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

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

If bra talk makes you uncomfortable, you might want to skip this post.

I was happily getting into my groove this afternoon on the treadmill when I felt something uncomfortable in the region between my boobs. Something kinda scratchy. I figured maybe it was just because I'd switched bras quickly and didn't put the one I was wearing on properly. I chose to ignore it and continue with my run as I didn't want to interrupt my workout and thought it would adjust itself. About two minutes later I could stand it no more and whilst still jogging, reached into my shirt (which thankfully wasn't high necked) and quickly realized it was the under wire coming out of one of my cups. Any woman who wears a wire bra will know just how extremely uncomfortable this occurence can be at any time, never mind while you're jogging. I pushed it back in as best I could and continued with my run.

Another minute later and the damn thing had popped back out, this time with a vengeance. Oh man. There was nothing to it. I was not going to give up my run for anything - I was in my stride. So I took a quick look around, ignored the woman on the treadmill next to me, reached in and pulled that sucker out.

I'm not sure if she noticed what was happening but to tell the truth I didn't care. I stuck the wire in my cup holder and ran on in comfort.

Way I look at it, it could have been worse, I could have accidentally farted out loud.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

I'm not that into you, Jimmy Choo

The other day my hubby and I had a huge clear out of our wardrobes. As I was putting the last few bits of my summer clothes away (and realizing how much of Stacy's summer clothes I still have from her trip last year), Andy came into the room and looked down at the bottom shelves of the closet.

These two shelves happen to be jam packed with a variety of shoes: high heeled, low heeled, flip flops, boots, you name it. This isn't even counting the box of shoes I don't wear often but can't bear to part with, which is stored on a shelf in the spare room. And I still don't think I have enough... you can never have enough shoes.

This was my response to his question 'Don't you think you have enough shoes?'. When he heard my response he said 'You are getting as bad as Carrie Bradshaw'. Now, I'm probably breaking a major rule in the husband-wife rule book by publishing the fact my husband knows who this character is, but hey, he has to admit that for all the times I've made him sit through episode after episode of the show, he's actually been drawn in. I think he secretly has a crush on Mr. Big. Or at least admires his slick personality.

Anyway, my very quick response to his likening me to Carrie was: 'No way... all the shoes in my closet wouldn't add up to five pairs of hers.' I buy most at a bargain and usually always draw the line at $150, unless of course they are an absolute must have, and face it, all of us shoe lovin' girls have found at least one pair of clogs we can't just leave on the shelf, despite the price.

Note: Of course this is why I stay clear of designer shoe shops - what you don't see you can't miss, nevermind afford.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Never too stingy to share...

As most of you know, I have three sisters and one brother. We were considered rather a large family whilst I was growing up and still would be considered a large family by some. But more importantly, I like to think we are a close family. A tad bit dysfunctional maybe, but hey, show me a family that isn't?

Growing up my sisters and I got on well enough together and often chose to do things together without being forced to by our parents. Naturally, we had the usual fights over touching stuff that might not belong to us, such as clothes or make up, but most often we were happy to share, something that has luckily followed us into adulthood.

The McDonald Sister Clothes Swap is quite an event to behold (or so I have been told)and its bad enough when two of us are partaking in this event, but when a third gets thrown into the mix, it can be very difficult to follow. Our friend Dawn used to shake her head at us, but now that she participates in this event, she has become even more ensconced into the Family McDonald, bringing me to this point:

Not only do us sisters share clothes, make up, books, etc. we quite happily share our friends.

For years Dawn was mainly Tawny's friend, one of her best, and quickly become a much seen presence in our house. By the time we had reached our early twenties, she had became not only a solid friend to Tawny, but was quickly becoming a good mate to myself, especially after Tawn departed to another region of the country. Dawn at one point even dabbled in a friendship with Sandra (the one of us that tends to march to her own drummer :) But Dawn had something in her that can seemingly relate to all of us McDonald girls. While Dawn and Stacy were both here in 2006 I kept saying that they should start hanging out more back home, as they always seemed to get on so well when we were all together, and so they did. Now they continuously get together for movie dates, shopping and a bit of dining thrown in ;) It makes my heart sing to know they are together, looking out for one another. It is sometimes hard to be missing out, but it makes the times when we all get together even better. I can only thank Tawny for being so open-hearted and unselfish for sharing Dawn with us so willingly.

And in return, I would like to think I've been the same way throughout my life. I have always been happy to introduce my old friends to new friends, as well as to my family. If everyone hits it off, even better.

I met one of the best women I have had the pleasure of knowing shortly after moving to England. We had five years to grow close and she became indispensable to me during this time. Last year, she left to move back to Ontario and in some ways, a very large part of me went with her. I miss her often and sometimes still can't believe she is gone. While she was living here she was able to meet Stacy and Dawn, and they too came to love her. Since moving back home, CA has been able to connect with Tawny and they have since developed a close relationship. This I am happy about because I know my friend could use the loyalty and support that is so readily given by my sister, and as well, because my sister will only benefit from this girl with the big heart who isn't afraid to say what she feels.

So again, here we are - us sisters sharing in the love of beautiful friendships. Friendships that I know will survive the years and miles spent apart because they already do. Here we still are, after all of this time, laughing and crying and being there for each other.

Carol Anne, Dawn and Me at the Canada Day BBQ we had the summer of 2007:

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

No Looking Back

There are some decisions in life that we make and instantly regret the choice we made. Other choices are made and we know immediately it is the correct one, even from the moment the idea took shape.

But it's the decisions we make that keep niggling and picking at that little spot in our conscience, asking 'but was it really the right thing to do?' My husband believes that once you've made a decision, it is the right one, no matter the outcome, because it was the right choice for you at the time.

This is something my feelings run to the ambivalent on due to some decisions I've made where I wish I could turn back the clock. Decisions that may have been insignificant, or enormous in their capacity, but either way I wonder what the alternative outcome might have been if I'd taken the other option. Many people, myself included, have been heard to say: Stop dwelling on the would haves, could haves and should haves of this world. What is done is done and and there is no turning back the clock. And I do believe this... for the most part.

Because really, how long can you sit around thinking and recriminating on something that is past? Or how long must someone weigh the pros and cons before making their mind up about something? Is it better to make instant decisions or spend ages thinking about it before coming to a decision? I suppose its all relevant to the enormity of the choice needed to be made.

However when you are someone who can take a ridiculous amount of time to decide on what kind of ice-cream she'd rather have, how can I possibly make life-changing decisions in a short amount of time? Despite all the uncertainties that run riot in my head, I am someone that actually does manage to make decisions (sometimes sooner rather than later) and the decisions that serve me best are often the ones I've made spur of the moment, especially when it comes to the momentous decisions in my life; because ultimately somewhere deep down, I'd been deliberating for quite some time and knew the answer all along.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Keep the focus on the ball.

Back when Molly was only a year or so old, we started playing on the field that now only happens to be across the street. On this field Molly was able to socialize and meet a number of new friends. Two of these friends were Abby, a manic black flat-coat retriever, who still happens to be quite manic, and Carter, a placid chocolate lab, who at the moment is anything but, at least when he is outside.

Over the years I've become quite close to the owners of these dogs, and as a result we often take turns taking care of each other's dogs. Molly goes crazy with glee when she realizes she is being dropped off at Abby's for a few hours, and of course Carter is now jokingly referred to as her boyfriend. The only problem is, over the last year or so, Carter has become increasingly more cranky and is basically an arsehole when it comes to other dogs; especially other dogs that want to bother with Molly. It was only the other day that he and Dawn, his owner, were out on the field and ran into another chocolate lab that was a little on the cranky side. Dawn was later telling me that the other dog's owner was relieved that her dog wasn't the only one with a foul temperament, when Molly and I walked on to the field. Dawn was quick to inform the woman that now would be a good time time to vacate, as here comes Carter's woman and he just doesn't deal well with other dogs coming near her. And its true, Carter is manic over tennis balls and Molly. What's so surprising though, is that he is an absolute teddy bear when he is in the house, whether that be ours, or his own.

Today on the field he got into this horrible fight with Mac, another neighbourhood dog who is normally rather easygoing. It was a nightmare to watch, and we were all desperately trying to break them up. Carter and I both ended up a bit bloody, and I don't know who was more shaken up in the end, Molly or Carter's Mom. If didn't know him and love him so well, I might have to put a stop to his seeing my Molly ;)

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

This was my 1st attempt, and a lesson learned:
I should never make these when my husband isn't home

Blueberry Lemon Mini Puff Pastries

Note: When you are feeling ambivalent about something, baking might be the solution to occupy yourself but only if you have a strong enough constitution not to eat it afterwards!