Wednesday, December 13, 2006

We Are In the County!!

This is the view from our kitchen window and the horses are usually in the green field you can see on the other side of the river.
I'm once again at the library picking up junk mail. The deal is the Wireless tower they built on a silo in Waupoos isn't tall enough to get a decent signal. So back to the engineering drawing board of figuring out how to get it taller and attach it so it doesn't blow off!! They say maybe by xmas. We aren't holding our breath.
We are in town to do some errands and one of them is to find a modem for dial up in the mean time. Of course they will only allow us to use 10 hours month until the wireless is up. Yes you heard right 10 hours a month!!! Yeah, I freaked too! Hopefully we'll have some dial up before the week is out.

Life is awesome and we are loving it here. The kids are loving it and very happy and relaxed. Quinn is bringing home love notes every day this week from all these different girls so he is feeling pretty good! Leah loves the less homework and therefore less stress and has 2 very good friends in her class.

We've had a great snow that is now gone, plus a day with double rainbows and lots of sunshine and warm weather too. It feels like we have, in three weeks, managed to have every season pass through!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The Crystal Ball

Wow! What a night Tim and I had last night!! My boss Sharin got for all the Crew tickets to go to the Crystal Ball at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. It's a huge fundraiser for Reach for the Rainbow, which is a children's charity. The tickets were $700 each!! Our table was given to us because of the large donation Sharin gave of a completely decorated bedroom with furniture and everything!

Sharin is in the green jacket with Mary Jane (MJ) beside her, then Adrianne, then me. Lorrainne in red and Evelyn on the rocker. This was early in the evening and once Bacardi opened up the cocktail bars it all got a bit sillier! Those mojitos went down smoothly didn't they ladies!

Yes and so did those Bacardi Razz and lemonade cocktails too!

We had to test out the comfort level of the BMW car and motorcycles that were up for auction too!

I couldn't resist hiking up my long dress and trying it out. I know, I know not exactly lady-like, but when will I ever get another chance like that!! The bike was so nice and all the foot pegs, brakes and clutche were perfect sized for me to ride. It was a wee bit tall, I had to be on the balls of my feet, even with heels on!!

Here is a shot of my hubby and me in our fancy dress up clothes. This will have to be a keeper of a picture since the chances of going anywhere this glamourous in the future is probably fairly slim!

What a way to end our 4 years in Toronto. Did I mention that the Beach Boys were there and we got to dance for a couple of hours to their music. Sweet!!

Thank you Sharin for an absolutely great time! You are an Awesome boss!! That was so much fun!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Website Building

My smart hubby is working hard on creating our Galloping Goat Gallery website. It's looking great so far. We've even managed to agree on a business card design without any major arguments! Just a tweek here and there and one back and forth of each of us having a go at the design and we came up with one that we like.

Cute goat isn't he?

I got all excited this afternoon in the middle of packing because I came across a knitting pattern for a winter hat that had a goat on it. I kept thinking how cool it would be to make Tim one for Yule and try to somehow tweek the design so it looks more like our goat. I have only recently begun knitting but have managed pretty well and even messed with some patterns midway so that they would fit better. I guess I could always just knitt the hat and then stitch the goat on after.

Tim just realized we have inadvertantly picked christmas colours. Well yes, kind of, but red and green are split complimentary and go together really well. We picked the red because the barn is red and green to go with the garden theme of our items that we will be selling. We should probably pick a third colour to compliment the design that doesn't say christmas so much!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Limbo Anyone?

Well here we sit in Limbo Land...sigh. Too soon to pack all of it and nothing much to do since the work is waiting on the other side of the move.

Having Tim home has been nice and he even cooked dinner tonight! Nothing beats sitting down to a meal I didn't have to think about, plan or prepare!

Here is the stuff I have been working on and is now on the website. Soon the grow charts will be there as well, they just need to be photographed. has most of my stuff under "New Projects" and there is even a page with my picture in the Knobart crew link. Our dog Belle has her picture and info page under the dogs since she comes to work with me on occasion when I dodn't drive in on my motorcycle. Though she would probably love that if I had a side car for her!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

3 Beautiful Things

Thanks to Clare and her blog for this idea!

1. Full moon last night was gorgeous and had me up late and creative until way past my normal bedtime. Then I got up early in the morning to continue working on my fun painting. I rarely give myself permission to just paint a picture on canvas and I did last night and it turned out very cool. It sort has the look of what could be a great fabric design.

2. Hot chai tea with frothy milk made for me by my hubby who found me in my pj's playing with my paint this morning. It looks like even my pj's aren't safe from me getting paint on them. Oh well they are fuzzy purple flannel with sheep on them so it's not like I'm really going to care if I get paint on them. Love that chai and it always wakes me up with a zing of caffeine.

3. Going to the movies with the kids and actually enjoying the kid flick!

3 Beautiful Things

Thanks to Clare and her blog for this idea!

1. Full moon last night was gorgeous and had me up late and creative until way past my normal bedtime. Then I got up early in the morning to continue working on my fun painting. I rarely give myself permission to just paint a picture on canvas and I did last night and it turned out very cool. It sort has the look of what could be a great fabric design.

2. Hot chai tea with frothy milk made for me by my hubby who found me in my pj's playing with my paint this morning. It looks like even my pj's aren't safe from me getting paint on them. Oh well they are fuzzy purple flannel with sheep on them so it's not like I'm really going to care if I get paint on them. Love that chai and it always wakes me up with a zing of caffeine.

