Sunday, May 31, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
Today I was more aligned with the former, but trying to optimistically tilt to the latter.
I almost always follow the same routine. As much as I cry out for the new and novel and frequently ponder whether "routine" is merely a half-step from "rut", at the core I am a creature of habit.
So this morning I got dressed, applied some half-assed lip gloss and mascara, packed my purse with pencils, a camera, grammar worksheets and a novel, and took myself out for pancakes.
Being a silent pancake-eating observer across the street from one of the biggest high schools in the city is a very interesting way to spend an hour and a half. While I
Because what is more fun on a sunny Friday morning in May than eating pancakes on the secret garden patio of a greasy spoon and playing Harriet the Spy?!
Teenage drama ensued. Grad related, friend related, drama drama drama.
Having been a teenage girl and experienced my own fair share of teenage grad drama once upon a time, I felt compelled to offer my wisdom.
But as an unemployed 25 year old with bags under my eyes so large that I had to pay an extra fee to have them shipped, I shut up.
But even so, I can share that wisdom with you.
1. No one is ever going to remember the exact specific details of your graduation attire. I am positive that NO ONE cared that my dress was a strapless Alfred Angelo Watermelon - pink on one side with a red backing to really punch up that colour -- Taffeta number with moroccan inspired beading. It was pink, people. End of story.
2. Any post-grad after party you attend will be full of whiny, insolent teenage girl drama. Live with it.
3. If you truly don't like someone, don't be their friend. I understand this is difficult, particularly if you live in a small small town, but you go to one of the biggest high schools I've ever encountered in my life. Suck it up, buttercup, or break it off. You're a few short months from college or Uni anyway. You'll see those people step off an elevator for a business meeting in a decade and won't remember their names, having only the vaguest recollection of knowing them from a previous life. This is the natural order of things. Accept it and lose less sleep over it, and I guarantee that the bags under mine eyes will not be reflected on your perfect (minus those few acne spots which DON'T GO AWAY MAGICALLY WHEN YOU FINISH HIGH SCHOOL, LYING DERMATOLOGISTS AND TEEN MAGAZINE!), unlined adolescent face.
4. And one for the management: It is unwise to sit at a table in your dining establishment with the rest of your patrons and loudly discuss the number of sanctions you received from the last visit by the Health Inspector.
No, no, I'm fine, thanks. Don't bother with boxing up those remaining flapjacks. I'm positively stuffed.
Thursday, May 28, 2009
In researching our upcoming trip to Germany, I fumbled my way across the internet. Some of the towns we will be visiting are quite small and aren't tourist attractions, so fewer resources exist than for, say, Munich.
One of the towns we will be visiting, Mainbernheim, has a wikipedia entry. You can clicky, or I'll sum it up for you:
Mainbernheim has a population of approximately 2400, the town having grown significantly due to new developments outside the city walls. The gummi-bear factory, Bären Schmidt, is the major industry there. Some extant points of interest include the 400-year-old farmhouses along Herrnstraße, which transverses the city from gate to gate and hosts several historic hotels and restaurants.
Wait a second.
The GUMMI BEAR FACTORY??
(sidenote to self: Next year, do your hair on Christmas eve...)
I LOVE GUMMI BEARS. So I did more poking around the internet.
And tragedy struck.
Turns out that Bären Schmidt is a Lebkuchen, or gingerbread, factory.
Wikipedia, you are LIARS. And even though my disappointment is marginally buffered by delicious cookies...LIARS. Filthy filthy liars.
I even tried calling my mom so I could lie on the floor in a heap and moan "Moooooooom, I'm booooooooored" into the phone, just like old times. But she wasn't there. Pssshhh.
I renewed my car insurance, which was a two-hour process that involved forgetting my online log-in password, a call to customer service, numerous repetitions of Canadian Direct Insurance's on-hold phone recording- and as it turned out, the entire process was completely unnecessary as my auto insurance automatically renews itself. Bollocks. (Well, it's not like I didn't have the time...)
Then I read a few chapters of this smutty historical novel, but then turned to reading it aloud in a snappy Bristol accent to amuse myself, which gave me a headache. Helloo, Tylenol Ultra Migrane Relief with Easy-Open Cap.
And now I've realized that it's almost 3:00 in the afternoon and I have yet to eat anything today.
I guess I could go fill in some of my new German Grammar workbooks. Practice Makes Perfect Verb Conjugation, what fun!
