Saturday, 28 February 2009


Today is the anniversary of the day that my parents got married. If my Dad had not died in September it would be their 64th anniversary.

Instead it is a day full of memories.

*artwork by Kathy Hare

Friday, 27 February 2009

Fantasy Friday BLD No. 6

*artwork B by Mark Ryden and L is by Lisa Falzon

Thursday, 26 February 2009

50s Housewife Quiz No. 1

I think this is supposed to be from a magazine that told women in the 1950s what was appropriate behaviour for a good wife.

Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready on time for his return. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they get home and the prospect of a good meal is part of the warm welcome needed.

All together gang. ‘Ridiculous.’

This is how it went down in the Khan household.

I was 19 when I got married so I didn’t really know what a wife’s role was. One of our first meals was a pizza mix out of the box. I made it on a cookie sheet and I topped it (no lie) with cut up hotdogs and raw hamburger. The stove caught on fire from the grease from the hamburger. I took it out, let the fire die down, and popped it back in the oven. I was completely insulted because Wahid wouldn’t even try a piece.

Next I made him a sandwich for lunch because I thought that is what wife’s do (my mother didn’t but I wanted to be a wife from television). I don’t remember the details; all I remember is ‘So, how was your lunch? Did you like it?’ “No, not really.” ‘Fine, make your own from now on.’

I worked evenings and Wahid worked days when we were first married and the kids were small. So I would make dinner before I went to work so that he could feed the kids by 5:00 when he got home. There was never, not once, a thought in my head that he was hungry and needed a good meal when he got home. It was all about the kids having a proper dinner and enough time to digest it before they went to bed at 7:00.

I started working days and got home later than Wahid so he started to do all the cooking. We realized that this was a win/win because I would rather clean and he would rather cook. And more than anything else the kids would rather eat what he made.

I do believe in planning the meals ahead so that it is easier for everyone in the house to cook. Each of the kids cooked one day a week when they got older and so they could pick out any recipe and they would write down the ingredients and Wahid would buy them. There were some interesting dinners. Nathan, for example, always made a roast chicken because all he had to do was throw it in the oven with potatoes and carrots.

When I started working till 3:00 and was the first one home I started cooking again.

After I was diagnosed with cancer I never cooked or even wiped a counter for almost two years. My idea of cleaning at the time was sweeping the room with a glance. Now, I may cook once or twice a week or I may not cook at all. Wahid completely goes with the flow and always tells me “Dearest, don’t worry about it I can take care of myself.” And then after working hard all day he comes home and cooks.

So let me just clarify this piece of advice once again.

Have dinner ready (Failed). Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready on time for his return (Failed). This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs (He is not a misfit and knows that I think about him when I think about him because I tell him, and he is concerned for his own needs as he is not a baby and can take care of his own basic needs like food). Most men are hungry when they get home and the prospect of a good meal is part of the warm welcome needed (So are most women and that is why we always had the agreement that whoever gets home first cooks. As far as the warm welcome needed; that always came in the shape of ‘Daddy’s home,' just like it comes now in the shape of ‘Grandpa’s here.')

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Wednesday's Women No. 19

We are all so happy. Someone that is dear to us will be arriving on a jet plane in four more days.

It is so unlike me to be so happy for other people. But this special person, this wonderful sister is coming back from the land of sun to rejoin us here in the land of snow.

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Fables I Tell

On a cold winter day in February I was told I would die sooner than later.

Flashbacks From The Month Of February

February 14, 1998

*Wahid bought shrimp to make me a valentine dinner. Yummy!

*Nadalene is flying to Amsterdam today; she will be there for five days. It would be so nice to start all over and to go to all these places. I think Angelique must be on her way home because she said she would be home Saturday or Sunday. Of course I hope Saturday. Nathan got so many valentine presents from Natalie that you would have thought it was Christmas.

*My tulips that I got from Angelique for valentines have opened up to (no joke) the size of my hand. They are beautiful.

February 28, 1998

*Mom and Dad’s 53rd anniversary and Natalie’s 17th birthday.

*Wahid and I went to Maximes for lunch ($15). I think that was the first time in 22 years we spontaneously just went out and it was great.

February 2, 2004

*I’m in my future.

*Wahid and I went to see Lord of the Rings on Saturday and then went out for supper for Thai food. I really enjoyed myself.

*On Friday, Angelique, Nadalene, and I went to meet with the florist to arrange for flowers for the wedding, July 17th will be here before I know it.

