Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Olympic Flame makes it's way through Canada...

I have always been a big fan of the Olympics. I don't watch any sports usually, mostly because I never have any idea what is going on, but for whatever reason I find the Olympics the most exciting thing ever. Next year, the Olympics will be in Vancouver, and while I am extremely sad that I am not going, I am extremely happy that they will be held in Canada. I'm looking forward to seeing a sea of Canadian flags at some of the events. And believe you me, I cry like a baby whenever a Canadian athlete wins a gold medal and the national anthem plays. Actually, I tear up whenever I hear the national anthem anywhere. Baseball game, school just happens. I think one of the things I miss most about grade school/high school is getting to hear the national anthem every day. It just makes me really...happy.

Anyway, the Olympic torch is on it's way through Canada, making stops in several communities along the way. One of those stops was right here in St. Kitties.

I did have some issues with some things, like the Olympic t-shirts they were selling coming in plastic bags with MADE IN BANGLADESH written in giant bold letters. But all in all, I can look past these things because it was an event that really brought the community, and by extension, the country together.

Canada is a huge country, and sometimes it is hard to feel connected to your fellow Canadians when they live so far away. It's not like being Belgian or something. Events like the Olympics have the ability to really bring a country together, because we are all cheering for the same thing-for the Canadians to beat the Americans at something; at anything. :)

I liked the way the Olympic Torch Relay was organized, because it was made into a community event in each individual community. The Torch Bearers in St. Catharines were people that have made a significant contribution to this community. The man pictured running with the torch, Mike Accursi, is a local high school teacher and professional lacrosse player. Each person in the Torch Relay got to run with the Olympic Flame for 300 metres before passing it off to the next person. Seriously, how cool would that be?? It was really amazing to watch, so I can't imagine the emotion if you actually got to carry it.

Lighting the Olympic cauldron.

It was basically a sea of red and white and flags. Great to see.

Ice sculpture!

Elusive mittens that were extremely hard to come by! I waited in line for a long time, but when I got to the front they were sold out. Then today my co-worker came in and was like, "they had one pair left at Zellers, I got you some!!" Awesome!!

Bring on the bobsled Vancouver, I can't wait!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Travel Tuesday-New York, New York

Once upon a time, a young girl named Meg dreamed of going to a place she saw only in the movies: New York. With it's skyscrapers, it's shopping, it's culture, it's history, it's people, it was so very different from the small Canadian town she grew up in. She dreamed about it for years, until one day, when Meg was 15 years old. She was going along with her family on a trip to Florida and while Meg does love the sun, she's not one for sitting on the beach for any length of time. At least she wasn't then.

"But", her parents said, "there's one more thing, "on our way to Florida we are stopping in New York City."

This was quite possibly the most exciting news Meg had ever heard in her 15 years of life. She burst into tears. So this is what it felt like to actually have a dream come true.

You might think that New York could never live up to such high expectations, but it did. That first trip began a love affair that will likely last until my dying days. New York City is hands down, my favourite place on Earth. And I have a lot of love for a lot of places. But oh, that city.

If someone were to ask me why I love it so much, I don't even know if I could put it into words. It's a bit like the love I have for Bette Midler; fierce, yet kind of unexplainable.

It was great to see the city at Christmas time. I mean for a city that bubbles with energy all the time, then it absolutely oozes it at Christmas time. If you go to New York at Christmas and don't leave filled to the brim with Christmas spirit, something ain't right.

So I present to you, a photo diary of my trip to New York City. I love New York, I love New York, I LOVE New York.

I have several hundred more pictures, but I didn't want to go overboard. More stories to follow.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Furry Friday

Alright, I actually broke out my camera again last night! The runs are pretty much frozen, so we can bring the dogs out there again. And the weather was pretty nice last night, making it much easier to press buttons. I only had one pair of gloves on!

I'll be the first one to admit that Chihuahua's are cute, but I don't think I could ever have one. I would be afraid of stepping on him/her all the time...and really, it wouldn't take much to crush a chihuahua. I don't trust my clumsy self with that. The constant shaking they do is somewhat endearing...but it's like...are you actually cold, or are you just trying to get my sympathy? This wee one is only 4 months old, but I don't imagine he'll get much bigger. He's adopted already, natch.