I think my mom would tell me to clean something. Sigh. That's so boring.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
I've had two interviews this week and have a third today (at super-cool places!). I've got a doctor's appointment to attend to annoying prescription refills, and I have the rest of season one of Gossip Girl (in HD!) queued up for the watchin'. I renewed the registration for my automobile. Also, only two weeks and two days until we leave for parts Germanic! Woot!
Granted, I still haven't unpacked my suitcase from the weekend, so it sits on the bedroom floor, which I'm sure annoys Gary to no end.
But he leaves stagnant water in pots in the sink so I'm calling it even.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
So here are more wedding pictures!
And proof that I did Karaoke- list item and awesome wedding? Check!
Monday, May 25, 2009
Yesterday's drive home was about 10 hours, including an emergency stop for Popcorn Chicken about 45 minutes outside of Calgary. I've driven/shotgunned the Trans Canada Highway from Vancouver to Quebec City at various points in my life, and one day I hope to complete the last leg of our National Main Street.
I've got to say that the dullest section is, without a doubt, from Winnipeg to Calgary. Maybe even from Regina to Calgary. Because yikes. That's flat land, people. And my company must be getting increasingly mundane, because it wasn't even an hour on the road and my three passengers were sound asleep.
Despite several warnings of "I swear to God, I'll kill you all if you fall asleep and make me drive in silence across the ancient plains of two provinces. I swear."
They survived, but it was a close call.
Anyway, after a day of driving plus the weekend of activity that came before it, I was exhausted when we got home. A quick stop at the grocery store and my head hit the pillow like a bucket of lead.
If you carried lead in a bucket.
Today I woke up and got dressed for an interview and skills assessment at a temp agency. I had lunch with a former coworker, scheduled two interviews for later this week with really cool places, ate a small bowl of Gary's very expensive muselix and soy milk and now I'm going to read a smutty historical novel.
I've earned that relaxation time. I don't have cruise control. I am le tired!
Sunday, May 24, 2009
More to come! When I'm not car-lagged! And I can feel all my toes! And I find my computer to camera cord, buried deep in the innards of my suitcase!
That I'll unpack hopefully tomorrow.
(Also, video perhaps to come. I warn you. Karaoke. Just sayin'.)
Saturday, May 23, 2009
I'm sitting in my Auntie Debbie's kitchen wearing yoga pants, drinking my fourth cup of coffee. My hair is done and my legs are shaven. The dresses are being steamed and are awaiting pick-up at the seamstress. My mother is on her way to the florist. The groom and the groomsmen are delivering liquor to the bar. The tuxes are at the hotel. The cake is being assembled. The wii and karaoke machine have been set up for the reception. The sun has finally come out to play. A sense of calm settles on everyone in the house.
This is a happy day.
Friday, May 22, 2009
I can sleep pretty much anywhere. Sitting up, lying down, propped against a wall. On a couch, in a chair, on the floor.
Well, or least I thought I could.
Now I've found that after falling asleep one way for months in a row, any deviation from that position leaves me turning and shifting, unable to relax. Uneasy. Uncomfortable. Lonely. Restless.
It certainly does not help that my mother has hijacked what has always, as long as I can remember, been MY bed in the blue bedroom at Grandma's. So not only am I not in my normal sleeping nook, I'm in my brother's designated bed at Grandma Olga's. Bleh.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Uh, I mean, be there to support the bride and take care of anything she needs doing. And eat cake.
Last night Mom and I arrived in Yorkton at about 10:00. After a long day of driving my dusty Mazda3 across many miles of dustier prairie, instead of heading for the sleeping zone (which would have been the smart thing to do), I was keyed up and helped by cutting salvage edges off many yards of purple lace for centrepieces.
It is yet to be seen whether anyone will notice that certain squares, the ones that were trimmed closer to 11:30 pm, are signficantly more jiggidy and significantly less square.
This morning the female half of the bridal party had lunch and spent several hours getting our nails done.
Now I am exhaaaausted from all that buffing!
I wonder if there's anymore of that cake kickin' around?
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Driving roughly 400 km across the Alberta prairie I spotted:
a few scary looking prairie chickens, clearly the descendants of tiny velociraptors
one renegade, unfenced black heifer
1 ghostly town
1 wooden one-lane bridge
Only 6.5 hours to go! This time, with company! And I'm reconsidering my decision to buy a car with no cruise control!
I'm not sure if I'll be able to post while I'm gone, so worst case scenario- see you on Sunday night! (I'll try my best to sneak a quick blogaroo in around drinking...er...preparing for my cousin's wedding)
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
If only I could find a decent pen.
Up early? Check.
