Monday, November 3, 2008

Hunting Again

I had to write about hunting again because I had such a wonderful weekend! Although I don't usually hunt by myself I did make an exception. I still have to apologise to my mom for going out alone. I did carry a cell phone with me and was close to the farm house.

Here's how my Saturday unravelled...

5:20 drag myself out of bed after 3 hours of sleep following late night hockey

6:30 make sure I have everything I need for hunting... realize I am missing my gloves and rifle

6:40 get on the road and listen to another Hercules Poirot Murder Mystery by Agatha Christie

7:50 arrive at Mary's house and say hi

8:30 walk out to the muskeg and field to find a nice spot in front of a willow in tall grass to sit and enjoy the view

8:35 spot deer walking straight towards me and start to shake with excitement (I really need to work on delaying the shaking until after I shoot)

8:37 wait for deer to walk closer and am amazed that it is still walking towards me

8:39 shoot said deer

8:40 find deer, calm down and gut deer by self

9:20 walk back to house to ask if I can drive into the field to get deer

9:30 Mary, Ray and myself hop in their truck to get the deer together

9:45 take lots of pictures

10:00 hang deer with tractor - this is cool!!! skin deer

10:45 go hunt coyotes with Mary, miss coyote and scare others away

11:45 quarter deer

12:30 eat lunch care of Mary - YUM!!

1:00 go pick rocks for my garden with Ray and Mary

2:00 think about going back into the field after a cup of tea to hunt coyotes

2:15 guests arrive

4:30 lay down for a nap before driving back to Edmonton in daylight

5:30 wake up for supper before driving back to Edmonton in daylight

6:30 have one more cup of tea and apple pie before driving back to Edmonton in dark

8:20 get home exhausted with a deer to deal with...

Hunting at Ray and Mary's place was a real treat. And now I think I am done hunting for the season. I have some wonderful msg free garlic sausage and am contemplating having jalepeno/cheese smokies made up.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


I am sure you are all wondering about my hunting habits. This blog is to enlighten you. =)

Carefully placed footsteps echoing thunderously on crunching leaves.

Sharp eyes scanning for the elusive doe...

Until they glaze over as my brain starts to think about a picture I should take for my blog and how should I write...

I had a wonderful day last weekend. You can all admire me in the picture... if you can see me =) I'm below the orange hat.

I spotted a deer from 200m down a pipeline and proceeded to creep along the edge of the forest quieter than the dozen voles I spotted. After about 100m I could no longer see the deer and thought they had run off... buy my pal Rich was still sitting where I left him... so I kept going. Finally I stood up to take a better peak and stepped on the loudest twig of the day. Up popped a head 20 meters away... Rich could see me and the deer in his binoculars at the same time. WOW!!! Anyways... I hesitated... I've never taked a head shot... needless to say I startled it and two others... =(

My heart racing from the excitement I turned back to meet up with Rich. I had a good time.

I did shoot an 18 month old deer and had some wonderful garlic sausage made up at Victoria Meats - they don't use MSG!!!

Ecologically Minded

I am watching the history channel and it is telling me what would happen to earth if all the humans died... it is very interesting.

It is sad the number of animals that would initailly die. Pets trapped in houses, pets hunted by packs of dogs, domestic fenced in livestock... They say that the last reported serious dog packing was after Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. Large zoo animals may be okay as they can escape once electricity fails. But they will need to migrate south to find sufficient food and not freeze come winter.

But in the long run, the Eiffel Tower will rust and collapse. And although the Statue of Liberty's skin is copper, its skeleton is iron the the arm holding the torch will detach from the shoulder and fall to the ground to be admired only by the local wildlife.

The spillway of the Hoover Dam will eventually erode and fail and the power of the water rushing down river will supposedly demolish any dams blocking the way to reach the ocean and allow fish to once again swim upstream.

Oh... and the spent nuclear waste stored in buildings for cooling will heat up after electricity fails and evenually cause an explosiion spreading nuclear waste and killing surrounding life... I missed how long it will take to recover.

But without all our body heat, the temperature of the globe is supposed to decrease!!! WOW!!

Eventually the show says we will have another ice age in 25000 years and any remains of the Statue of Liberty will be wiped out.

The good news is that in the end the earth will clean up after us... by degrading anything degradable and burying everything non degradable... though it will take a really long time.

So if you want to leave a mark... put something on the moon as most artifacts and craters are preserved there. =)

Oh right... but what struck me is my admiration of stainless steel, which is long lasting so I won't have to replace my cookware... environmental I thought... well it will still be around centuries after I die!!!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Blind Date

Okay, I have a cute, happy story. The photo is of me at work. Notice the sign in the background =)

I went biking with my friend Val on Sunday and she had just bought a new tire pump. Well needless to say it came without instructions and we thought we set it up right but it didn't work. As I have become lazy and don't carry my biking bag at the moment we did not have another pump. But there was this guy across the parking lot who looked like a serius biker so I went over introduced myself, explained the problem and asked if he had a pump we could borrow. Of course he did but the offered to look at Val's pump first. He was cute, had a beautiful smile and was a friendly biker. WOW!!

So after biking, his truck was still there so I left a note...

"Thanks for your help today Chris. If you're single and interested in going fot a hot cocoa call me... =) Nicole"

Well he called me later that day!! WOW!!

Turns out he loves hot chocolate. So we talked a bit and I found out that sadly he was not single. But he was flattered by the note and thought if I was brave enough to leave a note, that I might be brave enough to go on a blind date with one of his friends... ... OK. So he told me a bit about his friend... single, never married, no kids... he sure knows the words that warm a woman's heart. =)

I'll keep you posted. He still has to ask his friend if he's interested in going on a date with me.


Thursday, October 2, 2008

Dating Blunder

You'll be happy to know I went on a date with someone new last night. Here's what happened. He suggested we go for a bike ride. As he was picking me up and I called him to let him know I was ready, there was really no excuse for me to be late or not ready. So of course I was ready. He showed up and was surprised that I was ready and said, "Don't you want to have a drink before we go?" Of course, how silly of me. =)

So we stood out on my deck drinking water and watching stars. He pointed out the Big Dipper. I geekily replied, "Actually that's Pegasus, not the Big Dipper. You can tell because... The Big Dipper is hidden..." In hindsight, telling him he was wrong the first time we met was probably not the brightest idea I have ever had. But really who wants to live with the misconception that Pegasus is the Big Dipper?!!? What would you have said!?!?

He also really doesn't like plants. =(

Cheers. Next date with someone new is on Saturday night.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Corn in Pots

Here's what I heard about growing corn in pots.

I am not sure of the pot size, but I assume it should be fairly large to hold sufficient soil and water for the corn. I have some old tree pots (16" dia.) I'll be using for the first summer, if it works then I'll invest in prettier pots... eventually.

Corn likes well drained soil and full sun and shelter from wind. I'm planting the corn off to the west side of my yard where I don't currently have anything planted because it floods every spring. I figure I'll start the seeds inside so they have a head start and then transplant them out in late May after the last frost. Hopefully by then the water will also have drained out of my yard.. I think it drains by mid April. The corn will add a decorative touch to my yard by covering the fence and looking pretty, but I'm expecting it will taste delicious too.

When planting them, it is important to have the corn growing in a clump, or a block if you like an organized garden. Read the seed package for the appropriate spacing, but I think it would be good to plant in a block of 4x4 to 6x6. I think not less than 4x4 because I seem to recall my friend Joanne mentioning that one needs to plant at least 4 rows of corn for successful polination. She had really nice corn plants when I last saw them.

I understand corn is wind pollinated, not insect pollinated. By planting the seeds in close proximity the corn will touch each other as they mature thereby facilitating fertilization by neighbouring plants when the pollen falls down. I am going to try this next summer!! =)

Also, I was informed Borche is spelled Borscht. I knew I should have used the spell checker. =)

Also, I did not get any tickets on Saturday morning. The officer and I had a discussion about where I lived, that I just finished playing hockey and needed to go home to bed, and that I should roll down my windows and drive home safely. Yes, I am a mix of humbled, embarassed, and thankful.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Garden Harvest

I hear that September is the time to pull the garden... now when in September is the tricky part... before the frost. Why don't I read the farmer's almanac!!!???

Well, thankfully the weekend I chose to pull the garden was the right choice. Last weekend I pulled my garden in, Tuesday it froze.

I dug the potatoes, pulled onions, ate the last strawberries, picked tomatoes, picked the immature zucchini and carrots... next year I may plant my garden a little earlier =) So what can I do with a zillion pinky sized carrots? Wash them, shred them and make carrot/apple/chocolate chip/flaxseed muffins of course. YUM!! But then I ended up with twice as much carrot as I need, and still had to deal with the 4 inch long zucchinis... heck I can make zucchini/ carrot/pecan/milk chocolate nugget/chocolate muffins. =) Okay, I admit I did miss supper, I ate two muffins at 10pm instead. They were really good!!! YUM!!! Yeah, baking is best started early in the evening or on the weekend to prevent missing my bedtime.

And if you are wondering about the tomatoes... no I still don't like fresh tomatoes, I thought they might be good for salsa or pasta sauce.

I still have lots of carrots, so today, if it works out I am going to make soup... but I have four soups to make. Borche, butternut squash, carrot and stew... well stew may not be a soup. I made borche for the first time about a week ago and wow! I make good borche. I only made a small batch in case it didn't turn out, but now that I know it will turn out, I'm going to make some and freeze it for lunches. I love warm soup lunches. But borche everyday would be tiresome, and thus the need to make a variety.

Next year I want to plant corn in pots, heard about it at Hole's. That would be so beautiful! I have the spot selected, I just need to modify it a bit next year... remove some grass. At the rate I'm going I may not have much grass in five years. Why did I buy a lawn mower?

Well, since I played hockey last night I'd best go lay down for a nap so I have energy to make soup later today. =)

Acupuncture and Late Night Hockey

Let's start with some handy advice. If you play hockey late at night and then go out for food when you know you are really tired and should go home, but succumb to peer pressure because you don't go out that often... it is likely that when you start to drive home and doze off at a set of lights next to a police cruiser, that the police cruiser will pull you over and ask what's happening. Today if AMA is open I am registering my car and updating my driver's licence address. Not to worry, I did make it home okay.

But on to acupuncture. A few years ago I had heard that acupuncture could be good for my allergies!! WHAT!!!??? WOW!!! So I found an allergy specialist and made an appointment. He refused to treat me if I didn't stop drinking milk and eating dairy products. Needless to say, I still drink milk and eat cheese and yogurt frequently.

I was at a party a few weeks back playing guitar hero... when I was persuaded to try acupunture again. I was recommended to a lady here in Edmonton and I made sure she was okay with me drinking milk. HURRAY!!! She said my diet seems fairly decent, but to avoid raw vegetables and salads. You can stop your laughing. I only eat popcorn for supper occasionally, it's just you remember when I say I ate popcorn and not when I ate that marvelous butternut squash soup with ravioli.

So I am super excited to be trying acupuncture to desensitize me to my allergies. If it all works out I may be visiting you indoor pet lovers for longer than 5 minutes!! =) So far I've noticed my lungs were more open, my nose was stuffy and I sleep really deep.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Pulling Posts 101

Thankyou to Jamie and Sarah for lending me their jack alls for pulling posts at the farm with my mom. I have to admit, it was an adventure. Here's how it played out.

1. Ask friends for a heavy duty jack.

2. Discover there are a number of different types of jacks.

3. Explain to friends my intensions with the jack.

4. Discover there are multiple ways to pull out a post.

5. Make back up plans and buy supplies for plan one.

6. Drive to farm, wake up, ask mom why she has a taxidermied mouse on the wall, decipher it is actually a bat that has been in the house for a week, trap bat and carry it to tree outside, hope it is still alive.

7. Execute plan 1: Use tow strap and truck to loosen post #1 in ground, hit cement skirt with pick axe because the sledge hammer is lost, attach 2x4 to post using 1/4 inch bolt-style screws, set up jacks on paving stones, jack up post #1 still in cement; bust 2x4.

8. Execute plan 2: Use tow strap and truck to rip post #2 out of cement, go to store to buy 1/2 inch bolts, drill hole in post #2 and 4x4 for bolt, jack up post #2 ripped out of cement = SUCCESS!!! I should have taken a picture... sigh. Move 4x4/bolt setup to post #1, jack up #1 and hear strain of wood, stop jack and pull post with truck again, rip post #1 out of cement, jack up post #1 = SUCCESS!!!

9. Stare at post #3, which is more solidly poured and did not crack under pick axe duress, decide to use tow belt and truck to pull post and hopefully crack cement, cement does not crack, but post and cement come out together, stare at situation, pull post again, watch mother's eyes widen as she reminds me that she does not want the post to fall on her truck, raise tow strap to avoid hood collision, pull post and cement from ground, post misses truck = SUCCESS!!!

10. Decide tow strap can pull other blocks of cement from ground, pull cement from ground = SUCCESS!!!

11. Have a nap.

12. Clean up, roll and carry cement to pile for dump, store posts for potential future use... somewhere, plant saskatoon berry shrub in hole # 1, cover holes #2 and #3.

13. Have a nap.

14. Contemplate how to break cement into manageable pieces, decide to ask friends... advice welcome, sledge hammer lending welcome, hilti lending more welcome. =)

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Zucchini and Beans

I planted a garden this year. And it is green!! Mostly because the zucchini I planted all sprouted and migrated around the garden!! HOW!?!?! I don't undertand. And my beans... I can only find 2... I planted 9!! But wait, what's this weed I just pulled!?!?! HOW did the beans get into the strawberry patch!!!

These seeds aren't just migrating a few inches!! I have three garden boxes and the beans were not planted in the one with the strawberries!! They had to jump garden boxes to get there. I suppose I could have stuck the sprout back in it's proper place... But back to the story, the beans migrated 4 feet!! How is this possible.

And my lettuce!! Only 4 plants are growing??? Sigh. I suppose I should be happy to have a garden. The seeds were old afterall... In hindsight I should not have pulled all those extra zucchini plants... They would have filled in the bare spots. =)

On the bright side, my potatoes seem happy and have effectively taken over. In fact, I am now worried about my peas, which are in the shadow of the potatoes. Whoops!! =) They're still growing. Half my strawberries are happy, and my carrots seem to be okay. I am not sure about the tomatos or red pepper plants, but they are blooming.

I am realizing I put the garden too close to the fence, I would like an extra 6-12 inches to move along the fence... it's not such a problem that I'll dig the garden up this year, but I've added it to my 5-year plan.

Now the big news!! My saskatoon mini-trees planted along the back fence are still green... so I'm assuming this means they are still alive. They don't really seem to be growing, but maybe they are too wet... I'll cut back the landscaping cloth tonight so they can dry out in between waterings. Really, Saskatoon berry trees should be like weeds!!! I am too impatient I suppose; I just want them to grow to their full potential right away. Last night I did see one berry on one plant =) I'm such a proud parent!!

Happy gardening. =)

A big thank you to those of you who have already sponsored me in the MS bike tour and who donated items to the garage sale. For personal pledges I've made it to $750!! Just $250 shy from my $1000 goal. As a team we are aiming to raise $25,000 this year and we are well on our way. We are still accepting donations so if you haven't donated yet and want to here's the link to my pledge page

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Sex and the City

A few years ago I was drawn to watch "Sex and the City" episodes on TV because a number of strangers I encountered commented that I reminded them of Charlotte from the sitcom. I was unsure how to respond, being unaware of this Charlotte, thus I started watching every episode of Sex and the City I could find for about two years. Of course, I watched too many episodes in a short period of time and wore myself out. With the release of the movie, again strangers renewed their comments on how I reminded them of Charlotte.

Of course being a previous "Sex and the City" sitcom addict, I had to see it. I loved it. And now I find I want to watch any episodes I missed. I love the clothing and shoes and hairstyles. WOW! Shush to all of you silently sending me vibes to do more with my hair! It's cause I wear toques for half the year and helmets for the other half!! And as for my clothes, I have improved my style considerably from frumpy to fitted over the last few years.

After watching the movie, I can see there are certain similarities between myself and Charlotte. And now that some of my friends are making remarks about my similarity to her... I am wondering whether it is a compliment... I will take it as such =) I know my friends mean well.

Sunday, June 15, 2008


This weekend I was reminded of the importance of paddling in a group, even if I think the trip is a float. We were paddling the Upper Red Deer as a more advanced group! Always fun paddling when you can play!! We were just a short jaunt from the campsite and I was a bit separated from the group, so I thought I'd pull into an eddy... unfortunately the eddy had a small pour over which formed a hole... Even more unfortunate was that I am out of practice and a terrible hole surfer so after being worked for a bit, and being short of oxygen, I pulled my deck !! HOW EMBARASSING!!! I was pulled down and out of the hole, that surface seemed a long ways off while I was underwater. My boat, shot out of the other side of the hole. All I could think was that I was cold and my breath was short. I swam a bit to shore... then thougth I should grab my boat... then thought no, it's too cold. So I watched my boat float downstream as I got my bearings and swam to shore, pulled myself up on a tree, and started walking down the bank back to camp. Sigh. At least I still had my paddle.

Now you may wonder why didn't I blow a whistle or something? Well... I did... and a whistle only works over a limited distance. My lesson... do not float away from the group... EVER. Please note, I was never in a life threatening situation.

I'm looking forward to going out again and practicing surfing, so next time I won't get worked over again. I am grateful to Brad who remarked that it was a nasty hole. I appreciate the comment. =)

I made it back to camp by hitching a ride with some good samaritan rafters. And even better! Carl and Janet found and recused my boat. HURRAY!!!

Now I'm off to do yoga cause the hole was a little rough on my shoulder.

=) Paddle safe!

Thursday, June 12, 2008


I want to thank Brad, Sarah, Mario, Wendy and Jim for helping with with hauling, spreading and tamping gravel this week for the patio!! =) I have the sand now and nailed down the edging. I'm ready to tamp the sand and lay the paving stones. =)

Though I am still suprised after needing a sledge hammer 5 times in the last couple of years, I still don't own one. The first time I used the back end of an axe... not that effective. The second time, I used a heavy hammer... it worked fairly decently. The third time I used a regular hammer... not that effective. And the last two times I used a large rock and guess what?... I found my makeshift sledgehammer!! =)

No wait... the fourth time I sat on a horizontal 4x4 and sat on a post I was trying to drive into the ground... I have to admit, it worked well, though it was difficult to maintain alignment. =)

Unfortunately I think the consequences of putting my finger under the sledgehammer would be the same as when I put my finger under the rock last night. No bruising yet... actually it doesn't hurt that much today. Same finger that I dropped a tile on three weeks ago. =( Poor thing.

Stay tuned for a picture of the final product =)... where is my camera?!?!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Third Night

I may often wonder why my eating habits are so poor at times... Tonight is the third night in a row that I have overeaten at a restaurant... mostly because they fill my plate fuller than I would I think. Plus I had 1.5 pints of beer and two glasses of wine on Tuesday, a pint of beer last night and half a bottle of wine tonight.

But really, how can I say no to roasted tomato zucchini soup (puree) that is to die for. I can really die happy now after eatig that soup. If I live much longer I will not be happy because I'll need to know how to make it before I die... and make it well.

I feel like I am bigger than my skin. It is not a pleasant feeling. I do not think I'll eat tomorrow. Yes, I'll be at home sometime tomorrow, but that has nothing to do with it!!!

On the bright side I walked into a haircutting coop and got my hair cut today... it's a little shorter than I expected but exactly the length I indicated her to cut. What a wonderful idea, though, a coop. They rent the space but they are their own bosses... I don't know how to cut hair, but I have thought of taking a class... =)... that and a million other things. Anyways, it's a bit of a weird length and I may have to cut it shorter just for fun.

And with this, my drinking is over for two weeks until I travel to... let me check... northern Saskatchewan... but I think I'm going to a dry community so drinking is over for... um... three weeks when I go to Prince Albert... wait... I don't drink in Saskatchewan... I swear I was drinking because of those lawyers peer pressured me!! It wasn't my fault.

Oh right... good news! The maps I made Tuesday night after a night of drinking were fabulous for our morning presentation. =) Wednesday I fell asleep before the end of the second period (ET), but the maps were fabulous! Tonight I may not be able to sleep because of my belly, but really I should be grateful that I have a full tummy. =)

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Work in Ottawa

I was really wishing I had my palm with me today to take notes about my evening that I'm about to share with you... I am bound to forget something in my state of mind. =)

So I woke up this morning at 5am to fly to Ottawa. I fell back asleep on the plane before it took off. The very unfortunate part is that I lost my neck pillow on my last trip to Saskatchewan. =( I bought a new one, but it pales in comparison. I will be shopping again and selling this one at our MS garage sale. Thanks to all of you who have donated articles for our sale. =D

Back to work... normally I would not blog about work... I don't think... but tonight I'm sure is set the bar for my week. I arrived in Ottawa to find out they were not discussing anything of interest to me so I worked on other stuff. Then they called to say we are going for drinks... I missed lunch so I'm wondering if drinks is equivalent to supper, so of course I agree. Well I run into the lawyers from the other party downstairs... they are very familiar with dining together and are pleased to see me of course. I'm sure eager to share their food with me - as I have a reputation for picking off other people's plates... and as expected I shared nachos, creme brule, sole, beer, and wine. It's not my fault!!

So we're off to the Royal Oak for drinks, just down the road. Great! Short roll home. I meet up with my party and off we trod. We find the Royal Oak on the corner! WOW!!! Really close. Order beers and then shortly realize there must be another Oak bar cause we're alone. Well there are 3 Royal Oaks on this street within 10 blocks!!! So bottoms up and we trod off up the road to the second Royal Oak. =) Yes in half an hour I drank a pint of beer and I still have to have another drink with the gang... So I am feeling the beer. Oh and I should say, I wanted a local beer... they didn't serve Bass!!! Didn't sell enough they said. So I had a Keith's... I could have been at home!!! We find the rest of the group, I order a half pint and continue to monitor my inside voice gradually increasing to my raucous voice. And my laugh!! Good lord you may have heard it at home in your sitting rooms tonight.

Then we decide we need supper (I definitely need food) so we up and trod back down the street to Don Alfonso's for spanish cuisine. Now it's supper and our group really likes wine with supper... and appetizers... and I like dessert. I have a weird stitch in my side that I hope disappears soon. Last time it came I had overeaten and it lasted for months!!! It is absolutely amazing how we can disagree at the negotiation table, but beer, wine and food makes us the best of buddies. =)

The part I left out is that we started drinks and supper at 5pm-ish... we finished at 10pm-ish and now I have to work. What the heck?!?! I'm partially drunk and really tired and have to finish 3 maps by 7:30 tomorrow morning... I may have to agree with the lawyer... perhaps I should not work right now. But the time zone change tomorrow morning will be rough. I feel some hick ups coming on...

Good night.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Not Dead Yet

Well surprise, surprise... my friend Linda and I inspected my tree last night and found 3 buds leafed out during the day. I guess my tree is not dead yet... I think I'm a bit sad. If it's alive that means I have to find a new home for it... I'm encountering an ethical dilemma here and will have to contemplate plant rights. Thankfully I have the whole year ahead. =)

How about a dating update. I think I have a positive outlook right now. My friend Wayne encouraged me to just go on lots of dates and forget about exclusive dating... not that I often make it to exclusive dating mind you. =) I went on a date last week with "M" and guess what!?! No - we're getting together again - he has a wonderful smile, is caring, is a workaholic, and has a great sense of humour. I'm going on a date with "D" this coming week and I know not much about him yet, but wish me luck... making a mental note to read his profile again before meeting. Oh and a few weeks ago... okay months ago when I took my communication course with Skillpath, which was really just a motivational talk, I met this guy "J" and we were calling each other and then I went away and didn't call him back... Well he called me the other night saying it's been a while give him a call... look at me I'll make it to that recommended 1 guy for each day of the week!! =) Just kidding.

My friends Natalie and Wendy recommend I date a kayaker and I'm all for that if I can find one who is single with a beautiful smile and is interesting and smart and... =) I did meet two really cool guys in Pincher Creek, but ends up one is married... why God why?!?! - he spoke spanish, and kayaked, and had a beautiful smile... sniff... sniff... The other also super awesome, but a bit young. Oh well. =) I'm dedicated to paddling as often as possible in the sun this summer. =) Yes, I am a fairweather paddler. In fact people are paddling the Red Deer River this weekend - what, 60 minutes tops form my mom's house but it's going to be raining... I can't get wet... I'll melt... =)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Drug Testing

You will all of course be relieved to know that I passed a drug test at work last week. WOW! Was I ever relieved. =) Okay, I know, I didn't really have anything to worry about.

This past weekend I started kayaking again after a 20 month absense because I hurt my shoulder in hockey. 6 hours of travel each way and I only paddled one day before my body said, that's enough!! =D Good lord I'm old. Tonight I have yoga scheduled so that should help get rid of the creaks.

But on to better news... I have started biking to work... I think this is old news cause I included it in my MS fundraising email. Thanks a bunch to you who have already donated, your tax receipts should be arriving shortly. My mom chastized me because I told her it would arrive after she already received it. Oops. =)

And sad news... =( I will not be able to start my stone patio this weekend due to complications with the weather forecast. Instead I will head to the farm to do some electrical work for my mom. Hee Hee... I am such a pro now. But this break gives me more time to dream about the front yard. I thought about rearranging it to improve drainage... by improve I mean terrace the yard so that moisture is evenly distributed to the plants instead of creating the drought conditions at the top and the swamp at the bottom. I have to admit I felt a little anxious about the plants in the front yard, but figured that one more year would be okay... well one more year is irrelevant now - half of them died =(

I know it is a travesty!! The silver lining though, remember the silver lining... I did not like my tree in the front yard and I wanted to rearrange the shrubs... well, now I get to choose my own tree... I am open to suggestions for ones that have living leaves for a good part of the season. I'm contemplating Snowbird Hawthorn or Oak. Now I have time to plan... I will need my drafting book for this one, it's complicated. And as for the plants... those that grow... well they get bigger.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Cookies 2

I am torn with the whole cookie rationing project. I have decided that 4 cookies a day is more realistic - 2 with lunch and 2 with supper. To be honest, I made supper last night, just so I could eat cookies. I was going to have popcorn. Really I wanted popcorn, so I may have that tonight. I'm eating leftovers so popcorn will be a nice change.

Why is popcorn so tempting right now you ask. Because I have a craving, I love good popcorn, and also because I am running low on frozen dinners. This weekend, I think I'll make some soups or stews or something and maybe grill up some meat strips for quick stirfries and sandwiches. I am still a pinch away from creating the perfect butternut squash soup. I have purchased ingredients again and am ready for hopefully my final try. My last one didn't work out, I think cause I added coconut milk. I like coconut, but the milk in soup tastes like stale beer. =(

Meal planning is an art that I was unluckily not born with.

Oh, and to keep you posted on dating... I've been on a few more first dates, but how do I say this. I am feeling downhearted; like perhaps some of my friends are right, that I'm destined to be eternally single. =( But really, I prefer my friend Kirsten's version. I just haven't met anyone at my level in the pyramid yet. Yes, that's it and as a bonus it keeps me motivated and my self-confidence elevated. =)

Thank god, cause no one wants a cranky, moody princess around!! =)

Saturday, April 19, 2008


I really like cookies. Actually, in all honesty it may be more of a passionate obsession. Regardless, it has come to my attention that eating cookies does not constitute supper; no matter how delicious they are nor how healthy they are. Now this may be self-evident, however, sometimes in between travelling, I forget what to cook, or I am tired, or . Cookies are easy and quick. But I've had to close my mouth and consider my health and jeans; I am no longer going to eat cookies for a major meal. I may eat popcorn, but from now on no supper means no cookies. I've been enforcing this lifestyle change for 7 days so far... I'm 7 for 7!! =) I am also trying to limit my consumption to 2 cookies a day... that resolution is so far 2 for 7.

I have found out hearty cookies, such as trail mix or nutty, dried fruity cookies, are an acceptable breakfast.

Thankfully this means I can still bake and freeze cookies. I am extremely relieved by this news as some of you know, I recently purchased my long sought after kitchen aid. I have used it every week, sometimes multiple times a week testing it on various cookie recipes. Delicious!! Yes my cookies are more delicious than ever. I think too, I started using stoneware to bake my cookies and I have fallen in love with stoneware for baking cookies. I need to buy a special stoneware pan for nut-free cookies though, cause I'm pretty sure that nut oil will stay in the stoneware, contaminating nut-free cookies. Now like the kitchen aid, the stoneware also involves some experimentation. My first batch were a flop, thankfully I made a batch on a metal pan at the same time and they didn't turn out either, so obviously it was my fault. =(

Lucky for me "A Few Spokes Short" holds an annual Pampered Chef party to fundraise for the MS bike tour in September so I'll buy a stoneware pan then. =) No worries, I'll send out an invitation to you so you can come to the party and I'll soon be sending out an email seeking your MS donations. Last year I raised $1500 and this year I'd like to match that goal, but I'll start with a goal of $1000.
And even better, now that I've started biking again, my inability to limit my cookie consumption to 2/day will actually be beneficial as I will no doubt require additional calories to sustain myself. =)

Hockey gear is packed and biking gear is already unpacked! Oh right, and my kayaking gear is about to be unpacked, once it gets a little warmer. =)

If anyone is interested in going out for a bike ride or paddle, call me.

See you on the trails, or river, or both. =)

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Born in the wrong country

As one of my first attempts to get out into the dating scene, a few single friends and I went salsa dancing. I am really funny to watch salsa dancing, but I had such a good time I’m going again tonight. =) Now to find a clean shirt… hope my x-country ski gear is clean for this weekend… I’d better check.

Ironically, right after that I met a seemingly wonderful man online who likes dancing. He’s in Chile right now but wants to get together when he gets back in early March. And he wants to learn to x-country ski. And he loves mountain biking. I think I just fainted. Can this be another man who seems overly compatible with me??

There is a second man who seems very compatible, but I haven’t sent him a note yet as I am trying to weed out some of my lower interests first to avoid overwhelming myself. Yes this is ridiculous as he may get nabbed up, give me a couple of days, I’m just coping as I can.

Anyways, back to the born in the wrong country theme. I make empanadas de pollo last weekend and they were phenomenal, then I made another Mexican dish earlier this week, I’m dying to learn how to make picadillas, I speak Spanish, I watch Mexican telenovelas with a passion… and thus my colleague Carlos humorously proclaimed that he thought I was born in the wrong country. Wait till my mom hears that one. Mom, I love you and I’m glad to be Canadian. =)

Well I’m off to the library and then to dance.

Salsa Dancing

Just another Spain picture.

Well, with a new year comes a renewed sense of courage and energy for dating. I am currently trying online dating at Plenty of Fish and speed dating. Let’s start with the speed dating. I went to the zoo – cool!!! I have been informed the best time to go to the zoo is Saturday morning in the winter because the animals are sometimes out wandering the halls. Oh the perks of a small zoo. I haven’t been back yet, but I think it could be a good date. I’m not sure it is for everyone though; I heard one lady loudly complain about the urine smell… hee hee… it wasn’t me. =)

I had a wonderful time, but didn’t really meet anyone of interest. I did check yes to some names just to be… you know… a good sport. But now that I have to go on a date with these men, it’s a bit of a chore. =( My friend Wendy wisely advised me not to waste my time if I wasn’t interested. She’s right, I know she’s right. But I was trying to be, like I said, a good sport. Not to worry, I’ll spring back.

Now to online dating. WOW! I often have a good time there. There are three people I’m interested in and currently writing to. But one of them suggested meeting and I have to admit, my heart sank… why? I think perhaps because I have an image of this person and the reality may be different.

So my 10 dating goals in no particular order include:
1. Conversing with people I’m interested in.
2. Remembering to ask about their spiritual beliefs as I am pretty sure God is important to me and my lifestyle.
3. Finding cool (and cheap) events to do around Edmonton.
4. Praying that they bike and x-country ski or do something I really like.
5. Getting out to actually date in real life and not sitting in front of the computer.
6. Brush my hair and wear make up.
7. Judge people by their ability to spell.
8. Wear nice shoes, people look at shoes I am told.
9. Sacrifice sleep for dating, occasionally.
10. Be nice.
… well I just started this list two nights ago, I guess it needs some tweaking. =)

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Square Dancing

I found a place to stay. I ended up staying with the chief another night. =) We had a great night!! We drove around for a poker rally and WOW!!! What a great time! I didn't win anything but it was entertaining to go from house to house. At one stop, a tent, we ate white fish right off the fire... some of it was raw, which was different for me. I liked the cooked stuff better. We ate just about a whole fish!!! And bannock, I love coming north to make bannock even though I can make it at home.

After we went back to the band hall for a dance and talent show. I square danced!!! I had such a wonderful time. Then these young girls decided that I was the coolest thing and wouldn't let go of me for the rest of the night. Weird. Still they were entertaining. For talent we heard from Johnny Cash, a Mexican, and Tina Turner. =) WOW! Everyone got right into the event. We were even voluntold to jig - it was a competition. I had no idea how to jig, but I hear I did okay. Today a number of people thanked me for participating in the dance and said I did good... looking around I can see why I was a bit of a spectacle, I was one of two non-native-out-of-towners in attendance. If I lived up here I think I would want to get involved in the entertainment. There's another dance tonight, but I'll be on a flight home. Would have been on one already, but I missed it. Oops.

Now to convince the client that our next meeting needs to be up here during carnival!! =)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Ice Roads

I'm sitting here at the school in Wollaston, SK and the blowing snow has subsided enough that I can see the sun setting. I guess that would be west. =) It is beautiful here. I can also see people digging their trucks out after the flurry we had all day. I went outside twice and it was cold!!! I didn't wear my boots one time, but my slippers cause I was in a rush and forgot... whoops. It is a bit chilly here - I suppose it is close to the arctic! I went outside in my slippers accidentally... . I won't do that again. I wasn't wearing gloves either. Sigh. I obviously wasn't thinking straight. It is dropping to -30C tonight...

What a comedy of errors here. My travel was surprisingly calm. I made every flight, no bad weather. But when I arrived the hotel was closed. Thankfully I found a place to stay for the afternoon. I had a meeting, but only 2% of the people showed up - it was cancelled. Then in the evening there weren't enough rooms at the hotel so I was roomless!! Thankfully the chief invited me to stay at her house. I watched TV with her daughter. Now to find a place tonight... =)

Food is great. I am eating caribou... though today for lunch I had turkey, it was a like a Christmas in January meal. I love bannock with butter, jam and cheese. And even cooler! I road on my first ice road in my living memory today! I'll admit I had to squelch some nerves at the thought of driving over a deep dark lake!!! Yeah, I know the ice is probably tested and legally has to be yay thick... =) It was cool! And what a short cut! Mile to drive around a bay cut to half a mile across the bay.

Tonight there is a talent show in town and it is rumoured to be phenominal!