Tuesday, September 30, 2008

home afternoon

Well it's definitely the start of the school year - I got that great phone call from daycare today. "Michael is sick."
I show up and he is sitting, crying; on a couch, alone. There is one girl who doesn't like me because I came and had a fit one morning about the guys being soaked to the bone because they were allowed to play in a puddle, in the rain. She thought I was speaking about her behavior - I wasn't - I was speaking about the owners. In any case she continues her role as a non-talker and the other employee comes over and says "he doesn't usually sit with me or talk to me but today he did so I knew something was up... (not a good start - I need to be a stay at home/work from home mom...)" She goes on to say his temp was 100.3 and then says - I mean 103... great - there is a difference in shifting the decimal point... so we go home and he looks terrible. We do the song and dance about taking medicine - he cries - its even worse on me but he finally takes most of it. Fast forward three hours and he is hungry and sitting here watching a movie. So I don't know what the heck is wrong with him. He has a slight runny nose and is complaining - a little - about a tummy ache... the joys of parenting.

On the parenting front, because Michael came home at lunch I decided we'd go and get Kyle after school. I arrive and another parent is waiting and we chat a little bit and then I ask - hey have you heard anything from the teacher. Well then I got an ear full about the same stuff I'm concerned about. Do parents not get involved with their students work anymore? I'm shocked that a month into the school year we've received nothing formal from the teacher - no introduction - no welcome - NOTHING! Very - super - extremely frustrating... or is this normal? Am I to expect this low level of communication home? (Jen - what say you?)

Friday, September 26, 2008

the toll

Alright friends - what do you think about the province of BC removing the toll on the coconut highway today?

Here is a few cents worth...

1) The coconut highway tolls puts $57M in the provincial coffers every year. Where will that shortfall come from now? We still need to maintain the highway - the only savings, as far as I can tell is that a group of people lost their jobs today. Not great. Where do we pick up $57M? I know we have a surplus... oh wait - if we have debt do we really have a surplus? I'm sure there is money in education or health care that could be trimmed off.

2) We've been paying the toll for 22 years and raised $853M, the apparent price of the project was $857 and apparently we've paid off the "debt" on the highway so the toll can be removed - debt paid. This is actually a great idea - removing a tax when the reason for the tax is gone... that was what was supposed to happen to income tax, but here we are - still paying - and I don't think good old Steve Harper is going to pull a "let's get rid of income tax" card out of his hat.

3) All my Vancouverite friends and people who don't live in the Okanagan.... are you know going to get in your car this weekend and drive up to the Okanagan because you'll save $20 on tolls... minus the carbon tax, of course.... right.... I'm sure it will cause an amazing boom.... look out!

On the boob tube - The World After Humans - I don't know if any of you are watching this tonight. I'm more half assed listening and as far as I can tell the point is that if we want the earth to get better we should all go and hang ourselves.

in the news

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A West Virginia man who police said passed gas and fanned it toward a patrolman has been charged with battery on a police officer. From the associated press Wednesday Sept 24 08.

I know a few people that should definitely be charged... not naming names... I'm sure a few of my friends will remember someone who was banned from a washroom in university :)

What's even funnier is that it was like fart central at our house tonight. Michael actually declared it "fart time"... a kin to circle time I guess.


Ok so last night was the season opener for ER and it was super sad. I mean they told us all summer that someone was going to die in the season opener but gees... I don't know if any of you watch it - I guess ER isn't as popular as I think it is. It was good in the 90's and I'd still watch it if they carried on with it. It's almost like a soap opera - you don't seem them canning any of those and they are terrible. ER kicks ass over all the daytime stuff... but I guess ER isn't competing with the day... what are they competing with? I don't know what is even on the other channels during that time slot - or do people actually turn off their tvs? - HA - right!

Ok - I won't wreck it for those who didn't see it but I cried hard enough that when Paula called me to say (our ER ritual) - damn - how could they do that and we could both cry on the phone together - that I didn't answer the phone because I was crying so much and just couldn't talk. I know - I'm stupid - it's television... I know, I know... but I cry to good books too...

Thursday, September 25, 2008


Today I was listening to my favorite CBC show - Almanac and people were giving it to Minister Penner. 2 things came out of the discussion that I thought were interesting enough that I'd share them here.

1) Penner noted that NDP has flip flopped on the carbon tax/carbon planning idea. He noted the NDP plan for carbon credits/carbon exchange currently being toted around and then noted that the NDP had voted out/against the idea of that in principal months ago. He then said "I wouldn't drive with Ms. James, pause (paused long enough that I thought what the hell is he talking about that has nothing to do the carbon tax), she's all over the road." To which I started laughing pretty hard. I mean politicians don't usually talk like that - it was actually kind of refreshing.

2) A caller calls in and says he doesn't believe in global warming, but does believe in global cooling. Penner wasn't really listening, I don't think, because he went on Al Gore bender on all these scientists agreeing that humans have caused climate change. I don't think anyone was arguing against climate change - just that the planet is cooling and not warming and that a cooling trend has a direct impact on the people that are trying to heat their homes with natural gas and other fuels that are now being charged an additional 2%.

