Friday, February 28, 2014

Knocking Those Damn Moles Squarely on Their Little Heads

Even though I allotted some "Me Time" for myself by having an osteopathic treatment for an hour and a short nap afterwards, I got a lot accomplished today. 

Yesterday I felt overwhelmed by everything I had to do.

Today, the Whack-a-Moles were overwhelmed by the skill by which I knocked most of them down.

Yay me!

Yay getting things done!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

A Whack-a-Mole Kind of Day

I want to paint.  I just want to flaming paint!

Today I had intended to do so many things, get them out of the way, and then do more work on my newest painting.  (It gives me such joy to bring Rob and Dandylion back to life through my art.)  Sure, some things got done, which makes me very happy, but just like a game of Whack-a-Mole other things kept popping up out of nowhere.

I'm tired (I only got three hours of sleep last night!) so I won't go into any details.

One thing that made me happy, that was spontaneous and yet didn't suddenly pop out like a demonic fake mole, was the video I made with Laura Mac.

Hopefully, this will give my business a shot in the behind it sorely needs!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

My Day So Far

My day started by having the third training shift with Maddie.  I like her, and she did very well.  I think she's going to be an excellent employee!

And, I had french toast with maple syrup - or, as I call it, french toast soup!

And, I scratched a lottery ticket but didn't win anything. Booooooooooooooooo!

Now, I'm debating about painting ....

or updating my finances and my employees' scheduling, or writing emails, or ordering more merch.

Hmmm ....

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

All Tied Up

All tied up ....

                  Wrapped up ....

                        OBSESSED  -

                                                             with my painting!!!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Nothing Can Stop me From Painting

Nothing can stop me from painting - not a twisted knee or a painful groin!

Art clears my mind of everything unimportant and allows me to focus upon what is ....

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Excuse Me

... for such a short entry.  I haven't been sleeping very well because of the pains in my knee and groin.

Last night, I jerked awake at 5am, the pain in my knee was excruciating!   I turned onto my back and crossed my legs to elevate my knee, but this caused lower back pain.  Before Kelly left, I asked her to put my small black cushion under the small of my back, thinking that this would ease the pain in that area. It did, but then my neck began to hurt.  I tossed and turned, trying to fall back to sleep, but I didn't succeed.

Last week, I was in a funk from which I could not escape no matter what I tried.  Stress, the gloominess of the weather, and missing Mom and Rob, all contributed to my bad mood. 

However, oddly enough, my mood has improved since I twisted my knee.  It just seems so ridiculous that I had this annoying groin pain for five months, and then my knee was injured in the same side.  Like my mother always said, when misfortune follows you around like a lost puppy you can choose to either cry or laugh it off.  I choose to laugh it off.

By the way, did anyone notice that it was daylight (bright and sunny!) at 5pm?  Is Spring truly just around the corner?

I hope so!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Today in Pictures

I only made $20.00 today - only $1.00 more than last week!  I did get a good long snooze, though.  It was much needed because I'd had a terrible sleep.  I had twisted my knee badly during my transfer from my wheelchair to my commode chair.  Ouch!

After the market, my friend Nick ...

and his girlfriend Erin brought two bookcases from my mom's condo.

I'm so happy!  I got my cards, merch, and membership material all tidy and put away on the bookshelves.  I love getting things organized!

And now, it's time for bed ... and cats!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Too Much on My Plate

Typical Friday night - I'm too busy to write!  I'm hungry, grumpy - and I still don't have time to paint!

Grumble, grumble, grumble ....

Well, anyway, here are some pictures of my boys from this morning. They can cheer up anyone who's having a bad/stressful day!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

When Will it Ever END?

When I came into my bedroom to get dressed for the day, both of my cats were asleep on my bed.  As I peered out of the window at the February gloom, I seriously envied them their lives of leisure.

I was still excited to go outside, though, and buy art supplies and go to Starbucks.  I heard it was mild out - and I was so happy and hopeful that maybe Spring was finally coming!

Mother Nature is a weather tease, though.  I mean, for two minutes when I first went outside with Lucy, it was warm(ish), windless, and partly sunny.  Beautiful! And then, the wind began to blow and snowflakes began to drift downwards.  Almost immediately, the wind blew harder and colder, and the snowflakes multiplied by thousands. It was like a bloody blizzard! I swore in my head all the way to Curry's!

