Author Archives: Dianne

Dear Me: The Books

Dear Me: The Widow Letters is now available as an ebook for Kindle and KOBO in Canada, and for Kindle and KOBO in the US.

I’m currently working on Dear Me: The Mother Letters and hope to have it available in print and ebook formats sometime in February.

Glancing Back & Looking Forward

Between Christmas and New Year’s, I like to take stock of the past year and predict what the new year might be like. I didn’t do it last year – probably because I was too busy 60-thinging it – but I wanted to make sure I did it this year.

And what a year it was! I think it’s going to be one of those time-defining years – things will be remembered as being “before COVID” or “during COVID” or (hopefully sometime this year) “after COVID”.

Things I miss:

  • My weekly visits to see my mom. We would go out for lunch and then go back to the care home and bake muffins to share with the other residents in her “house”.
  • Band – the Warman Community Band and the Diamond Jazz Band, especially the Christmas music
  • Choir – the Contemporary Singers from St. Martin’s United Church, again, especially the Christmas music
  • Handbells – the St. Martin’s Ringers and the Zodiac Tapestry Ringers, and again, especially the Christmas music
  • Agility Classes with Posey – Although it was because of my other groups shutting down that we were able to start this, it eventually had to shut down as well.
  • The monthly CUPE Dolls Breakfast – a group of retired Saskatoon School Board Support Staff that met the first Tuesday of the month at Grainfields.
  • Getting together for drinks or supper out with friends.

But as I look back, I realize that despite COVID, 2020 wasn’t all bad:

  • I finished my 60 Things and wrote and published a book about my adventures.
  • I learned some new things through online classes
    • self-publishing, including ebooks
    • Indigenous Canada, a free Coursera course through University of Alberta
    • Fundamentals of Music Theory, another free Coursera course through University of Edinburgh
  • I bought a small motorhome (Lottie) and enjoyed a week at Kimball lake with her
  • I adopted a cat – Lysette. Posey and her continue to adapt to each other, but it’s going well.
  • I finished my Lay Worship Leader course and am now licensed.
  • I finished the quilt I started 3 years ago, to celebrate the six trips I took the year I retired.
  • I taught a Zoom class on writing Picture Books through Wheatland Library.

So, not a total waste of a year, after all.

What’s in store for 2021?

  • I’ve started another quilt, and hope to finish it before spring – this year, not three years from now. 🙂
  • I’m putting out an ebook version of Dear Me: The Widow Letters in January.
  • I’m publishing a new book, as an ebook and in print, called Dear Me: The Mother Letters, hopefully by February. Similar to The Widow Letters, it will be a book of letters written by women to their past selves, but this time rather than women who have been widowed they are women who have experienced the death of a child.
  • I’m doing a Decluttering Challenge in January – whatever the number of the day is, that’s how many things I have to recycle or throw away. I’m pretty sure I can last at least a week, but I’m hoping to last the whole month. It would be wonderful to be free of 496 things by the end. Wish me luck!
  • I want to continue to take free online classes, but not sure what will be next. Yay Coursera!
  • I hope to explore more regional and provincial parks with Lottie this summer.
  • And I really hope to be able to start visiting my mom again sometime this year!

Happy(er) New Year everyone!

Monty Python and Musical Terms

I’m taking a (free) online Fundamentals of Music Theory class from University of Edinburgh through Coursera, and am really enjoying it. Especially this week.

This week was all about rhythm and meter. I did not know that not everyone calls notes by the same names. And the Brit terms are freaking hilarious! I thought so anyway. I honestly thought that it was some kind of April Fool’s joke or a Monty Python sketch and at any moment a big cartoon foot was going to come down from the sky and squash the lecturer.

Here’s the order they were explained in, and my reactions:

Whole note = semibreve (which means half brief, which makes no sense to me whatsoever, but okay.)

Half note = Minim (this is when I started wondering if he was serious)

Quarter note = Crotchet (I started to giggle. Seriously?)

Eighth note = Quaver (Who came up with these names???)

Sixteenth note = Semiquaver (Of course!)

Thirty-secondth note = Demisemiquaver (I lost it! Howling with laughter. How is this guy keeping a straight face?)

Sixty-fourth note = wait for it… Hemidemisemiquaver! (I had to pause the video until I could stop laughing! Where is the foot? This has got to be a Monty Python sketch! If it isn’t, it should be!)

Thank goodness he stopped there. I don’t think I could have taken anymore.