Don’t Fence Me In – Friday Fictioneers

‘Tis a beautiful Wednesday.  Sun is shining but still bitterly cold.  Spring, eh?  Riiiiight….

So, what better to bring our spirits up than to participate in Friday Fictioneers!  This lovely image was provided by J.Hardy Carroll and chosen by our hostess with the mostest, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields.  What does this picture make you think of?  Why not share that in 1oo words by clicking on the Blue Frog below and adding your version?

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Genre:  Fiction (ish)

Word count:  ALWAYS 100

Don’t Fence Me In

I need wide open spaces.

You can’t get around alone anymore.

So.  I still need to breathe.

So do I.  And I can’t here.

This is my home. I don’t want to leave it!

It was our home.  We have no choice.  We can no longer handle it alone.

I can’t even decide for myself now?  Have I no say?

Yes, you can decide to stay.  I, however, will not.  I’m tired.  I miss my family, who want to help us.

Tears in his eyes, his good side slumped to the now-defunct side.  I know, It’s what we must do.

 

#WeekendCoffeeShare – Snowstorms, Work, and Hello Kitty

Hello, my friends.  Welcome to this week’s coffee share where I am so late it is Sunday and it is five o’clock in the early evening and I’ve had just about enough coffee for my day.  I have decided to splurge on a nice Kilkenny beer.  However, please do not be shy, should you want a coffee or tea or hot chocolate, I will be more than happy to provide.  There is also wine and some limoncello and aranciacello left so, those are options as well.  I don’t want to ruin your appetite, so I am only offering some delicious Miss Vicky’s lime and black pepper chips.

I cannot believe I forgot to mention my Skype session with my friend Raye over in Portland, Oregon, last Tuesday. Should have been mentioned in our last coffee share.  She is very special to me and we were way overdue.  That said, we have decided that we are going to try for a monthly get-together!  Should be wonderful indeed.

OK.  So back to business!  This week started off with work at the Golf Club.  Monday was a nice day.  We were basically there to set up for a trade show on Tuesday. A very physical day.  Tuesday’s group people very nice.  Their show ended at around 3:00 pm and we were able to start setting up for Wednesday’s event.  The snow started slowly round noon.  I had been there since 9:00 a.m and by 5:45, I was sent home.   as they had called in another woman to help with the set up.  To justify her being there from 4:00 pm, it was considered best I should leave.  Lucky me!  By then, the snow was becoming quite the mess.  This was the road leaving the golf club, towards the highway…

Took me almost one hour to get home… a usual 15-minute drive.  I consider myself lucky as I did get home.  My boss and co-worker never made it!  The boss got so disoriented leaving the club, he was driving towards the highway, through the golf course!  When he realised he had no idea where he was, he got out of his car and walked back to the club, where he stayed to sleep.  My poor co-worker managed to get to the highway but got off (probably near my house!) and parked her car in a gas station and slept in her car!  I wish I had known because I would have gone to pick her up and bring her to my house…

Needless to say, all activities at the club were cancelled on Wednesday.  I got a call at 7:30 telling me to stay home.  This was another trade show and people were coming from far and wide so no choice but to cancel.  Only person who did not get a snow day was Iain!  Here are his steps out of the house!

After sitting at my desk watching the snow accumulate on the windows, Zeke and I decided there was some shoveling to do.  Some.  I have two teenagers.  Just had to leave some for them, right?

Depending on the regions, there was up to 75cm (2.4 feet) total snowfall.  Though I live on the “sunny side” of the street, it also happens to be the “gusty side”!  I usually have six steps going down to my driveway.  There were none to be seen.

More views to give an idea…

Each of the boys did a section and even the neighbour’s son helped out… To think that two days later, there would be so much melted, is crazy!

I also got an order for a Hello Kitty cake for a two year old.  So Friday night I baked the cakes and Saturday, I put it all together and decorated it.  I had a dinner date with a friend Saturday night, so I offered to deliver it on my way.  Otherwise, the client would have picked it up Sunday morning.  Admittedly, depending on how late Saturday was, I wasn’t sure I wanted to have to be out and about at 9:30 am!

