Thursday, 26 September 2013

Why Fall is everything

I was saw this list and thought it apt

Its missing some points:
21. No Flies - fruit, deer, black, and of course our dear friend - the mosquito
22. Baking without over-heating the house
23. Walks on empty beaches
24. (now this should be # 1 frankly) Starbucks Pumpkin Spiced Latte

which brings me to this - Starbucks Pumpkin Spiced Latte made with skim milk and a smaller dollop of cream on top (than is the standard) is absolutely the bees bits! Its like Fall heaven in a cup. I cant get enough of it.

I am so digging the soft comfy sweater look too with some comfortable worn jeans (you know the ones, they are so old that they are soft and perhaps on the verge of getting a hole but not quite there). I have even looked at my long brown boots again, but I just cant bear to get them out of the box yet. I still have flipflops on the go for those still hot lunchtime strolls and I cant make the mental jump yet to boots. Cant and wont!

This weekend I must remember to test drive the girls soup flasks to make sure they actually work - i.e keep soup on the hot side of warm for 5 hours. Its that time of year when I want to give them soup for lunch but I have no clue if they will end up with freezing tomato soup at midday due to massive flask fail- eeewwwwwwww

Monday, 16 September 2013

Fall weekend and Scentsy party

Its been an interesting few days. Friday saw us all awash from Tropical Storm Gabrielle that just literally drenched everyone and provided little else of interest, such as gusting winds. There was none of that. Just a whole lot of rain, and humidity. That was pretty intense. It was sticky warm.

Saturday dawned damp and sticky again. We all decided to go out for breakfast at the Big Stop, this always sets me up for the day and the girls love it. We had the added bonus of having our friends join us, the coffees constant. The eggs are cooked as ordered, breakfast potatoes are scrumptious and the plates are big.

I then immersed myself in mopping everywhere and washing walls as Alpine is a messy dog, and I mean really messy. Since he arrived I have cleaned more than ever before. I had a stack of volunteer paperwork to do and I couldn’t do it in a house with floors (and walls) covered in muddy prints.

So that was my afternoon – laptop, paperwork , printer, coffee and me in a slightly less than happy frame of mind, I don’t mind the work but I do mind the time it sucks up. I wish I could stop time for when I do it, that way it wouldn’t impact my weekend.

Sunday dawned cool and crisp and I set out for a run. I always feel quite tentative as I am not running as much as I was. I don’t feel the draw as much as I did and so I always expect to find it really really hard. But it wasn’t, it was fine, enjoyable and I had good motivating music to run to. Duke liked it too, hes a great running dog, hes just there to my left the whole way round.
The day was gorgeous – warm, blue sky, sunshine, actually no it was hot. It was shorts, t-short, flipflops weather and I loved it. I had my Fall Scentsy party booked for 2pm and decided at 10am that I needed cupcakes to be on the agenda. I got out the Hummingbird Bakery book and made chocolate cupcakes and they rocked! I am still amazed that I made them.

The Scentsy Party was great, ladies chatting about babies, Eastlink vs Bell and then Fall Scents. We laughed, we drank wine and coffee and we ate well – Mexican dip, asiago and artichoke crostinis, apple caramel dip, veggies in ranch dressing, chocolate cupcakes!….

I then walked the dogs (again) and came home to our first roast dinner of the season, courtesy of chef Paul which I could barely manage to eat, so a lot of it is in the fridge to be re-visited tonight and I am SO looking forward to it.

I know I have said it befor but I love Fall here – warm, hot, blue skies, sunshine, leaves changing colour, firepits in cool crisp evening air, the freshness, the sunshine! Gone are the days when Autumn means grey sky and soggy leaves on the ground.

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Fall begins

Its definately here, its not in the post, its arrived.
Hot days with blue skies and sunshine that are no longer beach days because they start cold and crisp and end the same way. The bugs are fading along with the desire to eat bbq meals and salad.

I love this time of year here, I love the warmth and the absence of grey skies. Its the time of year to consider getting changes ready.

Today I went with my friends on the 50 mile yard sale, it was my first time and I think I got in a good haul.
I found white lights to go round the eaves of our house for $3 (bargain!), I also got some shelves for the bathroom - $3 again and a great picture for my office - $7
I also enjoyed a BBQ burger from one the bigger yard sales and managed to find a stand that sold homemade jam - so I picked strawberry. I love decent jam.
One of the yard sales was almost like a step back into Little House on the Prarie, there were wooden wagon wheels, a wooden boat propped against a tree, a wagon, and a bearskin ( I had to get a photo!)

Paul is now going to hang all the lights maybe tomorrow so that we can enjoy them asap, lights need to go up here before it actually gets cold and hes shutting down the pool tomorrow. That to me is a definite sign of the change of the seasons. I have big plans for this Fall, I am going to organize all my favourite articles in my two years worth of house and home magazines. I am going to find a new TV series to get into.

New Scentsy will start to burn in my lamps - apple pie, ginger cookie, pecan, honey pear cider......all the Fall smells that I love to have in my home.

So now I am going to enjoy the heat of the day and the start of the leaves changing, walking the dogs and being able to see the sunset as its so much earlier now (8pm, instead of 10pm) the crispness of the evening and the firepit that we plan to have later today.

Friday, 6 September 2013

Utopia - in too many places.....

I was wondering if there is a perfect place to live and would you ever find it. I don't think I would.
I like so many different places for so many different reasons that you would have to amalgamate them all to make them into my Utopia.

