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Monday, 30 January 2012

Happy Birthday Christopher!

Christopher can mark another year off of his 30's.  He had a birthday yesterday.  I wasn't online enough to write a post (call it lazy, call it busy... put it this way, I was wrapping his presents and constructing his birthday card yesterday morning while he was sipping on his first coffee of the day.  And oh, yeah, he and I did also have a heated Bejewelled battle on the go yesterday and if I neglect to add that to my list of excuses as to why this is late, he'll just mention it himself (I'm now winning again, btw)).  So, here I am to write up a belated tribute to my one 'n only...

You're my rock.  You know how to bring a smile to my face when I do my damndest NOT to smile (even going so far as putting stuff over my face so you can't see the smirk forming).  You know me from the inside out, and I can be my most comfortable and most real when you're there, with me.  You can frustrate the holy heck out of me, and you still forget your dirty socks and dirty drawers on the floor, but I still love you to bits despite those little things.  We've been together a very long time, celebrating a variety of birthdays together. I can't quite remember what life is like without you by my side...and I hope I don't have to think about that for a very, very, very long time. 

Happy Birthday Christopher.  I love you to the moon and back.  Thanks for being my everything xoxo.

Monday, 23 January 2012

"Catching fish probably isn't much harder than catching a man..."*

It's really Monday again?  Another typical "Monday" at work, and here I am in my jammies by the fire in front of the tv watching the Bachelor.

Tonight's backdrop is the spectacular Canyons Resort in Utah.  Rachel is the recipient of the first one-on-one date card and she nervously considers the time she's about to share as she remembers the last relationship she had ending due to her lack of communication (well, yeah, girl, you're there competing with scads of other beautiful ladies for one man's attention.  You best hope you can communicate decently).  They take a helicopter ride and the scenery is absolutely spectacular. They hop off the chopper onto a canoe, where they nibble on one another's lips as a barrage of bugs flit around their heads.  Soooo romantic!  They probably should have kept to sucking on their lips because the conversation (or lack there of) between them was awwwkward. I'm not entirely convinced that him giving her that rose was worth his time or not.

Onward to a group date.  Horses and hipwaders, oh my! Ben takes the ladies on a horseback ride through picturesque landscapes, and they lead to the water's edge where a line of hipwaders and rods are waiting, and together they plop in the water and go fly fishing. Nothing spells "sexy" quite like a pair of rubber hipwaders, no?  Much to the other girls' chagrin, (and my surprise) Courtney caught the only fish of the afternoon, and the cross-eyed, buck-toothed Samantha was left packing.  Courtney had a goal in mind, and that was the group date rose, and lo and behold, without much convincing, she got it (now waaaaaait just a minute -- Courtney's occupation is listed as a model, right? Not actress??? Coulda fooled me *eye roll*).

Jennifer was awarded the final one-on-one date. Together, they plunged into the depths of a crater and sought shelter from a rainstorm, and ended the night with a country concert "just for them" (amid a huge crowd of others), and shared a too-fast slow dance.  I don't mind Jennifer. I think when it's all said and done, Mr. Ben might have his work cut out for him trying to decide between her and Kacie B.

The typical drama ensued during the cocktail hour before the rose ceremony, and Emily tries to convince Ben that he's making a mistake by holding onto Courtney. Emily, Emily, Emily.  Didn't you learn anything from previous seaons of the Bachelor?  Any time one of the girls expresses opinions of one of the other ladies in a distasteful manner, she ends up getting the boot.  Tsk tsk...You're lucky that Boobs McGee was less interesting than you this evening. I don't think you should get too comfortable, though.

All in all *yawn*, I thought it was a rather boring episode.  Maybe it's because I had to lose a full two hours of my night tonight to watch it instead of recording it and being able to forward through the commercials and the too long "coming up nexts" in between them *shrug*.  Oh well, you know I'll do it again next week.  OH, and did you hear, ya'll?  We're getting a Bachelor of our very own!  I'm not entirely sure how I feel about that, actually (but you know, I'll watch it).

