Thursday, October 17, 2019

Rainy Day, Take 2

So here we are, another dark and dreary day.  I love a rainy day, but two in a row?  Bleh.  I'm kinda over it. 

Yesterday, I talked about my rainy evening plans to make chili, bake biscuits and cookies.  But then afternoon hit and I got sleepy and less ambitious, so I chucked the chili plan.  I just did the biscuits and cookies.  The biscuits came together quickly and turned out beautifully, but the cookies were just meh.  For one thing, I hadn't read the recipe through and didn't realize I had to chill the dough for at least 2 hours.  Then, once the "wait time" was over, I think I under-baked them, and the end result didn't taste that amazing anyways.  Kind of a waste of ingredients in what was supposed to be "the best pumpkin cookies ever". 

But the biscuits!  They were a success!!  I had one with egg and cheese on it for dinner and it was delicious.  I packed a second biscuit-egg-cheese sandwich for lunch today.  What to do with the rest?  I suppose I could still make that chili for supper tonight... Or maybe just freeze the rest.  I don't know.

Side note:  I love to cook.  I love to bake.  Do you know what I do NOT love?  Doing dishes.  ugh.  That is my single biggest reason for NOT making something:  I hate the thoughts of the clean-up afterwards.  It will be the reason that I probably do not make chili tonight.

In other news, I am having a new weird head problem.  You may recall the strange electrical-pulse like headaches that I had behind my left ear early in the summer that caused me to panic.  They went away after a few days, and all has been fine since.  Suddenly yesterday, I began having weird pulsing sensations on the left side of my head.  Not behind the ear.  Kind of above the temple area.  At first, it reminded me of when your eyelid twitches and you can't get it to stop.  But it has continued ever since, off and on, and it kind of feels like an alien is trying to dig its way out of my head.  I don't notice it when I'm busy, but when I'm just sitting still, there it is.  Of course, Dr. Google tells me I'm either: A) Fine or B) Dying.  It's not painful, just annoying, so I think I'll wait it out and hope it goes away like the other weird head issue did.  Fingers crossed.

Ever wonder why I don't get normal problems?  Like, say, a cold?  Or a sore shoulder?  Or an aching tooth?  No, I get electrical pulses behind my ear and aliens trying to escape my brain.  Awesome.

Moving on... I finished Outlander Season 4 last night, and it was SO good!  I liked it so much better than Season 3.  I really enjoyed the coming-to-America, pioneer storyline, and the incorporation of Brianna and her love story.  So much weird stuff went down in the last season, it was a relief to get back to more "normal" situations.  As normal as you can get for a story about time travel, I guess.  Now I'm unsure of what to watch next.  Back to The Ranch?  It wasn't really floating my boat, but I guess I started it so I should finish it.

This morning in the office, we have discussed the best chinese food in the area, the best pizza in the area, and how long it has been since we've had Kentucky Fried Chicken.  Needless to say, I am now craving chinese food, pizza, and KFC.  Just dandy.

Even though I'm kind of over the rainy day, I do still daydream about being home, cozied up, reading and watching movies and crocheting.  Ah, if only...

Why do short weeks always seem so long?  Come onnnnnnnnnnnnn Friday!!

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Dreary Day Randoms

  • It's a dark, overcast day, with lots of rain on the way for today and tomorrow.  Thankfully, I got my grass cut last night, so that was a weight off my shoulders.  I was starting to worry I'd never have time on a sunny day to get it done, and that I'd go into the winter with long, shaggy grass.  I like it as short as possible before the snow so that it isn't a huge panic to get cutting come springtime!  I may still have to cut it once more, but for now, I'm relieved it's done.
  • I am SO looking forward to Car Rally this coming Saturday!!  It is one of my favourite events of the year.  Things will be a little different this year, as we have lost our guys - Ricky is hunting, Graham is putting a new roof on his house - so we are bringing Stacy & Sara's oldest kids with us, Maddy & Charlotte.  I think it will be super fun to have them along this year, introducing them to Car Rally!!
  • Last week when we went to see It Chapter 2, one of the previews was for the upcoming movie Doctor Sleep, also based on a Stephen King novel.  Not only that, it is the sequel to The Shining, which is one of my favourite King stories - and I had no idea a sequel even existed.  SO.  I ordered the book from Amazon, it arrived yesterday, I started it last night, I'm only about 30 pages in, and I'm already sufficiently spooked.  Motherf*cker.
  • Up until last night, I was OK with the scary so far this year.  But it appears not only watching, but also READING, scary stuff in October is what is pushing me over the line this year.  Now I'm nervous for the upcoming scary movie fests I have planned for the next two weeks.  Part of me thinks I should just shelve the book until winter, when I'm not so sensitive to this stuff, but then I'd like to have it read before the movie comes out in early November.  *sigh* Decisions, decisions.
  • As we all know, dark dreary days such as this make me want to hunker.  I'm doing all my rainy-day day-dreaming.  Right now, my plan for when I get home is to make chili and biscuits and pumpkin spice cookies.  Will I ACTUALLY do that?  Probably not.  I didn't even take hamburger out to thaw this morning.  And I would have to go down to the scary basement to get it out of the freezer.  We'll see, but this does not look likely. lol
  • I know I already mentioned the new baby blanket I'm working on, but I am just LOVING it!  It is working up SO quickly, which is encouraging.  I'm still not 100% sure on my colour choices and the way I've spaced them out (I'm doing mint, grey & white, but with the mint sections bigger than the grey & white), but overall, super thrilled with how this one is turning out (and how quickly I should be able to complete it!)
  • Anyone remember when I said I was putting a freeze on my credit card, and not allowing anymore online shopping for the month of October?  HA. I have bought a book, boots, jeans, boots, a pom-pom maker, boots and more.  It's a sickness.  The good news is, I'm getting a refund for that dumb computer clean-up program I paid $50 for in my ill-fated laptop repair frenzy on Friday evening, so that's a little bit of a relief.
That's about all for today, folks!  Hope you're staying warm & dry wherever you may be! :)

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

The Thanksgiving Weekend Rundown

Here's a point-form re-cap of a mostly really great Thanksgiving weekend!

