Welcome to SANDYLAND!!

stories from my childhood

Beet It

I’ve been really into beets lately, specifically, roasted beet salad (I’m eating some right now) and it got me to thinking back to when I was 14 or 15 when I’d read in a magazine that cutting a beet open and rubbing the juice on your lips would stain them perfectly.

beet lips

Because, who wouldn’t want lips this gorgeous color?

My grandfather had a garden and one day sent home a small bunch of beets for me…for my lips.

And it worked!  I was so excited slicing into that first beet.  I mean, it didn’t look Revlon lips, but hey man, I can’t complain too much.

beet stains

Nearly perfect

That is all.  I just wanted you to know how I feel about beets.  ❤

fresh sliced beetroot on wooden surface

Ah beets…the prettiest colored root vegetable in the garden.

Cheers.

Advertisements

Tell Me About Your Favorite Ornament

HomemadeHolidayOrnaments

When my grandmother died of cancer, she had tons of quilting and sewing material leftover. My mom took it upon herself to use the remaining materials and make Christmas decorations for her siblings and the grandchildren. They mean the world to me, not only because they were my grandmother’s materials, but also because my mom made them out of love (and loss). And I display them with love every year.

Tell me a story about your favorite ornament and the sentiment (if any) behind it.

homemade-christmas-decoration-items-homemade-christmas-ornaments-ideas-simple-christmas-decorations-ideas

~Peace (on Earth)


New ‘Do and Feeling Fabu

A very long time ago, at least 20 years, I cut my hair off because my best friend dared me to.  That was the last time I had a major hair cut.  I’ve been blond, I’ve had bangs, I’ve gone straight, but other than that, I’ve had little more than a trim.

I have naturally curly hair that often seems like a cross between Chewbacca and Kenny G., and the idea of cutting it off was terrifying.  Mostly because it’s so hard to style.  I have had hair envy for short (and long) ‘dos for a long time, but just never had the guts to go for it……

Until now!

(Jules and Andy – Here’s your pic!)

Hair

Short Hair, DO CARE!!

I’m loving it!  I am so happy with my decision to chop it off!  I grinned all the way home that night.  It feels so much healthier and it’s full of body and bounce!  My hair was damaged from straightening and blow-drying for so long.  I made the right decision.

Keri Russell

Keri Russell’s hair here was my inspiration.

And if cutting my hair off wasn’t enough to make me feel fantastic, the other night, Honey Boo Boo and I were at a grocery store.  I came to the end of his lane to wait for him.  When he was done, his cashier closed her register and was coming out of her cubby when saw me.  She stopped dead in her tracks…I thought she was going to ask me if I was looking for something because she just glared at me and didn’t move.  When she finally spoke she said “you are so beautiful”.  I just looked at her and half laughed.  She said “I’m serious.  You are beautiful and you have the most gorgeous eyes and smile.”

Um…wow.  That was completely unexpected.  Thank you grocery lady new best friend.  That just added glory to how I have already been feeling. ❤

Cheers,

 


Full Circle

Winston died 4 weeks ago today.  This morning, actually.  And although I am still in full devastation mode, the days have been seemingly a teensy bit better.  I can’t imagine I’ll ever get over this loss, but I’m managing.

The morning he died, we had a delivery to my office and one of the delivery men was my friend’s “little” brother.  I say that but I suppose once you hit a certain age, you stop referring to people as little anything.  I was surprised to see him because he is not our usual delivery person.  But there were two of them so he might have been in training that morning.

My office door had been closed most of that day because I was bawling the entire day and just honestly didn’t feel like talking to anyone.  But for some reason, my door was open when these guys came in.  I think maybe someone had been in back with me checking on me.  Little Brother and the other delivery guy popped around the corner to make their way downstairs and spotted me in my office….crying.  I said hello, as one does, and they both stopped with sheer concern on their respective faces and asked if I was okay.  My coworker announced the news that my Winston had just died that morning.  They both expressed condolences, and Little Brother came right in and gave me a big hug.  He started exclaiming to his colleague that “Sandy is the love of my life.  I have loved her since I was 10 years old!”

Waiittt…..what?????

Crush

Apparently, I was Little Brother’s big crush.  I had no idea.  His sister and I were such good friend in high school and the years that followed and spent a lot of time at each other’s houses.  How did I not know this?  Maybe it’s because he was Little Brother.  Just a cute little blond teddy bear that always says hi and hugs me through the years when we see each other.  I never thought twice about it….

But would you look at that?  I was someone else’s Jordan Catalano.

Jordan

Full Circle.

