All The Way To The End

It’s been snowing here for 50 hours straight.  It entirely depends on what elevation you live at and in what area because we have 11” of snow at home and down the hill, 3 miles away where I work, there is barely a skiff, you can still see grass!  We’ve had the snowplow in our cul-de-sac twice this weekend and I don’t think other municipalities have even taken their snow plows out of the garage!

 Snowy Walk

This weekend seemed really long, for some reason….like it was more than just two days.  Friday night I left work and went to get my hair cut.  I had intended on just getting a wee trim of the ends but when I got there I had a moment of insanity and told him he could cut it quite a bit shorter.  I absolutely love it!  I love the length and the cut and the way it feels. 

 New Hair

Saturday morning my sweet hubby dragged our sleep-disrupting dog out of the bedroom and closed the door and went about some of his own errands while I got to sleep in, it was blissful!  We did some errands and I did some cooking and there was napping and then we dolled up and went to a pub fundraiser for the Boxer Rescue that we’re a part of.  That was a really fun evening, crappy food, good wine and great company.  We would have liked to stay out later but the entire group of 50-odd people all packed up and went home early….because…..4am Gold Medal HOCKEY!!!!!!!!!!!  In British Columbia, if you wanted to watch the Gold Medal Game live, you had to get up at 4am!  We did just that and it was great!  Ray lit a fire (which we kept burning until 10pm last night, living room so toasty, rest of the house, SO COLD!) and we made coffees and I put together a new recipe that I like to call “Gold Medal Oven Pancake”.  It was super easy and SO delicious!  And, if you don’t drown it in maple syrup (ya right), it’s not awful for you but it is a higher calorie recipe so I would consider it a special occasion treat.  I’ve linked the picture below to the original recipe and I’ll also put it on the FEED ME page.  I highly recommend this one!

Gold Medal Pancake

A couple of other things that are on the go right now.  I have 5 days left to come in on the Century at my original goal of racking up 100 kilometers by March 1st.  5 Days left and 31 kilometers left.  If I’m going to be completely honest, when I originally decided to do this challenge I had a sneaking suspicion that I’d end up in the last week with a big push to finish.  I’m not sure why I thought that……because if it hadn’t been for my injury in early February, I would have been done by now.  I have to average 6.27 kilometers (3.9 miles) every day this week to have a shot at succeeding.  So what will I do?  I’m going for the big push and the successful finish! It will be hard to get there but I really have no reason why I can’t do it.  Between the gym and an evening dog walk each night, I’m determined to pile those kilometers on and finish what I started!


With only 4 days left in the month, I’m starting to tally up my February goals and results as well and see how things went.  I am VERY surprised by how much momentum I lost at the beginning of February.  Getting sidelined by injury/recovery really threw a wrench in my works in ways that I didn’t really see coming.  For instance…..we did not eat at the dinner table once last week.  Anyway….there were some successes and some flops…..I have a couple more days this month to work on getting some positives….but mostly I’m just really looking forward to a fresh March start!

As far as my previous post about groceries goes, I was really glad to read the comments and see that a few of you don’t budget for groceries because you enjoy what you eat too much.  We do as well and I tend to buy groceries based on what I feel like eating rather than what may be on sale however I felt that we had room to make an improvement on just how much we were spending.  I think I’ve done that really well between January and February and I hope to make another little dent between February and March.  One thing that I will not do though is compromise on what we eat.  I would like to reduce our grocery bill and if going a couple different places & planning our weekly menu based on the meat or veggies that are reduced pricing does that for me without too much hassle then I’d be crazy not to do it.  But I will not sacrifice our enjoyment, our health or our overall nutrition for the desire to knock a few bucks off our bill every month. Just wanted to clear that up. 

And finally…..if you made it this far into my post, that’s good…because you get to hear the happy news!  Ray’s daughter is expecting a baby in September and we are going to be grandparents!  His daughter and her husband have been trying for quite a while now and have suffered some loss along the way so we’re all very excited with this great news!  I’m sure, as things progress, that you’ll hear more about this….we’re so excited!

That’s it for me today, trying to stay warm, watching the snow fall and contemplating my walking route after work today to cram in the most kilometers possible!


Birthday 2012 or “Snowpocalypse”


Tree Down

The first day of my 34 didn’t start so well.  While I was getting ready for work, I got a text from Ray showing me a picture of the bridge on the way home.  A snowy, icy mess and he was stuck on it.  I knew that didn’t bode well for me (we work at the same place) but I didn’t think it would be too bad.  Boy, was I wrong.  Ray got home, we swept off my car and off I went.  I got about a kilometer from my house and that’s where traffic stopped.  2 hours later, after watching semi trucks get stuck, cars spin out on teeny little hills and getting myself nowhere, I turned around and went home. 


