Reading Plan For 2023

Old photo of one of my bookcases

Hello all.

Hope you are doing well.

It is cold here,

in my beautiful ugly,

so now that groceries,

are bought,

now that the larder,

is full.

I can stay,


Cleaning, laundry and cooking,

are on the agenda,

for today,

but, right now,

I am sitting with,

a good cup of Ceylon tea,

and looking ahead to,

the year that is coming,

reading wise.

This year,

I would like to read,



I would like to learn more,

on World War I.

I will read some fiction,

and history on the era.

I have read,

Goodbye To All That,

I have read,

All Quiet On The Western Front.

This year,

I will reread Regeneration,

by Pat Barker,

I will read The Return Of The Soldier,

by Rebecca West,

I will read Birdsong,

by Sebastian Faulks.

I also have a history of World War I,

that has been sitting on my shelves,

for a couple of years.

I will read Wilfrid Owen,

and Siegfried Sassoon,

two excellent World War I,


My plan is to spread these out,

over the year.

I will also finish City Poet,

which is a biography of,

Frank O’Hara,

and go through,

the Complete Poems Of Frank O’Hara.

I will finish,

21 Things You Didn’t Know About The Indian Act,

and read it’s follow up,

Indigenous Relations: Insights, Tips and Suggestions On How To Make Reconciliation A Reality.

A lot of this is serious reading,

but, that doesn’t make it less,


I will try to fit in a couple,

of mysteries and romances,

in between.

I want to try and read,

from my own shelves,

from the library,

and some cheap Kindle books

picked up The Return Of The Soldier for 99 cents.

I still want to read more,


and more books in French.

I also want to read some graphic novels,

which is a genre I adore,

as well as some,

Gay history.

I look forward to another,

full year of reading.

Let me know what you are reading.

Be well you all.

Later girls,


My Year Of Reading 2022

One of my bookshelves

Good morning everyone.

I hope all is well in your world.

I am resting and it is feeling,

pretty good.

Catherine and I had a lovely weekend.

The theatre on Friday,

a nice quiet Saturday,

and on Sunday,

I preached at my church.

It’s Monday,

Sunny, cold but the sky is blue.

I have been going over,

which books I read this year,

I had some goals going into,


I fell short in some areas,

I exceeded in others.

So far,

as of December 5 th,

I have read 35 books,

I should manage,

a few more before the year,

is done.

It is less then I had hoped for,

but, ultimately,

that isn’t really important.

I read deeper,

than I used to,

and I read lots of online sources,

as well as magazines.

I have a subscription to,

Chatelaine, House & Home,

Esquire and Bon Apetit.

I also read lots of,

New Yorker,

The Paris Review,

Literary Hub,

The Atlantic etc.

I read, quite a bit,

but, I also watch more,

You Tube videos than I used to,


so what.

Of the 35 books read so far,

in 2022,

twenty were written by women,

I am pleased about that,

I want to read more women.

Nine of the thirty-five were in,


Eleven were by Quebec authors,

in both French and English.

Four were by native authors,

or told native stories or history,

three of those were in French.

Nineteen were non-fiction books,

memoirs, essays, correspondence,

sociology, history.

Six were by LGBTQ authors,

and all of them had LGBTQ content.

When I started my 2022 reading,

I wanted to read more than fifty books,

I didn’t reach that objective.

I wanted to read more,

women writers,

not only did I accomplish that,

but, a majority of my reading,

was women authors.

I wanted to read more in,

French, mission accomplished.

I wanted to read more,

Quebecois content,

I did that as well.

I wanted to read more,

by and about Native peoples,

I did but I am still way behind,

in that sphere.

I wanted to read more,

on LGBTQ history,

cultural and otherwise,

I did but again less than,

I would have liked to.

It has been a fabulous,

reading year,

a lot of that I can attribute,

to my wonderful peeps,

in the Montreal Literary Book Club,

who have suggested,

some incredible books.

Kukum by Michel Jean,

When Women Were Birds: Fifty-Four Variations On Voice,

by Terry Tempest Williams,

both those books were,

top notch, touching,

beautifully written,

great books.