  • I feel like my weekend pretty much started Thursday after work, when my friends Lolly and Brenda picked me up and we headed to the Skylight Drive-In Theatre in Pembroke.  It was my first time going to a drive-in movie (at least, that I can remember - we may have gone when I was a kid, but I have no recollection).  We went to see It: Chapter Two (we saw the first one in theatres together, we had to go for the sequel!)  And I just LOVED the experience.  The drive-in is kind of on a back road in the middle of nowhere, it was super neat to look up at the big screen and see the stars and trees all around it.  The movie was a little disappointing, but I soaked up the experience on the whole.  There were quite a few cars there, and they had a great snack bar/concession stand as well.  Overall, VERY much enjoyed it!
  • Friday was a work day, but Lindsay and I were playing hooky.  Around 10:45, we split and headed to the Ferry to take us to Kanata.  We went for lunch at The Barley Mow, then to the movie theatre to see Downton Abbey as a little early birthday celebration for Linds.  (Her b-day was the next day).  We hadn't done anything like this in quite some time, and it was very refreshing!  It felt good to get away from the office early for some Friday down-time. Good food, conversation, movie... a perfect day!
  • When I got home late afternoon, I zipped up to Shawville to get groceries, then came home to enjoy a relaxing evening.  BUT I messed that up royally.  I went into the church office to print the bulletins for Sunday, and realized I printed out the wrong Announcements page.  I started up my laptop, which has been acting kind of sick for a while now, and long story short, I ended up fighting with it for 3 hours, charging my Paypal account an unnecessary $50 for a program that didn't even work, and cycling through the "blue screen of death" (it's a real thing, google it) over and over and over.  I could have cried.  I finally restored it back to a point in June so that I could get back into it, but clearly, it needs professional help.  I was so mad that I wasted a perfectly good start of a holiday weekend evening battling with my laptop.  *sigh*
  • I woke up Saturday morning and decided to put my laptop problems behind me.  I lazed a bit with coffee, watching PVR'd shows, then decided to get moving.  I made pumpkin bread, cinnamon spiced roasted nuts, and assembled my cheese & pickle tray for our family dinner, then got myself showered and ready.  Early afternoon, my mom picked me up and we headed to my sister and BIL's, as they were hosting.  It was a truly enjoyable family day.  We sat around snacking and chatting for a long time, then watched some of the Sens game before having dinner.  My sister had everything prepared and ready to roll, so there was no big fuss in the kitchen.  It all went so smoothly!  The meal was fantastic, and then we had cake and gifts for my nephew Caden's birthday (he turned 14 yesterday!!)  Our only disappointment was that it was a rainy, dreary day, so we didn't get the full effect of the gorgeous fall colours on the mountains, and the kids didn't get to play outside.  Otherwise, it was an A+ Thanksgiving!!
  • On Sunday, the church was decorated beautifully for Thanksgiving, and we enjoyed the service.  Right after church, we were off to Hull.  We stopped at Tim Horton's for a quick bite to eat, then on to the rink for Caden's hockey game.  They ended up losing 3-2 to Maniwaki, but at least it was close.  My sister's family was having Thanksgiving with her in-laws that day, so we just took a leisurely drive home, hitting the back roads, looking at the leaves, and making a quick trip in to the hunt camp to check things out (it had been years since my mom had been in).  For supper, we had the leftovers my sister had sent home the day before, and then watched A Quiet Place (scary movie time, remember) before going to bed.
  • Monday was my favourite kind of day - nowhere to go, nothing to do, and it was kind of rainy and overcast, so PERFECT!!  I got laundry and dishes done, sent in my Equity notes, and then I just lounged watching scary movies - by the end of the day, I could check off I Am the Pretty Thing That Lives In the House, The Amityville Horror, and The Sixth Sense, and still with plenty of time to watch Outlander episodes to shake off the scary before bedtime. LOL!  After all the turkey dinner food, it was nice to have a "junk" supper of pizza and jalapeno poppers.  I also had run out of stuffing for my crocheted pumpkins, so I got started on a new baby blanket pattern I'd been wanting to try.  All in all, just a perfect lazy holiday Monday!!
I hope all my Canadian pals had a great Thanksgiving weekend!! :)

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Give Thanks With a Grateful Heart

Good morning friends!  Since today will likely be my last chance to post before Thanksgiving (I'm only working for a few hours tomorrow morning, then taking the rest of the day off) - I thought I'd share some of the things I'm most thankful for right now in my life.

  • I know it's a dumb thing, because it comes around every year, but I'm so thankful for fall!  I just love this time of year, and the colours are really starting to come out this week.  It's just gorgeous out.  And on top of it, it's been a beauty of a week - and I think it's supposed to be most of the weekend too.  Lovely!

  • I'm grateful for my family.  My mom, my siblings, my nieces and nephews, my extended family.  I've always valued and enjoyed spending time with family, and that hasn't changed.  They are my people, and they are the best.

  • I'm very thankful for my good health.  Just having this nagging sore lower back this week has really annoyed me, but it also reminds me that I'm lucky to not have any huge health problems right now.  I had the weird zappy headache thing earlier in the summer, but aside from that, I've been pretty good.  Heart palps and blood pressure are under control, and I have hardly had a sniffle for months. Knock on wood, and thank you God!
  • I feel very fortunate to have a contented life right now.  Aside from the on-going pigeon problem, life is pretty good at my house these days.  There are still a few things I'd like to spruce up the place - new blinds, an area rug for the living room, new knobs for the kitchen cupboards - but overall, I'm content.  I think about where I was even five or six years ago, and I've come a long way.  I don't want for much, and that is a blessing.
  • I'm so grateful for good friends.  I have many, and I am lucky.  Most of my friends are on different pages from me - married with children, busy with a million things going on, and yet they haven't left me in the dust.  They haven't forgotten about me.  I will always be thankful for them, for sharing their kiddos with me, for being part of my life even though I may not "fit".

