Monday, September 29, 2008


I enjoyed the sounds of a young first grader singing while sitting in a stall in the bathroom at school today. It was comical that she was just sitting there singing, not a care in the world!
Ah, the "loo," the powder room, the can, the bathroom, the shitter, I wonder what percentage of our lives to we spend in there? Some of us spend more time in there than others, but all of us spend some time in there everyday! I, personally don't give much thought to bathrooms, except for wondering where they are when I need one really badly. I mean, I am not the kind of person who worries about using outhouses, or really minds sitting on the seats of public toilets. I can easily turn my head while using the "facilities" in a bachelor's apartment, I don't mind using bathrooms where children who have not quite figured out how to "aim" and I can pee in the bush like an experienced woodsman! I am good at just closing my eyes and "going!" Some people are not! I have been with friends, male and female, who scream when entering outhouses, who spend extra time in a stall at the mall, covering the seat in layers and layers of toilet paper and those who will suffer horrible abdominal cramps just to avoid "going" in the great outdoors! I am not that girl! Most of the time I am glad I am not compulsive about using unfamiliar facilities, however there are times when I should be more careful!
I have sat on many a seat that was not put down soaking my butt crack in toilet water, I have scrubbed my hands with urinal pucks thinking they were bars of soap in port-o-potties and I have squatted on rose bushes, ouch! I have been confused watching plastic wrapped seats whirr round and round and had accidental bidays while sitting on seats that “super flush” automatically!
I’ve spent lots of time in bathrooms, but I can’t remember the last time I sat on the pot singing…think I will try that today!

I have posted a picture I took of an outhouse on the ski hill in White Fish Montana.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


Tomorrow is the annual Terry Fox Run at our school! We have been on a big fundraising kick trying to beat the total of 24 thousand dollars that we raised last year! Some of the top fundraising kids will be getting their heads shaved at recess as part of the promotions, there will be speeches after lunch and a school wide run! All of this happens in memory of Terry Fox and his dream of running across Canada to raise money and awareness for Cancer research. Here's hopin' the sun shines...but we will run even if it isn't, raindrops can't hinder our spirit!

I have posted a photo of Nic and I. We ran in another Cancer Fundraising event this the pouring rain!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Today, I got to go to grade two! Every Tuesday a "grade team" in our school is given time to plan collaboratively. In order for this collaborative planning to be possible, other teachers, like me, cover classes for the "planning" teaching teams. Today, I covered a grade two math and PE class. I used to teach grade one, but it has been a long time....I had almost forgotten all about those days, but today I got to remember! I got to remember how when you walk into the room after recess everyone, I mean everyone, has a story to tell! Then there are the shoes that need tying, the knots that need removed from laces and the zippers that are stuck. There's the water bottles that are spilling, the kids, the ones who didn't remember to "go" at recess doing the pee dance, theres the kids who've started their silent reading and theres the bossy kids yelling at those who havn't started yet and then there's me, I'm just standing there taking it all in! It is quite a scene and I have missed it! Everyone is excited to have the French Teacher in their room and they all have to show me how high they can count in french or spanish, or whatever gibberish they say that makes them feel like they can contribute to the conversation. I review the "greater than" and "less than" signs with the special cardboard fish their teacher has left for me. The students take turns coming up to the board to trace the fish's mouth in the correct direction of "greater than." I notice every marker in the baskett (they get to choose which color to trace with you know,) has bite marks in the lid, every single one! Ofcorse they do, all kids open smelly markers with their teeth! After we are sure everyone remembers how to make the greater than or less than sign(<) they all go back to their desks for "seatwork." Some kids finish in a nano second, others take until lunch! Some kids copy their neighbours, some do it all themselves, but everyone does the work! Ofcorse no math page gest done without several trips to the pencil sharpener, the bathroom and the drinking fountain. 2 water bottles get spilled, a pencil goes missing and a math sheet gets ripped, somehow though, every child handed in the page just in time for PE! Actually this was DPA, something we have in Alberta schools, Daily Physical Activity. The lesson plans left for me, asked me to take the kids outside or play 7-up inside. I am sick (staying home tomorrow morning) so I didn't feel up to an outside adventure today. There was no way I could imagine playing 7-up with 25 seven year olds for half an hour so I decided to teach them a new game. The game was basically my version of fruit basket upset, where all the kids except one put their chairs in a circle. The one kid without a chair calls out two colors, if you are wearing either of those colors you have to get up and find a new chair while the child in the middle tries to steal one of the vacant chairs. Kids love this game and it gets loud and crazy! I always worn them about wrestling over chairs and tell them that if anyone cries, we stop playing this game! There was wrestling for chairs, sliding across the carpet on tummies, a little pushing, a lot of yelling and endless laughing, crying! Yipeeeee! My hour in grade 2 was a great little reminder of how similar they actually are to the grade eights, except that whining, tattling, chair wrestling, carpet sliding and water bottle spilling are much cuter when done by someone in the form of a 7 year old than someone in the form of a 13 year old!

