A Canadian gal living in Britain with 3 men and a dog. Wine helps.

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Friday, February 25, 2005

Tickled Pink

Last Friday I was out for lunch with Wendy and our friend Beryl. As I was sitting there laughing and enjoying my chicken and sun-dried tomato pannini, I happened to glance out the window to see a shop across the street with a pretty pink awning... The title of the store was In The Pink (Fine Silver jewelry). Naturally I had to go investigate once lunch was finished and the ladies were only too happy to join me. After a quick glance at the gorgeous window display I walked into this gloriously silver and pink shop and instantaneously fell in love. Not one of us walked out empty handed. My first (but not my last you can be sure) purchase from In The Pink was a fantastic pink, square cut stone for my finger. Its a bit bigger than I usually wear and boy does it have bling, but it was calling my name. I can see most of my wish lists are going to be devised of this shop's inventory!

Yummy Scrummy Tomato Soup

My friend CA gave me this delicious recipe for tomato soup. I was a little apprehensive to make it at first as me and home-made cuisine don't always go hand in hand, but I figured it sounded quite simple so why not try it out. It was rocking... I will share it with you all just in case you would like to try it for yourself.

2 x cans of crushed tomatoes
1 small onion
1 Tsp. Basil (the squeezy kind)
2 Tsp. Vegetable Stock (the powdered kind)
Olive Oil

Finely chop the onions and sautee in the pot with olive oil. Add the tins of soup, stir and then add the rest of the ingredients. You can modify to taste... I also added a dash of mixed herbs and Italian seasoning. Simmer for 45 minutes. Trust me, its scrumptious. (Ooh I also threw in some low-fat grated cheese once it was in my bowl - its good either way.)

My Last 2 Days of Unemployment

So, Monday I start work. On Tuesday I went and bought myself a new pair of high-heeled, long black boots to wear with my skirts. Today I have just had my hair redone by a gal called Katie who comes to your house and she does a brilliant job for much cheaper than the salons. I wasn't nervous to have her do my hair as she worked for the top salon in the area and is my sister-in-law's cousin and I'm very happy with the result. Now I just have to wait for Monday. I'm not nervous or excited. I think I'm just finally happy to be getting back out into the world.

Tonight CA's five year old Madeline is coming to spend the night - she's been packed since Wednesday she's that excited. It'll be good to have a sweet little girl here for the night with me and the boys. Tomorrow morning we will be dropping her off at her dad's restaurant and will likely have brunch there at the same time. Andy is on his way home at this moment and I think I might just have to cook him some tomato soup .

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Its not enough to sled on, but its still snow...

This morning as I was in my room watching TV listening to the sounds of Alex getting ready for school, I heard him call out for me to look out the window. As I pulled the curtains aside I was hit with the glare that only comes from a snowy ground and sky. Although it wasn't enough to really get excited over, things were still white and my heart certainly felt the warmth when Alex called out with glee 'Does it remind you of home?' He was so excited. If only we could bring him home to Nova Scotia...

My Baby Sister is Coming to England...

She's Coming!!! Posted by Hello

Well the countdown is on until my baby sister arrives in England on the 23rd of England. We are already making our plans for what to do and see and can barely contain our excitement. Just for Stacy to come here and see how I live now and to explore England and quite possibly Scotland, with us will be absolutely fantastic. The boys are thrilled and cannot wait to meet her. Above all else, I'm just so grateful to have someone come here to be with me, times have been a bit 'tough' at times!

A New Baby Boy!

I was so pleased to hear that my good friends back home, Jeff and Jaime Brown are now the happy parents of a beautiful baby boy - William Borden Brown... he was born almost a month early but both mom and baby are doing well. I'm so proud of Jaime for persevering through her difficult pregnancy but in the end, it was all so worth it. Although I'm not technically a member of the Brown family, Jeff has been like a little brother to me all these years, so I hope that I will be given the title of Aunty alongside my dearest pal Annette! I can't wait to see you all and give that little 'ginger' haired boy a cuddle!

I Could Blog Forever...

I have tons of things to talk about today (serves me right for not blogging in over a week) however I've been avoiding the gym far too long and duty calls... I will try to get back on track though and much sooner than later.

Monday, February 14, 2005

A Little Ronan, Champagne and Chilli...

Its 4:30 on Valentines Day and have just put a pot of chilli in the oven. I'm sitting here listening to the Ronan Keating CD, namely the one song - Father & Son, that Andy gave me as part of my Valentine's gift. Its a bitterly cold and windy day out, however I have taken advantage of the wind to dry some towels. I find myself more relaxed and at peace today than I have felt in awhile. The trials and tribulations with the Dragon still continue and of course court faces me on Thursday, but in all honesty, its not at the forefront of my thoughts. I have supplied the information that I have and what will be will be.

At the moment Alex is over at his Grandma's fixing his bike. Soon he will be home for his tea (supper). I am contemplating heading upstairs for a bubble bath and to enjoy the mini bottle of champagne my husband gave to me last night before he left. Tonite I am off out to Strictly Come Dancing, an event that will highlight two of Britain's top Ballroom Dancers with my friend Beryl.

I would like to acknowledge that today is my special Valetine, Annette Brown's birthday - I wish her all that she deserves... maybe she will be blessed with being an Aunty for the first time on this day as we are all anxiously awaiting the birth of her brother's first born!

Friday, February 11, 2005

I'm Going Over the Top

This picture is of the Grimsby Dock Tower which can be seen for miles around the local area. It was originally built so that the local fishermen and sailors would always know they were close to home once the tower was in sight. We can even spot it from various areas in the village where I live. On May 8th a Cancer Foundation is hosting a 275 abseil from this tower and I fully intend to be part of the group. Not only is it a great way to have some fun, but better yet, do something positive for the community and raise money for cancer. I had originally planned to do a tandem parachute jump for the Foundation, (easy-peasy for me, since I've previously jumped on my own) however I thought it might be nice to start with this local event.

A Start In Sight

This morning I received a phone call asking would I be able to start my job on Monday. As exciting as the news was, I had to inform Lucy (my new employer) that as we still have Alex with us and it is 1/2 term for his school, I would have to wait an additional week. Unfortunately for me, but fortunately for Lucy, she is off that week to a health spa... so we set my start date for February 28th. Thank God, I am looking forward to this like there is no tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

We met the Fockers

Last night Alex and I took ourselves out to a movie to get away from the chance that someone might call and upset him for the third night in a row. It was a successful night as we both found the movie refreshingly funny. I think the director gave us a wickedly amusing sequel, so much so that I personally enjoyed it more than the first.


Yesterday while I was chatting to Andy on the phone re the various occurrences in our life, we got to talking about my job. Or non-job, as it seemed. Andy was pushing me to call and find out what the hold up was however I informed him that I know what the hold up is. They are awaiting clearance on my Police Records Check and I was told that this could take up to six weeks or longer. I have been in contact with my employer at least bi-weekly for various things and I was not going to be calling her to find out what the deal was as I was secure in the fact that she would call me and let me know if something had changed.

I received that call today as Lucy rang to invite me to a 'Time Out' program for all her admin. staff from the various clinics being held on Friday morning - sort of a discussion group for everyone to talk about learning objectives and changes/challenges affecting the clinics. Although I haven't started, it'd be a nice event to go to and meet some of the people I will be working with, learn a bit about my new position and enjoy a free luncheon. I'm looking forward to it. During this call Lucy informed me that all should be a go soon, that there had just been a hold up at HR over some 'confusion' with my maiden name. I told you all that the English seem to have a hard time grasping the idea of a gal keeping her own name... sheesh. Anyway, the main thing is that I'm going to start working again soon.

To Knock on the Door... Or Not

Alex to say the least, is an outdoor kid. He does amuse himself while inside, but if the weather permits, he prefers to be outside. There is a place down at the back of our estate where kids jump their bikes - lots of hand-made hills and dips. The problem is Connor is rarely here and unless Alex has a friend or cousin to stay over, he has no one to go with. The same goes for football or anything else he might want to do outside. There are two boys who live in in the houses next door. We know one, Jack, however Jack doesn't often want to play out he's more of an indoor kid. Then there is Ben, who I do know is an outdoor kid and would probably go out with Alex in an instant. However they have never really met and Alex is hesitant to go 'call for him'. I've mentioned it to him a few times, but hey, when I think back to being that age, I doubt I would have went and knocked on a strange kid's door. Anyway, I've just noticed that Alex is outdoors now kicking the ball around with Jack. I know its not been easy for him since he doesn't go to the local school, however now that the weather is warming up, maybe the boys next door and he will get to be pals.

So, last night at just after eleven I was just getting offline when I heard a knock at the door. I walked over, thinking it might be Julie, my neighbour (Jack's mom), however the tall, big outline quickly diffused that thought. I leaned down to the mail slot and asked who it was. I heard a man say, 'Open the door'. I muttered, 'not likely' to myself as I quickly went upstairs to look out of Alex's front room window. There was a guy standing there wearing a baseball cap and holding a 40 oz, almost empty booze bottle. A car was parked near him with the engine running. I watched as he pulled out a mobile phone, dialed a number, swore, hung up and then spoke to the person in the car, who then drove off. I waited a minute more until I saw him finally walk off in the direction of the next few doors. I'm not sure who he was, or what he wanted but he might have been the guy who lives on the other side of Julie. After about 20 minutes another car came back and I saw someone get into it from the house two doors down. After that I heard a door slam a couple more times, then all was quiet. I must say, it didn't affect my sleep and I was just relieved it didn't wake Alex up.

This morning when Andy called to make sure all was fine (I had been chatting to him after the door knock) I ended up telling Alex what had happened the previous night. He asked why hadn't I woken him. When I expressed puzzlement at this, his explanation was 'Mum would have'...