Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Cookalong

I'm still waiting. sigh.

But there isn't much more I can do. In writing an email to my potential employer indicating that I'd changed my primary contact phone number, she replied (at the time, which was last week) that they were "making their decisions this week, and will be letting people know next week." It's next week now. Tuesday. If I don't hear anything by Friday night, well, I'll know I didn't get the job. But I'm trying to think positively. THINK POSITIVELY.

In the meantime, I was watching the movie Julie and Julia yesterday. Later, I saw a commercial for Gordon Ramsay's Cookalong Live. A three course meal that you will make along with him on tv, and will be totally done in an hour. So, with a couple of friends (in lieu of a fancy dinner out for Christmas) we're going to make this meal. Pasta for the appetizer, steak and potatoes with peas for the main, and tiramisu for dessert. Wish us luck! I'll let you know how it goes!

The show's on tonight, but there will be a couple of repeats. If you're interested, go to globaltv.com, or follow THE LINK

Happy eating!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Waiting Takes So Long!


In my last post, I commented on how I feel like the waiting period between my interview and a potential call back has been terribly nail-biting.

But I wasn't sure exactly how long I'd been waiting. So I went into my "sent" mailbox so see which day I sent BCCH my references. That was the 25th of Nov. Today is Dec the 9th. It's been 14 days. Minus the 4 weekend days, There have only been 10 eligible days in which to contact and interview my references. I had been thinking I'd waited at LEAST three weeks. Turns out it's only been 10 days. Oh, how the days roll on like dark molasses having been in my freezer!

So I suppose I'm still within normal range. Hopefully, I'll hear something by the end of this week. Truly, it would be the bestest Christmas gift of all!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Pause


I'm just waiting.

I did my BC Children's Hospital interview some time ago, sent them my references, and now I'm waiting to hear something (anything) back from them. This whole process has taken so much longer than I had originally expected, but it's this last bit that has me concerned. I started in on this in October, spoke with a recruiter in early November, did the interview late November, and now it's December. I suppose I didn't mind so much that all that other stuff took so long because I knew at least things were moving forward. But now I'm at the end of the process, and each day I wait I start to have more and more doubts. Will they call me? Would I have had the job in the bag if I'd done a better interview (even though I've already worked on that unit before!)? Did one of my references not give me a good reference?

Of course, once you get onto that train, you start to have lots of crazy thoughts. What if I don't get this job? I won't have worked as a nurse since May. What if nobody hires me because of this? I won't have enough RN hours to renew my nursing membership! What if I'm just not cut out for this? What if this is all a sign and I should just do something different?

Not really healthy. But one gets antsy after sitting around for months - literally- without any firm prospects or guarantees of work. Knowing (through the magic of social network sites) that all of your peers are working and being successful doesn't help either. Just makes you feel less competent.

And at least my significant other has an excuse. With the economic downturn, there just aren't as many jobs for engineers. Companies aren't hiring because there isn't money for new projects. So he knows it could be a while before he's gainfully employed.

What's my excuse? There isn't one.

but if I don't hear anything from BCCH by the end of this week, I'm going to make a call. I'd at least like to know if they've struck me off the list, or if they're just getting their ducks in a row before they hire me.

So, I'll wait.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Season Begins

I don't think I was in it until this week.


Maybe it was because I didn't realize I had cabin fever this week and I needed something to break the funk. I don't currently have a job, or a car, or any real money, so my life lately has been made up of knitting and watching tv and seeing friends for coffee. (The friends are good, but the venure needs to change, I think...it's just more sitting). People who are normally very busy and have active lives get tense and a little nutty when they are made to sit still for too long, and after some confrontation, I realized that I needed something better to do with my time. Being that I'm broke during the Holiday Season, I decided it was time I put my efforts towards creating something great for my friends and family for Christmas. But how? Needs to be cheap. Needs to be cool or beautiful or meaningful or useful - something that won't get tossed January 6th. Needs to be within my talent range. Needs to be creative (nothing bugs me more than when people "craft" - they buy all the pre-made supplies at the store and assemble a craft, rather than CRAFT a craft. Like the scrapbooking industry...but I'll not get into that). So I've at least got something to keep my brain busy. Good.


In addition, I've been looking for places to volunteer. If I can't work, I can at least spend the time doing something productive. At this time of year, most volunteering comes hand in hand with Christmassy events. Like Operation Red Nose.


Basically, I'm getting into Christmas. That means I'm not as lame right now. And I feel busy, and productive and useful. I feel like I have things to do. People give you the stink eye when you sleep in until 11 (or 1130....or 12... even though by that time you've had 12 hours of sleep) every day, but upon reflection, you realize that it's not because you're lazy, it's because your body says "Well, what the hell else were you going to do? Watch tv and knit? oooo. Sleep, idiot." Not that I care about the stink eye, but sleeping like that really isn't healthy.


