Thursday, March 31, 2011

Shapely...but toned.

I have become accustomed to weighing 10 lbs more than usual...10 lbs and holding. I usually can put on 5-10 lbs when I go through an eat whatever I want when I want and lay around not doing too much...but then I go a week with no junk and lose it all. These days not so much...even walking Maggie is not exercise at all. We walk every day...but Maggie is more like an Eeyore type these days. Walking slowly and methodically down the street...grazing the ditches 50 steps behind til I stop and wait for her to catch up. And this happens even when I AM walking a slow pace. She is just an old lady that feels the need to take it really, really easy. And that is okay. I enjoy our walks...I enjoy sweet Maggie May. <3 But, she doesn't help me with getting my heart rate up. I am no spring chicken anymore...that's for sure. I need to get me some cardio at least 3 times a week to maintain a healthy 'everything'...just to be a basic, fit human. I don't need to be a marathon runner or fitness guru. I just need to be in somewhat decent shape...like not losing breath after walking up a small hill. My heart really would appreciate me taking care of her...so I have to buck up and just do it.

I think I am going to try and start running again.Not that I've ever been a "runner" per se...but I have had my bouts of a month here, a month there, where I go running. And I enjoy it. My brother and sister have been running avidly for the past couple of years. Both entering marathons and feeling good about their accomplishments. I find it cool and inspiring...and wicked awesome how their bodies are in shape. Me...I am NOT in shape. My butt, as of recent, has an actual jiggle...like when I walk I feel the jiggle. I got some junk in my trunk! I guess it ain't all that bad. I complain about it...Clint enjoys it. ha ha ha!!! So, I am starting to feel okay about my extra weight. I just need to tone my new shape and feel healthy. Run and eat better. Make sure everything that goes into my body is good for me. We HAVE to stop buying the 4l pails of ice cream! They have been on sale for $5.99 for the last month...and we constantly have one in our freezer. Aaaaah!!! And seriously...it is high time we stopped buying...so embarrassing...microwave popcorn! Sick!!! I NEED to start running.

Even at this moment I feel like I should be outside...enjoying the beautiful sun that is shining.

It's a gorgeous day. Maybe go for a Maggie walk then change and go for a 20 minute run. I have to slowly work my way to be able to run for an hour. Argh...discipline. I so do not have it. I am good with the will power. I smoked for a very long time and enjoyed it. Yes, I actually really enjoyed smoking. I found it deliciously satisfying. Also...sick! The cravings supposedly never go away. And I have noticed that. I quit 6 years ago. Yet sometimes, after I have had a drink and someone is smoking...I feel like asking for "just a drag"? But I don't. I keep repeating in my head how I don't want to stink or have the taste in my mouth. Because, second I take that drag in, I regret it. It DOES taste gross to me. It doesn't taste as good as I remember. It's toxic...huffing on an exhaust pipe. ha ha ha ha! Sorry my smoking friends. They do say ex-smokers are the worst non-smokers! So, that'd be me. Sorry.

Anyhow, the sun is sparkling now...mannequin arm is calling me out...got to get out there and make my shape look good! ;o)

Peace!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

'Lyme'...sooo much more than a sour fruit...

I love 'limes'...they make Club Soda so very tasty. I even add a wee bit o' lime to a Ceasar. A little bit of citrus always goes great with seafood. (Clamato juice is in a caesar...tomato juice is in a Bloody Mary.) I even love and find myself purchasing, fairly often, No Name brand frozen concentrated Lime-Ade. Mmmmmmm. We, in this home are fans. But at the moment, I do not have the pretty, dark green, sweeter and smaller than a lemon fruit on my mind. Although...I think I do have to go pour myself a club soda with lime...uno momento por favor.

Poopy. We only have a lemon...and it's old! ha ha haaaaa! I used it anyways.

I remember being quite young and hearing about Lyme disease. Either through my parents watching the news, seeing headlines on the newspapers, and half listening to adults around me talk about it. Only half listening, because as a kid you are not REALLY listening to what the adults are even talking about. You hear select words in between the imaginary world you are, at that particular moment in. Well...I for one was always pretending to be somewhere else than where I was. I had a fantastic imagination as a child...I lived all over the world and at times even visited so many cool places in Outer Space. Sometimes some of my memories are so vivid of places I've seen and things I've done...almost as if I really did live in Africa. Like the time I lived in Antarctica for a few months (spending hours in my big snow drift fort home in the backyard...playing with my handmade snow toys and building proper nooks and "shelves" on which to place my household possessions) with my sled dog Anika. Anika was a great dog...Alaskan Malamute. She came from a dude who had a sled team...but she was more interested in socializing than being a sled dog. So we got her...oh beautiful Anika. Anyhow...Lyme disease. Which,
back then, I believed was "Lime Disease". I think that I just thought it was spelled funny because it was now inside your actual bloody body. The whole thing just made me not like limes. I was pretty much grossed out by them. I would just say they were too sour for me. I didn't even realize that they aren't really that sour. Keep the lime away from me I felt. Yet, I could eat lemons any old day. The lemon I currently am drinking in my club soda tastes gross. I think it is a bit too old...kind of an almost rotty lemon taste. Not so nice. Okay...Lyme disease. I found out later, in my teens that it was a disease caused by Deer Ticks. And, that you can die from a tick bite. Well for quite a few years after that I was afraid when I was at the lake or in a park, that I would get a tick on me. I remembered how I once did find a tick on my thigh when I was about 8 years old. That tick got on me from walking through tall grass. I never got a bite from it...no evidence of one. So I was convinced that I would be okay. Still, I was leery of ticks for a few years back then.

Last week, my girlfriend told me that the mother of her good friend from growing up is dying from Lyme disease. First time I have heard about the disease in a VERY long time. And a horrible new introduction to it. How sad is that? She gets a tick bite in the Nanaimo region and now is dying from Lyme disease. Terrible. So...last night I am flipping through the TV channels and see a documentary about Lyme Disease. Wow is all I can say. There are a ton of people who are infected and subsequently affected by it. Here is the "Wikipedia" definition of Lyme Disease...
"Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne disease in the Northern Hemisphere. Borrelia is transmitted to humans by the bite of infected ticks belonging to a few species of the genus Ixodes ("hard ticks").[5] Early symptoms may include fever, headache, fatigue, depression, and a characteristic circular skin rash called erythema migrans. Left untreated, later symptoms may involve the joints, heart, and central nervous system. In most cases, the infection and its symptoms are eliminated by antibiotics, especially if the illness is treated early.[6] Delayed or inadequate treatment can lead to the more serious symptoms, which can be disabling and difficult to treat.[7] Lyme disease is a biosafety level 2 disease."

It is named after the town of Lyme, Connecticut where the first of many cases were identified back in 1975. It's not a real old disease. So you got to wonder about that. Did we (humans) create it somehow?? Many people actually suffer from it...chronically. There has been a very recent finding that the Borrelia parasite sometimes can birth a like super charged virus inside your body and can not be gotten rid of by the common anti-bacterial meds that infected persons are put on. And when you get it that bad it just takes your life from you. There was a teen aged girl who was a ballerina her whole life. And suddenly one day she couldn't properly walk. She just started to almost shrivel up. She was bound to a wheelchair...had to be fed by her parents...couldn't dress herself. She looked to me like someone who suffers from very severe cerebral palsy...not an infected tick bite. But, she was lucky enough to see a specialist in Lyme disease that got her on the right meds. The last clip they showed of her she was walking down a sunny hall...she was smiling. That was so beautiful to see. The most horrible part of this documentary to me was the fact that these wonderful Dr's, who do specialize in Lyme Disease and have the methods to give someone their life back...these Dr's are being sued by the American Medical Assoc and going bankrupt having to shut their doors. The AMA have not believed in Lyme Disease as a chronic one. They think the patients are making up their symptoms...they call them psychosomatic cases. Mean while...these "patients" are slowly dying with a parasite that is taking over the function of their bodies. How is it in your mind when you lose function of your appendages, bowels, nervous system, sight, inability to swallow or breathe...everything that allows us to live.

I don't know. The doc made me feel very sad. And again...frightened of ticks. The new evidence supporting chronic Lyme Disease hopefully gets the Dr's their licences back and helps the others win their cases to be allowed to continue treating the people affected...the "patients" that they truly do care for. The one guy had a photo of each of his patients on his wall. There were probably about 200 photos. What amazing Dr's they all are. Still continuing to help while going through hell in the court system because of their need to help others get well. We live in such a crazy world. And even crazier...I saw a headline today about Lyme Disease. I think it was in the National Post. Anyways...I think even more that I have to make sure I don't get bit by a tick. And I will have to be more careful when pulling ticks out of dogs. Something I actually enjoy doing...I know...gross. So...do animals get Lyme Disease?? Yikes!

Enough of talk about ticks. It is just on my mind today so I felt the need to write about it to get it out of my head. ;o) Anyways...the clock is a 'tick'ing and I need to get off the comp. May you be tick free!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Could it actually be spring??

I love the whole darn year...I can't ever pinpoint an exact season that I love the most. There are so many things about all four of them that I truly do love and enjoy...even feel blessed about. But, right now, it's spring. And I am really loving it. Going for a walk down at Drumbeg this morning was an incredibly pleasant surprise. The cherry blossoms are out!! There were for sure about a dozen trees that were in full bloom. All white blossoms...no pink at the Park. I love the pink flowers when they line the streets in the big old stink...AKA Vancouver. It makes the city waaaay prettier than any other city in the spring. In Manitoba, you know that it's spring when the snow melts away and leaves behind the stench of melting dog poo. Oooohhhhh breathe it in!! ha ha ha! I remember walking down the streets in the spring and having to last a minute or two without taking a breath while you are walking through a minefield of sidewalk turds. Like do the dog owners actually think that the poo their dog leaves there will just magically disappear along with the snow?? NOT!!! Anyhow, I love the West Coast spring anthem...blossoms and bulbs. I've seen a ton of daffodils out already too. My tulips are poking out of the pots they are in...yippee!!

Spring. It means time to wake the heck up...get out of the winter funk that you feel after months of dark rainy days being holed up inside your home. Hermit time galore. I don't mind the solace of winter. I don't even mind the dreary days as long as I can get out for a nice walk on the beach with Maggie...double happy when Clint comes too. The first blooms always make me want to get busy and get at 'er. You know...make things happen. We are doing some mega yard clean up here. I like the work...as long as you get to reap the benefits of that said hard work. Nice to look out your windows out to a beautiful yard. It makes life sweeter...it truly does. Lifts the spirit...and I am ALL about lifting the spirit.

I had to lift my spirits today. Spring. EVERYONE and their dog is preggers. I guess it's not just because it's spring. It seems like in the last 6 months so many of the lovely women around me are getting knocked up. ;o) And it's good. Good to have babies around. Good to keep the world fresh. It really does make me happy when friends and acquaintances announce their pregnancy. What could be better news? But...there is still a soft little voice inside of my head that wants to scream like a baby. It yells in my head, "OUGHT...why does everyone get to be pregnant but me"??? It still is a little hard on my ego. We tried for years to get pregnant. There was nothing wrong...still isn't anything wrong with either of us in terms of fertility. Clint has good swimmers, I have good tubes and ovaries and a lovely cervix I have been told! ha ha ha! So all is in good working condition...it just ain't panning out...yet. I still have faith. But, I can't hold all of my eggs (not trying to be punny here) in that one basket. I am the best Auntie ever...I truly am...ask my nieces and nephews. They are the world to me. :o) I also a surrounded by amazing girlfriends with their beautiful children that I enjoy so very much. And I know that the kids love me to. Why?? Well, I am just big old kid myself. So we just have a great time together. So forever I will be happy to be the lady that all children love when they meet me. :o) That I feel proud about. I am not bragging...just saying. ;op But, I do still get the little itsy, bitsy twinge of jealousy when I hear someones exciting news. I am so stoked for them...stoked to meet the newborn...stoked to get to know this new little human...but still wishing I could be stoked for myself. So weird how we are that way. It's all about the ego...how do we stop it?? Living in the moment and just being there and being happy about everything that is a good thing. Because good tings are good for everyone...makes sense to me.

So blossoms are on the tree...babies are blossoming in bellies and some are blossoming in the outside world too. It's a time of birth all around. And I love it. I love it all. It makes me feel happy to be alive and share my life with those around me.

Happy Spring!!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Arachna/Pyromania!

I don't even understand it myself. Pam...the arachnophobic...but I feel that description of me can and should only be used in the past tense. I WAS scared of spiders. No...let me re-phrase that...I WAS deathly afraid...horrified, terrified, distressed, disturbed and petrified of the eight legged creatures from outer space. Even the tiniest of arachnids would pull shrill screams from the depths of my panicked belly. It was quite embarrassing and even annoying at times. I truly could not help my fear. My nervousness. My incredibly high anxiety over the creepy crawly little buggers that so often pull the ol' sneak attack approach to me...or anyone for that matter. Thing is, normal people just ignore it. I had a problem. A deep set problem. Let's recount the beginning...because I was actually a teenager and old enough to remember...old enough to know better too you would think.

The year was 1991. It was November. We left the deep freeze of Winnipeg and headed south to a magical island called Montserrat. Montserrat is an island in the West Indies. You take a 10-15 minute little plane ride from Antigua to the tiny little volcanic island. A place more breath-taking than anything in my most beautiful fantasies. It truly was a magical, tropical paradise. So, being that we were living for 2 weeks on a Southern Tropical Island...I wrapped my head around the fact that there would be bugs and creatures of which the likes I have never seen in the flesh before. And I was okay with this. Even at 16 years old. I wasn't about to complain. I was just taken along to spend 2 weeks away from school...away from the frigid cold...to spend family time in a place where dreams are made of. I would have even enjoyed sleeping in a moldy tent just to have had that special time there. Anyways...we wanted to see every square inch of the wee little island. Along with the villa we rented off our friends we had a car available to us and drove all over the place. Visiting the little villages and buying their food and locally hand made products. We talked to as many people as possible. Sometimes just to have conversation and other times to find out where the best beaches or place to eat out were. (best restaurant experience ever...in this family's backyard...sitting at a huge cable spool...surrounded by the chickens we were eating and being served by the children of the house. So awesome!) One of the beaches we were directed to go to was called "Little Hideaway Beach". And hidden away it was. We had to park at the bottom of a little mountain and climb up one side, down the other to get to this amazing spot. The hike over the mountain was quite awesome. Basically walking through rain forest. Cool trees and vines and bushes and bugs and birds...and heat...lots and lots of heat. I kept to myself on this walk. Soaking in the scents and memories to last me my lifetime. Just walking the trail following my brother and sister and staying in my own little world. All of a sudden...fwoosh. My face is covered in spider web...I walked right through it. Yucky! I just swept the web off of my face and kept on hiking. Then again...fwoosh. argh! I open my eyes to swipe it off again. But this time there is a shiny black/brown spider with reddy/orange spots dangling between my eyes. I scream bloody murder and start flailing like an idiot. I am crying and screaming and crying and hitting my face and feeling creepy crawlies all over me. My mom rushes to me to see what has just happened. I am trying to talk through my screams and begging her to take them off of me. She is saying there is nothing on me but I can feel millions of spiders crawling all over my body now. I just start running...as fast as I can. I run all the way down the mountain and dive into the awaiting blue waves to wash me of all my hallucinations of grandeur. ha ha! It was just only ever that one spider but it scared me so bad I started to hallucinate. I was traumatized. Seriously traumatized. I got over it that day because how could I not. I had some sun bathing to get to and snorkeling to enjoy. Even build some sand creatures...well, bury my sister in the sand and make her look like a mermaid with big boobies! :o) Well...that one incident DID in fact stay with me. It stayed with me hard core for 17 years.

A few months before we moved over to Gabriola I realized that I had no choice but to get over my pathetic fear. I only call it pathetic because really, spiders ain't all that bad. I mean come on. I am 5'6"...120 lbs. That must be at the very least one zillion times the size and height of your regular everyday house spider. Especially a Daddy Long Legs. They can't weigh more than the tiniest feather. Here is my trick. Every time I saw a spider...yes, even the teeny, tiny ones that no one but an arachnophobic moron would notice...I would force myself to get close to them and stare right into their eyes. Don't know where their eyes even are cause sometimes all you see is grossness...but I would stare them down. I started with the tiny ones and worked my way up from there. When we moved to Gabriola my very good friend Megan (she's so smart) bought me two things as a housewarming present. 1. Book on how to deer proof your garden...VERY important here on deer island. 2. A spider catcher. This thing is the best contraption ever in the history of spider catching...not killing devices. Because, I don't really want them all to die even though that is all I would ever scream for years. "KILL THAT SPIDER!!!!" What makes my life so much more important than theirs? They have a real job to do too. Soooo, anyways...this spider catcher...awesome. It is a trap door like thing-a-majiggy. You trap them in this clear plastic tent like dome and then you can bring them outside into your garden or drop them in the grass. But the most awesome thing about this "Spider Trap" is the clear plastic. Once they are inside you can stare at them so closely and they will NEVER be able to jump on you or shoot their web in your face or try and bite you. You are safe as the trap holder. It comes from Lee Valley...go and buy one. Having the ability now to stare evil right in the face I have overcome my fear. And I know now that it truly is no longer a fear because of what happened yesterday...

We had a big old burn in the afternoon. Our yard is chock full of wood debris...and paper garbage stuff too. So we really needed to have a big fire. Out of one of the boxes of paper crap came this big huge wood spider. Like, he was really big. But I didn't freak out. I watched him walk away from the flames and then walk back. I thought he was quite dumb actually for going back towards the heat. A few minutes later Clint spotted him about 10 feet away from the burn pile...just chilling on the rock. I think he may have gotten a bit too close to the heat as one of his legs had a little blister on it. (I noticed it in the photo)
But...my recognition of my loss of my fear came when I had no problem placing a toonie beside his body. I didn't flinch or tense up. I just did it. And he didn't seem to mind me around either. It was like he too realized the strength I had to do this feat and he was proud of me. Also, probably happy I did not smoosh him with my runner.














Anyhow, it was a great day. I got to have a huge burn in our front yard and enjoy for a brief moment the company of one big, bad ass spider. I wonder if he enjoyed the burning of the rotten wishing well...I sure did! Look at it BURN!!


Friday, March 18, 2011

Gobble, Gobble, Gobble, Gobble.

I love turkey...they are pretty cute/ugly birds...and they taste awesome to boot! lol Do you know what I mean by cute/ugly?? Like Mick Jagger. He is sexy/ugly. He is not the most attractive guy in the world...but he knows how to work it. He is a very cool rock star and he's got the moves. Seriously. Watch an old Stones Video like "Start Me Up". I LOVE his "pigeon" dance! He's awesome. But he is no turkey. Or maybe he is. My dad always calls bad drivers and people that tick him off turkeys. Ha ha ha! I can remember sitting in the backseat while dad was driving and when someone cut him off or did some bonehead maneuver dad would yell "You turkey!!!" hee hee. Also, my dad is really good at doing the turkey sound. I wish I had it on audio so I could listen to it over and over sometimes. Makes me laugh so hard. But, it's even funnier to see his face when he does it! He has some awesome jowls...they move pretty sweet when he shakes his head. So maybe I wish I had it on video...next time I see him...I will vid him doing it. Just for my own giggles! ;o)

Gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble...is what is called out the window of my car yesterday morning while driving to the Village. We have Wild Turkeys living in our neighbourhood. There are 3 males and I think 4 or 5 ladies. They are always walking up Dirksen Rd near the cop shop...taking up the road so you actually have to honk at them to make them move. It makes me laugh...out loud. Anyhow, yesterday the 3 males were on the side of the road. The one dude had his tail feathers all spread out as my car approached them. I think he was thinking of charging me. They are very temperamental, these Wild Turkeys here. Like I think the one guy has a hurt foot from probably getting hit by one the passing cars because he chased it! ;op So, I slowed down to a crawl as I was beside them...rolled down my window and started to gobble as dad would do. Well...the big puffed up dude kind of shrank back and joined the other two dudes who must have been just as perplexed as big ol' puffy feathers. He must have been saying to himself... "Why is there a turkey in that car"? I am boasting of my very own turkey gobble sound making...I'm pretty good at doing it. Years of mimicking my dad, I guess! lol I would like to run into the turkeys when I am on my bike or walking. I wonder if they would allow me to approach them...maybe even pet them! That would be awesome. I don't need to eat these guys even though I'm sure they are quite tasty. These guys have got major personality. They are street stalkers! I need to find out what turkeys like to eat...maybe chicken!

I will have to get a better photo of them. I have this one...as lame as it is. There was someone driving behind us so Clint wouldn't stop to let me take a better pic. But they are ALWAYS around. Maybe Maggie and I should go for a little walk. :o)

Here's to the Wild Turkeys...may they live long and prosper!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Jacques Choc LeBloque...BlackJack Shellac.

There are so many little things that Clint and I can come up with to parallel our lives to one another...from a young age even. It's just how the universe aligned to bring the two of us together. And to even share our memories before our memories were even personally linked. I don't know if I am even making much sense...I make sense to me. I always make sense to me. Let me make more sense of what I am thinking to myself...ha ha haha!

Westwood/Unicity Winnipeg. Clint was born in 1971 and was brought home from the hospital to his house on Doran Bay.
My Omi and Opi had recently moved to Freemont Bay...3 years later I was born. You can see on the inserted map how close these Bays are to one another. There even was a little walkway between two homes on Fairlane Ave that brought you to Doran Bay. But, by the time I was born, Clint and his family had moved away from that home. Although, he still ended up in the same neighbourhood...just across Portage Avenue. I can remember walking or biking over to Doran Bay because of the walk way. It's a little parallel life match there. He remembers the back lane behind Omi & Opi's house. It took you right to the doors of Unicity Mall. Us kids (my bro, sis and later on my cousins) would walk there often when having sleepovers at Omi & Opi's...fun times. ;o)

Growing up, we spent a lot of our time out at Lake Nutimik. Our church was affiliated with Lake Nutimik Baptist Camp. We would go to Family Camp weekends, Church picnics, camp clean-up weekends...of course I would spend a week each summer at camp there too. I loved the lake so very much. My cousins even had a trailer out there. Such an awesome place to spend time. Clint also spent much of his younger years out there. His family had a cabin at Dorothy Lake. Which was just up the highway from Nutimik. You pass Dorothy Lake on the highway and drive about 10 minutes further to get to Nutimik. I am sure we must have passed each other at least once in all of those years...either going to the museum where the big old stuffed black bear loomed over everyone in the tiny cabin or to Blueberry Hill for yummy blueberries or to enjoy some rigorous cliff jumping...maybe even passs each other at the candy aisle at the corner store in Opapiskwa. Either way, it's fun to reminisce together with him about that area...we both have so many fond memories. Oh yeah...driving to the dump to watch the black bears too!! ha ha ha!

Clint used to be a driver for Pepsi...for like years. He would say for EVER. Well, it was 11 years of his life...so that can seem like a very long time when it is a truly and incredibly labour intensive job. He can tell you a story or two...and you can see him once in a while pushing his stool/walker when his back goes out. Because of his memories of parts of the job, I can say without doubt, that you do NOT want to see the back rooms of most stores or restaurants. Don't even think about it! Yeeeesh. Anyhow, he pretty much covered places all over Winnipeg. He would do deliveries to the Redi-Mart...that was the little corner store beside my High School. The place we would go at breaks and lunch time...lunch for my 99 cent pizza pop! I remember seeing Pepsi and Coke trucks parked out front of the store making delieveries...maybe once we passed each other. I probably would have thought he was a hottie and giggled to my girlfriends about it. Had I been who I am today, I surely would have said something directly to him. Like "hey...you are cute!" Not super thrilling...but I was 15 years old...didn't know how to lure them in yet. But I was a shy gal back then...well shy to the guys...for the most part. ;op He also would have delivered to all of the restaurants I ever worked at in Winnipeg...maybe even while I was in the building. I was the morning hostess, coming in first thing for opening duties for over a year at Grapes Pier 7. :o) Possibly could have seen his gorgeous face then too.

Anyways...there are so many things that him and I discuss and realize we have crossed paths thousands of times before we actually met one another. Concerts, the beach, the park...yadda yadda yadda. Back to Jacques and BlackJack. My dad is a pretty silly fellow. A guy who likes to have fun and laugh and just enjoy life...thanks for handing some of that down to me Daddy'o! ;o) We used to go for Sunday drives at least once a month. We would drive out to Kenora, ON or go to St. Norbert to he big park or go check out the open show homes in a newly developed neighbourhood (I actually loved doing this...my mom would obviously be dreaming about new things to do in our home and I could imagine living in my own grand home...just like my Barbie doll). lol Didn't matter what we did or where we went...we always had an adventure. Singing to the 50's, 60's and 70's Reader's Digest tapes...telling funny stories and dad making us all laugh. He would sometimes talk in a French accent would call himeself the name Jacques Choc LeBloque. It was just a made up name. I used to say it all of the time too...it sounds best when you say it with a thick heavy as good as you can do French accent. Anyhow...the funny part about that is...Clint's dad made up the name BlackJack Shellac!! It's like almost the same name...sooooo close! When we realized that, it was just too much. We truly are meant for one another! lol I do believe that statement to be true no matter how paralleled our lives can seem. He is the one for me...and I surely am the one for him. Hallelujah! All I can say is that I am a happy woman with an amazing man by my side.

Jacques Choc & BlackJack together forever!!
This is how I imagine BlackJack to look like. Clint had 2 cowboy "dolls"...like the GI Joe dolls. He had a beard and was dressed in black. So he named him BlackJack Shellac. I'm sure it made his dad proud! ;op


Cheers to Jacques Choc and BlackJack! hee hee!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Eggs = Energy for Walkies!

Mmmmmm...fresh, free range organic eggs. Nothing is quite the same. That is, if you fancy eating eggs...not everyone does. In fact, I was the biggest hater of eggs for most of my life. I only ate the whites when they were hard boiled...I would give my dad my yolk to eat. This would happen each and every Easter at the breakfast table while enjoying the Easter eggs we found hidden in the house. I enjoyed the colouring and dying of the hard boiled eggs...I just didn't want to have to eat them. The only other time besides Easter that I was ever given a hard boiled egg...my mom eventually had to force feed it to me, as I refused to put it in my mouth. She shoved the whole egg in my mouth...without a moments delay, the egg came spewing out of my mouth with such force that it flew out of the kitchen, through the family room and landed between the TV and piano. As it flew my brother yelled "Super Egg!!" Oh the memories. ha ha ha ha! Anyhow...I love eggs now. Especially when they don't come from a chicken all caged up and nowhere to go and nothing to do but lay. Boo. We bought some eggs from Russell's chickens the other day. Oh my. They are beautiful chickens...and they live in the most excellent coop and property. Their run is big and cool and has a better view than 90% of Gabriolans. These are happy chickens I tell you. And well taken care of. They lay the best eggs I have ever eaten...for real. He sells them out of a little shed at Peterson and South Rd...at the anchor. Clint just painted some signage...the frame is still being built for it...
but even the sign will lure the people and they will never be unsatisfied with eggs again. Life will surely be sweeter for all that eat these wonderful eggs. Hee hee...maybe not, but you will have a delectable meal out of them and therefore feel happy because of it. And what an excellent way to start off your day. ;o)

So, yesterday I made myself a fried egg sandwich to give me some energy to get out of this house and enjoy a walk in the hood with Maggie May. In the carton of eggs that we bought was a Blue Egg!! Yes...BLUE. It looks so sweet nestled in the carton sitting pretty amongst the other little brown eggs. Well...I thought it looked so sweet...it made me want to take a picture. ha ha! It's the little things in life that I truly do enjoy so much. ;o) The egg may be special because it is blue...but it is also still an egg and I bought the carton to eat all 12 eggs inside. So that is exactly what I did...crack.
Next, I added a brown one to the pan...crack.
The yolks on these eggs are also quite amazing. Big and delicious...soooo good for you. But, can't overdo the egg thing. C stands for cholesterol...eggs have a whole heck of a lot of that stuff. Good and not so good for you. Moderation is key as with anything else that is so yummy. And yummy was the perfect word for my fried
egg sandwich. I added some spices to the butter for the big fry...mmm. Then all I had to add to the bread was a bit of mayo. A dash of paprika to the fried eggs...and, because there were sesame seeds staring right at me...I sprinkled some of that on top of the eggs. And wouldn't you know...they actually tasted good on my sandwich. Pam's Fried Egg Sandwich...Supremo! The yellow colour is not mustard...that is free range happy yolk colour.

Anyhow, it was that very sandwich that gave me, Pam, the energy to get my lazy "but it's raining" butt outside and take Maggie for a nice walk. And a walk we took. It was lightly drizzling...just sprinkles on my jacket. I decided to walk up the main road to the side of our house. The new place is right on the corner of two roads...we have two driveways...
ooooh fancy! ;op It's a bit of an uphill walk. But it's not a huge hill...it stops quickly. But then you round a corner and there is a huge long hill. Downhill first. It always seems like downhill is so easy...but when the grade is at about 8-10% and it goes for 300 feet...your legs start to feel the burn. Maggie's legs were feeling it too. She was taking it really slow. But it was nice. The drizzle was barely there...we walked along a flowing rain creek...sounds so pretty. Taking that route is actually very peaceful I found out. There is only houses on one side of the road and they are surrounded by trees...it's a dead end road so it's not trafficky...you get peace. You get peace and really sore thighs. ;o) Walking up the hill was amazing exercise. My thighs were burning and I kept a good pace even while walking in my gumboots. Maggie looked like she was going to kick the bucket. She took it at her leisure...good on ya Maggie May! She had a great nap when we got home.

This morning we got up early and drove to the south end...Drumbeg...went for a stroll in the wind. I didn't know there was a giant earthquake in Japan. I heard after I got back from my walk. The waves seemed big...but it was super windy. We are supposed to see some effect from it. We'll see. I am sending love and prayers to all affected by the earthquake and aftermath. Peace.

video...a little vid of our windy walk today...

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The rain in Spain makes me insane...

Not exactly Spain here...but it sure is raining like mad again. I mean, the rain ain't all that bad. There are some things that I actually do like about the wet stuff that so often spouts out of our skies out West. The sound of the rain on a tin/metal roof and sky lights...peaceful sounds that can lull you asleep. And the fact that winter rain is bone chilling, those peaceful sounds make cozying up with a burning wood stove so much better. I really wish there was some chopped firewood right now...I would roar me up a fierce and hot fire! I am not the greatest at chopping...I have done it mind you...and I ain't as terrible as you may think. It's just way hard for me to do. and right now I can barely hold my arm up to type...me don't think attempting some wood chopping would do any one any good. ;op So, I will fire up the propane forced air furnace heat when I feel too much of a chill. I love it. All I need to do if I am feeling cold is turn the thermostat on and to 20. 1 minute later hot air starts blowing out of the floor vents and into my nice, dry home. Life of luxury out here I tell ya. I feel quite spoiled...thanks LL Cool Jans. (that's what I call my landlord...he's cool) ha ha!

Interesting...I think the rain may have actually just stopped. I hope that is it for today. I want to go walking with Maggie. Normally, the rain does not deter us from taking our daily walks. But, that was when we were a less than 10 minute walk to the best beach on Gabriola. Walking on the beach in the rain is sweet...you are mostly 100% alone...beach all to yourself. Sweet perfection. At the new place, we have a neighbourhood to walk in...just not quite the same. I guess it is a little like the city to me and so kind of bums me out. Wow, I totally sound like a South end snob! ha ha ha haaaa! It is sooooo NOT like the city here. I didn't really mean that. All I meant to say was that I liked our neighbourhood before for the peace and quiet, privacy and hardly ever seeing anyone. Perfect for hermitting. On this street we actually have neighbours right beside us...they happen to be awesome though...thanks goodness!! It is an actual Gabriola Neighbourhood. Houses side by side. But far away side by side...like the space in between the homes on my street range from 30-100 feet. In the city it's more like 10-15 feet. So case in point...my new hood is not city...it's just more densely populated. And that is okay. hee hee hee

I guess I am going to have to actually get dressed now. Time to go for walkies. Oh, I got to have eggs first...energy! ;o) While walking, Maggie and I can reminisce about the good old days and beach walks and treasures we find along the way. And we'll make new memories in the new hood. Ba-bye Starfishies...til we meet again.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Maaaaaan.

It's just too much work! Changing music over...you know...from cd to Ipod. We have like a gazillion cds between the two of us. Sitting here at my computer and ripping each one to my Itunes could take me months and months of monotonous computer work. Open cd drive/put cd in/close cd drive/wait for it to notice cd spinning/choose rip cd/add to Itunes/add track names if needed/eject cd/put next cd in/close cd drive...and continue to do that about 500 times. I have no idea really how many cds we do have. There is a ton of them though...that, I do know. And we still buy cds once in a while. They come pretty cheap for some oldies but goodies. Even new cds seem like they are priced fairly reasonable these days. But really, who wants to waste all of that space on cds. I love having the album art and all that comes with that...but so much space is required to have that. This is our "cd rack".
It looks like about 500 cases to me. Plus the blue case you can see in the bottom shelf holds 120 cds...those are all of the cds that I burned and ones that were missing or had broken cases. In the last place it looked so much worse because all of the cds were out. And when a cd gets played...they don't get put back in their case when a new one gets put on. Well, that is until I get to the stereo and find the amazing mess of loose cds, open cases , beer cans or coffee cups, album covers out...I just sigh and find the proper cases for the cds that are left out to get scratched and broken. No...I do not have a problem with it at all...I do not obsess over cds not being put away. Ugh. Yes I do. Sorry honey for my craziness...it's not as bad I make it out to be...just my insanity kicking in. But at least my insanity helps keep the place somewhat in order for the most part. hee heee heeee! Anyhow, I am getting rid of a lot of cds now too. Stuff we NEVER listen too. Or cds that were burned for me I will just put on itunes and give away the cd. Good stuff I tell ya. ;o) Time to buy a stronger Ipod...mine is 1gb. Don't laugh at me...I bought it like 4 or 5 years ago and it still cost me nearly $200!! Anyways, buy a new ipod and docking station and arrive in the age of higher technology. Now where to get the $ from! lol

Funny how these things are always changing. I never bought records myself. My parents owned a ton of them and I played them all of the time. But we also had tapes...the "new technology" at the time. So when I started buying my own music at age 10, I was purchasing tapes. And by the time cds were all of the rage I probably had about 4-500 tapes. And it's not like there was any technology to transform your tapes into cds. You just had to start replacing them. That was a costly procedure. But you could also at the time bring your old tapes into "Into The Music" on Osborne St in Winnipeg and make a bit of cash. If they were tapes that they were looking for you'd get $2-$4 a tape. They didn't take everything obviously. So let me think for a moment. I believe the first time that I bought a cd for myself I was 19 years old. It was for my first apartment with my roommate Merrit. She had a stereo that played cds...tapes too...but cds sounded cool and they were so easy to use. I guess I did have Madonna's Immaculate Collection already. My sister in law bought it for me...but back then she was just my brother's girlfriend. :o) That was for my eighteenth birthday. And I lived at home still listening to all of my brother's music...playing his cds in the living room stereo. (My 'Ghetto Blaster' only played tapes and radio.) Anyhow...after that I was hooked on buying them...slowly dwindling my tape collection. Although, I still have about 15 tapes. I just can't let them go. I don't even listen to them...I just want to have them. Hoarder!!! ha ha ha haaaa!

It's all just a process I don't like. Change is good I know...but I also enjoy what I am comfortable with. So I eventually plug in. Another new technology item I would like one day is a lap top. Imagine that...freedom to be in whatever room you like and still be able to do what you need. Wow...technology. Maaaaan, it's good but it's also annoying. Peace out.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Blessings...

they come in so many different ways. A new day...the sunshine...a morning walk with friends and Maggie...a warm home...cheap insurance. ha ha ha ha!! Insurance on the brain. Ugh. I just realized that my car insurance expired at midnight...so I am driving uninsured AND I also don't have a front plate. The front plate fell of somewhere along the way back in June. ;op Now I have to get two new plates and remember the new number...boo. But, the blessing is that because I am such an awesomely fabulous driver with years of "street cred" I get the max discount every year...plus because I am "disabled" I get a further 25% off. Yeah baby...membership has it's privileges! hee hee! Anyways...it's nice to have wee little car payments every month. Now, because I am going into the insurance place anyhow, I feel that I might as well get it all over and done with and change my tenants insurance too. Too much paperwork and small talk waiting for papers to print. I don't have the mind capacity to be talkative today. My mind is tired because my body is beaten down. I am having trouble thinking about what I am even writing about as I am typing it all out...huh? Blessings. ha!

I just really feel good today. This weekend we got a whole heck of a lot done in the house. LOTS of cleaning and putting of stuff away. Got the laundry area all spic and spanned...nice to clean clothes again. Clint got all of the storage boxes underneath in the crawl space...hooray!! That was a BIG job. Thanks my love. No way I could have even attempted doing it. But I was able to do muchos cleaning once all of the boxes were outta my way...which is all I needed. So now today I am trying to actually take it easy on myself. No cleaning. Maybe I can do a little more of putting stuff away...but maybe not. I was planning, originally to go to Nanaimo today and do a big costco/stuperstore run...but that is a lot of work actually. So, I met up with Frank, Jodie and baby Ferenz at Drumbeg first thing this morning for a lovely walk. Then back here for muffins and tea...yum! The place is ALMOST ready for entertaining. In a week for sure there will not be a single box in sight...I am just taking my time. It feels weird because generally I am done unpacking and cleaning within the first week. I feel a bit lazy because it is not all done. But I just need to take it easy...I am not able to be on top of things like I usually am...and that's okay. It is okay to let ourselves breathe once in a while and not break ourselves and stress out to the max over such minuscule things. My ocd is too much at times...take a breath...deep!

Anyhow...Drumbeg was beautiful as always. 9 am blessing of the sun sun on the water...yeah Gabriola!!!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Oi Vey!

Don't know if I spelled it right...but it looks and sounds exactly how I feel...Oi vey! The move...what move...did I just move? I don't recall spending 3 mad days moving boxes, furniture and crap, plus hours of relentless cleaning. I totally don't remember it at all. ;op But, what I can say is that my fingers are mostly numb, I can not lift my arm up more than half way without needing to screech out in pain, my shoulder is clicking and feeling like the tendons deep inside there are wound too tight and are about to snap. I have worked my big butt of this past weekend. And it keeps going. The new place is rad...it just needs a little cleaning. By a little cleaning I mean a lot. Oh, he's a super fine fellow, and a good friend. But I have learned his dirty little secret...he is dirty. Or WAS a dirty ol' bachelor living in his home with his trusty side companion the big German Shepherd. You know, the "man pad". Things don't get cleaned in a "man pad"...never. And I am the super fortunate chosen one to do the big...er...massive job of cleaning up after him, his dog and his drinking buddies. Yes! ;op No big deal really. I usually do a clean job after I am moved into a new place. I mean everyone cleans when they move...but I like to deep clean and know that anything that is gross or messy is my doing. So I have no one to blame but me. I like it that way. And I am clean so I never have to blame myself anyways! lol

Anyhow...I am happy to be living here. I miss the old place...the privacy on 5 acres...hardly any neighbours. A short walk down to my favourite beach. So today, I took Maggie for a walk in the new hood. House after house...it's like city living again...but still in the sticks. ;o) It feels a wee bit odd being back in a neighbourhood. I had gotten used to living "all the way" on the South Side. I could be at home or out on the property and not see a soul...total privacy. I sometimes didn't even want or feel the need to leave the place. I hermitted a whole heck of a lot over the past 2 years...and I did enjoy it. I am excited for the change now. Seeing people on the streets and all of the different houses. We live so much closer to most everyone and everything now too. In fact, earlier today I rode my bike to the Village to eat a sandwich from Raspberry's. It took me 10 minutes to get there...10 quite grueling minutes I will admit. The slightest incline is pretty tough on my bike. It has no gears...cool little blue beach cruising bike. I paid $7.35 for it at the GIRO and I love her. I don't think I even named her...but she has "BEACHCOMBER" printed on the side of middle bar in pink. So I guess she came with a name. It's a hard ride getting up the hills and there are quite a few from here to the Village. But I made it...on 0 energy. I hadn't eaten yet...no fuel in my belly. The sandwich fixed that right up and I was ready to head back to the homestead...back to Maggie :o) and Wensday. Maggie, who is now officially our dog. She came along the move with us and is quite happy to have done so. I can now call myself mom! ;op Anyhow...I went outside and my bike was wet and it was raining...oops. I hopped on the bike, went to the Co-op to fill my tires with air and headed off for home...rain punching my eyeballs. After walking my bike up the first big hill Ashley pulls up beside me...hauls my bike in to the back of her car and brings me home. Hurrah!!! I bought her some tulips for being so awesome. I also bought myself some tulips...add some sweetness to the home that is still partly in boxes and waiting for the big clean. Tomorrow I start with the oven...

Before my arm falls off I got to get off this keyboard...wonder what's on the boob tube...