Friday, February 25, 2011

My Turf

I lived in my condo for over three years. Six hundred square feet of cozy. In those three years I changed the orientation of my bed once, but did not alter the positioning of any other furniture or home fixtures. There was no point; there was no space. But because of the consistency and familiarity over time, I was pretty much one with my condo when it came to moving around in the dark. Umm, Gina? About a hundred years ago they invented this thing called a light bulb. Why would you move around in the dark? Come on, you know what I'm talking about. When the light switch is on the opposite side of the room but what you seek is in closer range, or when your eyes are adjusted to the dim night-time ambiance and light would just be painful. It's easier just to do the small task in the dark. And in my condo, I was good at it.

Getting up to go pee in the middle of the night; child's play. Going from bedroom to kitchen to turn off my cell phone after I realized--ten minutes after settling into bed--that I left it on; smooth sailing. Grabbing a quick snack at a commercial; good to go (okay, sometimes that's a cheat cuz there's light from the refrigerator). I was so in-tune with my floor plan. And then I moved.

While emotionally, this house felt like mine pretty much right from the get-go, physically this was not the case. I was dealing with a new--and larger--layout. Different corners and walls. Stairs. Light switches at different heights--and why isn't there one at each end of the kitchen?! ...Aside from getting up in the night to go pee (still easy, since my bedroom and bathroom are right next to each other), I did not navigate anything in the dark for quite some time.

Eventually, I started meandering to get something or put something away without trying to find the light switch first. My steps were not confident, mind you. Especially through the kitchen, I would take baby steps to avoid knocking into chairs or tripping over something I may have left on the floor (it's been harder to dump my stuff in a consistent spot near the door when I get home each evening).

...It was about a month ago that it happened. I don't even remember what I was getting. I may have just been locking doors and turning off lights as I made my way to bed. Whatever it was, I moved through my entire house--with little motor hesitation--in the dark. I paused at the entrance to my bedroom and smiled at the realization: I was in tune with my house. And it's awesome.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

My Work Rocks

I am blessed. I work for a great organization doing great things. Lately, we have been given a decent amount of media coverage. The timing of this has to do with our upcoming fundraiser. Still, we are an organization that makes sure it is always following best practice. We believe in empowering families, inclusion, learning through play, and learning through life. These are great values to run a business by, and I think it's one of the reasons that The GRIT Program is such a great place to work. Here is a little bit of what I get to experience every day.

The GRIT Program, through Carson, also got some coverage in a free local paper, The Edmonton Examiner:

Saturday, February 19, 2011


I realized that it has been a while--a few weeks--since I last posted anything. What have I been doing that I haven't had any thoughts to share on my blog? ...Well, nothing out of the ordinary, really. But my brain has definitely been in a non-bloggy space.

It is winter in Alberta, and it has been a rather wearisome one. From November until mid-January, we had snowfall at least once a week--and generally more often than that--including two large blizzards in a row. I nearly broke both my body and my spirit trying to keep up with the snow shoveling. I have since purchased a snow thrower. And of course, now it has only snowed twice in the last month-and-a-bit since I got it.

But, OH, the cold! This winter has consisted of alternating cycles of -30C (-22F) or +2C (35F). And virtually no in between. We get anywhere from 3-7 days of bitter, nose-hair-frosting, face-freezing, why-do-I-live-in-this-frozen-wasteland cold, followed by 3-7 days of puddle-splashing, sunbeam-lounging, turn-the-heat-down-in-my-car-even, milder temperatures. The reprieve of mild temperatures is great, but the overall oscillating routine is getting a bit tiresome. Could we just be done already and move into spring? ...Alas, today is day four of a frozen wasteland style weekend. Which is why I'm sitting here in my pajamas, under a blanket, tea and a cat at my side, catching up on my blog.

The energy to be productive when your body is frozen is understandably low. Of the hours I spend at home, more of them have been spent curled up on the couch enjoying some television, or lying in bed with a good book. Blog? Ha! All my brain's resources go into keeping my demeanor amicable during the day as I drive on icy roads, do up frozen seat belts, dress in multiple layers, and wake up in the dark five days out of seven.

But the turnaround is coming. I noticed tonight that at 7pm, there was still just a little light on the horizon. When I leave for work in the mornings, it's actually daylight. And the -30 cycles can't continue indefinitely. Spring must come.