Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Work Weeks

2.5 weeks down, 4.5 to go. I think I can I think I can. And let's be serious, it's actually 30 days, 2 hours and 49 min to go. Because of course I have a count down on my phone.

Last week and this week has been nothing but work. Which is great in it's own special way.

For one, it gave me something to do every day for at least 9 hours. Which is a really long time to do hygiene, in case anyone was wondering. And 7am is way too early to start. But hey, at least that means I'm off by 4:30. Which is nice. (3:30 would be nicer.)

For second, it has reminded me that I actually really enjoy being a hygienist - and people enjoy me being a hygienist. It has done wonders for my self esteem. And at least I get to be around people, rather than just puttering around my apt without a job, alone, very alone. And I'm never bored at work. Exhausted, yes; in pain, by noon; running behind, occassionally; but bored? never.

For third, it gave me funny stories to tell Trent. Like about the guy that hit on me shamelessly until I told him my husband is at boot camp. Then he told me he meant nothing by it all, and had just gotten out of a long serious relationship and was just having fun, and I was the best trip to the dentist he'd ever had, and he couldn't wait to get home and tell his roommates... it really was an entertaining app't.

For fourth, it ensured that I was around to get news that I will be moving at the beginning of July - which I had previously been told wasn't going to happen - so now I must start packing boxes and getting organized and cleaning. Quickly. But at least I'm moving up in the world! And hopefully they'll let us have a say in the paint colour so that Trent and I don't have to secretly paint again.

As great as having work is - and I'm turning out to have a fair bit between this office and another for the summer - I am so stoked for 4:30 tomorrow, when I will be done work for the week and shortly on my way to SoAB for a 3 day weekend; where kiddie pools, and frozen yogurt, and people watching await me. My swimsuit is already packed.

Monday, June 20, 2011


Where to begin...

Trent left for bootcamp last Saturday. T-39 days. He had to be at the airport at 5:30am.

Why yes he is shaving while driving to the airport.

Man I miss that boy.

Upon dropping him off at the airport, I proceeded to cry my way home, crawl into bed and take a nap, then packed the car and drove to Edmonton. What other options did I have?

It was a great choice. I arrived to the smiling - if not a little groggy - faces of Jessica and Amy E; two of my long lost edmonton friends, who also made the drive to edmonton that day. And it only got better from there. Devo, Beth, and Blaire were soon home and we met up with plenty more Edmonton favourites at Paula's wedding reception! Nothing like a good wedding to bring the old crew back together. I'm going to be sad, in a selfish sense, when all my friends get married and we no longer have receptions to act as reunions. Baby showers just don't bring people together quite the same. So it's official, I'm going to have to start planning Edmonton YSA reunions.

For some reason I didn't have my camera out at the reception and am just banking on stealing pics from Amy E. Check back, I'll add the classic group shot when I steal it.

That night we moved on to a classic YSA house party. They're still bompin'. Only word for it. Though I may have spent the majority of the time on one couch catching up with one friend. I got to say hi to EVERYONE (we were conveniently located right by the door).

I know, I know, what was I doing at a YSA house party? I've decided I'm breakin the barriers. Who cares if I'm married, they're still my friends, and I still wanna have fun. Though funniest comment of the party goes to Erin S... when she whispered to Devo, "Is Cathy still married?" I know that shouldn't be funny, but I mean, COME ON! Of course I am. That and it was coming from Erin... just sayin.

Sunday was a glorious day. The talks at church were seriously phenomenal - sadly I can't say that about every Sunday - but they were so good, I honestly didn't want the one girl to stop talking and then didn't mind at all when the last guy went 15 min over. Pure. Brilliance.

But that wasn't all that made Sunday great. There was also, "The Treasure". What is that? Oh it's just a little piano musical starring the one and only Amy W. She started piano again this year and I guess her teacher does these musicals (but with piano instead of singing). Amy may have been the eldest by 8vyears. Her co-stars were probably 8 and 10. And awesome.

This was no low-budget production. We walked into the theater and BAM - check this out:
Can you see how radtacular the set is?! Because PS. All those flowers are kids in costume.

I love piano musicals. Where people burst into piano instead of song.

And finish it all off with jazz hands.

We loved it.
(Totally not planned: Amy's glowing. Or Devo's pasty phtoto-shopped look.)

Okay, and I have to admit one more hilarious awesomeness of "The Treasure"...
That's Candian Olympic Curling Gold Medalist, Kevin Martin!

Random. I love random.

I didn't end up having to go back to S'Toon to temp Monday, so I stayed and Amy W and I had a lovely morning. We slept in, and talked, then got up, and talked, then went for a walk in sun dresses, and talked, then went out for lunch at Olive Garden, and talked. It was wonderful.

Then I jumped in my car and headed for another one of my favourite places - the Wilderman's! (That's right, I'm living the nomadic life now, while my husband is gone living the most structured life ever.)

Oh how I love the Wilderman's. They're great people. Even if Erin does swear like a sailor.

Erin had to work Tuesday morning (for a ridiculous DH rate that makes me cringe to come back to S'Toon), so I may have taken advantage of the sunny, warm morning to finish reading my book and visit with Art (E's dad). Yep, just took a little vacation all for myself for a few hours out on the Wilderman's deck.

Then the nomad in me drove on to Lethbridge. Surprise family! What's for dinner? It was nice to get to spend some time in Leth - and Raymond. I was sad little one was sick and couldn't play, but the weather wasn't conducive to us playing much anyways. And we had a great girls day sewing and hanging out - listening to american idol performances.

Oh and I bought a Ukulele! You must go back and pronounce it ook-uh-lay-lee. It took much googling, you-tubing, debating, seaching, and sleeping on it. But it was all worth it. Because I found this:

This will one day be me. That's totally what I sound like when I sing along to the radio.
(And Michelle and I killed ourselves laughing at it. Multiple times.)

I love my beautiful new ook. I'll show you it sometime this week when I haven't already written the world's longest blog post and still have one more story to tell.

I slept over at the Bevan's Thursday night and woke up bright and early to a) a call from an office I'm temping at this summer - them wanting me to come in that morning - ooh sorry, totally 7 hours away currently; b) to a text from Trent - him asking me to buy him a laser hair removal groupon for the front of his neck; and c) to Trent's mom coming to see if I wanted to get up and come to the border with her to pick up Kanzi's bridesmaid's dress fabric. A through C may have all occurred within a minute of each other.

So to the border I went! It was a fun drive. Trent's mom and I discussed laser hair removal and waxing and her babies and having babies. Yep. It was great. The best part of the story was coming back though. We ended up in the slow line. Of course. And Cari needed to get back to Raymond ASAP to drive the school bus. So we finally get to the front of the line, and I know the guard! Like, KNOW the guard. If I had run into him anywhere else (and a car and booth weren't separating us) we would have hugged and we would have been so happy to see each other. (He's a 50 year old man, everyone calm down, we just go way back.)

But here at the border, he's all business. I leaned forward so he could see me, but still nothin. I wanted to wave and say hi, but I was afraid that maybe he wasn't allowed to recognize and be jovial with border crossers... Then we handed him our ID and he lights up and is like, Cathy I thought that was you! Really? Because you sure didn't seem like it. From there on, it's all good, he asks what the value of stuff is we picked up and waves us on! No GST for us! WOO WOO! Cari was so hesitant and afraid, but he didn't tell us to turn in or mention GST or anything. I tried to tell her not to worry because he would have said something, but she was so funny about it. She said she felt like that commercial where the lady is running through the parking lot with the receipt and arms full of shopping bags, screaming "Start the car! Start the car!" Apparently she gets really nervous at the border and doesn't always have great experiences. Apparently I never have bad experiences because borders don't make me nervous at all. It was a good drive. I even got a tootsie pop out of the deal.

Okay I've rambled for long enough about my nomadic life. And I want you to know that only the beginning falls in chronological order. But now I am back in S'toon, and have two and a half weeks of DH temping... before I can hopefully be a nomad again because Waterton is calling my name. Don't get me wrong, it's a fantastic opportunity to have this much temping lined up, but Waterton... and playing my ook on mountain tops and on rocky beaches... are calling my name.

I don't know how kosher calling my ukulele, ook, is, but that's what the google pronunciation said. And abbreviating it to uk, will make you think uck, like yuck, which doesn't portray the right sound and joy that ook does.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

I just realized I already mentioned this...

This morning I got a text from Trent saying we for sure got the apartment upstairs! Which means, beginning of July (hopefully) I'll be recruiting help to haul all of our stuff up a floor. Apparently it would be ridiculous for either Trent or I to stay in the same place for more than a year. Neither of us have yet to accomplish it since moving away from home. We move every year. I hope the military doesn't get any bright ideas... Trent loves switching things up and moving, but I, on the other hand, kind of don't love it.

This move upstairs will be the second of the most ridiculous, but great, moves for me. In edmonton I literally walked my furniture and stuff two blocks to a new apartment. I can close my eyes and see Melissa and I carrying a table and lamps down the block. Ridiculous. But it was a necessary and loved move. I hope this one will prove the same.

See, it is kind of necessay, and I hope it will be loved. Pros of moving up a level:
- balcony - and therefore BBQ! and somewhere to sit outside and read! (Rather than my cement stoop that I've been sitting on out back.)
- it's the same amount of stairs just up instead of down.
- dishwasher!! (I hate washing dishes. Hate.)
- full size fridge. (We only have an "apartment" size one currently, which is way too small. We can't even have regular and chocolate milk at the same time!)
- new parking spot. Hallelujah. Our current spot is so snug between the others... and was literally impossible to park in half the winter/spring... and is under a tree that craps sticky all over my car in the spring/summer/fall - like I couldn't see out my back window after 36 hours of parking there once the snow melted. So I'm not even parking in my spot right now.)
- all for the special price of $30 more a month. I call this a good idea.

The only potential cons, is we're not sure if the kitchen is as spacious as our current one, but hopefully it won't be that much smaller; and the floor plan is different so hopefully it turns out just as great as this one. And hopefully we don't need to paint again...
The upside is the owner's daughter is the current occupant so it should be as updated and renovated as ours.

Was that way too much info? My bad. These are the kinds of things that make me happy and occupy my time.

Other things that occupy my time? Well today...
- Cutting up rhubarb (a lot of rhubarb) and making a scrumptiliumptious cake. You should all be here and have some. It's so good. Don't worry I had plenty to freeze so I can make more whenever you come to visit.
- Cleaning up the apt to show the manager - she was very impressed at our cleanliness. After seeing the apt we're moving into, I would be impressed by our cleanliness too.
- Checking out Ukulele's at Long and Mcquade's. I may have found "the one". I'm excited. Now I just need my tax rebate to get here. We filed in Feb. I don't want to talk about it.
- Finding out I didn't get the job from my first interview, which was shocking and sad - mostly because I just don't like losing. Obviously it wasn't meant to be, and hopefully tomorrow brings better news. Jasmine's going to put in a good word for me, so fingers crossed!

Things I love about yesterday.

Trent is gone this week mon-wed in Moose Jaw being all grown up and army dentistish. So I'm left sitting here without a job, waiting to hear from a couple interviews, and fending for myself.

But yesterday was a good day.

Things I love about yesterday:

1) It was sunny and warm and gorgeous outside.

2) I got a bonus from my last boss. Always a good day.
Walked in to drop off my key and walked out with a check.
Good trade.

3) I got an impromptu interview at an office.
I got a heads up about a position at this office on 
the weekend and just dropped by yesterday to hand
in a resume, and had an interview on the spot.
(I should hear back by tomorrow.)

