Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Back To Reality

Well, this shall be my last entry written from the depths of BC for a good long while. I’m not expecting to make it back this way until around July since that is when my sister is expecting to get married. Sucks living so far away from my home province, but I have to admit that I’ve learned a lot and experiences much as well being so far away. The PEI language and accent alone was an experience all in itself. Plus I have overcome my fear of flying which has proven to be extremely helpful considering how much I have to travel and plan to travel in the future.

So back to PEI tomorrow. Ugh. I shouldn’t say “ugh”, but we’ve been watching the Weather Network while I’ve been away and the weather over there makes me DREAD going back. I was hoping that my last winter on the island would be nice and mild and enjoyable to get through. I’m thinking that my dreams have been dashed considering the 100+ km winds happening the past couple weeks. I think my New Year’s resolution this year should be to shop complaining about PEI weather and just come to terms that it sucks all of the time. I’m being dramatic again…but we got the most beautiful snowfall last night and I woke up to the world being covered in a white blanket of loveliness and I love opening the blinds to my bedroom and automatically smiling. Walking Rizzo this morning was so calm, peaceful and white and it upsets me that in less than 24hours I will be leaving. I also woke up with a head-cold this morning which is quite unfavourable considering the amount of traveling I have to do the next 2 days. I was really hoping that I had avoided the plagues going around the area but alas, one found me. I was so close! Plus my lifestyle the past 2 weeks has been lovely. Sleeping in “late”, long walks with the dogs, eating copious amounts of food which is bad for me, reading novels… life is good when you have no responsibilities. Too bad it has to come to an end. Back to reality!

All I want is to be able to stay here and kick my dad’s butt in Yahtzee until I make enough money to pay off my student loans. Yes, you read that right. We play games for money in this household and yes, we make change if you’re short of pocket change.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Life's Funny Like That

There’s this thing about growing up which can be startling at some times but also very eye-opening and educational. As we get older we learn more and more facts and stories about our family which were hidden from us as we were kids. Obviously there are tons and tons of things that our parents have to keep from us when we’re young because it’s just so out of our scope of understanding. I think that every time I come home to BC I learn some new things about my parent’s or family’s past that just makes me change my view of them slightly. 99.99% of the time it makes me think just that more highly of them. Tonight was one of those nights for sure. I can’t tell the world what it is that I learned tonight because my mom made me promise to keep my mouth shut, but I can say that my head was down on the kitchen table because I was laughing so hard that I couldn’t hold the weight of my head upright. In fact, it's been a long time since I laughed as hard as I did tonight. Plus the things coming out of Cadance’s mouth was so funny that I nearly had to leave the room at a couple points because it was just too funny to handle. That little girl is getting quite the personality. Oh man. Good luck to her parents.

What made tonight so great is that everyone, for the first time I have been home, was feeling good. We postponed our Christmas dinner yesterday because Amy and Jer ended up coming down with that evil stomach bug that was going around. This also meant that neither of them attended the first round of gift opening or the big Christmas Eve event at the Kotyk house. It was sad not having them around. The night just wasn’t the same. Then on Christmas morning only Amy was able to come over because Jer was still not well, and Pam and Graham went to Kamloops to spend the holiday with his family, so it was just the five of us that morning. Nearly 50% of our clan wasn’t there on Christmas morning (including Splash) so it was a quiet and mellow day for all of us. By the time Amy and Cadance left around noon, it was just me and my parents around the house. I went for a good run and got a lot of reading done, which in my opinion is a great way to spend Christmas day. I think that people go way overboard with Christmas day when really, it should be a day of visiting and relaxation.

Today is Boxing Day and for the first time ever in my life, I went shopping. I was very optimistic and hoped for finding great sales. And yeah, there were great sales, but everything was so picked over in terms on sizes for clothing. Generally the stores had every style in stock, but only in sizes XS, XL or XXL. Crap. But I did get a cute new coat and a shirt. Unfortunately when I got home and showed my mom she said I looked like Peter Pan. Thanks mom. I now have no desire to wear this shirt ever again.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Eve of Christmas Eve

One more day and then it is Christmas Eve! It's hard to believe I've been home for over a week already...didn't I just get here? Another thing that sucks about the holiday season is that you're so busy all of the time that time goes by incredibly quickly and before you know it, it's all over and time to go back to the real world again. I'm lucky that I'm able to take time off work to come home to my family this Christmas. Last year I will probably not be able to afford going home so I'd better enjoy it as much as possible this year.

It's been an interesting trip so far. Things aren't going as smoothly as we all would hope for but we're making due. First of all, everyone is sick! Amy's been sick for a long time and working full-time at the hospital so she's worn out whenever I get the chance to see her. My other sister Pam has also been incredibly sick and has been spending her time off from work home alone trying not to infect the rest of us with her disease, and she also has not much energy to do much of anything anyway. Cadance was puking her little guts out a few nights ago which was awesome! Nothing like a projectile vomiting toddler to make the season nice. Of course we were babysitting when it all went down...or 'up' I should say. Also my friend's and cousins kids all have the same stomach flu which means that friend and family visiting is quite minimal at the moment. PLUS, my poor aunt had emergency intestinal surgery the day I got back and was in the ICU for a few days (she's ok now) so we've been steering clear of her because we don't want to get her sick in case we've picked up this nasty flu virus the kids are all getting.

This is also the first year where everyone won't be together for Christmas. Bummer. Pam and Graham are going to Kamloops early Christmas morning so we're all opening our gifts to and from them tomorrow morning instead of Christmas morning. Plus we always do a big family get together on Christmas Eve and Amy works until 9pm so she will basically miss the whole thing, which is unfortunate. I mean, we always keep it going until about midnight but I'm sure a lot of family will have gone home by then. Either way, it's sad that we won't all be together this Christmas.

This has also been the trip of appointments. Last Friday it was the optometrist (my eyes are still good!) and yesterday it was the dentist (my teeth are great as well!) Sure it's good to get the news saying that my body is still in good working order and all, but the bills that come along with these appointments are just really uncool. I'm really hoping that the school reimburses me some of this. Oh, and I have a doctor's appointment today. Yipee.

Since Pam has been sick and working as well, I've had Splash for the past week which has been lovely. I've been going out on lots of long walks in the snow which we've both been really enjoying. We don't have a lot of snow but it's been consistently falling lightly for the past few days which makes morning and afternoon walks nice and winter-wonderlandy. One bad thing about constant snow fall is that things get buried quickly. Yesterday when we were out walking, I was throwing a stick for Splash, and on about the 50th throw it broke. This was sad. But luckily Splash found a new stick buried in the snow and came out running full speed happy that she found a new one. Unfortunately when I bent over to pick it up to throw I realized that this was not a stick but actually some guy's underwear that had frozen solid. Why they were outside in the middle of nowhere, one can only guess. I had a good laugh about that one anyway.

