When I was a kid, I was shy, nervous, anxious, worried that everyone hated me and I loved to SING. Between the ages of 9-12 there was one cartoon on TV that just made everything bad in my life go away. Jem and the Holograms was my solace and my dream. I used to play dress-up with my friends and I’d be Jem and they’d be my holograms. I had Jem dolls (my sister has Misfits, I think?). Jem was my dream, my inspiration. I wanted to BE her when I was a kid.
Jem sang. She had magic (well, holograms that seemed like magic). Synergy was beautiful and purple and could fly. Jem and her Holograms has brightly coloured hair. They were AMAZING!
If only real life was like Jem and the Holograms – with less orphaned kids and people always trying to kidnap and kill the orphans. (Zipper! Seriously! What was your deal with the always wanting to burn the orphans up? Therapy was obviously needed in your life.)
I never liked the Misfits much. I liked Stormer, with her blue hair and raspy voice, but I think that’s because she was the Misfit with the heart of gold. She was nice deep down. Not like Pizzazz and Roxy.
I always thought Rio was rather dumb not knowing that Jerrica and Jem were the same person. Heck, they SOUNDED the same. Also, he was kind of a jerk dating both of them and not telling either one about the other. (So many others in that sentence.) Often Jerrica or Jem would get jealous of the time he’d spend with one over the other and then I thought Jerrica/Jem was the stupid one because SHE could SOLVE HER OWN PROBLEM by just TELLING Rio the truth. I mean, really!
(This is my favourite Jem dress ever. EVER!)
So, when I went to bleach the purple and pink out of my hair two weeks ago, in order to change it to something totally different and then discovered that the bleach had turned the purple light pink…
I looked in the mirror and thought, “Oh my gosh, I feel like my Jem doll from the 80s!” And as much as I worried I couldn’t pull off pink (and bleach blonde) hair, I kept it for a while (because the Internet told me to) and it’s grown on me. I felt like my childhood idol. I felt truly outrageous!
And then I found these on Etsy from a store in Sweden…
SuzywanDELUXE etsy shop - making childhood dreams come true
And I knew I needed to own them. They were $20 and shipping was only $5 from SWEDEN. And, Internet? They were shipped on Thursday last week and they arrived TODAY. Even better, I am home today so I was able to get them moments after they were deposited into my mailbox and then rip open the shiny envelope and… look at them! LOOK AT THEM! They are awesome.
And now I, Internet, I am TRULY OUTRAGEOUS!
(and yes, I added more pink to my hair, thinking it would come out a little less bright. Now I have more Kimber hair than Jem hair… I shall bleach it a little more to lighten it. Truly outrageous hair is hard to capture…)
I figure, why not keep the pink hair a little longer, and get the earrings to match, right? Might have taken me almost 30 years to make this dream come true, but I’m totally going to milk it while I can.
Now I just need that record deal. Anyone? Anyone?
Like the Year of Doing Things I had in 2010, this year turned out to be my Year of Going Places (Quebec City, Kingston, Toronto, Ottawa, New York City). What I didn’t expect was how much I didn’t actually BLOG about GOING PLACES. I was sure I had. Sometimes updating facebook and twitter makes it feel like I updated my blog. I think for 2013 I am going to make a better effort to blog more and update FB less. I miss blogging, and I don’t actually like FB. I need to kick that habit.
So… here’s my 2012 in review, point form.
January (6 posts)
- as in 2011, I didn’t blog much that month
- turned 36 and had some friends over
- tried to cook more often, that went up and down
- was still trying to get over the stress of the strike & stuff in the office
February (4 posts)
March (6 posts)
- my macbook pro died and I lost a bunch of photos. *sniff*
- I had a horrible plague, that the doctor said wasn’t a lung infection
- my husband had a birthday and I love him very much
- my sister & I threw our parents a surprise going away-slash-40th anniversary party at a Cabane a Sucre at the end of the month. They were moving & celebrating their anniversary in May, so we wanted to get this in before they left.
April (6 posts)
- I grieved over the loss of a Bull Dog I had never actually met in real life, and was thankful for the friendship I had formed with the dog’s human. The internet can be an amazing place sometimes.
