I spend a lot of time being attracted to songs with messages about remembering to breathe. I do it, of course, and I’m thankful I can. Still, I’m most thankful for music and reminders of such a thing.
Tough year so far, ups and downs, but if it weren’t for a few familiar favourites about this time of year, I would be totally lost.
I haven’t done one of these in months. It’s partly from the tough year and partially because the whole process of this Ten Things of Thankful
thing is different now than it once was.
Yet, I am back and trying to fill out this middle of 2019 with a few items of gratitude and this is the place to do that.
I am thankful for July being the month for fresh peas.
They’re so fresh tasting, sweet yet healthy. I am thankful for the whole podding process that I am expert in after so many seasons of practice. It’s so sweet to me that my niece and nephew love peas too. I don’t even mind doing the podding for them, especially, and even the sharing of the final product. If I’m going to share my favourite fresh vegetable with anyone, it’d be those two. I try not to feel affronted when the two-year-old takes too many in a handful or one or two or a few more are dropped. (Common mistake for a rookie.)
I’m thankful for new experiences for those I love most. I can stand a difficult time of it for myself a little easier if I know someone else I care about is having a memorable time of a summer.
I’m thankful for the return to regular summer days amongst the really humid days.
There’s a big difference between when the sun is hot but the air is still fresh, with a lovely breeze and those days when it’s a sauna in the very air I need to breathe.
And, of course, I’m thankful for AC because, though I know I am spoiled in that, I am grateful I don’t have to tough it out.
Such heat and humidity is one of the main triggers I’ve so far discovered with my pain and headaches and I am glad I have another option.
I’m thankful we’re getting some more exposure for our show from a media source like Accessible Media Inc.
with a feature on their TV network.
I’m thankful an interesting documentarian/filmmaker was generous enough to give me a few hours of his time, to ask me several thoughtful questions, to get to know my story a little better. I’m discovering, life’s all in the connections that you make.
I’m thankful for an upcoming Niagara Falls weekend trip with my family to celebrate the start of spring.
I’m thankful for my recent weekend away in New York City with my friend and travel agent extraordinaire, just in time for International Women’s Day festivities.
I’m thankful for rooftops, bars/restaurants/nothing but the roof.
I stand on one, on a cold International Women’s Day in New York City, with my friend Anita.
I’m thankful for fear that I keep facing.
I’m thankful for the opportunity to share my fears and not feel so alone. On the stage, the presenter (my “writing mentor” was the presenter) spoke about fear in her talk and then called me up, along with two other ladies, to share what we’re afraid of.
I’m thankful for lovely songs and their singers.
Though I don’t mind winter like some do, I am thankful for this first day of spring.
“Everything is new in the spring,” said Anne. “Springs themselves are always so new, too. No spring is ever just like any other spring. It always has something of its own to be its own peculiar sweetness. See how green the grass is around that little pond, and how the willow buds are bursting.”-
L.M Montgomery, Anne of the Island
I’m thankful for Canadian healthcare, for the x-ray I received of my knees and big toes. I’ve had pain in both places for a few years now. I wonder if there’s anything to see in those pictures. I’m just glad I didn’t receive a bill for that medical test.
I’m thankful for a delightful salad of fruits and vegetables.
I’m thankful for the snow, while it’s still around, and for the sound it makes when it’s freshly fallen and powdery underfoot.
I’m thankful Kristi
is willing to help me still be able to take part in the TToT, even though the accessibility has become an issue.
I’m thankful for February’s birthday celebrations and for the last two years, with many more to come, with my niece in our lives.
“What’s in a name?” … Why, Ketchup on pancakes, in our case, obviously.
Our podcast being titled thus, we think it’s high time we get any guests on the show to taste just that, though they may not all agree to the experiment.
We are back, with our first real episode of 2019 and another guest to interview too. He did taste Ketchup on pancakes, but alas – it was too late this time. Still, we had a lovely talk about language, culture, cricket, and Retinitis pigmentosa.
