SoCS: collect

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “collect.” Use the word “collect” any way you’d like. 

Collect is now a dirty word for me. I have collected crap in the 15 years I’ve been living here and its not fun stuff like spoons or turtles or bears.

Back in the 80’s it was popular to have a “collection”. That way when you went on your aimless shopping excursions, not needing anything but wanting to buy something, you had something in particular to look for. You would peruse gift shops, antique shops, second hand shops until you saw it; “a bear!” “a turtle thing!”. Then you would get a momentary lift; you got your fix, and took it home to the Collection. On your birthday or Christmas someone would have found another great turtle, bear, or spoon to give you.

My sister-in-law was the bear person. She also had lots of money and loved to shop. Their spectacular cottage was filled with bear stuff. Even the bathroom had bear wallpaper and a bear toilet paper holder.

My ex-husband collected stones and crystals and turtle things for a while. But we didn’t have much money and didn’t do many aimless shopping excursions. I started to look at it all as more shit to dust.

The very best thing collected was by my mom and bless her for doing it!: She saved every note we wrote for her as kids. My mom worked so if we were going to be somewhere after school, we would have to leave a note. Later in teenage years were notes saying we were staying at our girlfriends or taking the bus downtown; often a lie. I look back and ask myself often; “Where were they?”

Anyway back to the notes. She even saved one from a friend when we were 12 years old. I’m pretty sure I remember it was about winning tickets to the Beatles from the radio station. I never would have remembered that without this note. I happen to have it in my photos already so I will share it at the end of my SoC. I reunited with her after 50 years and recently found her note, scanned and sent it to her. She was delighted! That collection still brings joy!

My mother-in-law collected sewing stuff she might use again. She left me her sewing machine and all her sewing stuff in her will. (I named my machine Marion.) There is a vial of bra hooks she picked off and saved, little tiny buttons, and all kinds of sewing thingamagigs that were popular in the ’50’s and ’60″s. I have my mom’s sewing collection, too, so I have the evolution of automatic button-hole attachments.

There is 40 years of collected stuff still in my old house where my ex still lives. He was much more of a collector than me and I suspect it has become hoarding. He told me he has over 50 Himalayan Salt lamps. I am so glad I don’t live in that anymore. I brought my favourite things here but I have not started collecting things except old papers and documents that should have been thrown out 10 years ago but they are in ‘piles to go through’. That’s my collecting.

Recently I was given a large filing cabinet so I am in the process of re-organizing my office/sewing cubby. Its hell. I hate doing it and its bringing back sad memories. So when the weather is bad, I am going through things collected.

But so happy my mom collected our notes!: Worth more than gold!

(Couldn’t resist adding the Easter card I made that was also scanned.)

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS May 29, 2021 | (

SoCS: growth

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “growth.” Use it any way you’d like.

Two subjects jumped into my mind; the first was my personal growth and the second was the growth of all the plants and shrubs that need attention right now.

I experienced a set-back in my personal growth. Someone touched an old wound that only has a band-aid on it and I lashed out in anger. It was an immediate response and I’m sorry I lost control although I’m not sorry I said it.

We, here in Ontario Canada, are still under lock-down so I have had plenty of time to turn this over and over in my head with no one to talk to about it. That’s why mental health is so bad right now. Human contact is a basic need and those of us who live alone can go crazy. Its a fact.

But the other kind of growth is saving my psyche. I spent an hour and half pruning my Pink Beauty. Its a very large shrub that gets a lot dead branches every year normally but also got backed up onto and some main branches were broken. I am very happy that I have 2 hours to spend on pruning shrubs; pushing negative thoughts out of my head with a mantra. I can turn “poor me” into “lucky me” in a short time.

I have 18 tomato plants growing in pots for the garden in the program I volunteer for. I was so sure we were going to have an early spring, I started the seeds way too early. Last week was cold and frosty. I’ve been moving flats of tomato, cannabis and hollyhock plants in and out of my guest room every night. I’ve had them out during the day but last night was the first night I left them outside all night. This weekend they can finally be planted. The flats to be given away can stay outside.

The growth all around the gardens is such a joy in the spring! So many trees and shrubs are flowering! In my raised bed I have spinach and beets coming up. I’m so fortunate to live here! My sanctuary.

The lawn is growing rapidly but I don’t have my lawn mower battery charged up yet. Fingers crossed it starts up again this year. But the lawn also has dandelions, violets and some other pretty flowers growing in it; too pretty to mow! I like it. Good thing I don’t live in a “keeping up the Joneses” neighbourhood!

Well, no witty ending: that’s all I got for ‘growth’.

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS May 15, 2021 | (

SoCS: on my left

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “to your left.” When you sit down to write your post, look to your left. What is the thing closest to you? Write about the memories that thing induces.