When I got home from the walk, Amy and Cadance had showed up at the house and Cadance greeted me at the door asking if I could take her outside to play in the snow. I had already been outside for well over an hour but it's just impossible to say no to such a little cutie. So Cadance, Splash and I all went for a walk. Well, I pulled Cadance up and down a large hill on the toboggan while Splash played around us with her doggy friend Billy. It was a fun morning to say the least.

As I continue to write this post I am realizing that I cannot possibly blog about everything I've been up to. Just take it to heart that I've been really busy considering that everyone is getting healthier (except my dad who came down with a head cold last night) and I've been enjoying the company of my friends and family very much. Happy Holidays everyone!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

December is for the Dogs

It has been brought to my attention that the Kotyk family has a history of adopting dogs in the month of December and in fact, all of our dogs became family members during this month. So why do we tend to open our home to the canine community this time of year? Perhaps we are feeling extra giving during the holiday season. Maybe it’s just fate. Who knows. In the end, we’ve gotten some great friends to call our own.

In December of 1992 we got Sam. My parents knew the people who had the mother so we all went up there in November to go meet the pups. A few weeks later we brought home Sam who, within only a few days after arriving here, proved to be a lot of work. How could such a teeny tiny little creature escape from such a tall pen?? Sam had a mind of her own and there was no way we could ever contain that dog. Ok, I'm beng nice here. Sam was the biggest pain in the ass to ever live. She had the spirit and ego of a Rottweiler but was in the pint-sized package of a Shit-zu. She barked at everything that moved and the only thing we could ever do was just accept her for what she was and try not to shake the living daylights out of her when she rebelled against our every command. Proof of how tough this dog was is that the vet had to wear leather gloves when she was on his table and she survived being attacked by a coyote. She may have been a handful but she was ours. Sam was put down at the ripe old age of 18 (nearly 2 years ago) and will never be forgotten.

It was December of 1997 when Rizzo joined the family. My mom and I went along with a neighbour to “look at” a litter of pups up in Fruitvale and when I saw that one little puppy I just picked her up and never put her down until we got home. For the first year I wasn’t sure if mom would let me keep Riz because she was such a handful (we couldn’t keep her in the yard no matter the measures we put in place) and mom was concerned that Riz would never stop growing! But Rizzo’s size and energy started to level off and she grew into the great dog we all love. Sure she has some issues...like she's obsessed with sucking on her blanket, any toys that squeak and she wants to eat any small white dog that crosses her path. She’s 13 now and it’s hard to watch her grow old. She’s gotten much older physically the past 2 years which is sad. The walks have to be shorter and we can’t play the way we used to because she gets too sore. It’s hard to believe that she used to be able to outrun any dog that she met and could pull us across the room during a game of tug-of-war. Why do dogs have to get old? It's not fair.

Then there’s Splash. I adopted Splash from the SPCA when I used to live in Nelson. It was December of 2005 and I was going through a hard time when I was volunteering at the shelter there. I think I was drawn to Splash because we were both these neglected creatures looking for a companion to share our lives with. Bringing Splash home was instant happiness. She was a lot of work in the beginning because she had some major trust issues and hated men, skateboards and baby strollers(?). We went to a dog trainer which helped some of her issues. We went everywhere together. Unless I was going to work, Splash came along with me. When I decided to move to PEI, leaving her behind with my sister was the hardest part of leaving BC. My friends and family could still talk to me over the phone or via email, but Splash would never understand where I was going and why I disappeared from her life. Plus I’m the best dog-walker in the world and I knew she’d miss our giant walks! Splash is my heart. She’s just so sweet, forgiving and patient.




Now some of you reading this may wonder why I am devoting an entire post to the dogs. I’m guessing that the same people who wonder this are also people who have never had a dog. When they get hurt or sick, there’s nothing you won’t do or price you won’t pay to make them better because they are your family and you’d do anything for your family.

So now it's December again and I have been told to steer clear of all dog shelters and pet stores. Damn.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Powered by Borscht!

I’ve been in BC for 2 whole days now and I’m pooped already. I guess it could be the jet-lag, or the mass amounts of candy I’ve been consuming, or maybe it has to do with the fact that my life took a complete 180 by coming here. In PEI my life consists of school, work, the lovely boy, my friends and any other thing that may come my way. Here it consists of family, walking dogs (who are always in my face wanting to go outside to play), a niece (who is also in my face wanting to play), Christmas shopping, grocery shopping, cooking, baking, tree decorating and game playing. So both lives sound pretty great and I am very much not complaining, but switching from one to the other can be a bit overwhelming at times!

The thing that sucks about being gone for so long is that when you get back you have this huge weight on your shoulders to make sure that you get to see all of your friends and family before you head back. Plus there’s a time window in which you should call them and go visit before it gets to the point in which they start to think that, “well, she’s been here for a week now and I’m just seeing her now?” You don’t want to be the jerk who takes too long to contact everyone. Most people are understanding though.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here. My family waited to put up the tree until I came which was very nice of them. My dad, sister and I all put it together today and as I analyze it sitting here in front of me I am noticing that there is a huge gap in the lower right corner. I’m going to have to fix that in a few minutes. Mom made some borscht for dinner and I whipped up some homemade buns to go along with it. Yum yum. I think it’s become tradition for my mom to make a pot of borscht within the first two days of me getting home…although I’m quite sure she isn’t aware that she does it. Not that I mind! It’s one of my favourites.

So what else to tell? I’m hoping to get to Nelson either tomorrow or the next day. I have officially fallen in love with a local designer, Lillie and Cohoe, who makes these amazingly lovely hats. On the drive from Kelowna to Trail yesterday we stopped at this little coffee/gift shop and they sold them there and I just wanted one immediately but am too effing cheap to buy one for myself. But, I think that I will go to Nelson and get one because I am kicking myself for not stepping up and just putting out the money for such a great quality and adorable hat. Horray for hats! I tend to not buy hats anymore because of the whole issue with people calling me “sir” all of the time, but then I decided that if I buy girly looking hats then there is a much less chance of that happening. My logic is flawless!

Tip of the Day: Denial and inner reasoning will get you everywhere.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The one bad thing about going back to BC for the holidays is that flight prices always get jacked up a day or so after exams finish so there’s this huge pressure of having to book flights before the prices increase which means that I have so little time to get my life in order before I jump on a plane heading west. So the past two days have been chaotic as I have been tying up the dozens of loose ends (you know, all that stuff I’ve failed to do the past 3 months) and have already successfully boarded by first flight. Our internet hasn’t been working all that great the past 2 days so I write this from the Ottawa airport as I wait for my next flight, which goes to Vancouver. I have a 3 hour layover here and only about 45 minutes of battery time left on my laptop, which means I had better go find a good book to read. The thought of reading a book which isn’t a textbook makes me very happy. Plus I am enjoying being in an unfamiliar airport. I usually go to the Toronto or Montreal airport on my way through, but for some reason they booked me to Ottawa. All I can say is that I am happy that they offer free WI-FI and it looks really cold outside right now. Brrrrrr.

