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Slice of Life Tuesdays- Chapter 9

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Today was the celebration of four years of University completed. I now have a Bachelor of Education Degree!!

Phone calls and messages of congrats from everyone today, my mom, dad, Aunt Cheryl and Justin came to the ceremony. We got to TCU Place and it was pretty much chaos, no one knew what was going on. The doors finally opened and we rushed in like cattle, grads were sent behind the stage where more confusion arose on where to stand and how to sign in and how to hold or wear the sash thing. It was great to see some of the Gamma people I had been in class with.

We finally got into our order. I was second last for the B.Ed, # 224. I had tears in my eyes in the holding area just thinking about this being the end of a crazy four years.
We walked down the hallway and took our seats in the full auditorium, I couldn't find my family in the stands with all the faces. The ceremony was very formal and I felt silly wearing that gown and we were all sweating, my hands were making the card I was holding wet. The people were walking across the stage quickly and it was our rows turn to get ready to stand in line. I was getting more nervous. It was my turn to walk up to the Dean have her say my name, then I walked over to the chancellor shook her hand and finally over to the President of the University and he handed me my diploma. I wanted to jump for joy I was so happy.
3 1/2 hours later it was all over, Justin and I bought matching frames to hang in our office and we took a few pictures outside and went and had supper.

It was a long day, but it was an important one that I am very proud to say that I am now a University of Saskatchewan Graduate.

Congrats to all my fellow classmates!
Justin and I after the ceremony

Memoir Mondays #2- Now and Then Special Place

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It was my second home, I could see the large grey Quonset shaped building from my bedroom window, the shingles needed replacing and a new paint job inside and out, the back door didn't really close or lock. It was not the prettiest building in the town, but when winter season came the town gathered nightly to drink coffee, visit and watch some hockey. Small towns in Saskatchewan are fueled by hockey, everyone ate, drank and slept hockey, everyone except for me.

I was a figure skater.
I raced through my backyard everyday after school with my skate bag bouncing on the back of my legs as I ran to public skating on my lesson.s When I started skating there were at least 10 older girls who I looked up to and many other my age who I skated with. They quickly all quit to play girls hockey and it was Rachelle and I then just me...I wouldn't be trading in my pick and skirts for a stick and a puck. I was often the only figure skaters at public skating. It was dangerous avoiding pucks from the shiny game on the other side and as the game went on I had less and less ice.

Our rink had natural ice, it was hard and looked like glass, still wet from the Zamboni. I would skate over to the music room and play the newest cd I had bought. Stroking around the boards marked up fro pucks and age, the birds flew from rafter to rafter near the ceiling. The cold winter wind blew through the windows on the side. My hair flying behind me as I picked up speed. The sounds of my blades cutting into the ice was hypnotic and rhythmic. Seat would form on my forehead and neck and make my hair curly. I would breath in deep , the smell of the ice- my favorite smell, truly indescribable.

This old barn had so much character and brought me so much joy growing up. It was were I spent most of my free time in winter- a rink rat I called myself. It was falling apart as time went on, not beg enough for a tournament and natural ice made our season very short. The town finally raised enough money an now have a huge multi million dollar complex for skating curling, dance, bowling, the library etc. They turned the old rink into a horse riding arena. My skating career was done by the time they built the new rink but I taught other how to skate and have been to a few public skates. It is beautiful, great ice, well lit, better sound system but it is missing that smell...

Now when I look out my old bedroom window and see horses coming in and out of it I feel all these memories and moments of time spent in their on the ice. As I grew I learned many lessons inside those walls on and off the ice. I learned grace and power on the ice through my skating lessons. It is a passion that still burns inside me today, although I don't practice anymore whenever I get back on the ice that fire burns inside me to jump and spin. I founded many friendships, Rachelle and I spent many Monday and Thursday afternoons skating round and round together telling each other the highs and lows of our day, the ice was cathartic and the connection we built was strong. Many of my coaches were great role models and also good friends that I could go and talk to. The younger skaters that I taught all looked up to me on and off the ice and I felt pride at the end of the season when those who could not stand on their own where now the fastest in my group. I also made friendships off the ice with the caretakers. I was the official hot chocolate taster, and new 5cent candy eater. They were kind and generous to open the rink early when competition was getting close and always warned me about the cracks in the ice when March came around. I sometime had to stand up for myself and the use of the ice to those who thought figure skating was a waste of precious ice time. It was not always easy, but I knew in my heart that it was important to me and no one was going to take that away.

