Monday, November 29, 2010

Christmas Trees and Latkes

What a great weekend.

The two oldest kids were here on Friday night and got our Christmas Tree decorated. Decorated their way.

It is the best tree I have ever seen. They had so much fun digging out the ornaments and getting them up on the tree. They are starting to get excited.

On Sunday I went over to S's. house, four of us made Latkes. Lots and lots of Latkes. We peeled and cut 20 pounds of potatoes and 4 pounds of onions, then added eggs and Matzo Meal and made squishy, delicious little potato pancakes.

A year ago S. had a party on the last night of Hanukka. The beginning of a great tradition.

Last year we thought we would be able to make Latkes at the beginning of the evening and then spend the rest of the night socializing. We ended up in the kitchen until 1:30am. We had fun cooking away, and decided that this year there would be a bit more planning ahead. A bit less cooking the night of, nad a bit more socializing.

Milo is feeling much better now.

Our planned start time of 1:30 turned into 4:30 when Milo needed an emergency Vet visit.

Once everyone arrived, we got down to business. The business of drinking tea, making Latkes, visiting and having a great time.

C. taking a potato peeling break.

Hours later when we called it a night, we had had a very productive evening.

S. and the first batch of Latkes.

We had trays of Latkes, lots of great conversation, a few new friendships and full tummies. And a perfectly decorated Christmas Tree.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Winter Wonderland

It never snows in Victoria.

Famous last words.

While I was out last night it started to snow. When I left town the lawns were white and the roads were a bit slushy. By the time I got halfway home I was slipping and sliding all over the place. Finally I stopped at a red light and put my truck into 4-wheel drive, from then on the drive home was not so slippy and slidy.

Thankfully it's the weekend and I don't have to go anywhere. It is nice to be able to stay home and enjoy the snow through the window. I did go out this morning and fill the bird feeders since they can't get to their regular food sources. I also like to watch them through the window, they are able to empty the feeder in just a few hours.

I also cooked up some hummingbird feeder 'juice' for our teeny tiny neighbours. The magic recipe is 1/4 cup of sugar to 1 cup of boiling water. Give it a stir to make sure the sugar is totally dissolved and then let it cool before pouring it into the feeder. No food colouring, it's not needed, and it's not good for them. These little guys live in one of the trees outside our living room.

The cows don't like the snow. The smartest cow is the newest little girl, Andy. She stayed in the barn today. Right now the cows are sharing their paddock. With half of our Chestnut Tree. At about 12:30am those of us that were still awake heard a noise and figured it was just a big pile of snow coming off the roof. Nope. It was the Chestnut Tree. With the weight of the snow the biggest branch came crashing down into the paddock. Fortunately all the cows were tucked into the barn for the night and were safe. After the snow melts, the chainsaw will come out.

The snow does amazing things. Just a few days ago the yard was a soggy, rainy, muddy mess. Now it's all clean and sparkly. Snow makes everything look so peaceful and pretty, and makes it so quiet outside.

Now that the birds are fed outside, and the cats and people are fed inside, it's time to curl up with a book and a cup of tea.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

What a Week! And it's only Tuesday

It's turning into an interesting week...

Cell phone stopped working.

Cell phone = alarm clock.

Woke up 2 hours late, confused, just as I should have been arriving at the office.

No time for a shower.

Crazy busy workday.

Noticed the cell phone was broken at lunchtime.

Forgot lunch at home.

Went to have the cell phone exchanged, they couldn't do it, the box was at home, they need the box.

Picked up dinner on the run, not on the 'approved' eating plan.

Slopped dinner on my shirt.

Upset tummy from dinner.

Had a late meeting, with a messy shirt.

No power at home from the windstorm. No power = no well = no water.

No hope of the power being back on anytime soon.

Went to stay at a friends. I am very thankful for my friends.

Went to bed too late after getting settled.

Up early. Borrowed a different alarm.

Forgot my toothbrush at home.

Into the office early, extra toothbrush stashed in my desk drawer.

Downstairs to shower at the gym.

Forgot my homework list at home.

Another silly busy workday.

Finally got the cell phone exchanged.

School after work, homework was not done.

Power was back on after school, 22 hours later. Yay!

Cats were really wierded out and attention seeking. So snuggles in the chair.

Drippy bathtub noise... drip... drip... drip...

The tub is not draining.

Actually, everything else is draining into the tub.

Blocked sewer line. Boo.

We are on septic. This could be really bad. 

Now we have well water, but can't do anything with it.

Off to bed way to late again tonight.

Lets hope that the rest of the week will run a bit more smoothly...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Water, Water Everywhere

I have 2 cats.

They are not the best of friends.

One I have had for about 10 years, her name is Bob (yes, Bob is a girl). The other cat, Charlotte (also a girl), I have had since March of this year. I got Charlotte as Bob was painfully lonely after the sudden passing of her best friend, Rupi.

Bob and Rupi in January

I certainly didn't expect Bob and Charlotte to be immediate buddies, but I figured that the hissing and fighting would have stopped by now. I was so wrong.

I have found one thing they agree upon.

When we moved into this house I put out their water dishes and noticed that they never drank out of them. Weird. Cats need water to survive, I am sure of it.

It took a little while to figure out what was going on...

Bob in the tub and Charlotte on the tub

The bathtub faucet drips.

I guess the fresh drippy bathtub water is better than the fresh tap water I put out every day. Now, I don't even bother with water dishes.

It's nice to see that they are learning to get along. Or at least be in the same room without fighting.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Daily Lesson

Every time I get on my motorcycle I learn something.
Today's Lesson: When you think the ride home will be fine without longjohns, put them on anyways!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Downsizing and Organizing

Continuing on my theme of downsizing this year I have been sorting through some more bunches of 'stuff' I have and am working on fitting into a much smaller space. It's a work in progress, and is going to take some more time, but it is an interesting task. Everytime I come across something, I ask three questions.

1. Do I love it? Really love it. It has to make me smile when I look at it.
2. Do I use it? Regularly. Often. Like, I would have to replace it soon if I got rid of it, often.
3. Does it have a home? A permanent one. Where it can live forever.

If the answer to all 3 is NO, then it goes. It goes online if it's saleable, or in the donate pile if it's not. Either way, it's outa here. And soon.

My big item for today was my dining room table and it's 6 matching chairs, listed online, and I have had one offer already.

Big Ticket Item #1, on it's way out...
Tomorrow I think it will be my Golf Clubs. I golf once a year, maybe. I should just rent clubs.

While I am working on all this downsizing, I am also organizing all the stuff I am keeping. Today the organizing began in the Laundry Room. I emptied out the whole room, washed the floor, swept the cobwebs out of the corners and organized everything while I was putting it back. Now I walk in there and can find things and have room to think. Ahhhh...

Tomorrow will be paperwork organizing. I have piles of the stuff I need to go through. And I already know I don't love any of it.