Oh my gosh, what a long line of memories these kitchen chairs bring up.

My laptop is sitting on a kitchen table bought more than 50 years ago by my parents. On my left is a chair from a set of four that never went with the table. There’s 50 odd years of memories in these.

My parents didn’t agree on much, especially when it came to decorating. We first lived in a house in a small town until I was 10 years old when my dad’s company transferred us to the Big City; Toronto. My parents looked for a house but couldn’t agree on one and rented an apartment until they could find a house.

The big dining room set barely fit into the dining room of our first apartment. To get to the back chairs you had to squeeze behind pushed in chairs or, as kids, just climb over the empty chairs. But they kept it because we were maybe going to buy a house.

In the next apartment they knew they were never going to buy a house and so would buy an smaller dining set. And so the Saturday morning search for a dining room set, followed by a fight and tears, became a weekly event.

Finally, they found some chairs they both really liked. Wherever they saw these chairs had a pedestal table on sale. It was fairly ugly but my mom would make tablecloths for it. They would use it until they found a nice dining room table.

My mom would go to Fabricland, buy extra wide fabric, and make round tablecloths for it. I bought her a round tablecloth in Morroco that she loved. She used it up until the end, stains and all.

They never bought a new dining room table.

My dad passed away from a heart attack just as my mom’s Multiple Sclerosis was getting bad. A few years later she met a farmer in the hospital and they got married. He was living with his parents so he fixed up an old house on his farm and my mom’s furniture was moved down to farm country.

This dining room set was by a bay window in their kitchen, always filled with plants and flowers. We still used the chairs but my mom was in wheelchair. We would have our meals together; meals were the highlight of her day.

My mom lived to be 80 years old; even with her MS. She had a terrible flu and got better. She fell out of her wheelchair and broke her hip and got better! But in the end her organs shut down.

Her husband stayed in the house so we weren’t going to take any furniture from him. But fate had more shit in store for us.

My husband was abusive and I tolerated it for way too long because he didn’t hit me. He constantly yelled and belittled me and finally threw me out because I couldn’t work hard enough. I did not go back. He re-mortgaged our home to buy me out and I bought my own house.

During that time, my mom’s husband passed away and we went to get her furniture. I almost threw up from the smell when I went in: the house was a hoarding nightmare. My sister and I took 2 trips with 2 vans trying to sort through my mom’s stuff.

I basically needed to start all over so I was happy to get this dining room set along with some furniture my dad had made.

I’ll take a photo even though I have a vinyl tablecloth on it. (I can hear my mom say, “How gauche!”) I do have a couple of cloth table cloths. But this post is about the chair on my left.

I’m a little sarcastic when I say; Thanks for the memories

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS May 8, 2021 | (

SoCS: May

Its May! Beautiful May! Its greening up, crab apple trees are flowering, I may have to mow my lawn soon!

I may be partially immune to Covid now. In two weeks I will be 92% immune. I may spend a lot of money in two weeks.

I had my shot yesterday! I felt great and worked outside in the afternoon but by dinner I was extremely tired and thirsty. Felt kind of yucky last night but other than a sore arm, I’m ready to work outside again.

I wish I could do more. I go out so gung-ho to make my gardens beautiful but I only have 2 or 3 hours of energy in me. When you are younger, even in your 50’s, you can keep working tired or get a second breath. In your 60’s, your arms just give up. You start to stumble easily, trip on vines (I have lots of wild grape and Virginia Creeper). My brain starts to whine: “I don’t wanna do anymore.”

So I use the ‘chipping away’ method. I try to do a little everyday because I know I won’t last long. I work on the thing I really want done most and what doesn’t get done isn’t important enough. It seems like a monumental job but by going out every day and chipping away at it, a surprising amount gets done!

The monumental job at hand is weeding and digging out old compost piles to fill a bathtub. I bought a cast iron bathtub when I moved into this house 15 years ago, hoping to put it in because what was here was the most shallow bathtub ever. But it would have been a huge job as the floor underneath would have to be supported and the bathroom re-done as it had legs so would have to re-do the floors and walls.

So the bathtub stayed outside: I bought an acrylic soaker tub.

But now its May! Time to plant! The bathtub was sinking into grass and old irises for years but now I am preparing it to grow 2 cannabis plants.

Yesterday I got my shot in the morning and got the soil in the tub in afternoon. I felt victorious! Also, tired, thirsty and a little woozy.

Its May! I’m chipping away! Feeling so much more hopeful than last year!

(I put the photo below the banner photo so it wouldn’t show up on the Reader.)

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “may.” Use it any way you’d like. 

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS May 1, 2021 | (