IT’S THE SMALL THINGS
What crazy times we are living in. I will admit that recently traveling in France and England I was nervous. My children thought I would be a bit of a basket case as my husband and I arrived in Paris two days after the terror death of a police officer on the Champs Elysees, I was not. Sad yes, insanely nervous no.
It was oddly reassuring to see the armed military in police patrolling the city. Our daughter just this week travelled from the south of France back to Scotland where armed military were apparent at the airport. Something she had never seen in Scotland before. I feel horrible for the families of those affected by the horror of the attack in Manchester.
I so admire the people of Manchester who are strong and have shown the world that they will not let terror win. These wonderful people who go about life, doing the small things and enjoying life, being examples for the world.
Don’t know if I would ever have their strength and determination to live a “normal” life, all things big and small. Thank you Manchester for showing me the way.
GOTTA GET READY
It’s 9:58 on Wednesday morning, a beautiful sunny day here in the Boonies. I took our dog Oli out for his morning constitutional about three hours ago. Oli is a rescue dog who hailed originally from Texas but came to us by way of Vancouver and is a bit of a baby; everything in his world must be perfect to get the old tail wagging. Sunny but not too hot, a slight breeze to just lift his black and white coat is perfect. Great comfy spots to lay in while he follows the sun around the house getting his sun on through the windows. Did I mention that we often call him our “cat dog”. A good run then plenty of rabbit poo to munch on (YUCK! But oh so dogfish, Woot Oli!) then a lie in the grass while watching us work is his perfect day. It has been raining a ton here, our lot line is a lake. The pond across the road is the highest I have ever seen it (partially due to the bloody beavers I am sure) and our side lawn towards our neighours “The Clampets” is a tad squishy. Oli when it is raining must be paid to go outside to do his business, to step on the grass after a rain is almost painfully for him. This morning I spent about 10 minutes trying to fake him out to come out onto the grass with me. Two steps and he is frozen, one paw midair, standing on the tip of his toes of the three left on the ground. He looked up at me with such a glare of “wtf”, that it took everything in me to not laugh at him. He bounded his way, leaping like a deer to find a “dry” spot on the brim back by our fire pit. He leaped a little too far and ended up in a burr bush -YIKES! The poor guy’s front paws and shoulders were covered and I still made him hang around to pee before I carried him in and debburred him. Fifteen minutes later he was ready for breakfast, all in all the whole thing had taken about thirty minutes. Thirty minutes I don’t really have today.
You see, tomorrow morning at what the hell was I thinking o’clock, my husband and I have to be up and at’em to head to the airport in Toronto. I know dear invisible readers, you are thinking where the heck are they going now? The answer is Mexico for the wedding of my husbands trainer. I will know let me see… 1 person, my husband. I have met the bride and groom and handful of times, and a few others that will attending once. We are at a time in our lives where we don’t get out much other than traveling and don’t really meet many new people. As well, most of the people we would hang with at home either live out of town or are still working making socializing difficult. My people skills are more than a bit rusty – and its an all inclusive. Ya know what I mean?!? We are packing our Bubba’s and I have to be sure to not partake of too much liquid courage lol!
I have a bit of an issue before I travel, those that know me would probably say its all the time (and we are not talking about my wine consumption here folks), I want my house to be perfect before I leave. Doesn’t matter that Oli and Baby Girl will be here to trash it while we are gone – it just needs to be eat of the floor clean before I leave here at what the hell was I thinking o’clock tomorrow morning. I have been away so much that currently you could braid the dog hair that is on the floor (just kidding – honest)! One load of laundry done and hanging on the new indoor clothes rack (more about that in a later post), a husband that is sitting on the couch praying that the grass dries a bit so he can go out and cut it, a dog finding the perfect sun spot. And I am not packed, not even close. So much to do! Clean, pack, laundry, walk Oli – iron……What the heck was I thinking!
IT’S BEEN A WHILE….BUT
Hey there imaginary readers! It seems weird to say sorry to someone when they don’t exist but any way here it goes..sorry that I have been slacking on writing. I have been a busy girl, away a lot – and as my kids would say have had my head up my own butt a bit.
I have just recently gotten said butt out of bed after a much needed 10 hour sleep. My husband and I returned Monday evening from a fab trip to Europe (more about that on a later post), the time change kicked both of our butts this time. Not getting much sleep, wide awake at 4 a.m., felt a real brain fog (be nice here imaginary readers hahaha). Thursday afternoon found me and my foggy brain on a Porter flight to Halifax where I got off the plane and immediately settled into a car with our baby girl for the long drive from Nova Scotia to Ontario.
You see, Baby Girl has decided to come home for the summer! Easy to see now where I get my name from huh?! It was six o’clock in the evening on a rainy, foggy miserable night when we began to drive. Baby Girl had experienced some car issues between Antigonish and New Glasgow, as we began or drive she says “the guys at the garage told me that the gas tank has a hole in it. Dad says we can’t put more that $20.00 of gas in at one time, oh and that we need to keep him posted on where we are” and then she adds “and..when we stop we have to check the duct taping job I did on the back light where the car got hit in the parking lot by the snowplow”
I had to keep my bag (thank god I only brought essentials) at my feet , placed carefully along side of her purse and what ever other “stuff” was there. The back seat was full to the brim. Don’t worry she says, “I have pillows, some books, my whole wardrobe, but not my teaching clothes, didnt think I would need those”. I took a look around, the car was a disaster, probs a bio hazard site. Apparently I didnt have my game face on as the next thing I heard was “I knew you were going to say the car was a mess! I even told Swiss girl (roommate) that you would say so!” Oh Dear God…we weren’t even off the airport grounds, dear spirit world help me get through this!
We stopped at the Masstown Market to pick up some fabulous Just Us! Coffee and Green tea, a pee break and road munching food. You would be proud of me dear imaginary readers, only healthy food purchased and munched along the way (almost!). Then we began the long haul. Baby girl was doing the driving, she was ready to power our way home!
We carried along, she a little sad passing the Nova Scotia flags and saluting the New Brunswick ones; me counting down, ok, one province done! The night grew darker the transport trucks more plentiful, the stops for $20.00 of gas never ending. Have you every driven to Ontario from Nova Scotia? If so, you may remember that the number of gas stations along the road are few and far between. Maps and its great gas stations nearby feature became our best friend. Did I mention that that lovely feature does not indicate if the gas stations near by have gone out of business or are card lock only? To say that there was anxiety on the trip is an understatement.
I hereby solemnly swear that I did my very very best to be a good co pilot, passenger and mother. I handed water and opened food for the driver. I encouraged her when passing huge log bearing double trailered transport trucks that were spewing blinding spray. I suggested buying more duct tape to reinforce what was already there. I waited until the third stop to get a plastic bag and discretely begin picking up garbage in the car….I did well. Or at least I thought so lol! I only grabbed the door handle in panic 6 times!
We made it to Edmunston New Brunswick, the gas light coming on as we coasted down the off ramp it was 12:30 PM. We decided to stop for the night, and headed to what over the last 5 and a half years has a been rest point for us, the Best Western. There was a bit of praying that they would have a room, and thanks be,they did. We shared a king size bed that was so big baby girl was in another area code!
Then came 6 a.m. ( 5 a.m. In Ontario) Up and at’em again. My turn to drive. First stop gas, second McDonalds for breakfast (see, not all good for ya food but perfectly acceptable road trip nosh). We ate as we drove then baby girl slept for another 4 hours. As she awoke, I swear it took about 3.5 seconds for her to get the music going – the party began. We laughed and tee heed our way across Quebec stopping as required.
We met lovely people, had mediocre food, stopped at far too many gas stations (though they were easier to find). Crossing into Ontario, Baby Girl took a pick of the Ontario sign and sent it along to friends and family to let them know where we were (and probs to let her friends know she was open for play plans!). Shortly after this, baby looked at her self in the mirror and gasped! ” I. Have. A. Moustach!” “Can you see it!?! Why didn’t you tell me? I’m getting old and I’m not even 25 yet!” I tried my very best not to smile or laugh, she worked though the problem both in her head and out loud.
Baby girl’s next topic of conversation was this blog. Had I posted anything yet? HAd I added a website? Theme, logo? On and On and On! You see, I have been slacking. We had discussed me working on my fluff in an early post, and I am, promise. Fitness is coming, at a snails pace, but coming. I love Precision Nutrition and what it is helping we with. Its a confidence thing all the way around. Ya see, I have a lot to learn. About loosing the fluff, blogging, using hashtags, getting my name out there. About making sure that my baby girl feels strong, smart and beautiful even with the moustach and without.
Now I have to find the way to not slack, not to let my lack of knowledge with regard to anything get in my way. If, no WHEN, I do that I, can be strong and help my kids leave the nest, I can develop a fulfilling life without them in it every day; as well I will be able to help them with all their problems even when its not as simple as dealing with Baby Girl’s moustach.
We stopped to visit family in Pickering, then rolled into our driveway at 8 p.m. Home – safe and sound, had a great Chinese dinner that “Dad” had picked up, a quick bath and into bed for me by 9:30. Then up to face the music and get real here.
Glad to have you home for the summer honey, now – lets get to work.
PREPARING FOR A BUCKET LIST TRIP
My husband and I had just said to ourselves a few months ago “ok, we are not booking any more trips until the end of the summer” as we have quite a busy travel schedule coming up. This said while we were enjoying a fab trip to Fairmont Heritage in Acapulco (lols). While there a friend mentioned that they had rented a beach house in the Abacos Islands and would we like to come for a week? Where in the heck where the Abacos Islands? Beach House…in February, the middle of what was supposed to be a brutal Canadian winter? SURE!! We are in!! We’ll figure out the details later….
Turns out the Abacos Islands are part of the Bahamas, our winter hasn’t been that bad here in southern Ontario and our hearts were recently crushed. None the less a trip such as this was on our bucket list, today we prepare for Lisa from Pawsitive Wellness Pet Care to stay the week with little Oli. She is Amazing with animals and so great to have someone staying in our house while we are gone. So today will be cleaning, cleaning, cleaning and packing.
Packing a carry on only – YIKES! How will I fit enough clothes in there to cover my “fluffy parts”! Then there are the hair care products, shoes..it might be cold – windy !!! I am feeling STRESSTED about getting ready for a great trip. Did I mention its going to be an adventure getting there? Fly to Nassau, short flight to Marsh Harbour and then – gulp- a 25 minute boat ride to Elbow Cay. Oh yeah…on a small boat cause we will have missed the ferry by 15 minutes. A small boat, over open water….and I get sea sick on small craft. Hope I don’t have to pee cause if I have to go down to a head, I will be screwed. Will toss my cookies everywhere. :( Gotta remember to pack the ole Sea bands.
So dear imaginary readers, cross your fingers for us. No hurling, good weather and time to heal our hearts. Chat from Paradise soon!
WTF!!! TWO WEEKS OF WHAT?
Today is Saturday January 22 2017, I have just heard one of my favorite sounds in the world. The “POP” of a bottle of champagne or Prosecco in this case. I am currently sitting on the back porch of our rental in Marathon in the Florida Keys squinting in the sunlight as I type this. Poor, poor me imaginary readers lol!
My husband and I left home 10 days ago, leaving the SIX to head to Durham, England for the graduation of our son “The Golden One” according to our girls hahah! We landed to damp awful cold but hey, it wasn’t Ontario. I perhaps enjoyed a little toooooooo much red wine that evening, visiting restaurants and then College bars and ended up having a close intimate conversion with the great white cool throne. Embrassing!
This was our first flight with British Airways, unfortunately we also had to fly them home. It was a very disorganized bright flight to England as a light malfunctioned making it impossible to tame the herd. The front of the steerage section, us included, could not settle down. Even after 3 hours when the staff finally admitted that the light could not be turned off and offered eye shades. People milling around and screaming kids did not make for a great flight.
Our eldest daughter met us in Durham (after missing her train from Scotland and having to pay through the nose for a new one way ticket) missing breakfast at the most awesome Flat White Kitchen. If you have the chance, you must check this place out. Amazing foods coffee, reasonable portions. Unfortunately she was there for my wine induced performance. We stayed in a lovely family room at the Durham Royal County, a little cold but we were happy to all be together.
Friday was Grad day, I mean, how ofen in ones life do you graduate from Hogwarts? Our son was gowned and the procession began from Durham Castle over to Durham Catherdal for the ceremony. Both venues have been used in Harry Potter movies. It was a lovely ceremony in a World Heritage Site, we are so very lucky to have been able to attend. Dinner that night was very much enjoyed at The Cellar Door. A lovely selection on the menu with an average wine list.
The next day was up and on the way to Florida……more to follow. Yes, I know dear imaginary reader that perhaps we are bit crazy. Two days in England?!?!?! WTF
LIFE IN THE SLOW LANE
I was remiss while away and did not get in a single post or flow. Our group spent a lot of time by the pool eating, laughing, drinking and counting our lucky stars.
Thanks to one of the group, we were lucky to be staying at the Fairmont Heritage Place in Acapulco. We stayed in an amazing 3500 square foot outstanding villa with our own plunge pool and resident Crabby McCrab in the outdoor shower. The property was spectacular. If I could pick it up and move it home, I would. More importantly the property was safe.
That said, safety is a concern in Acapulco. We were warned about and learned quickly about using only “safe taxis”, checking in with the armed guards before walking on the beach. Got used to armed security protecting us on the “other side of the gate” of our resort while we waited for the hotel shuttle. We sure weren’t in Kansas any more Toto.
We are so very very blessed to live in Canada. For sure, we are not perfect and have poverty, and exploitation that occurs here. But nothing like the acts of violence that happen in Mexico. So happy to be home safe and sound
Today I began to pack for my very first carry on only trip that I will be taking very soon with the merry band of travelers that I often have the opportunity to play with. For this trip one of the gang was able to snag 5 nights in a Hacienda at the Fairmont Heritage Place in Acapulco, when asked it took my husband and I about 2.5 seconds to say Si, to this one! We will have access to a washer and dryer so packing should be a breeze right?
I have a great Lug carry on that has been getting a work out lately. I have a couple of skorts, capris, one pair of longish shorts, some shirts,my toiletries. Was feeling good, organized – and then I had a nasty thought, I need bathing suits. O . M. G. Bathingsuits. As I have mentioned before I am a 50 something woman who is trying to get healthy and in shape. I don’t want to be skinny, I want to be strong and healthy, those who know we would share that I am a bit of a klutz. I need the strength to stay upright lol. Here’s the thing, I talk a good talk but don’t follow up with the game, ya know what I mean? I tried on a one piece bathing suit, strolled into the kids bathroom (where the best mirror is) and did my best not to cry. How the heck did that happen to me, back in the day I was an athlete, now I look like a sackalete.
I need a game plan, I have trips booked that will require me to be strong, agile even (GASP I hear the crowd). I need to get strong for me. Ok, here it goes walking with our 2 dogs to the top of the road and back daily is not enough. I need to add some more using my body weight, some cardio. Feeling good that I can walk longer and faster than 2 ten year old dogs should not feel like an accomplishment. So, Sunday morning first day of vacay, I am going to get up and go for a walk on the beach, a long walk. I will find a place to try out some flows, no where where anyone can see me of course, now THAT would be embarrassing. My downward dog looks like a, geez I can not even think of the words to describe it. Add some squats, some lunges…ya, I can do this. My first goal – excercise on a vacation that is supposed to be for me time.
I suck at me time, but now its here in black and white. Will keep you (if anyone else is out there) posted
CHICK ROAD TRIPS AND GROWING UP
For the past 10 years or so KB, a good friend of mine and I have taken road trips to pick up, return my kids to their universities and colleges both in the good ole USA and here in Canada. Some have been eventful, hearing the drag slap, drag slap of what turned out to be a pregnant hooker walking home in her shoes that were too big (drag slap!) with her pimp riding up, down and around the street on his bicycle at 5:30 a.m in a quiet little mid west town. Getting caught in the middle of a street biker gang intimidating a grid locked group of cars at 2:30 in the morning in downtown Chicago. I could go on – but perhaps another installment. Last April we took what we thought would be our last trip – this one to the east coast of Canada to a beautiful town located in the Annapolis Valley. My baby girl was graduating, soon to leave the nest , err country to begin a year of travel. All. By. Her. Self GULP!!!! Mother alligator tears!! KB and I had come to take back to the middle of nowhere in Ontario all things baby girl just had to hold onto, as well as the winter tires for her car. Said car would return with the girl. We had some fun in the valley, great hikes, good food, learned that we like Cider thank you Annapolis Valley Cider company and then headed home. KB and I were both sad when we said goodbye at the parking lot, she to head back up to her beautiful home me to the middle of nowhere. Our last university/college road trip was over, never to be repeated.
Move forward four months, while everyone thought the baby girl was preparing to spread her wings and fly to the UK to begin her travels; she had in fact applied to a new program at a different university on the east coast. Lo and behold, she was accepted and would begin a B. ED program in September. WOOT!!!! KB and I are gonna get at least 2 more road trips!!! I mean, way to go baby girl!!!
Last week KB and made another trip, returning to the east coast most of the stuff we had dragged back to Ontario in April and only managing to get lost once. We don’t get to see each other that much and have a lot to catch up on…we chat, look for what ever nature chooses to show us (this is where our kids would tell you how lame we are..HAWK!!). We stop for food breaks which are really just disguised pee breaks as we are of that age. This time our first thought that something was amiss was when we had to slow down – next thought, a traffic light on the highway what’s going on?!? WTF? We found a place to pull off the road, figured out how to use the GPS of the car we were driving and realized we had managed to find ourselves an hour and a half off the highway. We still don’t know how we ended up in the middle of farm country in Quebec but we did make it back to where we should have been eventually…never could figure out how to get the GPS to talk to us.
Today, baby girl takes her next step in growing up, she begins her first practicum. She has stressed over her lesson plans, shopped for just the perfect clothes to make her look like “real teacher” and posted selfies this morning of her full look to our family What’s App account. One giant step toward adulthood and getting off the payroll of Mom and Dad. Btw…she did get a little time in the UK before school began I think it lit the travel bug.
Hey Baby Girl – You will rock it today!