Snow

Snow, Snow, Snow!

Here in Manitoba, Canada we laugh when Spring starts to appear. Like most places in Canada March seems to herald in a new season. Snow starts to melt, the sun shines and temperatures rise. Lots of people discard their parkas or other winter coats in favour of lighter Spring jackets and sweaters. There are even people who start wearing shorts! I know 10°C is warm, but come on!

But in Manitoba, we know better. We know this is just a ruse, a trick. It’s not actually Spring yet. We’ve gotten a dumping of snow in May for crying out loud! When I lived in Alberta, it was much the same. I haven’t lived in Saskatchewan before, but since it’s sandwiched between the two, I imagine it’s similar.

So it was no surprise when a fresh, crisp blanket of white greeted me this morning. Flakes were falling gently in the air. Ah, snow. It’s snowing again and we’re liable to get another 2-4cm today.

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My eldest son was less than impressed. He wanted the green grass and the puddles to come back. Driving to work this morning had us going through 2 intersections. Such is life here.

On a good note, do you all remember that money issue I’ve been bitching about for the last seven months? Of course you do! If there’s anything I do well, it’s complain.

Yesterday afternoon the bank called my husband to inform him that the cheque had been received. Within an hour, it was showing in our account. FINALLY! FINALLY! The money has been received. I no longer have to worry about buying groceries this weekend. I don’t have to worry about paying my mortgage. I don’t have to worry about being able to afford the new socks my kid so desperately needs.

I have been offered lots of support in terms of money to fill the gaps while we were waiting for this goddamn payout. Friends, family, friends that are basically family. While I appreciate it all, I have an extreme aversion to borrowing money. I do not like owing people money. I don’t like owing even a dollar to someone. Being indebted to someone makes me go into extreme anxiety-mode.

I’ve associated owing money to someone as basically giving that person rights  to your life. Like blood money. My rational brain thinks this thought-process is ridiculous. My irrational brain tends to be a bit louder and is like “whaaaaa? NO!”

Other good news is that we are now able to afford those tiny extras we’ve been waiting on. I can paint the office and purchase one of the last pieces of furniture. We paid off my student loan, I paid off the credit card, I repaid my in-laws (they bought us the desk for the office. I’ve been in agony ever since). My husband was able to order the new toy he wanted. Once the credit card recovers from its workout I’ll pay it off again and put the rest of  the money in savings like I planned.

Things are finally looking up. The last seven months have been hell and stress. Things have been tense and no one was happy. Now we can focus on being a family again. My husband and I can afford to go on a date. It is better now. Much better.

Posted by Sarah Jayne in Rantings, 0 comments

Good Morning Starshine

The Earth says hello!

Our administrative assistant/superwoman is out of the office today. She was out yesterday as well as the sickness has finally gripped her. I do feel a little bad about it because it seems like she’s got the version of the illness I had.

They’ve been calling my office-mate/brain-sharer and I the ‘Toxic Twins’ which is quite funny.

Since our Superwoman is out of the office I made coffee for everyone. I’m generally here first, and even though I don’t even drink coffee myself, I know my co-workers really enjoy being able to have a hot cup first thing in the morning. We have meetings this morning too that we need to get through. For some of them, being able to do that uncaffienated is frightening. But the pot is on the brew so there’s nothing to fear now.

I have my thermos of tea, as usual, so all is right in my world. It’s nice and warm and lovely.

It snowed last night which has made things interesting so early in the day. Even though I live in freaking Canada and we have snow like, 6 months out of the year, people will still forget how to drive and it will take ages to get anywhere. It’s pretty funny because I now live in a relatively small town so instead of 5 minutes to get somewhere it takes 10.

Not much work has been done on TAK while I’ve been sick. Since we got the notification that the money is on its way, I’ve been dreaming of redoing my office at home and getting things organized and set up the way I like. Since my husband wants a new computer that means I get his old one. My current laptop is less than wonderful. It’s died one too many times. I can’t even have it unplugged because the battery won’t hold a charge.

Hopefully this means that soon I will be able to give you all either another short, or an actual book!

Have a happy Wednesday! The Work Week is almost over! That is, if you work Monday-Friday.

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My co workers

Posted by Sarah Jayne in Rantings, 0 comments

Putting Grumpy Cat to Shame

I am grumpy today.

I’m not even 100% certain as to why I’m grumpy today, but I am.

