Thursday, January 5, 2012

New Year, New...

You guys. It's that time of year again. You can't spit around these here internets without hitting some company or another hawking the "New Year, New You" shtick.
This morning it was Forever 21. Now, I love me some F21, but it seems to me that the average age of the girls lurking en masse in the store is maybe 19 years old? Or like Fetus. Can We use minus numbers?
Which makes me all
 "DUDE. you're not old enough to HAVE an old you. Now get your dewy skin and perky boobs outta my way. I got cheap jewelry to peruse"
Now before I come off as a completely bitter crazy person (too late? oh oh.) I should say that my main problem with New Year, New You is that I like the old me.
I do.
Quite a lot actually. And it took me AGES to get to like the old me, having to get to like an all NEW me, well I don't think I have the energy.
Which is not to say that I don't get the sudden need to take 5 spin classes in a row and swim until I'm a prune. My festive All Pie and Cookie Diet and 3 weeks of gym dodging has caused me to jiggle more than I like to.
But that doesn't mean i want an all new me, it just means I should prolly think about what I put in my mouth and maybe do a bit more running around for a few weeks.
And I know that it sometimes isn't that easy. I REALLY know, I am a person who has been "overweight" and has had a complex relationship with food for my whole life.
But I'mma say RIGHT NOW. These aren't the things that define me. So changing them doesn't make me a whole new person. And that is all. Rant over.
I'm not going to get into the whole body image thing (at least not this morning) I need more coffee and I get so angry I spit a little. It's gross.
Now. New Year, New Shoe... there's a concept I can get behind.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


It came! Finally! After roughly 20 days of 6.30-in-the-morning "is it now? is it today? is it today? is it? is is? IS IT?"
And you guys! It was for sure my best Christmas as a grown up, and maybe my best one ever. There were gifties and roast beast and fambly and chums and food. SO. Much. Food. And Lovely Little Things. And a bit of boxing day shopping with my sweetheart. (We hardly ever get to spend time, just us; so even though there were a squillion other people out bargain hunting, I got to hold his hand and it FELT like it was just us. It was super fun. Wait, is that too smooshy? Did you barf in your mouth? Sorry.)
Here's a picture of a Thing I Made to take the taste away...

It's a small talk shawl, what I made for my good friend (and my kid's honourary Granny) for Christmas. I like how it turned out and my sweetie saw it like this (pinned out, being blocked) and was all "OH hey! It looks like you steam-rolled an angel's wings!" Which is maybe sacrilegious? But completely adorable.
BUT, you know when's a good time to start as large and complicated project? Any time but two weeks before Christmas.

So. That's mostly what I've been doing, well that and a tiny bit of hiding, Hiding and thinking about blogging and what I do here a bit. My last post was kind of depressing, and maybe off-putting for some people? But I think I'm OK with that. In real life I do over-think things. And I WANT to live a well-considered life, even if I sometimes feel like a stupid, or give myself an un-necessarily hard time. Or am misinterpreted. So. I'm going to do that here too. And risk a swathe of unfollows. Because it's worth it, and the kindness and encouragement of strangers (whom I would, for serious, hug until the were a tiny bit uncomfortable) is totally worth it.
So, moving swiftly on.
This year looks like it's going to be (in the words of my kid) "Super-Rad". I have some pretty exciting stuff happening* and I pretty much can't wait to tell you about it.
But I can't JUST yet. So here's a picture of the new baby that I am auntie to...

His name is Brutus and he is entirely made of swagger and puppy parts. And smoochable wrinkles. He is, you guys, TOOMUCH. It's a good thing he doesn't live with me or his leggies would atrophy from his being carried around and smooched all the time. OK.
That is all.
*I'm not pregnant, that's always the first thing I think of too, so I'm just clearing that up.

Monday, November 28, 2011

I need to apologise to someone.
She is unlikely to see this, but I want to put it out into the world anyway.
So, lady in the playground, with the pretty little pixie of a two and a half year old. Who we have seen in passing a few times and finally spoke to today. I'm really sorry. I choked. I really hope I didn't hurt your feelings.

As we were leaving the playground we talked about Teddy's balance bike. I asked how old your pixie is. We agreed that two and a half is fun-but-exhausting.
I asked if you lived around here.
And you were brave. You said yes, temporarily. You were staying at R- House. And I said "huh?"
And you explained that R- House is the Woman's Shelter over-that-way.
And that's when I choked. Not literally, but conversationally.
I said "Oh I didn't know it was there. And OH HEY, do they accept donations of baby clothes?"
And you were polite, and said perhaps, that there was a room of donated clothes. And you went to catch up with someone you knew and I wanted to kick myself in the ass.
I wish that I had said pretty much anything else instead of what I did; which was, to all intents and purposes, "OH hey, I'm a lucky, privileged do-gooder and you're a charity case".
Walking home I had that horrible mix of mortified and angry-with-myself, the kind that sticks in your throat and makes your eyeballs smart.
So. There we have it.

