Thursday, 28 December 2017

2018 NY resolutions

Its December 28th and I am chilled at home. I cannot recall the last time I took the period between Christmas and NY off and its really very nice. Its also incredibly cold outside, -25C in the windchill so chilling inside is about all I am good for.
I took a look back at my 2017 NY resolutions and I think that for the most part I made it.

I have certainly grown as a leader and try every day to impact my staff in  a positive way. I am present in my family life and I am so pleased that those years of anxiety are just memories to me now. They are useful memories as they allow me to understand anxiety and what its like to suffer from it, and I didnt before.

So for this year, this 2018 that is fast approaching my list is thus:

  1. Continue growing at work.
  2. Enjoy Ace and my new saddle and keep competing and improving my riding.
  3. Keep working on improving myself as a human being and role model for my two girls.
  4. Work on bringing that line of credit right down.
  5. Go on a road trip to somewhere new this summer.
  6. Meet up with my friend Jenne, its been too long.
  7. Find a level of fitness that works for me.
  8. Succesfully grow some vegetables.
  9. Eat meat only from local farms where animal welfare is off a high priority, guilt-free meat as I call it.
  10. Have a once a month date-night with hubby, even if its just a coffee at Tim Hortons.

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

We made it!

After the shelling out of some cash back in January and the completion of more forms (we are pros at this now), we learnt all about Canadian history, politics, law, who was on various bank notes (bills to Canadians) and the pictures on various coins. This led us to site (write) exams back on a chilly day in April down in Halifax. We each passed the twenty questions with 100%.

Then we waited, and waited, and waited some more.
Finally we had our citizenship ceremony on December 12th and became Canadian.
I am so very proud to call myself that.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

A little update post about our trip to Maine

I am behind due to a little work pressures right now but its all good. This was my morning view today on my way to see Ace:
I love this time of year. The festivities are definitely kicking in too.
We went to Maine last weekend for Christmas shopping. Whilst it wasnt cheap, we saved no money on "amazing deals" and we certainly dont feel like we are winning on the economy front, what we did achieve was this:
  • A fun drive down
  • A chance to be us as a family in a hotel, a get away.
  • Dinner at Olive Garden and Longhorn with Don and Cherie, fabulous meals.
  • Lunch at Subway - the girls love Subway, so I do too.
  • Breakfast in the hotel, always pricey and always fun, this one was free so winwin.
  • A swim in the hotel pool, or two.
  • A whole stack of Christmas gifts and wine purchased.
  • A looooong drive home by Mount Kathadin. Always one we look out for.
As usual we have all stated that the next road trip has to be a while away due to the time in the car and as usual we are all just about ready, already for the next one.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

NS in April to June

Following on from my previous post of NS in January to March,
Weather - the month where you want it to get warm but it just doesnt. Still snowing regularly although as the locals will point out, its not snow its just a flurry and you think "but it contains snow"
The will to live left a while ago and summer feels like it doesnt exist here and never will again. People start to plan unseemly deaths for that lying groundhog.
People - The winter weary soldier on with "it is what it is" as a common statement that gives a degree of comfort.
Food - eating too much and the desire to cultivate a "summer body" seems pointless to many.
Neighbours - Around here somewhere.
Sports - Hockey is still going strong.
Word of the month - Meh

Weather - Hope springs anew each morning as you study buds on trees for any sign of growth. Its all brown and grey out there still and just too cool for well, anything. Rains starts up and washes away any remaining snow bringing fear of basement flooding. Its foggy seemingly every morning.
People - People start to plan their summer vacations and ask each other at work about what summer plans they may have. Lines grow outside of garages to have tires switched.
Food - very similar to April.
Neighbours - Some are about as the evenings get longer and the general discussion is about how long it will take to warm up and how warm it already is in Ontario but hell you can keep Ontario....
Sports - Hockey, still.
Word of the month - vacation planning. Sump pump. Summer tire change.