3. Going to the movies with the kids and actually enjoying the kid flick!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Galloping Goat Gallery

Here is the location of the Galloping Goat Gallery barn. Or at least in 19 days it will be ours. This barn used to be the original Black River Cheese Factory but it moved across the road in, I believe 1901. It's going to be quite a job getting this barn up to snuff to be a store. I'll load photos of what it looks like inside when we get there and hopefully before spring there will be "after" pictures when we are ready to open the store. Too bad I can't paint it until the temperatures are above 10 celcius...sigh. That will be fun, at least painting the inside and picking colours since the outside is staying red. I want to paint the trim around the windows a sage green colour but Tim wants to keep it white since it's traditional. Any opinions? It isn't registered as a heritage building but and everyone that visits the county takes pictures of the barn since it is so picturesque with it being beside the river. Which should we do? Or do we even need to worry about it?(The river is just to the left of the picture here.)

Only 19 days left! Eeek! My stomach lurches when I see the calendar these days knowing it's soooo close.

Tim's last day of work was yesterday and for fun he decided to a jacket, shirt and tie. The kids even asked why he was dressed like that. I told the kids "Daddy is playing dressup today." The kids of course understood that explanation completely and just said "oh" and went on with getting ready for school. Tim and I had a bit of a giggle since he wouldn't normally ever wear those kind of clothes to work, only weddings and funerals warrent it.

Friday, November 03, 2006

The Handyman Gene

Apparently the handyman gene has been passed from father to son. This is Tim and Quinn building the mecano dinosaur set that Quinn won at the costume party. It was very intricate to put together but they both stayed at it the whole weekend!

Quinn is now looking online for more mecano sets to get for christmas! Tim is already planning the next build they will do with the dino set, apparently there is a car that can be adapted from the set.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Halloween Treats!

Here is Quinn, Leah and my version of ye olde witch finger cookie. We went with a sugar cookie dough that we added green food colouring to and a chocolate chip for the nail (no nuts in the schools allowed). We call them Monster Toes! Too bad most of them got a little over cooked but these guys turned out OK and it made enough for both class parties tomorrow!

Gotta love a simple fun and a wee bit gorey treat that makes 73 cookies!

Friday, October 27, 2006

and so begins... Halloween!

So Quinn managed to not scare himself too much and decided that he did want the scars, stitches and blood for his pirate outfit for the Boys and Girls Club costume party last night. 2 nights ago he had changed his mind and only wanted to be a guy with a boat that was blue with a white strip and sail. He was worried if he looked in a mirror he would be too scary as his original idea of Franken-pirate!

The evening turned out great considering how the day started out with Quinn disappearing at his school and no one knowing where he was. I found him hiding in the basement almost 20 mins after I had dropped him off at the school and watched him walk into the building. It's pretty scary to ask his teacher where your child is and she tells you that he hasn't arrived yet when you were the one that dropped him off into the building!

Anyways, letting that stress go, or trying too!

Leah's Grammie made her Raggedy Ann costume and I made the wig and painted the lines on her tights and she was thrilled with how she looked. Quinn loved his look as well and had a long list of pirate lingo that he was practicing all night.

The competition was a bit tougher this year at the club but these 2 again won two of the six best costume prizes so they were pretty pleased with themselves. Leah won Best Dressed Girl and Quinn won Best Homemade Boy.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Baxter of the Golden Eyes

Here is our boy Baxter. It seems his name is staying. He was a good boy his first night but I'm definitely going to have to learn to sleep through all the purring! He even managed to wiggle under the blankets in the early morning for better snuggling. He slept the entire day on my pile of bills beside my computer monitor while I was typing away and Belle was at my feet keeping them toasty on this chilly day.

County School Visit

Tim and I along with Leah and Quinn left early Friday morning for the County from Toronto. We arrived under a deluge of rain and gray skys at Quinn's soon-to-be school. We walk into the small school and turn into the office where we see the big white board with the important news and up coming events on it. There right in the middle in Bright orange marker is "Friday Oct 20th - Quinn's visit". The secretary and principal and Quinn's soon-to-be teacher rush to greet us and tell us all about the school.

It's in the middle of lunch hour with an indoor recess because of the rain so it was a bit noisy and the principal (we got to call her Pooky!) kept appologizing since they've had 4 days straight of indoor recess because of the lousy weather. It really wasn't that noisy, I've heard way worse at Dovercourt in a lunchroom with the kids.

Quinn got a book from his teacher with all the pictures of all the kids in his class with their favourite things listed and a bit about how many people are in their families. Then his teacher introduced him to the class and showed him where he will sit and had a girl stand up and tell Quinn that she had moved here also from Toronto. Then she had a girl named Lucy stand up and say hi because her grandma and Quinn's grandma are friends and know each other.

We then left for Leah's school 5 minutes further down the road. Quinn was clutching his book and looking for Lucy's picture and asked for a pen or pencil, or anything quick! He quietly wrote his name and put a heart with a happy face and an arrow pointing to Lucy in the picture. He showed us and told Leah not to tease him but he loved Lucy.

Leah's teacher was away but she got to see her class and check out the kids and see the HUGE computer lab. There is one brand new computer for each kid when a class goes in to use the lab.

Quinn's class is SK grade 1 split with 22 kids and every other day when the SK's aren't there, there are only 18 kids. Leah's class is a grade 4 and 5 split with 22 kids in it. Nice class size or what!

In the 20 minutes that we spent at each school the secretaries and principal and even the special needs teacher had double checked on the special FM system and phonic ear that Leah needs for her Auditory Processing Disorder. They are hoping to maybe even have the classroom wired and set up for when Leah arrives. This is completely shocking for us! Toronto school board told me it would take a couple of years probably to get this system for Leah. Too expensive, not a strong enough need, she isn't hearing impaired, blah blah blah.

Pooky kept saying we will do our best but no promises but the secretary Brenda just laughed and rolled her eyes and said don't worry we'll get it all set up. Pooky said the school board would of course have to approve the expensive of the system so that's why they can't promise anything.

