Dentist, Visitors….and Cleaning!

Ack!  All this morning.

So not looking forward to this dentist appointment.  Another root canal.  I can’t say I lost sleep over it or anything that drastic but really, it’s one of those things……you know you’re in for some pain.  It has to be done but why would anyone in their right mind subject themselves to pain??  They do put that spray or whatever it is on before they do the needle but it still hurts…..I obviously do not have a very high threshold for pain.

The Sechelt friends are coming over for a quick visit today.  They’ll only stay one night this time.  They’re off to see her Mom (95!!) for lunch then will head over here.  Dinner and lots of yakking and wine later.

Yesterday was a busy day….changing beds and cleaning.  Still more to be done this morning before I leave for the dentist…..I’ll put Roomba on when I head out the door and hope it doesn’t get stuck under one of the beds while I’m gone.  I really love that little robot vacuum…..especially with the dark hardwood floors.  It’s not as efficient as really vacuuming but sure does the trick for picking up the cat hair and dust…..and dead skin!!  After our cold spell my skin is so dry and flaky.  I can’t put on enough cream….that doesn’t seem to happen so much in summer…..I’m counting down the days.

I was supposed to go to my grandsons lacrosse game yesterday afternoon but it rained and rained and it was not terribly warm either.  They came after for a visit….and some hot chocolate….then we met the rest of them for dinner later.

A very boring, kind of dull time right now….nothing too exciting going on in my life.  Not sure what exactly I expect should be going on…..I am retired, right?  Not really that “unsettled” feeling but just not sure…’s like something should be happening.  What though?

Trip planning is coming along nicely.  My trip will overlap with my brother and SIL’s in London for a couple of days and they’re staying at the same hotel.  We can meet up for dinner that first night and catch up on how their trip went along….they will be heading home and we’ll just be starting!  I’m sure they’re going to have a few stories to tell!!




No Pain, No Gain

Maybe I just took enough Tylenol to not have pain!!  I hope that’s the case because I worked really hard yesterday.  My hip did hurt a bit but…..

I really enjoyed my fried chicken last night….with no guilt!  I know it’s not the best thing to be eating at the best of times but hey…..everything in moderation right?

Not sure what I’ll do today….lots of things on my list that I could be working away at.  It’s almost nice enough that I could do a bit of stuff outside.  It’s still chilly at night but it’s been warming up nicely through the day….and the sun even shines every now and again.

I do have more trip planning that I could be working on too but will save that for later I think.

The kids were lots of fun and really good last night.  They brought along their “stamp” making kit so we made a bunch of them after dinner with only minimal mess… is Crayola and all washable thank goodness.  While we were doing the stamps, I thought about Ken.  I wondered if he would have liked doing this with the kids…..he didn’t like mess but then again, there were lots of little bits and pieces that you had to use tongs for and other little parts that you had to put together before putting the felt tubes in the little ink/dye holders.  He did like to do things like that.   It might have been a little too chaotic for him though with 3 little bodies all hanging over the table, and blocking the light, trying to do it at the same time.  I hadn’t really thought much about those “what ifs” for a long time, but I wonder……

I’m on my own tonight for dinner…..oh boy, leftover chicken!   Glad to see my daughter finally feeling good enough to get out after her surgery.  She did last weekend, to a friends baby shower, but said it did kind of tired her out.  I think part of that is because she’s been doing a lot of sitting around reading and not much of anything else.  She’s back to work on Monday so she better get some of that energy back.

I nice quiet weekend……I like those 🙂



Off For More Torture!

Going to the gym should be a fun thing, right?  I guess it is at the end of the day but certainly not while you’re there.  I am thinking the whole time…..this hurts, I can’t breathe, my knee hurts, my ankle hurts, I’m so out of shape it’s not funny, I can’t go that one more mile….not happy thoughts.  I come home though and feel really good!  Go figure that out!

I really do have to get back into some sort of shape though if I’m going to survive this bike trip.  Walking is no problem….but walking and pushing a bike could be a bit of challenge so I’d rather be able to ride the thing!

