Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Encyclopedias? Really?

Who actually goes out in search of a set of encyclopedias these days?


Why, that would be me of course!

Yes, I picked up this 1940s set of encyclopedias thanks to a listing on Freecycle.  They're so pretty, I love them so much.  Almost too much - I'm kind of dreading tearing them apart.  See, as usual I have a bunch of crazy projects planned for these, at least one of which includes tearing them apart just a little bit.

What do you think?  Did you love encyclopedias when you were a kid like I did?  Have any good projects to recommend?  It's still too cold to spray paint, so I need something else to do!

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Outfit of the day - All About the Shoes

So I wasn't going to blog about this outfit in particular, but then two people at work told me I looked sexy, which is about 200 times more than I usually hear that, so I figured it was worth a blog post.  Plus I get bonus points because this skirt was one that I bought just before I went back to work and I can now take it on and off without undoing it.  Yay!


The real star of this outfit are my hot new shoes - they're from ShoeDazzle but I got them off of Facebook.  They didn't fit the girl who ordered them, so I got to snag them for $30!  Yay!


They're insanely high, and I love them.  They're just a smidge too big though, which made walking a little awkward.  Some insoles should fix that right up.


Cardigan - George
T-shirt - Smart Set
Skirt - Pure by Alfred Sung
Shoes - Shoe Dazzle

Monday, 27 February 2012

Grandpa's Secret Family



I'm sorry, but what the hell is going on in this commercial?  Why is this woman so charmed by the fact that she found multiple marriage certificates for her grandfather?  Did he have a bunch of secret families or was he just a cad who left a trail of heartbroken women in his wake?  Shouldn't this woman be concerned about secret relatives?  Maybe her husband is actually her cousin - who the hell knows!

Seriously, what is the deal with this commercial?

Friday, 24 February 2012

Vivian Vendredi - In Mom's Shoes

It seems that Vivian has developed quite the interest in shoes lately.  If there are any shoes left out of the closet, she's carrying them around and trying to put them on.  When I get her up in the morning, the first thing she goes for are her little pink Crocs.  She'll hand them to me and stick her little foot out just waiting to get them on.

I couldn't be more proud.

So when I brought home my new pair of amazing and crazy tall high heels, of course Vivian was all over them.




She'll have her first pair of stilettos in no time.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Oscars!



It's the Oscars this weekend!  Do you all get excited about the Oscars like I do?  I love curling up on the couch to watch all dozen hours of it or however long it takes.  I've been watching it every year since I was about 12 I think.  Even if I'm exhausted the next day, I just have to stay up until the bitter end to see who snags that Best Picture trophy.

I love the fashion, I love the speeches, I love the presenters - but mostly I love being in the know.

I love waking up the next day and knowing about the dress they're talking about on the radio, and which celebrity did something outrageous.  What can I say, I'm kind of slutty with my pop culture intake - I want it all!

One day I would love to go to a big fancy Oscars party, where people make bets on the winners and eat movie-themed snacks (Cheese Moneyball, anyone?)  I know that's about the dorkiest thing ever, but I would totally go.  Yes, this is the place where I'm soliciting for invitations.  If you host such a party, invite me!

What about you?  Do you dive in for the whole red carpet pre-show and full awards show with a big glass of Diet Pepsi and bowl of popcorn like me?  Or do you avoid the whole spectacle and prefer to just check out the dresses and winners the next morning?


Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Tuesday's Gone.



I was stuck for a blog idea this morning.  I have a bunch of stuff waiting in the draft folder, but wasn’t inspired to finish any of it.  Then I went to lunch with my friend, Jerri.  Hi Jerri!  Jerri and I have a very simple formula for our lunch dates – we go to Wendy’s and we talk about TV and movies.  Today was no exception as we bantered back and forth with the latest scheduling news and DVD release dates.  As we talked about upcoming DVDs that would be coming out, I mentioned how we have gotten away from the Tuesday release.  So now you get to hear me rant about it.

