Looking ahead while glancing back

I don't really ... DO New Year's resolutions.

Not officially, anyhow. I think I tell myself in my head, what I would like to accomplish in the following year.

Clearly I've either accomplished everything without much difficulty... or promptly forgot what I had resolved to do...

Because either way, I have no idea what my resolutions have been in the past. I guess... and maybe this is vain of me... I don't really have any big vices.

But this has been a year of firsts, and huge changes... so why not add to the list of changes. I guess.

So here goes, on my list of New Years Resolutions 2008...

  1. Spend half an hour before I go to bed tidying up the apartment. This means wiping off the stove, putting those last dishes in the dishwasher and starting the load, taking out the garbage... just the little niggly things that I normally "leave for the morning" but then never do. And instead end up with a mountain of crap in my apartment.
  2. Being physically in my bed by 11. I do not get enough sleep. This can be very obviously seen by my neighbours when I run out the front door.... limping because one of my boots is only half-on.
  3. Waking up at 7. It would be good if I had a paper to read in the mornings.... because then I could have a coffee, a bagel.... and read the paper before leaving for work (like a normal adult....) but maybe I'll just have to be satisfied with reading the back of the cereal box like I have for the past 21 years.
  4. Making sure I actually eat breakfast. I do enjoy it, but it's hard to eat a bowl of cereal when limping out the door....
  5. Eating at the dinner table, not on my lap in the living room. I have a DVD-R. Jeopardy can wait.
  6. Minimize the online shoppings. This is a biggie. Packages in the mail is just sooooo much of a pick-me-up.... and who DOESN'T like new toys... but I have to stop just buying things because I can. It makes them less valuable, I think. What's the point of pining for something if you just get it right away? That's what I'm going to tell myself anyways...
  7. Be more proactive. This goes for a number of things,
In looking at my resolutions... none of them seem like they are going to make my life better by leaps and bounds.... but I guess they are things I know I "should do".... but don't... and maybe that's the point.

*insert thoughtful noise.

Question period

Over the holidays, I have come to the realization that maybe I've not really done a very good job of telling my "southern" readers where and how I live.

So here goes. I'm going to do a general hit on the particulars of my community life... and (I may regret this later... but oh well) open the comments section up to any questions folks might have.

Here goes, Mr. can o' worms!

  1. I live in a town/hamlet of about 2300 people. Doesn't sound like much, but its actually the second-largest community in the territory.
  2. It's not big population-wise, and its not big geographically either. According to wikipedia, it is about 24 km-squared.
  3. Location-wise... we sit right on the Hudson Bay. On my 20-minute walk to work I pass by the bay. There's also a big lake that sits in the middle of the town. I'll make sure to post a nice map of this soonish. I just have to scan it when I get back
  4. We have an airport, a pretty big one... which is needed because it is (like basically all communities in Nunavut) a fly-in community. We have several flights a day that come in... from Edmonton, Winnipeg, Iqaluit and other surrounding northern communities.
  5. These flights also bring up food and supplies. So its not like we eat canned veggies and freeze-dried meats all the time, but the "fresh" fruits and veggies we do get... are a little worse for wear. The tomatoes are more likely to be hothouse, and lack that deep juicy red colour (and flavour). The pears, often bruised. Not a nectarine in sight. But I guess that's the price you pay.
  6. And speaking of, yes, things are significantly more expensive. Rumour has it things aren't as bad in Rankin as other communities. A co-worker once told me when people from Arviat (neighbouring community) come to Rankin it's like us going to the Walmart in Yellowknife. Shopping spree. On average, things are around 2 to 2.5 times the price of what they would be "down south". There are some exceptions: lettuce, for one... asparagus, for another. But a pineapple runs between $12-20... and a 10lb bag of potatoes goes for $20 (yep, killer for an island girl). A 2L bottle of pepsi costs $9. Which drives me crazy when I see them going 3 for 5 bucks here hahah.
  7. As a result... once a year there is a "sea lift" service. People order a year's worth of dry goods, dog food, pop ... as well as have things like cars, 4-wheelers... ski-doos etc. shipped up via barge. Several barges arrive between August and mid-September to deliver these supplies. It's like Christmas!
  8. There are three restaurants in town. They all basically sell the same food, just vary in price. None of it is that great, nothing to write home about. But its kind of something you might eat if you were tired of cooking, not something you crave.
  9. We don't have a McDonalds. Or Wendy's we kind of have a KFC/Pizza Hut, but .... it is limited in selection, and not really very good either. And quite pricey. Nine bucks for a chicken sandwich... and that doesn't include the fries ... and nothing comes with a pop. Nothing.
  10. There are no bars. You can drink at the hotel (but only if you are a guest, so you have to be really desperate ... and spend $200 bucks for a room so that you can have a drink. And if that's what it's come to... well then you have other problems. There is also the legion... which is probably about the size of my apartment, and you can only drink there if you are a member. Membership is something like $70 for the year.
  11. There are no liquor stores. All alcohol comes via special order. Generally, the way it works is you are "granted" (or ... you purchase, is probably the better way of saying it) a temporary liquor license. Then you pick from a list of available products (there are easily hundreds of beer, wine, spirits, mixed drinks etc.). You pay for the license, and the alcohol... and a couple days later it arrives via plane. Then you have to pay the shipping. It costs at least 30 bucks to have cargo shipped up from anywhere (that's the flat base rate) so you order a goodly bunch at a time to make it worth your while.
  12. There are two main stores. The Co-op and the Northern. The Co-op is much like any co-op... but with slightly more household items (like fabrics, televisions etc.) and the northern is a bit more like a Walmart, with an expanded grocery section. There aren't really any clothing stores. You can buy clothes at the Northern, or through their catalogue. Or order online .... or wait till you go down south... like a lot of us do.
  13. Mail comes twice a day. It's fantastic. You get mail at 10 and 3. It is easily the best part about living up north. Oh, and the lack of slush. I hate slush.
  14. At this point, there are no cell phones. But that may be changing in the near-ish future.
  15. In the dead of winter we get down to about 4 hours of direct sunlight ... from 10 to 2. The sun starts to rise at about 9, and is mostly gone by 3 or so. But that's going to get better, as we're over the solstice-hump.
  16. Yes, it really is quite cold. It's been pretty steadily at -30 for a month or so... and the windchill makes it at least -40. I have the longest walk of anyone I know... 20 minutes to and from work... so I wear my Canada Goose parka, North Face boots (warm to -40... but I've never had them leave me anything but toasty) and wind pants (actually, combination wind and waterproof. I don't have down-filled ones like some people I know, but mine work just fine, and they were like fairly cheap from Mark's). The only thing that I bought down south that wasn't really suitable for nothern living was my mitts... I always just wore knit mitts... "grandma knits" is what we called them... so that was one of the first things I got when I arrived north, a suitable pair of mitts. All in all... I wear about a grand's worth of winter gear when I leave the house for any period of time. Crazy eh?
Okay, I think that is all for now... but I will add to this list as things occur to me. Hope this helps answer some questions!


Northern Blog contest!

I'm re-posting this from Kara's blog, because I think it is a really cool idea, and not to mention kind of fun-sounding!

In celebration of Blogging in Nunavut I'm introducing the Nunies in conjunction with Nunavut Blogs!. The Nunies are a simple recognition of the best that blogging in Nunavut has to offer. Here is how it works...

From now until January 21st, 2008 there will be the opportunity to nominate blogs in two categories:
1) Best Nunavut Blog
2) Best New Nunavut Blog (the blog must have started in 2007)

and a third category for...
3) Best post of 2007

To nominate blogs for the first two categories send an email to the Nunavut Blogs! email address nunavutblogs AT yahoo DOT ca. You can nominate up to five blogs but you can only make one submission. Oh yeah, The House and other Arctic musings, is ineligible to be nominated... my award, my rules.

To nominate the best post of 2007 send a link to the post to the same email address. To be eligible for the two blog categories the blog must be primarily about Nunavut, written by someone living in Nunavut, or written by an expatriot Nunavumiut now living elsewhere. The post can have the additional criteria of being a post about Nunavut, not necessarily by a blog falling into one of those other categories.