Today is kind of a day to celebrate….I received my first Canada Pension payment.  All the more reason to go to the gym I guess…..being old is one thing but being old and at least in reasonable shape is a much better thing! RIGHT?

I’m babysitting the kids for dinner tonight.  That should be fun and part of celebrating my pension payment AND all my hard work at the gym I’m going to pick up fried chicken!!!  The kids love it and it’s kind of a treat seen I don’t have it that often.

My ex-SIL is not doing well.  They changed her chemo and it’s really taking a toll on her right now.  Chronic nausea, weakness etc.  After work yesterday I picked up a few groceries for her because she just couldn’t get out.  She was in rough shape when I got there.  I thought we should just go to emerg because she’s probably dehydrated, which will contribute further to feeling crappy, but she said she’s wait until the nurse comes by today.  Luckily the nurse drops in once a week to check on her….I’m pretty sure she’ll suggest the same thing.  L has been such a trooper all through her other treatments so I hope she can get through this set back too.  She supposed to go in on Tuesday for her next treatment but is going to tell the Dr that she doesn’t want to do this if it’s going to make her sick all the time.  She was on one of the immunotherapy drugs, but because there had been some growth, the Dr wanted to try the heavy duty chemo.  The growth had been minimal so since she felt so much better, she said she’d rather go back on that unless he’s got something else up his sleeve.  She’s supposed to call me later and let me know what’s going on.  I really do hope it’s just some rehydration.  A bit of a catch 22… can’t eat because you feel nauseous but part of feeling nauseous is because you haven’t eaten….I know that so well from Ken’s experience.  She’s taking ondansetron, which is a heavy duty nausea med, but it’s not really giving her any relief.  I got her to take a gravol too last night, which seemed to help a bit more.  She managed to take a shower and then have a piece of toast later.  My fingers are crossed for her!

Off to get sore and achy…..


Pain In The Butt!

Literally!!  I did go to the gym yesterday specifically to use the bike…..which I did.  The bikes and treadmills have these nifty screens which let you choose a route to either run or ride….such a nice diversion.  I chose one that took me through the French countryside of Provence.  Very pretty. Tomorrow I think I’ll ride through the Champagne region.

Today it hurts to sit!!  I will definitely be getting myself some of those padded bike pants.  I’d like to think this pain is because I have bony bum but I know that is not the case.  I’m hoping that one builds up callouses, or something like that, otherwise how on earth can you possibly bring yourself to get your butt back on that seat the next day??  I started out on level zero!!  And only went 5 miles…..I am in big trouble if I don’t get myself into bike riding shape.  You can’t go from being in no shape whatsoever to riding what, to me, was the equivalent of the Tour de France!

I know I can walk a lot and for a long time so I’ll also use the treadmill to build up more stamina just in case I end up chucking the bike!!  I’m sure I’ll get myself to a point where I’m not second guessing doing this bike trip…..I have too.

All that said, the other aches and pains are good ones.  I really feel like I accomplished something at the gym yesterday.  If I was smart(er) I’d go again today but I’m busy so I can’t.

I’m going to Bev’s today for a visit with her little granddaughter.  I haven’t seen her for long time and they change so quickly.  She’s such a cutie so I’m really looking forward to this afternoon.

Then I’ll go into work for a couple of hours…..I like it when there is no one else in the office….it’s much quieter and easier to make some of the phone calls.

I’m feeling so much better these last couple of weeks… it the vitamin D that I started taking?  Is it because the arctic weather has finally gone?  Is it because we’re seeing some sun and rather “springy” temperatures?  Is it because our June trip planning is moving along nicely?  I don’t know but I’m glad.  Not that I was sick, not that kind of feeling better, but just……happier, in better spirits, sleeping much better…that kind of feeling better.  It’s good and I hope it lasts!!



Planes, Trains, Automobiles….and Hotels!

Trip planning is going really good.  Had lunch with everyone yesterday and we got so much done….the best part was saving almost $250 on airfare!