We shall see what happens but I'm certainly more hopeful at this school then I ever was in the Toronto Board. Like I told Pooky and Brenda "you've done more for us in the last 20 minutes than the Toronto School Board has in 6 yrs".

Wahoo! I love the County!! The kids seem like they are happy with what is to come now and Quinn seems less frantic about what the new school will be like so all in all a good trip.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

I'm always a sucker for a sad story and after looking online at all the poor kitties that need homes we (as in myself and Leah and Quinn) ended up at the Toronto Humane Society on Saturday.

It was very busy but we looked around read all the cats charts and any info found one, two and three and even a fourth that we liked. Next we got a number and an adoption form and kept poking around looking. After an hour and a half the number on the lighted screen was still "3" and we had "15" in hand. Quinn was grumpy, hungry and the smell was making him a bit nuts so we decided to be smart go home and think about this whole thing.

Sunday we woke up and couldn't get all the kitties out of our heads so this time with Tim in tow we headed back to the Humane Society. We decided in the ride over we wanted a girl and a tabby as first preference. We threw around a bunch names of what we were going to call our new cat. We also decided we wanted to get one at least 2 or 3 yrs old.

Well after a short time showing Tim our favourites from the day before we found Pixie. I think Quinn found him first. He was talking to Quinn when I saw him first. He has huge golden eyes and black and white patches on the softest fur ever. He is a big boy and I assumed he was at least 2 yrs. Turns out he is only 6 months!! We discovered this while doing paperwork, so much for all our plans.

As you can see he made himself very comfortable by climbing in beside Leah on the couch for a nap. The kids are completely in love with him, we'll see how long that lasts after the inevitable kitty litter scooping begins. Oh and we have changed his name to Baxter, at least it seems to fit so far!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Making Plans

Well Quinn is still stressing so after chatting with another mom in the school yard I've scheduled a visit to the new school and thank you to Denise for her brilliant suggestion!

I spoke to the principal of the school where the kids will attend and she was very helpful although extremely curious about us. She asked straight out why are we moving to the County, what are we planning to do there? She then said she isn't supposed to ask but that she was asking anyway. I couldn't help but laugh at that. I almost forgot how small towns work. Who every has the most up-todate gossip wins!

Apparently all the County folk have already heard that it's "Toronto people comin' and bought that Black Crick property"(note to self; to sound like a local it's Black Crick not Black River). So I guess it's understandable that Ms Pooky Scott the principal of the small public school wouldn't want to miss this opportunity to grill me. I couldn't resist putting in her full name, isn't it great!

So we are leaving this Friday morning early, early and probably crawling out of the city stuck in rush hour traffic, grrr. Which should add on an hour or so to the drive. So I've got to pack snacks, a lunch and the (thank Goddess for this) portable DVD player. Hopefully all this rain we are getting will be gone by Friday so it's not a wet sloppy drive. I want to take the kids to Little Bluff to see the beach where they will be able to swim in the summer and to few other points of interest. Hopefully this will help give them a sense of anticipation rather anxiety about where we are going to be living.

It's funny it still doesn't feel that real yet sitting here in my kitchen with the constant hum of traffic and sirens from the fire station down the street. Will the silence be too quiet? Will the dark feel scary and suffocating without street lights? I don't think it will, I'm feeling too much the draw of quiet solitude and hearing nature at this point. We'll see if that is still true after some time living there. I'm looking forward to Friday and a chance to be able to take a few deep breaths before we head back to the city to finish up our time here. I am going to try and do some of the fun things in the city with the kids before we go but time is starting to sneak by me so I better get my butt in gear with some plans. Not to mention everyone here that wants to get together with us before we go. Maybe I should just have a big, last-blow-out party with all our friends and the kids friends too. Hmm... that sounds like a plan!

Friday, October 13, 2006

October's Chill

Well it sure was chilly this morning as we walked to school. Lucky for me I managed to find the box of winter hats, scarves and mitts in the attic so we all suited up nice and cozy.

Every morning lately Quinn finds a leaf and asks me to press it. Invaritably I loose it as I follow my routine of dropping of the kids and backpacks and taking the dog to the park for a run. So I end up having to spend some time hunting for a similar one to replace the one he found and it is wet. Now I have it drying which you know I'm going to forget about and it will go all crunchy and boy will he be ticked at me! THis is assuming he will even remember, you never know with Quinn, he's a tricky one!

With the move coming I am letting the kids have friends over more often and tonight they are each having a friend for a sleepover. Which means I'll have 4 kids running rampant in the house right after school and through dinner (thank goddess for mac and cheese!) until the late hours. How insane am I? Pretty insane but the guilt of knowing I'm pulling up their roots to move them is playing pretty strongly here.

Hmm... I just realized that when I saw the kids' parents this morning we never discussed a pickup time for Saturday, eeks! That can be dangerous but I have phone numbers and I will use them if it gets to ruckus on Saturday!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

The Number Three

This has been a hell of a week. Why do we always assume that death comes in three's? When did someone come up with that calculation?

Saturday evening my husband answered the phone at 10pm and was obviously upset by the news he was receiving. I was in a panic wanting him to get off the bloody phone and tell me want was going on because my imagination was going crazy!

It turned out it was bad news a very good girlfriend of mine from college had died. She was the same age as me which certainly brings about a reality check. Judy was 38 and was found in her apartment dead from Menningitus, the worse strain of the virus.

Judy was the one that kicked my husband and myself in the pants near the end of college enough to admit we had feelings more than just friendship. 13 years later and 2 kids and we are still very much in love and having a great life. That Judy was a smart woman, or possibly sick to death of listening to her two friend yakking her ear off about the other person. Either way we got the nudge we needed and Judy was toted as the matchmaker for us.

