "the grind."  As much as I adore the freedom that summer brings, I will admit that I do so much better when I have a routine.  I would really like to believe that I am awesomely self motivated, and I guess I am to a certain extent, but I really do need deadlines, and fall is good for that.


Fall is also a time of new beginnings.  New scenery, new friends, new opportunities.  To that end, I have chosen the fall to start a few new projects.  As you all may know, I have been working at improving my photography skills,  since I have discovered that is a huge passion of mine.  In the next little while, I will be opening a web store to showcase some of my work.  I hope to have it open in the next day or two, and I hope you like it.  In the long run, I want to have my own photography website, but I am starting small for now.


I also plan on overhauling my blogs in the hopes of getting them "out there" a little bit more.  I don't plan on making huge changes, but rather little tweaks here and there.  I'm going to make more effort to update them regularly and market them more effectively, as I would really like the freedom to work outside the home less, and in the home more.  I want to have the freedom to live comfortably and work hard, while still being here to be with my child.  I think that the time I've had off has taught me a lot about my priorities.


Right now though, I am on the hunt for an outside job in a field that is completely new to me.  I know that I can't physically do the work I was doing, and so I have re-done my resume to reflect my desire to do something that both challenges and inspires me.  For the first time in my life, I am actually excited about the direction in which things are headed. 


What about you?  How do you feel about this time of year?  Are you a fall lover?  What    are your plans for the coming season?  Leave me a comment below!


Cheers,
Tara


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Summer Fun

Have I ever mentioned that I love summer?  Because I do, I really, really do.  Granted, in Winnipeg, it's fairly short, but still... it's hot and lovely baby!  Good things happen in the summer, because it's so much more relaxed and free.


What's on board this summer?  Lots of time at the splash pad, and the park.  Even if he's getting to an age where he wishes to interact with me less while we're out, it's still nice to spend time with the boy. While he splashes and plays, I can read a book, or draw, or write, or I can just lay around and enjoy the sunshine. That's good too.


We also just got a family membership to the Y, so we are there quite a bit, too.  The boy is in a summer program for the next several weeks at school, so while he's there, I go work out and try to get this old body of mine overhauled and back to fighting weight.  I'm sure I'll be posting about that too, as time goes on, because I find if I talk about it more, I'm more accountable.  When I was younger, motivation wasn't an issue, but these days, it seems that there are so many things that I like to get done when the boy's at school that I feel like something's gotta give, you know? Often times, it's the workout, which is the sad thing.  I need to do something about that though, for health reasons, and just because working out makes me feel good.


Another thing I'm excited about this summer is the Winnipeg Fringe festival, which starts today!  I've really become a fan of it the last few years, and it's something I enjoy immensely. I love the chance to see live theatre, and it's less expensive and more accessible, so it's really awesome. Plus, the vibe in the area is so exciting and electric.  How can you not pick up on it?


Anywho, just thought I'd check in, since I've been a bit of a lazy bum, and give you a glimpse of what was going on in our little world. I hope in the next little while to have some other exciting news for you, but we'll have to see how it all pans out. In the meantime, leave a comment telling me what YOU like about summer!


Cheers!
Tara

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Ponderings

I absolutely love this time of year.  Warm weather, blue skies, sunshine.  There's just so much to do, and so much to see. Beauty abounds, it really does.  Don't get me wrong, there's a certain beauty to the winter, but for me, summer is where it's at. 


One of my favourite things to do in the summer is walk.  Not only is it good exercise, but it's a good time to think, and unwind.  In the past, I've needed a purpose to my walks.  I found that I would tend to give up if I didn't  have to be somewhere. 


Something's changed though.  I've started enjoying looking out at my city, and seeing all the beauty that's out there.  Even in the scruffiest of neighbourhoods, there's beauty to be found.  To that end, I started making sure that I never leave the house without my camera and video camera.  Too many times I'd see something that I'd really like and wish I had my camera.  That doesn't happen now.


At first, it was a little difficult.  I'd spend so much time "looking" for a good shot that I often missed the most interesting things.  I thought that I had to take my photos based on what I thought others would like, when all along, the only person I had to please was me. So, I started taking pictures of what interested me, and soon enough, I found that it was second nature.


These days, when I go on my camera walks, I let the camera decide where we're going. I know that sounds like a really odd thing to say, but it's pretty much what happens.  I don't plan, really, other than deciding on a direction to start out in.  I do what feels right.    That really works for me.  I take a lot of photos that look interesting to me, and people seem  to like them as well.  At first I worried that they were only humouring me, but as I get more comfortable with it, my confidence has soared.  


