Wednesday, October 31, 2007

I have a new teenager

Yes, its true...I have a new teenager. My daughter turned 13 yesterday. I know, I look way to good to be that old. And yet, here she is, turning 13 on me. I think I blinked or something because a moment ago she was born. How did I get here? Well, Happy Birthday Sara-Beary! Love you with my whole heart!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Group of Seven

Do you like art? I do. I love Canadian Art and its just my favorite thing to enjoy.
A guilty side pleasure I guess. If I had money to burn, after all my tithes and bills were accounted for, I would indulge in a beautiful piece of work from The Group of Seven. The neatest story was on CBC today about a really wonderful art discovery in the States. Sad how it happened but a fairytale non-the-less.

"Randy Boswell, The Ottawa Citizen
Published: Wednesday, October 24, 2007
A previously unknown Tom Thomson "masterpiece" capturing Canada's autumn splendour has been discovered amid a treasure of long-lost Canadian art found in a Vermont farmhouse after the death of a little-known collector.
The small sketch by the legendary landscape artist, showing a fall scene in the Ontario backwoods, is expected to fetch up to $600,000 at an upcoming Sotheby's-Ritchies auction in Toronto that will also feature dozens of other notable paintings -- including prized works from the seminal "Beaver Hall" school of Canadian female artists -- found last month collecting dust in the unkempt country home of a former Montreal art lover.
"It began with a gentleman dropping dead on a sidewalk in Zurich, Switzerland, on a Monday," David Silcox, president of Sotheby's Canada, said. "On the Tuesday, the executors of his estate phoned to say they'd been left instructions (by the deceased man) saying, 'I have a collection of Canadian art which has some value and you should probably call Sotheby's in Toronto.' "
Sotheby's asked the executors to name some of the artists.
"They phoned back the next day and said there's an artist named Varley, somebody named Harris, somebody called Jackson," recalled Mr. Silcox, who then realized that the mysterious collection included works by Group of Seven artists F. H. Varley, A. Y. Jackson and Lawren Harris, and could be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.
By week's end, Mr. Silcox -- one of the country's leading curators and art historians -- was standing wide-eyed in the living room of the late Michael Dunn, gazing at more than 100 significant Canadian paintings worth, in fact, millions of dollars.
"It was like a hermit had lived there," said Mr. Silcox. "It was pretty messy, things piled in the corners, piles of paper and clothing, stuff stacked all over the place. But there were pictures on the walls -- quite amazing. In the living room, which wasn't easy to get through, there were paintings piled on chairs and the sofa and the side tables, and three or four paintings leaning against walls and dressers. And I picked up this one that was sitting on the floor behind an easy chair -- and it was a Tom Thomson."
Mr. Silcox had found Algonquin Park -- a small oil sketch capturing a fall scene in the Ontario wilderness region made famous by Thomson and his Group of Seven associates, and described by Sotheby's as an "entirely unknown" work by the Canadian cultural icon.
"As far as is known, it has never before been published or exhibited, and was sequestered outside of the country for decades," according to the statement announcing the Nov. 19 sale.
Expected to sell for between $400,000 and $600,000, the painting "probably dates from his last autumn, just prior to his death," Sotheby's said.
Thomson, who was a friend and artistic inspiration to the future members of the Group of Seven, died in uncertain circumstances while canoeing in Algonquin Park in 1917.
The rediscovered Algonquin Park scene isn't the only Thomson painting that will draw national attention next month. Another small, but dramatic, work by Thomson -- a 22-by-27-centimetre sketch depicting the northern lights -- is expected to fetch close to $1 million at a separate sale of Canadian art being held by Heffel Fine Art Auction House in Toronto on Nov. 23."

Isn't that something? I can't believe how exciting that is. And the picture they found is simply stunning. The best news of all, is that my homeschool group will be going to the McMichael Art Gallery in Toronto on Friday and they house a spectacular collection of Group of Seven works. I'm sure it will be a buzz! Can't wait!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Is it just me?

Is this not a homeschool moms dream? My poor kids...

(M: Traditional [The Mexican Hat Dance] L: Randy Rogel)


United States, Canada,
Mexico, Panama,
Haiti, Jamaica, Peru;
Republic Dominican,
Cuba, Carribean,
Greenland, El Salvador too.

Puerto Rico, Columbia,
Honduras, Guyana, and still;
Guatemala, Bolivia,
then Argentina,
and Ecuador, Chile, Brazil.

Costa Rica, Belize,
Nicaragua, Bermuda,
Bahamas, Tobago, San Juan;
Paraguay, Uruguay,
Suriname, and
French Guiana, Barbados, and Guam.

Norway, and Sweden,
and Iceland, and Finland,
and Germany now one piece;
Switzerland, Austria,
Italy, Turkey, and Greece.

Poland, Romania,
Scotland, Albania,
Ireland, Russia, Oman;
Bulgaria, Saudi Arabia,
Cyprus, Iraq, and Iran.

There's Syria, Lebanon,
Israel, Jordan,
both Yemens, Kuwait, and Bahrain,
the Netherlands, Luxembourg,
Belgium, and Portugal,
France, England, Denmark, and Spain.

India, Pakistan,
Burma, Afghanistan,
Thailand, Nepal, and Bhutan;
Kampuchea, Malaysia,
then Bangladesh, Asia,
and China, Korea, Japan.

Mongolia, Laos,
and Tibet, Indonesia,
the Philippine Islands, Taiwan;
Sri Lanka, New Guinea,
Sumatra, New Zealand,
then Borneo, and Vietnam.

Tunisia, Morocco,
Uganda, Angola,
Zimbabwe, Djibouti, Botswana;
Mozambique, Zambia,
Swaziland, Gambia,
Guinea, Algeria, Ghana.

Burundi, Lesotho,
and Malawi, Togo,
The Spanish Sahara is gone;
Niger, Nigeria,
Chad, and Liberia,
Egypt, Benin, and Gabon.

Tanzania, Somalia,
Kenya, and Mali,
Sierra Leone, and Algier;
Dahomey, Namibia,
Senegal, Libya,
Cameroon, Congo, Zaire.

Ethiopia, Guinea_
Bissau, Madagascar,
Rwanda, Mahore[?], and Cayman;
Hong Kong, Abu Dhabi,
Qatar, Yugoslavia,
Crete, Mauritania,
then Transylvania,
Monaco, Liechtenstein,
Malta, and Palestine,
Fiji, Australia, Sudan!

Finished? Not quite.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


I was inspired at a meeting...never mind. This is in honor of Chris. Have a great day. USTA!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

"There ain’t no disguising the truth..."