Weather - Its raining, like forever. Its warmer rain but heck is it raining. Fog burns off quickly unless you are on the harbour front. Garden plants are growing like crazy, seemingly overnight in the deluge and the world is green again.
People - Snorkels seem to be acceptable outdoor wear. That and a jacket for that sudden cold breeze thats so persistant is its desire to stay around forever. You spend time trying to ensure that no one visits you from England where its nice and warm and full of the promise of summer.
Food - Diets are in full swing. Salads are the new "in thing". Pinterest is extremely handy.
Neighbours - People are walking their dogs in the neighbourhood and dashing between raindrops, commenting on the rain.
Sports - Everything outdoor is on wait for start time. Often delayed due to the weather.
Word of the month - Wet. Rain.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

news of Summerland Key

I heard from the owners of our beloved rental in Summerland Key that the structure survived but alas the butternut tree that housed the hammock did not. NOAA hurricane imagery of the Florida keys now includes this area and from what I can see, the end of the dock is no more.

Like all the other home owners there who have rebuilt their docks in the past, I am sure Windswepts will be rebuilt for the what, 3rd (?) time. And one day we will be able to return, to feed the tarpon and to have a meal at Robbies (which we have yet to do), to freqent Boondocks, to mourn for the Mangrove Mamas that I first visited in 1999.
To feel the wonder that is the Keys again.

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Irma blues

I will get my mojo back for my "month by month life in NS" posts that are coming soon but for now, I am glued for all news on the Florids Keys. All weekend, whilst living with my sore throat and hurty ears that at first I blamed entirely on that bag of All Dressed chips that I consumed before going to bed (they are tangy and I ate a ton), before the cold kicked in in full gear on Sunday night, I lived and breathed news of Irma. CNN (drama and all) ran full time in our house at the weekend

Now, its Thursday and we still dont know what damage Summerland Key suffered. Even the pictures coming from NOAA that show the Keys in all their damage are missing the area that suffered the brunt of the storm and Summerland Key is in that area.
So... for now, I am getting back into the mood for my planned posts, whilst I wait it out for news of our beloved Island chain.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

NS January to March

Having now been here in this Province for six and a half years I have noticed a general trend in the months that makes me smile. Here goes, the short guide to NS by month (this post Jan-Mar) for any would be visitors, taken from our little neighbourhood:

Weather - the month it starts to get really cold and I mean REALLY COLD, minus 26 in the windchill is not uncommon. Blizzards strike regularly (every Wednesday one year) and its not unusual to get 50cm of snow in one hit, after that 50cm we got last Wednesday... ice lingers under that fresh snow fall ready for your unsuspecting feet and suddenly you realize this cold is going to be around now for MONTHS.
People - The Tim Hortons drive-throughs all over do good business where people cant bare to leave their cars for their order of coffee and baked goodies. Accidents are a plenty due to summer time driving on winter time roads.
Food - the food intake is all about comfort,  the stews and the Sunday dinners, the chillis and the curry (50% of Canadians seem to enjoy a small amount of "spicy food"). There is the occasional burger on a BBQ in true Canadian fashion, but for the most part people are trying to be healthy after the December excess.
Neighbours - you no longer chat outside but see each other in the dark of the dawn behind the headlights of snowblowers clearing driveways just to go to work. There will be a nod to each other as you go across the road with your blower to help the poor sod trying to achieve the same outcome with a shovel. Neighbourliness shows no limits. Firepits sit frozen as the novelty of them has now worn off.
Sports - hockey is most weeknights where you sit in the freezing bleachers, wrapped in a snuggly throw, replete with mittens, scarf and hat complete with your Tim Hortons watching shouting encouragement at the local team.
Word of the month - all over FB feed ~ "Nor'wester","wind-chill" and "Storm chips"

Weather - Still cold and dark seemingly ALOT, interspersed by bright sunlight that makes the snowbanks glitter above the brown bits, making you feel all grateful you no longer live in the grey skies, tupper ware style overcast temperate world of a British winter. Blizzards still striking at their regular pace and now everyone is commenting on the amount of snow days the schools have had so far. Summer seems to be a season that will never ever ever return.
People - Accidents still a plenty and Tim Hortons drivethroughs still as busy. Early February an entire news team sets up in the local wildlife park to see if Shubenacadie Sam will see his shadow. Quite how anyone knows what a groundhog has seen is beyond me, theres yet to be evidence of an interview that I am aware of. Sams forecast along a couple of others is analysed in depth on the news.
Food - Still on the starchy stuff and of course the chocolate has returned as January without sugar was just long enough, thank you very much.
Neighbours - everyone is taking turns to start heading down south for that week or two of warming up. Jealousy abounds at the retired couple who took off after their annual skiiing weekend up the road, for the rest of the winter down south in that enormous motor home that otherwise sits on the drive. FB feed shows pets picked out of the cold by good samaritans who are now looking for their humans on the local page.
Sports - Hockey, still.
Word of the month - "down south", "snow days", "groundhog day"

