Monthly Archives: November 2012

F Words: Part Three & Ivan Coyote, by j

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Part three of our weekend happened when we were done with our Saturday morning brunch and found the women folk doing my favourite thing: shopping.

Imagine going to the biggest city in the country and deciding that the first weekend of holiday shopping is a good time to go to Holt Renfrew.

Apparently there was a need for pantyhose.

Surprisingly enough, between the shoulder to shoulder, dog carrying, fancy shoppers I did get to see some stuff that looked half way interesting.

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We found Jackson’s first puppy Xmas gift. We may need a larger size.

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Then we checked out A’s favourite department: shoes.

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$945.00 for a pair of black high heels? Seems reasonable. This is the moment where I remind people that $945 is two months worth of social assistance in our province. Yeah.

Then it was off to mom’s favourite store, William Ashley. I thought that the parents agreed that this weekend they would avoid the china store.

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Mom got a killer deal (according to her) on a soup pot. That was after she took a pass on the $600 pot Gramma suggested she buy. Fancy woman!

After all of that shopping, it was clear: time to resume eating and drinking. A great meal was ended by some of this:

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Eggnog cheesecake with pumpkin ice cream.

This was followed by more drinking and watching Brad Pitt’s excruciatingly bad interpretation of Achilles.

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To top it all off, I then received one of the most exciting emails of my entire life. If you don’t know Ivan Coyote, shame on you. Google that shit.

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To which I was like:

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And then I got my final fee bill for my MSW.

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F Words: Part 2, by j

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Does anyone think it was a coincidence that the family arrived in Toronto the same weekend as the Vanier Cup and the Grey Cup?

A smell a conspiracy afoot.

Early on Saturday morning I woke up to find my dad and Papa had already ventured out in the downtown area and my mom to be snoozin’.

And being the creature that I am, I went off to enjoy some alone time in the nation’s biggest city.

I didn’t go far, but I did check out the city’s Nathan Phillips Square early in he morning. Despite the early hour, there were some enjoying the Grey Cup experience.

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The square was done up for the festivities. I imagine it would be full during the day. Here’s a big football player.

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There was no ice yet- but a gentle reminder that it was coming. After the important game was done with.

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And then they had folks getting ready to feed the hungry masses with an authentic Québécois flair.

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And then they had some poor Westerner in a Stampeders jacket reporting early in the morning. He was talking about the bet between Calgary and TO mayors. Little did he know…

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Dad tried to talk A into taking a ride on the zip line. No dice.

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It wasn’t all football in the square.

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After that I followed the screams of the overly aggressive parents to the flag football that was being played on the grassy ice rink. It was damn cold.

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And then I was alerted to when Mayor Ford kicked off he festivities for the Grey Cup. He got sent to football camps at Notre Dame as a child, don’t you know?

You’d think with all his football relates troubles he’d keep an arms length.

Let it never be said that (ex) Mayor Ford does things half assed.  No, he definitely goes full ass.

F Words: Part One, j

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This past weekend was filled with our three favourites: food, family, fun. And if you’re into it: fashion, friends, football, fiery conversation, etc., etc. And there were a few drinks involved. Or more than a few.

And I don’t want to make unsubstantiated claims- but as I was walking to the bus depot to pick up my auntie, I was almost hit by an Escalade driven by one Mr. Rob Ford. Now I’m not saying that’s the reason he was ousted from office today. I’m just saying it’s a coincidence.

Here’s what else we did on our first day (other than cuddle up with M and hang with FFD):

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Here the view from one of our two suites, looking over Nathan Phillips Square.

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We didn’t spend much time gazing at the skyline as we were busy eating and drinking. Thanks to Gramma for the cheese.

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We then made our way down to a pub. We got some fresh air, and got to see the festive light arrangements. Which A noted looked like something less than festive.

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We arrived at this pub: “The Queen and Beaver”. Not, as we learned “The Queen’s Beaver”.

We did more of this:

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M ordered some duck pâté, I think. Mind the blurry photo. At this point I started mixing libations.

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And I had a bite of dad’s tomato and cheddar toast:

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And then I got some mushroom pithivier. Which is fancy French for a puff pastry pie.

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M had some smoked fish…noooo.

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And I had some more cider. Including this one that I sent back.

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And then it was off to drink some more.

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And then I took a picture of a cat.

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A nice surprise, by j

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Woke up to some pretty stellar fog this AM, which put a bit of a damper on the plans to travel down the busy, busy highway for my Advanced Social Policy class.

However, being that I am one of many, we trekked out to the KW for class, albeit an hour late.

So what’s better than an extra hour to get ready in the morning (read: I actually had time to shower and make my lunch and dinner to take…usually I have to choose between those two options)?

How about enjoying the perk of having a BFF living in the right province for the first time in a decade?  Because what this means is that we were all up in the fancy coffee shop next to the Google building.  Did you know that Google has an office in KW??  I DID NOT!  I am a little bit curious to see if their Canadian office is as fun sounding as their Cali office.  But, I will make the assumption that with all things cross border the Canadian office is probably filled with lovely Google employees but they have to go with the nap rooms and slides that their American counterparts get to enjoy.

