The busy person

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i came home to the most beautiful gift basket of goodies yesterday; some delicious smelling candles from mike’s sister-in-law and brother. talk about lovely family!

and today: give a job to a busy person and they’ll get it done. that’s how the saying goes right? usually that’s the case with me – the busier i am, the more efficient i become.

but it’s a whole different story when things get pushed aside and then the day comes when i have to confront them and get down to business. while i was basically “offline” all last week, i came back to a huge pile on my desk (aka my kitchen table) and i have not one clue where i should start.

and if i haven’t said it before, can i say it again: despite not having a 9-5 for the first time in my life, i can’t believe how busy i am with a million different little projects.

egads.

so i did what any rational person blogger would do.
avocado

i spent the morning tinkering with my new site and then i made an avocado salad (and of course took pictures of it.) k to be fair i did manage to apply for a job and rescue the cat which escaped not once, but two times through the open screen door.

but seriously, things have really gotten away from me and consequently it’s a really sad state of affairs over here – i haven’t even put a garden in yet (!!)… which if you are a long time reader you can imagine it’s just eating me up inside. Remember my garden last year? It was basically my life’s purpose, and essential bragging rights for about three months.

there’s also the laundry list of stuff to do around the house (including the laundry), and about 15 papers of administrative tasks sitting on my real desk in the basement (so i don’t have to look at it everyday, again skirting responsibility!)

so this post is about channelling some motivation and a starting point. i think i’ll make a priorities list. and then a to do list – #1. on that list will be, “see priorities list.”

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but on another note – it’s been super nice to be home. yesterday evening when mike got home from work we went on a nice little hike and i could kind of feel myself relaxing a bit. cliff is hilarious – he’ll swim if another dog is with him, but he completely chickens out if he’s by himself. we’ll throw a stick into the water and he’ll stretch as far as he can, leaving his back legs on shore, and then reach as far as he can to grab the stick. if it’s out of reach he starts to whimper. some labrador “retriever”!!

and now… productivity!

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Dog in a car

This past weekend we were on the road (again). And (again) we left Cliff at my parents place (thanks mom and dad I think that’s the last weekend for awhile!!).

Just so you know, cliff is a bit of a terror – in case I hadn’t already made that obvious to you… For example, I now have in my possession one iPhone video-worthy of america’s funniest home videos – of C-dog pushing my 5 year old nephew into a creek. (I’m gonna find a way to upload it because you really just have to see it to believe it). At any rate the point of telling you all of this is to let you know that whilst cliff may not have bedside manners when playing with children, he is an excellent traveller. I guess it’s not too strange for a dog to love the car, but I take my moments of pride where I can get them!
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On the way back home we had some extra passengers and extra cargo (about 12 Rubbermaid containers full of baby supplies) which we were transporting from one family member to another. We all managed to squeeze in to a borrowed dodge caravan that basically rides like a space craft.
Long car rides, road trips with friends and dogs will always hold a special place in my heart ❤

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family portrait

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i’ve heard people cite a statistic wherein if you get a dog, within two years there’s a huge possibility you’ll have a baby. apparently the frequency within which this happens is extremely high.

my concern is, what if mike holds the baby like this? ^^^

baby steps.

also, if you’re wondering about the bale of hay; it was on my front porch all winter long (since my fall “display”). I moved it to the back yard a few weeks ago when Clifford started digging holes in my garden. i’m not sure but i’m fairly positive he ate a tulip bulb and then threw it up.

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Great Dane + Lab puppy = love

We’re off for another road trip this weekend! Mike turned 30 this year – which means so do all of his closest friends for the most part. This weekend is 30th birthday number 4 of the year – we’re headed to Toronto for a Raptors game (aren’t they like not even in the running for the playoffs? I dunno I don’t do basketball…) and many yummy foods.

When we were away over Easter, Cliff boy got to meet my family’s great dane, Patrick. He’s the most lovely big dog you’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting (no really) and Cliff just couldn’t get enough of running under his legs and hanging off his jowls. Poor Patrick had to run and hide.

My sister told me that on one of the nights, Cliff was barking his face off in the crate in my parents kitchen downstairs, and Patrick who was asleep upstairs in my sister’s room, heard the commotion, got up from his bed, went downstairs and sprung Cliff free from his cage!! The both returned to the bedroom together. Too funny. Jail break buddies.