Weather - While the rest of the world seemingly is enjoying the first days of Spring with their daffodils returning, we are still in the grips of winter. Can we say "flurries"? (Not the MacDonalds kind)
People - The freeze thaw freeze weather of NS increases the likelihood of even more accidents. People start to lose what little patience for the white stuff that they might once have had. No one can recall why they wanted a white Christmas. Snowplows are at the increasing subject of everyones annoyance (in the way, not around, late, where are they?)
Food - Considering Easter, the fun part of Easter in NS is the hiding of the eggs all around the house at 6am because you still sell the Easter bunny myth to your kids and one egg with a matching mug no longer suffices (as it did in England), so eggs are hidden but they cant be near the floor in case the dogs eat them and they cant go out the night before in case the cats knock them on the floor.....
Neighbours - Fire pits start hesitantly up again as people feel the need to get outside before burn restrictions are back in their lives. Much alcohol is consumed as everyone recounts their tale of White Juan (hurricane style Nor-easter in February 2004) and compare snowfall numbers to the current year, as you while away a Saturday evening around the flames, feeling all at peace with the still frozen world.
Sports - Hockey.  Last minute skiing now your face can cope.
Word of the month - "snow fall numbers", "liquor store"

Friday, 1 September 2017

commercial love

I admit that I am a sucker for marketing, meaning that I appreciate a good commercial. Just lately there have been two out there that have brought me out in goose-bumps, so much so that I feel the need to share.
I hope these can be viewed in other countries and not just here. Fingers crossed.
The Canadian Dream

And this one:

Interesting that they are both car commercials, but its the wider story there, in those couple of minutes that gets me, every time.
Well done Chevrolet and Jeep!

Wednesday, 30 August 2017


As the dog days of summer seem to race by, the current status quo (in absolutely no particular order) is:

  • Listening - to country music. Like never before. The Zac Brown Band particularly rocks my world.
  • Enjoying - hacking in the green green fields with Ace and just flat out having fun in my riding, on the grass, in the brook... alone and with others.
  • Growing - at work. I realize that I have finally cracked not needing to be liked at work. I am in the highly desirable (snort) position of being involved in risk analysis and control and part of pushing through change at work. Sometimes I suck at my delivery regarding change and have to work on it but I am not upset at people not loving me, its ok nowadays.
  • Appreciating - my house, I didnt realise until just now that although it may not sport the wrap around deck, its pretty.
  • Failing - outstandingly at healthy eating. My healthy eating went to shit in June and stayed there. I have some work to do over winter for sure....
  • Loving - living. Every. friggin. day.
  • Enthralled by - my children, everything they do and say. Sometimes I just sit back and observe them. They are living the childhood of my dreams.
  • Counting down to - the opening of the biggest Canadian Ikea. I so miss being able to just walk around it and the option to indulge in cheap curtains at my will.
  • Being in control of - finances, first time in years. At first it felt terrible, now it feels fabulous!
  • Preparing for - back to school, pretty much all the school supplies are purchased except for the ever elusive writers notebook for Lily, after much consideration and nose turning up at many that didn't make the grade, she finally chose one. Of course no-one checked it (including her) in our haste to get out of Walmart. Its blank. It needs to be lined. Back to Walmart I shall go - fml.
  • Noticing - how friggen cold it is in the mornings now.
  • Feeling - horrified at the images coming out of Texas. My God, I cant imagine going through that.

Thursday, 24 August 2017

On the road to retirement?

Just lately I have been thinking about obsessing about the idea of retiring. The house up the road from us has a massive motorhome now sat on the driveway. We had a chat, hes 54 and newly retired from the military. He and his wife are planning on selling the house and their older car and travelling North America in that rig with their newest car attached on the back. I have seen the rig, its all kinds of lovely with slide outs and a queen side bed in its own room, nice bathroom, granite countertops etc etc (trust me this etc etc list is extensive)
When not travelling in a whimsical fashion in warmer climes all winter, they will be seeing their children, who now live with their spouses in Ontario. It sounds dreamy to me.

