{April 28, 2010}   Long time no see

Hi all – I know it’s been awhile. Sorry – we have been incredibly busy though. We had a very fun family weekend this weekend, full of parks, ice cream, productivity (hurrah running errands), even a pleasant little date afternoon yesterday. Got Little Tyke his new passport so we can go to Disney in June, and set up some work for myself today. Not a whole lot to update – we’re all doing well, happy, healthy, wealthy(ish) and wise lol – but I just wanted to say hi and I haven’t forgotten you, nor is life too boring to blog about – quite the contrary, I’ve been too busy enjoying it. 😉

But I do need to ask one thing. What in the blue cheese is this crazy weather? For 3 days straight it has been between 17-20 degrees Celcius, with nice bright sunshine – to the point LT’s babysitter was nagging us yesterday (good-naturedly of course) because we’d forgotten his sunscreen; and today? Today? Grey, 2 degrees and snow. Bloody SNOW. Wow. Someone upstairs is kinda bein’ weird, sorry. lol

{April 22, 2010}   Book Update

Knocked another one off – and yes it’s one I swapped in just because it was interesting and tempting. But it wasn’t small or cheap by any means. Planet Simpson, by Chris Turner. Find it in bold below. It replaced Will Ferguson’s “I was a Teenage Katima-victim” on my list. Of Ferguson’s works, it was the least interesting-sounding, which is far from an insult (consider that the opposite of ‘damning with faint praise’) and I hope to read it in my next round – I just couldn’t resist finally getting through this book on my bookshelf for the past 4 years.

1. Dead and Gone – Charlaine Harris
2. The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
3. Reading Lolita in Tehran – Azar Nafisi
4. The Year of Living Biblically – A.J. Jacobs
5. A History of God – Karen Armstrong
6. Dreams from My Father – Barack Obama
7. Beloved – Toni Morrison
8. ‘Tis – Frank McCourt
9. The Host – Stephenie Meyers
10. The Constant Princess – Phillipa Gregory
11. Wicked – Gregory Maguire
12. The Six Wives of Henry the 8th – Alison Weir
13. Eleanor of Aquitaine – Alison Weir
14. Tuesdays with Morrie – Mitch Albom
15. The Fellowship of the Ring – J.R.R. Tolkien
16. The Two Towers – J.R.R. TOlkien
17. The Return of the King – J.R.R. Tolkien
18. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – J.K. Rowling
19. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – J.K. Rowling
20. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix – J.K. Rowling
21. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – J.K. Rowling
22. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling
23. Dracula – Bram Stoker
24. Paradise Lost – John Milton
25. The Inferno – Dante
26. Towelhead – Alicia Erian
27. Sex, Lies, and Headlocks – Shaun Assael and Mike Mooneyham
28. The Way the Crow Flies – Ann-Marie MacDonald
29. The Robber Bride – Margaret Atwood
30. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
31. This United Church of Ours – Ralph Milton
32. Anansi Boys – Neil Gaiman
33. American Gods – Neil Gaiman
34. Stardust – Neil Gaiman
35. Tess of the d’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
36. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
37. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
38. Little Women – Louisa May Alcott
39. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
40. The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
41. Deception Point – Dan Brown
42. Digital Fortress – Dan Brown
43. The Lost Symbol – Dan Brown
44. Lolita – Vladimir Nobokov
45. Atonement – Ian McEwan
46. All the King’s Men – Robert Penn Warren
47. Under the Dome – Stephen King
48. Catch-22 – Joseph Heller
49. The Catcher in the Rye – J.D. Salinger
50. Uncle Tom’s Cabin – Harriet Beecher Stowe
51. A Clockwork Orange – Anthony Burgess
52. Scarlett – Alexandra Ripley
53. White Noise – Don De Litto
54. Their Eyes were Watching God – Zora Neale Hurston
55. Primary Colours – Anonymous
56. Revolutionary Road – Richard Yates
57. Ragtime – E.L. Doctorow
58. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie – Muriel Spark
59. Misquoting Jesus – Bart Ehrman
60. Fast Food Nation – Eric Schlasser
61. My Years as Prime Minister – Jean Chretien
62. Memoirs – Pierre Trudeau
63. Shake Hands with the Devil – Romeo d’Allaire
64. Team of Rivals – Doris Kearns Goodwin
65. The Secret Mulroney Tapes – Peter C. Newman
66. Why I Hate Canadians – Will Ferguson
67. Planet Simpson – Chris Turner
68. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
69. The Restaurant at the End of the Universe – Douglas Adams
70. Life, the Universe and Everything – Douglas Adams
71. So Long and Thanks for All the Fish – Douglas Adams
72. Mostly Harmless – Douglas Adams
73. Fifth Business – Robertson Davies
74. The Manticore – Robertson Davies
75. World of Wonders – Robertson Davies
76. The Donnellys – James Reaney
77. Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
78. Atlas Shrugged – Ayn Rand
79. Farenheit 451 – Ray Bradbury
80. Not Wanted on the Voyage – Timothy Findlay
81. A Tale of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
82. Coraline – Neil Gaiman
83. The Crucible – Arthur Miller
84. Mirror Mirror – Gregory Maguire
85. Snarky Responses to Yahoo! Answers – Matthew Cory
86. Sorbonne Confidential – Laurel Zuckerman
87. What Happened to Anna K – Irina Reyn
88. The Silver Linings Playbook – Matthew Quick
89. Hey Nostradamus! – Douglas Coupland
90. Girlfriend in a Coma – Douglas Coupland
91. Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
92. The 5 People You Meet in Heaven – Mitch Albom
93. The Poisonwood Bible – Barbara Kingsolver
94. Interview with the Vampire – Ann Rice
95. The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank
96. The Bonfire of the Vanities – Tom Wolfe
97. Guys and Dolls – Damon Runyon
98. Good Book – David Plotz
99. He’s Just Not that Into You – Greg Behrendt, Liz Tuccillo, Lauren Monchik
100. The Ultimate Weight Solution – Dr. Phil McGraw
101. Real Life: Preparing for the 7 Most Challenging Days of Your Life – Dr. Phil McGraw