There used to be a very simple order to the world.  Books, CDs, and DVDs came out on Tuesdays.  Comics came out on Wednesdays.  Magazines came out on Thursdays.  Movies were released on Fridays.  That was just the way of the world.  But lately, it seems like anything goes.  Movies have Thursday midnight releases.  Or they come out on a Wednesday.  Seriously – what the hell is that?  I understand that sometimes they’re released early to get in on a holiday weekend and increase their premiere grosses, but seriously.  DVDs will be released on Fridays or Sundays or whenever the hell they want.  It’s just insanity.

Have we become so fast-paced and focused on our instant gratification that we can’t look forward to designated days anymore?  Isn’t it bad enough that we can watch movies and TV shows on demand whenever we want thanks to the internet and a million other resources?  Is nothing sacred?

Now, I’m basically the most impatient person in the world, but I love Tuesday releases.  I love going to Best Buy or Future Shop and checking out the board to see what came out this week and what I can look forward to next week.  When you start messing with the releases and having special days devoted just to your release (I’m looking at you, Twilight) it just throws off my whole cabbage patch.

Am I right?  Or am I going off the deep end about nothing here? 

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Hot or Cold



I think we can all agree that there are some foods that are just better cold than hot.  Or at least room temperature - why does everything taste better at room temperature?  Anyway, one of my favourites is egg rolls.  As delicious as a hot egg roll is, I love a cold one even more.  There's nothing better than stealing a leftover egg roll out of the fridge in the morning for breakfast.  Love it.

So what else is better cold than hot?  The obvious top answers are pizza and KFC.  You know why pizza is better cold?  Because it actually stays together.  I had it when you're eating a piece of hot pizza and all the toppings slide off in one bite so you end up with just saucy dough and crust.  With KFC you could argue that the skin is better when it's hot, but I find the piece of chicken as a whole is better when cold.  Yes, I've given this a lot of thought.

What are the lesser known ones?  How about anything breaded?  That would all fall into the room temperature category.  Mozzerella sticks?  Chicken fingers?  Jalapeno poppers?  Well, I don't eat those because I'm a wimp.  But I'm pretty sure they would fit here too.  They just taste better after they've been sitting out for a bit.  Ooh, potato skins fall into this category too.

Kraft dinner works better cold too, don't you think?  Or one of my favourites is Chef Boyardee ravioli straight outta the can.  Yes, I might have a little white trash in me.  Don't hate.

McDonald's cheeseburgers?  Leave them in the bag for a little while.  Mr. Noodles?  Make a perfectly acceptable cold lunch.

What do you think?  What tastes better cold than hot?  Is there anything that's supposed to be cold and tastes better hot?

Monday, 20 February 2012

Outfit of the Day - Sweater Dress Style

It's Family Day today, which means that instead of going to work, I'm laying around in pajamas until I have to do something.  But instead of seeing there, here's an outfit from a couple of weeks ago.  I love this sweater dress.  I stalked it for ages until it finally went on sale.  I've had it for a few years and I always get compliments on it.


Once at work I was in the cells reading a probation order to a prisoner and he says, "I have to ask you where you got that dress.  My girlfriend would love it!"

Yes, I take compliments wherever I can get them.


Boots - Same old Payless boots (Yes, I wear them to work a lot)
Dress - Smart Set
Tights - Whatevs, I don't remember where they're from.

Friday, 17 February 2012

Vivian Vendredi - Kitty!

video

Today is kind of a crazy day, so I just grabbed a quick video of Vivian this morning.  She's been talking a lot more lately, but "Kitty!" seems to be her favourite thing to yell.  Most of her talking is still repeating things like cookie, drink, eggs - stuff like that.  Not a whole lot of independent words yet, but it's coming along!

Hopefully I can get a better video of her talking soon - I guess she wasn't too chatty at 6:30 this morning (even though she slept through the night AGAIN!)

