Category: Family Stuff

Fostering Love

Back in May, my wife approached me with what she called ‘a wonderful idea’. She was with a friend who fostered puppies, and wanted us to do the same. At first, I was against it; we planned on renovating the house, and also we needed to build a piece on our shed. Definitely too busy to ‘foster’ animals.

Of course, we fostered. It’s not that the wife always gets her way (she does), the truth is, I am an animal lover, have been all my life. My only fear was letting the animals go. I feared we would end up being what is referred to as a ‘Foster Fail’ where the foster parents end up keeping the pets. No, we wouldn’t want that.

My wife and I picked up two little pups from a foster home in the area. Their mother was abused and too skinny to properly feed her babies. My wife handed me the little boy dog. it was love at first site for the both of us. He really took to me, and I to him. Here is a pic.


See, how could a person get attached to something like this? We also fostered his sister. Her name is Gracie.


Apparently, the pups were at ‘Death’s door’ when they were given to us. The owner had the pups threw outside, and was tossing adult food at them. The pups were swollen due to the fact they could not properly digest adult dog food.

It didn’t take long for the animals to begin looking better. As I said, Harley took to me, and wherever I went, he wasn’t far behind. In one night, I managed to house train both doggies, and actually had them barking to go outside within two days.

We socialized the two doggies, taking them for walks in the park. Already having three dogs of our own, the pups grew accustomed to other dogs, and our cat loved them as well. When they were ready for adoption, the group we are so actively involved in, The Southwest Coast SPCA found great homes for the pups. The new owners were amazed how well behaved the pups were. I was okay with them going at first, but when Harley pulled on his leash to follow me rather than his new owner, I nearly cried.

We keep in touch with the new owners, and the dogs are doing great. Me not so much.

My wife had a cure for my dull drums. Three kittens who had been rescued from a home. The kittens and their mother were surrendered to the town animal pound, and rescued by the SPCA. The group at the SPCA agreed to separate the kittens from the mother, as she had finished feeding them anyway. We got all three kittens.  We removed them from the town kennel one kitten at a time. First was a cute calico. We named her ‘Callie’callie



Then we reached in and took out Rascal. Very cute little thing.



Last but not least, there was one little kitten left in the kennel. Meet Milo.



The three kittens in a box:


I know what you are thinking, its going to be difficult to give those kittens up. Totally right. We found a good home for the Calico, with my sister, who had a calico cat for over 15 years. The little cat, who she called Scrappy, got her through some rough times. Callie, now Molly, loves her new home, and I get to drop by and visit very often.

We found a home for Rascal, now Mr. Schmiddy, with a co-worker of mine. Schmiddy is living in another city, but from the pictures we were sent, it is no doubt he is happy.

That leaves Milo. Another co-worker fell in love with him immediately, and we practically had the adoption papers done up when she admitted she couldn’t take him. She already had two other cats and two giant dogs, and a husband who didn’t want any more pets. It would be off to the shelter for Milo.

That evening, my wife came home. “You want that cat, I can tell. Admit it, You want her!” she cross examined me. I did want the cat, but didn’t admit it. “You sound like YOU want the cat!” I joked. I was right. Long story short, we wanted the cat.

So then we had only one kitten, and he was staying. That evening, my cousin called. She runs a cat rescue in the area, and ‘over rescued’ 13 kittens. She asked if we might foster a few for her. I agreed we go and look, maybe take one or two home. My wife came along, and we ended up taking four kittens home. They were cute!

Tortoise Shell kittens. I had never heard of this before, apparently a black cat with orange coloring, and always female, (like the Calico). There were two black ones too, and these kittens were tiny.

The kittens allowed our newly acquired cat Milo someone to play with. Our older cat was a bit jealous of Milo, so he got along with the younger cats better. They are here:


Cute, right? All four kittens have homes as of now.

So now, our house is back to normal. Normal if you call normal three dogs, three cats, and two budgies. We just got a call. A dog we rescued a while back just had 7 puppies. Think the house is going to grow again.

If you want to become involved in a great thing, look at fostering a pet. You wouldn’t believe the rewards. Thanks for reading.



