Thursday, March 31, 2011

A-Ha!

A lightbulb moment. That used to mean a brilliant idea or a moment of great enlightenment. Now it means a dim expensive mercury-filled twisted idea.

I hate curly light bulbs, but it's becoming increasingly more difficult to find the standard style ones, and in fact they will be illegal to sell by 2012. So I am starting a light bulb collection.

I was reading an article about hydro rates in Canada increasing by over 50% in the next eight years. It blah-blah-blahed about how/why the rates are going up. The final sentence in the article read "Switching to compact flourescent and LED bulbs can save money."  Yeah, whatever.

Sure you might pay $8 to light a standard bulb for a thousand hours compared to $2 for a useless curly bulb, but the old bulbs themselves are 50 cents instead of 5 bucks for a curly one - which you need to burn three of to get enough light to read by. Alternatively, you can buy the new LED style bulbs - Superstore had 'em for $25 each. I'm not particularly a math wizard, but somehow it's not adding up to over all savings in my head.

Not to mention you are supposed to call in a haz-mat team to clean your house if you break a curly bulb. And God forbid if you dispose of one in the garbage.

Currently my hydro meter is whirring like a helicopter blade because I have a hot tub on my deck, an electric washer and dryer washing clothes in electrically heated water, an oven baking chicken, a dishwasher cleaning dishes (in Jed's suite- I don't have one. Yet.) I blow dry my hair every day, have 4 flat screen TVs in the house, a toaster, kettle and crock pot.....  Forgive me for looking like an idiot, but somehow I just don't see my 50 cent light source being the evil culprit here.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Geesh!

My fantastic blogging record in 2011 sure went for a big poop didn't it.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

I want your money.

Alrighty then....

Production is well under way, I think I'm ready to start the distribution side of things.

As I alluded to in a previous post, I want your money. As part of my annual fundraising for Relay For Life, this year I am offering original watercolour blank greeting cards. These are the original paintings, not prints.

I have posted a sampling here but have more images posted in a Facebook Album. The cards cost $4 each (which includes the cost of a stamp for me to mail it to you) or you can purchase a 6-pack for $20.

Alternatively, you can sponsor me through my Relay for Life web page for a minimum of $25 and you will get a tax receipt and I will send you a random 3-pack of cards. But please feel free to not limit your donation to $25  :) I'll send you the correct number of cards to correlate with your donation amount.

As far as sending payment, you can email me the money to elzie @ telus.net (if you are techno savvy living in the 21st century) or you can email, comment here or msg   me on Facebook to make alternative arrangements. Or .... you could meet me for coffee... now there's a cool concept.

If this is successful, or if I fail to stay on top of things (which is the more likely story) I will check into setting up an Ebay or Etsy account ... but we'll worry about that when we have to.

Please remember that 100% of your money will go to the Canadian Cancer Society - my costs and time are my portion of the donation. Cancer sucks! And it affects each and every family in Canada.

(The Famous Pink Panter Quilt Raffle is now underway as well and I'll blog about that in a later post)



Friday, March 11, 2011

Pickin' through the stuff

“How can you carry anything in that?” I am often asked when people see my purse which is about the size of two boxes of Kraft Mac ‘n Cheese. I can’t. And that’s the whole point of being a small purse owner.
My purse holds my driver’s license, bank card, iPhone and a pack of gum. And really, what more does a girl need. Life has taught me there is just too much stuff to pack around. Take what you have to and discard the rest.

I refuse to head out shopping already weighted down with stuff bought last week. I will not face today with baggage from yesterday.

Last year I tried to be in vogue and bought myself a fashionable large leather bag. Everything I normally carry fit into one small pocket. I literally wandered through the house trying to find things to fill my new fashion statement with. A water bottle. A writing pad. A 10-pack of Kleenex. Just stuff. Stuff I knew I did not need in an average day yet I willingly chose to let it weigh me down. The purse lasted about a week and now sits on the floor in the bottom of my closet.

Life has given me stuff. Death. Cancer. Special needs son. Broken relationships. Trials and struggles. Just stuff. Stuff to weigh me down. At times I carry stuff like a fashion statement. A badge of honour. A token of survival. I willingly choose to let it weigh me down.

I’m learning to pick through the stuff and just take what I have to and discard the rest.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

All the gobblety gook numbers...

"It's too good to be true" is, under most circumstances, an accurate statement. However, when it comes to the government's Registered Disability Savings Plan, it really is good, and I'm watching the results unfold before my eyes.

The intention is for the the program to be available for individuals with a disability for twenty years or until they reach the age of 49, which ever occurs first.

