Thursday, August 30, 2007

I did it!

Yes, I know I am a Starbucks addict. But just let me focus on my nice thing for the morning:

  • I went non-fat for my London Fog
  • I got a permanent mug - so no more throw-aways or reusing the paper cups!

Verdict: haven't actually USED the travel mug yet but I've been warned that beverages can sometimes taste metallic if you leave them in there too long. And the non-fat? Well, it didn't elicit the closed-eye "mmmm" that it normally does. But it's not bad.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Starbucks Alert

Cappuccino, Starbucks
Originally uploaded by glynnish
I have just learned that Starbucks is going to 2% milk as their "regular" milk. So, instead of the whole milk (about 4% or so) in your steaming mug of goodness, you'll get about half the calories and you might feel a little less full.

So my new health initiative of ordering 2% London Fogs has turned into the norm.

Honestly, I couldn't really tell the difference. But now I won't accidentally order the full-fat version.

Saturday, August 25, 2007


You probably don't remember, but I got a ceiling fan for either my birthday or my house warming last summer. It was beautiful, but it sat for a while until April this spring before we got around to trying to put it up. We ended up deciding that it was going to hang too low.

So, in April, my brother and I took it back to Home Depot and exchanged for another, higher ceiling fan. In preparation for the warm weather, of course.

My family had been over that weekend to help me with a bunch of house improvements. I told them that Alex and I could handle putting up the ceiling fan together.

I didn't know how ambitious that statement was.

It sat there until today. But, I should say that I'm quite happy that we finally got around to putting that damn ceiling fan up today. (I had stopped nagging, since that clearly wasn't working. I don't know what finally convinced him, but I'm not complaining! Maybe it was that it was the ONLY thing I asked for on the list of things to do today?)

Anyway, we toiled at it for about two hours before finally pressing the "on" button.

And nothing happened.

We did some trouble-shooting for a bit until we finally admitted that it was just broken. Boo! So, off it had to come AGAIN.

Vermiculite falling from the ceiling and landing in lovely glittery piles on our bed and floor. And probably in our lungs. Awesome.

And we took it back to Home Depot and, guess what? They don't have any more. But the girl was very helpful and told us where we COULD find that model. That's my goal tomorrow: exchange the ceiling fan.

On the happy side, it will be nice.

On the boo side, it will mean I'll have to clean up more vermiculite some other time... if we get around to putting it up again six months from now...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

I love my friends

Whenever things seem bad, along come my friends and make everything seem so much better.

I am lucky to have wonderful people in my life.

Thank you.

Monday, August 20, 2007


I read something recently about frustration - that it's about not getting what you want or need.

I've been feeling pretty frustrated lately. Roadblocks to many of the things that I'm trying to accomplish.

For every step forward, I feel like I'm taking three back. Today, I felt like crying and throwing things and screaming and actually purposely running my bike into something.

How do I get like this?

Because I have to keep my cool and pretend that nothing is happening when people make faces when I ask them a question, looking like I'm on fire or crazy without explaining why.

Because I know people are lying to me or to themselves or both and can't say anything about it.

Because things that were supposed to be fixed and working weeks and months ago are still in their early stages of development. Creeping along while those who are supposed to be working on them pretend like they have done all they can do... that that have completed the task before them.

And I feel like my hands are tied in each situation because freaking out would make it all so much worse. And yet I so want to freak out.

What in god's name is WRONG with people? Don't they have any pride in themselves? I feel overwhelmed. I constantly wonder how I can make the situation better and I am at a loss. I have no idea what to do. I feel hopeless. I want to quit. I want someone to help me, to give me the tools to fix everything. I want things to stop sucking so much. I want to be able to stop trying SO hard all the time. I want someone else to take responsibility and work WITH me.

My weekend joy is still in my mind, however. It just reminds me how good things can be. It serves to show me how dysfunctional other things are.

Somehow, somewhere, I will find the strength and motivation to pull things together again.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Sometimes you gotta love life

I have had such a fantastic weekend, I'm just sitting here with a little grin on my face and sad that it's all ending after I take my much-needed shower and lay down my ridiculously sleepy head.

Friday night, I met a friend who works at the Starbucks near work. It's her last week working there. Sad story. BUT, I did get a free yummy-yum-favourite-beverage-in-the-world. And a cookie. Mm. Dinner.

