Around the house and city (Toronto Edition)

one of the last posts before i make the switch over to the new site.

can’t wait!

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A rainy day for a yard sale

Can you say it’s ironic if you have about 10 solid days of beautiful weather and then on the 11th day – the day you have plans to hold a yard sale – it rains and drops about 20 degrees in temperature?

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that’s what happened to us this past weekend.

i spent the morning huddled in the car because mike was relentless and would not close up shop. i think after we factored in the morning coffee & the mcmuffins we came away with about 40 dollars in profit. not too shabby for about  hours of work :p

i consider the one success of the sale to be the fact that we got rid of the vacuum we tried to sell last year but couldn’t. see how persistence and holding on to things in your garage can pay off?!

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I think some people are just the sort of people who hold on to things. we’re those sort of people. it’s a fact that i still have papers and work books from public school, the first CD i ever owned (although i no longer own a CD player) and sundresses which i’m certain will come back in style one day (… lord jesus I’m already starting to sound like my mother) mike isn’t much better at picking and choosing so i’m in good company.

and then there’s all these studies that say the less stuff you have, the better it is on your mind – your well being.

so every so often i’ll do a bit of a purge.

and don’t you know, the minute i’ve discarded or donated that old pile of christmas cards or the extra canning jars (or any other random collection of objects!) i find a direct need for them? something comes up and someone says, “OH but couldn’t I just USE 40 old Christmas cards for this craft I’m doing.”

and I say “oh for crying out loud.”

sometimes life plays these funny little ironic jokes on us. rain when there should be sun. a need for something you’ve just gotten rid of.

i guess that’s why they say that god must have a sense of humour.

Around the house and city

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^ everything is in bloom in downtown ottawa. it smells like flowers.

^^ on my running route. it didn’t even up raining.

^^^ finally set up record player. jackson browne was the first record i listened to.

^^^^ i told him no soccer ball in the house and this is what he does.

^^^^^ nothing better then a spring night – windows open, candles lit.

^^^^^^ Lord Elgin’s patio is open for the season.

^^^^^^^ a striped selfie for good measure.

^^^^^^^^ mike is a on a quest to perfect the bocconcini stuffed hot pepper.

^^^^^^^^^ homemade italian sandwich bliss.

^^^^^^^^^^ we made a pizza.

^^^^^^^^^^^ i’m taking may to revisit the old children’s faves. first up, the phoenix and the carpet.

 ^^^^^^^^^^^^ he ate cat poop and then asked for forgiveness.

Have a great weekend! p.s. I’m on INSTAGRAM. (who isn’t 😉

One year in Suburbia

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we’ve officially been suburbanites for a year now – the beginning of may marks one year in this place we call home.

up until last year both of us had been living in the downtown part of Ottawa. there have been some big adjustments to get used to, like the distance for me to school on city transit (it takes about an hour and a half if it’s rush hour) or the fact that we can’t just walk to dinner or a movie, so inevitably there’s been a lot more driving. i can’t say there aren’t days i don’t crave these elements of living downtown.

but, in reality, i’d say suburbia gets a bad rap. last summer i was able to have a crazy garden, and we would have never been able to get a dog if we didn’t have the outdoor space.

plus there’s the part of life where at the end of the day, we can just look around us and say – “this is our house” something we would never be able to do if we were still inside the downtown core.

so what’s with the stigma of the suburbs? one year in and i still haven’t really figured it out – all i can say is, we’ve been happy, and we’re two of the biggest drifters/dreamers that i know. suburban life hasn’t changed my thirst for adventure 🙂

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Working on my kitchen table

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these days I’ve been doing a lot of work from my kitchen table.

you know, i thought i would be bored out of my mind since i don’t have a nine to five job right now, but somehow, between blogging for iRun, job hunting and mapping out other freelance-type work, the days get filled up really quickly.

i’m really excited for this time right now. it’s nerve wracking not knowing exactly what sort of work i’m going to get into, but at the same time i’m super happy to be contemplating the various routes i can go.

it’s so funny because when i tell people i’m in journalism, and that i don’t want to work for a newspaper as a reporter, they’re like “GASP – what are you going to do? If not that, then tell me, where do you see yourself working? and why would you take journalism if you don’t want to report?”

and it’s like this: there are a million different avenues out there – it’s similar to the fact that there are a million jobs which don’t have a direct path to them, unlike the professional designation jobs (i.e. teacher, nurse, dentist) With journalism, there are just so many places to fit in, it’s just a matter of seeking them out and planning a route to get there.

so right now, i’m enjoying my kitchen table, my “office” companions (prickly and canine), and the world – which honestly for the first time in my life feels like my oyster.

rarwh (lion roar.)

