Thursday, January 29, 2009

Cohabitation Ole!

Thursday, January 29, 2009
Last night I made these awesome enchiladas for dinner. Seriously, I know that any list of ingredients that includes a "cream of" soup is often times dodgy, but these were awesome.

Or at least so awesome that we ate them without complaint. And on a Wednesday, what more can you ask for?

It's a darn good thing that Gary likes Mexican food. Because, frankly, I love it, and I eat it all the time, and if I had my way our weekly schedule of meals (that I force him to sit down and discuss every Sunday...) would look like this:

Monday: Tacos
Tuesday: Fajitas
Wednesday: Quesadillas
Thursday: Tacos
Friday: Enchiladas

I didn't make him dinner for the first 7 months of our relationship. Honestly. I went all out the first time with Chicken Parmigiana, and ever since then I've been attempting to fatten him up, Eastern European Grandma style.

He's definitely not getting any fatter. I think I'm doing it wrong.

It's one of my few (ha) life goals to be as good of a cook as my mother is. We'll see how that pans out. All I hope for on a regular basis is just to not kill anyone.

We're having the Chapmans over for dinner on Saturday, I'm making chicken cordon bleu, Saskatchewan-style, and I'm feelin' the pressure. Because while I have a stomach of steel, it would be really unfortunate to kill one's boyfriend and one's closest friends, all in one go.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Goodbye

Wednesday, January 28, 2009
In preparation for my big move, I threw out a lot of things.

I feel really terrible about it, but honestly- no one wants most of my old crap. I'm donating anything remotely usable from the kitchen, and some of my old furniture, and of course, clothes. I'm recycling magazines and the like, but when it comes down to half-empty bottles of hand lotion and old fliers from parties in 2004: trash time.

I've probably thrown out as much, if not more, than I kept. I looked at boxes I moved the last time I changed households, realized that I've never even opened them, and just tossed them straight in the garbage.

But I did go through countless boxes, bins, and bags of stuff.

Megan stuff.

Mementos, memorabilia, paraphernalia...crap.

All of these things that defined who I was at a certain point in time, and now, they're in Glad bags sitting in the alley.

It was a little hard to say goodbye to 2005, 2006, 2003 Megan. I tossed out cocktail napkins with pithy sayings, boxes of business cards, feather boas I wore to the bar, journals and notebooks and random scribbles and scraps, posters, stuffed U of C Dino toys, term papers, costume pieces, picture frames, plastic souvenir beer mugs, and more than a few post-its with notes from old roommates and friends. All of the things I surrounded myself with because THAT'S WHO I WAS.

I thought it would be harder. To realize that I wasn't that person anymore.

But on Sunday, when I finished shelving books and putting away (full) bottles of perfume and lotion, there was no remorse.

2009 Megan? She's got less stuff. And that's okay. Because stuff is just stuff.

And as lame as it sounds, it did take 24 years for me to figure it out.

(...2009 Megan kind of wants nicer stuff, anyway.)

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Oh, irritating subconscious!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Do you know what I really hate?

I spend 8 hours of my day, 40 hours of my week, countless ('cause I don't feel like math right now) hours a year at work. I don't hate that- first of all, it's unavoidable, and secondly, just because I whine about it doesn't mean I hate it.

Anyway. I will spend hundreds of thousands of hours at work in my lifetime, and then when I'm asleep- I dream about work.

Unfortunately, nothing exciting happened in that dream, so it felt like just another day in the office. Which means, to my brain, I feel like I've been here for 3 days straight.

Ugh.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Shacked up!

Monday, January 26, 2009
Well, we did it.

Gary and I spent the weekend visiting the Purolator depot at the airport, going on a marathon trip to Ikea, moving boxes into and out of a house, a yellow SUV, an elevator, and an apartment. We ordered pizza, unpacked boxes, and then Gary assembled Ikea furniture while I sat around and looked pretty.


Gary really knows his way around a warehouse.

The books are alphabetized, the plants are displayed, clothes are in drawers and on hangers, and my art is up on the walls. It really is our apartment now- it's home.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Weekend: Finally.