So the past couple days, as I mentioned, has been busy. Ok, so Sunday I slacked off a bit, which I think I deserve…but slacking off can keep one busy too! On Sunday I went out to breakfast with Sam and Jess, and then we went and walked around downtown for a few hours. Yeah, my original plan was to go to breakfast then head back home and get some packing and errands done, but walking around aimlessly with my friends was just so much more appealing for me. Sam (the responsible one) left us early to go home and get her life in order, so Jess and I continued to waste time with more shopping and a good hour burned away sitting at Starbucks with some coffee. Jess dropped me off at home and I headed to work for the supper rush at the restaurant. After work, Chris and I watched “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” which was actually a great movie. It’s completely ridiculous and way over the top, but it made me laugh out loud on more than one occasion which is a rare find in movies these days.

But yesterday, yesterday was busy! Driving around, errands, laundry, school stuff, work stuff, grocery stuff, Christmas shopping, wrapping presents…etc…yeah. I didn’t stop from 9:30am til about 10pm. I was very fortunate enough though to go out for supper with Chris, his parents, Kelly and Ryan, at the Merchantman Pub. The company was great and the food was quite delicious as well. A successful day for sure.

Now I sit here in an airport on my way to BC and I am very happy knowing that I get to see my family in only a matter of hours. I am so excited to see everybody, plus the dogs and hopefully lots of snow! It was sad leaving my PEI family behind today but they’ll be there waiting for me when I return, which I look forward to.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

7/8 Done.

It's all over. Semester #7 of my university career has come to an end and I feel such a huge sense of relief from it's completion. I wrote my last exam yesterday morning at 9am and managed to finish it in less than an hour. Writing a final exam that quickly is always a bit frightening because you're sure that you missed a page or something since finals generally take longer to write (they give us 3 hours to write them). But no. All was done. It felt good to hand it to the prof with a smile and walk out of the gym. Real good.

But....then what?

The thing about being a student for so long is that you start to panic when you have any spare time. Spare time is this strange and foreign notion that causes me to take a step back and say, "Woah. What's going on here?" As a student, I start to over think the whole "spare time" idea as this gap in time in which I should be doing something but I just can't think of what it is! I know I must be forgetting something because it's impossible to have the extra allotted time slot for myself. And then after I check and recheck my list of things to finish and see that it's all done, I start to feel this sense of guilt for allowing myself time to do something like watch a movie or go out for a drink with a friend. But now that the semester is over and I definitely have no school work to complete, there's relief flowing through me but also this feeling of loss. Is loss even the right word? It's like I feel like I am missing something because for the past 3 1/2 months my life has been consumed by school that I forget how to be just a regular person with normal responsibilities.

You mean I can read a book that isn't a textbook? Are you sure this is allowed?

So last night after work I came home, opened a beer and watched a ridiculous movie that probably rotted an important part of my brain due to it's complete stupidness. But that's ok. It felt good.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

New Facts and Old Wives Tales

As I cram every corner of my already overstuffed brain with more information about nutrition and all of it's glorious aspects, I am once again blow away by how amazingly simple this all is. Um, that might need more explanation or else everyone who reads this is going to think this tiny little degree I have been working so hard to get for the past 3.5 years is really just a cake walk (which it is not!).

As I read about all of these horrible diseases which humans are prone to (such as renal diseases, cancer, GI diseases) it seems that at the beginning of each chapter is states that, "risk factors include: obesity, low-fiber intake, diet low in antioxidants...etc" OR to treat every single disease, the answer is good nutrition and staying active! WAIT A SEC? Eating well and exercising is good for me? Has anyone informed the public about this amazing phenomenon?

Surprise surprise! Ok, so obviously there are some diseases that nutrition have little help with because you're doomed no matter what, but in the big scheme of things, if we just ate more fruits and veggies, drank more water and ate some All-Bran, we'd be a whole lot better off. Just think; 50% of cancers are man-made through our chosen lifestyles and 30% alone are caused by smoking. That's a pretty huge number. Did you also know that vegetarianism and low-fat diets decrease your fertility? Not as healthy as you think! The one class which really surprised me this semester was when we were talking about caffeine. People are so uncertain about caffeine and whether it's good for them or not. One factoid that shocked me was that drinking 500mg or more of caffeine a day (so about 3-4 cups of coffee) will reduce your chances of becoming pregnant by 50%. Our prof pointed out that drinking large amounts of coffee is not an effective method of birth control, so don't none of you get any ideas! They've also found no reasons for women not to drink coffee while pregnant or while breastfeeding, despite what old rumours say about it's ill effects on pregnancy. We also learned that even though most of the population believes it not to be true, your daily coffee intake does in fact go towards your daily fluid intake. Everyone in the class was skeptical I think when this conversation started up because we all know coffee as being a diuretic (makes you pee) which in turn should be a factor in dehydration. But no! Your body will get used to it's effects and cause it to not be a diuretic after some time and merely use it as just liquid. Cool eh?

I think I just created an ad for Starbucks without even realizing it. "Caffeine reduces your chance of pregnancy! But if you do get knocked up, keep drinking anyway! No harm done!"

On my last note, I just wanted to toss one more statistic your way. 10% of women drink alcohol during pregnancy and 1 in 30 have 5 or more drinks on one occasion monthly. Wow. Tsk Tsk.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Two Firsts

So today is the first day of final exams at UPEI. I completely forgot that they began today until I went to the gym this morning and saw the dreaded gymnasium filled will perfectly aligned desks and chairs, just waiting for the first wave of nervous students to enter and begin writing. I get this hollow feeling in the pit of my stomach whenever I first see the gym full of desks like that. It signals the end of the semester, which should be an exciting time for all students, but it's also a reminder of the unavoidable and immense amount of studying which I still have to accomplish in the next 5 days.

I've been trying very hard to be a good student but I feel as though I'm working so hard and yet getting nothing accomplished! There's just so many chapters to make notes for that it's just this treadmill of typing and reading which never seems to end. I haven't even looked at Psychology yet which is causing some distress but my main focus has to be my nutrition courses so I am trying to keep that in mind as I neglect that whole other course.

On a different note, today was the first time I have ever walked in 100km/hr winds. Now if you're ever looking for a good time, I highly recommend it. Or you want to get rid of anyone with a body weight of under 120lbs, bring them to PEI on a good and windy morning and watch them blow away to sea. I say this all of the time, but how do skinny or small people survive on this island? The wind was blowing me all over the place and I'm not a tiny person. This morning as I was walking to the Cari Complex, I was bracing myself so hard against the wind (I was walking directing into it) that my arms and legs ached. I figured that if I were to walk for a mile in the wind then that would easily equal an hour at the gym because you strain so hard to keep upright and walk in a straight line. Crazy island.