I’d been checking it almost daily but seeing very little change….$5 up, $5 down….but yesterday….wow!  Supposedly Tuesday afternoons are the best time to book your airfare.  I’m not sure what the logic is behind it with the airlines and why it would be cheaper at that time of day….and it always isn’t the case either.  Last Tuesday there was only a few dollars difference.  Yesterday though we hit the jackpot of sorts…..I’m not going to complain.  It definitely pays to plan in advance and shop around using some of the bit travel sites that provide multiple quotes.  In the end we ended up on good old Air Canada.

We also got our London hotel booked… is not cheap there!  It’s the same hotel we stayed at a few years ago in South Kensington but is now called something different.  It’s kind of a cute place…..white regency style building with black wrought iron railings and trim.  Great  location close to two different tube stations and within walking distance to the Victoria and Albert museum, Harrods etc.

For the Italy part, we’re looking into car rentals…..we think one will have to do so we’ll get a bit of a bigger car.  Rae and I will be the drivers…..the only bad part about that is we are also the only ones that can read maps, so we’ll be each others navigators…the good part of that is we get the front seats!!  We’ll take the train from Bologna to Milan enroute to France for the bike trip.  I’ve found both legs of that trip but can’t book until less than 90 days out.

The only things left to book now are the bike trip and the hotel in Bologna, where we’ll stay for one night before heading to our vacation rental in Le Marche.

Some info about Le Marche

Le Marche is an area in Italy that I’ve never been too.  Definitely lots to see there and it will be fun exploring new territory.

I didn’t make it to the gym the other day…..all it took was one phone call and that was that!  I had even managed to get my socks on and runners out of the closet but oh well.  Today I am going for sure…..I AM!


Bottle Of Wine….

Yes, a whole bottle!!  But it was over quite a period of time…..from about 3PM to 1AM….and with a coffee or two in between.

So much fun on Saturday playing the game, eating, drinking, talking….some cursing and swearing and a bit of yelling too!!  I didn’t win…..I never win playing this game, don’t even come close but it is just a lot of fun so who cares!

Before and after baking……had salad an bruschetta to start then the cannelloni with focaccia bread and balsamic and EVO for dipping!

All the food was just OK…to me.  Everyone said it was good of course….but it certainly could have been better.  I should have just made my pasta the way I normally would have.  The meat cannelloni turned into more of a lasagna.  The veggie one, I thought, even with all the sauce was a little dry.  I did think I knocked the sauce off pretty good though for that one.

The game in full swing and my little old cat helping one of the guys……

Dinner last night at Rob and Sue’s was great.  T & S were there too, so lots of fun…..again….eating and talking and, other than one glass of one, no drinking because I had to drive….which was OK, I’d had quite enough the night before!!

Madly rushing around this morning picking up all the stuff that’s been dropped wherever because the cleaning lady is coming this afternoon.  Not sure I’ll ever get into the hang of tidying up after myself….I really don’t know why I can’t just put stuff away where it should go to start but oh well!

And….and…..and….I’m off to the gym this morning.  Something that I haven’t done forever it seems like.  Yesterday when getting ready to go out, I had to take my “skinny jeans” off because no one should have to see those thighs.   What the hell happened?  I’ve always had a problem with all my weight settling there but honestly it was kind of scary….I’m just glad a had a look in the mirror….checking to make sure the sweater looked ok…..which it did and was the least of my problems!!!  The jeans well, just NO!

So far this week I have lunch/cards with Bev this afternoon, lunch with Brenda and Rae tomorrow and then nothing else on my calendar.  I kind of hope it will stay that way.  Lots of things to do around here and if nothing else comes up I can get some of it done.  If a better offer comes along though, I can’t say no… is that for focused?

We’ve had a week of warm(ish) weather, lots of rain but some sun too.  Most of the snow is gone now….and all the big icy patches on roads and sidewalk…..and a lot of pavement and asphalt too!!  Potholes that I swear you could lose a small car in.  Last night was a bit chilly, back down to zero.  I know it’s still early in the year and we’ve got a lot of winter left but I really hope we’ve seen the last of the really cold and snowy weather….I AM SO READY FOR SPRING!



Stick To What You Know!