The day before we got that call I was poking through my wedding pictures and found one of Judy with her boyfriend partying with us. I promised myself to call her after the weekend to catch up and tell her all about our new adventure we were launching with our lives. I got to go to her memorial service instead.

Why don't people cry? I couldn't help crying but I seemed to be the odd person out in doing it. She was only 38 and there were at least a hundred plus people there that she had been a part of their lives. Was it just too fast and shocking that people haven't let the news really sink in or have we just become too desensitized from reality thanks to all that TV and movies we see. We only know how we are supposed to act not how we actually feel and to follow that instead of the proticol that we've seen in some damn movie.

As for the number three... well I learned the day before yesterday my Great Aunt May passed in her 92nd year which is still sad but understandable. The number three death was our pet Rachel who was a very sweet rat.
Do we get to count small rodent pets as a death in our morbid death count? Rachel hasn't had her ceremonial burial or good-bye service yet with the kids. I am going in 5 mins to pick them up from school and have the talk.

Unfortunately we had to send Rachel's body out with the trash this morning but we have a box we created last night which the kids will think holds the body of Rachel. Personally I prefer the truth since we all have stories as children about pets that go off to a farm to live to only find out years later it's completely bogus! Tim wants the fake burial service, I want to hand them a gentle truth. I'm going to see how they first take the news of Rachel's passing before I make the final decision about what I want to say about her body.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

A few more kinks to work out

I'm going to apply for a job in Picton. Big problem is it starts next week! We don't move for 6 weeks yet. This would mean living at my Dad's or Mom's and driving back to the city for the weekends.

Sigh... what to do... It's a real simple office job that happens to have excellent pay and it would mean a bit of stability while we go through all the changes.

Tim finished his job in 3 weeks and then no more income! Scary!

We asked our purchasers if they would move up the closing date by 10 days but they wouldn't unless we paid them $1000!! I was a little shocked at that number. I'm going to check with the bank about bridging and see what that would cost.

I just want to get on with the new life and stop hanging around this old and ill-fitting life we have now. Time is passing very slowly.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Waiting... and Waiting... and Waiting...

Well there was some hope of moving up the moving/closing date of the houses but I'm waiting to hear still.

Our home purchasers said they would let me know today if they wanted to make the date earlier in November, I'm still waiting.

It's still 6 and 1/2 weeks if we move on the original moving date so I'm waiting, impatiently for that date.
I'm waiting to find out if we can get high speed internet at our new house. Apparently I have to find a close neighbour that has it and then chase down the provider so we can get it too. There is no way I'm patient enough to handle having dial-up! I know I'm going to be the wound up, fast moving person from the city for a long time. The County is moving on a whole different space, time plane of existence. I imagine it's going to take years to wipe off the city from me.

I'm waiting on my cell phone provider that will no longer be able to give my phone service since there is no signal in The County to finally decide to let me out of my contract without fining me.

Sigh... The kids are waiting for Thanksgiving turkey dinner at their Grammie and Gramps house and very impatiently waiting for trick or treating night!!

Funny how we spend way more time waiting for the future than actually living the moment to moment stuff.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Toronto - Before and After Shot

So it's official after one week on the market and holding back offers until Tuesday evening we sold the house that evening. Only a smidgen under asking price so we feel pretty good about that. Again, like our last house, the couple that purchased our place are young and getting married next year and very excited about the house and can't wait to move in. Unfortunately for us they asked for 3 visits before moving day, argh! Well it sure won't look like it did for the showings when it was up for sale! We brought back the computers and the place looks back to normal practically!! Papers everywhere and toys scattered about, that clean, neat, lovely home we had sure didn't last long!

The countdown now begins with 8 weeks until moving day. The kids are starting to stress about the move and leaving their friends. Quinn came home yesterday for a couple of hours because of a sore tummy. Tim and I are also feeling the reality of the big move and getting anxious also. This is going to be quite an adventure!

Here is the picture of the house before we demo'd the porch and after with a fresh modern paint job.

For all of you groaning about us painting the brick you would understand if you saw it before we painted it without the porch. The bottom half was painted to look like the upper portion of the house. They even painted in mortar lines! It was the only thing we could do to fix the odd way the paint and unpainted portion of the house looked after the porch was gone.

We Bought Black River House!

We bought our next home! On Black River in "The County" right across from the Black River Cheese Factory (this is a very well known tourist spot to visit!). This is a picture from the bridge of the coach house and the barn beside it and our little bit of the river. The house is farther to the right on the property.

I'm writing this about a month after we actually purchased it and then we ran back to Toronto and went crazy on trying to finish all the renos on our house. Time was tight because we wanted to hit the hot Toronto real estate fall market. We missed our first choice deadline and made it a week later. We both worked so hard and so long those last weeks but the house is gorgeous!

This is the Toronto house after we ripped off the old metal porch and painted out the brick. It's quite shocking on our street from all the dull beige houses and browns and terracotta bricks. The consensus of the neighbours is that they like the look of the house and many have commented that before I changed the look they had never even noticed the house at all. There was also some comments that we are looking much more like the Annex neighbourhood now. This neighbourhood is quite posh and funky with gorgeous houses.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Movin' to "The County"

Well like one of my favourite bloggers Farm Girl we are thinking of making the big plunge of selling this ridiculously expensive house and moving to "The County". Which is Prince Edward County in Ontario Canada. It is a beautiful island that is just starting to be discovered by tourists in search of antiques, good wine, (and Black River cheese) along with all the arts and crafts created by the artisans that live there.

