Describe your mothers wedding dress. What do you know about her wedding?
My mom has been married twice, so I'll tell you what I know from both.
When she married my dad she was wearing (from what I can recall from pictures) a very lacy dress that her mother had made her. After the marriage ceremony, my mom found a pin my grandma had not noticed when she was finishing up the dress. I guess she had a habit of leaving at least one pin in her creations. A trademark, if you will. Her roses were yellow, even though she didn't like yellow. She would have prefered pink. I still don't get why she didn't go with what she wanted. Then again, a lot of things about my wedding and reception weren't as I wanted ... so I guess I don't have much room to say anything.
My dads younger twin sisters were the flower girls and some of his brothers were the grooms men.
It was held in my grandma and grandpa Jones' back yard in Grande Prairie, AB before they moved to Creston, BC.
Her second marriage to Rod Hutchinson was held in Kalispel, MT, so that I could come. I still wasn't legal to cross the boarder. So my siblings, their families, Rod's son and girlfriend, mother and sister and my aunt Norma all came down there. Yeah, it was a big deal to me that they were willing to go so out of the way so I could be involved. The wedding itself was held in a park, infront of a big tree. Dawn, Michael and I stood up for my mom and Tyler stood up for Rod during the ceremony. Afterward we went over to a community building, ate cake, drank ... something and watched the kids play on the playground. We then went to the Sizzler and ate. Ended up back at the hotel in the swimming pool. Fun time had by all. I think. At least I had a fun time.
Her dress was a pretty flowery thing ... I'll add a picture, I suck at descriptions.
Do you recall any outstanding family trips or summer holidays you experienced as a child?
The most remarkable vacation we went on as a family was to Florida when I was ... 12 (?) After talking to Michael and Dawn about it years later - it turns out I was the only one who had a lot of fun. I suppose 12 was on the cusp of the "Magical" age limit. We stayed at a condo (on exchange from out Fairmont timeshare) in the Kissimmee area. Odd things pop to mind when I think of that vacation. Watching a "Gold Bond" commercial for the first time, being fascinated by a sudden down pouring of rain, going to an outlet mall for the first time, collecting autographs from the characters for my best friend, being in a rental car for the first time, being on a commercial airplane for the first time, listening to Monty Python on the plane - with my whole family ... except my mom cracking up. She still doesn't know why we think it's funny. C'mon "I'm a lumberjack, yes I am ..."that's some great stuff!
We drove to all of our other vacation destinations (almost all of them to see grandparents in British Columbia). I recall so many moments from those trips. I guess that is why I have been somewhat resistant to the idea of flying to our summer holiday destinations, though it would be WAY faster - and sometimes cheaper. Memories are created, lives are changed, relationships are molded with the time we spend with our family. If you're in such a rush to get there, you may miss out on some of the best moments you can have.
Describe getting a Christmas tree with your family as a child: How did you decorate it? When did you put it up?
We never actually got a Christmas tree. For as long as I can remember, we just had the fake Christmas tree we put up every year. I can remember quite a way back, as in all the way back to the Christmas I was 3. Same tree. I do remember decorating it though. We were what I would consider now, tacky. We used that garish silver garland and that icicle stuff you took by the handful and tossed on the tree. Horrid. Just taking it off was a nightmare. However, we never really remembered to think of that until AFTER Christmas was over and had to painfully take it all off.
We had to wait until December 1st (a tradition my brother now painfully continues) to turn on Christmas music, put up decorations or set up the tree. To this day, I think that is a silly ordinance. I'll wait till after American Thanksgiving - but then it's no holds barred.
Tell the words of a song from your childhood. What memories does it bring to mind?
TAPS (I had no idea it was a Scout song and the song they play at military funerals till I just looked it up.)
Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, from the hills, from the sky;
All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.
Fading light, dims the sight,
And a star gems the sky, gleaming bright,
From afar, dawning nigh, falls the night.
