Saturday's are For Quotes

Walking with a friend in the dark is
better than walking alone in the light.
- Helen Keller

Especially when you are helping her move in the wee small hours of the morning.

Welcome home M and C. We are so glad you are here and safe.

Would you Help a Knitter Out?

So, I have this

And this.

And all of this is to be a hat/mittens/scarf set for twins. Well, two sets actually. (You know, one for each twin). My parish priest just happens to be adopting two twin boys from Haiti. They are coming in October. I'm knitting, and then going out to buy snowsuits for them. They should be between the ages of 2-3. At least their pictures look about that. They are very cute. Very.

Anyway, the scarf is going along swimmingly (except for the usual scarf angst - am I done yet? Surely a 6 inch scarf will work for a 2-ish year old. No? Humph)

Anyway, the plan is to knit the scarf first, because I can use that to swatch gauge, (take that knitting fates!) and really how hard is knitting a scarf. Knit. Keep knitting. Throw some pattern stuff in. Repeat the pattern stuff on the other side of the scarf, in the same order. (I will confess to having a bit of trouble with the same order thing in the past. But, I have resolved to do better!)

The problem is the hat and the mittens. I'm not sure of the dimensions of children's heads and hands. I have no idea what dimensions might comprise these particular children, and I have noticed that there is a particular dearth of toddlers around Chez Spit. I checked most closely. Even the basement. No children. None. Most inconvenient when you are trying to measure.

I have carefully consulted the internet and the dogs. The internet and the dogs were of utterly no assistance. (But the dogs would like you to know that they still have not been fed, and the cat is looking tasty)

They all suggested I ask the blog.


If you have a child, of between 2 and 3 years of age that just happens to be lurking in your house and consuming your groceries and generally being present (In, I don't know, the spare cupboard under the stairs?) Would you mind checking to see if they have a head and at least one hand in reasonably good repair?

If so, would you ever mind hauling them out and running a measuring tape around their head, about where a hat brim would usually sit?

And would you ever mind grabbing their hand (my experience suggests that it might be a good idea to wash said hand first.) and measuring around their wrist, about where their watch band would go (if they have one. Feel free to guess if not. No actual watch band is required for this), and then from the wrist to the end of their longest finger? (Generally this is the middle finger, but we are all about not judging here at Mrs. Spit's.)

And then, would you ever mind writing those measurements down and leaving them in the comments section?

The children who have to wear these garments this winter, in a facsimile of reasonable fit, and I, both thank you.

The dogs; however, do not. They are still stuck on this whole food thing, and you have failed to feed them. They are picky like that.


I was driving down a fairly major street and there was a guy lying half on the sidewalk, half on the meridian, out cold. He was lying on his back, which is an odd enough way to sleep, and as I came down the road, he was not moving. And people were stepping over him, and around him, and drivers were looking anywhere but at him.

And I knew this guy. Not his name, but his face. I'd had seen him, at a soup kitchen we used to volunteer at, around downtown. And I have always been struck by how kind his face looks, and how small and unassuming he seems to be.

I pulled into the alleyway, and got out of my car. And lest you think that I am Mother Teresa in training, I got out of my car, grumbling, muttering.

Why am I always the one to stop?

I counted 5 cars that went past in 30 seconds. Surely there have been hundreds of cars. Surely. Why am I stopping? And I walked around the corner, and thought:

"I'm going to be late for dinner - and - please don't let him be dead."

And I came upon him, and he was not dead, which was a relief. But, given the smell of alcohol, and the fact that certain parts of his body had let loose, and that he was out cold, I debated. Ambulance, police. Police, ambulance. And I knelt, on the side of the road.While cars paused to ask if I needed assistance - for what? Could they not have stopped earlier? Quickly checking for breathing, pulse, bleeding, indication of what might have happened. Was he beaten? Diabetic? Seizure? Stroke? Heat Exhaustion? I debated, recovery position? And I took another whiff of the alcohol, saw no evidence of trauma and decided.

And lest you still think that I am a saint, I put him in the recovery position for his good and my own. For him, so that he would not aspirate if he vomited, and for my good, so that I would not have to go home to change my clothes. And I reflected, as I always do, that I really should get some vinyl gloves to put in my glove compartment. And I rubbed his hand, and told him I was there, and he would be ok. And I equally reflected that I did not like the indignity of wearing gloves where there was no infectious material, that the feeling of my hands on his, they must be a comfort. I wonder who had last touched him with some sense of human care in their mind. And the late summer sun beat down on us, and I called the emergency number and told them where we were. I reassured him. It would be ok.

And I am still not sure what would be ok. He was homeless. He was on the ground. At the least he was drunk. While I waited, I tidied up his few things, put them back in his shopping cart. Tucked his jacket and hat around what few items he had. Reflected that someone had rummaged through his shopping cart, likely taking everything of value. There were a few rice puddings, past their due date, a wind breaker and an old ball cap, much like farmers wear. I wondered if he liked it, or it was merely what came to hand at a clothing bank. A copy of a newspaper that was a week old, and three slices of bread. Perhaps there had been more, but it was gone. Likely a day's worth of bottles he had collected, although it was possible he had spent that money on the bottle of 90 proof grain alcohol that was on the ground, not 3 feet away. Empty now.

And with the sun beating down, I put his things together, to hand to the ambulance attendant. Trying to get what little that was his, what little might matter. I reflected on the rice pudding, and wished that I still carried around granola bars with me, to give out. And I looked at his face, slack in unconsciousness, and noticed how his mouth was caved in, and decided that the rice pudding would still be best, expired or not.

I wondered, in an itinerant life, what you could have of value? Memories perhaps? I am sure, that this old man, with his kind face is not safe or secure in our shelters, and I am equally certain that he too has a story. I wonder if his memory still exists. It did not at 5:15 pm on Tuesday.

And quickly, kneeling beside him, looking into startled blue eyes that had just opened. I told him my name, told him he was safe, and that help was on the way. I stopped saying ok. And he did not tell me his name, merely mumbling and waving his hands, but not trying to get up, not trying to move away. Lost, confused, in another world.

And the ambulance arrived with its clanging sirens and flashing lights, and the techs poured out. In clean sanitary uniforms, taking control of my unsureness. And the woman, as she was pulling on her gloves, and putting on her glasses, she said his name.

I told her that I had come upon him, lying so still, in such an awkward, inopportune place, and I had stopped. And she turned and looked at me and said:

"binge drinking".

And I nodded. She helped him up. With care and concern I had not expected. Gently. I handed the other tech his things, such a small package, even in the heat of summer where not much is needed. Such a small package for such a confused man.

And I thought about patting his shoulder, but they were already helping him away. I looked at the last tech, moving the shopping cart, now empty, out of the way and said:

"that's all, then?"