Because you can’t bring brat puppies to Basketball games, Cliff is spending another few nights tormenting – I mean, visiting my family.

Thank-you family! We owe you BIG TIME, LONG TIME>

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What happened to the past three months?

seriously. where does time go? i feel like i woke up today and suddenly it was april. the last thing i remember it was NY’s and we were ushering in 2013. now it’s almost time to usher in the summer.

yesterday i finished year one of the master of journalism program! such a milestone.  year one done. finito. c’est fini!

i was leafing through some of the pictures i managed to take when life was busy – and in my head we haven’t done a whole lot of anything since the start of the year, but in reality… man we’ve crammed a lot in: New puppy. birthday celebration. trips home. job searches. classes… i don’t know why i was so misled. I think when you’re busy, you just put your head down and soldier through.

at any rate. on to the next steps. this is the first time in a long time i don’t have plans outlined for the summer (read: a form of employment at the ready). i’m not going to lie: this whole “lack of control” is driving me alittlebitbatty. (deeeeep breath.) maybe this is a really good exercise in letting go – and seeing where life takes you.

So a bit of a recap the moments i thought i missed over the past few months:

JANUARY

NY's EVE

NY’s EVE

New family member

New family member

mike's 30th birthday celebrations

mike’s 30th birthday celebrations

FEBRUARY

group

outdoor hockey game

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endured another snow storm

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a warm cup or two

dressed a dog up

dressed a dog up like Rihanna

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winter trail runs

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embracing the snow

MARCH

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trying to get spring to hurry up

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the TV studio at school where I spent the month of March

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sneaking a lunch date in

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watching Mike in a comedy tour

Proud to be team bride

Road trip across the province for Wedding festivities on Easter weekend!

And now? Bring on the APRIL showers 🙂

Noise etc.

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Out for a walk along the river

Yesterday at this time Mike was sitting upstairs, mad at me, the cat AND the dog because there’s so much noise in the house lately.(To be fair to me and Lo mein it was mostly because of the dog.) He started barking at about 5:45 and was a holy terror most of the morning – running around with shoes/biting at things/barking at the cat. Usual cartoonish dog stuff.

This afternoon it’s all quiet on the Western Front. I got a text showing me a conked out dog, laying on the office ottoman while Mike typed away at his desk (So I think they made up.)

I had wanted to get a dog for a long time. It was something that I basically begged Mike for – I’d say I worked on him for probably about two years. I always had dogs growing up – but not the kind that were in the house. We lived in the country and they had a dog house and a kennel run and slept inside at night. Mike never had any pets growing up and he was always skeptical about getting one- Like having to walk it, having to feed it, pay for vet bills (ok I was skeptical about this too) and why would you want an animal living in the house with you?

So I guess you could say I finally wore him down and he said, “ok, let’s get a dog.”

(side note: now it’s impossible to tell who he loves more: me or Cliff.)

One of the reasons that I wanted a dog (aside from the fact that animals are awesome and most of the time I like them better then people), was so that we didn’t get to stuck in a “rut.”

I feel like I’m young still. I’m still figuring out what I want to do with my life/what type of work I see myself doing in a few years. Mike is in a similar boat – he’s working and trying to figure out what sort of route he has to take to pursue doing stand-up comedy full time.

And were not unlike so many other late-twenty somethings (well that’s just me… Mike’s THIRTY now 😉 ) and we have this crazy back-wards luxury of “taking time” to see what we want to do. My mom at my age now had 2 kids. My sister is 34 and she already has a teenager who’s just about in University.

I’m STILL in University.

When you settle down and have a family right away, you learn to adjust. You don’t spend 2 hours at breakfast on the weekend, or make a gourmet meal on a weeknight. Part of me feels guilty that that’s how I’m living my life still – how I want to, and not on someone elses’ schedule.

So we are accountable to few things in life at this point – which is why I wanted to get a dog. Honestly it made me uncomfortable to think: “You could just get so used to this lifestyle that you’ll never want to change it.”

So mission accomplished – if I wanted a dog so that we would be able to change up our routine, and avoid becoming overly selfish or stuck in “our ways” – I did it.