I have to admit, I was quite pleased with the end result.

Zeke and I went for a nice walk before I had to get ready for my outing.  It was a glorious day but I underestimated the coldness.  That sun was shining something fierce so I was fooled into thinking the temps were warmer than they were!  As I had changed coats for one that is lighter, I had no gloves stashed in the pockets.  Poor Zeke ended up with a much shorter walk!  Will make it up to him this week!

Upon our return home, I notice a humongous icicle hanging from the now-detached gutter.  Sigh… there is always something, isn’t there?

I have taken up way too much of your time but I do appreciate your stopping by!  Have a marvellous week and find joy in the small things!

Lotsa love,

Dale

 

 

 

It Is Time – Friday Fictioneers

Wednesday is here and I have to rush out to go to work.  Ugh.  There is a mountain of snow in front of my door and the white stuff is still falling!

Thank you, always, to Rochelle for hosting this weekly shindig and this week, thanks go to Jennifer Pendergast for her photo.  If you want to participate, click on Rochelle’s name for the rules and regs.  If you want to see what about 70 or so others have to say about this, click on the blue frog!

Genre:  True Story

It Is Time

As Nicole approached her father’s hospital room, she overheard him speaking.

“How long will I live once you turn off the oxygen?”

“About ten minutes,” she replied.

“Okay then, we are doing it today.”

“Hang on there, sir, that is a horrid way to go.  We can’t just turn it off without preparation!”

“Well, I’m done.  I want it done today.  It’s been long enough.  It is time.”

“If you are absolutely sure, we will prepare you so that you go gently.”

Nicole walked away from the door and called her sisters, sobbing, “You have to come to the hospital…”

#WeekendCoffeeShare – Milestones, Letting Go and Fun Stuff

Good early afternoon!  I slept in this morning as my son had a party and I hung around with the (how cool that they even want me to?) last stragglers till 3:30 this morning!  Eldest basically tried to kick me out of my own house and, not to accommodate him but because it worked out for me, I went hung out with Tina, Liz & Peter (old friends of Tina’s), Emma and Luciano (Tina’s daughter and son-in-law).  It had been a while since our last get-together so was nice to catch up.  I brought a bottle of my aranciacello (orangecello) and that was a big enough hit, I may just have to sell some!

When I got home, the remaining four friends (and one girlfriend, sitting quietly by watching them) were playing a serious game of beer pong.  Let’s just say I was very happy no one was driving as they were feeling no pain whatsoever.  Nice guys, I have to say.  Very polite.  They think I’m “chill” so I’m “allowed” to stick around!  And when Iain told them I made booze… well!  My “chill points” went up!  I happened to have an already open bottle of limoncello so gave them each a small shot.  Now one of them wants me to teach him how to make it.

Needless to say, my coffee is strong this morning!  Care for a cup?  Would you prefer tea?  It’s bloody cold today:  -17ºC (1ºF), but with a windchill of -25ºC (-13ºF) so, I’m sure you want something hot!  Now that you’re all settled in, let me catch you up on my week.

I worked at the Golf Club on Tuesday and Wednesday.  Was nice to see some of my coworkers.  On Tuesday we set up for Wednesday’s event.  I know I’m supposed to be a waitress but frankly, sometimes I feel like a mover!  Man do we schlep around tables and chairs!  I definitely could feel it in my muscles the next days!  Wednesday’s group was members of some landscaping companies.  A truly friendly sort which is so pleasant to deal with.  Would that they all were!

Tuesday morning, my son needed my car to pass his driver’s test.  Good thing his appointment was at 10:30 as I was only working at 12:30.  However.  We got to the DMV (SAAQ, for us Quebeckers) and I waited patiently.  For 10 minutes.  What?  Seems son forgot a paper proving he had passed his driver’s courses.  “But, it’s okay, Mom, they gave me an appointment for 1:30 so we’re good!”