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Come House Stalking With Me!

Can we all talk about how awesome Google Maps is?  Seriously, how did we ever function before it?  I love to use it to check out a place before I go there to buy something from Kijiji (My rule is to only buy stuff from people who have nicer houses and drive nicer cars than I do) or to scope out parking at a place I've never been to before or just for some good old fashion internet stalking.  Don't judge, you've done it too.  I know it!

And so today with the help of the magic of Google Maps I thought I would share some of my favourite houses in London with you.  I love London.  I loved living here, and I'm so glad that I get to be here every day for work.  Sure it's a pain driving to work (and my car is about to hit 200,000 kms) but I am still enchanted with some of the neighbourhoods and am constantly falling in love with houses.  There are so many crazy big amazing houses in this area (hello, Plunkett Estate!) but there are also loads of smaller, unique, charming houses.  Here are my faves!


And of course I start with one that isn't even a house.  This little apartment building is at Richmond and Huron, maybe you recognize it.  I fantasized about living here the entire time I was in university.  I love those itty-bitty balconies and imagine that the place is filled with creative types who line their windowsills with books and share meals with their neighbours in a cool-sitcomy way.  It's probably actually filled with old people who will never ever leave.  I've never once seen a for rent or for sale sign on this building.


If you ever took any classes at King's College, you might recognize this place.  Just a bit further down Huron from my apartment building is this lovely house that has the unfortunate circumstance of having a very busy bus stop right in front.  I've spent many hours standing on those gnarled tree roots waiting for the 1 Kipps Lane bus to pick me up.  But seriously - look at that front porch!  I would live on that porch, just sitting there reading.

Oh, Wortley Road.  I love, love, love Wortley Village and it's just chock full of beautiful amazing houses, but this one just calls to me with that unique panel on the left side.  I love big, old houses and this one is just awesome.  Again with the great front porch!

Urgh, this one is frustrating.  I'm obsessed with the house on the left, but you can barely see it for the tree.  This is why Google Maps needs to have winter and summer versions.  How are you supposed to sufficiently stalk places if you can barely see it?  Frustrating.  Anyway, this house is on Commissioners Road, right across from Springbank Park.  It's very, very similar to the house on the right, which is why I included it in the picture.  The house on the left is WAY better though because the slanted roof is just one big slant, not broken like on the right.  It also has a nicer stone exterior and bigger front windows.  It's so midcentury and delicious, I picture it having a big sunken living room with awesome updated shag carpeting where I could lounge and drink martinis.  What?  Is that weird?  Seriously, I want to have a fancy cocktail party in this house.  Someone find me the owners.

So there's a few of my faves in the good old Forest City.  What about you?  Where are your favourite houses?  Are you a crazy Google Maps stalker too?  It's okay, you can admit it.  This is a safe place.

For even more house-stalking fun, check out this MLS listing while it's still active.  Who knew there was a Scottish castle in Delaware, Ontario?

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Spoiler Alert!

There are two types of people in this world.  Spoilerphobes and Spoilerphiles.

Spoilerphobes avoid spoilers at all costs.  They don't want to know what's happening on next week's episode, they don't want to know how the movie ends, the don't want to know about the crazy twist that you can't see coming.  They just don't want to know anything.  They like to be pure and just experience things as they were meant to be.  God help you if you accidentally spoil a spoilerphobe.  You could end up with a flipped dining room table and someone crying in the car because they found out how the latest season of Dexter ends.  Beware the spoilerphobe.  You can identify them by their tightly covered eyes and constant "Lalalalala" sound when you're talking about the latest "Ask Ausiello" post on TVLine.

Then there's the spoilerphiles.  That's me.  We scour casting announcements.  We read upcoming episode descriptions.  We beg for you to tell us how the movie ends.  We read the wiki article of a movie while watching it.  We read recaps of episodes we haven't watched yet.  We don't like surprises.  We like control.

