Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Skinny Saturday 43

Ah, the weekend once again. Wish I could say it will be a relaxing one. I always seem to have more and more things to do and less and less time in which to get them done. I did stay in bed until almost 9:00 this morning and then jumped up and walked Kaiser. We ran into the cute boy down the street on our walk... Don't think I've ever told you about him. He's just cute, cute, cute. Cute as a button. Probably in his early thirites, dark brown curly hair, big dark eyes, and a smile that would knock you over! He and his wife (yeah, there's usually a wife!) moved into the neighbourhood last summer. For a long time, I thought it was just him living on his own, but then, inevitably, I saw the wife, too. And then I saw her grow, and grow, and grow! They had a baby in November, so he's a scorpio like me. (I know it's a boy because I saw the "It's a Boy!" ballon through their window.) I'm not stalking him, really I'm not, he just happens to live on my dog-walking route and on my route home from work when I walk, so I generally pass their place at least once or twice a day. In ANY case, today, as Kaiser and I were walking down the sidewalk close to their house, we meet him and bundled-up baby in one of those big 3-wheeler carriages. Kaiser had to jump into the snowbank as there was not enough room for all of us to pass at the same time. Cute boy smiled and said something about it not being very wide. "Yes," I said. "It's true!" Sigh... our first conversation! I think I detected a bit of an accent, probably French, but perhaps something else as well... Till we meet again, cute boy!

In other riveting news, we received our Sonnambula CD this week. We ordered it to become familiar with the music before we see it at the Met in March. It's sung by incredible Italian mezzo-sporano Cecilia Bartoli and my other cute boy crush, Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Florez. (Sigh... his wife recently had a baby, too!) Juan Diego will actually be in the Met performance accompanied there by French mezzo Natalie Dessay. The two of them performed together last fall in La Fille du Régiment, which was spectacular. We are very much looking forward to seeing them together again in La Sonnambula. Here's a pic of the CD, which also contains the Libretto for the opera. Hopefully we'll have time to listen to some it this evening by the fire.

Tomorrow, it's off to mom's to deliver her biweekly stash of large-print library books, juices, cookies, and other goodies not provided by the home. She'll be happy this week as I bought her some fresh cherries, which she loves, and I will cook and mash some squash tonight and take that down to her as well. They can heat it up for her there. They generally just have frozen vegetables at the home that don't really have a lot of taste, so she misses her squash and turnip and other vegetables that she used to make at home.

The time, she flies... On to the Boyz of Saturday!

Friday, January 23, 2009


Turn up the volume...

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Fantasy Real Estate

Here's some pics of my new favourite apartment, in Stockholm, of course! I had the price wrong yesterday. It's actually 16 million SEK (making it $2.45 million CAD). It's in the tony Östermalm neighbourhood of Sweden's capital. No one won the lotto last night, so it's now $43 million for Saturday! If I had that, I'd scoop this up in an instant, have a pied-à-terre in NYC, a "cottage" in the Laurentian's, and probably someplace in Switzerland, too! Brad cringes at the thought of me with a lot of money, but he'd get used to it and he and the doggies would be very happy at the cottage!

Check out the Stockholm digs:

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

End of an Error!

Well, that's it. Bush is gone and Obama is President of the U.S. Thank god! There were times I thought this day would never come! To think that that smirking chimp had the nuclear codes! I hope they don't let him out of Texas again!

I did end up taking yesterday off. I had a bunch of stuff I didn't get done on the weekend that I was able to do yesterday (mostly making GI muffins and vegetarian chili). I also biked my 21 km, shovelled the end of the driveway after the plow had gone by during the night and made its heavy deposit (took me almost half an hour), walked to the pool and back, and swam for 20 minutes. Phew!

The snowbanks here are almost up to my armpits when walking on the sidewalks. There must be a good 2 and a half feet in the back yard... But, just over a week left in January, and spring will officially start just 2 months from today! YAY!

I found another apartment I want in Stockholm. I'll post some pics of it soon. It's 15 million SEK (that's a measley $2.3 million CAD). But tonight's 6/49 jackpot is $33 million!! I want it!!

Wish me luck!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Sunday Weigh-in

Hey all! It's a snowy day here in eastern Canada... Supposed to get upwards of 15 cm. Not enough to get out of work, I'm afraid... I'm thinking I may take Tuesday off this week and watch all of the Inaugration coverage on TV. It will be a historic day for sure!

