Friday, 31 December 2010

MMXI

Graphic shamelessly snitched from the Google search page. They always have such cool things there and I quite like this one!


So... without further ado...



Thursday, 30 December 2010

Golden Boy

(Ken Gigliotti/Winnipeg Free Press)




Atop the provincial legislature building is a gilded statue that's a bit over 17' in height. He's the Golden Boy. And every now and then, the local Free Press publishes some really nice photos of him. This was in this morning's paper.


Our Golden Boy is 92 years old... and he's from France. Cast in 1918. Looks pretty good for such an old guy, doesn't he? Probably because he spent a few months at the 'spa' in 2002... He was getting a bit rusty in the bottom and losing his lustre, so they lowered him down for a complete make over.


He even got to be rededicated by the Queen when he was stuck back on the building, some 250 feet above the ground. Personally, I think he's kinda cool... and a definite eye catcher in the bright sunlight!

Tuesday, 28 December 2010


Can one ever be completely honest with those who matter most?

Or...

Should one be completely honest?

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Chillin'


What I wouldn't give to have one of these on my deck right now.

I have spent a good part of the past couple months chilled. Ever since starting on hormone pills and getting the hot flashes under control, I have been COLD!!!

Right now, I am in the house. The thermostat reads 22C in here. I have on thick wool socks and my feet are stuffed into my sheepskin slippers (yeah, real sheepskin) and they are still cold. I have a hoodie on over a long sleeved t-shirt... and I am cold.

When LHB is here, I rarely feel cold. (wink wink) But aside from all that activity, we spend a fair bit of time close to each other... and he's always nice and warm! Men generate more body heat than women (aside from hot flashes, of course), apparently due to more muscle mass and a higher resting metabolic rate.

I don't care why! But I do care that he keeps me warm. (Although I like him for a lot more than just that!) I hate being cold. And I live in a place that has the same climate as Siberia... seriously, Winnipeg does!

So, some day when the budget allows, I will get that hot tub and put it on my deck right outside the door. And I will use it every day! And I will be warm. Very warm. Hot even! And I will love it!!!

Right now, it's another cup of hot chocolate. *sigh*

Saturday, 25 December 2010


Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas!

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Christmas Wish






I fully admit to having no faith whatsoever in any so called deity. I've been a staunch non-believer my entire life, although I have read bits and pieces of the bible, and had long chats with Catholics, Mormons, and a few others. So for me, there isn't any 'Christ' in Christmas.

What there is, is a whole lot of love for family and friends.

Christmas for me is a Time to get together with the people I love, to visit and laugh, give and receive hugs, share wonderful food (and there are a few traditional foods that make appearances every year), tell tales of what's happening in life, delight in the giving of gifts (especially to the little ones) and generally just have a really good visit.


Because the best Times in life are actually just that - Time. Time together. Time spent with those who mean the most to you.


Time goes much too quickly as we get older (who decided it should be that way, anyway? it is so not fair!) and it's too easy to lose track of it. It gets away on you and next thing you know, another year has flown by and you don't know where the Time went!


Time is something that LHB and I don't get enough of... What little Time we get together is rare, precious, intense and cherished. We really don't know when the next bit of Time will appear, but we take advantage of every snippet we get.

So my Christmas wish this year is to take the Time to enjoy what life has to offer. From the big events during the year, to the tiny moments that give pause and create wonder and awe. Those all add up to a memory vault full of huge chunks of Time well spent.

I also wish this for you, my blogging friends. May your Christmas be filled with the best of Times with those you love.





Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Early Christmas

"Go away... that flash hurts my eyes. I may have to hiss at you..."

LHB was just in town... arriving on Sunday about midday and able to stay until early Tuesday morning. We decided that since his return to our fair (and frozen) city is not known, we'd do the Christmas gift exchange while he was here.