*So far 2004 is a year of travel for the Khan family. Wahid went to Trinidad on January 1st. Nadalene went to Cuba on January 6th, and Nathan went to Germany on January 17th. Angelique, Nadalene and I are going to Banff for a Leadership Challenge on February 12th.

*I just wondered what is inside me. I list events but not feelings. I know I am at peace, but am I stagnant? I feel happy. Run with that….. Weird.

*This year I will know Wahid and he will know me. I will do this by changing unproductive behaviours/traps. We will go out together, talk to each other, and love one another.

*My oldest daughter is getting married to a wonderful man ‘Don.’ This makes me feel that I want my marriage to be all it can be.

*My marriage is great but I know that if I really gave myself to it and didn’t hold back so much it would even be better. I want to know Wahid’s soul.

*An inner strength I need to unleash is an ability to change. Comfort is great, but change is needed when the comfort is unhealthy, i.e. eating habits/food choices; inactive/sitting. Maybe too much of a good thing really is too much of a good thing. The smallest change in perspective can transform a life.

*In some ways I have outgrown my life. My friends and siblings and parents can bore me.

February 11, 2004

*I think I am the real thing. I definitely have sides of me where I’m not as authentic (God, I hate that word) as I need to be, but that is me too. So, yes, I am the real thing.

*My love and attention need to be a little less on the children and a little more on Wahid; a little/lot less on housework/dinners and more on family and friends. Maybe need to read less! Yikes!

*I do not envy people who have true love. They would have nothing I don’t already have. I do need to build on the love I have for Wahid more by concentrating more on us, and less on the kids. The kids are older and are all fine.

*I need to make the transition from mother to wife. Make us as a couple important. Real love means to me – mutual respect, wanting the other person to be as fulfilled as you are.

February 1, 2006

*Ultrasound and biopsy.

February 8, 2006

*Dr. Gillespie gives me positive results for Inflammatory Breast Cancer.

February 9, 2006

*St. Boniface calls me to start a file.

February 12, 2006


*Start my periods.

February 13, 2006

*St. Boniface called and I went in for a blood test.

February 15, 2006

*Wahid and I meet Dr. Grenier (my oncologist) for the first time. I have questions and a recorder to tape conversation.

*Dr. Grenier tells me that Dr. Shojania (my hematologist) is going to come in right away to do a bone marrow biopsy. My blood counts are a concern at 80 and 87. He extracts bone marrow and needs three samples but is only able to get two; he tells me I have too much fat on my body.

*I get more blood tests and one is for a cross match for a transfusion. My blood type is A positive.

*Dr. Grenier tells me that at the end of January my platelets were 166 and that they are now at 80.

February 16, 2006

*Went in for a blood transfusion to receive two bags of blood. After nine attempts on arms and hands they call Dr. Shojania and he tells them ‘Keep trying, she has to have that blood.’ They finally get the needles in my feet after three tries. Wahid is holding my hand and I am just crying.

February 20, 2006

*CT scan on neck, chest, and abdomen. Once again can not get needle in for dye and told that they would need to keep trying. Gets it in on the sixth try while I just sit there crying.

February 21, 2006

*Went in for PICC with Dr. Brown (later see on TV being tried in Florida for child pedophilia) by ultrasound, he did it three times and it did not go in. Very discouraged and arms bruised with pockets of blood up to my elbow. The nurse tries to talk to me but I can’t answer because I feel like such a failure; she pats my back.

February 22, 2006

*Dr. Grenier tells me that the cancer is Stage 4 and it is in my bone marrow, bones, lung, breast, and skin. Completely shocked. Angelique brought us all alive again with her knowledge and wise words. Went for a bone scan in nuclear medicine (again cannot get needle in).

February 24, 2006

*Went in for PICC with Dr. Lawrence and it was in within minutes. He was a fantastic guy.

*Started chemo (Docetaxel = Taxotere).

February 4, 2007

*My kids have become a lot closer to Colette this past year. I know it is because they see how much she is there for me. Jacquie of course is beyond the beyond.

February 5, 2007

*I went and bought some baby things yesterday.

February 7, 2007

*Bummed out today as noticed six new cancer spots along my lower back.

*Exciting! Angelique, Don and I went to get their baby furniture and it is absolutely beautiful. They bought a sleigh crib and a sleigh dresser in antique white. They also bought a yellow and white glider.