Um. No, dear.  I am working at 12:30!  Now what?  Luckily Iain’s godfather, my brother-in-law, Sébastien, was on spring break!  I called my sister, asking for her hubby, and all was arranged.  We would drive over to their house, I would take one of their cars (Tracy was working at 1:00, otherwise she would have taken my place) and leave mine as Iain had practiced with my car and was allowed to use it for his test.  Sheesh.

Off I go to work, waiting patiently and I get a text.  “I failed”.  Awwww… poor kid.  I’m feeling so bad for him and he doesn’t respond to my “what happened?”  Sébastien calls me to tell me he’s stopping by the club to change cars and says:  “By the way, your son passed.”  Little shit.  Not only did he pass, he got 91%!  So proud of him (after wanting to smack him…)

Wednesday was a glorious day.  It was 10ºC (50ºF).  I finished work at 3:30, got home, picked up my camera bag and Zeke went nuts.  Don’t even have to say the word “walk” – though that gets him going too!  Off we went.  On our way to what we call Teletubbie Park, I could see signs of life.  Yes!  All those folks over the pond in England and such showing off their snowdrops and such… so not fair!  OK… we don’t have much in our frigid clime but look!  I see tulips shooting up!  It’s the little things, ya know?

Tulips!

Towards the park. Nothing Zeke likes better than to be off leash and given the opportunity to sniff and run at will.   Once we got over one of the little hills, I could see the baseball diamond had three dogs running around.  Of course Zeke wanted to go play.  Being a mean mom, I said no.   I didn’t know the dogs and people and I was already having trouble choosing where to put my feet as the ground was very soft and wet.  I did not want to make my way there.

We turn to leave and I see, in the bluest of skies, the moon.  Tried my best!

Not a speck, the moon!

On Thursday morning, I got a little… ok, more than a little, emotional.  After Mick died, two years ago, I had to get rid of his beloved F-150 truck.  Much as it was really cool to drive it and get double-takes when other drivers realised a woman was driving it, it cost a fortune to run.  So I changed it for my Escape, which I love.  I kept my old Pontiac Sunfire for the boys.  They both would be driving soon – or so I thought.   For two years that car sat in my driveway.  In the beginning, Iain would ask me to go practice driving with him.  Then he didn’t.  Then, he didn’t seem to be in any rush to get his bloody permit.  What IS it with today’s youth?  I could not wait to get that puppy in my hands and be independent and drive all over!  Anyway.  I kept telling him to at least start it every couple of weeks.  Didn’t do it.  After paying for the registration and insurance for two years for nothing, I had had it.  I called an environment company that pays you for your junk and tows it away.  It was no longer safe to drive anyway.  When I think of how much I could have gotten for it had I sold it two years ago.  Whatever. Won’t go there.

I cannot lie.  I shed more than a tear.  Not for the car itself.  Matter of fact, I was pissed at Mick for convincing me to get it in the first place way back in 2003 because I wanted something else.  He was good at getting his way.  I did learn to love that thing and it was a little bomb that got me to wherever I needed to go.  But it is so weird.  I felt like it was yet another little piece of Mick gone from my life.

By Friday, I was more than ready to go for lunch with Michèle.  We share the gift of the gab, I tell you!  We sat in that Louis XIV restaurant in St. Bruno from 12:30 till 3:50!  Good grief!  It’s a lovely little bistro where you can bring your own wine.  Delicious.  We each had a tartare, her the salmon, me the beef.  Then we splurged on a piece of white cake with strawberry sauce on top.  Perfection.  I brought her a bottle of each of my ‘cellos – which she forgot at the restaurant!  She was beside herself.  Thankfully, she had left it on the floor beside her chair.  The restaurant was full of supper diners when she went back (because when she called, they said they did not see it).  All the tables but ours were full.  She walked up to her chair, bent down and voilà!  The bag was there!  Relief, you say?