I'd picked up a couple of little things for him, like a bottle of red wine (and a  nice little cloth bottle bag to hide it in), a key chain with his first initial engraved on it, and a box of those absolutely scrumptious dark Ferrero Rocher 'Rondnoir' chocolates with the whole hazelnut in the centre!

We had talked one evening about what each wanted for Christmas, and he'd mentioned he wanted some sweat shirts... good ones... not for work (things can pretty grubby when loading and unloading trucks, hauling tarps all over things, and handling big heavy canvas straps to tie everything securely). 

So I decided to put my skills to good use.

I made him a red fleece quarter zip shirt. He was thrilled to get it and didn't realize at first that I had made it, until I mentioned that I was glad I had lengthened the sleeves a bit.

So here is a photo of him modelling the fleece, but since I haven't asked his permission to post his photo here, I had to lop off his noggin. I'm sure he won't take offense. And if he does, I will have to be especially nice to him the next time he's here! *nudge nudge wink wink*



It's a lovely red, isn't it? The tag on the bolt of fabric said it is 'Cooking Sherry' in colour. I think the white piping stands out nicely. I am very pleased with how it turned out, although I did discover in the construction process that my sewing machine is loathe to do a zigzag stitch. That warrants some investigation. *sigh* After the bobbin incident, I am none too pleased with this development.

I've the first season of a show called 'Sanctuary' to watch (with Amanda Tapping from Stargate in the lead role), some di Sorona Amaretto to enjoy (given to share with my sister when we are having 'girlie' time together - isn't that just so sweet???) plus a weekend of dinner theatre and just the two of us in a hotel room to look forward to!!! *more nudge nudge wink wink!*

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Ice sculpture

(US Coast Guard / The Associated Press)

This looks pretty cool, doesn't it?

A giant ice sculpture, an abstract form of crystalline water.

Which just happens to be the Cleveland Harbor West Pierhead lighthouse... after a winter storm.

It's completely useless. Seafaring folks were left to their own devices as they couldn't see the light.

Oops!

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Workplace bullying

A coworker of mine, who is also a good friend, just called me. She wanted to ask my opinion on how I would handle a situation she found herself in at work today.


Now, I am about 13 years older than she is - she recently turned 40 - and have gone through a lot of the perimenopausal crap women go through. Any woman knows that at times, when you have your period, you run the risk of having a 'gusher' and ending up having an accident that is highly visible.


That's what happened to my friend today. She knew her period was heavy, and had doubled and tripled up on the 'protective' gear before coming to work. Unfortunately, it was not enough to absorb the flood that ensued when she sat down at the nursing station. As a result, there were a couple of small (about the size of our two dollar coin) spots on the chair. But blood shows up. And the chairs are grey.


Now, embarrassing as that is, what her dilemma turned out to be is the reaction of a couple of our female coworkers. They openly made fun of her, calling over several of our male cohorts to look at the chair, talking and laughing loudly enough that many of the patients could hear exactly what was being said.


My friend was mortified by what she did to the chair, but completely humiliated by the reaction of our colleagues. I cannot blame her. Her question was, should she confront them tomorrow morning (before the patients get in the unit) and should she tell our unit manager of the situation?


I said absolutely yes! Those two were so completely inappropriate and cruel, it blows my mind! And one is a good 'Christian' woman who goes to church faithfully every Sunday, to be absolved of her sins.... obviously so she can be as evil as she wants during the week without having a conscience to deal with. She must feel that she can do and say whatever she wants and God will forgive her if she shows up on Sundays at church. How hypocritical is that!


The other woman is just plain mean-spirited. They both try to laugh everything off and say it's all in good fun, but they are so terribly guilty of bullying and cruelty, it is ridiculous!


I wish I had been in the unit when this happened. My friend was forced to go to the restroom and cry as she got herself straightened out. I would have called those two up on the carpet then and there, and made them apologize and recognize their juvenile behaviour for what it was! But I had been relegated to the ICU for the entire shift and missed the whole thing.


