Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Sparks, part II

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I had decided to become a Sparks leader. Well, today I went to my first Sparks meeting as a leader. I was totally clueless about what we'd be doing, but it went well, and we planned the next 4 meetings afterwards.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Back in Ottawa

I flew back to Ottawa today. I was in the Edmonton area for 2 full days, but didn`t actually make it in to Edmonton. It was a good weekend, though.

Before going through security in the airport, I considered having breakfast at Harvey`s. However, I didn`t want to have to gulp down my drink & I couldn`t take it through security, so I went through without getting any food.

The options on the other side were limited. However, Montana`s was serving breakfast. (Do normal Montana`s locations serve breakfast? Somehow I doubt it.) Anyway, I had breakfast at Montanas. It was good but expensive - but it was an airport, so that is to be expected.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Miscellaneous Alberta things

So I'm still visiting my cousin. It was a lazy day (at my request).

However, we did make our own chips out of tortillas. They were enjoyable.

She also had some yard work to do, and in the process I used an electric lawn mower. (Don`t think I was too helpful, I only mowed a strip at the side of the house & I managed to unplug it twice.)

Saturday, September 27, 2008


Hmm. As I mentioned yesterday, I am in Alberta today. I'm visiting my cousin. It has been a good (but quiet) day. We went in to Fort Saskatchewan (about 20 minutes away) to buy groceries. For the record, the grocery store there had a better selection of produce than the grocery store I normally go to.

I also watched "Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader" and then watched the TV version.

Friday, September 26, 2008

More travel

Today I did several new things all related to yet another airplane trip.

I went through security in the Regina airport, where I updated my twitter status by cell phone. Then I managed to get temporarily outsmarted by a Pepsi machine. (I eventually got my bottle of Pepsi.) Next, I flew into Edmonton. It is possible that I have changed planes there in the past, but this is the first time Edmonton was my final destination.

Finally, I went to Gibbons, Alberta, which is where I am now.

(Edited to change "few" to "flew". Also, to fix the date.)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Have I mentioned I have a cold?

I believe I have whined about having a cold. (Those people who are actually around me can attest that I have been very annoying.) Anyway, I had to pick up my niece at school, but I wanted to take a nap so I set an alarm on my cell phone. I have had a cell phone for many years, but that is something I've never done before.

It went off as planned and I made it to school to pick her up on time.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Yet another cold

When I got here, my niece had a cold. Last night she started screaming and holding her ear, and thus was diagnosed with an ear infection. She went to the doctor & got liquid antibiotics, which need to be administered through a syringe type thing. (Obviously, there's no needle, they are oral antibiotics). Today I used the syringe to give her the antibiotics.

Of course, I am also getting a cold (again!). Today I am at the sore throat state. When I have a sore throat, I like to have a milkshake. They were out of chocolate at A&W, so today I had a root beer milkshake. It was good, but very sweet.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Today I painted my parents' garage door. Since I'm a full service type of painter, I also painted parts of the driveway, the ladder, and my jeans. Sigh.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Back to school

My niece is in pre-kindergarten. It's a program for 3 & 4 year olds. She loves it, and is always excited to go to school.

Today I walked my niece to school. I got to meet her teachers and everything. I suspect I'll have to go pick her up soon as well.

Sunday, September 21, 2008


When I cook a chicken, I usually just cook the chicken - I like the meat for sandwiches. Usually if I have people over (which is rare) one of them wants to make the stuffing and I am more than happy to let them. However, my mom was cooking a turkey today so I made the stuffing.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The farm

Today I went (with various family members) to visit my uncle at his farm.

While I was there, I was hanging around with my niece as well as my cousin's kids. One of the things we did was go up in the hayloft where I built a fort out of hay bales. I remember hay bales being really heavy. These ones were lighter than I expected.

I didn't do much playing in the fort myself, but the kids had fun.

Friday, September 19, 2008

And guess what?

I arrived at my parents' place last night. By the time I got to bed, it was close to midnight. At 1 my niece (who had fallen asleep at 4:30) woke up & crawled into bed with me. I had a 50 minute conversation with my niece in the middle of the night. "And guess what? I got bitten by a wasp. And guess what? I have a new bike helmet. It has princesses on it. And guess what? There are lots of girls in my class this year. Their names are ..."

Anyway, eventually she went off to see her mom, and I got to sleep.

I was still tired by lunch when I went for lunch at The Atrium restaurant.

Today was busy, and tomorrow will be too.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

More travelling

I am officially on vacation. I left from Ottawa at 6:45, and arrived in Regina at around 11 (which, due to the time change, is 6 hours later).

