Friday, February 27, 2009


It has been ridiculously cold here lately.  Everyone is getting cabin fever!  Marty came down from his home office at lunch yesterday, this is what he ya think Scout was bored?

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I went through the "self-check out" at Superstore tonight.  As someone who has never worked in a grocery store, or in any kind of store, I kind of think it is fun to play cashier.  I think it's fun to scan items, though sometimes, I find finding the scan code a challenge.  Just today I figured out there are two "scanners." The obvious one on the bottom that you physically put the items on and, did you know there's one perpendicular to that?  Yep, you can just hold the item in the air with the scan code facing this other scanner and it will scan!  Who knew? 
I also realized tonight, that I talk, outloud to the computer voice.  When the voice says "place the item in the bag" I am right there saying, outloud, "I did put the item in the bag." The machine often repeats itself to my frustration and my outloud voice gets louder, "place the item in the bag" "THE ITEM IS IN THE BAG!  ITS IN THE BAG!"  Sometimes the voice tells me to remove something from the bag and I tell it "there is nothing in the bag.  I DIDN'T PUT ANYTHING IN THE BAG!!!!" Sometimes it wants me to punch in the PLU code. "I don't know the plu code.  There is no code. I can't find the code!" "Please wait for assistance," the machine will say to which I respond "GIMME A BREAK!!!"  The whole transaction ends with the machine telling me "thank you and please take your receipt" to which I always say "where's my receipt?  Why isn't the receipt coming out?  Where's my...oh, there it is!"  
How about you?  Do you talk outloud to the self check out machines?  Are your conversations pleasant?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


It snowed all day today.  The wind blew all day today. The temperature dropped all day today.  Yuck!  Traffic was a disaster, everyone was grouchy and there was no doubt that Winter was back!  Just when we thought Spring might be sneaking in early, Winter, the big bully, came back!  The only one who seemed to be happy about the newly fallen snow was...Scout!  While the rest of us came up with excuse after excuse NOT to go outside, Scout, drove us nuts, begging at the door to be let out.  Rather than tip toe through the snow, she bounded through it!  She dunked her face in it! She actually frolicked in it!  I begrudgingly took her for a walk after school today.  And there, at the opposite end of the leash from pure happiness, I was robbed of my gloomy attitude! It is impossible not to laugh and smile at the free spirit reminding me, of how fun snow is supposed to be!  
Aimee had sent us one of Jasper's jackets, a hand-me-down, if you will and I took this cold weather as an excuse to have Scout try it out!  She hated it, but damn, it was adorable, don't you agree?

Monday, February 23, 2009


 Scout wearing her cone.  Doesn't she look
pathetic?  She only wears the cone when we are gone.  She only
stays in that fence when we are gone too!  I hate leaving her like that!
I picked Scout up from the Vet's last Wednesday afternoon.  She had recovered enough from her "spay" operation for me to bring her home.  The vet tech explained the recovery instructions before bringing Scout out to me.  The instructions included things like, "no climbing stairs, off leash walking, no jumping, bounding, wrestling, or licking."  Ha, yeah, right, I thought as the instructions continued..."put this plastic cone over her head whenever she is unspuprvised, give her a syringe of pain killers every day for the next 5 days and keep her in-active!"  I smiled and nodded my head, however, I knew, probably as well as the vet tech did, that there was no way I would ever be able to keep Scout calm and in-active!  I carried the cone, the syringes and my wallet to the counter to pay for the surgery while the vet tech went to get Scout.  The dog at the end of Scout's leash, looked like Scout, and smelled like Scout, but DID not act like Scout.  She wobbled as she slowly walked towards me, her tongue stayed inside her mouth as I bent down to hug her and her eye lids fell closed when the other puppies in the waiting room barked.  Scout actually layed down right there in the waiting room, she ACTUALLY LAYED DOWN in public, with other puppies around!  She was definately stoned!!!  I scooped up my 48 pound puppy and carried her to the back seat of my car.  Marty met us in the driveway, carried her up the stairs and set her down on the couch where she spent the remainder of the evening drooling, snoring and sleeping.  It was weird to see our rambunctious, hyper puppy, so quiet and immobile!!  I began to think that keeping her in active might not be that hard!  We carried her up to the bedroom at bed time.  I couldn't bear the thought of putting the cone on her.  She could barely hold her own head up, how was she gonna have the energy to lick herself?  I decided if we put her doggy bed beside me on the floor, I'd hear her if she licked and I'd put the cone on then.  She slept the whole night through and so did I.  The next morning, I felt lost as I woke up and realized that today there would be no 5km walk with Scout.  She was banned to short, quick walks.  The minute she heard me stir in my bed, she bounced (oops, not supposed to bounce) out of her bed and chased (ooops, no running) me into the bathroom.  Before I could stop her, Scout climbed down the stairs (ooops another no-no) and the disillusionment I had felt the day before about her being calm, quickly faded.  Nothing keeps Scout down, nothing!!!!  