I also wish I could be there tomorrow morning to witness my friend's scathing retort to those two but I don't start until mid morning and will have to rely on my friend for her report of the situation. She's mad now, I can tell you!! She was humiliated today but by tomorrow, she'll be out for blood!


All I can say is, "YOU GO GIRL!!!" I am sooooo on your side!!!

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

My little tree

 This is my little tree. It is about 3 feet tall. It is fully lit with twinkling lights and covered with unbreakable ornaments. It's perched on the table between the chair and couch in my living room.


Don't the walls look like they are painted with watercolours? I took a few shots until I got one where most of the lights in the tree were on. Not an easy thing to do with a digital camera (there's that delay, you know?)!

This is the star on the top of the tree. It has special meaning for me because my Mum gave it to me years ago. It's made of twigs and twine painted gold, with bits of (fake) evergreen bough and a little wooden red heart stuck on it. I love it!

To ensure the safety of the tree, and its decorations, I have used a bungee cord to secure it to the table! I am hoping that makes it a lot less interesting to Lila...

We'll see if it survives the season. I didn't even put it up last year because she was only seven months old. She's getting close to two now, but hasn't slowed down even one iota. *sigh*

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Monday, 13 December 2010

Hallelujah!

Turn your speakers up, kids! This will get you in the Christmas spirit for sure!!!!

Enjoy. :-)


Sunday, 12 December 2010

Just about done

I finished my Christmas shopping today. In fact, I just started yesterday. I know, I know... procrastinator! But it's also waiting for a payday that isn't completely spoken for, and managing to find things that fit in the budget.

I spent numerous hours this weekend trudging through stores and malls, braving the crowds (which weren't as bad as I thought they would be) and trying to find deals. My feet are rebelling. I have crap for feet anyway and when I spend that much time tromping about, they let me know they are not at all pleased! I haven't taken my socks off yet, but they may resemble these:


This evening will be spent wrapping the presents. Tomorrow will be a trip to the post office or bus depot to send things where they need to go. I haven't even mailed cards yet! I am sooooo bad... and it just seems to get worse as I get older. Not sure why, but there's a pattern I've noticed.

(I may be wishing I had as many hands as Stitch here... they'd come in handy.)

The wrapping will have to take place behind closed doors. I do not need the assistance (or sabotaging) of a couple of little cats, nor the potential for dog spit on anything. After that, it'll be up with the feet and some hot chocolate liberally spiked with Baileys, plus my book (thank you, LHB - I will get it finished one day...).

Any baking I have even remotely thought of doing will have to wait for another day...

Technical difficulties

Turns out LHB is now stuck in Edmonton until Monday morning, due to misinformation regarding closing times and loading availability.

If he's going to have to hang out and wait somewhere, why on earth can it not be here????

The trucking gremlins are having fun with us, the little bastards! Oh well. I suppose this will give him time to catch up on paperwork... and sleep.



The laptop is also causing him a headache. He told me this evening he tried to leave comments on several blogs and is again unable to do so. And since I don't have his laptop in my hot little hands, I can't figure out what is wrong.



This is most frustrating. For both of us. For numerous reasons.

But it does give me a bit more time to get things accomplished before Christmas.

Of course, there is not guarantee I will get to see him before Christmas....

Saturday, 11 December 2010

A Christmas Song

I just knew...


... reality would come crashing in at some point.

LHB and I had been hoping to connect the beginning of next week when he'd be taking a load (of whatever) from Calgary to Ontario somewhere. And since the TransCanada highway happens to run right through Winnipeg, a pit stop here would be inevitable.

Up to this point, each time he's been through here, we've managed 2 or 3 days together each time. And it has been lovely. But I think we were getting spoiled.

Although, as he said today, a little spoiling is a wonderful thing!

But the cold hard reality of the trucking life is that things can change in an instant. And today they did. The customer getting the load shipped to Ontario required it sooner than LHB could get it there. So they gave it to another driver. Which means LHB is not only not coming through Winnipeg, he's not even coming close to the province!

