31 July 2006

Love is in the air

This past weekend, wedding season officially started for Daniel and I. In addition to our own big day, we will be attending 5 other marriages this year. It seems as though the old adage, “If you can’t beat them, join them,” holds true for many of our friends. We like to do things at the same time; not that I’m complaining at all…wedding are fun!

On Saturday, Dan and I made the long drive to Waterloo to attend the wedding of an old high school friend. It was a nice weekend away and a much-needed break from all things “house”. The wedding was held at a pretty lake-side club. It was small, intimate and very comfortable…a very nice change from the typical huge conventional affair. I was especially fond of the “old-school” kids’ games that were placed out on the tables for guests to enjoy – Barrel of Monkeys, Hungry Hippos, Operation, Connect Four, etc. It was definitely a nice touch of fun and nostalgia for anyone who grew up in the 1980s.

My only complaint from this weekend would have to be our lodgings, or rather our neighbors in the next room (Thankfully nobody from the wedding we attended). Turns out we had some very loud and voracious lovers next door. It was pretty disturbing but we had a good laugh about it. Things were a little less funny, however, at 2:00 am when Dan and I woke up to crying and screaming. I still have to idea what was going on, but the woman certainly didn’t sound happy this time. I tried to catch snippets of their conversation, but she was sobbing too loudly. Definitely not the happy lovers we heard before we headed off to the wedding. I’m still perplexed….

So there you have it, the “Coles Notes” version of my fun but strange weekend. Daniel and I are gearing up for yet another wedding next weekend. Two of our best buddies are getting married and we’re very much looking forward to sharing in their special day. Dan is “Best Man” and I’ll be playing the role of “MC”. Slightly nervous as I’ve never done this before, but I’m sure I’ll ease into it once things get rolling. Typically I love speaking, but this makes me nervous for some odd reason. I guess I just want to ensure that I help things run as smoothly as possible. If not, the bride can seek revenge on my own wedding day, seeing as she is one of my bridesmaids

25 July 2006

Return of the mud....

This morning’s jaunt to the bus stop proved to be even more challenging than yesterday. My old nemesis, mud, made a repeat appearance.

Last night the house got pounded with yet another thunderstorm. Because our house backs out on a field / forest, we don’t have anything to buffer us from the elements. The fact that we still don’t have eavestrophing also doesn’t help.

Sleeping last night was next to impossible. It’s difficult to remain asleep while your windows are rattling, even more so when you don’t have blinds blocking out the flashes of lightening. I always wonder why I insist of sleeping closest to the window… perhaps this is a lesson….

Today I decided to better prepare myself for the trip to work. Donning an old pair of pants and a T-shirt, I was ready to take of the messy construction zone. Stupidly, I still insisted on wearing my nice sandals. Vanity always seems to reign, no matter how rational I try to be.

There were more puddles and potholes to avoid this morning, however I’m quickly learning where to step. No mystery mud holes for me today thankfully. My sandals still required a quick wash at work, however I managed to keep the majority of my toes guck free. I think I’ll have to invest in a more sensible closed-toe shoe. I can’t go through this ritual every time it rains….and it rains a lot!

I found that yesterday seemed exceedingly long. Work dragged on and all I could think about was going home and enjoying my new environment. It seems that Daniel and I have been running around since the day we moved; I feel as though neither of us have truly had the opportunity to enjoy the house yet. We still have an unopened bottle of Champagne in the fridge that my father gave us as a housewarming gift. I look forward to the day that we can finally sit down, relax and celebrate.. A day to vegetate would blissful.

24 July 2006

A messy return to work

Back to work today to filter through copious amounts of emails and phone messages…joy! I always hate the first day back after a vacation. Sometimes I wonder if it’s worth while because I always have to work doubly hard to play catch-up.

Leaving home this morning felt strange. I was not looking forward to the prospect of finding my new bus stop and adding an extra 10-15 minutes to my usual commute. To make matters worse, because it is a new development, the express bus does not run often; this means getting up at the crack of dawn to make sure I get downtown on time.

