Monday 27 January 2020

Poetry Monday: Duty . . . and Funnies

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is ....... DUTY.

Join Diane, MotherOwl, Mimi, Merry Mae and me as we do what we gotta do with this topic :)

You can leave your poem in the comments, or post on your own blog. If you do the latter, please leave a comment so we can come along and applaud. Use the topic, or choose another; the idea is to have fun and work our brains a little.

And if anyone would like to suggest a topic, please feel free to do so! Diane and I take turns providing the topics but there's lots of room for more suggestions.


There's not much of a preamble this week.

Suffice it to say that I am having to work extra hard lately to encourage myself to do my filial duty in a kindly way.

So I've written a poem to remind myself where to find the grace I need.


Filial Duty

Duty alone can be a mean thing
It's only a chore, with a hollow ring

Uplifted by love, any chore can become
A heartening song that we're glad to have sung


And some funnies, because I'm in need of them and I bet you wouldn't say no to them either :)

By the way, they all originated on either Facebook or Twitter. Who says social media is all bad?!


The topic for next week's Poetry Monday will be ..... WATER. Good luck!

Wishing all of you a good week . . . no, a GREAT week. If we're wishing to begin with, let's make it worthwhile :)

Monday 20 January 2020

Poetry Monday: Connections

It's Poetry Monday, and the topic this week is ..... CONNECTIONS.

Join Diane, MotherOwl, Mimi, Merry Mae and me as we connect the dots on this topic. If you'd like, you can leave your poem in the comments here, or you can post on your own blog. If you do the latter, please leave a comment here so we can find your contribution. Use the topic, or choose another -- the aim is to have fun and stretch our brains a little bit.


You might say I have a few family connections. My father was one of eleven siblings and my mother was one of five. All fourteen of my aunts and uncles married at least once and had at least one child, although often they had more -- many had four or five and one had nine.

This means I grew up having a lot of first cousins -- sixty-one in all. I didn't know all of them -- a small number died as infants or children, while some lived so far away I never got to meet them. Others lived nearby or visited from far away every summer and I got to know them quite well.

My children, on the other hand, have only eight first cousins in total.

I've always felt like there are many connections between me and the rest of the world, even though sixty-one first cousins is not many people if you're looking at the world's population. But it was enough to make me feel like there were tendrils of my gene pool that extended into the world at large, far beyond my village.

It makes me feel a bit badly for my kids. Of course, it may be true that you don't miss what you don't have, and they may feel eight cousins is plenty.

Where am I going with all of this and why have I made your brain cells short out and your eyes roll back in your head with all those figures?

Well, I have a poem to write, and wanted to provide some background, of course :)


We've Done Our Bit And It's Too Late To Produce More

My aunties and my uncles
Had lots of baby bundles

They gave me many cousins
I have cousins by the dozens

And though they're all terrific
We've all been less prolific

Our kids have less selection
Re family connections

I feel a wee bit wistful
They haven't cousins by the fistful

But it's really not that strange
Times - and people - always change

A small portion of my family reunion


Wishing you a week of rewarding connections, whether they're family or not.

Next week's topic is ....... DUTY .....

Good luck!


Friday 17 January 2020

My Answers to the Quiz, and Funnies

This quiz has been circulating among bloggers I read (like kylie and Joey), and, being bored on a stormy Friday evening, I thought I'd play along too.

Feel free to answer some or all of the questions yourself in the comments, or do a post of your own!

1. What was the last thing you put in your mouth?
Oh dear. I'm off to a bad start. That would be a lemon creme cookie. Well, actually, TWO lemon creme cookies. But I had a light supper just before that. So I was still hungry.  

2. Pajamas or gown?
Well, pj's make my legs too hot and then they get restless, and then I can't sleep, and if I don't get my sleep . . . let's just say you wouldn't like me when I don't get my sleep.

3. Worst physical pain you've ever been in?
It's a tie between labour and that time I fell down the stairs and hurt my back. In fact, I distinctly remember, after I fell, trying to get myself onto my hands and knees, thinking, "Whoa, this is as bad as labour was . . ." On the plus side, the intense pain passed faster than labour did. On the negative side, it took months for the lingering effects to finally leave, as opposed to labour, which was over in less than twelve hours both times.