And the tech nodded yes. And I walked away.


Wednesday's are for Grammar

Your Homework last week was to create a sentence with a dash, and ellipsis and brackets. I'm pleased to say that a number of you did well.

Who Gets to Post the Coveted Grammar Award Button
I was absolutely thrilled with the homework this week. I must give you all kudos. Not only did everyone use the marks correctly, but truly, reading them brought a huge smile to my face.

Without further ado, a big round of applause to:
- Sweet Camden Lass - who is very good at this.
- Martha - who writes quite well, don't listen to her protestations.
- Aunt Becky - who has never done her homework before. A special round of appluase for not being such a slacker.
- JamieD and JuliaS who always do their homework.
- Carbon - who doesn't like parenthesis in conversation.
- Tash, who has, quite possibly the jerkiest ex in all creation
- Two Hands (who called me charming!)
- Alice - who rhymes. And is funny. And Charming. And used another language in her sentence!

A reminder. If you don't do the button and you keep it up on your blog, your hair will turn green, your tomatoes will explode in your garden and your back bumper will fall off at a traffic light. I mean it!

This Week's Lesson:
Ahh, the time has come dear readers. I'm afraid we must discuss that most awe inspiring mark, the apostrophe. I know that you don't like them. Although, I must say I find the fact that there is a campaign to ban the apostrophe a titch distressing. Surely there are more pressing issues at hand? (1)

Apostrophe's are actually important, with 3 main uses.

1. To indicate that a noun or a pronoun is possessive.
This part gets a bad rap, only because no one can ever figure out where to add the apostrophe if there's an S. Everyone is disconcerted. Here are the rules. Write them on your hand until you memorize them.
a. When the noun or pronoun does not end in 's', use 's to show possession.
Mrs. Spit's knitting. (the knitting, belonging to Mrs. Spit)

b. When the noun or pronoun ends in 's', add another 's to the word.
The bus's passengers were completely bored with nothing to knit.

c. When a plural noun (already more than one) ends in 's', use only the apostrophe. Truly this seems to screw people up. What the rule means is this. If you already have more than one thing, don't add another s. That would be a plural of a plural. If you add the apostrophe before the 's', there can only be one of the noun. A plural is denoted by the 's'.
The boys' bicycles were run over by Mrs. Spit's car. (note this, there are several boys, but only one Mrs. Spit)

d. Add the apostrophe and the s to end of a compound word. (2)
The Thursday-Whinge-For-All's prize is a scarf this month. (3)

e. Where there is individual possession, each person owning the noun or pronoun in the sentence, they each get an 's to indicate the ownership is separate.
Mrs. Spit's and Mr. Spit's pets are not always well behaved. (4)

f. In join possession, only use one 's at the end of the nouns or pronouns in the sentence.
Mr. and Mrs. Spit's fridge smells really bad.

2. Apostrophe's are used to indicate that letters have been omitted from a word. These words are called contractions. Contractions are generally informal, and should be spelled out in formal language. (5)
Mrs. Spit can't go, she has too much weeding in her garden.

3. Use an apostrophe to form plurals of individual letters of words, numbers or symbols.
Mrs. Spit has a lot of S's in her name.
Yes, that's right. My phone number is 444-4444 - there are seven 4's.

Important Note on the Grocer's apostrophe.
For some peculiar reason, writers assume that if they are identifying single nouns, they should follow this rule. Accordingly my grocery store is notorious for having:
Pear's, .79 cents/pound.
Now, we know that we aren't forming plurals of a single number or letter, so that's not why they are using the apostrophe. Surely there are no letters missing, which means that the store seems to be indicating that the pear's belong to someone or something else. Now, this is concerning. If the pears belong to another, really whom do they belong too, and should you be selling them if you don't legitimately own them?

Your Homework:
Now that you know better, your mission is to identify an abused apostrophe in the comments section of the blog. Bonus points if you take a writing implement and fix it then and there. (6) Yes, you can use the English Fail Blog or the like, but if you do, you have to identify why the mark is wrong. People finding examples in real life may merely leave me the details in the comments, or email me a picture, to be posted on next week's blog entry.

(1) All is not lost. There is also a society to protect the poor wee mark. They have t-shirts. They could likely use the money from the sales to further their work. Just a hint. (Likely a 2xl please)
(2) Alas, hardly anyone uses compound words any more.
(3) No really, it is. Looks lovely.
(4) It's hard to think of an example in this case. This is a terribly awkward sentence construction, it's not often used.
(5) And I don't care where you are, Ain't isn't a word! Ever! Under any circumstances! Even if you are the President of the United States, you sound like a fool if you use ain't!
(6) But don't get yourself arrested. That would just look bad.



This is me.

Waving at the internet.

I'm not dead.

Just nothing to write today.

Go read Mr. Spit's post. It's beautiful.

See you tomorrow.

Monday Miscellany

  • I have finally finished Gabriel's scrapbook. I'm quite pleased, it looks great.
  • There is something in my fridge that smells, well, just terrible. But I can't figure out what it is. I have been through the fridge. I thought it was the beyond dead asparagus. But it still smells in there. Do you think you can use febreeze in your fridge? Baking soda just doesn't seem to be doing it.
  • Mr. Spit is out of town again. I'm out of frozen burritos. I'm not sure what I'm going to eat. It's not like there's not food, it's just that I totally suck at cooking for myself. What do you eat when you are alone?
  • I finished another several books this week, including "The Grass Beyond the Mountain", "Nothing to Good for a Cowboy" both by Richmond P. Hobson, "The Other Boleyn Girl", and "The Golden Compass". I'm still wandering through "The Problem of Pain", Phillip Yancy's new book on Prayer and Naomi Klein's book "Shock Doctrine". Also reading Judy Blume's "Summer Sister's" in the bath tub. And for some reason (masochism, I tell you) I'm meandering through Aristotle again.
  • Oh, and for those of you who were curious, I dropped Huckleberry Finn into wash by mistake. I had somehow gotten it caught up in the bedding as I stripped the bed to wash it. Mr. Spit noticed that something was awry when he went to flip the laundry, and there was paper every where in the washing machine.
  • I got my very first ripe tomato on Saturday. It looks lovely. I don't know how it tastes. I can't eat raw tomato's.

That's all for me. Hope you are having a great day.

Weekends are for Quotes

By his very success in inventing labour-saving devices modern man has manufactured an abyss of boredom that only the privileged classes in earlier civilizations have ever fathomed.

Lewis Mumford

This Little Bit of Romance

Brought to you by Mr. Spit.

"Darling, let us stop and enjoy the blazing sunset, and the twinkling of the lights from refinery row".

While standing in the parking lot of Costco.