So where is the carbon tax money going? It's "tax neutral" - meaning our income tax is supposed to decrease to recover what we are now paying in additional taxes for carbon. But does it really add up?

Our family is paying at least $1,800 a year in gas for our cars and another $1,800 in natural gas. So that's $3,600 annually (pre-2% carbon tax). So that's $72 more a year that I'll pay for the governments carbon tax. Does it balance out? Well we got a $100 cheque in July for each of us, that's $400, and we'll see what I'll save on my taxes. So as far as I can tell for this year we are ahead. Now the tax escalates up over the next few years so we will see what it looks like in four years and we will see if it is even there in four years - who knows who will be making the rules by then.

What I also hate about the election season right now is that politicians seem unable to answer questions without first talking about their competition in a negative light. Doing the negative talk says to me that they aren't confident. A confident leader wouldn't need to talk about the other party and their plans and their mistakes. Tell me you are going to make my city, my province, my country a great place to live - economically, socially, and all the other 'lly's - and do it. Politicians need to remember that every day they are in office they are doing the work of the people - every day - not the first year in office and every day after that is campaigning to stay another term. Forget the second term - third term, fourth term.... treat every day like you are really trying to make a difference for us... the tax payers - aka your wage payers.

Where do you stand on the carbon tax? Have I misunderstood the carbon tax?

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

damned costco

On the weekend we went to Costco - likely one of our last visits since I'm not renewing our membership - and did the "aisle" thing and picked up a few items - nothing special and nothing that I couldn't have gotten somewhere else. There was also a nice display of strawberries and since they were less than $4.00 for a big container of them I thought sure - let's get some.

First problem - they stank up our car, leading me to believe that they are spraying the boxes or berries themselves with something that is supposed to smell like strawberries but actually smells quite vile. Seriously it smelled like a strawberry fart - I'll let you think about that - but really - it was that bad.

Second problem - this morning I took them to the sink to be washed - they looked all pretty, sitting in their container - all placed so delicately in the box - so uniformly - and then it happens - I pick one up and my thumb goes right through it - ok - so one strawberry - that's ok - pick up another - same thing - same thing - same thing - same thing.... ARG! So the outside looks great - in fact if I was super gentle I could have probably put them all back in the box and they'd still look fantastic - but the meat of the berry was destroyed - so what are they spraying them with to make the outside look good and the inside rot...

Can I take them back and complain? Not unless I want to spend another $50 in fuel to drive to PG. Arg - again!

Monday, September 22, 2008


Kissed by the morning fog; a beautiful rose in Lebourdais Park

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Happy First Day of Fall

That's right - it's already here - which means the days are getting shorter and we are marching closer to another winter. Well hooray for that. Thanks for stopping by :)

Friday, September 19, 2008

what happened this week

Well I actually got some scrapbook pages completed. I'm up to 5 pages for the week - which is incredible.

What else? Well on Thursday I got to go on a mine tour. It was pretty amazing! A few photos are below. The only downside was the final building tour - the smells in the building made me feel like I'd been punched in the lung - it was terrible - I actually was struggling to breathe and then it started to get better or my body made the adjustment, but every once in a while I got all choked up - so not great - but I'm pretty sensitive. The rest of the tour was pretty cool though.

Here is my tour group in front of a giant truck - the trucks cost $4,000,000 each - tire replacement runs for $50K each... see you can learn something new every day

Here is one of their active pits - to put it into perspective - each step on the face of the mine is 45 ft tall... it was crazy!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I scrapbooked last night. Seriously I haven't done much in the last year - I start and I get creative block - but for whatever reason last night worked - two pages completed and a third nearly finished. Tonight I spent the evening at work - didn't get home until 9:30 and so I'm just trying to unwind... I'm hoping to continue putting a few pages together a night this month - that would be great... I'm also thinking rather than making 3 sets of the scrapbooks this year I'll just scan each page and make a photo book. I spend so much time trying to reproduce the pages that I get bogged in it and don't finish. So I'm going to see if making a photo book is a better option and be something all the grandparents will like and display.

Now for a few photos...

Michael enjoying some time with Doc

"Um, now what do I do with it?" - Kyle fishing the Nazko river

You can nearly read it off his lips... STRONG - this was Michael's word of the day after helping with filling our truck with a load of wood

A bear - I whistled at him and he started to come back to the road... oops... he got to the road and another car started to come around the corner - and then he took off - always sites to see the Nazko Highway

Friday, September 12, 2008

and so it begins

Today is September 11 and my skin has already started to fall apart. It happens every year but it is early this year... usually I start to get dry skin in late October - so what's the deal... what can I do? I know - apply skin lotion - but I feel like I'm doing it all day - ALL FLAMIN! DAY!!!! Anyone heard of eating a food that can help with your skins ability to retain moisture?... I know it sounds pretty sci-fi - let's go to the moon stuff - but really - there has got to be a better way to cope with this... right... there is also the - shut-up method - but really - would I have a blog if I wanted to hold all my complaints inside ... hell no!

