Friday, December 17, 2010

The Digital Nativity Story

Brilliant video I've had shared with me a couple of times as a Youth Pastor - enjoy!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Cans for Comments Update

Hi all - know I might not get comments on this one as it isn't particularly fascinating but I just wanted to let everyone know that as of now I will be donating 9 cans to the food bank ... please remember between now and Christmas to post on my blog posts - and be sure and visit the blogs along the side I mentioned playing along with this game too. XO

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Magnificat

"My soul magnifies the Lord,
47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant.
Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me,
and holy is his name."

Lovely words in themselves ... right? I'm sure at moments of happiness and peace, almost all of us can muster up either these words or their equivalent depending on our belief system. But ... can you imagine the strength, the courage, the faith, to utter them at perhaps one of our lowest or scariest moments? Mary, Mother of Jesus, recites this, the Magnificat, upon learning she is pregnant with the Christ Child. Now, this in itself is wonderful news ... but picture the realities in this world, in terms of what this otherwise-magnificent news would lead her to face. Young, single, unexpectedly pregnant in the last century BCE/first century CE ... risking the loss of her fiance, the potential loss of any hope of a future respectable marriage, bringing perceived shame to herself and her family ... yet then ... even then, she was able to praise God, and steel herself to face the enormous task ahead. Just food for Advent thought ...

Mary did you know, when you kiss your little baby
You kiss the face of God?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Updated Reading List

So I realized I hadn't updated everyone on my 101 books in 1001 days project in awhile. That is in large part because I haven't *finished* any new books in awhile lol (ACTUALLY THAT'S NOT TRUE - please find my review for 'The Lost Symbol' by Dan Brown, below the book list - AND I'm halfway through quite a few so there will probably be like 5 or 6 reviews shortly after the holidays). But I did change a few books on my list (again all of a similar length so I'm not trading 900 page books for 200 page books or anything like that - and where I have, I have also replaced a few shorter books with some longer ones so it all comes out in the wash). So I wanted to update everyone on that score. New books below are found in bold:

1. Dead and Gone - Charlaine Harris
2. The Time Traveller's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
3. Reading Lolita in Tehran - Azar Nafisi
4. The Year of Living Biblically - A.J. Jacobs
5. A History of God - Karen Armstrong
6. Dreams from My Father - Barack Obama
7. Beloved - Toni Morrison
8. 'Tis - Frank McCourt
9. The Host - Stephenie Meyers
10. The Constant Princess - Phillipa Gregory
11. Wicked - Gregory Maguire
12. The Six Wives of Henry the 8th - Alison Weir
13. Eleanor of Aquitaine - Alison Weir
14. Tuesdays with Morrie - Mitch Albom
15. The Fellowship of the Ring - J.R.R. Tolkien
16. The Two Towers - J.R.R. TOlkien
17. The Return of the King - J.R.R. Tolkien
18. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - J.K. Rowling
19. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire - J.K. Rowling
20. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix - J.K. Rowling
21. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - J.K. Rowling
22. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - J.K. Rowling
23. Dracula - Bram Stoker
24. Paradise Lost - John Milton
25. The Inferno - Dante
26. Towelhead - Alicia Erian
27. Sex, Lies, and Headlocks - Shaun Assael and Mike Mooneyham
28. The Way the Crow Flies - Ann-Marie MacDonald
29. The Robber Bride - Margaret Atwood
30. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
31. This United Church of Ours - Ralph Milton
32. Anansi Boys - Neil Gaiman
33. American Gods - Neil Gaiman
34. Stardust - Neil Gaiman
35. Tess of the d'Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
36. The First Christmas - Marcus J. Borg and John Dominic Crossan
37. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
38. Little Women - Louisa May Alcott
39. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
40. The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
41. Deception Point - Dan Brown
42. Digital Fortress - Dan Brown
43. The Lost Symbol - Dan Brown
44. Lolita - Vladimir Nobokov
45. Atonement - Ian McEwan
46. All the King's Men - Robert Penn Warren
47. Under the Dome - Stephen King
48. Catch-22 - Joseph Heller
49. The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger
50. Uncle Tom's Cabin - Harriet Beecher Stowe
51. A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess
52. Scarlett - Alexandra Ripley
53. White Noise - Don De Litto
54. Their Eyes were Watching God - Zora Neale Hurston
55. Primary Colours - Anonymous
56. Revolutionary Road - Richard Yates
57. Ragtime - E.L. Doctorow
58. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie - Muriel Spark
59. Misquoting Jesus - Bart Ehrman
60. Fast Food Nation - Eric Schlasser
61. My Years as Prime Minister - Jean Chretien
62. Memoirs - Pierre Trudeau
63. Shake Hands with the Devil - Romeo d'Allaire
64. Team of Rivals - Doris Kearns Goodwin
65. The Secret Mulroney Tapes - Peter C. Newman
66. Why I Hate Canadians - Will Ferguson
67. Planet Simpson - Chris Turner
68. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
69. The Restaurant at the End of the Universe - Douglas Adams
70. Life, the Universe and Everything - Douglas Adams
71. So Long and Thanks for All the Fish - Douglas Adams
72. Mostly Harmless - Douglas Adams
73. Fifth Business - Robertson Davies
74. The Manticore - Robertson Davies
75. World of Wonders - Robertson Davies
76. The Donnellys - James Reaney
77. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
78. Atlas Shrugged - Ayn Rand
79. Farenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury
80. Not Wanted on the Voyage - Timothy Findlay
81. A Tale of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
82. Coraline - Neil Gaiman
83. The Crucible - Arthur Miller
84. Mirror Mirror - Gregory Maguire
85. The Emerging Christian Way - Marcus Borg et al
86. Sorbonne Confidential - Laurel Zuckerman
87. What Happened to Anna K - Irina Reyn
88. The Silver Linings Playbook - Matthew Quick
89. Hey Nostradamus! - Douglas Coupland
90. Girlfriend in a Coma - Douglas Coupland
91. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
92. The 5 People You Meet in Heaven - Mitch Albom
93. The Poisonwood Bible - Barbara Kingsolver
94. Interview with the Vampire - Ann Rice
95. The Diary of a Young Girl - Anne Frank
96. The Bonfire of the Vanities - Tom Wolfe
97. Guys and Dolls - Damon Runyon
98. Good Book - David Plotz
99. He's Just Not that Into You - Greg Behrendt, Liz Tuccillo, Lauren Monchik
100. God's Problem - Bart D. Ehrman
101. Jesus for the Non-Religious - John Shelby Spong

(and please note that while those last two books did replace Dr. Phil books, it is not because I don't appreciate his work, so much as his books are actually not long or hard to get through, and as such I feel like I can read those AND complete the books on this list)

THE LOST SYMBOL by Dan Brown - REVIEW
While I definitely enjoyed the Lost Symbol, I can also say that if you've read any other Dan Brown, it won't surprise you much. For once, they don't have one of the good, supportive guys turn into the villain at the end, so I suppose the lack of a twist is a twist, lol, but otherwise it is simply a very smart thriller. If you're interested in American and Masonic history, as opposed to Roman Catholic history, as portrayed in the last two Robert Langdon novels by Brown (Angels & Demons and the Da Vinci Code), and you enjoy the Robert Langdon books, you'll enjoy this one; and if you don't, you won't. It is very true to Dan Brown's history and style. Which is to say, while I enjoyed it, and recognize a lot of research went into it, the plot itself was as formulaic as you'd expect, although still riveting and pageturning at the same time.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Science and Story

I wanted to put a plug in here for one of my fellow Parishioners' incredibly intelligent, thoughtful, thought-provoking blog, Science and Story. Please check out Arlene's journey in faith and discussion here:

http://scienceandstory.wordpress.com

I will also link to her in my blogroll, to the right. While I was vaguely aware that this was something she did, tonight I was inspired to click the link at the bottom of an email she sent to me - and she is definitely on my reading list from here out. Brilliant.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

D-List Celebs Sing Let It Be ... Glenn Close too

Check out this video - as various pseudo-celebrities from Tonya Harding to Roger Moore to David Faustino, Jason Alexander, Glenn Close and beyond sing John Lennon's 'Let it Be'.



Right - and keep it on up with the comments for cans. XO

Thursday, December 2, 2010

UPDATE: Cans for Comments and Travel



So I don't want to make all my upcoming posts about Cans for Comments, but I wanted to thank folks for my feedback so far - I'm at 5 cans so far, thank you folks - and quickly be sure to give some link love to everyone (I know of ...) playing along right now. :)

Here are the links so far - I'll put them in my sidebar as well.

The founder of this particular feast - Tatiana at http://dubioushausfrau.blogspot.com
My darlin' friend Alex at http://ourthingcalledlife@blogspot.com
And Cindy at http://foodieatthefinishline.blogspot.com

Meanwhile, I may or may not get the opportunity to post tomorrow. Why??? Because I am going to a very dear friend of mine's wedding. L and I have known each other almost ten years now and have been through a lot together. We've had times of being very close, times of being out of touch (we have probably spent at least half our friendship living in different cities), but I have always considered her a very special person and a wonderful friend who truly deserves the happiness she has found with S. I am sure they will have just a beautiful day tomorrow and I'm thrilled Ari and I get to be a part of it.

