Friday, June 30, 2006

"Back to the Beach Peach"

Blogger has been giving me trouble, but I am able to finally post. Wednesday we had a day of feet. We, being myself, my two Sisters, yes one of my Sisters is home from North Carolina so we are spending every moment possible together, and my Mom. My youngest Sister, the one visiting, and I took the longest withour feet. Scrubbing, shaping, softening and finally polishing.

"Back to the Beach Peach" was so irresistable in name that I had to make the purchase. Our feet were scrumptious. My other Sister had really hard callouses that were actually making it uncomfortable to walk. Had I known this a long time ago I would have pulled out the foot spa earlier. However, since she didn't mention it she suffered along. After our foot spa we neede to go out, just to show off our toes! We headed to Bayshore with out sandal on, sans enfants!!! And ran around, up and down the stairs, it was almost heavenly... until we missed our little gaffers and headed home.

And what did we find? Two maestros playing a duet. Happy as can be twinkling the ivories for Grandma. Now, if only everyday could be as glorious.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Ribs, Fountains, and a bit more..

We had the best ribs and pulled pork at the Rib & Chicken Cook-Off down on Sparks this weekend. Of course, I have been trying to get Hubby ( a rib lover) to go for years. Now that he works Downtown he finally understands why I love it so much. He had ribs for lunch on Thursday without me, so we had to go again on Sunday. It was so yummy, and we brought A who had pulled pork for breakfast (yes, he is truly a teen, slept in till noon!)

Here is one of my pictures from Friday, before the battery died. J loves fountains so this was the first one we visited. This fountain is located at the end of York Street. To the right is the US Embasy and the left is Stats Canada. I got the clock from Parliament in the background, which J loves, he is still singing the "Ding, Dong, Ding, Dong" song of the clock today.
I thought I would include a photo of me, yes, I am slouching, but A took my photo at the Cook-Off and I couldn't resist posting it. Most of the photos of my are taken by J in the wee hours of the morning, when I have just woken up. So I had to be thankful for a not so bad photo. And yes, that pulled pork was AWESOME. And it was soooo hot down there on Sunday, I am surprised that you couldn't see the sweat around my hairline, but it was so worth it.
And finally J at the fountain. I think I am going to make it a thing this summer to take J to as many fountains as I can. I know of a few more around town that we could go check out so it might be a fun project to work on. It would be a fun summer photo essay of J and the fountains.

*If anyone knows how to post a slideshow on blogger without using flicker, I would be forever grateful for the instructions :)

***Edited for Dani!! I knew that the fountain was in front of Revenue Canada, but somehow when I typed it, I thought Stats. And we did think of you when we were there!! Appologies.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Pictureless post

I set out on an adventure today. I had to take Hubby to an appointment and then drive him to work. My plan was then to head over to the market and pick up a few fun things and take some photos of the great architecture, vegetables, people, fun stuff.

"J" and I were having a great time. I started taking a few photos. Found "J" his first water fountain. I promised he would see a few water fountains and clocks. He just loves the "Peace Tower" so he likes to see other clocks Downtown as well. Which is another cute thing. He used to call it "Treetown" until last week when he switched to Downtown. Anyhow, back to my story. So I was taking some photos, got to another great site, then ...

... my battery died.

How sad is that?? I had this whole morning planned all week long. As the battery on my new camera has never died before, I had no idea that when the battery looks like you have a quarter left, you only actually have 1/16th left. And then without flashing lights or much warning whatsoever, it just stops taking photos. So needless to say, I will have to return again to have my photo day.

I did just remember though that I took a few last Friday when we met Hubby for lunch, so I will post one just so it looks like I was Downtown.

Are these two of the most touristy photos of Ottawa or what? We were pretending to be tourists for a lunch hour and walked around Parliament. "J" loves the "Peace Tower" and the "Eternal Flame".

It was great to be a tourist for a day.

p.s. the scaffolding is there to set up for the "Sound and Light" display and "Canada Day".

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Fridge Meme

I have been tagged by TwinMom to post my fridge. Mine isn't quite as exciting as hers is :) here it goes...
Truth be told there is more on top of my fridge, than on the front. I tried to make it neater by getting the two offenders boxes (Hubby & J) but, the piles are now growing on top of the boxes!

On the front of the fridge are:
-Easter magnets, becasue the kids love them. Although we are missing the Easter Bunny, but am hoping that it will turn up again soon.
-A magnet from our honeymoon in Cancun.
-A magnet of a beach house in Delaware.
-A flip flop note pad
-A postcard from Secret Agent Josephine of her trip to Paris. I love her work, and it serves to inspire me to be more creative.
-A photo of me with "J" & "J2" at my Mom's when my sister was having her Baby. The boys were jumping all over me so my Mom snapped a few shots.
-A photo of my Sister with "J" & "J2" at the park sitting in a train.
-A postcard from Opa and his most recent trip to Alaska.
- A magnet with a list of how to prepare for an Emergency (such as a pandemic, that was hubby's help in the planning when he scared the crap out of me last spring).
-Insurance papers for the van, that should be in the van, but since we don't drive it anymore, there the papers sit.... just like the van. Did I mention it is ugly and depreciating the value of our house? Just kidding, we are thinking of getting rid of it now that Hubby takes the bus, but I am not a one car family kind of person so we are waiting to see what my Dad's mechanic has sitting around.

And voila. That is my fridge. Nothing too exciting, all of it pushed to the top because "J" would pull it down with his hockey sticks, now it just adds a bit of colour to our kitchen.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Welcome Summer

The summer solstice is here and it is such a bittersweet day.

I crave this day, to officially say that summer is here. But, now that it is here, it means that the shorter days of daylight aren't too far behind. And you know what that means.... white stuff.

Why I love the summer solstice.
I love that the days feel longer, even though there are still only 24 hours.
I love that it makes me want to sit outside and watch the sun go down at 10pm.
I love that it brings warm breezes and sunny days.
I love that we can sit outside without a sweater (most days).
I love the smell in the air first thing in the morning, the dew mixed with flowers, mixed with warm sun.
I love that I don't have to wear shoes.
I love that we cook mostly outside, and that there are few dishes to wash up.
I love the fresh fruit and veggies.
I love the sand that gets squished in between "J's" toes.
I love that "J" wants to be outside most of the day.

I am sure I can find more reasons to love the summer solstice, but that is enough for now. I am going to enjoy this longer daylight day. And I am thankful that the skies are blue and clear and that we can enjoy it to it's fullest.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Oh Golf, How I Miss You So

Before J, I used to golf once or sometimes twice a week. I have not golfed once in five summers. First, I was pregant, then I had a baby with me, and then I just didn't have anyone to golf with me during the week. All my golfing girlfriends either had new babies or had gone back to work.

I used to golf with Hubby. Actually, I was the one that really got him started golfing. I started golfing with girls from work and we would occaisionally need a fourth. Then, Hubby went off the deep end. He was golfing every other day or at the range, getting custom clubs, eating, drinking, sleeping golf. He does that a lot when he really likes something.

We have golfed in Vancouver (see photo above of Fury Creek, not where we golfed but we had breakfast there), Victoria, Bermuda (twice), Tremblant, and all around the Ottawa region. It actually got to the point that we golfed so much, I was getting tired of it. I was actually pretty good. At least, I thought so.

I considered myself an average woman golfer. I was asked to play with the guys at work all the time. I have been taken to Eagle Creek by vendors. I have golfed with some of the Senior Executives at Nortel. I never professed to be a professional, but I could hold my own and send out a shock every now and then with a hole in one or the best score of the group.

Hubby told me a few weeks ago that I wasn't really a very good player. That took so much of the wind out of my sails that I think it carried to the driving range on Sunday. We decided to take "J" to the driving range so we could get out and hit a few balls. So, not only have I not hit a real golf ball in five years, but my toddler is hitting next to me saying, "help Mommy" and "look, look". And Hubby switched up some of my drivers. One of the shafts broke when he lent it to a friend, so now it is too short. The other is a hand me down from him. But, I don't know where my old favorite went. Needless to say I left a little frustrated. Hubby kept cracking jokes about my swing to the point that I gave up the last quarter of my bucket and sat on the bench.

I miss playing golf so much that I wanted to just pick up where I left off and start playing again. But, it looks like I will have to start with a few weeks at the range, and maybe a few visits all on my own, with no distractions.

Dear fairways, I miss you so. Fear not, I will return. Soon.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

10 Beach Things

Ten things that can make me feel like I was at the Beach. Most of which I encountered yesterday.