I started off Monday in fine fashion today – tired, cranky, sore….muddy.
After taking special care to dress up and look my best, I grudgingly made my way down the street to the bus stop. Because we had heavy rain showers during the night, the ground was awash with mud. Being extra careful not to ruin my favourite sandals, I slowly picked my way down the street. I started to breath a sigh of relief once the bus stop came into view…alas, to soon! A huge truck came rumbling down the street, causing me to step aside. I put my foot on what looked like a dry patch of dirt, only to discover a deep mud hole. Plomp! My beautiful sandals sank beneath the mud. After freeing my feet and sandals, I tried to rub mud off on the pavement to no avail. Turning back home was not an option otherwise I’d miss my bus and be late for work. So there you have it, my first day back at work began with a dirty and uncomfortable ride to work… bar the strange looks from fellow commuters.

I hope that Dan’s day is going better. While I sat caked in mud, Dan was comfortably sipping coffee and playing computer games back home. I really must learn to adopt his morning ritual.

22 July 2006

House = Work = Exhaustion

Work, work, work! Turns out I’ll need a vacation from my vacation. I knew that moving into a new home would be busy, but nothing could have prepared me for everything that has happened over the past week.

For the most part, everything major has been handled. The appliances are working and all of our furniture was delivered and assembled with no problems. Dan has become a master furniture builder and I’ve discovered a newfound talent for drilling drywall. All in all, with the guidance of friends and family, we are starting to learn about the ups and downs of homeownership. So far we’ve had the developer in to look at a leaky kitchen sink and crooked countertop. We are quickly learning that “the squeaky wheel gets the grease”…it pays to complain!

Living in a new house has proved to be challenging. I’ve had to ignore my aversion to clutter and messy environments. I’m quickly discovering that dust is impossible to get rid of right now, especially seeing as we still live in a construction zone. For now, I’ll have to be satisfied with general tidying and unpacking our remaining bits and bobs. It’s a slow progression but I’m getting there.

I can truly say that the house is starting to feel more like home now. Dan and I have only been in the house for one week and we have already hosted two dinner parties. It was nice to finally be able to give something back to my parents. There’s a certain degree of pride that comes with having your folks over for dinner, a sense of accomplishment, sort of like assuring them that they reared you well.

With house matters well on track, I was able to refocus some of my attention on the wedding today. Our cake has been confirmed with the baker and I went out to Carleton Place for my 2nd fitting this morning. You know you have an awesome Maid of Honour, when she gets up at 6:00 am on a Saturday to drive you out of town for a 10 minute dress fitting. Very happy with the way everything looks now. I have to make sure to maintain my current physique, otherwise I’ll be eating my words in two months time. No pressure whatsoever…

18 July 2006

Home Sweet Home...almost...

Daniel and I moved in four days ago and I’m only getting to my computer right now…serious withdrawal!

The past few days have gone by in a blur. I can truly say that I now know the meaning of exhaustion. I don’t think that either Dan or I have ever been so tired and sore. Moving beats you up both physically and emotionally; I totally don’t understand how some people willingly move every few years. No thanks! I’ll stay right where I am.

All in all, I can’t complain about the move too much. Everything went really smoothly. We got the keys early on the 14th and had everything unloaded at the house by 16:00 that afternoon. We were very fortunate to have a wonderful crew of friends and family helping us out in the sweltering heat and humidity. My parents were amazing, bringing food and taking time to help clean the kitchen. To my dismay, it seems that NOTHING was cleaned since our last home inspection over 2 months ago.

I’m not sure that everything has hit me yet. Today was the first day that the house started to feel like home. Now that things are starting to take shape, curtains are up and boxes are emptied, it’s starting to feel a little more permanent. After three days of suffering without central air in 33+ C weather, we were very happy to get our air conditioning installed yesterday. Dan doesn’t deal well with humidity, so having the AC is a godsend. It makes working on the house much more bearable.

Nothing much more to write right now. I have a huge roman tub calling my name and beckoning me to soak my aching feet. For your enjoyment, some pictures that my father took during moving day. Note the bedraggled and surly look.

Daniel arrives with the truck and brother helps unload:

Grabbing a bite to eat with mom before the boys arrive with the truck. Mom looks hot and I look annoyed. My father thought it was a "special" moment to capture:

14 July 2006

0 Days Left!

Yes....even though I am moving today, I'm still blogging! Everything but my laptop is packed and ready to go. I guess you could say that I have now effectively transitioned to the world of "Geekdom". Dan must be so proud!