Today, I had some child free time, and my cameras and I went out for a walk.  And soon enough, I was in my zone, taking my photos and feeling good.  As I walked, I got an idea for a painting I wanted to do, and an idea for another project I had been planning, and I started thinking about how awesome life is.  Sure, there are troubles that come up sometimes, and it's not always easy, but it's definitely worth it to be alive, and to get out there and experience the world.  It's so easy to get trapped in a negative mindset, but I just can't do it.  There's just so much to be happy for.


I walked through a park, and was looking at this piece that had all these sayings on it, and while I was snapping off pictures I realized how happy I am that this creative side of me was unleashed.  I love creating, and the more I create, the more I want to create, and the more I feel I have to create.  Taking pictures is definitely what I feel drawn to, it's like a living, breathing being that needs to come out, or it'll eat me from the inside out.  You know, nothing dramatic, or anything.   Hehehe. 


I think that, when I grow up, I want to be a photographer.  I think I've got a pretty good eye, and, while I don't know much about the finer points of photography, I can certainly learn, can't I?  It feels right, so I'm definitely going to see what I can do to further this goal, and in the meantime, I'm going to keep snapping away.



Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Happy- Go- Lucky Girl

Have I ever told you how much I love the sun?  Such a bright, happy ball of warmth.  Fills me with joy, it does.  Of course, as a rule, I am an optimist, so it doesn't take much to fill me with joy.  I have my moments however, like everyone else does, but they pass.  Life is about how you look at things.  I choose to find a silver lining in any cloud, and after a lifetime of practice, I've become pretty damn good at it.


Some people follow the Law of Attraction, and things in that vein, but it's not my thing.  I don't begrudge them their beliefs, so long as they respect mine.  It's been around for a long long time, and there is something to it, but it's not the be all, end all, in my opinion.  Like attracts like, eh?  Well, you reap what you sow, that's true, but there's more to it than that.  


I  think if you want to succeed at life, you need to work for it.  It's not enough to wish, you have to put some action behind it.  Life is about the process, not the end result.  I think if you try to remain positive and do the best you can to achieve your goals, then you've lived a good life.  To me, crediting a good outcome on some "law" negates all the hard work you put in.  


I know most people who follow a lot of these philosophies are sane, rational people, but there is that small handful that take it overboard.  Just like religion.  If you don't believe as I do, it's no wonder bad things happen.  That's not how life is at all.  Sometimes, shit just happens.  We can choose to learn from it, or we can dwell.  We don't need to be told that we "attracted" it.  Just because I don't believe in certain things doesn't mean I mean I am less positive, or that I deserve bad things to happen.  It just means I am different.


And anyway, how boring would life be if we all were the same?  I love that we're all so different.  We can have different views and still happily co-exist.  That's a pretty awesome thing right there. Just keep it respectful.


Cheers!
Tara

Saturday, May 14, 2011

It's The End Of The World...

With all the talk about the Rapture lately, anyone else find themselves singing, "It's the end of the world as we know it," in their heads on a regular basis?   Is it just me?  Surely I'm not the only neurotic one here.


I was all set for an apocalyptic end in 2012, but then a few months ago, I learned that the end was actually coming on May 21.  It must be true, too, because everybody's talking about it, and there's billboards popping up all over the place.  Truth in advertising, right?


Here it is, only 6 days away, and I haven't made any plans.  I thought I had longer, and the lack of a looming deadline tends to make me procrastinate.  So, what do I do?  Does anyone know what time it's at?  Is there a dress code? Is it family friendly, or do I need to get a babysitter?  Ack! I am sooooooo unprepared for this whole Rapture thing!  
Me and my poor planning.


So, I'm not terribly religious, but I do believe that there is something bigger than us out there.  Some kind of kind, benevolent, whatever watching over us.  My idea of God (for lack of a better word), does not include some angry, vengeful dude.  He's just a cool guy, with infinite wisdom who keeps an eye out, making sure we're okay, but not intervening too much, because we need to make mistakes in order to better ourselves. I don't believe it's the end of the world, and I kind of wonder about people who do.  But, who am I to judge?

Just in case though, maybe I won't make any long-term plans.  I gotta say though, my birthday is on the 24th, and if the world ends before that, I'm going to be mighty po'd.  Is a couple extra days too much to ask?



Cheers,
Tara




  

Monday, May 9, 2011

"Just One Of Those Days"

Morning all.


Been a while, I know, things have been a bit hectic around the old homestead, and I've had precious few ideas for posts. 