He's going to be bopping back and forth in Alberta and BC.

Needless to say, both of us are sorely disappointed at this turn of events.

But I suppose it was bound to happen at some point. We've been very lucky with his ability to take the time he has while in town.

Anyone have a lucky Buddha? Rub his belly for me, k? And please excuse me while I go check my lottery ticket... cuz if it's a winner, he's flying back on the next available plane!!!

Friday, 10 December 2010

What the hell????

This just popped up on my blog roll:

http://nevermindthebollix.blogspot.com/

I nearly had a heart attack! But sadly, no, it's not Our Jimmy...

I don't know who it is... this person seems to have a lot of blogs that say nothing, in many different languages?

*sigh*

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Just another day

I sit here, in front of my computer, and think of things to write. I'm not coming up with too much that's witty or original...

Pips sits on my desk, gazing at me indifferently. I've not let her onto my lap for a snuggle. So she proceeds to look about the desktop, and whip the pen on to the floor. She looks at me again. The next movable object is flung across the room. The only thing that moves on her is her paw. And she proceeds to look at me after each launch.


(Don't let that cute face fool you... she's a wily one!!)

I kick her off the desk.

And pick everything up.

Lila keeps trying to lie on top of the electrical cords under the desk. I make sharp hissing noises at her and she runs out, only to try and run back in in a minute to repeat the action. I eventually stick my foot out repeatedly to block her access to under the desk. She eventually hisses at my foot and attacks my slipper, biting the suede with great frustration.


(There was growling going on too. This girl's got 'tude!!!)

The dog had tried to worm her way into my lap, drooling on the keyboard in the process. After wiping the slobber off the Ctrl key (it's a wonder this keyboard works at all), I pet her and she lies on the floor, farting prodigiously on the way down. She'd just been out to do her business, so I'm assuming that was just some left over wind that wasn't expelled out of doors (where it would not have been noticed but in here it makes your eyes water).


(Could she possibly look any more rejected???)
(And how on earth can this possibly be comfortable? She lies like this all the time...)

Lila has now decided the dog needs a good cleaning and is proceeding to ingest copious quantities of coarse dog hair gleaned from Zoƫ's cranium.

Having spoken to LHB already today (he's in the inner reaches of BC, having unloaded lumber and is proceeding to load more lumber), I am in need of getting something constructive done with my day off so I think it's time to haul out the vacuum (to suck up the remains of the kitty wrestling match that obviously went on last night while I was at work), and throw a load or two in the washer... although not at the same time.

And if this isn't enough excitement for your day, I think I have to wash some dishes too.

Try and control yourselves, okay?

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Thwarted at every turn...


Several times in the recent past, I have tried to upload little videos on this blogger thing and have had my efforts rejected each time.

They aren't long vids... just short clips involving Lila for a bit of comic relief. You know how she can be... a little bit crazy and a whole lot of nuts!

But for some reason, this blogger thing just won't do it. It spins the whole time, supposedly uploading the video, and then has the audacity to tell me there's been an error and the video was not uploaded.

These are not youtube videos. Do I have to resort to putting them on youtube first and then uploading them here? I know I have uploaded from my own computer in the past and it has worked. I don't really feel the need to litter youtube with my cat being silly.

If anyone has any ideas or suggestions, I'd be pleased to hear them. I guess I am off to blogger help to see if there's any info there.

Monday, 6 December 2010

A million miles away...