(Yes, he was joking. But we watched the sunset anyway. I don't know what I did to deserve this man, with his humour and zest and care for me. But oh, I am thankful that I did it.)

Feeling Better

thanks for the prayers, paper bags and good thoughts. And thanks to Anna for talking me down. . .

I can breathe again.

I appreciate the support. Don't know what I would do without it.

Panic Attack

I'm having one.

And having a hard time settling myself down. (I usually can)

Could you pray?


"This is new", I thought, the first time I really looked at myself after Gabriel's death.

I had wrinkle's already, those fine lines that you get from squinting into the sun and smiling. And I was content with those. I was content with lines that told the story of someone who spent time outside, someone who gardened, and ages ago and time away spent time out-of-doors. Content with a face that showed others I liked to smile.

But this furrow on my brow? It speaks of confusion and sorrow and depletion of soul. It speaks of sadness and lament and pain.

I looked at Mr. Spit's face the other night, in the light of our bedside lamps, and I saw a tiredness, a loneliness, more lines than before. I saw a face that looked not older, and not old, but careworn. A face that spoke of going through hell. Of being lost in the wilderness. Of feeling more pain than any person should have to bear. A face that was not weather-worn, but life-worn. I saw lines marked Gabriel and sorrow. Lines etched in when he held up his wife, as the world around us told him that he didn't matter, and father's don't grieve their dead children. I saw lines that came from loving me beyond all comprehension, lines that came because he could not fix this sorrow that came upon us.

Our wedding picture is on my desk. I am looking at us. Seven years ago, young, innocent, joyous. And parts of the joy are still there. To lie next to my husband at night is to perform a re-charge of sorts. To be with him, to have him home and next to me, is to fill something in me. To recharge a part of my spirit, my soul. It is to be joined to someone, to give and draw strength from someone.

You look at this person, this person you have pledged forever too, this person who has always been there, this person who guards and holds your heart. You look at yourself in the mirror, and you see a different woman. And when you look into his face, and you see an older, sadder person, you begin to realize, that baby loss, the loss of your child, the death of that which you created together, those lines, they run very deep.

And you realize that those lines and cracks entered your soul and your marriage, those places where you hurt, and those times that you did not respond in love, but rather held on to your grief - holding it in front of you. You begin to explore those lines when you realize that you grieve a baby in your arms, and he grieves a son, a person to be a father too, to teach about wood and cars and sports, and in doing so, to teach honour and integrity and gentleness and family history. To teach what it means to be a man, and how you do it.

And you look at the lines on his face, and you follow them with your eyes and your heart, and you realize, these lines are deep. And they tell a story. Of a set of parents with no child, with a marriage that has grown stronger in tragedy. The lines lead you to a couple who can do anything together. The lines lead you not to a belief of the fundamental goodness in the world, but a belief that together, there is no path you cannot walk.

Wrinkles are far deeper than lines.

I didn't think that I would be cool enough

To have 2 blogs.

But, Mr. Spit and I wanted a blog that we could use to stay in touch with people as we went through a second pregnancy. (no, I'm not pregnant yet!)

We wanted a place where we could post what hospital room I was in, and when would be a good time to visit and what was happening and that sort of thing.

And I wanted to leave this blog to give me space to write about grief and knitting and gardening and grammar.

So, because we've started the process, Mr. Spit and I have started a new blog. If you are a loyal reader - it's invite only, so if you would like to be included, send me an e-mail, and I'll add you.

Wednesday's are for Grammar (Soft Marks)

Right then class, last week your homework was to properly punctuate this sentence. Here it is, correctly done.

"What", cried Mr. Spit. "You bought more wool. How could you? You have mounds, great piles mountains, of the stuff." I smugly thought to myself, I have lots more knitting to do, essential knitting, that must be done. Knitting for: babies, for husbands, for winners of Whinge-For-All Thursdays. Amazing knitting that everyone will treasure!

Those Who Get to Post the Coveted Grammar Button

Two Hands (and I believe this is the first time she has participated, so she gets extra points)
Dreams come true ( a frequent participant)
Sweet Camden Lass (a dedicated grammar maven)
JuliaS (who just all around rocks)
Honourable Mention to Niobe, who agrees with me that some grammar rules are just dumb.

And the rest of you were where? Really, this was pathetic participation.

And the friendly reminder that no homework = no button. If you keep the button up past the week, your toes will develop an obscure and uncomfortable fungus, your potatoes will all be green and your car will belch purple smoke. I promise!

This Week's Lesson

All that is left is the rest of G.V. Carey's lighter marks.

  • Brackets and Parentheses

  • Ellipsis

  • Dashes

This is a nice short lesson, so let's get right into it.

Brackets and Parentheses

There are actually two forms - used for slightly different purposes.

A parentheses is the curvy thing looks like this ( ). We use parentheses in the following situations:

1. To enclose additional information or explanations and examples. Many of you will notice that you could also use a set of commas. Parentheses are sometimes helpful when the explanation will be long, or when the sentence looks confusing with even more commas.

Mrs. Spit (the celebrated knitter) could teach you to knit lace.

Mrs. Spit knit a beautiful shawl for Cathy (her midwife).

2.To cite chapter and verse, especially in legislation, reports, contracts or court decisions, and to annotate lists in documents.

Section 22, paragraph 12, clause g is often abbreviated 22.12(g)

3. To enclose a number that is repeating a spelled-out number. This is often used in business documents, or when you want to be really clear that yes, Mr. Spit should buy five (yes, 5) pounds of butter.

That wool will cost sixty-five dollars ($65).

We will need to order thirty-five (35) skeins of wool for this project.

4. To enclose a question mark, when you are not sure of the truth of a number or date. (1). This is not an excuse to not check your facts. But, when you are not sure if information is correct, it's worth noting it.

I think Mr. Spit was born on October 21(?), 1972(2)

Brackets - perhaps it would be most helpful to think of brackets [ ] as an editorial device. Consider the following uses:

1. To insert missing text or vital information into a quote. This is where you have had to make alterations to a quote to make it fit a sentence, or where you have had to omit a significant amount of text and are truncating. It always bears repeating that you should not use square brackets to alter the intent of the quote, and when you see them in a sentence, you should be curious about what was omitted. (3)

"Wow", the Yarn Harlot said. "[You're] an amazing knitter."

2. To let your reader know that you have added italics for emphasis in a quote.

Mrs. Spit responded "My husband is a wonderful, kind, loving and fun man. Don't you dare talk about him that way. I shall claw your eyeballs out." [bold mine]

3. To let your reader know that a mistake in the quoted material is not yours.(4)

"She always did insist that her husband waz onlee 32" [sic]


1. An ellipsis shows that you have left words out of a sentence or quoted material. When the material we are leaving out starts the sentence, we don't use an ellipsis. We also don't use an ellipsis when the quoted material left out is a complete sentence.

