Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Road to the Top paved with good lies..... (as stated in the latest UK and international business, finance, economic and political news, comment and analysis from the Financial Times)…. But in Craig’s recent attempt to make the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship his road is paved with good “golf” lies.

Golf Lie; Definition

This golf term has two meanings. The first is simply where the ball sits. A golfer's lie is the location of the ball at rest. The second is the number of strokes it took the ball to get to where it sits. "Lie" is most commonly used in descriptive terms "good lie" and "bad lie." A good lie would be one on the fairway with good grass under the ball. A "bad lie" would be one in the rough, for instance.

Craig has been golfing since the age of 6 and began competitive golf with the McLennan Ross Sun Junior Tour in the Spring of 2003 at the age of 13. He then joined the Canadian Junior Golf Association Tour (CJGA) and Maple Leaf Junior Tour (MJT). His ultimate goal was to qualify for the Canadian or US Men’s Amateur Championship one day, so in 2008 he entered his first Men’s Alberta Amateur Qualifying tournament. He qualified both in 2008 and 2009 and made the cut each year at the Alberta Men’s Amateur Championship but failed to qualify for Canadians. The road to get to the “top” goes something like this:

Play 1 round of competitive golf at the Men’s Alberta Amateur Qualifying (a qualifying score would be approximately 76 on a par 72 course). After qualifying; play 4 rounds of competitive golf at the Men’s Alberta Amateur Championship (making the cut after round 2 with a score of approximately 150) and playing another 2 rounds (with a total 4-round score of approximately 301 on a par 72 course). After achieving this you earn a spot to play in the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship.

Third Time Lucky; Meaning

The belief that the third time something is attempted is more likely to succeed than the previous two attempts. It is also used as a good luck charm - spoken just before trying something for the third time.

This year, in his third attempt, Craig achieved this and nobody is more proud than we are. It didn’t come easy and he just squeaked in, but he is IN and headed to London Ontario to play in the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship on August 12-15.

Alberta Men’s Amateur Qualifying
Elbow Springs Golf Club, Calgary
July 5, 2010   Score 74

Alberta Men’s Amateur Championship
Red Tail Landing Golf Club, Edmonton
July 20-23, 2010   Scores 70/79/74/78

Look for this layout in the Fall 2010 issue of Canadian Scrapbooker

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Wreck This Journal

Journaling on my scrapbook pages is very difficult for me but I am beginning to realize that it is very important for future generations to see my handwriting, feel my emotions and know when and where the photo was taken. On the rare occasion when I do finally make the decision to journal on a layout it is cathartic for me but most of the time, typing the date and place of the photo is enough. My struggle is not about what to write, it’s about making it look perfect. I would like to step out of my comfort zone and, for once, just be happy with the “messy” look on a page…. A torn or wrinkled piece of paper, an ink blotch, uneven writing…..

I know that many scrap-bookers often struggle with journaling in their scrapbooks, for many reasons. My main reason for not journaling is that I don’t always trust my handwriting. I am a perfectionist so I use stickers, rub-ons, the computer and my typewriter to get my feelings down on the page but I am determined to use my own handwriting on my layouts as I try to step away from this compulsion.
As a child I always kept a journal and loved sitting down to record my memories and feelings. The writing wasn’t always “perfect”, the cover of the book got a little ragged and the pages were worn and torn. Somewhere along the line I have lost the idea that being “messy” is ok and feel that it is important to get it back. There are a host of journaling products on the market for scrap-bookers and I think I have them all. One of the reasons I started this blog was to push myself to journal but it doesn’t push me in the direction of using pen to paper so I have found another tool which I am hoping will help to get my feelings out on paper in my own handwriting and then, in turn, transfer them onto a scrapbook layout. A couple of weeks ago, my friend, Maureen and I found the coolest little concept book by Keri Smith, it’s called “Wreck This Journal”.

The following is the journal’s description by Keri Smith:

This book was created for anyone who has ever had trouble starting/keeping or finishing a journal/sketchbook. By forcing ourselves to wreck it on purpose, the “journal as an object” loses its preciousness, and allows us the feeling of completion. This book was created for every person who has looked at other artist’s journals and said, “I wish I could do that. I’ve started dozens of them but didn’t stick with it.” or, “But the journal itself is so beautiful, I don’t want to wreck it with my ideas/handwriting/drawings.” Or, “I feel pressured to write something good.” In this book good does not exist. The goal is to fill it up, to shift your perception of the blank page and the journal itself into a place for experimentation. Into a place where you just get stuff out onto the page. A place to start working against your better judgment. To do those things you were taught to never do (make a mess, destroy, fold down pages, write in books, play with dirt). This book IS the place. Each page of Wreck This Journal is filled with prompts telling you how to systematically ‘destroy’ the entire book.

