Saturday, February 26, 2011



So, it's not quite 2 a.m. and I find myself awake. I'm not usually an insomniac, but lately, as I've started letting my creative side out, I've found myself staying up later. It's when the juices tend to flow.

As I write this, I'm laying in my bed, laptop and a glass of pinot grigio close at hand, television set to the Food Network. I'm thinking. Come on now, it's not all that rare. I've been known to think from time to time, I just hide it well.

I'm thinking about art, and artists.  I've never considered myself an artist, even though I do have a tendency to be creative. Maybe that's because in the past, when I've thought about art, I've always thought about paintings, and drawings, and such.  I don't paint, and I can't draw, so, clearly I'm not an artist, right?

In the last few months though, I've come to realize that art is everywhere, and in everything. Really, when you think of it, in one way or another, we're all artists. Some artists paint or sculpt, some artists style hair, some draw. I write, and take silly photos, and make videos. It may not seem like it to some, but it's how I express myself, and it exercises my creative self, and so, it's my art. My idea of art is very likely different from another's idea of art, and that is okay. We don't need to all be on the same page.

I guess that what I'm getting at is that art, like so many things in life, is subjective. What's art to me may not be art to you. Which leads me to my question: what do YOU think of when you think of the word "art?"  Leave me a comment, let's have a discussion.

Happy Creating,

Thursday, February 24, 2011

David Goes To The Hospital

Morning, all.

So, yesterday, I did something that every parent dreads: I took my darling 8 year old to the hospital for surgery. He had his adenoids removed, and while it was a minor surgery, he's my baby, and no one likes to see their kid suffer. As I see it though, he's been suffering from sleep apnea for a long time, and one day of discomfort seems like a small price to pay for a lifetime of healthy sleep.

To get prepared, last month we visited the hospital to find out what we could expect.  They showed David some pictures, and talked all about what he could expect. It really helped for him, because when the day arrived, he wasn't nervous at all.

Yesterday was the big day.  We arrived at the hospital half an hour earlier (oops!) and checked in.  Then we headed up to the day surgery ward, checked in there, and went to the day surgery waiting room. 

We'd been waiting a little while when we were told that the doctor was running behind, but that was ok, as Mom is a self contained entertainment unit. My bag was filled with so many toys that it's ridiculous.  Froot Loops the sock monkey came with us, so we amused ourselves by taking pictures of him in various places.

After the first waiting room, we were taken to the surgical waiting room, where the boy amused himself by playing old school video games, and I took more pictures of Froot Loops.  While there, we spoke to the surgeon, and the anaesthetist. 

We waited in that room for about 45 minutes, at which point a nurse came for David, and he happily marched away, and I headed to the post-op waiting room. He looked so strong and tough, like it was no big deal, and, I am proud to say, I DIDN'T CRY!! I'm still impressed about that.

David woke up from surgery really easily, and it was only about 20 or 30 minutes until they moved him from recovery to the ward. On the ward, he did get sick and throw up, but they gave him some Gravol, and he had a nice sleep. While he was out, sock monkey snuck into his bed!

We came home shortly thereafter, and D camped out in bed all night, watching television, and eating me out of house and home. Hungry boy!  He's feeling good this morning too, not having very much pain. I suspect he'll be back to his old self in no time! 

All in all, it was a bit of a rough day,  but we made it through. We can handle anything now!


Monday, February 21, 2011

Catching Up With Tara

Hey, all!

I haven't posted in about a week, and I'm feeling a little guilty about that. I really want to get in the habit of doing it daily, but sometimes life just gets in the way. I really enjoy blogging, so I'm not quite sure why I keep putting it off.  Maybe I just have too much to say, and I'm not sure where to start.

What did I get up to this week? Hmm.  Lots, and nothing, all at once. Tuesday I got two new tattoos. I got a Hello Kitty geisha on my shoulder, and I'm so very excited about it. I've wanted Hello Kitty for a long while, and I'm glad I was able to make good on it.  I also got a pink ribbon on my left arm.  I've wanted it since my mom died, as my mom had breast cancer (that's not what killed her in the end, though), and lost her left breast to the disease. It's my way of honouring her, even though I know she wasn't fond of me getting tattooed in the first place.  I think she'd like it, though.