So, I toom Martha Stewarts 2009 Encyclopedia of crafts out of the library (GRR, EVERY Christmas craft book was on loan.). I have volunteered for a couple of organizations. I have made plans.


Now it's time to get out of my jammies.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Oh Hay,


'Sup?


Where you been?


Where have I been?


Dublin, London, Amsterdam, Brugges, Arras, Paris, Basel, Interlaken, Venice, Florence and Rome.


No biggie.


Lemme know if you want to hear more about that trip.


But it went well. Was gone for 5 weeks. Loved being away, but I was definitely glad to come home to my own shower and my own bed and clean clothes every day. Clean clothes was definitely a bonus. I'm still feeling like it's a luxury I'm getting used to.


And while I was away, I became engaged. On top of the Swiss Alps. Beautiful. That's all I can say to describe it.


And then I started thinking about what it meant to be 'engaged.' If you look at the word out of context, what does it mean? Engaged. I've started something. I've started something and now I'm fully loaded. What does that mean I was before? disengaged? I wasn't in it? Just doodling around? Now I'm supposed to start something....although I'm fine with what I've got and I don't want to change it. Of course I want to marry the guy, but I don't want to change what the relationship is....if you get my drift. Or maybe I've got "foot-in-mouth" disease and I should have just deleted those last few sentences....


So in addition to chronicling my life as a nurse, I have a feeling this blog will include snippets of the engagement stage and wedding plans.


But I don't have any yet. Yeesh, I don't officially have a job yet. And I still live with my parents. (Though I'm sure there are some people left who prefer not to live in sin beforehand...) So I can't start planning because there's no way I could make a budget. If I knew my budget right now, I could start things.... I'm feeling like there won't be any nuptials until summer 2011. That's just because I'd like a summer wedding, but I'm not sure I could get things in order in only 6 months without any money....


Do I have a vision? No. I don't think I've ever had a real vision for what my "dream wedding" would look like. I've mused about what a beautiful wedding would look like, but none of those ever really pertained to me. Sort of like "All of these things would be beautiful, but they're not me, per se." Dresses. Dream on. I don't think I've ever thought of what I'd like to wear, and I feel like I'm a million years away from choosing. A few people have suggested that I go to Bridal Fairs, but frankly, they intimidate me. All these vendors telling me about what my wedding should look like.....though I guess if I don't know what I think my wedding should look like, who's to say that what they're suggesting isn't what I want?


But that's crazy.


Mike wants a pig roast. I'm ok with that. Just as long as he keeps his beer swilling and sloshing for his Stag Party.


At least for now I don't feel so ashamed watching all the wedding shows on TLC anymore.


Aside from that, I have some good news on the job hunt front. I have an interview with BC Childrens' Hospital tomorrow at 130. It's in the same unit where I did my final practicum, so I'm pretty confident that I'll get the job, but one never wants to count their chickens before they hatch. It's not where I really want to work, but if it'll get me in the door, then I'll take it. I'd rather work with kids in Mental Health than no kids at all...especially since I applied to other hospitals and haven't heard anything back yet...


I'll let you all know how it goes tomorrow.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

The aftermath

I realized I haven't posted in 10 days. Sorry guys, I've been busy.

For reals, though.

Since my last post, Mike's come to Millbank. We went to see Macbeth at Stratford, and worked at getting ready for the auction before my aunt, uncle, and dad came to Millbank. That's when the real work started. On Sunday, we all got into our work clothes and started in on getting all of the stuff (a lot of junk, but lots of diamonds in the rough) out of the house, the shed and the workshop. There was a LOT. To try and create a mental picture, imagine that you have an area the size of a soccer field. Then put 4 haywagons full of stuff on it. Then lean other stuff on the side of the wagons. Then fill all of the remaining grassy spaces except for a few walkways. That's how much stuff there was. Oh, and we filled the garage with all the old radio stuff, and the driveway with more stuff (but mostly the lawn tractor, the Model A Ford, and another car in parts) It was a lot of work.

On Friday night, Mike and I went to see another Stratford show: The Importance of Being Earnest. Quite funny, if I do say so myself. I'm glad I booked those tickets because Mike needed a break from the "work camp" to do something fun and totally unrelated.