1. Diet Dr. Pepper
2. Seagulls
3. Clinique Sunscreen
4. Lemon Juice
5. Smell of 85+% humidity
6. Heat
7. Hazy Day
8. Strawberry Daiquiri
9. Ricky Martin songs
10. The smell or taste of Coconut

Only nine more weeks and I will be there again, can't wait.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Another Beautiful Day.. and Personal Trainers R.O.C.K

What a beautiful day. The sun was shining, it wasn't too hot for everyone (thinking baby) and we had another adventure to the water park. Only, this time my sister could come with us. She is doing much better and that meant getting out.

I packed up a snack/lunch and a beach blanket (otherwise known as a picnic blanket) and headed out for some fun. Although it was nice and warm there was a strong breeze that kept sprinkling us with water. Sending a little chill our way.

I am not sure the smile and fun can be seen on "J's" face, but he is so happy and excited that the water is jumping up through the grates that he appears to almost be flying.

Then to our picnic, we had great snacks, enough time for the boys to dry out and warm up. After the warm up they got changed and spent another hour playing at the sand park.

All in all, another great day at the water & sand park. Did I mention that it was FREE? Yes, indeed it is free. I mean our taxes pay for it, but there is no charge on a daily basis. That being said, on hot days it is packed. We will be there in the mornings mostly, I am sure.

Back home to get ready for my second visit with my trainer. For my first week, I followed her 1500 calorie per day meal plan. I don't eat that much food! I tried, just in case I was supposed to, but honestly it was just too much. I will continue to follow as best I can and to log my food for the next six weeks or so.

My routine was to walk, which for me is almost a run, at least 4 or 5 times a week and for at least 30 minutes. I was provided with a long program and a short program consisting of excercises that include weights, the stability ball and my floor mat. I did the long program (45 minutes) and the short program (20 minutes intense) once each as I knew she was coming today and I would be working out with her. Both programs are tough, but I made it through two reps of everything.

For my first week, I lost 1lb. At first I was feeling glum about that, but then I realized that one of my skirts was feeling better on me, so that wasn't so bad. My trainer actually told me I did great, she expected me to gain about three pounds as I was gaining in muscle. She also brought me some awesome resistance bands, giant rubber bands with handles. Oh how I wish I had bought some of these years ago. She ran through about 10 excercises that work the whole body using the resistance bands. I love them. And I invited her back in six weeks. I figured that six weeks was a good time frame to establish my training and see some results. And that would keep me motivated to continue for at least another six weeks.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Movie Day

I am feeling uninspired this last few days. I think it is from spending so much time taking care of my sister and her little ones. The good news is she is doing so much better. Better enough, in fact, to go to a movie yesterday! I didn't think I could handle another day hanging around and the kids needed an outing too.

We met at the cinemas and unloaded the kids, waited in line for treats, got the boys off to the potty and settled in our seats. We chose to go see "Over the Hedge" again. I say again because "J" and I saw most of it in Regina, but "J2" had not. By the time the trailers were finished so was "J". He didn't want to stay anymore, and even being an Ex-Cineplex employee, I have to agree (just like I did when I worked there) that 25 minutes of trailers on a kids movie is a little ridiculous. I scooped up "J" onto my lap and there he sat for the entire movie. With about 10 minutes left the boys were getting edgy, so I pulled out my bag of tricks with suckers and fruit snacks and that brought us to the end. I enjoyed seeing the whole thing and it is really quite cute.

So for some excitement today we are heading out on a road trip ;). My Mom is off today so she can fill in with my Sister. "J" and I are heading up to Silver Creek Mom's place for a little playtime with others. "J" can't wait, but he thinks we are going on a hay ride again, maybe he will be happy looking at some cows? Either way it should be a fantastic day and hey... the sun is shining!!!

Monday, June 12, 2006


Not this time, but it was close!

Apparently "J" & "J2" need to chill out while playing. Today, I was at my Sister's again this morning. I spent all of last week helping her out when she threw her back out, and as it was not completely better as of today, I headed over.

The "J's" were having lots of fun playing, laughing, running around. Then, they started pulling the blankets out and that is when the trouble happened. "J2" started twirling and before we could stop him he slammed his forehead into the toy chest. Oh the blood!

After applying pressure, ice and checking it out, we decided that he did not need stitches, but it was a pretty deep hole. I am becoming very fast at pulling out emergency kits and getting ice and towels ready. All the while the screaming wouldn't stop. "J" and Baby "A" sat quietly in their chairs knowing full well that something wasn't right. On one hand I feel badly that "J" has escaped the injuries and on the other hand I am thankful. We may need to stop giving them sugar when they are together.

Friday, June 09, 2006

I Just Had to Update

This morning went awesome. What more should I say?