This brings my total number of tattoos to four, and I think I can now safely say I am addicted.  I'm already thinking of other things that I want! Too bad I can't afford it! I need to find a job to fund this passion! Hahahaha!

Hmmm... what else? Well, I've been hanging out with my sock monkey.  He came to the tattoo shop with me, and I got the idea that I should take him to various places, and take pictures. I'm recording his "adventures." I think it would make a good book, or at least a series of blog posts! This weekend he and I went to a couple of museums, and many photos were taken. Good times were had! At first, I was a little embarrassed to be an adult wandering around with a toy, but I think doing things like that is a good way to get me out of my shell. It was great.

Well, I'm glad  got to check in. My son is going for surgery this week, so I'm not sure how much free time I'll have. While he's recovering, though, and in bed sleeping, I'll work on getting the monkey photos up for you and I've got a couple topics I'd like to discuss. 

Talk to you soon!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Sock Monkey!

Hello again! Two blog posts in 24 hours! I know you're impressed! Or bored. Tee hee hee.

Feeling pretty good today, which really surprises me.  Little dude had a rough night, and was up every hour or so drinking water. When he did manage to sleep, he was super restless.  Poor guy. Nine more sleeps until he gets his adenoids removed, and I really hope that helps.  Both of us are losing sleep.

The morning started out a bit rough, and I'd explain why, but it's a really long and rather stupid story. Suffice it to say that I kept the boy home for the morning. We went to Starbucks, and then went to pay a bill (I'm fond of electricity, so occasionally I pay the bill, haha), and then came home where I gave him his valentines day gifts: a sock monkey plushie, and a heart shaped box of peanut butter cups.

I could tell he wasn't that enthused with the sock monkey, and so he gave it to me. I don't feel bad though, I did buy him a video camera, and cheap or not, it's still a good gift. I've developed a strange affection for the monkey, who I've named Froot Loops (thanks, Kelly), and I wouldn't be surprised if he shows up in one of my YouTube videos in the near future. In addition to that, I've decided to start him his own photo album, and I think he'll travel around taking in the sights.

All in all, it was a good day, with lots of love and laughter. This is why I love life so much.


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Will You Be My Valentine?

Howdy all!

So... it's that time of year again... Valentines day. I'm really not a big fan, but don't worry, I'm not going to go on a rant, as people often do about how it's a made up, Hallmark holiday designed to sell greeting cards, or just another way for all those annoying people who are in love to stick it to the single people.  Not this year anyway.

In the past, I've found myself feeling down on Valentine's day, wondering what's so wrong about me that I'm still single, or, if I'm in a relationship, why it's not what I expected it to be. I've moped, and looked at all the people out in the stores buying all those romantic gifts. I've thought, why me?

This year however, it's more of a non-issue. I can't really say what triggered the change in perspective, but it's a good one.  When I look at my life, even taking into account that the last 18 or so months have had some big challenges, I'm fairly happy with it.  Sure, it would be awesome to have someone special to share it with, but I'm not just going to date for the sake of dating. It's not just me I have to consider.

I'm really ok with being single. I don't think that being single at my age makes me any less special, or somehow defective. It's just how it worked out, and I'm stronger for it. I've conquered so much on my own and proved that I can do anything I can set my mind to.  

Besides, I have an awesome valentine right here. His name is David. He's sweet, and lovely, and loves unconditionally. He's the reason I tend to be more selective about who I date... the right one will have to accept us at a package, and I refuse to settle. 

Anyway, maybe it'll happen, maybe it won't, but in the meantime, I'm going to enjoy all that life throws at me and be happy with myself.

Happy  Valentines day!


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Importance of Mommy Time

Happy Tuesday, everyone! 

Today I thought I'd talk about something I love very very much: Mommy time. Don't mistake me, I love being a Mom, it's the best thing I've ever done, and I love spending time with my boy, especially now that he's a bit older, and he's developing a great personality. But there's just something about being nice to yourself that makes life a little better.  To that end, it's Mommy time!