Growing up in a small town with the rink in my backyard and with my hockey loving dad and brothers it was no question that I was going to skate and that the rink would be a big part of my life. I was always the girly-girl so figure skating was natural for me before we had a dance club in Aberdeen. Today the rink in the winter is still a big part of my life as I teach skating and when I'm off watching Justin play hockey. Aberdeen's rink holds a special place in my heart and it holds a lot of special memories for many of the people that live in the town. No matter how amazing our new rink is with all its technology and glamour, the old cold barn behind my house will forever be the best rink ever.

Teaching Certificate

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I FINALLY got my teaching certificate today!!! This has been a very long 3 week wait that is finally over---now one more step, I need to send in my sub application and just wait for the official word that I am on the sub list!
I was getting pretty pouty about all of this waiting, I was getting really whinny. So crossing my fingers that this last step goes quick and I can be out subbing for the month of June!!!!

Slice of Life Tuesdays- Chapter 8

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The days seem to blend together lately. I gret up eat breakfast check out things online, work-out, shower get dressed and work on my never ending to-do list.
Sending out resumes for jobs, waiting for phone calls from resumes I've already submited, constant cleaning of the house, writing, reading, running errands, making gifts, buying gifts, wedding planning....the list goes on.
I enjoy having this time to myself, but I feel like I'm on pins and needles waiting to get a call saying that someone wants to meet me to see if they want me to teach in thier school. I can't wait until this nervous time is over and I can really relax and enjoy spending the afternoon in my nest chair curled up with a book or painting something.
Tonight was week 3 of bowling out in Aberdeen. Half done already and I don't think I'm improving at all, maybe even getting worse. My wrists are week and I let the ball drop off to the side and into the gutter it goes. Oh well, it's all in fun and it's nice to hang out with my mom.
This is my life right now, checking off the to-do list, and a lot of waiting and wondering....

Memoir Mondays #1- Now and Then Friendship

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We have known each other since diapers, and plan on becoming old ladies together who go for coffee everyday and talk about the old days. We have shared a million memories in our short 21 years and I know more are to come.

Dallas was like the sister I never had. We shared everything, clothes, secrets, lip gloss and boys! :P How that sneaky boy got between us momentarily I'll never know (but that's a whole other story). Through all the high school drama, and the life now after with jobs and responsibilities she is still the first person I call to share any kind of news. We spent many hours on the phone talking a mile a minute or in each others bedrooms painting nails and combing each others hair. Telling each other the latest on our crush, or complaining about the teachers at school. Our friendship was strong, and we may not have always agreed on everything but we never really fought about anything. We were there for each other through and through.

Dallas moved almost next door to me, there is a house in between us. You could see us running back and forth our neighbors lawn all summer long getting cookies, watching movies, riding bikes and playing basketball. Life was very simple back then.

There are so many memories from dance competition and taping up Stephanie too tight, girl guide camp, Dallas getting hit in the head by a hockey puck, graduation, and spice-girl imitations, birthday pub-crawls and so many more.

Dallas was there when I first met Justin at the Poker Tournament, and she was the first person I called after Justin and I had our first date, and our first kiss. I am very excited to have her stand beside me on my wedding day to be my Maid of Honor.
This is my friend Dallas, trailer trash, sporty spice, dancer! I love you dear!

Book Club

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Great wine, good appetizers and FANTASTIC cupcakes were eaten at Shauna Foster's Book Club on Wednesday when we went to discuss Sharon Butala's Girl In Saskatoon. All of us ladies had very high hopes for this book and sought it out after the one and only major book store sold out of it two times, and other stores were also selling out. I ended up getting my copy off Amazon. I was excited to get into this piece of historical fiction placed in the city I am currently living, but after only a few pages what I thought the book was about and what the book was really about it became a chore to finish it.

Most of us in book club tried to push through and finish it, hoping that it would pull together in the end, but it did not happen. The disappointment and some anger came from many of the ladies at the book club including myself.

There were gaps in the narrative, which really parallel Butala's connection with the main character of her story Alex. They were never really friends, just simply went to the same school. She had never really hung out with her or remembered anything really specific. Her book really isn't about Alex, but more about the connections between Sharon and Alex's similar origin, they were both in drama club and Sharon had a summer job where Alex would have a future job as a nurse. The story seemed to be more about Sharon and her life, comparing her life to that of Alex's along the way.

The part of the book that is really wonderful was the description of the time about living in Saskatoon, and all the description of how life was for girls/women in that time. The book left many ties still undone and so many unanswered questions. I thought that this story would have better been told as a fiction story, take the idea of Alex's death and make it a fiction story rather then filling a true story with maybes and assumptions.

Shauna picked the next book: Marley and Me by John Gorgan. I picked it up that night and
have had a hard time putting it down and in the first 5 chapters I have already shed some tears. I'm looking forward to this book much more, something fun and heartwarming.