~Sandy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


RIP BLR

19 years ago today I was awoken in the earliest hours of the morning.  My grandmother had died.  She didn’t pass away.  She didn’t move on.  She died.  Cancer took her from us.  And in those moments, my family was broken.  And we have never fully recovered.
We knew it was coming.  But we were praying for a miracle.  And maybe we got a miracle in some other way.  But our miracle for her to be healed, although answered once before, was left undone this time.
My mom had stayed at the hospital that night and I remember the phone ringing and then my dad coming to wake me.  We were going to say our final goodbyes before she was taken away.
That was the first time I’d ever seen my dad cry.  My grandmother, my mom’s mom, my nanny, was our family matriarch.  She was loved by everyone.  She kept us all close and together.  She had more spunk than you can ever imagine.  She was our big solid rock in the center of our earth.
And then she was gone.
She had a smile that would light up a room.  She was mischievous and funny and she loved jokes.  She was the best hugger.  She could kiss away any boo boo.  She liked Clint Eastwood and Billy Ray Cyrus.  (Who else’s nanny rode a moped??)  I have told you before about Hitting the Family JackpotHitting the Family Jackpot and she was our number one prize.
And then she was gone.
Life has never been the same without her.
Nan
We were broken that day.  Shattered in our hearts and in a way that we have not fully learned how to repair.  But we have pulled together and are doing our best to get through until we meet her again.
RIP BLR ❤  Forever in our hearts.

Looking for Inspiration

I’ve been having a really rough few months.  My cat got sick in late July and stopped eating altogether at the start of August.  I spent a lot of time and money at the vet trying to find out what was wrong with him but to no avail.  (At least not with that vet clinic!)  I spent the rest of the summer whipping him up tuna smoothies and feeding him via syringe.  It was comparable to having a newborn….I was up all hours of the night.  If he wanted to eat at 3am, I was up feeding him, any time he got up or stirred, I was awake too, checking on him.  Waiting while he used his litter box, bringing him back to bed so he was close by, petting him, and listening to him purr.

King Winston

Winston.  KING!  My boy.  Forever in my heart!

Even though he had three different veterinarians check him (and a dozen visits), I finally had enough and took him to a new clinic and vet.  Turns out, my poor boy had a cancerous mass on his kidney and my time left with him was limited.

I can’t get too much further into it because I am still grieving – heavily.  But, Winston moved on to Kitty Heaven almost two weeks ago.  My heart has been broken.  My sweet boy had been by my side for 12 and a half years and I am still getting used to him not being here.  I would give anything to be able to pick him up and cuddle him and listen to him purr like a little motor.  I’d go another summer of sleepless nights to have him flip his water dish over or claw me in the middle of the night or scamper underneath my feet, making me fall.

But he’s not here.  And I haven’t cried yet today but I can feel the lump forming in my throat and the tears are glossing over in my eyes, so I have to stop talking/writing/thinking about him for a little bit and gather my emotions.

And yes.  I’m grieving for my cat.  He was more than a cat.  He was a companion and a friend and a guardian.  He was my boy.  I will be grieving for him for a long time.

Grieving

 

So there it is.  That’s how my life has been going the last three and a half months.  Worry and fear and stress and sadness and anxiety.  And sleepless nights.  But I would do it all again for him.  For just a few moments more with him.

Now here I am.  At a loss for inspiration and with this dull, constant ache inside me.  Thankful for the distractions of work and friends and whatever else happens to pop into my life these days.  Last week is was Halloween.  And now we’re moving onto Christmas.  And here I am on a Monday evening in early November writing an ode or memoir to my Winston with a Hallmark Christmas movie and Candace Cameron Bure as background noise while I type and search for inspiration for upcoming posts.

If you have any suggestions, I am open to them.  At least for a bit.  I need the distractions because when I am alone with my thoughts I am bombarded with sadness and then I just can’t delay the tears.  And once that flood gate is open…oh my.   It just won’t stop.

So please, if you have any ideas for me – so I can have something to write about and not dwell on the death and now the absence of my longtime companion, please let me a note below.

In the meantime, I’m doing my best.  I’m hanging in there.  I haven’t been able to bring myself to put anything on his corner of the bed, but one day that day might come.  In the meantime, I’ll be here.

~Sandy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Halloween

Screw The Skeleton Key.…It’s Halloween!  And last night Honey Boo Boo and I went to see the new Halloween movie.
halloween 2018.PNG

Via Dimension

Oh.Em.GEE!!!!
First of all, let me start by saying the first Halloween movie wasn’t really my thing.  It’s on every year on rotation during October, and I’ve seen bits and pieces of it, but I only saw the original maybe once or twice and I was a little bored by it.  Truth be told, I should re-watch the original in its entirety again so that I can make another judgement.
I also have seen Halloween 2 just once.  I’ve watched Halloween: H20 several times, and Halloween: Resurrection once.  All the in-between movies of the franchise I have not seen…sorry Paul Rudd.
But, like many, I have been counting down the days to this new Halloween.  It did not disappoint.
The theater was packed, yet the room was silent throughout the film.  People weren’t munching on popcorn or opening candy wrappers.  You couldn’t even hear anyone breathe.  Complete silence….likely, like me, many of the audience were holding their breath waiting on edge.
Some things about horror movies will always baffle me…like, when you’re entering a room, whether you’re a police officer or a home owner, why doesn’t anyone ever turn on the lights?  How does Michael Myers continually escape his lock up (and, I’m not sure what the laws are in the state of Illinois, but I’m assuming the death penalty is not an option?? I mean, Michael Myers has murdered A LOT of people…why is still allowed to breathe??).
I was also annoyed by the inconsistency with some of the other movies.  Such as Laurie Strode’s children.  In H20 she had a son, John.  And she’s had a daughter named Jamie.  Neither one of them are mentioned or even in existence in this new movie…but Laurie has another/different daughter.  Whaaaa?
Regardless of these little nitpicks, Halloween (2018) was pretty darn good.  So good, in fact, that I slept with a light or two on last night.  Not gonna lie.  I may have also checked my closets and behind my shower curtain.  I’m not sure what I would have done if Michael Myers (or anyone else) had been there.  But I still checked.
Michael.jpg