Saturday we had to get up early. We still had valuable items to display, and other things that wouldn't have fared well outside overnight. Plus, die-hard auction people (old car guys and old radio guys) were there well before the auction start time of 10am. The group of us had to work during the auction, too. We had to hold up the items for people to see, and run the tally sheets back to the "office" for the cashiers to deal with. And they decided to go with 2 auctioneers simultaneously in order to get through everything. Even with two auctioneers going for 5 hours straight, we finished it all off at 4pm. And the auctioneers never stopped. There were only two of them, and the main one, Bill, never had a break and never had a chance to eat or drink the entire time. He just talked and sold stuff. And he wasn't even horse at the end of it!

Me, I was exhausted. We were all exhausted. We'd been putting in long days of hauling big boxes and shop stools for a week. It was finally finally over. *sigh* except for the clean-up today. There was a fair amount of stuff that didn't sell, but it's all stuff that can go to the scrap yard or the garbage. Thank goodness for good neighbours lending a hand. Mike and I walked over to Anna Mae's to get a take-out chicken dinner for everyone. Real good food. And then, after dinner, we pretty much all crashed. Zonked out.

And I woke up this morning to realize that I'm going to Europe in 2 days! I haven't had time to get really excited about that!!

p.s. My dad ended up buying the 1997 Buick LeSabre for $600. He and my mom are going to drive back to BC. All summer I've been looking for a car but they've all been too expensive. And then dad buys this one from himself (pretty much) for cheap! blarg.

Gotta get back to work. The yard won't clean itself and I really should be helping...(but my feet huuuuurt.....)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

EXCITED!

Today is like Christmas, except instead of a Blastoise Pokemon card at Christmas, I get my hunny back!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_phU1coQCU

That's how excited I am.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Free Play

Hi kids!

I'm not going to lie: I was spurred on to do this because of something I saw on tv.

And since none of my other friends in the blogosphere have bothered to post anything, I'll do you all a favour and entertain you! :)

So I was watching TVO (for those of you not in Ontario, it's "Tevevision Ontario"), and they show a lot of documentary type shows. Yesterday, one of the featurettes was about the de-evolution of children's free play time. That children are being super-parented and their time is so strictly managed that they have so little time just to be free and play - alone, or with other children. Free play time is seen as frivolous because you can't evaluate the results, whereas you can directly see how a child improves at soccer practice, and ballet, and hockey, and basketball. It's harder to measure the social skills and crativity being developed when children play together without direct parental supervision and control. They say that children now have a "play radius" one ninth of the size as children did 20 years ago. Like, say, a child now is only given the freedom to play in their backyard now, where a child 20 years ago might have played around in an entire neighbourhood. I know I had at least a kilometer or two - especially once I became a fierce cyclist! Just as long as you came home in time for supper!

So, after that I got up off the sofa. I walked out of the house, and decided I was going to walk down the street. I didn't bother to put shoes on. Bare feet. I didn't even know where I was going to go when I started out. I just let it evolve. I wanted to be silly, and think about having some time to explore like I did when I was younger. So I walked down to the bridge over the Nith river. And I walked down the side of the grassy bank and checked out the water. Too muddy for me. So I walked along the river, through the thick grass. I totally didn't care about not wearing shoes...except for the occasional thistly weed. And then I came to a spot where I realized I couldn't go any further unless I crossed this small spot of water. So I did what any kid would do. I rolled up my pants, and I started across. And then I saw...

A FROG!!

but not quite as dramatically as this. The frog (or toad, probably) was just little. But I thought 'I wonder if I can catch him!?'....I made an effort, but I'm not as proficient at frog-napping as I was when I was 11. He hopped off, and then I had to continue on with crossing the water.

I walked for a short time, and realized that the water I had crossed was actually where the river had just narrowed (seems silly that I wouldn't have guessed that before, but the river was windy and the grass was tall). So to get back home I'd have to either walk up to the major road and cross the river on the highway bridge....in my bare feet, or find a way to cross again. Thinking that I was out of luck (the river was easily 20 feet across), I started for the road. But then I saw a sign off near the water, and I couldn't read it from where I was, so I went over to it...just being curioius and all... And right near the sign (that said "no trespassing"), there was a small man-made dam. Perfect for walking across to get to the other side. It was muddy. I let my toes sink into the mud, and then I squished them around. I forgot how much I like that feeling. gooey and gross. So I get to the other side thinking that I can walk right up to where the P.G (playground) is. But once I'm across, I see that there's a barrier. Tall grass. Taller than me. But the other option is to go past where is says no trespassing.

Long grass it is.