Well my trainer, who looked so famailiar, is actually the cousin of a girl I used to work with back in my restaurant days. Kidding, no, I kid you not. Did the similarities end there? Nope not even close. She has a daughter, one month younger than "J". She conceived through ivf. She has just finished going through more treatments with no success. Does this all sound familiar? Can you believe she is like my twin, but in better shape and with brown hair?

I actually cried when she asked me if this was what I was looking for. I said, I should have called you last year when I first saw your car.

So here is the deal. She came in and asked me a gazillion questions about my health and fitness. She did suggest having some post treatment bloodwork done to make sure that my hormones didn't get way out of whack with all the drugs I did this past year. She gave me a sample menu to check out and follow. And it is a menu made up of pretty much things I have already in the house and eat normally, just a few changes and additions and I will be on the program.

Then we went for the workout test. She ran me through a sample of excercises to see where I was at and what she needed to set up for me. And truthfully, she thinks I am actually in pretty good shape! Just a little extra toning combined with a little less food and hopefully all will be well. All of the excercises she recommends actually don't even use the majority of equipment we have. Just a few weights, the stationary bike and my stability ball. Her plan is to create a program that can be done anywhere, anytime. In the half hour we worked she definately had me sweating though and I can tell you I only did one set of everything. The sweat will definately be flowing when I really get going.

She was so awesome, I am looking forward to our meeting next week already. I may have to pay her to stop by once a month to check on my progress so I can stay motivated. Oh yes, and "J" was thrilled to pieces to be excercising and has been begging me for about an hour to go for a walk. Does he not know I am exhausted from this morning and our walks for the last four days? Not to mention the rain.

**Oh and Nancy, no you can not have my candy, I need to keep my motivation for reward going :)

A New Beginning

You are all going to think this isn't new, that I have been talking about getting into shape for months, but it is new for me. I have never gone to such extremes. Today, in about an hour, a personal trainer will be coming to my house. Yep, I am admitting I need help, outside help.

I have tried eating properly, walking everyday, lifting little weights while watching my favorite shows, supplements from the healthfood store (oh, I didn't mention that one, will be going back today to get my money back). And here I am the same lump of lump that I have not wanted to be for a long time. I hit my breaking point the other day when I put on a sundress from last summer, that although a little snug, was down right busting my chest. I know when my chest has grown that we need some serious input here (and no I do not like to be like certain celebs that pay for bigger busts, I like mine small, so much smaller than they are right now).

So I called up a wonderful lady that had an advertisement on her SUV in my neighbourhood, I would see her SUV when I walked my dogs and "J" every or almost every day. She also has a website, but I am hesitant to post it because she has gone back to her pre-Mom job as a Nurse Practitioner. If she gives me the ok later, I will link to her.

Although she is no longer helping women (mostly pre and postnatal, but I qualify as postnatal due to m y pregnancies last year) get back to shape on a regular basis, she was able to come over and do what I need her to do. Whip me into shape. She is going to go over the good, bad and ugly of why I am where I am and design a plan just for me, using what we have here at home. Once I have the plan, I will start to follow it and have her check in on my in a few weeks to see how I am doing. The goal is to create a plan that I can follow FOREVER. Aparently my body was happiest when I was slinging beer and not taking care of itself, we need to find a way to get it back in shape while eating as healthy as I do now, and STAY THAT WAY. Crazy I know.

Who would think that eating greasy restaurant food, drinking almost everyday and really truly not taking care of myself had me in the best physical shape of my life. Definately not me.

So, here "J" and I sit getting ready for a life change. He is all excited that Mommy will be using the basement for excercise, he has his own mini 1lb dumbells that we got him to work out with Daddy, so as long as I can keep him interested in working out or excercising with me then all will be well with the world. If not then, he will just have to go back to taking naps so I can do what I need to do.

I will take some before photos and one day when I am back in shape, I will perhaps post them for all to see, perhaps.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Splashin' Fun

Oh the fun we had. I have been helping my Sister all week as she has been laid up with a bad back. We spent a day and a half inside, then I couldn't take it anymore. My Mom was off yesterday, so I called in the reinforcements. We packed up the kids and took them out. We went to McDonald's Playland for lunch (although, I am thinking they don't play enough there, so we will start going to Subway instead) then, after getting kicked out for no socks, we headed to the water park.