Meanwhile, Little Tyke gets to spend his weekend with Nana so as not to haave had to take the 6 hour drive here (Mama misses you, though, my big little boy), and Little Pup came along with us so his grandparents here get some grandbaby love too. Second night of Chanukah with my in-laws. A nice steak, a nice glass of wine, and beautiful candles. Yup ... shaping up to be a lovely weekend. Hope the same is true for everyone else. XO

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Advent and Chanukah

It's a big week - heck, a big month - in the Daigen house. Tonight was the first night of Chanukah, which we celebrated by dancing (was that a hora, Ari?) and singing and opening gifts. Because we also celebrate Christmas, Chanukah we do a bit differently; we do a gift exchange where each person gets one gift a night; in a family of 4, this means two gifts apiece. Eventually, this will turn into a draw, where each family member draws two names out of a hat, and has their name in a hat twice, and such. This way, Chanukah still gets celebrated and acknowledged, but we don't go nuts trying to figure out which gifts are Chanukah, which are Christmas, which are from Mom and Dad, which are from Santa, etc.

Tonight was also the first night of advent. And inspired by a blogger friend of mine, Tatiana (click HERE to see her blog, the Dubious Hausfrau), I've decided to give back this Holiday season. So from now until Dec. 25 (my 'Merry Christmas' blog), I am going to totally copycat her 'Cans for Comments' gig (and while I usually find copy catting annoying, I figure doing so in the name of a good cause, and giving credit to the person who gave me the idea, is fair game ;) ).

How does it work? Well, during the time specified above, I am going to donate a can or box of food to our local foodbank for every comment I get on my blog. So - comment on this post? I'm donating a can to the foodbank. Right up to Christmas day. So a bit different from Tatiana's game, but that's OK too. So please come - post away. XO!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

A Few Personal Wishes

  1. A Happy Thanksgiving to my American relatives; I'm hoping their long weekend is full of family, friends, good health and excellent Black Friday shopping deals.
  2. We are now one week out from my 'baby sister' L-N's wedding and I'm so excited for her that she's found such a wonderful guy and found such happiness in her life. She's had a road that has been both bumpy and smooth at times, but she now has S to help her through the choppy seas, and to share her joy in the calm ones. They both deserve all the happiness in the world.
  3. Someone very dear to me has been going through a rough time for the last year. Sorry - absolutely no details here, it is not my story to share and incredibly personal - but let's just say that after they, and those around them, have gone through just about every conceivable hurt and pain that they could go through over the last 12 months, some closure has been achieved this week, and while the road ahead is not going to be an easy one, I am hopeful now that the trip might be a successful one and pray very much for that to be the case as they take steps to put their lives together again.
  4. Lastly, for my loved ones and friends, and yours, as we once again put our tree up, attend church, brave the malls, light the Menorah and generally enjoy family around the Heaney-Daigen hearth; so much this past year to be both thankful for, and to learn from; so many challenges, but oh so many rewards. As the holiday season is upon us, I wish for us, and you all, the opportunity to reflect, to relive and relish, to learn, to overcome ... and whether it is US Thanksgiving this weekend, Hannukah starting next week, or Christmas in a bit under a month ... I wish everyone a happy one this year. XO

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Congratulations William and Kate! :D

So a couple days behind the news, but I wanted to extend my humble congratulations to His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales, and his fiancee, Kate Middleton, on their engagement announced Wednesday, after 8 years as a couple. They strike me as a very intelligent, grounded, down-to-earth couple and while I have learned better about 'never saying never' as celebrity, and particularly Royal, marriages are concerned, I am optimistic these two have a great future together, and I wish them all the best. And if they don't ... hey, I've already arranged the 'battle for William' with another girlfriend of mine, loser gets his brother. ;)

Check out the very charming interview the newly-engaged royal couple conducted shortly after the engagement announcement:

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Happy birthday little man ...

So it seems just as my actual tangible schedule frees up, other intangible things come up. You know - like, Little Tyke's second birthday! lol If you're wondering where I've been since Wednesday last, that about explains it. A couple days of housecleaning to make it sparkle before the (grand)parents came to visit. My dad and stepmom were in Friday night for dinner, and back the next day, along with my mom and step-dad, brother, Ari's parents, and my cousin Allison and her new family, to celebrate LT's birthday. Monday (yesterday) was the actual day of, and we took him to a barbecue restauranta and Megamind at the movie theatre. We are officially celebrated out up in he-ah! Last night was a 3-hour oldschool WWE Monday Night Raw I have been dying to see and we didn't even have the chance to check THAT out before passing out in exhaustion. That=tired lol. But so worth it to celebrate our favourite little Toddler. Love you LT - XO!!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Saga of the Computer

Starring me - a dolt.

So ... let's flash back to about 18 months ago. My 2-and-a-bit-year-old computer (Xmas 06 gift), which had been a bit sluggish and dud-like from the beginning, had slowed down to the point of unbearability. Between myself and one of my best friends, who is a computer genius who has a like, 99.9% record of fixing any tech problem we throw at him, we manage, in fixing it, to damage it beyond repair. I find me a 1 year old Dell Vostro laptop on Kijiji. Yes. Dolt. Nonetheless, I did due dilligence, checked the computer, checked out the family selling it, and was very happy with it. Very happy indeed. Even with little hiccups - needed to replace the AC adaptor, for example - it was by FAR the best computer I'd ever owned; satisfied with it right from the top and remained so until Thursday/Friday night.

When I turned it on, and the screen didn't light up. Machine=whirring and hiccuping and clearly 'going', but no action on the monitor. Despite the best long distance help friends (and close at hand help Ari ...) could give, the ultimate decision was made; brand new computer.

So ... yeah. Doing the math that means as of yesterday I'm on my 3rd new computer in 4 years. Boo! On the plus side? This is my first very BRAND NEW computer in 4 years, and it is lovely. I managed to skip the Vista debacle entirely and am running on a lovely new Windows 7 OS. Nice, organized, AND managed to get all of my important files transferred (yes, that's the additional complication to this story; one of my main sources of income is teaching high school courses online. So me being without a computer ... or without access to my documents file = bad news).

So I guess on the positive end of things I have a GREAT new compy. Lovesit. Still ... boo on having to replace otherwise good computers. Sucksy.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Good and the Bad

The Good - Little Tyke's first trick or treating this weekend. He enjoyed it and got a nice, toddler-sized haul. His touchy mood of the last few weeks seems to have improved, and his baby brother has learned to smile. I have been working steadily between the church and teaching, while still having plenty of time to enjoy my boys. Life has been good.

The Bad - I'm sorry, American politics is upsetting. I have enjoyed some of the past week on this score - Barack Obama going on Jon Stewart's Daily Show and performing beautifully, and the latter's Rally to Restore Sanity this weekend were highlights. Apparently, however, those messages fell on deaf ears as the not so-G-OP has taken back over the House of Representatives and picked up an unfortunate number of Senate seats. Alright, progressives - stand up, brush off, and let's start trudging towards 2012 and Obama's hopeful re-election. What's the alternative, after all, Sarah Palin? "Good policy is good politics". Just keep saying that to yourselves, and know in the end it will prove true, even if this year seems an egregious betrayal of that reality.

God bless you all. Be well. XO

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

Please check out last night's Daily Show to see Barack Obama say just about everything I've wanted him to say since the GOP decided to vilify him as a socialist and the more lefty wing of the Democrats have decided it would be better to kamikaze themselves and deliver the reigns of power back to 'Them' (dun dun dun) than to give their guy some time to do his thing.

Comedy Central in the US or the Comedy Network's website in Canada will allow you to see the president's interview, and it's good stuff all around. Good job to Stewart for not shying away from the hard questions, and good job to Obama for answering them. Kudos to both men for perhaps buying the Democrats some time and votes en route to Tuesday's midterm election.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Happy Birthday Al!

Hi all - sorry it's been several days, this has been a big celebration weekend in our family, as Ari's dad turned 60. We had him, my mother-in-law, as well as Ari's aunt and uncle in town for the weekend. It was a lovely, tiring, busy, fantastic time, that we'll get to do all over again next month when Little Tyke turns 2 and Ari turns 29. Hurray for families gathering for fun, positive occasions.

BTW just as a note on politics, since yes I still follow that from time to time between teaching, pastor-ing, parenting, etc. - Toronto. All I have to say is ... HAHA! ;) No ... I joke. I honestly think one of the most immature and irresponsible people in Canadian politics was just elected mayor of Toronto. It is a sad day. Mike Harris, former Ontario premier, spoke at Rob Ford's victory rally - nuff said. At least Ottawa seems to have kept its head - in a fairly accurate reflection of the "B"-ish report card I'd give our current city council, a few incumbents were returned, some new faces were sent to the council table ... I think by and large I'm happy with the results.

Is this where we say we get the hockey team ... I mean ... government ... we deserve? ;) ((again ... honest, JOKES. As sad and depressed as this makes me, I am still a Leafs girl through and through ... the shame)).