I loved buying paint and canvasses, though. I swear, I could spend hours in an art store, there's so many beautiful and different colours!

I didn't paint today, I was too damn busy, but I got a lot done so maybe I'll get to paint tomorrow! I keep thinking that other artists like DaVinci and Picasso and Frida Khalo never had to worry about things like answering emails or bookkeeping, etc.

I heard thunder a few minutes ago, and a guy yelled "Ya-hoo!" I wondered if it was Rob, acting happy because winter is still here.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Yearning to Paint

I'm yearning to paint, but I had another busy day, and now I feel physically and emotionally drained. (Yup, you guessed it - I went to counselling today!)  I still need to reply to a few emails before bed too ....

Tomorrow, however, I'm going to concentrate on doing a big chunk of work on this painting.  I love this picture.  It makes me happy and sad all at the same time.  I've captured Rob's spirit, his essence.  I could paint him a million times and still get him right.

Knowing Rob for 22 years, how could I not know him inside and out?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

On a Rollllllllllllll

So busy today!

I answered emails, texted people about friend/employee stuff, updated my finances and the employees' schedule.  Plus, I edited and ordered more cards and merch.

Now, I'm going to train a new employee, and then (hopefully) paint ....

Monday, February 17, 2014

Painting My Blues Away

I've been in a funk all week, and I've decided to lose myself in my art.

You never know, maybe one day I will literally lose myself  in my art.  My clothes and chair are already covered in several inches of paint. I may go nuts one day and not stop until my whole body is under tons and tons of paint.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

A Stressful Three Lorazepam Day

The real estate agent came by this afternoon to give me Mom's key back to me.  It was a short but nice visit.  I like Susan; in many ways she reminds me of my mother.

Upon the heels of Susan's departure, another woman came to see me.  Her name was Maddie, and three of our mutual friends recommended her to me as another employee.

Maddie was pleasant and amiable.  She's as crazy about cats as I am and doesn't mind staying up late.  She starts her first training shift on Tuesday night.

Neither of those interactions gave me one iota of anxiety, and yet, I kept popping Lorazepam as if they were candy.  One, two, three ... and, just now, four.

What has been causing me such terrible anxiety?  Two close friends had a whopper of a fight yesterday at the market, and I feel as I'm caught up in the whole bloody messs!  I hate this type of situation!  I have to remain diplomatic and impartial, while both of my friends (especially one of them) want me to choose sides!

The four Lorazepam have finally kicked in.  I feel very mellow ... and very tired. 

I think I'll go to bed now.

Good night ....

Saturday, February 15, 2014


It's market day, and, as usual, more people pass me by than purchase anything from me.  I have made $19.00 - and that's better than a kick in the teeth! One of my regular customers gave me a bag of pastries, which is sweet of him (if you pardon the pun!)

It's almost 2:30 pm now, and I'm still hopeful that I'll make more money. After all, I have all my new paintings displayed.  And, I'm wearing my new red dress too.

How can people resist?

Friday, February 14, 2014

New Rob Painting in the Works

I've started a new painting today.  It's going to be a picture of Rob sitting on our sofa eating chicken, while Dandylion sits perched upon his shoulder, begging for a small morsel.

Silly cat!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Still Swamped!

I'm still swamped with work. Sure, I'm getting a lot of things done (employees' cheques are written, the employees' schedule and my personal finances have both been updated), but every day something else springs up.  Some things bring very welcome news - like, yahoo, I just sold a painting from my website! Other things bring terrible frustration - more accurately, emails regarding my mother's estate!

(AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   When will it ever end?!?!?!)

I'll write more tomorrow ....

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

It's Not My Fault!

Before I did anything really subtancial work-wise, I wrote a small tribute on Facebook to my old cat Dandylion. That feisty, firebrand of a cat sure made my life more interesting and entertainig! Dandy would have been 24 years old today.

I miss you, Dandylion! )

I did a few of the things on my "To Do" list today, (and some that weren't) but I still have so much to finish up!

It's not my fault, though!  I kept getting phone calls and texts from people.  And then, when I did start to get into doing some work Rascal/Hershey would get on top of my laptop and vie for my attention. (How could I resist theit furry cuteness?!)

And then, my internet went out too! Bloody hell!

Oh well .... Tomorrow is another day!