So, it would seem things have settled down somewhat, work done in the apartment and the resulting chaos is done for now, Mother's day has been and gone, and today I'm hit with some random overwhelming emotions that I can't quite seem to keep at bay.


I'll try to keep it brief, as I am in the middle of a coffee shop and I'd rather not burst into tears again.  This is a particularly hard time of year for me, with some hard anniversaries, a happy anniversary for me, and my birthday.  It's really no wonder that some emotions will pop up from time to time, but, being the neurotic person I am, I seem to think they should occur on the actual day I expect them to.  This way, I can process them and put them away neatly until next year.


If only it was so easy.  First off, I am overly sensitive, and pick up on the moods of others.  Several people around me have been going through some tough tough times, and I can't stand to see people hurt knowing that there's nothing I can do to fix it.  I'm a "fixer" by nature, and I like to do what I can for people, but sometimes, you just have to stand by and let the person know you're there, and find the right balance of support and respect for distance.


The anniversary of my dad's death was a few days ago, and I actually felt relatively okay for the most part.  I miss him a lot, sure, but nine years have passed, and I've processed most of that stuff, so it's getting easier.  I suspect it will always hurt a little.  


I also tend to get a little morose around mother's day, and I really don't understand it, because David is the best thing that ever happened to me. In fact, one of my happy anniversaries often coincides with mother's day, so you'd think I'd be over the moon, and I am, but still.  May 12, 2005 was the day that David's adoption became final and he was officially mine.  And it fell on Mother's day. Of course, I had no clue until the following week, but it's still a good memory.  It was also right before my 30th birthday, so I'm pretty sure that was the best gift ever.


Anyway, I think the thing about mother's day is that it brings up sadness about my mother's passing, and as much as I love seeing other people celebrate their mothers, I will admit that there is a bit of jealousy there.  I feel a bit guilty about all the things I never did or said, and that towards the end, our relationship maybe wasn't as strong as it could have been.  I had a FANTASTIC day with David though, and nary behaviour issue in sight, so that helped a lot.


Then there's my birthday.  I've always loved birthdays, and I have no issues with the aging process.  In fact, I actually find I am MORE happy with myself as I age.  I'm more trusting of my intuition and less critical of my flaws. We all have 'em.  The only real problem I see is that they seem to be getting closer together, and I'll admit I miss that yearly call where my mom would sing happy birthday to my answering machine.


Next month is the second anniversary of my mom's passing, and that one's still hard.  I'm doing okay, but it's hard.  I'll get through it though.


I think I'm at the end for now, and if you've gotten through this long rambling post, I congratulate you. I actually feel better now. =)


Cheers, 
Tara



Saturday, April 30, 2011

Who Wants Soap?

So... want to know a secret about me?  Well, it's not really a secret, people know, but it probably SHOULD be a secret.  Okay, here it is: one of my guilty pleasures is soap operas, particularly the Young and the Restless.  There, I've said it, and I am not ashamed of it.  Well, maybe a little.  


I'm not sure when this love of soap operas started, but I remember that when I was in high school, I used to run home every day to watch Days of Our Lives, which very conveniently started at 3:30 where I lived.  In Canada, for some reason, they show Days and Y&R a day ahead of the States, so if I miss them, I can always watch the US feed the next day.  Gotta love a show that tries to work around YOUR schedule, huh?


Anyway, back to high school.  I watched Days of Our Lives, and marvelled at the fairy tales romances of couples such as Roman and Marlena  (then later John and Marlena) and Bo and Hope.  Those relationships withstood such instense hardships, and they'd be torn apart only to find their way back to each other. You know, now that I think about it, it's no wonder that I have such an unrealistic view of love. 


From DOOL, my passion turned to All My Children, and the much married Erika Kane and all her drama, and then, after a while, to The Young And The Restless, which is the only soap I'll cop to still watching to this day.


What I love about soaps is their incredibly realistic story lines that you just can't find anywhere else.  Remember when Marlena was possessed by the devil and  tried to kill John's girlfriend Kristen by tying her up  in a church and drawing evil symbols on her? Who DOESN'T have that happen to them? Why, just last week I found myself... okay, maybe they're not so realistic.  




These days, the stories are a little less far-fetched (but only a little), but they still have the power to draw me in every day.  It's a form of escapism, and when the world seems out to get me, I can always tune into Y&R and see that these people obviously have it soooooo much worse. ;)


Do you like to watch soap operas? If so, which ones, and why?








Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Chillin' At The Park

Another sunny day at the park. 

