Sickness & Saturday

Well as it turns out, it’s a good thing I didn’t go to the gym yesterday morning, since I was about five seconds away from getting really sick from whatever horrible virus all the daycare kids have been getting. I ended up sending the one little boy I was looking after home early and putting Taylor in charge of picking Sym up from school and feeding, parenting her, etc, while I took to my bed with a glass of ginger ale and some orange-flavoured Gravol tablets and tried not to puke my guts out until my fever broke at 11pm.

Luckily it was just a one-day disease, because I had an epic four-hour hair appointment today that I didn’t want to have to reschedule. It actually only ended up taking three hours though, since my stylist, the beautiful and talented Aleks at Stratosphere Salon, determined that with the last six months of crazy highlighting we’d lightened my hair enough from the almost-black, super-dark brown I’ve had for seven years we could just throw an all over colour on the roots and pull it through the midlengths to blend it. She also cut off like, five inches of fried, dead ends and my hair is SO much lighter and healthier looking now!

New Hair

Even though I’m over my one-day sickness, I’m still weak and floppy like a kitten. Walking the six blocks to the hair salon made me exhausted and dizzy, and running errands (buying Symphony some new piano books, returning a cute-but-ripped dress to UO) afterwards totally destroyed me. I made Taylor come meet me on my way home for moral support and once I got back here it was pajama time. We cozied up on the couch and watched some shows I’d been too sick to watch last night.

First was the second episode of Caprica, the premiere of which we watched a jillion years ago. I think the series has the potential to be good, but it also has the potential to be super cheesy, if the opening credits and silly editing are anything to go by. However, I loved Battlestar Galactica, and once last summer I was in the school playground with Sym, and Eric Stolz (who stars in Caprica) asked me where the gate was. True story.

Next we watched the season three premiere of Damages, and OH MY GOD I do not know why more people don’t watch this show because it is AMAZING. The twists! The turns! The backstabs! The Glenn Close! During season two I actually had to stop watching the episodes every week and save them all up for a marathon because it was SO INTENSE that I went crazy waiting to see what would happen next. I actually put off watching this episode all week since I knew it would just grab me and suck me in and it did not disappoint. I’m already bugging out over who did what and why!

We still have the last episode of Dollhouse to watch, a show that I thought was pretty ok during season one, totally directionless at the start of season two and then, as soon as it was cancelled, became totally awesome and mindblowing. It’ll have to wait though, as this picture will show:


Yes, it is the classic Tanie with Sleeping Husband in the Background of all her Pictures.


Today I only had two daycare kids coming- a baby from 8-5 and a preschooler from 11:45-5 after his session at the Montessori. However, the baby got sick and stayed home, so after I dropped Sym at school at nine I realized I had a free morning! I texted Taylor to arrange a trip to the gym (I haven’t been at all this week- on Tuesday I had a migraine and yesterday I was just too lazy and tired). I was all excited and then DISASTER! The mom of the preschooler called and told me his school was closed and she needed to drop him off.

So disappointing! I couldn’t really say no, so there goes my trip to the gym, but I am going to have words with her about this last minute changes nonsense. She told me the Montessori teachers were all at a conference so there’s no way they wouldn’t have given the families more than a day’s notice of the closure! I’ve had issues with this family with this sort of thing before- there were a couple times before Christmas when I showed up at the Montessori to pick the kid up, only to find that it was closed, or they were on a field trip, and no one had bothered to tell me. This is unacceptable, especially on days when it’s raining! The plans I made today were spontaneous and easily cancelled, but if I’d known in advance that the baby wouldn’t be coming and I had a free morning I might have scheduled an important appointment that I didn’t want to break.

What I’ve Been Reading/Dougal Turns Six


Leviathan, 5/104, Girlfriend in a Coma 6/104, Gone 7/104

I picked up Leviathan because I really enjoyed Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies series, and I thought the cover of this one looked interesting. Turns out it’s a steampunk alternate history of World War One. The mind boggles. It was pretty interesting but it kind of felt like more of an introduction than an actual book, so I guess I’ll have to wait and see how the series progresses.

Girlfriend in a Coma I grabbed off the old-books-with-no-home-since-I-dismantled-the-bookcases pile in the hallway. I’ve read it before, but not for probably ten years. I recall not really liking it when I originally read it but I enjoyed it more the second time around. In my mind old Douglas Coupland > new Douglas Coupland.

A cover blurb on the back cover of Gone reads “If Stephen Kind had written Lord of the Flies, it might have been a little like this.” No, it would have been exactly like this! That’s not a bad thing though, I actually really liked this book.

In other news, a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY to one Mr Doogie Bowser, MD, who is six today.

Such a handsome fellow!

A Boy and his Dog

The other day I used one of the throws from the couch to make a sling so Taylor can practice doggywearing with Kichou.


Kichou is basically IN LOVE with Taylor, as shown in this video. Please excuse the weird hissing noise I make; I was trying to hold in my GUT-BUSTING laughter.

hahahaha SO GROSS.

The (Inter)National Pastime


Tracking packages via the courier’s website.

Because our apartment is at the back of the house in the basement it’s basically impossible for delivery people to find, except for UPS and one in five mail carriers. Taylor and I usually leave hand-drawn maps or notes at the front door and by the mailboxes but that doesn’t always help. This time I’m printing out a satellite image from Google Maps.

UPDATE: Jan 25, 2010 8:52 AM On FedEx vehicle for delivery
UPDATE: Jan 25, 2010 11:10 AM In my hot little hands


WOW I really need to get better lighting in here. Trust me, this bag is gorgeous. Here’s a better picture:


Can I just say, Neiman Marcus is like, THE BEST. I ordered this on Thursday, shipped Friday, arrived Monday. This was with the standard shipping to Canada. Amazing!

Weekend Recap

It’s Sunday night and as usual I have a ton of housework to catch up on- a load of dishes, a bunch of laundry( thank goodness I have a high capacity, high efficiency washer & dryer!), vacuuming everywhere and both bathrooms to clean, as well as the catbox and the hamster cage. Every weekend I swear I won’t let the house fall into disarray and every weekend it does. I just have a hard time motivating myself to clean things around the house when that’s what I have to do all week while I’m working, especially when there are other, funner things I’d rather be doing all weekend!

After work I managed to squeeze in a super-quick trip to the gym. Taylor and I were supposed to go together on Thursday evening but laziness prevailed and instead we watched tv shows and got poutine from La Belle Patate, which has like, 30 different kinds of poutine! If you’ve never had it, it’s french fries and cheese curds smothered in gravy. Basically, it’s the opposite of working out! To make up for it Taylor went to the gym after he finished work on Friday morning, and I was going to go later that night after Sym’s bedtime.

As luck would have it she was invited to her friend Ali’s house for a playdate that afternoon. She and Ali were in preschool together, but even though she lives just half a block from us she goes to a different elementary school, so they don’t see each other often. Anyway, both girls were going to be coming back to my house at six-fifteen, so I figured that if I left right when I finished work I could get to the gym, run on the treadmill for a half hour (and live tweet it, haha) and get home in time to meet the girls. Normally I hate going to the gym right after work because it’s so busy, but only crazy meatheads work out on Friday nights so it was really quiet. As it turned out I rushed for nothing because they ended up staying at Ali’s until seven-thirty, but at least I got to have a shower before they got back!

After Ali went home and Sym was in bed, Taylor got us beer and Japanese takeout and we watched some Neon Genesis Evangelion. Taylor says I have to watch it with him since he watched the whole of Sailor Moon with me, although he really didn’t. After like, three episodes we were both ready to pass out, even though it was only ten-thirty! Apparently, we’re old now. Oh, and I conquered my up-until-three-every-night insomnia. The trick is to get up at six-forty for work every morning. Seriously, good luck staying awake until three am then!

Since I’m no longer a sleep-deprived zombie I was able to get up early on Saturday morning and take Sym out shopping. She’s grown like crazy since her birthday, and most of her pants and jeans were getting to be too short and too tight. She’s really picky about her pants (won’t wear skinny jeans or leggings) and shopping with her can be a huge drag, but the trip was surprisingly painless and fight-free. We went to a few different places but the only store where she found anything she liked was Gap Kids. She picked out some black and navy blue yoga pants, three pairs of jeans, a dress and some glittery flip-flops (early, I know, but she’s preparing for when we go to Hawaii in March). They had an extra 25% off for Sprize members, so I ended up saving $40 on her stuff. That’s how I’m going to look at it anyway. I saved money!

After we got home Ali came over to play again- this mostly consisted of them running in and out of the house shrieking about the neighborhood boys who were having a Nerf dartgun fight outside, alternating with them sitting quietly and reading, wrapped up in blankets. While this was going on I managed to do some dishes and read some of my book (Girlfriend in a Coma, which I hadn’t read in about ten years). Taylor was out getting his hair cut and came home with all his shagginess gone! He also trimmed his woolly beard this weekend and I’m still not used to this new, more streamlined husband.