Cats in the attic and other cat tails


Please pardon the dual pun title. This blog post is all about the cats in my family. Currently, I have two, my brother has four, my parents have two, as do both my sisters. My wife, who loves cats is allergic, but thanks to Benadryl, she manages.

When I was a kid, I fondly remember Gypsy, a little tabby someone gave my parents. Back then, there was no such thing as spaying or neutering your cats. You simply had a cat and she had lots of kittens.

Gypsy must have been quite popular with the male kitties in our community. She managed four litters each summer. We were fortunate to know lots of people, because we gave away a lot of cats.

At one time, we had fifteen kittens at once. My sister Tammy used to carry the kittens around in beef buckets. Everywhere you looked, there was a kitten popping out of something, and it was quite hilarious at times.


Me and mom and our cat Gypsy

We had so many cats, Dad had to do something. One day Gypsy ‘ran away’; at least, that’s what we were told. The reality was, my parents could no longer afford to keep all those kittens, and were quickly running out of people to give them to. I bet my dad still feels guilty, but (as he told us when were older) one day he took Gypsy for a car ride to the local dump. “Lots of mice and rats for her to eat here” he told mom, as they drove home.

When I got older, and my first marriage was over, I found my  home very quiet. I decided to adopt two kittens. A friend of my parents had a litter of kittens at their home, and this is where I found ‘Rascal’. Rascal was and is still one of my favourite cats. He was a little grey tabby with a white belly, and from day one, he was special; a real ‘People Cat’.

Rascal used to cry a lot, probably from being removed from his mother, so I visited a local pet shop and found him a buddy. ‘Killercat’ was a little black kitty who liked to bring knives into my bed, hence the name ‘Killercat’.

Killercat and Rascal were the best of friends, and I loved watching them play. The worst thing I ever did was get Rascal neutered. Something went wrong with the procedure, and when he came home, the stitches let go. I had to rush him back to the vet. This was the beginning of a very difficult time for both myself and for Rascal as well. Once they did the ‘fix’, he had problems with his urinary tract, and after spending the next three years traveling to and from the vet clinic, my beautiful cat had to be put ‘asleep’. I cried with him the entire night, as we had to wait until morning to bring him into the vet.

The Vet suggested putting him on strong medication, but when asked if the medicine would ‘cure him’ or just prolong his pain, I decided to do the humane thing and let the vet put my little buddy to sleep. This was very difficult, but when you agree to be a pet owner, I believe you have to do things like this sometimes.

Killercat was devastated when his buddy didn’t return home from the vet. All the times before, he would be waiting patiently by the front door, and when Rascal came home, Killercat would wash him and the two of them would cuddle. This time, I returned home alone. It was almost as if my cat had went into shock. He just sat there, with a lost look in his eyes, crying. I truly believe animals mourn their loved ones when they pass away, and Killercat’s reaction  proved it.

After a few months of only owning one cat, I decided to look around for a ‘friend’ for Killercat. A friend of mine told me a lady down the street from her had a litter of kittens to give away. What I found was quite the opposite.

Apparently this lady was none too smart. She always wanted a Himalayan Persian, and her new husband was quick to get her one, at a price of $800. The young un-neutered Tom Cat arrived, and seeing how the lady had to attend school that morning, she left him home with her un-spayed female tabby. Her new cat had quite the welcoming party, as in a short while, the lady was greeted by five more members of the cat family. Four of the kitties looked exactly like pure bred Himalayan kittens, but the other one didn’t.

The cruel lady took the runt of the litter, a cute little tabby with the face of a Himalayan, but the short fur of the mother, and hid her away in a cardboard box. When people came to purchase the ‘Pure Bred’ kittens, the little tabby kitten was nowhere to be seen.

When I arrived at the door, the little kitty ran to my feet. It was almost as is she was asking me to rescue her. ‘She is a bit shy, she always has been’ the owner told me. She even told me what she had done to the little cat, bragging how she sold each of the other cats in the litter for $500 each. She didn’t want anything for this one, who  I named ‘Misty’.

Misty was very shy, as I expected. Killercat hated her. They never got along, and Misty chose to live her life in the basement, often hidden away. She was never cross, and could be pet by only certain people. She also never grew. She is as tiny now as she was in 2002.