I now cannot get past this ideal. Obviously we need to downsize our beloved house to do it, which in a perfect world would be paid for and that (selling this house), I cant imagine doing easily. Obviously my children will be older. To be 55 and retired is 13 years away for me.
I have started doing the math and its entirely possible to be following in the neighbours tire tracks in 15 years time (at a push in 13). What I now need to do, whilst fiscally planning this out carefully (so it can actually transpire) is actually continue to enjoy the years between now and then, and really live them.
I absolutely do not want to fast forward to mid fifties with grown up children. That would be a terrible waste of my life. I cannot forget though, the look of the Bahia Honda RV park which I have been looking up online like a stalker....
dreamy huh?!!!

So... now to get there by carefully planning the finances, but at the same time enjoying the present moment... hmmmm

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Weekends enjoying my home

My "home" encompasses far more than the house I live in. My home is the subdivision it sits in and now also the barn Ace is in. Last weekend I decided to spend all weekend at home, enjoying life generally. I rode, I walked the dogs, I cleaned the house. There were some cool clouds at the weekend and it was typical August hot.
A couple of photos from my at home weekend, enjoying what we have and spending zero dollars.
(I plan to enjoy a whole lot more of these)

Monday, 7 August 2017


This weekend we managed to get in some tubing down the river on Saturday. It was a perfect day for it with high temps and safe, lazy river water.

Sunday was quiet with very noisy crazy rain. We need the rain, so I am not complaining at all but by heck did it rain.
I decided to ride Ace in the indoor with another horse. It was insanely loud in there. Overwhelmingly loud. He was a good boy although understandably a little tense and tall. With his teal polos on he looked like an oversized polo pony. I was pleased with his behaviour and we called it a day after 15 mins as I thought my head would explode with the noise.

We now have some step up trailer training planned as we are returning to Salmon River showground at the end of September for the final of the seasons shows. It turns out that Ace and I are currently sitting in 2nd place in points for hunter. Who knew?!!!!

Friday, 4 August 2017

Ace moves house

Last weekend I was actually intelligent enough to book nothing as I was moving Ace on the Monday. (Usually I try to fit something like this into a booked weekend and stress myself out)
Therefore I had time on both Saturday and Sunday to clean up items I had borrowed so that they could be returned, empty my locker of horse "stuff" and take it to the new barn and generally say my goodbyes to the old barn. It was a time of some emotion as I am no good at saying goodbye to people as I get way too attached.

I took the girls with me on the Sunday when we moved his stuff so that they could see the new barn. It was such a hit with them that we managed to spend all Sunday afternoon there just looking around.

On Monday Ace arrived and settled in by trotting up his new paddock with an elevated floating stride, tail high. I could have stayed all afternoon with him but had to return to work. It took two days for him to settle in, calm down and return to his normal size.  Then on Wednesday evening we had a little ride in the outdoor arena and yesterday, after work, a hack around the fields there.
Complete bliss and tranquility.
The views are peaceful and beautiful. The breeze blew warmly. We wandered around in a happy state.

Monday, 24 July 2017

The perfect weekend

Just enjoyed a blissful weekend where I believe I managed to crack the code of the "perfect style weekend", although Paul was away on a bachelor weekend so I was a single parent until Sunday morning which dimmed my joy a touch. The girls and I got the grocery shopping done on Friday eve with wild weather warnings on the radio (we had some thunder and lightening at midnight but no possible tornadoes that had sent the girls into a spin).

Saturday was a little nuts with the horse in the morning so that we could go to the beach and then the Lavender gardens at Seafoam. We went to Melmerby where it was breezy but the water temps were delicious. I went in, no jelly fish in sight, and we swam for an hour or so and had a picnic on the sand and all round just relaxed.
Got home via the lavender gardens in time for a speedy supper so that I could drop Chloe off at the camp ground where her friend was and chat for a bit before returning to our neighbours firepit where I chatted some more.
Bed followed Netflix where I tried (and failed) to get into Homeland Season 3.

Sunday was bliss as I deliberately *did nothing* By that I mean, I made no plans so we could please ourselves. I walked the dogs once Paul got home at 10.30am just as the heat was really starting to kick in.