MAYBE Michael Myers just needs a hug…?   (Via Dimension)

 

Happy Halloween!!
~Sandy
PS – I’ll try to get The Skeleton Key up.

Jeepers Creepers 2

Creep

When the original Jeepers Creepers came out it was a pretty great movie.  And it did well by spooking the crap out of us.  So well, in fact, that the producers banked on a remake.  But because the lore surrounding the Creeper is that every 22 years he comes out and feeds for 22 days, they decided the sequel would happen within the same time frame as the original story…the same 22 days (a dead Derry [from the original] even makes an appearance), instead of jumping ahead in time.  Although, I would definitely like to see a Jeepers Creepers Origins kind of story.
This new story surrounds a bus-load of high school kids…and one vengeful father.
In this movie, the Creeper continues at being super creepy….and also adding a little bit of humor (just a tad….just a wee, wee bit) to his character.  Great for audiences who were nail-biting.
I remember seeing this for the first time in the theater and not loving it.  Certainly not liking it as much as the original either.  This time, I was a little bored and annoyed.  But, the Creeper is definitely creepy, so it worked.
Next up…The Skeleton Key
~Cheers

Lone Ballerina

I was sick a lot when I was little.  I was in and out of the hospital – usually with pneumonia – and I missed out on a lot of things.

I remember one year I was supposed to go outdoors ice skating with my Brownies group.  But I was sick again and not able to go.

I am pretty sure I whined about that excursion quite a bit because one weekend, right around Christmas, my dad packed me up and took me to a pond (just off the highway connector) so that I could skate.  It wasn’t as much fun as being with a bunch of my Brownie friends, and we weren’t out for long, but I remember it well.  I slid and slided and skated over that ice like I was a ballerina – even in my snowsuit (Nova Scotia winters are cold y’all) – the shine from the sun my spotlight.  And then it was time to go.

Skater

And every time I pass that pond, usually with ducks sitting in it or cows grazing around it, I think of my skating excursion.

~Cheers.

 


You Wanna Buy A Gate?

There’s a scene in the movie Almost Famous where the Stillwater tour bus, after one of the band members is electrocuted on-stage, mows down the locked auditorium gate.

- You want to buy a gate? - Yeah!

There’s also a story in Drew Barrymore’s book Wild Flower where she tells of being young in NYC and returning to her Bronco after a concert in parking complex, only to find that the complex had been locked up….by a 20 foot gate.  Which she proceeded to ram over and over and over and …. well, I won’t finish her story.  But I’ll tell you mine.

My story that is coincidentally very similar.

When I was somewhere around 20 or 21, I went to the see the Tragically Hip in concert in the City with some friends.  My friend David drove and we met up with my best friend and her boyfriend for the concert.  When it was over, we decided to grab food and hang out for a bit.  Dave and I both had to be at work bright and early the next morning (me at 5:30 and him at 6) and it was already very late/really early into the wee hours of the morning.

We had parked at a very popular parking complex and when we finally dragged our butts back to his his, it was basically the only one left in the parkade.  We drove to the gate (not 20 feet high) and plugged in our ticket and nothing happened.  The parkade was now closed and we were trapped.

If you don’t know me, I have very little patience for things like this.  I liked to be punctual and prompt and I don’t like it when unruliness gets thrown into the mix.  After what seemed like a very long wait and trying to figure out what to do in this scenario (which, by the way, in hind sight, likely wasn’t that long of a wait after all), I told Dave, just go through it!  To my surprise – because, although it’s something I totally would have done, it is not at all something Dave would have done on his own and without my prompt), Dave gunned the gas and drove into the gate.  Holy shit!

Doris

The gate budged but it didn’t allow us enough room to pass, so David reversed his little car, then put it back into drive and gunned ‘er again.  RAM!

He did this several times.  Once eventually breaking the arm of the gate and then finally, the rest of the thing pretty much just fell to the ground and we had enough room to pass and leave the parking lot.

I’m sure we laughed at those moments a lot.  And I know we made it to work on time a few hours later.  And I’m sure the first person onsite at the parkade the next morning scratched his head and said “WTF???”  But for us, in the heat of the moment, it was the only way out.  (Sorry Mom.)