I went there to visit my parents who both live in Belleville, which is just over the bridge from the County. I also went to check out some real estate. Tim was coming up by train late Friday night so I was supposed to qualify some of the places we had found on our MLS search during the week while I was there. I did some major running around and my Dad was good enough to come along and his girlfriend Pat babysat Quinn and Leah tagged along with us.

What a crazy busy time and trying to sleep at night was impossible. My brain wouldn't be quiet and Leah kept flopping on top of me all night and my mom snoring in the other room made for alot of lost hours of sleep. The excitement of finding a great place to live definitely kept me going though.

So by Saturday I had it down to 4 properties one of which I hadn't seen but was the property that started it all and then there was a big victorian with only a wee bit of land and a house with 2 outbuildings that all looked like it was about to fall down but it was in a prime location for tourist traffic. Then there was this Farm that I had seen the day before, sigh... it was so beautiful there, I fell in love before I knew what hit me. I didn't say much to Tim other than "you've got to see this place, it's really nice".

Our adventure started at the house on the river with two cute barns and a newer raised bungalow. The location was good, the house was in great shape and roomy and the views were spectacular. The odd thing was we both felt that the acre and 1/4 lot seemed too confining.

Next we went to The Farm. The owner, Sid, was waiting for us with raincoats and an ATV with a trailer to haul Tim, myself our real estate agent, the kids and my mom back to the back of the 80 acre farm. What a great ride we all had fun bumping along the trails and admiring the 400 trees planted in '76 and the 4000 trees that had been planted in '81 along with the 50 acres that his neighbour rented off of him to farm. Also behind the house is an evironmentally protected marsh.

It was a bit shocking how big 80 acres really is. The property reached back a mile and 1/4. We decided then and there that the ATV would have to be part of the purchase of this place.

I really thought Tim would like the place but lean more towards the riverfront property so I kept watching him to gauge his reaction. We ended up staying there and checking everything out for about an hour and a half. I think Sid and his wife Marg really liked us and the kids had them laughing with all their antics in the hay loft. Sid's daughter and her family live right next door, actually, come to think of it they are about the only neighbour you can actually see!

When Tim and I finally got a moment alone to talk I found that he had the exact same reaction to the place that I did, you just feel like you can really breath. Like you finally are able to take a huge deep breath after ages of breathing very shallow. I described it to Tim that it was like your chest just got opened up so that your soul can step out and take a real stretch.

Now we number crunch, which really means we make up numbers that we think it will cost to live there and then come up with numbers of what we think a business like what we want to create will make. Then we hope that the 2 match up! Ridiculous or what? We have been talking and planning and talking about doing this for 4 years (it was our 5 year plan) I say F**K it and we just do it and then work our butts off to stay afloat. I don't care if I have to work for minimum wage at a grocery store or hardware store I just want a chance to do what we have always wanted to do. Set up a studio create our creations, sell them from our studio/home and online and at craft/wholesale shows and just plain go for it.

We shall see, Tim's going to see it another time with his Dad in 2 weeks. I hate waiting!!!

Sunday, June 25, 2006

A Meme About Me

I borrowed this from my brother-in-law for fun. All the bold ones are true for me.

