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TToT: Boulder Slipper Lungs – Thanks Noodles! #10Thankful

No quote full of wisdom can possibly be any greater than the ones that come from young kids and their imaginative little minds. I am feeling that most acutely and holding on, looking for a little bit of that in me, while the little ones in my life remain this age and teach me so much.

For some reason, some reason we can’t figure out, his mother can’t quite explain, my nephew calls his lungs boulder slipper lungs.


Nobody Knows (Pete’s dragon Soundtrack) – The Lumineers

The things the children in my life continually come up with are things that are constantly surprising me and making me smile.

My nephew, for example, he loves noodles and he wants them plain, with only butter. He loves what he refers to as “Grandma’s noodles,” but I think my brother, for example, may pick out the Simpsons quote from the title of this week’s TToT post if no one else has the foggiest clue what I’m referring to.

I was thankful my sister, brother-in-law and nephew made it home safe from their first vacation together out west to visit family. It was my nephew’s first airplane ride. Western Canada and Alberta means dinosaurs for my nephew and fishing for my brother-in-law. My sister was just glad to get away with her two favourite boys. With my nephew starting JK in a couple weeks, things are about to get busier.


For their affect on my life.

They teach me to keep an open mind, even though they often feel like they are right, so who’s to say who’s right anyway?

For instance, if you were to try and convince my nephew that lungs are not called boulder slipper lungs, he likely might not believe you, but school will soon start and who knows what sorts of logic and teachings he will be introduced to then and there.


Reminds me of that song by Canadian band Rush, “The Logical Song”.

That my family puts up with my writing and this blog, are as supportive as they are, when I know many writers aren’t quite so lucky.

A lot of people write memoir and non fiction which involves stories of their family members in it. This can create resentments and other issues. Recollections are different for everyone. I needed to express myself, but how to do that without alienating those I care about?

Of course, if I write (even in my fiction), people in my life are going to appear because they are most of what matters to me.

I know they respect my need to express myself through words, but I never want to sacrifice their trust in me or their needs for that self expression.

Hmm. Perhaps I really should just quit with these pesky words and return solely to visual art instead.

That all my family survived the destructive, unpredictable tornado of August 7th, 1979

TORNADO: Part One, Whirlwind

I wanted to mark the anniversary and write an interview with my parents. It was too late to speak to my grandparents about their recollections, as I only started this blog after they both passed away, though I had spoken to them both about it many times before.

It’s raining as I type these words, hard and noisily just now, and I imagine or I try to. One of those things I can’t really fathom without experiencing how it must have felt firsthand, which I am lucky and hope I never have to do. I am just glad my father survived to tell the tale, or else I wouldn’t have been here to be able to help him tell it in the first place.

For that moment that I often find myself awake to witness, at three or four in the morning, when the sound of the nighttime crickets and the start of the early morning first chirping of the birds intermingle with one another.

If I am unable to sleep in those moments, at least I am awake and tuned in to hear such a natural thing as that.

For a nephew who just turned four.

We had spaghetti and meatballs (noodles) and cake (which I received a big bite of just icing when finishing). We may need to whisper Happy Birthday for his fifth birthday, if he doesn’t grow out of the shyness he had this time when we sang out loud.

I will never forget his birthday, as I was there the day he first arrived.

It was a very special day for me for so many reasons.

Read here to find out why.

Memorable. Unforgettable. Incredible.

For a fierce game of dinosaurs.

This includes “THE DEEP UNDERGROUND” from my nephew’s favourite movie “The Land Before Time”.

The underground, in this case, is the front entrance which is down two steps. The Sharp Tooth is inevitably pushed off the edge by Mother, Littlefoot’s mother with the long neck.

For a chunk of days of rain, whether the weather is a loud, hard downpour or a sprinkle off and on throughout the day. We needed the rain, something to break up all the intense humidity.

For a gift from my father. I know he feels bad when he hears how much I miss the vision I used to have, but he still brings me markers when I speak of wanting to revisit all that anyway, despite my worsening sight, an activity which will likely bring back both joy and sadness all at the same time.

I heard my favourite scented markers from childhood, a somewhat brighter time in my life, visually I mean.

Mr. Sketch

Well, thanks to




I have been thinking about colours, flowers, rainbows. I am going to try art, which I have been aching inside to give myself another chance to do for a while, but kept on putting it off because it will never be what it used to be for me again.