4. Favourite place you've ever been?
Plonked in front of the computer reading blogs.

5. How late did you stay up last night?
I'm embarrassed to say.

6. If you could move somewhere else, where would you move to?
I like it right where I am. Also, the thought of moving horrifies me for so many reasons, beginning with cleaning and decluttering and staging the house to viewing/choosing a new house to finding new friends to finding a new job . . . so . . . you want me to move, you're going to want a few sticks of dynamite.

7. Christmas or New Year?
Yes. Or maybe no. Could you re-phrase that question, please? Or make it multiple choice or something?

8. When was the last time you cried?
Are we talking slightly blurry vision or ugly-crying?

9. What's the last photo on your phone?
I don't take photos with my phone because I am an unenlightened dinosaur.

10. Two of your favourite movies?
Awakenings, and any of the Pink Panther movies.

11. What's your favourite season?
The season to be jolly, fa la la, la la, la la, la la! And spring, with all its green colours and glorious peeping and cheeping.

12. Which famous person would you like to meet?
I can't think of anyone. Unless you count the arrogant, deceitful politicians who I would - in spite of my basically pacifist nature - like to meet so I could whack them over the head with a shovel.

13. If you could talk to ANYONE right now, who would it be?
My father, who passed away nearly five years ago. I miss his kindness and warmth.

14. Are you a good influence?
No, I'm a terrible influence. I stay up late and eat too many cookies and cry at the drop of a hat and spend all my time on the computer reading blogs and want to whack certain politicians on the head with a shovel.

15. Does pineapple belong on a pizza?
Pineapple belongs in pineapple squares. Mmmmm, pineapple squares. Start with a shortbread cookie crust, cover with icing, finish off with pineapple-whipped-cream-mixture. Wait, what was the question again?

16. You have the remote; what show would you be watching right now?
If I have the remote, then my husband is probably dead or nearly so, and I sure as heck wouldn't be watching TV, I'd be getting help.

17. Three people who you think will play along?
I try not to think; it makes my head hurt.

18. First concert?
Stars of the Music Festival, when I was four, with a group of six other girls (ages four to sixteen). We sang "The Gavotte" at the local festival, and then we got to sing again at the Stars performance. We all wore white blouses and plaid skirts and black shiny shoes. I have a picture as proof if you need it. (I peaked early; it's been all downhill since then.)

19. Favourite food?
You think I'm going to say cookies, don't you? Or pineapple squares? But it's actually homemade pizza, with onion, green pepper, mushrooms, pepperoni, and mixed cheese. Dang it, now I'm hungry again.

20. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A librarian/archeologist/geologist/wife/mother in that chronological order.  I would have been a terrible librarian or archeologist or geologist. I'd read all the books instead of helping people, and I hate getting my hands dirty or being outside in the heat or rain or wind or basically any inclement weather. I got to be a wife and mother, though, and feel they were the most important things I ever did. And now I'm a grandma. I never thought that far ahead when I was growing up, but that's pretty cool too.

I found some funnies about quizzes. Enjoy!

I'll be back on Monday, folks :)

Monday 13 January 2020

Poetry Monday: Leap Year

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is . . . . LEAP YEAR.

Join Diane, MotherOwl, Mimi, Merry Mae and me as we jump into this topic. You can leave your poem in the comments or post on your own blog; if you do the latter, please leave a comment to direct us to your blog so we can come along and applaud. Use the topic or choose another; it doesn't matter. The objective is to have fun and give your brain a workout.


I've never delved too deeply into the concept of leap year. Mostly I just rely on the news to tell me whether we are in one or not.

I know, of course, that we need an extra day every so often to make up for the deficiency in our system of time, and that if you can divide the year by the number four then it's a leap year.

But wait! When I googled "leap year" I found additional information that was new to me and made my head feel like it might explode:

          Leap years are any year that can be exactly divided by 4
               except if it can be exactly divided by 100, then it isn't
                    except if it can be exactly divided by 400, then it is

Making sense of that is almost asking too much of my arts-and-crafts brain. Please note that that link goes to a children's website called "Math Is Fun". That tells you most of what you need to know about my math-y skills . . . in spite of the fact that my job is bookkeeping . . . which is a whole other post.