* I miss somebody right now.
* I don't watch much TV these days.
* I own lots of books.
* I wear glasses or contact lenses.
* I love to play video games.
* I've tried marijuana.
* I've watched porn movies.
* I have been the psycho-ex in a past relationship.
* I believe honesty is usually always the best policy.
* I curse sometimes...
* I have changed a lot mentally over the last year.
* I carry my knife/razor everywhere with me.
* I have broken someone's bones.
* I have a secret that I am ashamed to reveal.
* I hate the rain.
* I'm paranoid at times.
* I would get plastic surgery if it were 100% safe, free of cost, and scar-free.
* I love sushi.
* I talk really, really fast.
* I have fresh breath in the morning.
* I have long hair.
* I have lost money in Las Vegas.
* I have at least one sibling.
* I was born in a country outside of the U.S.
* I have worn fake hair/fingernails/eyelashes in the past.
* I couldn't survive without Caller I.D.
* I like the way that I look.
* I have lied to a good friend in the last 6 months.
* I am usually pessimistic.
* I have a lot of mood swings.
* I think prostitution should be legalized.
* I slept with a roommate.* I have a hidden talent.
* I'm always hyper no matter how much sugar I have.
* I have a lot of friends.
* I have pecked someone of the same sex.
* I enjoy talking on the phone.
* I practically live in sweatpants or PJ pants.
* I love to shop and/or window shop.
* I'm obsessed with my Xanga or Livejournal.
* I'm completely embarrassed to be seen with my mother.
* I have a cell phone.
* I have passed out drunk in the past 6 months.
* I've rejected someone before
* I currently like/love someone.
* I have no idea what I want to do for the rest of my life.
* I want to have children in the future.
* I have changed a diaper before.
* I've called the cops on a friend before.
* I'm not allergic to anything.
* I have a lot to learn.
* I am shy around the opposite sex.
* I'm online 24/7, even as an away message.
* I have at least 5 away messages saved.
* I have tried alcohol or drugs before.
* I have made a move on a friend's significant other or crush in the past.
* I own the "South Park" movie.
* I have avoided assignments at work/school to be on Xanga or Livejournal
* I enjoy some country music.
* I would die for my best friends.
* I'm obsessive, and often a perfectionist.
* I have used my sexuality to advance my career.
* Halloween is awesome because you get free candy.
* I have dated a close friend's ex.
* I am happy at this moment.
* I'm obsessed with guys.
* Democrat.
* Republican.
* I am punk rockish.
* I go for older guys/girls, not younger.
* I study for tests most of the time.
* I tie my shoelaces differently from anyone I've ever met.
* I can work on a car.
* I love my job(s), most of the time.
* I am comfortable with who I am right now.
* I have more than just my ears pierced.
* I walk barefoot wherever I can.
* I have jumped off a bridge.
* I love sea turtles.
* I spend ridiculous amounts of money on makeup.
* I plan on achieving a major goal/dream.
* I am proficient on a musical instrument.
* I hate office jobs.
* I went to college out of state.
* I am adopted.
* I am a pyro.
* I have thrown up from crying too much.
* I have been intentionally hurt by people that I loved.
* I fall for the worst people.
* I adore bright colors.
* I usually like covers better than originals.
* I hate chain theme restaurants
* I can pick up things with my toes.
* I can't whistle.
* I have ridden/owned a horse.
* I still have every journal I've ever written in.
* I talk in my sleep.
* I've often thought that I was born in the wrong century
* I try to forget things by drowning them out with loads of distractions.
* I wear a toe ring.
* I have a tattoo.
* I can't stand at LEAST one person that I work with.
* I am a caffeine junkie.
* I am completely tree-huggy spiritual, and I'm not ashamed at all.
* If I knew I would get away with it, I would commit at least one murder.
* I will collect anything, and the more nonsensical, the better.
* I enjoy a nice glass of wine with dinner.
* I'm an artist.
* I am ambidextrous.
* I sleep with so many stuffed animals, I can hardly fit on my bed.
* If it weren't for having to see other people naked, I'd live in a nudist colony.
* I have terrible teeth.
* I hate my toes.
* I did this Meme even though I wasn't tagged by the person who took it before me.
* I have more friends on the internet than in real life.
* I have lived in either three different states or countries or provinces.
* I am extremely flexible.
* I love hugs more than kisses.
* I want to own my own business.
* I smoke.
* I spend way too much time on the computer than on anything else.
* Nobody has ever said I'm normal.
* Sad movies, games, and the like can cause a trickle of tears every now and then.
* I am proficient in the use of many types firearms and combat weapons.
* I like the way women look in stylized men's suits.
* I don't like it when people are displeased or seem displeased with me.
* I have been described as a dreamer or likely to have my head up in the clouds.
* I have played strip poker with someone else before.
* I have had emotional problems for which I have sought professional help.
* I believe in ghosts and the paranormal.
* I can't stand being alone.
* I have at least one obsession at any given time.
* I weigh myself, pee/poo, and then weigh myself again.
* I consistently spend way too much money on obsessions-of-the-moment.
* I'm a judgmental asshole.
* I'm a HUGE drama-queen.
* I have traveled on more than one continent.
* I sometimes wish my father would just disappear.
* I need people to tell me I'm good at something in order to feel that I am.
* I am a Libertarian.
* I can speak more than one language.
* I can fall asleep even if the whole room is as noisy as it can be.
* I would rather read than watch TV.
* I like reading fact more than fiction.
* I have pulled an all-nighter on an assignment I was given a month to do.
* I have no piercings.
* I have spent the night in a train station or other public place.
* I have been so upset over my physical gender that I cried.
* I've been married and am now divorced.
* There have been times when I have wondered "Why was I born?"
* I like most animals better than most people.
* I own a collection of retro game consoles.
* The thought of physical exercise makes me shiver.
* I have hit someone with a dead fish.
* I have written/read erotic stories.
* I am compulsively honest.
* I was born with a congenital birth defect that has never been repaired.
* I have danced topless in front of dozens of complete strangers.
* I have gone from wishing I was a boy to revelling in being a girl to feeling like a boy again in the span of five minutes, and not cared a whit for my actual sex.
* I am unashamedly bisexual, and have different motivations for my desires for different genders.
* I sometimes won't sleep a whole night or eat a whole day because I forget to.
* I obsessively wash my hands.* I always carry something significant around with me.
* Sometimes I'd rather wear a wig in day-to-day life than use my own hair
* I've pushed myself to become more self-aware and thereby more aware of others.
* Even though I live on my own I still cry sometimes because I miss my mother.
* I hand wrote all the HTML tags in this document.
* I've liked something which a majority of people claimed was either bad or weird.
* I have been clinically dead for a brief period of time.
* Instead of feeling sympathy/empathy with people and their problems, I simply become annoyed.
* I participate/have participated in auto drag races and won.
* I do not 'get' most comedy acts.
* Seriously. I do think larry david, and roseanne are funny.
* I don't think strippers are money-greedy or slutty for dancing.
* I don't like to chew gum.
* I am obsessed with history/historical things and can't wait for someone to build a time machine so I can be the first to use it.
* I can never remember for the life of me where I parked the car.
* Had the TEEN ANGST thing going for at least 2-3 years.
* I wish people would be more empathic and honest with each other.
* I play Dungeons and Dragons weekly.
* I love to sing.
* I want to live in my mother's basement when I grow up.
* I have a custom-built computer. And I built it.
* I want to create a certain someone's babies, even though there's a 0% possiblity of ever achieving it.
* I would be in a relationship with one of my pets if they were human.
* I've gone skinny-dipping.
* I've performed in three plays, all of them Shakespeare.
* I enjoy burritos.
* I'm Irish and lovin' it.
* I have a thing for redheads.
* I am a twin.
* Most times, I'd rather do something intellectual instead of doing something generically 'fun'.
* Once I set out to finish something, I always stay at it until it is completed before I move on to something else.
* I wish there were a way to erase past mistakes.
* I wish I could do High School all over again.
* I have big interest swings every year.
* I have loved Pokemon since the beginning and continue to do so.
* There's no genre of music I dislike.
* I've read every work written by my favorite author(s).
* No matter how much I sleep, I'm always tired.
* I'd rather eat out than cook.
* I am obsessed with actors that are older than I am.
* I can move my little toes independently.
* I enjoy purchasing and wearing articles of clothing and/or accessories that have skulls on them.
* I can play most woodwind instruments, particularly the clarinet.
* I have appeared nude in a film.
* I have attempted to rob a store using a replica weapon.
* My hair has been every colour of the rainbow at least once.
* I think its entirely possible to just like Marmite when you feel like it, without having to love or hate it.
* I have half siblings who I've never met.
* I auditioned to join the circus.
*I have had sex with someone of a different race.
*I can do tricks with my tongue.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Father's Day Climbin'

Well for a father's day treat we surprised Tim with a rock climbing adventure at our local rock climbing club. Of course the kids had to go first and did really well then Tim got a turn. We soon understood why it's a pay one price and stay as long as you want. It should be a pay one price and stay until you drop which seems to be about 2 hours into the climbing!! Tim managed to go up 3 times and was completely done with numb sore fingers and toes from griping.
The kids had an absolute blast and are completely hooked. Of course they did great scrambling up until they looked down and then they would just let go and hang there with one of us holding their ropes at the bottom and just yell "I'm done, Get me down, NOW!" Quinn managed to get about 20 feet or possibly more by the end, Leah was closer to 15 and Tim got to the top once, which would have been about 40 feet or so.

The photos of Quinn climbing is about 6 or so feet short of where he managed to actually get to. I have a feeling we will all be back fairly soon and Tim is already trying to think of people he can drag along to climb with him after work next week.

I have to say it was a really great thing for the kids and not that bad in the price department. They had a bunch of different areas to practice with many different skill levels plus the caving area where there were some people practically hanging upside down!

It sure burned up some energy with both Leah and Quinn and they both sure fell asleep fast!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Gorilla Gardening

Two years ago I took out all the grass of our tiny 12 foot by 17 foot front lot and with a tonne of work and digging and adding in a truckload of triple mix. With the help of donations of many plants by my Mom and a friendly stranger who just came and dropped off an entire box of perennials my front garden looks fantastic! The tulips created a fun path for the kids though I can see now that I missed a section that I need to put bulbs in this fall. I better mark it now so I can find the area come October!

The city came along and spoiled my plan to no longer have to drag a lawnmower out the front by adding in a grass boulevard with a tree...sigh. I don't want to drag the damn lawnmower out and the neighbours to one side are renters and never do any lawn care. The neighbours on the right side are very clear that they will only mow up to and never over the property line. Sooooo that leaves me dragging out the lawnmower or making a new garden and ditching that grass too!! I think I'll start that little project soon...heheh. I can't resist the urge to expand the garden, maybe I'll even spread it into the renter house area since they obviously will never cut their's either.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Quinn is 6 Today!

Happy birthday to my sweet boy! I can't believe you're six already, where did the time go? I think because you are the youngest it seems more final, all that baby stuff you are leaving behind.

I always had that time frame of the September when you would go off to Grade 1 for full days of school and Leah would be in Grade 4. It always seems so far in the distant future and yet here it is only a short summer vacation away!

You and your sister are growing so fast that I find myself looking at and you both and wondering some days how I got here and where did all that time go? You both are really great kids and I love you to pieces and love to hang out with you, it's always a fun time. I was once told that our children are our greatest Zen Masters and will teach us our toughest lessons because they are the one person on the earth that we have to listen to and can't avoid the lesson being taught. So always remember you have as much to teach me as I have to teach you and we have a life of learning ahead of us both.
Love you my wee boy.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Bathroom Limbo

Well the bathroom reno is temporarily on hold. Tim is back at work and once again crazy busy and coming home late and exhausted. Weekends are crazy busy like this weekend with it being Quinn's 6th birthday party and nothing prepared for it. So between the mountain of homework Leah always brings home and a party to shop for and organize along with a function at the kid's Boys and Girls Club that they desperately want to attend, I'm already tired. Not even mentioning Leah's social calendar of her friends that want to get together with her to play.

Now that I'm working from the store and not at home during the week all the household chores are piling up. I used to break up my work with grocery shopping, laundry and cleaning while I was home. Now I'm too whipped to do it in the evenings after rushing through a meal and homework. What is up with the homework anyways! Leah is in grade 3 and there is always an hour to 2 hours of homework. She has trouble doing class work in class because of her APD but even still. Last weekend she came home with 13 pages of math work that was over and above what they are doing in class and the homework that came from that. Crazy! Math is a real struggle for Leah especially at the end of a day when she is tired.

So back to the bathroom, well no news is bad news in this case. I think we are going to have to hire someone to get us to the next stage. This is going into week 4 with no upstairs toilet and I really need a toilet up there! I guess I'll make some calls to see what it will cost me... sigh. It's actually cheaper to hire someone and keep Tim at work since taking off work for Tim means no pay whatsoever. Definitely cheaper to hire someone than loose Tim's income.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

All Quiet...

Well Tim went back to work today after taking 2 weeks off to do the bathroom. Those kind of holidays suck, all work and no play. We did manage to get some major destruction, rebuilding, organizing, purging of the house and garage done which is great.
We are going to have a big yardsale soon!
So the kids are now out of the house to school and Quinn will go to daycare for the afternoon and Tim is at work so we can finally get a paycheque again. It's very quiet and pretty damn clean in this house, yeah!
Now I'm supposed to get my work done of making final changes to the children's book I've illustrated and designed for the author. Of course I'm avoiding as usual. I keep telling myself it won't take long and then I can burn the CD's and ship it this week and it will be done! Unfortunately I'm not really believing that because there always seems to be one more change...sigh.
I've moved onto other projects and jobs and illustrating a whole book may sound great but it's a really long project for me and I never can do it quick enough to actually make any money. I'm lucky if it pays my daycare expenses for the time I'm working on it. I've decided that I'm not a book illustrator, I'm much better at the short creative jobs so I'm going to turn down the ones that I'm not good at so I can concentrate of the jobs I am good at. Less stress this way for everyone involved.
The author that is paying me has been awesome about the whole project and the 2 books we did previous to this. I think though she is taking it a bit personally that I don't want to do a 4th book or any other book in the future. I couldn't have asked for a better person to do the project with but I need to realize my limitations and step back to allow for someone truly talented in this capacity step in. I know lots of illustrators so when she is ready I'll help her find the right person to step in and develop anymore books that she wants to plan for.
Book website

Monday, May 15, 2006

The Tub is IN!

The plumber arrived early Saturday and we got the tub in by evening and it's really, really deep! YEAH! A good soaker/bubble bathtub at last!!!
The kids decided to christen it for us and there is tonnes of room for them both and Leah can even completely submerge herself and she says practice for swimming class. We stuck up plastic everywhere and hopefully we will get the floor in and the toilet and sink by the end of next weekend.

We moved the doorway so it opens on Leah's side of the hallway and will have a sliding pocket door. The door will be in the wall when open right at the end of the tub.

Century homes are such a joy and full of surprises!! We did find some old newspaper from 1937 and old wallpaper and the old, probably original flooring which was about 5 inches lower than the other old floor that had probably been installed in the 60's with the yellow tub and toilet. We also found a nice piece of baseboard still attached to the wall under the old tub from the days of a freestanding tub. The bathroom is only about 8 feet wide and the original floor where it attached on the side of the room where the toilet was to across the room to where the tub was the drop in the floor was about 5 inches. The angle was crazy! The old floor ontop of it was sloped as well, even where they tried to correct it. We had to rip up the hallway section as well since it wasn't level either. Now Leah's floor in her room is again lower than the hallway and a small step down into her room.

The angle of the walls is pretty scary. I think if we intend to stay in this house for much longer we are going to have to underpin the kitchen so it will stop sinking!!!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Movie Night!

I help organize a movie night fundraiser at our kid's school and it's tonight. We are watching Nanny McPhee.
We usually raise close to and sometimes more than $300 so it's a great evening. THis time I'm sneaking a thermos of some lovely chilled wine for myself and another mom (best girlfriend) to celebrate the end of another school year. This is the excuse I came up with anyways.
Hopefully I won't get caught with the goods!


I was at my Mom's during the xmas holidays and created this backsplash for her kitchen. It was a small area that ended up taking a surprising amount of time to do.
I used 4 x 4 inch white tiles with 1/2 inch glass mosiac tiles in about 4 different colours of blue and 1/2 inch mirror tiles. The mirror tiles were all silver but the glass was etched with different designs like a raised wavy pattern, swirls, a fern-like leaf pattern and also just clear glass. The mirror added a really nice sparkle.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Renovation Time...AGAIN!!

So we are once again renovating this house of ours...sigh. This time it's the upstairs bathroom. So far we've discovered the original floor is sloping about 5 inches from one end of the 7 foot room to the other. Someone raised the floor over it in the 60's but now that floor is slopping too. So now we are raising it up so it's level which meant now we had to raise the hallway up too. Which means we had to rip out the top layer of laminate flooring, the middle layer of oak strip flooring and the subflooring and then start over. We've gone to the dump alot! Our poor old van is going to have a heart attack with all this abuse.

This is the 3rd bathroom reno Tim and I have attempted and none have been much fun. This picture is before we took the lovely gold tub out and found the old flooring underneath it with the old baseboard still there.

The basement bathroom we reno'd back in September and only finished it last month. That reno entailed digging up a large portion of the basement floor to get the plumbing set up properly. Before we fixed it the toilet used to get flushed out a pipe and sent through the floor drain in the basement out to the street rainwater run off. The smell was nasty in the basement because of that floor drain. So we dug up trenches of dirt through the basement back to the upstairs sewer pipes to discover that it was up too high so we had to buy a "poop shooter" which takes the waste water and shoots it upwards into the sewer pipes. This "poop shooter" needed another hole dug about 3 feet wide and 4 feet deep. You would not believe the amount of dirt that we dragged by the bucket upstairs thru the kitchen and the livingroom and out the front door to the dumpster. We filled the dumpster with dirt!

We've lived in the house for 3 years and we have done some major work to it; made the house back into a single family dwelling and put in a new kitchen, ripped out the walls in the livingroom/dining/hall area so it's open concept, new hardwood, new electrical, insulated, removed the upstairs kitchen and put it back to a bedroom and painted and sanded every square inch of the house. Plus fenced the backyard with a wooden privacy fence and put in gorgeous perennial gardens in the back and the front yard and even planted a tree.

Maybe someday soon we can just live in it without a project that has to be done to it.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

And So It Begins

So I bought a motorcycle a month ago and have managed to drive it in the streets of Toronto and lived to tell about it. Yeah! I got my license about 12 yrs ago and haven't really driven since. There was the problem of no bike, no money, college, marriage and children that slowed me down a bit.
My husband became hooked on bikes last year and got his license and Honda 550 1977 last spring and then convinced me this year to get my own. I bought a 1971 Honda CB350 which is a a bit smaller and much less daunting to handle. Though I have discovered that I need to hold on and excelerate slowly because it is so light it practically does a wheelly sometimes!

I was very nervous about riding since we live downtown Toronto with all the traffic but I stuck with just our few neighbourhood streets and then cautiously ventured onto the bigger streets. So far so good and I'm driving it to work and here and there. I do need to get some saddlebags because after all I'm still a mom that needs to pick up milk on occasion! Vroom, vroom