Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year One and All !

I hope you all had a wondrous Christmas and a great 2007 year to come.

Update - baby Jack is adorable and for my birthday (Dec. 27th - Christmas birthdays.....don't get me started.....) Darrell is flying me to Calgary for a visit ! YAHOOOOOOOO...... I leave on the 4th until the Sunday.

House - we have really been ploughing through the jobs at the new house. I just yesterday finished the faux finish on the living room/dining room. Big job out of the way. We have also removed a sliding glass door (2 on the same wall???) and replaced it with a picture window as well as moved a wall downstairs and re-drywalled it. Lots more to do but it's coming.

So, as promised here are some before pictures of the new place. After pics will be a few days perhaps but you will get the idea of what we started with. The top pic is part of the family room - carpets ripped up, will be painted this week and the sliding glass door that is now a window.

The kitchen shows the half wall that has now been torn down and the whole kitchen has been gutted to the walls (cabinets arrive Jan. 24th) and Darrell tiled the floor in a gorgeous 18 inch tile I chose. The room that looks like a workshop is going to be the one-bedroom suite and work has already started down there. The picture of the living room/dining room is before being painted and I didn't like the bannister so we ripped that down to make a more open room. Great stone fireplace in this room.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Baby Jack - one day old

All is well and I think Anna & Mike will be taking my beautiful nephew home today. How cute is he??????? SOOOOO CUTE !

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Baby Has Arrived !

Praise the Lord ! Little baby Jack Mason came into the world in the last hour and Mum and babe are both healthy. 8 lb, 2 oz and 21 inches long. Well done Anna - I'm very proud of you.

Sleep well little prince.
Love your Auntie Rachel

2nd Baby Update ......

Well, because I'm such an impatient sister and because it's 11:30am I phoned the Labour & Delivery ward of Foothills Hospital to see if my sister had a room lined up yet. The very kind receptionist told me no, because she was still in the delivery room but assured me that the baby was going to be born in the next half hour. YIPPEEEEEEE.........can't wait...........stay tuned..........

Anna......and Baby Update!

Well, the baby is on the way. My sister started labouring at 3am yesterday (Monday) and was inconsistent until later in the afternoon. She stayed home as long as possible (way to go!) and went into the hospital at 10:30pm last night when they were 3 or 4 minutes apart. I hoped to wake up to a new nephew (it's a boy!) but instead woke to a phone call to say she's 9cm. Poor thing - still, any moment now. I'll keep you updated.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Is the crash and burn-out coming soon?

Ok - I think I'm done. OH! Christmas shopping you're all thinking aren't you? Negative. Done with cleaning, scrubbing and tidying. I've been doing it at the new house and I've been doing it daily at the old house as Darrell put us on the "You can call us with very little notice to show our house to your clients" list.

So last night I hit the hay at 2:30am and woke at 7:30am. Got to work 40 minutes late. YES - 40 !!! Every morning there is the burden of cleaning your house well enough that if a realtor phoned and said someone is coming through, you would feel it was clean enough to present. Well everyone knows that 'realtor clean' is not the same as 'family clean'. So I scurry around after Darrell & the kids leave for school and clean up after all of us. And quite frankly, I'm knackered.

So as a result I am way behind on Christmas shopping, baking, cooking etc. But we did get our tree last Saturday. This year's theme is silver and gold. You can blame my Mum for my insane need to decorate in different colour schemes each year. She always did it and now I too continue the tradition.

Sorry - this is a weak post but I'm tired.... (see above). OH - but we did have a great evening Tuesday at the Tom Jackson benefit held at our church. The band was great and though I do say so myself I think our choir sounded pretty darn good too.

I'm out.............hope you're all finding real PEACE somewhere amidst the whackiness......

Monday, December 04, 2006

Live from's Saturday Night !