I can't believe that today has finally arrived. My stomach is in knots and there's a myriad of emotions running though me: excitement, nervousness, and even a little sadness. For the first time in my life, I will be living without my parents. I know that this is rare for a 25 year old, but I guess it's because I come from a fairly conventional family. Both my brother and I lived at home throughout University so that we would not accumulate student debt. We both put ourselves through University and managed to come out with top marks and some extra cash in our bank accounts. When I think about it, it was a pretty sweet deal - no room and board to pay and plenty of opportunity to save. If it weren’t for my parents, I probably wouldn't have been able to afford a new house at this age. I've never regretted living at home, looking back it was probably the wisest decision that I've ever made. And maybe its maturity setting in, but I've recently come to realize that parents are not all monsters. True that we may not always see eye to eye, but they are human, they have their faults too....and they’re family. Not seeing them everyday will be quite an adjustment (both good and bad).

Today is going to be an absolute nightmare. I'm not looking forward to the prospect of lugging things around. I think Dan and I will let out a collective sigh of relief when everything is inside the new place. I've heard that moving is one of life's major stresses.....I totally concur!

Right now it's only 8:00 am and I'm desperately trying to keep my mind active. Sleep was next to impossible. The next few hours are going to drag on and on because we don't get the moving truck until noon. As luck would have it, Dan had to attend a business meeting this morning....go figure....

I guess I better go and find something constructive to do. I'm reluctant to pack up my computer because it is the only personal thing left in my room. There's nothing sadder looking than an empty room...especially one that you've lived in all your life. But...it's time to go, time to grow up and move on with the next stage of life. I'm looking forward to my future with Dan and that truly overshadows everything else.

11 July 2006

Boxes, boxes and more boxes!

I hate packing! I cannot comprehend how some people move every few years…by choice!

The bulk of the weekend was spent stuffing boxes and bags with all my worldly possessions. It amazed me to discover how much junk I’ve collected over 25 years…especially clothing! A little part of me cried inside, thinking about all the money I could have saved if only I had been a little wiser. I guess that’s the frivolity of youth. Sadly, some people never seem to grow out of it.

Right now my parents’ house looks like a disaster zone. I’ve pretty much taken over all available space. Despite the fact that they aren’t dealing well over the “loss” of their last child, I think they will be happy to have their house back.

Only three more sleeps until Daniel and I move. It seems we’ve been counting down the days forever now. I must admit, I’ll miss Dan’s enthusiastic morning phone calls to declare, “Only ____ days left!”

07 July 2006


T-minus 7 days and counting!

Just thought I’d share that.....

Look Ma’ I’m all grown up now! Wahooooo!

Seriously, I don't know why I'm so excited. My life of poverty begins soon.

For all your DIY needs!

Why invest in expensive tools? Ever consider using fruit?

Introducing man's greatest invention....the BANANA HAMMER!

Step1: Cool banana in liquid nitrogen
Step 2: Hammer away!

Genius....pure genius. This is physics at its best! Bloody brilliant, I say!

Only two people will truly understand my reason for posting this, my brother and Dan...

04 July 2006

Golfing Tragedy!

I suck! I really really suck! Sucky McSuckerton, that’s me!

Over the Canada day long weekend, Daniel and I were up at the cottage. Conveniently, there’s a 9-hole golf course only five minutes away. Nothing too fancy and not very busy…perfect for a first-time golfer such as myself. After lessons and a few practice rounds at the driving range, it seemed inevitable that I would have to play sooner or later.
It should have been later!

If the game of golf focused on who could make the largest air bound divots, I’d be a legend in my time. I’ve lifted less dirt while gardening!

It seems as though all of my previous instruction left my mind the moment that I hit the green. I especially loved teeing off from the first hole, which is overlooked by a balcony where the leering eyes of others golfers watch your every move….no pressure! Not one to do things in half measures, I gave them one heck of a show – a wild swing, followed by a flying mound of turf and some embarrassed grumbling. On the third swing I finally made contact with the ball, relieved to see it move anywhere outside of the view of my audience….even if it was almost on another fairway.

Dan didn’t prove to be much better than myself, although slightly less embarrassing. Needless to say, we quickly decided to turn the game into “best ball”. It was pretty evident that neither of us would be making par that day. Even together, we couldn’t muster a half decent score.

Lessons learned:
Need to work on sportsmanlike conduct!!! (Sorry Dan)
2. Need more practice at the range…teeing from the grass this time
3. There is no such thing as too much bug repellant
4. Sand traps mysteriously turn into water traps after thunderstorms
5. Groundhogs are cute (even when they look like Beavers)
6. More beer needed during play