See The Light

Sunday, February 27, 2011

When we first moved into our house over 7 years ago, there was a hideous 80's-era light hanging over the kitchen table. We took it down and put up a cheap-IKEA light which I loved at the time. It had an exposed bulb and once we bought all compact flourescents, the light fixture looked terrible and the bulb was overly glaring and ugly.

After seeing a cute light fixture at my neighbours' house, I went and bought it myself!

I went to install the light, and had the old one taken down before I realized that one of the metal bars from the new lamp was missing. I had to put the old light back up and about two weeks later made it back to the lighting store to exchange the light. I explained the situation and got a new light with a box that had never been opened. About two weeks later, when I got around to installing the light, I realized that this time the shade was missing from the box!

My mom returned the second dud light for me. Another couple of weeks later, I finally got around to installing it yesterday and it looks great. The only problem is: it doesn't work and I can't figure out why.Aaargh! I sure hope I don't have to take it down and return it for a third time.

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The Navigator of New York Book Club Guide

Sunday, February 20, 2011

I've been the member of a very small book club on and off for a couple of years.

Our most successful book club meeting occurred after we had read The Book Of Negroes. I think it was because we had a list of questions at the back of the book which were meant for book club discussions. Since we're reading The Navigator of New York, by Wayne Johnston for this week's book club, I searched the internet to find similar questions to guide our discussion on Thursday.

There wasn't much out there, so I ended up making up my own questions and I'm posting them here to share with my fellow book club members and the rest of the world.

1. What role does the city of New York play? It goes through so many changes, can it be seen as one of the characters of the novel?

2. There are many letters written throughout this book and they are used in interesting ways. How do the letters contribute to the story?

3. As this is a novel and not a play, do you feel that there was an overuse of dialog?

4. Devline Stead was uneducated man from St. John's, yet never made a misstep and spoke like an educated man from a young age. What do you think contributed to this?

5. Johnston's depiction of Robert Peary was rather scathing. He is the villain of the story?

6. Devlin becomes an orphan three times; once at his choosing and twice not. If he hadn't met Kristine, what would have become of him?

7. What do you like about historical fiction? What don’t you like?

8. At the end of the 1800's, the novel makes it seem that a person's reputation was very important. How important is reputation now?

9. Dr. Cook revealed things piecemeal to Devlin in his letters piecemeal, with sometimes months in between. Today, we can get frustrated when emails take an hour to arrive. Do you think people were more patient back then?

10. Why does Devlin agree to be brought to the pole without the ability to navigate, read the instruments, or understand the route they are to take?

11. Why is the book called The Navigator of New York?

12. Do you find there is a good use of humour in the book?

13. Several times, especially at the beginning of the book, one of the characters explains that there are 'no words to describe' something. Do you think this was an effective device?

14. The role of women in the late 1800's was much different than it is now. Why do you think the wife of Peary accompanied him to Greenland?

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On My Own

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

This past weekend, DH went on a ski weekend with Mr. Boy and some other male members of the family. There used to be a time when this kind of absence would scare me and I would wrack my brain over how I would manage to parent the kids for a whole weekend without Daddy. I would try to plan meals ahead, and arrange visits and playdates and generally over-plan and work myself up over how I would fill the time. I did a little bit of that before this weekend and almost over-scheduled myself.
Turns out, the girls and I did fine alone, thank-you-very-much. We went to skating lessons and gymnastics. We stopped at the store. Watched a movie on Saturday night. We ate all our meals at home. I did the laundry, cleaned, sewed, watched TV, and stopped at the knitting store. Sweet Pea went to a birthday party, and Precious and I got groceries, and I even got the girls ready, all dressed up and took them to their piano recital on Sunday afternoon.
I'm loathe to show any vulnerability (just ask DH who will tell you that I am fiercely independent) so even admitting that I have had my doubts about having the kids home alone is hard. Granted, with only two of the three kids, my life was a bit easier. Sweet Pea is much more likely to play with Precious if her big brother isn't there.
The reality is that my kids are getting older. My youngest child is 5 years old, even if she is 3 years old developmentally. That makes life a whole lot easier and means that DH doesn't have to worry about me when he's not here.

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I'm in Love!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Ever find something and it clicks right away?

I felt that way about Boden U.S.A. as soon as I got on the site, and I especially love the Outfit Maker and the sample outfits. I love the way each piece of clothing shows what goes with it.

I love the features of the site and I even love the colour scheme. I've never bought anything there and I'm not even sure they ship to Canada, but I sure love browsing the site.

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