On the way, I walked through the new portion of the Ottawa airport. Somewhere around 2003, Ottawa built a new building to replace the old airport, but it didn't quite work out that way - the old terminal remained in use. This summer they finally replaced the old terminal with a new section of the new terminal. It must have opened recently, since I was in the airport less than 2 months ago & I didn't notice it then.

I also must look suspicious, because about 30% of the time I get an extra security check. Most of the time they do a particulate check on my carry on luggage. This time they did a random pat down. Luckily, I was early so I had lots of time.

My first flight was late, which means that my 30 minutes in Calgary turned into 5 minutes in Calgary. As a result, I got to be one of the first people off the plane (despite sitting in row 15). Then I walked off of one plane and directly on to the next plane. Amazingly, my luggage made it as well. I love WestJet.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


I was a Girl Guide leader for many years. (For those in the U.S., it's the rough equivalent of Girl Scouts.) I worked with Guides (9-12 year olds) or Pathfinders (12-15 year olds). Four years ago, I was burned out, so I quit.

A couple of weeks ago, I ran into one of the leaders I used to work with. She is now doing Sparks (5 & 6 year olds) and asked if I'd join her. Today I agreed to become a Sparks leader. I followed that up by saying that I would miss the first meeting.

Hopefully it will work out well. One of the advantages of working with the younger girls is that it is much less of a committment - they do not do many camps, and the meetings are just an hour.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A minor (but annoying) new thing

Today's new thing is a continuation of last week. You may recall that I did a class at the gym wearing shoes from two different pairs. Well, today I wore a shirt with a tie at the neck to the gym. I really liked the shirt, but it's now somewhat grungy and only good for the gym, so I wore it today. That sounds really minor, but it's really, really annoying to do an aerobics class with a shirt with dangling ties. They swing around. It's very distracting.

I took a picture of the shirt with my new cell phone camera, but wasn't able to upload it onto the computer. I'll upload it if I figure it out.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Next time I will bring a water bottle

I've mentioned before that I used to go to the gym, go home & eat, then go to boxing.

I'm taking a break from boxing, but today I did two classes at the gym back to back.

The first class was Body Pump (weight lifting), the second was Body Combat (i.e. martial arts aerobics). It was actually quite nice, the first class meant I was nicely warmed up for the second class. And, in the end, I was very relaxed.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Casino night

I mentioned while I was in Botswana that I played the slots for the first time.

Tonight I played blackjack. My sister used to be a blackjack dealer, so she ran a game for us tonight. It was definitely more fun than the slots.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

More shopping

The Glebe is an area of Ottawa that contains, among other things, a few blocks of unique shops. There are a few chain stores, but mostly it's more unusual stuff. I thought about taking a day and wandering through the shops, but never have. Today I went shopping in the Glebe. I bought some things that I like but did not technically need. I even got started on my Christmas shopping. (Next anticipated Christmas purchase will be in early December.)

Friday, September 12, 2008

Fall cleaning

I mentioned a week or so ago that the breaker for the office microwave had tripped and the power was out. This also meant that the light in the bathroom was out. It was annoying, especially since it took a week to locate the breaker that was the problem.

This Wednesday we noticed an odd smell in the fridge in the kitchen. (Can you see where this is going?) The fridge was mostly empty, so the smell was perplexing.

Wednesday afternoon we found the breaker, and realized that it also controlled the plug that the fridge is plugged in to. That's when we opened the freezer. It was not a good situation.

Anyway, the fridge (and freezer) have been empty since Wednesday, but the smell remained, so today I washed out the fridge at work. I then propped open the door for an hour or so. It seems to be doing better. Maybe I will resume putting my lunch in the fridge next week.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

My sister tells me this is a pathetic new thing

I got a dozen cobs of corn at the corn roast on Saturday. Today I cooked some of them, and I made a pyramid of corn.

I remarked on how I'd never done that before, and my sister told me that it was a pathetic new thing. As a result, I had to use it as my new thing. (She promises to leave a snarky comment.)
(My actual new thing happened at work. There is a door that divides up the floor I work on. It gets locked separately as the other side of the door is a different zone for the security system. Today I checked the security panel to see if the door was unlocked instead of just unlocking it.)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

TV to the rescue

I'm too cheap to buy a PVR. Actually, it's not the cost of the PVR, it's the $3/month they charge you just for having a PVR.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I bought a hard drive DVD player. I had played around with it a bit, but hadn't really seriously used it - the TV season is just getting started.