And I walked to my "date" at the movie theatre, where we watched "SuperBad" which was very funny for boys, but mildly amusing for me, once I got past the horrific affirmation of all the worst that boys represent. Does that even make sense? Anyway. Let's move on.

Sleep, blah blah blah.

Saturday, I met my brother and his wife at the airport, as they're on their way to Brazil! I got the keys and now I have their vehicle for the month, which can come in handy.

I hung out for a bit at home, doing some garden work and doing some of my phone calls and then decided that I needed to get outside because it was a beautiful day. I slapped on my mp3 player and my comfy sandals and headed out the door.

First stop: Dairy Queen. Bien sur!

Then I walked downtown.

Second stop: movie theatre -- just my luck, Harry Potter was about to start. So I used my birthday movie pass and saw it! Loved it!

Then I walked to work and picked up my bike from the bike room.

Third stop: Sarah's house.

Fourth Stop: a local pub that had a great cover band playing. We chatted and chatted and ate sweet potato fries and onion rings.

And finally, I rode my bike home. I was asleep within minutes of my head hitting the pillow. God, I love that feeling.

Bike Trip, beach near East Point ParkSunday morning, I get up, strip the bed and start the laundry. I make myself a pot of tea and sit down to watch Voyageur and home improvement shows.

My mom arrives at 11am and we pore over the cycling map and choose our route, pack the paniers and we're off.

First stop: Starbucks, of course.

Second stop: Taylor Creek Park, having a little difficulty finding the entry, but otherwise, we're good. We cycle east beneath the trees, alongside the bubbling creek.

Third stop: Warden Woods/Byng Park

Fourth stop: St. Clair Ravine

Fifth stop: Dairy Queen. It was, afterall about time for lunch.

Sixth stop: Bellehaven St, Scarborough. Where the beautiful people live. Time for gawking!

Seventh stop: Guildwood Park. We meet a retired man who is so deeply tanned his skin has that "indian red" sheen to it... you remember that colour from your pencil crayon collection? He told us about the best paths to take and that he'd been out golfing that morning and that he was going for a run now and that he was selling off everything now and going back to the UK. Sigh. I think I would like his life. We ride down to the beach and sit on the rocks there, below the bluffs that tower above us, and get our picture taken by some people walking by, and our retired friend.

Eighth stop: East Point Park, or just east of there, west of Rouge Hill, there is a new path. Newly paved, it is like riding on butter (just not the melty kind). And finally, there we sit on the rocks by the beach with real sand. A basically deserted beach. We wonder why there is hardly anyone here. We eat our lunch. And marvel that you would never know you were in Toronto. Until the Go train rumbles by behind us. Which is all the better for us, as we think next time we can take the Go train out here or at least catch it back...

Ninth stop: North up Highland Creek to Colonel Danforth Park and UofT Sarborough Campus.

Tenth stop: another route through the Guildwood Village area houses before hoping on the TTC to get us back to the Danforth.

Festival of SoutheastAsia - the final stop on our bike tour of easter TorontoEleventh stop: bike down to Gerrard for the Festival of South Asia. Feed our hungry faces with all manner of tasty treats that we had no names for or at least couldn't pronounce. All I can say is "Mmmm!" In fact, one of the best places we ate was the Veggie restaurant, Udupi Restaurant. Quite surprising, but very very tasty. And mom was introduced to mango lassis. She is won over.

Twelfth stop: home. We biked home. Drank some water, uploaded some photos and here I am, in front of my computer with my map before me. Amazed at where I've been today. Hoping I will relive this all in my dreams tonight.

Does it get better?

Friday, August 17, 2007

YAY, New Pornographers

Sarah has sent me the link to the latest New Pornographers album preview on the MuchMusic website.

I am LOVING it.
Love love love!

Groovin a Friday morning away while I sort out content management system problems. What could be better?

(Doing it with a London Fog, you say? Oh wait, that was me thinking out loud. And, yes, I do have on sitting right here on my desk. Perfection.)

Monday, August 13, 2007

I love summer weekends

Taste of the Danforth
Roller blading along the lakeshore
Listening to the bands at the Beer festival
Dinner with friends
Bicycle shopping

Gotta love the summertime! And more specifically, my weekend, because that's what I just described!

