Thursday, 29 January 2015

Very Vivian - Who's the Boss?

Vivian has always been independent, opinionated, and strong-willed.  I know that these are good qualities for her to have, but it can make things exhausting.  Sometimes the littlest things can send her over the edge because things have to be just so.  We have had many arguments because she can't find exactly what she's looking for, or has tragically forgotten her beloved blanket somewhere.  As a means of dealing with this, as well as saving my sanity, I started implementing a bit of a mantra.  

"You're in charge of your own stuff."

She likes it because it gives her responsibility and ownership over her things.  I like it because it stops a lot of arguments in their tracks.  "Mommy!  I can't find my blanket and I want it!"  "I don't know, Vivian.  Who's in charge of your stuff?"  "I am."  And then she'll head off to find it, typically right in front of her face.

It's worked out almost too well - now she's extended it to "I'm my own boss."  That part is a little trickier.  I have to follow it up with, "Well, you have to listen to people like Mommy and Daddy and Grandma and Grandpa and Oma and your teachers and, and, and, and, and."  She's far from being her own boss, such is the tragedy of being 4 years old.  I do, however, like to tell her, "You're the boss of your own body" because that's a concept I care about very deeply.  I always want her to feel confident and in charge of her own body and own person.  She seems pretty content to have "I'm my own boss" morph into "I'm in charge of my body and my stuff."

So for now she's the boss in a few somewhat limited areas, and I pretend to be the boss the rest of the time.

Monday, 26 January 2015

Treats of the Week - You Look Nice Today

Today was one of those classic Mondays - nothing too terrible, but somehow a collection of annoyances made up for kind of a crappy day.  I was told a few times that I looked nice though, so that always helps.  So if any of you had a crappy day today too, let me be the first to tell you that you look nice today.

  • Most of my meals last week consisted of leftover lasagna from my mom.  It was heavenly.
  • I had Early Bird for lunch with some coworkers and these delicious little fish tacos went in my face.

  • I had a lovely weekend of chill hangouts with great friends watching some Oscar movies - I'm getting close to having seen all the best picture nominees and acting category nominees!
  • Vivian has been watching a lot of Astro Boy lately, which has been awesome!  When we were at Chapters for my book club we found this set of 8 prints of Osamu Tezuka's art for only $9.99 and Vivian can't wait to have some hanging up in her room!

  • Bumping into people you know in unexpected places is always a nice treat.
  • I finished watching The Affair this week, and I quite enjoyed it!  Although I couldn't quite wrap my head around why anyone would step out on their husband when that husband is a rugged bearded Joshua Jackson.
  • Vivian had her first trip to the London Children's Museum yesterday and she loved it!  I was a little apprehensive about going, only because I was worried it wouldn't stand up to my memories since I loved going there so much as a kid.  I was quite impressed though - there was enough that was the same as I remembered to satiate my nostalgia, but enough had been nicely updated that it wasn't rundown.

  • I made some awesome new shirts as part of a Christmas present - but I'm going to do a specific blog post about that one!
  • My mom is basically the worst at going to the car wash.  We have been those people who somehow got off the tracks and had to be helped out by the staff.  We went to the car wash yesterday and were just saying how nice it is now that most car washes are updated that you don't have to drive into the tracks anymore.  As we pulled in, mom noticed the "Back Up" sign.  She asked if I had ever gotten the back up sign (I hadn't) and we mentioned how terrible it would be to get that sign lit up because it would surely spell disaster.  Not even two seconds later she pulled ahead too far and got the "Back Up" sign.  Because of course she did.  Luckily we managed to get through the car wash without any major disasters - just some mildly panicked children.
  • My dear Jenn has secured some Amy Schumer tickets for us in Windsor in March - we can't wait to spend an evening learning at the feet of the queen!

...and now it's time for bed.

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Am I using my foot wrong?

So I was at book club last night, where we were talking about boots. Because what kind of book club would we be if we actually talked about books the entire time? I was lamenting the fact that my beloved Sorels were looking a little worse for the wear - heavy salt stains and the right heel was worn through from driving. I thought that this happened to everyone's shoes - the right heel on most of my shoes is in a terrible state of disrepair from wearing them when I'm driving. Apparently this doesn't happen to everyone since I was met with some "What exactly are you doing when you're driving?!" 

I maintain that I'm doing nothing wrong. The scuffs are from balancing on my heel while I'm working the pedal. In the summer when I'm in sandals (or more likely barefoot) my right heel will be black and gross from driving. Maybe it's the heavy duty winter rubber mats I have? Or maybe I'm just a giant weirdo. That could be true. 

Monday, 19 January 2015

Treats of the Week - Blue Monday

Today is Blue Monday - the most depressing day of the year.  The holidays are behind us, but the bills are here.  The weather is cold and miserable, and the next long weekend is so far away.  If you're like me, you're also coming off of a terrible week which included a compromised bank account (so glad that someone else decided to spend a bunch of my money at an online gaming site), a forgotten purse, getting stuck at work until 5:30 p.m., and some god-awful viral illness that had me sleeping away two days while my throat closed up.  So that was fun.

Before getting into the silver linings that made the week tolerable, here's some New Order for you.

And here's the version by Orgy, because I'm just feeling so generous.

Now I have to resist the urge to fall down a YouTube rabbit hole of NuMetal...

Yes, it's been the kind of week that can only be cured by repeated viewings of Sherlock gifs.  Just because it makes me so darn happy. what was I saying?  Oh yes, treaty-treats.

  • Vivian asking to go to bed at 7pm.
  • The Oscar nominations came out this week and I am well on my way to viewing all of the Best Picture nominees before Oscar night.  I scratched American Sniper off my list on the weekend and am planning on watching The Theory of Everything, The Imitation Game, Selma, and Wild this week.
  • I might have had a crappy day when I found out about my bank account, but it was made marginally better when pretty new underwear came in the mail that day.
  • Also cheering me up after the bank account ordeal were the lovely friends who offered to help me out if I needed it, and my mom who always pulls through.
  • I was way too excited to find this set of Mysteries of the Universe books at Talize.  Not quite excited enough to take them home though.  I used to love scaring myself by reading these late at night when I was babysitting.

  • This week also saw me trying another escape room, this time in London.  Three new businesses have popped up since I had the chance to try out Adventure Rooms in Kitchener.  This time we emerged triumphant, conquering the Lost-themed room at Escape.  Even though I was still a little muddled from cold medication, it was a great time and I can't wait to try another one!  I'm going to do a more thorough post about these places soon though - don't worry!
  • I scored some bonus karma points by letting a kid take my turn at the walk-in clinic, even though the doctor seemed annoyed with me for doing it.
  • Friends who get HBO screeners are pretty darn awesome - I've now seen the first 5 episodes of the latest season of GIRLS and it's SO GOOD.
  • My favourite wine has quickly become 19 Crimes.  Not only is it tasty (the staff at the LCBO keep raving about it when I buy it) but the packaging is badass and the corks are awesome.  Each cork outlines a different one of the 19 Crimes that would have gotten you shipped off to Australia.  It's too expensive for me to have it all the time, but it's a nice treat and the start to a new collection!

  • My mom is finally understanding how I operate - after dishing up my dinner at her place yesterday she said, "Oh it looks so nice!  Take a picture of it for everyone!"

Okay folks, I have a date with a glass of that 19 Crimes and a couple of episodes of The Affair.  Have a week!

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Outfit of the Day - Polka Dots and Plaid

I'm sick and am about to crawl into bed and hide from the world for about 11 hours, but let's remember a time when I wasn't wandering around the house in pajamas and a housecoat, shall we?

I'd been wanting more of a Buffalo check plaid shirt for awhile because I thought it would look good with other prints - power clashing forever, yo.  I found this one on Boxing Day at the Superstore for about $15.  I was too lazy to try it on, which is a big downfall with me since I hate having to return things.  I found it was a little bit bigger than I like, but with button-down shirts they're always either a tiny bit too big or a tiny bit too small so I just kept it.

I decided to take it out for a spin last week and dress it up for work.  Because it was a little big it felt too '90s to have it just undone, and I wanted the polka dot top underneath to show so I decided to just tie it low at the front.  It's like a plaid non-sweater cardigan now.  Totally a thing.  This also helped keep it from looking too crunchy and new.

I love that little tank, I don't know if I've blogged about it before.  It's from H&M and is awesome for layering - I love the little lace detail at the top and it's perfectly stretchy and just the right length.  The fact that it was $7 doesn't hurt either!  You can't really tell that it's polka dotted in the above picture though, so you lucky readers get a dirty bathroom mirror selfie!  Hooray!

Also, I was totally running late for work that morning because I had to get up and shovel before I could leave the house but I still made sure to take pictures of my outfit because I have my priorities in order.

Yay for mixing prints!

Top - Joe Fresh
Tank - H&M
Skirt - Maurices
Tights - Joe Fresh
Boots - Maurices  (PS - those little wedge boots are like the best $30 I've ever spent.  I've worn those things almost every day since I got them!)

Monday, 12 January 2015

Treats of the Week - Yes I'm complaining about the snow

Ughhhhhh I know we have been very spoiled with this winter so far - especially when you consider what we had to deal with last year but man am I sick of the snow already.  Too many days in a row of terrible drives to work, early morning shovelling, late night shovelling, wet boots and cold hands is making me grumpy and tired.  I'll take my hibernation now, please.  Despite all my grumbling it was still a great week - now here's the treats before I head off to hide in my bed for several hours.

  • Just making it to work and home safely this week has been quite the treat - it was touch and go on some of those drives!
  • I want this shirt now, okay thanks.  And yes, most of the pictures on my phone are random screencaps of things.

  • Two of my favourites - Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen - are teaming up for a new comic called Descender and you can bet that it will be added to my pull list!

  • I've been trying to make a dent in my Oscar race movies and managed to get out to see Big Eyes and Inherent Vice over the weekend.  Two very different movies, but I enjoyed them both!
  • Vivian and I also had a sleepover at my friend Amanda's place - after the kids went to bed we had a bit of a mom's night in that started out innocently enough like this...

And ended up a little rougher like this.

Totally worth it though!

  • The next day we had to manage the kids though, so after they were wowed with some science experiments...

  • We ventured out to see Little Ray's Reptile Zoo for the travelling show.  I think this is Vivian's fourth time seeing them and she just loves it.  The kid is fearless - she wants to touch and hold everything!  Here she is holding a scorpion, giving zero fucks.

  • After Little Ray's we had to fight our way through a grocery store - no small feat with four little kids and two moms who had seen better days.  I had the two girls in my cart and right when I had about had it and was tired of telling them to stop touching everything the nice man who was ahead of me in line asked the girls to help push the button for the conveyor belt on his side.  They had a blast helping him with his groceries while I got ours bagged up.  The kindness of strangers!
  • GIRLS is back with season four and even though I have dropped HBO from my satellite package (shocking, I know) I have managed to procure the episode through some internet means and will now be heading to my bed to check it out.
Have a week everybody - stay warm out there!

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Go Gif Yourself

So when I'm working on a blog post I usually take a bunch of pictures, upload them all into a post and then decide which ones to use from there.  I find it easier to decide which ones I like best that way.  What I didn't realize was that when I do that, since my Blogger account is linked to my Google+ account (which I have zero idea how to use) Google does helpful things sometimes.  Apparently Google thinks it's useful to turn those series of photos into gifs.  Why I would ever need these, I'm not sure.  But, I think they're kind of entertaining, if only to give an idea of how many pictures I'll take for a blog post.  Enjoy!

Hmm, do I like skinnier with my cardigan over my boobs or not over my boobs...

Taking pictures in crowds is not awkward at all.

The people in the background make this one.