*Alternate title, "Winning!"

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

"Babe, welcome to Dumpsville. Population: You"*

Alrighty folks, it's episode 3 and we're heading to Rice-A-Roni-town.  Yes, I'm a day late with my update.  I didn't feel like watching it 'live' last night, opting instead for the snuggle-Dexter-watching time with Chris, and recording the episode so I can waste less than the slotted 2 hour interval tonight.
  • Emily is treated to the first one-on-one date, testing her fear of heights. I think I'm repeating myself, but how does pitter pattering onself up to the top of a horrifically high bridge prove one's worth when it comes to love and relationships?  Oh right, it's all about tackling fears, and if they can tackle this, "Lord knows what they can tackle together", paraphrased Ben-ism. {Insert huge eye roll here}.  As much as I love Chris, there's no way on God's green EARTH , nor ANY amount of money in any BANK that would make me waltz up to the top of the San Fran bridge for him!  Sidenote:  Is it a good idea to describe your dating history as, "abyssmal", to try to impress a potential suitor?  Really?
  • Skiing in 85 degree weather whilst wearing itsty bitsy teeny weeny bikinis is the perfect group date, no? Thank goodness there was some SUBSTANCE to the date, since I was beginning to think it was just a Honda CRV commercial.  Add in some insecurity with Kacie B (oh she shows her young age, doesn't she?), and the voluntary leaving of Brittney even after she was awarded the 2nd one-on-one spot (I think she just missed her Granny), and you've got a fait accompli!
  • Onward and upward to the 2nd one-on-one date starring the darling runner-up Lindzi-with-a-zee (hey, at least it wasn't Courtney, right?)  And now I want ice cream.  Those friggers. A private concert at City Hall followed by dinner at a 1920's inspired bar seem to be the backdrops of some pretty decent dating time (yet I'm still craving ice cream). Beauty tip #2 for Lindzi: never pull your hair up or tuck it behind your gargantuan ears. Never.  Trust me. 
  • I.still.hate.Courtney.  
  • Soooo the 'surprise' visitor wasn't an old flame of Ben's trying to rekindle a lost dying ember after all,...but instead the funeral lady from Brad's season, Shawntel, who wanted her own shot because she was crushin' on Ben from watching last season.  Her introduction to the wolf pack was the best part of the show, though not to be outdone by the need for Erika's smelling salts and call for emergency personel. In all, I am happy with Ben's ultimate decision in letting Shawntel go, along with the other 2 he'd already picked to leave, sacrificing the final rose (oh, and Shawntel, the ugly cry, really?).  Had he kept Shawntel, I think the wolves would have been out for his flesh, anyway, along with Ben finding a pet on boil atop his stove.

And we're only 3 weeks in, folks. Yup.

Title courtesy of Lindzi's dump text.  Alternative title:  "Who's that Girl?", or "Scram, bitch!", or "It's a circus; it's a frickin' three-way circus" (the choices were ENDLESS, really)

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Fresh out of the draft folder: a belated Christmas recount

I trust you all had a good holiday?  Mine was really nice.  To the Island's surprise, on Christmas Eve eve, we were treated to a beautiful blanketing of white snow, giving headway to a wonderfully white Christmas after all.  I felt like a little kid as I stared out of the window in excitement at the big fluffy flakes coming down.  That evening, Chris and I joined Lana and Keir for supper at Cedars. Lana & I have the tradition of going out for birthday shawarma on each of our respective birthdays, and we thought we should add a new birthday to that tradition, so we celebrated the baby Jesus' birthday too.  Thank you baby Jesus :).  From Cedars, we headed over to Lana's for a few drinks while she and I exchanged our gifts and then we moved from there to karaoke at the Murphy Center.  It was a fun night, indeed! 

