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Showing posts from August, 2010

me and my wise ideas

My passport expired in May, and I've been slowly working on the "simplified" application for renewal. I finally had some time to get the photos taken, and for some stupid reason I chose to go to Walmart. They weren't very friendly, but they took the pics and when I asked the price I was told there was a "special": two pics and a passport wallet for $19.99. In disbelief I asked what the regular price was and was told $23.99. I told the lady I was sure I had never spent more than $10 on passport photos and she acted like she didn't believe me. I handed over my card and she handed me a plain black passport wallet that smelled slightly of gasoline.

I then went across the street to Shopper's Drug Mart to mail the small package to the passport office. Next to the postal outlet was a photo area, with a sign that said, "Passport Photos $9.99" which made me feel slightly sick to my stomach.

I hardly ever go to Walmart any more and now I remember wh…


I just got off the phone with VISA. I have a card with a $30 000 credit limit and a "low-interest" rate of 12%, with an annual fee of $29. I had them switch it to a no-fee, 1% cash-back card with warranty extension and a $5000 credit limit.

I am just not comfortable with so much open credit now that my balance is on its way to $5000, but at the same time I was not yet ready to close out the account entirely, which was my intention. I realize that it's useful to have a VISA card for the locations that do not accept MC - like the eye doctor I visited last summer.

Eventually I will be credit card free, but not yet.

Seriously, Karissa

Another Moment of Joy

A bright, beautiful, windy day. Coffee in hand, I'm heading toward my office. I hear them before I see them: a huge gaggle of noisy Canada geese in circle formation passes by overhead. They are honking like their lives depend on it and the silliness of the sound makes me smile. I notice that, even though it is mid-to-late August and mornings are getting chilly, they are heading north . This makes me feel joyous. Summer is not yet over.

I look out over the river and see the gaggle settling onto the water, still in a circle. I wonder what the noisy urgency was, and why they settle there. From how far did they fly? Maybe just down river. No answers, but it doesn't matter, because their very existence made me happy.

Seriously, Karissa

What brings me Joy?

This post is part of SOYJOY‘s What brings you joy contest. Learn more here.

Seriously, I'm a person of a pretty morose character. Years of wrong choices, bad luck, untrained coping skills and general pessimism have flavoured me in such a way that contentment has been an elusive second cousin, thrice removed.

About six years ago I found myself alone, lonely, and unhealthy and medicated. I had hit my bottom and luckily for me I was desperate to climb back up. I explored meditation and cognitive therapy. I went to twelve-step meetings and listened to the stories of those who had suffered much more than me, always wondering if I deserved to be so unhappy. I couldn't pinpoint the start of my decline, but I guessed it was sometime during my fourth year of university. I knew, though, that I had lived with unhappiness and depression off and on for years.

So you can imagine my hesitation and skepticism when my dear friend Kate Baggott posted about Joy the other day. I thought about it,…

For me, time is money

My time is valuable. Isn't yours?

I switched to a more part-time work position so that I would have time for my son. My job is great, my work hours are somewhat flexible. Not as flexible as work-at-home or freelance, but I don't have the skills for that.

By working part-time I am able to spend more time with Bean in the morning - let's face it, we are dawdlers. Once I drop him off at daycare I meander to my office, unless I have a meeting scheduled which makes our morning hectic, but thankfully that is only once every month during the school year.

Some days I leave work early so that I can go to the grocery store alone, or attend a self-help meeting (my version of "me time").  I know I can't handle the stress of "I want this! I want that!" so I rarely take Bean to the store with me.

A couple of weeks ago though I was feeling rushed. It felt like a thousand degrees outside and I was hurrying through Price Chopper, getting the things we needed to get …