After January 21st the top five nominees will be posted and voting will open for a week, with the Winners being announced in the beginning of February. What do the winners get??? Not much really, a nifty badge to post on their blog (that I've yet to design), a little promotion of their blog, and dinner for two at the House, should they ever make it up this way. If anyone else wants to donate a prize you can let me know.

Please spread the word, so as many people as possible take part in the nominations/voting.

I've not yet decided who I'm going to vote for... like Kara, I too am more or less dangerously addicted to my northern blogs. I have them all booked marked in a folder in Firefox, and I open them all in tabs. But it is hard to pick a favourite.

Good luck to all!


never satisfied!

Here I am, surfin' the internet at lightening-speed.... and I'm still annoyed that my program download is going to take 9 minutes...

Because, you know, up north.... it'd probably take an hour, and then Qiniq would promptly email me, congratulating me on being such an active member....

but then bump me down to dialup.

Jackie the recluse

So as I think I eluded to in my past post...
I am spending much of this Christmas break somewhat under the weather... I wasn't feeling too hot on the plane ride from Winnipeg to Toronto (and that's before we had to make several attempts to land... ug)...
And normally I fly so naturally, it's like I was born with wings! But I had to do some serious mind-over nausea meditation to make sure everything stayed where it was supposed to.
So unfortunately, it was not just the flying that made me less-than-my-cheery self... I ended up home, but nice and sick for Christmas Eve eve, Christmas Eve, some of Christmas... and Boxing day.
Not completely "can't function" sick... but "not fun to be around, not really all there" sick.
So maybe as a result of that... maybe thanks to my newfound "quieter" lifestyle, I felt somewhat at odds with the boisterous "father's side of the family" reunion.
But that's okay. And I think the aunts/uncles/cousins (all 25 or so...) sensed that... and I only had to explain things in great detail once or twice, which was great. Not that I mind explaining things, but I'm 100% not good at it when I'm at only 50 per cent brain capacity (like I have been the past couple days).
Anyways, all in all... a satisfying Christmas/Boxing day. Lots of good food (probably too much... especially for my poor, recovering stomach)...


Merry Christmas!

Well I've been outrageously terrible at the blogging thing of late, but I think you'll agree I have good reason.
I'm actually home, in PEI right now...
Nope, not in Winnipeg, as I had previously announced...
But home, sleeping in my old bed, eating food that I didn't have to cook...all around a good time. Or not eating, as I've been sick to my stomach since Sunday...
Okay I'll back up. I decided to surprise my family by coming home for Christmas this year. They had no idea, and I had to be ultra-sleuth about it... not even mentioning it on my blog... because my parents and sister and many others from the island read it.
And ... as you can imagine word travels fast.
I will make sure to update all the intricacies of my grand adventure in due time... but it's Christmas morning, my grandparents are here (LOVING Sully... haha) and there is still some wrapping to do.
And with that, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year...
And those who have the chance to visit with friends and family, consider yourself very lucky. I know I do.


A little splash

A couple weeks ago, there was a woman from Nova Scotia (Kerry Lawson) who gave an "introduction to yoga" session here in Rankin Inlet. Jaime and I went ... in hopes, really, that it would be someone gaging interest for yoga in the community, and would be starting up a class in the new year.

This wasn't the case, but in the process... somewhere between the deep breathing and the chai tea, I knew I had to do a story about this woman. Well, not just her, but what she does, and why she does it, and the experiences she's had up here.

I had a little trouble "selling" it to co-workers, but I just... I had a vision of what this story could be.

She came into the studio, and told me about her grandmother dying of Alzheimer's... of the children she's taught yoga to... of the reactions she's had from the elders.

Now, I'm not really a yoga buff. Sure I have a pair or two of yoga pants... but they are more for lounging than asanas... but this whole thing just called to me.

To make a long story short, I ended up sending it to syndication (for those who aren't really on the up and up re: CBC's inner-workings, that just means that the story gets offered up to all the morning or afternoon shows in the country).

