August 12, 2011

Temporary Move

I decided to move to a new blog while I am in Canada ...
Come join me at

O Canada, Y'all - the story of one Texas family living in Canada

July 26, 2011

Welcome to Calgary

I had a great day. I got to visit the office of the company that transported my car, the customs office (for the second time in a week), and the Calgary Police District Office after I was rear ended by an Aussie. And I thought the Canadians were the bad drivers. At least I was still driving the rental and not my still almost brand new Subaru.

July 25, 2011

We Made It

We made it and have moved in and are unpacked. Three days to put everything away. That is a record for me.

The dog made it. M's new Betta fish made it. J's did not. I killed it within an hour. Not enough water conditioner.

I can see the Rocky Mountains from my kids bedrooms. I see them every time I go to the grocery store or walk to the park. I wonder how long it will take before I start taking the views for granted.

It is cold here. I know I should not be complaining since it is 105 in Houston. But I need a jacket every day and it is July.

We saw Stampede. We saw a baseball game. It is like Houston - except for that weather part. Oh, and those mountains.

June 15, 2011

It Keeps me From Reading

A new "friend" on another blog asked "What keeps you from reading?" And writing. And posting.

For me lately, it has been the move. I am not sure the reason. We are not going as far this time. I wonder if it is the kids. Or the stuff (this is our first move with cars and furniture). Is it the five years between moves? Our longest stint in a house ever.

I'm not quite sure, but I am tired and sick of the process. And this is a corporate relo ... imagine if I actually had to do any of the work?

I'm also sad. Very sad. A beautiful sorority sister of mine died today from complications related to surgery. She should not have died. She was too young. She was too beautiful and talented. RIP Brigitte.

May 2, 2011

I am Buying this Shirt

and I am going to wear it on the plane when we move our family to CALGARY!

Yes. This Texas family is moving to Calgary. We have a little apprehension, but we are truly excited.

We have been in this house 5 years. Before that we moved 14 times. In 11 years.

This ain't my first rodeo (or my first move). This ain't even my first international move.

The new job will be tough but a career builder for my husband.

The company will pay for private school.

I'll be close to Lake Louise (skiing is my all time favorite sport).

Anyone have any winter coats for sale?

May 1, 2011


As we decide on our future "country" of residence, I am forced to keep all of the swirling anxiety in perspective. I am well. I have my husband (at my feet this moment playing with the dog) home and alive. My children are strong and here (in the next room playing in a fort of chairs and blankets). They are tough kids who we have raised to weather change (they didn't even blink when we told them we might be moving).

I am lucky. I am blessed. When (if) we move, I will take the most important parts of my life with me.

April 29, 2011

Are we Moving?

Stay tuned...

But I am not unhappy about recent developments in our lives. I think I just might be ready for a change.

April 27, 2011

The Ugly American

Now we don't even have to travel for the rest of the world to think we are crass and vulgar ...

What the World See in America

April 19, 2011

Too Soon Gone

Grete Waitz died yesterday. She inspired me.

My grandmother also died yesterday. She prayed for me.

I suddenly feel very lonely.

The only reason I was able to get out of bed this morning is my belief I will see her again.

April 15, 2011

Read this Article

How to Get a Real Education

I understand why the top students in America study physics, chemistry, calculus and classic literature. The kids in this brainy group are the future professors, scientists, thinkers and engineers who will propel civilization forward. But why do we make B students sit through these same classes? That's like trying to train your cat to do your taxes—a waste of time and money. Wouldn't it make more sense to teach B students something useful, like entrepreneurship?

He gets it. Also why I am against 100% education. You don't need a college degree to be a electrician. Or a plumber. Or a car mechanic. Or a bank teller. Or a cop.

If you want a college degree, by all means get one. But don't ask me to pay for it.

This is a great article too ... but I wonder how much we had to pay someone for this "knowledge."

A small but growing body of literature suggests that exercising outside can help kids concentrate, learn and build important skills, says Rich, of Children's Hospital Boston.

Anyone who ever was or knows a boy in scouting could have told you this.

April 14, 2011

COOK'S ILLUSTRATED offers Extra Special Deal ONLY for their BEST Customers

I have been a subscriber of Cook's Illustrated for a few years now. I love the magazine and have always felt it was worth the cost. It tends to be a bit more expensive than other cooking magazines, but it is also higher quality and ad free.

So I was excited today when I received this e-mail ...

With this letter attached from editor Christopher Kimball ...

Dear Loyal Subscriber,

At Cook's Illustrated, offering recipes that work and call-it-like-we-see-it cookware and ingredient ratings to our loyal subscribers is our passion and singular purpose. I like to think that we're pretty successful at it, and hope you agree. I really do go over our records and note our "repeat customers" like you. It's a great way to measure our success.

