January 15, day 15 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge. The half way mark. Do I have it in me to do the second half? Today is just as hard as yesterday. I woke up at 3 am. My nose was as dry as all get up, my tongue thick and furry. I could hardly swallow. I’m thinking allergies. Damn that snow mold! We’re having melting temperatures after some very frigid days. Then I wonder if it could be the coronavirus. I got up to wet my mouth and squirt some salinex nasal spray and went back to bed.

Luckily I got back to sleep. In the morning, just to be sure I did a rapid test. I was pretty sure I am negative but I have an in-person watercolour art class today. I want to be responsible and be sure and not risk other people’s health. I tested negative. It was still a relief even though I am triple vaccinated. I could relax and go to my class without worry.

Being in the classroom again is one of the things I missed in 2021. Before Covid I had an aerobic class Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I had swimming on Saturdays. I attended an adult learning class once a week at the University of Saskatchewan. Yes, I missed them, the exercises, the in-person learning and the people. I am happy that I had signed up for the art class way back in December. Of course, I had morning jitters, wishing that I hadn’t. It was signer’s regret but I got quickly over it once I arrived at the studio. Today there was 5 of us plus the instructor, all masked.

I didn’t pull off any master pieces. I was learning the basics of watercolours. What’s good, what’s not. What to cheap on and what not to. Definitely get good paints and paper but you can cheap on brushes. We practiced a few brush techniques and how to mix colours. I like the instructor. She’s a good teacher. I learned that I missed talking in 2021. I found myself talking quite a bit in class -asking questions. Maybe it was just an excuse to talk. It surprised me. It felt good.


A hot 26 degrees Celsius on a Mother’s Day. I agree with Anne Lamott’s article on Why I Hate Mother’s Day.  The article didn’t make Anne popular. She received a lot of hate mail for it. Agreeing with her probabley won’t make me loved either. Though I haven’t receive any hate mail, I can feel the disapproval. I’m not unfamiliar with those feelings. While Miss Lamott is considered a trail blazer for her frankness, I am not bestowed with such.

Shucks! I will have to bear the brunt of my words. Words do have alot of power as Caroline Myss proclaims. She has lectured about it many times. I shall have to give words more respect and use them with care. There is a possibility that I do voiced what others would only think. It would be wise of me not to give my opinions and feelings so freely. I do not have to be an open book. At the same time I need not be a clam with lips sealed tight. I could learn from these wise and wonderful words.

Talking is fantastically overrated. Too many people do too much of it. It stuns the hell out of me how so many people like to talk. Sharkey, for example. If talking is so good for you, what the hell is Sharkey doing here? The guy tears me up. Talking does not heal you. Talking just adds to the noise pollution in the world. If we were really serious about going green, then maybe we’d all just be quiet.” 
― Benjamin Alire SáenzLast Night I Sang to the Monster

“I choose to choose few words each day. Yes! few words that count. Few words that can make impact. Few words that talk much. Few words that can make people ponder to wonder. Few words that are indelible. Few words that can leave distinctive footprints on minds. Though we may fail to mind our words, we shall never fail to mind the works of our words.” 
― Ernest Agyemang Yeboah

Ah, I wish that I had written those words! I may be able to come up with some of equal power if I talk and share less. Wise is a woman who keeps her counsel. I’ve never betrayed another secret nor spread malicious lies. I have been a victim though. Who hasn’t? People who tell their secrets should never ask another not to repeat it. It’s asking for too much. IF you don’t want people to tell, you should not tell yourself. The power lies in the choices we make.

What I know for sure is I try to speak always in the first person singular – I.  I get tripped up frequently.  I’m reminded with the question: Who’s THEY? What I know for sure are the things that pertain to myself only. Everything else is guess work. What I know for sure today is, I do love my mother and we celebrated the occasion with a meal. I have not been buying her gifts she seldom wear/use for a few years now. Like Anne Lamott I do not care for these ‘special days’ when you are expected to celebrate in certain ways. These ‘special days’ include Father’s Day as well as Mother’s Day, Christmas, Easter and birthdays. I know it is not a popular sentiment.

Growing up, my siblings and I did not have birthday parties or presents. My mother always made something special to eat like a chicken drumstick and a hard boiled egg. I’m sure there is a significance to them but I am not sure what. I am not a very good Chinese. I am somewhat ashamed to say that we have not done anything for my parents’ birthdays. They have never voiced any disappointment nor displeasure. My mother is quite proud of us. She should be. She has raised us well. As for my father, I am not sure. He is not a demonstrative man. He did not participate in our upbringing. He was the breadwinner.

So I did not grow up in the normal Western traditional family. I am a child of immigrant parents. We adlibbed, adopting some Western traditions while tweaking the traditional Chinese ones as necessary in our circumstances. We had Charlie Brown Christmas trees and celebrations. I am tired of it all, fitting in, trying to be ‘normal’. Now I want to cast off what is not true for me. I want to get up every morning feeling that EVERY day is special. I like to celebrate by being a kind considerate person who will greet each day and each person with kindness and cheer. I struggle with it every day. Gee Wheez, I am talking too much again.