Sunday, September 21, 2008


Oh My God, I totally busted an old man peeing in the bush today! I certainly didn't mean to, it's not like I was out scoping for people using nature to "eliminate" themselves so that I could make a citizen's arrest or anything. Lord knows, I've been guilty of relieving myself in public bushy areas too and it's true that if you are going to "go" in public, it is best to choose an area with as many trees and bushes as possible! But it is also key to make sure the area has as "few" people as possible!!! The man I saw (well, tried not to see) was NOT in a place with "few" people! He was in an off leash dog park! There were not only lots of dogs, but lots of people too!!! It was a beautiful day and the park was crawling with familes and puppies and random people without dogs who just like to walk in dog parks, like me! The park is a huge area with lots of hills, cliffs overlooking a valley and tonnes of trees, bushes and dirt trails. I love walking there because it kind of feels like I am hiking and I enjoy seeing all of the happy dogs and puppies. I was walking by myself because Marty hates walking and though I normally talk outloud to myself, today I was unusually quiet. I headed down one of my favorite dirt trails. I could see a small, fluffy white dog standing in the middle of the path. The dog looked scared of me, and began backing up at a rapid pace. I was busy watching this fat little fluffball back into bushes and trees when I caught, out fo the corner of my eye a rather large man standing very close to a tree. I could tell he was facing the tree and his hands were in a position that suggested he was holding something infront of him....oh my god, I suddenly clued in, he was peeing!!! We were both embarrassed, but it was me that apologized! Why did I apologize? Like it was my fault I had invaded his privacy! It was an awkard moment for us both, but it made me smile and realize that nomatter how old you are, when you gotta go, you gotta go!

My friend Maria was puppysitting her brother's puppy this weekend, I have posted a couple of photos of him...adorable!

Thursday, September 18, 2008


Tonight was "Meet the Teacher Night," or Meet the Creature as we like to call it, at our school. It's when we open the school at 6:30pm and invite all of the students to bring their parents to the school to meet the "creatures!" It is pretty informal, parents are welcome to poke thier heads into the classrooms and see where their child spends a good portion of thier week.
I am the French Teacher at our school and to be honest, not a lot of parents come to meet the French Teacher. Don't feel bad for me though, I like it that way! Oh, I like meeting the parents and I think it is fun when kids make a point of bringing theirs in to say hi, but if the truth be told, most of the kids I teach, are of the age where they do anything to keep thier parents from Meet The Teacher Night. Funny isn't it, that the first graders can't wait to drag thier parents to every room in the school. They have so much pride in their school and classrooms when they are 6. They love thier teachers and can't wait for thier parents to meet them. This year my classroom is in the K-3 wing of our school, though I only teach French to grades 4-8. I love being in the K-3 wing. The kids are hilarious, happy and sooo full of hugs, even for me and I don't even teach them! The parents of the Kindergarten to grade 3 wing students were lining up at the doors at 5:50pm and we were not opening them until 6:30! When the doors did open I stood at my classroom door and watched as children held thier parents hand and described in detail every room and teacher as they passed. They were so excited and proud! I wondered through the building, checking out the 4-6 wing. Not as many parents down there, but plenty of kids and they were all excited, but mostly because they were at school in the evening and they were seeing thier friends. There was very little hand holding and most of the parents went inside the classrooms by themselves. I checked out the 7-8 wing and wow, it was sooo quiet! Definately more kids than parents down there and most of the kids were there because they were hiding from thier parents who had brought younger sibilings to meet their teachers. The atmosphere in the building was happy as the excitement of Back to School rang through the hallways, but I still felt kind of sad. What happens between first grade and 6th that changes kids attitudes towards school so much? Is it just that the novelty wears off? What happens to make them lose thier love for school, for learning? I am going to make it my mission this year to help every student in our school find a sense of pride in the place they spend the majority of thier time for ten months of the year! Thank God tomorrow is Friday!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Out and Back, you go, you come back, same terrain just opposite. The Loop, you never see the same terrain twice, you end up where you started. Which is better?