My good friend Rayael had a vision for a young adults (18-35ish) semi-formal banquet with a SNL theme. Well, due to her brilliant planning and expertise at bash-throwing, there were 135 of us enjoying SNL skits and great food. Well done my friend! You outdid yourself.

Jake and Katie did a brilliant rendition of the Spartans, Rayael and Elise were outstanding as the Sweeney Sisters and Aaron....well let's just say Elvis' gyrations had nothing on him.

Here's a few pics from the grand event, including one of the centrepieces.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

For long last.....

So my friend Alison asked me to post a picture of my purple streaks. These were originally done a month ago, and then again a week later and finally got fixed today. Initially the purple streaks turned to orange/light brown streaks. After the first 'fix' they turned to yellow after washing. Hopefully today's batch is the right concoction and is to date my favourite shade of the purple stuff.

Yes, it's my favourite colour..... Yes, I painted my walls with a purple glaze in my living room.....No, I will not allow Brooklyn to dye hers purple! (just kidding...)

So Alison, sorry I look like such a dork in the photo but now you can see what it looks like.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Let It Snow !

Well, perhaps Rayael's intense wishing upon a winter snowfall was the reason for the dump. Either way, it came. And for our friends and family further East than us - YES Anna ! I said inches NOT centimetres!

In Central Saanich we got about a foot and a half, and our neighbours joined us to clear our panhandle driveway to the road. The kids absolutely loved it and we helped them build a fort - igloo at one end and a run for the magic carpets at the other end. Tonight's expected freezing could be a problem for tomorrow but we'll see... perhaps another snow day!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

How to Tug at a Mother's Heartstrings

Zachary has an obsession. He is obsessed with changing outfits to suit what he's doing. If he's watching a Star Wars movie he will disappear to his bedroom and return dressed as a Jedi. If he's playing cowboys he'll disappear and re-appear fully clad in stetson and cowboy boots. If he's playing Davy Crockett he will re-appear in a racoon hat and different clothes.

The problem with this is when you visit his bedroom.

He has no concept of organizing laundry.

Clean clothes are mixed with dirty clothes and are strewn all over the room and hanging out of drawers. As a result we end up washing clean clothes over and over without ever really knowing if they were dirty or not. This is a real source of frustration for me. I'm a busy Mum; I work outside of the home and taxi kids all over town. I don't have time to wash clothes that aren't really dirty. I had reached the peak of my frustration on Monday when I called Zachary in for a meeting and told him how angry I was that after many conversations about it he had still proceeded to toss everything all over the place.

Imagine my surprise when I went back downstairs to see if he'd cleaned up the mess, and in addition to a now-clean room found a note on his bed. This, you can imagine, was the cause of many tears on my part. What he lacks in order he more than makes up for in kindness. This is what he wrote:

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Halloween with the Michalskis

Last night was fun. Despite kind of hating Halloween and everything it stands for, you can't help but love seeing all of the children dressed up and being in a state of giddy shock that strangers would load them up with candy.
This was the second year we met at Todd's Mum & Dad's house for supper, and then all went trick-or-treating together. Our five children love hanging out together, and they get on like a house on fire. We had 2 Darth Vaders, an Obi-Won (don't call him Anakin!!) a fairy princess and a hippie. After the candy catch Jill made us a cup of tea while Todd set off fireworks.

Good clean family fun.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

The joy of Christmas puddings....and other updates....

Tonight I have time to blog..... I've been a bit short on time lately. Since our house went on the market there have been 2 Open Houses at our place so we have been cleaning like maniacals for those, as well as buying fresh flowers for the table (thanks for the reminder Rayael!) and doing a tidy up every morning before leaving for work. Now for some friends, like Vicki, this might be a normal occurence. But we, like many families, make every effort to 'clean as we go' but the likely event of slept-in mornings often leads to neglect in the household tidiness department. BUT NOT THIS MONTH! Everything has been spotless. Yet, as of the mo', no bites on the house. Not a worry, we are having so much fun (insert - I am ecstatic) at the re-designing of our new kitchen in the new place, that we're not thinking too much about that yet.