As I had mentioned previously, this season was a little more relaxed for us visiting wise.  Chris' parents actually celebrated Christmas in Truro this year.  This marked the first year in about 18 years since they've done that.  It must have been nice for the family to be all together again Christmas morning.  From what I understand all of Chris' father's brothers and families were together with his Nannie.  On account of there being one less location to visit on Christmas Eve we were darned sure not to miss the Bowlan's annual Christmas Eve bash!  We arrived just as the party was revving up, ate a litany of yummy goodies and had some great chats catching up with some people we only see once a year at this particular function.  As usual, Rhonda B, hostess with the mostest, was in the thick of it all, ensuring to give each and every guest some time, all the while making sure the goodies remained well-stocked. She's truly a superwoman.  Thanks again, Bowlans, for your rockin' hospitality!  After the Bowlans we headed to Mom's for a visit with her and Todd then back home.

Merry Christmas from us to youuuu!! 
Christmas morning was a leisurely wake up and we were able to take our time opening gifts and having breakfast (consisting of some just-like-Dad-used-to-make stuffing omelettes...hashtag that as 'Christmas to me' for all you tweeters). As in years prior, we were sufficiently spoiled. Many, many thanks to all of you for your kind gifts and special surprises! We were able to get the house back in order and dishes done before heading back to Mom's for turkey supper. In our turkey comas we then convened in the living room to watch a movie before heading back to the 'hood for a snoozin'. 

Boxing Day we headed back again to Mom's. Fred and Belinda just arrived that day. It was Belinda's Christmas gift to Fred for him to see Mom. We gathered together to enjoy some holiday spirits, laughs and take-out. On the 27th we joined Chris' parents at their home for a belated supper to 'end' our Christmas celebrations.  The idea now is for us to host the Christmas supper next year (err, this year), and have everyone gather here in our teeny tiny kitchen.  It sounds a little chaotic and maybe a little crazy, but it just might be the start of a fun new tradition. 

I hope you all had a magical Christmas season with you own friends and families - and I hope you were able to form a few blessed memories that will last you a lifetime...xo


Well, here we are, 14 days into the start of a new year.  I normally try never to make a huge list of resolutions because you all know that I just hate setting myself up for failure.  That, and it's my own way of figuratively wearing a really big bulky sweater (more life oversized blanket) to disguise (hide) the over-fluffy that has become my fluffy.  Seriously people, I happened to glance in the closet mirror last night as I stooped on the bed folding laundry and had to swallow back the vomit that filled my mouth in reaction to my own reflection.  I have a huge affection for Reitmans-wear, and I had started to joke with myself that my size is fine til "I can't fit into the plus-size Reitmans-wear".  I think I'm upon an epiphany, seeing my own reflection that I try to avoid mostly, and two, fearing that I won't fit into the new-still-tags-on jeans from Reitmans that were 'slightly snug' when I bought them undoubtedly many pounds ago.  *sigh*.  So, the eggnog is probably now bad in the fridge.  Most of the Christmas chocolate has been eaten (I did have a little help, but, I'm still not proud). It's time to start cutting back on the crap again and start to get my heart pumping (and I mean for a longer interval than reaching the top of the stairs at work).  I may or may not blog about it. But, I gotta get a handle on it. Til then, this shall still be my motto for the new year that is upon us:

Number one priority, fluffy or not, is to spend the next 12 months trying to be as happy as I possibly can.  So far, since just after Christmas, I've learned of 5 deaths...all close enough in proximity that I know loved ones of each family.  Another one is expected, as the person has just been admitted into palliative care recently.  In addition, I've learned of 1 marriage break-up and 1 on the cusp. These sad statistics break my heart and make me feel sick inside.  Hey Universe, you can stop any time, ya hear? 

Happiness isn't a guarantee, and life truly is a gift.  I'm going to try to give it my all.  Why don't ya'll join me? Let's kick 2012 in the ass...

Friday, 13 January 2012

I will remember you...

