This past week has been challenging as I try  to master WORDPRESS, the Blog  Masters…what do I expect for free??   I mention my frustrated state of mind as a prelude to my confessions of failure in this past week’s challenge.

Being altruistic does not come naturally to me. I have failed miserably. When I decided to give to someone, without expecting a response of gratitude, the voice inside my head uttered (in a tart tone no less)…uhh…a thank you would be appreciated…  This happened when I simply held the door open for a mom with a stroller. I set out to expect nothing, in my goal of altruistic gestures, but when no ‘thank you’ was given, I got stroppy.

Another example of my failure at altruism occurred when I decided to carry my neighbour’s garbage cans back to his yard after the garbage collectors had been and gone. I did this but when I next saw the neighbour, I wanted my ‘grand gesture’ to be duly noted. It took all my effort to not tweak his memory on the surprising return of his garbage cans.

And then I had a real test put before me by the forces that want me to grow into The Other Woman…I was given a perfect opportunity to demonstrate altruism. I had made plans to drive from Vancouver Island to The Pas in northern Manitoba for the 100th Anniversary of my town of birth, in early August. My younger daughter offered to help me do this long drive, but then changed her mind as it no longer worked for her. Remember, I had planned to do this alone, and was only later given the offer of help. So in the interests of letting each person(including myself here) give whenever and whatever pleases them…I SHOULD HAVE BEEN GRACIOUS and UNDERSTANDING. But I wasn’t. I said all the right words but with an icy… disappointed in your choices …tone.

I have learned that I am closer to the behaviours of Kim Kardashian than Aung San Suu Kyi. I will continue to try to give without waiting for a nod of thanks so that I may become a less demanding woman.

I must remember that a loving gesture given freely,  feels very different from a loving gesture given dutifully.

I took the photo of racks of freshly washed dishes with a feeling of envy towards the person with this job! Later the same summer I noticed this man outside my window sailing along on some type of surf board and longed for his feeling of joyous freedom.



Having fun as  one of my week’s challenges, may seem odd to most. Those of you who know me well, though, realize this will be an arduous task … hahaha… Work comes naturally to me. My Astrological sign is Virgo… we are the organizers, we are the worker bees…and to prove my point I will quote the first characteristic I read on the first site I Google…

Virgos adapt to different people and situations by finding ways to make themselves USEFUL” 

Point made.

Secondly, my parents were from Eastern Europe. Their child rearing motto…(Ukrainian accent thrown in for authenticity)…”No foolink arrrrround”…My first 12 years had the whiff a of labour camp for children. To be fair, I have never been imprisoned in a real labour camp, and for this I am grateful. But at least there, I would have known I was being held and forced to work against my will, for some crime I was purported to have committed. But when it is your own home, one just believes one’s experience to be normal. We did have family outings, but they were purpose driven.

1. Walking on the Carrot River Dike…to pick mushrooms.

2. Hiking through the woods…to pick raspberries, cranberries, moss berries, blueberries, gooseberries and red currants.

3. Camping at the lake…to catch fish and pick berries.

4. Enjoying the garden…while picking vegetables and fruit.

This may have been an idyllic childhood, what with the constant communing with nature, but it was not balanced with a normal amount of play time…play being the absence of purpose.

I will try for the next 49 weeks to dabble, frolic, rollick, cavort or fool around at least once a day!