Yesterday was a zoo - I had 5 places to be in, and some almost at the same time that as a result I didn't make it to all of them, and the ones I did get to in time I had to leave early. But right now I have time to blog. Because I - as we 'speak' - am cooking my Christmas pudding. Please indulge me for a minute while I divulge the joy of Christmas pudding.

This is one of those Christmas traditions that I have decided to keep going. My grandma always made 2 puddings; both back in September. That was also my plan but time got the best of me and here we are beginning of November. Oh well.... you see the fruit and the brandy in the pudding definitely improve with age, which is why Harrods claims their puddings have been made 6 months previous to you purchasing them. They are dark, they are rich, and a medium one will feed your whole family plus visitors. But what makes them divine in my opinion is the presentation. I remember my grandparents bringing the pudding to the table, pouring brandy on top of it and then setting it aflame. This brought applause and delight to me, and is something as of late I have wanted to re-create. My grandma always served it with her homemade nutmeg sauce or brandy butter. I have never googled the recipe for brandy butter but I can make sauce so the nutmeg won out.

Here is the illogical part however - it appears that out of my family of four - you guessed it - I am the only one who likes it! So I am essentially, cooking a Christmas pudding entirely for myself. And the aroma of ginger and nutmeg is filling my kitchen as I type. Everyone else is asleep in bed but I am revelling in the spices and fruit-aroma that are making their way to my computer desk. They are however, starting to get mixed up with the lingering smells from the French Onion Soup I made earlier this afternoon. Hmmmm... may be time for some Febreeze.....

Monday, October 23, 2006

Celebrity Sightings

Ok so of course I knew my Jack Leyton story would be overshadowed but who knew how by how much! My handsome brother-in-law Mike beats mine hands down. He was staying at a swanky hotel in Saskatoon (as put up by the Palm people) and was asked to wait at the end of the corridor while some people walked by the intersecting hallway.

Yes, Mike had to pause in his footsteps to allow the passage of the ROLLING STONES to their elevator. Story goes that as Mike waited they passed by and Mick said "Thanks Man". Thanks Man. WOW. And because Mike is the gracious dude that he is, he politely waited and can now tell his children (soon to be born son) that he and Mick were THIS CLOSE ........

House update - first open house yesterday - 20 people came through which the realtor said was a good turnout. We'll see if it pans out to anything. Meanwhile we are still cleaning it daily in case we get that all-of-a-sudden-we-want-to-view-your-home call. Mum returns from Calgary tomorrow. It will be great to see her again; the kids missed her a bunch.

And last but not least - my friend Jeni is a rock 'n roll superstar. TELEVISED no less! Yes, we deeked out of church after the worship last night and raced back to my house to watch her in all of her stardom as she and the Heartbeats jammed out on MuchMusic and we dined on pita, artichoke dip, carrots and dried ribs. I know, strange combination but I haven't done groceries yet. It was a grand time. Once the viewing had ceased we moved on to some great female rock duets. But I'll let her tell you about that ........

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Can't Sleep......'coz of the house......

I'm awake. It's 2:33am and I've been awake since 1am. I am never awake. Well, at night I mean - I hit the pillow and every day of my adult life someone has had to kick me out of bed to be sure I woke up the next morning. But tonight I'm awake. Truth be told, I fell asleep before 10pm and for those who know me well that will be an absolute shock. 1am seems to be the time I GO to sleep usually.

But here's the deal - as of last Wednesday I believed I was heading to work only to return at the end of the day to a normal life. But Darrell asked me to look at a house he saw earlier in the day, as there was a chance to purchase it before it hit MLS. Now here we are 5 days later and we've made an offer that's been accepted. I move in 4 weeks - AAAAGGGGGHHHHHH ! And not just move, but move into a house that we are doing some major (Darrell thinks minor!) renovations to, including putting a 1 bedroom suite into the basement. We've done this before and I do prefer my situation now where we don't have a suite but longer term, well let's just say financially we should be quite a bit ahead in a few years. HOPEfully.