I'm Catholic. Capitol C. I view myself as a Pentecostal Catholic if there is such a thing. I'm a Christian Catholic. To me, that means, I believe Jesus died on the cross for my sins and rose again, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. So, that makes me Christian. I practice being Christian by purposing to walk out my Catholic faith. I don't just go to church on Sunday. I evangelize youth to come to the Lord. Not just to the Catholic Church but to the Lord. I read the bible, in fact I own about 10. How God speaks to each person is unique to that person. I believe the relationship with Christ has to come first. And, yes, there are luke warm Catholics walking around and there are also luke warm Baptists, Methodist, CRC's, Pentecostals (well maybe not...) but you get my point. There are people everywhere that are Christians in waiting. Denominations get so legalistic sometimes. Catholics blew it in the early centuries. Badly. But time and time again, other churches do too. Why? Because people run them who are sinners. We all are. Even the Pope. Blasphemy for a Catholic to say that? No. Pope John Paul spent 8 hours a day laying on his face in prayer and confessed every day his sins, one to another. He was a good and holy man. He was also a sinner. So was Mother Theresa, Augustine, Francis, AKempis, Luther and Calvin. So am I. I know that it is only by Grace that I am saved and that I really don't deserve it. It's the blood of the Lamb that paid the price. And still, the Creator of the Universe wants to love me. He wants to be my everything. He wants me to choose Him. And I do. Daily. I have to die to my own desires all the time to choose Him. When I converted to Catholicism, I felt like I had come home. Here was a place, rich in history, mistakes, and beauty that I could rest my thoughts on. I could go deeper here. So, while our church continues to make horrible mistakes, I take comfort that 2000 years later, it's still here. Flawed? Yes. Scared? Most definitely. Working on it? Certainly. Ever get it right? Not until Jesus comes back. So, please, ask me some of the deepest darkest Catholic questions that have been burning in the back of your mind. There are answers for most of the things people assume to be true about Catholics. Like, why do we pray to idols. Simple answer...we don't. Go ahead and ask me...because I am in love with Jesus. I am not afraid to say how much I love Him. I'm certain, that He loves me back. How I choose to worship Him is flawed. But He speaks to me here. Where do you hear His voice? Where do you feel His breath whispering across your face? I pray peace to you my brothers and sisters in Christ. And I'm not offended. I love you. One God, One Baptism, One Faith (one day...)

What will people think
When they hear that I’m a Jesus freak?
What will people do
When they find thats its true?

Separated, I cut myself clean
From a past that comes back in my darkest of dreams
Been apprehended by a spiritual force
And a grace that replaced all the me I’ve divorced

I saw a man with tat on his big fat belly
It wiggled around like marmalade jelly
It took me a while to catch what it said
Cause I had to match the rhythm
Of his belly with my head
Jesus saves is what it raved in a typical tattoo green
He stood on a box in the middle of the city
And claimed he had a dream

What will people think
When they hear that I’m a Jesus freak
What will people do when they find that its true
I don’t really care if they label me a Jesus freak
There ain’t no disguising the truth

Kamikaze, my death is gain
I’ve been marked by my maker
A peculiar display
The high and lofty, they see me as weak
Cause I won’t live and die for the power they seek

There was a man from the desert with naps in his head
The sand that he walked was also his bed
The words that he spoke made the people assume
There wasn’t too much left in the upper room
With skins on his back and hair on his face
They thought he was strange by the locusts he ate
The pharisees tripped when they heard him speak
Until the king took the head of this Jesus freak

People say I’m strange, does it make me a stranger
That my best friend was born in a manger
People say I’m strange, does it make me a stranger
That my best friend was born in a manger

What will people think
[what will people think]
What will people do
[what will people do]
I don’t really care
[what else can I say]
There ain’t no disguising the truth
[Jesus is the way]

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Van D Retreat Centre

You know when God places people in your life and your just so amazed that He put the quality of those people in YOUR actual life? Like I don't deserve these friends because I'm just not worthy? These are really great people. Well, years ago, God gave us the VanD's through soccer. And these are the kind of people that your friends with in a heart beat, and you see them a few times a year after soccer season is over, and they are in your life for the rest of your life, and without them you notice something is missing. We are blessed by the VanD family as they generously let us use their cottage this past weekend. So, we piled the inlaws and the outlaws into the van (Bessy may have made her last run north...) and we had the most refreshing weekend we've had in ages. It is always a good thing to bring the mothers because I never really have much work to do. My mother in loves gifting is service. She pours her love into the food she prepares, the cleaning she does (I swear the place is cleaner than we found it and really you could have eaten off the floor when we got there!) and generally the care she takes of people. My mom's gifting is teaching. She is a great teacher. When my inloves needed some help with government forms, she was able to help them and encourage them rather than allowing them to feel inadequate. What a heritage my children see in their relationship. And my father in love, well, he really does need a hearing aid, but he's really happy in his private little world. Even though he battles depression, he had a wonderful weekend. So here are some pictures of the beautiful country God made and thanks to our forever friends for letting us share in the beauty.