So this was a really interesting sociological and philosophical look at the world of the Simpsons, and the Simpsons in our world. You definitely need to check it out to get a sense of just how broad and all-encompassing Chris Turner’s work is. It isn’t just some ‘fan book’ glorifying the Simpsonion oeuvre – it’s in fact very deep and not something you’ll get through in one sitting. Much like an episode of the Simpsons, it is something much better appreciated for reading with a careful eye, perhaps re-reading in some parts, and taking as both a fun and appreciative romp, as well as a carefully-considered critique/homage. It is something, in short, I feel even the Simpsons team would appreciate – an honest look at their work, on the level at which they want it appreciated; comedically, satirically, social commentary-wise, etc. An awesome piece of research that by now somewhere, somehow must be the textbook for one fun university course (or two or three). 🙂

{April 18, 2010}   Getting To Know You

My friend Alex plays this game – I’ve done it once or twice too, but not regularly. Still, I figure it’s not a bad way to end a week so le’ts go with it. Meanwhile – want to thank my parents for a lovely visit this weekend. Always nice to see Nana and Grandson have some bonding time – and I love how he’s taken to his Papa too. 🙂 Add that to a lovely church service and a good job interview today – I consider this weekend to be full of awesome. 🙂 Hope the same is true for all. Now … getting to know … well, me. 🙂

((WANNA PLAY? Click the icon above and join in the fun!))

1. Mens chests..hairy or hairless?
Enh. Objectively I think I prefer hairless but I totally own this comes from watching too much wrestling lol. It makes no difference in the end as I’m married to a sasquatch and obviously it doesn’t bother me … much. lol

2. How often do you run red lights?
Never. I might push the point with a yellow now and then if I’m in a hurry, but really I don’t.

3. If you could raid any celebrity’s closet..whose would you raid?
Probably Katy Perry’s – she’s just so cool and retro and funky. If I were looking just for classic elegance and simplicity? I don’t know, Jennifer Aniston’s.

4. Would you rather have more followers/friends on Facebook, Twitter, or your Blog?
Definitely not Twitter as I’m not on there often and my wittiest stuff is never there anyway. At this point I use it more for following others than updating myself. Facebook and blogging are tied – I’d want everyone to follow BOTH ideally, but if I had to pick one, I’d want people I know personally to follow me on FB as I communicate there multiple times daily, post photos etc. If I don’t know you personally though, I guess I’d prefer my blog as while I post less frequently I post more in depth and am a bit more proud of what I put out here on a ‘professional’/writing/content level.