Marty and I went biking out at Bragg Creek after work today and since we could find no trail map and since the sun goes down very quickly we decided we would bike for a certain time and turn around to ensure that we made it back to the parking lot before dark. This was going to be an out and back. We started chugging up an outrageously long hill (maybe it only seemed long to me...) and all I could think of was: on the way back, this is gonna be a downhill!! I knew Marty was excited about that thought, however, me? I hate downhills, they still scare the hell out of me! I immediately started getting nervous. Here we were, just starting our bike ride and already I was nervous about the last downhill we'd do! We rode over a couple of steep lips that dumped our front tires into deep puddles. We had to pedal like mad to keep our wheels churning through some slippery clay and deep mud (didn't always succeed), and all the while I kept thinking on the way back we are going to have to hit these from different angles! I spent the entire ride thinking and worrying about the way back! Don't get me wrong, I LOVED the ride! I LOVED the sunshine and the weather and the company. I loved that we saw cows on the trail and I loved that for once I wasn't crazy scared the whole time, but there was still that little part of me that got obsessed with "the way back!" I guess that is the "downside" of the "Out and Back."

The Loop on the other hand, does not feed into my tendancies to worry about the way back. The mystery of what's ahead, is what gives me anxiety. I worry that the trail will get steeper, rockier and rootier. I worry that I will fall off my bike and cry, but I never worry about how hard "this part" is gonna be on the way back!

The ride we did in Banff on Saturday was supposed to be a "one way" ride. You know the kind of ride that ends with you taking a cab, or previously arranged vehicle back to the start. We had no idea what kind of ride it was going to be so we just started biking. We decided at the beginning, that if it was too hard (for me) we would turn around and come back, and if we both felt great, we'd ride to Canmore and get a cab back to Banff. The ride was definately challenging. It really did have almost the perfect balance of "hard" and "do-able." But here is what I have learned about myself during this "learn to mountain bike at 32 years old" time: I AM SCARED TO GO DOWNHILL!!!! I can chug up most hills, I am not afraid to walk if I absolutely can't make it, but damn, I DO NOT LIKE DOWNHILL! I had no idea I would be sooo scared and I had no idea I turn into such a grouchy bitch when I get scared! Turns out, when I am scared I cuss a little, mostly at the bike, the roots, rocks and a little bit at Marty. I get short and snotty with my comments and I just generally turn totally emotionally retarted (ER as Nic's husband, Troy calls it.) I guess it is because I have no idea how to handle the feeling of "fear" and to me it must be easier to be grouchy and bitchy than scared. So, I bike along, happy as can be, one minute celebrating a giant climb up a rocky hill...and bitching the next, as I ride my brakes nearly "endoing" down the very same hill! Poor Marty, he has no idea what to do with me. He offers to get us off the trail and I get annoyed (I sure as hell don't want to quit,) he offers to go on and the next time I get scared I snap on him, he just can't win! Me neither though! I truly don't know what I want. Part of me wants to get on a safer trail so I can experience success and build my confidence, and part of me wants to just conquer the one we're on! As we biked along this difficult, technical trail in Banff, I honestly kept thinking, this is stupid, I am scared as hell, but we are going to have to go all the way because, mentally, there is no way I can handle coming back across all of this!!! Eventually we decided we were running out of daylight so we had to turn around, we were not going to make it to Canmore before dark. I panicked! I had spent the last hour scared to death, there was no way I could face all of those steep downhills, rocky creek beds and twisty, turny, rooty slopes again! But, I had to! Funny how the "mental game" is so huge in all sports! I was already so worked up about how hard it would be to go back, that mentally, I was a disaster. The way back for me involved, me riding when I experienced rare calmness, running and pushing my bike when I decided that I was a runner and what the hell was I doing biking and me throwing my bike down a hill when it fell on me, during one of my brave riding attmepts! It was not pretty! When we finally made it back to the hotel, I was all smiles, ready to go again. Marty was confused as hell!