Killercat and Misty

Killercat, on the other hand, was never the same cat as he used to be when Rascal was alive. He had gotten so cross, I didn’t trust him around anyone but myself. Although he was the prettiest thing, with his big green eyes and the totally black fur that covered his body, I urged people not to get close. He actually bit a few of my friends.


The Infamous Killercat

When I met my wife, Killercat tried his dominance with her as well, but was surprised when she stood her ground. It was as if he appreciated this, and the two became very close. He never growled or threatened to bite her again.

A few years later, Killercat began to have trouble with his urinary tract. A few costly trips to the vet and not many results, I decided to put an end to his suffering. As before, I had a difficult time with this, but the thought of him crying at night was too much for me. I brought him in to the vet, and surprisingly, she actually suggested putting him to sleep.

When I got home, I told my wife “No More Cats!” I said that once Misty passes on, I don’t want cats in my home again. It is just too hard when you have to put them down.

That evening, while watching TV, I heard a cat meowing loudly. My wife and I ran to the basement to check on Misty. I thought for sure she was the next to go, but she was as content as ever, sleeping in her little bed. Again we heard the sound, and knew it couldn’t have been Misty.

I ran outside to discover a tiny, skinny little tabby hiding under the front tire of my truck. I sat on the ground and called the little thing over, and although hesitant, he came to me. My wife came out with a bowl of cat milk (No, we didn’t milk a female cat and fill a jar, this is actually a pet product, a low lactose milk made especially for cats).

The little thing didn’t know what milk was, but when I put my finger in the bowl and then held it in front of him, he soon learned. I had to count my fingers to see if he had ate one or not. He drank five bowls of milk before cuddling into my lap.

“You know what you said, NO MORE CATS” my wife reminded me, knowing how the little thing had already won his way into my heart.

“Where will we keep him? We can’t leave him out here, its starting to rain” I pleaded. “We can take him in, I will get a kennel” My wife offered.

Well, once he made his way into the house, there was no going back. We had just adopted (Bought) a little Sheltie puppy, and worried at her reaction to the little kitten. We didn’t have to worry much, as the two of them became the best of friends.


Chance and Marley

We named the little kitty Emily. This name didn’t stick, mainly due to my cousin informing us that ‘Emily’ was much more like a ‘Elmer’; so Emily quickly became ‘Chance’. We chose this name because it was only by Chance he showed up at our door that night.

I have to say, Chance is the best cat I ever had. Of course he doesn’t get along with Misty, who still lives in the basement, but he is as much a ‘People cat’ as Rascal was. In many ways, he reminds me of Rascal.

Chance spends nights in the basement, but as soon as I wake, he is quick to come upstairs and greet me. He stands on his tippy toes and meows so that I can bend down. Upon me doing this, he kisses me. He has to have his kiss from both me and my wife every morning. In the evenings, he likes to cuddle with my wife on the couch, or run and tease the dogs and get them to chase him. From time to time, you can see him hanging from the neck of Marley, our sheltie. They play all the time.

You can still find Misty here as well. She is the oldest cat in my family, but she still looks like a kitten. She comes out more lately, possibly due to her love for my wife. Misty gets so excited when my wife pets her, she drools, which my wife is also allergic to.

If you have never had the pleasure of owning a cat, you certainly don’t know what you are missing. I love cats, always have, always will.

Oh, I almost forgot, the title ‘Cats in the attic’ relate to a story about one of my brother’s cats. My brother was having work done on his house, and one of the carpenters left the attic door open. My brother had this huge cat named Tiger, who was, like most cats, quite curious. Without being noticed, Tiger climbed the ladder and ran into the attic. The carpenter, who was unaware of this, closed the attic door and removed the ladder.

When my brother arrived home, he looked everywhere for his cat, and was mortified how maybe he got out when the carpenter may have entered the house. After spending hours outside looking for his cat, my brother had to face the obvious. His cat had ran away. He was almost in tears when suddenly he began to hear meows coming from above. My brother explained how he believed he was losing his mind, but soon came to the suspicion that maybe the cat was really above, in the attic. When he opened the attic door, the huge cat leapt out and ran for the bed for safety. A big relief for both my brother and especially for his cat.



Chance thinking he is going on vacation with us

wheres chance

Where’s Waldo I mean Chance


Me and my good buddy


cars my dad drove

I was talking to my dad yesterday, and he expressed how he just loves his current car. He drives a 2005 Pontiac Vibe he purchased used in 2009. The car has served him well, always dependable, never breaking down. It gives us peace of mind for him to have a car as worthy as this one.

some of Dad’s cars weren’t so favourable. (Yes that word is spelled right, if you live in Canada, so WordPress, I am ignoring your little red line).

My dad’s last car was a Hyundai Elantra. The thing spent more time at various garages than it spent in his driveway. The windows wouldn’t roll down, the transmission slipped, and the electrical was constantly a problem. He was lucky to sell that one.

Dad was never one to ask much for his cars. He put the Elantra for sale for $200. This bozo comes up and asks if the car comes with a warranty. It was a 2002 for crying out loud. The guy asks my dad to Guarantee the car will successfully travel from Newfoundland to Toronto; of course my dad gave no such guarantee. Luckily we never heard from the guy again, so I guess the car did make it.

Before the Elantra, my dad drove Toyota Tercel. What a great little car that was! I believe the car was a 1996. The car was the wagon version, and boy was it handy. My dad carried everything from lumber to laundry, and the car always started first click of the key. He would still have it, but our Newfoundland winters and the enormous amount of salt took its toll on the little Japanese car. My dad was sad to sell the car, but the guy who bought it said he transferred the engine to two more cars and the little motor is probably still running.

The Tercel was certainly an upgrade from the 1982 Chevy Citation. This was one of the first front wheel drive vehicles my dad owned, as well as it being one of the first front drivers Chevy built. Although the little v6 engine was powerful, the car was troublesome. Again, being a station wagon (they called it a hatchback), my dad used the thing like a truck.

Before the Citation, dad had an old Chevy Nova. Piece of crap. I should know, I had one as well. A 1976 Nova, the thing was constantly broke down. We later used the car to bring us back and forth to the woods, where we worked together as pulp cutters. The car fell apart on the road one day.

Dad didn’t pay anything for the Nova. Instead, he traded his 1972 Dodge Club cab Pickup for it. The old Dodge. I have fond memories of the truck. When Dad purchased it, it had a green patina paint job. These days the hot rodders would have left it that colour (spelled correctly in Canada), but my dad hated the colour. My uncle volunteered to give it a ‘psychedelic’ paint job.

As you laugh, you must remember, this was the late 1970’s, so driving around in a two tone blue truck with paint highlights around the windows similar to a ‘tie dye’ t-shirt was somewhat cool. Okay, not really, but the paint job was free, and my Uncle Albert got to brag about his outlandish paint scheme. He actually coined the term ‘psychedelic paint job’.

I believe my dad’s second favourite car was the 1972 Ford Cortina. A little British Import, my dad loved this little car. Despite being second hand, the car was in beautiful shape, and ran like a top, as my dad put it. I remember sitting in the car, and pretending to drive around. It was light blue in colour, and I can still remember how proud my dad was to drive such a nice car. Our cold damp Newfoundland winter was quick to destroy the little car. I guess British cars and road salt didn’t make a very good combination.

Before this car, Dad drove a 1967 Ford Falcon. We have pictures of the snow white Ford. I can’t remember whether it was a two or four door, but I do remember a story about the car.

My dad bought the little car used. He and our neighbour agreed to fix it up and give it a new paint job. When they attempted to remove the left front fender, they were surprised to find it difficult to remove, until our neighbour discovered the fender was nailed to a 2×4 that was nailed to the chassis. Some backyard mechanic actually used lumber to hold the car together. Good thing we didn’t have termites on the island, or else my dad’s car would have been eaten before the rust could have did its job.

I know before this car my dad drove a terrible little fiat. The Fiat 500 was so slow, my dad had to back up hills in order to climb them. The exhaust constantly leaked in through the holes in the floor. I don’t remember much about this car other than what dad says now.

I don’t remember much before that, but my dad talks about a few of his other cars, such as a ’55 Pontiac, and a Nash. He says the Nash once had a flat, so he filled the tire with sand and drove it home. He still talks about the rough ride.

He tells another story about the Nash. The four door was a bit rough, and lacked certain body parts, namely rear door handles. He tells a story of a time in which he and a few friends were driving on a slippery winter day. The hill he was climbing was very steep and icy, and when the car began sliding backwards, one of the passengers got scared and said ‘Bail Out!’. My dad opened his door (the only door with a handle on it) and jumped from the car. The passengers all attempted to do the same, but the lack of door handles caused them to endure the ride backwards down the steep hill, and into the ditch at the bottom of the hill. Dad still laughs about that to this day.

In those days, cars didn’t have to pass inspection tests, which was lucky for my dad, not so lucky for his passengers. It sure is nice to see my dad in a safe car, with all the door handles.



Honey’s visit

Living in a small community, we never got many visitors. We were surrounded with immediate family, mostly on my dad’s side, so nobody really had to visit I guess. My grandmother had family in Nova Scotia, and from time to time, her relatives would come to the island for a visit. We always looked forward to this.

I remember once, mom’s cousin Honey and her husband Dave came to visit. I later discovered that ‘Honey’ was a nickname, her real name was Jeanette.

I was probably around 25 at the time, and already seriously into working as a private Disk Jockey. I was getting ready to play a wedding for a young couple who recently visited, when I decided to play a few tunes, and see if they were ‘dance worthy’.

With this, mom and dad began dancing around the house. My brother and sisters hid their eyes with embarrassment, but mom and dad didn’t care. That was until mom noticed someone standing outside the picture window….with a huge video camera on their shoulder. It was Honey’s husband Dave, laughing to kill himself, as he videoed mom and dad dancing away. Of course, (if my memory serves me correctly), his laughter was short lived….he forgot the lens cap on his camera. (If this was not the case, I would love a copy of the video) Too bad, this would have made a great video for mom and dad’s 50th wedding anniversary a few years ago.



peppermint leaves

I had a dream last night. I was little again. I was sitting in the tall grass at my grandparents’ house. The smell of fresh mint in the air, and a gently breeze blowing in my face. My great grandmother was sitting with me. ” Chew the peppermint leaves, and then spit them out!” she said, “They make your mouth tingle!”

With a handful of gooseberries she picked from the branches of the tree that hung over the step rail, and a glass of lemonade my grandmother made for us, we had quite a time. She told me stories, mostly about the hardships she faced as a young woman, left to care for her eleven children when her husband was taken from her at just 50 years old. Tuberculosis took him, and the dreaded disease took one of their younger sons soon afterward.

To this day, whenever I smell the scent of fresh mint, I find myself back at my grandparent’s house, sitting in the tall grass, chewing mint leaves and laughing with my grandmother Josephine.



Tribute to a soldier who never returned home

He was just 17 when he left, but he looked every bit of 15. With his heart set on saving the world from Nazi Germany, he joined the army. Mommy cried and so did Daddy, but he never told anybody. In those days, men were strong and didn’t go crying. I still remember Joseph walking down the concrete walkway Daddy and him poured just last summer.

Joseph  was always mommy’s favourite. She denied that she had a favourite, but we all knew better. All 7 of us kids were proud of our  brother and despite the tears, mommy and daddy were proud of him as well, plus he promised to write every week.

It seemed as if Joseph was gone forever. At times we doubted whether he was ever coming back. Mommy kept track of all his letters, most of them stained with dirt and sometimes even blood. We knew it must have been hell over there, so far from home, nobody he knew or even trusted, but he stayed anyway.

A few of his friends came home early, either in body bags or with some part of their body broken or gone. Oh the town celebrated their return, but in time they were forgotten; just cripples who hung out at bars and usually caused trouble.

We got news reports on the radio about how our forces were doing, but the reports spoke about the army in general, never a specific person.

In the six years he was gone, things sure changed around here. Daddy was sick a lot. TB or something; at least that’s what the Doc said. Daddy couldn’t breathe very well, and couldn’t work. Mommy had to take jobs outside the house, mostly cooking and cleaning for the big shots in town. We almost starved.

I remember the day they made the announcement. The war finally ended. We anxiously awaited the return of our brother. When the bus pulled into town, we were there, mommy and all us kids. We waited patiently for all the soldiers to exit the bus. Joseph wasn’t there. Mommy cried her eyes out while trying to screen us from the terror she felt, but we knew how she was hurting.

We lost Daddy that summer too. What a bummer year. After all those years of dealing with TB, it finally took him.

We still wait for Joseph, hoping that one day, a bus will arrive and he will step off and hold us in his arms.

I help mommy lots now. She has to work for all the big shots, keeping their kids fed and their houses clean. I do all that now, I am boss here over all the little ones, but I still miss my  brother.

A few years back, while volunteering at a senior retirement facility, this story was relayed to me. Annie, a very sweet old lady reminisced about her brother, and how they lost him at such a young age. The workers in the home thought she was crazy, always talking about some guy named Joseph. I listened to her and found that she was quite sane; even at 97, she never forgot one detail of her young life or about her brother.

I presented her story here, for the world to read. I feel that since tomorrow is Remembrance Day here in Canada, it would be a good time to tell her story. Lest we forget not only those who lost their lives fighting for freedom, but also for the families who like Annie, anxiously awaited their loved ones to return home.

12…from an adult’s point of view

The first thing I discovered once my son turned 12 is that I don’t know anything. Essentially, I am a moron. I am glad I figured this out.

I vaguely remember being 12. Maybe that is because I am 51. Maybe it is because 12 was probably the worst year of my life. That was the year I discovered that my parents knew nothing.

“Bring in the firewood, wash the dishes, help your Mom with your siblings, brush your teeth, wash your face (don’t want acne, do you?), do your homework, take out the garbage, shovel the driveway, put away your laundry, wash the car, mow the lawn, pick up your sister’s toys, feed the dog, put the cat outside, let him in…blah blah blah”

Boy, being 12 sure sucked.

My son struggles with 12 because at this age, he is expected to be a bit more grown up than he was at 11. What a difference a year is supposed to make. No wonder he gets confused.

And as much as I try not to sound like my parents did when I was 12, I sound exactly like them. You want to know why? Because parents are SUPPOSED to sound like that. It shows that they care, and that they want the best for their kids. GOD! It took me 39 years to figure that out.

12 is also a time in which you begin to think for yourself. God, it is so amazing. On the last day of your 11th year, you walk around knowing nothing about nothing, and then, suddenly, you turn 12. This is not just another year. This is a year in which you evidently know more than even Albert Einstein knew in all his years. At 12, you basically know everything. It’s a waste of time for anyone to tell you anything, because you know everything there is to know about everything on this planet, and maybe other planets as well. So much knowledge is stored in that amazing brain of a 12 year old that it still amazes me. Most of all, you know way more than both your parents combined. I know, I was 12 once too.

The big difference with a 12 year old in 2015 and one from the deep dark past….when dinosaurs roamed the earth (1975 to be exact). is that back then, there were consequences for your actions, even if you knew everything.

Nowadays, 12 year olds cannot fail the school year. Every kid is passed on to the next grade (or the parents have to fight with the school board to have them repeat a grade and always lose the battle). Nowadays, cheating in school is allowed. If a child is caught cheating, they do not receive a zero, they receive a chat from the school counsellor. Of course, being 12, all the child hears is blah blah blah. This is because the counsellor (who has had years of education and possesses a PHD in psychology) knows less than the 12 year old. It must be tough working with all those 12 year old scholars.

When I was a kid, you only received rewards when you did something. If you failed the school year, you remained in that grade until you passed it. I remember going to my grade 7 class and there was this adult sitting in the seat ahead of me. He repeated the seventh grade four times. He had a bigger beard than the teacher did. One day the teacher caught him cheating. His ass was kicked to the principals office where he received his ‘reward’ for cheating. Ten lashes across the hands with ‘THE STRAP’. A twelve inch piece of leather sometimes used to sharpen straight razors. I think that guy finally graduated from the eleventh grade. I believe he was 24 at the time…definitely not the fastest rabbit in the woods.

The good news? 13 is coming….then my child can go back to being a normal human being….I hope!


I wanna play with my toys and make bubbles and run and shoot bad guys with  my Nerf gun.

I want to talk to a new girl at school. I want to do my studies and I want to do well in school.

Why are adults telling me what to do? When to bathe? What to eat?