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this guy, always at my feet ^^^

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Spring storm

and then all of a sudden, it felt like springtime.

there’s a warm wind outside right now – the likes of which i don’t think we’ve felt since last september!!

the winds picked up while we were out walking the dog last night – and all of a sudden we had our first spring storm. Cliff, having never experienced any thunder or lightening in his life, took off running for our front door.

we made it home just as the rain began to fall.

but inside the house – things are in chaos. we started painting the front hallway. a task that brings me back to one year ago at this time when i painted virtually every wall in this house– except for the front hall… it wasn’t in desperate need of a redo so it made its way down the priority list. so there’s painting cloth everywhere and the coat rack is in the living room.

i’ve also been crafting up a storm – this weekend i’m helping to host a wedding shower and there are paper flowers ALL over the place. I call them “thneeds” – like after those puff ball commodities in The Lorax? i dunno – that’s just what i think of when i look at them.

spring has just been making me itchy to re-do things; clean, paint, purge, make things bright and shiny and fresh.

i kindof envision it like i’m taking a loofah to my life.

have a great weekend everyone!

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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Remember these two?

Remember these two? It seems like yesterday My best friend and her fiancé were engaged on the end of a dock at midnight in the summer (awwww):

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But really it’s been about 8 months and the wedding festivities are officially UNDERWAY!!

Last weekend was the Stag and Doe – it’s an event in support of the bride and groom. Some people think it’s like the “stag” or “bachelor” party – but both wedding parties together. Not true.

A Stag and Doe is NOT about holding a party for your “last night single” (which I think is SO tacky by the way. If you have to have a party to celebrate “last night single” you probably shouldn’t be getting married in the first place… I mean celebrate the event with your friends for sure, but the way these Bachelor and Bachelorette parties have evolved into meat market type parties kinda makes my skin crawl.)

Actually a Stag and Doe is an amazing night where everyone in the community comes together, pitches in and helps out. Really, it’s just a fun opportunity to have a relaxed party before the more high stress events can pick up and it’s such a great way for the bride and groom to feel love from their community and the people in their life.

It was about an eight hour trek across the province so we had to pack Cliff dog up and left him for the weekend with my parents (who live about halfway from where I live to where the Stag and Doe was held).

One of the pitfalls of growing up is the fact that sometimes you meet partners that live hours and hours away from your best friend 😦 It still pains me at random moments throughout my life that it’s not like it used to be, when we lived a phone call away and spent every spare minute together. All things considered I think we still do a pretty good job of seeing each other – and growing up, more often then not, means things can’t stay the same way forever.

It really was such a good weekend, and it was so amazing to see Jessie and John and made the fact that they will be married in only 3 short months very, very real!! (YAY!!)

I’ve included a few pics below. If you haven’t been to a stag and doe or you’ve never heard of one, you need to put it on your bucket list  (find one and attend… there’s no such thing as “Stag and Doe Crashers”). There is just so much positivity in the air at a party like this. Plus, the DANCING. (Oh the dancing!) A “do not play list” does not exist at an event like this – which is just fine by me. I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed Gangnam Style so much 😉

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Road Trip!

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Country roads

Driving to the hall to set up

Driving to the hall to set up

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The tiki tiki bar gets signed by every bride and groom in town who use it for their event

The bride-and-groom-to-be

The bride-and-groom-to-be

Proud to be team bride

Proud to be team bride

Clearly I'm going to make a great journalist someday

Clearly I’m going to make a great journalist someday (I actually didn’t notice any error until after I spent half and hour making this sign.)

the actual "coolr of boozer" that you could buy tickets for

the actual “coolr of boozer” that you could buy tickets for

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Hard working wedding party

The boys had a brilliant idea to raise more funds

The boys had a brilliant idea to raise more funds

The youngest dancer on the dance floor

The youngest dancer on the dance floor

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Marked my cup so no one would take it (MOH) 😉

Bouncer face

Mike does his bouncer face

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We basically danced the night away

Lately….

Lately I’ve been thinking

That there’s too many things in my house. Spring cleaning is in order.

That there’s nothing better then shedding your heavy winter coat for a wool sweater.

That when your nose runs from the cold in the march air you can feel like a kid again (like when you were waiting for the school bus or playing outside after dinner in the twilight.)

That the times that seem the most arduous and difficult in your life are the times you look back on most fondly.

That sunlight until 7:30 pm is a blessing.

That if spring won’t come to me, I’ll go to spring:

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I live in a beautiful city

I’ve always been a lover of the “off and beaten track” – the smaller towns or the quaintness of a medium sized city; the people are more willing to get to know you, the streets aren’t busy after nine pm, and if you tried hard enough you could find the two degrees of separation between yourself and the mayor.

don’t get me wrong, i love the big cities. i love the idea of living in NYC as much as the next girl… i think it’s romantic, has charm and you can’t take a bad picture of a city street. My love for NYC dates back to the early episodes of Friends that are etched in my brain: it’s a place where you can always drink coffee, hang out and live by Central Park.

but i say to you, a city can be what you make it. that’s how NYC got it’s reputation: a vibrant community. That community continues to drain other cities of their trendy population today.

ottawa always get’s a bad rap as a “government town”: sleepy, boring, no night life… blah blah blah. it drives me absolutely bonkers. ottawa is such an amazing place, and cities are what you make of them. if you think a city is boring, it’s probably because you aren’t trying hard enough to get involved, find a community and make a connection.

and i’m not saying you have to be in every club that exists. i’m just saying, are you the kind of person that has to go to THE most exclusive party to have fun? Or are you the life of your own party?

Scenes from around Ottawa the past few weeks:

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