"Out and Back," "The Loop," the challenge of "learning to ride," all of it, is proving to be a great, fun adventure for both Marty and I, one that includes a free emotional roller coaster ride! Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Monday, September 15, 2008


I can't seem to shake this happy, lucky feeling. No, I havn't won the lottery or anything like that, it's just that lately the sun has been shining, I mean really shining and that makes me feel lucky! When the sun shines I love to be outside soaking it up and that is when I can really appreciate being here in Alberta. The last few sunny days have given me the desire to explore my own neighbourhood and I can't believe how lucky I am to live where I do! I have discovered the best dog park in the trees, it goes on forever and though I don't have a dog (yet,) I love walking there, it actually feels like i am hiking. We live within 35 minutes of Bragg Creek, where last Wednesday, after work, we discovered the "Telephone Loop," a mountain biking loop that had the muddiest swamps and lots of cow shit, but it was close and it was a great 2 hour workout! This past weekend, we spent 2 days in Banff, a short 1 hour drive from our house. We biked, we hiked and we took in the amazing mountain air that comes free with sitting on patios in the sunshine! Today I rode my horse down a long trail, with a never ending mountain view! I just can't wipe the smile from my face. I feel lucky to have been raised by outdoor loving parents who showed me that great adventures lurk around every bend. I feel lucky to be physically and mentally able to enjoy the adventures the outdoors offers, especially this fall! Here's hoping the sun continues to shine and that as the leaves turn, we can be outside enjoying every bit of it!
I have posted some pictures of Marty and I enjoying some adventures in the Canadian Rockies!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


You know those things that make you instantly smile? Those silly simple things that bring a smile to your face without you being conscious of it? Not the big things, like a winning lottery ticket or squirming your way successfully out of a speeding ticket. Not big accomplishments like winning, or even finishing a race, but the little things.....I have been thinking about them lately. Like today I picked up a pencil at my desk and it was sharp! Silly and simple as that sounds, it made me smile. I get an instant smile from a really sharp pencil. I also got an instant smile when I discovered that in this house, here in Calgary, I can sit on the edge of my tub, and reach to hang my feet over the toilett to trim my toenails. In fact, everytime I do it, I smile. Weird how little things like that just make me happy. I tried thinking of a few other things, but since it is soo subconcsious (I don't know how to spell that,) it is hard to think of very many. Here are a couple to add to my list of sharp pencils and toenails in toilett:

Surprise coffee brought to me by anyone
Hitting several green lights in a row (I may be known to say outloud to myself, "this is the sign of a great day" when I hit the lights on my commute just right.)
Going to empty the dishwasher and finding it has already been done....WAIT that might be a big thing, see it is hard to really pinpoint those LITTLE try, come on, make a list of your own, it is fun!

On the other hand, it isn't so hard to think of things that make us instantly grompy. These are also little things. Simple, innocent little things that bring a frown to our faces without any real reasonable explanation why. Here are a couple that make me instantly grumpy:

Traffic going too slow, too much traffic, etc....
Someone parked in what I consider to be MY spot, even if it isn't officially, or legally my spot, it still pisses me off when someone is parked where I "banked" on parking.
Waiting...for anything!!!

Today Marty was parked in the driveway, which meant that I couldn't get into the garage with my car...I would have to park on the street! Before I even processed the thought that it was raining and I was wearing a skirt and heels and had a huge bag to carry, I was instantly grouchy. Not because I'd have to walk the whole 5 feet to my garage, but because I couldn't park where I had banked on parking! Just after I dropped a few four letter words outloud to myself, I realized HOW STUPID!!!!! Maybe Marty had stuff to carry in, maybe Marty was wearing a nice outfit and heels, maybe Marty didnt' want to walk in the rain! Anyway, between the fantastic sharp pencil and the frustrating parking situation I was on an emotional roller coaster (could Aunt Flow be coming???)

