Monthly Archives: November 2011

taking care of business

Things are moving forward all according to plan…I’ve received an employment pack from the new job. There is one hitch however. I need to have a TB test done and a letter of clearance from a physician stating I am physically/mentally able to do the job. Yes, it’s standard for this work. BUT since I am a transplant to this new small town I can’t get a friggin’ doctor! AND apparently there is a back log for TB tests here. What? I’ve had the test, it takes 30 seconds to scratch my arm and stick it on a slide. What the heck? I’ve put out some calls to a few lady doctors and am crossing my fingers one of them will take me in. Once I have that I can begin work (which would be nice if that could be very soon!).

 

Also! I am going to a derby practice this Thursday and I have come up with a clever name (but it will remain under wraps until I know I am on the team!) and I am so excited and nervous. I don’t know anyone there and haven’t skated indoors in 2 years….keep your fingers crossed for me!

School – yep it is still right there up in my face. In fact I am “working” on it right now. I should get back to it. This was just a quick update.

Peace out

SM

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yum-tastic cookies!

Ingredients

  •                     1 cup butter, softened
  •                     1 cup white sugar
  •                     1 cup packed brown sugar
  •                     2 eggs
  •                     2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  •                     3 cups all-purpose flour
  •                     1 teaspoon baking soda
  •                     2 teaspoons hot water
  •                     1/2 teaspoon salt
  •                     2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  •                     1 cup chopped walnuts

            Directions

  1.                     Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2.                     Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Dissolve baking soda in hot water.  Add to batter along with salt. Stir in flour, chocolate chips, and nuts. Drop by large spoonfuls onto ungreased pans.
  3.                     Bake for about 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are nicely browned.

Blog has been silent, so now I must make noise

It’s not that I haven’t had anything going on….in fact, there has been LOTS going on. I got a job! That’s right, it only took 3 weeks in a new town to hammer down a good source of income and tomorrow I will go sign the papers to make it official. It is a similar job from the one I left in the big city – supporting some folks with varying abilities to participate in their community. A new company, new people, should be exciting.

Second. Rollerderby. Something I’ve been into for quite a while now, and even tried out for a couple of seasons ago in the big city. Didn’t make it obviously but it didn’t squash my interest. Well, I’ve discovered a few up and coming teams over here and am putting out my feelers to get involved. So this will be exciting! I’ve got my eye on some beautiful new skates (since mine aren’t “derby” skates but they are still super cool) and am determined to play. Will definitely keep you posted.

Third, we continue to support our local ethical farmer guy here in Qualicum. We picked up more chops and some peppered sausage yesterday. He (our farm guy) even invited us to come check out the farm and we can see how the animals are living happily and roaming the pastures. Excellent.

Cookies….I had a massive craving for chocolate chip cookies and found a fail-proof recipe (not ok for nut allergies though) that I overdosed on Friday night. They are DEEE-LISH.

School is getting hot and heavy these days and this is what I primarily blame my lack of updates on. I feel guilt if I am not attached to a school related book these days.

And finally – I actually finished a knitting project I started in January of this year. That’s right, almost one year to complete a pair of fingerless “reading mitts”. I’m not actually that slow, I just ignored the project for a long time.

So, things are picking up here in the new transplanted life. Thank you to the well-wishers out there sending the good vibes, I send ’em right back at ya! For those who are interested in checking out some cool Roller Derby stuff I have added some new links on the blog.

Happy Sunday and could use a few more good vibes while I write a big scary paper on Structural Approaches to Cognitive Development!

SM

Quick local food update

I’ve been frequenting the local Farmer’s Market on Saturdays now. I am still on my ethical-meat-only kick and have located a great local farm that supplies lamb, chickens and pork products….that means BACON. I hadn’t really had bacon since August until this past weekend. I picked up some Whisky Smoked Bacon from Ravenstone Farms and cooked up a Sunday breakfast feast. T’was delicious. Did I mention I also picked up some juicy pork chops that were superb from him too? I did.

I’ve also found a mushroom guy. The same one I got the tasty chanterelles from earlier, hooked me up with some “Pines” which weren’t much to look at but pretty bold little mushrooms. He picked them obviously – which I realized in hindsight that I took a crazy mushroom guy’s word for it that they were in fact edible…but it’s been a few days and I’m alive. They had a strong, earthy and piney flavour to them, and I kept it simple by just sautéing them with garlic and butter. Delish. The mushroom guy seems legit, but not any less freaky, which I think makes him legit.

I’ll have another post coming up in a day or two about other stuff going on. I’ve just been thinking about food a lot lately…

Mmmm food.

Are You Afraid of the Dark?……(I am)

I’m not afraid to admit it. I’m afraid of the dark. That’s funny. Not being afraid to say I’m afraid. Anyways, it’s true; I am scared silly by the prospect of being alone in the dark. And this is no funny matter. I have included a small list of things that come to mind for me while I contemplate my adult fear of the dark. Maybe, just maybe, I can work through it.

  • Shadows are creepy…..it can be as easy as a distant car driving by and the faint shining of the headlights that hit one of the walls in the house, but let’s face it….it could also be an ominous boogie-man doing shadow puppets to get a rise out of you.
  • Strange “house sounds”, you know the ones. They are the sounds of rapping at the window or the side of the house. Sure, they could also be the heater kicking in, but it makes more sense that the same shadow-puppet boogie-man is running a xylophone stick along the side of the house as he skips gleefully around your house in circles, laughing and snorting and looking all crazy. Obviously.
  • Dogs barking in the distant. I have dogs, but I KNOW this is spooky. The dogs are trying to warn you that there is something very creepy in your basement…..or your closet, and it’s most likely that bad-ass boogie-man.
  • Any scary movie. Ones that particularly come to mind are “It” because clowns are messed up, and the one with the scary kid with cat-eyes and teeth. Why is it that I am afraid of a creepy little cat-kid? Because cats like the dark and I know he’s hiding behind my door.
  • Ghosts. They seem to be quite lively in the dark. Which is ironic, since they are dead.
  • Pretty much anything that goes on while it is dark (and I happen to be alone, whether it is alone in my bedroom, or completely alone in the house).

Some of the things I do to feel even slightly less frightened include:

  • Flashlights….they are everywhere because I realize at some point I have to sleep and that requires lights off. But what if I have to pee? Flashlights.
  • A good clear path from the light switch to the bed to make a good, quick dash for under the covers. You’re darn rights I still make the mad dash.
  • *not to sound alarming, this only applies in the rare event that I am in the house alone overnight* I keep a sharp kitchen utensil at my bedside.
  • As a follow-up to the last point, I realize the kitchen utensil will not “cut it” (pun!) for a ghost, that is why I now have an enchanted tomahawk for such an occasion – which can also be found at bedside. (Apparently enchanted blades can take out ghosts and other spooky beings)
  • portable phone near by.
  • A text-book. For some reading that will surely put me to sleep.

Once you are done poking fun at my serious affliction, please provide any suggestions. Do I need a Ouija board? A Rabbi? A Ghost Hunter? A Life? Help!

SM

Back in the saddle again

Today was one of those days where I woke up and things were off. Since we moved, I have begun the search for a job. I’m not too picky, since I am heavily immersed in school and don’ t have a lot of time for serious job right now. There isn’t much going on. So last night before bed, I said a nice little optimistic “prayer” if you will out loud…

“Tomorrow’s gonna be a good day! You (to John this is) will get the package in the mail you’re excited about, and I will get a call for one of the jobs I’ve applied for”

How can you go wrong with such positive vibes right?

Back to this morning. Typical routine, coffee, dogs outside, watch the deer for a bit and wait to talk to my overseas sister via Skype.

We’re chatting away and I am notified by John “There’s cat puke happening over here!”

I run to go deal with it……yuck…..

A couple of minutes later I am notified by John, or rather hear him yelling “Wally no! Sh*t! Get him outside!”

Apparently my little dog couldn’t hold his um….movements….and he is famous for no warning (like while on a walk, I’ll be walking and looking ahead and he is way behind just dropping one in a parking lot or somewhere random, yes I know, too much info). So I run to pick up a pooping dog and rush him outside…luckily there wasn’t much inside, but thanks for the warning Walter…..

Oh yes, this is all going down within 5 minutes and while my sister is waiting/watching my frantically run around from the webcam.

No phone calls today……

Finally, I decided I need to take a bike and go for a ride. It was a beautiful day too. So I bundled up and hopped on “Link” my green Schwinn semi-cruiser. I rode into town, then down to the water. The waves were HUGE and awesome and just what I needed to ease my nerves. I hated feeling tense in such a beautiful place, so the huge rollers were the fix I needed.

I rode and rode and rode some more until I realized I rode myself to the bottom of an unforgiving hill. Way to go Sarah. Way to ease back into being on your bike. I huffed it and puffed it until I returned home to two happy dogs and a smiling man (John). I was back in the saddle again.

We had a spectacular lunch of homemade Potato and leek soup (from yesterday but tastier today) and grilled cheese sammies. The day was looking up.

So, here’s to my effort to keep the good vibes, and wishin’ y’all a happy and prosperous week ahead.

My cat, my keeper….for cat lovers

I am an animal lover through and through. Two dogs, four geckos, three tarantulas and of course my cat, Betty. She and I have had our differences, but I love her still. In just over two years, she’s escaped from our old condo three times, two of which required time-consuming and stressful searches. I’m not convinced she did it deliberately though, since she waited patiently below our balcony for three days for me to find her.

There is just something about having a cat though. No, cleaning a litter box is not enjoyable. No, she doesn’t fetch and she isn’t particularly social with anyone other than me. But she loves me, I can tell. She comes when I call her, tucks me in at night (or stares at me while I sleep, which is slightly creepy but I’m sure she means well by it) and helps me do my homework. She is regal at times – or likes to act like it. She’s a bit clumsy but she’s my kitty and I am happy to have her.

She can tell the time, I’m sure of it. She knows exactly when it’s bedtime and when it’s breakfast time – she is always there to remind me. She is definitely a girly girl, which is interesting, since that isn’t really my style. But she knows who she is and what she wants. She picked me at the SPCA.

I’ve had some past issues with my lovely kitty – regarding her concept of what equals a littler box and what doesn’t. I am thinking that she’s liking the new place and is starting to come around since she has become way more social with the dogs, us and freely explores the new house…without incident (fingers crossed). So this post is for Bettysocks (my silly nickname for her) and a “shout out” to her for being a good kitty in the new home. For keeping me company for long hours at the computer screen, my reading chair and for just general snuggling. Meow!

Small Town Saturday

Today was by far the most exciting day of the week. After a delicious eggs benny, John and I wandered into town to do some exploring. We parked, unbeknownst to us, right across from the winter farmers market. Perfection. We did a quick circle through the small, charming and busy market and made a mad dash to the cash machine. I was absolutely thrilled to pick up 1lb of fresh picked chanterelle mushrooms for $10! Outstanding price, and a future outstanding meal in my near future! We also scored some pasture-raised pork(chops), pasture-raised chicken legs and some fantastic rustic sourdough. Oh yes, coffee beans!

The morning was off to an outstanding start….We did a wander down the main street and located what we consider to be an important building – the liquor store 😉 We continued our exploration by taking a two-minute drive down to the water front, when I heard John say “What the?!”….I slowed down….”I think I see something out in the water”. Turns out we witnessed a plethora of Stellar Sea Lions AND some porpoises jumping in and out of the water, in a fish catching frenzy! Unreal! Unfortunately we didn’t have a camera with us (or a proper lens to capture the sight/distance) but it was amazing.

Homeward we went. Since the weather has been beautiful (but chilly) here all week, we thought it’d be fun to do some raking out in the front of the property. Piles and piles and piles of leaves. But it can’t be all work and no play…..

So we raked and raked and raked some more, with intermittent ball tossings for Benji. Fun times. So I haven’t mentioned that we live very near to a small aircraft airport, so we get small planes overhead during the day. No biggie. Today we watched either a novice pilot, or a guy having trouble with the wind try to land his plane a minimum of 6 times. We captured a few photos while he went overhead (many times).

 

 

 

All in all, a decent day so far. I have a feeling we will enjoy this new small town stuff just fine 🙂

Happy Saturday

 

one more thing!

Yes, the apple-header pictured above is one from our tree! I think that is pretty darn cool!

Oh deer! First week in the twigs

Well, it’s happened. We have survived the move from the mainland to island life. Boy oh boy was it worth it! The new place is unpacking as to be expected for me….quite chaotically however I feel that in all of the madness I have some form of “organized chaos” within it all….sort of. I am proud to say that one of the bathrooms looks very inviting and in fact resembles one of a real grown up – could this really be my doing? Almost. With the help of a lovely sisterfriend of mine, I have purchased towels! Lots and lots of matching, colour-schemed towels in all types of sizes!

Aside from fancy new towels, the setting up of a new place is fun but quite exhausting. Trying to figure out furniture arrangements, and designating rooms for certain purposes is fun, but if I decide it’s not quite right then it means more furniture moving. And seriously, my body has NOT healed since my adventures of dining room table/deep freezer-toe-smashy last week. I’ll survive.

So what have I done in the last four days of my new rural life? Well, I walk two minutes to a fenced off-leash dog park for the boys to run wild….well Benji runs wild. Walter sniffs around, pees, sits on the covered bench or waits by the gate for Benji to stop chasing balls. Seriously. I’ve mingled with some other “small town folk” who are also dog people – something I may have once scoffed at, but our chats have been quite pleasant and informative. I learned where the hospital is, other dog-friendly areas, shops and oh ya, the cougar sighting nearby! What? Yes, there has been a cougar sighting in my new ‘hood. Cool and freaky at the same time.

I’ve done a bit of a grocery shop in town and spotted the local ethical meat butcher place (it was closed when I drove by, but I know where it is!) and plan on checking it out for real today or tomorrow.
I’ve picked apples from the tree outside and made one helluva delicious pie! Mmmmm pie.

The new favorite pass time is deer spotting. There are plenty of deer that have laid claim to the property we’re on LONG before we got here, so we run from window to window scrambling with the camera to try to get some shots of them. We are mainly seeing does, but we did spot a young buck yesterday. The pic isn’t the greatest, and clearly you can see the window frame, but as proof, take a look at this boy!

So today I am up early (the crack of 6am that is) to help John wake up for work. He still has to travel once a week to the mainland and stay over night to work his two days at his clinic there, and he is NOT a morning person. So in an effort to help bear the burden of waking up when it is dark out, I got up too and packed him a lunch. For the next two days I will continue to explore my beautiful new surroundings, check out the meat guy in town, research which breeds of chickens to get and where we will get them and catch up on a ton of school work. But before I dive into all of that, I will finish my coffee and listen to the dogs continue to snore at my feet.

Happy Thursday folks 🙂