Monday, February 10, 2014

A Mountain of Things Still to Be Done

To Do:

Write letter of complaint to Wheel Trans re Saturday incident.
Write letter of complaint to Vistaprint re customer service call I had with them today.  (I'll post about that at another time!)
Start the newest employee schedule, which begins today.
Update my finances.
Answer email, weed out junk.
Get my membership cards ready to be mailed out.
Figure out a way to get two pieces of my mom's furniture from her place to mine. Hmm ....
Paint more pictures!


Purchased art supplies.
Photocopied and mailed important documents (related to my mom's estate) out.
Gave out new keys to my employees.
Purchased groceries and kitty litter.

After I have my second peppermint mocha frappuccino of the day and watch a couple of episodes of Downton Abbey, I'll go back to work on some of these things.

No rest for the wicked!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Thank You, Wheel Trans

Thank you, Wheel Trans.  Thank you for distracting mefrom a potentially difficult and sad day for me today.  (Certainly, way down deep there was some sadness inside of me.  How could there not when Bruce and I were signing papers and discussing the best way to proceed in putting Mom's condo up for sale?)

Instead, I felt tremendous anger and humiliation for most of the day.  For one thing. Wheel Trans was forty minutes late, for which they never apologized.  I say "they" because there was one regular driver and the other one was a trainee.  As I was getting on the bus the trainee asked me if I wanted a lap belt, and I thought that was odd because I'm never asked this question until I'm setttled into my spot. Annoyed that she was asking me a question while I was trying to concentrate on driving my chair, I shook my head no.  Once in my spot, she tried to give me a shoulder belt, but I refused because I can't move properly with one on.  So then, the regular driver tried to convince me to at least wear a lap belt, and I refused because I always wear a lap belt when I'm in my wheelchair.  Unlike other drivers who usually shrug and say, "Ok, it's up to you," the regular driver wouldn't let up.  She tried to scare me and told me that if we were ever in an accident, my chair would fold up on me because my own belt wasn't tied to the actual bus.  And then she said "Alright, but I need to write you up for this."  I thought to myself, "Am I in school?"

All the way to my mom's condo I kept fuming about the regular drivet's remarks.  I mean, on TTC buses, no one wears belts. And no one gets a lecture from the drivers either. In fact, when a person in a wheelchair goes on a TTC bus they can choose to have their chair tied down or not.  I don't get it, Wheel Trans is supposed to be for people with disabilities, which means they shouldn't only support us in our transit, but also in our decision making.

But the straw that broke the camel's back was when we got to my mom's condo and they opened the back door of the bus, and I automatically started going forwards, not backwards.  (I hate backing out of the door of a bus because I can't see where I'm going!)  The trainee started trying to convince me to go backwards but I just ignored her because I've been riding on Wheel Trans for over thirty years, and I know how to get on and off a bus! Well then the regular driver actually started yelling at me, "Anne! Stop it and turn around! Anne! Stop it and turn around!"  I ignored her rantings and got off of the bus myself, in my own way, and went straight up to the condo's doors - no problem!

On my way home I had another driver, and he asked me if I wanted a belt, and I said no," because I already had one on my chair.  He didn't lecture me or say he was going to write me up.  However,  he did talk about me in the third person to Yuula, and asked if I was deaf.

I guess you can't have everything ....

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Contradiction in Terms

Today I played hookey from working at the market so I could stay home and do some work here.  I know this is a contradiction in terms - if you're playing hookey you shouldn't work, you should have buckets of fun!  Ferris Bueller had the right idea for his day off - riding around in a Ferari and lip-syncing to Twist and Shout!  Woo-hoo!

Me, I answered email; uploaded my employees' hours to my bookkeeper; designed and ordered more cards and merch; and, put all of my 2013 tax receipts in seperate, logical, categoricalized (and stapled!) piles. After this blog post, I'm going to my website and put some new things on Etsy.

Sure, Ferris Bueller had fun, but did he have that sense of accomplishment and pride in his work?

Oh god, I AM  a workaholic ...!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Things Never Stay The Same

I went to Cafe California today with my friend Brittainy and her boyfriend Billy to celebrate her birthday.

I hadn't been there since the renovaions, it looks very nice. I kept thinking of how my mom wouldn't have approved of the changes -- too modern. And the music would have been too loud for her. For me, I liked it, but I was sad the feeling of being in somebody's home was gone.

Things never stay the same, and sometimes it's not good, but sometimes it's cool, great,fantastic, and brilliant!! For example, having new friends like Brittainy and Billy, and being apart of a significant celebration in their lives. 