      Scout, looking much happier and without her cone!  Adorable!!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Scout graduated puppy school today!!! It was an exciting evening for all of us! To the untrained observer, Caos peeing 4 times during the hour, Tulip and Marmalade laying down under chairs to hide from thier handlers, Bear running away from Scout and Scout sitting at the very end of her leash, it may appear that none of these puppies has learned a thing. However, I sat in the middle of my chair smiling at the fact that Scout was actually happy to be sitting still at the end of her leash. I giggled at Bear as she ran, even if it was away from Scout. This was progress, there was a time when she refused to move faster than a walk and she only did that if she was required to for a treat! The fact that Tulip and Marmalade were brave enough to hide under a chair that thier handlers were not sitting in was as huge as the lion in the Wizard of Oz, getting courage and Caos, well Caos had learned to pee standing up! The fact that he did it four times in the hour was proof that he had become very good at it!! Bravo puppies!!!!

We had 2 "recall challenges" for fun. They were timed events. The first time we had to call our puppies and make them sit before the time would stop and the second one required us to call our puppies, have them spin in a circle and lie down before the time stopped. I sit here proud as can be as I annouce that Scout WON both challenges!!!! The trainer pulled out a tunnel and we played with that for a while. It was a super fun night and as frustrated as I was at times, I amglad we spent the past six weeks at Dogma! :)
They had us put t-shirts on the puppies as a handling exercise....adorable!

Monday, February 16, 2009


Marty and I met in February a couple of years ago. Valentine's day came at an awkward time in our very new relationship. We'd been together long enough that I felt like I wanted to aknowledge it, but not long enough to really "invest" in it. I decided chocolate covered strawberries were a yummy, safe aknowledgement of Valentine's day. Every year since then I have dipped fresh strawberries in melted chocolate! It has become a delicious tradition!
This year Marty's folks were going to a conference in Banff over Valentine's and they invited us to spend the weekend with them in the mountain condo they were going to be staying in. The condo was pet friendly, so Saturday morning, Marty, Scout and I packed up and headed to Banff. Among the things we packed were the chocolate covered strawberries I had made. This year, I got fancy and dipped the berries in both white and milk chocolate, making them look like they were wearing tuxedos. ADORABLE!!!! Late in the afternoon of Feb 14th, Marty's folks presented us with an expensive bottle of champagne in honour of our engagement (this was the first time we'd seen them since the event.) I busted out the tuxedo berries and the four of us celebrated Valentine's day the perfect way, with chocolate, champagne and people we love!! Here's hoping you got to celebrate much the same way!

Sunday, February 15, 2009


I can't believe it!  Judging from both the published and confidential comments regarding my last post, it turns out I am the weird one!!!  This comes as news to me!!  Here, I always thought it was normal to pull my pants all the way down to my ankles in the bathroom.  I hate having them around my knees, makes me feel closterphobic.  Suddenly though, I am feeling a little self-conscious!  Someone pointed out that by pulling my pants down that low, people in the joining stalls can see my undies, or lack there of, and that my pant legs touch the floor, the same floor where more than one person may have "dripped"while prematurely standing up!!! Ewww!  But, there are no rules, at least none that I know of.  I will continue to pull my pants down to the ground when I pee and I will embrace it as one of the perks of living in a "free country!!!"

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Without trying to sound like a creep, I noticed something weird today. When I go to the bathroom, whether it's "number 1" or "number 2", I pull my pants down all the way to my ankles, everytime! While sitting in my bathroom stall today, I noticed that the lady next to me, did not pull her pants down all the way. From where I was sitting, it looked like her pants were still curled up around her knees. I don't know why I noticed this, but it was the first time I consciously realized that not everyone "settles in" to go about their business the same way! Who knew?!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Scout being super gentle 