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Back - I hope!

Not that I've REALLY been away - more that it's been a busy few weeks and I have been unable to blog as I would hope.

I've wanted to express my relief at the rescue of the Chilean miners this week who were pulled out of a collapsed mine after 68 days underground ... and my disappointment at some dismissing this as just another flash in the pan Princess Diana dies/Paris Hilton gets arrested story.

I've wanted to express how impressed I am at how people have come together in light of so many LGBT youth who have been bullied to the point of suicide/suicide attempts during this still-young school year ... and who knows how many before.

I've wanted to explain how important it is, as municipal elections come up here in Ottawa (and I think Ontario more broadly), and mid-term elections are coming up in the States, what an important civic duty voting is - especially in the United States where the only party worth their citizens' trust runs the risk of losing Congress this time around.

At the same time, I've wanted to express how that party needs to stay true to their ideals - especially the current Democratic administration, for whom I have nearly-unlimited respect in the light of healthcare reform, financial reform, etc., but in whom I am currently very disappointed as they appeal the Federal bench's repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, a policy they express disagreement with in the first place. You just got your way with no political fallout folks - come on.

I've wanted to express my sadness this week as celebrity couples (shock of shocks I know, but ones who seem to have cared about each other) Courteney Cox and David Arquette, and Christina Aguilera and Jordan Bratman, have broken up (nowhere quite near the level of the other stories of course ... but nonetheless caught my eye).

I have done all those things now - although in nowhere near as timely a fashion as I'd like, nor in as much detail as I'd have liked. That's just the kind of week it's been ... in OUR world as a whole, and mine in particular.

May God bless you as we head into a new one. XO

Monday, October 11, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving




So it's Thanksgiving weekend here in Canada! Ari and Little Tyke headed to California to celebrate his grandmother's 90th birthday, so Little J and I spent the weekend with my mom and my grandparents, before coming back to Ottawa yesterday (as a youth pastor ... oh yeah, I work Sundays!). The other boys should be home tonight. So it hasn't been a great big family celebration. But I did one to list off some things I'm thankful for:

  1. Starting close to home, the people I live with. Ari is my best possible co-parent, a wonderful help and support, and my best friend. Together we are creating two wonderful little men, LT and Little J, and for that, no matter how tired we might get, or busy, we will always have a reason to connect with one another, and I could not be more proud of the job we're doing with those boys. The boys themselves - LT's energy and smiles and eternal good mood, and Little J's sense of wonder and waking up to the world, to me, are what the Bible speaks of when it speaks of approaching the Kingdom like a little child. It is so inspiring to me. I suppose I am also thankful for my cats too, useless mousers that they are.
  2. My parents - all four of them, in their ways, are good people from whom I have learned a lot. They have all shaped me in some way, big or small, and while of course there have been disagreements and disappointments along the way (I mean, I was a teenager once after all, heehee), I can honestly say they've never let me fall, and they've always been there when it matters. I have never felt alone in any struggle, and that is because of these people. My mom's selfless and unconditional love and support, my dad's intelligence and generosity, my step-dad's no-nonsense, hard working, but good-hearted approach to life, and my step-mom's grace and good humour in the face of almost anything are all things I aspire to.
  3. My brother - this little person (yes whose diapers I used to help change lol) has grown into an incredibly mature, strong young man who has handled a tough year with more grace than I think I would have. This kid is my hero and even more than ever his protective big sister wants nothing but the very best of everything for him.
  4. My in-laws - they have raised a great kid, welcomed me into their family, and love my children. Good food and good wine flows whenever we visit, and we have grown into a relationship now that I don't know if I could have foreseen when Ari and I were just dating. For all of these things, I am eternally thankful.
  5. My friends, past and present - I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. I have had friends who have mistreated me, and who I have mistreated; I have friends who have been wonderful to me, and who I have been wonderful to. I have friends everywhere in between on that scale. But they all have meant something, and again, they have all shaped where I am now in my life. And I am appreciative of all of them.
  6. The tangible stuff - a roof over my head, three incredibly flexible yet fulfilling and enjoyable jobs, food in my belly, a car to drive, the lovely neighbourhood and city we live in, the opportunity to travel and go out a bit ... these aren't things I take for granted, and they are things I am so thankful we have.
  7. The less tangible stuff - I am thankful for my God, for the peace and happiness I feel today despite coming off a rough week, I am thankful for nature, and the world's increasing awareness of it. I am thankful for music, for the sun and rain, for all the things that make our world more than just a space rock suitable for living on, to a place we would WANT to live. :)
What's your list? XO

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Inspiring

There's an infuriating yet inspiring story I've been following on Anderson Cooper 360 of late - a long one with lots of details but this video sums it up pretty well. Feel free to poke around more if you want. But in light of the recent rash of young LGBT people committing suicide due to bullying and mistreatment, and given in this case that the mistreatment is coming from a 'respected', professional in a position of influence in the community - I applaud Anderson Cooper and the U of Michigan student body president Chris Armstrong for their class and eloquence in covering and living through this story respectively, with an eye to both this personal matter, and the bigger picture of the acceptance of the LGBT community.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 30 - A Dream for the Future

Well this is kind of like the last one but more generally and big-picture ...

I hope to stay on the path we're on now. Would there be some things I'd like to change? Yes. There are some relationships I'd like to step back from in my world right now, and others I'd like to repair. There are times of great busy-ness and stress, and times of ennui/boredom. There are times I wish we could travel more, have a nicer car, live in a bigger house, like almost everyone.

But then I remember - where a year ago we had one child, we now have two. Where three years ago we were renting an apartment, we now own our own home, with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a basement, a yard. Where a matter of months ago I had no real job, I now have three. Three very different jobs, all of which both challenge and thrill me to no end. I do have a great family, wonderful friends, and all those things in the first paragraph? We're working towards most of them, and those we aren't working towards are really small things that we can more than get by without.

We are currently living a version of, and moving steadily closer to the complete version of, the life I always wanted. A husband, a home, a job I love, healthy children, and the ability to do fun and adventurous things on a fairly regular basis. While I might ask for more of the same, or for the same to be a bit smoother and easier - I really wouldn't change a thing at its core. XO

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 29 - Hopes Dreams and Plans for the Next 365

  1. First and foremost is to maintain the positive aspects of our status quo here, which is for the most part wonderful. We have a happy, healthy little family in which I am a wife and mother, we have a lovely extended network of family and friends, and I just hope for those wonderful relationships to be maintained; everyone to be in good health, happiness, etc. I know that can't be perfectly possible all of the time, but we can try our damnedest. Especially when it comes to my two little boys, who are so happy and content and I intend to keep them that way.
  2. On a similar note, finalize Little J's adoption.
  3. Get my full driver's license (in Ontario we have graduated licensing; I have my second stage license of 3; I'm good enough at this point to go for my full license I just haven't bothered because we've been busy, and it doesn't afford me that many new privileges; but it's getting to be about time, if this license expires I need to re-test to keep it, and I've already done that once so I might as well take that test to get my full license and not worry about it again until I'm 80).
  4. Get a teaching contract that meshes well and allows me to keep my job as youth pastor at my church, as right now I'm enjoying both callings immensely.
  5. Travel next summer; we agreed after Walt Disney World that even if it's just a few days to somewhere inexpensive (local camping or whatever), we need to take the time to do at least a little something vacationy each year. We're hoping/dreaming this year for either the Jersey Shore where I used to vacation all the time as a little girl, or Prince Edward Island, where I've never been. Both incredibly kid friendly, with beautiful beaches and comfy accomodations.
  6. Do some of our more urgent home improvements - we have an ancient stove and dryer I'd like to replace, we have some paint that's chipped since we've moved in that I want retouched, our powder room sink is all rusted, etc. Our garden has also gone to weed again and I'd like to fix that.
  7. Sign up for SOMETHING as a family - whether it's art classes with Ari, swimming lessons with Little Tyke, or whatever, I want to get some more structured activities into our days which so often degenerate into 'where do the kids play today, the living room or the park out back?'. That's fine for now and no one's complaining, but I think the opportunity to meet other kids and to get out of our little zone would be good for everyone.
  8. Be consistent in my plan for weightloss, and actually, y'know, lose weight.
  9. On a related note - it is my goal by next spring to run a 5K race. I don't care how fast my time is or how long it takes me, I just want to be able to say I can run 5km.
  10. Actually complete a writing project that is longer/more involved than a blog entry. :)

30 Days of Blogging - Day 28 - What's Inside My Purse

My purse right now is ridiculous and really should be labelled 'what's inside my purseS' because I have a 'Mommy's working out of the house' today purse, and a 'Mommy's not working today' purse. My 'Mommy's working today' purse includes a bunch of church related materials, my day planner, makeup, a hairbrush and some backup 'oh crap the person I'm replacing didn't leave me enough to do' substitute teacher activities.

My 'Mommy isn't working today' purse also includes a hairbrush, diapers, toys, non-perishable snacks (think goldfish), makeup, diaper wipes, hand sanitizer, vaseline, and a bunch of random paper (receipts, junk mail) that I toss in there and haven't gone through.