Happy Birthday to my brother!!  Normally I’d say “I hope you have a great day” but I know you will….we’ll certainly have lots of fun playing Stock Ticker ALL DAY!

I don’t make homemade pasta that often but when I do it turns out quite nicely…..I should have just done what I usually do!!

To save time, or what I thought would save time, I decided I’d do the pasta dough in the kitchen aid.  Everyone online swore by using it to knead the dough, I even used the dough recipe they suggested….ah sigh.  What I usually do is 1 cup of flour, 1 large egg and 1 tablespoon of olive oil… always works…even doubling it is no problem.  This recipe was basically the same except it added an extra egg, then vinegar to offset the eggy taste in the pasta.  Yuck!!  The kitchen aid did not knead it properly and left lots of globby bits of flour in the bottom of the bowl.  Saved me no time at all since I had to start all over again and had an extra bowl to wash!!  Live and learn….I say that a lot.


the last bit of dough….too dry to do anything with


two dozen cannelloni sheets ready to be cooked and stuffed

The pasta is all made, the cannelloni stuffings (meat and also a veggie one,cheese and spinach)are all ready to go too so all I have to do is put it all together later.  I made the best ever tomato sauce yesterday.  Salad and fresh tomato bruschetta to start.  Cheese focaccia bread to go with the pasta….not homemade but good enough.

Today will be lots of fun and I’m looking forward to it.

Tomorrow I’m off to one of our old friends birthday dinners.  It’s their place that we go to on Boxing Day, which did not happen because of the weather this year….so we’ll make up for lost time….lots of catching up to do (Sue was in Australia for a month visiting family back in November….she always has some good “Mom” stories…Mom is 95 and still spunky as ever).  Another busy weekend but a good one.

Yesterday was lots of fun too.  After my granddaughters treatment was over we went for lunch.  I asked her what she’d like or where she wanted to go….IKEA!!  So we did.  She had lots of fun!  Checking out all the room display set ups…..opening cupboard doors, testing beds and chairs.  Lunch was good too.  Then home just in time to catch a couple of the “Say Yes To The Dress” shows that we’d PVR’d for her before her Dad came to pick her up.

I think next week I will do nothing….we’ll not quite nothing but I’m just going to have to say NO to stuff that comes up if I’ve already got more than 2 of my days filled.  I really need just some at home time to tackle the things on my to do list.   It’s so hard to say no though…..we’ll see how that works!!


Up And Out Early!

My daughter had her follow up appointment with the surgeon this morning at 9AM!!  She could have driven herself but figured I save her a couple of bucks for parking….the plan was to drop her off at the office then I’d head down the road to where the parking is free, go to Starbucks have a coffee and wait until she called.  Not to be!!!  There is absolutely no free parking anywhere near there because of the hospital being close by.  All the side streets are resident/permit parking only.  Even the mega grocery store near there has pay parking!!!  Not something I would do to grocery shop.

Now I’m off to work again, only for a couple of hours.  I was on a roll yesterday then everything came to a grinding halt when I came across something that I’d not seen before…..and the office gal had already headed home.  I’ll get the answers I need today so I can just carry on.  I’m lucky that I can just go in whenever I like and since what I’m doing does need to be done but not with any specific deadline in place it all works out good.  I am trying to keep it to only one day a week….so far that’s worked out pretty good.

Then I’m off to pick up all the goodies for the birthday party on Saturday.  Appies, stuff to make the cannelloni and a salad.

My granddaughter is coming to stay overnight tonight, after her Brownies/Guides.  That works better for all of us so we don’t have to get up so early tomorrow.  Another hour of sleep for everyone!  I might wait until she gets here to make the pasta, I think she’ll enjoy that.  We did do it before but that was a long time ago.  Or I’ve PRV’d a bunch of the “Say Yes To The Dress” shows…..she loves watching that.  It can be her choice.

Lots to do!



Breaking Out The Vitamin D

Rain, rain and more rain….that is what’s in our weather forecast for the next week or more.  One of the days at least had a half sun showing, so there is some hope.

