About Me

My photo
Delta, British Columbia, Canada
I took very early retirement from teaching in '06 and did some traveling in Europe and the UK before settling down to do some private tutoring. As a voracious reader, I have many books waiting in line for me to read. Tell me I shouldn't read something, and I will. I'm a happy, optimistic person and I love to travel and through that believe that life can be a continuous learning experience. I'm looking forward to traveling more some day. I enjoy walking, cycling, water aerobics & and sports like tennis, volleyball, and fastpitch/baseball. I'm just getting into photography as a hobby and I'm enjoying learning all the bits and bobs of my digital camera. My family is everything to me and I'm delighted to be the mother of two girls and the Gramma of a boy and a girl. I may be a Gramma, but I'm at heart just a girl who wants to have fun.

Monday, July 19, 2010


I really didn't want to continue in a vein of worry over Lorne's chemotherapy, but this week's treatment has been postponed due to some complications with his health. Therefore, the word ANXIETY reared its ugly head and it's all I can feel or think about. Apparently, both his red and white blood cells are very low to the point where they need to get them up before any more chemo can be given or else it could make him very very sick or even put him in danger. In the meantime, he has to have a shot every day. When he said I'd have to give it to him, I panicked and said, "NO!" because I know myself and prefer if he goes over to the public health nurse. This is a very anxious time for both of us, but we will persevere.
So let's move on now and think of some other happy A words. As a teacher, I automatically think of A is for Apple. But, pondering my years as an academic, I recall one of my favourite units in ART where I taught the students about Impressionism using Claude Monet as an example. We had such fun over the weeks as we experimented with pointillism, reflections, and making our own works of art using impressionistic techniques.
Another favourite unit in Art for both my students and myself was Abstract Art. One lesson had the students use a regular pencil and without stopping and starting again, make swirls and squiggles all over the paper. The next step was to use pencil crayons and colour each section in different colours. This usually took the whole hour lesson (and for some, even more time was needed). The next time we had Art, the students would use a sharpie and outline all the sections. Next, they chose a partner and they would take turns looking at their pieces of Art from all angles and from varying distances until suddenly, they "saw" something - a bird, a house, an animal, a piece of fruit, a tree, whatever! This led into creating a title for their artwork. They chose a coloured piece of construction paper upon which they glued the picture. Now their art was "framed" in a lovely co-ordinating colour. I would type up the titles they'd chosen on labels that the students stuck on the "frame." All the Artwork was then displayed on the hallway bulletin board for all the other classes to admire.
Now I must admit that I am not an Art teacher! But because I had to teach it, I had to learn a bit about it. And I found that it was one of my favourite classes. Towards the end of the year, one student's mother (who is an artist) came in for about 5 or 6 times to lead the class in making tile art. Each student had that piece of art to put somewhere in their garden or cement it into their sidewalk.
I can't believe that this is Round 7 already for ABC Wednesday! Huge thanks to Denise Nesbitt for coming up with this idea and keeping it going, now with a whole team of volunteers to help her out.


Linda Frances said...


No wonder you are thinking of anxiety as your word. Chemotherapy is frightening. My daughter went through a year of treatments last year and it's hard to concentrate on usual activities.

Would it be helpful if I, or others, added Lorne to our prayers or good thoughts?

It sounds as if you were a creative teacher. I loved some of the activities you shared.

Take care


Leslie: said...

Thx Linda - it would be wonderful if you'd add him to your prayer list!

Beverley Baird said...

We shared art as teachers for this week! Loved your ideas.
You do continue in my prayers. I can't image the anxiety you are experiencing.
Take care of yourself!

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to hear that you and Lorne are going through this. One step at a time...

I work for the Cancer Agency, and I know there are several good websites where you can read about chemotherapy-induced neutropenia. Here are a few pointers so he can reduce the chances of infection:

• Make sure that food is freshly cooked;
• Remember to wash hands before meals;
• Avoid contact with people who have any infections;
• Avoid extremes of temperature;
• Avoid crowded places with poor ventilation.

Most of all, both of you need to get lots of rest. Try not to do too much. Hang out in your yard, read, sleep, relax.

My heart goes out to you both.

Mara said...