When the season 3 finale of LOST was leaked online, I read it.  I spoiled one of the greatest twists ever.  I won't spoil it for you here, but if you've seen it, you know what I'm talking about.  Do I regret it?  Yeah, a little bit.  But you know what?  It didn't make me enjoy it any less.  It still hit me hard.  That's just the way I am, even if I know something is coming, I can still enjoy it.  I don't need the shock factor.

Is it fun to be surprised?  Sure, sometimes.  But is it fun to be spoiled and know what's coming and be dying with anticipation to see it actually come to fruition.

Where do you stand on spoilers?  And if you love them - tell me where you get your good spoilers!


Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Like Mother, Like Daughter

Like many people, the older I get, the more I realize I'm just like my mom.  It comes out in different ways at different times, but here's my example from last weekend.

On Saturday, Vivian and I were invited over for dinner and a movie by our friends, Dan and Amanda.  After dinner we were all chatting and Vivian was somehow running around the house with a plastic bag.  Being the terrible mother I am, I was letting her run around and put it on her head.  She was within arm's reach, whatever.  As she was playing with the bag, I mentioned one of my favourite scenes from Mad Men where Betty Draper informs Sally Draper on the true dangers of playing with dry cleaning bags.



So imagine my surprise when the next day we were at my mom's place and Vivian was once again running around with a plastic bag and my mom exclaimed, "Vivian, there had better not be any dry cleaning on the closet floor!"

Great minds think alike!

Monday, 13 February 2012

Outfit of the Day - Weekend Edition

It occurred to me that by only showing outfits that I wear to work, it seems like I've got it all together.  So to balance things out, I figured I would show you what a slob I am on the weekends when I don't have to dress like a grown-up!  Here's Saturday's outfit.



What you can't tell is that my jeans are actually covered in applesauce, and I don't care.




Yes, I'm wearing a LOST-themed sweater and T-shirt.  Doubled up on awesome!

Dharma Sweater - Ebay
What Would John Locke Do? T-shirt - TeeFury
Jeans - Parasuco for Smart Set

Friday, 10 February 2012

Vivian Vendredi - Daycare is Awesome

So Vivian's been going to daycare full-time, five days a week for about six weeks so far and she's doing so well.  Daycare is awesome, it's totally worth it just to see how much progress she's making.

She's eating better, she's sleeping better (I don't want to say just how much better though, I'm afraid to jinx the awesome week of sleep she's been having!), she's talking more and just generally seems to be growing up super quickly.


I'm totally not one of those parents who is like "I miss my little baby, stop growing up!"  I love seeing her change and grow.  I find this is a really, really difficult age with her.  It's so hard to keep her entertained and she's just on the verge of things like listening and holding my hand when we walk somewhere, so I can't wait for her to get a little older and be able to communicate more.


She has definitely mastered pointing though.


I love how she runs to the door when I go get her, holding her arms out like a little zombie and saying "Mom", I love how she wants to cuddle with me on the couch when we get home, and how she's so tuckered out by bedtime that she'll just snuggle on my chest, and then wave goodbye when I ask if she's ready for bed.


And I love how when she's driving me crazy on Sunday night, I know that the next morning it's back to daycare!

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Catchphrases

Maybe you can tell just from reading the blog, since I've often been told that I write exactly the way I speak, but I tend to repeat the same phrases all the time.

Can you guess which ones I'm notorious for?

"I know!"

That's probably my number one.  What can I say, I'm in touch with my inner Monica!  If you don't know what I'm talking about, check out this terrible, terrible YouTube clip.



I've been mixing it up a bit lately though, and trying to use "Right?!" instead of "I know", but somehow it's turned into "I know, right?!" which is probably even more annoying.

Another one I'm quite fond of is "Who does that?!" which is usually said in a squealing, shrill tone.  I'm awesome to be around.