My wallet and whatever book I'm reading for the day go back and forth between my purses as needed.

30 Days of Blogging - Day 27 - My Worst Habit

Eating. Without a doubt it is eating. I have a sweets and fast food weakness, and am currently overweight to a very unfortunate degree. I am beginning to work on this in various ways that I would rather keep personal at the time being, but it is easily the scourge of my life.

Other than that it's your run of the mill bad habit stuff; don't always put everything away/clean as I go; I'm a procrastinator; I can run late. But 'worst habit'? Food, by a mile.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 26 - My Week In Great Detail

I'll recount in as much detail as I have in my head ... hmmm.

Monday I don't remember at all. A bunch of housework, marking, church-related stuff, general puttering.

Tuesday I went to the library in the morning to actually do some marking (when I say I 'marked' Monday I really meant I sat at my computer with some schoolwork open while tending to babies and other stuff - I have learned this week I need to leave the house to do work). In the afternoon myself and the men went stroller shopping unsuccessfully. Had dinner out en famille, came home, watched some West Wing, went to bed.

Wednesday Little Tyke had a speech therapy appointment and I had a staff meeting at church. We successfully bought a double stroller and ran some errands in the evening before going home.

Thursday Little J and I hung out at home while Ari and LT went for a run - we went out to the movies (Despicable Me) in the afternoon, and finished up The West Wing in the evening. I also began painting (well really, colouring using paints - it's already drawn) a picture to hang in LT's new 'big boy' room.

Friday I substitute taught for the day, before coming home to spend the evening with my boys; we were going to go to the park but it was a bit damp and chilly so we played inside. Saturday was lazy and other than running a few errands and taking Little Tyke for a walk, reading a book and starting 'One Fine Day', it was pretty quiet family time.

Today is described pretty well in my last post. :)

Friday, September 24, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 24 - Where I Live

I'm not going to post a photo of my house here - just call me paranoid, I know that's probably silly - but suffice to say this: I live in a modest but comfy 3 bedroom townhouse in the South end of Ottawa. :)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 23 - A Youtube Video

I'm going to put two up as I've been on a bit of a kick again of how cool Sesame Street is! Something for everyone adults included. Video 1 is their parody of True Blood (for reals - True Mud). Video number two is Katy Perry's appearance with Elmo, which unfortunately won't make the actual show due to her outfit being too revealing for some. Sigh. Nonetheless - really cute and I've enjoyed these videos the last couple of days. :)



Wednesday, September 22, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 22 - A Website

I'm going to put a few here I use daily.

http://www.facebook.com (must I explain this one? really?)
http://www.perezhilton.com (yes, because I am a celeb gossip fiend)
http://www.prowrestling.net (ditto, re. pro wrestling)
http://www.slate.com (for me, because I'm a political junkie - not so much one? At least check out Dear Prudence, which is by far my favourite advice column ever in history)
http://www.cnn.com (straight up news, with a slap on the wrist to me for not using a Canadian news site)

30 Days of Blogging - Day 21 - A Recipe

I'm going to go with an easy and an old favourite from the Kraft kitchen - I have other/better recipes both in terms of taste, health and all kinds of things - but this is a great one for busy families on the go and my brother and I always enjoyed it as kids.

Kraft Dinner Lasagna recipe - CLICK HERE

NOTE: This recipe recommends white cheddar KD; but you can use original just as well. That's what we used 'back in the day'.

Another good, quick and easy one on the same vein - CLICK HERE for the recipe for Spaghetti Pie.

Monday, September 20, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 20 - A Hobby of Mine

Too many ...

Writing (I include blogging here)
Theatre
Movies
Solo sports (walking, swimming, skating)
Needlepoint
An unfortunate amount of TV (especially wrestling and Y&R)
An equally unfortunate amount of video gaming (Legend of Zelda, the Sims, etc.)
Travel (and I want to do more)

Is parenting a hobby? If so I'll include it here and at the top of the list. But 'hobby' just doesn't seem to do it - calling, life's work, job, any of those things seem to suit that particular role I play better. But I didn't want anyone to think I just left something so intrinsic to my being off the list. Because those two beautiful boys eclipse and overshadow anything I put up there (especially my lovely electronic time killers lol).

30 Days of Blogging - Day 19 - A Talent of Mine

This is going to be a tough one - and not being all self-deprecating saying I have no talents (I HATE that - everyone has them lol) - just that my talents are distributed a bit differently from some. I'm not one of those that people watch them dance or sing and say 'she's fabulous', or see me act and say 'give that girl an Oscar!', or read something I've written and say it should be published. But I've been told I'm good at all those things. I think the 'Jack of all trades, master of none' kind of applies, so I guess I'll say my talent is becoming good at things - I might never absolutely excel and outshine the real masters who focus on their craft and work at the same set of skills for years; but if I decide to learn something it's very rarely that I suck at it (sports and math aside lol), and I can usually hold my own with the average schmo.

So with that in mind I consider myself to be pretty good at
  • Writing
  • Theatre involvement (I'm a competent actor and director)
  • Kids (as a mom, a teacher, and youth pastor, I've learned a thing or two about little people)
  • Speaking publicly (the above helps, as does having a weekly podcast over on the wrestling blog)
  • Anything trivia - especially stuff I REALLY know (ask me anything Young and the Restless, Wrestling, Musical Theatre, most history .. I've got it).
  • Anything 'word'y - Scrabble, Scattergories, wordsearches, crosswords=aced it. :)

Saturday, September 18, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 18 - My Wedding


How ironic that this comes up the 18th of the month - Ari and I were married the 18th of June.

We had an interfaith service, presided over by my childhood minister and a Jewish cantor, at the Kitchener Wedding Chapel, followed by our reception at the New Dundee Country Club. There are lots of little things looking back I wish could have been a bit different - the planning had its moments of stress as all weddings do for sure, we probably should have had an open bar instead of a cash bar, as it was mainly our wedding party who ended up not getting the tickets 'close family and friends' were supposed to get for drinks ... - not so much a fan of my hair and makeup, and the singing during the service was lovely but complicated due to technical issues (everyone's dream for the Windows theme to chime in as they're signing the registry lol) ... but that's just it. Those things were so small. At the end of the day, what I will remember about our wedding is this:

  • Everyone who was important to us in that time and place was there. We wish we knew then some of the people we know now so they could have been there too - but the wedding was such a reflection of our life at that time, it was amazing.
  • Those stupid little things - the drink tickets, the music - they're some of the moments we remember now with the most fondness. Those silly things are what made our wedding, our wedding. So we didn't get to cut the cake ceremonially because the speeches went too long - no one noticed and we all got to chow down on chocolate. Y'know?
  • The thoughtful men in my life. Besides, you know, the one I was marrying, who simply made sure that everything but everything was in place at the chapel before we got there, my dad was at his gracious best that day, giving my mom (his ex-wife) a huge bouquet of flowers for raising his kids right, and my brother, besides giving me the 'if he hurts you I'll kill him' talk wrangled showtunes (and much-appreciated grub for the wedding party being tortured by photos).
  • The hour after our wedding when we had late night munchies at 1:30am and walked down to the corner store from our hotel for Cheetos - so quiet ... just the two of us for the first time in a week ... it was amazingly fun.
  • Shawn Michaels' theme music ("Sexy Boy") playing for the garter removal - and to this day none of us can figure out who clued the DJ in to our wrestling fan-ness.
So was it perfect? In the literal sense ... no. But were those little things, little things, some of which in fact enhanced the day? Yes. And you know what? The fact that I can only sit here and rattle those things off in hindsight, as opposed to the day of, or even the weeks or months afterward ... hey. We must have done something right. :)

30 Days of Blogging - Day 17 - A Work of Art



Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh. This has been one of my favourite paintings for a long time now, although I couldn't explain for the life of me why. I think because it just embodies everything - it is so dark yet so bright at the same time, so forboding yet also peaceful, hopeful ... almost all of humanity. I'm stretching a point here in my art analysis I know - don't think for a second that all this is going through my head consciously when I look at this painting, only now when I look at it. It just appeals to me, and these seem as good and art-critick-y reasons to give as any. :) BTW, any conspiracy/history buffs will also understand why the following painting appeals to me:



Conspiracy, religion, history, very early feminism (!?) all in one seemingly straightforward, uncontroversial, even reverant work of art. Don't get it? Read the da Vinci Code. :) XO

Thursday, September 16, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 16 - A Song that Makes me Cry

Funny I was just talking this up on Facebook a few days ago how I'm such a sap for songs. A few examples ...

  • Cat's in the Cradle (don't know who sings this one but it's a really powerful folk song)
  • Just a Dream by Carrie Underwood (OMG especially if I'm watching the video too ... TEARS!)
  • Butterfly Kisses by Bob Carlisle
  • Christmas Shoes by NewSong

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 15 - My Dream Home

To show you how not picky I am, my dream home is basically the one I want to settle down in. It's just a bit out of our reach right now, but I'm one regular teaching job away from it, and it's not that different from where we live now. I would want ...