- Shawn & I went on our first ever trip to Quebec City over Easter weekend and although we relaxed, we didn’t really think it was a Big Deal while there. And of course I never did blog about this trip. Ugh.
- Sophie turned 2, and ate all the corners off our coffee table, and some shoes.
May (2 posts)
- apparently this was not a blogging month =/
- my parents moved to Kingston, ON
- had a central air unit installed & OMG bliss!
- planted what would soon become Jinx’s Garden
- I went to Kingston by myself & by train, over the long weekend in May to see their new place.
June (4 posts)
- went to New York City to see Kristi and attend BEA 2012 and visit my cousin
- let Jinx take over the garden
- spent a lot of time outdoors, which is unusual for me in the summer
July (11 posts)
August (18 posts)
- attempted to do Blogust – blog every day in August, with my internet bestie Yoj. Failed, but did a lot of soul searching at the same time.
- might have failed at Blogust, but I rocked the August Photo A Day. =P
- played in the garden some more with Jinx
- had a blast at the All Star Reunion Dance at my old church
- I didn’t have a very eventful August
September (3 posts)
- didn’t blog much, but a ton of Big Life Events happened
- Shawn & I visited Kingston over the long weekend (didn’t blog about it. Ugh.) we fell in love with that place & are sad there are no real jobs so we can’t move there.
- went back to school for the first time since 1995. Scared out of my mind, only one course to start, but still. Did it.
- got that pesky tree cut down in the front yard & FINALLY had the HOLE IN MY DRIVEWAY filled in.
- joined weight watchers, though I don’t talk about it with people and yes, that’s what those protected posts are about
- went to Montreal Comic-Con for the first time ever. It was ok.
October (13 posts)
- didn’t do much because I was pretty swamped with that one course I was taking – had to hand in a research paper that nearly made me give up out of extreme panic and anxiety. I didn’t though and I got an A!
- started to reorganize my kitchen so it was better suited to my cooking more often. Kept the slow cooker out on the counter, instead of in a cupboard so we actually USE it often now. Whee!
November (8 posts)
- did school stuff
- doubted myself
- went to Toronto to visit friends & an amazing sticker store (didn’t blog about it!)
- decided to hand-make all my Christmas cards
- lost weight, gained weight, lost weight
December (16 posts – including this one)
- went to Ottawa to visit Monkey (didn’t blog about it!)
- had a super fun 24 Days of Tea advent calendar from DAVIDsTEA – loved it!
- Jill came over, as usual, during the Christmas break and her boyfriend Jinx was very happy & we played a rude card game that made us laugh and laugh and laugh. Jinx WON!
- 45cm of snow on Dec 27 (the day Jill came over) – so happy we didn’t have to drive anywhere!
- had an amazing Christmas with the man I love. Didn’t blog about it, like I normally do. To tired to blog.
And there you have it… my simple and quiet year in review. I’ve been making some changes to my life, to help me see things in a happier light. I’m eager to see where 2013 leads me. Not only do I tend to do better in odd-numbered years, 13 is one of my favourite numbers.
I don’t really do the New Year’s thing and I never make resolutions, but I am looking forward to improving the changes I have made so far and just becoming a better person all around. Part of that is to try and be less negative and try and stop getting so angry at everything. Just accepting and changing when and where I can. I feel like a better person that way. My soul is happier.
And spending time with loved ones, both family and friends. I want to do lots of that next year (and forever). Reminding myself what the important things are once more.
Happy New Year, my friends. Thanks for sticking around.
PS – Our driveway STILL isn’t finished… just in case you were wondering. Although the hole did get cement poured in it. Cement. NOT asphalt. And they never came to take the asphalt and crap off our lawn either. Not that happy about this. Ugh.
I have been in a weird head space for almost a year now. Everything is so dissonant and out of joint and I can’t figure out how to fix it. Part of it is work, I have so much going on in my head about what I need to keep track of and it’s causing me to lose sleep (I was up at 4 am this morning and haven’t been able to sleep since – not even a nap). As soon as I close my eyes, the voices in my head get really, really loud reminding me what I’ve forgotten, or what I have to remember to do. There are things currently in my life that are just pounding on my brain and I can’t shut them up.