You can read the details on the website, but the short story is, if the individual contributes $1500 to the savings account during the year, the government match it up to 3:1 and potentially will add another $4500 each year. Even if you cannot afford to contribute any money yourself, just by having the account the government will deposit $1000 each January.

The numbers in Jed's case are this: If he contributes $125 per month (or a combination of lump sums totalling $1500 per year) for the full twenty years (of course, this assumes the government continues the program) he can quit contributing at age 44 and begin drawing on it at age 55 at which time the value of it will be $350,000. (He will have contributed a total of $31,500) 

At 55 he will draw $1,200 per month. Payments will increase at 3.5% per year (for inflation) and by the time he reaches 83 years old the monthly amount will be $4,000. The total he will have drawn by age 84 (when the well will run dry) will be $857,216.

I hate numbers and it's all gobblety-gook but the fact is we opened the account 15 months ago and have contributed a total of $1720. His balance currently sits at $7005. My new mission is to make sure anyone who qualifies for the disability savings plan gets signed up - even if they can't afford to deposit their own money.

I fully anticipate that the government initiative will peter out before the 20 years is up, but why the heck would one not take advantage of it while they can.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Livin' the good life

As the Cougars wind up their regular season hockey games, Jed's time in the dressing room is coming to a close. I will call the GM next week to see if he'll be the dressing room attendant during the play-offs as well, and verify that things are good from their angle and hopefully they'll have him back next year.

He is really enjoying being accepted and included by the team. He often gets a ride home with one of the players and they are always teasing and joking with him like he's "one of the boys." It's been good for him.

This opportunity has also allowed him to cross paths with lots of celebrities which he normally would not.

Last week Heart was in town for a concert. Albert attended. Jed did not. However the Wilson sisters and the band attended a hockey game and Jed got to hang around them for the evening. (Not that he knew who they were - he's too young for that. But he does know the song Barracuda)


He did manage to get a free ticket to Toby Keith and George Canyon the following day. He decked himself out in his dad's cowboy hat and boots and headed off to the show. Witnesses say he enjoyed himself.


The other day as I was dropping him off for work at the CNCentre, a very large celebrity bus was just pulling into the parking lot as I drove away.

"Oh!" I thought, "If Jed turns a corner and bumps into Sarah McLachlan he is gonna think he's died and found himself in the arms of an angel."



But alas, it was not Sarah.

It was, however, Papa Roach and Buckcherry and others on the Jagermeister 2011 Tour. And the entire Cougar team was attending the concert that night and gave Jed a ticket and a ride. While the music didn't really cut it for him (thank you God) he was thrilled to hang out with the boys for the night.





Sarah was here the following day. Jed didn't get to see her up close and personal and he had to buy a ticket. He does insist it's the best $70 he's spent in a long time. He is absolutely certain Sarah sang "I Will Remeber You" directly to him, and was thrilled that "Arms of the Angel" was her encore song.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Bring on the two's....

He's a two year old unlike any other. Okay, I'm probably marginally biased and I am so so proud to be Xander's granny, but I really find him to be quite entertaining and brilliant. And cute too.

March 3rd was Xander's second birthday and the sixth is Jade's birthday. We combined them both and Thursday was dedicated party day. We started off with family breakfast at our house. Normally for birthdays we do family dinner, however Jade prefers breakfast foods and it worked better for everyone's schedule. (And that got Granny out of having to supply a cake)

Xander stayed and played with Granny for the afternoon while Mommy and Daddy went home and set up their house for his 4 o'clock party.

It was a full day and even Xander voluntarily climbed into bed at the end of it. Granny was pooped too!


He named each letter on his banner and insisted it spelled "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse."




The cake was a great co-operative effort by Daddy and Mommy
Happy Birthday Dear Xander! (And Mommy) Happy Birthday to you!

Loving his new puzzles. Each time he opened a present he wanted to play with it before opening another.


For months he's been telling me he wants a "Panda Puzz-oh" for his birthday. I looked as far away as Vancouver and couldn't find one anywhere.

Finally had to Photoshop a panda image and send it to Costco and have it turned into a puzzle.

He plays games with the big kids. (This is quite an advanced talent you know)



Looking cool in his biker jacket.


Aunty B keeps him stylin' with DC shoes and jeans

Wanted to be the birthday photographer.


Superman made an appearance.



The infamous kitchen unit that PaPa has had to renovate a room to accommodate.

Just so you don't think he's perfect, or that I am a pushover Granny ... he does get time-outs occasionally.

...when he does things like paint my floor.


He hates bright sunshine and has learned to love wearing sunglasses when the sun shines. He didn't have any in my car the other day so I put mine on him. He asked me "Am I a cool dude, Granny?" When I assured him he was, he nods confidently and says , "Yeah. I'm stylin'"



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