Sunday, March 31, 2013

Shoe Flinging. . . . 

So I've been noticing shoes on wires everywhere lately.  These are right across from the bus stop I wait at to get to work.  I'd always wondered if there was any significance to the whole thing, and in most cases I'm sure there is not, but, as it turns out, sometimes there is.  In fact, there could be a few different meanings.

In the past, a soldier who was leaving the military, whether at the end of combat or because he or she was discharged, might paint his boots yellow, the colour of peace, and toss them over power lines near where he was stationed.

A less positive explanation would be that a bully took your shoes and you had to, shamefacedly walk home barefoot, a trend which began in the '50s apparently.  Or, in more modern days, a drug dealer lives close by, specifically crack or heroin, drugs from which you often don't come back from.....and so may not need your footwear.  

In some areas the shoes commemorate a neighbour who has passed away, a gesture which suggests that if the dead person's soul returns, he can walk high and proud.

It's interesting, isn't it, the many things that such a thing can mean.  I'm sure in most cases it's a matter of someone walking home in terrible shoes and just saying "eff this!"  When my Chucks that I wear to work finally die (which, if their appearance is any indication, will be any day now) I think I'll pick a line to toss those babies onto, even just to see how long it takes someone to take them down.  

Anyhoo, hope you all had a wonderful day.  Happy Easter again!

Till next time!

Happy Easter!

I was absent from here again yesterday - twice in one month, oh the guilt!  Truth is, yesterday was one of those busy every minute kinds of days.  I worked all day, then BF picked me up and we drove (what felt like) all over Clayton Park/Fairview to find my cousin T's house.  T is in the process of reno-ing her kitchen and has kindly donated her old cabinet hinges to our cause.  I've mentioned before, I believe, how tragically bad our hinges were when I took the cabinet doors off - corroded and coated in decades of kitchen grime.  No amount of CLR was cutting through this.  So when T mentioned she was replacing hers and we could have the old ones, I immediately accepted.

Bucket o' hinges.
They may need a little colour touch up here and there but look how nice and clean!  Ack, I can't wait to get those doors back up now, knowing I don't have to touch those grimey-ass hinges again, haha!  Thanks cousin T!

So we had a hard time finding T's place and were a bit late meeting CA&G, but we got there eventually.  Brooklyn Warehouse is undergoing a menu change so they were clearing out their kitchen and out of a bunch of stuff which, for some kitchens would mean disaster, but for the BW team, meant they got to get creative.  Sadly I forgot to take photos but, sufficed to say, if you ever get the chance to have a chef just randomly think up something for you for supper, well, do it.  

Yesterday was also BF's very good friend J's birthday (HAPPY BIRTHDAY, J!!).  We met him at Staynor's Wharf to celebrate and to see our friend Keith Mullins and his band play some tunes.

Keith is one of those multi-talented types who can play every instrument, sing and write, but is also a farmer.  He and his wife own and manage Localmotive Farm, a nearby CSA.  Busy guy.

We finally headed home late into the evening....or early into the morning I guess you could say.  I basically walked in the door and shed everything before collapsing into bed for the night.

BF loves it when I leave my shoes in the middle of the kitchen floor.  Believe me, he does!

So it's off to work with me now (HAPPY EASTER TO ME!) and then who knows what the evening holds.  I hope you are all able to enjoy that gorgeous sunshiney day.  

Till next time friends!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Project For Fun: Part Two

I finished the little dresser I was making over.  This is what it looked like before.  And this is what it looks like now:

I wanted something bright and cheerful so I chose a nice, medium shade of turquoise (Thai Teal, to be completely correct) and I searched for drawer pulls until I found these:

They are hand-etched glass knobs that I found at Bellissimo on Agricola.  Pretty, huh?

I am quite pleased with the finished piece.  It hasn't found a home quite yet, but then again, only about a third of our belongings have at this point, truth be told.

My first project for fun, completed.  I have so many in mind that I don't know what I'll be doing next but, as usual, I'll keep y'all posted.

I also wanted to share this with you:

This was the scene in the sky last night, the view from our front deck.  Excuse the power lines, I know they aren't so great, but look, just look at those colours!  It looks like the sky is aflame.  Just gorgeous.  I look forward to many more sunsets like this.

Hope you're all geared up for the Easter weekend, friends, and that you have lots of loved ones and chocolate bunnies and ham and egg hunts to enjoy.  Till next time!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Rest Easy, Jay

Yesterday, the Canadian music scene took a hard blow in the form of the loss of a great musician, guitar player, singer, song-writer, bandmate and nice guy, Jay Smith.  He passed away in Edmonton while on tour with Matt Mays, with whom he'd been playing for some years now, but he's also well known in these parts for fronting the band Rock Ranger, and for doing his own thing in between.

I remember the first time I saw Jay playing with Matt Mays on his first tour with El Torpedo.  I'd been a huge fan of Mays's music for years and I couldn't believe how much more loud and rockin' the band suddenly was.  There was Jay up there, a new guy (to me) in head to toe leather and shaggy hair, looking like a modern day Jim Morrison, stirring the crowd up into a frenzy.  

Years later, I saw him play a solo show at The Carleton and this time I couldn't believe how quiet and sweet and humble he was.  It was just him up there on the stage, with his guitar and his songs, no leather, no big amps.  He was so versatile, so talented.  

It's a sad time.

My heart goes out to Jay's family; I can't imagine the shock and heartbreak.  My heart goes out to his friends and fellow musicians, a different family; if my newsfeed on Facebook means anything, Jay, you were an immensely loved and respected man.  I hope the love that's being shared right now can give those closest to you even just a tiny trace of comfort.

A sweet video of Jay jamming with his sister:

A trust fund has been set up for Jay's family.  Please follow this link to see how you can help:

Rest easy, Jay.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Adieu, Apartment

Nice to have known you.

Today I went to the old apartment to finish cleaning up. BF had gone by for a whole afternoon last week and done an amazing job cleaning most of the place, so I tackled the last bit - the kitchen.  My awesome friend D came by and helped out, which was amazing, especially since he even picked up coffees to keep us going.  Thanks D!  T stopped by for a visit too, which was great.

We cleaned that kitchen good.  It's all done now, the whole place.  Packed, moved, gleaming clean.

It was weird to leave.  It is probably the last time I'll ever be there and I suddenly became nostalgic.  So many good things about the place. It was BF's and my first home together and we had lots of great times there - spontaneous kitchen dance-offs, big, friend-filled parties, making amazing meals together, marathon couch chats until 4am, fireworks and sunsets on the roof-top patio, Saturday morning coffee and weekend planning in the windows, hosting visitors from near and far, we even got engaged many memories.

But it's time for exciting changes.  A new and wonderful house, a wedding to plan, a whole new chapter.

Plus, it all looks so hollow now, and....beige.  Good-bye Kitchen!

Hey Kitchen, remember the time BF dropped the ceramic compost bin on the floor and a weeks worth of compost burst out all over you?  That was bad.  And remember when we finally found a good pasta recipe and made ravioli with goat cheese and sweet potato stuffing, right there on your counter?  That was good.  I'll miss you Big Fridge, and especially you, Dishwasher.

So long livingroom.

We had so much fun in you, as all the footprints and wine stains and cd rack impressions prove.  I'll miss you Eleven-Foot Ceilings and Big French Windows!

See you, Bedroom!

Well....yeah, nevermind. ;)

Nice to know you, Closets.

It was amazing what we could fit into you and you kept safe and out of sight for us for years.

Farewell absurdly long entry hallway.

It was amazing to have so much space to set my shoes and I suppose you did somewhat buffer outside noise, even though you were a waste of square footage.

Farewell spare room, adios huge storage closets and giant bathroom.  It was nice knowing you.

And good-bye construction site outside our windows.

I watched one last blast today and that was that.  I put my raincoat on, my earbuds in my ears, my iPod on, I locked the door and walked away.

I'm at the new house now, cosy and warm, writing this post, listening to tunes and some birds outside.  I am so looking forward to all the things that are going to happen here - settling in, our first party, summer time, fires in the back yard, getting a dog, getting married!  We've already got a whole new set of memories on the go.

Hello Home!  Glad to have met you.

Till next time!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Here Kitty, Kitty, Kitty....

Here, there, everywhere!  Another little street art series I have come across.  I love these random little kitty stickers.

Sage advice if I've ever heard, read it.


Something I'm sure we can all relate to.

Maybe not right now, but soon for sure.

Hear them roar!
Pretty cool stuff.  I hope I run into more - anyone see any in your neck of the woods?

Till next time, friends!!

Monday, March 25, 2013


Today, on my way home from work, I saw a ghost.  

Actually, I saw three!

Unless there is a cut-out-stick-on-spook trend I am unaware of, I am assuming that, like the elephants, these fellas are all from the same person.  I wonder how many more there are around town! A new hunt!  Oh dear, I'm going to end up walking into traffic one of these days, looking around at lamp posts and fire hydrants and back alley walls, searching for weird little bits of street art.  

Till next time!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

She's . . . 

She'll get a hold on you, believe it.

Oh, you are welcome! ;)

Till next time folks!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Growing, Growing....

Just last Sunday, our friends T & C visited and gifted us a pot of lovely purple tulips.  They were pretty little and hadn't quite opened yet, but just look at them now!

They've grown a foot since they came to live with us; they're almost as tall as Arlo the Robot Lamp!  Oh, just look how pretty!

They seem to really be thriving.  There is one little baby trying to poke her head out:

And another little one not even all the way out of the soil yet:

I can't wait until the weather gets better and the ground thaws so we can plant them outside where they can be free to grow as big as possible and maybe even multiply.  Tulips are my favourite flower so I'd love a million of them out there!  Well . . . ok, maybe not a million, but lots and lots.

I mean how could you not love having this all over the place:

Thanks for the flowers ladies!

Till next time!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Winter, Winter, Go AWAY!

This is what we woke up to this morning:

Don't you just hate it when something you are expecting, no, hoping is going to happen doesn't?  Like, oh, Spring for example.  This week we got hit with two big snowfalls.  I think we can all agree that it's time for Winter to get lost and not come back for quite some time.  I'd hate to be considered a bully, but I would DEFINITELY sock Winter in the nose right about now, just for being itself.

I am ready for dresses without leggings, and cute shoes instead of rubber boots and Sorrels, and going out to do errands without twenty minutes of preparation first.  I am ready for barbecuing without risking frostbite, strolls on the waterfront, morning coffee in the back yard.  It's time, don't you think?  Time to leave winter behind, no looking back!

Till next time!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Project For Fun: Part One

Today, after work and then coming home to do more work on cabinets and unpacking for a couple hours, I decided I needed to start a for-fun project that I could reward myself with after a day of necessary tasks.  I needed something that is still productive, but that I can look forward to in a way I just don't to removing tupperware from a corrugated cardboard box and placing it in a cupboard, and folding and searching out homes for endless numbers of towels and sheets.  I choose a super simple project, one that would take up little space in our chaotic house right now, and little space in my already slightly overwhelmed and full-to-the-brim brain.  

This little dresser has been made over already.

It used to be just plain old naked pine, with brass handles.  A while back I stained it this dark mahogany colour and changed the brass handles to round, chrome pulls.  

Time for another change.  

Today I sanded and cleaned the heck out of this little piece.  Then I primed it.  I primed it good. 

In a couple more days I should have the time to do it all up as I am envisioning it in my head right now.      A few hints:  Bright and cute and cheerful.

I know, you might not be able to wait a couple days to find out what I do.  I am sorry for that, but it'll all be worth it in the end, I promise.  Plus, it's just quittin' time.  Wine and left-overs and Sex and the City re-runs, here I come!

Till next time, folks!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Hibernation and Happy Birthday!