Just got home from our second last class of puppy school and as I write this, I have this silly, silly grin on my face.  I, for almost the first time since puppy school began, am happy of Scout's performance in class.  The funny thing, is that Scout didn't actually perform any better than usual, but the other puppies?  The other puppies got worse!!!  Yipeeee!  Now little Marmalade who before, could do no wrong, has gotten brave.  I tried to hide my grin as I watched her owner become frustrated as she chased  her once perfect little puppy around the classroom.  I watched with embarrasement for his "handler," as Caos peed while laying down, not once, but twice!  I watched her horrified owner wince as  Jemma growled evil, almost mean  See, she can be attentive..
if you have just the right treats!  :)
growls at the littler puppies. (Tulip and the mini dash hounds were no shows.) And I watched with an unphased expression as Scout pulled all her usual stunts (pulling at the end of the leash, pouncing playfully on the other dogs, attmepting to "french kiss" every human in the room and showing little interest in me.)  Suddenly these things seemed minor, so "passee" if you will.  The other pup's behaviors were new and right or wrong, those behaviors made my Scout look, well, pretty damn NORMAL!!!!!!!!  
I have decided to post a few pictures of puppy class, enjoy!

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Ok, so we got home from our Ski Trip, after getting engaged, on Monday, Feb.2nd.  The minute we walked in the door, I called the "nail" place near my house.  I was hoping to get gel nails before going to work the next day, so that when I showed off my ring, I would have hands and nails that would do it justice.  I have ugly, ugly hands.  My skin is dry, my fingers are stubby and short, my knuckles are large and more "manly" than dainty and there is more grime under my nails than in some mud puddles!  For the first time in a long time, I had this urge to pretty them up.  I figured gel nails would give them the feminine look my beautiful engagement ring deserved.  Lucky for me, there was one appointment left at 7pm.  I took it!  I've had nails before, for various occasions, but not in years.  What I don't like about getting nails, I quickly remembered, is that you have to sit still, for a long time!  The esthetician asked me if I was uncomfortable and that is when I realized that even at a thirty-something, I am too hyper to sit still!!!!  I was horrified to realize that she did not clean the grime out from under my nails at all.  She simply lectured me in her asian accent, about how gross it was, then she covered it up with the gel.  She basically created a curtain of gel to cover up how gross my own nails are! I had explained to her that I am pretty active and therefore did not want long nails, just a little tip with a French manicure, that would be natural and easy.  I guess her idea of "short" and mine, were pretty different, which I didn't realize right away.  I left the salon with beautifully groomed, perfectly shaped French manicured nails and met Maria for a coffee. She was the first one to see both my new nails and my ring!  She loved both and I left our coffee date feeling on top of the world!  
The next day, however, I discovered that this length was not appropriate for my lifestyle!  First of all, typing became a challenge!  My fingers no longer fit on the keys and I kept hitting more than one key at a time.  I couldn't text on my cell phone at all and I couldn't get the flat magnets off my white board at school!  Ridiculous!  "People do this all the time" I kept telling myself, "you'll get used to it."  But texting and typing remained a frustrating act, demanding too much time and concentration and magnet removing became a task I assigned to students.  Today, Sunday, almost a week later, I decided to take matters into my own hands.  Certainly, the thought of calling the salon and asking them to file down the nails had crossed my mind, but so did the thought of sitting still in a chair while someone meticulously filed down these gel nails.  I had a perfectly capable set of nail clippers in my make up bag.  I grabbed them and began snipping away at the tips of the fake nails.  That gel is hard!!!  I'd chip off a piece and it would go flying, at one point I thought I should go get some safety glasses.  Instead I just looked away and cut off the nails on all of my fingers.  I am not much of a filer, that is way too precise and it takes too long. This was a quick, painless, process that created a much more reasonable nail on the end of each fingertip. Each fingertip except my right thumb.  The nail on that thumb was way to thick and I didn't have the strength in my left hand to snip it off.  When Maria came over today, I asked her to please help me trim my thumb nail.  Maria didn't even blink an eye at this strange request (she has been hanging out with me long enough not to be phased by my eccentricities.)  We walked over to the sink and she clipped my nail as we both turned away so as to avoid the flying chips of gel.  She agreed the length was much more suited to me and then she reminded me I needed to file them so that they looked shaped.  We both smiled and changed the subject.  We both know that that will never happen.  I dont' have the patience,nor the co-ordination to make that happen.  From a distance these nails still look pretty damn good and that is good enough for me!  
If Marty didnt' have the camera with him in Red Deer, I would take a photo of my man hands turned feminine but until I can, you will just have to use your imagination! :)

