Thursday, November 29, 2007

Excited about Christmas!

O Christmas Tree
Originally uploaded by Heather Garland
I'm starting to get excited about Christmas.

I started feeling it yesterday at Starbucks with all the red cups and the cute little card-holder stockings.

And then there was the email/call from Sarah about Christmas baking. Can't wait to get started on that this weekend! Any orders or suggestions? I usually make a shortbread, some chocolate-butterscotch marshmallow log, chocolate peanut butter balls, chocolate macaroons and a pecan cornflake chew. Last year, I threw in some yummy homemade granola as well. Now what will I do this year? I'm thinking I need something lemony.

Then there was the conversation with my friend Tanya about Christmas shopping. I can't wait to get to Winners to start looking! I'm thinking I'll start next weekend, although I'd love to have gone to the One of a Kind show, it looks like it's not in the cards for me this year.

This weekend, I'll be attending my first Christmas party at Tree's house. And my family has been assembling their Christmas lists for the past couple of weeks. I'm not sure that mine is actually any good, though.

Mostly, I'm excited about having some time off to spend with my family, hanging out in front of the wood stove with some tea, reading my Christmas stocking magazines and some mindless novels while A Very Special Christmas plays on the stereo.

Ahh, I can feel the warmth stealing over me now!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Woodstoves, tea and cats on laps

This is largely what my weekend consisted of: sitting by the woodstove, my feet propped up, reading MoneySense magazine, drinking a cup of tea with a cat curled up on my lap.

Seriously, there isn't much that could be better than that.

And I suppose if that's all I did, I mightn't feel as good about my weekend as I do. I also managed to:
  • eat out with my parents
  • get some branches of my overzealous tree chopped down
  • get to Home Depot to cost out some reno options
  • fix my watch, helped my mom with Christmas shopping (shopping without spending money... isn't it the best?)
  • check out a new coffee shop in a little town to see my friend's photo exhibit, chat and catch up with friends there
  • listen to an acoustic version of some of my favourite live music
  • watch a cheesey ridiculous local theatre show
  • ice skate at the local rink
  • tour the local historical arts centre.
And, as I mentioned, sit in front of the woodstove with tea, a magazine and a curled up cat.

And now I'm on to more unsavoury tasks: financial spreadsheeting, website updates (if I'm lucky) and cooking or cleaning or some such mundane task.

I had such a nice weekend, looking out at the gorgeous winter wonderland in the country. And next weekend maybe I'll start getting in the Christmas spirit with some Christmas baking and decorating.

Assuming I still live in my house.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

pretty dresses

Last night, I decided to help a friend in need with their pant selection at the Gap. Usually, this is something I love. It was still something I loved, except I forgot about the trap potential of that store.

This past summer, I bought TWO cute dresses there. And they're both my kind of dresses. Empire waist, coming away from the hips. Falling just above the knee. Great colours. Don't have to be ironed. Can be dressed up or dressed down. Sexy or work-appropriate.


And I thought: I don't even have to LOOK at the dresses. I can just look for the pants for someone else. Because I don't need (or like) pants.

And then there was a girl in the changing room who was trying on dresses. I couldn't escape it. There was THE dress: the super cute one. And I almost made it out of the store before breaking down and grabbing it to try. Actually, grabbing it in two sizes and two colours, and trying it on.

It looked GOOD.


And I had to leave it behind.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

cookies make things better

14th August 2007 / Day 226
Originally uploaded by Mrs Magic
You know, chocolate chip cookies with skor bits makes a lot of things better. One of those things is NOT your belly. However, it does take away boredom.

Because there are grocery stores to visit and batters to whip up and dishes to do afterwards and warm bits of yumminess to stuff in your mouth. And then there's tea to wash it down with.

Really, there are a lot of activities that can fill up your day out of one batch of cookies.

And then there are friends to call.Especially when you have a long distance phone card to use up.

Follow the photo link for a recipe for some regular chocolate chip cookies. I'm sure you can add some skor bits in there to kick em up a notch.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Thursday, November 15, 2007

not feeling good

Ugh. Migraines.

They don't just affect your head, but your stomach and pretty much your desire to move your face in any way.

I just want a massage and darkness.

But today I got bored. Bored bored bored. I don't know if I actually spoke at all. Felt like a lump.

I think I'm restless. I want to be doing something, but don't know what to do. I don't feel much like myself. I feel sick, but don't have any symptoms of anything in particular. Just blah-ness. And of course the migraine, which is nothing new.

Maybe it's the coming of winter and hating the cold and avoiding the outdoors because of it.

Whatever it is, I need to figure it out and get over it. Because I'm not liking this at all.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Feeling less dramatic

Ok, so I had a bad day.