My stand out book of,


is La Femme Qui Fuit by Anais Barbeau- Lavalette.

it has been translated,

here is a link to an article,

from Canada Reads about the book,

and it’s translation,

Catherine gave me a copy of this book,

for my birthday,

my mother had read the book,

in 2016 or 2017,

and had loved it,

and told me I should read it.

I resisted,

it was a very popular book,

and a critical success,

and I often resist the books,

everyone is reading.

This novel which is based,

on the Barbeau-Lavalette’s,

maternal grandmother’s life,

was shattering,

when I finished it,

I looked up to the sky,

and said “Mom, you were so right!”

Catherine bought me this book,

because she listens when I tell her,


when I share,

the things I wish I had done,

the small regrets.

Her giving me this book,

and understanding the link,

with my mother,

made me love her,

that much more.

If Quebec culture, art, feminism,

family and what it means,

memoirs, women, history,

any and all of these subjects,

interest you,

read this book,

in French or English.

It is haunting and hard but,



So those are my reading numbers,

and a tiny bit of my,

reflections on a year’s worth of,


I will give it a little thought,

and come back with a reading plan,

for 2023.

Be well everyone,

read some books,

good for the mind,

good for stress,

good for the imagination,

and so good for the soul.

Later girls,


Love in my late 50’s

With Catherine, always, smiles

Good morning everyone.

It is my third week ‘off’

I have done stuff around the flat,

organised closets,

sorted stuff.

I have painted quite a bit.

I have written almost everyday,

I don’t think I will make,

the Nanowrimo 50, 000 word count,

but, I am writing.

I am also reading,

a lot.

But mostly,

I am taking time to think,

to recharge my depleted,


November is a hard time,

of year,

the days are shorter,

the cold weather is upon us.


don’t like it.

But, today, the sun is bright,

the sky is very blue,

and I am feeling …


I have many precious friends,

I have a home that I love,

to spend time in,

and I have,


happy sigh.

I have had love in my life,

lots of it,

but, I don’t think I was,

very good at loving,

being real,

being vulnerable,

being what my partner needed,

nor was I good at asking,

for what I needed.


I met Catherine.

We are such a good fit.

I love her as she is,

she loves me as I am,

and I am my authentic self,

with her.

I don’t try to be anyone,

other than me,

I don’t try to conform to,

an image,

a mold,

of what a good,



of what a good,



I just love her,

I listen to her,

I don’t try and change her,

I love,


We have so much fun,

we laugh, we explore,

we enjoy each other with passion,

with intensity,

we also sit in the quiet,

on her couch,

in my favourite,

Ikea chairs,

and hold hands,

watch TV,

read the paper,

or just smile,

at each other.

We don’t fight,

we barely disagree,

we know who we are,

we know what we want.

We enjoy our spaces,

our homes.

We cherish our time,


it is never too much,

probably because,

we have our alone time,

which is important to both,

of us.

I don’t want to be her,


I just want to be her,

someone special,

and vice versa,

she is my special lady.

I love her,

to bits.

Love in my late 50’s,

is so, so good.

I wish for all of you,

a relationship,

that is what you want,

what you need.

Be well you all.

Later girls,


Taking Some Time

Hello all,

I hope you are all well.

I am fine, thanks for asking.

I am taking some time.

Three weeks ago,

I gave notice at work.

Last week was a week off,

this week will be another week off.

Last week I organised my closet,

and the cupboard under the stairs.

I cooked, I read, I wrote,

I watch a shit ton of,

Ru Paul’s Drag Race,

Can I get an Amen?

I tried not to think about,

what the next step is,

I want to sort of shutdown for a bit.

Do a reboot, so to speak.

So, please don’t fret if,

you don’t see me around,

I am just taking some time.

Be well you all.

Later girls,



Weird ,

what comes to mind when you,

picture certain things.



conjures up,

visions of blackboards.

When I think of writing,

I see a typewriter,


I have owned many,


I have never written,

much on a typewriter.

I take notes in notebooks,

I keep a paper agenda,

but I write, work,

on a computer.

I don’t find laptops,

or desktops…


for lack of a better word.

Hmm, maybe that’s it.