We each purchased a journal and have begun our mission to complete the journal as recommended. There are, of course, some pages that I just cannot bring myself to complete – not yet anyway! Here are a few examples; “document your dinner; rub, smear and splatter your food & and use this page as a napkin”, “place sticky things here, gum, glue, syrup” and “bring the journal in the shower with you”.

I have made a commitment to myself to complete this journal front to back, following the author’s suggestions on creative destruction and fill it with all things personal and emotional. During the time that it takes me to complete this journal, I’m hoping that it will help me to; step out of my comfort zone and lose the idea that everything has to be “perfect” My hope and wish is that I complete the journal page-by-page and not end up in the psychiatric ward of the local hospital!

Wish me luck!

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Home of Marching Band!

The official kickoff to the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth, the Calgary Stampede Parade, was held this past Friday. Each year the Stampede brings back so many great memories for me. As a teenager living only 5 blocks from the Stampede grounds my brother and I would head there with our group of friends and spend hours taking in everything that the Stampede had to offer. As an adult raising my kids I would always make sure that we took a day trip down to the grounds and enjoyed the rides, the exhibits, the shows, the animals and, most of all, the junk food.

As an adult, my most memorable part of the Stampede was always the parade and the 4 years that Meagan marched with the Calgary Round-up and Calgary Stetson Show Bands. In my humble opinion, Calgary is the “home of marching band”! We have some amazingly talented marching bands in Calgary; starting with the Stampede Show band, The Calgary Stetson Show Band, The Calgary Round-up Band and The Bishop Grandin Marching Ghosts, just to name a few. On parade day, Dale and I would haul our lawn chairs down to 6th avenue, find the perfect spot, set ourselves up and wait in anticipation for the band to pass by. Upon seeing the band come into view, I would jump out of my seat and start yelling Meagan’s name and waving frantically for her to notice me…. Never failed, she always turned her head towards the sound of my voice and gave me that cute little smirk (you know, the one that said; “hey Mom this is embarrassing”). Oh how I miss that. We followed her to every parade and show performance that the band participated in – usually 9-10 parades & shows a year and I always made sure that she knew that I was there… Sorry Meagan!

Since Meagan does not participate in the Calgary Stampede parade anymore, I don’t attend it on a regular basis, but I watch it on television and as the band passes I look for other mothers who are doing the same thing and, inevitably, I see one or two….. I really miss those days!  One of the things that Meagan misses the most about Calgary is the Stampede, she has only had the opportunity to attend once since moving to England 4 years ago.

This year as Craig was heading out the door to go to the Stampede grounds for an evening with his friends, I made him pose for a few pics in the back yard (another embarrassing moment ). I got a couple of good ones and thought I’d post them on the blog…..... Sorry Craig!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Live The Life You've Imagined

Having been raised in a single parent family, my mother gave me the insight and fortitude to get a good education and make a career for myself, a career that could support a family if left to do so on my own.

When that fateful day happened to me just one week before Meagan’s fifth birthday I made a promise to myself that I would raise both of my children to be the best that they could be, to always support one another and “have each other’s backs”; after all it was now going to be just the three of us. From that day forward my entire focus was to make sure Meagan received the best education that I could give her to make the best career choice to be able to support herself . I became obsessed with giving her all the tools she needed to choose the best career path and vowed that somehow, some way I would put her through post secondary education. Fate had a hand in this goal of mine and Dale came into our lives.

Through dedication and a lot of hard work Meagan made her dream possible; in 2006 she graduated from the University of Lethbridge with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and headed off to England to work for a year as a Special Needs Assistant at Kennel Lane School in Bracknell. In the Spring of 2007 she applied and was accepted into the Speech &Language Therapy Program at the University of Reading, England; one of 3 international students. I cannot begin to comprehend the time and hard work that Meagan put into these two years and I cannot tell you how proud I am of what she has accomplished. In 2009 she graduated with honorable mention with her Masters degree in Speech & Language Therapy and was immediately offered two positions working with children as an SLT. She chose the one in Harlow and she and Jake found a beautiful flat in Wanstead, London. She is just finishing up her first year of work and has surpassed both her and her employer’s expectations. I know that she is appreciative of all the support, both emotional and financially, that we have given her and I am proud that she is on the right track with her whole amazing life ahead of her. I have accomplished what I set out to do, but I did not do it alone and the only person that deserves the credit for achieving this goal is Meagan. I love you more than words can express. It is now time for you to

            “live the life you’ve imagined”