It’s cold outside. Snow has come, gone, and come again lately. As Christmas approaches in a few short weeks, I love the air this time of year. I love the thought of a silent night, snow softly falling, but then there’s the bright lights and the musical spirit of this season.
I am not Jewish, but I was listening to an all Hanukkah edition of a radio show my brother likes to listen to, a college radio station out of New Jersey I believe.
I don’t get annoyed by holiday themed music this time of year because it’s really only a short time out of the year. It makes me happy, from older classics to newer stuff, unless the singer goes too wild with their own rendition.
I see all the articles about the banning of Baby It’s Cold Outside, on certain radio stations since this whole #MeToo movement. I have read people’s thoughts and opinions on Facebook and thought about adding mine, but as usual, I am somewhere in the middle when it comes to whether the whole thing should have occurred in the first place.
I know the song well enough and I am not a fan of it personally, but other people have their own connections to the song and are upset that there’s any kind of pulling from holiday tune rotations.
I’ve always found it creepy, but it can be interpreted lots of different ways. Many artists and performers have done their individual renditions and made it sound differently, come off in a unique way, all depending…
I grew up knowing of Red Skelton from my father and grandparents too. He is a part of my childhood, but kind of from a different time. This song I came across is from the 40’s and things were different than they are in the 21st century we’re living in now.
In one version, the male sings certain parts and the female sings the rest. In another version of the song, there is a reversal in lyrics, in lines.
Is it a song where one person is pressuring another to stay, to spend the night? Is it more about both wanting to stay, but in those times, concerns over what people will think, a purity thing? Or is it a harmless flirtation?
I don’t necessarily think a song should be banned. Many songs, a lot from the 40’s or the 60’s come off, today, sexist and pushy, even inappropriate. People today should be more aware of boundaries and what messages we’re sending. Songs of today can be just as inappropriate, in my mind, but harmless in anyone else’s.
Thursday, December 6th, 2018 was an All Women’s Voices day, in remembrance of the 14 women in 1989, Montreal (mostly engineering students) who were murdered, by a madman who hated feminists and didn’t think women should dare go into the traditionally male fields of study.
On a university radio station near my home, (for 24 hours straight)
they played and aired all women’s music and interviews with women and girls, about their interests and their fears and the issues they care about, how they’re making a difference.
I was interviewed for this, where I wanted to speak about myself, as a woman who is working for more equitable treatment for everyone in our society. These things weren’t taken into as much consideration in years gone by as it is today. Some still think we’re overreacting.
Again and again I hear about snowflakes and safe spaces. I know people think we’re making too much of things, politically correct as people like to say, far too sensitive for our own good, but this is a tactic of minimizing someone’s lived experiences and a brush off of possible trauma.
I just want people to try and put themselves in someone else’s shoes for a minute. If a song made someone feel uncomfortable, due to experiences they might have had, can we not stop and think about that for a moment at least?
The song Baby It’s Cold Outside is still available. It hasn’t been banned from the earth. If certain radio stations choose not to play it now, can you not just go find it elsewhere?
On the other hand, we’re not going to get rid of everything. There’s been progress, but there’s still so many discussions to be had. I may sound wishy washy, but I prefer to have a stance, somewhere in the middle of the road. I see both sides, but want to respect all people if I can.
Happy birthday to L.M. Montgomery, who was born 144 years ago today!
“‘Old Prince Edward Island’ is a good place in which to be born – a good place in which to spend a childhood. I can think of none better. We Prince Edward Islanders are a loyal race. In our secret soul we believe that there is no place like the little Province that gave us birth.”
– L.M. Montgomery, The Alpine Path: the Story of My Career
Caption: Kids, with Grandpa, about to blow out birthday candles.
I’m writing this on the final day of November, even though this post is dated days earlier. I missed last week’s Ten Things of Thankful
and I’m too lazy to try to figure out how to reset dates in WP and I don’t want to bother starting a new entry for this. It works as is.
I’m thankful for my father on his 63rd birthday.
I’m thankful for my favourite writer on what would have been hers too.
Caption: The bedroom she was born in.
I got to visit that house when I was in Prince Edward Island in September.