Does anybody else have this problem with Blogger? Why do the pictures upload sideways when they are clearly the right way on my computer?? If someone could enlighten me as to what I'm doing wrong, I'd be eternally grateful. Anyways, this is the elk hound! He's only 4 months, and I'm pretty sure by the time he's done growing he'll be the size of a deer.

Again with the sideways. Oy. I'm not sure why this dog is back...I couldn't get a sensical answer. But he's getting so big. His body has elongated completely since I saw him last.

The ears!! I'm so obsessed with this dogs ears. Can you imagine being a basset hound puppy? People would just be constantly tugging at your ears. Just like Dumbo.

Ah, they are getting so big! I cannot even handle going in the room with the puppies. I want to pick them all up, and they are constantly jumping and crying, and it's almost too much cuteness to handle. Almost.

All the doggies had Christmas bandanas on last night which was extremely adorable. How is it that dogs in bandanas look 12 times cuter than dogs without bandanas? But it was very festive!

Happy Weekend everybody! There will be a New York related travel post next Tuesday. Cross my heart. has just informed me that "sensical" is not actually a word. Huh! And to think of the number of times I've used it in a sentence...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Cloris Leachman and other random thoughts...

I think my mind was officially blown last night. By Cloris Leachman. I was watching Prancer (aka, one of the best Christmas movies ever!) and Cloris Leachman came on screen, and I was just like...1) Cloris Leachman is awesome, and 2) she's like in every great movie ever, 3) her name is Cloris.

I love the movie Prancer for so many reasons. The drama! "Without Prancer, there's nothing left for me in this town". Ummm okay, 9 year old girl! Dramatic much? I just googled "Prancer quotes", and a movie came up called "Prancer Returns". Starring John Corbett!! How did I go through my entire life not knowing there was a sequel to Prancer??? It has the exact same plot as the first movie, except it's with a boy. I have to find this.

Anyway! Cloris Leachman. Seriously though, she is in like...everything!

-Bad Santa
-Now and Then
-The Ellen Show
-The Beverley Hillbillies
-A Little Piece of Heaven (Anyone remember this movie? Kirk Cameron? I had this taped on videocassette and I seriously watched it approximately 100 times). This is the exact description from IMBD: "Will Loomis is living with his retarded sister Violet, who wants a younger child to play with, so Will 'kidnaps' one (and then another) child from the local children's home. The child is told it is dead and gone to heaven. Will and Violet try to make their farm a little piece of heaven for the kids, while the authorities wonder what has happened to the kidnapped children." Bwahahaha, amazing. I wish I still had that.
-Ferris Bueller
-The Facts of Life
-Young Frankenstein
-plus like 8 million more things.

Wow, I can't believe I talked that long about Cloris Leachman. But seriously, every time I see her, I'm always like, "Cloris Leachman again??" and I'm just amazed.

I think one of my goals for 2010 is going to be to get her autograph. I'm totally adding it to the list. Wish me luck!

I'm going to try very hard to get good pictures of the pups tonight, because some of the dogs there now are pretty great. A little Chihuahua puppy, who needs to be lifted out of his kennel because his legs are two skinny for the grate. An Elk Hound puppy. An elk hound!! A blue tick coon hound puppy!! ahhhhh. I can't even handle it. I'm such a nerd about dog breeds that I haven't seen in real life before. I saw the elk hound puppy and I practically jumped up and down. Commence mocking!

Anyway, my head is slightly clearer today than it has been in a while. I am not going to apply for the job I was talking about earlier this week. I'm leaving this job soon. And I'm really just going to try and go for it. Life that is. I feel good about these decisions, and my head has now quieted some. It's nice.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I don't even know...

I just gotta say, my posting will be sporadic until next week, when I have 11 glorious days off of work. I apologize for the lack of a travel story yesterday, but I just...I have no excuse other than...this time of year is busy yo!