Snow Globe

I spent the next hour walking my dog through the trails near our house, it was white and quiet and gorgeous!  An unexpected gift at the start of what was turning into a horrible day!



Snow Trees

After our walk I went into the back to the toolshed to pull out the snow shovels and got nearly run over by my dog as she was chasing the mice that apparantly took up residence in the shed.  Gross.  Mouse traps it is!  At around 10 I decided to make another try at getting to work and an hour and a half later I arrived….where I worked for 3 hours.  So a 6 hour total commute and 3 hours of work.  Didn’t quite seem worth it! 




Fortunately it only took me 20 minutes to get home (miracle!).  We shoevelled out the driveway (thanks snow plow!) and then went inside where I cracked my birthday bottle of wine (Hester Creek – Character) and warmed up on the sofa.  Dinner was my hands down favourite, ribeye steak, balsamic mushrooms & onions, baked yam and brocoli.  I didn’t even mind that I was making dinner on my birthday because it meant I got to use my new knife!  That thing is so sharp that you don’t even hear it cutting, it just whispers through the food!



Bday Cake

After dinner we headed out for Birthday Cake, which this year was a Ginger Frost milkshake from McDonalds.  So sweet and delicious.  I’m really glad I didn’t go to any trouble to make myself a grain free cake, this was totally good enough! 

After a couple of phone calls to my dad, sister and mom, it was time for bed.  I set my alarm for an hour earlier than normal because if the impending snow storm.  We got another good dumping and I spent an hour this morning shoveling our driveway….and then went back inside and took a second shower (our driveway is double wide and we had easily 4″ of heavy wet snow), had a coffee and a cookie and then got on the road to work.  Fortunately all the main roads were plowed and it looks like most people stayed home today so I was at work in record time!

Happy Snow Shovelling!

Birthday Goodness

 This past weekend was filled with birthday goodness.  Nice meals with friends and family, a couple of treats, a couple of drinks, lots of tea and a little home-work thrown in for good measure (don’t want to get spoiled!).  I am so very grateful for everyone and everything in my life; I am blessed beyond measure in my relationship, I have family & friends both near and far who take the time to wish me well at this time of year. 

I give you the birthday weekend of goodness a picture at a time! (in no particular order….because for some reason I can’t sort these pictures)

This was us on Sunday evening, watching Christmas movies all together on the sofa.  Grace forgets she's 70 pounds and climbs right on!  Having a snoring boxer head jammed under your chin does not suck though!

Sunday morning started with me waking up snuggled between Ray and my dog.  Trust me, waking up buried under a heap of blankets and duvets, sandwiched between a sleepy, warm man and a snoring, snuggly dog does not suck!  No pictures of that, obviously, but this was our Sunday evening, after birthday presents had been opened and dinner had been made, eaten and cleaned up, we all piled onto the sofa to watch a holiday movie. 

So beautiful, an early morning snowy walk!

So beautiful, an early morning snowy walk!

 Grace's first snow fall on Saturday morning.  She definitely did not appreciate it!  I loved it though, felt so festive!

 Saturday morning started early, I got up with the plan of taking Grace for an early morning walk before I was off to birthday brunch.  How excited we all were to look outside and find that it would be Grace’s first time seeing snow.  She’s came to us from California so snow is not something she’s ever experienced (neither was rain based on her intense dislike of it!).  We got all bundled up and headed out for the trail.  It was big fluffy flakes and a bit of wind so she thought she was under attack every time the wind blew the flakes into her face.  We headed into the trail where it was less windy, but I’d left the house too early and it was still too dark in the trees for us to be in there alone so we turned around and meandered through our snowy neighborhood instead.  Grace didn’t love it, but I did, it was chilly and festive and snowy!


My honey spoiled the crap out of me for my birthday.  The food processor I've been wanting and a Japanese slicing knife that is so flipping sharp it scares me!

My honey spoiled the crap out of me for my birthday. The food processor I’ve been wanting and a Japanese slicing knife that is so flipping sharp it scares me!

Sunday afternoon I baked cookies while Ray napped for night-shift and then he gave me my birthday present.  I was so excited to see the food processor but I was absolutely floored to get the SHUN knife.  It’s an absolutely beautiful tool, perfectly weighted and insanely sharp.  Insane!  I’ve never had a knife that sharp!  Part of me felt guilty because Ray completely spoiled me this year and, because I’m your typical woman, I immediately assume that I don’t deserve nice or expensive things and I feel badly.  I put a stop to that immediately though, nothing ruins someone’s gracious giving quicker than the receiver telling them that they spent too much.  Ray’s an adult who happens to be in love with me and he went out and selected this gift for me and that is all the reason I need to believe that I deserve it and to enjoy it fully! 