Tip of the Day: Don't ever wear a dress or skirt on PEI. You'll regret it the moment you walk out the door.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Obviously Not An Elephant

Last night was a bit of a personally embarrassing night for me. I had an appointment in the evening and got home around 9pm. I drove Chris to work because I had asked to use his car for the night (and of course he let me because he's so sweet) which meant in turn that I had to pick him up around 10-10:30pm. So I got home and didn't want to do homework because I didn't want to start getting into a studying groove only to have to stop and go grab him from work. Plus studying is no fun. So I decided to be a complete loser instead.

I downloaded John Denver's 1975 album Rocky Mountain Christmas and listened to it while cutting out paper snowflakes. Completely alone. And that's not the worst and most pathetic part of my story. I actually somehow managed to forget how to cut out paper snowflakes! How is that even possible?? I've made about 3 million of them in my lifetime and yes, it's been a while since I created one but I actually went through numerous pieces of paper before I was able to make one that didn't break into 5 pieces when I unfolded it. Here I thought that making snowflakes would be like riding a bike, but I was obviously mistaken.

Tip of the Day: They say that elephants never forget... I suppose this is why I lack the big floppy ears and trunk.

But I did manage to cut a few decent snowflakes by the end of it all. I'm going to cut a new one every day and tape it onto the front door of the apartment until the day I fly home to BC for the holidays. Hopefully my skills improve and the snowflakes look nicer by the end of it.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Another One Bites The Dust

I survived the most pain-in-the-ass class in the history of university. DONE! This class pushed my buttons on so many levels and I'm quite certain that all of my friends will be very pleased that I will no longer be complaining about Psych 222B. This class was held for once a week for 3 hours with a total of 11 classes. It consisted of us having to read 14 chapters of one textbook, 32 short-medium length articles out of another textbook and 9 full length novels. We had a quiz at the beginning of every class and three 10 page assignments due throughout the semester. Yep. This was one class. Are you beginning to understand my pain and horror?

I think the problem I had with this class was not only the large reading assigned but the fact that this class was very loose and did not have a lot of strict rules, structure or outlines. I like schedules, structure and outlines so that I have something to follow and commit to. I don't enjoy the feeling of not knowing what a prof wants in terms of writing assignments! She would basically say, "Here's a book. Read it then write a paper." WHAT???

Twice I did blogs which I called "Book Reviews" which were my opinion of some of the books I read over the summer. Here is a quick and dirty version of that for the books I had to read for this class.

1) A Death in the Family (1955) by James Agee. It was kind of sad and somewhat confusing at some times since the author started writing it in 1948 and it wasn't completed in 1955 when he died so they decided to just throw what he had into a book and sell it...it seemed there were some unfinished thoughts. I give this book a 5/10.

2) Tuesdays with Morrie (1997) by Mitch Albom. A very touching and sad book about a man dying of ALS and the dear friendship between him and a former student. It was an easy read and makes you want to be a better person which I think is a good thing. I think that everyone should read this one. 9/10.

3) The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life (1959) by Erving Goffman. Don't read this book. Please. Here's the gist of this very boring book; we are all performers on a stage and the world is our audience. We put on a "front" which is what we portray to our audience but we have other versions of this front for different people in our lives. THE END! 2/10 because it was so boring and I actually didn't read it all.

4) My Sisters Keeper (2004) by Jodi Picoult. A good read but unfortunately most people saw the movie without reading the book and they are very different (completely opposite endings!). I say read it anyway. I got a little teary eyed by the end of it. 9/10...I would give it a 10 but as I read it I kept visualizing Cameron Diaz as the mother and I didn't think that was a good casting call for the part. I guess that isn't the book's fault though.

5) Mother Night (1961) by Kurt Vonnegut. I've read a few of this man's books and I love his writing. A very twisted tale of an undercover agent in WWII who has every kind of misfortune, but luck as well in come cases. It was humourous but I got lost sometimes while reading it...but that's inevitable when reading Vonnegut's books. It wasn't his best novel but still entertaining. 8/10.




6) Gracefully Insane (2001) by Alex Beam. This was written by a journalist who explored the history of the most expensive and elite mental hospital in the USA. Meh. It was ok. The history of the barbaric and strange procedures they did on patients was the most interesting part. Plus there were some neat stories of some of the famous patients (like Ray Charles, Syliva Plath, James Taylor and Susanna Kaysen). I give it...uh...6/10.

7) The Four Agreements (1997) by Don Miguel Ruiz. Honestly, a really good book to read. It's quite short and very simplistic but full of amazing quotes, ideas and statements which really make you think about your own life and the terms by which you live. He has four agreements which everyone should live by and as long as you follow those 4 things then you will find personal freedom. Easier said than done though. 9/10.

8) Man's Search for Meaning (1946) by Viktor Frankl. Another really great book. It's his story of surviving 4 years in concentration camps in WWII. It was difficult to read at some points because the horror was just too much to imagine. Very inspiring though. 8/10.

9) From Brokenness to Community (1992) by Jean Vanier. This is about a man who created homes/communities where people with mental and/or physical disabilities, or anyone who felt rejected, hurt or isolated from society, could come to be loved and find a place where they belonged. It was a short book (50ish pages) but had a lot of wisdom and great teachings within in. He talks a lot about religion in some spots which could turn some people away from the book, but I suggest reading it anyway. 7/10.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

New Addiction

Today is day 3 of my newest addiction. Hot yoga. Most of us have heard about this practice but I have never been a big yoga person and the thought of doing it in a super hot room was not appealing to me in the least. Two summers ago when Kaylynne came back to PEI from Ontario she raved about hot yoga and how amazing hot yoga was and as she described it to me I just thought how uncomfortable it sounded. Since I have this 15 day trial at Dynamic Fitness and they offer a hot yoga class nearly every day, I thought I should look into taking a class. So on Thursday I decided to give it a try...and then I went again on Friday evening...and then again on Saturday morning.

You basically do regular yoga for either 45, 60 or 90 minutes in a room which gets heated to 105-107 degrees F with 40% humidity. You sweat unlike you have ever sweated before and your brain keeps telling you how disgusting you are for sweating all over the place, but then you look up and see everyone else sweating just as much and you begin to accept the whole experience for what it is. The actual moves are fairly basic but doing them in such a warm room just kicks up the intensity of it because you have to breathe so deeply in the humidity that lingers in the air.

Needless to say, I'm hooked.

But how will I keep feeding this addiction when my 15 days are over? How is a poor student supposed to pay the fees that Dynamic asks of it's customers? How will I live?!?!?! Ok, this is me being dramatic, but I will be sad on Tuesday when my trial at this place is over and my budget stares me down with it's arms crossed over it's chest denying me access to funds to pay for a membership. My budget can be an asshole sometimes.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Elves in October?

