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Posts tagged “Drew Barrymore

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.)

 

 

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Hitting the Family Jackpot

To say that I grew up in a loving family is an understatement, to say the least.  I grew up in an abundance of love.  With warmth and hugs and kisses.  I hit the family jackpot!

I was surrounded constantly by my family – parents, brother, best friends – who were basically adopted siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents.  And everyone is very close.
My mom’s parents lived only two houses up the street from us and they were the foundation of my family.  They were our proverbial rock.  Walking into their home was always walking into warmth.  They had an open-door policy and their faces would light up anytime we walked into the home.  And although they lived just a few minutes away and I got to see them pretty much anytime I wanted, nearly every day, it was always a great treat to visit them.  Nannie and Grampie.
My brother and cousins and I would take turns having sleepovers at their home.  And they made each and every one of us feel special and like we were the most important people in the world.
When I was very little, not school-aged yet, my nannie would take me shopping.  My grampie would give me money before I left and my mom would joke that I would always come home with a treat and more money than I left with.
I was their favorite.  We were ALL their favorite.  And they never made us feel like we were anything less.
These people were so special – to all of us.  We would always have big family Christmas parties there; celebrating, and being in love with each other and being so thankful for having these wonderful, loving people in our lives.  Feeling truly blessed.  In the summers, we would have “wiener roasts” – a backyard barbecue of sorts on the side lawn with a fire pit and swings and making “hobo pies” out of white bread and pie filling and roasting them in the fire.  These would go to after dark and were such a treat because we kids, the cousins, got to stay up late and play and be surrounded by so much love and friendship.
My grandmother, Betty, was an incredible woman.  Bright, witty, spunky, hilarious, and hip.  And my grandfather, Brent, loved her more than words can ever express.  And the two of them loved us unconditionally.
Nannie

Catching a fish and wearing white jeans with a thick black belt – this woman was ahead of her time

I remember never wanting to disappoint them.  And even today I still try to live each day trying to impress them and making them proud from their perch in Heaven, as I know they are looking down on me.
In fact, I remember the first (and maybe only) time my grandfather yelled at me.  I was maybe 3 or 4 and I was playing with my baby cousin, Daphnie and I held her wrong or something that may have injured her – and my grampie yelled at me.  Not out of anger, but to prevent me from hurting the baby.  I was instantly heartbroken and I burst into tears, confused and ashamed that I made this man, who I loved so dearly, angry with me.  Of course, he and my grandmother cleared up the confusion but I still remember that moment vividly.
My grandmother was very, very hip.  She drove a moped!  And she loved Billy Ray Cyrus and Clint Eastwood.  And she taught me how to play (read: cheat at) cards.  If were driving with her and jokingly said “Nannie, look at the cute boy, stop the car!”, she would indeed stop the car.  And she would laugh.  If she saw cute boys she would call them over and introduce us.  Instant mortification to a teenager, but funny as hell now.  Nannie would let me put make up on her – regardless of how hideous it looked – and tell me how much she loved it.  She would welcome me with open arms when I would “run away from home” and walk on the inside of the guardrail to get to their place (my mom would always watch from the end of the driveway).  I never felt of out of place with my grandparents.
Nannie had a heart condition.  She had two heart attacks by the time she reached 40 and then had a pacemaker put in. When I was diagnosed with a heart condition when I was in my late teens I was also told I would have a pacemaker by the time I was 30 (Note 1. My family doctor was super pissed at this statement and said the specialist had no business telling a kid something like that!  Note 2.  I don’t plan on ever turning 30.).  At the time I was annoyed and confused and scared at this diagnoses.  But, although I saw it as a potential obstacle in my health and life, I also saw it as something I possibly inherited from her.  Something that made me feel just a little more bonded to her.  I have held onto that.
When Nannie was diagnosed with lung cancer in the late 90’s I was devastated.  I remember my mom told me one Friday night while my friend Kim was with me so that I could be comforted at the time of receiving this terrible news.  But Nannie was so strong.  And after having her lung removed, her cancer was gone.  I also remember that while she was in the hospital for this surgery and treatment she was telling me about this gorgeous (male) nurse or orderly that she thought I would find so cute – as she found him so cute – but then she broke the news “….but I think he might be gay.  Dammit.
Within months of having her surgery Nannie was out in the fields picking berries in the summer heat.  Something she loved to do.  She took me with her one summer when I was 15, but I was not meant for that kind of back-breaking work – or using a port-a-potty in midsummer heat (so that I complained the entire day about having to pee) and she refused to take me again.  Ever.  And she kept her word.
That fall I had an essay to write on heroes.  And in my essay I wrote that I did not believe in heroes because I saw them as mythical beings, but that the closest I could come to was my grandmother, for all that she had done and gone through, and even made mention of the berry picking right after her surgery.  (I may also have mentioned my affection for Drew Barrymore for all that she had gone through in her short life and had overcome so much.  See, lifelong follower of this girl.) My nannie was indeed heroic.
Not long after, Nannie was diagnosed with throat cancer.  Cancer so bad that there wasn’t much to do.  The cancer would win.  My nannie, however, stayed strong and fought as much as she could.  We had family gatherings and spent as much time as we could with this woman.  But sadly, devastatingly, heart-breakingly, Nannie passed away in November of 1999 at the age of 60.  A young woman still with so many years of love and adventure left to live.  And my world crumbled.
I have never experienced pain like that in my life. Ever.  This woman was our world.  Our rock.  Our light.  And her death devastated me.  I still have not fully recovered.  To this day, even in this moment, I cannot think or speak of her without crying.  And maybe it’s because it was the first time I really experienced death and loss.  And maybe because she was just so full of life and love and liveliness.  I continue to mourn her loss each day.  But I also celebrate her life each day.
I live in my own world sometimes – hello, SandyLand.  I have adventures, I laugh my ass off – even at the most inappropriate things, I hug and kiss my nephews with so much love that I think they can’t stand it, and I have taught Abby how to play the first game of cards my nannie taught me to play.  And, just like my nannie, I play to win!
There are moments when I can be a real scrag.  I admit it.  But for the most part I try to live each day with goodness and love and laughter.  I want to continue to please my grandparents and not disappoint.  Because I know one day I will see them in Heaven and I know I will have to explain my actions to them if I’ve been a real asshole.
Each night I say a prayer for them – and my dearly departed Aunt Linda – and pray that they are all together and loving and watching and waiting.
I know, since the passing of my grandparents and of my aunt Linda, my mom and my aunt and uncles are pained.  They are broken-hearted, as we all are.  And sometimes it’s terribly difficult to get the family together for holiday celebrations or gatherings because it feels like the spark has gone out.  Like the house is empty and there’s really no point anymore. Because deep down – or even right on the surface – it’s so unbearably painful to celebrate our family when we’re no longer complete. Since my grandmother’s death, my mom (the eldest of her siblings {sorry I used the word “eldest”}) has pretty much taken over the role of the rock; the matriarch of our big but little family.  She always makes sure that no one is left out of Christmas gifts or celebrations.  She wants to honour everyone in the family – especially those who are no longer with us. But everyone sticks together.  As a family, we have had our moments, our ups and downs, that’s what happens in families sometimes.  But we love each other.  Parents, aunts, uncles, cousins.  We support each other.  And there are days we want to beat each other over the head with a golf club, but at the end of the day, when it comes right down to, our family is bonded with love and togetherness.  That is something we all inherited from Nannie and Grampie.
I want my family (my nephews, my future children) to feel like it’s Christmas morning – to feel that abundance of love and togetherness and that incredible light of love that I always felt at Nannie and Grampie’s.  Walking into my parents’ home I always feel the warmth and the welcoming I felt each time I walked into that house up the street.  And when I visit my cousins and my aunts and uncles I am always welcomed with open arms and smiles and hugs.  The way it was meant to be.  And the way it will be when we’re all together again.
~Sandy