I'm working on a editorial for the local newspaper on breed specific legislation...that is due next week. I'm working on a travel piece for a contest. I'm also doing an oh so exciting article on Unusual Driving Laws in's all great, I love it, but it means I need to take a break from here for a bit. Not to mention all the fun Christmas stuff: eating to excess, visiting with friends, drinking, guarding the Christmas village in case somebody tries to move something, you know! Also the baking. And the shopping...which I have barely even started. I know I will be regretting that, because if there is one thing I hate about Christmas, it's busy malls. One time, when we were shopping at Christmas time, one of my friends started to shout really loud, "oh my god, I'm having a panic attack, I need to get out", and then I dragged her behind me while parting the crowd. It was all a ruse. That's how badly we needed to get out of the crowd. Why am I talking about this??

Anyways. I'll be back. I just wanted ya'll to know I'm alive. I'm off to the shelter now to set up a paw washing station. It's a glamorous life people.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Unfurry Friday

Well, a plethora of things happened last night which prohibited pictures from being taken. The main issue was that I was wearing so many pairs of gloves, that I could not bend my fingers to hold the camera properly, let alone press a button. Gale force winds plus freezing cold temperatures did not make for a great time. I even upped my shivering in the hopes that somebody in the Tim Horton's line would perhaps buy me a hot chocolate, but nooooo. Bastards.

I went to check on the puppies from last week, and I was going to take more pictures so you could see how big there are getting. But when I took out my camera, my battery was dead. Pictures were just not meant to be last night I guess! Also, I kept picking up and squeezing the puppies only to later discover they were covered in crap, thus covering my jacket in crap. It was unpleasant.

I undid my coat so it wasn't completely obvious that I was covered in dog shit, and as I was walking out, another volunteer was walking in. He showed me a newspaper clipping about Charlie's new home (he's become a local celeb ya'll!! haha, so cute), and then he was like, "it smells like dog shit in here". To which I could only reply, "yes, that would be me". I decided that would be a great time to leave, as being the smelliest thing in a dog shelter is a hard task, but there I was.

I wish I had a fun story about last night, but nothing really happened. I think I might have blacked out from the cold. I was wearing jeans, and I believe that's where I went wrong. I was bundled up like crazy, but my legs were frozen. Next week, I'm breaking out the long johns.

Isn't it weird how long johns can be both an undergarment and a donut? What the what?

I logged on to Facebook today and I had a realization. Facebook depresses the ever living piss out of me. If I see one more status that says "I'm engaged!!! <3", I am going to rip shit. I love feeling like everybody's life is just moving along, and I'm stuck here. Thanks for nothing Facebook. These are usually people I'm not even actually friends with, so I'm not too sure a) why they are on my list, and b) why I even care, but whoomp there it is. I dunno, I just had a very "I hate Facebook!!" moment today, and I thought I'd share.

Are these stream of consciousness posts working for anybody? I'll get back to actual writing next week, but this is honestly sort of fun.

I signed up for a Pet First Aid course on Sunday. Pet First Aid!! And it starts at 9 o'flippin clock in the morning. I'm sort of excited, but also sort of apprehensive. There is a lunch break. And in my experience, there is not much that is more awkward than eating lunch with a bunch of strangers whom you were thrown together with during a one day course. You would be surprised the number of times this has happened to me. I'm an awkward person to begin with, so I'm really not looking forward to that. In regards to what Pet First Aid will actually entail, I have no idea. Maybe I'll get to use a scalpel? Or at the very least, a thermometer?

This work day feels eternal, and I'm starting to feel a little giddy.

I really want to go to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary. I'm thinking May or June. My goal this weekend is to get the application done. Is anybody as obsessed with Dogtown as I am??

Anyways. Happy weekend!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My Eternal Question

I'm at a bit of a crossroads right now. I've mentioned before this whole stuck feeling, and it is still driving me crazy.

I've been thinking lately about settling, and at what point a person should give up on their dreams. Here's the thing-there is this job coming up that everybody thinks I should apply for. It's full time, 9 to 5, doing communications, which is what I went to school for. I think I would have a fair chance of getting it. It would be an okay job. The pay is good and there are even benefits (omg, benefits!). But still, I waffle. I mean, this is clearly all hypothetical at this point, because I don't have the job, but I just can't help thinking, "what if". If I did apply for this job, and I got it, I would have to put all my plans on the back burner. On the one hand, I think I would be settling.