We now get up at 5:50 most mornings. We’re both tired. The dog barks and disrupts the silence of the saturday morning because he really needs to go and run some energy out. When we’re out for the evening we “have to get home for the dog.” And it’s not like we were surprised about this. We knew going into it that it was a “big responsibility.”

And I’d say that we take turns being mad about it – about the loss of freedom.

And it’s crazy because even as I’m typing this I’m thinking… “It’s just a DOG. How is it that our lives have changed THAT much. And why do other people with dogs not seem to make that big of a deal about it? Why do people with MULTIPLE children, not get angry about excess noise in the house?”

So anyway… we’re learning to deal with noise. Which is probably a good thing because there are those other times when my life is busy and loud and I think to myself that silence is over-rated.

The IPHONE Files

Lord help the world. I was gifted an iphone…. and now I’m just free to snap pictures at will. So I present to you, “The IPHONE Files” because I’m sure people aren’t getting enough of me on instagram.

Family Day

It’s a holiday in Canada today: Family Day. The irony about Family Day is, it’s a “provincial” holiday – so everyone in Ottawa who has a job with the Federal Government (which is probably 75% of the working population) has to work on “Family Day.” Bummer. Imagine your kids have the day off school but you have to go to work so they get shipped off to a sitter’s house? Something’s wrong with that picture.

I used to work for the Federal Government – but now I’m a degenerate grad student sitting on my couch in pyjamas at noon (and I may or may not shower) and to be frankly honest I have no classes on Mondays anyway so there really isn’t anything different about today in this household.

i’ve realized that as you become older, you become less concerned with other things in your life – things that seemed so important when you were younger – and you realize that your time is better spent with family.

nothing could really be truer. despite all the struggles, the ups and downs, life turmoils, distance and eccentricities that make up a family, there really isn’t anything that can replace them.

since the student budget is tight and my family doesn’t live in town, I won’t be able to spend the day with:

two sisters, three nieces, one nephew, two brother-in-laws or mom and dad.

but….. the other thing about getting older is your family will grow, it’s one of life’s many blessings.

and so i get to spend the day pulling shoe’s out of this guy’s mouth:

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sharing a wonderful brunch for two:

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And of course intervening in various attempts to overthrow the canine (from the advancing feline front):

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Happy Family Day!

And remember in the words of George Bernard Shaw:

“If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance.”

Snow + puppy

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The thing about getting a puppy in the winter time is you spend most of the first few months trying to find  creative ways to tire him out… at least that’s been our experience with cliff. so much puppy energy plus winter days = not fun nights.

i was under the impression that labs like cold weather since they were bred for the icy cold waters of Newfoundland?

but i gotta say, i think we got a softie – if there’s any sort of a wind chill, you literally have to coax him down the side walk with peanut butter (no this has actually happened. we’ve officially crossed that line into crazy dog owner territory).

in his defence, there have been some days this winter, when i think it’s been even too cold for a lab. Cliff is totally like “nah. I’m not going out there.”

Last weekend however, we took him up to the cottage. it was the perfect winter day; sunny, bright, mild enough that you don’t freeze and you can bare it longer then 10 minutes.

lo and behold we found out someone really likes the snow.

Snow Storm Anyone?

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Snow storm anyone?

It took me two hours to get home on friday night. but i’m not retroactively complaining, i say, if you made it home safely in the snow storm, thank a snow plough driver.

I guess we didn’t get near as much snow as the rest of the Eastern Seaboard, but we still got a pretty hefty dumping. Everything is all shiny and white and new again. I love how snow can do that.

I had to laugh though because in the news Boston’s Mayor said that “we’re easterners and were really prepared for this” – two years ago I was in Boston when they got probably 5 centimetres and it seemed like the city didn’t know what to do with it… I mean it was a lot of snow that they got down that way this past weekend, and it’s been a long time since we’ve had that big of a dump here in Ottawa (all at once), but you haven’t seen “prepared” until you’ve seen snow storms covered in this city.

Hometown pride: snow removal. We do it best.

despite the snow storm, there’s just this feeling in the air that the winter days are fading. slowly the afternoons are getting brighter. the other day i went out for a run at 5:00 pm and it felt like it was mid-afternoon because of the sunlight.