I forgot my book at home which means I have nothing to read during my lunch break. Which makes me irritated because I have grown accustomed to giving my eyes a break from a screen and reading a book in print, in my hands. My options now are to read something on my phone. Maybe nap. Although I know that napping is not realistic. I get even more irritated if I nap.

We’re still waiting on the payout from my husbands previous job. It’s been 4 months. I am getting to the end of my rope, both emotionally and psychologically. I’m tired. I’m stressed. I can’t do the things I want to do. We all know that money runs the world.

All this stress is sapping my creative juices and I can’t even write a short about Edessa like I wanted to. I was going to write about her experience leaving her home and finding Brexton and Aldric. I can get that far in my thoughts, but I can’t get any farther. I can’t get the ideas going when I’m grumpy which in turn is making me even more grumpy.

I’ve got a plain scratch pad in my office I haven’t touched. Perhaps I will take that to lunch and see if I can get anything moving. I won’t know until I try!

How is everyone doing today? The weather has gotten nicer. It’s -15°C today. Only feels like -22°C with the windchill. The last few days it has been feeling like -35°C or so with the wind. A friend posted an article how in Toronto they received 10cm of snow and the kids are bitching that they didn’t get a snow day. The responses from the school board to the tweets is absolutely hilarious.

But yeah. It’s freakin’ cold here and the kids still go to school. Depending on the temperature they may be relegated to inside recess, but they still go. Buses still run. If it’s really cold the buses won’t run outside of town so that means a day home for those kids, or that their parents will be bringing them in for school. I can’t think of a day when school was cancelled in the almost 3 years I’ve lived here and it’s been even colder than what I stated above.

Any way, hopefully I’ll get happier before the day is done.

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Posted by Sarah Jayne in My Book Stuff, Rantings, 3 comments

'Cuz it's a Green Christmas in this Town

I don’t know about you, but Christmas is supposed to have snow. I guess depending on where you live in the world, and if you celebrate Christmas at all for that matter, a green Christmas might be completely normal.

I live in Canada. The Great White North. It’s usually cold up here (especially in winter, duh lol) and we typically have white Christmases where I’ve lived. Some of the provinces have milder temperatures than others and therefore a green/brown Christmas is normal. I live in freaking Manitoba. It’s the coldest place I’ve ever lived and I live pretty south in the province. I can’t imagine what it’s like for the communities in the northern part of the province.

Outside, we have remnants of snow. There is no blanket of white. There is no dusting. For a province that is usually sitting somewhere in the negatives for temperature it is a high of 6° C here today. Tomorrow it’s supposed to be a high of 8° C! That’s madness.

I enjoy the warmer weather because it makes it easier to play outside with the kids. I’m about to sound really old, so hold on for a second, okay?

BACK IN MY DAY parents could lock their kids out of  the house and let them play in the yard or whatever without constant supervision. Sure, they would look out the window now and then to make sure we were alive, that we hadn’t run away or that we hadn’t killed each other (when siblings were involved) but that doesn’t happen these days. If you tried that now and the kid wasn’t like, 12, you’d probably get arrested.

One thing I want for my children is that I don’t want them to be responsible for each other. My eldest is about 3 years older than his brother. I don’t want to expect him to constantly look after his younger brother or be expected to watch him. They’re too close in age, I feel, for that to work really well and realistically, my eldest is not my babysitter. I have nothing against people who have their elder children help with looking after the younger children as long as it’s not automatically expected of them. It’s different when the older children have a choice or are all right with it. Speaking from experience, it sucks when it’s just expected or demanded of you to look after your younger siblings, even if you get along. I don’t want to do that to my kids.

I hope my children have a good relationship with each other. They’re close in age and their both boys so that could either spell disaster or it could be great. As long as they don’t end up  hating each other I think I’ll be happy. My eldest is pretty keen on trying to keep his brother happy, when it suits him. My youngest was a bit upset this morning and his brother tried to hug him. He tries to console his younger brother if he’s upset. It’s cute. Although sometimes my youngest doesn’t want anyone to console him and starts pushing people out of his bubble; parents included. At that time it’s just important to tell my eldest that it’s not his fault and his brother just needs some space.

My eldest is so excited for Christmas. He keeps trying to touch the tree, tells me we need to put presents under the tree and constantly asks for hot chocolate now. It’s pretty funny seeing as in previous years he could care less. Maybe it’s because he goes to school now or because he’s older. Not sure.