Get Away From Me With That Logical Mathy Stuff

You'd think my line of work would mean I'm awfully good at math
And if, by "good", you mean I never felt a teacher's wrath
Then you'd be right; my marks would make you think that I was smart
But in real life, math trips me up and blows my head apart

It's not the numbers, not the basics: those things are okay
It's logic that's the problem, makes me cry and run away
So give me lots of numbers and I'll do the computations
But give me rules for Leap Year? That will just end in frustration

To me they're like the Tax Act, which delights in "if" and "then"
While "and" and "or" will change the gist completely once again
The same with legal documents, with all their "ifs" and "buts"
They're made to cramp the brains of us who need our facts clear cut

I envy those whose minds can follow all those twists and turns
In fact, a mind that's logical is one for which I yearn
But at my stage of life, I think my talents lie instead
In writing dreadful poetry and living in my head

A different meaning for "leap year"


Over to you now, Diane! What's the topic for next week?

Update:  Diane says ...... CONNECTIONS ......

I hope you have a good week.

And in an effort to help make it so, here are a few random funnies. If the captions are too small to read, just click on the picture to make it larger.

See you next time :)  


Friday 10 January 2020


By now, many of you will have already read or heard of the airliner that crashed in Iran, killing 176 people, 138 of whom were bound for Canada. Of those, 57* were Canadian citizens, and included professionals, graduate students, students, and children.

Intelligence points strongly toward the crash being caused by a missile strike from Iranian forces, perhaps inadvertent, certainly connected to the latest back-and-forth between Iran and the United States.

Actions have consequences.

I do not know any of the deceased, nor their families, but it has still been a bleak day here.  It feels like such a waste of life and talent and youth and wisdom and hope.

A few days ago I was reminded of the tune Skylark, as sung by Bette Midler, a piece I associate with my university days when homesickness and a lonely heart led me to play it often. It's a beautiful tune with beautiful words but very melancholy, and it has, I believe fittingly, been on continuous play in my head all day today.

* Updated 1/11/2020 to reflect more recent information in the news

Skylark, have you anything to say to me?
Can you tell me where my love may be?
Is there a meadow in the mist
Where he's just waiting to be kissed?
Skylark, have you seen a valley green with spring
Where my heart can go a journeying
Over the shadows and the rain
To a blossom covered lane?
And in your lonely flight have you heard the music?
In the night, wonderful music.
Faint as a will-o'-the-wisp, crazy as a loon,
Sad as a gypsy serenading the moon.
Oh, skylark, i don't know, i don't know
If you can find these things,
But my heart, my heart is riding on your wings.
So if you see them anywhere
Won't you lead me there?
Oh, won't you lead me there?
Lead me there, lead me there.
Lead me there, skylark, skylark, skylark, there!

Source: LyricFind

Songwriters: Hoagy Carmichael / Johnny Mercer
Skylark lyrics © Peermusic Publishing, Warner Chappell Music, Inc

Will there ever be peace in the world, I wonder? What will it take?

Monday 6 January 2020

Poetry Monday: Things That Go Fast

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is ... THINGS THAT GO FAST.

Feel free to join Diane, MotherOwl, Mimi, Merry Mae, and me in posting our poetry on this topic (or any other topic of your choosing). You can leave your poem in the comments, or post on your own blog; if you do the latter, please leave a comment so we can track you down and applaud :)

Have fun and build up your brainpower -- what could be better!

A reader suggested in a comment last week that we use the topic 'leap year' sometime because 2020 is one. It was a great idea, and that will be our topic for next Monday. Thank you, Andrew.

If anyone, at any time, wishes to suggest a topic, I'm all ears (as donkeys are - ha ha). Some weeks it's hard to come up with an original, timely topic and I can use all the help you want to give.


This Is My List; What Would Yours Be?

Some things just never last quite long enough --
Kittenhood full of wide eyes and soft fluff . . .
Holidays, weekends, long-dreamed-of vacations . . .
How lovely if we could extend celebrations . . .
Music that lifts us, our troubles transcend . . .
Books that engross us, beginning to end . . . 
Meaningful talks with the ones we hold dear . . .
Time that flies from us, more quickly each year . . .

So many good things are soon in the past
. . . That's why we have memories, to make good things last

Note: This button really works for our cranky cat. Just thought you'd like to know.


As mentioned in the preamble, next week's topic is . . . LEAP YEAR . . .

Good luck!