I hung out some in the back yard:


I relaxed, I watched "Love it or List it Vancouver", I cleaned the house so it looks and smells great, I got through all the laundry - washed, dried AND put away #winningatlife, the girls made mug cakes, I rode Ace in the early evening, we had homemade burgers and sweet potato fries with mango curry dip in the evening. I tried and failed, again, to watched Homeland Season 3. I think I am going to give up with that one now.

Thursday, 20 July 2017

exploring the possibilities of a Roo

I went on the annual strawberry picking event with my BFF and my youngest child a few weekends ago.

Its something Lily and I enjoy doing and whilst I was perusing the plants for the best strawberries possible I happened to mention to my BFF that I *still* want to stop off at an RV and trailer dealership and look in them all in a happy kind of way. Its been on my "odd" bucket list for a few years.
One hour later and we were both at the closest dealership complete with sticky children and a red stain on my white shirt which I felt compelled to explain constantly.
The kids were pumped and so was I.

I got the chance to look inside the Rockwood Roo 183 which has been on the wish list for about a year and it was all kinds of delightful. I suddenly had visions of us pulling up to some coastal camp ground complete with dogs and new Ikea plastic plates, or, better still, Bahia Honda State park RV site.

I went home all pumped and announced that I really wanted a camper trailer but we need a new car as the Outlander doesnt have the required ooomph to tow anything.

Fast forward 2 weeks and the neighbours up the road, who are newly retired at 54 (swoon at the prospect) have a massive motorhome on their driveway and casually mentioned that they plan to now circle North America in this and forgo all requirements for cold weather clothing. I was invited in to look around, I grabbed Paul and in we went.

I was now even more excited about camping prospects and dragged the whole family down to the camper sale event at the weekend to look once more at the Roo and marvel at its $30k price tag whilst still not having a towing vehicle.
We discussed happy camping possibilities as a family and how we would need to change the car. $$$$$$$$$$ started circulating around my head like they do in cartoons.

Because I am me, I spent a fairly sleepless night in a fit of anxiety over this, the kind you would envisage doing had you actually spent those dollars. The next day Paul and I had a heart to heart where I admitted my conflicted side of my head had the Ikea plastic plate, dog travelling, Roo 183 dream whilst the other side was thinking "are you nuts???!!!!".
We came to the conclusion that whilst the retirement dream involving a large motor home and 365 day heat is very attractive, we are right now unlikely to make campers. We are plane, car rental, hotel people. He reminded me that our children have no desire to spend three days in a car going to Florida now and thats not going to change.
The Roo idea is currently shelved.....

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

#1 Father-in-law is here

He arrived at the weekend and is here for a whole 12 days, I was madly excited on the leadup and am loving his visit.
Thank God that so far, bar the day he arrived, the weather has co-operated. Annoyingly I am at work for three days this week and then I have 6 days off and hes here for Canada day too so thats good timing. So far, hes been out for lunch, down to the lake with the girls, hung out in the back garden, been in the pool and attended three BBQs. I think hes slowly realizing that a BBQ is just part of summer and doesnt require a garden party to use it although its also how we all prefer to cook and eat together.
We even took him to an evening baseball game where Chloes boyfriend was playing.

I took this photo of the house the other day, the sky was that deep deep blue.

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Horses again

Sometimes I spend time wondering if I should have a horse and thinking about life without a horse, like my life was for the 9 years I didnt have one. In that time I walked away from the BS politics that typically come with a stable yard, the expense of owning that horse and the expenses of having all the "stuff" for that horse.... the stuff that seems never ending...
Its starts with tack and a grooming kit and quickly moves on to fancy show tack, show gear for you, a trailer, a Jeep to pull that trailer. Countless saddle pads (numnahs to the Brits) and other stuff like pessoas and lungelines and dressage whips and fancier saddle pads with names embroidered on it and the best of the best boots like the Eskadron tendon boots that Pebbles wore.

This time around I am trying hard to resist the "stuff" purchases getting out of control. Ace has one saddle and one bridle, I borrowed a white saddle pad for the last show and a borrowed Pelham so I didnt end up in the dust again due to his romping between fences. I so far have managed to steer clear of trailer ownership (although I would LOVE one) and the required towing truck which Paul wants badly anyway.
I am buying secondhand stuff and trying my hardest to ignore the beautiful breeches that are worn by everyone else and the Charles Owen helmets that seem to be the "in thing" here. It was a big deal to buy myself beige breeches at all and I still am in my old jacket that now needs new buttons.

