Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Happy Canada Day

The Queen will be here in Ottawa tomorrow.
Though I like the Queen,
I really don't like crowds.
So I will be happy that she is here,
but I will stay home with Cleo and study.
A dear friend learned of an illness of a family member.
This is always hard.
I am studying French but have to keep working at it.
Need much mercy from God.
I may have the test in just over two weeks.
Wishing everyone in North America either a
happy and safe Canada day
or a happy and safe 4th.
Christ is in our midst!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Cleo says I should be studying...

I am slowly working through a French test.

I need to clean house and be a bit stronger on organization.

Also need to find other places to study...

I have to study more;

am creating a strategy for studying for these tests.

First, do the test and research the answers

(so I know why I got it right or wrong).

Second, make a list of vocab words from the test

Third, figure out the areas of grammar that I have to review

Fourth, study study study.

I really need God's help for strength, comprehension and discipline.

I welcome your French Test Study Suggestions

(I feel like I should call them FTSS to sound

bureaucratic like government LOL!)

This picture of Cleo represents summer to me...
Sunshine on Cleo as she looks for birds
in the green green trees...

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sundays...the best days...

I have various social events after

Thursday's interview...

Many more flower pictures to put here!

This picture was on a walk

with some of my really good friends...

Fountains in a small park by City Hall...
This week is going to be about...
*French test studying
*Cooking and Eating more vegetables (kinda failed at that today)
*Social times
(I have to be sure to balance myself as if I have too many days with
little interaction, I don't do as well).
*A, I hope it works as planned, trip to the Greek monastery this
I am really going to have to plan carefully to be doing as much French
studying as possible...
It is not easy for me to do,
so I will really have to work on being disciplined about it...
This week Thursday (the 1st) is Canada Day;
I hope to be picnicking with some friends
and maybe seeing fireworks from somewhere...
Tons of people come to Ottawa for Canada Day since
Ottawa is the Capital;
so seeing fireworks is not something easy to do
with all the crowds...
What do you have planned for this week?

My Cute Cleo Cat and Her Antics

She was sitting calming on the top of this chair

but had moved before I could take a picture...

She is so funny!

She however may not think it so funny...

But we know she is just one of the cutest cats ever!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

God's Mercy is Deep Enough

The interview went well,

Thank God!

I was able to be at part of liturgy at the Cathedral this morning

before the interview

and was able to ask especially the Mother of God's help.


I was able to be my natural confident self

and answer all the questions.


I feel that my research and preparation for the interview

paid off

and God was merciful

gave me the ability to remember things I had studied

in the past and explain them well.

Thank you all for your love, support and prayers!
I really felt very loved and upheld
and am so thankful!
They are going to set up French testing for me
so this is still an issue
but it is in God's hands.
Thanks again for your prayers!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


My interview is tomorrow!
with 30 minutes before hand to read over the interview
(which is great!).
Please pray to Christ for me!
BTW, I took this flower picture this afternoon;
I thank God that the earthquake was
not serious
and that I could be taking pictures of flowers...
Glory to God in All Things!

Earthquake of small magnitude

I was just going out to work on my interview prep for tomorrow.

As the elevator door was closing,

I saw the door began to shake -

I did not know why it was doing this.


I thought the elevator was having a huge breakdown

(it is an older one).


The elevator started really rumbling and shaking,

sand was falling on my head.


I prayed Lord have mercy automatically

three times

and pressed the elevator alarm button.

By then I was going past the 2nd floor and

then it opened like it is supposed to one the first floor.

I called my landlords immediately,

still thinking that it was just an elevator problem

(a BIG elevator problem!).

One woman was very pale,
everyone started coming out of the building.
And I was in an elevator!
Eventually, after talking with various neighbours,
I went back to my apartment;
I had already prayed for my Cleo cat,
who is fine
but may have been a bit worried;
books fell down, icons, my willow branches from Palm Sunday.
But my dishes, open on shelves, were still in tact!
My icons are okay.
My lampada is still lit by St. George and
my icons of the Holy Trinity
and the Transfiguration.
I called my parents, called my Ottawa family,
texted my godchild
(she is fine too)
went on Facebook to say I was fine
and saw other friend's updates about it...
and so is the story of a small earthquake felt in Ottawa
in which God spared many.
Lord have mercy
Lord have mercy
Lord have mercy

Trees and Green Canopies

For me taking pictures

is just about paying attention;

looking for and at the beauty that surrounds us.