You know, today's post was going to be where I outed myself as a personal style blogger and waxed lyrical about the job of parenting and clothes and body image and yadda yadda yadda, I've been thinking about those things a lot recently. Perhaps tomorrow I will feel like words are my friends instead of chunky rocks to throw.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

This isn't really a post it's just something I want to remember.
So, my sweetheart set up these guys last night for my poor, bored bear (and me) to find.

It's Hank, Mr. Penguin and Leroy Brown (baddest dog in the whole damn town) doing a spot of camping. And it looks like some pretty fun times actually. 
In conclusion, I love that man. Like, a LOT. 

kids = ebola (and pinterest!)

Preschoolers; they're adorable germ-laden plague-bearers. Nothing quite like a feverish, booger-beladen kid to put a crimp in one's day week. Seriously? A week? Poor baby is bored to tears. But he sounds like Lauren Bacall after a heavy night (which is actually completely rad, just not on a 3 year old).
And cause some terrible guilt.
The guilt thing is 'cause, I, um, didn't even notice he was sick. 
We went out for Dim Sum with his Granny H, and he was a kind of tantrumy then kind of sulky. Both of which are really of out of character*, and both of which get pretty short shrift from me. It wasn't until we were in Holt Renfrew trying on perfumes-I-can't-afford that I noticed that he was sweating like crazy and had a blistering fever. 
Yah. Nice job me. Apparently I won't be winning the Parent Of The Year award, AGAIN.

Oh well, he can start saving for the therapy now.

Oh,  and he's infectious. Which means we've been hanging out in our jammies watching an embarrassing amount of TV.  But it does give me time to lurk around Pinterest, cooing over the pretty things. Do you Pinterest? This is me right here, hit me up in the comments if'n you want to be chums?  (on the proviso that I'm not exactly sure what I'm doing with the whole thing and I get distracted easily by shiny objects).

And lastly here's a quick shot of Betty looking artsy. And you guys? I don't mean to brag, but she sews through leather like it's no big thing. She's all "Sure, whatever lady, give me a real challenge, bust out the titanium". I love her. Even her font KILLS me.

* The "out of character" thing? It kind of blows the idea of child-karma out of the water. Given what a horrible child I was, Teddy should be cross between Taz and an angry orangutan. As it is, he's a pretty awesome little chap. Perhaps he's saving it up until he's in his teens?

Monday, November 7, 2011


You guys! I'm 33 today! 33! (I'm not complaining, so far I bloody LOVE my 30's)
I'm also not sticking around for long, I just wanted to tell you that apparently I don't learn! 'Member how last year my sweetie surprised the dickens out me with a party?
Well he did it again.
And I fell for it. Hook, line and sinker. Again.
And it was lovely, there was cake. And sangria. And funtimes. And that was after dinner at The Queen and Beaver (you should go! it's ace!)
There are no pictures (or if there are there may be sailor hats?) but I do have SOMETHING to show you...

Can you see what it is? It's a ring-bound manual for a 1969 White Company sewing machine. With less than 5 hours use on it. Still in it's table. With a heap of feet and accouterments. In TIFFANY BLUE.
Wondering why I might have such a manual? For such a machine?
YOU GUYS! It's because she is mine! And she shall be coming home with me on Wednesday. And her name shall be Betty (like Betty White; another awesome vintage broad, see?) and GOOD LORD but she's smooth. And you guys. I just about pee'd.
She is a gift from my good friend (and my baby's honorary granny), and I am a very very lucky gurl.
Ok. I'm going to go drink birthday chardonnay and snuggle on the couch with my sweetheart.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Dirt Cheap DIY Boot Trees

So. I have two problems with boots. And I use the term "problem" pretty loosely here folks. In fact lets go with So, I have two kinda-dumb-first-world-problems with boots.
The first problem isn't just me, it's just a thing that knee high boots do. See:

My boots flop over. Which wrinkles the ankles and makes the tops all flat and puts a crease down the middle. It's a whole big thing. And Not Cool. 
The solution is Boot Trees (not trees that grow boots - though you guys, just the idea of trees that grow boots makes me feel kind of fevered).
Boot trees that you jam into your boots to keep them erect and wrinkle-free (oh my god. I just wrote "erect" on the internets. So, HI! If you came here via a google search for "erect", you're prolly in the wrong place, perhaps turn your safe-search off?).
Now, in an ideal world I'd have a full compliment of beautiful, hand carved, vintage boot trees. Or even just a bunch of these. In this world I don't, and I'm fairly unlikely to acquire 'em any time soon. 
But that's OK! 'Cause there are a couple of different solutions. 

The first, and my total favourite, is this:

Wondering what that is? It's flexible plastic chopping board of course! (Remember how I use them for EV.ERY.THING?) And all you do is roll it up and jam it down your boots. You could get all fancy and cut a rounded "V" shape out of the bottom. I didn't because most of my boots are flat.

Next there's the old  "wine bottle down the boot" trick. Which is OK? I guess? But not ideal, because
It kind of puffs out the ankles in an odd shape, but doesn't stop the top of the boot from being flat. Also, having "hidden" booze in my closet makes me feel like my Alcoholic Granny - which, gross & kind of upsetting. Ok moving swiftly on...
Here's a shot of the difference between the choppin' boards and the wine bottles:

Note the unpuffy ankles on the choppin' board boot versus the bottle boot.
And lastly (and the cheapest way) is to roll up a magazine and jam it down there. It's not perfect but it'll does in a pinch.

