1. My oldest daughter is insane. She LOVES to go to the gym, LOVES to run on the treadmill, and WILLINGLY got up at 5:45 this morning to drag me out of bed and drag me to the gym. She finally has the doctor’s okay to start running again (since her knee surgery in September), and is doing everything in her power to convince me running is FUN. Yeesh.

2. I may have to admit that my eye-sight is not quite what it used to be. Gulp. Everybody warned me that it would start to deteriorate after 40, but I refused to believe them since I’ve happily lived without glasses all of my life. But last night… darn it all… I could barely focus on those nearly invisible stitches I was trying to rip out to replace a zipper. I have the injuries on my finger to prove it. Aargh.

3. Tonight I start a drawing class at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. I’ve got a healthy mix of excitement and nervousness. More excited than nervous this time around, but this feels like SERIOUS art instruction instead of just the community centre stuff I did last time around. Yikes! Who am I trying to kid?

4. Speaking of art classes, Maddie started hers on Saturday, and oh my gosh that girl is fun to have in the car on the way home from art classes. (And swimming classes too, for that matter.) She gets really silly when she’s happy and her imagination goes wild when she’s gotten positive energy from something she loves. I think we grown-ups have gotten a little too good at stifling that kind of thing to the point where we often don’t even recognize what gives us true pleasure. We can learn some things from Maddie about basking in pleasure.

5. Since I mentioned the other two daughters, I should mention Julie too. It appears she has inherited two of my characteristics – perfectionism (when it comes to projects, anyway), and procrastination. Not a great combination when you have a big creative project due on Monday and want to get some actual sleep on Sunday night, but boy-oh-boy does she have a nice project to hand in this morning!

6. I’ll be spending most of this week at a staff retreat.  If you’ve been here for awhile, you might remember last year’s retreat. This year will be significantly different, because we have a lot of new staff on the team. None-the-less, I’ve got some fairly big challenges that make me feel a little queasy about the whole thing. I may have to wear my colourful jacket again for fortification.

7. After the retreat comes the fun stuff – a weekend at a soccer tournament in the States. I wish I could just jump to the fun stuff where I get to hang out with my family in a hotel and help my daughters spend the money they’ve been earning by trudging through the neighbourhood delivering flyers.

8. I have one of those plants in my office that I only know of as a “mother-in-law’s tongue”. A rather horrible name, I know (especially since my mother-in-law’s tongue is anything but sharp), but I don’t know the proper name. (I just looked it up on wikipedia and it’s also known as the “snake plant”.) It has one really tall leaf that is shooting toward the sky. It seems like it’s trying to serve as a metaphor similar to the “tall poppy” where people dare to stand above the crowd even when they might be shot down for it.

9. I have a grinning plastic monkey on my desk by my computer (from my friend Kelly from back in the days when we were trying to avoid using the word “monkey” in communications plans because the lab we were working at was beginning to do experiments on “non-human-primates” – ah yes, we were spin doctors!). For some reason, that monkey is making me smile this morning. Thanks Kelly.

10. Nine doesn’t seem like the right number to end on, so I’m adding this point just so I can end on an even number. I have nothing more to say.

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