5. What makes you feel sexy?
Enh? Quite honestly, I don’t often. But I guess over the last year as a mom and professional, where I’m more often just back and forth between work clothes and sweats, the opportunity to go a little more all-out: have a nice shower (instead of 10 minute in-n-out in the morning), dry out my freshly-dyed hair properly, do my nails and makeup, and dress in somewhat nicer clothes and go out to do something fun (dinner, movies, dancing, whatever).

6. I get excited when………..?
It doesn’t take much these days lol. When my son learns a new skill or shows affection, when I get work, when I have a good day at said work, when hubby and I get a date night, when we’re going travelling or having visitors, wrestling events, when a good song comes on the radio, when the weather is nice, when I go to church … almost anything positive is enough to make me feel good. Downside? I take negatives equally to heart too. That’s just my nature.

7. Are you the “outdoorsy” type or more “indoorsy”?
I have been for years a more indoorsy person, but in adulthood I’ve very much enjoyed being outdoors. I’m not sporty by any means but I love walks, parks, beaches, back yards … playing, swimming, reading, writing … eating outdoors if possible. Especially in nice weather, although I’ve even gotten into outdoorsy winter activities this year (it helps when you have a three-week-long winter festival in your new hometown, AND the world’s longest skating rink).

8. Would you rather have your dream home or a million dollars?
With a million dollars I could by said dream home and have money left over. So I’ll go with the million.

My mother is like, my favourite person in the world.
I haven’t seen her in 2 months.
This is the longest I’ve gone without seeing her in nearly 4 years,
Since we last moved home to Kitchener.
I know Little Tyke is going to be the star of the show this weekend …
But I’m pretty jazzed too.
I get to see my mom!
I missed my mom!
It’s going to be lots of fun.
Can’t wait until they move to this little end of the province
Come the fall. So nice. 🙂
Hope everyone else has a good weekend too! Much love XO.

{April 15, 2010}   My brother

Been meaning to post this for a day or two now as well –

Kyle with this performance won the first ever Drumming for Drinks contest outside of Scotland. Congrats kid! 🙂

But judging from this video, I just might need to change that. Kudos!

{April 13, 2010}   Condolences

Condolences to Poland this week as they mourn the loss of their President, First Lady, and a sizeable portion of their cabinet in a plane crash over Russia. Kudos to all involved in the investigation for their stoic professionalism, and sympathies particularly are extended to the families of the 97 deceased on the airplane. Such a personal and political tragedy for Poland, already far too familiar with both in its history.

I would also belatedly like to extend my condolences to the family of the victims of the W. Virginia mine explosion last week which took 29 lives. I know I am behind on both of these expressions of sympathy, but they are no less sincere for having been distracted by my own set of illnesses and work last week. May we all have better weeks going forward with this one. Love to all.

{April 8, 2010}   ABCs of me (stolen from Alex)

**HEY GUYS – sorry I’ve been absentee this week – I’ve had a sick baby. 😦 But now that he’s feeling better, and now that my computer is also less buggy :D, it’s an evening to relax, take care of some grading and stuff … but also to remind blogland that I’m still in here somewhere. So … I’ve also been catching up with my blog *reading* and got the idea to make this entry a bit more than just a paragraph of ‘I’m alive’, from one of my friend Alex‘s entries – so thanks, girl, for this neat game. Since you’ve been sharing some of my surveys, I figured I could punk a great one of yours. 🙂


B. BED SIZE: Queen size

C. CHORE YOU HATE: Floors. Not a fan of sweeping or mopping. Changing garbages neither.

D. DOG’S NAME: No dog – but my former dog was named Holly, and my two current cats are Calvin and Lita.

E. ESSENTIAL “START THE DAY!” ITEM: Little Tyke’s milk bottle.

F. FAVOURITE COLOUR: Blue or red, depending on shade, mood etc.

G. GOLD OR SILVER: Gold usually. But I’ll go with Alex, white gold is pretty cool too.

H. HEIGHT: 4’11”

I. INSTRUMENTS YOU PLAY: I sing mostly, to the extent I’m musical; I can also very rudimentarily plunk a piano, and knew how to play clarinet once upon a time …

J. JOB: All kids, all the time – mom and teacher. 🙂

K. KIDS: My one Little Tyke, with hopefully at least one more someday in the middle-future (not too far off, but not like, next week either).