I find the idea of being,

a full time,

published writer…


As of November 1 st,

I will be writing a novel,

I am participating in,

NanoWriMo(National Novel Writing Month),

I started the challenge,

a few years ago,

and gave up.

I had laptop issues,

but mostly,

I allowed myself to give up.

This time,

I am determined.

I am writing, a romance novel,

a lesbian romance novel.

It is a genre I like,

I have read tons of them.


romance is by far,

the biggest selling genre,

yet, so few people,

‘admit’ to reading them,

as if they were somehow,


a guilty pleasure.

I don’t consider,

romance novels,

anything other than,

what they are,


that take me away,

allow me to escape,


see women like me,


Lesbian romance novels,

are written by queer women,

they are sex positive,

they are women positive,

they are gay positive.

Writers like,

Karin Kallmaker,

Katherine V Forrest

in a lot of ways,

have taught me,

how to be a, loving, caring,


So, for NaNoWriMo,

I am writing a romance,

about two women,

in the early September,

of their lives.

I don’t know if it,

will get published,

I just want to write it,

I am taking Toni Morrison’s,


I am writing the book,

I want to read.

Challenges are important,

they keep you motivated,

they keep you stimulated,

they keep you curious.

Here is to Challenges,

and Dreams.

Be well, everyone.

Later girls,


Fall Days &Giving Thanks

Hello everyone,

here in Canada,

it is Thanksgiving weekend.

Three days off!

Thanksgiving has never been,

a big deal in my family,

not that we lacked in,

thanks and gratitude,

it just wasn’t a big thing.

I love the Fall,

the colours,

the cooler days,

flannels, sweaters,

boots, caps.

I love the wind,

the crisp air.

I love snuggling,

under a blanket or by the fire.

I love taking classes,

concentrating on creativity.

I love that my thoughts seem,

less foggy in the cool air.

The other day,

I was brushing my teeth,

looking in the mirror,

and it dawned on me,

my hair is no longer,

graying it is grey,

I have droopy eyelids,

small lines around my mouth,

I am no longer young.

I am not old,

not by a longshot,


the signs are there.

I don’t mind,

it is who I am,

the grey hair,

is a product of living,

of loving,

of genes and heredity,

the fine lines are from,

laughing, talking and smoking.

The last was a destructive behaviour, but, I really enjoyed it, mostly.

My grey hair, my wrinkles,

my scars and blemishes,

tell you a lot about,

the story of who I am,

as Brandi Carlisle would sing, look it up if you don’t know it, an amazing song!

It tells you the joy,

the pain,

the stress,

the fun,

the love,

it tells you,

the grief,

the memories.

I am so thankful for,

my life,

my home,

my job,

my faith,

my doubt,

so grateful,

for a chubby orange cat,

for the best friend a person could have,

and for a woman,

who makes me laugh,

who laughs at my jokes,

and loves me,

exactly how I need to be loved.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Later girls,


Almost October

Fall, my favourite season, with my favourite clothes.

Hello everyone,

I hope you are all doing,


I have been sick,

had all the Covid symptoms,

but my tests,

were all,



It really tired me out,

my ass has been,


but I am slowly,


my energy.

I am writing this blog,

with the window opened,

the fresh air is invigorating.

It’s almost October,

I love the Fall,

the cooler weather,

the colours,

I love wearing,

flannel and jeans,

my sandals are put away,

until May,

time for boots.

I am not crazy,


the shorter days,

the cloudy skies,

but, they,

go hand in hand,

with the bright blue skies,

and the brisk fresh air.

I noticed today,

I have written 982 blog posts,

1000 posts,

will be quite the milestone.

I have been seriously,



in Nanowrimo,

this November,

a whole first draft of a,

novel, in one month.

I have lots going on,

in my life,

but I believe,

this is a challenge,

I want to tackle.

Meanwhile, ideas,

are percolating…

Be well you all,

later, girls,


Not A Day Goes By…

Mom September 2019, a year before she died.

My mom died,

two years ago,


I have been home,

sick all week.

I have Covid symptoms, but,

my tests are negative.

My head has been aching,

pounding all week.

