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A Day in My Life: Andrea Lundrigan

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Summer, 2014.

Wake up at 7:45am, pull up yesterday’s jeans, braid hair to hide the bedhead. Find Bea already up and dressed.

Make breakfast and lunch at the same time – savour the Valley strawberry jam on my English muffin. Wonder if perhaps I’m packing too much food – she’s 9 and leaving home for eight hours, not a trucker traveling for eight days.

Out the door by 8:25—five minutes late. Am silently thankful it isn’t hot yet; my face won’t get sweaty and make yesterday’s grease extra shiny. (Remember too late that I forgot to wash my face.) Walk fast to make up lost time.

Arrive at the theater slightly out of breath. Shake hands with the director, turn to say farewell, discover that she has already joined the game, and hasn’t looked back.

Take the stairs and realise Bea can be spied on from the pedway. Glimpse just long enough to emit a silent prayer that she will have fun, and make a new friend. Hop on the bus to get home faster, hoping to find a few minutes alone with Henry, before Letty wakes.

Find a newspaper on the bus, read first the horoscopes and then skim an article on an upcoming preliminary hearing. Feel heavy hearted for a women I’ve never met, and all those that loved her.

Transfer buses. Wish I felt less frumpy when an attractive man steps aside to let me board first. Remember that because of opposing work schedules I have spent 26 minutes with my husband in the last four days. Arrive home with the sick realization that walking would have been faster.

Spend a few minutes with Henry before he heads to bed. Interrupted by Letty seeking breakfast. Fix her a plate of sliced banana bread and orange wedges while she rattles on about Minecraft.

Return to bed for a snuggle and a story. Re-read “Who has What?” and “What’s in There?” Wonder if anyone has ever been as proud and excited to have a uterus as she.

Convince Letty to get dressed. She chooses her polka dot tights, polka dot skirt, striped shirt, polka dot jacket and mermaid rubber boots. Try not to be outwardly shocked that the mix of dots and stripes looks good together. Instantly remember I know nothing about fashion having grown up in the Grunge era. Briefly miss the big brown wool sweater that hung to my knees and paired well with long johns worn as pants.

Arrive at the hairdresser, happy to find the round, chatty lady isn’t working yet. Watch Letty have her hair chopped off, all the way up to her chin.

Splash in puddles all the way back home. Hop in the shower, wonder where the day went. Scramble eggs and make smoothies for lunch. Console the cat, crying for the big girl. Ms. Kitty, much like myself, is happiest when all her babies are home. Wake Henry. Grab a quick hug. Rush to the bus stop.

Arrive at work. Feel tired. Crave a Kit-Kat bar, but the vending machine is out. Chit-chat with co-workers. Send some emails. Work on a report. Forgo break in lieu of a phone chat with the best gal pal. Put out some small fires. Pack up to head home.

Discover that my Mother, with my children in tow, has come to pick me up. Bombarded with details of theatre camp. “Lunch was great! Bella is my new best friend! Tomorrow I need to bring a costume, but I don’t know what to bring!” (Suggest the Mary Queen of Scots dress leftover from Halloween, or the harried mother-bathrobe look. Get denied.) “Someone is allergic to dairy and nuts so I didn’t eat my lunch because I was sure there are milk products in my cookies, and I didn’t want to accidentally kill my new friends. What should I take for lunch tomorrow?”

Stop for lunch supplies. Everyone tumbles out of the car. Five minute trip takes 25. Buy bagels, pizza sticks, yogurt, avocados, cherries and chocolate croissants. Encourage Letty to climb into the bottom basket to aid in speed and efficiency. Pretend not to see the women shaking her head at my parenting skills.

Arrive home to dark house. Offer reward to child who is first to apply pajamas and brush their teeth. Tuck in Bea, and shut the light. No reading the night way, when morning is scheduled to come too early.

Agree to re-read Letty’s morning books in exchange for an easy bedtime. Try to think of the proper response when she asks “if everyone comes from a uterus, where did the first uterus come from?” Think of Adam’s rib, and monkeys. Use the old standby, “I’m not sure, ask Daddy tomorrow.” Melt a little when she asks me to kiss her “Poor Head” (forehead) goodnight. Rejoice at the glimpse of my baby in this fast growing child.

Mentally write tomorrow’s “To Do List” until her eyes shut and breathe evens out. Carry her into her own bed.

Brush teeth. Feed the cats. Prepare tomorrow’s lunch box. Double check locks. Text love to the husband, relieved he will be home for four days in a mere 7 hours. Stumble to bed. Remember too late that I still haven’t washed my face.

A Day in My Life: Courtney Gerber

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Greeted my toddler at 7:15am.

Nursed said toddler.

Nuzzled said toddler until 7:45am.

Ate breakfast.

Played, played, and played toddler-style.

Cleaned a poopy diaper.

Started to clean the shower (one tile down, quite a few damn many to go).

Rushed to the gym for a 45-minute workout. (Thank you partner for staying home with the kiddo.)

Made lunch for myself and my daughter.

Spent ten minutes trying to convince my daughter to eat.

Changed clothes.

Rode a trolley with the family.

Talked the little one off a cliff when we had to exit the trolley.

Disassembled the car seat. Washed the car seat. Vacuumed the car. Reassembled the car seat.

Registered for the neighborhood garage sale.

Wrote a gallery learning activity for a museum educator clinic I’m leading tomorrow.

Composed notes for a consulting gig I’ve got on Wednesday.

Reviewed blog pitches I submitted to a company that I’ll be speaking to on Wednesday.

Cleaned out the silverware drawer.

Finished cleaning the shower. (I’m really happy about this one!)

Went to the park with my family.

Gave my daughter hugs and kisses while her Dad readied her for dinner and bed.

Went to the grocery store.

Got my daughter’s daycare supplies together for the week.

Glanced at job openings.

Stressed about going to my current job.

Showered.

Kissed my husband.

Read a few pages in a book.

Slept.

A Day in My Life: Bethany Gladhill

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Got up, had coffee, got a little girl going.

Drove across town to a friend’s to help her pack — and score some of her clothes (long story).

Came back, entertained said little girl and visiting 15-year-old Russian foreign exchange student staying with us.

Weeded parts of the back yard.

Attempted to put in a new bar top, found it slightly too big.

Spackled gouge in wall caused by said top.

Put in a load of laundry.

Obsessively checked email for responses to a few client questions.

Emailed out another question.

Posted a challenge on a neighborhood board.

Watched girls swim.

Ran dishwasher.

Delivered exchange student to her next place.

Picked up a few things at the other house (longer story).

Emailed a potential upholsterer.

Discovered a great new blog!

Now off to a circus show.

A Day in My Life: Annette Sawers

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Husband away on business trip, seems my brain has turned to mush!

Not very sleepy tonight; must be the 13 hours sleep I had. (Sore hip, took two codeine instead of two aspirin. Mental note: must move bottles to two different locations.)

Found my keys, after looking everywhere, and the house is cleaner as I cleaned while I looked for them. Does seem I am the messy one in this marriage; keeping that to myself.

Found keys on my desk in my office, so maybe I am not going batty. But then again, found my cell that I dropped in the driveway on my journey from studio to house, less than a two-minute stroll, and my glasses that were missing for days on the lawn–must have been when I went to feed the fish. Talking of which, have not seen the fish for days. Bloody hell, don’t say I have lost them too….

A Day in My Life: Su Rogers

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Between 6:00 am and 4:26 pm, I did the following not-so-brilliant but time-consuming things:

I went for an early walk access what traffic was on the water. Went in front of red buildinged (my computer doesn’t like the word ‘buildinged’) Adams and Knickle, onto the Public Wharf and subsequently onto the Railway Wharf before shooting up to Montague Street, going up-hill ever after back to my house. I watered the garden on my return, forgetting that rain was in the forecast, and pulled up some weeds and cleared yet more leaves and branch debris from the hurricane before going into breakfast.