L. LIVING ARRANGEMENTS: 3-bedroom townhouse with my hubby and the baby boy.

M. MOM’S NAME: Jean.

N. NICKNAME: Sar I guess is the main one; Princess used to be one as well.

O. OVERNIGHT HOSPITAL STAY: When I got my tonsils out, and several that ended up being overnight just from how late I stayed lol – but not intentionally overnight.

P. PET PEEVE: I think I have two – dishonesty is one (I REALLY value trust, and while I’ve come to accept some white lies of ‘No that dress doesn’t make you look fat’ variety lol, not much beyond that is acceptable to me); also, immaturity. My other isn’t so much one thing as a summary of a type of behaviour that would be best labeled ‘Drama’. Deal with your problems up front, it’s not high school gossiping, sending nasty notes, stewing about problems without discussing them, all Mean Girls-like, and don’t take out your issue with other situations, people, or yourself, on those who you KNOW deep down are good people who are just trying to be there for you and haven’t done anything THAT wrong. Whether you’re 25 or 50, this is so unbecoming.

Q. QUOTE FROM A MOVIE: “I owe you nothing. And you are nothing to me. Thank you for curing me of my ridiculous obsession with love. ” (Moulin Rouge)


S. SIBLINGS: I have one younger brother, Kyle, and a hopefully-future sister-in-law Dawn.

T. TIME YOU WAKE UP: 6am at the earliest, 8am if Little Tyke’s let us sleep in

U. UNDERWEAR: Uh, comfortable mainly. lol


W. WAYS/REASONS YOU ARE LATE: Losing track of time. I’m awful at getting it into my head I only need 5 or 10 minutes or what have you to get somewhere, when really it’s longer. Either that, or last minute … um … baby emergencies (feeding or diaper related lol).

X. XRAYS YOU’VE HAD: Teeth, ultrasounds, chest.

Y. YUMMY FOOD YOU MAKE: Shepherd’s pie, and penne and sausage. Other stuff too but those are probably my signatures.

Z. ZOO ANIMALS YOU LIKE: I enjoy big cats, or petting zoo animals. I agree with Alex though, monkeys are cute because of how busy they are.

{April 6, 2010}   A Lovely Weekend

It was Easter this weekend and a perfect example of looking at the positives rather than the negatives – something my friend Alex has been teaching me by example, and which without even realizing it I find I’ve applied. Case in point:

We had wanted a movie date Saturday afternoon before meeting up with friends while Ari’s parents babysat. We ended up skipping the movie and only a small number of friends managed to make it – but we skipped said movie in order to have a lovely afternoon with our son and my in-laws at the playground, and the people who DID make it to dinner all knew each other and got along well and we had a lovely time.

I’d wanted to go to church Sunday morning – however Little Tyke had trouble sleeping until midnight Saturday and we took the opportunity the next morning to sleep in when he did – but instead we got to enjoy a lovely brunch with my father. I have communed often with the Lord since moving to Ottawa and discovering a truly inspiring church community to be a part of – but it was nice to spend time with my dad and step-mom, two busy professionals who we don’t always get to see as often as we’d like. My brother, who I love and miss, wasn’t able to join us, and my mom was out of the country on vacation, but we had a lovely trip to the park, a great meal, and saw a nice movie in THE BLIND SIDE.

My tendency at times would be to focus on the sleepless baby, the missing people, the lack of church on the Holiest day of the year … but I instead consider God to have blessed me with time with my family, a baby who despite the sleeplessness was in excellent spirits and charmed everyone as usual, nice time with my friends and lovely weather both for the weekend itself and travel both to and from ‘home’. Hope everyone else had a lovely weekend as well. Happy Easter, and Happy Passover all. XO

{April 2, 2010}   Happy Easter! Happy Passover!

After a lovely Seder meal at my church tonight celebrating the Last Supper, Ari and I are headed back to our hometown tonight to see family and friends for the holiday weekend. I may or may not have the opportunity to post before Monday, but that’s when you can expect me back. Meanwhile I wish you all a lovely Passover, and a happy Easter.

May all your Good Friday moments lead to the glory of Easter morning Resurrections.

Next year in Jerusalem! XO

et cetera