People say you never forget your first.  Todd was my first.  He was the first boy to tell me he loved me.  He was the first boy to break my heart into a million little pieces.  I was 17.  He was 19.  We'd met through my friend Lori's older brother, Paul.  Todd and Paul hung out together. The two of us met at Lori & Paul's house. Both Lori & Paul had a few friends in while their parents were away.  We took a shine to each other that night, and began dating that week.  I was in my final year of high school and I was so excited to have a boyfriend that I would be able to take to the prom with me.  I ordered my grad ring that year, and opted for the one with the stone inside.  Most who chose the stone ordered the ruby stone, since our school colours were red and white.  I, on the other hand, ordered the bright blue stone.  The stone closest to the colour of Todd's eyes (I kid you not).  Unfortunately, Todd had a wandering eye, and he let it wander when he was still dating me, and that ultimately led to our parting.  I took him back briefly, but as I couldn't trust him, it didn't last very long the second time.  I ended up going to the prom with a boy that I didn't know.  After my 'back up' date fell through very close to the prom date, my father set me up to go with a boy that worked in his office. Dad thought he was a nice kid.  It was late in the year, and everyone else had been asked, and I sure didn't want to go alone.  I actually considered asking Todd to take me, even for old time sake, but at the time, he was involved with another girl.

Life carried on.  I had several more heartbreaks thereafter, learning something from each one.  I ran into Todd a few times in between, and each time there was always something in his eye...something that told me that he still cared... neither of us let it go any further than that though.  Jump ahead 20 years, Todd found himself married with kids.  We reconnected again via Facebook, but didn't see each other again in person until just before Christmas last year.  I ran into him at Home Hardware.  He was there waiting for his brother to go to lunch.  A brother he just found out he had.  He was so happy to have found him. We talked that day for a really long time.  We remininsced.  He had a few health problems that he had alluded to. No details, aside from the fact that he commented that he felt it was life's way of getting back at him for treating some people in his life (like me) so badly.  We parted, smiling and shared a hug. I was happy for him  that he had a good family and home.  I was happy for me, too, being in a steady, mutually satisfying relationship.  Life had gone on. I no longer remembered the 'bad times' or the hurt that Todd caused. We were friends, and that felt good.

Last week, I got a message from Lori. She was sharing some news about Todd.  He had been sent to the hospital in Halifax.  He was unconscious, and the outlook, grim.  Not usually one for praying, I prayed that day.  I prayed that he'd recover.  I prayed for his young family.  That message arrived on Thursday.  On Saturday, a further message had arrived advising me that the doctors were giving him 2 days. I was floored.  In shock.  How could this be happening?  On Monday, a further note arrived to let me know that they were taking him off life support that day.  Within a few more hours, he was gone. 

He was 41 years old.  He left behind a wife, and 4 kids, 18 years, 7 years, 4 years and 1 year.  He stayed home with those kids after some health problems prevented him from working outside the house. Daddy being home is all those young kids know.  Now Daddy is not there.  They're too young to comprehend what has happened.  They're undoubtedly calling out for him.  The youngest won't even remember him.  I'm just crushed thinking about it.  How will his family ever get over this?  No parent should ever have to bury their own child.  No son or daughter should grow up without knowing his or her father.

I'm so sad.

You broke my heart once before Todd, and now, my heart is broken again.  I cry for a life lost much, much too soon.  I cry for your wife. Your loss will be unbearable for her. I cry for your children. Tyler had an opportunity to know you as a wonderful father, and your loss will be a void that will never ever be filled for him.  Jock, Sadie and Willa are still so young...they will cry out for you.  They will not understand why you aren't in the room anymore.  Jock will remember you, but the memories will be so distant.  Sadie and Willa may not be able to hang on to any early memories at all.  Watch out for them...

Rest in peace, my dear friend.  Thank you for the memories you have given me. I will never, ever, forget you.

~ A friend who dies, it's something of you who dies.

Gustave Flaubert

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

"Blakely is super flakely"*

Wow, the Bachelor is really starting out seriously by bringing all the girls to Ben's hometown right at the start, huh?  Sorry I'm a few days late. I just got around to watching this week's drama tonight, so play along with me, ya'll.  Am I right, or am I right?