"Mrs. Spit . . . an amazing knitter, is likely to knit all sorts of things."

2. An ellipsis shows that you have 'trailed off' in a sentence. It's a stylistic tool that invites the reader to fill in the blank or draw their own conclusion.

"Knitting relaxes me. I should probably do more of it . . . "


1. We use dashes to emphasize an aside in a sentence. (5)

Mrs. Spit - the celebrated knitter - is knitting a shawl.

2. We use dashes to emphasize explanations, examples, and definitions.

I am going to see Mr. Spit - my husband - for dinner tonight.

3. To emphasize a contrast in a sentence.

Mrs. Spit, who is very organized - looked very disheveled.

4. Use a dash to show hesitant or broken-off speech.

Umm - ah - well, I stuttered. I'm not sure how I spent that much in the wool store.

Your Homework

Write a sentence with a set of brackets or parentheses, an ellipsis and a dash.


(1) We do not use a question mark in parenthesis when we aren't sure of the spelling. We go and get a dictionary and look the word up, if we aren't sure of its spelling.

(2) Errm, this is less of a joke than you might think. I have a hard time remembering Mr. Spit's birthday. I write it down each year.

(3) Especially when viewing quotes from politicians!

(4) I must confess, that when quoting those who annoy me, I take great delight in going through all their material, and sticking [sic] in wherever I can.

(5) Grammar Geek Speak - this is called an appositive. Remember those from the comma lesson? The one I called the non-essential comma?

eyes are not the only thing that weep

On day 3, my milk came in. I had my bath and I came back down stairs, and I looked down, and there were two identical milk patches on my clothing. The next day, I stood in the closet, getting dressed, watching rivulets of milk make their way down my body. Eyes are not the only things that weep for our dead babies.

I walked down the aisle in the drug store, the aisle of baby things, looking neither right nor left. I walked until I saw the box from the corner of my eyes, and I picked up the first one on the shelf, and I put them in the cart. I went to the grocery store, and I bought cabbage and sage leaves. I bought frozen peas.

I threw nursing pads in my bra, and took some Tylenol for the pain, and carried on. Filled with horror and shame and isolation. Who do you ask - what do you do when there is breast milk, and no baby to give it to? The solution for engorgement is feeding a baby. Do you see if you can find a child that could use it? How do you start that phone call? You have all this milk, and there is no baby that needs it. And there is this terrible ache in your heart and in your breasts, and there is nothing else that you can do. Your arms are empty. And when you finally do ask, and your nurse friend is angry they did not give you a shot, how do you tell her that it wasn't offered, but you wouldn't have wanted it.

I threw nursing pads in my bra. And the milk and the blood were the last link to my son. They were the last reminders that there had been a baby, a living breathing child, a thing that my body had sheltered. And the nurses, the doctors, the midwife, they seemed to treat my questions about how long I would bleed, and what I would do with all that milk as simple. I left the hospital without answers to either.

And no one told me of the pain. The pain that blood and milk are. And when you hold a baby, so soon after your child's death, and there is still milk, and you realize with horror that they are hungry and they can smell the milk for another child, and they begin rooting at your breast. And you look at the mother with shame and tell her that you still have milk, and you are ashamed that you have not been able to bring your self to do anything to dry it up. You lie and say that there isn't much, but it hasn't stopped. And she looks at you so kindly, and tells you that she would have brought you her daughter and she would have given you her child and taught you to feed her, so that you could hold a baby to your breast. And when this person offers you this terrible and tremendous gift, what do you say?

How do you tell her, that you hold on to this milk, that you hold on to this pain, because it the only connection to your child? That this terrible pain is the pain of reality, and it is the only link your body has to your son, and you do not think your heart can hold the terrible remembrance on its own. That your heart, so broken, so shredded, is not large enough to hold the pain and the reality that you did give birth. You need your body to carry some of the pain. And that tiny and frail child who gasped for breath and was so terribly still and bruised should have needed the milk your body is making for him. How do you tell someone this? How do you tell someone that you wished you could nurse him, knowing that he was too weak, and needed no nourishment for his journey out of this world?

Everyone has dreams, a thing that they looked forward too. Infertility is a disease of dreams and losses. And my dream, my hope was nursing my son. All of my friends have nursed their babies. And I wanted that. It was the hurt most bitter in barrenness, and what I most wanted to heal my broken soul. If there was to be any consolation in the years of my barrenness, it was that moment when I beheld the work of our bodies and the joy of our souls, and I felt a hungry, greedy mouth tugging at my breast. When I fed my child. When I beheld the balm for the pain of the years that the locusts ate.

And how do you tell women that you know what let down feels like? How do you tell them that the milk came for six weeks, because you did nothing to stop it? And how do you tell them that when their baby cried in your church, your body still produced milk?

How do you tell your bible study that you dropped out because when you saw her nurse her child, and you saw the milk drip out for her child, that you had seen that. Last night, as you leaned forward in the tub and you watched the milk, the last link to a child too soon gone, swirl away from you. Away, because there was no mouth to catch it. And you could not bear to stop it.

And how do you tell them of the day when you pressed on your breast, and there was only a drop? And the next day, when there was nothing? And that last link to your child was gone?

How do you tell someone, eyes are not the only parts of our bodies that weep?

Monday Miscellany

  • I had a lovely visit with Alica at Earls. She's as lovely and charming as I expected. I touched her belly, and told this wee one (or ones?) that we were all very, very happy that they were here, and there was a large group of women who are so pleased, and we have expectations about fetal behaviour, and they'd better stay in line, or there will be a lot of women to give them crap.

  • Alicia got to see the Thursday-Whinge-For-All scarf for September. She says it's lovely. There were a few tense moments when I wondered if I was going to get it back. . .

  • Have I mentioned that I'm a big fan of local libraries? Yep. Probably goes along with knitting and gardening and sustainable living and being a communist (well, I believe in socialized medicine!). Anyway, big fan of the local library.

  • But, um, this isn't quite what they meant. Yes, you should not wash your books, no matter what the subject manner. The library likes new books. But not when they have been washed and they are replacing the book. That is not a new book. That is you paying the library because you are an idiot. And on no account, should you wash your book when you have not finished reading it. Because it will be the only copy the library has.


21.1 KM (13.11 Miles).

3 hours, 38 minutes. Just 8 minutes past her challenge goal.

I'd say she looks pretty good. Glowing, but pretty good.

With her just rewards (Cider and some of Sam's chocolate, in her favourite flavour)

I'm proud Kuri. Really proud. Better than Obama rocks the vote, you rocked the race.

She's Off

(start with the it's 6:30 am post if your joining late)

She's off. And I was going to watch her go around the corner, but I stopped at the course map, and by the time I made it to the corner, she had already beetled out sight. Can we just say she's boogie-ing. . .