All day today I have been fretting about this stupid trip to Russia that my boss is going on. The saga has been a daily part of my work life since mid-August. It’s driving me crazy!! If I’m not worried about this, I’m worried about my class and the research paper I have to write and hand in my November 9. I was supposed to work on it all last weekend but I did nothing but panic each time I thought about it and convince myself I am just going to fail so why bother.
In the middle of all this worry today I realized something even more important than travel visas, expense reports and school work… I completely missed October 22 $ 23.
I. Missed. October. 22 & 23.
These are not dates that ever go by without notice. They are seared into my soul like Christmas dates, or my birthday. I can’t even believe that the dates passed and I didn’t think twice about it because the last two months have just whizzed by and I can’t ever remember what date it is anymore.
When I suddenly realized the date today, I felt like I’d been punched in the stomach. I couldn’t breathe. I felt dizzy (and not because I’d been up since 4am). I am honestly distraught by this and feel like I am the worst person in the world.
October 22 & 23 are such important dates in my life. No matter what’s going on in my life I always stop and think about those two days in 1994. I can’t believe this anniversary of the passing of my friend and her mother just slipped by me this year.
Where the hell was my head? I was at my BodyTalk session on Tuesday night. It was the 23rd THEN. I don’t even think I realized the date. That’s not like me.
We’re almost at 20 years since that accident happened. I don’t want to forget. I didn’t forget, really, but I did. I feel horrible about this and I know it’s not the end of the world, but for me… for something that has been such an important part of my life, for something that has had such an impact on my life… for it to just pass by without my notice? It feels like part of my soul was removed.
I don’t care if that sounds dramatic and over the top. Right now I am feeling so many things, so passionately I just can’t keep it all in.
How the hell could I forget something this Big in my life? I’m sorry Erin & Heather, I truly am. Even though I think of Erin on a regular basis (how would she look? What would she be doing? What would she think of this, that or the other?) I feel as though I let her down. Hell, her birthday in August whizzed by, too. I didn’t even notice the days. What is wrong with me this year?
So I’m going to post my annual post here, at the bottom of this one – on the wrong date – because I need to post it to soothe some of the voices right now. I need to offer my tribute to the spirits and let two very important people know that they are not forgotten. I’m just in a strange head space.
erin walker :: august 6, 1977 – october 23, 1994
when i close my eyes
she’s too young to be forgotten
her world has only just begun
her future is an empty slate
waiting to be filled
and i see her
when i close my eyes
dancing in the sky
over moonbeams, around clouds
starlight in her eyes
angels in her hair
and i see her
when i close my eyes
child of the sunlight
daughter of the day
sleeping on bed of roses
with flowers in her hair
the wind it softly kissed her cheek
the raindrops fell like tears
and i see her
when i close my eyes
a thousand white candles
their flames dancing with the air
as rocks play tag with ocean
she’s fast asleep
never to be woken
and i see her
when i close my eyes
© catherine healy
October 23, 1994
When I was a kid, I had two goals in life. 1) To make a record (as in a real, vinyl record) like The Monkees and The Mickey Mouse Club and 2) to be on the Muppet Show. (obviously singing the songs that would be on my record album!)
I have always wanted The Muppet Show to be real. I loved the humour, the variety showyness, the guest stars (even though at the young age that I was I had no clue who most of the guest starts were. Heck, even today, as we watch the DVDs I have to look someone up!) But I loved the Muppets and The Muppet Show and I cried when they announced on the radio that Jim Henson had died. I cried a lot that morning before school. I cry when they play Rainbow Connection. I wept during the newest Muppet movie when the song came on and I knew I’d tear up if they played it at the show I’d be at.
And yes… one of my dreams came true, people. Never in a million years would I have thought I’d be a member of the audience for the Muppet Show. I had higher hopes for recording an album. The album thing never panned out, but people, I got to see the MUPPETS LIVE ON STAGE.
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal. This is a Big Deal and because of the Big Dealyness of it all, the organizers managed to snag some pretty Big Deal Things. The most important one to I, and to 2998 other people in that hall at 7pm, was – THE MUPPETS!
This is the first time in history that the Muppets have hosted a live show – anywhere in the world. It’s never been done before and what a magical night it was. The show opened with the traditional Muppets opening – stage and song and boy did the crowd go wild. There were 3000 people at this show and we all stood up as the Muppet theme song came on and each of the Muppets were in their own little space like the TV show. (balcony? What the hell is that called?) Statler and Waldorf were EVEN IN ONE OF THE SIDE BALCONIES LIKE IN THE SHOW! OMG! It was AMAZING!
Kermit and gang hosted the Gala and they each had their own time in the spotlight as they introduced the 5 comics on the bill that night: Ryan Hamilton, Jim Breuer, Mike Birbiglia, Danny Bhoy and Steve Patterson. Shawn and I liked pretty much all of the comics but found one a little less funny than the others (oddly, it was the same for each of us, we have the same humour!). The crowd laughed a lot for each of the 5 men on stage, but it was NOTHING compared to the reaction those Muppets got when they graced the stage.
The show was filmed, as all of the Galas are, and they had screens scattered around the hall so you could watch the Muppets from the waste up – because we got to see something very, very extraordinary that night. We got to see the puppeteers work those Muppets for the entire show. And you know what? It takes about a handful of seconds and suddenly you don’t see the PEOPLE anymore. You only see the Muppets that you know and love. It’s like they are alive and real and it was the most amazing thing ever.
Even as the stage was set in the dark, while one Muppet or another were filling time, the audience went CRAZY when they rolled out a counter that looked like it had food bowls on it. Half the time I couldn’t even hear what the Muppets were saying because the crowd was screaming and clapping so much. It was obvious that the Swedish Chef was about to make an appearance and OH BOY! were people THRILLED. He made “pew-teen” and then had a heart attack from all the gravy he put on the fries.
And that’s another amazing thing… the script of the night was entirely geared towards Canada, Montreal and the Festival itself. The humour was HILARIOUS as only Muppet humour could be. I really don’t think the puppeteers could have expected the reaction we gave them. The energy in the room was outstanding. And then there was another show at 10pm! Standing ovations abounded. Statler and Waldorf heckled Fozzie from the balcony just like in the show – people yelled out “I LOVE YOU, FOZZIE!” when the bear came out to do his stand up. It was a BIG DEAL for him. Fozzie finally made the Big Time being at this renown festival!
If I had to find anything negative about the evening it would have been minor things like – I wish there had been more interaction between the Muppets and the comedians as they were introduced. It’s possible there wasn’t because this was filmed and this way the individual comic routines could be easily taken and shown on other Just For Laughs tv specials. But I do think with the magic of editing, any reference to just having been introduced by THE FREAKING MUPPETS could have been edited out. I mean.. being introduced by the Muppets is like.. just… it’s unbelievable!
The only other problem I had was that because of the audience reactions, I found some of what the Muppets were saying to be hard to understand. We were not a quiet audience. We laughed and applauded and screamed so much of that evening and there should have been a few times where the dialogue was paused as they waited for us to all calm the heck down. We couldn’t help ourselves, this was a dream come true for so many people.
I don’t know if the Muppets will ever do a live show like this ever again. I do know that it was just such an amazing experience and I will always cherish the fact that I bought expensive tickets about 30 seconds after I heard someone say the Muppets were coming to Just for Laughs. It was worth the money to get good seats (not the best seats, but decent enough!) I will never forget this night for as long as I live. I can say that I got to see the Muppet Show live. Not many people can say that.
The show ended with a funny (yes!) version of Rainbow Connection and though I started to tear up, it was soon apparent that the laughter was going to win out. The Muppets received yet another standing ovation as the song wound down and if we could have stood any higher, we would have for the puppeteers who came out from behind their set when the song was done to take their bows.
From the song about Canada, to Miss Piggy being carried in by Mounties, to Bunsen turning Beaker into Youpi (former Expos mascot, now the mascot for the Canadiens?) to the Rainbow Connection, this was a magical, hilarious night that I will never, ever forget.
(Sadly, no photos were allowed, or I’d have taken so many of the set and the old men in the balcony. Sadly, out of all the shots, I don’t think any of the media captured Statler and Waldorf in the loge seats. Which makes me sad. The Montreal Gazette did get some neat photos, so you can check them out here.)
July 12, 1942
I wanted to post this on July 12, which would have been my grandparents’ 70th wedding anniversary, but I didn’t have time to sit in front of the computer and blog. Apparently when one works for a living, work tends to get in the way of non-work and after spending all day at the computer, I just don’t feel like doing the same when I get home. Alas.
It hit me at the start of this month that had my grandparents still been alive, this would have marked their 70th wedding anniversary. Unfortunately my grandfather passed away right before their 67th anniversary and my grandmother 10 months later. I still think of them every single day. I still get the urge to call my Nana when we have a small lull in the afternoon at work. It always catches me short when I realize I can’t do that anymore. Three years might have come and gone between losing my grandparents but after 33 years of having them in my life, pretty much daily, it’s a hard habit to kick.
My grandparents did actually get to spend 70 years together, since they dated for three years before tying the knot. Imagine. Seventy years with the same person by your side for better or for worse. Seventy years getting to spend each day in the company of your best friend. I can only wish that Shawn and I will have that, but we were older when we met, and I don’t know if we’ll be blessed with 70 years together or not. If we even reach our 67th anniversary, we’ll be 96 and 95 respectively. I can’t see us living that long! I’m not being negative, it’s just such a huge thing to get your head around, that one day you might be 4 years away from being alive for a CENTURY!
July 2, 2005
In this day and age when people seem to treat marriage like dating, like it doesn’t mean as much as it should, I think people who reach those marriage milestones of 20, 30, 40… 67 years are just so lucky. I feel like people just don’t get married for the right reasons anymore.
I’m saying this not being a huge fan of marriage. I mean, I didn’t grow up dreaming of my perfect wedding day, or the dress I’d wear. I never dreamed that one day my One True Love would come sweeping into my life and pick me up off my feet. Shawn and I never thought we’d get married, but one day it just felt right. So we did. I don’t like church weddings. I think the Church puts too many limitations on marriage. I like the idea of Hand Fasting (one word?) and tying two souls together. I love that marriage is a promise full of love and hope.
People seem to love differently today than in the past. I can even tell a difference in just the last 20 years, but it’s certainly obvious in the 70 year gap between my grandparents and today. I can’t explain it in words, but the kind of love and relationship that my grandparents have, that even my parents have, is so rare these days. I like to think that Shawn and I have that kind of love and partnership. I know of some friends who certainly do. People who spend their lives together because they love each other, not because it looks good to get married. I have friends who aren’t married to who have this bond, as well. You don’t have to have a piece of paper to prove your love.
I miss my Nana and Poppop so strongly and at times it’s still sort of overwhelming. There’s a little Mexican restaurant Shawn and I discovered a few years ago that’s just across the street from the senior’s apartment my grandparents moved into in… 2004? 2003? Hmm. Anyhow, they’d moved from their house of 60 years into an apartment and for some reason I always get hit by this wave of sadness when I see it now that they are gone. I don’t get that same punch from passing by their old house – a house that I spent MUCH of my childhood growing up in. That could possibly be because the people who bought it completely remodeled it and added a second story, etc. Actually, THAT really bugs me. That they CHANGED the house I loved so much. BUT the apartment just makes me miss them so very much. When we eat at Tamales I can see it just across the street and I feel melancholy but also a little happy as it makes me bring up all these memories of my grandparents.
My POINT, I guess, is that I was very aware of this year and this July being the 70th wedding anniversary of my grandparents and I am missing them a lot once more. I have been so lucky to have had them in my life for 33 years. I really, truly am lucky. They were wonderful, loving people. Strong and funny. Friendly. Big hearted. (Hart All Over as my grandfather, John Hart, would say).
They helped teach me what it means to love and be loved. They showed me what it takes to make a marriage and relationship work. They, along with my parents, helped mold me into the woman I am today and for that, I shall forever be thankful.
Seventy years of love. You can’t get much better than that.