Tomorrow I am going to really focus on those little, happy things....make a list of your own, let's meet for a coffee (you can treat if you want to see my instant smile, hee hee) and we'll share lists!

Saturday, September 6, 2008


I once read a sign at the top of a chair lift, in the mountains, while snowboarding that said "Do something everyday that scares you." As I hopped off the chairlift and headed down the steep mountainside those words echoed through my head. I kind of liked the little quote. There is something to be said for doing something that scares you and SURVIVING! I have thought of those words several times while trying to keep up with Marty on our snowboards, but until today, I had never really considered them in the smmer! I usually spend the summer running (not scary,) and riding, usually not scary.... to me. This summer, though, Marty and I were inspired by Aim, Nic, Shane and Troy to try mountain biking. Nic and Troy have been over to our place a few times after biking in Bragg Creek and they always looked like they'd had so much fun. We spend a long weekend in Colorado with Aim and Shane and they took us mountain biking in Golden. They are amazing bikers, they made climbing huge hills look effortless and speeding down hills look frightless. They lent Marty and I top of the line Yeti bikes and we did our best to keep up with them. I, personally felt like the fat kid in a race. I suffered on those uphills and rode the brakes all the way down every decline. I couldn't keep up at all and I could feel my heart working to capacity. Sure, the altitude is different there, but Marty wasn't having the same troubles as I had run 3 half marathons this summer and I didn't have the lungs or legs to ride with these guys! Man, no wonder they are in such great shape, biking is HARD!!!!!
The other thing that is hard about biking, is the seat! Damn, did our butts hurt after that ride. Neither Marty nor I had padded bike shorts, we were naive in thinking that we didn't need them! We were definately convinced after that ride that we needed them. We both bought official bike shorts. The spandex ones with the padding in the crotch and ass area. Just to confirm what you are thinking, it does feel like you are wearing a diaper and to someone new to bike shorts, they are extremely awkward and uncomfortable. To me it feels like I have a maxi pad in my shorts. I hate that feeling, infact, I switched to tampons to avoid that sweaty, mushy feeling in my shorts, but I hate having tender butt bones more, so I sport the spandex maxi pads while biking. Everyone says "you'll get used to it." I will let you know if I ever do.
Marty bought a bike from Shane and the weekend after it arrived we took it and my old Rocky Mountain, front suspension bike to Kananaskis for our first Canadian off road ride. We took a trail that was supposed to be for beginners and within the first 2 minutes I was scared! I had never ridden over roots like the ones I was bouncing over. I had never pedaled up such steep dirt hills, I had never walked a bike down so many hills and I had never carried my bike across so many creeks! I actually loved the challenge of the roots and the rocks and even the uphills, but the downhills scared me to death! That mantra, that quote "do something every day that scares you) crept back into my head and I repeated it over and over for the entire 10km ride. By the time we made it to the village of Kananaskis I was more than ready for the beer we had waiting for us at the pub!
Today, Marty and I went to Canmore for our second Canadian off road ride. This time, we found ourselves on an extemely technical trail, a trail that required way more skill and guts than I had! It had rained yesterday and a little this morning so the trail was slick, which made it challenging to begin with. Roots, I learned are slippery and tricky, they grab your back tire and make it spin out throwing your bike off balance. I am not sure if this "spinning tire" thing is a problem if you are going fast, but at the speed I travel over roots, it is dangerous! The trail was narrow, trees hugged my knuckles on my handlebars and all of the downhills included turns! I am definately not ready to turn while going is awfully hard to turn with my brakes on! I admit, I walked my bike...a lot. I walked halfway up several hills, but walked it down almost all of them. I walked my bike when the trail was too rocky and the trees were too tight. If you hit a rock and take a bounce the wrong way on a narrow trail you will smash into a least that is what my mind kept telling me. Every once in a while I 'd take a bad bounce and would find myself off the trail in the soft moss, destroying the environment, contributing to erosion and feeling bad about that but not being physically able to steer my bike in the proper direction. That happened more than once, my bike would start going in a direction I had not consciously told it to go, and I couldn't make it turn. I'd be heading for a tree or the edge of a steep bank and I'd say to myself "turn, just turn the bike, turn..." but I couldn't! I'd have to put my feet down and walk my bike back onto the path. I have more luck controlling a two year old horse! I was being brave though and trying my hardest to keep up to Marty, who, bless his heart would wait for me at all sketchy areas and yell words of encouragement to me. Though he is also a beginner, he is one of those guys who is just naturally good at all sports. Sometimes I'd get going and think I was doing pretty good and then, I'd get to the top of a hill and I'd just lose my nerve. I'd have to get off and walk, just to get my courage back. I am not joking, I was scared for almost the whole ride! Do you have any idea how exhausting that is? Being scared, is mentally and physically exhausting! Being exhausted makes you make mistakes though and that is how I ended up crashing! I watched Marty go down a fairly long, loosely graveled hill, across a bridge and up most of the other side (he sometimes had to walk half way up hills too, I think that happens a lot when you are just learning.) I figured that since it flattened out at the bottom that I could probably try to ride this hill. I leaned way back like my sister had taught me, I pulled both brakes on and headed down hill. I was starting to feel brave, starting to consider letting the brakes off a little when the gravel grabbed my bike and started making it skid sideways down the hill. I was skidding now, and my brakes were not stopping me. I panicked and through my feet down, but somehow, doing that made me release the brakes. My bike was now skidding sideways, my feet straddling it, running Flintstone style to keep up with it. The whole thing was ugly and could only end with a crash. I wasn't hurt, but I had scared myself and all the frustration and fright I'd been trying to suppress the whole ride erupted in tears. Damn, I hate crying and not even having blood to show for it. Marty was awesome about the whole thing. He suggested that we get out of the bush and go the last 10 minutes on the gravel ROAD bsck to the parking lot. He insisted that he was exhausted too and ready for a break, but I am sure he was just saying that to make me feel better. He is a good man! He loved the whole ride, especially the downhill parts. He agreed that it was a little too technical for both our skills, but we did it and we learned a lot. Marty learned how to manipulate and handle his amazing new Yeti bike and I learned that "granny gear" is my favorite and that in the bush like that, I don't need any other gears! Once we got back to the van, I realized how scared I'd been and how alive that made me feel. I love that feeling (love it mostly when I am done doing the thing that scared me, knowing that I survived it!)
Go ahead, try something today that scares you!