You can always tell when spring comes, because, more often than not, the boy and I can be found at the park after school.  He gets rid of his excess energy by running and jumping and playing, and I amuse myself by sitting on a bench (or on a rock under a tree as is the case today) with a cup of coffee or other such beverage, and either play with my iPod, or take inspiration from the surroundings to create something, whether it be a drawing or a poem, or even a blog post. 
I haven’t always been an outdoorsy person, and I still make no claims to being a nature lover, but I will admit that it’s growing on me.  There’s just something so relaxing about a warm day spent in the sun, watching your child enjoy himself and just being. 
When I was working, by the time I picked the kid up and got home and got him fed, I was so tired that the idea of taking the boy to the park seemed like such an ordeal.  That all changed when I had to leave my job. I had all this time and so we started going to the park. At first, I had to bring stuff to keep myself busy, but after a while I realized how fun it was just to watch him play and enjoy himself.  Who doesn’t enjoy seeing their child happy?  Mom’s happy too, because when the kid burns off all that energy, his mood improves, and he sleeps better.
These days, the boy’s old enough that he plays mostly on his own, unless he wants me to watch something, at which point I drop everything and watch him.  It’s pretty awesome.  Win/win, actually.  Boy gets to play, and mommy gets a break AND quality mommy-boy time. What else could you ask for?

Wacky Times At The Ol' Park...

Hey all...


I thought I'd be different and do something along the lines of a wordless Wednesday kind of post.  Enjoy!


It's so nice to feel the ground beneath my feet again.


My darling boy


Even clowns need to play at the park!


Cheers!
Tara

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

A Springy, Sunshiny Day

Greetings!


So, it's a nice warm sunshiny day today, and I thought, to be different, I'd do my writing on the balcony.   And get a little sun while I'm at it.  I really do love my balcony, I get to look out over the downtown, and see all the goings on.  I'm a city person, it makes me happy.


One slight issue with this plan,  the sun is creating a really bad glare at my laptop which makes it impossible to see almost anything.  To rectify this, I am sitting out here with one of my son's blankets over both my head and my laptop, which fixes the glare issue, but kind of defeats the purpose of sitting out in the sun, no? Plus, I'm pretty sure anyone who can see me thinks I'm insane.


Oh well, insane looking or not, it's nice to be outside in the warm air after months of being cooped up. Winter is so long, and the spring and sunshine are definitely welcome.  


I love spring, it's a time of rebirth, where everything is fresh and new.  Everything looks brighter, and there's a certain lightness in everyone's steps.  It's a time to be creative, too.  I've taken up painting and drawing, not because I think I'm any good at them, but simply because I can. It makes me feel good. These things also make me want to write more, which is awesome.  That is my true passion, and one I'd like to engage in more often. I've always wanted to be a writer, but I never really pursued it because I doubted my ability to do it well. Either fear of failure or success has always held me back.  


This year I've done a lot of growing both emotionally and spiritually, and I'm learning to trust my instincts more.  I've had a lot of good feedback about the stuff I've written thus far, and I'm trusting that it's not just people humouring me because they love me.  It's because there's value in what I've written, and people enjoy reading it.  So, I'm going to take advantage of the season of growth and rebirth and indulge my passion for writing whenever I can.  I'm sure I'll be sharing it with you along the way.


For now though, I think I'm going to take this blanket off my head and enjoy the sun.


Cheers!
Tara

Friday, April 22, 2011

My New Addiction

Hi all.


I can't believe it's been more than a week since my last post! Once again, I'm a bad, bad Tara.  Oops.  The pox came through the house, and there was some other chaos too, but hopefully that's behind us now, and we can move on.


I thought today I'd fill you in about one of my passions: tattoos. It's sort of a newer thing with me. I actually got my first one in 2004, but I didn't get the 2nd until late 2010, and that is when it really took hold.


I absolutely LOVE tattoos.  A good tattoo is a work of art. In a way, I guess I am like an art gallery.  My body is the canvas on which the art is displayed.  I'm very proud to display them too, because each one has a lot of thought put into it, and a special meaning to me.  Plus, you know, there's just a certain sexiness with the juxtaposition of a sweet girl with a tattooed body. When I show my tats it's like releasing my inner rockstar. We've all got a little rockstar inside us.


My first tattoo is of a panther walking through flames.  It's in honour of my dad. To me, the flames are life's trials, and the panther making it through unscathed means that no matter how tough things get, I'll always make it through okay.  I've got that one on my calf.  I actually bought it as a temporary tattoo because it was cute, and carried it around for two years before I decided to make it permanent. I think keeping it so long is the reason  I don't regret getting it.  


After that, I really wanted another, but I don't believe in getting tattooed just for the sake of doing it.  Plus, shortly after the first one, I became a mother, and the practical side of me couldn't justify spending the money.