Friday, January 23, 2009
Oh, weekend, you are so close. I can smell you. You smell like productivity, which isn't your usually scent. Normally you smell like naps and waffles and a trip to the grocery store and a game or two of Age of Empires II. (uh...okay, totally not going to deny it)

No, weekend, this time you waft in and my sniffer detects boxes. And moving. A giant borrowed yellow SUV. And a trip to Ikea, where hopefully (fingers crossed) I can convince someone to stop for $1.99 Swedish de-lites. And by de-lites I clearly mean meatballs.

Oh, weekend. I hope that you are truly productive, but that by the time the Sundays roll around, you'll give me a little break to do some napping/gaming and general layaboutness.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Rat and Monkey, meet Ox

Thursday, January 22, 2009
Indulge me for a moment.

I know that it's totally absurd (or is it?) to believe in things like horoscopes.

Except that last year's Chinese horoscope was bang on. Totally and completely accurate. In a bizarre and convincing way.

So of course I'm a little curious about what my Chinese horoscope has to say for 2009. And of course I looked it up. And then I may have looked up my close friends. And maybe Gary's.

Look, we established yesterday that I am totally borderline nuts. Let that freak/crazy flag fly, Bailey.

But without giving too much away, I breathed a sigh of relief and feel much more at ease.

Thank you, crazy internet Chinese horoscope. You may have saved my mental health for today.

God Save the Clean Underwears

I have had God Save the Queen stuck in my head all morning. I have NO idea why. I don't even think I actually know all the words to God Save the Queen! Whenever it was being played, I was in the band, and I just kind of hummed along in my head while I played my french horn. I wonder when we'll start singing God Save the King.

As if Queen Elizabeth is ever going to die. Ha. She'll live to be 127 if it means holding on to that throne...

It is snowing again, which was a cruel reminder that it is still Winter and I am still grumpy about it. I've got a list of life maintenance chores about the length of a small child to accomplish this weekend, not the least of which is adjudicating a community theatre performance of Fiddler on the Roof.

Can you believe that in my life, I have probably seen over 400 plays, and I've never seen Fiddler on the Roof?! I don't even know what it's about! Except maybe a Fiddler! And a roof. And for some reason, something about a matchmaker.

Tonight I'm going to attempt to break into the laundry room in our building and do a load of wash. I have a bunch of laundry cards left from my days at the illustrious University of Calgary and I'm pretty sure at least one of them will work. Ahh, sweet sweet clean underwears. And socks. I'm barefoot and it's going to be -20 this afternoon.

Clearly I was meant to live in a warmer climate.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

crazy voice

Wednesday, January 21, 2009
I keep a lot of my thoughts inside my own head.

I'm sure that we all do, but seriously, my internal dialogue is INTENSE.

I don't let it out most of the time because I'm sure that 90% of the things I think, if spoken aloud, would cause all of my friends, family and coworkers to label me crazy. That special kind of crazy that starts with an elongated, higher-pitched first syllable, and a long, drawn out vowel sound at the end. No finger motions required.

The things I think and want to say would, under most situations, cause my boyfriend to slap a giant "psychotic girlfriend" sticker on my forehead and run. Run run run and regret the fact that I have a key to the apartment he lives in.

So fortunately for us all, including myself, I keep those thoughts on the inside. I let them simmer and bubble and turn over and over, until I come to the conclusion that I actually am crazy, so god forbid, don't ever speak of them again.

But maybe...

this actually makes me more crazy.

800

Last night I made fish for dinner. I don't really know how to cook fish. It's one of my 101 list items- and I only have to do it 4 more times. I maple-glazed, then baked in foil some salmon. Served with rice and veg, I had it on the table roughly 10 minutes after Gary got home from the gym. (Does that win me any kind of girlfriend award? I think it should...)

I'm terrified of buying frozen fish filets. I have fear of cooking pretty much all meat. Meat and I, we don't really agree on much. Other than its deliciousness, but when I'm driving the cooking train, it can be rough. Hopefully the salmon experiment didn't kill either of us- but so far, so good.

I'm off to see the Marilyn play tonight at the Glenbow. I had a bit of an internal debate this morning- what does one wear to a VIP performance of a play about a sexpot? Do I sexpot it up? Do I go with what I always wear to VIP performances of plays? Do I wear what I wear to a normal play (jeans...'cause I'm lazy).