I sat down with my pack of colourful markers this afternoon, with a piece of braille paper because it is the perfect thickness, at my kitchen table because the light from the window there is the best place for maximum brightness.

Well, it was frustrating some moments and at others I had hope, with the slightly damp texture these particular marketers leaves behind and with the correct colour of marker fitting to the corresponding scent all coming back to me. I want to make something for Ivy’s Art Challenge and maybe involving 10 Things of Thankful because it has been so important for bringing light and colour back into my life these last fifteen or so months of extra reminders of the things I have to be thankful for.

That my five-year-old niece has a love of art and colouring and drawing pictures.

She got that from my brother I’m sure, her burgeoning artistic talent, but she reminds me a little bit of myself at her age and I feel somehow comforted by that notion.

I know she will continue to create beautiful things because that’s just who she is and where she comes from.

For this old favourite of mine from fifteen years ago.

Perfect Day – The Cranberries

This song perfectly incapsulates my feelings about the August birthday boys in my life. I celebrate their birthdays and I selfishly want them to remain young like this and never grow old, as Dolores sings, but I know that’s neither fair nor plausible.

August, within ten days of each other but spanning a year apart in age, are my two amazing nephews. They have inspired these songs today.

It’s the two boys and my niece who inspire my attitude that all art is open to me because I’ve seen the amazing things that come from their imaginations and my own imagination is the one thing I haven’t lost. They help me never to forget that.


8 thoughts on “TToT: Boulder Slipper Lungs – Thanks Noodles! #10Thankful

  1. Your nephew is very cute and those Hulk hands! Makes me laugh as I remember seeing them in the stores while Christmas shopping for the younger of my niece’s boys last year.You nephew has no doubt been having a blast with them 😀
    There is so much to learn from kids and they have no idea sometimes the impact they have on adults. Amazing isn’t it?
    Ah,scented markers. They are very cool. And so are you for venturing to a place you know will produce feelings of ambivalence. Yet you’re willing to risk it. That is the artist in you 🙂

  2. Piper George says:

    Your nephew is super cute. Kids can inspire us to do all sorts – and make us silly again. Since mine came along I’ve learnt to dance in public without caring who is watching, and my daughter and I are learning to draw together. Kids are awesome – I love your post,

    • Thank you and you are so right. I just think that my art can be as insightful or silly as I want it to be. I don’t have to draw like a thirty-two-year-old because art isn’t about being perfect, at least not this art I’m striving for.

  3. “…find myself awake to witness, at three or four in the morning, when the sound of the nighttime crickets and the start of the early morning first chirping of the birds intermingle with one another.
    That is such an excellent way to describe that more: wonderful/alien/frightening/inimical time of the day. All other parts of the day either have people awake or people falling asleep at their center. 3-4am …watch and observe those who write about that time of day. It is always one person and the world at a time on pre-formation.
    Hey! we should write a story about being awake at 3:49 am…. the whole thing could take place between that time and when… (there’s an old arabic saying about how the colors of a white sheep becomes distinguishable from a grey one… or something like that…very cool saying, if I could find it. lol)… anyway, maybe a short story?
    (yeah, like we both don’t have things that need words…

    let me know your thoughts!

    …good TToT

    • I like that saying. Let me know if you do find out more about where it comes from. I am always looking for new short story ideas, so thanks and I will think on that one a little. I love that I can always count on you to appreciate at least one of the more odd statements or observations I make in one of the TToT posts Clark. Thanks.

  4. This is wonderful and absolutely stuffed with things to be thankful about.

    I loved your stories about the tornado and I was so shocked by the impact. I suppose I shouldn’t have been, having been given a tour of Joplin, and having SEEN the after-effects of the damage there, but your writing made it so tangible. I still hope I never have to see such a bad one in person.

    SO HAPPY about the markers, and about the inspiration you get from your niece and nephews. SO happy you have them to encourage and inspire and confirm that art is everything and anything and creativity can’t be stopped by logic or blindness or anything else, but can be made wonderful through determination and love.

    • Tangible. Thank you and I am glad it came across in that way when you read it. I hope neither of us ever does experience anything close to that though.
      Ah yes…blindness is so much about barriers that I like to get a break from some of them, wherever possible, and I’m finding that possible in all the art forms I’ve decided to focus on, whether it be writing/song lyrics, violin (which must be taught/learned a little differently too), or now and once ore the visual art I am rediscovering. Thanks Lizzi.

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