She forgot her Advil, I forgot the camera.

Came home to get both. . .

Going to find a place where I can sit and watch her go by.

Hopefully in the shade. It's going to be 30 (84F).

She's rockin' this race. . .

I'll try to swing by to post the finishing photo's, but I have to go and meet Alicia this afternoon.

It's 6:30 A.M.

On a Sunday.

And I'm not a morning person. And Kuri, She's walking a half marathon. And I am really damn proud.

Honest. I'm proud.

Yes, I can yawn and be proud.

Hardly slept. Was worried that I would sleep in. I think anyone who walks that far, in the time goal she set, is amazing.

At least she's not a marathoner.

They started at 6.

Kuri, your planning to walk the full one next, aren't you?

Next year?

Ahh, I'll still be proud. I'll still drive you.

Knock 'em dead. . .

Weekend Are For Quotes

God made rainy days so gardeners
could get the housework done.
~Author Unknown

Domknitrix Knitting

At some point you reach the end of a project. Especially with lace like things, you are left with a misshapen, lumpy thing. Looking like something that a particularly large flamingo exhumed, there is a need to block knitting, to illustrate to it, firmly, what sort of a shape you intended it to be, before the willy-nilly decreases. (It's for a friend. She doesn't know she's getting it. Don't tell her.)

There are no photo's of the washing. You will have to rest assured it happened. The camera is expensive, and it does not inspire matrimonial concord when you drop it into the sink. . . .

The beginning of the drying process. It's high tech. You can see a corner of the Very Big, Very Fuzzy, Very Pink Thing (VBVFVPT). There is a mastiff hanging over the chair, wondering if this process will involve food.

See, I told you the drying process was high tech. . . .

And in order to block something, you need a flat surface . . . . It will be just like sleeping next to Mr. Spit. Except that he's not pink or cold and clammy. . . . It does expand to take all the available space on that side of the bed, much like Mr. Spit (No photo of Maggie, looking very concerned about where she was going to sleep tonight)

Everything prepared for blocking. Thanks to Kuri for the loan of the wires. I meant to count the pins, you know to make sure I got them all back. Nothing says I love you and welcome home like being stabbed in the nether regions by a stick pin.

See those funny looking scallops. This is why we are blocking the VBVFVPT. Blocking hides a multitude of sins. It's a knitter's best friend.

All laid out. Getting suspiciously close to the side of the bed designated as mine. Still looking distressingly lumpy. I also discovered a dropped stitch. Remind me to fix it, would you?

With wires. Note, no scallops. . .

The second part of the high tech drying process. . . .

I'll sleep, it will dry.

Will post pictures of it when done. Really, all you need to know- it's very pink, very fuzzy, very large. Knit on needles roughly the size of lamp posts. It was hard to go back to the size one's for Anna's socks.

So tell me, any guesses on what it is?


Dear CBC:

I'm what you might call a fan. Really. I listen to CBC radio, I get my news from, and if I watched TV, I would watch CBC.

So, I'm perplexed. You are showing BMX biking. Table Tennis (really, it's a sport), Badminton, Rhythmic Gymnastics (it's not a sport. It's children twirling things. I can see that at Sunday School) and Beach Volleyball. (No, not the real thing, this is an excuse to wear minimal clothing on a hot day at the beach, and they've gone and made a sport out of it).

All I want is the Equestrian events. Show jumping. Eventing and Dressage. I'll get up in the middle of the night to watch. But, you aren't showing anything. The best I can find is crummy coverage that looks like you took it from your cell phone.

I don't care if we get a medal. Honest. But I'd sure like to see someone get one. Please? Just an hour of coverage that I could watch on a TV?

A horse, a horse, my kingdom for a horse!

Wednesday's are for Grammar

All right then. Your homework was to punctuate this sentence.

I need to go grocery shopping for a few essentials i need milk eggs bread and a skein of 100 percent cashmere for a new project dear Mr Spit said did you think I wouldn't notice the addition of your essential cashmere safeway doesn't sell wool and I have told the local yarn store to ban you from their doors

Punctuated correctly, it should look something like:

"I need to go grocery shopping for a few essentials. I need: milk eggs bread and a skein of 100 percent cashmere for a new project." "Dear," Mr Spit said, "did you think I wouldn't notice the addition of your essential cashmere? Safeway doesn't sell wool and I have told the local yarn store to ban you from their doors!"

A number of you changed the sentence to be "Dear Mr. Spit", and he will tell you that there's a good reason he likes you!

Who Gets to Post This Week's Coveted Grammar Award?

Well, blogger ate homework this week.
I remember that Excavator, Julia, Alicia, Antigone and Sweet Camden Lass participated. I think there were others. If you did legitimately do your homework, please post your award.

I also got re-submitted homework from

-JuliaS, Julia, JamieD and Sweet Camden Lass.

A stern reminder - no homework, no button. If you don't do your homework, your house will be overrun by moose, Canadian geese will poop in your shoes and the left indicator light in your vehicle will cease to work. I promise.

This Week's Lesson
Ah, this week, we get to talk about what G.V. Carey calls "The Soft Punctuation Marks". This is a short lesson, most punctuation marks just aren't that cuddly. Now, there are a few cuddly, soft punctuation marks, but the most important of all (arguably the most important mark, period!) is the comma, so the comma will comprise an entire lesson. (I hate to tell you - the apostrophe will get it's own lesson too!)

The Comma

A comma is a humble mark, but oh, so important. Upon its misplacement, Lynn Truss wrote an entire book, and spurred a grammatical revolution. Don't believe me? Consider the following joke:

A panda walks into a bar. She orders a beer and wings, drinks the beer, eats the wings, draws a gun and fires two shots in the air.

"Why?" asks the confused bartender, as the panda makes her way towards the exit. The panda produces a badly punctuated wildlife manual and tosses it over her shoulder.

"I'm a panda", she says. "Look it up".

The bartender turns to the relevant entry and, sure enough, finds an explanation.

"Panda. Large black and white bear like mammal, native to China. Eats, shoots and leaves."(1)

Important places to put the comma:

Between And, Or, But, For, Not, Yet. (2)

A co-ordinating conjunction can link two independent clauses to create a compound sentence.
Mrs.Spit was ominously quiet, so her knitting was not going well.

After an introductory phrase or an interjection.

Mrs. Spit, please stop talking.
To satisfy a craving for ice cream, Mrs. Spit drove to Marble Slab.

To separate 3 or more items in a series, or in a list.

Mrs. Spit adores: wool, cashmere, alpaca, silk and mercerized cotton.