We all had a grumpy morning so I hope that a good day can cure that. I enjoy my job, my husband is pretty happy (for the most part) at school, the youngest enjoys his day home and the eldest is usually happy to go to daycare/school. Let’s hope this pattern holds!

ONLY 13 MORE DAYS UNTIL CHRISTMAS! (12 more days in my family until the Big Dinner, which is super important!)

Dinner

Posted by Sarah Jayne in Rantings, 0 comments

Snow! Snow! Snow!

Yes, it is almost May. However it’s snowing in Alberta anyway.

The view outside my office.

The view outside my office.

I mean, I suppose it could be worse. When I first moved to Alberta in 2008 it snowed so much in the middle of May it reached my knees. I may be 5’2″ but that was still pretty high!

I don’t mind the snow. It’s not overly cold right now so that helps. The snow just makes me melancholy. Especially when there are big fat flakes like today. I want to be sitting somewhere with a big window with a dog at my feet and a steaming mug of tea in my hands while I watch outside and write. I used to do that when I was younger and lived in the log cabin. No tea, since I hadn’t really developed a taste for it until I hit about 13/14. But I would sit at my desk in my room, look out the big picture window while I wrote in my journal or notebook with my big dog at the time lazing at my feet. The sereneness wouldn’t last and maybe I’d only get to have 20 minutes of that peace before it was somehow interrupted, but it was one of my favourite past times. It makes me miss living in rural areas.

Posted by Sarah Jayne in Rantings, 0 comments

The Mysteries of Winter Driving

So I live in Canada, eh, and we’re well known for our extensive wintry climate. The province I live in currently is almost always cold. We’ve had hail in June and snowstorms in May. And these aren’t freak occurrences either. They’re expected.

The week before last we had extremely nice weather. I mean, it was positive 6! That’s awesome. I didn’t even feel the need to wear a coat all the time.

Late last week we got hit with a big dumping of snow. It started Thursday night and while it stopped a bit yesterday, there are some flurries happening right now.

It always amazes me how people ‘forget’ how to drive in the winter. Most people in this province don’t even put their winter tires on until December and are skating around out there on summer tires.

The snow removal in the city I live in is atrocious. It’s like they also forget each winter that snow WILL fall and it WILL block roads and slow down traffic. It will make those hills difficult to climb and it will make people slide into each other.

This morning on my way to the dayhome to drop off my son I heard about 3 accidents before I even pulled out of my driveway. I leave my house at 6:30 in the morning at the latest. While I was driving on the highway and trying not to be overwhelmed by the blowing snow which was making it difficult to determine the lanes, I counted about 3 vehicles plowed into the snow on the side of the road. One was a pickup truck that had somehow managed to spin all the way around and slide ass-first into the ditch.

Honestly people. When there’s no snow for 7 days do you REALLY forget how to drive in it that fast?! It blows my mind how this happens every year, every individual snowfall (provided there’s been a gap of at least 5 days between them).

You’d think they’d know how to handle it by now….

Posted by Sarah Jayne in Rantings, 2 comments

Snow Fall in the City

This morning as I made my way to my Day job, I immediately wanted to go back home.

It started snowing yesterday and it hasn’t stopped yet. On the highway this morning on my way to work the snow was blowing all over the lanes, hiding the lines so you don’t know what lane you’re in, and billowing up behind speeding vehicles like smoke that would engulf them and make their taillights disappear.

The snake-like twisting of the snow on the asphalt doesn’t bother me. The fact that apparently having a snow plow out earlier than 24 hours after it snows so that people can see where the hell their driving is NOT acceptable in this city bothers me.

The streets in the city are even worse. Snow is piled up everywhere. You can’t find the lane to save your life. Even if you drive slow and break early, chances are that you will still slide into someone’s backside (as I learned yesterday).

People are swerving and sliding everywhere. On the highway, some of the bigger vehicles are driving like it’s plus 15 and beautiful out. Transport trucks pulling up beside me in such wintry weather make me nervous, when normally I don’t mind them. I drive an SUV, so it’s not like I’m trying to get around in a little Neon and still, people are flying through the snow only to end up in the ditch a few kilometers ahead. I’ve actually witnessed this happening.

How I wished I could have turned around and headed back to my warm and cozy house. At least today is Friday.

Posted by Sarah Jayne in Rantings, 0 comments