There is no link for the water park, but it is located on Longfields Drive in Barrhaven. It was built probobly four years ago now, and is only a five minute walk from my parents place. For the last two years it wasn't open during the day while school was still in, as it is located directly beside Mother Theresa's High School and the students would go and cool off then head back to class.

In addition to the waterpark, there is a canteen and a huge sand park. It was evident yesterday that many Mom's hang out there all day. One Mom was getting some sun while napping on her lawn chair. Others were reading a good book and others still were chatting and picnicing while the kids played and got wet or sandy. There is a pavillion to keep off the shade (this is where my Mom and Baby A took refuge), but NO benches. Note to self: bring lawn chairs next time and an umbrella (not for me, but for Mom).

The waterpark doesn't consistantaly pour down water, the kids have to work for it. There are sensors located all over the place and you have to stand with your hand in front of them to keep the water going. It does make sense (Parents would get the sensors going and watch their kids at the same time), but is a bit of a pain when you don't necessarily want to get soaked. I did get a good dunking a couple of times, but was able to stay dry for the most part.

So all in all it was a great day, "J" and "J2" were all done after an hour, which was more than enough time for Mom and I. In addition, they were worn out, had fun, laughed and ran and didn't cry, and best of all... asked to go back again. I documented it all for my Sister so she could feel like she had been there with us. We will be going again, it may even become a weekly event.

Monday, June 05, 2006

On the Run

I ran this weekend, well it was more of a light jog, but I ran all the same. It started out a couple of weeks ago when Hubby decided he was going to start training to run a marathon next year. I have heard this before, but will support him and go along with it for as long as it lasts, and he understands that. So this weekend, I went along (walking at first) with him on his third run. As he got ahead of me "J" started calling out for Daddy from his most favoured perch in the jogging stroller. Then, he started yelling "faster Mommy, faster!". So what could I do, I had to run.

I figured I would run for a bit, then walk for a bit, but to my surprise, without the dogs (it was raining) I was able to keep a slow and steady pace and catch up to Hubby at the turning point. I was not winded, I was not dragging my feet, I was running and chatting with "J". I hate to admit it but, it felt good. I used to run. I used to run every single day! I haven't run in about 16 years. This could be a start of a good thing. As Hubby doesn't run every day yet, we went for a fast walk yesterday instead, which is pretty much what I do almost everyday with the dogs anyway. We will have to see how this goes, since I can't lose weight any other way at this point in time, might as well strap on the running shoes and actually run.

Don't wait for me at the finish line yet, but do wave if you see my jogging by.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Hot Weather Meme

This is from Jo(e)'s Page a littel hot weather Meme to start off the summer.

How do you cope with hot weather? Better than I cope with anything else. I am truly a hot weather girl and the only thing keeping me going during the winter is knowing that the hot weather is on its way.

When does the heat make you most crazy? When it is so humid that Hubby can't stop complaining.

Your favorite hot weather music? "Boys of Summer" by Don Henley, "Summer Girls" by LFO, any song by John Mellencamp or Bryan Adams.

Where do you go to get air conditioning? Now I just stay home. Last year was the first time in my life I have ever had airconditioning. Hubby had it for many years, then I made him live without it for 10 years. Last year I lost that battle. I hate it. Air Conditioning makes me not want to go outside, it makes me catch my breath, it makes me cold. I hate being cold.

Your favorite hot weather food? Daiquiri's. Oh ya, that's not food. Chips from the chip wagon, hot and greasy.

Your favorite people to visit in the hot weather? My family in the South, Delaware. Nothing say summer like 110 degrees, 100% humidity and my Aunt's Peach pie.

Your favorite way to wear your hair in the hot weather? Down. I have long hair, but I love wearing it down. If I go for a walk, I will tie it up, but I do prefer it down.

Your favorite hot weather drink? Daiquiri's, preferably raspberry, but strawberry will do too. (And they don't have to be alcoholic).

Your hot weather story? Our wedding. We were married on May 1st, in a tent on a golf course. Traditionally May is an iffy month. The year before, when we were engaged, it was 30 degrees (Celcius), so I planned the wedding for the following year. April 30th was cool and rainy, we were making plans for the heaters in the tent. But, all the sun in it's glory shone down on us, without a cloud in the sky. It was 30 degrees and really hot in the tent. I remember saying my vows and wondering if everyone could see the sweat running down my back. It was a perfect day.

Is hot weather good for anything? Good for your skin, your hair, your feet, good for going out in next to no clothes. Sandals and sundresses. Sandy beaches and swimming.