I love that my favourite writer and my favourite father share this day.
I’m thankful for last weekend, a trial run of the 2018 KFC (Kijewski family Christmas) as we like to call it.
Caption: Grandpa and Mya watching gingerbread houses being decorated.
I’m thankful for a night out at the movies with siblings.
I’m thankful for brownies.
I’m thankful for a second Fantastic Beasts film,
where more of the world leading to Harry Potter was revealed.
I’m thankful for another episode of Outlook,
where we interview (or he us) a lifelong friend and brother.
I’m thankful for an unforgettable night of stories performed from the heart.
I am standing up, in front of an audience, to tell my story, a dying art.
I’m thankful four of my family members could be there to see me do that.
I’m thankful for a doctor who goes above and beyond.
The Simpsons has made fun of all recent Presidents (from Nixon on) and has taken a few shots at some of the famous and forgotten ones who came before, but they have a special relationship with Bush Sr. Surprisingly, this began with Barbara, who in a 1990 interview with People , said The Simpsons was “the dumbest thing [she] had ever seen.” The writers at the show had Marge send off a letter defending her family (and implying that certainly Washington had some dumber people/things to see). Mrs. Bush wrote a prompt, polite response.
The next year, 1991, the Bushes were featured in “Mr. Lisa Goes to Washington.” Barbara gave a private tour of her bathroom and George moved decisively to remove a corrupt congressman when he learned through the pipeline that “a little girl [was] losing faith in democracy.”
The real controversy began January 27th, 1992, when Bush declared to a meeting of the National Religious Broadcasters: “We are going to keep on trying to strengthen the American family, to make American families a lot more like the Waltons and a lot less like the Simpsons.” The Simpsons quickly wrote and animated a new sequence for “Stark Raving Dad,” which would be rerun three days later. Bart and his family watch the clip of Bush’s speech and Bart replies, “Hey, we’re just like the Waltons. We’re praying for an end of the depression, too.”
It was not until four years later that The Simpsons got the final word—in “Two Bad Neighbors,” George and Barbara move in across the street to the Simpsons. While George immediately takes a liking to Ned Flanders, he dislikes Bart, whom he sees as disrespectful.
Bush: You know, in my day, little boys didn’t call their elders by their first names. block quote level 1block quote level 1
Bart: Yeah, well, welcome to the 20th century, George. block quote level 1block quote level 1
The episode casts Bart as Dennis the Menace and George as cranky Mr. Wilson until Bart accidentally destroys Bush’s hand-typed memoirs, in which he claims, “And since I’d achieved all my goals as President in one term, there was no need for a second.”
Bush spanks Bart and won’t apologize for interfering with Homer’s parenting. This leads to an escalation of tension and pranks until the inevitable fistfight in the sewer. The Bushes move away after Barbara forces Bush to apologize in front of Mikhail Gorbachev (after which Homer demands an apology “for the tax hike”). Homer gets along much better with his next neighbor, Gerald Ford.
It’s satire and could be seen as mocking. I don’t approve of politicians talking about family values though, in order to win an election, as to be political you can’t possibly totally practice all that you preach. Still, I see being made into an episode as an honour and I show it as a goodbye to a man who lived a good long life:
I had to explore this, from a strictly cultural (Simpsons) point of view, because people are complicated. This show hasn’t been for everyone, a certain generation a lot less likely, but it is sad to have no sense of humour.
A man who was in charge to be forever known as the American’s With Disabilities Act president will be remembered for it. He was someone’s husband, father, and grandfather. He made decisions that not everyone would have agreed on, but he was more of a respected politician than what the US has as POTUS at the moment, by a long long shot.
You do not have to be good. You do not have to walk on your knees for a hundred miles through the desert repenting. You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves. Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine. Meanwhile the world goes on. Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain are moving across the landscapes, over the prairies and the deep trees, the mountains and the rivers. Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again. Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination, calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting – over and over announcing your place in the family of things.
I may have used this quote in one of these already, but I like it so much and am using it again.
On Remembrance Day, here in Canada, I pause for silent reflection. Then, I get pissed off.
I’m supposed to feel gratitude and I do, but I look at all the sacrifice and I can’t help seeing waste. Of course, we wouldn’t have the peace we now have if it weren’t for the actions of so many, but I am angry and can’t feel grateful that mankind continues to get itself into ugly, awful wars.
We teach our children to share, to play nice, and to work it out. Yet, adults repeatedly let greed and lack of compassion and a sense of entitlement for what they may have get the better of them. Nationalism is dangerous, while patriotism even gets stuck in my throat sometimes. I am thankful for peace and for Canada, but I see the wider world in pictures, clearly with borders and laws and still I look for more common decency in the face of the things we all deal with.
I’ve been away from Ten Things of Thankful
for a month at least. I am returning, on this day in particular, because I am still thankful for so much.
Remembrance Day makes me more mad than anything, overshadowing my gratitude. I take peace for granted too, in my own way. I am sick and tired of conflicts and battles because there’s endless suffering and a long lasting mark is left on nations and on their people.
It’s still going on. Maybe not at a world level at this moment, but there’s no guarantee that things won’t worsen into more widespread destruction.
Saying all that…
I’m thankful for all the kindnesses I’m seeing. I’m thankful for those putting out the fires and those celebrating and highlighting peace.
These are Moscow Apartment and they are a young duo, two amazing musical girls from Toronto who are so musically accomplished at such a young age. I was so impressed.
Teenagers. I can still relate and empathize so much with that time of life, even as I approach my 35th birthday this February.
I am thankful for Women’s Travel Fest
and my trip to New York in March. The prospect gives me something to look forward to in the new year.
It will be a challenge for me, traveling to New York City for this conference, but I need to keep on taking chances and going on adventures. I can sometimes get so down on the things I don’t have and focusing on things I do have makes it tolerable.
I’m thankful for my sister, who helps me go jean shopping and writing up invoices for my freelance writing work.
I am thankful for a six-week storytelling workshop. It’s getting me out of my comfort zone.
So there’s so much going on and I’m just barely catching up, but I always swore this TToT was a positive thing in my life, getting me focusing on the good things. I wanted to return and I wish I hadn’t been gone for so long.
I’m thankful for this gratitude journal of sorts and everyone who has ever run it or participated in it.
“It was November–the month of crimson sunsets, parting birds, deep, sad hymns of the sea, passionate wind-songs in the pines. Anne roamed through the pineland alleys in the park and, as she said, let that great sweeping wind blow the fogs out of her soul.”
We interview our extra special guest, our visitor from September, all the way from northern Ireland.
We have fun, even while the serious topics come up, as we talk travel, blindness, and why our Irish friend would move to Canada in a heartbeat, if the circumstances were right.
In the meantime,, we were thrilled to host him for a few weeks and to have him come on Ketchup On Pancakes for a laugh and a chat and hope he’ll be back for Canada visit number seventeen again some day.
Thanks for listening and also check us out on Facebook,
where you can give our page a like, if you like.
He knows all the best words, like those in the title, from his love of reading. He likes to drop them into everyday conversations, catching us (always) off guard. He’s one-of-a-kind and he has a lot to say over beers with friends.
Right around our two-year anniversary of the start of this whole thing, after one chaotic summer, we got to interview a good friend of twenty years and an ally in the work to challenge stereotypes about those of us living with disabilities.
In Part I,
we discuss friendship, how we met, and the fun we’ve had throughout the years. It’s the more lighthearted part of #13. (Guide dogs, mice, and Toronto adventures.)
So much to say, we had to break the interview up into two parts.
In Part II,
we hear from Erik in his role as (Executive/Chairman of the Ontario chapter of the Canadian Federation of the Blind).
He has high hopes and big dreams/plans for the CFB, both hear in Ontario and nationally. At the heart of it all though, he is fighting for a better tomorrow, starting now, for all of us who believe society holds the low expectations for its blind citizens that must not continue.
He’s our twenty-year pal and his passion for the things he cares about is contagious. Here’s to the next twenty years.