Thursday, September 4, 2008


I love the fall, well I love it when it is actually "fall" and not winter pretending to be fall. Today was one of those perfect, beautiful fall days. It was the kind of day where the weather was fresh and crisp, but the sun was shining so brightly that it wasn't chilly at all. The kind of day that was perfect for riding horses in freshly swathed fields and newly mowed ditches. The kind of day perfect for long walks in the setting sun. The perfect fall day!
Yeah, school has started and I am back at work, but there is something kind of exciting about that too! Fall is great, I love it....except when winter tries to make an early appearance, like it did last weekend, while we were camping in our TENT. We were in a tent because we thought it was still FALL!!! We had brought tarps and down sleeping bags, and mitts and rain pants and boots because fall in Alberta has a habit of getting mixed up with winter and we wanted to be prepared! Prepared to take down our tent in the snow that is, not prepared to actually camp in the snow.
I stayed outside until dark today, enjoying this true taste of fall so I don't have much to write about, except that I am going to bed with a sense of peace and comfort after enjoying the perfect fall evening! G'night!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


I just got back from Superstore. Remember Superstore, from a couple of blogs ago? I loved it for the spicy cajun nuts in the bulk department? Well today, I hate it! Superstore is stupid! It is busy and crowded and I can't find anything there! I went in to see if they had wooden clip boards, I needed them for my classroom. BIG MISTAKE!!! There were a million picked over school supplies, a bunch of kids, stressed out parents and overwhelmed clerks, but no wooden clipboards! Since I was already in the building, I decided to see if I could quickly grab a few groceries, normally a pleasant, relaxing thing for me, but those "comfort feelings" were robbed from me by the craziness that is Superstore. Too many little ladies; asian ladies, old ladies and just plain short ladies with loud toddlers were pushing huge carts through the narrow isles. They like me (self proclaimed short lady,) were searching, searching for the items on our lists. Items that didn't seem to have any logical place in this giant store! I passed the same frustrated women, confused men and running children several times. They were all doing the same thing as me, staring at the overhead signs above the isles, trying to decide if it was worth the gamble, to actually go down the isle in search of the item we wanted that never seems to be on the sign! I found the pam, the milk, the eggs, the apples and bananas I was looking for, but I left the store without the tin foil. Still have no idea where the tin foil could have been, it sure as hell was not in the isle under the sign reading "foils." Nope, ofcorse not!