Errands loomed. I bought some hot tea on the way to Bridgewater. I had a very long list of to-do’s and it was a good thing I fortified myself with tea because I found myself behind a long line of cars going 20K under the speed limit. I slowed down, sipped and took note of my surroundings. I noticed that once the front car got to the 50K zone in Dayspring it sprinted up to 70K.

The weather had turned to deep cloud cover and the river water was ruffled. Wipers were needed.

I picked up some ‘white’ black-out fabric to rejig curtains for my son’s temporary rental. The fabric is $8.99 a metre at Atlantic Fabrics in Bridgewater and 10% off today. He will enjoy a total black-out, I was promised by the person helping me. He does manual labour and he needs his sleep. Evidently there is an extremely bright light standard outside of the bedroom windows of his flat in the commercial district where he has taken up residence.

The saleslady said to me: “Why doesn’t your son do what our town counsellor did?”

“What was that” I asked?

She said with the most serene look on her face, “Why just have the light standards dug up and removed. He did not want to put up curtains so decided that the lights just had to be removed.” She elaborated that the community fought back and demanded that the standards be put back for safety reasons and now the ongoing struggle revolves around who will pay for them to be re-installed: the community or the counsellor. La lucha continua.

Further, I bought handles and knobs at Canadian Tire for a bureau I am going to paint for two of my grandchildren. The project is to turn a garage sale item into something funky and cheerful. I settled on a turquoise paint I used on a bench in my studio thinking there is lots of it left so why leave it to waste? My son is a single father now and needs a little help with some finishing touches after the move and I am only too happy to oblige. In fact, I am on board to help him get settled in any way I am able to. (I would do it for you, too, if you asked.)

I went to the Atlantic Superstore and while buying milk, being careful of the expiry date, I also saw some amazing bright red cereal bowls for 74 cents each. Who could resist? I bought them for the grandchildren and their father.

Returning home, I sent a text (I texted?) to a friend to make an appointment to have some tea and a chat tomorrow. No firm plan as yet. It is not easy to nail down a tea time.

I began to get nervous about using the word “texted”. So, off to google.

tr.v. text·ed, text·ing, texts
1. To send a text message to: She texted me when she arrived.
2. To communicate by text message: He texted that he would be late.

Lunch was a promised “Perfect Tuna Salad Sandwich,” a snipped recipe I captured from the Internet, along with some rhubarb tea made from my hard-won rhubarb patch in the yard. The tea recipe came from a well-spent $3 on a 1997 edition of Good Things: A Collection of Inspired Household Ideas and Projects. This was a good Frenchy-find.

Much time was misspent walking to the Fishery Museum of the Atlantic, not once, but three times back and forth from my house on the hill. The project I set out for myself was to photograph some items at the museum as reference material for a canvas I have been painting. The first time I clicked the camera, it left the message that I had not put my SD card in before I left home. Yes, it was sitting in my computer. Not pleased with myself, I walked home, retrieved the card and then walked back down the hill to the Fishery Museum. I got sorted out in front of the same display and the camera communicated to me again, only this time it said that my battery had just run out. Undeterred, I walked back up the perpendicular hill to get a second charged battery. Third time lucky.

Throughout the day, I had been reading, Steal Like an Artist: Ten Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon (a very useful little read), Images of Lunenburg County (for research), and Madness, Rack, and Honey: Collected Lectures, by Mary Ruefle.

One last item I worked on, something I relish, writing Trip Advisor.ca reviews of restaurants, hotels, events. I would say I have more readers than do most poets in Canada. Every so often, I get a notice saying that 6542 (and mounting) persons have read my reviews and that they were helpful for the traveller. (BTW, my computer insists I am spelling traveller wrong, but I am a Canadian and it seems to favour the American. There it is again, another red line for favour.)

Throughout this day I’d been flogging myself wondering if I can get back into my studio and paint before dark falls….