And as for the second problem I have with boots, um. OK. Don't judge me now... but... I have 5 pairs of brown knee high boots, (OH, and one black pair too). 5 (and they're all... um,  pretty similar actually).
It's a sickness.
I blame Duo Boots.
See, I am a girl with chunky calves, (not like baby cows, like the bottom parts of my legs, chubby baby cows are adorable).
Which means that knee high boots were pretty much a no-go for me, with the zipper-straining and the weird calf muffin-tops and the plain old "YAH, dude, these are never going to do up".
Anyway, my mum was all "you should look up Duo, they do different calf sizes".
I was all "WHA!? Why wasn't I informed!" and I had my first pair picked out before she'd finished her next sentence.
Now here's were I warn you before I send you over there. They're kind of expensive. Actually, not "kind of", they ARE expensive.
They're your forever boots. My first pair have trotted happily through four Canadian winters, complete with mushy snowy salty grey slop attacking them, and they still look awesome. I take care of them, with regular waterproofing sprays and sticking chopping boards inside them and softly crooning love songs to them. But you do that when you pay a bloody fortune for your boots (or at least I do?).
So, if you have wide (or skinny) calves you should go check them out here.
And here's the good part. If you can wait till the new year, they have a BRILLIANT sale. They get to be, if not dirt cheap then "OH MY GOD I CAN TOTALLY JUSTIFY THIS" cheap. It's a heady time.
Just to be clear here, Duo isn't sponsoring me (mine is an unrequited love. Le sigh). I just happen to think they rock the free world and I'm not even kidding when I say that their boots are kind of a life changer (well they were for me anyway).

NOW! I'm off to go and lurk around Duo,  pressing my nose against the (browser) window like a Dickensian orphan. Because, 5 is NOT too many pairs. no no no trala la la-I'm-not-listening-la.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Cowboy Chicken! "He's a chicken who is a cowboy guy"

Halloween, maybe my favourite holiday. costumes+candy=funtimes.
Want to see how we rolled, costume wise?
WELLL! First we went to "Big Boy School" (the PFLC playgroup at our local school) Like this:

He's Biggles Bear, Flying Ace. And here's a tiny admission. There was no planning for that "costume" at all. The flight jacket and hat are just what he wears. And I grabbed a white "scarf" from my fabric stash and fringed the ends. But you guys. I love it. Love love. See, both my Grandpas (his great grandpas) were pilots. And my dad IS a pilot. (My mum has her  P.P.L. and I have about 17 hours of a Private Pilots Licence too; we're an aeronautical family)
So yep, my kid is Biggles. I might have put on my outfit with Amelia Earheart in mind. Maybe. but I'm admitting nothing. (and it's a brutally unflattering shot, gah).
So that was the morning, and a thrown together outfit so Teddy wouldn't BOIL in the overheated school.
This is the real deal:

Which... OK?
I have no idea how he came up with it but he asked to be a "chicken who is a cowboy guy".
For the last couple of weeks the whole "what to be" conversation has been a source of superfuntimes, and there was some talk of a Space Robot, a zookeeper, or a "RacingCarDriverVRooom". But on Wednesday he declared for Cowboy Chicken and stuck with it when asked three times.
So off we went to the Dolla' Stor'. We scored the hat, the orange "feet", some craft foam and (my favourite part) a handful off-brand swiffer-type dusters.
I pulled those suckers apart and tacked them on to the sleeve of a white hoodie. And voila, softie chicken wings. I could have used a feather boa but I'm monstrous allergic.
I chopped the toes off the orange sockies and tacked on felt chicken feet.
The vest/waistcoat we had.
The chicken mask I made because the chicken masks at the costume shop across the road were kind of... sinister looking? and too big. I did manage to hot-glue a chicken nosehole to my hand. Not cool you guys. Not cool.
Anyway, it came together, it looked like this and it was a hit when we went trick or treating last night. So I'm calling it a win.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Oh No. Drums.

Wondering what my sweetheart and my kid were doing while I lurched around the city pretending to be undead? Well. My sweetheart was having an attack of the crazypants.
He took Teddy to Long & McQuade, a music and musical goodies shop here in the city. And he let him do THIS:

Uh huh. That's a drum kit. And that's my kid giving it some; to the cooing admiration of a handful of his uncles. 
Drums you guys.

The thing is, my sweetie is (at 39) learning to play the guitar. Which - maybe the hottest thing ever? He's spent six months working his fingers to nubbins while me and the dog sit around gazing adoringly at him like super-hairy groupies (what? I sometimes forget to shave my legs.)
Teddy is similarly impressed. I'm  really proud of my sweetie for setting that kind of example to him. You know, the "it's never too late, you just have to work hard and practice and you can do anything" example. Well that and the all-important "guitars = adoring girls/boys/dogs" lesson.
But Drums? DRUMS? really? 
Le sigh. Anybody want to open a book on how soon I cave on this one? 
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