I've been meaning to write on this topic for exactly 25 days now and I just kept either forgetting or found something else more pressing at the moment to write about. But the day, today, has come for me to talk about Christmas. That one time of year in which we celebrate the act of giving and the love and warmth towards our family and friends. Oh wait. Did I say one time of year? I meant a good two months, at least! I walked into the Superstore here in Charlottetown on the evening of October 31st (Halloween!) and stopped dead in my tracks when seeing the vast array of Christmas decorations already hanging around the store. Halloween wasn't even done yet and there were giant cardboard elves all around me! Did I enter into the twilight zone or something??

My heart sunk. Not because Christmas was coming but because Christmas commercialization had started and would not end for at least another 55 days. Plus everyone is always saying things like, "Only 47 more shopping days until Christmas," or, "Only 3 more paychecks until Christmas!" as though this will send me into a mass shopping frenzy.

Now I love Christmas. I really do. It is so warm and comforting and I just love the feeling that the time of year brings to myself and to everyone else who is a fan of it. I love the holiday baking and the spices which generally are used in abundance during the season (cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves...YUM!) I love the memories of us girls all decorating the tree together while listening to the same 1975 John Denver Christmas record every year. My favourite part would be Christmas Eve when we'd put out the plate of cookies for Santa and some carrots for the reindeer. There's also the movies which I generally watch only during this time of year, such as my two favourites, White Christmas and The Santa Clause. And even though they are now being sold all year round, Christmas is the one time of year that I don't feel guilty for consuming obscene amounts of Toblerone bars.

It just makes me sad that by the time Christmas comes we're already sick of hearing the songs playing in the stores and we're so stressed out about finding "that perfect gift" for everyone on our Christmas list that we can't enjoy the time of year. They have also taken away some specialness of some of the candies which used to be only sold during the holidays but are now sold all year round. Knowing you can get these foods any time takes away the novelty of waiting for them to hit the shelves in December. Plus everyone keeps asking me what I want for Christmas when I honestly don't want anything and I end up feeling guilty for not having an answer to the question. I just want a flight home that doesn't get delayed or cancelled due to the weather, some snow to play in with my niece and the dogs when I get to BC, a lot of good food, drink and family times, and another safe flight back to PEI when it's all over.

I hope it doesn't sound like I'm complaining too much because Christmas is great. I just wish they would pass some law so that the decorations and music couldn't hit the stores until December 1st so that we're not bombarded by it all for such an extended amount of time. We're all so stressed out as it is already...do we really need another constant reminder that there are still more things to add to our "to do" lists?

And yeah, you've guessed right. I haven't started my Christmas shopping yet. How can you tell?

Monday, November 22, 2010

What Have I Become?

I think that it is safe to say that I have officially become a snob. Yep. I'm not denying it anymore. The realization of becoming a snob is not easy to accept in the beginning and I have been denying myself of the truth for a total of 7 days now. Now you might be thinking that it's strange that I know the exact date in which I became an honourary snob and yes, it was an abrupt moment in my life when this happened and the date was marked accordingly.

It all happened on November 15th when I was walking to school and saw the big banner outside McDonalds advertising that they would be giving away free coffee for two weeks straight. So I thought to myself, "Great! Free coffee for two whole weeks! Can't complain about that." But still, I went to campus that day and paid $1.50 for a hot cup of Starbucks coffee and have done so nearly every day since. I would rather pay for one brand of coffee then get free coffee of another brand. To fully explain just how deep this Starbucks snobbery goes, I can't even drink the coffee at work (which I also get for free) because it just doesn't match the deliciousness of Starbucks. How did I become such a coffee yuppie?? Sure I've wanted to own a Volvo for a long long time, but this whole adoration of a name brand coffee just creeped up on me and has taken over my caffeinated beverage life. Having to admit to my good friend Jo that I am now a Starbucks snob was difficult for me to say out loud because she is so highly against coffee chains and I hate to look bad in her eyes. But what am I to do at this point? I'm in too deep to look back now.

Now I keep thinking about what I'm going to do when I go home for Christmas for 2 weeks and the nearest Starbucks coffee is a 20 minute drive away. Am I seriously going to go that far out of my way for my comfort drink? I think I might have to get my car keys taken away when I get there or give them my picture and refuse my business.

On a sad note, I just learned that the fantastic Food Network show Ace of Cakes has been canceled. I have been living without cable for a couple years now and even when I did have cable in 1st and 2nd year here, the Food Network was never given to us students. But when I go home I basically live and breathe the Food Network, with one of my favourite shows being Ace of Cakes. Everyone who reads this blog knows that I am a die hard Cake Wrecks fan and this show is all about amazing cakes (so basically the complete opposite of Cake Wrecks). I am sad to learn that they are finishing up their last season. Those people are amazing artists and I know they'll be hugely successful for as long as people want to spend large amounts of money on astounding pastry designs.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Let it Snow!


Today is the first day of snow! Yay for snow! It began when I was at work and hasn't let up yet. We're supposed to get about 5-10cm I think and some more tomorrow. I love snow. Snow makes me happy. Snow makes the world beautiful by covering up all of the ugly hiding beneath it. I hope it snows all night and all day tomorrow!

The past few days have gone by so quickly! I didn't even realize that I hadn't written a blog since Tuesday until someone mentioned it. Geez Louise I had better get on it!

School is almost over and it's blowing my mind. I have to complete just one more assignment before I am done all assignments for the semester. ONE MORE! Then it's just a few little quizzes, three final exams then Christmas break! I am looking forward to going home and seeing the family for the holidays. I will very much miss everybody here though. It's hard to have two families on complete opposite sides of the country. I decided to come back to the island on the 30th so that I can spend New Years with my people here since I have never spent a New Years on the island and my friends have been giving me flack for that for 3 years now. Plus prices for flights are super insanely high from the 31st until about the 6th and school starts during that highly inflated time period.

So for some time now I've been wanting to get some photos done of Chris and I, just to have. His sister Kim is an amazing photographer and I am always ohhing and ahhing at all of her pictures that she places on Facebook of her clients so I thought it was time to set up a time and get some photos done. All I have to say is that I am thankful that she is so great at what she does because I suck as getting my picture taken and feel like a fool when trying to pose for a camera. I'm sure that most people feel the same as I do. It's hard to smile on demand AND not blink at the camera's flash. Although she seemed to yell more at Chris for the blinking think. I just remember my friend Gill getting angry at me for blinking in most of her bridal pictures. That's not cool.

But Kim posted some pictures today and here's a few examples of her supreme talent:







If you like what you see and think, "Man! I would sure like some gorgeous pictures of my wedding/kids/partner/family..etc..", here's a link to Kim's website and feel free to give her a call.

http://www.kimberlyrashedphoto.com/main.html

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Oh There You Are!