Thanks and praise, for our days,
'Neath the sun, 'neath the stars, 'neath the sky;
As we go, this we know, God is nigh...
My mom used to sing this as one of her lullabyes. I'm not too sure she realized what an impression she was making, the memories she was creating. I love her for unknowingly doing so much that has influenced my life so completely.
Do you have a favorite magazine? Describe it and the kinds of things you learn from it or enjoy about it.
My favorite is a "rag" mag. I LOVE "US" magazine. I know, it's ridiculous. I just love the "nothingness" of it. I like the mindless chatter, the gossip about people that won't ever have anything to do with me. I take it to the gym with me and it helps speed up an hour on the treadmill.
Describe the perfect summer day. What would you do on that day?
I've spent plenty of days in what I consider the perfect way. There is a privately owned 30 acre park/1 acre spring fed lake about 1/2 hour from my house called Burger's Lake. I've gone there several times with my kids, a few times we've been able to bring my mom and various friends along with us. There are two sandy beaches, huge trees for shade, a concession stand, picnic tables, tubes for rent, diving boards, a slide, trapeze, grills ... It's fantastic. You pull up there in the morning and can spend the whole day playing in the water, in the sand, lazing under the trees, snacking on your picnic food. When we head home the kids ZONK OUT every time. I love it. That, to me, is summer perfection.
Where do you like to go eat out? What do you order?
My favorite place to go eat is Nagoya, down in Arlington. It has some of the best sushi I have ever eaten, actually, until I ate sushi there I wasn't too sure I liked the idea of it. My favorite thing to order there is the Shrimp Tempura roll. Tasty.
Or The Melting Pot up on Beltline in Addison. Come on, who doesn't love fondue? Alright, what woman doesn't love fondue?
Do you like rainstorms? Why? Why not? Do you have memories connected with rain?
I love rainstorms as long as they don't last more than a few days. If it stays overcast for longer than that, I get really depressed. However, I love Texas rainstorms with the thunder that shakes the windows and lightening that brightens the whole house. It's a wonder to behold.
Did you have a close relationship with any of your grandparents?
I'd have to say that I was the closest with my grandpa Jones. He was so cranky and funny. When I'd go to their place in the summer there was always a guarantee we'd spend too much time out out on the lake not catching any fish, arguing over how many coats of paint the deck needed, finding "great deals" at garage sales, discussing gardening (of which I am still not sure either of us knew anything about)... He'd pinch my cheeks cause he knew I hated it and I'd rub his close shaved head (something I think my dad needs to look into, it's very fun to mess with...)which I knew irritated him. Yep, I loved my grump.
What activities did you participate in during your school years?
I was involved in a lot of school sports till high school, then I felt like too much of an outcast to try out for school delegated sports and stuck to Lethbridge soccer leagues. In Jr. High I was on the student council - looking back, I'm not too sure what good we were, or if the whole process was just to teach us about voting, getting involved and popularity. In high school I was on the yearbook committee. I went around, got sponsorship from various businesses in town, took pictures, helped dictate the lay out, ect. Mr. Beukert (sp?) was an awesome adviser for that project, he was very free with what we were able to do with the yearbook and always willing to listen to new ideas.
Describe your first paying job. What was your salary? Your duties? What was your boss like?
My first paying job was a Chef's assistant at the Sandman Inn in Lethbridge. My cousin Kristopher, who lived with us at that time and I both got hired on - my mom's youngest brother Jim was the head chef he figured more little hand involvement the better. As for salary ... I can't really recall. Though I do know at the time it seemed like a lot of money. Add to on to the fact that we always got a plate of what ever we'd cooked for the banquet/reception, it seemed like a good deal. Our duties included doing everything besides serving the food. We mixed, tossed, turned, added, cleaned, gutted, sloshed ... Our boss was fair. He's my uncle, what was he going to be mean? Come on. I think he was trying to make up for the fact that he'd completely broken my heart 6 years earlier by going to jail instead of coming to my birthday party ... or maybe that's just what I want to believe.