Today was a very weird day.  I was awaken by the furnace guy coming to give our furnace a check up to make sure it won't conk out on us some winter's night - things seem fine.  I decided after he left that the right thing to do would be to curl up on the couch and watch a couple episodes of Sex and the City before getting down to business and doing some more unpacking and cleaning and so on.  

Six hours later. . . . . . .yep, that's right, like a hung-over 16 year old boy, I slept the day completely away!  I woke up at about supper time, a time I do not believe I have EVER woken up at in my entire life, and in such a state of confusion I thought I'd lost my mind.  What?  4:50???  Why is it bright out?  Have I missed work? Where is BF?  What's going on?  Where am I?  WHO am I?  

It took me a good ten minutes to realize that things were ok and that I'd just fallen into a bit of a daytime coma.  Soon after, BF called on his way home from work to remind me that it was our friend, and legendary local bluesman, Joe Murphy's birthday today and there was a surprise party for him at Freeman's in Fairview.  


We got there late, but, in typical rock star fashion, Joe got there later so we still got to be part of the surprise.  His friends and band warmed up the room for him.

I don't know if you guys are familiar with Joe or not, but you should be.  He's an amazing harmonica player and one of the most fun blues shows you'll see. Check him out!

Till next time!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


Six lives on the side of a grocery store on Windsor Street.  She's the biggest one I've found yet, her name is Stella and her favourite cheese is Brie.

Till next time!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Holy Book Exchange Redditman!

Today I received my Reddit book exchange package!  Imagine my shock when the postman came to the door and passed me this:

Like a kid on Christmas morning I ripped that box open and dug out my treasure. 

General Rick Hillier's account of how he helped to change the way Canadians and those around the world viewed the Canadian Armed Forces.

A gorgeous book of the famous Audubon's drawings of the birds of America.

A collection of printed poster art, one of my fave styles.

My gifter, who in a very nice letter, told me he's read my blog and saw that I was a big music and especially Canadian music fan, passed on one of his own collection.

He also sent me a dvd that he says is a visual stunner and he has been a fan of for ages.  Though I am not familiar, BF is and is excited to check it out.

Finally, Gifter threw in a bunch of cute Reddit stickers.  

Wowza, I am overwhelmed!  The time and thought put into this package was just beyond anything I never expected.  Gifter D, if you happen to be reading this, THANK YOU!  What a great treat, and you were bang on with all your choices.  I hope someone was a good to you as you were to me!

Yay Reddit gift exchange.  What a concept folks, give it a try!

Till next time!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Homeownership: Day 1

Today was the first day BF and I were fully moved into our new house.  That is not to say we're fully settled, oh no, far from it.

This is the scene in the room we have named The Green Room, on account of it's emerald coloured carpet.  It's being sorted through, but it seems like it's probably going to be a holding room for a bit.  Progress is being made though. 

Here's what the living room looked like yesterday:

And this is it today, after plenty of hard work:

It's getting there.  You can't see from this angle but BF set up the entertainment system on the wall opposite the couch, and sorted all our dvds and blu-rays.  

Here was our book room:

And today:

Like I said, slowly but surely.  

My sweet BF also surprised me by finding and putting out my salt and pepper shakers on a little shelf in our kitchen:

We had our first guests today too, dears T and C.  They brought us a pretty present:

Thanks guys, and thanks for meeting us for lunch and for your wallpaper removal advice, haha.  

I started to do this post a couple hours ago, sitting in our new living room as the sun was starting to go down.  The shadows on the wall of the sun through the tree on our front lawn were quite lovely.

It's been a big, eventful day.  We made progress on the settling, found camera cables and computer cords, and hung key hooks.  We changed a couple locks and ran a dozen errands.  We did laundry and then unclogged the washing machine draining pipes after the water backed up from not having been used in a year.  We made our first supper in our 1/10th finished kitchen, then sat and ate it, hoping that the pipes really were unclogged and agreeing that we're really going to learn to appreciate the little things from now on, like proper drainage and knowing were your knives are.

All told, it's been a nerve-wracking but exciting couple of days, that I wouldn't change for the world.  This is an adventure after all, might as well take it all in.

Till next time friends!