It is thinking of how Elizabeth Goudge saw


in the green hills, woods, in golden sun,

in houses with beautiful shapes

coming to greet us.

It is finding the path hidden that is there

and walking in it.

It is being aware of God,

The Author, the Creator, the Provider, the Giver of all Beauty,

the Maker of Trees.

It is thinking of how trees are made
big and strong
by winds that blow on them
by storms
that strengthen the trunks
and twist the limbs
strong and beautiful.
It is realizing that with God
and being in His will
is being safe
even in the
strengthening storm.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Today Tuesday June 22 2010 is...

My Mother's Birthday!

I often say,

explaining why I am so easily Canadian,

"I was born of a Canadian Mother"

but really there is something much greater to be said than this!

"I was born of a Christian Mother"

and I am so blessed.

My Mother still loves me today

and we talk on a very regular basis on the phone.

She still reminds me often of God

and of God's faithfulness,

challenging me to trust God

to not worry

to do things in God's strength,

not my own.

To seek God first...

My Mother is a beautiful flower in the garden that God

has created and founded me in.


My Mother's example of seeking God;
of patience
(she had me you know!)
and constant steadfastness in her love for all of her kids
of my Dad,
of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ
is something I hope to grow towards
and be worthy of.
So Many Years to My Mom!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Monday, the day before my Mother's birthday

This is the week of the next interview.

I have begun preparing.

I feel a bit nervous to say the least

and have so much I need to review

and prepare answer for.

My French classes are winding down.

Even though they were not perfect,

I will miss them.

It seems that in a lot of ways I am still where I was

a year ago;

tomorrow is my Mother's birthday...


I struggle with the unknown

with transitions

with being patient

with having faith.


Lord help me!


Yet life goes on.

Saw the husband of the neighbour who has cancer.

She is doing okay

but he said he thought he almost lost her

a while back,

when she was so sick from chemo.

Lord help us all,

there is so much to bear at times,

so much.


Today was a beautiful sun-filled day.

The green on the trees is so comforting

as I walk underneath their canopies

even here in the city.

Strawberries are in season
on sale.
I told my Mom today on the phone
that today is the first day I remember
buying strawberries
for myself to eat.
What took me so long?!
In ways it rather breaks my heart to be preparing
for a job interview
that I can not yet pass the French test for.
I took a practice French test this weekend.
It was hard.
I didn't even finish it.
10 questions on the subjunctif
which I have not learned yet
at all.
But now I know how it is
and what I need to learn
and all is not lost
and I must not give up
or give in
to weariness.
I must cry out to God
save me
I looked at the waves
I am drowning
like Peter
Save me, O Lord,
in Your great mercy and compassion,
Reach down and pull me out of the waters,
out of the fiery pit.
Bring me into Paradise
with trees of green, with Peacocks
and a riot of vibrant coulors,
with birds praising in the dawn.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Looking towards the weekend

It looks like Ottawa may get the summer heat

many of my friends on the West Coast are wanting.


Personally I prefer the slightly cooler days

(shhh, don't tell!)


I have plans to visit some friends this weekend

and am looking forward to this!

My French presentation went well

and I was surprisingly happy and comfortable

doing it.

Of course I talked about my trip to Brampton

to see My Oma and when people here that she is

101 years old

it is a natural crowd and ice breaker.

I submitted the application
it was a loooooonnnngggg process
to rework my resume,
write two 200 word essays
and be sure to match everything to the posting.
Lots of writing and many edits;
but it is done now and printed at 8 pages
(for my records of course).
Still not sure what I am doing for July to learn French.
Am going to (yay, thank you God!) borrow the
Rosetta Stone CD's from a friend,
I could take a part time course for 6 weeks
(am only going to do one this time not two if I do it;
and I will NOT be taking the one that
is still teaching French in English!)
or I could take a (more costly) two week intensive course...
or perhaps something I do not know of yet.
I have come to the decision over the past while
that I will continue job searching
for full time and part-time work,
while continuing to work on French.
Next week will be a full one for me again,
is this coming Thursday!
I have been practicing for this interview
but have a LOT more to do.
Thankfully both my French classes will be done before the interview...
Hoping this email finds all of my lovely readers doing well
and aware of God's mercy and care for them!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

More of the same can be good

Got word today of a government competition
for a job (non-librarian) that
does not need French.
Am applying!
I have my presentation on my holiday
prepared for tonight!
I am so thankful for a friend who cares enough to send me
job postings.
Now I need to do my best I can on this application!
Wishing everyone a lovely day!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Keep Swimming...