There was a time when I thought that sending David off to school and coming back home counted as Mommy time, but when you're home all day, doing the same old, same old, it loses its appeal rather quickly. So.... Sometimes, a change of venue is in order. I don't have much in the way of money, so any time I can get out, it's a treat for me.

Today, Mommy time sees me at Second Cup, enjoying a nice cup of French vanilla coffee, and surfing the net. And blogging! I can do these things at home, sure, but it's nice to have a change of scenery, as well as a chance to make myself look all pretty and sit and watch the world go by. It's relaxing, and when I'm done, I can go pick up David, and find out all about what he did at school, and be happy to be together again. 


Sunday, February 6, 2011

Dizzy Tara Strikes Again.

Hi all.

I know I said that I wanted to save this blog for the light-hearted side of things, but, truth be told, I occasionally have things come up that I need to get out. Today is one such occasion. 

In March of 2010, I was diagnosed with Meniere's disease. Most of you know this, but for those who don't, I'll just give you the basics. Meniere's disease is an inner ear disorder characterized by fullness in the ear, tinnitus (ringing in the ear), vertigo, and eventually, hearing loss.

While I was just diagnosed last year, I've actually had symptoms dating back to about 1995, it's just that the attacks were so far apart that I didn't even think to connect them. I've actually had the ringing in my ears and some low frequency hearing loss in my left ear for longer than I remember.  Things came to a head in  2009 when I went through an extremely stressful period in my life, and that led to my eventual diagnosis.

The thing about Meniere's is that it's so damned unpredictable that it will run your life if you let it. I try to live as normally as possible in between attacks, and for the most part, I think I've succeeded. It's difficult though. It's really tiring.  If you're lucky enough to get a remission, make the most of it, because you never know when you'll get another.

I've just come off a lovely 7 month remission. I had almost no vertigo, save for one or two attacks, but those were milder, and relatively brief. Then, right before Christmas, I caught a virus, and so ended my remission. I've been having a couple of attacks a week, but most of them I've managed to fight back with meds.  Still, I keep going.

Yesterday, I had things to do, and right before I decided to  go out, BOOM! I started feeling it. So I took my meds and hoped for the best. It didn't stop the attack, but it pushed it off for a little while, until a few hours later, when it caught up with me and I became friends with the toilet and took a nap. I woke up a few hours later, feeling a little better, but not really able to stand. The laptop and I stayed in bed. 

Today was better, until I went to the mall and got hit by my buddy vertigo while riding an escalator. I don't recommend that, by the way, it's scary as hell. I made it home, the vertigo was strong, but brief, and came in a few waves. Now I'm mostly just feeling tired, and wondering if an attack is going  to come. 

I don't tell you this so you can feel sorry for me. I don't want that at all. I think it's just important to remember that we all have our burdens, even when they can't be seen. Just because I look healthy, doesn't always mean that I am. You know... something about judging a book by it's cover, and all that.  

Hopefully this wasn't all a ramble, I don't always make sense when I'm not feeling my best.  It's hard to think when your ears and brain are arguing! If you need any clarification, let me know, I'm always here! 


Friday, February 4, 2011

Feelin' Bloggy

Morning all. Hope the day is treating you well.

I've been a little remiss in my blogging duties  the last few days, so I thought I'd check in. Life's been pretty same same, just doing the usual: taking boy to school, picking boy up, taking boy back to school, and, well, you get the gist.

I'm feeling creative again, so that's always good. I'm not creative in the traditional sense. I don't draw or paint, or sculpt. What I do is make silly little videos. I don't have my own video camera (I'm hoping to rectify that at some point though), so I've been using my cousin's Flip camera and just going to town. In the past, I wouldn't have dared post these anywhere online. I'd be afraid of what people would think, and worried perhaps that they'd wondered about my mental health. 