Ultimately, I ran out of time staring at my clothing options, most of which are calf-length skirts and black cowl neck sweaters, and put on what was clean.

No diamonds or pink satin or mink for this girl. Hopefully I can sneak in unnoticed in the back.

This blog post sucked.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Where were you?

Tuesday, January 20, 2009
When asked that question, years from now, I'll be able to say that we set up the projector in the board room and cancelled our conference calls. I think the expression "history in the making" or "watching history be made" is cheesy and over-used, because history is made, every single day, monumentous occasions or not.

I thought about my grandparents, who lived in DC, and what my Grandpa Al might have said about today. I really don't know- and I really don't know if I want to know.

But yes, when asked, like I pester my own father about his whereabouts during historic dates, I'll have an answer:

"...and then we went to the Casino for free lunch."

Monday, January 19, 2009

I need a sunlamp

Monday, January 19, 2009
I am in a significantly better mood today. Actually, I've been in a significantly better mood since Friday. This is probably because it's sunny and warm- like, 16 degrees warm- even despite the fact that it's JANUARY on the PRAIRIES.

Gary and I saw The Curious Case of Benjamin Button on Saturday night. I loved it. I know, I know. The premise is predictable and it's veeeerrry similar to Forrest Gump. But I loved it all the same. Also, Cate Blanchett is stunning and in my next life I want to come back and look like her. Or just be someone who gets to look at her.

Tonight is chicken fajitas night and I am excited. I love anything even remotely tex-mex. Tragically, I live in Canada on the Prairies which is where Mexican cuisine goes to die.

And one more paragraph, to round it all out- how many bankers boxes do you think it takes to pack all of Megan's books and living room tchotckes?

Friday, January 16, 2009

isit5yet?!

Friday, January 16, 2009
I think today has been the longest day of my life! Or at the very least, the longest day of this week.

I've entered the Dead Zone: the time between 2:30 and 4:00. It's not early enough to get excited about the end of the day, and lunch is a distant memory.

At least I have a glass 'o red waiting for me at the end of the day, and a weekend chock full of packing.

Uhhhhhnn. Paaacking.

How I do it

This morning I strutted in to the office and our receptionist told me that I looked "damn hot". Yeah, that's right.

My secret is this: Make no effort 80% of the time, wow them 20% of the time, leaving the impression that you're pretty much always damn hot.

Last night I looked so sad and frumpy that the guy working at Sephora gave me the fiercest set of pity eyes I've ever seen.

But it's all just part of the plan, those schlumpy grey cardigans and ill fitting dress pants. All part of the plan.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

If I had $245 USD...

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Just lying around, I'd totally buy myself this. It's the wrong size, but god, it's gorgeous.

Also, I'm addicted to Etsy. It's like window shopping on crack.

**edited to add: this post doesn't exist with the intention of convincing anyone to buy this or some facsimile of it for me. I just like it and think it's pretty and wanted to share.

It's true.

Yes, it's true.

I no longer hate The Tragically Hip.

I don't know if it's a sign of mellowing with age, or a greater appreciation of the music of our country. Maybe it's all the CBC Radio 2 I've been hoisting upon myself since the new year started.

Or maybe it's just that really, hating something so random and subjective takes up a hell of a lot of energy and time, and I just don't care anymore.

It's like hating an ex-boyfriend.

You live in fear of the day that you'll turn on the radio and whammo, every single station is playing Little Bones and you can't stop because if you do turn off the radio all you'll hear is it playing in your head and it's driving you crazy and then one day you just stop.

You don't care.

You may even find yourself reminiscing fondly or singing along.

And then you know, it's done, it's over. The end.

I'm getting old. It's causing me angst. Amanda was right. Maybe I am wasting my twenties.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

There goes the neighbourhood

Wednesday, January 14, 2009
The unthinkable has happened.

And I think it might be my fault.

Saturday night, post-dinner party, Gary and I cleaned up my house, put away the leftovers and put on our winter coats to walk back to our (whoa) (technically, not yet officially ours but I'm breaking it in casual-like) (whoa) apartment.