Thursday, February 5, 2009


I started a fire my stove!  I mean a real fire, flames, smoke, flames, did I mention flames????  I sincerely thought I was going to burn my house down!!  I have already had one house fire in my life (I was not home at the time, so it wasn't my fault.)  I have had a huge fear of fire my whole life, only magnified but the burning home experience, so discovering full blown flames in my stove was very petrifying for me!  I had baked "sticky buns" with my students in Foods class this afternoon and they turned out to be delicious!  When I got home, I decided to bake some for Marty as he had to work late and always appreciates yummy surprises.  I filled my angelfood cake pan with butter, syrup, raisins and sugar and put the dough on top, spilled more yummy stuff ontop and stuck the pan in the oven.  I am queen of multi tasking, so naturally I was on the phone while creating this concoction.  As I cleaned the dishes, I smelled something burning.  I opened the stove and...FIRE!!!!!!!!  The syrupy, sugary goodness had dripped out of the bottom of the pan, pooled on the bottom of the stove and caught fire!  I screamed!  My girlfriend on the other end of the phone yelled "pour salt on it!!" I looked at my salt shaker and seriously doubted that that shaker would put out the fire.  "Don't you have a box of salt?"  My girlfriend, remaining calm on the other end of the phone asked.  NO!!!  I panicked, grabbed a cup full of water, threw it on the flames and turned the oven off.  I pulled out my sticky buns, put the gooey mess on a plate and popped them in the microwave, hoping they would finish baking.  I then, brilliantly decided to immediately put the self cleaning mode on.  FYI, that was a stupid move!!!  The self cleaning mode basically turns the stove up high as it can go and burns the shit out of everything in there.  Yep, you guessed it, didn't take long until I had a fire in my self cleaning oven!  In my panic, I had not scraped the syrup from the bottom of the oven and now it was on fire, inside my oven with the door LOCKED!!!!! Apparently the self cleaner locks the oven door!!!  By this time my heart is pounding, the house is full of smoke and I don't know what to do.  I called my girlfriend back and had her ask her mom if the oven should have flames during cleaning.  I knew the answer was no, but clearly I was not thinking rationally at the time!!  I turned off the self cleaner, and hoped for the best!  Luckily the fire went out and i was left with a smokey, smelly condo!  Scout was petrified, so, after opening all of the windows, leaving Marty a voicemail message informing him to pick up something already cooked for dinner, and making sure no flames were going to spontaneously flare back up, I took her for a walk in the fresh, clean city air!!!!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


My fiance, (I love how that sounds,) and I took Scout to her puppy class tonight. I enjoy the class soooo much better when Marty is there to hold on to Scout. There were only 5 puppies at class tonight, apparently there are some truants among us.... Of the 5 puppies in the class, Scout was by far the biggest and the most excited! Though we had our choice of chairs in the room, Scout took to her favorite position: the very end of the leash. At the end of Marty's unrelenting grip the collar pulled just tight enough to cause hacking sounds and gagging motions, awesome! 3 minutes in and Scout was drawing attention to her little gong show. Thankfully, we started class with some supervised play time. This is Scout's favorite part of class and she needs zero encouragement to "go play!" As soon as we unclip the leash,she is off on a tear, racing across the room at top speed! The two tiny puppies, Marmalade and Tulip (how can that not be wimps with names like that??) hide between their owners legs. Jemma and Caos scramble to hide underneath chairs and Scout? Oh, Scout body slams into all human knees, hoping to uncover potential hiding playmates! Scout mows over all plastic chairs taking away inanimate refugee camps. Scout dives into the community water bowl and Scout jumps up and attempts to French Kiss every spectating 2 legged adult in the room! As my exuberant puppy basically terrorizes the class, pride does not exactly swell in my chest.....but I love her energy and her free spirit, if only I could bottle it and keep some for myself!!

Monday, February 2, 2009


Way back, around new years, I wrote about "status quo," and how happy I was with everthing the way it was.  Today, I am writing to say, "status quo has changed!!!"  Marty and I are now engaged to be married!!!!  

We spent the weekend snowboarding in Whistler, BC, a Christmas gift to me from Marty.  I had never been to Whistler so this was a real treat, plus we got to fly there and I got to take a day off to make it an extended weekend holiday.  We stayed in the village of Whistler, the Gondola to the top of the mountain was only a 5 minute walk from our hotel.  We hot tubbed, apres-skiied, ate nachos, drank beer (and girlie coolers), snowboarded, hung by the fire and slept in!  Oh and on the very last run of the weekend, Marty sat in the snowbank, board still attached to his feet and proposed marriage to me!  I lifted up my pink goggles, stared through the falling snow into his big, beautiful blue eyes and smiled the biggest smile!  He pulled a ring box from the inside pocket of his ski jacket, opened it,took the most incredible ring out and put it on my frozen finger, it fit perfectly!  We sat there in the snow holding eachother, trying to kiss despite our big coats and goggles, laughing and celebrating!  It was a perfect moment!  Here's to the adventure!!!!!!!!!!!!!!