Now here's where the actually cool part of the blog entry comes in. I got an email from her yesterday, well a couple ... really. Telling me:

Just got an email from an important person in gov who said they heard the show this am on the Yoga. She said it was very good, and well done. That means alot, cause this person is pretty critical and sensitive to Inuit issues and it was the gov people I always worry about hearing any interviews....


also....so much has happened as a result of this last trip and the meeting with the Elders....its all very amazing and positive.


Wow, more emails...seems your story has started something. Seems its the part about the Elders saying they used to do "games" that resembled the Yoga that has caught attention. Its funny that the similarity wasn't ever noticed before...even the Arctic Winter games remind me of Yoga-the concentration, some of what they do looks very much like Yoga poses...

anyway, its very interesting. CBC has done 4 stories so far in the last 3 years on the Yoga I do in the North with the youth but this one is the first that has had responses.....

I just thought that was the coolest thing of all time. That government folks are hearing my stories, and its making them think in different ways.

I guess that is... really... what makes this job worth doing.

*happy smile, dumb grin


All is calm...

Except at the Northern this morning when easily half the town stormed the store between 8 and 9 am.

I don't get paid till tomorrow so I was not one of them. But I did get my taste of crazy Christmas after-hours madness the other day, when Jaime and I went to "ladies night" to stock up on Smartfood popcorn and board games.

Did I mention she's my soulmate?? lol.

But things do seem to be quieter of late. Maybe its the dwindling daylight... (it's 9:21 right now, and I don't even see a strip of sunrise yet...) maybe its people gradually heading "home" for Christmas...

I, on the other hand, feel BUSIER these days. Work has been busy... mostly just the regular news things... but then also preparing for the week I will be gone... and news is pretty slow over the holidays, so everyone's trying to pitch in on that. My problem is I'm too deadline-oriented now, and have trouble getting myself keyed up to finish something that isn't 'NEEDED' in the immediate future.

Speaking of keyed up.... I'm leaving for Winnipeg SO SOON. And I'm really excited. It's not the same as going to my real home for Christmas, but I'm going to be staying with relatives, so that's almost as good. I am taking Sully with me... which should be an adventure in itself. I've got so much to do before then... trying to pack differently than I normally do... my mom has sent a tupperware container full of presents via bus from PEI... I want to pick up some stuff in Winnipeg too... and I have to make sure I have the puppy's things too. Not to mention clean. Which I feel may or may not really happen. And its looking like I'm going to do the typical Jackie all-nighter the night before hand because of my deadline issues. Haha.

And then I realized how boring a post this must be for everyone. Sorry!



Where do I start.

Bingo.... is a very ingrained "cultural" experience up here. Emphasis on the "cult" part. I have been asked numerous times today and yesterday if I was going to play bingo tonight.

The answer: no.

I have a bit of a conflicted attitude about the bingo up here. Or bingo in general, I guess. But mostly just up here... because ... as like most things in the north, is prone to extremes.

The jackpot for Bingo tonite is $12,000.

That is a lot of money, that may very well go to someone in this community, or be held over a little longer.

But, UNLIKE any bingo I've ever been to (shut up, I find it amusing, and like to see how many cards I can actually dab before the next number is called) the buy-in is $20. And tonight, it's $30. That's just too rich for my blood. Nah-ah, no way.

And its not like people just buy one card, they buy two, three... maybe four. That's a hundred bucks. Personally, it seems like a lot of money to blow on just a game. I never really considered bingo to be gambling ... until I moved here. It was just a game. Not something you spend a hundred bucks on.

Like... playing poker for nickels... not dollars.

I remember being told, back when I was looking for a puppy, to make an ad on local radio* before Bingo... and I'd get whatever I want. That people sell anything they've got prior to bingo night, so they can play. I've even heard (though maybe this was an exaggeration) of people "selling" their kids. Maybe this means loaning them out... I'm not sure.

But then, on the other hand, the bingo is "not-for-profit" .... so supposedly this money ... what's left after the winners are paid... go to support local programs. But I have to wonder... is it worth the cost?

*Local radio here, is sort of like the classifieds section of your local paper. Except all day, every day, interspersed with music. There's only a weekly paper for the region (not even the town itself) so newspaper ads for the average person... is a bit tricky. It is our main "competitor" (though we don't really compete... we do completely different things) in the town.