Why are the rules so strict? Why can’t I go to the mall on the weekend and spend time hanging with my friends?

Why do I have to do homework? Why are there final exams? Why is it important?

I wanna play with my old toys but I also want to date girls. I want to be a kid and I want to be treated like an adult. I don’t want to grow up but I have to.

Why can’t I make decisions for myself? I am grown up! Why don’t THEY see it?

Why do I have to follow THEIR rules?

Why do the other kids laugh at me when I tell them about my latest toys? Why do they laugh when I talk about my neighbourhood friends?

Why are they so mean? When will it all stop?

Why can’t it be like it used to be? Why can’t we all get along?

Why can’t my parents understand my battle? The one with being a kid vs growing up?


We Understand. We were 12 once too. We used to question our parents’ decisions too. We used to get angry with our parents all the time. We used to wish we were little kids again so we didn’t have to deal with all the crap that comes from growing up. But we did grow up, and when we did, we seen that our parents made the rules so that we could become the people we are today. So that we could raise our kids so that they could become all that they will become. Because we love our kids.

Sometimes I wish I was 12 again…

With Heavy Heart….

A little girl in a family of many, she always had a sister or brother to play with. Growing up on a western Newfoundland farm wasn’t easy, but she had the love of her parents to keep her safe and happy. Running in the hay fields, playing with the dog, her homemade dolly under her arm, she was always the feisty one. Those were the easy years, probably the only easy years for poor Jeanie.

The family moved to a more populated area, thanks to the poor health of her daddy. From there, things changed. Jeanie was of age now and searched for someone to love her. At first she met a man who loved her to pieces, and she loved him, but something or someone put a wall up that separated the two. Her first chance at happiness gone forever. Then she met him.

They say evil comes in many forms, his evil was there for all the world to witness. His charm hid the ugliness that he carried with him, and she was swept off her feet. The two married in no time, because that was the way back then. No sex before marriage, or the Devil will get you!

Things weren’t easy from there. They moved into a small, dingy house that should have been demolished, but wasn’t. The roof leaked, the floors squeaked, and it lacked any sort of insulation.  His controlling ways drove her family away, and he kept Jeanie to himself, when he wanted her. They were in the house only for a few years, and that was all it took to break her soul and her heart.

Four babies in four years, a boy and three girls. The boy was strong, as were two of the girls; the fourth wasn’t so lucky. It was cold that winter, and one morning when Jeanie went to feed the little one, she lay still in her crib. With Daddy out drinking, possibly waking up in the arms of another, Jeanie was found lying on the floor crying, a dead baby in her arms.

Her family intervened and took her under their wing, until he came home. No remorse for the fallen child, he blamed Jeanie for everything. Her fault the baby froze to death, her fault the others were nearly starving. He wasn’t concerned, his drinking buddies came first, and the little money they received from welfare wasn’t for Jeanie and the kids, it was for him and his buddies. Eventually his drinking and cheating ways ended the marriage, and he moved on.

Left with with a boy and two girls and no place to live, Jeanie depended on handouts from her family and a bit of welfare from the stingy hands of the government, poverty was her only friend. With a broken heart and no choice, Jeanie spent a lot of time alone. She found a friend in a box of cigarettes and a lighter, and spent many a night smoking her life away.

Bars and nightclubs were her newest friend, someone out there might actually be looking for a good woman who could love them, but she never found them. Instead, she found Richard. Oh, he was quite the bluff; that or she was naive, or both, but after a night of dancing and a short courtship, she was back in front of the minister, hand in hand with a man who loved her and her three children. A fourth child, his first with her, was born.

This time she had a house on the coast. A lonely, forlorn place where nobody knew you and the nearest neighbour lived miles away. This was where he kept her. No chance for her to attract anyone, no place for her to run. He worked away, and sent money to care for the kid, his kid. The others didn’t matter. One day the phone rung. It was a woman. Jeanie was confused at first, then hurt. The woman claimed that Richard was her lover, and that she was fed up with him leaving to go to the arms of another woman, even if she was the mother of his child.