*Angelique, Nadalene and Nathan are made of the most incredible strength!! Incredible. Loving, caring, compassionate, wise, open, helpful, sympathetic, generous, and strong. I really would not be where I am spiritually and emotionally if it were not for them. They are my best support group. They reflect back to me that Wahid and I must have done lots of things right. I love you all so much!

*Mom and Dad have been wonderful and have not tried to minimize my disease. By seeing it for what it is keeps me strong because I don’t feel that they have tried to keep me under a gag order. We are able to keep it real.

Flash Forward

A pivotal time that changes a life. My world has changed and it has hit me like the proverbial ton of bricks. I coped by putting one foot in front of another, as well as denial (denial can be a very good thing). Maybe denial is not the right word, after all chemo was happening and you cannot ignore that, no matter how you try.

I tried to see the chemo as a positive, like suffer now with chemo, but in the long run save you life and give you more time. I do not see this change as an opportunity of any kind. This does not redefine me nor do I see this as a positive in any way. It does not make me stronger; as a matter of fact it lessens who I am.

*artwork by Rima from the Hermitage

Monday, 23 February 2009

Dreams Sponsored By The Letter L

Labyrinth: A desire to get to the center of an issue. Alternatively it can mean that you feel trapped and lost and that there is no way out.

Ladder: Indicates meditation and prayer. Setting forth on a spiritual path and seeking higher awareness. Each rung of the ladder is indicative of a stage in your spiritual awareness.

Lamb: To dream of a lamb is symbolic of deception. Lambs also represent all that is vulnerable, pure, and innocent. Because lambs can have meaning on opposite sides of the spectrum you must look at your dream closely. Holding the lamb in your arms signifies sacrifice.

Landslide: Represents emotions that you have been holding back for a long time. You are at risk of emotional overload. Your emotions are erupting in an unexpected or violent way. There is too much responsibility and stress resting on your shoulders.

Lark: Flying larks in your dreams symbolize high aspirations. If the lark falls during flight it indicates that you may be overcome with despair in the midst of your pleasure and joy. If the lark is wounded or dead it denotes sadness and gloom.

Late: A dream of being late signifies a fear of change and an ambivalence to seize an opportunity. This leads to feelings of being unready, unworthy, or unsupported in your life. In the biggest scheme of things dreaming of being late signifies that time is running out and you will not be able to accomplish all the things you wanted.

Leeches: Refers to people or things in your life that are draining your energy. However, if in your dream you are covered in leeches then you are feeling disgusted by your own body or repulsed by the way you are living your life.

Letter: If you receive the letter it signifies new opportunity or challenges. If you send the letter it is your unconscious mind trying to give you a message. If you tear up a letter in your dream then it symbolizes regrets you have had in your life.

Library: Signifies a search for knowledge and a hunger for ideas. You may be trying to seek out new meanings to your life. If the library is disorganized it would suggest that too much information is coming at you all at the same time and you are having difficulty sorting it all out. A library will always symbolize the knowledge you have accumulated over the years.

Lightning: Signifies sudden awareness, insight, spiritual revelation, truth and purification. It also implies a shocking turn of events, which you need to know you can handle. It may suggest that forces governing your life may well be beyond your control. If you are struck by lightning then irreversible changes are occurring in your life.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

Thursday, 19 February 2009


The birthdates for Pisces are between February 19th and March 20th. My niece Natalie’s birthday is on the 28th.

Colour = Purple, Green
Metal = Tin
Stone = Sapphire and Emerald
Tree = Willow and Elm
Plants = Heliotrope and Opium

Pisces is symbolized by two fish swimming in opposite directions. Pisceans often feel like they are being pulled in different directions, making it very difficult to make concrete decisions. Pisces are considered the most receptive sign in the zodiac. They are impressionable, spiritual, and open-minded.

Ruled by Neptune, God of the Sea and master of illusion and mystery, Pisceans have an affinity for the performing arts. Pisces twist the world to fit their version of a dreamful and more beautiful world. Sometimes ignoring the reality, Pisces often see a skewed version of what is really going on. When a Pisces can detach from what they want something to be and embrace what really is going on, then they can be at their most adaptable and show tremendous understanding.

A Pisces easily perceives the feelings of those around them. They have a high level of emotional intelligence and make wonderful teachers. If a Pisces can keep real to themselves and committed to others, then and only then will they be able to make wonderful guides for the soul. Pisceans are born under the last sign of the zodiac and because of this they have within them a little of all the signs. This gives Pisces the ability to identify with people from all walks of life.