I love Key West for its ambience, its restaurants, it chilled out feeling, its oceans, its beauty and did I say food? I would love a little Conch House in old town within walking distance of Louis Backyard, so I could be found there when I went missing on a Sunday afternoon, with a pina colada on the afterdeck.

I love Halifax NS, for its smallness as a city but it still has the tall buildings and city feel in its streets. For its harbour walkway and its funky Tug boat. For its little shops and its Cows Icecream and Beavertails.

I love Peggys Cove for its serenity and peace, even when its crazy busy. Theres something about that place and the drive there, that beauty, that calmness.

I love downtown Orlando, its nice, its not touristy but its pretty actually, like St Augustine with its heat and its Spanish moss that hang from trees. I like its road names like Orange Blossom Trail that is actually a 6 lane highway in places. Downtown Orlando is somewhere I could work and live I think.

I like Rome, with its craziness and awe-inspiring history on almost every corner. The food is flat out wonderful too and its the only place in the world where I choose to go and check out religion. For those that have not yet seen the Vatican or the Colosseum (amongst other wonders) I recommend a visit, if you can. And while you are there, have some lunch at a little Italian restaurant down a backstreet, the tomato sauce in the pasta and on pizza, alone, will blow your taste buds.

Gibraltar - gorgeous, Spanish with a twist of English, with red phoneboxes and a runway that crosses a road, or maybe the road crosses the runway. The streets curve and twist and its quintessentially Europe.

And there are SO many places still to see, on my personal to do list:

Cape Code - Nantucket and Marthas Vineyard
The Carolinas
The Grand Canyon

Ah, theres more but I am starting to feel like I should be travelling rather than at work, frankly.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Alpine and a rainy September Day

Its feels like summer is over and then it doesn't again as its all warm and humid and hot but its damp too, it rained ALL FRIGGIN DAY yesterday, it was like a Monsoon out there.
It also happened to be the day that our new puppy Alpine let me into the secret that he likes to dig, in mud!
He was outside doing his thang and it was peaceful, no jumping on Dukie or throwing himself around the house in his exuberant fashion so I left him out there until I was ready to leave for work.

He ran back into the house in a very happy wet muddy dog way and created havoc with the couch in the family room. I was stunned. I have never seen a dog so dirty and so happy about it.
He was literally plastered with mud, his little white face was black with it. And I was now late for work.

So I stood on the deck in my work clothes and work hair and washed him down, in a relatively furious fashion. I was soaked, he was soaked, he was muddy, so was everything in a 50 mile radius.

I then went to leave, late, and of course I am out of gas. So I stopped for that, it was still raining, at an angle, I got wetter (if that's possible) at the gas pump.

I drove to work in driving rain and gusting winds and figured that my house is awash with wet muddy dog, my work hair is now a curly fluff and I am later than late.

It rained all damn day and Alpine spent more happy time later that day out there cleaning out and widening the ditch in our yard, so successfully that the little bridge now no longer spans it as its too short.
I went through most of our towels and more water in an attempt to stop the house turning into a damp, muddy dog disaster.
And here he is, hes meant to be company for Mr Duke, but currently hes melting hearts, making a big mess and driving Duke insane with his crazy energy. Hes certainly young and I look forward to the day he grows up just a little bit and calms down a touch.
Hes a husky, collie, lab mix with just a touch of polar bear (we feel)

Monday, 2 September 2013

Labour Day weekend

I was just indulging in my Sunday fest of online Tan Lines on the Key West Citizen on a Monday as its the long Labour day weekend and the column was about the significance of the Labour Day weekend to the writer and I realized as I read that that significance was starting to become our world too.

Its the last weekend before school starts this Thursday and my mornings of relative relaxation before work end. No longer will I be able to be all about me in the morning with my leisurely dog walk and preparation for the work day as all I need to do is pick the girls out of bed and drop them at the sitters, breakfastless and in their PJs with tangled hair and frowsty eyes.
It will replaced by increasingly frustrated tones (from me) of GET DRESSED, EAT YOUR BREAKFAST, BRUSH YOUR TEETH etc etc so that we can all leave together and they can be dropped off at school on my way in, before 7.55am....

I will start to arrive to work on time, that hasn't happened all summer, by really most people at work, as the summer carries on and people are barely there as they all soak up the heat, spend time in their cottages and go to bed late each day.

My children will start to view the Labour Day weekend as that weekend where they sort out their carefully selected school supplies into the new bags from that great shopping trip where I wanted to bawl in the aisles of Staples as I tried to follow the very specific lists of - 8x10 lined artists notepad with 2mg paper and pink spine etc etc and then had to pay out vast sums for the whole lot including the new Disney lunchbox that was a "must have" according to my youngest and has now joined the cupboard where there are other gently used completely serviceable lunchboxes that I had already bought for last year.....

We had planned to go to the Ovens today but the forecast looks damp, I don't mind, I am not sure I can be bothered to actually do anything today. Its been a nice weekend - we had late nights, walked down our road at 11.30pm on Friday night and picked out the Big Dipper in the clear starry night with the girls after hanging out at the neighbours at the end of the street where we ate horribly bad food and drank very nice beer and wine. We had a hot Saturday of a girly lunch for me and my pal and a Costco trip and then a pool afternoon and smorgeousbord of food get together as we all hung out. We do it so well. That was another late night. Yesterday I got in a run, a family movie afternoon and a family dog walk, then a movie evening with a on the edge of your seat thriller - oldie but goodie - Red Dragon.

So now I must walk the dogs (yes dogs) we have a new puppy, I will write about that adventure in my next update. Right now, I am savouring the calm before the storm and enjoying this long weekend....