  • Date 1 with Kacie B - she seems like a keeper. I really like her, and I thought their date was really quite charming til the only-used-at-weddings-video they played.  That was way too over the top, in my opinion.
  • Courtney is a biOTch!
  • The group date was fun.  If you want an honest opinion, ask a kid.  I adored their reaction to Blakeley.  Bang on, they were!! Oh, and by the way...I totally thought Ben's character's name was "Prince PEDO". I literally had to rewind it and watch it again to get it right. 
  • I do not enjoy Blakely. At all.  However, I do hope he keeps her around for a bit longer, because I do enjoy the catty comments about her from the others.
  • Date 2 with Courtney - I don't like her. I don't trust what she says.  She's conceited, and she has the potential to break Ben's heart. The best part of that date was watching the dog howl.
  • Um. Jenna, you state your profession is blogger. So you type for a living. You type words into cohesive sentences, right? So, you should be good with words, right? Good at getting your points across, right?  Ok then, what.the.EFF was that display with your one-on-one opportunity? Your final declaration, "I'm not like a girl", just about made it's way to the post title.  For the love of the sweet baby Jesus, get your sh!t together if you ever want to try to find true happiness.  No, we're NOT kidding you.
  • A few catty comments...Samantha's dress:  Does forcing your skin together tightly with duct tape to make homemade cleavage really work for you? Really? And Lindzi with a zee... you commented on your one-on-one time that your normal make up was mud. Did you roll around in the dirt before the rose ceremony because your foundation was ALL shades of wrong, girlfriend. You really ought to beg a few of the others for some beauty tips.
Yeah, I guess that's about it.  What's that? A return of an old girlfriend next week?  Can hardly wait.  Probably a good thing that Jenna won't be around to deal with that, eh?

*Thanks to Jaclyn for the appropriate post title

Monday, 2 January 2012

girls + booze = DRAMA (otherwise known as your first Bachelor post)

I'm due for a post-holiday update. Okay, overdue.  Seems to be the story of My Happy Place's life lately.  I'll get to that.  In the midst of three loads of laundry I found myself immersed in yet another season of the Bachelor tonight. I'll be honest, I was considering letting this one go without commentary.  Who're we kidding, though? The ridiculous antics and premise of this show really generate colorful blog fodder in an otherwise barren time of year, right?  So, without further ado, we've just met our various hopefuls, and here are my first impressions:

- Of course we have to have our standout Canuck in a sea of American girls.  The Baconator. Hmm.  She's no Jillian, though, eh? Is Ben a vegetarian? 
- Now Lindzi, I can understand you wanting to stand out in front of the other 24 girls, but, do you REALLY think smelling like a horse was a good idea?  Suppose it's one way of making a first impression.  Congrats on your first impression rose.
- And the blonde snubbing Ben at the entrance. She's another Canadian. I'm not so proud that she is and perhaps she isn't either after Ben just finished snubbing her, too (good on ya, Ben!).
-The British one has more to worry about people making fun of the ginormous schnozz more than the bum dimple on her chin, in my humble opinion.  Looks sure aren't everything, of course. Let's hope she's got something, then (for the record, she annoyed the crap out of me within the first 20 seconds, and I will NOT miss her).
-Bringing Grandma along for the ride when you know he's a real family man, Brittney.  Hmm...that just might have worked for you...
-Shira needs a cheeseburger.  Or twenty.
-So you were in a beauty pageant, huh?  Sure. Wear that sash. Wear that sash, everywhere. Yeah.  And it seems apparent that you feel that sash nullifies the fact that you should brush your hair.
-I predict the blogger chick to be our season's unstable-on-the-verge-of-breakdown girl. What do you think? She's bound to make things interesting, though.
-Hey, Ms. Kentucky:  your hat looks STUPID.
-Just a general question:  When stepping out of the limo to make your very first impression on a man, is a ponytail your best look? Really?
-The model is so not here to find a man. Publicity, sure. Ben? Nah.

Oh the drama.... You love it too, don't ya?