Thursday, October 11, 2007

50 And Counting

No that's not my age...its my 50th blog post anniversary!!! Wahoo! When I first started this whole thing I wondered if it would be something I did once in awhile and forgot about. But, I love it! So I'm in for another 50, I hope you'll come along.
The election went well, my guy won, but overall the Liberals won the Majority which means another 4 years of gobbley goop. But interesting turn of events, the Opposition Leader, lost his seat. If his caucus won't support him as leader, they will have to have a convention and guess who's name the pundits are throwing around? My guy...Tim Hudak! That would be so great. I think he was born to lead Ontario. And really, how cool would it be to live in the riding the Premier is from. So so cool. Anyway, the Referendum was good too...we keep our current system of governing instead of changing to the non-effective MMP system, which would allow ANY group with an agenda to hold seats in government, which effectively stops government from working. Italy uses this system and anyone who follows politics knows that they are forever held up in making decisions because some party is always in opposition. Its too hard to actually govern. So, the old fashioned, First Past the Post stays. I for one am quite pleased. So, its a good day all over my house. We're packing to go away for a few days and I'll have some great fall "away" shots to bring home and post. I still have the party shots too but my batteries died this week and it was a few days before I got more, so I have yet to download. Anyway, thanks for sharing in my 50th Blog. That's all I have for now. Ciao.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Name Game Fun

I've seen this floating around in blog land and it looks like here goes.

YOUR ROCK STAR NAME (first pet and current car): Bobby Aerostar
YOUR GANGSTA NAME (fave ice cream flavour + fave cookie/biscuit): Chocolate Chocolate Chip
YOUR FLY NAME (first initial of first name, first three letters of your last name): S.Pel
YOUR DETECTIVE NAME (fave colour + fave animal): Blue Dog
YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME (middle name + city where you were born): Lynn Hamilton
YOUR STAR WARS NAME (the first three letters of your last name + first two letters of your first): Pelsa
SUPERHERO NAME (The + second favourite colour + favourite drink): The Yellow Cosmo
NASCAR NAME (the first names of your grandfathers): Steve Aurther
WITNESS PROTECTION NAME (mum and dad's middle names): Anne Aurther
TV WEATHER ANCHOR NAME (your fifth grade teacher's name + a major city that starts with the same letter): Walsh Waterloo
SPY NAME/BOND GIRL (your fave holiday/season + flower): Summer Daisy
CARTOON NAME (fave fruit + item of clothing wearing at the moment + ie or y): Honey Dew Jeansie
HIPPY NAME (what you ate for breakfast + your fave tree): Oatmeal Sugar Maple
YOUR ROCK STAR TOUR NAME (The + your fave hobby/craft + fave weather + Tour): The Scrapbooking/Blogger Sunny Day Tour

What's your name?

Get Voting or not

Today we have Provincial elections and its a beautiful day to vote! I love politics. Crazy, I know, but I just love the process. I love the language and the organization and the ideas. I love the accountability and the idea that I myself am the government and I get a say in the ideas that happen. And, if I actually vote and don't like the results, I feel that I have the right to say something to my MPP (Member of Provincial Parliament for those not in Ontario). So for me, its a fun day. I actually get emotional when I vote because I think of how many before me fought for the right for me to freely do it. Its a huge honor. People lay down their lives for my rights. That continually blows my mind. I don't know how they do it. Do they really know what they're doing? Do they ever really know how blessed we are because of their sacrifice? And the families who sacrifice everything to let them go. Its really incredible. So, if for nothing else, I honor those people who fought for my right to vote. Its hard to think about, but they also fought for my right to choose not to vote. So for those exercising that right today, well, even though I disagree, just think of the soldiers and women who fought for that too. Freedom, its a huge responsibility.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Tag Your It

I have been blessed with a lovely award today. What a huge honor and I have my blogger buddy Aduladi to thank. So, publicly, thankyou. Its a huge honor to say the least and I'm really speechless about it. (those who know me know I'm never speechless, I probably most likely tend to ramble than be speechless...) ah ehm.....
anyway, I am honored and will dilegently set out to honor others as per the requirement. If I could, I'd award Aduladi, but she already has it. goes.