If I try to stay grounded and remember how much I love it and how much I dont NEED all that stuff, I am fine.
Heres a photo from last weeks show where we came second overall in combined 2'6" hunter and 3rd in the stake class which earned us $24 :-)
I so love this horse

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Remember when you badly wanted everything that you now have

The UK seems to be really going through the wringer the last few months what with London x 2 now and Manchester. All tragedies, all affecting people who are now living with loss, painful loss. And now its a country with guidance along the lines of "run, hide, tell". I was a child who grew up in the era of the IRA but this feels beyond that to me. That was normal to me (sadly) at age 5. "Run, hide, tell" is guidance that I never thought I would witness there, and I never want to accept as "normal".

So, this morning on my way to work whilst pondering the minor aggravations that are a normal part of (everyones) day I was brought up short by remembering a meme I saw recently that  I cannot, of course, find now. In short it said, and I cant recall it precisly

"Remember when you badly wanted everything that you now have"

I remember when I would walk to meet the person picking me up for my first job (couldnt drive then and had no car) and in that walk would wish that I lived in Canada, in a Canadian home, drove a VW Golf (a red Golf, was the wish at that time in 1991) in a job I loved, married to a great man with children that I adore.
Well, I have all that, and more....
I live in Canada, have a Golf (its grey but meh I love it), a husband I adore, two girls I am so proud of and love more than anything, a Canadian house, a job I love, a swimming pool (that was beyond 90s dreaming), my horse, dogs and cats, my health, my friends and extended family..... Everyday I live this life.
That means I have to put it all into perspective and be damned grateful and stop focusing on the small shit.

Friday, 19 May 2017

Its hot, as promised

Yesterday I drove home with 32C registering on my car outside temp. Todays its 28C again.
Love it.
I dont even mind the June bugs that much, as long as you dont turn a light on you can almost pretend they arent there. Mosquitos are of course not that easy to remove from mind and body.
Its the Friday before the long Victoria Day weekend and I have many plans for the weekend including dogs, horse, pool preparation, spring cleaning and glorious fresh air.

Happy Friday

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Hot on Thursday! Plus working on flow.

Wildly excited by the weather forecast because its promising this on Thursday:
29C feels like 35C! The fact that its 6C outside and grey is of no concern to me at all due to the promise of Thursday.
Bring it!
I had a great jumping lesson on Ace at the weekend. One of my horsey goals this year is to jump a flowing round. The kind that almost has a John Williams score dedicated to it.
The weekend before when we returned to jumping I nearly died of exhaustion after the third jump so was feeling frankly alarmed at the prospect of completing 8 jumps in the show at the end of May.
So I requested another jumping lesson.
Well, it was like night and day. Ace was super excited, coughing a bit at the start (gggrrrrrr I hate this ROA, it gives me anxiety) but he cleared that like an old man and then had some major energy and it was almost flowing, it was definately better.
I of course didnt get photographic evidence (I never get the good stuff) but below is my exhaustion weekend, they were tiny jumps. I am pleased to be able to report in that the weekends lesson had a 3 footer in it.

Thursday, 11 May 2017


  • Eating - overnight oats with bananas, coconut and pineapple seem to have become my breakfast staple, what I will do when I grow tired of it is a worry.
  • Waiting - for my friend to have her baby, shes currently in labour with her first, exciting times!
  • Wondering - if it will ever stop fecking raining. This May feels like our first ever June here, rain, rain, rain, rain. Ugh.
  • Watching - the duck thats resident with her eggs in a planter in the parking lot at work. We are all set with a ramp for her to lead the babies down when they are ready to leave and flags so she can cross the road. I have no idea why shes picked that spot but apparently its her second year.
  • Drinking - coffee without sugar, yep thats still working out.
  • Riding - working hard on our flow in jumping this year. I keep being congratulated by 20 somethings on how well its going. I cant keep banging on about how good I used to be at this, before they were even born or were in nappies. Ugh again.
  • Working out - going through the Hammer and Chisel program and LOVING IT.
  • On an economy drive - credit card stays at home unless required for gas or groceries as we put everything through it for the airmiles. To say I feel vulnerable is an understatement but its making me be more organized (I actually have to look at the gas gauge now so not to be surprised when I suddenly get the warning beep). Its also good to be in control!
  • Down - 7 inches all over - woop woop. Got aways to go still but on it.
  • Looking forward to - my father in laws visit at the end of June. Love it when he comes to stay. Oh and the heat bring back the damn heat!!!
  • Cant wait - it to stop raining! Stop raining!!!!

