Thursday, May 31, 2007

pressure cleaned

pressure cleaned
Originally uploaded by Julep67
my feet feel so good. just taking my shoes off tonight felt amazing. funny how you have to feel really totally shitty to appreciate feeling good sometimes.

I had a pretty long day today. I worked all day and then went to convocation to help out with the framing service. It went pretty well tonight, very smooth actually. It wasn't too hot where we were until about an hour into it and then, all of a sudden, the air was gone and it got very hot. It rained a little bit and that cooled things off a bit. It's muggy outside right now but I don't care because it's cool in our house!!

It'll be even cooler in our pool this weekend. Only one more sleep 'til the weekend, betcha can't wait!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

free air

free air
Originally uploaded by Julep67
the best things in life truly are free, aren't they? air from the gas station for one thing, how can you beat that?

today was a little weird. we had our annual departmental retreat today and while it was fun, I wasn't feeling all that great so I had to actually stop in the middle of it all and chill out. at one point (we were building a Rube Goldberg machine) I had to leave the classroom and get some air. I think it was a combination of a weird stomach bug, warm weather, walking through construction breathing diesel fumes and the burning candles from our machines. not fun.

the rest of the day was interesting though. I did a session on mensa and took an abbreviated version of their test. I did pretty well too and may consider writing the actual test at some point. It was a lot of fun even though I wasn't feeling great, my brain was still functioning pretty well so that was encouraging!

tonight we're just chilling out. Mark's barbecuing us up something for dinner and then we're heading to bed. I don't care if it's only 7:30 when I get to bed, I needs to sleep folks!

happy hump day

may I offer you a cup full of childhood memories?

When I was really little (like from age 3 to 8) our next-door neighbour was an old hippie who introduced me to Harry Nilsson at an early age. Thinking about it now, this was the early 70's so he wasn't really that old...anyway...this was a particular favourite:

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

it's good to have a friend like robin

my friend robin sent me this link today. how cool huh?? we're planning to be in the line on saturday morning. what a deal, I can't wait!! it'll be so much nicer to collect the rain water in a barrel than in the basement!

my week is toddling along. yesterday I was in a course all day learning the "principles of project management." it was an excellent course, the component on how to run better meetings alone was well worth being away from my desk all day for, seriously! tomorrow, unfortunately, I'm away again, all day. it's a professional development day for everyone in our area. I'd be telling a huge fib if I said that I was looking forward to it because I'm not. I'm more about obtaining actual skills and less about touchy feely stuff. I'm trying to give myself an attitude readjustment though, just out of respect for the amount of work my colleagues have put into the day. it's hard to create a program that will be fun or informative for 120 people. some of us will just need to suck it up I guess.

day at the beach

happy Tuesday!

I can't go to the beach today (because I have to go to work) but this almost makes up for it!

Monday, May 28, 2007

stuck in a trap

construction meets convocation
Originally uploaded by Julep67
so this morning, I had to walk across campus to a training session.

if any of you spend anytime around campus, you will have noticed the massive amount of construction which is happening. I'm all about the construction, it's a good thing. change is good, the improvements are going to be fabulous! it's actually really exciting.

getting trapped inside the construction zone however, is not exciting.

I was walking between Ontario Hall and Grant Hall and saw that there was an opening in the fencing. I expected to see a walk way (I needed to get to Mac-Corry). There was no exit opening though, I had to walk about a 1/2 block south, near big trucks which were moving stuff around, and other equipment - through the mud I might add - to find an opening.

It was a little scary.

It really makes me glad that on a normal day, I don't have to do this too many times. I think that most folks will be happy to hide out in their offices this summer. I know that it's going to beautiful when University Ave is all fixed up later on this summer, today though, it was just a bit on the frightening side.

Sunday, May 27, 2007


Originally uploaded by Julep67
We received some good news yesterday. It's about the concert.

I still don't like hockey much but the tour promoters were able to swap the dates of the Ottawa show with the Quebec City show. So now, we're off to see the Dark Side of the Moon on a different night.

All's well that ends well right?

I still can't understand why, whoever was booking this thing in the first place, would have booked a big ass rock show in the arena on a night when they could be in a hockey playoff.

Honestly, head's should be rolling over this one!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

too cool

our pool

is too cool


I was just standing in it, trying to smooth the liner wrinkles out (and actually accomplishing that) and the water is freezing.

Of course, this does mean that there is water in it. it's filling up. yay!!

by the time we go to bed tonight, it should be full. it'll be cold but full. The sun actually ducked behind a cloud just now and it's chilly in the back. it's not so chilly that you can't be out there but it's not exactly swim-inspiring.

next weekend should be good though. if we're lucky, the water will have warmed up and the sun will be out and we'll be floating.

won't that be nice?

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

yet another reason why I hate hockey


I bought tickets to this show literally seconds after they went on sale.

We had tickets to two Roger shows in September which just happened to be the week that Joe died so we couldn't use our tickets (for Toronto and Montreal).

We have floor seats for this Ottawa show. Mark also has tickets for Toronto.

Seriously, I hate hockey on a good day, with a white hot passion. This is making me sick to my stomach (honestly - not exaggerating here).

crap on a stick!

deep discussion

deep discussion
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
It was so hard to concentrate on working today. Seriously difficult.

Because we still don't have a screen on our window at work, we had to break down and turn on the air conditioning today. It felt bad to turn it on, I know that if we could just open this one window, we'd have a cross breeze and it would be lovely.

As Ontario Hydro used to say, "wasting electricity turns people off." It turned me off to turn the AC on. Yuck.

At least there are only two more working days left this week. For a chunk of tomorrow and a chunk of Friday, I'm helping out at convocation so that's a nice break. It's so much fun, everyone smiles, the new grads, the proud parents, the little brothers and sisters who have tagged along. What's not to like about graduation? NOTHING, that's what!!

coping with hump day

The short work weeks seem to just drag on for some reason. I guess it's partly because you have a lot of stuff to cram into four days but really, a huge chunk of the problem is that the weather is so nice outside.

Alas, I can't really play hooky but here's a nice diversion for a sunny afternoon:

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Mr. Robin

Mr. Robin
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
The sunshine fills our backyard!!

Really, honest!!

This huge, horrible, tree branch, which was hanging into our yard from our neighbours, was removed today. The whole back yard is now full of sunshine. It'll make being in the pool this summer, so much nicer! Not to mention, we won't have all of those flicking seeds in the water, mucking up the filter.

Our yard is looking lovely. It's all weed free, neat and tidy. Our neighbour (not the ones with the branch) even tuned up our lawn mower today. It looks like brand new and it's running like a dream.

Have I mentioned before how much I love this neighbourhood?? Around here, folks actually help each other out, it's amazing. Such a switch from our old place, just around the corner. People actually talk to each other, amazing huh?

We literally moved around the corner, 2 stop signs away from our old house, but it's like a different planet. It's a good planet though, no mean aliens or anything, just friendly folks who watch out for each other.

who knew huh?

Monday, May 21, 2007

middle of nowhere

middle of nowhere
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
We're back from the big city. We got back last night actually. It was a long day but we both felt really relieved when it was all over.

It felt good to do an unveiling for Joe because we'd promised him that we would. We were both a little surprised by how relieved we both were when it was over, I guess it had been bothering us a little more than we realized. Joe's twin, Nate, was there, as was Nate's family and a couple of Mark's friends.

Mark's friend, Jack, was supposed to do the formal part of it but (sadly) he had a funeral to go to. Another friend, Rick, stepped in at the last minute and helped us out. He did a terrific job with the actual prayers and stuff. I said a few words on behalf of Mark and I. Anyone who knows me can appreciate how tough that would be for me. There are few things I dislike more than getting up in front of folks and speaking. Add to that, talking about something as personal as a deceased family member and you just about imagine how shakey I was. I had written something out and intended to read from it but in the end, I just said the parts of it that I could remember. I worked a couple of laughs into it to break the sad mood a bit. People told me afterwards that they thought I did a good job. I think that they were just being polite because I cried through about half of it.

During the service part, both Mark and I kept one eye on the parking lot, watching for his asshole brother to show up. We hadn't told him when it was happening but we still were afraid he might be there (we had the unveiling the day before what would have been Joe's 82nd birthday). I think that getting through it without having to push his brother down and stomp on his toupee.

Afterwards, Mark's uncle took us all out for lunch. It was a really nice meal and we got to visit with Mark's cousins and their children. We hadn't seen them all winter, not since Joe's funeral. It was good to get caught up on family news with them, and to see Uncle Nate.

The rest of our day in Toronto was spent doing some errands and eventually ending up at the home of some friends who live down town and who have the most beautiful, bright 3 year old twin boys you'll ever meet. We're trying to convince them to come to Kingston for a little holiday in the summer. It didn't work last summer but I plan to be obnoxious about it this year.

So now, we're a little pooped. I think there is a nap in my immediate future. We'll get caught up eventually though. It's just incredibly nice to have all of that behind us finally.

Sunday, May 20, 2007


I've seen your crack.

We are up at the crack of insanity this morning.

Just early enough though, that'll we be on the highway in a little bit and in Toronto by 9 a.m.

Roadtrip's are definitely less fun when a visit to the cemetery is involved.

Alas, sometimes you just have to do what you have to do, right?

Saturday, May 19, 2007

blooming trees

blooming trees
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
everything is blooming!!

it's great actually, it's green specifically. stuff's growing.

our yard looks good. the front lawn is like some gorgeous, fuzzy carpet.

soon, it'll be thistle free but for now, watch your toes.

I'm so glad that spring is here. being outside is lovely. it's sunny and nice but not hot. it's a good temperature actually, one you can work in. not that I'm working all that much. supervising is something I can do though, and have been, in bits and pieces. it's good.

Friday, May 18, 2007

a tip to the neighbours

saturday night fireworks
Originally uploaded by Julep67.

It's officially the long weekend here in Ontario. Actually, it's a long weekend across the whole darned country. Happy Birthday Queen Victoria, folks are drinking beer and opening their cottages in your honour!

Others will light fireworks over the course of this weekend. Usually, one would expect that this would happen at night, when it's dark. Not in our neighbourhood, no way!

About an hour ago, Mark was outside barbecuing and he heard fireworks going off. All through our dinner, we could hear them. Of course, the sun was shining so we couldn't see where they were coming from.

A little tip from me to the neighbourhood kids, no charge: Fireworks are actually better seen in the dark.


Happy weekend 24 weekend folks!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

day flight

tree light
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
How's your week going?

Mine is flying by in an blur. Seriously.

I'm working on a big event for tomorrow night. The parts of that I'm responsible for are starting to come together and I know that I'm really organized. Unfortunately, on some level, my brain thinks that I'm going to mess it all up. This part of my brain kept waking me up last night.

Hopefully it won't do that again tonight. I could really use the sleep.

I'll be so happy when Friday morning arrives. You have no idea.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

a peek inside

a peek inside
Originally uploaded by Julep67.

the sun came out. Mark got some sleep today and he's feeling better.

all of these things are good.

now, on the list of things that are not bad necessarily, but that one shouldn't smirk about, is the death of Jerry Falwell. I can't imagine how disappointed he must be with what happens to a person after you die.

Moral Majority indeed. He was a hateful, hate-filled man. I can't imagine that too many folks on my side of the fence will miss him much.


it had to happen I suppose. it's dreary today. we had rain through the night and Mark's been suffering with a migraine since late yesterday afternoon. myself, I'm a little groggy. I think I'll be a 3 coffee morning.

Monday, May 14, 2007

little lunch buddy

little lunch buddy
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
I like this photo because I was able to catch the bird in mid-air.

As you can tell, I'm enjoying my new camera hugely. I took it to work today with great intentions of walking around campus at lunch, taking photos of the construction.

Instead, I sat on a bench with a friend, in the sunshine, and had a chat and ate my sammich and didn't feed the birds.

Mean, I know.

It was really difficult to come back to work today after a fabulous birthday weekend. Really difficult, like insanely hard.

I did survive though, somehow. Poor Mark is a little worse for wear right now, he's got a migraine. The weather must be planning something bad for his head to be pounding so much. Fingers crossed, a good night's sleep will make it right again. No one needs to feel this bad, ever.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

icing on the cake

icing on the cake
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
I have had a great birthday weekend so far. It's winding down now but it's not quite over.

It's safe to say that I've had a lot of fun and feel as if I've been completely spoiled rotten. Rotten maybe strong because I actually appreciate all of the effort that Mark has gone to this weekend to make this particular birthday, particularly special.

Tonight, Mark is barbecuing. I can smell it right now actually. It smells good. For dessert, he's made ma a cheesecake. As long as I have known him, he's boasted about a white chocolate peanut butter cheesecake but he's never made it for me. Until today!! It's huge so I imagine a large chunk of it will go to work with me tomorrow.

this afternoon we went for a bit of a drive. I got to see my mum & dad for a few minutes and then we went out to a park along the lake shore so I could try out the new camera on something other than our fish! I felt a little bit like I was doing surveillance with this camera but it was really cool. Some of the shots I got were really nice, particularly of the water and some of the birds. I am taking so many more shots with this new camera that one or two are usually quite good and I can toss out five or ten. This camera has completely changed the way I take photographs. It's very cool. The whole weekend has been cool.

So far, I have no complaints whatsoever about being 40!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

early birthday gift

early birthday gift
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
My birthday fun started a day early.

Well, technically, it began yesterday. In the morning, a massive bouquet of flowers arrived at the office from Mark. Then, I had a nice brown-bag lunch with a couple of friends and they gave me some lovely votive candles and holders.

Last night, we had dinner with my parents and then went to the carnival. This morning, Mark surprised the crap out of me.

I thought we were going out of town but he went along with that idea to throw me off the scent of my fabulous new camera!!! He got me a Nikon D40 for my birthday, with a 18-135 mm lense. I've never really used a camera like this before but so far I'm loving it. It feels just great in my hands and already I've taken some (in my opinion), nice shots. It's much easier than I expected because many of the settings are automated. Eventually, I'd like to figure out all of the manual stuff too but for now, I'm just loving what I can do with it.

We're heading out shortly to see my godson, it's his birthday today (happy 21st Matthew!!). I'm not sure what the rest of the day will bring but holy crap on a stick I'm having a good birthday weekend so far!!!

Friday, May 11, 2007

candy apples

candy apples
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
When life gives you apples, dip 'em in cherry flavoured sugar and enjoy!!

Well, not quite but you get the sentiment, right?

On the way home from dinner (at my parents, in celebration of my birthday - two days early, it's not until Sunday) tonight, we saw a carnival set up in a mall parking lot. I made Mark stop so I could get some photos of the rides and people. Of course, these things always also have the best signs ever. I am a sucker for a good sign.

I'm a little surprised that I'm still awake at this hour. Usually we're alseep by now but it is Friday and it is my birthday weekend so it's okay. Tomorrow, we can sleep in a bit. We're planning a trip down south of the border. Probably to Syracuse for some shopping and birthday fun. I'm not sure if we'll go tomorrow or Sunday, it's all kind of up in the air at the moment.

Whatever we do or wherever we end up, it'll be fine with me. I don't plan to do much more than have fun and enjoy the last few hours of my 30's.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

a couple of things

First, did any of you watch American Idol this week. Okay, will any of you admit to it?

We missed it the other night so we sort of zipped through the eliminations this morning over coffee and watched (in a very very edited way), the competition portion tonight. I have to ask, what the hell happened to Barry Gibb??!!? Was it me, or did he have ill-fitting dentures in?? Has he had a lot of bad plastic surgery done or was he in a fire (seriously, just asking)? He looks terrible, just terrible. I couldn't bear the thought of listening to him sing so we passed over that. Honestly, the whole things was just rather sad.

Second, does anyone actually believe that Mexico is still a safe holiday option??

Ever since Kirsty MacColl was killed in Cozumel in 2000, I've been telling folks to stay away. They just won't learn though, will they?? It just doesn't seem to me to be a safe place for tourists. Given what's happened to Canadians down there in recent months, you would think that folks would pay attention and stay home, or go somewhere else. Honestly people, pay attention!!!!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

air quality

mum's flowers
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
the air was like soup today, it still is actually.

how can this be? the second really nice day of the year and the air is crap.

to make matters worse, the storm windows are still on the windows in my office.

right now, we actually have the air conditioning on in our house because it's so humid it stinks.

I guess spring is over huh?? I hate to complain about the weather, especially because I've been waiting so long for it to warm up but crap on stick people, can't we just have a week of nice, sunny, breezy, warm, spring days?

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


phytotron - big lights
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
apparently, there was a smog advisory in effect here today. I was inside all day pretty much and didn't hear about this until we were in the dollarama store after work. driving home from the west end, you could see an icky grey in the sky as we approached the city. it doesn't feel particularly good to be under an advisory on the first really nice, warm day of the year.

the upside of this is that I actually wore sandals today.

I shouldn't have to live with smog in order to enjoy naked toes.

Monday, May 07, 2007

yay, Monday!

fun world - roller coaster
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
The weekend just flew by. why does it do that?

Yesterday was half quiet, half busy. we slept in a little bit and then had a bunch of chores to look after all afternoon and into the evening. I didn't really feel overly rested at the end of the day, not like I think I should have, it being Sunday night and all.

Today, right now, for some odd reason, I am totally knotted up. My shoulders and neck. It feels like stress but I don't quite get why that would be. Work's busy but not insane. It's tiring though, and I can't easily move my head from side to side. weird huh??

Hopefully tomorrow it'll be okay. It should be, no, it will be. Yeah, right on. Positive thinking. sure!


Originally uploaded by Julep67.
There is an old joke about the fifth season of the year being "construction." I don't think that's the least bit funny.

Campus is a huge mess right now. I completely understand that things have to look absolutely disgusting before they can be beautiful but getting around is really tough right now.

When you can find a path to get where you need to go, if it's not full of gravel, it's all over the place. I'm not one to stand in the way of progress, goodness knows, it would just be nice to not have to deal with diesel fumes and dust and detours. I need to get used to it though, it's going to be going on for a few years.


Sunday, May 06, 2007


saturday night fireworks
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
I had great intentions of getting up early and getting all kinds of things accomplished today but so far, not so good.

I've not done a whole heck of a lot besides sleep in and drink coffee. It is Sunday so that's the not worst thing I can do, I know...but I do need to get laundry done. Seriously.

This time of year is particularly weird on the old wardrobe. It's not quite warm enough to be wearing strictly summer clothes but it's not cool enough for sweaters. Layers is something that works on some days. I've still been wearing socks and shoes but I don't know how much longer that will go one.

I am not complaining though, I'm enjoying the weather. Just not loving the idea of pulling out the summer clothes and having to do all of that ironing again!!

Saturday, May 05, 2007


mum's garden
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
happy cinco de mayo people!!

My brother informs me that it's to commemorate a jar of helman's falling overboard but I really know what the holiday is about. I also know that it's been userped by folks who sell tequila and sombreros and I suppose that later this evening, we'll fall victim to that whole thing. Not the sombreros so much but I do plan to make margaritas later.


we're also barbecuing. a neighbour couple are coming over for dinner. should be fun although, the wind is sort of cool right now so I'm doubtful that we'll be spending much time outside.

Today's been busy so far. Up early doing some chores around the house, a quick dash to the grocery store (we were at Costco last night but you can't ever really get everything you need at Costco) and then some dinner prep. It's a good thing that the fun times and nice visits always make you forget about all the hustle and bustle that impending company always brings.

Friday, May 04, 2007

don't pay for 3 months

don't pay for 3 months
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
Wouldn't it be nice to not have to pay any bills for three months?

Winning the lotto would be good about now too. Of course, one needs to actually purchase a ticket to be in the running for that sort of thing. I always forget to buy 'em until it's too late.

This week has gone by in a bit of a blur. The working part of it anyway. One of the nice things about my job is that it's not boring. One of the downsides of it is we're always looking ahead. When one always looks ahead on the calendar, the time flies even faster than normal...or at least it feels that way.


But, it's the weekend again. This is nice. In a couple of weeks, we have to venture to Toronto for a family committment. Next weekend is my birthday so I'm guessing that the month of May will fly by too.

I guess we're having fun though, because they say (who are they?) that it flies when you're having fun. We must be ecstatic!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

not quite friday

orange rose
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
Yesterday, for some odd reason, I kept thinking it was Tuesday. Today, I can hardly believe that tomorrow is Friday already. I know not ever a bad thing for the weekend to be on your doorstep but seriously, the time is just zooming by for me these days.

It's work I guess. We're really really busy and, when you work on events, you're always looking ahead on the calendar and before you know it, another year has passed and it doesn't feel much like you've even had a chance to lift your head.

I must say though, we have less pressing stuff to work on during the summer months and I'm really looking forward to feeling less frantic in general. I'm also really jonesing to get back into our pool again. I know it's just a dorky little inflatable Canadian-Tire special but it's ours and it's in our yard and I can float around in it and listen to Van Morrison or whatever else I feel like and pretend that I'm not actually in the middle of the city, but rather, that I'm in the middle of the lake. Aaahh...summer days, can't wait to see you again!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

stop this car!

fun world - car ride
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
Oh man, I've been groggy all day today. I can't shake it, my head is truly in the fog.

Poor Mark was really sick last night, he woke up feeling hung over from the meds he took for his head. Between his hung over feeling and my foggy head, we made a good pair.

Earlier this evening, we zipped through last night's AI show. I know that my stomach could not have tolerated watching that much Bon Jovi without being able to press the fast-forward button. They are seriously scraping the bottom of the barrel for "mentors" on that show. One thing that was particularly irritating was the appearance of Mr & Mrs Smirking Chimp at the end of it. Mark yelled, loudly, at the television when his face appeared on the screen. I couldn't help but think about how messed up his priorities are...he has time to do Idol but can't take the time to listen to reasonable people who would like to see an end to the war.


Tuesday, May 01, 2007


new barbecue
Originally uploaded by Julep67.
Poor Mark, this weird weather system is doing bad things to his head. He's been on the edge of a migraine all afternoon. I think he's taking some drugs and hopefully that will make the pain go away. It's surprising too, after the nice weather we've had the past few days, that it's suddenly cold again. I say cold, it's not freezing or anything, just a few degrees lower than yesterday. I'm a wimp, what can I say!?

We've really been enjoying our new barbecue. It works soooooo much better than the old one. Cooking with the natural gas outside makes a massive difference over cooking with propane. I knew that our old barbecue was in bad shape but you don't realize how crappy something is until you replace it.

Speaking of replacing, we have this shed out in the back which I was planning on painting this year (I said I'd do it all last summer too but never did!). It has some paint on it only because the folks who lived here before us let their kids shoot it with paint ball guns. Mark was talking to our neighbour today and he's going to side it for us. The shed itself is structurally in good shape, it just needs the outside "prettied up" because it's ugly. Once it's all sided too, we shouldn't have another squirrel infestation like we did last winter. They are cute and all but boy can they make a mess!!