Are there any family heirlooms in your possession? Tell about them and how you came to acquire them.
My grandma Jones gave me a diamond heart necklace pendant my grandpa Jones had given to her on their wedding day 40 (?) year prior for my wedding present. I don't think it was because I am her favorite - but because I was his ;)
When my Uncle Howard's things were distributed I was given a choice of one of his knives... I don't know if it's quite a heirloom - but I still cherish it.
I have been dropping none too subtle hints that I'd like one of the wooden bowls my grandpa Jones made ... I think I need to just go ahead and pack one in my truck the next time I am in Canada. No one seems to get that I WANT ONE!
Eventually, I hope to inherit the family Bible. It's old and thick and beautiful. I'm not too sure who it originated with, but I have always loved it.
Do you like to go to the theater? The opera? The symphony? Which do you like the best? Which production did you like the best and why?
I love to go to the theater.
I have never been to an opera, though I have watched Phantom of the Opera and Les Miserable on DVD (does that even count?) and loved them both.
I don't really enjoy the symphony. I found the one time I went I had to keep myself awake by hunting the musicians for someone good looking to entertain my brain with. lol ... I really did. I should be flogged.
I love theater productions. They, to me, are just so much fun.
The show I enjoyed the most was STOMP. It was so entertaining and beautiful and invigorating. Those people are so talented.
In general, I have a hard time going to theater productions where there is a lot of talking because I have a hard time understanding what people are saying if they are too far away and I can't see their mouthes moving. So I prefer musicals more, especially if I have already heard the sound track.
Describe a childhood birthday.
The first birthday I remember somewhat clearly was when we had moved down to Taber from Grande Prairie. For people who were use to snow 8 months of the year, it was quite a shock to have it nice enough for us to be running around outside in February in nothing but our frilly birthday dresses. We decorated cookies, played some games, opened presents and played outside. It was a novelty for us! I am pretty sure that was my fourth birthday.
After that, the next memorable birthday came when I was about 14 and we started packing up a passel of my friends and heading over to Westcastle or Fernie for a day of skiing. That was what we did for the next three years. It was an awesome way to spend my birthday.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I was so wishy washy. First I wanted to be a nurse. Then I realized I cannot handle the smell of blood, urine or vomit. And sick people? Not so much my idea of a good time.
Then I wanted to "just be a mom" - not so much because it seemed like a noble thing to do, but because it seemed the easiest option. Bah! Who was I kidding?
Lastly I wanted to be a legal assistant. Infact, Michael and I even had a plan stewed up. I was going to get my degree, get some years of experience then when he graduated, we'd go into business together. Ha. He followed through on becoming a lawyer. Me ... not so much. Doesn't meant I still can't do that, I suppose. Just not work with Michael. The whole living in two different countries may make that difficult.
Tell something about each of your children, their personalities, talents, traits that make them different and special.
Wow. That is so loaded.
Ms. R ...
She is sweet, eager to please, soft hearted, has a quick temper - quick to flare up just as quickly dies out.
Her special talent, at 5, is being aware of others. Because she spent two years in a program for children with disabilities and a brother with Autism she has a keen sense of fairness. Of being open to others who are different, not being afraid of those who are not "as kids should be".
To me, this makes her very different and infinitely special. Being able to see past what the exterior and the world shout they are ... she sees their inner spirits and loves them for it.
He is funny, cuddly, outgoing, easy going, hard to handle, easy to love.
His special talent, at 4, is opening eyes and hearts to differences that can make someone who "looks" normal so much different. He is learning beyond his years, even with his inability to communicate locked up. He can figure things out faster than most adults can think of the true problem. He studies and watches and imitates to an uncanny degree.
He's special not only because of his challenges but because of how he's dealing with them, overcoming his limitations and breaking all expectations.
He may not communicate in words what he wants as much as the average boy, however, I say he's just becoming a man early ... hahahaa.