Two loads of laundry? Check.
Reload laundry card? Check.
Enormous kitchen full of dishes? Check.
Tidy kitchen? Check.
Booked appointment with temp agency for interview? Check.
That is enough productivity to last for the entire day, methinks. Fortunately I have some historical smutty television to watch and a Ben and Jerry's ice cream bar in the freezer.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Gary möchte die Bratwurst und das Sauerkraut kaufen. Ich möchte der Scholkolade ahber ich kaufe nicht.
Ich bin am Verhungern!
Er köche das Sauerkraut und die Wurst- mit Senf, naturlich! Ich köche die Kartoffeln. Wir trinken zwei Beir Kanadisch.
Das hat hervorragend geschmeckt!
I apologize for the shameless flaunting of my new German skillz. I also apologize for any grammatical errors and the fact that we haven't learned past tense yet.
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Except, uh, it was full of lasers and smoke and light fx and giant projection screens and guitar hero played with the philharmonic. And crazy people in costumes.
Video Games Live may indeed be a bastardization of centuries old orchestratic tradition, and yes, Ludwig Van B. is rolling in his grave, but seriously. If the opportunity ever presents itself, it's absolutely an evening worth the cost of admission.
Except next time I'd like to not sit beside any furries. That'd be great.
PS- For those of you keeping score, that makes two of the penultimate nerding activities Gary has taken me to in one month. Coming soon, Megan and Gary go to the Home and Garden Expo, Gary and Megan re-enact the final scene from Dirty Dancing and Gary helps Megan pick out the perfect pair of black pumps!
Friday, May 15, 2009
Then I made toast.
Then I looked for a job for an hour.
And now I'm trying to figure out how I can stretch three errands out to fill an entire 8 hour day before I return to pick Gary back up.
These are the waking hours of my life. Lived in 650 square feet. Alone.
Occasionally I talk to Peter, the guy that runs the convenience store. Except he doesn't really speak English. So it's more like encountering another human as opposed to engaging in conversation with another human.
I'm so desperate that I struck up a conversation in the elevator with a crazy old lady doing laundry at 7:15 am. She needed to re-do her laundry because it smelled funny.
I am going crazy and for the first time in history, I am not looking forward to a long weekend.
What a waste of my nine hundredth blog post. What a waste of my mid-twenties. What a waste.
Thursday, May 14, 2009
One of my 101 in 1001 list items was to bake bread. From scratch.
It's seriously delicious. I followed this recipe, though I ended up adding about 3/4 a cup of milk and didn't use all the flour. I selected this particular one because it makes one loaf, and conveniently, I own one loaf pan. I've got a different recipe on tap for next time, from my trusty 1960's copy of the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. But I need to acquire a second loaf pan (and a muffin tin, for good measure) before that happens.
I had suspicions that this was going to be a bust after 10 minutes of kneading a lumpy, dry dough.
But srsly. People. This is amazing. And our apartment smells like delicious. Contented sigh of satisfaction and baked goodness.
I didn't have anything positive to say yesterday, so I refrained from blogging. When mein Freund (German, still paying off, see?) came home last night wondering why, I explained that I had been advised not to spill my emotional guts on the internet.
For good reason. I understand that this is a public forum and as such, anything I say is viewable by anyone, at any time. It's like posting nude photos of myself on Facebook. That's a no, by the way.
This blog is google-searchable by my first and last name, and I currently have no qualms about potential employers, former high school teachers and my potential in-laws finding it. Currently.
But if I posted here about how I was feeling yesterday, my pathetic ramblings wouldn't do me, my reputation or any of my blog followers any good.
But then he reminded me that blogging is a good source of stress relief. That it helps to get those emotions out there. Or at least give me something to do, and gosh-darn-it, some people still have jobs and need procrastinatory material!
So here it is. The list of things that I thought about yesterday, in no particular order:
1. (While mashing potatoes) I've never made mashed potatoes before. How is this possible? This is easy. Why was I so afraid of this?
2. This stuffed hippo makes a really good pillow.
3. Uhhhnnn, 55 minutes of lazy biking really is a decent workout. I can't feel my left foot. Uuuuhhhhn.
4. We should have a baby!
5. Don't be RIDICULOUS, BAILEY. This is the third worst possible time in your life to have a baby. Worst time number one: While in High School. Worst time number two: Between second and third year of university. Mounting debt, not yet employable. Worst time number three: While living in sin with one's boyfriend, who is currently the sole breadwinner of the family unit. Going from DINKS to SINKS to SIWKS is a baaad idea in the span of a few weeks.