Sorry Blair, but I think this is a gif of you picking your nose.

Best one!

If she would stand still I wouldn't have to take so many pictures.

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Outfit of the Day - Something Other Than Yoga Pants

I don't know about you guys, but I spent the vast majority of the last two weeks in yoga pants.  The holidays are a wonderful and terrible time, and when yesterday morning rolled around and I had to actually put on real grown up clothes I think a little part of me died.  Luckily I had something new to help ease the transition.

You may recall that I have quite the fondness for trouser shorts.  It's weird, because I don't care to wear shorts in the summer, but make them dressy and pair them with tights and I'm all over it.  I used to have some, but they were pretty cheap and fell apart pretty quickly.  I'd been on the hunt for a new pair, but was having trouble finding some.  I was considering finding some actual pants and getting them hemmed into shorts, but that seemed like an excessive amount of effort.  Plus it would require actually trying on pants, which is terrible.  Luckily I came across these lovely little shorts while browsing for Boxing Day shopping sales online at the Gap.  $23 later I was in business.

I resisted the urge to just wear a white tank for my more typical combo of white/grey/black, but at the last minute figured that a little colour never hurts!  In all honesty, the shorts will probably look better once a few of those holidays cookies and snacks have found their way off my hips, but for the time being I still think they're cute.

The weird thing with wearing trouser shorts is I feel like you can get away with them being way shorter than if it was a skirt.  It basically functions as a skirt, but I feel like the rules are a little bit different, or at least that's what I tell myself.  It was a little disconcerting when I put on my winter coat and realized that maybe the shorts were just a bit shorter than I realized since they kind of disappeared.

Oh well, there are worse things.

Cardigan - Old Navy
Tank - Old Navy
Tights - Joe Fresh
Boots - Maurices
Coat - Columbia 

Monday, 5 January 2015

Treats of the Week - Cord Hoarding

Welcome to the cold dreariness that is January.  Winter is back, work is back - treats are more necessary than ever.

  • As much as it was nice to be off for the holidays, it will be nice to get back into a routine this week - if only to stop me from drinking coffee and snacking constantly throughout the day.
  • New Year's Eve can be a bit of a crapshoot - I don't like making big plans because you're bound to be disappointed.  A quiet night in worked just fine for me!
  • I've been well under way on my resolution of doing some organizing.  I even tackled my dark secret - I hoard cords and cables.  I managed to sort through the massive drawer tower I had and got it down to a normal amount (did I really need that many audio visual cables?  No.)  My organizing has even spilled over to organizing shelves in a friend's house, which either makes me the best or the worst guest ever.

  • It was so nice on January 2nd that Vivian and I took her bike to the park - never would have imagined we would have been able to do that after the winter we had last year!
  • I've been killing it when it comes to TV watching (yes, that's something to be proud of).  I burned through all of Black Mirror (it has changed my whole world - I would say that it's the best thing on television right now) and the first season of Orphan Black (amazing - love it!) as well as season 5 of Downton Abbey (oh the scandal!).  It's just so much more efficient than watching shows week to week - I think I'm going to let my regular programming pile up a bit to work my way through a few more seasons of stuff.  So much to watch, so little time.
  • Vivian has a new favourite movie - The Nightmare Before Christmas.  I also showed her The Princess Bride, although she dozed off partway through.  Her nerd training is well under way.
  • While watching The Princess Bride, we had this exchange - "See, Vivian?  That's a real giant!  And that guy is the voice of Rex from Toy Story!" Vivian, seeing Inigo, "Mommy, what's his name?"  "Oh don't worry, honey, he will tell you his name."
  • People steal my pens at work all the time - it never fails.  Today I was going over some paperwork with a defendant and his friend and when the defendant almost walked off with my pen his friend told him, "Give the lady back her pen!"  I don't know why, but it struck me as so funny.
  • I'm a little obsessed with this set of brushes that I got Vivian for the point that I don't want her to use it because it just looks so pretty!

There's a gold medal game happening, folks!  Go Canada Go!