However, today I got home later than usual, which mean that I finished eating later than usual, which means that it was 10 after 8 before I went to watch TV. As a result, today I used my hard drive DVD player to rewind (and watch) a show while it was still taping. It worked really well.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


The gym I go to changes its class schedules a few times a year. A new schedule started yesterday.

I usually go to the Body Combat (martial arts aerobics) and Body Pump (weight training) classes. I have also done Body Flow (yoga) and gliding.

However, with the new schedule both of my combat classes have moved, so I had to find an alternative. Today I did a Body Attack class. It was good - very intense, and it has an entire song you run through.

And, because I'm a fool, I did the entire class while wearing shoes from two different pairs. Luckily I at least grabbed a left shoe and a right shoe this morning, even if they didn't match.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Back to the doctor

I headed to the doctor today in an effort to find out why I am still coughing. Apparently, it can last for 6 - 12 weeks. If those are my choices, I'm hoping for 6.

Anyway, while I was there I stopped by the pharmacy and dropped off some old prescription medications for disposal.

(Everyone knows that's the best way to get rid of old medications, right? That way they don't end up in the water supply, and other people can't get a hold of them and use them inappropriately.)

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Fast, yet slow

I love my slow cooker. I got it a couple of years ago, and it is my favourite way to cook, mostly because it separates the cooking from the eating. Otherwise, I don't think about cooking until I'm already hungry. Having to cook then just makes me grumpy.

Anyway, I was intending to put food in the slow cooker this morning, but I got distracted and forgot. (I probably saw something shiny). I remembered at 2:30. As a result, I cooked a meal with the slow cooker on "high". It turned out well.

Saturday, September 6, 2008


The community association in my area does 3 events a year. The fall event is a corn roast. If I'm around, I usually help out in the kitchen. Basically, it's the perfect job for me - I boss around all of the high school students getting their volunteer hours & make sure everything gets done ... without doing much actual work myself.

Today was corn roast day. It rained all morning, let up in the afternoon, and then rained again just as the corn roast started. Luckily, it stopped after about 45 minutes and people started showing up.

This year, however, I did something new. We had borrowed some of those napkin dispensers (like you find in fast food restaurants), so I filled a napkin dispenser. Yes, I have had a deprived life.

Friday, September 5, 2008

I really have gone to an unusual number of movies this year

When I first moved to Ottawa, I used to go to movies at the St. Laurent mall on occasion. That theatre closed years ago. It stayed closed for a couple years, and then opened as a theatre that played movies that had finished their first run in theatre.

I used to be a big fan of the X-files. Like many others, I kind of lost interest before the series ended, but when I heard there was a movie coming out this summer, I knew I would go see it.

I left for Botswana the day before it opened. I returned with a bad cold 2.5 weeks later. The movie lasted 3 weeks in first-run theatres. Obviously, I didn't get to see it.

Today I saw a movie at Rainbow cinemas in Ottawa.

I had seen preview for the movie before The Dark Knight while I was in Botswana. It looked pretty bad. I am pleased to say that the movie was better than I expected (but I wasn't expecting much).

Today's preview? The Dark Knight.

I was beginning to feel like I was stuck in a loop.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Maybe I could be a spy

My sister is away for the weekend. Today she got a letter, so I called her to tell her about it. She wasn't sure what it was, so I read part of the letter through the envelope.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


Today I went to microwave my lunch. Nothing too unusual about that, except that I vaguely noticed that someone had plugged the teakettle in at the same time.

I'm sure you can guess where this is going.

The microwave blew the fuse. As a result, I microwaved my lunch in the downstairs microwave.

As an additional result, the light in the bathroom upstairs didn't work all afternoon.

Hopefully someone will have located the fuse box by tomorrow morning.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


Today I did a survey about having a blog. It was interesting - the questions are very repetitive and seem to be trying to find out if people who have blogs are social misfits.

It's apparently a survey for a doctoral student from Georgia State University.

(If you are over 18 and have a blog, you are welcome to complete the survey as well - they're looking for 500 people. If you do, you can check out the questions yourself.)

Monday, September 1, 2008

Here I go again...

I was very productive yesterday, which means I had nothing urgent to do today. As a result, I went to see Mamma Mia (the movie) this morning. This involved 2 new things:
- I went to a movie before noon, and
- I went to a sing-along movie
It was not that crowded, and I think the sing-along concept probably works well when the theatre is full (but not so much when it is mostly empty). However, that did not stop me from (quietly) singing along.