Comma Caution(3)
Some people would punctuate this sentence as ". . . silk, and mercerized cotton". This is called an Oxford comma, and is not common in North America. It's not incorrect, but not commonly done. Mrs. Spit tends to believe that unless you were actually educated at Oxford, you shouldn't do this.

To separate adjectives in a sentence

Mr. Spit thinks Mrs. Spit is lovely, wonderful and a great cook.

Comma Caution:
In order to legitimately separate adjectives, the adjectives need to operate independently(4). This means that you can place a co-ordinating conjunction between them, move their order around or remove one, and the sentence will still make sense. In the above example I could have written lovely and wonderful and a great cook, I could move their order around, or even remove one, and the sentence would still work. Try it for yourself.

To Set Off a Non-Essential Element in a sentence

You use a comma if you are putting a bit of information in a sentence, but this information doesn't change the meaning of the sentence. You could take it out, and no one would notice. It's like a conversational aside. Place the comma's on either side of the non-essential element, to set it off.

Mrs. Spit, a celebrated hostess, is a great knitter.

To Set off Quoted Material

Use a comma to help your reader pause before reading quoted material.(5)

"Wherefore art Mrs. Spit", cried Mr. Spit.

In Dates, Numbers, Addresses

Between the month and year
In large numbers
Between the city and the province. You get the picture.

The General, All Purpose Comma

This is sort of an odd-duck. Sometimes sentences just don't make sense. I would urge you to re-write the sentence, try to break it up, make sure that you haven't misplaced or dangled your modifiers, that sort of thing. But, sometimes there is just nothing to do but throw a few commas in.(6)

Your Homework:

Yep, you saw it coming. Put comma's in the following paragraph.

"What" cried Mr. Spit. "You bought more wool. How could you? You have mounds great piles mountains of the stuff." I smugly thought to myself I have lots more knitting to do essential knitting that must be done. Knitting for babies for husbands for winners of Whinge-For-All Thursdays. Amazing knitting that everyone will treasure!


(1) The panda says No! You'll get it if you read the book.
(2) Geeky Grammar Speak - before a co-ordinating conjunction that links independent clauses
(3) Troyka's book on Grammar (Out of print, sorry) helpfully comes up with this term to help writers avoid panda-sized fatalities.
(4) More Geeky Grammar Speak - these are technically called co-ordinate adjectives.
(5) I think this is the dumbest rule. That's why we have quotation marks. So, you know, we know that someone else is speaking. Alas, I am not the final arbitrator of comma use. But when I rule the world . . .
(6) No, I can't give you an example. I *always* write well!

My Thought Last Thursday.

George Bush.

You're a feckless thug. (or possibly, that should be "still a feckless thug")

It doesn't take much courage to insult the Chinese, while standing in Thailand.

"America stands in firm opposition to China's detention of political dissidents and human rights advocates and religious activists"

Your statement brings to mind two things.

Umm, exactly how do you stand in firm opposition? Do you refuse to buy their goods? Umm, no. Do you refuse to sell to them? Uh, well they do have Most Favoured Nation trading status. Do you refuse to travel there (because that's worked so well with Cuba, hasn't it?). Umm, no again. Oh, I know. No rice and ginger beef for you!

And, perhaps more pressingly, the Chinese own $340 billion of your debt. (That's about 20%). I realize you don't like the honourable gentlewoman from New York, but she did have a point. It's not a good idea to piss off your banker.

This group decided to protest at Tim McLean's funeral. They decided to intrude on the private sorrow and grief of a broken family, to make their wing nut point. I have to say, I don't like your religious activists. It might be helpful for you to detain a few of your own, before you criticise China for doing that. It would save wear and tear on our RCMP as we detain them for you. (No problems, your bill is in the mail. After all, the mounties always get their man!)

Just saying.

Monday Miscellany

Don't got much to say.

  • Need to go and find blocking wires for the very big, very fuzzy, very pink thing. . . I'll have pictures of it shortly.
  • I also made some good progress on Anna's socks, and on the whinge-for-all Thursday scarf.
  • Baby blanket? What on earth are you talking about. She's still gestating. I'm still knitting. I'm not sure which of us is getting more stressed. (Likely me, she doesn't know it's coming. . .)
  • I still can't dial the 780 area code. I swear the woman on the phone sounds more annoyed and more discontented each time I fail to dial the area code. I'm sure she's not Canadian. She would be more polite if she were.
  • I bought new bedding. And new blinds. And new curtains. Which means that I'm eyeing the bedside tables and the ceiling fan. . . .
  • Why yes, my scratches from the hell cat are starting to heal. Thanks for asking. He still seems to be doing fine. Only 360 days until we get to do this again. Dr. Collis and I can't wait.
  • That's all for me. I have a meme or two that people have tagged me for, but I'm running out of time. Next week. Remind me.
  • I'm reading David Sedaris' new book - When you are Engulfed in Flames. He's foul mouthed, but quite funny!

Weekend Are For Quotes

Do not pursue what is illusory - property and position:
all that is gained at the expense of your nerves
decade after decade and can be confiscated in one fell night.
Live with a steady superiority over life -
don’t be afraid of misfortune, and
do not yearn after happiness;
it is after all, all the same:
the bitter doesn’t last forever,
and the sweet never fills the cup to overflowing.
December 11, 1908 - August 3, 2008

dormit in pace.

Can't Talk Right Now

My mouth is full.

Can't type right now either - I have a chocolate bar in both hands.

Thanks Sam. You are my new hero, my new best friend.

Mr. Spit can't talk either. . . He's um, busy too.

I have to go now. See you tomorrow.

A few "also's":

  • Mr. Spit is asking about what strange things you have seen in a small town. Go tell him and we'll both read your answers, and laugh, at least as much as we can while we stuff our faces with chocolate.
  • Blogger ate your grammar homework. I'm sure it's very sorry. Could we please have a do-over? I need the answers to award the button!
  • And finally, there's a semi-colon appreciation society! And they have t-shirts! Even in plus sizes! Oh, how my little heat yearns!

To Live in Hearts We Leave Behind is Not to Die

We are a group, those of us who live in lost baby land, and those who care enough to walk with us. We stand, shrouded in silence, in sorrow, in grief. We stand together, holding lights to mark those who are not with us. Holding hands and hearts for comfort. And we give each other the gift of remembrance. We hold memory as a sacrament, a duty, a hallowed responsibility.
We lift our faces and our voices and we recite names and dates and memories.
We keep life that is gone from this world still alive in our hearts.

Katie and Carena and Ciara-Rose.

He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."
Revelations 21:4
Thomas Campbell, Hallowed Ground

Max Goes to the Vet

So this is where we stood after the last vet visit . We had a bit of a do over today, to try to get the rest of the check up done.

Mmmm hmm. If you'll excuse me, I have polysporin to dab on the gashes and a new shirt to buy.