Today is September 16 th,

the second anniversary of,

mom’s death.

It was a glorious sunny,

late morning,

when she died.

I was there,

I heard the last,


I knew, she was gone.

She wasn’t really conscious,

when I got there on that,

morning, she saw me,

she made a sound…

The day before we had,

a talk,

the last one,

I told her I loved her,

she let out a half laugh,

“I know that” she said

and then she said I was,

the best thing,

she had ever done,

in her life…

she kissed my hand,

I kissed hers,

this was September 2020,

I was wearing a visor,

my mom was so small,

in that hospital bed…

We knew what we felt,

we knew what we had,

been through together,

as a family.

Mom said I would be ok,

that I was loved,

and I was, I am,


and yes, I am loved.

My eyes are full of tears.

Mom never got to meet,

Catherine, but, somehow,

I feel, she knows…

I love this photograph of mom,

looking sharp, in her khakis,

her pink Vans and wearing,

the scarf Helene brought her back,

from Prague.

Mom had real style.

She was healthy and happy,

in this photo,

not skinny and sick.

I miss her,

I really do,

I talk about her,

quite a bit,

I think about her,


Not a day goes by…

I know that wherever she is,

she is happy,

the bounce is back in her step,

the library is overflowing,

my dad is a perpetual good mood,

they have learned to dance,

and they give,

each other,

all the space the other needs.

I know we shall all meet again,

and that Francoys is there too,

with his mom and dad,

there is no pain,

there is only laughter and love.

J’taime maman,

ta Caroline.

Later girls,


The Queen Is Dead.

A recent photo of Her Majesty.

The Queen is Dead.

My whole life,

Elizabeth II has been,

the Queen of England,

The U.K, the Commonwealth.

I am a Canadian,

the Queen appears on,

our money, our stamps,

she is,


the Queen of Canada.

She has visited and stayed,

in all parts of Canada,

many more parts,

than the average Canadian.

Canada is a very large country.

Elizabeth lived a long life,

96 years.

The Queen was a continuous,

example of grace,

of duty,

she was a smiler,

and somehow seemed,


In the last year or so,

since the death of her husband,

she has appeared,


You could tell, her energy was,


Her smile was still there,

but, smaller, with always,

a trace of sadness.

The skin of her face,

appeared more,

thin, crinkly.

This happens,

to older people,

it happened to my mother.

But, I think it is not only,

age and aging,

it seems to accompany,

less gusto for life,

when those people,

and those things,

that were most important,

to you, have gone.

Then comes the frailness,

the slipping away.

I feel great sadness at her passing.

She just was,

always there.

May she rest in peace.

In a week it will be 2 years,

since my beloved mother died.

I hope you all enjoy ,

the September sunshine.

Be well you all.

Later girls,


Vacation Over

Catherine and I goofing around

Well, that’s it then,

today is my last day of vacation.

It flew by, I had lots of fun.

Got lots of fresh air,

did lots of reading,

ate some delicious food,

spent quality time with friends.

Went to the movies, museum,

botanical garden, a mini road trip,

baseball game,

hung out,

Spent extra time with,

the woman I love.


petted George even more,

than usual.

Listened to music,

drank coffee,

disactivated social media,

for 9 days,

didn’t wear a watch,

for the better part of a week.

Experienced heat, and chilliness.


I watched tennis and golf,

I caught up on Painting with John.

I planned my Fall schedule.

I booked doctor’s appointments,

fourth doses, blood tests,


I smoked a little pot,

with a friend,

I never smoke pot,

but it was fun.

I signed up for a few,

online classes.

I mourned a friend.


I have loved my time,

for me.

On my schedule, on my time table,

eating when I am hungry,

rising when my body feels,

it has slept enough.

I wish there was more,

but…we all have work to do,

work is an important part,

of our lives.

I do work I like,

work that means something to me.

Still, I have been looking ahead,

to retirement,

you need to think about it,

plan it, at least a little.

It’s September,

my favourite month.

A busy month,

a month full of memories,

a month to remember,

to plan for the coming of,

Fall and Winter.

It’s a cool Labour Day Monday,

and I am feeling good.

Have a wonderful day

Later girls,