I can picture you asleep in your bed
A massive explosion of thoughts in your head
Life is complicated when you fall in love and out again

Oh I can feel you
I can hear you
I can see you in your room
Oh I can kiss you
I can taste your mouth - I can nearly touch your face
Oh how I miss you
How I miss you
How I long for your embrace
From a million miles away

I can picture you in the silver of the rain
You’ve got so many thoughts running round in your brain
Time seems confiscated when
You fall in love and out again

Oh I can feel you
I can hear you
I can see you in your room
Oh I can kiss you
I can taste your mouth - I can nearly touch your face
Oh how I miss you
How I miss you
How I long for your embrace
From a million miles away

I can picture you asleep in your bed
Imagine your body like flickering red
Life is complicated when
You fall in love and out again, you fall in love and out again

Oh I can feel you
I can hear you
I can see you in your room
Oh I can kiss you
I can taste your mouth - I can nearly touch your face
Oh how I miss you
How I miss you
How I long for your embrace
From a million miles away

-- Jann Arden, Free

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Disappointment... and Not!

The party dress lies on the table, three quarters finished but not at all wearable.

An hour prior to the start time of the party, I am in the final stages of fitting and finishing the dress, the gorgeous purple stretch satin and lace feeling luxurious under my hands. It's the final stretch and I'm getting geared up to be glamorous in my new finery.

Then there is a sickening 'crunch' as the needle stops dead in the fabric, all the way down the slot to the bobbin chamber. It won't move. I can't even raise the needle up to pull the fabric out and see what's going on. It requires much mutterings of foul phrases, tiny sharp scissors, a pair of forceps and the assistance of LHB to get things pried apart. We fritter and flutter and tinker with the damn machine. Try this and that. Take this apart, peer into there, switch that out with another, try again... and two stitches later there's that 'crunch'.

There's no time to borrow anyone's machine. My sister has one but she lives on the far side of the city and it would take 40 minutes just to get to her place, never mind borrow her machine and get back home and finish sewing.

So I frantically searched through my closet to find something suitable to wear. Party clothes have never been high on my list of necessary wardrobe bits, so it's down to one pair of black diaphanous floaty (and very comfy) pants that almost look like a skirt (black with an overlay of sheer black) and a choice of two tops: one black lace, the other pink and slinky. LHB chose the pink slinky number... he does rather like the feel of lycra under his hand while we wander about the dance floor.

So despite all best efforts, the party dress didn't make it. But to the party we went! LHB got to meet a bunch of people I work with.We had fun and that's what counts.

Having 2 days with LHB was not a disappoint, however... The more time we spend together, the more time I want us to spend together. He's back on the road again this morning, headed for points to the northwest... the land of no cell coverage and bleak(er) winter. He's got no idea when he'll be back in town again. Or even if he will be working Christmas. It's likely he will be. But if he is here, he's coming to Christmas dinner with me... and that means he'd meet the family - all at once!

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Creativity

I'm on a roll this week.

Have bits of fabric everywhere, pins and needles and threads all 'round.


Making a new dress for the upcoming work Christmas party on Saturday. I'm not built for an 'off the rack' dress without looking like a cheap hooker popping out of her top, so I decided to make one instead. I've tons of experience in that department and it's coming along quite nicely, if I do say so myself. The tricky part is coming up, as the bodice pattern pieces required major adjustment to belay the hooker look!

All in all, I think it will look smashing when all finished! A custom made outfit looks like a million bucks.

(No, mine will not look like this... but it is purple!)

The party is a potluck affair, so I will also be throwing together a Vinetarta to take along. This is a traditional Icelandic cake... or as XL loves to call it - Viking cake! (Some people call it Icelandic heroin...)


But the best part of the upcoming festivities will be that LHB will be in town and will be accompanying me to the party. He's not yet met any of my friends, so this will be a big introduction to the people I work with. He's actually quite excited about it and has been asking me what colour he should wear (he has several choices in his wardrobe). Of the ones listed, I chose the green, as the others would clash a bit with my deep purple dress. He'll be in town tomorrow afternoon and back on the road on Sunday, but the intervening time will be cherished.

There's growing fondness between us and we are taking our time to see how things develop. There's no rush, after all... As he once wrote to me, "...life - a long way to the end, but sometimes one meets someone - that makes the trek and the life worthwhile!"

(All photos nicked from the interwebs, as I have nothing finished so can't post my own at this time!)