Pisceans are especially loved by their Aries aunt. Although Pisces people are frequently labeled wishy-washy, this Aries aunt knows that is not the case of her Pisces niece. This Aries aunt believes her Pisces niece to have the best qualities of the sign and believes that she is a deep person with real dreams. Pisceans at their best are tuned in to a higher purpose and their dreams can transcend the individual. They have a deep love for humanity and a compassion that knows no bounds. This Aries aunt has a deep love that knows no bounds for her Pisces niece.

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Wednesday's Women No. 18

She knew she was deep. In fact, almost as deep as the mud puddle she was sitting in.

Her thoughts were original thoughts. She pondered death and spirits and skulls and crossbones. There were no thoughts in her head about school dances and prom dresses. Oh no, not for her were the simple pleasures of high school, oh no not for her.

After all she had pink hair and TATTOOS. She was unique.

She was so busy thinking her deep thoughts that she never realized that almost everyone else had pink hair too. And that in fact, a person was more unique in this day and age if they didn’t have their own personal license plate tattooed on their skin.

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

February = 02

Who was your Valentine? Love and rage and Wahid were my Valentines. Luckily love and Wahid won out. Love because I love my husband and always have warm feelings for him. Rage because he always pulls the stunt of washing the car right before a wedding, leaving me on pins and needles as to whether he is going to be home on time for us to make it to the wedding ceremony. In this case, he was late and we had a 45 minute drive ahead of us. The wedding was to start at 3 p.m. and luckily for us, we drove by the bride at 3:25.

When you were little did you buy valentines for the whole class? Yes, my mother did. The best thing about them was that they were not in a box already done for you, but they were in a book where you had to either cut or punch them out yourself. I loved giving and getting valentines. I especially loved the boxes we made in class. I always carried it home so proudly and looked at it and the valentines in it forever.

Do you care if the groundhog sees its shadow? No, winter in Manitoba lasts forever, whether he sees his shadow or not makes no difference.

What did you receive for Valentines Day? I got deluxe chocolates and red tulips from my lovely girl Nadalene the day before. The day of valentines I received two cards from my other lovely girls, Angelique and Josephine. The day after valentines I got a red tulip plant from Wahid.

What did you give for Valentines Day? I sent out valentines in the mail. At my nieces wedding I also gave out candy valentine bracelets to some special girls.

Monday, 16 February 2009

Dreams Sponsored By The Letter K

Kettle: If the kettle is boiling than it symbolizes great and laborious tasks ahead. If the kettle is whistling than it would symbolize that you have reached your boiling point. If the kettle is doing neither of these things it would symbolize the mundane aspects of your life, the things that you take for granted and may even be overlooking.

Key: A key can open many doors – opportunities, access, control, secrets, responsibilities, etc. You may be locking away your own inner feelings and emotions. Or you may even be close to unlocking the answer to some problems you are having. If a key is on a ring of keys, it will represent your ability to adapt to any situation.

Keyhole: If you are the one peeping through a keyhole it would suggest that you are overstepping your boundaries and are prying into other people’s business. If the dream shows someone else is looking through a keyhole that suggests that your privacy is being invaded.

Khan: To dream of the Khan is representative that no challenge is to great. It is always a symbol that must be followed by an action. Great things may come about if only you are brave enough to try.

King: The king usually represents a father figure. You are looking for support. Depending on what type of father you had you may see that the support is forthcoming in the direction you are looking or you need to look for support elsewhere.

Kiss: If you are kissing someone’s hand that is a symbol of respect. If you are heterosexual and you dream that the person you are kissing is of the same sex then it would represent self-acceptance.

Kitchen: The kitchen represents transformation. It is a place of warmth and spiritual nourishment. The kitchen is also symbolic of a nurturing mother.

Kite: Suggests that even though you have high ambitions and goals, you are still well-grounded. Alternatively, the dream can imply that a choice or gift comes often with some sort of strings attached.

Kitten: If the kitten is white it signifies deceit and trouble, be aware. Basically to dream of any strange kitten no matter the colour indicates trouble ahead for you.

Krishna: Symbolizes divine love and spiritual knowledge.

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Soundless Saturday No. 26

*artwork by Natalie Dee

Happy Valentines Day

I am wishing all of you a sweet Valentines, whether you spend it with someone you love or whether you spend it alone. Be happy.

