Monday, 30 June 2008

Monday Mutterings

Last night we had friends over for dinner. We had a great time and great food. I made my hot wings, debrezier sausage, herbed potatoes and my bruschetta. My friend brought luscious cherry cheesecake squares. We yakked, ate, laughed, yakked some more and were thoroughly stuffed :)This afternoon we went to Ribfest. There were four different booths of ribs you could buy. We bought ribs and 1/2 a chicken from one place. They were ok - nothing I'd write home about. We are going back tomorrow after J's soccer game and we will try a different rib vendor - maybe two.
J with ice cream
Lady with hawk (falcon?) some kinda big bird :)
J got his summer haircut on Saturday - a fauxhawk.They also had some booths at the Ribfest - at one called Nature's Salon I got a mini hand massage done. The lady sprayed my hands with water, then put about a teaspoon of sea salt scrub into my hands - I rubbed it around then she rinsed my hands - they felt SO much better, smoother and softer already. Then she had me chose a body butter scent from about 20 different scents - I chose Lilac. She put a tiny amount in my hand and I rubbed it around and into my skin - amazingly, my hands felt even softer than they had from the sea salt. I was sold - I bought a jar of sea salt scrub and a jar of body butter, both in lilac for $16. My arms and legs are really dry so this should help quite a bit.
J found a booth doing airbrush tattoos and asked if he could get one.
He got this cute symbol :)We are going back tomorrow after the soccer game for more ribs and to watch fireworks.Oh I love summer :)

Friday, 27 June 2008

Friday Stuff

It's Friday.

It is the first day of summer vacation for the kiddo. He brought his report card home on Wednesday - he did pretty well, 6 As, 8 Bs and 2 Cs (one of which was in French, which I am not too worried about). The way the report cards are done now is strange, some subject have more than one section that is graded on - for instance - Math has 5 sections and English has 3.

It is my last day of work on this contract (technically, I am actually home doing nothing because they ran out of work).

I have a HUGE to do list that I would like to tackle before I get another contract, but I am feeling lazy today and do not want to tackle anything on my list yet :)
I hope to get just a few weeks off before I get my next job - I do need the money. I have submitted to a few jobs and am still waiting to hear about them.

So on the agenda for today:
  • Reading a book if I can find one in the house I haven't yet read, otherwise I will reread the last Harry Potter book as I rushed through it last summer so the kid could read it next.
  • I may throw in a load or two of laundry so that I don't have to do much this weekend.
  • I should tackle a bit of cleaning as well, again so I don't have much to do this weekend
  • Just hanging out with the kiddo.
Tuesday July 1st, is Canada Day, so DH booked Monday off as well and we'll have a nice long weekend together.
It is also the 150th birthday of the town we live in - so there are many things going on this weekend as well that we would like to go to.

This is the kiddo last Canada Day - he is getting his hair cut on Saturday and is thinking to get it cut that way again.

The beginnings of my HUGE to do list:
  • Do a freezer and pantry inventory and plan meals around what I have - do a mini grocery exile (buy only what I need, no more stocking up right now)
  • Do a deep cleaning of the ENTIRE house (floors included - I should have just hired someone while I was working :))
  • Fix the broken tile and regrout in the kitchen - this has been on our to do list for far too long!
  • Reorganize the sewing room - the fabric is beginning to take over.
  • Bake some cookies, muffins and granola bars for the freezer
  • Finish niece's baby quilt in time for the shower in July - start next one for nephew, who's gf is due in Sept
  • Get DH to install shelves in laundry room
  • Get DH to hook up phone jack in sewing room/office - I have been using the portable in there for almost a year!
  • Get all winter stuff packed away in spare closet - I am just being lazy with this one but we need the closet space and I still have mittens in the front hall
  • Get forms filled and sent for new birth certificates so we can get passports - DH & I were both born in Quebec where they used to just issue BCs to anyone who asked - so since 911, we all have to refile to get new ones
Oh there is probably SO much more - but that will do for now :)

I may not be around much this weekend - so I want to wish all the Canadian readers a Happy Canada Day and I hope everyone else has a wonderful weekend!

Monday, 23 June 2008

RIP: George Carlin

A really funny man has left us. George Carlin died yesterday at age 71.

This was one of my fav pieces.

Enjoy! He will be missed.

George Carlin talks about stuff

Friday, 20 June 2008

Frugal Friday - Eating Out Cheaper

We like to eat out once in awhile. We also really like the Mandarin restaurants - I'm not sure if they are in the U.S., but they are a Chinese buffet restaurant.

The buffet is more expensive on Fridays and the weekend than during the week - $6 more, but then they have extra special stuff on the weekends like crab legs etc...

We usually only get the chance to go on the weekends, even though weekdays would be cheaper.

So what we do instead, is to go for lunch on the weekends instead of dinner. Their lunch buffet is almost identical to the dinner buffet but is $7 cheaper. We have a nice leisurely lunch and usually end up skipping dinner.

We eat the same amount of food as we would if we went for dinner but save $7 each.

Makes sense to me!

For more great frugal tips, stop by Biblical Womanhood.

Thursday, 19 June 2008

If you want to read something really funny....

go here, however, do not read it at work or they will think you are nuts - and do not read it while drinking unless you wanted to buy a new keyboard anyway.

Niece's baby quilt...

I've started the basics on the baby quilt. I will be doing a disappearing 9 patch with a border I think. I will also be making some burb cloths and bibs.

I bought some cute baby flannel to go with the flannel I already have.

As far as I know, my niece nor her parents read my blog, so this will be a surprise for her shower, which is in July.

I have found that flannel is very stretchy and hard to keep straight - I'll be using lots of pins!

So here are all the quilt squares cut up

And then sewn together
Then you cut the block into four pcs and turn two of them
And then resew them that way - I turned the top left and
bottom right so that the red squares point out now.

I will make a bunch of these and then sew them together with some sashing to make the quilt.
I'll add more photos as I do more.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Works For Me Wednesday - Email Calendar

I use Microsoft Outlook as my email application. It has this cool calendar that I can enter all my Dr. appts, dentist appts, birthdays, dates that bills are due, kid's soccer practice and game schedule, all kinds of things actually.

And the best part?.....It reminds me of those things with this little pop up message. I can even hit snooze on the pop up if I am not able to do the task right away. I can set the reminder anywhere from 15 minutes before to 3 days before.

I never forget anything anymore. I even use it to remind me to post for WFMW!

I'm not sure how many other email applications include calendars, but it is definitely worth checking out.

For more great tips - check out Rocks in my Dryer.

Kitchen Tips Tuesday - Smoothies

Smoothies are a great way to get your fruits in, veggies too if you are adventurous.

If I have fresh fruit on hand, I love to whip up a pitcher of smoothies to drink during the day. They are refreshing and nutritious.

You can pretty much add any fruit you want. I even once added fresh baby spinach and it was good! Adding a bit of liquid or even yogurt helps it all puree.

This day I added fresh strawberries, fresh pineapple, watermelon, frozen blueberries, frozen raspberries and orange juice.


For more Kitchen Tip - stop by Tammy's Recipes.

Monday, 16 June 2008

Catch up post

My nephew had brain surgery on one side of his brain on Friday - he came through it well and went home on Sunday. He will have surgery on the other side in 3-4 months time.

My current contract ends in 2 wks, it was supposed to run another 4 months but they ran out of work for me. I have submitted to a few more positions, but haven't yet been called for any interviews. My son is finished school in 2 wks as well, so we may have some time together before I start my next contract.

My son still has 3 of the 5 baby fish we rescued a week and a half ago. They are now about 4 mm long. They need to be kept separate from the larger fish for about 3-4 months until they are large enough to go in with the other fish without being eaten.

I Stumbed Upon this...

Gandhi's Top 10 Fundamentals for Changing the World.

Sounds so simple doesn't it?

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Happy Father's Day to My Dad

My father has been gone almost 14 years now, and there are still many times when something exciting happens that I reach for the phone to call and tell Dad about it. I still really miss him a lot.

He never got to meet my son J, something I always wish were possible. I have told J all about my Dad and he has a picture of my Dad getting a medal for his service in the Korean war, pinned to his bulletin board in his bedroom. He thinks that is pretty cool.

My father did a lot in his life. He joined the Navy but that only lasted a few months, either because he got seasick or because they found out he was under age (I don't remember). He was 15.

He once hitchhiked across Canada from Quebec. He ended up with frost bite and had to have the soles of his feet peeled.

He spent 3 years as part of Princess Patricia's light infantry in Korea. He told me, when coming home, he got here the day before he left Korea, because of the time difference.

He also told me a story of going down into a gully where a mounted machine gun was, he crept slowly down but ducked quickly when he heard gunfire - he shmucked his head open on a rock when he ducked down and ended up in the hospital - he found out later it was his side firing.

He had only two siblings, brothers. Only his eldest is still alive.

His mother died of cancer when he was only a young teen.

My father only had about a grade 6 education but was one of the smartest men I knew.

My father taught me all the provinces and capital cities of Canada before they taught them to me in school.

My father didn't care much for long division and having to show your work (include all steps), he said I should have got more points for being able to work it out in my head (which he insisted I learn to do).

My father was argumentative, as was I and he wished an argumentative child one me. I got one. :)

Everyday after work and dinner, my father would have a tea and read the newspaper front to back.

My father was the king of common sense. If you knew him, you would understand this statement.

My father was the cook in our family. He made the best fish chowder (as well as many other dishes), something I have tried to duplicate but never come quite close enough. Before I was born, he owned a tavern in Quebec that he cooked in. A regular customer would come in daily and ask in French for his steak to be charred. He didn't mean simply well done, he meant charred to the point that you could snap the meat apart - my father always said it hurt him to do that to a decent piece of beef.

My father was an entrepreneur before that word was cool. He had several businesses throughout the years. He had a commercial cleaning business. He built houses with my brother. He owned the afore mentioned tavern. Many years of his life he worked as a printing press operator.

Dad did a fair amount of carpentry over the years as well. Before I was born, when there were just 4 of us (there are 6 now), and times were a little tight, Dad made the boys desks with wooden horse heads on them, made the girls a full-sized play house, cradles for their dolls and bean bag toss games. Year later Dad made me a custom built bed that had a slot in the headboard for my "boom box".

My Dad always told me to be my own person - don't "follow the sheep" as he put it - don't be afraid to be different.

My father was always willing to lend a hand. When my sister separated from her husband, she lived with my parents for a few months until she could find her own place for herself and her sons. Once she did, Dad was there to help with painting while she was at work.

Dad passed away in his sleep the day before my 27th birthday. I received a call at work from my eldest brother telling me that Dad had died. You know when you read a story and they describe the feeling of cold water being tossed on you - well that is exactly what I felt.

My Mom said later that she though maybe he knew he was going to die - he had recently promised to do things with her in the fall, things he wouldn't normally agree to, like joining her senior's group (he called them "ole fogys" and he said he wasn't old :).

I still miss my Dad so much - I probably always will.

If your Dad is still with you, please give him a hug or even just a phone call. Don't wait - do it now, while you still can.

Happy Father's Day to my Dad, my husband and all the other Dad's out there.

Saturday, 14 June 2008

Friday, 13 June 2008

Frugal Friday - Back on the Frugal Bandwagon

Well I found out yesterday that my 6 month work contract (of which I have completed only 6 weeks) will end in 2 more weeks due to lack of work. I have applied to a few other positions, but have nothing solid yet.

So while I relaxed a little while the money was coming in, I have to once again tighten the belt and pay attention to every penny until I get that next job.

Frugal things I plan to do:

  • Take an inventory of our two freezers and our pantry. I am sure we can do a mini grocery exile for everything but fresh produce and milk.
  • I will start baking bread again.
  • I will get back to planning our meals (fell out of that habit) and start making them smaller too - I no longer need the leftovers to take for lunch and we ended up with too much waste.
  • I will finally get around to selling a few things I have, on Kijiji.
  • I will also go on a fabric diet - I have more that enough now and will sew most of it up before buying more.
  • I will bake more to have snacks on hand for kiddo.
  • I don't drive, so I won't go out shopping.
I'll pinch those pennies while I have to.

For more frugal tips, stop by Biblical Womanhood.

Thursday, 12 June 2008


Disclaimer: Not written by me - borrowed from somewhere on the net

I am hereby officially tendering my resignation as an adult. I have decided I would like to accept the responsibilities of an 8 year-old again.

I want to go to McDonald’s and think that it’s a four star restaurant.

I want to sail sticks across a fresh mud puddle and make a sidewalk with rocks.

I want to think M&Ms are better than money because you can eat them.

I want to lie under a big oak tree and run a lemonade stand with my friends on a hot summer’s day.

I want to return to a time when life was simple; When all you knew were colors, multiplication tables, and nursery rhymes, but that didn’t bother you, because you didn’t know what you didn’t know and you didn’t care.

All you knew was to be happy because you were blissfully unaware of all the things that should make you worried or upset.

I want to think the world is fair. That everyone is honest and good.

I want to believe that anything is possible. I want to be oblivious to the complexities of life and be overly excited by the little things again.

I want to live simple again. I don’t want my day to consist of computer crashes, mountains of paperwork, depressing news, how to survive more days in the month than there is money in the bank, bills, gossip, illness, and loss of loved ones.

I want to believe in the power of smiles, hugs, a kind word, truth, justice, peace, dreams, the imagination, mankind, and making angels in the snow.

So … here’s my checkbook and my car-keys, my credit card bills and my income tax statements. I am officially resigning from adulthood.

And if you want to discuss this further, you’ll have to catch me first, cause…..

“Tag! You’re it.”

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Works for me Wednesday - Better than Bacon

This week I am recommending you try Piller's Better Than Bacon ham slices.

I don't buy real bacon very often because I love it and will eat an entire package. I buy it occasionally to add to dishes.

I do however, like to have meat with a nice big breakfast once in awhile. I tried and disliked turkey bacon. Then I found Piller's Better than bacon ham slices.

You can have 3 slices of this stuff for only 50 calories and 1 gram of fat. I usually cut the slices in half to fit them in the frying pan easier and we end up each only eating 4 halves, so only 2 full slices.

These work for me. Give them a try!

For more Works for me Wednesday tips, go here.

UPDATE: I wanted to clarify, this is a pork product but it isn't bacon - it is ham - but it is still yummy!

Kitchen Tips Tuesday - Fresh Berries for Breakfast

I absolutely love fresh summer berries. Raspberries being my favorite. I usually just wash them and eat them - forget making anything elaborate....plain is best for me.

Somewhere I came across a recipe for fresh fruit salad that had a touch of honey and lemon juice. I tried it once and will never try a different fruit salad again.

Yesterday for breakfast I cut up some watermelon, some fresh pineapple, some strawberries, some blueberries and added some plumb raspberries. I added a couple small squirts of lemon juice and about half a teaspoon of honey, I mixed it up and put it in a tupperware to take to work.

When I opened it at work it was nice and juicy. The lemon juice makes it taste oh so fresh!
It tastes wonderful and is good for you too!

These are pictures of just a bowl of fresh blueberries and raspberries.

Simple & Fresh - Can't beat that.

For more Kitchen tips, pop over to Tammy's place.

Monday, 9 June 2008

My Mosaic

Ok so I copied Melody, who copied Pants who copied someone else.

1. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MIK5156 (KIM), 2. Jounieh, Lebanon; door detail, 3. Fungi, 4. frame, 5. Alex O’Loughlin 2, 6. Malibu Hurricane, 7. Desert meets the Sea, 8. brownie a la mode, 9. Chihiro, 10. Velvet Beauty, 11. Flower Power, 12. Three.

a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.

1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One Word to describe you.
12. Your flickr name.

Sunday, 8 June 2008

The truth

You’re just jealous because the voices only talk to me!


Am I the only one who finds this hilarious?
more cat pictures

more cat pictures

If You Were a Girl In The 70’s…

My comments in brackets.

  • You had that Fisher Price Doctor’s Kit with a stethoscope that actually worked
  • You owned a bicycle with a banana seat and a plastic basket with flowers on it.
(Oh yes I did - it was the coolest bike ever!)
  • You learned to skate with actual skates (not roller blades) that had metal wheels.
(mine had wheels but they we not metal)
  • You thought Gopher from Love Boat was cute (admit it!)

  • You had nightmares after watching Fantasy Island

  • You had either a ‘bowl cut’ or ‘pixie’, not to mention the ‘Dorothy Hamill’. People sometimes thought you were a boy.
(I had the Dorothy Hamill - yuck!)
  • You had rubber boots for rainy days and Moon boots for snowy days. YEAH! You owned a ‘Slip-n-Slide’, on which you injured yourself on a sprinkler head more than once.

  • You owned ‘Klick-Klacks’ and smacked yourself in the face more than once!
(We called them Klackers and I still have mine - gonna teach my son to smack himself in his face too :))
  • Your Holly Hobbie sleeping bag was your most prized possession.
(Didn't have the sleeping bag, but did have the doll)
  • You wore a poncho, gauchos, and knickers.
(Yup to the ponchos and gauchos - together even)
  • You begged Santa for the electronic game, Simon.
(Never did get one though)
  • You had the Donnie and Marie dolls with those pink and purple satiny shredded outfits, or the sunshine family.
(Nope but watched the show)
  • You spent hours in your backyard on your metal swing set with the trapeze. The swing set tipped over at least once.

  • You had homemade ribbon barrettes in every imaginable color. (Oh yeah!)

  • You had a pair of Doctor Scholl’s sandals (the ones with hard sole & the buckle). You also had a pair of salt-water sandals.

  • You wanted to be Laura Ingalls Wilder really bad; you wore that Little House on the Prairie-inspired plaid, ruffle shirt with the high neck in at least one school picture; and you despised Nellie Oleson!

  • You wanted your first kiss to be at a roller rink!

  • PONG! (’video tennis’ ) was the most remarkable futuristic game you’ve ever heard of!

  • Your hairstyle was described as having ‘wings’ or ‘feathers’ and you kept it ‘pretty’ with the comb you kept in your back pocket. When you walked, the ‘wings’ flapped up and down, looked like you were gonna ‘take off’
(Wow does that bring back memories!)
  • You know who Strawberry Shortcake is, as well as her friends, Blueberry Muffin and Huckleberry Pie.

  • You carried a Muppets lunch box to school and it was metal, not plastic. With the thermos inside some were glass inside and broke the first time you dropped them.
(Mine was Scoobie Doo)
  • You and your girlfriends would fight over which of the Dukes of Hazzard was your boyfriend.

  • YOU had Star Wars action figures, too!

  • It was a big event in your household each year when the ‘Wizard of Oz’ would come on TV. Your mom would break out the popcorn and sleeping bags!

  • You often asked your Magic-8 ball the question: ‘Who will I marry. Shaun Cassidy, Leif Garrett, or David Cassidy?’
(Oh wow....Leif Garrett...)
  • You completely wore out your Grease, Saturday Night Fever, and Fame soundtrack record album.
(Yes I had the Grease soundtrack)
  • You tried to do lots of arts and crafts, like yarn and Popsicle-stick God’s eyes, decoupage, or those weird potholders made on a plastic loom.
(Yup got those sets every Christmas)
  • You made Shrinky-Dinks and put iron-on kittens on your t-shirts!

  • You used to tape record songs off the radio by holding your portable tape player up to the speaker.
(LOL Oh yes I did!)
  • You had subscriptions to Dynamite and Tiger Beat.

  • You learned everything you needed to know about girl issues from Judy Blume books. (Are you there God, It’s me, Margaret.)
(Judy Blume is the best!)
  • You thought Olivia Newton John’s song ‘Physical’ was about aerobics.
(It isn't?)
  • You wore friendship pins on your tennis shoes, or shoelaces with heart or /r a i n b o w /designs.

  • You wanted to be a Solid Gold dancer.
(Didn't we all?)
  • You drowned yourself in Love’s Baby Soft - which was the first ‘real’ perfume you ever owned.
(I love Love's Baby Soft! they still make that stuff?)
  • You glopped your lips in Strawberry Roll-on lip-gloss till it almost dripped off .
(Mine was 7up flavored lipsmackers - I can still taste it :))

Saturday, 7 June 2008

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of The Crystal Skull

So the kid and I went to see Indiana Jones this afternoon.

Pretty decent movie - I was worried because I had read some bad reviews. It wasn't as good as some of the previous Indy movies but I think I would give it an 8 out of 10.

I really like Shia LaBeouf in this movie too. And I've always liked the chemistry between Indy and Marion, so it was good to see her again.

Overall worth seeing. We still want to see Ironman.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

I'm a grandma!.....kinda

My son's molly (fish) had babies yesterday morning. Mollies give birth to live fish not eggs. We got this fish and two others about 3 wks ago. We noticed soon after that this one fish looked kind of fat, so we googled mollies and discovered that she may be pregnant. Just the night before, I was looking at her and said that I actually didn't think she was pregnant because she didn't seem to be getting any bigger.

My son noticed them soon after I woke him yesterday morning and called for me. I grabbed a tupperware like container and scooped the little fry (that is what baby fish are called) up with a net and popped them into it. We are not sure how many babies she had, but we saved 5. We seen at least 2 being eaten, one by the mother. That is a piece of gravel from the tank for a size comparison. The container they are in is about 3 inches across.
She may have had more once we left to go to work and school, but my son could not see anymore when he got home from school, so if she did, they were eaten. Sadly, the little black one did not survive the day. They are tiny; only about 2 millimeters long.

We bough a special breeder tank last night that floats in the big tank and can hold a pregnant fish and has a little trap that the fry fall into so that they cannot be eaten. The adult fish are still trying to get them through the breeder tank.
Can you see them?

They have to be kept separate from the adult fish until they have at least doubled in size. Not sure how long that will take.

We have two females and a male adult mollies. I read online today that mollies can give birth to fry every 30 days. I really wish the lady at the pet store had told me that!

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Works for me Wednesday - Motivation Advice Needed

I know, I know - this week's WFMW theme is about keeping kids busy this summer, but as a working Mom, that is why I pay the babysitter so well :) it's her job.

My friend is kidsitting my son this summer and being a grade one teacher, I know she will be able to keep him and her 2 kids nice and busy.

So instead I would like to ask your advice.

I need to lose weight. Serious weight. I need to diet.

I know EVERYTHING there is to know about dieting, really I do. If there is a diet book written, then I have read it. I know what to do. I do, I do. I just don't do it. I just can't seem to get my motivation up enough to actually do it. I plan like crazy, then fizzle out after just a couple days.

I need to know where I can find me some "stick-to-itness".

I know how I should eat - but I don't.
I know I should exercise - but I don't.

So help me oh wise people of the Internetdom.....have you seen my motivation?

What helps you stay on track? Can you come live with me and keep me motivated?

Please help.

If you want solutions to keeping your kids busy this summer, go visit all those who actually followed the rules :)