4) Back to point one, since it was so glorious I decided to go
for a walk to check out some music stores on my hunt
 for a ukulele. I felt all trendy and cool walking Broadway Ave.
It's just one of those streets that seems like the type that's
made for walking up and down. So many interesting shops.
And they're shops, not stores. I loved it. And wish I had money
to do more than window shop. But I had to cave when I came to a
butcher and cheese shop. I went in on a whim and bought some cheese
curds and a piece of "Beemster - Premium Gourmet Dutch Cheese".
It honestly made me feel like I was in Amersterdam again,
as I walked and nibbled at my cheese in the sun on my trendy street.
It was Amsterdam all over again - that's where I first had this cheese afterall!

5) I walked home, but soon decided that I wanted to
keep my euphoria going. So I walked to the grocery
store to get some fresh basil for my caprese.
(Again, here's where I'd insert a link to Melissa's blog,
someone needs to tell me how. Apparently Melissa
has been inspiring me a lot lately.) It was quite the
walk, since the close local store didn't have fresh
herbs, but it was worth it! My caprese was so incredibly
delicious. I don't think I've ever realized how
ridiculously scrumptious fresh basil is - with fresh
tomatoes and mozza and a pinch of salt - so so good!
It was Italy and south France all over again. Such simple
ingredients, when fresh, are masterpieces;
that's what I love about their food.

It was a wonderful day for flying solo. The trees are full and leafy and grow over the streets into each other like a fairy tale and the sun was so warm. The only thing that would have made my day better would have been walking home with a Magnum - which are now in North America for the first time!! I was so excited when I saw them at the store. Clarissa and I got magnums everywhere we went in Europe, they're exquisite. I hope they're made out of  the same chocolate they are in Europe. Best ice cream treat ever put on a stick. But I'm pacing myself. I already treated myself to Dutch cheese.
I think today will be a magnum day.

And I have a PS. to good days: We got a call today saying we can move upstairs to the second floor where we'll have a balcony (and therefore BBQ), a dishwasher, and a full size fridge! All for the small deal of only $30 more a month. Again, good trade. We can move in beginning of July! Now I have to get dressed and clean so they can come check out our place and make sure it will be good to go when we move up.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Apartment Pro

This morning I love that I live in an apartment. For one reason. It's easy to clean and keep clean.

Trent got up early to go help someone from church move their heavy furniture (hence why I wasn't invited), so I decided to get up too and get the house clean so when he gets back we have the rest of the day to do whatever we want!

It took me one hour. ONE. to:
- do dishes
- clean counters and table
- sweep
- dust
- vacuum
- clean the bedroom
- eat breakfast

Granted the bathroom technically still remains... but is it so wrong that I'm leaving it for Trent this time? I always clean the bathroom. Call me juvenile but I'm leaving it for him. And it's really not that dirty because it was just done last weekend and we're not really dirty people. Okay fine I'm convincing myself that maybe I should just do it too so everything's done... dang it.

Either way, this morning I am happy to live in a nice apartment - plenty big enough for the two of us to enjoy and plenty small enough to be able to get everything done quick.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Cooking With Quinoa

Melissa inspired me. I bought a bag of quinoa a month ago and made chicken fried "rice". It was delish and I recommend substituting quinoa into a chicken fried rice recipe of your own. But that's beside the point.

I really like "keen-wa" and love the idea of how healthy it is. I think I even like it better than rice (which is easy because I only really like coconut rice). But since buying and cooking quinoa that one time, it has proceeded to sit on my shelf untouched. Until I read Melissa's blog (here would be where I insert a link to it... if I knew how), and she has started cooking with quinoa, too! So tonight I tried another recipe and it worked out great. It didn't even taste healthy - but it was!

So for Melissa and others, here it is: (for just Trent and I, I cooked 1/2 cup dry quinoa and halved the recipe - and it still made more patties than we needed for the two of us. So judge accordingly...)