  • 4 bedrooms instead of the 3 we have (one for Ari and I, one for each of the kids, and a guest room).
  • Free standing as opposed to townhouse (more conducive to space in the back yard - with a gazebo up we have no room for wading pools, swing sets, anything like that; and just more privacy overall, not right on top of the neighbours if they're having a smoke, or what have you).
  • Central air as opposed to one measly window AC in our bedroom (barring this being an option only for the filthy rich in Ottawa, this has become non-negotiable after the last 3 summers without it).
  • A swimming pool in the backyard (although I suspect Ari and I might do some head-butting over that one).
  • Zero, or at least only a few minor, renos/updating to be done (this house had a lot of little things updated, but a lot of other things that needed fixing and changing that we don't have the time and/or money for at this point).
  • Overhead lighting in bedrooms and living room - our house is so old-fashioned it has none of that! One of the first things we intend to change though ...
Although mind you - if we're talking 'just won the lottery and are set for life' dream house ... I hear Walt Disney World is developing a whole bunch of McMansions on-site ... hmmm ... :D

30 Days of Blogging - Day 14 - A Non-Fiction Book

I've been on a real kick of religious/Christian non-fiction, so I'm going to throw a few books out there that I've really enjoyed along my journey this past year or two.

  1. David Plotz's 'Good Book' - basically a transcript of his year-long 'Blogging the Bible' project on slate.com. This is probably the first non-fiction religious book (besides, well, you know ...) that I'd read in awhile and while it's nothing on sitting down with the book itself, it's an incredibly good crash course and an excellent resource if you are unsure of a passage or how to interpret it. My only complaint is he sticks with the Old Testament - claiming that, being Jewish, he doesn't feel qualified to pick apart the New Testament. I hope he changes his mind soon, since frankly, I'd love to read the sequel. :)
  2. A.J. Jacob's 'The Year of Living Biblically' - a look at how silly biblical literalists are; for those who think the Bible is the unerring, must-be-followed-word-for-word, not even once edited by human hands Word of God, this is an excellent book examining how even literalists cherry pick the parts of the Bible they want to follow. It's not quite as good as Good Book, and A.J. can be a bit heavy-handed and pompous at times, but it's refreshing that he acknowledges his shortcomings and still writes an interesting and important book.
  3. Ralph Milton's "This United Church of Ours" - A really easy-to-read, straightforward introduction to the United Church of Canada, the denomination I have attended since my youth. There's a lot about the UCC in here that I knew, some I didn't even as a lifelong member, and it's just a great way to sort of get back in touch with religion as a pragmatic, real-world thing. It deals with issues facing church and parishioners today in a very realistic way that I can appreciate. My only recommendation is be sure and get the most current edition (3rd I think) as it is the most up to date; a lot has changed in the UCC since 1993, when the 2nd edition was written.
  4. Marcus Borg et al's "The Emerging Christian Way" - see my blog post of the same title for a description.
I also recommend Karen Armstrong and Bart D. Ehrman - excellent writers with a more academic/scholarly approach (footnotes beware!). Lots of great material for those wanting to really sink their teeth into faith, and develop an understanding of just what it is they worship, how and why. Not one of these books will answer that question for you - but they will help you develop an understanding of those answers yourself.

Monday, September 13, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 13 - A Fictional Book

Well - I'm going to cheat here, since it doesn't specify 'favourites', and I'd be practically writing you a novel myself if I tried to use that parameter, I'll name the novel I'm currently reading: The Host by Stephenie Meyer (who brought us the Twilight series). It's about a group of aliens ('souls') who have taken over human bodies - all except Melanie's, her brother's, and her boyfriend Jared's. The book starts with Melanie being 'replaced' by the soul named Wanderer - or is she? As Melanie refuses to give up her body and she and Wanderer begin sharing thoughts, they both end up working against time to save Jared from possession. (and no this isn't a spoiler - this can all be gleaned off of the back of the book, and through the first 4-5 chapters or so of the novel. I'm only about 6 chapters in at this point so still too early for me to say if I'm really deeply enjoying it (I'm not devouring it as quickly and insatiably, if you'll forgive the awful puns, as I was the Twilight saga though ...), but it's what I'm reading now.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 12 - Things I am OCD About

I have to admit I am generally speaking the opposite of OCD as understood by pop culture - I mean, to a fault. Not that I am filthy and a slob or anything like that - I keep a generally neat and clean home, I wash my hands when I eat or use the washroom, shower every other day, stuff like that. But short of the odd moment where something catches my eye and I know better and it bugs me until it's fixed, I don't really care if my bed's not made perfectly, or the boys' toys haven't been put away 'just so', or if the shower I was supposed to have Sunday night ends up being had Monday morning, or I change the bed sheets after 2 weeks instead of 1.

However - OCD=obsessive compulsive disorder. And if we're going to talk obsessions and compulsions, I would be remiss not to mention my relationship with food. Without getting into too many personal and private details, I am actively working on changing this aspect of my life. But in sum - how others might use alcohol, or drugs, I rely on food. And I'm not talking a few too many berries one day or having a white potato instead of a sweet potato (horrors!). So yeah ... that's the journey I'm fighting. For some it's obsessive handwashing, or rituals that, for example, bedtime routines need to be followed just so before someone can sleep. For me, it's all about food.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The Emerging Christian Way

OK so I added a new book to my list again this summer after having heard much about it at my church (where I am by the way the new Minister of Youth, Children and Families; yay!). It is called The Emerging Christian Way and it is a collection of essays from very prominent progressive theologians, Marcus Borg, Matthew Fox, Bruce Sanguin, et al.

1. Dead and Gone - Charlaine Harris
2. The Time Traveller's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
3. Reading Lolita in Tehran - Azar Nafisi
4. The Year of Living Biblically - A.J. Jacobs
5. A History of God - Karen Armstrong
6. Dreams from My Father - Barack Obama
7. Beloved - Toni Morrison
8. 'Tis - Frank McCourt
9. The Host - Stephenie Meyers
10. The Constant Princess - Phillipa Gregory
11. Wicked - Gregory Maguire
12. The Six Wives of Henry the 8th - Alison Weir
13. Eleanor of Aquitaine - Alison Weir
14. Tuesdays with Morrie - Mitch Albom
15. The Fellowship of the Ring - J.R.R. Tolkien
16. The Two Towers - J.R.R. TOlkien
17. The Return of the King - J.R.R. Tolkien
18. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - J.K. Rowling
19. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire - J.K. Rowling
20. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix - J.K. Rowling
21. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - J.K. Rowling
22. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - J.K. Rowling
23. Dracula - Bram Stoker
24. Paradise Lost - John Milton
25. The Inferno - Dante
26. Towelhead - Alicia Erian
27. Sex, Lies, and Headlocks - Shaun Assael and Mike Mooneyham
28. The Way the Crow Flies - Ann-Marie MacDonald
29. The Robber Bride - Margaret Atwood
30. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
31. This United Church of Ours - Ralph Milton
32. Anansi Boys - Neil Gaiman
33. American Gods - Neil Gaiman
34. Stardust - Neil Gaiman
35. Tess of the d'Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
36. Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
37. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
38. Little Women - Louisa May Alcott
39. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
40. The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
41. Deception Point - Dan Brown
42. Digital Fortress - Dan Brown
43. The Lost Symbol - Dan Brown
44. Lolita - Vladimir Nobokov
45. Atonement - Ian McEwan
46. All the King's Men - Robert Penn Warren
47. Under the Dome - Stephen King
48. Catch-22 - Joseph Heller
49. The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger
50. Uncle Tom's Cabin - Harriet Beecher Stowe
51. A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess
52. Scarlett - Alexandra Ripley
53. White Noise - Don De Litto
54. Their Eyes were Watching God - Zora Neale Hurston
55. Primary Colours - Anonymous
56. Revolutionary Road - Richard Yates
57. Ragtime - E.L. Doctorow
58. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie - Muriel Spark
59. Misquoting Jesus - Bart Ehrman
60. Fast Food Nation - Eric Schlasser
61. My Years as Prime Minister - Jean Chretien
62. Memoirs - Pierre Trudeau
63. Shake Hands with the Devil - Romeo d'Allaire
64. Team of Rivals - Doris Kearns Goodwin
65. The Secret Mulroney Tapes - Peter C. Newman
66. Why I Hate Canadians - Will Ferguson
67. Planet Simpson - Chris Turner
68. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
69. The Restaurant at the End of the Universe - Douglas Adams
70. Life, the Universe and Everything - Douglas Adams
71. So Long and Thanks for All the Fish - Douglas Adams
72. Mostly Harmless - Douglas Adams
73. Fifth Business - Robertson Davies
74. The Manticore - Robertson Davies
75. World of Wonders - Robertson Davies
76. The Donnellys - James Reaney
77. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
78. Atlas Shrugged - Ayn Rand
79. Farenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury
80. Not Wanted on the Voyage - Timothy Findlay
81. A Tale of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
82. Coraline - Neil Gaiman
83. The Crucible - Arthur Miller
84. Mirror Mirror - Gregory Maguire
85. The Emerging Christian Way - Marcus Borg et al
86. Sorbonne Confidential - Laurel Zuckerman
87. What Happened to Anna K - Irina Reyn
88. The Silver Linings Playbook - Matthew Quick
89. Hey Nostradamus! - Douglas Coupland
90. Girlfriend in a Coma - Douglas Coupland
91. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
92. The 5 People You Meet in Heaven - Mitch Albom
93. The Poisonwood Bible - Barbara Kingsolver
94. Interview with the Vampire - Ann Rice
95. The Diary of a Young Girl - Anne Frank
96. The Bonfire of the Vanities - Tom Wolfe
97. Guys and Dolls - Damon Runyon
98. Good Book - David Plotz
99. He's Just Not that Into You - Greg Behrendt, Liz Tuccillo, Lauren Monchik
100. The Ultimate Weight Solution - Dr. Phil McGraw
101. Real Life: Preparing for the 7 Most Challenging Days of Your Life - Dr. Phil McGraw

