Friday, July 14, 2023


Recently, our daughter, our toddler granddaughter, and our newborn grandson stayed with us for two weeks. Pure fun. Also, pure energy. Breaks were essential and that meant walks,  parks, drawing, reading, singing, also an inflatable kiddie pool, plus TV and movies. 

With my daughter's approval, I introduced my two-year-old granddaughter to Pixar's 'Up.' Although I hadn't watched it for a decade, I remembered Carl and Russell, the "little mailman" sidekick, Dug the talking-dog, and that indelible image of hundreds of balloons tied to Carl's precarious house floating us all away into adventurea perfect representation of childhood imagination, and also a poignant metaphor for time and how we can't hold on(to) forever. 

I was rapt. With new eyes, I realized that this film introduced the "Squirrel!" distraction meme, still common in our language mores. I (re)recognized the pain of discovering your childhood heroes were not so heroic. I remembered Carl's transformation: growing stronger (less grief-stricken and, dare I say, younger) with each conflict—he tossed his walker and eventually spit out his dentures! Rewatching 'Up,' I also realized I'm now 65% Carl, ha! 

And my granddaughter? Likewise rapt. She (and her pillow) crawled in so close to me; she barely said a word except in one dramatic part where she turned to me with alarm in her eyes and yelled something like "go bird go!" But I didn't remember, nor was I prepared to relive Russell telling Carl about his broken family and a favourite memory of sitting along the street eating ice-cream with his DadHomesick for the past, he notes others might find his memory boring, yet Russell longs for those simple, shared moments with his Dad, "I like that curb." 

Indeed, Russell. I miss some curbs too. Don't we all? Some I'll never forget. But friends, we can like new curbs too. Maybe 'Up' will be one of those curbs for my granddaughter and her Popsthe story of an old guy and a kid and what they can learn from each other if, together, they are willing to keep looking up and seeking new adventures.

Saturday, July 8, 2023

Live in the moment?

We all agree it's important to live in the moment, but some ask, how?  


We humans struggle with living life in the now. Why? Honestly, how could we not? Who has the luxury of living in the moment? People without responsibilities? People without goals? People whose needs are easily attained? Billionaires? There's always something making us busy now, often for good reasons such as, others. True living in the moment might be achievable for toddlers only. 

Maybe it's legitimately better to live for the future? Isn't this why we study? Isn't this why we raise children? Isn't this why we schedule holidays? Isn't this why we train for marathons? There's always something making us busy now, for then

I think living in the moment is the right intention, but perhaps the wrong idea: I can't surrender to consistently living in the moment, but I can surrenderand recommendliving in the moments. I read Alice Walker's book: notice the color purple. It's a cliché but it's true: stop and smell the roses, or linger after the kiss, or go ahead and swim in the lake, or take the day off to be with a toddler (personal favourite) aka live in the moments. And how? 

When I'm mindful, it goes like this:
1. I decide
2. to stop,
3. and revel.

And then I forget. And then I'm mindful again. And then I get busy again. And then I forget. Rinse and repeat. But when I remember steps 1, 2, moments...they lift me. 

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Things that deserve the stink-eye:

Does anyone else recognize this tree?! Despite being nowhere near Hollywood, it is clearly the "gnarled tree" featured in the1982 horror film classic, Poltergeist, written by Steven Spielberg. I love trees but this tree? Yikes. I would not live in this house. Likewise problematic: these trees. 😨
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