SandyLand Stories

The other night I finished what was, I think, my 23rd John Grisham book.  And although I’d picked up three more of his on the weekend, I couldn’t wait to delve into Drew Barrymore’s Wildflower.

Drew-Barrymore-Wildflower

As you may know, I love Drew Barrymore. She is my all-time favorite actress; since the first time I saw her in E.T., I fell in love with her – with her spirit and her spunkiness, and I have since followed her career.  The ups and downs. The stints in institutions and rehabs, the bad movies, the badass moves.  I have followed the 90’s wild child and doted on her for years.

David-Letterman-Drew-Barrymore

The original wild child and my not-yet-met best friend (Drew flashing David Letterman in the mid-90’s)

And so, I have been waiting since I received this book for my birthday in October to read it but, 1. I had shit-tons of studying to do to prepare my nutrition exam and 2. I’m kind of addicted to John Grisham’s storytelling and am always anticipating completing one of his books so that I can immediately begin another.  This time, though, I forfeited Grisham to finally read Drew’s book.

And I am so glad I did. I started reading it Friday night, and now, Sunday, I am almost through it. This book is not an autobiography, although it is autobiographical in a sense.  It is a telling of some of Drew’s personal stories and memories.  It’s lovely.  And this book has made me miss writing.
This afternoon I was reading one of the “chapters” titled Flossy.  Flossy was Drew’s rescue dog which she had for nearly 20 years.  I remember reading about when Drew first adopted Flossy. I remember hearing about her in interview and seeing her in the background in magazine spreads featuring Drew.  And this story told the lifeline of this dog, this sweet companion to Drew, a lost soul longing for a friend who would be her lifelong mate and confidant.  And this story told of the demise of Flossy and Drew’s beautiful tribute to her once she passed (sorry, no spoilers! You’ll have to read the book.), and there I am, sitting in the gorgeous long-awaited sunshine, bawling my eyes out at the telling of the loss of this life love.  With tears streaming down my face and wiping my snotty nose on my arm, I was so completely moved by this memory.
Although I am a little bias because I still believe Ms. Barrymore and I should be best friends (squad goals), I will admit that she is not the best writer in the world. I even found a few grammatical errors *gasp*, but she’s a good writer.  And she’s a great storyteller; one that can clearly move me to tears – or laughter.
And so, being inspired by these stories, these little collections, I am committing myself back to my writing.  I am going to begin telling chapters of my life, albeit through this little blog, and I will share with you tales of my adventures, my reflections, my wisdom, my stupidity, and tales of just…my life.
I am not going to commit to writing every day or every week because life – work, teaching, mating, adventures – comes first.  And I like to live my adventures before sharing them.
But stay tuned….the first one will be right up.
~Sandy

Birthday Love

Today is the lovely Drew Barrymore’s 40th birthday!