So… I think I’ve been at this long enough.  Luch (Luciano) should be here any second now to pick up a bottle of each ‘cello, I really must take my shower and finish my strawberry crumble as my sister has invited me and our sister and hubs over for dinner.  Adults only – even though 5 out of the 8 kids are already adults.  And for those of you who read Friday Fictioneers… NO!!  Not THAT kind of adult party!

Oh!  And before I forget!  As promised, the recipe for the limoncello is this one!  I do the 40-day version and depending on the fruit (more limes, less grapefruit, a few less oranges) I’ll play with the sugar levels as well…

Have a great week, my friends!  I wish you much happiness, smiles, laughter and love!

Dale

xox

Oh!  Before I forget!  Thank you, Emily, from Nerd in the Brain for hosting this weekly get-together!  If you want to play with us, just click on the here and add your link!

Outside Looking In – Friday Fictioneers

Well hello my lovely readers!  It is Wednesday already!  You know what that means?  Yep!  Friday Fictioneers time!  How fast do these weeks go by…  This lovely photo was brought to you by Shaktiti Sharma.  Hmmmm… What do you see?  If you care to join in on this fun weekly challenge, please click on our fearless leader Rochelle Wisoff (no ‘e’)- Fields blog for the how tos.

Should you just care to read all sorts of interesting takes on this one, click on the frog!

Genre:  Fiction

Word count:  100 – always!

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN

Never failed.  Every time Mommy and Daddy had one of their parties, I was sent to the neighbours’.  Not fair!  I’m not part of the family?  What gives?

“No, honey,” said Mommy, “Of course you’re part of the family, but sometimes, Mommy and Daddy have parties just for adults.  It would be boring for you; there’s no one to play with!”

Little did she know I sneaked back, looking through the hedges to watch.  I was surprised to see Daddy hugging and kissing Auntie Laurie on the bench.  She must have had a boo-boo and he was kissing it better.

********

Little note:  I originally used the word “snuck” and then doubted myself.  It bugged me enough to look it up.  So… apparently, both are good.. Though “sneaked” is the original form dating back to the 1500’s and “snuck” showed up around the 1800’s mostly in the U.S.A. but then made its way across the Pond, though not unanimously.  As I searched some more, I found out “snuck” is used twice as often as “sneaked” in Canada.  Oh dilemma!  The worst part?  “Snuck” mysteriously appeared and cannot truly be explained.  So, as there are people from all over the world who participate in this challenge, feel free to change my “sneaked” to “snuck” if that suits you more! 😉

#Weekend Coffee Share – March 4, 2017

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Well hello friends, do come in.  It is freezing outside today.  I swear, when Mother Nature has teased us with temps like 14°C, it is way not cool to, a few days later, drop down to -18°C but feels like -21°C!  Welcome to March in Montreal…

So, I should think a warm beverage is in order.  Would you like an espresso, cappuccino, lattè, good straight up filtered?  Maybe a little splash of somethin’, somethin’?  It’s Saturday, why not?  Of course, if you prefer tea I’ve quite the selection as well, Earl Grey, Orange Pekoe, Breakfast, green and 5-6 herbals, should you prefer.  Please, it is no trouble.  The kettle goes on, voilà!

Alrighty, now that we are comfy on the couch, let’s chat.  How has your week been?  Busy? Relaxed? A little of both?

If we were having coffee, I’d say it has been mostly a nice week, starting with Sunday night at the Oscar’s – yes, in my home, on  my couch, alone.  But that was okay.   I actually enjoyed this year’s and apart from that Kimmel and the tourists bit, didn’t find it boring or too long.  The tourists… five minute would have been enough!  This year I only saw two of the movies.  I am promising myself – for realz this time, that next year, I will do better!  Mind you, the two that I did see were La La Land and Fences – for which Viola totally deserved her Oscar!