I'm having a particularly great day...warm weather in October, a great weekend feast of friendship, family and food...and, it was a decent school day after a huge long weekend. What better than to stay in a thankful mood and offer this song to God and to bless my friends. I hope your day is great too, and if its a struggle, find one thing to cling to...a beautiful leaf, a baby's smile, or just a simple breath, I pray you are all well. He loves you that much.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Happy Turkey Day

For all you Canadians out there, Happy Thanksgiving! We've been giving thanks all weekend long. First with our Homeschool Group Enoch on Friday night...we had such great food and really lovely fellowship, complete with a rockin' Dutch Blitz Tourny. Saturday brought extreme rain while we enjoyed a day at Marineland with friends, talk about soggy. And Sunday was all about coming together as family. After church we enjoyed dinner with my in-love side of the mother in love, sister and brother in loves and all my nieces and nephews. Festive food, fantastic family and phenomenal fellowship. And now, today, we're off for more Turkey and my side of the family. My brother is in town and my aunt (dad's sister)is joining us, and my mom is working away cooking for us! This is the first year in a long time that I haven't cooked on the long weekend and its been so great. I'm rested and full and content. Not just full on food, but on family. Its been such a great feast of fellowship this weekend.
Anyway, wherever you are in your turkey journey, I pray God's blessing on you and a peace that surpasses all understanding.
photo credit:

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

My Talented Son Part 2

Here's part two for those of you hanging on my the edge of your seats....

Too funny

Okay, I promise I'll post pics from the big birthday party on Sunday, but you have to have a listen to this and then pop over to Aduladi's Blog to hear a hysterical dad version to Pachabels Canon in funny. Man, these people are talented!
Anyway, enjoy, even if your kids are grown, or if you don't have any, its really funny to listen to.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Do you have an Ebeneezer Stone?

I've found this neat article and lately I've been looking at all the Ebeneezer's in my life and love the way God places each and every one in each and every situation. Most are joyful, some are mournful, but they are all filled with Gods love. So here's to all my Ebenezer's...thankyou each and everyone, for filling me with God's love and His Holy Presence through you!
“Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Jeshanah, and named it Ebenezer; for he said, “Thus far the LORD has helped us.” So the Philistines were subdued and did not again enter the territory of Israel; the hand of the LORD was against the Philistines all the days of Samuel. The towns that the Philistines had taken from Israel were restored to Israel, from Ekron to Gath; and Israel recovered their territory from the hand of the Philistines. There was peace also between Israel and the Amorites. (1 Samuel 7:12-14 NRSV)

What is an Ebenezer Stone?

“It is usually transliterated as a proper name by dropping the definite
article (Ha) from the Hebrew word for “place” (Ezer) and putting it together with the Hebrew word for “stone” (Even) to create: “Ebenezer.” The etymological roots of the word, thus defined, should demonstrate that an “Ebenezer” is, literally, a “Stone of Help.”
Literally speaking, an Ebenezer is a “stone of help,” or a reminder of God’s Real, Holy Presence and Divine aid. Spiritually and theologically speaking, an Ebenezer can be nearly anything that reminds us of God’s presence and help: the Bible, the Sacramental Elements, a cross, a picture, a fellow believer, a hymn – those things which serve as reminders of God’s love, God’s Real Presence, and God’s assistance are “Ebenezers.”
Dr. Gregory S. Neal
I encourage you to find a stone, an ugly, bumpy, warts and all kind of stone, to place in your garden, or on a table, but somewhere you can see, to be reminded of all your Ebenezers.