I watched part of the movie
Finding Nemo
in French.
One of the themes of this movie,
you may know
is to keep swimming,
to not give up.
That is what I feel that I have to remember too!
I am continuing to prepare for my interview;
I applied for another job today;
I am still researching French options.
I have been feeling a bit homesick;
my Sister (and bro-in-law) are going home
from Romania
in August.
I so wish I could go see them
but don't know if I should spend the money to travel.
So I am waiting for a lot of things to fall into place.
I am tired
but I must look to God for help
and for strength.
My Grandmother,
who recently turned 80,
loves the verses in Isaiah about those who
wait upon the Lord will renew their strength...

Saturday, June 12, 2010

God's mercy in time healing all wounds

Sometimes I go back and click on the month
in past years on my blog;
just to see what was going on at that time last year,
I had totally forgotten about June 6
when two years ago
I kinda had my foot run over by a car.
Yeah, just kinda,
like realizing that the dark marks on my toes
were from tire rubber;
oh yes.
God, the Holy Angels,
the Mother of God and
St. George
were all protecting me...
I totally forgot when it was June 6 this year!
I think this is a really good sign...
It means I am getting over it;
sudden injuries to us take a long time
to heal,
on the inward emotional / spiritual level.
I have finished a resume and cover letter!
First edit done,
rest to be done later.
I am not certain about what to look for right now
as in part time or full time work,
what French class to take next
how to go about the rest of this summer
writing cover letters and resumes somehow
can be a source of encouragement to me.
It is part of actively doing something
that is encouraging I think.
A monastic who visits from time to time
is in town this weekend.
I can't tell you how glad I am
when I see a monastic
it is like being reminded of God's presence here with us
and I feel a little less afraid of living
in such an uncertain world.
God is merciful to us small ones and encourages us to
become aware of living in His presence
at all times
and to learn to live in the reality of this presence,
in the reality of hope that the Church
is always offering us.


I signed up to do a presentation
in French
for one of my exams.
At first the teacher said we would present on
a vacation that we had.
Now he says we can present on anything.
I think given the circumstances
(job search, interview prep, French learning blah blah blah)
that I may just stick with the first topic given -
a holiday.
Especially as I already had a beginning to this in French!
If you could present on any topic for 5 minutes,
what would you say?

Friday, June 11, 2010

A Friday in June

Cleo wanted to be included in another blog post.

So here she is ... will have to take new pictures soon

I am applying for more jobs.

Not sure what doors will open,

but I am feeling a bit better about it all at the moment.

I savour these moments.

I got a new (for 69 cents at the dollar store)
calendar where I am mapping out
what I need to do each day.
I am finding that this is helpful
so I know what needs to be done
and by what time.
Of course now I need to get the work done
but I am feeling a bit more at peace
and ready to do what needs to be done
Also I am doing a little bit of planning
in the morning and evening for the day
and am excited to see how
this may help me
arrange my days
and assist with decreasing my sense of stress
and / or anxiety.
I am also finishing up the final details for the
BA in French as a Second Language.
Now I need to seek God's Kingdom and righteousness
and thus to maintain peace.
This of course is the most challenging part!
Wishing everyone a joy-filled weekend!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Every morning is new with God's mercy

I realize that I must not stay

in a struggling state.


One new thing I am trying is to learn new ways of planning

my days in order to get everything done.


We will see if it helps.

I have some further direction from one of my teachers

about the government tests.

I am now looking for a class that will be more conversation

and help me with the speaking and listening

part of French.

I am also going to explore
looking for part time work
but first have to work on preparing for my interview.
This is important as I need to do a good interview,
The weather has really fluctuated
and it is cold and cloudy here.
A good day to work on interview preparation
and seek quietness.
We need God's mercy at every minute.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