And I complained about MY bills....

Poor sap.

Here's the thing though. At what point would it kill Bell to give the guy a courtesy call and say "by the way, our records say you've used $200/200/20,000 of bandwidth... are you aware of this?"

If credit card companies bother to call to check on "unusual usage" then Bell should too.


Puppy pondering

Sully is alive and well.

Sometimes TOO alive... but that's just cuz the poor guy is cooped up during the day... and boy does he ever run loose when I get home.

It's actually kind of funny to watch him run into things... very much like that toilet paper commercial.

But unlike Sully, some of his former pen-mates at Snookums pets... weren't so lucky.

I don't know what to think about this. Honestly, my first emotion was sympathy. The guy who owns/runs the shop (Bud Wheatley) is probably the most involved pet store owner I think I have ever... or will ever... meet. He got Sully up to me safe and sound, and insisted that I call him when I got my puppy... even though that was going to be after midnight, PEI time.

He refused to ship a puppy up to the north ... that he didn' t think could make it... that means it had to be over a certain weight... and he quickly discouraged me from considering getting a Yorkie ... because it would just be too small, and lacks an undercoat.

He consulted with a vet in town to make sure a corgi would be "comfortable" in the north... and made all the flight arrangements for me.

The store called me several times in the first week I had Sully... and when I was scared about some of his "droppings" they calmed my fears.

But the thing I WAS TOLD, many times over, and what makes me wonder about some of these puppy deaths... was to NOT FEED HIM ANYTHING EXCEPT THE FOOD HE CAME WITH. No rawhide bones, no treats. And to give him half a pill (some sort of medicine they developed with the vet....) every day till they were done. Come to think about it, I now think the pills were for parvovirus... which they explained to me even before I paid for Sully, and they sent him on his way.

And I got him right around the same time these people did.

Now, I don't know anything about dogs. I don't know anything about the people who lost their pets, and I'm sorry they did. But I can't help but sit here and wonder... if my puppy survived shipping up to the north, being cooped up in a travel crate for a horribly long time ... and unexpected plane delays... maybe it wasn't the puppy.

I'm just putting it out there.

Latte Wednesday(s?)

Today, my friends, is a latte day.
I've been thinking about this moment for a couple days now. Putting it off because regular coffee "would do"... but today.
No, today is a latte day.

I have been teasing myself with it... for the past five minutes... very a la Ally McBeal...
Gradually sipping at the foam, but not touching the beverage itself.

I'm sure I'll give in sooner or later... hopefully before it reaches the inevitable "lukewarm" temperature. But this one stupid little ritual has made me oddly nostalgic for Quebec City.

Not far from the station there... maybe a five minute walk or so... there was this coffee shop.

Not a Starbucks, not a Second Cup, not a Van Houtte...

It was "la Brulerie de Quebec." Best and cheapest coffee in town.

A dollar per espresso shot. Add milk and you've got a latte. Or don't and just enjoy the tarty goodness of the espresso. Never add sugar. Sugar's for wussies.

So yah, I miss that, and other little things Quebec had to offer, but I also... LOVE the much more "relaxe" atmosphere here. Everyone goes home for lunch... or at the very least DOESN'T WORK.

I think that's just the greatest thing, because... as I'm sure is the same with other jobs... it is all too easy to work though the lunch. Eating at your desk, waiting by the phone for people to call you back.

Haha, I guess I'll just have to break down and buy myself that espresso machine for Christmas. That way, at least, I can have lattes more than once a month, and they won't cost me a whopping 5.75


Cold is...

  • writing a blog entry, after walking over 15 mintues in teh cold without wind pants, or scarf.
  • not being able to close your mouth, after trekking through said cold
  • looking at children and wondering to yourself why they dont' wipe theri noses... but then catch a glance of yourself and realize you look just like them.....
  • looking at yourself in the mirror and wondering why every single follicle on your face has a bit o' ice on it... incuding your cheeks wehre you thought you didn't have hair
  • typing like this because though you have really warm mitts, yoru heart cant' pump enough blood to your fingers to justify real spelling.


