Tuesday, 29 August 2017


So as you've guessed already, if you've been here before, I've been messing with my blog. Changing things up a bit. Playing with formats and colour and backgrounds. Trying to make it more reader friendly. But still have it reflect what I want. 

I've been thinking of doing this for some time now. Several readers have mentioned that they found the white text on the dark background too hard to read. Last year, I lightened the background from black to dark grey, and made the text less bright. That helped, I think. But I'm pretty sure most people wouldn't have even noticed. Someone else mentioned that the "lines of text were too long," so I changed the widths to make the post itself narrower, and the sidebar wider. I follow several on-line publications that help bloggers, and as a result I cleaned up my sidebar, and did some other stuff. Most of this was just tinkering. Albeit tinkering that took time, but which I enjoyed. I like to tackle a problem, research how to fix it, and then see if I can do it. Most times it works out. 

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Hi-i-i-way Drivin' ... It'll Get You Home

I don't know what it's like where you live, but in my experience, most Canadians seem to think nothing of rising at the crack of dawn, or even earlier, hopping in the car, and driving enormous distances in a day. We're quite sanguine about watching the road roll under our wheels for hours and hours. 

Maybe it's because we live in such a big country. And for those of us from the east coast, making the long trek back home most summers is, well, part of summer. It's a Maritimer thing. The Maritimes has historically been less industrial and less wealthy than "Upper Canada," has offered fewer job opportunities than "out west," especially during the oil boom, and this has often resulted in the young seeking their livelihood elsewhere, and families being scattered far and wide. My Mum and my older brother live in New Brunswick, I have a sister in Ontario, and a sister and a brother in Alberta. And Hubby and I have been making the thousand kilometre drive home at least once every year since we've been together. That's a lot of highway driving, folks. And as the song goes, "highway driving, it'll get you down, but it'll get you home." 

highway before dawn.
Up and on the road before dawn.

Monday, 21 August 2017

Aging Gracefully...Or Disgracefully. Reprise.

Hubby and I are still down east at Mum's. And there's still no time for posting. So hope you enjoy this one from 2015. It's pretty timely... sort of. Because it's Mum's 90th tomorrow. And we'll be busy eating cake and talking to all and sundry. And whoever else drops by. 


There's lots of stuff on the net these days about aging, isn't there? How to, how not to, or how to and look like you're not... or whatever. And as my Mum had her eighty-eighth birthday this week, I've been thinking about aging. And how one copes. And what the heck "aging gracefully" even means.

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Lost in the 'Hood Reprise

Hubby and I are back in the 'hood again. But there'll be no time for posting this year. So I hope you'll enjoy the post I wrote about our trip home last summer. See you in a week or so.


Hubby and I are back in the old 'hood this week. Downeast. Staying with my mum for a few days. Fishing and reading and visiting. Drinking too much tea and talking, talking, talking.

On Thursday we were up before dawn to set off for the long drive. Truck loaded with bikes, fishing gear, suitcases. Big cooler packed with fresh veggies from our garden to take to Mum. Thermos mugs of strong tea. Breakfast would be a few hours down the road. Our picnic lunch tucked into our trusty travel cooler that's been everywhere with us from New Zealand to the Yukon to France, was behind my seat. By 5:00 A.M. we were packed, loaded, belted in, and ready for the ten hour drive.

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Seeking Fall Inspiration

Fall will be upon us before we know it, folks. And when it comes time to look critically at my fall and winter closet, to do my inventory, and make my list of what I might need, or want, I plan to be ready. And ready for me means having a sense of the looks that have walked down the runway, and featured in fall ad campaigns, and an idea of the trends that are being espoused. Whether I buy into the trends (or buy them literally) is another matter, of course. In other words, I'm currently seeking fall inspiration. So when fall comes I can make good decisions about what I will, and will not, buy. 

Thursday, 10 August 2017

On Being a Teacher

My fondest memory of teaching high school is not what you might expect. It's not of the many commencement ceremonies I watched or took part in, nor of reading the often brilliant work produced by some of my students, or even of the moving Remembrance Day ceremonies that my writing classes scripted. Those moments made me proud. But the memory that always makes me smile is of the 1999 end-of-year assembly when three of my teacher-buddies and I made total fools of ourselves on stage. Wearing black mini-skirts (not too short, of course), high black boots, and sporting backcombed, bouffant hair, we pranced around on stage in front of the whole school doing our best lip-syncing routine to Nancy Sinatra's "These Boots Are Made for Walking." The kids went nuts. I'll never forget looking down at several of my grade nine students in the front row of the audience, screaming, "Ms. Bur-paaaaay!" Ha. I'm smiling as I write this. 

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Why I'm Not Bored With My Summer Wardrobe

It seems everyone in the blogosphere is talking about how bored they are with their hot weather wardrobe. Shopping for that special piece to spice up their summer closet, devising new ways to combine tanks and skirts they're sick to death of, yearning for variety, and digging for something, anything, different to wear. Sigh. And what about me, you ask? Am I bored with my summer wardrobe? Ha. I wish. 

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Planning for England.

Only two more months and my friend Elizabeth and I will be winging our way to England. We're trying hard not to be excited. Not yet. There's too much planning to do before we lean back, take a sip of tea, sigh, and allow ourselves to dream of actually being there. 

I'm a total Anglophile. I love England. English food. English tea. English television. English literature. And in particular English (or Scottish or Irish) crime fiction. I've been to England twice. Once to London with three girlfriends on our March Break in 2000, and once with Hubby to northern England and Scotland in the summer of 2005.