I wrote a
panic and frustration post recently
and took it down.
I have been told by more than one priest
that we are put in situations
similar ones
again and again
until we learn what is needed.
I really struggle when not knowing my
(job) future.
This has been a huge (the fear of not knowing)
struggle for me for years.
All I can say is I am struggling still with it.
Ottawa is a really great but strange town.
French language stuff here is
complicated to say the least.
How did I, an American-Canadian, happen to fall in love with
a city whose second language
I did not know at all!?!
And what I know of French I love.
It can be fun.
But learning it to try to find a job is really stressful.
Sometimes one feels so
in it all
though really it is the devil who lies and says one is alone!
God and His Saints NEVER abandon us!
God promises.
In the next two/three weeks
I need to...
prepare for my job interview
just getting in a pool of candidates for future work
would be really great.
Government works that way here
they have one position but know
they have more possibilities in the future
so they try to create a pool
so they do not have to run the whole
job competition again.
I need to figure out what French course to take;
do I try for a new course
keep one of my old ones;
I need to start practicing the French government exams.
I really need a class where I can practice listening and speaking.
I am considering looking for part-time work.
I need to continue to seek to pray
remember God's saving mercies
and cultivate thanksgiving.
Please know my dear blog community
that you are really appreciated
and I hope you know this.
God is with us.

Friday, June 04, 2010

Living in Ottawa and Looking for God's Help and Mercy

I can't tell you how MUCH I appreciate your
prayers, advice and support.
I do feel that I have to impress, however,
how much French language plays here.
I live in Ottawa.
Ottawa is the capital of Canada, an officially bilingual country.
The job is a government job.
It is what is termed bilingual-imperative.
This means that even if I ace the interview
and am screened in to the next round,
if I fail the French test
I WILL be out of the the running.
I know this sounds crazy
but it is really true.
And one of my librarian friends,
who I emailed right away this morning,
has confirmed it.
She had an interview with the same organization a few years ago
passed the interview
but not the French test.
And so she was out.
BUT we know that God is a God who works wonders.
The wonder here is that I would pass the French test and the interview!
I am confident that I am good for the job
and am already researching the library, the strategic plan, and the organization.
But I am going to have to work super hard on French.
This worries me.
I thank God for all of you and your prayers.
I feel I must say it again
for your support love and prayers.
I appreciate the advice and welcome all of it.
I take your prayers on my behalf
and the support you give me
and thank God for it!
Glory to God in All things.

Unexpected - an Interview

I just got an email
for an interview for a 2 year position.
I do not believe I have the French level needed;
I am not sure how far or near I am to getting to this
The other qualifications I do have
or I would not of gotten the interview.
It could be that I will qualify but disqualify in French
which means I would not get the position.
The interview is in about three weeks;
it is a screening interview.
Please pray for me for wisdom
and God's mercy.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Praying for a Small Newborn Son

are hoping to find out more
this weekend;
let's keep praying that he will not have permanent damage
from the lack of oxygen;
based on the email I received today
(am not going into detail for privacy sake)
it sounds like his situation is quite serious.
O Lord have mercy!
Mother of God, pray to your Son for this small child!
Lord have mercy
Lord have mercy
Lord have mercy

Towards the Weekend

Cleo showing us her balancing skills;

she has figured out how to stand on top of this chair;

the top is less than 2 inches wide, so I'd say she is

pretty balanced and nimble!

Yesterday morning was incredibly beautiful;

I have been having insomnia so I

was taking a walk a bit after 6 AM;

the summery morning of dreams!

The canal water glistened in the sun;

it was still in the cool of the day

and the flowers,

sigh, oh the flowers!

Late Spring and Summer has such precious fleeting beauty!

There is a path I walk that is a bit hidden,
the picture above is from this.
I feel like I have entered a little taste of a place of
magical beauty, like my own secret garden
in the middle of the city.
I have been struggling to have time to do a review
of my old (first two classes) French text book;
since I am in two classes that always have new homework and exams
it has been a challenge.
I need to take a 90 minute online test to rank where
I am in my French knowledge
for the French BA.
If I rank really low, I would have to take classes
that I do not have time or money to take to
get me to the level needed for the BA.
I realized last night,
after struggling to fall and stay asleep,
that this was really stressing me out -
especially as if I do not do this BA I don't know what I will do
(i.e. to stay here and get a job when library jobs and many others
are bilingual).
So. I am going to the library soon.
I am also going to study tomorrow.
I hope to do this test on Saturday during the day.
Would appreciate prayers for this;
sometimes I feel like I am making progress in French
but other times I get overwhelmed by how much
I have to learn...
BTW, I can retest at the end of the summer,
and do the 90 minute test again.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Prayer Request

Please pray for a newly born baby boy who is in NICU due to not breathing for the first 45 minutes of life.

(The mother is a friend of a friend and is loved by many)