A big week for law and order

Connie, Pickton, and Lutha ... oh my!

I can remember, sitting in the Midweek newsroom thinking how SICK I was of hearing about the Pickton trial.

And then at CBC QC, being EXHAUSTED from the goings-on of the Black trial.

But as those two... fairly monumental... court proceedings enter their final chapter, O'Brien's (aka Lex Luthor aka Mr. Clean) has just begun.

Okay, so fair enough "innocent until proven guilty" ... but somehow... I just shake my head. I still can't believe he won that election. And I guess the fools who voted for him will just have to deal with the consequences of their actions... now that his ability to run the city ... in good faith... has been seriously questioned.

If I were in Ottawa right now, I'd just be fuming.

But in local news, the municipal/hamlet elections are being held tonight. Its kind of interesting how they do it here, you don't vote for all the councilors/mayors at once... instead you vote for half of them, every year. So everyone has a 2-year term (haha quite reflective of the fast turnover in people up here), but there are annual elections.

Much less "political" it seems.


Talking to Americans

As seen on TLC's Miami Ink today...

Buddy comes into the shop, "all the way from New-FOUND-land Canada"... he wants a coy/dragon tattoo.


I couldn't help but laugh.


Sun Dogs

For those who were concerned that the world ended after I took those pictures of the "split suns" (as I called them...) no worries, I'm still alive and well, and the sun has returned to one single unit.

Sun dogs are formed by the refraction of the sun's rays through a very specific type of ice crystal in the air. These crystals, called plates, are hexagonal (they have six sides), are quite flat, and slowly settle to the ground in a similar manner to maple leaves, wobbling back and forth somewhat, with the flat sides horizontal. These crystals grow in temperatures between -9° and -20° C. (15-25° F.). Temperature inversions, though, often allow sun dogs to be visible when it's much colder than that at ground level.
- ExploreNorth
And for those interested in a little longer explanation, I suggest looking here (it's even illustrated!)

From what I can tell, I really lucked out catching these guys the way I did on my little Canon point-and-shoot.

I saw them when I was driving from my home to work one afternoon, and looked towards one direction, and marveled at how bright the sun was. I then turned a corner, and thought to myself... its like the sun is getting even brighter! Then I realized I was looking at TWO different suns (hence me calling it "split suns") and it wasn't until I got back to the building that I could see all three in their glory.

I had no idea what it was, and asked co-worker 1 if he'd ever seen anything like this before, and his reply was it was no big deal and that by January there'd be like 8 or 9 of them in the sky.

I then pointed them out to serious co-worker 2 (hoping I might get a better answer) and he nonchalantly said "Yah, well we have like several suns up here in the north, and sometimes they all come out"

Gullible Jackie goes: "Ohhhhh, okay." Then shakes her head and goes "You LIE! That's not possible!!!"

Finally coworker 3 tells me they are sun dogs. Right like that means anything to little ol' me.

Turns out you actually can see them in the south, when the conditions are right... but are more common and clear up here.

So there you go. Sun dogs and Northern Lights. Two of the rare and beautiful things I have seen so far in the north. I'm sure there are many more to come.


Picture time!

My first album of photos from Rankin Inlet... are HERE

(OR, HERE: http://carletoncanada.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2116272&l=d1f76&id=90409745)

Jackie's home remedy for limited sunlight

I have developed an almost fool-proof method for getting up in the AM... even though the sun doesn't really start to rise until 9:30 or so now (I know because while it can be a pain in the butt sometimes... the stretch of windows along the wall of our office has a startling view of the morning sun ... which occasionally blinds me, so I have to close the shutters.)

First, I set my alarm clock half an hour before I really want to get up, and I place it ALL THE WAY ACROSS THE ROOM. That way, I have no choice but to get OUT of bed to press the snooze button. This is essential.

Also, I try to keep my room as messy as possible. So that it's not just that I have to get out of bed to turn off the alarm, but I also have to maneuver over, around and through a very complex obstacle course.