If we were having coffee, and you happened to be here last week, you know that I foolishly attempted to go shopping at Ikea.  On a Saturday afternoon.  Wrong!!  So… take two!  I went on Monday and bought 18 bottles!  And some candles.  All those baths I was taking when I was really sick put a serious dent in my candle inventory.  Oh, and of course, I did absolutely have to buy those bloody cinnamon raisin rolls that they ensure we sniff all through the store…  Decided to do a Costco/grocery/gas run and on my way through the back way was teased with a fabulous setting sun.  Parked my car, zipped out and snapped a few pictures.  Oh, where I was parked, I kinda blocked anyone from passing!  When I realised a woman was behind me, I smiled sheepishly (she smiled back) and hopped back into my car!

Got home and bottled my lemon and orange nectar….

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I cannot tell you how disappointed I am that my orangecello did not even have the slightest tint of orange.  Sigh.  Can only tell them apart by scent – HUGE difference – and by the labels I will be putting on them!

Iain and I had been talking about making grapefruit cello and I wanted to make some lime so, these fruit I picked up, along with the alcohol and now, two new batches are blending to do their thing!

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Think I’ll be making some sorbets or salads, or juicing them and freezing for later use.

While I was out gallivanting, I had a lovely blade roast cooking away with, of all things, pepperoncini.  (Thank you Facebook!)  It smelled so good when I got home!  Plain old potatoes to soak up the juices and some GI Joe Cabbage (brussels sprouts to the regular folk) sautéed with Serrano ham, shallots and apples.  Iain and I enjoyed immensely.

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So that brings us to Tuesday.  Fat Tuesday.  Mardi Gras.  Pancake Day!  Only.  I had brined a chicken the night before so I really had to cook it.  But, come on, we’re supposed to have pancakes for supper!  Well, not wanting to disappoint anyone, I served both.  The option to use my fabulous gravy (no, really, you know when you make something and dang if it doesn’t surpass your expectations?  This was the case on Tuesday…) or maple syrup.  Made no never mind to me, ‘sall I can say!  There were sugar snap peas for that veggie element but… didn’t bother asking them to pose for the camera…

Wednesday, Wednesday… what did I do Wednesday.  Oh yes!  Wrote my Friday Fictioneers, went on a coffee date.  Determined after one coffee that it was lovely to meet you, but move along.  Ugh.  I hate this dating thing.  It’s exhausting.  I know I haven’t really told you anything at all but I was on some dating sites.  I am no longer.  It was fun for a while.  Now?  Not so much!

How could I forget!  I finished reading “Swimming Lessons”, by Claire Fuller.  What a fabulous book.  So very original.  I definitely recommend it!  I have now started on “The Gift” by Louise Jensen, like Claire, this is her second book.  It it’s as good as her first one “The Sister”, I shall not be disappointed.

Thursday came along and I saw my friend (through Mick) Leonard was on-line so we chatted a bit.  I asked him when we were going to finally get together and have a beer and catch up on stuff.  He said he was meeting his buddy Steve (usually my “date” when we go see Leonard do stand-up) to watch the hockey game and that I was more than welcome to join them.  I asked him if he was sure I would not intrude on their “Guy-Time”!  Was told I would never…   We met at the Irish Embassy Pub on Bishop Street downtown.  Let me tell you, when there is a home game, ya gotta leave early because traffic is intense!  It ended up taking me a good 40 minutes, which was pretty darn good.  However.  Parking was a whole ‘nother kettle of fish!  After going around the blocks a few times, and just missing one – blast you, guy who cut in front of me!  May the fleas of a thousand camels infest your nether regions!  So, I gave up and decided to go to Mick’s old favourite inside parking three blocks over.  First time I ever end up on the top floor!  Eesh.   Hustle my way to join the gents.  See scads of empty parking spaces.  Pump fist up at the gods of parking but decide it’s a waste of time and keep walking.  Later find out that two streets over on the other side, there is indoor parking five bucks cheaper!  Sigh.  Had a great evening with these two jokers.  They tag-teamed against me occasionally.  Buggers!  Habs were losing 1-0 when Leonard decided he was done and left us.  Good thing too.  Not five minutes later, the Habs tied the game!  I told Steve, had we known all we had to do was get rid of Lenny, we would have sooner…  With six seconds left in the game, we beat Nashville and our beloved PK Subban.  Was kinda nice to see the fans cheering him on despite his wearing a different jersey.  His ex-teammates weren’t so enthused…