You know that fantastic movie "Hook" with Robin Williams and Dustin Hoffman? It was made back in 1991 and it's based on the story of Peter Pan. Peter Pan, played by Williams, leaves Never Neverland and forgets who he is as he grows older. Many decades later, Hook steals his kids and Peter is forced to go back to Never Neverland to save his kids. It takes a few days for him to realize who he truly is, and then the moment arrives when this adorable little Lost Boy says, "Oh there you are Peter!" in realization that this is indeed Peter Pan.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T0jVCDHE6pI



With this quote in mind, I found my lower abdominal muscles today. For far too long I forgot that those poor underused muscles existed on my body and today I welcomed them back into my life. And by 'welcomed' I mean I noticed their existence when I was in agony trying not smack the guy who kept making me lift my arms and legs higher in the air while I focused on not keeling over in pain. Let me explain. Kaylynne and I went down to Dynamic Fitness today to tag-team this Core Dynamic class offered down there. Neither of us had ever attended their classes and we went down to use one of her 2for1 coupons for a class. We ended up both purchasing unlimited class use for 15 days for $15 (considering a single class is $15, we're both suckers for a good deal and couldn't turn down the opportunity). So within the first 10 minutes of the 45 minute long class, I didn't think I was going to make it through. There was more than one time when we just looked at each other and laughed because it got pretty intense during certain moves.

Needless to explain, during one particularly difficult move, my lower abs were on fire and it surprised me to feel them. I said to myself, "oh there you are lower abs" in the same tone of voice the boy used in the movie. Then I realized how strange that was. But I was happy knowing that they do exist and that I now know how to do it! The one problem is that the move was so evil that I would probably never do it while on my own. I'd need someone pressing me on and encouraging me while in class to go through with it. This is how they suck you into these classes! You get results but are too lazy to do the work without going to the class so you sign up for more classes and part with more money. It's a vicious cycle.

Tip of the Day: If you haven't seen Hook before, go out and rent it now. It's a great great feel good kind of movie.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

What You're Actually Worth

A few days ago I wrote about how we tend to not stand up for our achievements and downplay the things we excel at because we don't want to brag and were told growing up to be modest. The problem with this is that there is a huge flip-side of this discussion and that's the part in which we make ourselves feel worthless. When we do something which is less-than-great, we beat ourselves down so hard that it takes far too long to build up that confidence again.

I was reading a chapter of a very boring textbook today and I came across this interesting part about personal assets and how we can use them to enhance our lives. The part I really liked was about an anatomy professor who once said that the average human body is worth only about $7.28, which is the value of the amount of minerals and trace elements within our body. Ok, given that he probably said that many years ago and inflation has no doubt been a factor since then, we may be worth a little bit more, but still that is a depressing way to look at our self worth. I'm sure that we have all had days where we don't feel to be much more than 8 bucks worth of minerals and trace elements. You fail your driver's test and suddenly you feel stupid and useless.

On the other hand, another anatomy professor calculated that any given living human is actually worth about $6 million in terms of our DNA, organs, hormones...etc. Now if you take that into consideration when you're feeling down on yourself then you might start to feel a little bit better. Just think, you could get more than you realize for your kidney on the black market if you go bankrupt after losing your life savings in a pyramid scheme.

My point to this is that we should always try to remember that we're closer to the 6 million dollar worth than the $7.28. Sure we have our limitations but we also have great potentials as well. We are capable of such high achievements and have countless chances to experience amazing things. Just going out there and giving it a try is all you can do.

Tip of the Day: You can actually get up to $85,000 for your kidney if you know where to sell it. Just saying!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Rotten Responsibility


Remember how great it was to be a kid? If you were sick, and able to convince your parents that you were indeed sick and not just pretending, then you got to stay home from school and have mom take care of you. You'd get to stay in your jammies all day without even giving it a second thought. Also, your day was spent getting some extra sleep, watching cartoons (or reading Archie comics in bed) and getting to drink flat gingerale (which always made you feel better no matter what). Yep. Those were the days.

Then you grow up.

Being an adult sucks when you're sick. When you're a kid you get to stay at home and have someone take care of you and the world goes on merrily without you for a day or so. When you grow up you have these pesky little things called "responsibilities" which perpetually consume your conscience when all you want to do is stay in bed and forget what's beyond your bedroom window. Wednesday I woke up not feeling super hot but I blamed it on my bad eating habits the day before. I had to go to campus because I had a quiz in my second class and my third class is Clinical which is basically my most important class. By the time second class was over, my head was spinning, my guts were unhappy and I was just not in a good place. Alas, I had to leave before Clinical began which was hugely disappointing because we were doing an HIV case study, which I think to be an interesting subject. But the idea of either passing out or throwing up in class was not appealing (and I'm sure my classmates would appreciate this as well) so I headed home and crawled into bed for a few hours.

Thursday wasn't much better than Wednesday but had to work. Everyone at work has been calling in sick lately (hmmmm...possibility as to where I picked this up?) and I really didn't to join the "call in sick clan". Also I have this annoying responsibility of paying bills and rent, so of course I went to work. And what do you know!?!? Someone else called in sick which made it so that I ended up having to work a few extra hours. Blech. Plus we got slammed with a lunch rush after the Remembrance Day gathering, which was literally right outside our doors. Hundred and hundreds of people gathered outside in the street, all in silence, while canons go off in remembrance of those who died. It was a bit eerie to watch so many people standing completely still and not making a sound. Either way, by the time I got off work I was feeling horrible and just went home and crawled in bed again. I had to pass up dinner at Chris's parents house which made me feel awful because that's always such a pleasant time, but I thought it would be better to stay home then possibly infect them with whatever I may have.

So today is Friday and I am feeling a bit better. Responsibility got me out of bed nice and early this morning so that I could get to campus and get some work done. And yet, here I am working on my blog instead of doing work....

Next week, tune in for my report about procrastination.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Pat on the Back

I am feeling much better than I was when my last blog was written. Thank you for asking.

Today is one of those days that I have every once in a while in which I kick myself in the butt for being so hard on myself and remind myself that I'm not as useless as I, every now and then, let my believe to be. Actually I take that back. The past couple days I have surprised myself more than once and it's a nice feeling to be able to do that sometimes.


So why are we so hard on ourselves? Well, I think that there are many reasons for this. The first is that we're afraid to gloat or be proud of ourselves because it makes us look arrogant. We don't want others to think that we think too highly of ourselves so we downplay our achievements. Let's say you get 95% on a test and your friend sitting next to you says "wow, great job!" Never do we say, "Thanks! I did great didn't I?" Nope. We have to answer with something such as, "The prof must have been drinking when he marked these," or, "This mark is a total fluke!" We're raised to be modest and yeah, it's good to be modest a lot of the time. But sometimes you need to just relish the fact that you studied your butt off and appreciate how happy it makes you knowing that your hard work paid off.

We're so critical of ourselves and we're always setting ourselves up for failure. I think this is another reason we're so hard on ourselves. If we strive for the stars and only make it to the clouds (which would be great nonetheless), it's not what we originally wanted so we put down the fact that we even made it to the clouds. We can't ever stop to appreciate what we have because we're always focused on what we don't have. What is the purpose of having this mindset??