Drew Barrymore via Yahoo

Drew Barrymore via Yahoo

If you’ve been following this blog for any amount of time – or know me at all – you will know that I love this woman.  I have loved her since I saw ET when I was 6.  I love her spirit, her kindness, her down-to-earth-ness.  She just exudes loveliness and beauty and fun.

And when she released her photo book Find It in Everything last year I, of course, purchased it.

Find It in Everything by Drew Barrymore via Yahoo

Find It in Everything by Drew Barrymore via Yahoo

And then I started to find it in everything.  Like here and here and here and here and here and here and here and (well, if you scroll back over the last year or so you’ll get it).

But today….*sigh* the universe has been showing me the love left and right.

First, this morning I was playing with the cat, Winston….he loves playing with elastic bands (he’s a bit of a huge nutball).  So I flung one across the room and this is how it landed:

Rubber Band Love

Rubber Band Love

Then later on I saw this:

Love in my makeup case

Love in my makeup case

I have been using this makeup bag for years….and yet, only this morning did notice the heart in the middle of the pink flower (*Note – as I typed this I noticed the upside down heart in the yellow flower).

And later on when I was taking the compost out the FIRST thing I see on my step going out the door:

Mother Nature is showing me the love today.

Mother Nature is showing me the love today.

Isn’t that just truly special??

Thank you, Ms. Barrymore, for showing me there is love found in everything.  Happy Birthday – now, seriously, let’s be friends??

~Cheers.


Far Away Fall Love

In my last post I talked about my Aunt Donna who is way too far away from me – living in Victoria, BC.  I miss her daily.  She sucks for being on the other side of the country.

But this morning she posted a photo to Facebook and it seems very fitting:

LEAF LOVECheers.


Coco Chanel Love

Okay..not really Coco Chanel.

My aunt Donna – whom I love dearly and I’m sure I’ve mentioned here before – moved to British Columbia 5 years ago and broke my heart.  She’s my mom’s baby sister and is only a handful of years older than me, therefore being more like a big sister to me.  Regardless, I love her.  EVEN when she’s being a dick. 😉

This past year Donna’s had some serious health issues and spent several weeks in the hospital – twice.  We want her to come home, desperately, but since her hubs is military we have she has they have to wait to be posted back in Nova Scotia.  So we are all waiting.  Patiently.

A few months ago Donna got a new kitty – Coco Chanel – and Ms. Coco has been acting as somewhat of a therapy for Donna.  They have daily adventures (crazy cat lady, much??) and it’s great because it gets Donna out and moving and in fresh air and having fun. All of which is fantastic.  I already love Coco.

Then today Donna sent me this:

Miss Coco Chanel

Miss Coco Chanel

Fancy face kitty has a great big HEART on her chest.  She is love. And she’s healing Donna inside and out.

Cheers!


Family Love

The other day my nephews were hanging out with my mom for the day.  Mid-afternoon I received the following photos:

From Boy #1:

Jamie's Heart

From Boy #2:

Aidan's HeartFrom my mom:

very cool that whatever was hanging on the line developed into a heart

very cool that whatever was hanging on the line developed into a heart

And then later that evening I was at Blair’s and noticed this on the floor next to the fridge:

Sandy's Heart

 

FINDING IT IN EVERYTHING!  🙂

Cheers.

 

 


Chalk it Up to Love

Today I had such a laugh-filled day with my friend, Angie Whoreface. Honestly, we laughed thru our whole lunch break and after work we had a dinner date with a bunch of other friends and she and I laughed then and afterward. Our laughter idiocy carried into the grocery store where we had a few others laughing with/at us. It turned out to be a giggle-fest of a day and I chalk it all up to this:

Sidewalk Chalk

Sidewalk Chalk

While taking a stroll on my lunch break I saw this sidewalk chalk art. Love is everywhere. 🙂

(We could also play “Name that Stain”…..but we won’t go there.)

Happy Friday!

Cheers.


Swarovski Love

A few Christmases ago, Blair got me 2 pairs of Swarovski Crystal earrings for gifts. I’ve recently been wearing a pair (often) and the other day I discovered:

Earring

🙂

Cheers.


Veggie Love

Last week I was having some delicious Brussels Sprouts for dinner and I noticed this itty bitty sprout.

Do you think it was trying to tell me something?

Do you think it was trying to tell me something?

Brussels Sprouts sometimes get a bad rap (thanks for nothing Rudy Huxtable!) but I love them. I think they’re delicious and they’re good for you. Maybe these sprouts were returning the love.

Cheers.