Saturday, May 30, 2015


I just realized how exhausted I am.  For the 6th time I jerked awake from dozing off at the kitchen table!

It must be because of the sweltering heat at the market, or because I got caught in the pouring rain on my way home, or perhaps (just perhaps, mind you ...) it's because I only got four hours of sleep last night.

Whatever the cause, I'm going to cut this post short.

Here are some pictures from today:

Friday, May 29, 2015

Focus on Painting

All week long I've been worrying, fretting, and stressing out about getting everything organized for the Riverdale Art Walk.

Now that plans are starting to gel, I'm going to focus on painting more pictures.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Great Day Except for Bloody Bureaucracy

With the help of Amy and Maddie I finally got 99% of my emails written and out of the way.  And, cards were folded, labelled, and put into packages.  The paper bags were stamped with my logo on their fronts and backs.

I feel far less stressed out about doing the Riverdale Art Walk than I have in days.  Yay!

Besides working on stuff for RAW, I decided to call Rosar-Morrison Funeral Home and ask for a death certificate from them. I explained that I needed one for financial reasons. Rob's name is still attached to a couple of bank accounts, and in order to close/change these accounts I had to give proof of Rob's death to the bank.

I thought it would be simple.  I was Rob's widow and next of kin - shouldn't it just naturally follow that I get a death certificate whenever I needed one?

Apparently not.  Because I had been too poor to pay for Rob's funeral, I wasn't entitled to receive a death certificate. The City of Toronto, who had paid for the funeral could get one, if so desired, no problem!

Finally, I ended up paying $25.00 to get a death certificate from the City of Toronto website.  It'll take fifteen business days for me to actually receive it.  And, sure, all that is well and good, but certainly there has to be a simpler and fairer way to do things!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Getting Things Organized

It was one of those days again where most of my day was spent emailing/texting, trying to get scheduling and the Riverdale Art Walk figured out.

I was feeling overwhelmed by everything I still had to do, but then Lucy came over and reassured me that I was on the right track. Lucy also helped me buy hooks and clips to hang my paintings up at the Riverdale Art Walk and paper bags for any small merchandise I may sell.

Thanks, Lucy!

This post has to be short. My computer keeps crashing.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Communication is the Word of the Day

Emails, texts, emails, texts, emails, texts.  This is how most of my day has been like.  I've been organizng like mad, not just scheduling my employees for their regular shifts but also making sure that people are available to assist me during the weekend of the Riverdale Art Walk.

I've been also in contact with the people in charge of the art festival, making sure that they understand that there needs to be some concessions made on my behalf because of my disability.

Everything will work out.  I'm sure it will!  I think .... I hope ....

I've never done any kind of art festival like this before, so I've been feeling extra, extra stressed out about everything during these past few days.  It's been so bad that one day I doubled the dosage of my Lorazepam.

And yet,  the non-stop mind racing; the heart thump-thump-thumping within my chest; and, the relentless doubts that poke my sleep like sharp spears are only part of the problem.

Overwhelming sadness and regret, this is my problem. I yearn for Mom and Rob to be here to share this new adventure with me.  Part of me says Just quit, back out of the festival.  It's too hard to manage and deal with.  But I know that I can't do this; quitting isn't an option.  Doing the Riverdale Art Walk is a step onwards.  Doing other festivals and gallery shows will also point me in the right direction.

Onwards and upwards!

Monday, May 25, 2015

One More Day of Rest

I still feel weary and blah from my cold.  You wouldn't want to read about my sneezing, coughing fits, or my aches and pains anyway.  I sure don't want to feel them myself!

One more day of rest and a good night's sleep -  I'll be right as rain by tomorrow!

(Hopefully ....)

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Evenings Suck

Evenings suck when you have a cold.

I had a good day. I saw Laura and her dog Stuie (short for Stuart MacLean) and had fun with them. However, right now I feel sneezy, congested, and blah ....

Write to you tomorrow.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

A Sick Day


I woke up at 5:30 am, thinkking: Bloody hell, I have a cold!  From then on, every fifteen minutes or so, I would jerk awake, review my symptoms in my head and debate about whether I would be able to go to the market.

Unfortunately not.  My whole body screamed at me to stay in bed and rest, to try to expel this evil illness from my body.

I stayed in bed until noon, and put food in my belly and watched a shitload of Friday Night Lights, The Musketeers, and Mad Men.

I also wrote emails and did some online banking.  (You didn't actually think I could just sit and do nothing, did you?)

It's evening now and my cold symptoms are getting worse.  G-R-O-A-N-!  I think I'll take some cold meds and go to bed early.

Hopefully, I'll feel much better tomorrow ....

Friday, May 22, 2015

Happy Puppy

Another Productive Friday

Yahoo! I'm all updated with emails, employee scheduling, and my personal finances.

Amy helped me write to a gallery in Baltimore asking then for qualifications on how to create a proposal.  In 2011, when I was in town for Frank Zappa Day to honour Rob's great love of Zappa, I met somebody from the Creative Alliance and they suggested that I have an exhibition in their gallery.  So, almost six years later, that's what I'm going to try to do.

Speaking of which - back to work! I'm starting a new painting.

Pictures to follow ....

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Walking Wounded

As I wait for my dinner, I'm listening to my YouTube playlist.  Walking Wounded by The Tea Party is playing now.  After my counselling session today, I feel like I'm "walking wounded" ... well, wheeling wounded anyway.