Okay... So I've said that I will keep you abreast of my weight-loss efforts, so here goes! I started at a chubby 177 pounds 2 weeks ago, and my competition with Shaun is to see who can lose 25 pounds first. So 177 minus 25 = my goal of 152 pounds, which will bring me back to what I weighed in high school! As of today, I have dropped 5 pounds, weighing in at 173 lb just minutes ago. Kind of a slow start, so I have to start cranking things up a bit. With all of the cold weather we have been experiencing, I have also been eating quite a bit of pasta. For some reason, salads really aren't all that appealing when it's -30 outside! In any case, I biked both days this weekend (total of 42 km in an hour and a half) and will go for a swim later on today. I also want to start getting out for a 30 minute walk at lunchtime... 20 more pounds to go!

Oh, and I HAVE to share this with you all. I received an e-mail from my good (and very straight friend) Shaun earlier this morning and in it he was commenting on our leak from the 3rd floor shower earlier in the week... He said, and I quote: "See what happens when you don't get enough caulk!" LOL!! Indeed! Not getting enough caulk can be the cause of many a problem! ;-)

Have a good Sunday, all!

I Love You Phillip Morris

Looks like a good film based on a true story starring Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor. Here's the trailer:

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Real Estate Makeover in Toronto

These pics are from today's Globe and Mail. It's an 80-year-old home that's had a very modern update. Overall, I like it a lot. I especially like the bathroom and kitchen. What do you think? Could you live there?

Skinny Saturday 42

So another Saturday is upon us. Thank god it's the weekend, and an 'off' weekend to boot! By off weekend, I mean that I don't have to rush around buying mom's supplies and then going down there for a visit. It's not that I don't want to visit her - really it isn't! It's just that all of that is so much harder in the winter, in the cold, the ice, and the snow. I call her everyday and go down every other weekend. Her home is still closed to the public in any case, as some of the residents are still quite sick with the flu.

It was bitterly cold again this morning and Kaiser, of course, pooped twice on our walk, necessitating me to remove my gloves two times as well to stoop and scoop, as it were. The process completely numbed my fingers and I could barely tie the second plastic bag. Thankfully, it's supposed to warm up a bit tomorrow, and by warm up, I am talking -13C (8F). On Monday, it's supposed to go all the way up to -4C (24F) and snow. They're not saying how much snow yet, but it would be great if we got a huge pile of the stuff and they had to cancel work! Small chance of that happening, I'm afraid...

I biked my 21 km in 45 minutes this morning and felt much the better for it. Brad has suggested that we move the bike up to the 3rd floor for the winter months, and I may give in yet if these extremely frigid temperatures hang around or return for any length of time. As it is, I am very much a creature of habit and tend to avoid change if I can. If something is doable as it is, then why bother changing it? This time of year, it certainly would be more pleaseant to bike upstairs, but then we'd have to drag the bike up 3 floors, and then drag it back down 3 floors come spring. It's actually nice to bike in the basement's cooler temperatures in the spring and summer. So for now, we'll leave things as they are and hope it warms up!

And YAY!!! Just 3 more days till Obama takes office!!! Let's celebrate with some hot boyz!

Kaiser's happy about the regime change down south, too!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Brrr [again] and Books

Well, it's another extremely cold day here in eastern Canada. This is the coldest it has been in several years in fact. When I gave Kaiser a very short walk this moring at 6:00, it was -35C (-31F)!! The last few winters, I don't think the temperature dropped much below minus 20 C, and certainly went no where near the minus thirties. Thankfully, there is only a very light wind, but even with that, the windchill is in the minus forties! This will be a very good weekend to stay inside curled up by the fireplace with a good book.

Speaking of books, I finally finished The Story of Edgar Sawtelle. Wow. It was a very well-crafted tale that definitely left me wanting more. It was the first novel by American David Wroblewski. I look forward to reading much more by him in the future. Thanks to Seth for recommending him.

That clears the way for the next two books on my nightstand, which I will probably read simultaneously. First is The Wisperers - Private Life in Stalin's Russia by Orlando Figues. It's a large book that will no doubt take a while to get through, but I am looking forward to it. I have a fascination with most things Russian, particularly during the Communist era.

And the second book, which I will get through in a week or two is Mark Bittman's new
work called Food Matters: A Guide to Conscious Eating. The book is designed to get people to become more environmentally aware and preparing food that takes as little toll on the planet as possible. It includes 75 recipes. Bittman lost a chunk of weight following his new program, so I am hoping it will help me out in that respect as well. (I'll give you a progress report on Sunday regarding my weight loss thus far).

Have a great weekend all and STAY WARM!!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Flashback to 1979...

The year I graduated high school. These bring back memories!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Drip, drip, drip...

So last night after somehow managing to bike my 21 km in the cold torture chamber we call our basement, I went up to the top floor where our master bedroom is to take a shower. The hot water felt so good after biking, I stayed in a few extra minutes. Brad was still working in his office on our second floor, so I continued on downstairs to rustle up some grub. My post-exercise glow quickly turned to red when I arrived in the kitchen, however! Water was leaking from the ceiling all over the flat top stove, the counter top, and onto the floor. It was dripping out by one of the screws in the track lighting - nice, that will mix well with the electrical current, I thought! I shouted for Brad to come quick, which is my wont in such circumstances.

Turns out it was all his fault! He had removed the caulking while trying to replace the drain in the shower on the 3rd floor. He hadn't thought much about it and was going to recaulk the entire shower on the weekend... In any case, some of the water must have not made it into the drain and flowed down the outside of the pipe. The leak stopped almost immediately and we got it cleaned up in no time. Now we'll both be showering on the second floor until the new caulking dries. No real harm done at all. There's not even a mark on the kitchen ceiling. I'm thankful that we have two bathrooms and am remined how so many people across the globe don't even have running water, heck don't even have a roof over their heads, so this miniscule inconvenience for us is not even a drop in the proverbial bucket when it comes to the hardship that so many have to endure. I wish there was more I could do to help others, and I wish they would stop bombing the crap out of each other in Gaza and Israel.

On another, happier, note. I took some time at lunch today to start researching restaurants in NYC for our upcoming visit at the end of March. I found a few promising places that I'll share with you later. If any one has a favourite haunt please let me know. We will be staying in Chelsea and don't eat much meat, but we both love seafood.

Brad wants the computer, so I have to run... Till later. Stay warm!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Baby, it's COLD out there! This morning it was minus 20 C (- 4 F) and this coming weekend, the temperature is supposed to dip down to -30 C (-22 F!). Yikes. Kaiser got a very short walk this morning, both because I overslept a bit and because it was so cold. At least his paws seem to have adjusted to the salt they use on the roads. The first part of the winter, when ever we crossed a street, he would jump and hop all over the place.

Here's a neat little link that shows you where the other side of the planet is in relation to where you are. Just type in your coordinates and presto! From me, the other side of the world is in the middle of the Indian ocean!

And a chunk of one of my teeth fell out last night! I was just nibbling a small piece of chocolate left over from Christmas and out came this sizeable piece of one of my bottom molars. It doesn't hurt and is not bothering me, but I still have to get in to see my dentist. I made an appointment for next week. Ugh... There's always something.

Stay warm!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Busy, busy weekend... (skinny Saturday 41 belated)

Where, oh where does the time go? Here it is at a quarter past 7:00 p.m. on Sunday night, and the weekend is just a whirlwind... Yesterday was non-stop busy. Bking, geting mom's stuff, going to the live Met broadcast at the theater, getting supper and heading over to the neighbour's for a drink after dinner. Home and to be. Up this morning and walked Kaiser then went immediately down to mom's. Her home is closed right now to the public because of a severe bout of flu that is circulating inside, so I just dropped off her stuff at the door and the girl took it in for me. Mom did come out to say hello. She had the flu last week and is pretty much over it now. After that, I had to go into work for about an hour and a half today to get something done that I didn't have time to do last week. Then, I went to the grocery store to pick up a couple of thing I had forgotten to put on the list and then went up to the pharmacy to renew a precription. I had meant to call it in, but forgot to do so. When I told the gal what I wanted, she said it would be about 15 to 20 minutes. All told, I was there for close to 45 minutes! Grrr... Patience, as I have mentioned before, is not one of my virtues. I was especially grumpy, as I had only had breakfast all day and it was pushing 3:00 p.m. when I left the pharmacy. Then back home to grab a bite to eat, do last night's dinner dishes, and start cooking tonight's dinner... And now, we're off to visit Paulie on the north side of our city. Help!!!I want the world to just slow down!

On the upside, yesterday's opera was very good. La Rondine (pronounced like Rondiné, in French) starring husband and wife team Roberto Alagna and Angela Georghiu, was excellent! Marius Brenciu, who played Prunier, was also very good. While at the mall, I also picked up Mark Bittman's new book, Food Matters, A Guide to Conscious Eating. I'm looking forward to reading it.

On to the boyz as we have to fly to Paul's...