I hope Lorne will soon feel well enough to continue the treatment.

I like your piece of art. When I was young I would do something similar, but never faded the edges like that. It might have looked even better that way!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Oh, I'm so sorry to hear about your anxiety. Poor Lorne and poor you. You are a very striong lady, Leslie and you will both get through this. I wish I'd been in your art class!

Hildred and Charles said...

What a very interesting and colourful post Leslie.

I understand your anxiety and will surely keep you both in my thoughts and prayers.

photowannabe said...

First of all I wants to send you some heart felt hugs....(((HUGS))))

For not being an art teacher I think you had some wonderful sounding classes. I want to be in them!!

I continue to keep both of you in my prayers.

Sylvia K said...

I do understand your anxiety and I do hope Lorne improves soon. But you have collected some wonderful A's as well for the beginning of Round 7! Glad you're back with us! Have a great week, I am holding good thoughts for you and Lorne both!


signed...bkm said...

Anxiety is a big word when someone you love is ill. Love the art pieces and pray all goes well...bkm

Tumblewords: said...

Sorry you have anxiety, but I can surely see why. Good luck. I love the art ideas and thoughts you posted.

LisaF said...

I like Art over Apples any day! Sounds like you had a very creative class. As for the Anxiety, leave your worry for the Almighty to take care of! :-)

Mar said...

Wishing you all the best... I enjoyed reading about your Impressionism classes, how interesting!!

A is for aerial

Reader Wil said...

Oh Leslie! I admire you so much for your courage. I can understand your anxiety so well. And then the courage to start talking about art is so great of you.
I think it a great idea if we all prayed for Lorne or think of him in a positive way.
Hugs, Leslie and Lorne. Take care the two of you.

Reader Wil said...

BTW Leslie, my burglar story was partly made up by me. The end was not true.

RuneE said...

I hope everything works out well for your husband. I'm not an artist either, but my attitude to the photography I do is much the same: I enjoyed it and so had to learn it. And the more I learn the more I enjoy it (and have to learn more).

Roger Owen Green said...

It was lovely seeing the artwork.
It was sad reading about your understandable anxiety. Prayers to you both.

ROG, ABC wednesday team

jabblog said...

I think we used to call it 'Taking your pencil for a walk' or 'scribble drawing' but you took it further than I ever did - wish I could have pinched that idea ;-)
My husband's brother is about a year ahead of Lorne in his colon cancer journey and doing well. Think positive thoughts :-)

Siromade said...

I don't like to experience that feeling anymore but sometimes I can't avoid, hope everything will be alright on both of you. Thanks for sharing this post, it's great.

Gattina said...

I prefer Art by far to anxiety, that's awful !
Gattina from the ABC team

VioletSky said...

I think I would have really enjoyed your art classes.

My first visit here and I have much to catch up on.

Joy said...

Your art class sounds like a fun and imaginative way of learning.
I hope Lorne's blood cells improve, and prayers are with you at this testing time.

ChrisJ said...

I'm very fond of impressionism. The abstract art we used to call, "taking the dog for a walk". I think I might try it again for my self and see if I can pull something out of it which I can dress up a bit and make it look like regular art in the middle of abstract art.

This chemotherapy thing is so frightening. I understand your anxiety. Praying for you both.

Shrinky said...

I have that Monet print, framed on my bedroom wall.

Lorne and you are truly going through the wars right now, of course you are stressed and anxious, it's (sadly) perfectly natural that you must be. Please remember to be kind to yourself, too, Lesley? I'm holding you both in my thoughts, dear lady.

Jay said...

Anxiety is very understandable. So sorry to hear about the complications - a friend of mine is also going through chemo right now (for lymphoma) and she has had to postpone her chemo because of the blood results too. Worrying, but she picked up OK next time and is doing well. Hope it's the same for Lorne. Fingers crossed!

Love the art lessons - I'd have really enjoyed those at school!

Self Sagacity said...

Wow, what a wonderful A post. No wonder you're a teacher. I can understand anxiety, and it isn't so great, but hopefully something good will come afterwards.

Leo said...

anxiety indeed.. my prayers with him too.. praying all goes well..!

liked the A words spread in the post..!