So - if I don't see or call most of you in the next little while, be assured the love isn't gone. I'm just hanging around liquor stores waiting for the daily discard of cardboard boxes. Peace Out.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Just saw.......

Just walking to my van for my lunch hour and who should walk by me? Jack Leyton. YES, yes the leader of the NDP. I guess he's doing something on campus today; I hadn't heard about it. And I guess his views haven't made too many enemies because the only guy accompanying him was some UVIC student media dude.

Sorry - I know it's not exactly a Jennifer Aniston sighting but it's all I've got.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving!

Haven't posted for a week I think. Been very busy around here. First off we had the big Ignition event at the Save-on-Foods arena. Will Graham (yes, THAT family) was speaking and Salvador, Joy Williams & Tree 63 (loved them) were performing. 4,500 packed into the arena and with the hundreds that went forward at the end, 264 new committments were made. Awesome. Tiring but awesome.

Then this past weekend my homegirl rockstar Jeni, and her band Counting Heartbeats, had a concert at a club downtown and a whole bunch of her friends (mostly from church!) went down to see her. Good fun, some loud rock and roll and girlfriends (and guys, sorry lads.....) got to hang out and chill for the night. Supper at Cactus Club and got home at 2am.

Then, mass excitement at our house as my brother and sister-in-law and 2 beautiful nieces came to visit. This was only the 3rd time the four kids (ours and theirs) were all in the same room together. And, as Tania pointed out, it was the first time our girls (Brooklyn & Chloe) actually 'played' together. Before Chloe had been too young so to watch them pushing babies around the house was adorable. And to hear Chloe say "Hi Daddy" (to my brother - how whacked is that?) in her high, squeaky voice was too sweet for words.

Well, I'm going for a bike ride with the kids around the neighbourhood and then to the McCullochs for Thanksgiving dinner - thanks Marie!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. I trust you found many things to thank God for, and people in your life who make life worth living.

Monday, October 02, 2006

The Skinny of it .....

Good news for me is, skinny jeans (which I hate!) are really popular once again, so boot cut jeans (which I love!) all seem to be on sale.

Ok, ok, so what's the big deal with skinny jeans? Why would I loathe a pair of denim quite so much? Here's the thing - not only is it a bit odd to be experiencing a trend for the 2nd time (wore the 'drainpipes' as they were called when I was 15) but I honestly believe they could be the most unflattering pair of pants on the market.

Think of this - all of us have curves - male, female - in the buttocks area. Unless you are wearing a long top, the skinny jean produces a stick like leg leading up to a - you guessed it - bump. It's not flattering. So ok, you choose to wear a long top. Well now, the top from the armpit down to the mid-thigh is producing a wider general width of your body because of this extra length it needs to reach. If you don't believe me, I can send pictures.

So I will stick with the boot cut. Having said all that, Oliver - you look fantastic in yours. Possibly the only one.......

And on a very positive note, Joel & Tania and my 2 nieces Tatum and Chloe are coming to visit this w/end from Calgary. Can't wait to see you guys!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Girls - Question for you.....

Ok - for the girls now....

I know this is a strange question but just because it's so randomly bizarre I had to ask. Have you ever washed a bra, waited for it to dry, put it away in your lingerie drawer only to pull it out ready to wear it and discovered a foreign object inside?

Such was my plight this morning. Pulled out a pretty mauve one, opened it up and found a walnut stuck to the inside of one of the cups. I know, pretty personal but how bizarre is that? I SAID A WALNUT !

And you know what - I do a lot of baking but can't remember the last time I used a recipe involving walnuts.

One of life's great mysteries - that and the Caramilk bar.