You know, sometimes you have your heart set on something and it doesn't work out that way.

Part of why I was sad was : LOOK AT THIS!

This beautiful mock-up of my house. My house as it was meant to be. My cute little darling house. It WANTS to be the house in this picture. It WANTS to grow up and have people driving by point and say, "Look at that cute house! I want a house like that!"

And then I had a conversation that may lead to me not being able to let my house achieve its full potential. Yes, I may need to sell the house.

If you know me, you know I like my house. You know that I've put a lot of work into it. That it was OK before, but it's even better now. You'll know that I was lucky to get it. That I take good care of it.

And I'm sad to think that I may not be able to get HERE, to this picture. But I realize that it will work out, no matter what happens. It will work out, even if I have to be separated prematurely from my baby.

Also, thank you to my neighbour who is the greatest neighbour of all time who has the prettiest house on the street and who, if I do have to sell, I want to bring with me wherever I go.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

my weekend

I went for a really nice dinner party at a friend's house. It was so great to see them, catch up, etc. They have a really exciting opportunity coming up that may have them off to Amsterdam to work. I was envious hearing about it. Happy for them, but envious.

The rest of my weekend was pretty restful. I cleaned, cooked, watched movies, read, drank London Fogs at Starbucks, gardened, went for a long walk, rode my bike and grocery shopped.

It was quiet, but maybe something I needed. Until things went... wrong. Funny how one conversation can really change the way you think about your near future.

This morning, I was talking to my neighbour about the renovations I'm going to make next to my house. And now I'm emailing my real estate agent, asking him for a house assessment and letting him know that I may need his services sometime soon.

It can change just like that.

And suddenly your half-hopeful smile in the face of adversity crumbles. And you wonder how you could be so silly as to think that it was going to turn out alright.

Really, I only have myself and my expectations to blame for being disappointed. I should know by now that expectations only hurt me in the long run. And yes I am totally feeling sorry for myself. And yes I'm totally bitter and sad and disappointed. And tired and going to bed. While it's still my bed.

Tomorrow, it may not be.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

My Garden

Garden - the AFTER shot
Originally uploaded by webgoddesscathy
You know what I like about my garden?

Yes, OK, it's kind of cute (albeit sparse) and it's teaching me about all sorts of laws about soil and sun exposure and moisture levels and seasonal changes and even design.

And yes, I don't have to mow it, but really I think I spend MORE time on my garden than I ever did on my lawn. But, sure, it's more environmentally friendly.

What like best is when it's late and it's raining and I'm making my lunch and I need an onion some herbs for my pasta salad and I just go out and snip, pull, there I have it in my kitchen, my spreader onions, garlic chives and summer savoury, contributing fresh yumminess when I need it. Green and flavourful in my mouth today, making me feel proud of the otherwise boring leftovers in my cupboards.

Instead of padding the back pockets of the big grocery chains, I'm working my own slightly deficient soil. (I learned this weekend at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair that farmers are getting paid much much less today than ever before for their produce. Sad story. Long live the farmer's markets!)

It gave me an immense sense of satisfaction to harvest the fruist of my own labours. And next year, I'm expanding into tomatoes and garlic!

(Any recommendations for what grows well in sandy soil that gets only partial sun?)

Sunday, November 04, 2007

The Royal

Me, mom and dad at the Royal Agricultural Winter fair this weekend. My brother Matt took this awesome photo and, by some freak chance, we weren't making stupid faces or talking.

It was such a great day. Lots of interesting nerdy stuff to do and learn. A family that nerds-it-up together, stays together!

I felt fairly productive this weekend:
  • met up with Sara for catching up and her birthday dinner at my favourite thai place (I know it was HER bday, but she told me to choose...)
  • cleaned pretty much everything
  • laundry (even the linens and nasty food in the fridge!)
  • all my pre-winter gardening done (well, almost all - I got the bulbs and the perennials in the ground and that's pretty damn good)
  • made apple crisp
  • made my lunch for tomorrow
  • dishes, and lots of them
  • went to Home Depot to get the latest door catalogue
  • biked to work to pick up the stucco colour pamphlet and just HAD to stay for my morning Starbucks. They recognize me. I love that. They asked me where my cup was.
  • I drank my london fog while reading a work-related article I've been meaning to get to
  • did my grocery shopping
  • got my bike fixed (for free! I love my bike guy!)
  • rode back downtown for a friend's housewarming party with Sarah
  • talked to my neighbour about house plans
  • talked to my sister and updated her on everything
  • even did a little reading

How great is all of that?

I love getting stuff DONE. And having fun while doing it. More of that, please!

Turned my clocks back and, yes, I'm exhausted, so off I go.