Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I've been going for facials since I was 19 years old and was dealing with a horrible case of adult acne. I don't remember when I stopped going for a negative reason, and started going for the pleasure of them. I actually enjoy facials more then massages.

I love all the lotions and potions used, the scents, the warm towels, it's heavenly! It is so relaxing to have someone wash your face and apply the various masks and moisturizers while your snug and warm on the table. And then there is the head and sometimes leg and arm massage your given while a mask sets. Sometimes I'm so relaxed I have to fight to stay awake.

I've had many facials at many different locations, but my absolute favorite place to go is Pure & Simple. A girlfriend told me about this place about six years ago and I've been going there ever since. They use and carry lines of product that are all natural. I have sensitive skin and I like knowing I'm not putting any harsh chemicals on my skin. I've been slowly switching over to using their own reasonable priced line of product, and have noticed the difference in my skin.

I try to go for a facial once a month, and it's a monthly pampering ritual I look forward too and enjoy.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


Rob’s cat, Meadow, was just a few months old when we started dating, but their unique bond had already been well established, he adored her, and he was her whole world.
I always felt in those first couple years of dating that Meadow never really liked me, she tolerated me. She always seemed a bit relieved to see me go home, as she enjoyed having Rob all to herself.
As Rob's and mine relationship grew more serious, and I spent more time at the house, I started to develop a relationship with Meadow myself. I played with her a little differently then Rob did, and she seemed to enjoy this. I also introduced her to something she had never had before, and that has become her vice, Fancy Feast cat food.
After the introduction of this new food, that only I gave her, she started to see me in a whole new light, and was happy to see me walk through the door. Feeding her Fancy Feast on the weekends became our thing, and she even learned to recognize a few phrases that I would say before feeding her.
After almost five years of dating, Rob asked me to move in, and I think Meadow and I had more of an adjustment phase then Rob and I. Those first months of living together I swear Meadow looked at me with a ”Your still here?” look regularly.
After a while I think she came to realize the benefits of having two humans to live with; she was rarely alone, she got Fancy Feast daily, and twice the love.
I knew when Meadow finally accepted me the day she jumped up on my chest while I was lying down on the couch watching TV. Rob was at work, and this was the first time she sought me out for some attention. I patted her as she purred and I felt like I had won the lottery.
Just this past week Meadow and I had another first, she came to bed with me, without Rob. Another proud moment for me, having Meadow accept me a little more, and making me feel like she’s mine too, or I’m hers.
I love having Meadow meet me at the door at the end of the working day and am proud of the special bond we’ve created on our own over the years. I’m quite content to be her number two favorite human.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Yesterday was only the second time that people in Ontario celebrated the new holiday, "Family Day." Rob and I decided to get out and enjoy the sunshine.

We started the day by having brunch at my favorite restaurant, Dr. Generosity's and then headed to High Park for some birding.

The parking lot were we usually park was full so we had to park a little deeper in, causing us to visit a different area of the park, which worked in our favor. We saw a lot of different birds; cardinals, gold finches, nuthatches, sparrows, chickadee's, hairy and downy woodpeckers. I was even lucky enough to have a male nuthatch land in my hand for a peanut!

We hadn't been to High Park since last spring, as it's a great place to visit during spring migration, turns out it's a great place to spend Family Day too!

Monday, February 16, 2009


As a teenager visiting my grandmother I happened to mention one time, how much I liked her china, and that I would like to have it one day. It's Wedgwood, the Countryside pattern.

A few years later on another visit she told me that the dishes were wrapped and put away, and I could have them when she passed away. I was happy that she was going to let me have the china, which she hadn't used in many years, but thought it rather odd, that she wanted me to wait until she passed on to have it.

I mentioned this on my next trip home, because by this time I was living in Toronto, having moved there from Nova Scotia when I was 19 years old. I told my Nannie that I was happy she was going to let me have her china, but would really enjoy having and using it now. I wasn't sure how she was going to react, as she can be rather outspoken (a trait I inherited) but she didn't say too much, much to my surprise.

My words must of resonated, because it wasn't too long after I returned to Toronto that my Mother informed me that Nannie had made arrangements with a friend that was driving to Ontario, to deliver the china to me. That was fifteen years ago, and my Nannie is still very much alive.

I don't use the china as much as I should, but it has a place of prominence in the kitchen china cabinet where I can see it everyday. I can't help but think of her when I see it, and that's half the reason I wanted it, to have something to remind me of her that I could use.