I made it through the horrificly long line ups and headed home! When I got there, I unpacked my groceries, including the adorable Alphabet letters I had found in the section that was void of clipboards. I planned to make flash cards for my students with the fun, patterned letters. To my dismay the alphabet letters were missing the letter Q! Great,I'll have the only french class that sings the alphabet without the letter Q!

2 of the eggs were broken and the milk jug leaked...awesome! Next time I decide I want to go to Superstore for anything besides spicy nuts, remind me that I would probably rather stay home and stab my eyes out!!!!

Monday, September 1, 2008


The Battle of Alberta, that's what they call it. The Labour Day football game, and Marty and I had tickets. Going to the game sounded so fun a couple weeks ago when a friend of ours bought tickets for us, but yesterday it snowed and the fun factor went DOWN! Ok, it didn't snow in Calgary, but it snowed where we were camping and after spending freezing my butt off out there, I had no desire to spend an afternoon sitting in the stands of a football game in the chilly, winter (is it winter already?) air! We had committed to the tickets though and since the sky was blue, with no rain or snow clouds in sight, we decided we should go.

I prepared for this game like I would prepare for a major adventure. I started by switching purses. I took my wallet out of my small, fancy purse, and put it in a large, yet stylish "bag." I then filled the bag with winter mitts, mini mitts, toe warmers, hand warmers a ziplock of trail mix, one of spicy nuts (camping leftovers) and an apple. I added my sunglasses and the case and over the handles of the bag, I put my down vest. I wore a tank top, a T-shirt, a hoodie, jeans, long sockes and sneakers. I put the bag over my shoulder and tucked a blanket under my arm. I felt ready for a football game on a sunny afternoon in September. No, Marty didn't think I was over packed at all, in fact, he got down the "Winter Tub" from the top shelf in the garage and pulled out his ski jacket! He decided to leave it in the van once we got to the game, but the reality is, he thought he might need it!

We met our friends at 12:30, though the game didn't start until 2pm. The tickets we had were for "rush seating" so you had to get there early to get good seats. The gates opened at 1pm and we were herded like cattle into the seating section reserved for those fans to cheap to pay for seats with backrests. We found a bench that had 5 spaces and steaked our claim. The boys went to the parking lot where they knew some people having a tail gate party and us girls stayed in the stands, guarding our seats. This section is filled with rowdy, beer drinking, shirtless, body painted, cowboy hat wearing, flag waving, horn honking fans...and families, with small children,
like the one that sat behind me, kicking the bottom of my seat relentlessly and old ladies, like the 4 adorable ones sitting in front of us. The ladies were so cute. They each had one of those foldable chairs, the kind with a back rest, designed to be put on bleachers. They weren't shy about sliding them waaay back so that they banged our knees. One of them had brought 4 plastic cups, individually wrapped in plastic and another had brought a thermos of hot chocolate. They shared everything, including pizza and fries. There were some big, strong policemen patrolling this rowdy area and the ladies were in love! The cheerleading squad from Edmonton was awesome. They had men and women on the squad and they were throwing and flipping eachother in the air, it was amazing. One of the ladies leaned back and asked me "how do you suppose a young man, decides he wants to be on the cheerleading team?" Another lady piped up "it's the ones who don't make the football team!" Those ladies made us laugh all game!

We sat on a balnket and covered up with the other one. I didn't need to dig out my mitts or toe warmers. The sun shone all afternoon and though I won't go as far as to say it was a warm day, but it wasn't uncomfortably cold either.
Edmonton (I was cheering from them) beat Calgary with a score of 37-16! All in all, great way to spend last day of Summer Holidays! Tomorrow it is back to school, ahhhhhhhhhh!