So here is why I am feeling happy about myself at the moment. The first reason happened on Friday night when we were stuck for a ride to the Finger Eleven concert (which I had a blast at! I was so happy that they played some of their old stuff along with the new material). Jess has a car but she had a drink or two and didn't feel safe driving...but it's a standard and I have never driven a standard car in the city before and I was nervous at the thought of attempting it. I've driven my dad's truck on numerous occasions but it was always on quiet old roads with little chance of running into other vehicles. Plus in BC, when you're learning how to drive a stick shift, there's a fear of rolling backwards on a hill and even though PEI lacks hills, the fear is always in the back on my mind. But I decided to give it a shot and totally rocked it! I stalled it once which frankly, is nothing considering it was the first time I had ever driven her car. I was so proud of myself for trying and succeeding! The second event happened this afternoon when I got back a test which I was certain I did terrible on. Honestly, I don't know how I got the mark I received but I am thankful that it turned out that way. Way to go me! I guessed all of the right answers!

There I go being modest again...but I did honestly guess most of them. Eeny meeny miny mo paid off for me this time.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Enter At Your Own Risk


I know it's incredibly stupid to write a blog on a day in which I am in a horrible mood, but I haven't written for a while so I thought that I should write something, even if it is hostile and begrudging. In my defense though, I am listening to Phil Collins right now so that should help my mood exponentially. Here's hoping anyway. I absolutely hate being in a bad mood because I'm usually in a pleasant mood most of the time so when my pleasantness fades into a brooding bitterness, it catches me off guard and I just want to hide away until my disposition lifts. Today just started of badly and I am trying to get over it all and just enjoy the rest of my weekend. Let me explain.

I woke up to an evil alarm clock this morning. First of all, waking up to an alarm is the worst way to wake up because it's just so abrupt. Plus who wants to wake up when sleep is just so lovely? I haven't been sleeping much at all and last night was my first night of actual productive sleep, so having that machine wake me up was just uncool. As I laid there for a few minutes and listened to the rain pounding down outside I did not want to have anything to do with facing the morning. Torrential downpour is not the most appealing way to start the day. But I got up and headed to the farmer's market to pick up some bread and beets. Then I went to campus to go to the gym...only to get there and realize that I forgot my student card at home. The student card is what allows us access to the gym at UPEI. So I said to the girl at the desk, "Look, it's the first time in 4 years that I have forgotten my student card. Please make an exception this one time." But no. The snotty 17 year old girl had all the power in the situation and denied me access to the gym. And her smug little friends sitting there gave me this look that I was completely pathetic. I was soaked and grumpy at this point. But what could I do? So I left.

Then I decided to go to the Superstore to pick up some groceries since I was right there anyway. The thought of going home and doing some cooking seemed nice. I walked around the store and loaded up my basket enjoying the nearly empty store. When I reached the check-out, I saw the one and only sign in the entire store informing the customers that the debit was down and cash was only accepted. UGH! Plus the bank machine which is in the store was down. UGH! Since I am a considerate person, I walked around the store again and put my groceries back on the shelves/fridges/freezers even though I really just wanted to throw them at people instead. I head back out in the pouring rain with no gym pass, no groceries and no patience at all. So I drove home, changed into some dry clothes, grabbed my student card, some grocery bags and went all the way back to campus to start my day over again.

The gym sucked. I think my mindset was so terrible at this point that my energy was drained out of me. I fatigued so much faster than I can even remember happening in a long time and this just added to my bubbling temper. I know this sounds really silly and pathetic to get all worked up about, but I just couldn't help it! If there's one thing in this world that I hate it's wasting time and I felt that my morning was a complete waste of time. So I left the gym (lightly glared at the girl behind the desk on my way out) and walked back to the car.

Then I smiled. I happened to witness a moment that no one else saw and that was great. As I was walking to the car, this little boy who couldn't have been any older than 3, was dawdling behind his parents as they were all leaving the arena. He stopped dead in tracks, took two steps to the left and splashed calf-high into a giant mud puddle. Just a quick splash of each leg and out he was to join his family. I couldn't help but burst out into a huge shit-eating grin. Kids are so simple in that way. The simple joys they have are lost as we age and it's depressing to think about. But I was glad to witness that moment. A bright moment in my dark and wet morning.

But tonight I am optimist. Yes it is still pouring rain, but Finger Eleven is playing at the Wave tonight and I am very excited to attend. They were such a huge part of my life when I was in high school and I am looking forward to the nostalgic effect they will have on me.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Satisfyingly Short

Today I am going to discuss the reality of having short hair. It's a rather strange topic to talk about but hair is something that we all have (well, most of us anyway) and being a female with very short hair can be controversial sometimes, and a pain in the butt other times.

I once read a statistic that about 95-97% of men prefer long hair on women. This is because having long hair accentuates being feminine, it is defined as being sexy and guys also like being able to run their hands through long hair. Sure it also depends on the woman's facial features, shape and personality, but overall, guys like their women to have long and thick hair. Now for people like me who look ridiculous with long hair, this can be an inconvenient piece of information. I have had my hair cut very short since I was 14 years old and after some failed attempts at growing it out a few years ago, I decided that my short hair is here to stay and if guys don't like it, well that sucks for both of us. Furthermore, they say that women with short hair should keep their weight slightly lower than normal because it will make you look more elegant and more proportional with less emphasis on the head. FML.

Does this mean that a man will feel emasculated if he's with a woman who has short hair? Does the masculinity of short hair freak him out? Dude, just cause you're making out with a chick who has short hair does not mean that you're any less of a man or that you're leaning more towards a liking of men! That's just ridiculous. Think of all of the amazingly sexy women out there who have rocked the short hair! Case and point: Natalie Portman and Halle Berry.



There are so many factors to consider when deciding what length of hair to have. First of all, cutting all of your hair off means that you pretty much can never wear a ball-cap again. I used to wear baseball caps all of the time but after being called "sir" or "him" one too many times, I decided to ditch that habit. I was thinking about this in class the other day when a handful of girls came to class wearing ball-caps and I felt envious that they could just crawl out of bed, ignore the greasy/unkempt hair but pulling on a hat and heading out the door. Having short hair means that you have to do your hair every morning because it's always sticking out in every direction possible when you get up. Plus you have to get it cut every 6-8 weeks depending on how short you keep it, and this means major dollars out of your pocket. Someone with long hair can go years without getting a trim and most people won't even care or notice. On the plus side though, taking a hair dryer to my head only takes about a minute or two, meanwhile long hair can take 5-20 minutes to dry. That sucks. I also mentioned to some girls at school the other day about when you have big or long hair that one can easily hide behind it, and they were quick to agree. Having a lot of hair can be easy to get lost in or hide within.