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A nice Irish stew and a couple of Kilkenny Pints and lots of great conversation.  It was one of the first times I had the chance to have such a great conversation with Steve.  He is a good man, lots of responsibilities but has the most wonderful mantra every morning:  Today I will try to be the best husband, father, brother, son, employer I can be.  Some days, no matter how hard you try, you do not succeed fully but come the next day, the slate is clean and you can start over.  I like that.

On Friday, I was very proud of my eldest son.  I drove him to the SAAQ  (DMV, for the Americans) so that he would not have to get up so early.  15 minute car ride vs. 1+ hour bus ride.  Came home and pfaffed around for a bit.  The whole gang was home for dinner – on a Friday night!!  I still had some chicken left-over with that fab gravy so I made us some hot-chicken sandwiches.  Went to the convenience store for some crappy McCain fries to bake and go with.   (I did not have a potato in the house.)  Seriously, those fries are the worst.  No matter how long I cooked them, they would not get crispy.  Note to self:  Don’t buy ’em again!

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So this Saturday, we were supposed to get a group of us together to participate in the Illuminart going on in Montreal.  Sadly, one of our gang hurt her leg and hip and could not walk for any distance.  That made it easier for one to decide to cocoon in his home all day.  That left Julie and me.  They were calling for “freeze-your-butt-off” temps and neither one of us was that enthusiastic to go in those conditions!  So we opted for dinner and a movie!

There is this great little Korean restaurant with amazingly reasonable prices and fantastic-tasting food.  Julie had never been and I’ve now been three times.  Mon Ami (My Friend) restaurant… How cute a name is that?  Their Bibimbap is delicious and they tell me their fried chicken is the bomb – maybe next time!  There was a line-up at 7:30 pm but we didn’t have to wait too long.  It was so hard to choose what to eat as everything looks good!  I’m hoping the next time I go, my dinner partner wants to join me in their BBQ platter that cooks on a hot plate in front of you…

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Mon Ami on Ste.Catherine – their photo

We had time to have a coffee before our movie.  We went to see “Hidden Figures”  and both of us loved it.

Oh my goodness.  We’re on our third cup already and I’ve totally gobbled up way too much of your time!  Thank you for sharing this time with me!  I hope I managed to keep you entertained and that I did not torment you too much with the food pics 😉  I wish for you a most fabulous Sunday and week ahead!

Thank you to Emily from Nerd in the Brain for hosting this shindig – I have to find out why I am not get notifications for the coffee shares but do for other posts… Hmmm…

If you’d like to join in, just click on the coffee share box at the top and you will be brought over to Emily’s blog.

Lotsa Love,

Dale

 

Story Time – Friday Fictioneers

Wednesday, Wednesday… what to do on this oh-so dreary (on the south shore of Montreal, anyway) day?  Oh look!  Rochelle has sent  us a picture (her very own) of nice fluffy clouds!  At least the sun’s rays are showing in this one.  At home?  Not so much.  Totally grey and dreary…

Should you want to play Friday Fictioneers with us, click here to see the hows…

T0 simply enjoy reading other interpretations, click on zee bleu froggy…

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Genre:  Fiction

Word count:  100

Story Time

It was a dark and stormy night….

It’s daytime, Daddy!

The menacing clouds slowly taking over the sky…

Those are cumulus clouds, Daddy!

The cauliflower top of the cumulus clouds announcing some rain showers…

Really?  But the sun is right behind the clouds!  Doesn’t that mean a sunny day is coming, Daddy?

The showers would be brief…

They could last all day, Daddy!

Except more clouds rolled in, assuring the day was lost for little girls who talk too much…

Oh Daddy!

Keeping them from escaping the confines of the room, where…

They could play with their Daddy all day!