  • I'm very thankful for hobbies that I love!  Currently, most especially, crocheting.  I have SO enjoyed learning and getting better at it over the past two years.  I can still remember the first few days when I was learning, how it made me want to cry in frustration.  How I threw the yarn and hook across the room and roared curse words.  I'm glad I persevered.  I get so much enjoyment from it now!
  • I know this is another silly little petty thing, but I'm so glad I went through the hullaballoo of getting myself set up with a working satellite dish, high-speed internet, a new TV, and Netflix.  I mean, it's kind of crazy to think, it wasn't all that long ago that I didn't have a functioning TV OR Internet in my home.  Like, three or four years ago.  Crazy, right?  We've played the game before in the office where you ask if your house was on fire and you only have a few minutes to grab possessions, what's the one thing you take - and I chose my TV, which caused laughter and disbelief.  But hey... it wasn't so long ago that I didn't have that luxury, so... yeah.  I'm taking my TV! LOL!
  • Right now, I'm thankful for how I feel about myself in general.  It's been a roller-coaster for the past six years - losing a bunch of weight, gaining it all back, going from feeling like I was on top of the world to feeling like a giant slug.  Last winter, I recognized that I wasn't feeling very good about myself, and I needed to make a change.  I haven't been in the right frame of mind to focus on food (I want all the bad foods, all the time) - but I have been able to get myself moving more, and that has helped immensely.  Getting to 10K steps regularly, four to five days a week, getting out of bed a half hour early each day to do a light workout, walking at lunch hour, and usually doing a little exercise in the evenings, has helped my state of mind
    immensely.  I may not be the size I wish I was, and I still often dislike what I see in the mirror, but overall, I'm happy with who I am right now.  I'm grateful I've been able to get myself there.
  • Overall, I'm just grateful to feel this blessed.  I'm in a good place.  Maybe not where I thought I would be at this stage in my life, but I've accepted that.  I've embraced my path.  I am fortunate to be surrounded with good people, to have a good job, to have all I need to make a good life.  I have much to be thankful for this coming Thanksgiving weekend, and all the year through!
Wishing all of my Canadian pals a very Happy Thanksgiving!  Enjoy & count your blessings! :)

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

Randoms from this week so far

  • Last weekend, I tweaked my lower back while moving deck furniture into the garage for the winter.  Not bad enough to put me out of commission, but it's been nagging all week.  Yesterday felt almost back to normal, but today, it's twinging again.  ugh.
  • I've been doing a lot of lying on the floor stretching to try and help it out, and it has reminded me that I miss doing Yoga.  I haven't done a regular Yoga practice in a long time.  It might be time to re-visit that.
  • I have been crocheting pumpkins.  My pumpkin patch is growing.  I gave one to my mom, but the rest are collecting on my coffee table.  They have been so fun and satisfying to make.  I have other things I COULD be making... but I'm stuck on pumpkins.  Might as well go with it.
  • And my favourite thing to watch while crocheting pumpkins?  Outlander.  Season 4 hit Netflix last weekend, and I am SO enjoying it.  I found Season 3 was kind of crazy, but Season 4 has settled back into a normal storyline, and I'm loving me my Jamie time.  Yum.
  • Besides Jamie, I have another crush on the go right now.  I have kind of fallen in love with Brady Jones on the radio. LOL!  He's the producer for the Morning Hot Tub that I listen to each morning on Hot 89.9, but he's often on the air with them, and recently he got some fun press for going down to storm Area 51.  Then last week, they sent him to the Wiggles concert in Ottawa, and the clips he posted of him with the little kids that joined him kind of melted me.  On top of it all, when they discuss things and take sides or positions on things, I almost ALWAYS agree with Brady.  He and I just seem to click. They are always ragging on him for being single, but I just know this guy isn't going to stay single for long.  If only he was 10 years older... *sigh*.
  • I am so totally enjoying my hunkering and hibernating phase these days.  I have been cooking and baking a lot in the evenings (tonight is cauliflower soup!) - then settling in to watch Outlander and crochet pumpkins.  I have been settling into my cozy, comfy phase and just loving it.
  • It's also the time of year when I am scrambling around trying to organize the Christmas House Tour.  Confession: I almost cancelled it this year.  I was exhausted at the thought of having to message 8 million people begging them to be on the tour, and hearing "no, no, no".  We had one person approach us which was a good start, but then I hit a rut.  I did the first round of messages, to the people who told me last year they would do it this year, and they all declined again. I put a public post on Facebook asking for volunteers, and got lots of shares but no responses.  I was ready to give up.  But yesterday morning, I felt this nudge; like a feeling that I just had to give more of a shot.  So I messaged a whole bunch more people, and I actually got another yes.  Then I got a message last night from another yes, along with a message that there's a potential.  So... in less than 24 hours, it went from being almost cancelled to pretty sure it's on.  I'm amazed.
  • Something I have NOT really got into yet?  The scary stuff.  I made lists, and I bought DVD's, and I thought a lot about it, but so far, actually watching any of it has not turned me on.  
  • I am so very much looking forward to Thanksgiving this weekend.  We are having our family meal on Saturday, and then I think we're going to my nephew's hockey game on Sunday after church.  Monday I'll dig out the Halloween decorations and maybe finally get around to watching some of the spooky stuff!  Bring it on!!

Thursday, October 03, 2019

October: Currently...

Today, I thought I'd share a little of what I'm currently into, here in the early stages of one of my favourite months of the year.

Listening to...  Right now, nothing but the little noises in an otherwise quiet office.  But for music in my life right now, I have a playlist on my phone that is getting regular play at home while I cook or bake or clean.  The Highwomen and Lizzo and Taylor Swift and Luke Combs all have prominent places on that playlist. 
Heavy favourites are: 
Even Though I'm Leaving - Luke Combs
Redesigning Women - The Highwomen
Circles - Post Malone
Good As Hell - Lizzo
Lover - T. Swift
She's Mine - Kip Moore
South of the Border - Ed Sheeran ft. Camila Cabello and Cardi B.
All My Favourite People - Maren Morris
Old Hat - John Pardi
Memories - Maroon 5

Eating... This week, the food has been japanese meatballs.  I made up a big go of them the other night and have been having meals of them with leftover hashbrown casserole and steamed cauliflower.  But I'm starting to get sick of the combo, so I think tonight I'm going to make a meatball panini sandwich.  Maybe with french fries or something.  And then the rest will go to the freezer.   Also, I'm allllll about the pumpkin.  I've been enjoying the pumpkin bread I made last weekend, and finished it up last night.  I have enough pumpkin to make more this weekend!

Drinking...  Just water, mostly.  Despite the cooler weather, I haven't really got back into drinking tea or hot chocolate yet.  It's coming, though.

Feeling... Good!  As I've said, September was weighing on me, so now that the page is turned, I feel much better.  I've been getting my 10k steps every day this week, eating marginally healthier, doing things that *I* like to do (crocheting, cooking, baking, reading, listening to music)...and looking forward to everything this beautiful month holds in store!

Reading... The Widow by Fiona Barton.  I've been reading it for a few weeks now (slow reader here) - but really enjoying it.  It's a mystery, and even now, as I'm winding towards the end, I still have no idea who took little Bella, if the man accused of abducting her actually did take her, if she's alive or dead, what role "the widow" plays in the whole thing... so many questions to be answered!!  It's so good, and there's a sequel called The Child that I'm already looking forward to reading.

Watching... The Ranch on Netflix.  I decided to go with it, but I have to say, I haven't really fallen in love with it.  That said, it's fine to have on while I crochet, because it doesn't need me to be paying full attention.  It's going to get shelved soon, anyways, because Season 4 of Outlander hits Netflix tomorrow! Squuuueeeeee!!!  That, and I have my Scary Movie list to tackle in the coming weeks.  Oh, and I'm also still following several shows on the PVR: Survivor, This Is Us, The Conners, Grey's, and of course, Jimmy Fallon.

Loving... Everything about this time of year!!  The cooler temps, the changing leaves, the fun activities coming up, the crocheted pumpkins I've been making, the comfort foods... it's my cozy time of year and I'm just soaking it up.