We used the china yesterday when we had friends over for a big turkey dinner and all the trimmings. Eating off of those dishes is as close as I get to having dinner with family 51 weeks out of the year, and that makes using them very special to me. I'm glad my Nannie let me have that enjoyment now, while she is still alive.

Sunday, February 15, 2009


Rob and I don't really do "Valentines Day", what I mean is, we normally don't go out for an expensive dinner, buy each other expensive presents, nor do I get a big bouquet of flowers. In the past I've always made a nice dinner, we exchange cards and a small gift. Ok, after reading that, I guess we do, "do valentines day", just in our own way, but this year was a little different.

We decided to go out for dinner this year, because Valentines Day happened to fall on a Saturday (just like our very first one together), and because it happens to be a long weekend, and we normally go out for dinner on long weekends to give me a break from cooking. We went to "Snug Harbour" in Port Credit. We had planned on going there last month, but a snow storm kept us away. We had been there for lunch before but never dinner. It's a nice but casual restaurant on the water.

We had a nice water view table. The sun was just starting to set when we arrived and it was very pretty. We were having a drink, sharing some appetizers and talking when we noticed some activity on the water. We saw lots of Canada Geese, about 10 Swans, a few Mallard Ducks, and something we had not seen before, Bufflehead's!

When Rob and I see a new bird together it is always exciting for us. We had fun watching the 3 or 4 males (pictured, the females are grey-brown) diving for food and swimming around. Their appearance made our Valentines day dinner just a little more special.

After coming home we exchanged cards and a small gift, but I know we both will remember the Bufflehead's most, and think of seeing them as an unique gift for the two of us. I wouldn't be surprised if we made an annual Valentines day outing to the Port Credit harbour to see them, because in my mind, the Bufflehead will always be my Valentine Bird.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Have you noticed all the people wearing rubber boots lately? I first started to notice this a couple months a go and didn't think much of it. Now with all the melting snow and rain, it really has become a trend, funky rubber boots! And there not just for backyard gardeners.

When I was a little kid, I know I had a pair of plain black rubber boots that I use to wear in the yard to play when it was wet out or when my Father took me clam digging. Rubber boots have come a long, long way since then.

There is a senior lady who I see daily at my bus stop, and everyday she has on a pair of leopard print rubber boots. Yesterday I noticed a couple teenage girls wearing a pair of pink ones with little shoes on them. Today I noticed a girl in her 20's wearing a pair of polka dot ones, and my neighbor, who is in her 50's had on a pair of red and black plaid ones. Rubber boots are everywhere and are for all ages!

I have been a part of a fashion trend and didn't even know it. I bought myself a pair of these funky boots a few months back. Mine are green plaid and fleece lined. I thought they'd be perfect for slipping on to go out in the backyard during the winter. They are easy to put on, comfortable, and they keep my feet warm and dry.

I don't think I'm up to wearing them out though, I'm saving my funky fashion boots for the place I love most, the backyard.

Monday, February 9, 2009


This past Friday night I joined six girlfriends for dinner at one of my favorite restaurants, Big Daddy's . This casual and fun restaurant serves authentic Cajun cuisine and with the southern sounds of jazz playing in the background it's easy to pretend your in New Orleans.

I've visited Big Daddy's countless times, but this was their first time taking part in Winterlicious, and I decided before I went to try something I'd never had before.

I started with the crawfish brushetta, which I liked more then I thought I would, though it could of used a little more crawfish. For my entree I had the 8oz striploin in a cracked pepper sauce, served with garlic red skin mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables. I've always had seafood when I visit Big Daddy's and was pleasantly surprised when the steak was melt in your mouth tender. For dessert, I knew I couldn't go wrong with their creme brulee, which is delicious and worth going for itself, I just wished it was served a little warmer.

Another $25 pre-fix three course dinner that was well worth it, and Big Daddy's is worth a visit if you haven't been.

Friday, February 6, 2009


The other night instead of heading home, I decided to stay in Bloor West Village to run some errands and have dinner before my physio appointment.

I went to one of my favorite restaurants, Dr. Generosity, to enjoy a good meal by myself. I don't mind eating out alone, though I always have a book for company. The restaurant was quite quiet, being mid-week, and a little early for most diners.