I enjoyed this book, although it is not always a light read, and I have to say it can be a complicated process to explain, teach and rethink a 2000 year old religion into something that is current, relevant, and interesting to a 21st century audience. Because unfortunately on the surface, religion has become an all or nothing proposition these days; the concept of the open-minded, moderate-to-progressive but faithful tends to get drowned out in the din of fundamentalism, evangelism etc. on one hand and sheer disbelief and atheism on the other, due to religion's perceived irrelevance and even evil nature, particularly as practiced by the former group.

As such, not everything in this book is going to work for everyone; like the Bible, it is a collection of modern-day religious thinkers wrapping their head aroud God, Christ, and how best to share that message within (and outside of) today's church. You won't agree with all, an you may not understand some - but it's worth wrapping your head around if you have ever attended church and though - 'I accept this, but not that, and this other thing really leaves me cold, and as soon as I introduce those doubts though how can I worship God if He and/or my understanding of Him is so flawed?'. Some ideas here will work for you, some won't, but the thought process is definitely worth entering, as to me, this collection of insights and this dialogue is really the only way compassionate religion is going to succeed in the face of its hijacking in some quarters.

Remembering ...

I mentioned a few blogs back that the 9/11 image made me sad/angry. 9 years later, how this day has been stolen and used to propagate hatred still makes me sad and angry. But ...

I also love how in response to a pastor wanting to use today as a day to escalate Christian-Muslim tensions by burning the Quran, the world (most of us) banded together to express our disgust ... but to do so peacefully, encouraging reading of both Holy Scriptures, of prayer, of communication. (And to those who responded by protesting holding placards demanding 'Death to Christians' ... you are what you hate ... much as Terry Jones is).

I love how on this one day, so many (though not all) can let go of politics, as Democratic First Lady Michelle Obama can stand next to Republican First Lady Laura Bush in remembrance and honouring of those who died on flight 93 in a field in Pennsylvania.

It is said major life and world events bring out the best in us. And I believe this; I see it most clearly surrounding this event. May we never forget both the evil, and the healing that 9/11 and its ensuing years have brought, however. Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it - this is one generation that never will ... or will at least strive not to. And those of us who succeed, I pledge, will continue to help those that do remember that hate cannot be met with hate, but must be conquered with love. People who are true to God - whatever we may call Him/Her - understand that innately, and wholeheartedly.

Eid Mubarak; Shana Tova. Happy New Year both in Muslim and Hebrew, as for the first time in decades both faiths are celebrating their high holidays at the same time - may that mean something to all of us moving forward. XO

30 Days of Blogging - Day 11 - A Photo of Me Recently




Yeah. This is me today. This is called Sarah with an eye infection. Pretty sight? Yeah ... not so much. lol Recent though. ;)

Friday, September 10, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 10 - A Photo of Me Over 10 Years ago

I'm going to put 2 up here because I couldn't choose ...


#1 - my favourite picture of my brother and I ... we're both a little older (and a teensy weensy bit) wiser now, but I still luvs him a really lot.


The picture I call 'all in the Jeans' ... erm, genes. ;) It's moi, my mom and my grandma. Notice I'm the only one who looks like she has any kind of energy? Yeah ... lol.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 9 - A Photo I Took



Well I'm hesitant to put up photos of baby #2 yet as he's still a part of an adoption process; but I thought I would take this opportunity to finally get up the nerve and post a photo of my first precious little boy, Little Tyke, at Disney World this year. This photo always strikes my funny bone. I enjoy it. I enjoy it a lot. I like how he totally changes the dynamic of the picture; we go from Walt Disney and Minnie Mouse looking at one another, to both of them looking at LT. Kinda neat, if I do say so myself.

30 Days of Blogging - Day 8 - A Photo that Makes me Angry/Sad



I probably don't even need to explain this one - September 11, 2001. From all kinds of evil, came all kinds of evil. Sad and/or angry do not do justice to how I felt that day - to how most of the world felt that day. It was saddening and angry then, and even moreso now knowing it has led to two wars, increased terror, and thousands dead. So needless ... so destructive ...

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 7 - A Photo that Makes Me Happy

Please note that the photo I want to put up here is one of my two boys - but given that one is in the process of being adopted, I think I want to stay away from anything much identifying. So instead ... here's one that always makes me happy:


This is me, making the same face I see my son make every now and then, referred to as 'happy rat face'. But this is me to this day - when you make a mess and get into scrapes, you might as well flippin' enjoy it and laugh! There's too much in life to take seriously ... no use crying over spilled milk. Or flour, as the case may be. Not to mention? Me=clumsy still to this day. I can make messes faster than Ari can clean up after me ... har har.

Monday, September 6, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 6 - 20 of my Favourite Things

  1. Favourite ice cream flavour: Candy cane chocolate crackle by President's Choice
  2. Favourite vacation spot: Walt Disney World
  3. Favourite season: the Holiday Season (although if Winter could end after January 1 I'd be much obliged)
  4. Favourite wrestler: Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart (tie)
  5. Favourite singer (female): Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, Pink
  6. Favourite singer (male): Billy Joel, Eminem
  7. Favourite band: Bon Jovi, Dixie Chicks
  8. Favourite restaurant (fast food): Arby's
  9. Favourite restaurant: Mongolian Grill
  10. Favourite room in the house: right now, bedroom - it's air conditioned! :)
  11. Favourite time of day: anywhere between 7-9am; my whole little family's in bed then, the boys are having their formula/milk, no one's in a rush, it's just nice.
  12. Favourite night of the week: Tie - Mondays for wrestling, Fridays because it's the start of the weekend.
  13. Favourite music video: I'm with the VMA academy AND Kanye West on this one; Single Ladies AND You Belong With Me were awesome videos.
  14. Favourite reality show: almost any talent competition - American Idol, Dancing with the Stars. If those don't count ... I'm big (or was big) on What Not to Wear - is that show even on anymore?
  15. Favourite wine: If I'm feeling cheap - Jackson Triggs shiraz. If I'm feeling a bit wealthier - Wolf Blass Yellow Label.
  16. Favourite flower: Roses. OK perhaps a bit cliche but yeah. :)
  17. Favourite gem: Emerald - my birthstone! :) Diamonds are nice too.
  18. Favourite car: For sheer look and flash - Corvette. What kind of car would I want for my family though? Either a VW Jetta, or a Mazda 6.
  19. Favourite soda: Cherry Coke
  20. Favourite superhero: Superman! :)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 4 - My Favourite Book

The only reason this one is easier than the previous 3 'favourites' is that I'm not even going to pretend to have a favourite. I am far too avid a reader. I can describe my reading habits, such as they are, however:

  1. 1. I like series'. I'm greedy; when I really enjoy a story I feel incredibly sad and deflated when it's over. So I enjoy stories like the Twilight saga, the Sookie Stackhouse series, the Anne of Green Gables series, which allow the 'story' to continue.
  2. I like non-fiction; particularly political and historical non-fiction or non-fiction about religion. I have loved reading "The Emerging Christian Way" by Marcus Borg et al, "This United Church of Ours", Karen Armstrong's "History of God", and almost anything by Bart Ehrman. On the political side - "Bastards and Boneheads", a history of Canadian public figures by Will Ferguson; "Too Close to Call", an account of the 2000 Presidential election shenanigans in Florida by Jeffrey Toobin, and both Bill and Hilary Clinton's autobiographies. I have also enjoyed Barack Obama's two books.
  3. I enjoy biography. This can extend to almost anyone interesting - I've read several books about Princess Diana, as well as biographies of Eleanor of Aquitaine, the 6 wives of Henry VIII, and the autobiographies listed above.
  4. I DEVOUR wrestling books. Some recommendations: The Pain and the Passion: A History of Stampede Wrestling by Heath McCoy; Ring of Hell by Michael Randazzo IV; Sex, Lies and Headlocks by Mike Mooneyham; World Wrestling Insanity and Shoot First: Ask Questions Later by James Guttman. In terms of autobiographies, ghostwritten or otherwise; check out Hitman: My Real Life in the Cartoon World of Pro Wrestling by Bret Hart; A Lion's Tale by Chris Jericho, Adam Copeland on Edge by, well, Adam "Edge" Copeland, and almost anything by Mick Foley (though I'd recommend his two earlier books or his works of fiction over the self-serving Hardcore Diaries). Hulk Hogan's second autobiography, while a bit of a tall tale, was still a good read, as was Shawn Michaels' autobiography.