Of course with all this rain the snow is melting and creating major puddles or small lakes in some places.  The temps have gone from being below zero to well above.  This morning when I got up it was 9C (50F).  If this keeps up it’s time to put the flannel jammie pants away.


We used to take vitamin D every day.  Then we stopped.  I’m not sure why….probably just ran out of them and didn’t pick up any more.  I bought some back in October when it rained for 40 nights and 40 days…..or more…..but didn’t take it….it got pushed to the back of the cupboard and forgotten about and then of course we had WINTER, cold but at least bright!  Time to break open that bottle with the rainy forecast coming up.  I don’t know how long it takes to kick in or whether what you actually get out of these little capsules is enough to make a difference but it’s worth a shot.

Work and the dentist today…how exciting is that?  Not a bad thing though after a couple of somewhat relaxing “in” days.  The rest of the week will be busy…..tomorrow I’m getting dinner ready for Saturday!!  At least getting some of it started….homemade pasta and making the sauce.  I think I’ll make cannelloni…..I have a great recipe from my cooking school back in September.  This is for my brothers birthday party…..another Stock Ticker game marathon day.  The food has to be simple so we can eat and carry on playing at the same time….maybe a salad to start.  One bowl/plate dishes so it doesn’t take up too much room on the table.

Friday I’m off to Children’s Hospital with my granddaughter for her monthly biologic infusion.  We’ll go for lunch somewhere after.  She’s such a little trooper when it comes to this each month.  They’re so good with the kids there too, which makes it a lot easier.  Movies to watch and the game people come by….usually teenagers that are volunteering.  I hope that’s the day that had the partial sun showing!!!


Another Whirlwind Weekend!

But lots of fun.

Eating, drinking, shopping, games, talking, planning…’s exhausting.  Yesterday I had a day off…..I truly did nothing other than put the dishwasher on.  I needed that.

We had such a good time and although busy it was nice that it was spread out over a few days instead of it being crammed into one.  I wish they’d always come over for at least two days.

My corned beef and cabbage dinner was a success on Friday night.  Even Bev and my daughter enjoyed it.  Something I will definitely not wait 10 years to make again.


after the cabbage and corned beef are cooked it put it all together and stuck it in the oven for a bit….not sure I would do that again though….kind of took all the colour out of the veg….but tasted soooo good.

Saturday morning I did a skillet breakfast, but forgot to take pictures of it.  It too turned out really good.  Diced potatoes, or frozen hashbrowns if you’re lazy like me, diced bacon, onion, green pepper, cheese and whatever else you want to throw in.  Brown it all nicely, make a few little holes, or wells, in the pan for the eggs, cover and voila, in about 15 minutes you’ve got a great one pan breakfast that was delicious and easy to clean up after!


there is an egg in there somewhere….I should have taken a picture BEFORE we dug into it

Yesterday I did do something else…..booked airfare for part on the June trip.  I also put together a budget that I’m hopeful we can stick too.  Some unknowns with the exchange rates of course but it should be pretty close.  It’s all slowly coming together.  I did up a calendar, working forwards and backwards from the known dates (confirmed house rental in Italy).  Looks like it’s going to be at least a month long vacation…..I’m really looking forward to it.  BUT….I really need to get myself in much better shape for the bike trip part of it….I’m going back to the gym, I really am!!!

Today is laundry room day.  I am determined to get that back to what it should look like.  The counter and floor down there has turned into a dumping off spot for everything….shoes, gloves, my roasting pan, papers and mail….anything and everything and it’s driving me a little crazy.

Tomorrow will be a work day with a dentist appointment in the middle.  Back to get the permanent crown put on.  They said it would be a 10 minute appointment…I’ll head back to work after.  It’s a day in the office, not driving.

We’re back to our normal weather now.  Instead of getting up to -6 degrees, it’s +6 and raining and raining.  It’s going to take a while for all the snow to wash away though and the ice on the river!!  Yes, hard to believe but there were actually mini icebergs on the rivers around here.  On Saturday when we were out and about it was fun watching the people skating on the ponds and any where that enough water/ice had accumulated to form a place to skate.  Lots of little guys out there with their hockey sticks….very cute.