A few weeks ago, around the same time that I decided to start blogging again, something changed. I'm a naturally silly person, and everyone around me knows that.   Why should I be ashamed to show who I am to the world?   I made a decision to start showcasing my inner Tara more often. I've got a huge network of supportive people in my life, and I knew that there would be no judgement. And heck, if they didn't care for my silly videos, they could opt not to watch them, right? RIGHT!

The response has been rather interesting. I've been getting mostly positive feedback. At first I thought that maybe it was just the people who loved me humouring me, but then I realized that people who truly care DON'T humour you. Maybe people just enjoy something silly every now and then.  I know I do. Don't get me wrong, I am capable of being serious when I need to, but most of the time, I choose to go the lighthearted route. 

To that end, I've linked my YouTube channel to my blog, so people can see how my mind works. Or doesn't, your choice! Hopefully someone will get a kick out of the videos. That's all I can do. I make my videos, and put them out there. What do YOU do to feed your creative soul? Let me know!

Happy day to everyone, 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Why Do I Blog?

As I mentioned in my last post, I've started the Girl Geek Winnipeg Blog Challenge 2011. Today is day one. I sent off my post, and I was so happy that I'd completed the 1st challenge that I failed to notice that I'd forgotten a big part of it! Oops!

The challenge was this: 1) Invite at least 3 people. Done. I posted the link on my Facebook and Twitter pages, and talked it up to a bunch of friends. Two are now participating! 2) Read the blogs of the other participants. Done. I really enjoy learning about other people, so that was easy. 3) Leave a comment on the other blogs. Done. I really enjoy talking. 4)Write a short post stating the reason you blog. This is the part I forgot. I'm easily distracted. On to the next topic for me!

Why do I blog? Interesting question. I could give you several answers, but I'm not really sure which one is the biggest reason.  I enjoy talking, for one, and I'm a big fan of conversation. I also have a lot of things that run through my mind, and I need to be able to get it out from time to time. Brain cleaning, I guess you could say. Keeps me sane (ish). 

Another reason is that while I appear to some as rather gregarious, in reality, I tend to be shy and awkward. Blogging is a way for me to reach out to people, and get to know others in new and interesting ways. I've been dealing with some health challenges, so I've been home an awful lot, and this is my way of connecting and "getting out there."

There. Challenge done... and it feels awesome.



So, for day one of the Girl Geek Winnipeg blog challenge, I thought I'd talk about my favourite topic: my son David. I really could talk about this kid endlessly, but I suspect that is because he's mine.  February first is his birthday, so I suspect that is yet another reason he's foremost on my mind today.

The above picture is probably a good indicator of the relationship David and I have. Laughter definitely plays a big role in our home, and it shows. Sure, we have our moments, but this kid is definitely not lacking in the sense of humour department. He's very much like his Mom.

I adopted David in 2004 as a single parent. It was definitely a huge decision, and scary, but it was the best decision I've ever made. I had a social worker working with me who was an unbelievable source of support during the whole process. I can't say how grateful I am to her for bringing David into my life.

Usually, prospective parents and children have different workers, but it didn't work that way for us. I was in the final stage of getting my application approved, when I got a call from my worker saying that a file landed on her desk, and she thought he'd be perfect for me. I wasn't quite ready to be placed on the registry, so she rushed out to my workplace to get me to sign all my paperwork, and conveniently "forgot" to put David into the registry of available children until the day I was registered.

The next day, I got a call saying that another worker had approached her with a prospective family, and she hadn't returned her call yet, and how fast could I get to her office to look at this kid's file. I called my mom shrieking, and she started shrieking, and off we went! Half an hour later, I was sitting in the social worker's office, looking at the picture of a kid that I just KNEW was mine. Of course, I said I needed time to "think" but really, I'd made the decision. This toddler was mine. 

A month later (the social worker was on vacation, so I had to wait), I met with David at his foster home, and fell in love. The very first word he ever said  to me was "Mama," and that was enough to get me hooked. I brought him home a week later, and we've been a "forever family" ever since. His adoption was finalized a week before I turned thirty. Best. Birthday. Present. Ever.

Anyway, you'll be hearing more about David as time goes on, but I just wanted to tell the story of how we got together. I hope you enjoyed it. 

Much love,