Finally, after the SECOND time my alarm clock goes off... I turn on my light before getting back into bed. That way, its like the sun has very suddenly and abruptly risen. And it is clearly time to get my butt out of bed.

Try it. Totally flawless


Blizzarding alone.

**I wrote this last night, but was unable to post**

So my excitement over the blizzard has dimmed a bit. And as have the lights (couldn’t resist that bit o’ pretentious writing). The thrill of the blizzard, for me, was the chance to do some work from home, and enjoy some afternoon television. Which is what I did, until the cable went off… so I watched a movie (well… half of one… as I remembered only when it cut out that I had only recorded the first half of Mr. & Mrs. Smith) and all was well…

Even got to see the finale of Beauty and the Geek finale (guilty pleasure fix!)… but only just. At exactly 8 o’clock… the power went out.

And of course, I was in the washroom at the time. Last time the power went out, I was in the bath. See a pattern anyone?

So the power goes out… the phone rings… I gingerly make my way out of the washroom (because there are puppy training pads EVERYWHERE these days…) Jaime on the phone freaking because her power cut JUST as they went….

And the winner of this season’s beauty and the geek is…..

Gotta love killer timing.

So here I am, writing by candlelight, bored already. It’s only been half an hour. But the puppy is already passed out in my lap (must have found candlelight and clacking of keyboard keys soothing) and I have nothing to do…

Though it is funny to think that my grandparents are sitting across the (many) ponds… likely sitting in the dark as well. A nice big storm hit the island yesterday and today, and they’ve been without power for awhile… but they have a wood stove, so it’s okay.

But I have to wonder what they are doing right now. Maybe they have more candles than I do, and are reading. Or maybe they called it an early night. Or maybe they are just talking. What to people DO when they no power.

Make that, what to people do when they have no power, and live alone.

I feel like my biggest challenge up here, as a single gal in the north, is to just A.) ask for help, and B.) don’t shy away from accepting it.

I just am constantly paranoid that I’m imposing on people, and they just humour me… but it gets old.. even to me… and I’m the one that’s doing it!

It comes down to a conversation I had with co-worker a couple weeks back. She very bluntly told me (but with the best of intentions) that I would be miserable if I was intent on playing “independent woman” … and she’s probably right.

It just goes against … no only my nature… but also…

It takes a very independent, self-reliant… “strong” person to leave their family, friends, climate, culture, language, comfort zone… for the world up here. And so to encourage such a person to drop those “key qualities” once arriving… is very counter-intuitive.

It also just crossed my mind... what the hell would I do if the power went off for more than a couple hours here? Back home its "normal" for people to be without power for a day or more if there was a lot of backup, or the storm was really bad. Tonite I dined on crackers, cheese and some funny processed meat. But I don't keep non-cooking-intensive foods around the house. Mostly because I don't really like canned/dried/cold foods.

So, input time. What non-gross foods should I be purchasing so I don't die if the power goes out for more than 2 hours?????

**Insert Jeopardy theme**


Jackie, skilled meterologist

'nuff said.

Y'all doubted today would be a snow day... but NOT ME. I was RIGHT. And now I am VICTORIOUS!!!!


Blizzard? Fo' Shizzard!


I think it's official, my new hobby is/will be cooking.

Or maybe, to be more precise, baking.

I am of the opinion that baking is cheaper... as you don't have to pay for all that pricey meat and potatoes. Because every good meal is based around meat and potatoes :P

There is just something strangely satisfying about kneading dough. Ooo, and that punching it part is fun too when it has risen.

I even was like "hmm... maybe I'll buy one of those cool mixers like Martha Stewart has..." until I realized it was like 700.00 bucks hahaha.

I've decided she's my new favourite TV personality. And possibly my new idol. Except for the jail thing... and even that has provided for fantastic Martha moments in the past month.

My favourite things about Martha Stewart:

  1. When, two weeks ago, when Andy Samberg was on the show, and he was like "you should come on the show" and Martha's response was "I was invited once, but I had to go to jail to get the invite" I was like *jaw hit the floor... the prim Ms. Stewart not only acknowledged her jail-time but made a JOKE about it on-air!!!
  2. She's always got the exact right amount of the ingredients pre-measured and laid out on the counter in these little saucers. I tried to do this last night when I was making cinnamon rolls... but only go so far as doing it with the flour. Then I was like "this is stupid, I'm just going to have to wash all these extra dishes..."
  3. She's constantly excited for any kind of alcohol. Be it wine, sherry, brandy, ANYTHING. And she's like "clearly we need just a LITTLE BIT more of THIS..."
  4. She loves eating. Who can hate that? I'm oft tres jealous I can't partake, but that's just me being selfish.
Okay, that's enough of my blatant Martha-worship... but I'm totally going home and may or may not be putting one of her recipes to use. Wooot.

www.marthastewart.com, when opened in Firefox tabs... multiple Firefox tabs.... it looks like THIS:


I'm such a sap

Freakin' movies getting to me and pulling at those weakened heartstrings!!

I think I've mentioned this before, about how I constantly use terrible made-for-tv movies and soundtracks to relive the in-person experience of musicals I've seen.

Rent was on today.

I can still remember really clearly certain parts of that show. Its a really... hard show, emotionally. Its got amazing energy, but when I listen back to the 2-part CD, I rarely make it past the first 15 tracks. Because I KNOW who dies in the second half, and it just kills me every time. But I watched the whole movie today, in-between playing "fetch" with sully (which he has somewhat, though not completely, grasped).

There's something about musicals that make me think I am a much better singer than I really am. But my vocals reverberating off my apartment walls... significantly less flattering then in the car with the windows rolled up.

In any case, today, the movie killed me, not because of who dies (I don't want to spoil this for people who haven't seen it...) as is usually the case, or the scene at the near-end when person #2 is near-death... and there is the infamous "candle moments" ... when I nearly broke down and bawled when I saw it in Ottawa (but didn't, I held my own...)

But the last song of the movie, before the credits.

"there is no future
there is no past
thank god this moments not the last
theres only us
theres only this
forget regret
or life is yours to miss
no other road no other way
no day but today

will i lose my dignity
will someone care
will i wake tomorrow
from this nightmare
theres only now
theres only here
give in to love
or live in fear
no other path
no other way
no day but today(x6)

i cant control
my destiny
i trust my soul
my only goal
is just to be
without you the hand gropes
the ear hears
the pulse beats
life goes on
but im gone
cus i'd die without you
i'd die without you(x5)

no day but today"

whirlwind city

I realized this week that I have been living up north for a full two months now.

It certainly doesn't feel that long. I can't exactly say I've been having the time of my life, but time certainly has flown.

Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't describe myself as UNHAPPY but I think its fair to say I'm still in the adjustment stage.

Sometimes I just love how mellow things are... that I really am able to recharge on the weekends (and after the NTI-filled week of last.... I certainly needed it).

But sometimes I just miss the company. I've not yet really reached the point with the people I know here, where I don't feel like I'm imposing... and I live a bit out of the way, so it seems a bit hard to get people to come down, for something so "trivial" as a movie night or whatever. Or maybe I've just not really tried hard enough.

And I just feel really.... spread thin emotionally right now. There is some drama going on in my life right now, (not involving me directly, but I am feeling like the aftershocks of it) and I'm feeling very conflicted about it all. I have this incessant urge to "fix things" ... to make things better and have everything be okay. But at the same time I can't get too involved in things because its not really my problem to solve. It just leaves me kinda stressed out. And I thought I had left that part of me behind in the "south"

My attempt at purchasing a wii is a complete bust. I ended up having costco return my money, because they officially couldn't find it, and now it is out of stock. Which sucks. And now that it is so close to Christmas, it's kind of like I don't have a chance in hell now.

Its just annoying because I have all these games... I guess it's just a lesson in cart and horse placement.

I think I just have to start my own little weekend rituals, maybe. I am considering subscribing to at least the weekend edition of the Ottawa Citizen. I'm sitting here on my couch, drinking Chai Tea (which I didn't even think I liked....) thinking how nice it would be to be reading a paper right now. The local weeklies just don't satisfy that craving.

This has been a really abstract post. But I think I'm just very all over the place right now.