We were walking up Kensington Road, and I don't know, maybe it was the fact that I had had six (at least) glasses of wine by that point, but my whole entire universe shattered.

"HOLY CATS!" (or something thereabouts) I exclaimed.

My favourite used book store, an icon in the neighbourhood, home of hours and dollars spent on cheap paperbacks and odd old VHS tapes, has closed.

But what happened to Boom Boom, the in-house persian cat?

I stood on the street and my face fell, and I looked forlorn, and I swear I didn't cry.

I'm leaving my 'hood, where I've worked and lived and loved and slept and caffeinated for years, and it's falling to pieces. Used bookshops with character and pets and really cute guys that can definitely swindle you out of fair price for your pristine quality hardcovers have been replaced with THE MOM STORE.

I just...I...just...don't.

So help me god, if the next thing that goes up is a Boston Pizza...

It bloomed!


But alas, spring is not here...it's snowing.

Again.

(But why am I surprised? Honestly. It's January. I live in Canada. On the Prairies.)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Cappuccino Calamity

Tuesday, January 13, 2009
I think the awkward barrista at the coffee place beside my office has a crush on me.

This is awkward for many many reasons, the first of them being that I'm probably almost a decade older than he is (frightening), and despite the fact that he looks very much like a young Emile Hirsch... NO.

I know, you're going to say, "Megan, it's a barrista's job to be friendly and smile at you and somehow turn the foam of every single latte, london fog and cappuccino you've ordered in the last 3 months into a little heart. Maybe the only milk-foam design he knows how to do is a little heart. Maybe it's a little leaf!"

But then we have the case of the googly eyes.

And the blushing.

And the strange hovering over my table when I'm alone.

And the sort of below the decible heard by human ears "hello" "goodbye" "thanks" "incomprehensible muttering" uttered at completely inappropriate times.

And the fact that at this particular independent non-corporate espresso joint, the barristas make it their mission to be snobby and condescending.

Awkward.

So. Awkward.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Dinner for 9, Hold the Food Poisoning

Monday, January 12, 2009
By some miracle of God and modern housekeeping, I pulled it off.

"It" being a dinner party for 9, the last party in my little Fortress of Smoothitude in the yuppiest neighbourhood in town, and a list item.

Saturday afternoon I swept, simmered, layered and scrubbed, but not necessarily in that order. I made a special 2 meat lasagna, recipe courtesy of my mom. Friends brought wine, veggies, salads, appies and desserts to round it out. Yeah, I cheated. We had an upscale potluck, but I'm counting it anyway.

I even went so far as to lay down matching tablecloths, arrange some flowers, and light a bunch of candles.

I'm pretty pleased with how it all turned out, and it was a nice way to cool the house. I'll miss you, hardwood floors, separate kitchen space and storage up the wazoo- but your time has come.

Onwards and upwards. 23 floors upwards.

Expect your dinner party invitation in the mail any day now.

Friday, January 09, 2009

waiting for spring and other things

Friday, January 09, 2009
My moving date has been bumped up a month. Starting February 1st, I'll have a new address.

I am ecstatic about this. I'm so ecstatic that I packed almost my entire bedroom last night.

I'm relieved that the renter my roommate has found will most likely want the room furnished, which means my enormous collection of ikea furnishings consisting of: one double bed (and the two night tables that were part of my childhood nursery) can stay put until the end of August. Which is much better timing for the people with the truck who will be storing it for me in their garage in Saskatchewan (love you mom and dad).


This is a photo of the crocus plant sitting on my desk. It makes me smile. It reminds me of my Grandma Clara, who loves crocuses. It also serves as a reminder that some things are worth being patient for.

Deep breath. Today sucked. Gee, I wish someone would invent a machine that makes copies and automatically collates 200 page documents.

What? They already have?

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Things that should have been on the list

Thursday, January 08, 2009
The 101 in 1001 project is going quite nicely. Two of my most awesome friends have also made lists. I've started making progress, ticking things off the list and making plans to tick things off the list.

Except for one thing.

I have been overcome with a strange and powerful urge to do other ambitious things that aren't on the list.

Like Tuesday. I phoned Amanda and asked her if she wanted to go antiquing. "Is that on your list?" She asked.

And I've started listing to CBC Radio 2.