Sidenote: If you Google street view the KW Google office, it’s hilarious.  Go ahead, check it out.

Anyways- what else is awesome about my KW friend?  She’s letting me crash at her gorgeous home when needed.  My last semester is going to be an interesting one as she is letting me move in for 48 hours a week.  She’s lovely.

And in anticipation of next week’s marathon of school work I get to have a sleep over this weekend.  It will remind me of our high school sleepovers when I used to go to her house to get away from my little sisters.

I am also making a prediction- as our Sunday night will include copious amounts of red wine and J taking an anti-histamine to deal with her lovely four legged feline friend.

This is what I’ll be all like on Monday morning in class:

Can’t wait.

So, it’s November, by j

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Is everyone having the same conversation as I am?

“Can you believe it’s November?!”

The past few weeks have been crazy- but good…shall we recap?

1. Celebrating auntie

The fam (or at least some of us) went up to the Pillar and Post for some birthday spa-ing.

It included some drinking of wine out of plastic glasses, steak eatin’, and being touched by a stranger.

Oh, and I walked into a glass door.  Note to masseuse: when I tell you to slow down because I took my glasses off, listen to me.  Your spa is so dark I think it’s lit with nightlights.

Also, I prefer my pedicure woman to be less judge-y about my feet.  Don’t be telling me my nails be short.  I know.  They’re my feet.

2. I went to the Santa Claus Parade this year, on account of the fact that I’m all up in a BOARD OF DIRECTORS now!  It brought back a lot of lovely memories.  We used to go to our local parade and see all the floats.  Here’s what I remember from my youth: candy (there was waaay more candy), snow (I remember wearing snow pants to the parade), more bands and less dancing.  Here’s what I don’t remember: the Star Wars characters.  Every year there is a group of Star Wars folks (Jedi, Chewy, storm troopers, etc.) walking downtown with their light sabers.  I can’t be too mad, I sure that these lovely folks don’t get out much in their costumes.

There was one group that I could have used less of- the Shriners.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure the free masons do some kick butt work for the community (I hear that keeping that secret handshake safe is a full time job)…but perhaps we could get rid of this:


The Shriners in the Middle Eastern garb playing their symbols and fancy instruments strikes me as a touch…racist?  They used to scare me as a kid, I hated when they marched by in their head scarfs.  Looking back, I’m pretty sure this is where my internalized Islamophobia started.  Thanks a lot.

3. Did you hear?  It’s World Kindness Day.  Let that soak in for a minute.  We have a day to remind us to BE NICE TO EACH OTHER.  I’m not sure how I feel about this dedicated day (which is a dedicated week in the office).  Apparently we need to stop, look around and check our KINDNESS!??!  DOES ANYONE THINK THIS IS THE SIGN OF THE APOCALYPSE?  I’m all for reminding us to take a minute and remember to check our breasts for cancer, think about mental health issues or to plant a tree.  But kindness?  KINDNESS?!  WE NEED A DAY TO REMIND OURSELVES TO BE DECENT HUMAN BEINGS?

4. It was Remembrance Day.  My irritation continues that we pay lip service to those who are in war and who have been fighting, but treat them like this and this.  I am kind of over the tokenism that it our country’s Remembrance Day celebrations.  If I had my way, I would change the entire process by which we remember.  It would be a critical examination of war, the motivations, how folks find themselves in the armed forces (whether by force or by choice…’cause I put money on coercion being used), and all the casualties of war (including civilians caught in the middle of battles, and the soldiers that come home injured physically and mentally).

But that’s just me.

5. Related: I heard a big ol’ stink by several people who complained about Christmas decorations going up before Remembrance Day was properly recognized.

Now listen here: I’m all for soap boxes.  I love them.  But people that I heard complain to “wait for November 12th” for the lights, music and yuletide excitement need to calm down.  Firstly, you need to relax, because if you were this concerned about remembering those who serve in the military maybe you should be talking about how suicides are increasing by the month for those coming home from Afghanistan and how families are waiting years for government support that good old Stephen promised (you know, before he got himself a majority government).  Second (and I think my grams would agree), Jesus doesn’t care when you put your lights up.

6. My second placement is almost done.

Which means I’m closer to being DONE this entire degree.  And for which I am practicing this walk:

7. Christmas is coming.  M and FFD are bringing their pup.  According to our mama, this thing is going to be huge by the time they roll into SWO.  I prefer to believe that this is what it will be like to spend some time with Jackson over the holidays:

8. We are getting ready for GREY CUP WEEKEND!  Also known as the merging of the families in TO in a week and a half.  While we are ALL there we are trying to get some tickets for the Grey Cup.  I’m not excited about this, as I don’t understand football.  But I hear Bieber is performing at half time.  Maybe this will make up for my confusion.

9. Tonight we made some epic plans.  Can’t say what, but it will be amaze balls.  And a little weird.

Hahaha my thoughts exactly!

10.  Did you hear what the 2012 Word of the Year is according to Oxford Dictionary people?

IT’S “GIF” !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So enjoy: