Sunday, November 05, 2006

Hallowe'en Party

It was a wonderful evening with about 17 people showing up to celebrate.

My guests were:
A belly dancer

A cowboy

A beatnik

A rock star

Jackie Kennedy

The grim reaper

Cruella DeVille

Dr. Ben Dover, Proctologist

A boy scout

A Hawaiin hula girl


An executioner

Two 80's girls

A Playboy bunny

A spider web covered girl

And of course myself. I was supposed to be a Black Widow Spider, but I looked more like a witch, with my long black dress.

I made some munchies too. There was meatballs, chicken nuggets, vegetable rolls, samosas, saudage rolls, cheese and onion puffs, mini quiche, veggies and dip, hummous and pita bread. Of course not forgetting the chips, pretzels and candy.

For dessert there were some lovely chinese mooncakes, and dough balls, banana bread and carrot cake.

I had put caution tape on the storage room door and put a cd player in there with monster noises coming from it. I made a giant spider and sat it in the sunroom with more caution tape on its doors too.

I made a mural a couple of nights before that I pinned to the wall, wishing everyone a Happy Halloween.

We played the mummy game: teams of 2 wrapping and unwrapping their partner. The winner of that was the cowboy and the hula girl.

Then we voted for our favourites.
The best costume went to Jackie Kennedy

The most original went to the belly dancer

The cutest went to the hula girl

And the creepiest went to Dracula.

Everyone went home with a Trick or Treat bag with goodies, and a great time was had by all.

I had rented Scary Movie 4, but we didn't have time to watch it. Good thing, because when I viewed it the next day, it sucked big time!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

October 28


is the date I have chosen to throw this party. I have listed it on MeetIn Toronto and so far about 12 people have signed up.

I will decorate my place with a SPIDER theme, and have a few games and prizes, as well as a best/cutest/creepiest and most original costume competition. As for food I am thinking just snacks, and people can bring whatever they want to drink.

I bought a cd of scary sounds, and it sucks, so I have to look for another one.

As for my costume I am thinking of a spider costume, you know, the widow spider, who bites of the heads of her lovers!!


Sunday, August 27, 2006

Come hang out at my place.

On Friday the weather looked miserable, and that was the forecast for the whole weekend. I wanted to get together with friends but didn't want to go out in the rain. So I decided to have a last minute party on Saturday.

I posted the event on here in Toronto, and asked people if they wanted to hang out. I would preovide the apartment and pizza and they could bring the beer, or whatever they drank.

I also sent an email to a few friends who weren't on the MeetIn site. When Keitha got hers she sent me an email saying 'thanks for the laugh.' I didn't remember sending her a joke, but then she explained I had written "I'll provide pizza, you byob." She had read it, "I'll provide pizza, you boob!"

One person emailed me suggesting we watch a movie, so I put out the call for people to bring dvd's of their choice.

Anyway now I had to spend Saturday cleaning, it seems the only time I really clean is when I have people over!!

So about 20 people showed up. I ordered 3 extra large pizzas, that wasn't really enough, I only got one slice, but that meant I could eat LOTS of dessert! And my guests brought huge amounts of desserts. Beatriz brought ice, Munny brought peanuts and Al brought chips. Mona brought bread and a great red pepper spread. Manal brought popcorn for the movie, Henrieta brought chocolate cake, Richard brought blueberry pie, Georgia brought apple pie, Alice brought keylime pie, someone else brought chocolate peacan caramel coffee cake, and Mark brought chocolate birthday cake. I didn't know it was Mark's birthday, so this was a bonus. Of course I put candles on the cake and we all sang HAPPY BIRTHDAY. Mark had also brought a bottle of champagne to toast his special day. So it was kind of a surprise party, a surprise to me!

At one point someone knocked on my door. It was someone visiting my neighbour who had cut her hand and needed a bandaid. Jeez what some people will do to crash a party!

So we all had a great time, and ended up not having time to watch any movies.

People left a few at a time, but a handful stayed until shortly after midnight.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Michigan Pictures day 2

So the following day we shopped all
morning, but took a break to find a Krispie Kreme doughnut shop. We had found coupons in the motel to buy a dozen get a dozen for .99, so who could pass up that offer?

They had this amazing van outside in the parking lot. I took loads of pictures of it, because I think it looked very cool!

Here is Sandra buying hers. She was attending a big barbeque at her Dad's house later that day, so this was going to be her contribution for it.

Then it was time to find a post office so that we, (the Canadians) could buy ourselves some American stamps for future swaps. I ended up with lots of one dollar coins in my change that I donated to PST for the prize vault. Who knew there was an American $1 coin?

Outside the post office were these signs protecting newly painted lines on the road. It was just begging for a picture to be taken! Both Keitha and I posed.

Along the highway there were signs saying that if a worker was killed or hurt while working there was a $7500 fine and 15 years in prison. I asked Sandra if the same went for these cute little workmen signs! Posted by Picasa

Pictures from Michigan

For some reason I am not able to add pictures to my blog about Michigan so I am adding them here.

The first picture is of myself, Geri and Keitha in the van heading toward the border.

Next we see a terrible accident that happened just ahead of us, although we still can't quite figure out how this happened. It was a single car, and by the looks of it no one was seriously hurt.

Next is outside K-Mart where we met up with Sandra. She drove past us at first, but then we eventually found each other!

And finally here we are after at a shopping spree in a scrapbook store. We ended up getting a few gifts here for Robin with a discount since we bought so much collectively. Posted by Picasa

Yuk Yuks

Hey I had a good day yesterday.

It started off with a trip to John Innes Community centre where I did 45 minutes of aquafit in their pool. I have only been going for two weeks, but every Tuesday and Thursday I find myself looking forward to it, eventhough I HATE to exercise!

I later walked downtown to meet Beatriz for lunch. We chatted about our upcoming spa that we would enjoy together. Hopefully it will be better than the last place we tried!

In the evening I met up with Ildiko who had offered me a ticket to Yuk Yuks. We spent an hour and a half laughing at about half a dozen short acts, and then the feature comedian, Wafik Nasralla. It was very funny, and I knew that I needed the laugh, as things have become a bit stale in my life lately.

Thanks Beatriz for lunch. Thanks Ildiko for thinking of me to join you for a good laugh.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Road Trip to Michigan

Keitha picked me up at 7 am and we were on our way to Michigan. The plan was to pick Geri up at the truck stop in Sarnia and then to cross the border and drive onto meet Sandra.

Our drive to Sarnia was uneventful and we chatted about what we thought Geri would be like. We arrived at the Flying J truck stop and sat down to breakfast. Keitha had a buffet breakfast and I had toast and jam with tea. Geri was to meet us at 9 am, but showed up at 9:25 having had some trouble getting something for her car. She had coffee and we were off at about 9:45.

We drove to the border crossing where we had to sit in the car for a while as people were going through. When it was our turn the guard wanted to know about what fruit I had especially those little orange things. They were my apricots, but I guess the way I say it is unusual, because she asked again. We passed through without further question.

Then we had a long drive to Lapeer Michigan. On the way we passed an accident that happened a few minutes before, and a car had rolled onto its roof. We had a short delay as we sat in the car waiting for the ambulance and police to arrive. We finally arrived at K-Mart in Lapeer where we were to meet Sandra. We were a bit early, so we looked around the store. I found a neat binder for $4 that I can keep my die cuts in.

Sandra arrived and we all got into Keitha’s vehicle and headed off to our first Scrapbook store, Crystal’s Scrapworks. I spent $33 there on a few items, but found some magnetic stamps. We went across the road for lunch at a Bistro where I ordered a house salad and ice tea. Then we drove over to Davison and checked out Karen’s Creative Stamping. There was so much at this store that I was beginning to feel a bit overwhelmed. I managed to spend another $30, and found some very cute purse and shoes stamps.

It was after 5pm and many of the independent stores were closed, so we decided to go to Birch Run and look at the mall for some good deals. I found a nice green jacket at Eddie Bauer for about $28. We walked around there while Sandra looked for pots and pans for her kitchen. She did find some.

It was late so we looked for a motel to spend the night. We drove to Flint and booked our rooms at the Super 8 Motel. Keitha and I shared and Sandra and Geri shared. We then drove to Appleby’s restaurant for dinner. I had a beer and a lovely vegetarian pizza with artichokes. After dinner we returned to the hotel to sleep. I didn’t have a good night’s sleep, too hot, too noisy and too smelly! I got up at 5am turned the air conditioner cooler, took 2 advil hoping that would help me sleep, and put in my ear plugs. I did fall asleep and was awoken by Keitha blowing her nose!

After a shower and a quick bite to eat we went to Target in Flint. I was not really impressed! Sandra did buy a change of clothes and Keitha found some books, and Geri bought a few things too. In the same Mall we found a Jo-Ann store. I went crazy in this store. There was so much to buy and much of it was on sale. I got 2 great punches, a square and a circle, as well as two 12 x 12 albums. We left there at about 12:20.

We drove to a Krispy Kreme store where we bought dozens of doughnuts with a coupon we got at the motel. They had a very cool van in the parking lot and I got lots of pictures of that. We then took Kathy back to K-Mart where she had left her car, and did a quick once over at the Dollar Tree store, but there wasn’t much available there. We said our goodbyes, and were on our way by around 2:15pm.

The drive back was pretty uneventful. At the border we declared that each of us had spent about $175 and we were told that after 24 hours the first $50 was okay the rest we needed to declare. Then he said, “Drive safely” so we drove off! We all assumed that was what he meant!

We dropped Geri off at the Flying J, used the bathroom and got a tea, and headed for Toronto. I got back to my apartment at around 6:15, so it was a safe and enjoyable journey.

What I want in a man

What I Want in a Man, Original List (age 25)

1. Handsome
2. Charming
3. Financially successful
4. A caring listener
5. Witty
6. In good shape
7. Dresses with style
8. Appreciates finer thing
9. Full of thoughtful surprises
10. An imaginative, romantic lover

What I Want in a Man, Revised List (age 35)

1. Nice looking
2. Opens car doors, holds chairs
3. Has enough money for a nice dinner
4. Listens more than talks
5. Laughs at my jokes
6. Carries bags of groceries with ease
7. Owns at least one tie
8. Appreciates a good home-cooked meal
9. Remembers birthdays and anniversaries
10. Seeks romance at least once a week

What I Want in a Man, Revised List (age 45)

1. Clean teeth and a kind face would be nice
2. Doesn't drive off in the car before I'm in it
3. Works steady - splurges on dinner out occasionally
4. Nods head when I'm talking
5. Usually remembers punch lines of jokes
6. Is in good enough shape to rearrange the furniture
7. Wears a shirt that covers his stomach
8. Knows not to buy champagne with screw-top lids
9. Remembers to put the toilet seat down

What I Want in a Man, Revised List (age 55)

1. Keeps hair in nose and ears trimmed
2. Doesn't belch or scratch in public
3. Doesn't borrow money too often
4. Doesn't nod off to sleep when I'm venting
5. Doesn't retell the same joke too many times
6. Is in good enough shape to get off couch on weekends
7. Usually wears matching socks and fresh underwear
8. Appreciates a good TV dinner
9. Remembers your name on occasion

What I Want in a Man, Revised List (age 65)

1. Doesn't scare small children
2. Remembers where bathroom is
3. Doesn't require much money for upkeep
4. Only snores lightly when asleep
5. Remembers why he's laughing
6. Is in good enough shape to stand up by himself
7. Usually wears some clothes
8. Likes soft foods
9. Remembers where he left his teeth
10. Remembers that it's the weekend

What I Want in a Man, Revised List (age 75)

1. Breathing
2. Doesn't miss the toilet.


1. Try everything twice. On Madam's tombstone (of Whelan's and Madam) she said she wanted this epitaph: Tried everything twice...loved it both times!

2. Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down. (keep this in mind if you are one of those grouches ;-)

3. Keep learning and trying new things: Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. It's good for the spirit!Never let the brain get idle. "An idle mind is the devil's workshop." And the devil's name is Alzheimer's!

4. Enjoy the simple things.

5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath. And if you have a friend who makes you laugh, spend lots and lots of time with HIM/HER.

6. The tears happen: Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person who is with us our entire life, is ourselves. LIVE while you are alive.

7. Surround yourself with what you love: Whether it's family, pets, keepsakes, (hippos), music, plants, hobbies, chocolate!whatever. Your home is your refuge.

8. Cherish your health: If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.

9. Don't take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, even to the next county, to a foreign country, but NOT to where the guilt is. (and don't listen when anyone TRIES to guilt you!)

10. Tell the people you love that you love them, at every opportunity.

11. Forgive now those who made you cry. You might not get a second time.

Friday, June 30, 2006

The beginning of the summer

Finally yesterday was my last day of work for the next 2 months.  I was happy when I left the school eventhough it was raining very hard and I rode my bike through it all the way home.  In fact it was quite nice!

When I got home I noticed a police car outside the building and 2 officers in the lobby.  I almost asked if they were there for Kris, a tenant that I helped out a few months ago.  But I figured that they wouldn’t tell me as I wasn’t a relative, and it was none of my business.

Later that afternoon another tenant came to ask me if I knew where the karaoke machine was, (why, I have no idea).  After 15 minutes of complaining about the possibility that it had been stolen, she was about to get on the elevator, when she suddenly said, “Oh yeah, Kris is dead.”  I couldn’t believe it, and asked which Kris she meant, and yes it was the same Kris I was wondering about a few hours earlier.

That put a huge damper on my celebration of the beginning of my summer holiday.  I made a few phone calls and found out that it was true she had been found in her apartment, and had probably been there a few days.  Only 38, and a life gone.  I can only believe that she is no longer suffering the trials and tribulations she endured during her short life.  

A neighbour came to my door today to suggest we have our meeting room named for her.  That may take a bit of convincing, but it is a nice thought.

So begins my summer off.  Hopefully I will have many more up days than down days like this.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Hot Chicken Leg

Many years ago I worked in a Laura Secord store that sold mostly chocolate, but also had a lunch counter with sandwiches, salads, drinks and a variety of other foods.

"Could I have a hot chicken leg please?" a man asked.

We had a microwave, and cooked chicken, so I held up a selected chicken leg for his approval, but instead he just looked at me in a strange way.

"You wanted a hot chicken leg?" I asked.

"No, a hot chicken leg." he replied..

Thinking he was just a strange man, I put the selected poultry in the microwave and heated it.

I placed it in a bag, and offered it to the man.

Confused, he frowned.

"I want a hot chicken leg please," he said again.

"This is a hot chicken leg," I said.

"No!" said the man, very slowly, in his best Asian English,

"A hot C H O C O L A T E."

Saturday, May 20, 2006

In the past month I have ...

Until I posted the previous post I didn’t realise that it has been over a month since the last one!

Some of the things that I have been doing in that time are:

got my bike fixed with new handle bars

tidied up my scraproom

went to a spa

played Bingo

visited a Buddhist Temple

        went to a Blue Jays baseball game

        hosted a scrapmeet

        went to Sweets Expo 2006

        tried to ignore Mother’s day

        was told to go to emergency for a stomach ache

        had a pedicure

        This weekend is a holiday here in Canada – Victoria Day. I have plans for Sunday to have brunch with a singles group and to go on a walk organised by the Royal Ontario Museum. Next week I will be going to see “The Lord of the Rings” at the Princess Of Wales Theatre. So there should be a few more posts this month!


        Inmate Mitchell King had a visitor -- his wife. King was serving a six-year jail term in Auckland, New Zealand for armed robbery.
        But his wife didn't want to be away from him for that long. So they held hands. And they stuck. She'd rubbed her palms with Super Glue.

        Their new-found closeness was short-lived, and their separation painful. Her technique is not one I'd recommend for a closer relationship.

        But if you want more closeness; if you desire relationships that are deeper and broader, more meaningful and longer-lasting, then remember the word "travel."

        T is for TRUST. Trust is the glue that holds people together (not Super Glue). A relationship will go nowhere without it.

        R is for RESPECT. "Do not save your loving speeches for your friends till they are dead; do not write them on their tombstones, speak them rather now instead," writes Anna Cummins.
        It's about respecting others and letting them know that you value them.

        A is for AFFECTION. Sometimes affection means love. Sometimes it means a touch. Always it means kindness.

        V is for VULNERABILITY. Though we may feel afraid to let another too close, no relationship will go anywhere without risking vulnerability. Entrepreneur Jim Rohn says, "The walls we build around us to keep out the sadness also keep out the joy." And the love.

        E is for EMOTIONAL INTIMACY. Learn to be open. Learn to communicate freely. What kinds of relationships you make are largely determined by how openly you have learned to communicate.

        L is for LAUGHTER. Victor Borge got it right when he said, "Laughter is the shortest distance between two people." It's also the most enjoyable.

        For relationships that can really go somewhere, just remember the word "travel." Then enjoy the trip!

        Monday, April 17, 2006

        No Easter celebration here!

        I worked on the page for Ashley. I used folded iris paper to make a flower. I also made six thank you cards for Ronae’.

        I called Dad and we had a long chat. He seemed very down talking about how if he hadn’t had his morning job he would have realised Mum was sick and he could have helped her. There isn’t much I can do from here, but I changed the topic and tried to lift his spirits as best I could.

        I went for a two hour bike ride along the Don River and took a few pictures of interesting trees. On the way back I stopped at the Distillery District where I sat outside the café to drink a pot of tea. Everyone there was out with their families, which made me feel quite alone. Where are all the other single people?

        I called Kate to find out what had happened when she gave her notice. She sounded much better, and it very glad that she made the decision to quit.

        Friday, April 14, 2006

        Take a minute to read through these cool facts.

        More than half of the coastline of the entire United States is in Alaska.

        The Amazon rain forest produces more than 20% the world's oxygen supply. The Amazon River pushes so much water into the Atlantic Ocean that, more than one hundred miles at sea, off the mouth of the river, one can dip fresh water out of the ocean. The volume of water in the Amazon river is greater than the nexteight largest rivers in the world combined and three times the flow of all rivers in the United States.

        Antarctica is the only land on our planet that is not owned by any country. Ninety percent of the world's ice covers Antarctica. This ice also represents seventy percent of all the fresh waterin the world. As strange as it sounds, however, Antarctica is essentially a desert. The average yearly total precipitation is about two inches.Although covered with ice (all but 0.4% of it, i.e.),Antarctica is the driest place on the planet, with an absolute humidity lower than the Gobi desert.

        Brazil got its name from the nut, not the other way around.

        Canada has more lakes than the rest of the world combined. Canada is an Indian word meaning "Big Village."

        Next to Warsaw, Chicago has the largest Polish population in the world.

        Woodward Avenue in Detroit, Michigan carries the designation M - 1, named so because it was the first paved road anywhere.

        Damascus, Syria, was flourishing a couple of thousand years before Rome was founded in 753 BC, making it the oldest continuously inhabited city in existence.

        Istanbul, Turkey is the only city in the world located on two continents.

        Los Angeles full name is El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la Reina de los Angeles dePorciuncula--and can be abbreviated to 3.63% of its size: L.A.

        The term "The Big Apple" was coined by touring jazz musicians of the 1930s who used the slang _expression "apple" for any town or city. Therefore, to play New York City is to play the big time- The Big Apple.
        There are more Irish in New York City than in Dublin, Ireland; more Italians in New York City than in Rome, Italy; and more Jewish people in New York City than in Tel Aviv, Israel.
        Percentage of Africa that is wilderness: 28.
        Percentage of North America that is wilderness: 38.

        There are no natural lakes in the state of Ohio; every one is man made.

        The smallest island with country status is Pitcairn in Polynesia, at just 1.75 sq. miles/4.53 sq. km.

        The first city to reach a population of one million people was Rome, Italy in 133 B.C.There is a city called Rome on every continent.

        Siberia contains more than 25% of the world's forests.

        The actual smallest sovereign entity in the world is the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (S.M.O.M.). It is located in the city of Rome, Italy, has an area of two tennis courts, and as of 2001, has a population of eighty, twenty less people than the Vatican. It is a sovereign entity under international law, just as the Vatican is.

        In the Sahara Desert, there is a town named Tidikelt, which did not receive a drop of rain for ten years.

        Spain literally means 'the land of rabbits.'

        St. Paul, Minnesota was originally called Pig's Eye after a man named Pierre "Pig's Eye" Parrant who set up the first business there.

        Chances that a road is unpaved
        in the U.S.A.: 1%,
        in Canada: 75%.

        The deepest hole ever made in the world is in Texas. It is as deep as 20 empire state buildings but only 3 inches wide.

        The Eisenhower interstate system requires that one-mile in every five must be straight. These straight sections are usable as airstrips and in times of war or other emergencies.

        The water of Angel Falls (the World's highest) in Venezuela drops 3,212 feet (979 meters). They are 15 times higher than Niagara Falls.And that's about all you need to learn for today !!

        Monday, April 10, 2006

        Woodbine Racetrack

        Glenn organized an event through to Woodbine racetrack.

        Mark another member of meetin gave me a ride to and from Woodbine.

        There were about 12 - 15 of us, and some of us had never been to a race track before.

        The weather was perfect with the sunshining and the a nice cool breeze to keep us from getting too hot.

        There were 10 races, but we didn't stay for all the races. The last of us left after the 6th race.

        Everyone of us who placed a bet, won at least once. I placed 6 bets and 3 of them paid out! Of course my bets were only $2, but hey a win is a win!

        We went down to the paddocks to watch them get ready for their races. The horse in the pink was rearing up so I thought it would either do well becasue it was raring to go, or it would do really badly because it wanted to go its own way. Another man looking on down there told us he liked the green number 5 for one of the races. I had already placed my bet, but Glenn went up and bet on that horse. And wouldn't you know it, Green number 5 won, my horse number 2 came in 2nd and the pink one came in third!

        We left after that race, all very happy with the day in the sun.

        Friday, March 31, 2006

        Sunday March 25, 2006

        I set up an event with MeetIn Toronto to go for breakfast and then to Allan Garden's Conservatory to take pictures of the flowers. I had enjoyed my trek there so much during March Break, I thought others would benefit from the amazing environment too.

        I had booked for 12 people to meet for breakfast at
        Frans Restaurant, but because I was at another event the night before word got around and many more people showed up! 17 in fact. So we ordered our breakfast, eventhough it was already passed midday, which ranged from pancakes, eggs, steak, and even ice cream! We had been separated into 3 tables, so we didn't all get to meet each other, but that was no problem.

        We left the restaurant and walked east along Carlton to Jarvis and came upon the
        greenhouse. The majority of the group had never been there before so they were quite shocked at how warm it was inside. But we soon acclimatized!

        We spent a good deal of time walking around in awe, and snapping pictures. We congregated outside and since it was such a beautiful day we decided to take a walk to the
        Toronto Necropolis Cemetery near Riverdale Farm.

        As we walked we got a chance to meet people we hadn't talked to yet. They were a very interesting bunch of people. I bumped into my son's friend
        Jason on the way and said a very quick hello.

        After walking around the cemetery we went and had a peek at the
        Farm. Then as were enjoying each others company so much we decided to take the bridge over the Don Valley Parkway. On the other side we walked up the hill and then realised that we were thirsty and needed to find a place for a coffee. We walked along side Withrow Park and made our way to Dimitri's Desserts where coffee, tea and desserts were ordered. I shared a "Split Personality" with Andy as it was way too much for him to eat alone!!

        It was a most pleasant day of adventures that I hope we can do again.

        Saturday, March 18, 2006

        St. Patricks Day Celebration

        The plan was to meet Kat and her friends at Fionn McCools to celebrate St. Patty's Day. Kat said to bring along friends, so I listed it on the board, and told them to meet me in the line at 7 pm. Kat called me before I left to let me know she would be at least an hour late!

        I left my apartment at 7. It was cold out there! I waited for 45 minutes and started talking to 2 women waiting along side me. I told them that I was waiting for others to join me, but didn't know who they were. After a while Jackie said to me that if I didn't find these friends, then I could join them. They introduced themselves, and the other woman's name was Becky.
        "Kat's friend Becky?" I asked.
        "Yes!" she said.
        "Then you are the people I am waiting for! I'm Mary.
        On hearing this, one of the guys standing behind me said, "Are you the Mary from MeetIn?"
        "That's me."
        And the guy standing beside him said, "I am supposed to meet someone from MeetIn whose name is John."
        "I'm John!" said the first guy.

        WOW! Talk about wierd.

        There we were, all standing together not knowing each other, but supposed to be meeting each other!

        After waiting in line for 2 hours and 15 minutes, and no Kat in sight, we finally got inside only to have to pay a $5 cover charge! Well that's not too bad I suppose. Although I think they made us wait till after 9 pm just to get the money out of us. Another friend of Becky's, Natalie, showed up shortly after.

        We got in before the band started so we were well lubricated enough to sing along and dance to Celtic music, (I'm not usually a lover of this genre!) We stood along the stage area and met a bunch of people some of which were line buddies of ours. My camera was passed around and I ended up with photos of people I know nothing about. One of them begged me not to email the pictures, but I have no clue who she was! The Guinness flowed along with the Kilkenny. We danced along to music that was foot stompin' and side slappin'! And we posed for the Global News t.v cameras, as we became "famous!"

        I left at 11:45 as I was hungry and needed to eat something! But a fun time was had, meeting new friends.

        Thursday, March 16, 2006

        Allen Gardens, Toronto

        I spent an hour in the tropics today! Not really, just walked to the local green house and immersed my senses in the wonderful surroundings. When I arrived there were hoards of people, which annoyed me, as I like to go there and for the quiet and imagine myself somewhere hot and exotic.

        So I went to the other end, my favourite end where the cactus plants are. They fascinate me, not sure why, but they just do. I tend to see more than the plant, I see people and objects in them.

        Every time I go to the green house there are artists there. There was just 1 when I arrived, but 5 when I left. I wish I had the ability to paint those wonderful visions, but I did take lots of photos. Click on my title for a link to see them.

        After the cactus plants I made my way to the east end, and most of the noisy families had left. I couldn't see any fish today, and the fountain pond was so murky that I couldn't see anything in there either.

        The water wheel turned effortlessly as the noise of the constant rush of the water fell. Two kids ran past me as I was attempting to get this shot. One yelled "sorry" as he almost knocked me over. "I doubt it," I said. But then they were gone and tranquility returned.

        An hour spent filling my nostrils with the tantalizing scents of the flowers, and my eyes and heart with the beauty of this place was just what I needed.

        If you have never visited this little bit of paradise in Toronto, make time to go there. If you have been before, it's time to reimmerse yourself in this amazing environment.

        Tuesday, March 14, 2006

        Birthday Present

        I got a birthday present today from my son in Korea. I picked up the package from the post office and hurried home to open it.

        Inside were 5 presents and an envelope containing a card with special message on the front. I opened the first one and to my delight was a lovely notebook, with lovely textured pages inside. The next gifts were dvds of the new movie The Pink Panther, then Tim Buton's Corpse Bride and finally RENT. I was just saying that I would watch some movies this March Break, and now I can. The last little package had a cute little key ring in it. It flashes a picture of what looks like a little Korean cartoon girl. There are some Korean words, but I've no idea what it says! The card that was inside the envelope was so cute with a bear and star jewels on it.

        What a great surprise. And it arrived at a great time, too.

        Saturday, March 11, 2006

        March Break

        March Break begins.

        I am grateful that the school includes March Break for the children and the staff, as usually by this time we are all ready for a break!

        Fortunately this winter has been a mild one, but in past years with the dreary February days, our spirits start to decline as we dream of the spring buds and flowers. Winter here in Toronto is long and tiresome, and to have a break in March gives us a chance to rejuvenate and revitalise.

        I generally don’t go anywhere at this time, not because I don’t want to, but because I can’t afford to. For teachers our breaks come at high season, Christmas, March break and summer so we seldom get a good deal on a getaway.

        So it tends to be a good time for me to do Spring cleaning: out with the old, in with the new. I get the opportunity to go through my closets, and storage area, and purge again. This is sometimes very difficult as I am something of a packrat, and find throwing out perfectly good stuff that I might need at any time a challenge.

        I will also get some shopping time in to replace all the junk that I have thrown out! I want to buy a new camera as the old one won’t flash any longer. I did purchase
        one already but returned it as the video element on it didn’t record sound. So any suggestions of a reasonably priced digital camera are welcome.

        I plan on getting more
        scrapbook pages done. Perhaps even a book of my 50th birthday. I have so many old photos that I brought back from my last trip to England, I want to get them organised and put into layouts. Procrastination!

        I will go to a couple of movies and perhaps rent a few as well. If the weather stays nice I will take walks around the city to explore a few sites that I’ve not been to in a while. I used to go to
        Allen Gardens every March just to get the smell of the tropics in my memory again. It is an amazing greenhouse with beautiful flowers, plants, trees and cactus. There is also a small stream that runs though with a waterwheel and a wishing pond with beautiful goldfish.

        I will spend some time in the kitchen trying out a few more recipes from the
        cookbook my son gave me as a Christmas gift. I hate cooking, but usually because I don’t like standing in the kitchen at the end of the day. Therefore I have no excuse over the break.

        So hopefully I will have lots to report during this break.

        Thursday, March 09, 2006


        Some samples of the fun I had on my 50th birthday.

        Me and Bruce

        Beatriz and Mona

        With my birthday drink. (no cake for this birthday!)

        Having fun showing off my new body!