And I've started knitting a cozy for my French Press. (What? A girl needs to keep her coffee hot!)

None of these things are on the list. I tell myself that it's okay, they are also honourable things I want to do or accomplish, and in some ways, they help me to achieve things on the list. They're like baby steps. List items -2, -1.

Except for that antiquing thing. I have no idea where that particular urge came from.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Fridge Door

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

This is the upper part of my fridge door. I wanted to show you it because I am crazy like that.

On my fridge, you'll currently find:

-An 'emergency family contact list' for my roommate and I
-3 copies of a photo of Rundle Hallers from the 2002 Residence Formal (I lived in Kananaskis Hall)
-A photo of me sitting poolside in Vegas
-Several magnets with inappropriate sayings related to body piercing, anti-suburbia and solving problems with substance abuse
-coupon for free onion rings (at least, that's what I'd choose as my buy one get one item!)
-Concert tickets
-Old nametag
-Photo taken in Banff
-Postcard notifying a former tennant of a shoe sale
-Inspirational card
-Thank you cards
-Magnet of the library in my hometown
-Utilities payment cheque

Epiphany


Sarah took the tree down last night. This means that the Holiday season really is over. For once, I wasn't living in denial about stretching out the festive. I'm ready to get on with January and February and the rest of these months in this shiny new year. I'm ready to box my crap and haul it across the river and up 23 floors in an elevator. I'm ready to have a potluck dinner for 8 of my Haskayne School of Business friends (how much lasagna do I need to feed 8 or 10 people? Mom?! Why didn't you answer the phone last night when I was standing in Walmart trying to buy a lasagna pan?!)

I'm ready to own a lasagna pan.

The weatherman promised it was going to be plus 5 today, and instead, it's snowing again. Colour me unimpressed.

(And yes, I did take this photo, as part of my photo-a-day project. I suck at taking photos, but this one's not so bad)

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Monday Night Recap

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

I don't have a lot to say. Last night I met up with Robert at Kawa, then Allison, Dhyia and a few others for their monthly Monday Night Drinking Club at Bungalow (delicious wine and dumplings, should you be the type interested in wine and dumplings).

Then I collapsed on the couch with Gary and his friend Ashley and watched a few episodes of American Gothic.

Apparently my theory that the young boy seeing ghosts and demonic influences is merely suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome didn't go over so well.

But then Gary and I watched the first episode of Season 4 of HIMYM and all was well again in the universe- in part, I'm sure, because I've already seen Star Wars.

Monday, January 05, 2009

At least the sun is shining?

Monday, January 05, 2009
I just looked at the calendar and daaaaamn, it is a long time between today and Family Day. I think that what Canadians need is a long weekend around the 21st of January. The next month and a half feels like it's going to be the longest month and a half of MY LIFE.

I've got to start cleaning, so I can start packing, so I can start moving. I suppose that is going to take me eight million years, because I have accumulated so much useless crap and now lack the closet space to hide it in. Does anyone know how much it would cost to rent a dumpster? How about just burning all of my stuff in an elaborate cleansing ritual and starting this brand new cohabitation experiment with nothing but the clothes on my back? Is that a feasible option?

I'm terribly sorry. Apparently drugstore-brand pain reliever/muscle relaxant makes megans crazy.

101 in 1001

I think this will be an easier format to read and update, so I'll post the full list here, add a permanent link to it in the sidebar, and you can follow along if you choose.

So here we go- to be completed by September 30, 2011:

1. make zuni chicken and bread salad
2. find 3 classical music cds I adore
3. find 3 jazz cds I adore
4. connect with 3 old friends
5. make 3 new friends
6. Host 10 dinner parties
7. knit 3 baby blankets revised: knit 3 baby gifts (2/3)
8. knit 2 scarves for gift-giving
9. knit a pair of mittens
10. knit a pair of socks
11. learn to knit cables
12. organize all christmas decorations
13. organize library alphabetically by author and genre
14. Print Photos and organize into albums
15. Frame and hang artwork
16. take a continuing ed class
17. recycle paper products, plastic products and glass/metal containers
18. save $5000
19. Pay off Credit Cards
20. Set up monthly RRSP contributions
21. Cook meatless dinners 15 times
22. Cook fish 5 times
23. Bake bread from scratch
24. Bake 3 birthday cakes for friends (1/3)
25. Learn to make spring rolls
26. Make homemade jam or jelly
27. Use slow cooker 10 times
28. Organize all recipes into one binder or notebook
29. clean the oven
30. Go to the gym at least twice weekly for 3 consecutive months
31. Lose 25 lbs (of course, part of that was an extra 15 I put on...oops)
32. Go to Hot Yoga
33. Take my lunch to work 4 times a week for 6 months
34. Write 10,000 words of fiction
35. Visit 3 foreign countries (2/3)
36. visit a city I haven't visited before
37. Learn to speak 'traveler's German'
38. Plant flowers
39. Plant and grow an edible thing (mint)
40. Learn to take great photos of people
41. Go snorkeling
42. Read Pride and Prejudice
43. Read Anna Karenina
44. Read Guns, Germs and Steel
45. Read No Logo
46. Read The Tipping Point
47. Read The Grapes of Wrath
48. Read 3 biographies or autobiographies
49. See 3 movies at the Uptown or the Globe (1/3)
50. Find/Start a challenging book discussion group
51. Blog every day for six months (revised goal)
52. Go to the CPO
53. Go to Shakespeare in the Park
54. Go to Zoolights
55. Try an ethnic cuisine I've never tried before (Korean)
56. Take a multivitamin every day for 3 months
57. Do not use plastic bags for 1 month
58. Go to the Farmer's Market 5 times
59. Send a postcard to Postsecret
60. Eat something I can't pronounce
61. Learn to play 2 new games
62. Get a massage
63. Get a facial
64. Have brunch at the Palliser
65. Move in with my boyfriend
66. Organize belongings in such a matter that will fit into new home
67. Go to an art gallery 2 times
68. Get dressed up for a really fancy event
69. Send a letter to each of my grandmothers 5 times each
70. grow my hair below my shoulders
71. Style my hair, put on makeup and wear an "outfit" every work day for 2 weeks
72. take a picture every day for three months
73. research home buying
74. get pre-approved for a mortgage
75. buy a condo
76. purchase new living room furniture
77. make homemade pasta
78. Watch Casablanca
79. Watch The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
80. Watch 3 foreign films
81. Find a job I love Bold, perhaps preemptive, stricken in 08/2009 - and again in 02/2010
82. Research starting a consulting business
83. Start a "one-in, one-out" organization rule for my home
84. Buy a new cell phone
85. Buy a new computer
86. Scan, print and make family and friends photo collage
87. Change my last name
88. Dye at least part of my hair a colour not occurring in nature
89. Sew or create a wicked Halloween costume
90. Sew one item of clothing I can wear
91. Invite friends over for a special occasion Brunch
92. Find reason to celebrate each month
93. Become a Big Sister
94. Learn to drive a standard, or at the very minimum, the fancy settings on my car
95. Read a bedtime story to a child
96. Take out 10 library books
97. Sing Karaoke
98. Lie on the beach at least once
99. Buy nothing for a week
100. Treat a stranger to coffee
101. Make homemade pizza totally from scratch

Friday, January 02, 2009

2009 Must Do's

Friday, January 02, 2009
Ready? Okay!

So I'm working on a 101 in 1001 list, but it appears that making a list of 101 things I want to accomplish in 1001 days is harder than I thought. Perhaps making the list itself can be number one on the list?

So to get me started, here's a brief list of a few things I want, need, must do in 2009:

-Make this roast chicken.
-Find 3 albums from the Classical Music genre that I adore, and listen to them while I eat aforementioned chicken.
-Knit 2 baby blankets, one for our friend Jaime, one for our friend Ashley. Anyone else with child? Let me know. ASAP. Or no baby blanket hand-knit with love for you.
-Learn to take photos of people without cutting of at least the top third of their heads.
-Start doing laundry weekly, sorted by colour.

Stay tuned as I work out another 95 things to do by the end of September, 2011.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

2009, You Have Finally Arrived!

Thursday, January 01, 2009
Here I am, sipping sparkling wine and breakin' in this year of blogging while Gary washes the dishes. Life, interwebs- is good.