Happy birthday Brittainy!

Some things never change, though.  For example, my love of art!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

A Friday the 13th Kind of Day


Oh well, at least the laundry got done ....

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

White out!!!

I can just imagine Rob in the spirit world, laughing and dancing around in the snow, happy as a clam.  He and Frank Zappa are probably are throwing snowballs at each other and singing, Don't You Eat That Yellow Snow.

Me, I was outside for only twenty minutes, grumbling and cursing this wretched, cold, evil white stuff that fell resolutely from the bleak sky and held my wheelchair in place like glue.  Inwardly, I swore at people who passed quickly by without a glance or an offer of help.  To those who did, indeed, offer assistance, I waned to hug them and French kiss them (is that too much?) to demonstrate how grateful I was.

In the end, I knew if I kept going onward I'd be ridiculously late and would miss my appointment with the grief counsellor.  So, I went back home and called the councellor to reschedule, and I sent Simone out to get me a peppermint mocha frappuccino.

Kids would call this a snow day, where they could play and have fun.  Me, I got caught up on email, arranged shifts for Saturday at St.Lawrence Market, and ordered some merchandise.  Maybe after dinner I'll do a bit of painting.  That's my kind of fun!

Is it Spring yet? 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Simone's Surprise Birthday Party

My friend Simone had her 30th birthday yesterday, but I couldn't be with her then.  So, knowing that Simone would be coming over this evening, I invited some of our mutual friends over, and, with their help, organized a surprise party.

I think Simone was surprised, happy, and very touched by all of the attention she received. 

Brittainy made tiny cupcakes with purple sparkly frosting;  Trevor sent over a huge basket of fruits in the shapes of flowers; and I provied the pizza, Cheesies, and Pringles, plus a YouTube playlisr of Simone's favourite songs.

I'd say more, but I'm dead tired.  I'm going to go to bed now so I can catch up on sleep and make some sense at my session with the grief counsellor tomorrow.

Good night ....

ZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ....

I love you, Simone!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Fifty Years Later...

It's funny how life goes sometimes.  It's weird how huge and yet small the world actually is ....

A few months after my mother's death, I had lunch with Rob's cousin Dianne, and I mentioned to her that one thing, down the road, Bruce and I would have to do would be to put Mom's condo on the market.  Dianne, a real estate agent herself, told me that she knew this other real estate named Susan who did her work out of Scarborough. Since Mom's condo is in Scarborough, I thought that this was a good idea.

About a few days later, Dianne emailed me and told me that she had been in touch with Susan, and Susan said that fifty years ago she had known a small child named Anne Abbott. She had been a teachers' assistant at the Ontario Crippled Children's Centre - the same place where I had been schooled for three years of my childhood!

Susan and I began an email correspondence, and she was pleasantly surprised that we'd reconnected after so many years.  Did I remember Susan?  Not really.  I was around four or five at that time.  But I did think it was cool that, just by chance, my late husband's cousin knew a person who taught at my school waaaaaay back when!

Honestly, our email correspondence didn't go very far because I wasn't emotionally ready to put Mom's condo on the market.  I'm still not 100% ready, but I feel that it's time to get the ball rolling.

Today was the first time in fifty years that I'd met Susan face-to-face.  I think I vaguely remember her but not fully.  She came over this afternoon, and we discussed the possibility of Susan selling Mom's condo, and what first steps we should take.

I like Susan, and I think our partnership in this endeavour will work very well.

It's funny how life works out sometimes ....

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Happy Birthday, Bruce

The day at the market started out sweetly ... if you pardon the pun!

Some kind person gave me five mini KitKat bars.  YAY!  Way better than gifts of bread!

Although, getting more "dough" would have been nice ....

Unfortunately, no matter how wonderful my artwork and merchandise appeared - and many people did complement me on my talent ... !

... and, no matter how friendly and charming I tried to be, I still only made $25.00 today.

However, I had a great time with Bruce and the kids at the Spaghetti Factory.

It's Bruce's birthday tomorrow, Groundhog Day.  (I've always joked with Bruce about this fact.)  And, we decided to get together to celebrate his 59 years.

It was wonderful seeing them, as it always is.  I think everybody enjoyed themselves, too, and I think Bruce liked his present from me:  season one of American Horror Story and two lottery tickets.

Happy Birthday, Bruce!  Let me know if you see your shadow tomorrow or not ....