Friday, January 30, 2009

A Flying What?

In Let’s Go! I tried to encompass several future transportation possibilities that included both the ideas of personal flight and large distances covered. I used the line, near the end, “Will we circle the stars like we now drive our cars?”

So it’s kinda fun that I just saw this article thanks to Nathan Bransford’s blog:

Yes, flying cars! Gotta get me one of them! Okay, later, when they are fully idiot-proofed by people not wearing white lab coats and have come down in price. Har!

Seeing this technology makes me think of my grandmothers. Why? Because I wonder what it must have been like to be born into the tail end of a horse- and train-based transportation society and then living to see automobiles and airplanes everywhere. Maybe one day I’ll have a pretty good idea.

I’ve already seen huge technological changes for computers (bulging black-and-green screens you used by memorizing Basic codes) and phones (remember rotary dials?), and good lord I’m old enough to have experienced life before microwave oven!

So I may yet live to see a huge shift in transportation technology. That would be pretty cool. Cause the evolution so far, from driving in the parentals’ Cordoba to joining the masses in a minivan, hasn’t been all that impressive.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Celebrate Family Literacy Day Today

It's Family Literacy Day in Canada! The people at ABC Canada along with Honda Canada have created a day to celebrate reading with family. How great is that??

How will I celebrate? I'll read to my kids as always, but to make it a little different I think I'll pull out a book or two that I loved as a kid. Due to my pack rat tendencies, I have saved a few of them.

And if all goes well I may have a critique group meeting, so I'll be working with fellow writers to create future literature for kids.

Have a literary day!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Fairy Fun Book

Ever read a book that entertains you so completely that you can't get parts of it out of your mind? This has just happened to me.

Thanks to How to Ditch Your Fairy by Justine Larbalestier I now have the word "doos" firmly embedded in my brain. Maybe this is a word she made up. Maybe this is a word teens have been using for eons. I wouldn't know given that
a.) my kids aren't quite teens yet and
b.) even if they were, any current lingo used up here in the styx is bound to be at least 10 years out of date in major urban centres.

Anyway, this and other pulchy turns of phrase are now running around my head. I recommend this book. It's a doos read!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Wow, an Owl!

The sight of an owl outside my window was so rare I just had to make note of it. This isn't a great shot because I had to take it through the window and my camera doesn't have a stellar zoom lense. Proof nevertheless...

I think it's a Great Gray owl. I'm no field expert, but it seemed to fit the description given in my Audubon bird guide.

Who knew these guys actually hunted during the day (a dark, gray, dismal day)? Better go let the cat in.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Writing Interruption

I've actually been writing, hooray!!

But have you ever been typing away when all of a sudden the actual act of typing jolts you out of the flow of what you were writing? I mean, some words are just so darned fun to type that I suddenly become aware of the mechanics of typing them.

This happens to me most often with words typed entirely by one hand. These are my faves:


And just plain fun to type: committee. In fact, I usually end up putting two “i’s” in there because I get carried away.

Apparently I'm easily distracted.

Found any faves yourself??

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Great Reading to Keep You Out of the Cold

Looking for some good reading and a great excuse to curl up and stay warm in today's -30C temperatures? I am. Check out the Children's & Young Adult Bloggers' Literary Awards, now in its third year.

The Cybils shortlist of finalists at
will keep you busy with quality reading for a long time.

Congrats to all finalists, from me, one of last year’s finalists. Link

Monday, January 12, 2009

Stinky Situation Solved

At least one of the grumbles from the other day has been solved. But it’s a bit embarrassing how it all turned out. That stinky melting plastic-y smell coming from my car? I couldn’t stand it anymore. Envisioning my car catching fire while I was in the middle of nowhere among other disastrous causes/effects was driving me crazy. Only using the heater at half capacity in an attempt to avoid the smell was (a.) freezing me to death and (b.) not working. So I broke down and took the car into the garage to find the source of the stink.

Turns out a lousy plastic grocery bag had become stuck to the catalytic converter (or whatever--some part underneath the car that gets hot, I am no expert on cars) and was melting on it so the fan was blowing the smell inside the car. I’d likely driven over the bag at some point.

More litter plaguing my life!

Yet another reason to hate those plastic bags!

Bet the garage guys got a good laugh at me.

A small bit of stink lingers, like my vague feeling that perhaps I should have discovered the root cause myself, but in my defense I am not in the habit of lying on the ground and crawling under my car.

The end result is that I am a little lighter in the wallet (groan) but also a little lighter in the worry department. Phew!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Happy New Year...No?

Happy belated New Year!

I have to confess that I'm having trouble with this new year. I normally find January 1st to be a day that makes me feel rather subdued and a little melancholy. No big deal. I take down the tree, the holiday decorations, and I make a big dinner. Our extended families live a fair drive away and don't usually visit; we've seen them over Christmas already anyway.

But here it is the 8th and I'm having a hard time getting back into the swing of things. I'm still subdued and melancholy. I'm grumpy and unenthused. I'm troubling, puzzling, worrying over a number of things, so maybe by committing them to words I can expel them from my brain, or at least push them aside, so I can get on with things.

In random order:
  • I'm stalled over which of the various writing projects I have started I want to tackle seriously. This one? That one? That one's huge. That one's being difficult. This one might be stupid. I can't decide.
  • My dishwasher is making an ominous rattling noise and the dripping leak in the corner is becoming a trickle.
  • The economic news is all doom and gloom. In fact most of the news is grim. I try not to listen to it but it's hard to ignore. And I can't just become a cat lady and retire from the world...or at least not yet.
  • My car is making an intermittent funny plastic melting type of smell. My daughter, spooked, ran from the car to the house yesterday the second I was parked. I had to agree with her impulse.
  • My son was dealt a mental and emotional body blow days before Christmas by a minor hockey coach who doesn't appear to have a bone of compassion in him...and may be missing a brain too. (I didn't actually just write that down, did I?)
  • Hubby's business computer crashed two days ago. Today it was diagnosed as being beyond resuscitation.
  • I'm growing increasingly annoyed at having to put up with dialup internet, and each bill that asks me to sign up for e-billing makes me want to scream. Every ad or spot that says go to this website for complete details makes me crazy. Every store that asks if I want to be put on their e-newsletter list makes me want to hurl. The world is leaving me behind, and unless I want to cough up some serious cash to make use of the new portable cell based internet services or inferior satellite that's all I'm eligible for thank you very much (despite neighbours only a few hundred yards away both up and down the road being eligible for DSL--I am living in a black hole I tell you!!!).
  • Almost every day is a bad hair day.
  • Oh and of course there's the ever present spectre of snow. What ever happened to only getting a couple centimetres when it falls? Seems like every second day we're dumped with 10 to 15 more centimetres. I know, I know, I should just suck it up because at least I'm not freezing in -40C like they have been out west.
  • Nobody is going to like what I'm cooking for dinner tonight. I can hear it now: "Eeew, yuck! I don't wanna eat that!!!"
See, nothing extremely disastrous. I might just be a big whiner. So there: I've whined...I've wasted more time... yeah.

On we go, I hope.

May 09
be kind
to all.