Bad Blogger (Wednesday's are for Grammar!)

Blogger ate the grammar post. Grammar haters! If you did your homework, unfortunately, Blogger ate it. I'm sure it's very sorry.

Well everyone, your homework was to decide and make a good case for whether or not this sentence was punctuated correctly.

If Mrs. Spit were pregnant, she would not go whitewater rafting.

The correct answer is "was".

There were two big giveaways to this question. Firstly, I told you that I wasn't pregnant. Which meant that this was an indicative mood - a case of either or. Because you knew my state, you knew that I wasn't pregnant. Secondly, remember in the example, I used the example of pregnancy - as a black or white thing(1)Therefore, we would most accurately say: If Mrs. Spit was pregnant, she would not go whitewater rafting.

Who Gets to Post This Week's Coveted Grammar Award

Well, I'm very proud to say that everyone who did their grammar homework passed(2).
This week
- JuliaS
- Excavator
-Sweet Camden Lass
All get the button.
A friendly reminder - your button is only good for a week. If you don't do your homework, you don't get to keep the button. If you don't take the button down, your pants will fall down in public, you will break a nail and your car will begin to belch purple smoke. You may also come home to a mailbox stuffed with zucchini. Honest.

This Week's Lesson: Punctuation
Let's start by looking at the punctuation marks. I'm going to be hauling out the seminal work(3) on the subject, Mind the Stop: A Brief Guide to Punctuation by G.V. Carey. There are, according to my hero, Mr. Carey, two types of punctuation marks: the heavy ones and the light ones. Let's start with the heavy ones.
- The Period or Full Stop
- The Semi-Colon
- The Colon
- The Exclamation Mark
- The Question Mark
- Quotation Marks

The Period
Periods come at the end of sentences. Periods tell us that the sentence has ended.(4) We also use them to denote an abbreviation - for example, Mr.; B.Sc., A.M, P.M.

Mrs. Spit always uses full sentences in the A.M. Sometimes she forgets in the P.M.(5)

The Semi-Colon
A semi-colon separates independent clauses, when they are NOT joined by a co-ordinating conjunction (6). Yes, yes, I can hear you now. This is confusing. Essentially the rule is this: if you could use and, or, but, nor, yet and the like, remove that conjunction and plunk in your semi-colon. Not sure if you have an independent clause? Independent clauses must stand on their own, they should be able to be a sentence in their own right.

Mrs. Spit has a latte; she is not sharing it.

The Very Special, Very Important 'however' Rule.

This is a big deal in Mrs. Spit's world. She gets quite frenzied over it. When you use: however, on the other hand, therefore or the like, you punctuate in a particular way:

Mrs. Spit is a nice lady; however, when you use bad grammar, she becomes irate.

Did you notice the comma after however? Good. Don't forget to put it in.

The Colon
A colon introduces a list of items, can be used to amplify a statement, to introduce formal quotes (this isn't very common) and in a few other particular circumstances.
It is always correct to use a colon in the following circumstances:
- After a Salutation (Dear Ma'am:) - In time (8:40)
- Quoting Chapter and Verse (Romans 5: 1-5)
- To make the title of any book or paper sound more spiffy. See Mr. Carey's book above.

The Exclamation Mark
We use these when we are very excited. Unless you are a teenage girl, you only use 1.
I am quite firm on this!

The Question Mark
Question marks are only used after direct questions. A direct question is a question that demands an answer.

Mr. Spit, did you do your grammar homework?

Quotation Marks
Double quotation marks enclose direct speech -when you are quoting someone else. Some writers may also put short stories, plays, articles and novella's in quotation marks. This is a matter of personal preference.
Single: We use single quotes to offset speech within a quote, to indicate a word is from another language, or to denote sarcasm -'that's nice'.

Mrs. Spit thinks some people are 'precious'. "Why God Bless your little heart" she says, when she meets them.

Your Homework
Punctuate this short paragraph correctly. (you will need to capitalize where appropriate!)

I need to go grocery shopping for a few essentials i need milk eggs bread and a skein of 100 percent cashmere for a new project dear Mr Spit said did you think I wouldn't notice the addition of your essential cashmere safeway doesn't sell wool and I have told the local yarn store to ban you from their doors

Also: for those of you interested in the choose your own question option for 'Wednesday's are for Grammar', can you e-mail me your questions. Don't send them in the comments, as the comments will be full of people doing their homework, right class?

(1) Although, in a world with a 2 week wait, paper pregnancies and the like, I'm not sure how exact this actually is. Perhaps I should have used living and deceased!
(2) Four people did their homework. Now class, this is not acceptable. Geohede had a by, what with the twins and all, but the rest of you? You had a 50% chance of getting it right. Mrs. Spit is extremely disappointed in you.
(3) You have a very dirty mind. Yes, you.
(4) A friendly reminder, you cannot force a sentence to be a sentence by starting with a capital. And ending with a period. It just doesn't work that way. We'll talk about what makes a sentence later.
(5) Did you note that I only used one period? This is a style thing. I find it confusing to use two periods, although technically that would be correct in this instance.
(6) Refresh your memory here.

That's Nice

Did I ever tell you the official Lucy Baker School Joke?

Well. Sit right down and let me tell you. You'll have to imagine my really bad imitation of a southern drawl.

There were two southern ladies rocking away on the front veranda of a big old Southern House. Let's call them Savannah and Shelby.

The Savannah looked at Shelby and said, "When I had my first baby, my husband bought me a big old diamond ring."

Shelby said, "That's nice."

Savannah said "And when I had my second baby, why my husband, he bought me a whole new wardrobe!".

And Shelby said, "That's nice."

Savannah carried on, "When I had my third baby, he bought me a trip around the world."

And Shelby said, "That's nice."

Savannah finally looked at Shelby and said, "And what did Macon do for you?"

Shelby looked up, "He sent me to charm school".

"Charm School! Whatever did he do a thing like that for?" Savannah asked.

Shelby smiled. "So I could learn to say 'That's nice' instead of f-you!"


Lately, when I talk about getting pregnant again, people ask if I'm going to use Chlomid again. Especially if they know about the miscarriage. Why not, they ask, try to get pregnant on your own this time?

Umm, I don't ovulate. I have, quite seriously, gone years without ovulating. My body is not good at it. It manages to get up the effort about once every three years. If you want reliability, buy a Maytag. My body, it requires assistance. It's the Alfa Romeo of bodies. Nice to look at, but it spends a lot of time in the shop. Reliable ovulation? Try the next woman.

I'm perplexed. What on earth is wrong with Chlomid? Why is the hell of trying to get pregnant naturally better? Do babies conceived with the aid of Chlomid have Serophene stamped on their forehead? Are they somehow handicapped for the rest of their life? "I'm sorry teacher, I can't speak a second language, my mum used Chlomid to get pregnant with me?" Do I get more points if I blindly try for three years, poking my ovaries and reading to them from Crossen's Synopsis of Gynaecology, trying to explain what they should be doing?