Quinoa Patties

2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa (I have no clue what my 1/2 cup dry amounts to, but possibly close to this much, it seemed like a lot, but I still halfed the rest of the rest of the recipe and it worked just fine)
4 large eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp sea salt, pepper to taste
2/3 cup fresh chives, chopped (or green onion)
1 small yellow onion, finely
1/3 cup fresh Parmesan, grated (I just used parmesan from the shaker, mixed with some grated mozza since I had it.)
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
1 cup breadcrumbs (I crushed crutons - the seasoning of the crutons was a nice touch)
1 T extra virgin olive oil (I fried them on a non-stick pan so I didn't even need the oil)
  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions and place in fridge (to avoid immediately cooking the eggs when added)
  2. In a medium bowl beat eggs. Add salt, pepper, garlic, chives, onion, cheese and cayenne pepper.  Add quinoa and breadcrumbs and allow to sit for a couple of minutes.
  3. Form into patties. The mixture should be very moist. You may need to add water or extra breadcrumbs to moisten or make the mixture dryer.
  4. Place a large skillet over medium low heat. Heat olive oil. Add as many patties as your skillet can handle. (Again, I used a non-stick so no oil was necessary.)
  5. Cover and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until browned. Flip and cook for 7 more minutes, or until browned. (I made my patties about 1/2 inch thick, to increase surface area of crispiness)

It was super quick and easy, if not a little messy handling the patties. Next time I might add a little more cheese, I'm all for health but you can never have too much cheese. But like I said, I halfed the recipe, yet may have had close to full amount of quinoa, so feel free to play around with proportions. I should have measured the quinoa. They turned out really good anyways. We ate them with ketchup, but next time I wanna try with sour cream or ranch, or maybe ketchup/mayo... all sorts of options. You could easily dress them up with some chopped bell peppers or something. Mmm they were good. Enjoy!

Cirque sous la plouie

Yep. The circus was in town this weekend. How stoked was I?
So stoked.

Why? I'm not entirely sure.

Maybe because Trent and I just watched Water for Elephants - which actually isn't designed to make you fall in love with the circus... but it did somehow invoke some sentimental attachment to it and desire for the charm and enchantment.

Or maybe just because every time I hear a circus is in town I really want to go check it out and it's just one of those things that I'm going to keep wanting to do until I do.

So when I drove past the big top on my way home from a rugby game last Thursday, I was so excited - seriously, still, no real clue why. The circus is in town! I rushed home to tell Trent... and let's just say he wasn't nearly as enthused as I was...

That didn't stop me though, I got together a couple girls to go with me and Trent went and hung out with the boys. It worked out much better this way.

I realized beforehand that it probably wasn't going to live up to my childhood dreams (because I haven't been to the circus since I was very very little and it's really just developed as a fantasy in my mind of it's wonder), but at the same time, I just wanted to go be a kid and go to the circus!

It was raining. Hence the sous la plouie.

Some of the acts were pretty entertaining, but most of them started out really good and then just went on that couple minutes too long, or they were decent but then finished with a great punch line or trick. I didn't take pics of the crazy clown diver guy, or the horses, the dogs, or the other clown acts, but here's a look at some of the tricks...

Overall I was enjoying myself. The 30 min intermission was a little excessive, but I guess they wanted to give us plenty of time to spend our money on treats and toys and to ride the elephants (total waste of money ps.)

But who doesn't love to see the elephants at the circus?

I felt bad for the kids that had to go home at intermission (it was 8:30 already though, bedtime), because the second half was what made the show worth it. The final act was phenomenal. The ring leader himself was the dare devil.

He starts out running inside this ring as the entire apparatus spins in the air. No strings or harnesses attached ladies and gentlemen.

Then he steps it up a notch and gets on the outside of the ring.

He just kept stepping it up. He juggled. He juggled with fire.

Then he busts out a skipping rope - which he almost killed himself with. The first time he went to skip, he caught his leg and tripped himself and fell and had to grab the wheel. It was crazy. But that didn't deter him, no, he didn't throw the rope away and say screw that (like I would); he got back up and skipped. Crazy man.

The video shows some tricks and stuff he was doing inside the ring, but you should have seen him finish off just running around the outside and jumping and diving and doing tricks. It was like he was suspended in the air for a moment and then gravity caught him back up to the spinning wheel.

It was insane. So many gasps and yells and hands slapped over mouths. I loved it.

I love the circus.