They say a heart breaks only once, but Jeanie proved this wrong. She was ready to throw it all away, and she did. Years of moving from one shit hole to the next, she lived by her wits alone. Her kids had grown up and moved on, and she was alone once again. Maybe she drank and smoked too much, but who cared? Everyone had their life to live, why bother with someone who has given up on God, and on herself as well? She never wanted to burden others, and she didn’t. And then she got sick.

The doctor warned her to quit smoking, but with a heart that was broken so many times, why heed the advice of yet another man telling her what to do?  Years of abuse to her body left her in the hospital, after suffering a massive heart attack. Her ticker couldn’t take it anymore. The doctors performed surgery and she recovered nicely. A warning to quit smoking again was heeded, at least while she lay in the hospital bed; but that ended quickly afterward.

The heart attack actually brought cheer to Jeanie, as family and friends, and even her kids were at her side, in her hospital room holding her hand, talking about the ‘good times’ and supporting her. It was here that she seen some hope. She moved in with her brother, living in a basement apartment in the community where most of her sisters and brothers called home. She was happy again. Some freedom now, she found happiness didn’t depend on having a man at your side. She kept in touch with her kids, and their kids as well.

A grandmother! Who would have thought? As much as she celebrated her new lease on life, she knew it wouldn’t last, nothing did. A pain in her chest, she thought for a minute she was suffering another heart attack. She was wrong. This time it would be much worse. Cancer. Her constant smoking had brought on another curse. Her lungs were filled with tumors. The doctor recommended treatment, which made her sick and weak. With the love of her family behind her, she went through numerous radiation and chemo treatments that made her feel worst than the pain of Cancer, but she did it anyway.

It took months of treatment and even longer to recover from the radiation, but she pulled through. A talk from her doctor involved her throwing away the very thing that caused the cancer in the first place. She did try to quit smoking, but the habit and the addiction to the drug called nicotine overpowered her desire to stay healthy. She told others she had quit, but continued to smoke. A pain in her back a few months ago, a visit to the hospital, and news that wasn’t what she had hoped for put yet another nail in her coffin. He gave her three, maybe four months to live. She offered to quit smoking, maybe prolong her days, but he told her to smoke if she wanted to. Not only would it do her no good to quit now, but the pain from quitting might actually end her life even quicker.

Today she lies in a hospital bed, weak and dizzy from the drugs being pumped into her body. Cancer had spread into most of her body now, and its just a matter of time. Yet she seems happy now. She spent the last few days getting her affairs in order. Her kids and grand kids are here now, and so is everyone else who have supported her in the past. The men in her life are long gone, thankfully. They only hurt her anyway.

Just the other day, with her entire family standing around her hospital bed, she lay holding a cake that read “Happy 70th Birthday Jean”. She had a smile on her face because in this room, love was present. Love you Aunt Jean.

Three dogs

1661915_10154832678985123_791877687067291139_nPeople say “Wow, three dogs! That must be so cool” While they are loveable, having three dogs can certainly be demanding. For instance, when I crawl out of bed at 6 a.m. and attempt to get ready for work, and of course all three of them have to go outside to do their business! This is okay on weekdays, but they know no weekends. so its the crack of dawn for me EVERY day! …and then, before I get my breakfast, they are ALL hungry…so feed them or they drive me insane by  crying. I know, I know, I should be stronger and do the dog whisperer thingy and make them respect me….but this is hard when everyone else in the house is trying to sleep and the dogs are whimpering and barking. so I feed them. They have me well trained! Same thing when I get home from work. First one up and the first one home….so let us out, our bladders are going to explode and we are starving, so feed us…NOW! Alas, the barking and whimpering doesn’t work this time. Nobody home by me, so barking won’t wake anyone…so bark on. But the soft spot in my heart realizes that they have been in the house all day, never destroyed anything (major), and perhaps they really are hungry. So I feed them before working on getting supper for everyone else. All this while Marley, (the year and a half old Sheltie) brings me my slippers (slightly chewed, but what dog can resist chewing just a bit), boots brings a tennis ball, (he is the one in the front, a mixed breed, and most loveable and sook of them all), and Halle, the Pomeranian…you know what they are like…bark bark bark…but since she is 7 years old and only 3.5 lbs…she is almost cute enough to get away with it. 10399990_10154844521550123_7011101043178091156_n