My second tattoo is a monarch butterfly on my right forearm.  I will admit that this one is a bit of an impulsive thing.  I'd been chatting on Twitter with a local tattoo artist, and he showed me something he wanted to do, and I just had to do it.  It's funny, because I'm not really a butterfly person, but it was just too beautiful. Plus, it was sort of fitting, because I am going through a metamorphosis of sorts in my life.


Tattoo 3 and 4 I actually got the same day, because, well, I could.  All my life, I've been madly in love with Hello Kitty.  She's like an old friend.  I found a picture of her dressed like a geisha, and fell in love. When the opportunity came up, I showed my guy the picture, and he came up with a drawing that I loved. Now my friend sits on my left shoulder blade.


The other tattoo I got that day is a pink ribbon on my left forearm to honour my mother, who lost her left breast to cancer. She wasn't really happy with me when I got the first tattoo (the only one she saw), but somehow, I think she'd like it.


That's all I've got now, but I definitely see more in my future. I've got ideas for at least 3 more, now all I need is a magical money tree to make them a reality. :)


How about you? Do you have any tattoos?  Do you want any?  Leave me a comment below and let me know!  In the meantime, enjoy my photos.


Cheers, 
Tara








Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A Pox On Your House!

Howdy!


Okay, okay, I've been a very bad girl.  I have not blogged in ten whole days.  I know, it's probably a little conceited of me to think that my followers are sitting there with baited breath, awaiting my next entry, but still...  This is like my therapy, so ten days is a lot!  


So, what's been happening here, you ask?  Well, there's a pox on my house!  Despite being vaccinated, the boy has caught chicken pox.  It's not so bad, it's a mild case, he missed 2 days of school, and then went back.  Apparently, the school doesn't care if the kids with the pox show up at school.  


So, it's just chicken pox, no big deal, right? Well, not entirely.  Auntie has a terrible immune system, and Mommy?  Mommy's never had chicken pox.  Eek!  A couple days later, and we've determined that he's given the pox to Auntie, who's not feeling so hot, and so far, Mom's got a couple spots of unknown origin. It's probably nothing, but I've decided to be all dramatic about it. It's my prerogative.  Tee hee hee.  


Then there's the other possibility. A week or two ago, I had this strange, horribly itchy rash on my arms, and I thought it was an allergic reaction to something.  It occurs to me though that the spots looked a lot like the boy's do.  It's entirely possible that I actually gave him the chicken pox.  Oops. Sorry, kid.  


Anyway... that's what we've been doing here this week! I'm hoping for healthiness next week, since 2011 has not been a good year for the boy.  


Talk at ya soon!
Tara





Sunday, April 3, 2011

I'm a poetry writing machine!

Hey, all.


I hope this evening finds you well.  I'm feeling a lot more like myself, I think I had a lot of stuff in me that just needed to get out, and so yesterday's blog post was incredibly cathartic.  Phew! I feel a million times lighter.


Yesterday, I went out with my friend Kelly and her son for coffee, and a little shopping.  We ended up at a toy store, and on a whim, I decided to ask if they carried the magnetic poetry kits. And guess what? THEY DO!  I think you all remember a month or so back when I went to the art studio, and wrote some really awesome poems with the magnetic words. I've wanted my own ever since.


I got all excited, and ran up to Kelly, going, "Look what I just found?!?!?!"  I remember saying, I want them, but can't really afford to buy them, and she just said, "Can you afford not to?" Well, you can't really argue with that logic, so I bought them! Tee hee hee.


I'm not really sure what it is about the magnets that facilitate my poetry.  It's not like they contain words that are new to me or anything. I think I just like the visual aspect of it. The words are there for me to see, and I choose them based on what feels right to me. I don't over think it, I basically just let the magnets tell me what the poem should look like. Maybe that makes me sound a little cuckoo, but that's okay, it's working for me. 


This is a poem I wrote a little while ago about a person who's been causing pain to people I care about:

Ugly bitter girl,
Like a frantic drunk sausage
will sleep with a thousand men,
and heave an enormous storm.
Her sordid lies crush you.
A repulsive goddess,
She eats beauty
and drives you beneath the shadow.


This is an erotic poem I wrote yesterday!


Love shines like a thousand diamonds.
Sweet goddess lies beneath you,
Panting and moaning,
She screams as you pound together.
Her blood runs hot from the frantic play.
Whisper to her, and sing her to sleep.
The woman is beauty...
And she worships you.


Hope you enjoy those, there's sure to be more. 


Cheers!
Tara