My sweet sister also spoiled me this year with a vintage necklace that I LOVE and plan to wear as often as possible!  It’s even prettier in real life and I love it!    


My mom has been feeling wistful about times gone by so when I saw this Lamb Chop at the store, I knew that Santa had to send it to her!

My mom has been feeling wistful about times gone by so when I saw this Lamb Chop at the store, I knew that Santa had to send it to her!

And finally.  On Saturday after the birthday brunch that my mom and sister and I had, my mom was feeling sad and wistful for days gone by.  Christmas tends to do that to people and this year she got hit a little harder than normal.  My mom moved into a condo, my grandparents sold their huge house and moved into a condo, this is the first year that dinner is at our house and I think that the amount of change going on during an already emotionally charged season was just too much for her.  So, when I saw this on Sunday, I knew that “Santa” had to get it for her.  She LOVED Lamb Chop when we were kids growing up and I thought a bit of nostalgia in the form of a plushie would make her feel a bit better.  “Santa” is planning to write her a little letter about not being sad about the past, not thinking about it as lost time, but as wonderful times that have made us all the people we are today!

This was a wonderful weekend, historically my favourite of the year and this year was no different!  Tomorrow is Official Birthday and we’re not doing anything much.  We’re making my all time favourite dinner; we bought a couple nice rib eye steaks, I’ll bake some yam and make Butter Mushrooms & Onions for the steaks.  And after dinner, instead of cake, we’re going to McDonald’s for Ginger Frost milkshakes….by my request!  Ray’s working nights so I’ll drag my snuggle-buddy into bed and close off #34 early.

Merry Monday!

Winter Schminter!

Happy Monday, it’s snowing here….in a place that does not deal well with snow.  I am from The North, we had snow, packed on roads and plowed up onto medians for 5 months of the year.  Shovelling was a daily (and sometimes mulitple times) chore.  We had block heaters in our cars and actual winter clothing, snow pants and big mittens, toques and earmuffs.  I grew up in a climate that had an Actual Winter and it didn’t bother me.  My sister and I used to walk to and from school (about a km and a half each way) every day.  The only time that we were given a pass on going to school was when the thermometer outside of our dining room window showed -40 or colder.  That happened about once/year.  Any other day we walked.  We put snowpants and winter jackets over our clothes, put on boots and mitts and braved the outdoors.  And now?  I hate the cold and I hate the snow.  When Ray took our dog for a walk last night he didn’t even bother asking me if I wanted to go (granted I was cooking dinner, but still).  I probably wouldn’t hate it as much if I had all the proper winter gear again….but since I’m always cold anyway (sitting here typing, my fingers may just shatter), going out into even colder doesn’t thrill me at all.
Yesterday I made Roasted Acorn & Butternut Soup.  It turned out alright…..because those are fairly sweet squashes though (and even more once you roast them), it’s difficult to season the soup.  We don’t like spicy and if you don’t season it properly it has the potential to become Pie Filling Soup.  I did alright with it and I’m curious to taste it again today once the flavours have melded.  I also made cheesy croutons out of large chunks of baguette, spread with some goat cheese and topped with a little sprinkle of marble and then broiled.  Very delicious!
I’m still on my Low Sodium awareness, I do not want a repeat of last week.  I’m convinced that the problem last week was something of a perfect storm of TOM, eating out and heart issue which caused the over-retention of sodium.  But I’m not taking any chances.  I’m being much more aware of sodium content (which is a good idea anyway) and buying sometimes more expensive but lower sodium products.  I used low sodium organic chicken and veg broth for the soup last night and when I was buying canned salmon for my lunch I found a low sodium one….460mg  per serving for the regular one and 85mg per serving for the low sodium one.  More expensive but that’s a HUGE difference.  The taste is slightly more bland but that’ll change as we get used to this.  
Tonight I’m going to BodyCombat at 4:30pm.  Ray is back on graveyard so he is sleeping now but will hopefully be cooking a small roast and some asparagus and red potatoes by the time I get home from Combat tonight.   We’re eating out once this week, on a Friday night date with our friends.  Given our recent record of eating out, I’ll take once/week as an acceptable reduction! 
I haven’t posted a Love List lately….and while you might not care, I do and I liked framing my day in a grateful manner so I’m going to try to do consistently again.

Love List ~  November 21, 2011
This morning I am grateful for:
my kitten hat
silly kisses at 6:15am
an absence of morning commute mayhem
warm soup for lunch