Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Today's To-Do List

1. Finish the tile project I am working on with Karen.
2. Have lunch with Nancy.
3. Cruise the new section of Chinook Mall (they just opened an "Anthropologie"....)
4. Run with Brandee and Maureen.
5. Hang laundry on line (spring-time - gotta dry those sheets outside!!)
6. Watch the Flames win (or lose, as the case may be).
7. Finish the gusset on my sock.
8. STRETCH after running.

This is not a typical day - because I usually work on Wednesdays at the school library. But it is spring break - which gives me a rare day to do what I want (Well, except for nag remind the boys about their chores. Because they really like that.)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Favourite foods

I like lots of different food - and I go in and out of love with some - but today's favourites are:
1. Really good chocolate
2. Home-made pasta (lucky I have a husband that makes it)
3. Prime rib - done rare.
4. Anything with lemon in it.
5. Home-made cookies - as long as they don't have raisins in them (yuck!)
6. Oddly enough - butter tarts -with lots of raisins. I know. It doesn't make sense.
7. Caesar salad with home-made croutons and lots of garlic - with a grilled chicken breast tossed in.
8. Gelato - especially lemon and grapefruit
9. Home-made cupcakes - with a touch of icing on them.

Love coffee and red wine - but they aren't really foods per se.

Vacations to take

Vacations I have taken - and would take again (I know - it's a sub-list of the list)
1. New York City - so much to do, so much to see....
2. Anywhere in Nova Scotia
3. Boston
4. Vancouver - never get tired of it - OK, except for the rain, I never get tired of it.
5. Seattle (and I get to go again in June!!)
6. Rib Lake - this is the family cottage - off the grid and out of the big city.
7. Montreal
8. Florence, Italy
9. London, England
10. Scotland (anywhere)
11. Mexico

Ones I want to take:
1. Chicago
2. Rhode Island (it has some sort of appeal for me)
3. Ireland
4. Greece (the islands)
5. France
6. Holland

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Things I've learned

1. Time is never wasted when you are reading.

2. Picking the baby up when she is crying really is important.

3. There is no substitute for being with your kids - even when they say they don't need you.

4. The food police won't get you if you serve cereal for dinner occasionally.

5. Sometime people who say they are Christian - really aren't.

6. Stuff lasts if you buy quality instead of quantity.

7. Good quality chocolate really is better for you.

8. There is no such thing as too much wool or too many books.

9. Spending time in a service job (like waitressing or clerking)gives you better perspective when you are the one being served.

10. People don't always want to hear the truth - even when they say they do.

11. Saying no (especially when you want to say yes) is hard.

12. Staying best friends is not always realistic.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Books I want to read this year

1. All of my book club books (because sometimes I don't) and they are:
Wolf Hall (Got it started, found it...tough)
2. Let the great world spin (halfway through)
3. The help (LOVED IT)
4. The Lacuna - not yet
5. River thieves - forgettable
6. The little book - again half way through
7. Piano teacher - half way through
8. Red leaves - just started
9. The slap - May, so not yet
10. Bishop's man - not yet
11. The given day - not yet
And these are just the books to the end of June 2011. We pick the next year's in late June, so there will be more!
12. Long song
13. Moby Duck
14. Little Bee
15. Faithful place
16. Brooklyn
17. Dark Fire
18. All the Newbery and Caldecott winners (children's lit). The Caldecott are easy - they are picture books - but it is SUCH fun.

And the many more books by my bed, too many to note.

Gotta go read, but before I do, I love this post (it was also on the 30 days of lists blog).

Friday, March 25, 2011

List 25

Things I'd rather being doing right now

1. Reading
2. Knitting
3. Sleeping
4. Having dinner out
5. Leaving for a week away somewhere warm and sunny

Although I spent most of day reading at work because it is year end and so I have nothing to do until everything rolls over - so having cleaned my desk, I finished several books. I think it would be frowned on if I was knitting at work. Or sleeping.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

I make lists for....

March 24 (Hey - I am finally caught up!!)

1. Groceries
2. Errands
3. Yarn and things I want to knit (Thank Ravelry for that!!)
4. Races I want to run (that's a new one this year).
5. Books to read next
6. Book club books - I am the unofficial organizer of the yearly list - which is kind of ironic, given that I am not particularly organized.....

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Guilty pleasures

1. Reading way too late.
2. A second glass of wine.
3. Driving my son to school in my PJs and then coming home for coffee and the newspaper.
4. Butter tarts - good ones.
5. Truffles (chocolate, not mushrooms)
6. Knitting in the middle of a week day. When everyone else is at work.
7. A long hot bath on a Saturday afternoon - with a good book.
8. Pizza on Friday night.

List 22 - Today I saw

1. Students rushing to get their work done as the end of semester looms ever closer.
2. Beautiful (and expensive) lingerie - loved the pale blue and white striped nightshirt.
3. Very few adults smiling - must be the unending snow.
4. A kid catching snowflakes on her tongue.
5. Cars stuck waiting for a train - lots and lots of cars and a very long train.
6. No sunshine.
7. My son's thoughtfulness as he chose to take the bus to guitar, rather than having one of us drive him.

Recipes to try (Sorry - forgot to post this one!!)

I love to cook. I mean really cook - like - try new recipes that people will comment on (even if they don't like it) or enthuse over it. I don't particularly like cooking for my family. Although my husband will usually tell me if he likes something or not - and he will even say "This is a keeper" or "Not too fussy on this one" and he never says he hates any dish (although veal stew has gone down in the family legends as a dish he will NEVER try again). Still it leaves a little to be desired in my heart. But I love to cook for friends - and here are some of the recipes I would love to make for them.

1. Anything with blue cheese (mmmmmm!!)
2. Salmon with roasted artichokes, tomato and olive sauce
3. Cedar planked salmon with a maple glaze (I know - a lot of salmon - but no-one eats it with enthusiasm in my house.)
4. Anything with carmelized onions (my taste buds are already watering).
5. White chocolate Frangelico mousse
6. Anything with chocolate

Notice - no hamburger anywhere.....

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Spring has sprung

Well, not quite - as I look out the window at yet more snow - and sigh.

So here is what I am looking forward to for spring

1. Wearing brighter colours.
2. Watching the tulips come up and all the possibility that they bring.
3, Rain - and the smell of worms on the side walk.
4. Putting the water barrels back under the drain spouts.
5. Going to the gardening centre.
6. Putting fewer layers on - for work, for running - for just about anything.
7. Not having to (or nag someone to)shovel the front walk.
8. Warm sun on my bare skin.
9. Sleeping with the windows open.

Celebrity Crushes

1. Elvis Costello - I know he is married to Diana Krall - and I am not exactly the marriage wrecker persona - but still.....
2. Alan Doyle from Great Big Sea.
3. Just about anyone from the Calgary Flames - what's not to crush on? (Except they are going down fast in the race to the playoffs - but still.....)
4. Robert Downey Jr.- bad boys have never had a great appeal for me - until now.

Even now, I think my kids might be going " Ewww, gross!!"

Saturday, March 19, 2011

On the road again!!

List 18 Road trip must haves

1. Good music

2. A thermos of coffee

3. A bottle or two of water.

4. Car d'oeuvres - you know - hors d'oeuvres you eat in the car. Popcorn, carrots, licorice (mmm - red!!). Werthers toffee. Or caramels. Or anything that will keep the hungry masses fed until we get to our next destination.

5. Knitting - and more than one project if it is a long (over 5 hours road trip). Not that I can necessarily finish anything. But I am under the delusion that I can. And no one would be happy if Mom ran out of yarn.

6. Camera

7. A list of road stops (not chains or fast food if at all possible).

8. Credit card - for gas and any road needs.

Looking at the list, it seems to me that a list of road side wash-rooms would be good too.