Friday, September 3, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 3 - My Favourite Television Program

This one's a bit easier than the last two, although not by much! I'm going to NOT include professional wrestling or Young and the Restless in this one, as those are not so much favourite shows as part of 'my routine'. Not to say I don't enjoy them, but it would feel to me like saying blogging is a favourite hobby of mine - I suppose technically true, but it's just sort of something that comes naturally and I do.

I'm also not going to include 'past favourite shows' that I might still enjoy - this would include Beverly Hills 90210, and Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. Heck, or Jem and the Holograms for that matter lol. While I still find those shows fun and quality, I freely admit a certain amount of the joy I get from them at this point is nostalgia. Which leaves one program I have been royally enjoying of late, and can't believe I didn't find it while it was on the air (well ... yes, I do ... its heyday was while I was at university, sans cable). Please check out, The West Wing. It's one of those shows that has something for everyone, even if you aren't completely into political wonk stuff. It explores the characters involved, and even for those not into politics, it shows you that almost everything IS political. Hate listening to campaign speeches but feel passionately about gay marriage rights? Distrust politicians but draw a hard line on right-to-life/right-to-choice issues? You will still find yourself able to enjoy this show.

If nothing else - in Martin Sheen, Alison Janney, John Spencer, Richard Schiff, Bradley Whitlaw, Rob Lowe, Marlee Matlin, Jimmy Smits, Kristen Chenowith et al, it has a fantastic cast, not all of whom are too painful to look at, and who have taken home a lot of Emmy hardware between them. And the series' creater and writer, Aaron Sorkin? Well - everything this man touches turns to gold. :) Can't say enough. Check out this sampling:

Thursday, September 2, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 2 - My Favourite Movie

This is about as difficult as asking me for my favourite song! lol I'm a sucker for movie musicals, honestly - so my list would consist of a whole lot of Moulin Rouge, Rent, Hairspray, Jesus Christ Superstar, Phantom of the Opera ... all would have a valid claim on my 'favourite movie' title. Quality romantic comedies as well - the American President, for example - or trilogies that do a fantastic job of telling an overarching tale; Back to the Future, Star Wars ...

But one stands out above all, even to this day - one I've watched I don't even know how many times and probably have memorized perfectly. The Anne of Green Gables trilogy by Kevin Sullivan (I understand the 4th got mixed reviews; I haven't seen it, though perhaps I will someday - meanwhile, I consider the Anne movies a trilogy). I acknowledge that the films got further and further away from the story, and the last movie of the trilogy as well as the prequel threw the Green Gables canon out the window. But I still enjoyed the first three, and will probably screw my courage up to see the fourth someday. Either way, this mistakenly-adopted orphan girl, Anne Shirley, will always have an incredibly special place in my heart.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

30 Days of Blogging - Day 1 - My Favourite Song

So this is a tough one because my 'favourite song' can change day to day, hour to hour, depending on my mood. For a long time, my favourite song was 'Unsent' by Alanis Morisette, because every single verse in that song spoke to a crush and/or boyfriend I'd had. I was also a fan of 'Always' by Bon Jovi for a good 10 years (still love it, and would put it on my 'top 5'). And over the last two years, a few songs that I really enjoyed have come out; I am a massive Katy Perry fan, and enjoyed 'Hot and Cold' a tremendous amount; Taylor Swift's 'You Belong With Me' was also fantastic.

But I'm honestly going to say the most recent songs that has just resonated right through to my soul are two Christian hymns that I'd like to share. Enjoy them:



Monday, August 30, 2010

30 Days of Blogging

Hi guys - quick note to say we're home again home again with our two wonderful, healthy, perfect little boys. I'll try to post as time goes by how things are going - but in case the next few weeks (months? years?) get busy and/or uncreative, lol, I wanted to introduce you to a blog game I'm going to be starting as of September 1st (as will my friend Alex over at My Life, My Glory - click here to check it out). Basically, it's a 30 days of blog posts experiment. Here is the topic list, that you will see up as of Sept. 1:

Day 1 - your favorite song

Day 2 - your favorite movie

Day 3 - your favorite television program

Day 4 - your favorite book

Day 5 - your favorite quote

Day 6 - 20 of my favorite things

Day 7 - a photo that makes you happy

Day 8 - a photo that makes you angry/sad

Day 9 - a photo you took

Day 10 - a photo taken over 10 years ago of you

Day 11 - a photo of you recently

Day 12 - something you are OCD about

Day 13 - a fictional book

Day 14 - a non-fictional book

Day 15 - your dream house

Day 16 - a song that makes you cry (or nearly)

Day 17 - an art piece (drawing, sculpture, painting, etc)

Day 18 - my wedding/future wedding/past wedding

Day 19 - a talent of yours

Day 20 - a hobby of yours

Day 21 - a recipe

Day 22 - a website

Day 23 - a youtube video

Day 24 - where I live

Day 25 - your day, in great detail

Day 26 - your week, in great detail

Day 27 - my worst habit

Day 28 - whats in my handbag/purse

Day 29 - hopes,dreams and plans for the next 365 days

Day 30 - a dream for the future

I will throw in updates about the boys, thoughts on pop culture or politics, all that stuff, as I see fit as well; but this will make for a fun theme through my blog the next month. Be sure to check it out - and again, check out Alex's too at the link above (and at the side). Fun fun! :)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Announcement

So we can now share a bit.

We are parents again.

LT's birth mother had another little boy.

We'll call him Little J.

Coming home this weekend.

XO - Sar

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Holy wow Batman ...

I can't say much right now
But this week has been utterly amazing
A new job, amongst other life-changing news
Some big transitions for our family
Which I'll be better able to share in time
But please - for now -
Please pray for us, our family,
As we've come upon those forks in the road of life
That you never see coming
But is so exciting when you do

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Blocked

As in writer's block.

Lots going on here, been super-busy, but all that work-a-day stuff that's not so much worth posting so much. Anyone want to hear what Little Tyke had for breakfast this morning? Or how many assignments I marked this afternoon? Or how much laundry Ari did yesterday? Yeah ...

But we're well, we're happy; LT's talking is coming along, which was a concern for awhile; I'm getting some nibbles for work for the upcoming school year; my mom is only about 2 months away from moving from 6 hours away, to about 45 mins. away. Life has a funny way of working itself out the way it should be, and we're either there or getting there on most fronts. Hope you all are enjoying the end of summer, and the rain from earlier this week didn't get y'all down too badly. :)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Congratulations, California

This week has been a proud one for California - barely 7 days after a federal judge ruled Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage, unconstitutional, today the stay on same-sex marriages has been lifted and homosexual couples will be allowed to get married as of August 18 (Wednesday of next week).

I have truly been blessed in having been able to marry the person I love - it's a right I have to admit to having taken for granted. But I am a Christian; he is Jewish. Perhaps not much more than a century or two ago, our marriage would have been looked down upon. As it was, it wasn't a 100% smooth road melding our two traditions and having people join us on this ride - although it has turned out to be one of the funkiest and most interesting journeys I've ever embarked on. I can't imagine looking someone I love in the eye, being with them, and knowing full well we will never be able to have quite the same experiences and acceptance as others, and that could be legally recognized and acceptable. This is a huge step in the US, and for that I applaud everyone involved in that legal process.

My message is simple; if you are against gay marriage, don't participate in one! :) Honestly, what is your worry? That they are hell-bound? Well, I personally doubt it but let's say you're right; that's kinda their problem isn't it? I still have a hard time believing God would punish His people for simply following his command to love one another though. And if it's about the sanctity of marriage and all that, well hey! As David Frum pointed out on CNN.com earlier this week, Bristol Palin, Britney Spears, and Jennifer Lopez have already taken care of that one folks. :)

Congratulations to the California GLBT community; may the rest of the US follow suit in due course. And hey, to my own country of Canada - congratulations on being 5 years ahead of the curve on this one! :) The time has come.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Getting to Know Me



1. Do you think mustaches are sexy?
When accompanied by a goatee. If accompanied by full beard, or no beard at all, no way.

2. What's the last concert you've been to?
Free open air concert on Parliament Hill featuring the Barenaked Ladies and many other Canadian artists for Canada Day.

3 What was your favorite 80's sitcom?
For lack of a better one off the top of my head, the Golden Girls. lol I think the ones I watched in my own right - Full House, etc. - were 1990s.

4. Were you named after anyone?
A Fleetwood Mac song for my first name, my mother/grandmother/great-grandmother for my middle name (Jean)

5. When you buy new clothes, do you wash before wearing?
For the baby. I don't usually bother for myself.

6. If you didn't blog, what would you do with your spare time?
Read and write; get involved in theatre; spend even more time mom-ing, housekeeping, etc.; video games, movies, various stuff.