I've also found that lately I've been saying "No worries" and "Whatevs" a lot, because apparently I think I'm Australian.

What about you?  Any famous phrases?  Or can you call me on some that I've forgotten?


Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Making Time for my First Love

I'm a reader.  Always have been.  When I was little, I used to push my books around in my baby carriage instead of dolls.  True story.  I've never not had a book to read, there is always at least one book being dragged around in my purse.  But since having Vivian, I've been finding that I have less and less time to read, and it kills me.

Right now I'm reading George R. R. Martin's "A Game of Thrones"



I'm one of those people who fell in love with the HBO series and now I want to read all the books.  Of course, at the same time I'm reading...



That was our book club pick for last month, and I'm still not done it.  What is the deal with this book?  Why can't I get into it?  Everyone said you kind of have to plough through the first 100 pages or so and then it picks up, but I'm through the first 100 pages and just can't stick with it.  I hate not finishing books though, so I'll keep sticking with it.

Then I have this month's book club pick to get through...


I haven't bought it yet, so I should probably get on that.

Then of course there's the lovely stack of reading beside my bed that I'm dying to get to...



Yes, I haven't started the new Chuck Palahnuik yet.  I hate myself.



It's tormenting having this staring at me.



I will get to you too, Tom Robbins!



Oh, I do love a good non-fiction.

Then there's all the books that I want to pick up, but won't let myself until I get through the ones I already have.



 I WANT THIS SO BAD!



We're reading this for book club in July I think.  I can't wait!

Oh, and then in May the new Sookie Stackhouse book, "Deadlocked" comes out and I'll have to read that right away.  Plus the small mountain of comic books also sitting beside my bed waiting to be read.

Sigh, the problem with reading is I can't multi-task it.  I always find time for TV and folding laundry and interneting and Pinteresting because I can do it in conjunction with something else.  Not so with reading!  I'll have to start making more of a commitment to sitting down and reading when I have a few minutes.  Having a lunch break at work again has helped.

What are you reading?  Do you keep a stack of books on the nightstand too?  Just staring you in the face begging you to read them?

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

What's with today, today?

How have you been?  Because anyone I've talked to lately has been just miserable lately.  Everyone seems to have something going on that's just making them blah.  I'm told there's a full moon coming, and while I'm generally not very hippy dippy about stuff like that, I really do think that full moons do crazy things to people.  A few years of working in a group home and a few more of working in a court are enough to make me believe it.

So I've been in a little daze lately.  You know those times where you just feel foggy and don't totally know why?  That's me.  Of course, I'm a crazy person, so instead of being all lazy about it, it makes me want to be hyper productive to try and balance myself out.  I've got the urge to purge and can't wait to start going through some closets and desks and make myself a to-do list and get stuff DONE!

I'll post my to-do list and completed projects as I go (first up?  Finally installing that damn dishwasher.) but in the meantime, I'll leave you with a song that's been exploding my brain lately, in a good way.



Are you fighting a case of the blahs?  Is it the weird in-between weather we've been getting?  Is it the moon?  Something else all up in your grille?  How do you deal?

Monday, 6 February 2012

Outfit of the Day - Hey, look I'm wearing pants!

Are you noticing a trend with these posts?  Cardigan + skirt/shorts + black tights = ready for work in my world.  I do occasionally wear pants though.  Not very often, admittedly.  Right now I only have two pairs of work pants that I like wearing, so I probably only wear pants to work once a week.  It can be a nice change though!


Shirts are never long enough for me.  Damn boobs make everything too short.  I love this blousey top, so I've been layering it with a longer T-shirt so I don't end up looking like a giant cube.  This is actually a problem I have.

My hair looks pretty good in these pictures.  Must have been a day where I actually bothered to blow dry it.



God, I hate how honey-coloured these floors are.