A little history lesson didn’t kill anyone. So Saint Valentine where did you come from?

The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Vanentinus, all of whom were martyred.

One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome when Emperor Claudius II ruled. Claudius II realized that single men made better soldiers than men who had wives and families, so he outlawed marriage for young men (potential soldiers).

Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Emperor Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death.

Thursday, 12 February 2009


My back has been sore all week, well now it is letting up. But my shoulders and my arms are killing me.

So, I prayed ‘Dear God, please help me.’ Then I got really quiet and listened for some love.

I felt guidance, love, and support come in, and I could tell that it was God because he spoke to me.

‘Dude,’ he said, ‘take some of your pain meds.’


This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

*artwork by Carol Roque

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Wednesday's Women No. 17

While on the subway this morning, I overheard a young woman in a white coat talking to her friend about how there was no one out there for her. How she felt that she wanted to engage other people but they just were not open to it. How she was going to spend another week before Valentines dodging the question of what she was going to do on Valentines.

I felt sad realizing that the one time of year that really reminds us of our heart (every shop window) this young girl felt so disheartened.

As we exited the subway we went in the same direction. She walked much faster than I and was almost at the top of the stairs when I saw a young man coming down. He seemed a tad nervous but tried to meet her eye and gave her a wee smile.

Unfortunately, I noted that her head was down and she did not seem aware of him at all.

I’m not saying that they would have been Valentines this year, but who knows, maybe had she smiled back and if they take the same route every day, the next time they would have given each other a ‘hey’. And, well, who knows.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Plucked Them Right Out Of My Head

I was just minding my own business like I usually am har har, when I came across a blog entitled Transcript of a Significant Life (, where the lady (Lisa) took many of my beliefs and plucked them right out of my head. I asked Lisa if I could reprint them here and she said that would be fine.

Authentic Knowing

living is different to being alive
guiding is different to leading
curing is different to healing
making is different to creating
desperation is not faith
faith is not blind
hierarchy amongst realms is a fallacy
hierarchy amongst humanity is a lie
there is always choice
letting go is the greatest proof of love there is
energy is energy, perception of energy is what differs
sadness is not depression
some questions have no answers
with possession comes responsibility
no two humans alive on this planet share the same definition of normal
angels, ascended masters, gods, goddesses, guides are all aspects of the
ONE divine source
losing is not failing
transition is not death
religion is not spirituality
religion is not faith
you are not me
knowledge is not wisdom
i am that i am

~~ Lisa Ballico ~~

Thanks Lisa, you rock.

Monday, 9 February 2009

Dreams Sponsored By The Letter J

Jam: Pleasant surprises, sweet things, and new discoveries may be on the way. Also foretells a happy home life.

Jaw: If clenched in the jaw of an animal it would signify misunderstandings and hasty judgments which may threaten your happiness. If the jaw is yours and it is clenched, this would indicate unexpressed anger and other powerful feelings which you are holding back. You may be compromising your own beliefs and principles.

Jester: Trivial matters and silly pastimes that divert you from important issues. You may feel embarrassed of a situation so try to cover it by playing the fool.

Jesus: A dream of Jesus serves to console and strengthen you in your time of adversity, hardship or struggle. You will rise above any situation and circumstance and become victorious. If Jesus speaks to you, this will signify that you will be blessed with true peace of mind, joy, and contentment.

Josephine: This dream denotes harmony and joy amongst the people you love. The dream is a reflection of your waking state of mind.

Journal: Could suggest that you are trying to rewrite the past to suit your present needs. Reflect on what is actually written in your journal and what is in your dream. There is a need to figure out which is the true version of what happened or it could be a realization that more than likely they are both true.

Journey: Signifies self-discovery and progress. Watch the scenery you see in your journey and the method of travel as this will help you with the feelings and circumstances that you are currently experiencing.

Judgment: To dream that you are being judged, indicates that you are being put through some kind of test. You are seeking acceptance and looking out-side of yourself for it, which is always the wrong place to look.

Jungle: Shows you aspects of yourself and your personality that may be inhibited. There is a strong possibility that you are experiencing some chaos and unpredictable circumstances in your waking life.

Jury: A feeling that you are being placed under scrutiny by others. You feel that others are judging you and your actions. Alternately the dream can indicate that you are too overly concerned with what others think about you.

*Jesus by Rita Loyd