I was seated next to a couple, a Mom and teenage daughter, or at least I'm assuming this. After being seated, I happened to glance over at them, and what I saw saddened me. The mother was on her cell phone, and the daughter was texting on her blackberry. This continued the whole sixty plus minutes I was there, even through their meal! I didn't see or hear them exchange one word.

As someone who only sees her Mother once a year, how happy I would be, to be able to sit across from her and share a meal and conversation more often. I guess this type of appreciation comes with age and distance.

I realize that technology has its place in society, but I also feel there are some places it needs to be left in your purse; restaurants, movie theatres, the transit system. People need to start talking again, to the people who are with them in the moment. I sometimes wonder if people are so afraid of being alone with their own thoughts that they are constantly chatting or texting someone. How sad.

When I realized I was starting to e-mail my friends more then call them, I made an effort to change that. If I'm home alone, and I haven't seen someone in a while, I call them to catch up.
Hearing your friends laughter at the other end of the line is no replacement for "LOL", no matter how many times you type it.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Every once in a while a movie touches your soul, and it happened this past Sunday when I went to see "The Wrestler". I loved this movie, but it made me feel sad too. I saw a lot of myself in the main character, Randy "The Ram" Robinson, who Mickey Rourke portrays so well.

As someone who often feels their "glory days" are behind them and wishes to turn the clock back 20 years, I knew how Ram was feeling.

Rationally I know this is silly, but sometimes that longing to be the hot, wrinkle and gray hair free girl I once was sneaks up on me. I look in the mirror some days and wonder who that is staring back at me. Like Ram, I loved the 80's, and felt that was the best time of my life, it was all fun, fun, and even more fun. Maybe I had too much fun, and that's why it's hard to let go of that time.

Maybe all these feelings have to do with the fact that I'm turning 40 this year, I don't know.

Rob reminded me later when we were talking about the movie, that I have a lot more going for me then Ram did; great friends, steady job, and a real partner. For these things I am truly grateful, but for one day, I would just love to wake up looking and feeling like I did in my 20's, at least at this age I'd have the wisdom to appreciate it.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


We go 'birding" quite often, and always enjoy seeing the birds, but when you have one land in your hand, well, that feeling is just wonderful. It's getting as close to nature as you can.

We visited Bronte Creek today in search of a white-winged crossbill, a bird we had not seen before but heard had been seen in the park. It was our first visit to the park and we were surprised by the number of cross country skiers, but we chose a more hilly walking trail with less people.

We hadn't been walking very long when we heard the familiar call of one of our favorite song birds, the chickadee, and they were more then willing to land on our hands for some black oil sunflower seeds.

Though we had no luck in spotting the white-winged crossbill, we were treated to many sightings of chickadees, white breasted nuthatches, and one very noisy blue jay.

We spent close to 2 hours enjoying the trails and birds, and will return in search of the elusive white-winged crossbill.


I've been very slow at moving into the "digital" world to the amusement of many friends. Since my 35mm breaking a couple years ago, I started using disposable cameras at all of our get togethers and didn't mind getting picked on because of it.

This past October when I found out I was getting a nice raise, I decided to buy Rob and I a digital camera, as Rob had mentioned getting one quite often for taking pictures of the birds in the yard and when we go birding. My friend Brian was great at helping me pick one out and answering all my questions, as I knew basically nothing except what I wanted it to be able to do. I surprised Rob with a really nice Canon digital camera, that he's been having a lot of fun with it.

For a Christmas gift I also signed us both us up at Henry's for a camera course, Digital Camera Basics, that was recommended to me by Teena. We took the course yesterday, and we both learned so much! Rob had figured out so much on his own since getting the camera, that I was worried he wouldn't get anything out of the course, but he did. Our instructors name was Michael Willems, and I couldn't recommend him more. The class was 3 hours long, but it flew by, with a wealth of information (which you get to download at home) and was very informative in a way that even a beginner like me could understand.

One of my biggest fears about digital pics, was not having prints. One of my most treasured items are my photo albums, I have many, from the time I was about 10 years old and my brother gave me my first camera as a birthday gift. I still take time to look at my albums on a pretty regular basis. Rob has calmed my fears about this. One of the first things he learned how to do was save pics to the computer and then to a disc and then he took them to Wal-mart and printed them out!

I must say, after the course yesterday, and knowing Rob can help show me how to save and print, I am seriously thinking of getting another digital camera for myself, something smaller that I can carry around in my purse. I might even get a pink one!