I can't wait till the next meeting to see what the rest of the ladies have to say!

Slice of Life Tuesdays- Chapter 7

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Justins new position at work and different hours changed a lot of things in our routine. He doesn't get home till 6:30, so I am now the cook. He also gets up way too early for me so we are hopefully getting into bed by 9:00-9:30 and reading. I have really missed cooking suppers with Justin- he cooked the meat and I did the veggies and salads. But I have enjoyed cooking new things on my own and having supper ready so we can eat when he gets home. The next 3 weeks Justin is back to his regular 8 hour shift and home at 4:30 which means we are cooking together again.
Somehow we manage not to burn anything or boil anything over while we dance around the kitchen and give kisses in between stirs! It is really the most enjoyable part of my dad, where we get the low-down on each others days and plan for the evening and work in harmony each person knowing exactly what to do.
I know this fun cooking time will come to an end soon so I'm enjoying every moment of it and hope it returns again soon.

Map of Me

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Start with my toes, curled and callused, nails painted the colours of the rainbow. Tapping to the music.

Bruises on my shins and on my knees, walking into tables and falling from a jump. I am such a klutz There were kisses from spring grass and autumn leaves that took away some of the pain.
Strong legs, muscular from years of my passion to skate. There are traces of lips and fingertips, lingering and soft.

The curve of my hips sway back and forth as I walk. I sometimes curse them as I struggle into a pair of pants. The ideal place to hands to rest while dancing, pull me closer and closer.

My stomach tells stories of nights spent on the bathroom floor that summer I turned 19. Move fast from here, it hurts. Pass over the middle, I'll be back, tonight I will take the long way home.

My shoulder hold the wight of the world, all my fears and a sleepy head. Tension released as be rubs lotion on my back. My neck like a princess swan reserved for his kisses, often draped in a necklace.

My head in constant conflict with my heart. It holds lyrics, poems, useless trivia, phone numbers, directions, movies how to's and how not to's: love, make cookies, play piano. All of it in flies for future reference.

My hair finally touches my shoulders sometimes curly, but often straight. I've always had bangs forever and over. Shades of purple and red peek out from the dark brown. I was blond for a bit, not my thing. I love when he runs his fingers through it.

My eyes changing from shades of blue to shades of green sparkling in the sunlight. My vision is blurred without my glasses but I dream clean, beautiful images at night. My eyes are wells ready to overflow with tears at any moment, happy or sad.

I scrunch my nose at things I don't like. There are smells of fresh chocolate chip cookies, the ice at the rink, sweaty dance shoes. Frequent nose bleeds when the weather turns cold and dry.

My lips covered in Lip Smackers. My tongue often stuck behind my teeth, often very quiet, but my lips speak words, sentences of longing, questions, happy, sad. Pillow talk about our day and the deep unanswerable questions. I sing loudly in my car and in the shower. My lips touching his, we kiss in odd numbers, every morning and every night.

Down my arms to my hands. Usually interlocked in his like puzzle pieces, his ring on my finger. Don't crack your knuckles my mom always said. My hands have filled a lot of notebooks. Paint under my nails, palms hurt from swinging a bit. My hands knit scarves and make supper. My hands run through his hair and down his strong back squeezing him close. Our hearts beating in sync.

My heart hold the most stories. It was many scars from being dangled by a strong then dropped shattered in a million pieces. Finally found my soul mate and the pieces became whole. My heart guides me, it is where I go for advice. My heart sometimes feels to big inside my tiny chest and often feels like bursting with joy or heartache.

***There is more to this map, but I just can't write anymore, but I wanted to share...

Slice of Life Tuesdays- Chapter 6

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Yesterday just got away from me and I didn't get to write me slice, so here it is now, just a little late.

How come they never tell you about the lengthy and complicated process it is going to be to get your teaching certificate when it is all said and done?? I waited very impatiently for a week for my last mark to be posted so I could order my transcripts and have them sent off to teacher services so they could process my application, send me back my certificate number so I could send off my sub application form. That's what I thought was going to happen, so after waiting for my last mark I started to order these transcripts but read in the fine print that my transcripts will not indicated that I have obtained my Education Degree until after convocation. THAT IS 3 WEEKS AWAY!! I cannot wait another three weeks....I called Teacher Services, they told me that I should send these transcripts and then send another after my convocation. My frustration is building. I just want to get into the classroom, I spent four year in University with my eyes and heart set on this goal and now that I have the education I'm playing a waiting game to get a piece of paper with a number on it.

So I'll play this waiting game, unfortunatly because I want nothing more then to be in that classroom watching students learn and grow. I will be there soon! :)