It's late - great dinner with A & J, followed by dessert on the sundeck under the patio heater. I think I'm done in... ciao.

Sunday, September 24, 2006


This past week was our first full-Fall week. All events that will weekly take place for the Richmonds were in full swing this week. Sunday - church a.m. followed by church p.m. Monday - work/kids in school, Zachary at soccer practise at 5:15pm. Wednesday - kids in school, Brooklyn in tap/ballet at 4:55pm. Friday - kids in school, Zachary at hockey at 3:40pm. Saturday morning - Zachary playing soccer at 9am. It turns out there are officially no more sleep-in days at our place.

And how do we feel about all this? Frankly, I had forgotten we did all this stuff last year. Theory about September - the natural light goes down, the activities go up and people are walking about in states of stress and flu. Vitamin C - I'm stockpiling it and making my kids have them at breakfast. Zachary had stomach flu last Wednesday night and I do NOT want to repeat that 11pm to 5pm shift again this winter.

On a happier note - there are more reasons than ever to put the kettle on and there are some really cute sweaters at Winners.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Wedding Anniversary

WOW - yesterday was our 13th anniversary and Darrell surprised me with a couple of wonderful things - first he gave me a HUGE bouquet of beautiful purple flowers (Purple is my absolute favourite colour). Next he told me he had made plans for dinner and we drove downtown for my mystery dinner tour. Appetizers were at the Tapa Bar (delicious almond stuffed dates....) and dinner at the Blue Crab (Lobster, steak, scallops, prawns) with the most gorgeous view of the harbour, a window seat. Each time we drove I had no idea where we were going. It was such a great treat and we had such a relaxing evening.

Thanks babe - I love you - Happy Anniversary!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

The Dog......Arrested???

Yes, yes, yes.... I know that Dog the Bounty Hunter has been arrested. And Yes, I appreciate the irony. But NO, I have not lost faith in him. He was bringing to justice a serial rapist. Yes, a Max Factor heir but nonetheless.... A RAPIST people.

He just maybe should have followed protocol in doing so but really - he was catching the bad guys.

I still stand behind the man.

I am done now.

Justin brought up a very good point - what WOULD their shower drain look like with all that hair?


Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Zachary Wakeboarding

Here are a couple of pictures of Zachary wakeboarding - courtesy of our buddy Oliver:

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Reality Bizarro-world

Ok, I have a confession to make in the world of TV viewership. I'm not one for much reality TV. I've enjoyed half of an American Idol finale and seen one or two seasons of the Apprentice but on the whole, I avoid the whole genre.

Which is why it might surprise you to know that of all the reality shows I DON'T watch, the one that I DO is a bit on the edge of tacky ...... Ok so it's a LOT on the edge of tacky.

I need to confess that I am a fan of Dog the Bounty Hunter. Not even a slight fan, but have watched back-to-back episodes with a gleeful delight and a twinkle in the eye awaiting the inevitable 'catch of the day'. Dog - or Duane as he was born - is a complete human anomaly. He was a murderer, jailed and released, has many children by various mothers but has turned his life around and now catches bond-jumpers. But the most fascinating part of this show is the family dynamics. He has his son, brother and wife on his bounty team and all of them add a colourful glow to the program. Like the time Dog chased down a criminal across the highway, threw him to the ground while calling him a **** mother bleep-er. And then, when he calmed down and threw him in the back of the SUV, told the guy he needed to straighten up for the sake of his kids, needed to be a good father and needed to find the Lord. Yes, needed to find the Lord.

This is a family that huddles together to pray before heading out to find a fugitive but then swears at the criminals like a bunch of sailors. Honestly, at first I hated it, but I've been won over.

Now don't even get me started on Orange County Choppers - another classic. Family dynamics at its best. If you've never seen Mikey backtalking his Dad after a huge family business fight.... you haven't lived.....

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Check out this Video!

My friend Justin M. who is a computer GENIUSSSSSS.... has put on the net the video we made at Teen Camp this year taking off the Jimmy Fallon Pepsi ad. Everyone in it are counsellors/Head counsellors from Nanoose Bay Teen Camp. ENJOY - he and Kirsten did a brilliant job!

The Outdoor Life

Well, the first week of school is almost over but the sunshine is hanging on. I've been enjoying the outdoor life for a good six weeks or so now. I have always loved my sundeck but since Darrell extended it this summer (way to go babe!) it's been extra-awesome. I don't think I've eaten more then 4 meals indoors in two months. Breakfast on the deck is the best.

This past Monday we ended the summer holidays with a day at our friend's cabin on Lake Cowichan and spent almost the entire day sitting on the dock. As they came back from the first trip out in the boat, Oliver & Brittany explained that Zachary, who had been riding on the boat, was dying to go wakeboarding. This of course made me laugh as Zachary doesn't know how to swim yet (well, only underwater). As a previous-almost-twice-drowner, the thought of sending my un-swum 7 year old out into the dark depths of the lake was crazy. But I tried to be the bigger person as everyone chipped in to attach the boom, and Brett (God Bless You!) explained to Zachary how to hold on. Zachary asked if I was coming in the boat to which I replied "No way - I want to watch you from the dock as you whiz by me on the boat! I'm so excited". Fact is, I knew that I was at risk of passing on my 'is this a good idea' vibe to him if I stayed in the boat.

As it was, my son had the time of his life and I got to see the biggest smile on his face as Brett helped hold the down the boom and Zachary concentrated on keeping his feet on the board. It was a great time with great friends.

And I would post the photos but since my friend Oliver - photographer extraordinaire - has not sent them to me yet, I'm afraid you will have to wait.

Joy up.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Techno-Savvy at age 5

Last night's chat with Brooklyn while the 2 of us snuggled together in my bed:

Brooklyn: What is heaven like Mum?
Moi: Well, I don't know because I've never been there but I know it's going to be wonderful.
B: We should go on the internet.
Moi: Why?
B: We should go onto the website.
Moi: What website?
B: The website for heaven.

So as she is about to enter kindergarten, my daughter has come to the understanding that whenever Mummy didn't know something, she would check on the internet. Mummy doesn't know about heaven, therefore.... naturally.... we must begin to surf. perhaps..............

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Blackberries..... Nesting........

You would have to be blind not to notice the plethora of blackberries out this year. They came early - I had two pies already in the freezer by mid-July whereas you don't normally see them until August. So, needless to say, I being the blackberry addict that I am I have been picking since mid-July.

Blackberries have always been my favourite fruit. Not just favourite berry, favourite fruit. I guess it all began back in England where the climate is similar and our family would pick so that my Mum could bake up some crumbles. For whatever reason blackberry and apple pie became my absolute favourite dessert on the planet. If you have only baked apple or blackberry pie, try combining the two. It really is a deluxe combination.

I feel that if God is going to give us free fruit we need to make the most of it and pick away. Tomorrow will be my 2nd lunch hour consumed with this pastime and I actually think even my mother is feeling this 7th trip out to the bushes is verging on the obsessive. I somehow have felt a season of 'nesting' coming on and 6 pies and 7 jars of jam in the freezer later I feel I may have squirelled away enough to keep us in Fall desserts for a while. So - if you need me I'll be in the prickles. Talk to you after the rains come and turn it all to mush......

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Yoda's back!

Got the picture back - see below - whew.......

Cloudy Thursday

So, as you can see from my last post (which looks like it was this morning but actually wasn't because of having to switch to new blog....... read below ...... ugh) I've had to create this one to avoid some 'problems'. Like the new colours, dislike the fact that photos aren't currently loading (blogger problem, not mine....)

Anyhoo - today, and all of August, my supervisor (Anne) is in one of my favourite places. Cornwall, England. For anyone who gets the chance to visit the native-land I would highly suggest train-ing it down to Cornwall. The bluffs, the greenery, the English Tea and let's not forget the Clotted Cream! I was trying to explain Clotted Cream to Anne before she left. It is the richest most artery-blocking thing you can imagine. And yet it's divine. If you stick a spoon in it you can turn the carton upside down - spoon will be fully intact. It is THAT THICK! So you more scrape it out than spoon out. But on a scone with fresh homemade jam it can't be beat. And Cornwall has spots where you can forget that big cities exist. If you've only been to London you've missed it - the retreating feeling you can get by a long walk along the ocean, popping into antique shops where the proprietors know all of the locals..... anyways, dreaming away here. Childhood memories flooding back......

Thought to leave you with - Brooklyn's chat with my Mum about what are/are not nutritional foods. Grandma: "Cheese?" Brooklyn: "Yes, healthy - both cheese and milk have calcium." Grandma: "Blueberries?" Brooklyn: (and this one killed my Mum!) "Yes, VERY healthy - blueberries have antioxidants". !!!!! Smart cookie for 5 yrs...... then Brooklyn again after they discussed broccoli, spinach and brussel sprouts: " In fact Grandma, all green foods are healthy for you.... ummm....... except for Green Smarties"

So there you go - make sure you get your milk and blueberries but watch out for the chocolate stuff. Good rules to live by .....

Blogging Issues.....

Ok, so for those of you who logged on to the last blog, it had some viewer issues so I had to re-do and create this one instead (note new url....)

BUT, it appears I can't post any pictures right now.... and there was a REALLY cute one of Zachary and his YODA cake from this year's birthday party.....geesh....

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The Cowboys are Gone.....

Did I tell you that the cowboy crazy seems to be finally over? Well, it is. And I have to admit, I'm having a bit of a hard time about it. My son at age 2 developed a fascination with all things cowboy. People said it was a phase that would last 6 months but it was more like an obsession that lasted 4 years. He had everything - chaps, leather boots, cowboy hat from Calgary etc....... he watched Davy Crockett, had more guns than I cared to admit and forever would be putting on 'rodeos' for us in our living room. Highly entertaining. But alas, the day came when cowboys no longer held Zachary's fascination - and instead he turned to Star Wars. Not that it is on the same scale you understand, but lightsabers now reign supreme in our house and every towel that is clean has been turned into a Jedi's cape or hood. I never thought I would actually say this, but I miss the guns.....

Well so far this weekend has been quite fun. I got a phone call late Thursday night from my cousin Dennis who lives in Vancouver. He works for an MLA there and wondered when a weekend at Hotel Richmond might be in order. Turns out this weekend was as good as any so he jumped on the ferry and headed over. I come from a very small family so Dennis represents 50% of all of my cousins - the other being his brother Brian. As Darrell comes from a Mum who had 5 sisters and a Dad who had 11 siblings, this is a foreign concept to him. Now truth be told, I didn't have much to do with Dennis until the last couple of years. We are 13 years apart so apart from him handing out programs at my wedding in '93, we haven't had much contact until just lately. But it's amazing how family members can bring out the most honest in you, and a level of humour that only other members of your side of the family really understand.

Saw my friend Jeni's band, Counting Heartbeats, this evening downtown in concert. It was fun and they had great energy on stage. Brooklyn danced with her friend Hannah and did their 'rocker' hair - this is where they take out all elastics and clips and bang out their heads in the air to the music. People try to tell me that Brooklyn got this from me - I strongly disagree. Yes I like a guitar with lots of distortion but never once did I ever mosh/slam or ride the crowds in concerts. I always saved that stuff for my living room......... And yes I did have rocker hair in the 80's but didn't everybody? I mean, you can't listen to Heart or Alannah Myles without having tall bangs or wings.Well, it's been an exhausting week - lots of events/visitors/family stuff/late nights so I think I'll hit the hay and call it a day. Til next time.....