Saturday, November 22, 2014

visiting our annual haunt


This time I’ve been more present, less encumbered by first time nerves. I’ve been here to appreciate the humor of having to label my dorm room door because the first day at the end of a work week packed full I was too tired to remember which door was mine. (I found it on the third try --Allison will not let me live that one down ;)
I’ve been here to appreciate turning on the light and reading in the middle of the night without worrying about getting my religiously observed 7 hours or waking D who is also logging hours to fuel his next day (and who has the side of the bed with the lone lamp by virtue of keeping later hours and being no less voracious a reader).
I’ve been here to stare at the ceiling getting caught up in the old glow in the dark stickers which appear when the lights are all off to show me an artificial version of the big dipper, a clever trick that makes the room seem like less of the small containment cube it is.
I’ve been here to witness the first time nerves of other people, the palpable thrill when they say at loud what they only admit to themselves about their writing, and when I discover that my new favorite author could well be someone I’ve lead through workshops only hours before.
I’ve been here to eat meals laid out at prescribed times, to get bossed around by a schedule I made myself, to thoroughly enjoy the feeling of camp, and to feel smiley on the inside when a fellow writer declares this the best camp experience she never had as a child.
I’ve been here at the writer’s weekend.
And next year, you could be here too.
 Email me to enquire about a spot. michelle.vandepol@ufv.ca

Friday, November 07, 2014

Ode to Intentional Holidaying


 How did we land up in November so soon? Not that I'm not thrilled. I am a complete Christmas geek, collecting gifts and themed wrap (2 matching reversible patterns so I can keep straight the gifts which are heading in three different directions while we celebrate with our family of five and then with D and my families' of origin). Christmas tunes have been playing at my house awhile (and I am looking forward to putting up the tree the last week of November) and when D and I went out for a long overdue dinner date this week I was thrilled to hear them playing in the little restaurant a road over from our home. (he may have rolled his eyes ;)

Due to making like a girl scout and being prepared, I am now on round II of stocking stuffers. Because little C and I are pulling a near all-nighter getting ready for his sleep deprived EEG (tracking his petit mal seizures), I have the opportunity to make some of these felt stuffies I've been pinning on pinterest.

I'm thinking bunny deserves some new duds as well. what do you think? red cowboy boots? ;)
As the holiday season approaches, I'm looking forward to a mall-free season (FYI; if you want to skip the mall Santa lines, join us as we collect items for local babies & the food bank and get FREE pictures with Santa and a free book at the Hope library Saturday Dec 13 from 1:30-3:30) -- making it about more than the traditional hustle and bustle & focusing on spending time with loved ones, celebrating the reason for the season, and giving back.
Taking a break from the office to make up for last week's six day week. Behind me: date night (delicious, non-interrupted time with D), parent teacher interviews (which always make me fall in love with the kids' school all over again), and the watching of a great documentary on Netflix (happy -- which you will love if you are invested in being happier yourself and finding out the science behind it). Ahead of me: little c and me time (I spy celebratory Starbucks on the horizon and he is hoping to wrangle the brain scan from the technician for some investigation with his grade 5 science class), a playdate that doubles as girlfriend time for me and a couple of mommy friends, and a 2 day spiritual retreat. The sort of thing that fuels my scribing and keeps me sane. you know I like it.

Friday, October 17, 2014

celebrating other people turning 30 and growing up

my little sister turned thirty this week (not the blond one, but the one who has always signed her cards, "your little twin") and my mom, my sisters, and I are heading to the city to celebrate. because it is my day off I started it with a Netflix documentary. it was surprisingly poignant and worth the watch,a definite tribute to sticking with marriage and family, one of the reasons I like career coach blogger Penelope trunk as well. Read her latest punch to the gut post here. today promises to be a pack the bags with new thrift store duds and get out of town kind of day. should make for some good material.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

I may suggest what to buy your loved ones for Christmas


The last month has been a crash course in event planning. Our friend's beautiful wedding (the first wedding D & I have hosted and it was a dream), D's 40th birthday, and then a great event at work.
Now I'm back to the regular: a much slower rotation of work, writing, scrapbooking, thrifting, reading, and Netflix series obsessions.
The high schooler is on the cusp of his own driver's license which I'm not sure will cut down my driving as the other two have their own jobs and activities to go to, but it is thrilling (and hand wringingly nervewracking ;) to see him at this milestone.
I'm one of those annoying people counting down until I can turn the Christmas carols on. I've restrained from posting a countdown on my Facebook, but that hasn't stopped me from liking everyone's post who does ;)
Currently reading: Free the Children by the founder of Me to We (it has renewed my interest in kiva.org )
Currently writing: A writer's guide with my other half of the Writer's Weekend. It should be out for Christmas purchasing.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

what's up

summer is starting to wrap up. i'm back to writing before the workday. my birthday, a wedding we are hosting, and soccer season are on the horizon. the projects i'm working on are fighting it out to be next out the door .

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Holy Puttering

 I remember the first time I came across the mundane coupled with the spiritual -- my friend Sylvia had called me up mid-day a few years ago and had said I'm not sure why, because everything seems great, but I felt the Spirit call me to pray for your family while she cleaned her floors. It turned into a couple of hours of scrubbing and spiritual intercession. And I was amazed (and if you know me -- you know I cried ;). First of all, because the timing was impeccable (as God's tends to be) and secondly because I had always been under the impression that the spiritual and the mundane needed to be kept in separate spheres due to the holiness factor of the one and the physicality of the other.

But now that I know better, and have witnessed the power in the coupling of the two (going into that mind space regularly means it will start to happen when you are in the middle of your everyday which is a powerful way to live -- knowing you have a spiritual backing), I have enjoyed puttering in early mornings, while praying for every thought and need and anxiety in my life and in the ones around me -- everything from my nuclear family to facebook friends to people in the news.

needless to say, I am thankful for her call that day
 The puttering of today: hanging picture frames near the ceiling (which isn't hard to do in a quirky old farm house with a great variety in wall size) and the planning of a chalkboard wall in the dining room to turn this:
into this:
source: http://bashooka.com/inspiration/chalkboard-typography-arts/

little c is now officially at camp. quelling my mommy nerves with editorial work and student hosting. and planning a little novel writing for later in the day.

Friday, July 25, 2014

quiet

this is how thrilling my Friday night is: Sally Hansen 330: Hard Drive, Matcha Kit Kat and Instagram review.

this is how tomorrow is shaping up: sun, 2 x celebrating the ten year old (read my baby aka little c -- I know -- I can't believe it either)'s bday

next week, he's gone to camp and I am figuring out magazine layout and other nit-picky computer jobs that are impossible to get done with an adventuring kidlet underfoot.

then I will only be distracting myself.

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