Happy Thursday y'all (I have a hankering to be Texan)

Monday, 8 May 2017

movie locations and other cool places to visit

Growing up in the eighties I became a big fan of the horror movies of that time. I have fond memories of ordering Poltergiest from the video shop one afternoon with the my best friend in the summer holidays and watching in a darkened room, with snacks, behind the requisite cushion. Then going out in the bright sunlight to the park and analysing every scene as to how much could be based on a true story.

I also liked The Shining, Halloween (1978 movie), IT, Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, Amityville, Duel etc etc
I still havent summoned up the courage to watch "The Texas Chainsaw massacre" but I have to watch it.

Anyway, today in my lunchbreak I found this rather cool website:
where the website owner has tracked down a ton of movie locations and posted then and now shots with helpful maps.

When I retire we have to go on an enormous road trip to visit all this plus where ET was shot and Centralia in PA. Centralia is an odd place and one which won my curiosity courtesy of Bill Brysons book "A walk in the woods". It's a town thats had an out of control underground fire thats been burning for years and years and cannot be stopped as its in a coalseam. You can still visit it although the road is now closed and see where smoke is quietly coming out of the ground. Apparently a few stubborn residents still live there as they refused to leave, even though their basement walls are warm. Beats me why anyone would do that...

Friday, 5 May 2017

Meet Kennedy

I have just realised that I have been amiss at posting about our newest baby.
Meet Kennedy. Shes is Misty cats baby sister, we lost Misty squirrel cat back in October.
Mistys mama had her last litter of kittens and despite feeling a little overloaded with animals we couldnt turn down an opportunity to have a Misty sibling.

Kennedy has now been with us for about 3 weeks. Shes named after Kennedy Space Centre which was where we were on the day the kittens were born.

Shes pretty darn cute frankly. Shes a real people cat adoring all cuddles and time with people. She snuggles as much as she can, runs like crazy all over the place and climbs legs. The dogs adore her and Oreo tolerates her. I am so hopeful that Oreo will soon feel the love.

The day she arrived and started camping out in Chloes room.

Spot the kitten in this photo.

Thursday, 4 May 2017

evening light in trees

Yesterday at the barn whilst I was hanging out with a grazing Ace (after a particularly good return to jumping session) I noticed the light on all the still bare trees was looking amazing. Of course, I had no camera at that specific time but I did manage to capture this about 10 minutes later:
The little baby leaves are creating the perfect green halo around the tips whilst the rest is almost silver.

I also came across this, this morning., It didnt just speak to me, but rather sang so share it I must.
And to echo all the radio stations this morning - "May the fourth be with you"
Happy Thursday

Friday, 28 April 2017

Two big events in our house-hold

Yesterday was a big day in our household. Two big milestones were achieved.
The first was that our youngest turned 10. Lily is such a mild mannered, pleasant and happy child that everyone seems to want to be her best friend. So, she has tonnes of friends and to keep them all happy, even the ones that dont get on I have agreed to have a birthday weekend (not just a birthday day). That way she can spend two days celebrating and see all her friends and everyone gets to hang with her. I am getting in copious amounts of wine to handle a house of grade 4s all weekend.
Shes also the original glitter child, loving all things from the Justice store. I love watching the way her life is unfolding for my little artist, photographer, ocean loving, purple and aqua fan, reader, young "crazy cat lady".

The second big event was that Paul and I took our Canadian citizenship tests. We had been studying and taking online tests for weeks in the lead-up to this and I fell a whole ton of trepidation on entering the exam room. It was just fine and we both passed with 100% marks (my first ever). We felt so incredibly relieved that we headed straight to Montanas for a celebratory lunch.
Next step is our ceremony and we will be Canadian - how wild is that?!!!!!