Birthday Thoughts

Today is my birthday. One more year and I’ll be in a new decade.

My husband gave me this stuff as one of my gifts. I am not sure how I feel about it. Is he trying to tell me something? Do I need anti-aging lotions? I’ll tell myself he knows I like Biotherm products and he just didn’t realise what exactly he was giving me.

I don’t feel older. I don’t feel like a grownup. People treat me like an adult. I’m expected to act like an adult and make reasonable decisions…and most of the time I do, but a piece of that insecure, awkward teenager I used to be still lives inside me. I don’t know when I will feel like I’m really a grownup…maybe never. And that’s okay.


Vacation Time


I leave today for 18 days vacation with my husband. We rented a house on the tiny island of Saba for 2 weeks and the are travelling to Sint Maarten for 4 nights at a beach resort. I’m looking forward to peace, quiet, eco-adventure and scuba diving.

There’s No Place Like Home

Many of you know my city Fort McMurray, AB, Canada evacuated all 88,000 people on May 3rd. Yesterday after more than 4 weeks away I was allowed to come back home. They are bringing people back by neighbourhoods. The fire came very close to where I live, about a half a block away. I am thankful to say my house only has smoke damage. I am grateful to the fire fighters who worked round the clock to save my neighbourhood. Here are the sites that greeted me as I drove into the city. It’s good to be home. 🙂


Welcome Home Welcoming

My Canadian Town Has Burned

By now I am sure you all have heard about the fires in my city of Fort McMurray, Alberta. I was at work 1 hour south when the evacuation came into effect. My husband drove north with our cats and was put up in a camp on his job site. My company put me up for a night until on May 4th – the fire had spread very quickly and started to burn my work site. I was evacuated at 10pm. It was scary. To the right of the road were flames, so high, the sky was red. I drove all night until I reached Edmonton. I had worked all day so I was up 24 hours but the 7 hour drive seem to fly. Adrenaline is a powerful thing. My husband is flying to Edmonton tonight. As of today my house is still okay. I am safe. It is almost unthinkable that this is happening. I can’t imagine the terror the people who fled through a wall of flame. The poor children will be traumatized for life. It’s bad. The fire fighters will be fighting this for weeks and weeks. I have no idea when the city will be safe for people to return. I do know once we do return we will be shocked at the devastation.

Burning Escape FRom the sky trees


Fire! Not something I ever expected to happen to my house  but that’s what happened exactly two weeks ago today.

When my husband and I arrived home from work my daughter was in the process of cutting veggies for her dinner. Hubby grabbed a beer and I got a glass of wine and we headed out to the deck to relax away from the sounds of my daughter chopping.

We had only been outside for about two minutes when hubby said, “She’s burning the house down in there!” I turned my head and smoke was billowing out the patio door. We jumped up and ran inside and were horrorfied. My daughter had put a pot of oil on the stove to heat and went back to chopping veggies. Needles to say it caught fire. I looked for a cover to put on the pot but not finding one I grabbed another pot and tried to snuff out the flames. Since it was not a tight fit the oil continued to burn. I told my husband to grab the baking soda but, being a man who is not familiar with baking, he couldn’t quickly locate it. When I removed the pot my daughter did the unthinkable – she poured water on the flames! At this point the microwave was melting and the cupboards near the burning pot were turning black. My thought process was to get the pot away from the wood cabinets before they caught on fire. So I grabbed the burning pot and took it to the patio. I could smell my hair burning and knew my face was burned. My husband couldn’t find the baking soda but grabbed baking powder instead. I told him to put it on the flames anyway. It worked.

We went inside to survey the damage. The house was filled with smoke. I went to the bathroom and luckily my hair was just badly singed and my face only a little red. No one seriously injured. The house on the other hand is.

The disaster clean up crew got to work the night of the fire and are still at it.

The actual fire only damaged one cabinet, the microwave, range and counter. The smoke damage is more disastrous as the fire itself.  Every item and object in the house is cleaned, down to the last pencil, by the disaster workers. Every item is put on an inventory list, even down to a stick of  butter and a chicken drumstick in the fridge. Our central air ducts have to be sealed by HVAC pros. All the walls and ceilings on my main level and upstairs have to be cleaned, sealed and repainted.  All carpets, the sofa/love seat, and mattresses/pillows need to be replaced. We lost all the food in the fridge/freezer plus all food in the cupboard that were in boxes or plastic. I also lost an entire collection of spices. Luckily we have full replacement value insurance.

The insurance company is providing a condo for us to stay in but I just want to go home. It will be at least three more weeks before the house is livable.

Below I’ve included a video that  you MUST watch.  It’s very short… but it shows what can happen if you put water on a kitchen grease fire.  I was so very lucky!