Sym’s dad picked the girls up and took Ali home at four-thirty. Taylor and I were going to go grocery shopping (what a fun Saturday night activity! Remember, we’re old) but we only got as far as writing a list of about three items before we accidentally fell asleep and had a three hour nap. Whoops! Taylor actually had an excuse- he was up stupidly early that morning, like three-thirty or something ridiculous like that. My mistake was lying down next to him on the bed and letting his energy leech powers wash over me. He is like a black hole of nappiness! I finally managed to drag myself out of bed at around eight and harassed Taylor into getting up and coming with me on a much more minor than originally planned trip to the store, where we picked up the essential food items of Coca-Cola, two different kinds of oranges (blood and pink) and pomegranate-raspberry sorbet. When we got home we watched Friday’s episode of The Tonight Show, followed by Forgetting Sarah Marshall before heading to bed at around one.

I managed to wake up fairly early again and after coffee and a quick breakfast Taylor and I headed off to the gym. That’s three times in a week, yay us! We came home to shower and change, and then walked down to Yaletown to have brunch at one of my favorite brunch restaurants, Glowbal Grill. We had our post-elopement wedding brunch there last May. The food is super yummy- today I had wildberry panettone french toast with marscapone cream and a shot of hot chocolate, so amazing.

After brunch we went to a bookstore, where I stocked up on four more books, which should take me about a week and a half to get through. I should probably just cave in and get an e-reader, or ask for one. I do have a birthday coming up! When we got home Taylor was going to help me clean the house, but as we all know that didn’t happen! Instead we both curled up in bed in our cozies and read all afternoon. So much better for the soul than doing chores! Taylor went to sleep at three (he has to work tonight) and I kept reading until Symphony got home from her dad’s around six. She and I worked on our Farmville farms (her Grandma got us both hooked on it), then I got her to tidy her room quickly and tucked her into a pile of blankets and sweaters on the couch so she could watch Ponyo while I started the housework I listed at the beginning of this post. I’ve actually been working on this post on and off for two hours, in between cleaning, reading Sym a chapter of Charlotte’s Web and putting her to bed. Now it’s nine-thirty, everyone is asleep (except for my pest of the cat) and it’s the quietest part of my week. I guess that’s why I tend to leave all my housework for Sunday night- to fill the loneliest hours.

I’m Just Joshin’ Ya*

*this is what my older bother used to say after he’d played a particularly good joke on me or one of my sisters.

Around my house, I’m pretty famous for playing super awesome tricks and pranks on my husband that more often than not go horribly awry, and usually not in my favour. Things like when I buttoned myself into the duvet cover with my head sticking out and my hands and feet in the corners and tried to walk across the apartment like a big… rectangular… blanket… monster? I’m not exactly sure what my plan was, but I barely made it out of the dining room before I fell over on a beanbag chair and laughed until I got a cramp. Others work out perfectly, like when Taylor was in the shower and I discretely filled a jug with freezing cold water from the sink and threw it on him, or when we were sharing an intimate moment and I thought it would be a great idea to purposefully make a really weird face. Like, seriously weird.

Sometimes my jokes have mixed results, like the time I was being a horrible shrewish nag about something really boring, like cleaning the oven. I felt bad about it, so when Taylor went to the store to buy Easy-Off I drew a Snidely Whiplash mustache on my face, and when he got back I pretended we were having a normal conversation- for about five seconds until I burst out laughing. I say this one had mixed results because although I achieved my goal of relieving the oven-cleaning tension, I used waterproof eyeliner to draw on the mustache and it took some seriously solid scrubbing to get it off.

Tonight Taylor and I were laying in bed talking about important things (dogs, preschool teachers I know, and whether or not my eyeball would get infected from the shard of claw I got in it while trimming the cat’s nails) and I decided it would be really fun to take a great big swig of water from my water bottle and then drool it on myself slowly while Taylor was talking. Unfortunately, I almost immediately started giggling, but I couldn’t open my mouth because I would have sprayed water everywhere. I couldn’t swallow it because I was laughing and it definitely would have gone down the wrong pipe, and I couldn’t spit it back into the bottle because the neck was too small. So I did the only logical thing: I pressed my face against Taylor’s shoulder and drooled it all over him and all over the bed and then laughed until I collapsed. Seriously, if laughter is the best medicine then I have NOTHING to worry about with that cat claw infected eyeball thing. Besides, Claire said she was sorry about that.


Oh yeah. She loves me. And WOW the top of my hair looks blonde here!

Baby Madness! and Financial Crisis: OVER

Today I took care of my former client Rachelle’s 7-week-old daughter Maya, and now I think I have the baby madness! I kind of had it before, but this morning as I sat holding this little wee squidger and she was sighing and making funny baby faces at me I was just like, OW MY OVARIES. I told Taylor we should have a baby boy and name him Jeremy. Jeremy Laramie. Say it out loud.

Also, the other month Danielle at Sometimes Sweet posted about buying the MbMJ Totally Turnlock Baby Back diaper bag and saving it for when she has a baby, and I thought this was a GENIUS idea. I told my friend Jenn we should each buy one, have some babies, quit working and just concentrate on doing yoga (her) and painting unicorns (me). I was totally broke at the time (financial crisis, ya know) and then once I was less broke the black was sold out and it was only available in caramel. No offense to Marc Jacobs but the caramel colour is sick. It looks like the inside of a baby’s diapers. Gross. HOWEVER, this morning on some strange whim I thought to check if the black was back in stock and not only is it in stock BUT it’s also on sale for $206 (regularly it’s of $458, that’s like 55% off!). WHAT THAT IS CRAZY. Even with all the extra charges (tax, duty, delivery) it was under $300 USD. Soooooooooo yeah, I totally ordered it. I figure if I don’t end up having another baby I can just sell it, or use it to carry a little dog around in. This is a no-lose situation. Edit: I had to call and verify my address so they could finish processing my order and the customer service rep had the most adorable southern accent.

As for my financial crisis, it is over, thank goodness! I did book that new client to start in March and I have all her paperwork and her deposit cheque already. Even more importantly, though, the family who I had to give notice to in December is back! Through no fault of their own, their child care subsidy payments were been cancelled by the government and I ended up not getting paid for November and December (which is why I gave notice- I mean, how long would you work for free?), but I let them know that should the matter be resolved I would be more than happy to look after their son again. Last Thursday I was checking the mail and there it was: a new subsidy authorization form. And it was backdated to November! I faxed the claim forms right away and today two and a half months worth of fees were direct deposited into my severely depleted chequing account. Hooray!

Get in Shape, Girl

A year ago I was in the most awesome shape of my life- I was eating (fairly) well and working out six days a week (including with a trainer. Of course, this was all because I was getting married in Hawaii and I wanted to look my best, and it totally worked. Since then… well, let’s just say I kind of fell off the workout wagon. I’m definitely not the same shape I was back then, and bikini season is coming way early this year- in less than two months we’re going back to Hawaii. I’ve been going sporadically but it’s time to start ding regular workouts again.

Taylor and I decided that this week was the week we were for sure going to start going back to the gym, effective yesterday, but we came up with some pretty good reasons to blow it off. He was going to go in the morning after work, but it was raining and he didn’t want to go back out, and once it stopped raining he’d eaten the world’s largest bowl of soup and was too full. I was going to go after Sym went to bed but we had dinner late, so bedtime was late, and I still had to go grocery shopping and pick up some stuff at the drugstore. By the time I was done all that I was exhausted, it was already close to 10pm and I really just wanted to spend time with my husband.

Trying to fit workouts into my schedule has always been difficult. I can’t go in the morning (I start work too early) and it’s too busy after work, plus I have parenting responsibilities. Usually I go after bedtime (like I was planning to last night) but that means not spending time with Taylor since he would have to stay home and step-parent. When I was going six days a week I literally never saw him, except for the rare times we could work out together- Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday evenings, plus Sunday mornings. Running on adjacent treadmills isn’t really the most quality of quality time! It’ll be us tonight though- no more excuses!

Vegetable Adorable & the Salad Days


More tiny foods! Extra-small orange bell peppers, grape tomatoes and mini cucumbers. I have no idea what I’m going to do with the peppers, but the other two I use to make this cute salad:

Salad by TanieThis picture was actually from last summer, and I used a regular cucumber. This resulted in a lot of waste, a problem eliminated by using mini cucumbers.

Making vegetables fun with interesting or unusual shapes and sizes is a great way to get otherwise-picky children to eat them, and using mini-cookie cutters (I got mine at Yokoyaya123) makes it fast and easy.

2-3 mini cucumbers, sliced and cut into shapes
1/2 pint of cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup cooked frozen corn, chilled
1 tbsp lemon juice (I hate 99% of salad dressing)