Pants - Suzy Shier
Purple top - Old Navy
Green top - Smart Set
Shoes - Bootlegger

Friday, 3 February 2012

Vivian Vendredi - Strike a Pose

Here's something you might not know.  If I haven't posted Vivian's blog until late in the day, it's because I have to take a picture of her to include in the post.  Yes, somehow I've gone from being a parent who takes dozens of pictures a day of their precious little one to somehow managing to go a whole week without taking a single picture.  Children's Aid should be here any moment.

Luckily, this week I have a picture I just picked up from a Valentine's session with Partington Photography, a local company.  They do sessions at Under the Moon, a store here in Strathroy.  Unfortunately, I don't know how to work my scanner or anything properly, so it's all blurry and weird.  It's better than nothing though, and she's already in bed for the night so I'm not taking another picture of her today!

Yes, she's wearing Crocs.  No, I'm not impressed.  But she's obsessed with them, so I can't really say no to her.  Love her little model walk - she threw the balloon up in the air and started walking up to Jennifer to try and get the camera.  Always the demon.


Thursday, 2 February 2012

Xs and Os for xoJane

I have a new obsession.  It's not really new for me to get new obsessions, but this one is particularly exciting, because it connects to an old obsession.

I mentioned in my love of Jane magazine in my post about my pre-Pinterest binders.  They were so great. I can remember the day I stopped reading Cosmopolitan.  It was when I came across an article on how to get the perfect giggle.  So not for me.  Jane was full of exciting, interesting articles about clothes and makeup, sure, but also about social issues and politics and self-esteem.

You guys - Jane has been reborn as xoJane.com.  What will you find at xoJane?  Well, let's see what the site has to say about itself...

"xoJane.com is where women go when they are being selfish, and where their selfishness is applauded.  This is not the place to find out how to please your husband, mom, kids or boss.  This is the place to indulge in what makes you feel good.

We are not snarky, but inclusive and uplifting, while remaining nothing but honest at all times.  Like Sassy and Jane before it, xoJane.com is written by a group of women (and some token males) with strong voices, identities and opinions, many in direct opposition to each other, who are living what they are writing about.

xoJane.com is not about changing yourself to fit any mold of what others think you should be.  It is about celebrating who you are."


Doesn't that sound like the greatest thing ever?  Don't you want to just compulsively read everything on the site?  I do!

Clothes, books, travel, fat-shaming, sex, gender issues, protesting, medical marijuana, lip injections...you name it, this site has it.  The writers are amazing, and because of the policy of having to include a picture of themselves with every article, you really feel like you know them.  (Emily, Cat and Julieanne are my favourites!)

It's where I go when I need a break, when I just need to zone out and read something easy and they usually leave me laughing out loud over their crazy stream of consciousness writing style - that is, when they're not breaking my heart with some wrenching "It Happened to Me" article.

Seriously, check it out.  Then fall in love, and be cool like me and constantly be saying "Oh, I read it on xoJane!"

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Outfit of the Day - Work to Tool

I went to the TOOL concert in London last week, which was awesome.  It was my third time seeing them and they are totally worth seeing live if you ever get the chance.

The problem with that day was it was one of those crazy days where my feet hit the floor at 5:30 a.m. and I didn't stop until 1:30 a.m.  So rather than having a fight with a pair of jeans, I just left my work clothes on for the concert.  I told myself that the skirt was plaid and therefore kind of grunge and therefore appropriate for a concert.  Plus I changed out of the heeled boots and into the more casual brown boots that I always wear. Plus, I really didn't care.



Top - George (secondhand for $1)
Skirt - Smart Set (clearance for $7)
Tights - Zellers (I bought them in extra large and extra tall and they still won't stay opaque on my stupid giant legs.  Grr.)
Boots - Payless

Here's a fun fact - I always push my sleeves up like that.  I seem to have oddly long arms, because sleeves usually aren't long enough.  So I just push them up to make it look intentional, rather than having my shirts end an inch before my wrist.  I would have been awesome on Miami Vice.

I am a master at rewearing the same couple of items!