Probably one of the best weekends of the summer. MOre on it later.

I'm off to the Crowded House concert...

Thursday, August 09, 2007

pretty dress

Raye will be happy to know that I'm wearing my new pretty dress that I bought while shopping on the Danforth with her.

I was a little nervous about it because it's different from the other dresses I have. It's a light cotton, vivid orange with big white daisies on it. But the cut is very 50's housewife: capped sleeves, cinched waist, full skirt, but with a plunging neckline.

Raye assured me that it suited my body type and I love the orange and it was something else that I love: on sale!

So I bought it and tried it on for Alex, whom I told couldn't actually tell me it didn't look good. :)

I've been a little hesitant about pulling it out. But today was the day. I need the orange in my life. I need something a little spunky.

And this morning, at Starbucks, I was admiring a lady's dress out of the corner of my eye when she suddenly said to me, "I love your dress!"

It made my day.
Yay pretty dress!

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

deep breath

The long weekend was a good opportunity for a deep breath before I begin the madness that is this week. Woke up this morning with a bit of an anxiety attack about work. Went to bed with some anxiety about personal life stuff.

Clearly, the weekend wasn't enough.

We went for a lovely dinner, a great hike at Awenda Park (although it was really too easy for us, it was nice to be in the shade on a hot day and then end up at the beach) and BBQ and family applesauce-making. It was as "away" as I could be on short notice.

But it was so good that I want more.
Even last night, when I got home, I had "away" things to do. Outside in the lovely hot weather with my grubbies on and a cap, digging in the dirt, mowing the lawn, garbage duty, all of the stuff that needs to get done. All until it was too dark to see so I came inside for some food.

After my gluttonous weekend, I decided to try to go clean. I ate veggies and hummous and then a tomato-basil salad and asparagus soup. I felt quite self-righteous about it.

And today? Indian veggie curry leftovers.
Seriously, somebody stop me!

I'm secretly (well, not so secretly anymore) hoping that good nourishment will banish all bad thoughts.

I think it's time for another deep breath before I dive back in after my lunch...

Friday, August 03, 2007

the joy of a long weekend

I have been needing a vacation. There are too many things going on. One can only multitask so much and at some point you need to depend on other people to take care of some things. So what happens when they don't?

Well, Cathy gets stressed and has two-week migraines.

This is not the Cathy that I like to be. I like to be the Cathy that enjoys the challenges of work, enjoys the warmth of her friends and the stimulation of a good talk on a patio or the inspiration of a good performance.

I don't like to be consumed with all of the things I have to do and take care of and and and...

I can tell myself all I like that it's not important and that it could be worse and really who cares and seriously, relax. But sometimes it just doesn't make it through to my emotional brain. And my body keeps producing those fight or flight hormones. And the migraine keeps burning.

But what's great about long weekends, especially those on the farm, is that I can take the time that I need to take to really forget about all of those things that need to be done. I can get perspective on what is important. I can hear the crickets. The hum of the fridge and nothing else.

And I can finally sleep the long, deep sleep and wake up when my eyelids just part because they are done being closed.

Happy long weekend.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Do-over birthdays

When your birthday kind of sucks, there is the option -- sometimes -- of a do-over. A chance to fix it.

Last night was Alex's do-over. And he scored. It was simple, yet effective. A really nice Indian restaurant find. Yummy butter chicken! Made especially nice because it means he was thinking about what I would like. And he knows that I like "different." So he chose exactly that.

And then we went over to Trinity Bellwoods Park for some Shakespeare. Driftwood Theatre was doing Much Ado About Nothing.

It was a very nice night, because as you might already know, I love theatre. And even more, I love outdoor summer theatre. This one was... well, the Dream in High Park CanStage production was much better. And I'm wondering how it compares to the UofT, Canopy Theatre Company production of the exact same show (I think someone needed to do some research!).

And on top of it all, I needed to forget about a lot of things that are going on.

Yay for do-overs!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Star Trek

Last night was Star Trek night. I watched probably five episodes of ST: Voyager. It's my favourite series of them all, although I'm not sure why. The early episodes were pretty crap, as with most of the series. But last night, I did some stucco work, talked to Sarah and then flaked out on the couch with my migraine, watching my decadence.

Happy to announce: the 10-day migraine seems to be gone!