Monthly Archives: May 2010

Saturday crafternoon

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I am not working on anything at the moment. Can you have a cross stitchers block?

However, I am completely smitten with the patters on Andwasabi’s Etsy store – they’re so cute and colourful! Perhaps when my bank account looks a little bit healthier, I will buy the Christmas designs to make some ornaments.

Also Rosa at My Little Stitches is working on a project about menstruation. Earlier this week she posted a really cool piece based on her friend’s story. Absolutely amazing!

Are you working on anything at the moment? Have any cool links to share?

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Babies

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I’m feeling clucky.

It’s a word that does not seem to exist in North America. It means maternal. Like a mother hen.

We’re definitely not at a stage in our relationship where we should have a child. There are financial reasons: there is a small amount of uncertainty whether Wife will have a job next year. There are immigration reasons: I’m not a permanent resident yet. There are personal reasons: we want to wholeheartedly enjoy our time as a couple and I still have some growing up to do.

However, I am so excited that we are starting to talk about starting a family. I am so excited that we are talking about a timeline. I am so excited that we are talking about pregnancy. I am so excited that we are talking about childbirth. I am so excited that we are talking about how to raise our children.

Unfortunately, Wife and I tend to overanalyse. We second guess our motives for having children. What is a good reason to start a family? Is it enough that we love each other and think that we have a lot to offer a child? What is it exactly that we can offer a child? What if we don’t have enough to offer our child? Why do we want a biological child? Are we too selfish to be parents? Are these normal questions? Should we even have children if we have these questions?

There are no easy answers. However, I am going to invest in some lesbian TTC books.  I am going to think long and hard about the qualities and habits I want to cultivate in myself before I become a parent. I’m also going to think long and hard about the questions and doubts that I have.

Do you want children?

Saturday Crafternoon

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I couldn’t sleep on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. So I decided to work on my feminist cross stitch. I did not cross stitch a vulva because a) there was not a suitable space on the fabric and b) a friend pointed out that a vulva embroidered on aida weave fabric would look very block-y (a Tetris vulva). I thought it would be funny to give it a twee feeling and I toyed with the idea of a green border with yellow flowers. Unfortunately, it did not look good, so I left it plain.

Close up of the feminist cross stitch

It’s definitely not perfect. However, I love the saying. Furthermore, it was fun and relaxing to work on while watching The Thick of It and it was really good practice for cross stitching letters.

It’s currently on a bookshelf in a $5 frame from Michaels. However, I’m not sure how long it will stay there as Wife thinks that cross stitched pieces are hideous. In her defence, she always praises whatever I make and I think she is quite fond of the cross stitched Dalek.

Do you disgaree on interior decorating with your significant other? How do you negotiate how you’ll use your living space?

Gifts

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My wife was still at rehearsal when I came home from work last night. I was looking for the mail, hoping for anything in a brown envelope (the envelope of choice for the Canadian government), when I noticed a blue package on the couch. A blue package with “4 U! Open” scrawled on the front.

I wondered if I should wait for wife to get home so we could open it together.

I managed to wait long enough to eat a chocolate chip cookie before ripping it open.

Inside was a print.

The best print that I have ever seen.

Wife bought it for me because I had commented (or complained depending on your point of view) that I missed the gorgeous pop art style painting of the Tenth Doctor a friend gave me for my 20th birthday. Unfortunately, when I came to Canada, I had so many things to bring (and not enough money to ship extras). The painting is currently being looked after by my best friend. In the meantime, I have this gorgeous print.

Sometimes I don’t think I deserve to have wife in my life. However, I am very glad that I do.

Lessons learned from improv

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I’m currently applying for an in Canada Spouse or Common–Law Partner Class visa.

It’s a really stressful experience. There is a lot of paperwork. My wife had to prove that she is capable of providing for our little family (immigrants aren’t entitled to government assistance for three years). I had to complete a thorough background check and a detailed relationship survey. I needed to provide additional documents – such as letters, photographs, e-mails, joint bills – that proved I am in a genuine relationship with my wife. I also needed to obtain a police certificate from Australia and undergo a medical exam, blood test and a chest x-ray.

When I mailed this two pound packet of information to Vegreville, AB (home of the world’s largest Ukrainian Easter egg), I cried with relief.

Now I am waiting. During this waiting period, I have been obsessively checking the CIC website and waiting for them to process my application.

The website has said the same thing for several weeks: currently processing applications received up to October 3, 2009.

I sent my application on March 25, 2010.

The stress continued to build. There was a constant knot in my stomach, my appetite was enormous and I was prone to tears.

Then I started taking an improv class at the Improv Depot. It’s eight weeks long and we’re working on the building blocks of improvisation – such as acceptance, story telling and character developments – through games. It’s a fantastic class: the teacher is very knowledgeable and creates a really friendly, warm environment.

A lesson that we learn every week is that one of the hardest things to do is relinquish control. You can’t predict what another person in the class will do or say. Willingly going into a situation that you are not able to control is terrifying. However, it can also be exciting and, if you’re lucky, hilarious.

I’m trying to apply this lesson to my everyday life.

Some days I fail. I eat cookies and cry. Some days I succeed. I acknowledge that I can’t change application processing times (I’m not the only person who would like to live in Canada), I make plans for obtaining an interim visa (it may involve a holiday to Mexico) and I look forward to the day when I receive a Maple Card (hopefully).

Saturday crafternoon

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So I’m writing a play with a friend. Recently we got together at a pub for discusion and writing which we affectionately dubbed “Queers and Beers.” During the course of the evening, she mentioned that during her undergraduate degree she wrote an essay on the words used to describe the vulva and vagina. At one point she became so frustrated that she replaced with the words vagina and vulva with euphemisms. For example, “Feminism is the radical notion that women are more than their hoo hoos.”

Firstly, she is an extremely easy to like person.

Secondly, that is a phrase that deserves to be remembered for time immemorial.

I haven’t embroidered for twelve years, but I recently picked up a needle, threads and a hoop after I decided that I needed a cross stitched dalek in a faux vintage frame (from the dollar store). As I have the materials (and I think that embroidery is a craft that looks fantastic when subverted), I decided that I would embroider the phrase.

I’m still working on “Feminism is the radical notion that women are more than their hoo hoos” (ideally I’d love to include a cross stitced vulva, but I am so out of practice that it might not happen). In the mean time, I am really inspired by the embroidered vulva and this amazing viva la vulva banner at My Little Stitches. So awesome.