Wanting... Not much, right now!  I guess I'm wanting my credit card to get magically paid off. *sigh*  Remember a few weeks ago when I said I was putting a freeze on my credit card?  Yeah.  That didn't happen.  If I'm putting in an official "want" then I suppose I should say that I WANT to win the frigging lottery!!!!

Needing... Stupid little things, like new socks and underwear.  New knobs for my kitchen cupboard doors.  Nothing really big or important, and that's a good thing!!

What is going on with YOU currently??

Almost the weekend, friends... Happy Thursday!! :)

Wednesday, October 02, 2019

Wednesday Medley: October Things

I was so happy to close the book on the month of September, and welcome one of my very favourite months to the party!  Hello, OCTOBER!!  Cooler weather, colourful leaves, Thanksgiving, scary movies, cozy crochet time, Halloween, comfort foods... my time of year is officially HERE!!

To celebrate, I'm joining in with today's very October-ish Wednesday Medley questions.

1. The first week of October is National Mystery Series Week. Do you sleuth alongside Nancy Drew or Miss Marple? Fan of Nero Wolfe? 

I enjoy a good mystery - in fact, I'm reading one right now (The Widow by Fiona Barton, and it is so intriguing!) And as a tween, I definitely read some Nancy Drew books.  But I'm not sure who Miss Marple or Nero Wolfe are, so I'm not sure I can call myself a Mystery series expert lol!
2. The first week of October is also National Chili Week. Do you plan on celebrating with a bowl of red? Have a top secret recipe to share?

I do love a good bowl of chili this time of year!  But no, I haven't made it yet this fall, and I don't have any immediate plans to.  I'll grab the ingredients sometime in the next few weeks and whip up a big pot and some cheddar biscuits or beer bread to go with it.  Hearty comfort food is my favourite!

My recipe isn't so "top secret".  It's from my Betty Crocker cookbook, and it is my go-to come Chili season.

3. October 2nd is National Name Your Car Day. Does your car or did a family car have a name?

Oh yes, we definitely have this tradition in my family! haha! My dad named his trucks in later years after the people he bought them from.  Most notably, his last three trucks were Jimmy, Maurice, and Neil.

I took on my dad's tradition, naming my first vehicle after the aunt that sold it to me (Linda), and my current car is named after the sales woman who I dealt with at the dealership (her last name was Purdy).

4. Today is also National Walk To School Day. Did you walk to school with your friends? Take a school bus? Ever have someone carry your books home from school?

No.  Even though now it doesn't seem like  a long walk to the elementary school in our town, we always took the bus.  And then high school was even farther away, so we had to take the bus.  Nobody ever carried my books for me anywhere lol.

5. And it is National Pumpkin Seed Day. Do you like pumpkin seeds? Do you carve the pumpkin and roast the seeds? Do you buy packaged, prepared pumpkin seeds?
 Or more of a pumpkin spice person?

I do like pumpkin seeds, but that will happen later in the month when I carve my jack-o.  I always roast a bunch after I carve, closer to Halloween.  I rarely buy the packaged, prepared kind.  I do sometimes buy the shelled ones.  And I LOVE pumpkin spice everything!!  I made a delicious pumpkin bread last weekend, and I'm already planning to make more!  YUM!!

6. Please tell us something interesting about your week. 

So far, it has been a dark and dreary week... a perfect week to usher in the spookiest month!  As I've mentioned many times, I burnt myself out on scary stuff during the month of October last year, and swore I would not repeat that mistake again.  Yet, yesterday, I got the impulse to create my Scary Movie watch list for this year, and I'm already looking forward to a couple of scary movie dates coming up this month (going to see It: Chapter 2, watching the Freddie and Jason movies that I've never seen, and of course Scary Movie Marathon.)  I've even purchased four DVD's from Amazon in prep for this month.  The aforementioned Freddie & Jason movies, of course, and I also picked up Arachnaphobia and Frailty, two movies I haven't seen in a long time that I liked when I was younger.  So... so much for taking it easy on the scary stuff this year, eh?