The thing about short hair that makes me sad is that women are afraid to try giving it a chance. I can't even begin to tell you the number of women (most complete strangers) who have approached me and told me that they LOVE my haircut and wish that they could cut it short but they could "never pull it off". Have you even ever tried??? Doing something drastic with your hair is liberating and exciting and I recommend everyone to do it at least once in their life!

I had to throw in a picture of Pink. She's basically, in my opinion, the hottest short haired chick I can think of.

I thoroughly enjoy having short hair. I love when strangers stop me at the mall to tell me that they love my hair and ask where I get it done. I like not having to clean up giant tumbleweeds of my hair accumulating around the house. Yes I do wish that I could have that certain appeal that long hair gives to a woman, but I figure I've done ok without it this long. I'm satisfied with my short hair.

Tip of the Day: Do something drastic with your hair!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Halloween was a bit of a bust since we started way too late and I got home much too early. Most of my friends were headed out to a party way out in the middle of nowhere and the time they were expecting to get home would be pretty close to when I needed to get to work this morning...so unfortunately I had to miss the party out there. But at least dressing up was fun! Here's a few pictures to explain!









We got many more trick-or-treaters this year compared to last year which was nice to see. I think we only got about 6 last year which was quite pathetic. Maybe my awesome pumpkin roped them over to our front door. Just a thought.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Homework, Costumes and Mice... Oh My!

It's Friday already and I have absolutely no idea where the week went. Well, I mean, I have little blurps of memory here and there about my doings and whereabouts the past 5 days, but the fact that it's Friday (night!) just blows my mind.

I've been working lots this week but now I have 2 days off to get my shit together and make some headway on my To Do list. Tonight I officially completed my Halloween costume for tomorrow night so I am relieved to have that done and out of my mind. I'll be dressing up like Morticia Addams which I am excited about. I realized tonight that I have never dressed up as a character before for Halloween...that I can remember anyway. Throughout the years I would dress up like a witch or devil or ghost but never an actual character from a TV show or movie. So this year is a first for me which is very cool. Hopefully I can pull off the Morticia look. I've got some pretty big shoes to fill to look at hot as her.

Speaking of Halloween, this year I bought my pumpkin nearly a month ago and it's been sitting on the front steps just waiting and waiting to be carved. I started to think that I would never get the chance to carve it, and the thought of that just broke my heart because I LOVE carving pumpkins. I look forward to it all year and when I finally get the chance I have so much fun. So today, even though I did not have the time to do it, I hauled that giant gourd inside, pulled out the knives and went to town on that sucker. Now this was no small feat. Had I known that this pumpkin had the hugely thick flesh that it had I may have not attempted the carving at all. It took me well over an hour to hollow it out, gets the seeds separated (which I roasted and ate copious amounts of) and actually carve. But in the end I am happy with the result. But I can't seem to get my picture of it uploaded onto this blog which is frustrating me because I wanted to share him with the world! Oh well. Bummer. But I can tell you that he was meant to resemble this fella....


We got the keys to the apartment today so Chris has been busy packing and moving some of his stuff into the place. I'm waiting to move most of my things tomorrow since that's when we'll have a truck and I'll have the time to do it. I was talking to Sam tonight about the reality not sinking in yet that I am actually moving from this house and within a few days I will have a whole new address. I think that since we've all been so incredibly busy that we haven't taken the time to stop and realize that yeah, I'm heading out of here. We don't talk about it much (we don't see each other much though) and I haven't done a huge amount of packing...plus I don't own much stuff anyway, so it's not as though my belongings being gone will leave much of a dent in anything. Except for maybe the walls.

One thing is for sure though, I will be happy to not have to share my food with any more mice! We've already killed two in the past week and it's not even November yet! The poor little guy I cleaned up this morning had his entire head covered in peanut butter. But like Kaylynne said, it's a good way to go! At least he was happy and oblivious while indulging in delicious peanut buttery goodness before his neck was snapped. There are worse things.

And this is my favourite cake of the week

This one makes sense when you think that "RIP" stands for "Rest in Poo." Bahahaha.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Shout Outs

Today is a busy busy day for me so I want to just send out a few (yet very important) shout-outs.

The first goes to my amazingly wonderful dad who celebrated his birthday yesterday. I called him as soon as he got off of work and wished him a very Happy Birthday. Unfortunately my sister and niece had just arrived at the house as well which not only took all of my dad's attention away from my phone call (Cadance is good at taking over a room when she enters it), but it also made me miss my family that much more. Happy Birthday Daddio! I hope you had a great dinner with everyone. Love you.



The second shout-out goes to the celebration of the 25th anniversary of Back to the Future! I may have only have been 2 years old when the movie came out, but I've seen it over and over again and enjoy it every time just as much as the first.

So how do I tend to celebrate the most? With an amazing cake! Here is one of the town square. The thing that makes this cake that much more amazing is that it is someone's wedding cake. The fact that someone had this for their wedding cake makes me think that I missed out on one hell of a party.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Change is Strange

The apartment hunt is officially over! We got a phone call on Tuesday telling us that we were approved for the apartment that we were holding out for. The relief of not having to keep calling to set up appointments to look at places is fantastic. Now I will admit that when the lady called to affirm all of this I started second guessing everything! Was it the right place? Should we keep looking? Can I really survive without any closets? (the place has no closets....) Do I want to live right in the heart of downtown like that? The questions and doubts just flooded my mind. But once I had a minute or two to think it all through, I remembered how much I liked that apartment when we walked through and how I pictured where our stuff would go and how we could decorate it. I am also glad that it's really close to work and the bus route to school. So we put wrote a check for the damage deposit and it's all done. We have an apartment.

Now, the real test begins. Finding the time and energy to pack up my stuff and move it down to Dorchester Street. The 1st of November is the worst day for me to move in terms of school work. I have a quiz, a midterm, a paper and an ADIME to write due for that day. For those who don't know what ADIMES are, they are pure evil Clinical Nutrition assignments. It's not so much that they're hard as you just second guess everything that you write about and end up handing it in with the confidence of a chihuahua entering an iron man competition. I think that if I do the packing slowly when I have pockets of time then I can get it done in time.



This morning I woke up a little early and the house was empty so I decided to do a tiny bit of packing. It just felt strange. I think what made it so strange is that I am the only one packing so when I remove my things from the bookshelf or a cupboard, Sam and Kaylynne's stuff remains in place. I feel this guilt of removing my stuff and leaving the rest. Knowing that I am leaving these girls here while I move downtown is hard. Really hard. There's a sense of abandonment within me and it sucks and I'm not sure how to deal with such a feeling. I feel like one of those wives who packs up all of her stuff while her husband is at work and leaves only a note in the entryway to say "Goodbye and Good Riddance!" Except I'm not saying goodbye or good riddance. I guess change is just strange. I am definitely a believer that change is good and is needed for people to grow and learn...but still it can really suck sometimes.