Monday, September 08, 2008


A trek to Nazko to enjoy a yummy dinner with Grandma and Grandpa

Fun in Lebourdais Park with Kyle


A beautiful female dragonfly

A pretty purply blue flower in Lebourdais Park

Sunday, September 07, 2008

the horse race

In just (just... ha) 37 days we (Canadians) will elect a new prime minister. Me, queen-o-political stuff, likes to follow all the stuff going on - although seeing some of the ads is already getting old. (It will be my first time voting... that one... good grief) I asked my husband who would he be voting for - like he cares - and he said - who ever looks best in a dress... so I give you a little political fun in the race to be the leader of our great country.

Mr Dion sporting a beautiful cocktail dress. Ready to party it up with Canadians - showing off his fun side and his green side.

Mr Layton is ready to pull out all the stops in this number. He is here to make a change and setting trends for the future.

Mr Harper - conservative through and through - why change from what works - not a show stopper but wanting you to take a second look.

You be the judge, who looks the best? Who will be our next prime minister?

This is not a paid advertisement, this is not to show support for any of the candidates or parties - I'm still trying to figure out who is best. I'll tell you this much I'm tired of hearing "picking the best of the worst" - politicians deserve credit for the time they put out to run things. If they don't do a good job its probably because we aren't being loud enough about the direction we want things to go in. Last time I checked they also didn't get training in mind reading and so are unable to connect with your fabulous ideas on truly making long lasting changes that will make our lives better - vote - guide our nation in the right/left/center direction!

Buy these beautiful gowns at Only Gowns.com - beautiful gowns for all occassions.

Friday, September 05, 2008


So I'm enjoying my workout on the treadmill tonight and flicking through channels and I come across the big cancer fundraiser happening in the states today (this week). I wasn't expecting much and was just catching the tail end of it - I caught the section where actors were telling the stories of cancer victims/survivors and everything is fine and dandy... I'm still walking and just listening and then forrest whitaker shares his story and I just start crying - it was the one with "time of death" - if you were watching it. It had a huge impact - the telling of stories - I watched the rest of the show - probably the last 15 minutes... I'm glad to see actors getting behind a good cause - hats off to them and everyone that donated to the cause. Stuff that like - seeing a guy donate $25M to cancer research - watching people rally together behind a cause is great. There are lots of diseases and illnesses that need support - but finding one cure will lead to other cures.

What else?

The first week of grade 1 is finished. woohoo! Kyle survived and now we are getting ready to enjoy the weekend.

Still having apple fest at our house and still on the hunt for the best uses for the surplus.

It is September 5 and I need to begin scrapbooking. That's more of a reminder to me because I come back to my blog often (in hopes of those beloved comments) and can use all the help I can get to remember to do stuff.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

apples, apples, we've got apples

Alright - what can I do with a tonne of apples... ok - not quite a tonne but I'm sure we've got more than 200 lbs once the tree is cleaned off. I've made apple crisp - which really - who can get enough of that... but what else? I'm looking for simple things - and something that will freeze - or something that you've had success with... yes - I will do my homework and use the internet to find this information but if you have a quick fix or something that you like to do with apples then let me know.

Oh and I found the Space Needle... I gotta say - I really expected it to stick out of the landscape when we flew over... in the post from yesterday look at the square roof in the middle of the photo and look left - you'll see a circle - and that's it.

This was taken from the Seattle aquarium - which I didn't know existed until we walked by the sign. I guess they don't need tourists. We went shopping at a cool Seattle stuff store near the aquarium and then walked back to the market - AWESOME!

Wednesday, September 03, 2008


Well friends it's September and with that comes the first day of grade 1. CRAZY! Yesterday was a half day and today was the beginning of full days. Yesterday we got the jolly - hey one of the kids in class has lice - YUCK! - letter but nothing else. Which has left me surprised because his kindergarten teacher was really good about talking with us and sending home stuff every day - well nearly every day.

Michael did ok yesterday - being dropped off alone again, but today he was a cling on and mumbled about Kyle. It was the worst. It made me sad... but within a few minutes of talking and seeing other kids at daycare he was ok - off and playing - pretending to be a tiger. me... well I was still sad - I don't brush stuff off as quickly...

My trip to Ellensburg was great. A good learning opportunity and a chance to meet other economic development people. I've got a few new pictures below from the past couple of weeks since I've been slacking on here - but with slacking on here meant I got a lot of other stuff done at home... like picking up apples (hundreds of pounds again) and making cookies, and apple crisp and playing and working out and just living it up :) Plus work - but hey - you can only have soo many good things in life... that's a tease though because my work is great right now... I'm getting stuff finished and I should have some great announcements later this week on work I've been part of all year - hooray.

Can you find the space needle?

Democratic headquarters - I just wanted an Obama sign picture... if you look closely you'll see my taking the picture in the window...