Is it irresponsible of me, to say "to hell with benefits, and large gobs of money, I want to work with dogs for a living. I want to travel, see the world, and I want to write about it." Would it be more adult, more responsible of me to just say, "Yes. I need to buy a house, get married, settle down. Save enough money for retirement. That'll be enough. You can travel when you retire".

But. I don't want to be 80 years old, staring out the window, thinking of all the things I could have done, but didn't.

The money for this job is extremely good, and everything I want to do costs money. More money than I have now, and more money then I could ever make at this job. So, I think to myself, perhaps it would be wise to really try for this job, and just save money. But then I fear I would become stuck and comfortable.

I just don't know you guys. Life is short. There's a big world out there, and while I've seen a lot, there is still so much more.

Maybe I'm making it too big a deal, being slightly too dramatic. I just can't seem to figure out at what point do I stop dreaming so large. A big part of me says never, but there is a little part in there that is just saying, settle down already. I love where I live, but I don't want to be stuck here. I can't be stuck here.

I dwell on these things so much, that everything gets all tangled. Responsible me and daydreamy me are duking this one out, but no one's winning yet. Sometimes, I really wish I could turn off my head.

I meant for today to be a New York post, but that'll have to wait until Monday or Tuesday. My computer at home is trying to kill me with it's slowness. I have no idea what is wrong with it, but I sure can't afford a new one. wamp wamp.

I hope I don't sound whiny or anything in this post, I just honestly dwell on things way to much, and it is nice to put it out there once in a while.

On a completely random note, how great was Glee last night?? So many lines made me laugh hysterically.

"She's the one they made me talk to when they found out I was keeping that bird in my locker."

"Okay. I'm just gonna come out and say it. This is a singing competition. I don't know how those deaf kids got in. They weren't singing, they were like honking and everyone was crying and I was like, "Get off the stage. You're terrible and you're making me super uncomfortable."

"You'll be adding revenge to the long list of things you're no good at, right next to being married, running a high school glee club and finding a hairstyle that doesn't look like a lesbian."

Bwahaha. It's like the only show I never miss.

Anyways. This is the last quarter life crisis post I'll write for a while. Back to puppies and travel stories!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

And I'm back!

I'm back, but I can't say I'm happy about it. New York at Christmas is a blast. New York is always a blast. Must live there one day. The only famous person I saw the entire time was Krysten Ritter. Does anybody actually know who she is? Because nobody I was with did. Anyway!

This will be brief, as I have a million things to do. I will have pictures/stories from New York tomorrow hopefully!

When I got home, I found out that Charlie has been adopted!!! I'm sure you all know how happy this makes me! All he needed was a little publicity! Wow. I just feel so great. He's got a home for Christmas ya'll. Tear.

I have many blogs to catch up on, and I will resume commenting soon. Hope you all had grrrreat weekends!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Furry Friday

Today is a good day in dogland guys!! Remember my Christmas goal of finding Charlie, the beauty of a white shepherd a home?? Well today, guess who got on the front page of the paper?? Mr Charlie himself. I am hoping, hoping, hoping, that someone out there will read the story and just have to have him. Keep your fingers crossed for him!! A forever home for him has been a long time coming.

Anyway, I again apologize for the quality of pictures...basically until it snows, we have to walk all the dogs on leash, and what with all the lunging and pulling, and general not walking on a leash very well, tis hard to take good pictures of the dogs with one hand. Anyway! I think you'll enjoy this weeks pictures because they are full of PUPPIES!!

Ummm there is not much that makes me happier than bunches of puppies falling all over each other. These guys are 5 weeks old, and holy crikey they are cute.

Bah!! I could not stop picking them up and snuggling them. Also, my favourite part of this picture is the dogs trying to eat each other in the background.

No idea why this is loading sideways. I'm not computer savvy enough to fix it either. Welps, turning your head slightly is worth it for the cuteness!!

A 9 week brown, standard poodle puppy!! Yes please. I tried for a very long time to get a picture with the dog looking at the camera, but it just wasn't happening. Also, in half of them you couldn't see her eyes. SO CUTE.

Poodle again! This dog was so fluffy it was hilarious. Her fur seriously made her look twice as large as she actually was, but when I picked her up, my hand completely sunk into the fluffiness.

That's it, that's all for today! Remember to send out good vibes for Charlie!!

I'll be away until next Wednesday, so probably no posts until then (unless I have absolutely nothing to do today and I can write a Travel Tuesday story!! Honestly, it very likely will happen).

Happy weekend!!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

NYC in T-minus 3 days..

I really cannot put into words how much I love New York City. The first moment I set foot there, it sucked me in, and it pretty much hasn't let me go since. I adore the hustle, I adore the bustle...I just love it more than any other place I have ever been. I will jump on any opportunity to go there. One day, and hopefully one day soon, I want to go there for like a month and just really sink into the city. I can't figure out a cheap way to do this though. Leasing an apartment for a month in Manhattan is hella expensive. Help.

I've always wanted to go to NYC at Christmas time, and it has been on my life goal list for as long as I can remember. I'm pretty sure the first time I saw Home Alone 2, I was insanely jealous, even though Kevin was all by himself, making friends with homeless people and getting chased by criminals. MARV!

So finally. Finally!! I will be flying to NYC on Saturday, bright and early in the morning. And I will come back on Tuesday night, full of Christmas spirit, and hopefully with a knock off designer purse on my arm. I cannot even wait. I am going to pack as much as I possibly can into these three days-window displays, museums, shopping, Central Park, Strawberry Fields on the anniversary of John Lennon's death, ice skating, drinking, dancing, theatre, Christmas, and lots and lots of photos. Also...I'm finding Carrie Bradshaw's stoop if it's the last thing I do.

I'm getting itchy feet, so I'm glad this little trip is coming up soon. Sometimes, I just need to be somewhere that is not here.

Tonight is the Christmas Party for the Humane Society, and this is always good times because it involves all you can eat Chinese food from the Mandarin. They basically rent out a giant room and all the staff and volunteers go. Mmmm Mandarin. I never usually go, because it's expensive and I can't eat enough to justify paying $25 for dinner. However, free? I'm all over that!

Also, I just found out about this The Best of 2009 Blog Challenge, and I'm going to give it a go. And by give it a go, I mean, do it when I feel like it. As much as I would like to say I will post every time, there is no way in hell I will post every day. I'm just not interesting enough. Basically there are prompts for everyday, but some of them I know I am going to have absolutely nothing to say about. Welps, we'll just see what happens. Pretty much, I will use these prompts when I can't think of anything else to write about. Nothing like half assing it!

Without further adieu (I'm a day behind):

December 1- Trip. What was your best trip in 2009?

Best trip of 2009....

I have only taken one so far, but it was a great one! I went to Europe and went though Munich, Berchtesgaden, Salzburg, Prague, Olomouc, Krakow, Zakopane, Budapest and Vienna. It was pretty damn great. Favourite cities? Munich and Krakow for sure. Munich is probably my favourite city in Europe (that I've seen so far), and Krakow was just so much more amazing then I was expecting. I was expecting, I don't know....grey and boring, and it was absolutely the complete opposite. It is beautiful, and there is an incredible amount of interesting history there. Munich! What else can I say about Munich other than, if you ever go to Europe, don't miss it! It is an amazing city. Amazing.

City that did not meet my expectations? Prague by far. I mean, it was beautiful, don't get me wrong, but it was just not at all what I was expecting. I think what turned me off was the sheer number of people. You couldn't even turn around without walking into somebody. Nothing like being carried across the Charles Bridge in a wave of people. If I go back to that area, I'm going to opt for Cesky Krumlov.

This trip was incredible, and I met a ton of amazing people that hopefully I'll keep in touch with forever. Rheana and Yolanda (otherwise known as Deanna and Leslie in my travel stories), are both awesome and it was so much fun to hang out with them. The British boy, who I haven't talked to in forever and despite certain circumstances, was a totally cool guy and so fun to hang around with too! One of the best parts of travelling is definitely the people you meet along the way.

December 2 Restaurant moment. Share the best restaurant experience you had this year. Who was there? What made it amazing? What taste stands out in your mind?

Ummmmm, honestly, nothing is standing out. In anticipation of tonights dinner, I'm going to say, my favourite restaurant moment is going to be tonight at the humane society Christmas dinner. Really amazing people + unlimited Chinese food=win

Alright, we can all see how good I'm going to be at this blog challenge!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Travel Tuesday-An Adventure in the Mountains

Today’s story is a short tale of my horse riding adventure in Poland. This would be much better with some pictures, but I suppose I just need to work with what I’ve got here. I’ve adapted this story from my travel blog which I wrote while I was away this Spring. I’m thinking I’ll leave this one pretty much exactly as it is in the journal. This story is a slightly different format than the others! Enjoy!

“Okay, the farther east I get, the more wonked out the computer keyboards get. Please excuse any grammar or spelling errors!! It is allll the computer.
Zakopane is a very cute little city…right in the Tatra Mountains. Everybody is friendly, there are cheese and bread stands filling the streets, and it just smells…fresh.

Today we went horseback riding, which I was totally looking forward to, because yay horses! When me and Deanna initially signed up, we told Carlos our tour manager that we were beginners, because while we have both ridden horses before, we could in no way be considered good at it. But he was like, “if you say beginner, you will have to just stay in the pen area, so I am going to write you down for advanced.” Warning sign one. But we were just like…okay, that’s fine, we will deal with it when we actually get there.

So we got into a car (we being Me, Deanna and Nikki), with this polish woman,who drove us to the horse farm. It was beautiful. We get there, and standing before us were three of the most effin huge horses I have ever seen in my life. I was like…ummm do you have one half this size?? I cannot emphasize enough how large these horses were. We may as well have been riding elephants, although that very likely would have been less scary. Anyway, I’m getting ahead of myself.

Giant horses-warning sign two of impending death. Instructor that does not speak english-number 3. horses that only understand polish,number 4. Can you see where this is going?? I mean, I love horses, and these horses were absolutely beautiful, but holy shit, I could tell this might not turn out well. The guy working there had to actually lift me onto the horse. The stirrup was so high that I could not physically boost myself up. The instructor told us that the word “volo” means “slow” in Polish. “This is all you need”, she assured. We tried to tell her that we weren’t expert horse riders, but I really don’t think she understood us.

Off we went. We walked through the woods, and at one part we had to let go of our horse and move branches out of the way. Hmmm get your eye poked by a tree branch or dangle precariously off your giant horse? What to choose, what to choose. We went down rocky slopes; we walked on bolder covered paths. We went through the river (which was awesome). Deanna’s horse fell on some rocks at one point, but she managed to right herself. We did all this while walking at a nice pace. It was leisurely, and the scenery was beautiful. When I picture riding horses, this is basically what I picture. Giant open fields filled with wildflowers, mountains in the background, all while walking at a slow and non life threatening pace.

W eventually get to the end of the one road , and the instructor said to me, “you want to try trotting?” In my mind I was like, well no,not really. But then she yelled,”KICK YOUR HORSE!!”, which I did, but he did not move. SO THEN, she gets out this whip thing, and just slaps my horse on the ass, and he takes off like a bat out of hell, all while I was clinging to his back for dear life. I screamed at the top of my lungs, and I’m pretty sure the whole of Zakopane heard me, because my scream ricocheted off the mountains. The instructor was behind me yelling, “STOP, STOP!!!” Which…I had no idea how to get my horse to stop. I was pulling reins, I was yelling an increasingly panicky “Volo! Volo!! Volo!!!!”, but my accent must of been off, cause horsey did not stop until we were up the road and around the corner.

The instructor trotted up on her horse, stopped beside me, and proceeded to yell at me, because I had grabbed that little handle on the saddle instead of the reins. I was like, “lady, I thought I was going to die, I had to grab something!” She just stared at me. Nikki and Deanna came riding up, hysterically laughing. “That”, Nikki said, “was hilarious. But you are doing a really good job!!”

Deanna and I trailed behind for the rest of the ride and chatted about our horror of a horse riding instructor, and our complete dumbness in thinking this was a good idea. We made it back to the farm in one piece and to get off the horse, the man again had to lift me off while I slid down the horses side. I was the very picture of grace. I backed away slowly from the horse, all while thinking I would not be horse riding again anytime soon.

So concluded our horse riding adventure. It is funny now, but at the time, I was certain death was coming to greet me in the form of a giant Polish mountain horse.

And I haven't even gone near a horse since!!
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