I talked about many things to my counsellor today, but one thing continues to circle around in my brain.  Fifteen years ago, Rob was in the hospital, deathly ill with pancreatitis. The doctors told me that he only had a 15% chance of his survival. Scared beyond belief, not knowing what else to do, I visited Rob twice a day, every day for six weeks, and I would sit by his bedside holding his hand for hours at a time.

Rob recovered, got stronger and healthier.  I thought I'd have him longer than I did.

As I told this story to my counsellor, I heard Adele's Rolling in the Deep echoing in my head.  "We could have had it allllllllllllllll, rolling in the deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep!"  It's not fair that Rob's not with me, after everything we'd gone through throughout the years.

But then whoever said that life is fair? Certainly not I.

Ok, time to distract myself ..... Mac & Cheese from Hair of the Dog and Merlin on Netflix.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Getting Ready

Today I got three of my paintings ready to go to Luc Sculpture Gallery. They will be in the Beautiful Mother EARTH group art show from May 20 to August 30.

And now, I'm going to finish a painting I started last night.

I need to get ready for the Riverdale Art Walk, which is from June 6 to June 7.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Wine Gums and Licorice All-sorts for Dad's Birthday!

My father used to snack uponWine Gums and Licorice All-sorts and a bowl of peanuts in the evenings.  Oh yes, and a can of Pepsi.

Dad would watch TV in the recroom downstairs as he ate.  Star Trek, Get Smart, Hawaii 5-0, Man From U.N.C.L.E., Gunsmoke, and Ponderosa were just a few of his favourite shows. 

He was a fastidious man, precise in deed and thought.  And yet, Dad could be very jovial and kind.  He loved playing tennis; going on yearly vacations; and, without a doubt, he loved his family ....

Happy birthday, Dad!  You would have been 89 today.  I love you and miss you!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Interesting Market Day

It was an interesting market day.

I felt pretty in my new dress and I did ok for sales.  That was good!

People were cool, friendly, and appreciative of my art.  The best customers, however, were two little girls.  The older one came up to me first. She and her mother chatted with me and asked me questions about my art.   A few minutes later, the younger girl and the father came along as well.  I had to smile as the older girl kept bragging that she had communicated with me by reading my board ....

Those kids were so cute!

I was going to write more about today, but I'm exhausted and my muscles are killing me


Friday, May 15, 2015

My Cats Are Lazy Boys

My cats sure are lazy boys ....

I, on the other hand, have so much to do before I go to bed tonight.  Despite the rainy, gloomy, dismal weather, which has been sapping my energy all day,  I know I must finish at least the bulk of work I've set for myself.  I'll have a terribly fitful sleep if I don't.

Tomorrow night, though, it's Move over, boys!  It's MY turn to chill out!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Trying My Best

Yesterday, between feeling sadness and regret over celebrating Rob's birthday without him, I looked at all of my clothes and decided to get rid of some of them.

And then I bought some more clothes at Joe Fresh.  Retail therapy always softens the sharpness of a hard day.

Today I concentrated on advertising the Riverdale Art Walk, which is being held on the weekend of June 6-7.  I'm going to be one of the artists, talking to people and selling my work.

In recent past posts, I've mentioned how I felt like I had somehow "lost my footing" within my life. However, by purging old clothes and other stuff I don't use anymore; by rearranging my apartment so that it's more accessible; and, by trying out new adventures like the Riverdale Art Walk I think I'm on the path to regaining at least some of my balance.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Loving and Remembering Rob Warenda

Today I did my best to honour Rob by watcing his favorite shows and listening to is favorite music. I even used is shampoo and deodorant this morning.

Grief is a weird thing. For me at least, I want the pain and sadness to go away, and yet I'm afraid to forget about Rob altogether. 

But how could I forget a a man like Rob Warenda? He was the sweetest, funniest, smartest, weirdest and sometimes the most infurating man I have ever known. Plus, Rob loved me the most of everyone (except Mom) and I felt the exact same way about him!

I know in my heart I will never really forget Rob, but I'll still keep honouring him and honouring the times we spent together.

Cheers, Rob!  I'll always love you ....

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Tired, So More Pictures

I'm exhausted but happy.  This evening I went to the orientation meeting for the Riverdale Art Walk. I'm both excited about this opportunity and yet stressed out about it too.  I've never been in the RAW before, and there's so much to do before June 6th and 7th. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeek!

Well, anyway, when I got home I decided to look in a bag that I had got from my mom's place two years ago.

This is what I found:

Sunday, May 10, 2015

One of a Kind Mom

As I'm having dinner, I'm drinking red wine and thinking about my mom.

When I was growing up I would say to my mother, "Mom, you're one of a kind!" I said this to her with great love and a bit of humour because Mom would make everybody smile or laugh out loud at stories of her past. She could make the Depression era sound like a hoot. Mom was always talking to people she met on the street or in transit and would tell us hilarious stories about the people she met. 

Because Mom had such an open and fun-loving nature, it seemed natural for she and I to go to parties together and even to a lodge together for a week.

Lately I've been watching Friday Night Lights, and I like it, but one part made me cry a little. The mother of the coach's daughter got so upset and furious that the girl was even thinking of having sex with a boy at age 15. Why did this make me cry? Because my mom and I could talk about anything, no problem. Mom would have never gotten upset over that type of thing, she would simply reason with me.  When I started dating Rob, I asked her to please take me to the doctor so I could get birth control pills. She was more than happy to do so! And, at 82, she told me all about the several boyfriends she had before she was with Dad. Way to go, Mom!

Mom, you sure were one of a kind! Happy Mother's Day!  I love you!