6. I wonder how many calories are in a bag of Doritos, and if that constitutes a fully balanced lunch. Meh. Good enough.
7. I don't understand why second language classes are so focused on grammar and conjugation instead of teaching me to speak less like a cyborg, more like a human. Even if it's a 5 year old human. Dative tense? Indirect article? WTF?
8. I should go back to school full time.
9. I wonder if I have anything I could pawn or sell on ebay. Hmm, appears that I have no possessions of re-sale quality.
10. I really need to get these caterpillar eyebrows waxed.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
-do the dishes
-have a shower
-clean the bathroom
-bake anything because I need to do dishes first
Le sigh. So I'm sitting in my bathrobe on the couch watching Season One of Gossip Girl and wondering if I'll actually go crazy if I go swimming and then have to sit around smelling like chlorine for a few hours. I think I probably will. And I can't leave the house unwashed. That's a slippery slope. If I do it once, soon I'll be gallivanting about town on day five of no showering, and then I might as well start living in my car and eating cat food.
Monday, May 11, 2009
Unless you like cake that can bounce.
But today, I learned that the most important lesson that she hammered home again and again really is very important.
I decided this morning after I dropped Gary off at work, ran a few awkward errands and went for a swim that I would use the extremely overripe bananas we have kicking around and make banana muffins. Thrifty! Frugal! Delicious!
I set about melting butter and mashing nanners and measuring flour. Then when it came time to add the baking soda...wait. We're out of baking soda.
No harm! We have a conveniently located convenience store in our building! And he has baking soda! And now the oven is fully preheated and soon, muffinliciousness will be mine!
Back upstairs, I fold the wet ingredients into the dry, being very careful not to overmix for fear of that dreaded gross muffin texture. Grabbing the butter wrapper I peeled off and saved to grease the muffin pan (super thrifty!), I...
Mrs. Wilson always told us to take everything out and set it up in the kitchen before you start. That way, everything is close at hand. And you would immediately be aware if you were missing something.
Like a muffin tin.
So, in 20 minutes, I will have delicious banana muffin cake. Hopefully. But seriously, how is it that I am 25 years old, have been living under my own roof for seven years and I suddenly am without a muffin tin?
Moreover, how is it that Gary doesn't have one?! We have two crockpots, two rice cookers, two can openers, nineteen wooden spoons and two full sets of table wear.
But no muffin tins.
Argh. I'm sorry, Mrs. Wilson. I have let you down. I am ashamed.
Friday, May 08, 2009
It's apparently quite hugenormous.
I wonder if there's a Starbucks in Balzac. Or if I could convince my dad to stop at one en route.
Thursday, May 07, 2009
In the hot, hot, awfully hot days of summer, that pool is a lifesaver. Last year we spent hours there.
I've never been much of a swimmer. I think it had a lot to do with being very nearsighted from a young age. I'm not uncomfortable in the water, nor am I afraid of it. But I've never gone swimming alone, nor have I ever been one to swim for the sake of fitness. I don't really even swim so much as bob around, float and splash a bit.
Today I changed that. I used to joke with my coworkers about how I'd like to go swimming after work, before G gets home, but a lone woman in a crazy concrete apartment building swimming pool? That is the making of an awful horror movie that ends up with my bloodied corpse floating face down, and I am not so keen on going out that way.
But hey. Circumstances have changed, and really- what have I got to be afraid of? So this morning, I put on my awful Walmart one piece swimsuit (not the one I wear when I'm at the pool with my friends or boyfriend, clearly). I grabbed a towel. I went downstairs to face my impending death.
Obviously I didn't die. I did crank my head pretty good on the pool wall, but I've got a thick skull. And as it turns out, being a poor swimmer is working to my advantage. I was too focused on remembering to breathe and not dying that I didn't have any time to wallow or worry. I liked that.
So tomorrow, I'll be back downstairs. In the pool. Swimming lengths. Tryin' not to die.
I'll get through this. One stroke at a time.
Yesterday, with an office to go to, I woke up at 8:00. I got out of bed at 8:30, scrambled to get dressed and ready for the day, and skipped the toast.
So now I have a full day ahead of me. My options are unlimited. I could go for a long walk, take myself out for coffee. I could bake: macaroons, bread, cupcakes. I could finish reading Guns, Germs and Steel or complete my latest knitting project, a baby blanket in shades of blue.
(The baby, Jillian, was born 6 weeks ago. Ooops.)
