Monday, May 30, 2011

Serious, Fun, Pretty

On Friday night Allison's youth group ("Serious Fun") had its graduation banquet. They had a special meal, a speaker, games, and a ceremony for the grade 8's who will be moving up to senior youth group next year.
Here's a lovely shot of Allison at home and one of her and the other girls in their dressed-up best.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Mom & Dad's visit

This past week we had a very nice visit from Mom and Dad. They took the train here and arrived last Friday the 13th (which sounded kind of ominous but turned out not to be :-). Alan and Genevieve and Sadie arrived from London right around the same time the train pulled in, so we had a nice little reunion there at the station. After a beautiful week of weather we were expecting Friday to be rainy, but it was a bonus sunny, warm day and we enjoyed sitting out on the deck for most of the afternoon and even barbecuing (first time in 2011!) for supper.

Everything changed the next day (Saturday): the rain started and lasted for most of the next few days. But we still had a nice time in spite of the rain. Alan and Gen and Sadie were in town till Sunday morning so we could enjoy supper together on Saturday evening -- everyone's favourite, Minos takeout!

Rich wasn't working during most of Mom & Dad's stay, so we took the opportunity to go on a few drives when the kids were at school. On Monday we drove to Gananoque (in the rain) and had lunch there; on Tuesday we visited Audrey, and Mom and I made our obligatory pilgrimage to Value Village; and on Wednesday we took the ferry over to Wolfe Island, had coffee at a little restaurant there, and then took the next ferry back.

They had to leave on Thursday morning already, so the time seemed to slip by very quickly. But we had a good time while they were here, and it makes the time we'll see each other again in August seem less distant.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

trickling thoughts ........

This week our kitchen faucet sprung a leak and we are waiting for a particular part to come in before we can have it fixed, so we can't use it and therefore have to get water from the bathroom for non-dishwasher dishes, etc. Rich commented that at least we have water, and pointed out that if I was still doing my "TNEL" series I could say "I'm thankful for water." Which I am! It's good to be reminded about things like that during life's minor inconveniences.

I guess I was blogged out after my Lenten series because I haven't written since Easter Sunday. It seems like a lot of things have happened since that weekend:

The Royal Wedding. I didn't get up early to watch it, but I did watch the 2-hour highlight program that evening. I was touched by the dignity and simplicity of the whole thing (if a wedding that's watched by 1 billion people can be said to be simple). The night after the wedding we had book study and we talked quite a bit about the whole phenomenon. Some people were bothered by the idea of putting two people on a pedestal this way, yet others commented on how much responsibility William and Katherine have to project an image of dignity and maturity and to be an example and role model to younger people. I thought it was very interesting that they wrote their own prayer for the wedding and that it spoke of wanting to serve other people.

The election. I always feel a bit uncomfortable at times like this because I have good friends who are on both ends of the political spectrum and I tend to be a more middle-of-the-road type of person. I don't agree with the prison farm closure (a big Kingston issue) or with scrapping the gun registry or with a number of other Conservative government initiatives, so I have concerns about this government's direction especially now that they have more carte blanche to implement their policies -- but on the other hand, I do not believe that Harper or his caucus are the spawn of Satan as some people seem to think. So I generally just listen to the more outspoken people on both sides and say very little myself.

My course. I say "my" a bit facetiously because the only way it's really mine is that I happen to be instructing it this semester. Last summer my friend/colleague Lori and I were tasked with revising and putting online the correspondence writing course we've both worked in for many years. It was a huge undertaking but it is finally done, and this past week the course opened up for its first semester's offering. The previous course was generally run by the Writing Centre Director in the Fall and Winter terms, while the Spring-Summer session was run by a rotation of 3 senior course tutors of whom I'm one. And it just happened to be my turn in Spring-Summer 2011. So it's been an anxious time getting all the last-minute stuff done and answering questions from students like "Where do I get the textbook?" "Why can't I access the course website?" and "The course is full; can I still register for it?" (Answers: At the bookstore; I don't know; No.)

Other things have been happening too, but a bit more behind the scenes. Sometimes we get so focused on the Big Events that a little perspective on what isn't really important (like the weird hats Prince Andrew's daughters were wearing) and what is (friends, family, health) is helpful.