Saturday, December 31, 2011


What a year of writing this has been for me or should I say lack of writing, well at least I made an effort and didn't completely fall away from the blogging world.

Graeme introduced me to John Acuff, who I enjoy reading immensely. He wrote this blog that challenged my thoughts towards the concept of "finishing" and what it means to finish what I have started. Graeme will testify that I am great with the big picture, the dreaming on a large scale, but when it comes to the details and working through to accomplish this BIG dream I lack the immediate follow through. If I set out to do something I eventually get around to it, but no promises of when that might be. When I read John's blog I couldn't help but laugh out loud, because I felt like he was describing all of my habits.

With 2012 literally hours away, I am aiming to start small and begin to finish projects that I have begun. Starting small I think helps me to get motivated and moving forward. So here is to a year filled with finishing projects and doing my best to post my small and hopefully large successes along the way!

Happy New Year Everyone! I hope you all have a wonderful start to 2012!

Friday, December 30, 2011

Knock Knock, Are You There Keys?

What was meant to be a fairly relaxing evening ended up in a course of learning how to unscrew the backseat of a Kia Optima. A note I would also like to make here is that Grae and I are looking to buy a car this coming summer/autumn and the Optima had been one of the choices but after this particular evenings experience, I can say that thought has been put on the farthest back burner possible.

My Mum had driven down for Uncle Mike's funeral and we had just returned to our apartment to finish up the day and wait for Grae to come home so we could do the last of our Christmas shopping. Through a flurry of information, rain, and packing up the car for her trip back home in the morning, she locked the keys in the trunk. Now my first thought was, not a big deal, we'll call AAA and they'll come unlock the car and we'll pop the trunk, easy!

Now, calling AAA and having them unlock the car was the easy part, but what we didn't factor in was that everything was tied together via the electronics of the car. Once the car was "forced" open everything practically locked down except for the alarm which went off about every 10 minutes until Grae got home with the tool kit to get the battery out of the car. Thus began a four hour pursuit of the keys in the trunk, from disconnecting a large portion of the backseat, using our phones as videocameras to have a look around the trunk, to getting a great work out by having to pull the back portion of the seats away from the door so Grae could reach in and pull out items that were blocking the way to unlatch the trunk.

Finally after several failed attempts Grae was able to stick the end of a broom in with a good view of the emergency latch and open the trunk... Success!!

The next hour consisted of reattaching the seats to the car, packing up the car, having dinner, and falling into bed.

Lessons learned: buy a car that manually allows the backseats to fold down from inside the car, always know where the emergency latch is within the trunk, keep tools handy, if able have a hide away key stored somewhere on the car, and if possible maintain a sense of humor when such situations arise :)

Friday, December 02, 2011

Uncle Mike

My Great Uncle Mike passed away yesterday in his home, with his lovely bride and family beside him. He was the baby brother in a family of ten siblings; he was a beloved Grandfather, Uncle, Father, and Husband.

I have more memories of Uncle Mike from my early childhood than I do presently, but the memory that will stick with me the rest of my life is from last weekend. Through a phone trail we learned that Uncle Mike had been admitted to the hospital again and was not doing well. He had been on dialysis for the past several years and had taken a spill a couple months back which resulted in injuring his leg, and through a series of events, lead to an infection that brought him back to the hospital. Graeme and I spent last Saturday crowded in an ICU room in Fullerton with about ten other family members, exchanging stories, memories, and helping Aunt Pauline with whatever she needed.

After everyone had left, Graeme and I waited to walk Aunt Pauline out. Uncle Mike had been heavily sedated and barely spoke throughout the evening, but when my Aunt Pauline told him she was leaving for the night to go home and get some sleep, he whispered "I love you" and stuck his lips out for a kiss. He had saved his energy for her. Aunt Pauline cried as she kissed him and whispered back, "I love you too, I love you very much". I cried. She had told us earlier in the evening that leaving was the hardest part, having to say goodbye, and sleep separated.

I know Uncle Mike is in a better place, but my heart aches for my Aunt Pauline because this goodbye is now more permanent. They were partners in this life; in good times and not so great times. They were lovers, parents, companions, and more.

Goodnight Uncle Mike, we will all miss you. Hey Uncle Mike, will you do me a favor and tell Grandma Ginny I said hello when you see her and that even after 19 years, I still miss her.