This dedication to keeping our readers satisfied takes a lot of hard work — and a huge grocery bill — to overcook steaks, under-bake cheesecakes, and create thousands more cooking mistakes along the way to our foolproof recipes. And because we are 100% ADVERTISING FREE, our loyalty is to you, the subscriber, so you can always trust our objective ratings and reviews.

Obviously I'd like to keep you in the Cook's Illustrated family, so I'm extending this one-time opportunity to lock in tremendous savings with our early-renewal offer.

Thank you again for your support. I look forward to providing you with many more years of foolproof cooking.

Sincerely yours,

Christopher Kimball, Founder and Editor

P.S. This is the one and only time you will be offered this early renewal deal. It's a time-limited offer as well, so just click below and lock in your savings!

Needless to say, I want to take advantage of this special offer. I want to lock in savings reserved only for their very BEST customers.

Current Offer:
1 Year (6 issues) for $28.95 — Save 19%

But I don't want to pay more for being a loyal subscriber. I want to pay less. So I thought I would check out what the non-loyal subscribers are paying ...

Yes! Please send me a one-year subscription (6 issues) to Cook's Illustrated. I'll pay just $24.95 — saving 30% off the newsstand price of $35.70.

In this case there is a price for loyalty. It is $4.00.

April 13, 2011

My Favorite Poem

This has long been one of my favorite poems ...

The Things
by Donald Hall

When I walk in my house I see pictures,
bought long ago, framed and hanging
—de Kooning, Arp, Laurencin, Henry Moore—
that I've cherished and stared at for years,
yet my eyes keep returning to the masters
of the trivial—a white stone perfectly round,
tiny lead models of baseball players, a cowbell,
a broken great-grandmother's rocker,
a dead dog's toy—valueless, unforgettable
detritus that my children will throw away
as I did my mother's souvenirs of trips
with my dead father, Kodaks of kittens,
and bundles of cards from her mother Kate.

It was featured as poem of the day on

April 8, 2011

Do You Take Jesse Jackson Seriously?

Does anyone take him seriously anymore?

On Thursday’s “Martin Bashir” on MSNBC, Jackson, the founder and president of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, said the budget battle on the Republican side represents an effort to make the federal government “dysfunctional.”

I don't know about that ... I think it already is.

“You have those who believe in states’ rights and those who believe in a more perfect union,” he said. “States’ right are anti-civil rights, anti-workers’ right to bargain, anti-social justice, pro-rich and significantly insensitive to poor people — that was the great divide 150 years ago and it’s the great divide today in the ideological sense.”

Mr. Jackson, I hate to be the one to tell you this, but they are also constitutional.

Amendment 10 - Powers of the States and People. Ratified 12/15/1791.

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Which way do you want it Mr. Jackson? Was the Civil War about slavery (as my 5th grader was recently taught) or was it about states' rights? Cause you can make a whole group of people feel bad about the first. But I don't think they will feel bad about the second.

Read more:

April 7, 2011

My Dream House

That is it. From House Beautiful. But I don't want it near a beach. I want it smack in the middle of a large tract of land in West Texas. A high fence and a gate code would be nice so no one could bother me. But that is a different post about my growing misanthropic tendencies.

I love the mid-century modern aesthetic of the house. I love the simple clean lines. I love the big windows and the porches. I love that I think you could easily drive a tractor right up to it. A green John Deere.

Mid-century modern with a touch of John Deere. My family. And some chickens. And a pool. And no one for miles. Doesn't that just about sound perfect.

And since it is Texas ... maybe a cow.

April 6, 2011

The Lost Fairy Tale

My kids have never seen Shrek. In the first place, I honestly just didn't care for the movie. In the second, I want a real fairy tale. I want the princess to be beautiful.

My friend, Dr. Louis Markos, wrote, "To most modern viewers, the transformation of Fiona into an ogre is 'no big deal.' Many would even hail it as teaching children the 'valuable' egalitarian lesson that external beauty is unimportant, an elitist, 'bourgeois' hang-up that needlessly divides and engenders low self-esteem in girls who can't make the grade."

But the Ugly Duckling doesn't stay ugly. He turns into a swan. The Beast turns into a Prince, and Cinderella beats out the ugly sisters for the love of hers. That is how I like my fairy tales.

Dr. Markos continues, "More and more, we are doing the same for ugliness: enshrining it at the heart of our culture, while beauty is left to atrophy and decay."

I've been thinking about this lately because of a 2nd grade project my younger son must complete. He has to recreate a fairy tale character out of craft supplies and return it to school. The most popular character this year ... Shrek. I kept my mouth shut during the discussion (I am learning), but I was just sad.

M will be recreating Prince Charming. And not the Prince Charming of Shrek or Into the Woods. He will be recreating the Prince Charming of Cinderella, Snow White and Sleeping Beauty. He will be the hero who rescues the damsel in distress. He will be dashing and defeat the dragon. He will be faithful. He will not be an ogre.