Tuesday, August 31, 2004

mad enough to spit

Actually to scream, yell and pound something. I have made a vow to never ever ever set foot on Mexican soil, as.long.as.I.live. How corrupt must the "government" down there be?

MacColl case closed again

The family of late singer Kirsty MacColl is fuming after learning Mexican authorities have abandoned their investigation into the singer's tragic death.

MacColl, 41, was killed when she was hit by a speedboat's propellers on a scuba diving holiday in December 2000. Last year deckhand Jose Cen Yam was fined $110 (£61) for causing her death.

However, the MacColl family suspected a cover-up and launched their own private investigation which revealed witnesses who claim the boat was actually being driven by a son of its owner, supermarket millionaire and powerful tycoon Guillermo Gonzalez Nova.

In March, MacColl's mother Jean MacColl visited Mexico, prompting the authorities to reopen the case.

But now local prosecutors have decided not to further their investigations.

Jean, 81, says: "We came home from Mexico very optimistic that we were being taken seriously and that something would happen at last.

"But now we are bitterly disappointed. This decision just defies belief."

Monday, August 30, 2004

rainy monday

It has been raining here pretty much straight through since last night. Unfortunately, I think it's a little too little, too late to save my hanging petunia in the backyard. I got so busy over the past week or so that I neglected it and it's look really sad right now.

It was so dark this morning that I really didn't want to get up. I couldn't believe it was Monday, really. Anyway, I'm pretty brain-dead today, typical for a Monday I guess. I'm wondering again, what would I do without memes?

Here is this week's edition of the Monday Madness:

Name 3 of your favorite.......

1. Colors

Deep pink, bright green and sky blue.

2. Pizza Toppings

Black Olives, portabello mushrooms and sweet red peppers.

3. Department Stores

I don't actually shop in big department stores but I like walking through the Bay once in a while.

4. Flavors of Candy

Licorice, strawberry and lime.

5. Scents of Candles

I only really like vanilla candles. I find the others too strong or sweet.

6. Days of the Week

Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

7. Vegetables

Broccoli, portabello mushroom and fresh peas.

8. Fruits

Straberries, super sweet pineapple and bananas.

9. Meals to cook

Salads (yes, the way I make 'em, they are a complete meal), zucchini and tomato casserole and stir fries (any variety).

10. Kitchen Gadgets

My berry huller, my bread machine and the Kitchen Aid table top mixer I inherited from Mark's mum.

11. Olympic Sports

I can't stand the Olympics and don't watch them.

One thing that made me smile today: Reading that almost 500,000 people marched in New York yesterday. If we could have taken today off from work, we would have gone down for the march. We plan to go to NYC for a long weekend this fall, that would have been great to see. I'm so happy to see the turnout and to read and hear that it was very peaceful and well organized. Way to go, United for Peace and Justice folks!!

Friday, August 27, 2004


I listen to a lot of Air America Radio during my work week. I stream it and listen through head phones while I get my stuff done. In particular I like the programs "Unfiltered" and "The Randi Rhodes Show." I love the whole station though and would listen it to it more if it were available say, in my car.

Anyway, I have noticed that I shouldn't listen to it when my work load is really heavy and I'm feeling stressed. The combination of the pace in the office with hearing lies exposed all day can make me go mental and drive my blood pressure up. I almost had a melt down at my desk yesterday afternoon. So much so that I had to to listen to DCW to sooth my soul and get rid of my headache.

I can't imagine how pissed off I'd be, all the time, if I actually lived in the states. ~shiver~

One thing that made me smile today: Black Forest Cake. I don't usually eat the stuff but today we had a birthday/going away party for a student who's been working with us all summer. I had the smallest sliver of cake that you could imagine and it was heavenly. Also, I'm pretty sure if it has cherries in it, which are considered fruit, it must be "healthy," right?

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

hump day

I'm not posting much here lately for a couple of reasons: 1. I don't have much time to do it and b) I don't have a lot to say.

Work is work. It's busy and crazy and the time flies by quickly and things are always changing. I have gotten very good at not bringing it home with me anymore though so, go me.

Home is still here. We had a fabulous weekend which involved, amongst other things, the purchase and instalation of possible the most gorgeous faucet I have ever seen, in our lovely green lav.

One thing that made me smile today: Okay, so I fucking hate Dave Matthews. I generally don't like folks much who like him too because, if you are boring enough to like someone as boring as Dave Matthews...well... you kind of get the picture. Having said that, I know some perfectly "nice" people who like Dave Matthews but I don't consider them close friends. These "nice" folks also like, amongst others, Shania Twain and Celine Dion. Do you see a pattern here? Lame, boring, bland. Anyway, I saw this in my NME daily newsletter and I laughed my ass off. As Jim Lahey might say, "The shit apples don't fall far from the shit tree."


THE DAVE MATTHEWS BAND have been accused of dumping 800lb (360 kg) of human waste from their tourbus onto a boat filled with passengers on an architecture trip.

It’s claimed that more than 100 people were drenched in sewage in the incident (August 8), when the driver of the bus emptied the septic tank through a grate in the Kinzie Street bridge and into the Chicago river below.

The state of Illinois is now suing the band for violating state laws.

The band and one of its drivers are facing civil penalties of $70,000 (£39,000) from the state for allegedly violating water pollution and public nuisance legislation.

According to BBC News, a spokesperson for The Dave Matthews Band said: "Our driver has stated that he was not involved in this incident."

He added that the band "will continue to be co-operative in this investigation".

All of the people on the tour boat were refunded for the trip and none were seriously injured. The boat was cleaned with disinfectant.

Attorney General Lisa Madigan said: "This incident may be unique, but that does not lessen the environmental or public health risks posed by the release of at least 800lbs of liquid human waste into a busy waterway and onto a crowded tour boat."

Monday, August 23, 2004

monday madness

And the topic is 'potpourri:'

1. Which is more fun, kid's toys or grown-up kid's toys? (ie. Lego's vs. power tools)

I think that children's toys are more fun. Grown-up "toys" like power tools and such, usually involve work and I'd always rather than play with toys than work with tools.

2. What's your favorite food and why? Which food is your number one weakness?

I don't know what my favourite food is. I love sushi (mmmmm...sushi) and thai food (like big time love) but I don't think I have a favourite. I guess you could say that I love good food. Food with lots of flavour. I love trying new things and like to surprise myself with different flavours and textures. A big food "weakness" for me is really really really good chocolate. I have never met a chocolate I didn't love.

3. How many blogs/journals/diaries would you say you read?

I have no idea, I'm always finding news one and forgetting to read old ones. I couldn't even guess to be honest.

4. Do you feel you have an obligation to spread your religious belief system to others, or do you think religion is a private matter that everyone needs to decide for themselves?

My religious belief is that religion is personal and you should keep it the fuck to yourself. I don't want to hear about it or know about it because I don't believe in it. I respect that others need the crutch of a some kind of "higher power" to get through the day but personally, I use logic and common sense and it seems to work for me AND I don't have to put any of my hard earned pennies into a collection plate on Sunday.

5. Did you keep a paper journal before blogging?

Many years ago I did. I started blogging because I was too lazy to pick up the pen and start it over again (also I'm a much faster typist than I am a long-hand writer).

6. Describe your life in 3 words.

Hot buttered chaos.

7. What was the last thing you were wrong about?

I can't remember it exactly, it was last night. Oh, wait, I thought that Joanna Cassidy was in Five Easy Pieces (as Twinky) but it wasn't her (we were watching it last night when the discussion happened).

8. What one thing would you do to help the world be a better place for all?

I don't know. If there was one thing I could do, I'd try.

9. Are you a dog person or a cat person?

Neither really. If I had to choose, I guess dog because I'm allergic to cats.

10. If you could start your own meme (And you can!), what kind of questions would you ask?

I'm not sure that I would. I kind of like using other people's questions on days that I can't think of anything to write about.

One thing that made me smile today: I talked to an old friend on the phone this morning. I hadn't spoken with her in a few weeks so it was really nice to have a chat and get caught up on stuff.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

sleepy saturday

I've been up for a while but I'm pretty groggy right now. I was having a weird dream and it woke me up at around 5:30 a.m. and I haven't been able to get back to sleep.

I'll try to do a proper post later but in the meantime, here's last week's Saturday 8:


1. We just went through hurricane Charley. Have you ever been through a hurricane or other major storm?

I have never lived through a hurricane but I did survive the Ice Storm of January 1998. Some pretty interesting footage can be viewed here if you're interested.

2. Do severe storms freak you out or do you consider them cool?

Severe weather fascinates me. If I am at home and watching it through my own window with a cup of tea, I love it. The only thing that freaks me out is freezing rain because it's so difficult to get around in. Part of that too may be a result of having lived through the Ice Storm. Anytime the weather calls for Freezing Rain, I just want to stock up on candles and peanut butter and hunker down at home until it's over.

3. Are you the type of person who plans things out, getting supplies early, securing your residence, etc. Or do you tend not to worry about those things and just go with the flow?

I'm a planner and I tend to keep the house well stocked in case of a storm. In general, I just keep the house well stocked anyway, it just happened to have paid off in spades when the Ice Storm hit.

4. I have some friends in the Netherlands that have no clue what a hurricane is like, they don't even get tornadoes. How do you explain a hurricane to someone with no concept of one?

I don't know that you could other than to tell them that it's a super duper severe rain storm with insanely high winds.

5. Several people were killed because they refused to evacuate when told to. If you were advised to evacuate your home, would you stay anyway or would you go?

I would probably get to a safe place, I think it's foolish to stay and try to ride something like that out at home.

6. Lots of people were out in their yards and streets having hurricane parties before the storm. Do you celebrate unusual things like storms?

For sure. Circumstances like that can bring out the best in folks.

7. One couple said they were moving out of the state after getting hit by Charley. Does weather factor into where you choose to live?


8. Weather personnel and news crews throw themselves to the mercy of the storms they chase. If you had the chance, would you take a job as a storm chaser?

Definitely not.

One thing that made me smile today: It's too early to tell.

Friday, August 20, 2004

Flash Friday

I just got from work. I'm completely brain dead and totally tired. The week went by in a blur but it seems like everything is going just as it should so that's something, right?

After work, Mark and I stopped off at the grocery store for fresh pasta. We don't eat it much anymore but we have all these gorgeous veggies in the fridge, as well as some turkey sausage so we're having that for dinner tonight. He's downstairs cooking it right now and the smell is heavenly.

This weekend is pretty much the same old, same old. I have laundry and errands to do. We have yardwork that must be tackled. Oh, yeah, cleaning. Gotta do some of that too. Exciting stuff huh??

One thing that made me smile today: The Students. This summer, I've had the great good fortune to work with two lovely students. This afternoon, we spent some time together packing things up for next week's events. They are so bright and full of plans and promise. One wants to go to medical school (and wrote the MCAT last weekend) the other would like to be involved in international policy/diplomacy. Instead of making me feel old and past it because, hey, let's face it, I am old and past it, I felt really happy for them, and excited by their plans. They have inspired me to seriously get my ass in gear and look into finishing up my degree. I'm only 10 courses away from it, it would be foolish not to.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

thursday blues

This morning, when I got up at 4:30 a.m., the humidex was 27 degrees. The air was thick and still and eerie. I was amazed that it hadn't rained overnight. Given the weather that's been happening down south over the last week or so, it was pretty amazing that it hadn't rained yet. About mid-morning, while I was sitting in a meeting, the rain finally came. We also had some thunder too, it was pretty cool actually. Where I was sitting, we could see the storm moving out over the lake. Fortunately, the air has cleared out and it's actually not bad outside right now. The only down part of it is that it's not sunny. It's grey and kind of blah.

Things at work have been going well this week. It's been busy but I'm getting the hang of it. The events I talked about last week are happening and we haven't had any reports of anything too bad happening (actually, nothing bad at all come to think of it) so that's good. It's just hard to believe that there is still another day of work left this week. I really hoped when I woke up this morning that it would be Friday, sadly, I was a little disappointed.

One thing that made me smile today: Hearing John Kerry finally stand up to those horrible television ads that have been airing, spreading lies about his war service. I know that many folks were wanting him to say something before now but I think the waiting was smart. It's pretty pathetic how many of the GOP ads are negative but I guess when you can't stand on your record and prove that you actually did good things for your country, you have to do the only thing you can. Sad huh?? In case you missed it, here is his response:

"Thirty years ago, official Navy reports documented my service in Vietnam and awarded me the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and three Purple Hearts. Thirty years ago, this was the plain truth. It still is. And I still carry the shrapnel in my leg from a wound in Vietnam ... Of course, the President keeps telling people he would never question my service to our country. Instead, he watches as a Republican-funded attack group does just that. Well, if he wants to have a debate about our service in Vietnam, here is my answer: 'Bring it on.'

"I'm not going to let anyone question my commitment to defending America-then, now, or ever. And I'm not going to let anyone attack the sacrifice and courage of the men who saw battle with me. And let me make this commitment today: their lies about my record will not stop me from fighting for jobs, health care, and our security - the issues that really matter to the American people.
" – John Kerry, August 19, 2004

Monday, August 16, 2004

into the groove

How was your weekend? Mine was terrific.

Yesterday, we had to go out and do a couple of errands in the afternoon. One of the errands included attempting to find a place to buy fresh corn. We never did find a corn stand but we had a fabulous drive in the country. Eventually we ended up in Westport. Luckily, I had my camera with me so I took a bunch of photos which I will sort out and post eventually.

In the meantime, I'm easing back into the working week at a bit of a faster pace than I normally care for but it's going okay. It has rendered me semi-brain dead though so here's this week's Monday Madness in lieu of a proper post:

1. If you could only take one item with you on to a deserted island what book, movie, music would you take?
I hate these kinds of questions because there is no way I could ever narrow it down to just one of each!

2. What's the most disgusting thing that you have ever eaten or even just put in your mouth??
Bad clams, unintentionally. I'll spare you the details but it was way worse on the way out than it was going in.

3. What one thing would you do differently if given the chance?
I probably would have washed my hair this morning. It's not quite doing what I would have liked to do but I was running late this morning and didn't have time to wash it (don't worry though, I washed it yesterday).

4. What political party, if any, do you belong to?
I don't belong to any party but I usually vote Green.

5. Do you like icees?
Yes. I love the blue raspberry ones or the lime ones. I haven't had one yet this year though.

6. East or West?
I love the eastern part of this country and I live in the eastern part of this province so, East!

7. Will we ever "all" be happy with the current political situation????
Nope. You can never please all of the people, all of the time.

8. Cookies or Crackers?
Cookies, particularly chocolate ones.

9. What fun thing did you do today?
It's only mid-day and I'm at work so...nothing really yet.

...and #10 has nothing to do with any of the above questions.........

10. Why??

Because I said so.

One thing that made me smile today: The summer campers who are playing on the lawn outside of our office. I can't see them but I can hear them. It sounds like they are having a fabulous times and it makes me wish I was out there running around with them.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

lazy sundays

After accomplishing basically everything that I needed to do this weekend, yesterday, I'm feeling a little lazy.
Granted, there is still yardwork left to do but it's nothing that I have to rush out and do so I'm enjoying a lazy Sunday. Try as I might, I cannot really bring myself to sleep in past 7:30 a.m. This morning I got up, puttered around a bit and then went back to bed and watched tv for a while. As is becoming my usual routine, I watched Queer Eye while I gave myself a pedicure. I got some really nice, metallic red nail polish last week. I am a pink girl when it comes to nail polish, sometimes I'll wear pearly silver or bronze but mostly, I like pink. This red is really fun and my toes look good.

Not sure what we're upto this afternoon. We may head up north for a drive to pick up some fresh sweet corn. We're planning to barbecue tonight for dinner and have not had any corn yet this season so... that might be fun. Beyond that though, we have nothing planned. I love Sundays like that!!

One thing that made me smile today: Minimized fuck-ups. When Mark got up this morning, he noticed that his machine was all messed up. It was as if a piece of the operating system had disappeared. Not a good way to start your day exactly. Anyway, it turns out that one of the drives was pooched so it wasn't as bad as we originally planned and he doesn't have to spend the best part of the day parked in front of his machine, rebuilding his operating system. yay!!

Saturday, August 14, 2004

american music

I've been listening to the violent femmes this morning and while I like the song, American Music, I noticed during the DNC that American music isn't usually the best choice. We were paying particular attention to the musical intros and outros that they used on the various speakers at the convention and, more often that not, when Mark and I would discuss a song we thought would be appropriate for a particular speaker or theme, it was not an American song (and I guess it's not a good idea to use music from another country when you're holding a political convention for the states huh?). Don't get me wrong, overall, I like a lot of American music but looking the big picture, the majority of what I'd call my "favourite" music is produced by folks who are definitely not from south of the border.

I was up pretty early this morning and am having a great day so far. I'm just finishing my laundry and completed my weekly bathroom sanitation ritual. Honestly, cleaning the house is just so gross. Admittedly, when you do it regularly, it's not as gross as when you do it once in a while but it's still pretty nasty. Many women I know would not like to have someone else cleaning their house. I am not one of them. At one time I thought that it would be completely decadent and lazy to have a cleaning person come in once a week and do the big stuff but the older I get, the more I see the value in it. If I could afford it, I would totally do it. It would be such a better value for my money and my time to have someone else do it. If that makes me lazy, big deal, at least I wouldn't have to clean my house!!

One thing that made me smile today: Early morning shopping. I got to the grocery store shortly after it opened this morning and it was like shopping in a commercial. The shelves were perfectly stocked and the produce department looked like something out of a movie. Also, there were a minimal number of idiots in the aisles which made for one of the more pleasant grocery shopping experiences I've had in a good long while.

Friday, August 13, 2004


Unlike most folks, I like Friday the 13th. Partly because my birthday is on a 13th day of a month. I like it when my birthday falls on a Friday the 13th, it adds a nice spooky element to another wise ordinary day. Spooky is always good.

Work today went by in a blur, which is a good thing. I loves being busy folks. Because we'd both had a busy week and didn't feel like cooking tonight, we just picked up a pizza at Costco for dinner tonight. It was pretty good and involved very little preparation and/or clean up. It probably isn't the healthiest option we could have come up with but it sure was tasty!

The weekend's shaping up to be good and lazy. I mean I have stuff to accomplish but nothing complicated or overly life-threatening. If I can get some cleaning up, laundry and groceries done, I'll be in good shape. Hope you can have a lazy weekend too!!

One thing that made me smile today: When i met her she was a beauty queen who wanted something more.. now she's hanging out with me infront of the liquor store... That's right, I was listening to Fred again this morning. I know it's an oldie but gosh darnit, it's a goodie! He usually makes me smile, or cry. Either way it's all good baby!!

Thursday, August 12, 2004

slugging along

The pace is picking up at work today. I like it when it's like this. I have a lot of stuff to do but it's not "my" stuff, it's helping someone else out. I get thrown pieces of the puzzle to sort out and when it's done, I get thrown another bunch of pieces. Helping someone dig themself out of the shits can be very satisfying. Partly because you're not responsible for the end result and partly because it's a diversion from your own regularly scheduled activities.

Remember how yesterday I was saying how I hoped that nothing much would change anytime soon at work. Well it's looking like it's going to change anyway. I can't really talk about it quite yet but it's good changes. See, I'm not always a negative nelly. I honestly think that well thought out changes can be good. This is one such situation. It feels much less scattered than the last set of stuff we had to go through. Anyway, I will talk more about it when I can.

One thing that made me smile today: Across the universe. While I'm at work, I either listen to Air America or some MP3's that I have on my machine. Today I was listening to music and had my player on random. In the mix, Across the Universe caame up. Instantly, it made me smile because it's such a beautiful song. Just as quickly though, hearing John Lennon's voice made me want cry because I miss him so much.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

hump day

Mid week already. I know that time passing shouldn't fascinate me but it always does. Almost mid-August, mid-week... how can it be?

Time is flying by because work is ridiculously busy right now. As it's been recently, it's still a good busy. The nice thing about it is that with my new job, I'm able to leave it at work at the end of the day. In my previous position, this was not possible. I'd bring work home with me, I'd dream about it in the middle of the night, I'd wake up leaving notes to myself. Not fun. I mean, I loved the work but the pace was insane because we were so short handed. I had my doubts about my role in the organization once the restructuring was over but I think it's going to be good. Hopefully we won't have to go through that again for a long, long, long time. I mean change is good but so is getting your bearings.

Canadian Idol continues tonight. I really don't have the interest in it this year that I did last year. We may watch it tonight but until Mark's dad mentioned it to me a few minutes ago, I'd totally forgotten about it. I think that part of my lack of interest stems from the fact that the kind of all things lame, Lionel Ritchie, will be on it tonight. How sad is that? Only in Canada you say? pity!

One thing that made me smile today: Our garden. I've been trying to take more photos recently. Last summer, I had my camera with me almost all of the time and I got into posting photos at fotolog. I've been spending more time in our garden this week, in the evenings after work and I'm trying to take more snaps when I find stuff that looks snap-worthy.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

back at it

Well I'm back at work today. Time is just flying by like crazy. Soon it'll be time to go home again, I can't even believe that it's lunchtime. Yikes.

Anyway, I'm a little overwhelmed and braindead but here's the TV Tuesday from July 27 (yeah, I know it's old but I haven't done one in weeks):

Week 19 - Memories

This week it's about you and what you remember about TV!! :)

1. What's your fondest memory of something on TV?

Fond huh? I guess this qualifies.... I was a kid, probably 9 or 10 because we were living in the house my folks still live in and we moved there when I was 8. Anyway, my dad woke me up in the middle of the night (probably around 11 p.m. but it felt like the middle of the night) to watch The Odd Couple with him on the late show. That was pretty cool and something I've never forgotten so I suppose that would make it qualify as "fond."

2. What's the first show you remember watching regularly?

Sabrina and the Groovie Goolies. Boy I'm old.

3. What is the (pick one: stupidest, saddest, silliest, most disgusting..) thing you've ever seen on TV?

Boy that's a tough one. Over the years there have been so many stupid, sad, silly and disgusting things on television. I can't possibly think of just one so I'll give you something that is really funny (well it made me laugh anyway) that I saw recently: the whole second season of The Office. It'll make you laugh too, trust me!

~Bonus~ What's the best series finale you remember?

By the time most series come to an end, they are pretty bad. I think that one of the most memorable series finale's I've watched was the Seinfeld finale. That was just plain stupid.

One thing that made me smile today: Only finding 2 messages on my voice mail when I got back to work after a week's vacation (and one of them I was able to forward to someone else!).

Monday, August 09, 2004

hungry much?

Do you use blogger?? Have you noticed that since the wysiwyg upgrade thing of a couple of weeks ago, that it randomly eats your post? I mean, it was always a little flaky but this is beyond annoying. I'm not sure what's happening but I don't like it. The weirdness had forced me to return to using notepad (which I should do anyway) to write my posts because I'm afraid that I'll lose them. Ugh!

Today is the last day of my vacation from work. Looking back on the past week, it's been a good one. There were things that I wanted to do that didn't get done and there was stuff that needed to be looked after that I hadn't planned to sort out that did so it all balanced out. I had half-way planned to hook up with some friends last week but with the company-induced running around that was being done, it never happened. I don't feel too badly about it though. In all honesty, it's easier to arrange those types of things when I'm working anyway because I actually know from day to day what I'm doing.

I know it's been a while since I've done this so, here's this week's Monday Madness

1. What's "it" all about, anyway?
That's sort of a silly question. Today, for me, "it" is about doing some errands and getting my mum's birthday gift together. It's her birthday today!

2. What radical political ideas do you have, if any?
Mmmm... I don't think I'm really radical at all. I think that big business should be less involved with the running of countries. Not just my own but all over the globe. I think that governments need to make decisions that will result in better lives of every day folks rather than profits for themselves and their buddies.

3. Do you believe that you 'fit' the profile of your astrological star sign?
I think I can find aspects of my personality in all of the astrological star signs. I don't really believe in them much.

4. Will blogging survive 2005 or is it a fad?
I can't imagine that it's going to go away anytime soon. I didn't start my blog as part of a fad, it was a way that I could start writing again, for myself. I think that folks who started blogs as a fad will probably stop doing it when it's no longer "cool" but folks who do it for other reasons will probably keep it up. I hope so anyway.

5. Do you Ebay? If so, what and how often? Is it a full-time job, part-time hobby, or just to clear the junk from your house?
I have eBay'd a lot in the past and not so much recently. It was always just a way for me to clear stuff out of the house and the extra cash came in handy.

6. True or False: When I vote, I am all for one party.
That's generally true. I almost always vote Green.

7. Meat or veggie sauce on your spaghetti?
Veggie please.

8. Would you ever be on a TV Reality Show?
Maybe. I think if anything, I'd be inclined to do a decorating show rather than anything else (because I actually watch them).

9. What is one thing (or place) that you would like to do (or see) that you have not yet done (or seen?)
I would love to travel more. I have never travelled outside of North America and I would love to visit Europe and Asia someday.

10. Do you answer memes honestly?
That's for me to know and you to try and figure out!

One thing that made me smile today: I know it's only early but I've been up for over 4 hours now so I think that a big enough chunk of my day has elapsed for me to comment on this already... Thinking about my vacation is making me smile. It was relaxing and fun. It helped me to recharge my batteries and recover from my cold. I don't think I would have enjoyed myself any more if I had been on a beach somewhere, and not just because I have a tendency to burn. Overall I just really enjoyed the time away from the office and actually feel ready to get back to work tomorrow.

Sunday, August 08, 2004

home and dry

We didn't see much rain today (just a few drops on the windows here and there) but we're home now. Joe's back home too and he seems glad to be here. I'm sure he's happy to see his own bed tonight. If I'm not mistaken, he's asleep in it already and we've only been home for 30 minutes.

I'm kind of tired right now, today was a bit of a whirlwind. We left the house at around 8 a.m. and pulled into the Leslie Street IKEA at around 10:20 a.m. In retrospect, we should have stayed and done our shopping then rather than bopping into customer service for the replacement brackets we needed and going for breakfast but we didn't. Hindsight is 20/20 isn't it? Instead, we got back there late in the afternoon and it was insanely busy.

Our "normal" IKEA is in Kanata, about 90 minutes from our house. It's not as big or as busy as the store in North York but a similar phenomena occurs at both stores. We've noticed that many large families (like mom, dad, granny and gramps, aunties and uncles and tonnes of kids) visit IKEA on Sundays as if it were a Zoo or other attraction. I swear, it's like watching visitors to another planet. They gawk and stare at the displays and don't pay particular attention to what they are doing or where they are going. On 2 occasions yesterday I had my ass grabbed, unintentionally I'm sure, by little old ladies who were just not paying attention to their surroundings. I also noticed that they weren't buying anything.

For the first time in a long time, we did a bunch of errands right downtown. You could feel the temperature rising as we walked around but there was still a nice breeze so it wasn't too bad. The cooler weather of the past few days really had me spoiled though. I don't mind it at all and am almost a little sad (just a little, not a lot) that the hot, humid weather is on it's way back.

One thing that made me smile today: A toasted poppy seed twister at Bagel World. I rarely eat bagels anymore. In fact, the last time I had a toasted twister was probably in November (you just cannot get them here in town). We sat at the counter and had coffee (yes, I had a cup of coffee for the first time in ages and ages) and toasted twisters with lox and onion and tomato and a little cream cheese. It was beyond delicious and was well worth the wait!!

Saturday, August 07, 2004

Sleepy Saturday

It's still feeling a little strange with Joe away. Not bad strange just strange. We talked to him a little while ago and he's having a nice time. He's been visiting with friends and just taking it easy. I'm sure that he'll be ready to be home by the time we see him tomorrow.

We actually slept in a bit this morning. It was quite nice. We were moving kind of slow this morning because we've been sleeping so well. The weather has been totally cool here the past couple of days, yesterday it actually felt cold if you can believe it! It's been really refreshing but it's made me very sleepy. When we finally got going, we went out and bought a freezer. We've been wanting to get one for a while now and this week we've been out comparison shopping. The freezer we ended up with was from Costco. It was a 3.6 cubic foot chest freezer. We don't really have room for it but we've stuck it in the corner in our kitchen where it won't been in the way too much. It's going to be so nice having one again. When we lived in the apartment I had one but it died a slow and horrible death so we've been without the whole time we've been in this house. Right now, it's out of the box and we can plug it in next time we go downstairs. I know it's lame but I'm really excited about it!

One thing that made me smile today: Being lazy. We're getting really good at it. We even had a nap this afternoon! I mean, don't get me wrong, stuff's getting done (like we got the freezer and I've been doing some laundry) but we're spending more time relaxing and enjoying ourselves than we are working and that totally makes me smile!

Friday, August 06, 2004

happy anniversary to us

It's been a lovely day so far. We got up at our normal time and I took Mark to work. When we got to the car though, it smelled of smoke. Smelled is not strong enough a word actually, stank to high heaven would be more appropriate I think. The smell hit him and made him feel sick, instantly. Rather than subject himself to an entire day of it, he didn't bother working. It had been quiet all week and to miss one more slow day would not hurt him.

Instead of working, we went out for breakfast and then stopped off for coffee at my mum & dad's place on the way home. It's only mid-morning but it feels like we've been up for days. Getting up at 5 a.m. will do that to you I suppose.

Mark's unplanned day off is working out so far. It's our anniversary today and we're going to do very little. So far this vacation has been very relaxing (other than the cleaning part) and I'm finally feeling rested and healthy again after being sick for a week. We literally have nothing planned for the rest of the day and I'm quite looking forward to it!

One thing that made me smile today: Mark. He makes me smile every day though. Sometimes, it is hard to believe that we met five years ago today. It's hard to imagine in some ways that it's been that long and in other ways, it's weird that it's only been that long. This may sound really corny but it's true, it really feels like I have loved him forever.

Thursday, August 05, 2004

home alone

Joe has left the building. As of an hour ago, he's on his way to Toronto to stay with his brother for a few days. It feels good and a little strange to have the house to ourselves right now. We'll be picking him up in Toronto on Sunday so we actually have the house to ourselves for the best part of three whole days. We've not made any plans for the weekend but I expect that much lazing around and vegging out will take place...afterall, it is our anniversary tomorrow.

One thing that made me smile today: see above! I almost can't believe that we actually have the house to ourselves!!

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

running around

Mark ended up working half a day today. It was just really dead so he quit at noon. This worked out well though because Joe was going with his brother on a cruise from Gananoque. They mentioned last night that they wanted to take a 1000 Islands cruise and we suggested the Gan tour. It's a much better trip than the one that departs from Kingston because you don't spend the first hour in the boat getting from Kingston to Gan. Instead, you drive for 20 minutes from Kingston to Gan and you actually see much more of the river and the islands.

Our plan was to meet them at the boat dock at 4:30 p.m., when they got back into Gan. The weather was absolutely beautiful here again today. The humidity was gone and the breeze was actually cool. We had more errands to do out in the west end. One of the things we needed to do was look at USB hubs. My machine has been behaving badly lately and it turned out to be a USB conflict with the crappy little hub we had. We splurged out and spent an extra $10 on a good one, with a power supply. While we were wandering around looking for the hub, I picked up Sex and the City Season 2. A couple of months ago I got Season 1 and had originally planned to buy one each month. That seemed kind of decadent to me though so I've decided to just get one every 2 or 3 months instead (until I have them all). We also spent a fair amount of time at this big dollar store in the box store mall. They've got some really nice stuff, just household things like pots and fake tupperware and the price is right! By the time we got back home, it was almost time to head down to Gan.

When we got to the dock, the old guys wanted to go to the Casino. Mark's cousin and his wife didn't feel like it (she has a serious smoke allergy) so we planned to meet up with them later on. We didn't win anything but we had a really good time. When you onlygo for for an hour or so, how can you not have fun?? We figure that overall, we're still up on the casino because we usually win so it wasn't that bad that we didn't tonight.

One thing that made me smile today: Having dinner by the waterfront. When we were leaving Gan, Joe's company didn't have any idea about where they wanted to have dinner. The one thing that they mentioned at all was that they'd like to be close to the water. The only place in town that has a patio actually on the water is the Holiday Inn. I've been there before and the food is "okay," not fabulous but okay, particularly for a hotel. I mean, let's face it, hotel food is notoriously crappy. Anyway, when the meal finally arrived it was yummy but the service was lousy. It took 10 minutes for our drink order to arrive and over an hour for our meal to come. We're talking about sandwiches and salads folks, nothing fancy at all. The nice thing about it though was that the weather was gorgeous, coolish with a lovely breeze and it was so nice to sit and watch the boats coming and going from the harbour. I guess you can get away with shitty service when the view is so beautiful!

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

hot and humid

Mark has booked a couple of days off with me this week. It's been very nice and we've been getting a lot of stuff done around the house the past few days. Today it was really hot and humid again and the weather threatened to rain all day. Originally we had half-planned to barbecue tonight but it didn't look like the weather was going to cooperate so we made other plans.

Late this morning we headed out to do some errands. We got caught in small showers a couple of times and were really glad that we had nixed the barbecue idea. While we were out running around we bumped into my parents. They had been shopping for a few computer chair (my dad's gift to my mum for her birthday -- it's next week). It's always funny when we run into them. For a medium sized city, Kingston is just a small town and you can't go too far without seeing someone you know.

It took us a while to get all of our errands done. It's funny how, even when you're out in a car, you slow down so much when it's really super hot. Hopefully the rain will help cool things off a bit. Something's got to give sooner or later!!

One thing that made me smile today: Joe's company didn't stay too long. They were very friendly and nice and all but we didn't have to entertain them because they were heading out to ride the tour trolley. Actually, they didn't even stay long enough for a cold drink. They arrived while we were out doing errands but only stayed long enough to fill us in on their plans. A couple of hours later, they came back and we all went out for dinner. Yay!!

Monday, August 02, 2004

cleaning and cleaning and cleaning

What on earth did folks do before television was invented? Or even the radio for that matter. Today we watched 1/2 of Season 2 of the Office and disc 3 of Season 4 of the Simpsons while scrubbing and cleaning the downstairs of our house. I have always had to have a television on while I'm cleaning. Not only that, whatever I'm watching while I clean has to be funny. I hate cleaning so much that laughter is the only thing that gets me through it. I wonder how our great-grandmothers did it?? I mean, they also didn't have dirt devils and swiffers and lemon pledge in a can. It's depressing to even think about it.

I realized today how very much I despise cleaning. I cannot think of anything I hate more actually. I love the result but I hate the action of doing it. It did not help at all that the downstairs of our house was pretty grubby. Ever since Joe moved in, it's been tough to clean the living room properly. He likes to watch television down there, in his recliner, which is smack in the middle of the room. When he's not down there he's in his room sleeping but not for very long, not for long enough to do a proper clean down there anyway. Seeing how the company we're expecting is technically "his" company (his twin brother, nephew and his wife) I explained to him what I was doing and he was a pretty good sport about keeping out of the way. After dinner tonight, I did the kitchen and everything is looking very nice right now. It actually looks like clean and tidy people live in this house.

Fortunately, the company aren't staying with us. We don't have the room for them (unless they wanted to sleep on the floor!) so they will be staying at a motel which is literally around the corner. I don't think they knew that when they booked it but it's actually the closest motel to our house in the area. They aren't arriving until tomorrow afternoon so I don't have to worry about getting the bathroom cleaned and the upstairs vacuumed until tomorrow morning. Ugh.... oh well, at least it's getting done and I won't have to worry about cleaning or yard work for the rest of my vacation!!

One thing that made me smile today: Several years ago, some very good friends of mine bought me a chrome pole lamp for my living room. It's got three lamps on it and they are chrome globes. I'm sure that most folks would find it a little tacky but I really love it. Tonight, looking at the reflection of the clean living room in the chrome globe totally made me smile. I stared at it long and hard too because you just never know when the house will be that clean again!!

Sunday, August 01, 2004

hot hot hot

It's still hotter than stink here. It's gross actually, or rather was gross for most of the day today. Our lawn desperately needed mowing and many weeds needed to be whacked but it was just too damned hot to do it all day. At one point this afternoon, on our way home from doing errands, I noticed a kid around the corner mowing a lawn in the midday sun. He looked like he was going to drop dead from the heat.

Instead of killing ourselves this afternoon, we did a couple of errands and continued with our veg-fest. The forecast was calling for rain tomorrow so I suggested that we wait until after dinner to tackle the yard. I knew that there was a good chance that we might try to weasel out of it by then but I just didn't see any benefit in making ourselves sick by doing in the afternoon. The after dinner thing actually worked out quite well. By the time we got outside, there was a nice bit of a breeze blowing and that made the heat actually tolerable. It was a bit of a race but we got it finished up. Of course, there is still a tonne of housework to do inside, before our company arrives but I should be able to get it all done tomorrow...fingers crossed anyway!

One thing that made me smile today: Our yard. One of the nice things about yardwork is that you can actually stand back when you're finished and reflect upon a job well done because, unlike many things we do everyday, you can actually see a results of your labour, immediately. I was also happy to have completed this huge chore with very few bug bites. Ordinarily I get eaten alive when we do yard work at this time of day. The mosquitoes must have been too tired to bother today.