I could play hours of Spider Solitare or read blogs until my little heart stops. I could go to the gym, I could do three hours of yoga. I could scrub every surface in our apartment until it glistens. I could start writing a salacious romance novel or a tell-all about magical rocks and blue shooters.
But I think I'll go back to bed.
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
I have an incredible partner, a loving family, wonderful friends.
I'm safe. My human rights aren't infringed upon or taken from me.
I have a roof over my head, shoes on my feet, gas in my car, food in the fridge.
I have the luxury to go on an incredible vacation this summer, and the honour of standing up for a beloved family member at her wedding in May.
I can see, I can speak, I can read, I can write, I can hear, I can move.
What about you? What are your blessings?
Tuesday, May 05, 2009
Now that the Undergrad Sparkles have completely worn off, I've developed a strategy for a lot of work-related things. But I don't like to blog about work, in part because I find that makes for depressing and boring blog posts, but also because I don't really want to get dooced.
(Oh, blogosphere, inventing colloquialisms of your own! So cute!)
But, I can blog about what I wear to work! How exciting for you all!!
I'm fond of wearing dresses to my office. I have fooled most people into believing that I've "dressed up" for the occasion, but really, I opt to wear a dress because seriously, life doesn't get any easier. One piece. One. Add shoes. Done.
My love for one-piece outfits (rompers, anyone?) is because truly, at the core of my being, I am laaaazy. I love clothing, I love shopping, I love looking pulled together (okay, reasonably decent...okay, let's be honest here: looking like I didn't sleep in what I'm wearing), I love experimenting with outfit combinations.
I do not love doing those things, or putting forth the effort to do those things, in the hideous early light of morning. I hate decision making before I've had coffee. I don't make coffee at home. You can see my boggle.
(If you're wondering, I'm totally behind school uniforms. For many reasons. Including preventing kidsthesedays from exposing their NC-17 rated underwears to people who don't need that kind of encouragement)
I like one-piece outfits because they are easy. They are as close to going to work nekkid as I'm going to get. They are also reasonably comfortable. It's a miracle that I haven't adopted a tunic as my daily ensemble.
You know, to tell you the truth, I'm anxiously waiting for the future to get here because I am looking forward to wearing a star fleet uniform.
One piece! Snazzy colours! Comfortable, effortless chic! Complimentary fit! Maybe, if I'm lucky, they'll be made out of an ultra-breathable natural fibre!
What more could anyone ask for?
Monday, May 04, 2009
Bring to me unconventional movie food! Like a pie, and perhaps a whopper with just cheese and ketchup!
Well, I had a decent weekend. Parts of it were great, particularly the parts where I was drinking beer and watching fluffy rom-coms and summertime blockbusters.
Did you know that at the theatre in Chinook Centre, they have a POPCORN CART?! It comes right into the theatre! I was shocked! And a bit ruffled, because Amanda and I had just gotten up, climbed over a row of people and stood in line, subjecting ourselves to the randomest of upsales from the concession stand guy and climbed back over that same row of people only to return to our seats and within minutes, be offered the same treats we foraged so valiantly for! Why would I ever get out of my seat to stand in line when the treats could be brought directly TO me!
But now I know. I know the secret to uninterrupted pre-movie time. Never again will I miss the stupid pre-show trivial and cell phone ads, because I will sit. I will sit on my lazy North-American backside and the teenagers, oh, the teenagers- they will bring my popcorn and licorice to me.
Ahhh. I see a long summer of sci-fi flash and free with purchase of a movie ticket air conditioning ahead. Summertime, and the livin' just got considerably easier.
Sunday, May 03, 2009
That is all I've got to say.
Friday, May 01, 2009
Ahh. Friday. How I love thee. I love thee because I am no longer forced to wear business casual attire, and rock on into the office in jeans and a green t-shirt with a big white fish on it.
It's cuter than it sounds, I swear. It's not a Big Mouth Billy Bass Big Reel Fishing Competition 1998 Souvenier T-shirt. I swear.
I also love Fridays because I take the opportunity to get slide into weekend mentality a little earlier. I break up the monotony by...gasp...listening to my iPod at my desk. I'm technically not supposed to, because "technology" is "evil" (I see their point) but I've made a special request so I can use it to block out background noise and be uber creative while writing copy for annual reports and research grants.
Did you know that the best playlist for writing sponsorship proposal documents is very angry rock music and pop music heavy on the sexual innuendos?
Yep. There's nothing like hammering out some great statistical analysis reports and verbage about use of donor dollars while pumping Closer by NIN in the background. (Mom, don't google that. Please.)