7. What is your favorite department store?
Zellers if I'm going on the cheap; if I have some money to splurge, Sears or the Bay.

8. If you were to get Laser Hair Removal..where would you get it?
My legs - I am SO inconsistent about shaving them lol.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Getting To Know Me Survey

Hey all - not playing this officially this week (two dates too late!) but the questions were good ones and I wanted to throw up some answers.

1. If you were to win an award today, what would it be for?
Hmm ... best procrastinator. lol Yup. That one.

2. What is your shoe style?
Comfy and practical. This tends to mean black flats of any sort when working, sneakers or said black flats when casual any season, and a wide variety of flip flops/sandals in the summer.

3 Does your car reflect your personality?
Uh ...? My car's a car. It came in a pretty red and the right price range. I put a key in it. It turns on reliably and gets me from point A to point B. Does that reflect my personality? lol I guess so. Haven't thought much about this one.

4. If you could take over someones body for a day..whose would you choose?
Someone super skinny so I could eat all I wanted and have that actually be healthy! lol Jokes ... my body does not often (ever) impress me and needs a lot of work, but it does its job and I'm fairly happy being me at this point.

5. Love or be loved?
I would LIKE to be so selfish as to accept more love than I give. Unfortunately, that isn't often the case. I think I've found more balance of late though - I do what I feel I can for other people, and I accept what they feel they can give to me, and I've stopped 'keeping score' of who's called who more often, who's treated who to what the most, who's always late, who's punctual, who owes who what ... those things can keep you up nights. I've stopped chasing people who don't want to be chased, and I've stopped engaging with people I don't want to engage with - things I've never been able to do before. I live my life, and I enjoy and trust who I enjoy and trust - if that happens to overlap with their lives and feelings, awesome. And you know what? I have lost exactly 0 friends since I stopped counting slights and playing the 'who loves who more' game.

6. If you were on death row, what last meal would you choose?
Hmmm it's a tossup between a couple of Arby's roast beef burgers or a plate or two full of Mongolian Grill stir fry. I know either however would be accompanied by a nice bottle of wine if that's allowed - or a cherry coke if it isn't. lol NOT diet for once. ;) And sour kids.

7. Have you been on vacation this Summer, if so where?
We got to go to Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida this past June, and we just got back from a long weekend 'home' in Kitchener. Otherwise no ... a few 'tourist in our own town' things (Ottawa's great for that), but overall working.

8. What is your favorite food related guilty pleasure?
Fast food. It's awful. But I loves it.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Civic Holiday

Hi guys,

Sorry I wasn't in touch over the weekend but I'm back! (cue horror music)

It was a long weekend here in Ontario and we took the chance to fly home (thanks Mom and Dad Daigen!) on the smallest plane I have EVER seen, to see family and friends. LT was a great traveller both ways (for the most part), and it was great to see my in-laws, especially as Ari's grandma Roz was in town (such a phenomenal lady, almost 90 years old and flew in from California for a visit!), my dad and step-mom, and my mom and step-dad - who we didn't get to visit at their house, but who were invited out to a couple of the weekend's festivities. Perhaps best of all - Little Tyke's Uncle Kyle got to see him for the first time since Christmas! :) It was lovely times had by all.

I got to see my best friend Shari, as well as a host of other folks, some of whom we haven't seen in a long time. If I saw you this weekend - please know I was glad to, and I hope we can do it again sometime. If I didn't - I'm sorry I missed you and hey! Let's make it up soon. But either way - karaoke, spraygrounds, or even just goofing around in a myriad of homes and backyards were fantastic.

And one last major thank you - we had some house-sitters this weekend who not only took fantastic care of our house, our cats, etc. but they also left us a wonderful 'thank you for putting us up gift' which was so unnecessary. Steph and Gord I want to take the time to publically thank you for your amazing generosity. Hope we can return the favour for you someday! Xs and Os all around.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Getting To Know You



1. If you see a guy with his fly down, do you tell him?
Depends on how close I am to the guy ... not some random stranger no.

2. Spanx or no Spanx?
I haven't tried Spanx or Spanx-type stuff; maybe it would be awesome but I'm going to recuse myself from this question until I've tried it. I'm all for anything that would make me less lumpy though lol.

3. Do you sleep in your sheets?
Until hubby kicks them off and gets mad at me for wanting to put them back because he gets all tangled in them, yes. lol Whiney hubby.

4. What is your favorite Disney character?
Oh wow ... I'm going to go for two here. In terms of sort of the classic mascot-type characters, Mickey all the way. :) He's just cute and fun and I got the best picture ever of my son with him last month! :) In terms of characters in the movie though, Belle. I like to think I'm a bit like her.

5. Dream vacation spot?
Right now because it's so fresh in my mind I'd love to go back to Walt Disney World. But I enjoyed my trips before that to Scotland and Mexico too though, so ... enh? In terms of places I haven't been, so many we want to go to. Israel, Cuba, almost any country in Europe, even Prince Edward Island right here in Canada ... my dream vacation spot right now would be somewhere we could just go and have a great time and either Little Tyke would enjoy it too, or else we'd know he was having a great time with one set or another of his grandparents. :)

6. What is your dream job?
Dream job like pie in the sky dreaming, I'd love to be a Broadway musical performer, or a professional writer. In terms of attainable, I'm still pretty sure it would be something in teaching; I'm just not sure teaching what. I enjoy teaching high school, but when I do I find myself missing my fifth and sixth graders. But wherever I land in my profession, I'm at least still sure I'm in the right ball park, and after 5 years of temporary contracts, private school work and subbing, that says something. :)

7. Who is your hero and why?
My mom. To this day, she is the only person I have ever met, who I can't think of one person who dislikes her. She is patient, selfless, generous, fun, sure of herself and the decisions she's made in life without being arrogant or unable to admit mistakes ... everything I work as hard as I can to be, and yet I don't think I will ever be able to do it quite like her.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

They're coming!!! :)

Anyone who has been watching TNA wrestling of late knows to what I refer lol ... but it is not the Hardcore Legends I'm referring to, but my mom and my grandma! :) Hurray for visits from favourite-type peoples this weekend! :) This means a busy week - between my two jobs I'm putting in roughly 12-hour days, plus getting the house, y'know, 'Mom-clean' (come on, guys, each and every one of you with parental figures knows of what I speak) - but it will be so worth it to toast a lovely meal with my ladies when they get here.

Oh yeah - and they'll enjoy visiting Little Tyke too, just a little. :)

What's everyone else's plans for the weekend?

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Geting to Know You



1. If you had to choose a country to live in besides USA (or the country you live in), which would it be?
Hmm ... I don't think I'd change living in Canada, though I could see changing *where* in Canada I live at some point ... move out to BC for the lovely weather, or PEI for the lovely beaches. But for now Ottawa is a lovely city with things to do and see, and we live in a decent part of town and are happy to be raising our son here. Also, my mom is going to be nearby soon! So we're pretty happy and settled. Now ... if I were to win the lottery tomorrow ... I would totally move to the $1m on-site condos at Walt Disney World ... *pines*

2. Which would be worse, wearing flip flops in the snow or wearing gloves in the summer?
Right now I'm kind of prejudiced and going to say gloves in the summer because I've been hating being hot. But I know flip flops in the snow overall are worse.

3. Fried or Bake and why?
Depends on what is being fried or baked.

4. If you were an entertainment reporter, which celeb would you love to interview and why?
I'd enjoy interviewing just about anyone formerly on the West Wing of late ... totally enjoying that show lol. If it has to be an entertainment celeb anyway ... I'd be all about wanting to sit down with Barack Obama if I could.

5. What was your favorite book as a preteen/teenager?
Hmmm ... Anne of Green Gables series was pretty sweet; I also enjoyed the Bridget Jones books.

6. List your top 3 guilty pleasure television shows.
1. True Blood 2. Intervention 3. Dr. Phil.

7. What bumper sticker slogan best describes you/your attitude/your life?
Unless you're a hemeroid (sp?) get off my butt.

8. If you were to join a circus - what performer would you be?
A clown. Totally. lol

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

My thoughts on Quebec's new policy to publicly fund IVF treatment

I'm torn on this one. As an infertile woman, I completely understand the desire to have children; and I do appreciate the arguments that this will help regulate the fertility 'industry' for lack of a better term, and make it more subject to oversight. At the same time, as an adoptive mom, when I think of all the children in the world who need homes... and I think of all the other family issues these billions of dollars can go to - universal daycare, improvement of family&children's services/children's aid, etc. ...

I can't help but think we women sometimes put the sentimentality in the wrong place. It's about becoming parents, not becoming pregnant. I love my son as if he were 'my own', and honestly, I don't particularly see, for example, when there are children available for adoption and singles and couples so eager to be parents, why, for example, the province of Quebec needs to fund Celine Dion's umpty-umpth IVF treatment when she could adopt and provide a needy child a lovely home.

I suppose, though, there are always going to be people who put a premium on biology that I just don't comprehend - and as long as that's going to happen, I will be cautiously supportive of this as long as it actually DOES lead to better regulation and oversight.