I don't have a problem with using Chlomid. Sure, I'd like to get pregnant without drugs or doctors or blood work. That would be exciting. But, umm, that's not my life. In my life, I use drugs to get pregnant. I want a baby. I'm extraordinarily fortunate, drugs get me pregnant. Let's do some simple math: Want to get pregnant = use Chlomid!

Would someone tell me: why the hell would I spend my life charting and praying and crossing my damn eyebrows to get pregnant "naturally"(1)? I don't have a problem using drugs. Hell, I'm a huge proponent of better living through chemistry. Chlomid worked for me! A next pregnancy is going to be a living hell for me, what with the whole pre-e/dead baby/trash kidneys, possibly have stroke thing. Tell me again, why I need to struggle to get pregnant in the first place?

My answer to the question, "Are you going to try on your own?"

Umm, "That's nice."

(1)Mr. Spit would like you to know, it was, ahem, a natural conception. Yep, his part was all natural.


Someone asked me if I dreamt about Gabriel. (1)


And I never did.

Truth be told, I don't dream. Well, I do. My MIL the psychologist assures me that I dream every night. Several times a night. She assures me that I do dream. I just don't remember my dreams.

I am a thinker, not a dreamer. Maybe it's why I can't write poetry, I am stuck in the solid world of prose. Even as a child, my day dreams had to be based on solid fact. I could never completely leap into a particular fantasy. There had to be fact, something solid about it, for me to fully give myself over to it. But as long as it seemed like it could exist in the real world, well, then I could fully give myself over to it.

For years, I regarded it as my biggest vice that I always seemed to live in the next moment. Not the moment I was currently in, but already anticipating the next thing. Mentally, looking past where I was to where I was heading next. And I suppose we could make much hay out of this tendency. I could spend hours and thousands on a couch somewhere, talking about why - but truth be told, I don't know why. I don't know when I started this. I just remember always doing it. And I'm not all that sure the why really matters.

And if you asked me what I dreamed about, before Gabriel, I would have answered with these thoughts - living in the next moment. I would have told you about going to the Carrot for babes in arms. I would have told you what car seat we picked out. I would have told you I was thinking about taking salsa babies. How satisfied I was that I got to join the Smugs in the nursery, carry a baby into church on mother's day and father's day. And I would have called these things dreams.

Perhaps, you would see the incongruity of the situation, if I told you this. Upon faced with a new challenge, a new opportunity, a new crisis in my life, I immediately begin to asses what the worst possible outcome is.(2) Yes, I know this isn't normal. But, it's what I have always done. I'm a helluva project manager, and pretty useful in a crisis. After all I've already thought about the remedy.

And after I have established worst possible outcome and how I will cope, I begin to think about what would be better than that outcome. I don't know if I think about the best outcome, but at least I think about better outcomes.(3) I would call that dreaming. But I'm not sure if anything so tied to the real world, so tied to the realm of possibility, is actually what is meant by dreaming. I don't know if it's a dream when it's so limited by what could actually be possible. Why dream of a full 40 weeks, I think. That's not even remotely possible. 34 weeks is a huge stretch.

I have, in the back of my mind, a post about what I have learned since Gabriel died. And I can't write it. I don't know what I have learned yet. I have some glimpses. I know what I want: to emerge kinder, more compassionate, living a slower life, fitting others in when they are hurting. I want to hear the subtext of the conversation, not the words. I want to stop being so damn nice, and start being honest. I want to cut out the extra crap. I want to call things what they are. I want to keep my new sense of priorities.

But, I don't know where I'm going with those things. I don't know what the end of them will be. Maybe, I'll change my mind about the virtue of being honest, maybe I'll decide other things are more important.

Some months ago, my parish priest asked me what my dreams are. And I looked at her, perplexed. My dreams, my plans, my future they involved bringing home a baby. They didn't involve the work, study, garden, do housework, sleep, go back to work treadmill I'm on. After all, a baby was my ticket out of a job I despise.

I suppose, I am making some tentative plans about a next pregnancy. Resolving not to plant a garden that I won't be around to care for. Listing books to read and movies to watch on bed rest. Figuring out Internet and email and phone for the hospital. Figuring out companies that will provide Mr. Spit meals, deciding to hire a house keeper.

Occasionally, Mr. Spit and I talk about moving to Victoria. We talk about things to do with the house. We talk about taking our kids and driving across Canada one summer. We talk about taking more time for the things we like. But are these dreams? Not really. I'm not even really living in the next moment.

I suppose I could say this about dreaming, and things I have learned:

At 10:37 on December 10, 2007, I lost my ability to live in the next moment. I'm not even sure I can always live in this moment. And I never really did seem to have the ability to dream.

(1) It was excavator, in a personal email. But it was such a good question.
(2) Which, for my pregnancy with Gabriel, was a C-Section in the hospital. Clearly I need to get better at my research.
(3). Between 34-36 weeks. I can birth vaginally, in the hospital, and likely nurse pretty quickly after the birth. Babies born at this gestation have few if any problems, and go home pretty quickly.

Monday Miscellany - Updated

  • Would someone please explain to me why I have to confirm the dentist appointment *I* made? Yes I know, I made it waaaay back in June, and the appointment is not until September, but I said I'd be there. I wrote it on my calendar. I'm going to pay a stupid sum of money to hear that I need surgery, and I'm going to ignore it, because in the toss up between getting pregnant and having dental surgery (even with all the complications!) I still pick pregnancy. Hello, the possibility of a baby versus a shiny, new filling-like thing? Hello?
  • And, on the subject of things that come up to early, would someone please tell Micheal's that Hallowe'en is not until the. end. of. October. It is August. It is wholly unreasonable to have your Hallowe'en stuff up. Fall is not here. It is STILL SUMMER. (In spite of all evidence to the contrary!)
  • Everyone say thank you to Amy. She gave me an AWARD with a nice write up! I should put together a bling page!
  • It's a holiday here in Alberta. Except for Mr. Spit. He's watching concrete trucks. Would you think of him? I promised too, when I rolled out of bed.
  • And finally, would you go and vote in the Grammar poll? Right now, the grammar-haters are winning. Even if you never comment, would you go and take a look and pick an option?
    Thanks! (Update: Erm, yes Sam. That would be a poll. I'm trying to figure out what grammar pole is - the place on the map where all correctly conjugated verbs and rightly placed modifiers go to die?)

Weekends are for Quotes

If you pick up a starving dog
and make him prosperous,
he will not bite you.
This is the principal difference between
a dog and a man.
Mark Twain
Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar