Thursday, July 28, 2011

Annual Girly Getaway.

How many times do you have to do something before you can call it annual? We're on our second year now, so I'm going with it.

Last year, 3 of my friends and I were lucky enough to get a great deal at a place near Hamer Lake. It was wonderful. Two days of not having to look after anyone but myself. No one asking me where their crap was or to do things for them. It was awesome.

This weekend we're doing it again. With some subtle differences.

Last year, we stayed in a lovely apartment with fluffy white beds, room service and beautiful views. There was a choice of several restaurants on the property. There was this awesome pool beside the lake, in which I spent an entire morning. All plumbing was indoors.

We did have to share everything outside our room with a bunch of other people though. I still haven't quite forgiven Adam (whoever he is) for making his mum go out and look (screech) for him at one o'clock in the morning.

This year, we're going the family cottage* route. We won't have restaurants, or pools, or room service, or big fluffy white beds; we will, thank god, have indoor plumbing. (At least I think we will, my friend said "one in, one out" when I asked about the toilet situation.)

What we will have, is the place to ourselves. I won't have to deal with anyone's children. We're also leaving Friday morning and not coming back til Monday evening. I might actually have time to miss my kids before I come home!

And apparently, the views will be spectacular.

*Yay for friends with cottages!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Reluctant Vegetarianism.

The main problem with being a vegetarian is the "no meat" part of it. Not that I'm a vegetarian. It's not because I'm a vege-phobe either; I love vegetables. It's just that I've never had a meal that couldn't be improved by bacon.

I think I ought to give it a try though. It's been brought to my attention that I may not be the healthiest of individuals; mostly because my body appears to be backfiring and perhaps trying to kill me.

While I'm trying to sort out my head and figure out ways to deal with stress that don't involve hiding under the bed, it might be a good idea to start with getting my body in shape. Starting with what I put in it.

I'm going to try to (very slowly) phase meat out of my diet. Starting with anything that leaves bones on my plate*. Next will be red meat.

The problem being that when you take something out of your diet, it's got to be replaced with something to maintain the proper nutritional balance**, so I've got to add things that will replace the protein and iron.

Which can be done with beans and fish and stuff. Or so I've heard.

But I don't really know how to cook fish, or what to do with beans***. I've found that a lot of vegetarian food is kind of bland and grainy... which isn't too appealing.

Another reason I want to do this is to get my girls on the right track, healthwise, before (eventually) sending them out to fend for themselves. If they won't even try it because it looks/smells/feels gross it's just not going to work out. Also? I'd like to be able to do this without making myself separate meals all the time.

I will probably never be a proper vegetarian; I'm far too fond of bacon for that. But I'm certainly willing to give it a try.

Does anyone out there have any (easy) vegetarian recipes? That taste good?

*The bones remind me of the animals, which kind of grosses me out, so... easy.
**Don't I sound like I know what I'm talking about?
***Except put them in cookies. But that seems counterproductive.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Here Comes the Sun.

And the heat. As the owner of pasty white skin that burns in five seconds, I am really not a huge fan of summer. When you throw in temperatures of thirty-eight degrees (one hundred for you Fahrenheit users)... well, I start doing crazy things.

Like wearing shorts.

I have not worn shorts for over ten years. I mean... stretch marks that look like I've been mauled by a bear, pasty whiteness, and now spider veins and a dent; would you wear shorts? So this past weekend, scowling the whole time, I bought shorts.

The ugliest shorts in the world*.

Okay, fine, not the ugliest shorts in the world, because these exist

but, still, pretty darn ugly.

They have an elastic waist, they're big and brown, and my legs stick out the bottom. So I will take this opportunity to apologise to any fashion minded people out there who may have the misfortune of seeing them. But it's hot, dammit!

*Why, you may ask, did I buy the ugliest shorts in the world? Short answer? Because I was shopping with two small children who don't like to let me try things on, and I grabbed the first pair that I knew would fit me just by looking at them. At least they don't make me look like I'm wearing a full diaper.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Help Me If You Can, I'm Feeling Down...

I really fell down on the job, with that whole "One a Day" thing. I have decided to blame medical issues.

I did get back to the doctor a second time and... it's nothing. Okay. Not technically "nothing", but nothing that can be fixed with a pill. I was actually hoping that it would be something big enough that I could lie down for a few days without feeling guilty about it, but small enough that some meds would solve the issue.

The problem appears to be stress. Plain, old fashioned stress, bordering on burnout.

I got homework from the doctor: I'm not to volunteer to do anything for anyone, I'm to say "no" to people (at least twice) before my next appointment, and I'm to do at least two things that are just for me.

I've started going to yoga again. I'm trying to relax. But the biggest problem with this whole "burnout" thing, is that it just feels so pathetic. There are other people who have a lot more going on than I do and I should be able to suck it up and handle it, and the fact that I don't seem able to makes everything seem that much worse.

Then, of course, I circle back to "what? WHAT is worse? You don't have any real problems, lady, SUCK IT UP!"

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Basic Rules For Audience Comportment at a Live Show:

When you go to a show of any kind*, it is courteous to behave with some common decency. Show some respect to both the audience who have paid to be there and the performers who have put in the hard work.

Presumably, as you have your inconsiderate ass planted (albeit haphazardly) in a seat, you have come to see the show. This would be infinitely more evident if you would refrain from conversing with your neighbour, playing with your phone, giggling as you rock your seats back and forth and poking the unfortunate man with the bad luck to be seated in front of you continuously with your fingers.

This is all behaviour that I would not accept, nor even expect, from my three year old. I think that even she could give you a lesson on how to be a good audience member.

Did I mention, I went out the other night?

*Unless, of course, we're talking stadium, not audience of 100...

Monday, July 11, 2011

A Review.

On Saturday night, I was actually able to leave the house without my entire family dragging along behind me. I went downtown (a rare enough occurrence, I assure you) and saw a show with my mum.

We saw a performance by "After Hours". They're an acapella group that a friend of mine from high school formed. They've been around for a while now, in one form or another*, but I've never had the chance to see them in their current iteration.

The music ranged from "Simon and Garfunkel" to "Sesame Street", with some comedy thrown in between songs. The show ran from 7:30 'til 10:00 with one 15 minute intermission; for me, a bit too long.

The first half was great, the songs leading into one another quite well. The second half lagged a bit and it felt like they could have lost a few songs (the cover of Iron & Wine's "Flightless Bird" song from the Twilight movie is one that I would've been glad not to hear.) and strengthened the show.

All in all, it was pretty good. I especially enjoyed their versions of "One Fine Day" by The Chiffons, and "Hey There Delilah" by the Plain White T's. And, I have to admit, I came away with a bit of a crush on Luke Hobbs. I'm a sucker for a snappy dresser. Also? he can sound like an electric guitar.

In short, fun was had by all.

*Though none of the current members is an original founder, they've been around for 15 years or so.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


As the sun comes up, they gather for their meeting. Their tousled hair and sleepy smiles make them seem almost angelic; if you overlook the hard gleam in their eyes.
"Good morning."
"Good morning. Let's get right to business, shall we?"

They settle, cross legged, onto the carpet and begin.
"Well, yesterday, I think we almost broke her," says the smaller of the two, pushing her soft blonde hair out of her eyes.
"Oh, definitely!" The elder one says excitedly, "you should have seen her after you went to bed - brilliant work, by the way - she completely broke down after she dropped her dinner on the floor. She threw a table! She even yelled at Daddy!"
"You don't think it was a bit much? I mean.. 'It's still daytime'... they know I'm smarter than that."
"That why it worked so well! It makes them nuts when we act like idiots."
"Alright.. so what's on the agenda for today?"
"Well, I guess we could go with fighting over everything we touch, that seems to work well."
"Oh," the little one sighed. "I'm getting sick of that. It's so TIRING. Isn't there something else we could try?"
"Well, she does seem to respond the strongest when we're discordant. You know how she keeps saying 'why can't you just get along'? I think that really is the sweet spot."
"Oh, okay, fine. But I kept getting put in my room yesterday, do you think that you could start it a few times today?"
"Yeah, sure."
"You know what though? I think that in a few days, we should behave."
The elder girl blinked, surprised. "What?"
"Well.. I've been thinking about it. If we pull the same stunts every day, won't that eventually inure her to it? After that, what's the point? If we give her a couple of days of good behaviour and then just when she's letting her guard down..."
"Slam her. I love it. Brilliant!"
"Right," the little one said, smiling. "But for today... are you ready?"
"What? Yeah.. hang on a sec," the big one ruffled the little one's hair and adjusted her blankie, then sat back to survey her. "Perfect."

They shook hands and stood up, smiling at each other.
"Ready?" Asked the little one.
"You bet," replied the big one.