Words that are hard to spell

Funny - when I did the previous post, I spelt independent incorrectly. ANd look what the next list is!!

1. Independent (Usually I spell it independant) - I guess it depends on nationality.
2. Niece (I know, I know - I before E , except after C.....)
3. Commitment. I usually put two Ts in there somewhere.

Can't think of many more.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Places to see in my town

I live in Calgary - and it is a relatively new town on the spectrum of history. But we are developing a "cool" status (I think) and here is where I would take my guests:

1. Top of the Calgary Tower (on a clear day, that is). It was fondly called the Prairie Penis when we first arrived in town. And then there was that whole Eastern plot, when Petro Canada (the government owned oil company) built their towers taller. Muttered comments of eastern domination were heard in all the best offices and clubs. But the tower remains a neat place to go. And once a year, we get to climb it, as an initiative of Alberta Wilderness Association.

2. The Glenbow Museum - beautiful art, great travelling shows and a gallery that speaks to the heritage of the city.

3. Nose Hill Park. It looms over the city, covering 11 square kilometres. It's a lovely place for a walk on an afternoon, a great place for a run - and there is lots of wildlife everywhere.

4. A bike along the city pathways - you can bike from Bowness Park in the northwest, to Fish Creek Park in the south-east. Now if they would only designate more on-street biking routes, we'd be set.

5. Not a shopping mall - because there are no yarn stores there. And who needs more American Eagle or Lulu Lemon?

6. Pudding Yarn - my favourite. That's for my friends who like to knit.

7. Several independent book stores - Pages in Kensington, Owl's Nest in Britannia - and I just noticed a new one on 4th Street.

8. Lina's - the best Italian store in town. Great sandwiches and pizza and a meat and cheese counter to die for.

9. Fair's Fair - a local second-hand book store.

10. Inglewood - great antiques, funky clothes and beads and good coffee and food.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Getting the groceries

List 15 - What's on my shopping list?

Let's see - my list is minimal. I only list what I know I am out of. The rest is the regulars - you know, veggies, fruit, lunch stuff, bread, milk (why do teenagers drink SO MUCH MILK?).

So this week's list has:
1: Cumin - (half-way through making chicken chili when I discovered that one).
2. Garlic powder - my husband was halfway through making burgers when that was discovered (I suggested he try real garlic. Apparently it is not the same. Who knew?)
3. Coconut - made some yummy spinach coconut soup last week and used up the last of it.

That's it!!

As an aside, it's funny that I would assume groceries. I mean, the blog didn't say groceries - there's lots of other things I could put on a list if it said Shoe shopping list. Or Yarn shopping list. Sadly, you are left with the mundane grocery list instead.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Weekly rituals, DIYs I want to try and things I love about....

So one of things I am discovering is although I like making lists, I'm not great about following 30 days of it. Maybe because the most practice I have is in making grocery lists and To-do lists for the weekend? Most of the time the lists are in my head - and so perhaps I would get more done and feel a different sense of accomplishment if I actually wrote them down. Hmmmm - things to ponder.....
On a different note - here are my catch up lists:

List 12 Weekly rituals
1. Mid-week run with Brandee and Wendy
2. Watching the Flames game on TV
3. Monday catch-up on the PVR (usually House, The Good Wife and Glee).
4. Saturday morning run, followed by coffee
5. Grocery shopping
6. Sunday night soup
7. Weekly phone call with my mom and my sister.
8. Making Sunday morning pancakes for my family.

List 13 DIYs I want to try
1. Reupholstering a chair (I have 3 that badly need it).
2. Making cheese - ever since I read Animal Vegetable Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver, I have been OBSESSED with the idea of making my own cheese. Also a little nervous....
3. Quilting - I already sew, but I am really keen to make a quilt. I took a class eons ago - just never put the skill into practice.

List 14 Things I love about knitting
1. Watching the item in question grow from a ball of yarn to a finished challenge
2. Wearing something I have made and having someone comment on it
3. Trying new yarns (and there are so many to try)
4. Watching my Projects list grow on Ravelry (OK and my queue of things to knit grow longer)
5. Gives me a reason to sack out in front of the TV - because really, I am multi-tasking.
List 14a (when one list is not enough) Things I love about running
1. Mastery over my body
2. Because even when I am wheezing at the finish line - I still have run.
3. Meeting all sorts of runners who are way faster than me - but it doesn't matter, because we are all members of a common community. O.K., maybe a community with some suburbs in it like the Boston qualifiers and the trail runners and the weekend warriors - but we are all still neighbours!
4. The cool gear -nothing makes me happier than my lap time when it pops up on my Garmin.
5. The clothes - because they make me feel like a runner - and there is something to be said about that. Even on the days when I ache and the last thing I feel like is getting my shoes on - if I get the gear on, then it pumps me up.

Friday, March 11, 2011

9, 10 and 11

So I am just a little behind on my posts - several busy nights behind me left me little time for the making of the lists, although I have been checking on what the next lists are,and making them in my head etc.

List 9 - Favourite web sites/blogs

This is easy - I only have to open my Favourites list to see that a great many are knitting blogs. I do have favourites among them where the writing is at times humourous, poignant or thought-provoking.

Blogs (in no particular order)
1. Murrmurrs
2. Yarn Harlot
3. The Panopticon
4. The more the messier
5. Cast-on
6. So the thing is....
7. Turtlegirl's bloggy thing

1. (Yes - in spite of the violence, the hits and the behind the times management, I love hockey - especially the Flames)
2. Knitty
3. Super Text-twist
4. Calgary Public Library
5. Webs

And I could go on and on and on.....

List 10 Wishlist

I am on record as saying that I really don't have wish list (well, it was actually a bucket list that I don't have) because one should always try and make wishes happen. I had a friend die unexpectedly last year and so I realize even more that I need to do those things that I long to do and not put them off to another time.

So the things that I want to do are:
1. Run both the New York and Chicago marathons
2. Visit Newfoundland
3. Host more dinner parties.
4. Practice my writing by looking for opportunities to write articles.
5. Buy an I-phone - better yet, an I-Pad. (Not sure why, I just like technology....)
6. Go back to England - and while I am there, visit Wales and Ireland.

Hmm - pretty short list - but I am trying to live more in the moment and not wish for that which is unachievable - so I guess that is why it is so short.

List 11 Date night ideas

1. Seeing a current movie - spontaneously.
2. Going for a long walk through the park and down to the river - and just talking.
3. Trying a new restaurant and not having to rush through to get some place afterwards.
4. Going to hear some music - maybe in a bar or club (now that they are smoke-free).
5. Bringing home take-out (without me arranging it, opening a bottle of wine and just relaxing.
6. Hanging out at a book store.

Really - my standards are not that high. I think by the time you have been through the years of newly married-newly parents-hanging on for dear life until Friday night comes- type of scenarios, date nights can be really easy. It's the gesture that counts, not the actual place.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Oh dear...

March 8 - Things in my bag

This could be embarrassing, since I never clean out my purse - ever. (Perhaps this will prompt me to do so.)

1. Wallet - overstuffed with receipts and cards (credit, loyalty and business).
2. Phone - turned on.
3. Notebook - for recording book lists (for book club), music/songs I want to hear, web sites I want to visit, addresses people give me, things I hear on the radio.
4. 3 receipts from the active release chiropractor I have been seeing.
5. A lab requisition for tests from my annual physical.
6. Two small bottles of hand cream - what, one is not enough?
7. One toothbrush (unopened) from the visit to the dentist in January.
8. 4 pens. (Probably only one works.)
9. 1 package triple A batteries (Duracell - the copper top battery!)
10. The book The Giver by Lois Lowry - because one of the teacher's wants to know if Grade 4 boys would enjoy it, so I am re-reading it.
11. A lottery ticket from February 5, 2011.
12. Packaging from a Bay gift card.
13. Coupons from renewing my Indigo card.
14. Ticket stubs from A Drowsy chaperone and Don Felder - An evening at Hotel California.
15. A tube of lip balm.

At least the dead orange came out last week, the tube of lipstick that turns my lips beige is gone and my knitting is (temporarily) being worked on in front of the TV.

Monday, March 7, 2011

List 7

List 7 - Blog goals

This is easy - I already have one (only one) - see #8 on this post but I will re-affirm it, since I have not been following it.

Post blogs twice a week.

List 6

March 6
List 6 - Least favourite words
Loser - because people usually have one or two redeeming qualities
Suck - as in "you suck". Vacuum cleaners suck - people don't.
Retarded - shouldn't even be a word , simply because of the years of labelling applied to people with developmental disabilities.
Moron - because my sons call each other that all the time....

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Weekend goals

List 5 - Weekend Goals
Shop for groceries
Get the laundry done
Try and sleep in
Run once
Iron next week's shirts
Read the Saturday papers

The phrase "weekend goals" is a little bit of an oxymoron,don't you think? The weekend should be a time of relaxation and hanging out. Instead of which, we tend to (or I tend to) fill it up with the stuff that didn't get done last week or needs to get done for next week.

Weekends used to be different. They were more civilized - we could sleep longer (although I certainly didn't). I could relax over the paper and a pot of coffee in my PJs until the paper was done or the coffee. We shopped leisurely, went out to dinner or had people over. Afternoons (especially winter afternoons) were for reading or napping or sewing or whatever.

Now weekends just feel like another work day - albeit with not quite the sense of urgency connected to them that a Monday brings, but a workday nonetheless.

I wish weekends were different - the Christian ideal of not working on a Sunday has some appeal, although I think that might mean working really hard to get everything done on the Saturday in order not to work on the Sunday. And if my memory serves me well, the books that I read in which people did not work on Sundays also meant that meals were cold and the only book read was a Bible - or Bible stories. And I would rather read one of the 60 or so books by my bed instead, and eat hot soup or roast chicken on Sundays.

But still the idea of one day a week where choice becomes the operative mantra rather than necessity, is an ideal I will strive for. Which making the list for weekend goals has helped me realize.

Friday, March 4, 2011

I'm kinda a list person

There are several blogs that I try and visit on a semi-regular basis. It's fun to hear about other people's thoughts and ideas. I even try and comment (when I think I have something to contribute) One of the blogs I like is We do not have a knitting problem (aka Irish girlie knits blog). She is currently doing the 30 days of lists from this blog. So I thought I would give it a try. Except that I have some catching up to do. So here goes.....

March 1
List 1 - A few things about me
Flames fan
excellent cook
cookie lover
coffee drinker
red wine drinker
knitting teacher
board member

March 2
List 2 - Things I'm good at
wifing (Is that a verb?)
being a friend
my job
doing laundry (What? It's a skill!!)
ironing (don't do it lots, but I am good at it - sadly)
making a mess

March 3
List 3 - Things I am looking forward to
The weekend
Finishing the pair of socks I have started
My Saturday morning run
Watching my youngest play basketball this weekend
Saturday nights at home
Visiting my sister in April
Going to see Elton John in May
Hot weather (but not too hot)
My next marathon
Starting a new book
Coffee in the morning
Tea at night

March 4
List 4 - Today's playlist
In the bedroom
CBC 99.1 - Jim Brown and the Eyeopener
In the kitchen
Sounds of the family getting going
In the car
102.1 Radio 2 Morning with Bob Makowicz
A year of pleasures by Elizabeth Berg(Audible book on I-Pod)
In my head
Ain't good enough for you by Bruce Springsteen (Plays over and over and over.....)