But I did OK! There were some spikey bushes, and more thistles, but I manage to get to the park alive! So I swing a little on the swing. But then I remember the swings are older than I am, and worse for wear, so I jump off and go looking for more mischief. Now, a long time ago, the community planted a bunch of trees near the park. I remember when they were planted, but now it's like a thicket. I start to walk around this mish mash of trees, and I see that whoever mows the grass at the park, has mown a path through the tall grass and in and around the trees. New adventure. It's not a long path, and it leads right back to the playground, but it looks like it'll be fun for sneaking around at night. And I bet I'm not the only one to think that. Also, there are tons more spikey weeds, so I have to spend more time watching where I step than where I actually am.

And just off the side of the path, I can see where another path is being worn in. It leads to the other bridge (the one over the highway), and probably under it, to where the young boys go fishing. I'll have to explore that path another day.

And I felt silly, and fun, and young to be just out there and exploring and not having a purpose to what I was doing. It was entirely un-grown up. I loved it. I loved having muddy feet. And catching a frog. And traversing muddy waters, and rocks, and mysterious paths. And absolutely nobody there telling me that I was being childish.

I hope kids get to feel like that.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Today...?


Today is banana bread made in the bread maker while listening to Josh Groban CD on my Uncle's sweet stereo system. Also, pulling down all the family photos and taking them out of the frames. They've gotta be put somewhere. But I guess it's not as hard work as mom's task for another day: pulling all of the boxes from the attic. There are a LOT of them. haha.

I'll tell you how it goes.

ps, bb - I'm going nuts! see you soon!


And in Lieu of a recent dream, I was reminded of Twilight. So here are some pictures from a Vanity Fair photo shoot that I love.


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Another Random Pictures Day!


Somewhere in Cuba.

Buddy Daver, after snorkeling, on a catamaran, in Cuba. Good times.

Mike playing soccer at UBC. I like to think he's about to headder the ball of light.

Ostriches! My very first ballet recital where I got to wear a real true tutu!
I've always loved this picture of my mom and my aunts. Three sisters wearing three silly hats!

Baking Frenzy

Do any of you watch Grey's Anatomy?

You know when Denny died? And whatsherface didn't know what to do except bake and bake and bake?

OK, don't worry. Nobody died. but I've been feeling a little listless and directionless. So yesterday I baked. I baked a peach cobbler. It's so incredibly good.

The I baked Pizza dough. Sort of. Grandma had this breadmaker. All you do is follow the recipe and put the ingredients into the machine, and press GO. no stirring, even. The dough's in the fridge ready for pizza making for supper tonight.

Then I baked a pan of brownies. mmm. They were real easy, too.

Then this morning, I woke up and said "I want to make bread." Knowing that I had the breadmaker, I knew it would be a snap. Throw in the ingredients, and the yeast, press "GO," and the machine said that in 3 hours and 50 minutes, I'd have fresh bread. The machine does the mixing and the rising and the kneading and the baking. Pretty wicked. right now we're rising. I'm 2 hours and 9 minutes away from bread. mmm. just in time for supper...ecept you don't usually eat bread with pizza.

Mom says I can have the breadmaker if I want it. Grandma got it not long before she died 9 years ago, and it's hardly ever been used. It works perfect. It's black and decker. All I have to do is figure out how to get it back to Kamloops.

Did you know that this thing can even make apple crumble!? You just throw everything in there and you put it at the "dessert" setting, and BOOM. Apple crumble. That'll be my next trick, I think.

And considering how much bread costs at home (here, not so bad since it's made at the local bakery - a hot loaf for $1.12) -nearly $3, for the price of 3 cups of flour I can have real good bread without all the preservtives. mmmm.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Finally, an update

Well hello again!

So what have I been up to? The last time I graced your presence, I told you about my adventure to Kitchener. Since then, I've

  1. Spent time with my cousin, Patty, from New Brunswick. She came out for 6 days.
  2. We went to see Macbeth starring Colm Feore. Was really good. Set in the 60's in Africa. All that colonialism jazz, Macbeth is white, Lady M is black. I liked it. Would go again.
  3. Visited my bestie Michaela in Thornhill (near Toronto). I only got two days (one night) with her, and I was happy to take it. She's currently in the process of driving/moving to Yellowknife, so I wanted to go before she met the great white north. We went to an asian market and got yummy sushi for dinner, and we watched tv, and went to Walmart so I could help her pick out knitting things, and the next day I helped her pack (sort of...I hope I was more help tha hinderance). I also met her "mother-in-law figure," a person I'd heard so much about. I pictured she'd be a lot like Bette Midler - loud and proud....but not so....
  4. Came home from Thornhill and did the Ontario Corn Maze with my cousin in record time. We only had a couple of hours before she needed to leave to get on her plane back to NB, so we hustled. And we made it out in exactly 50 mins. The average time is an hour to an hour 1/2. I won't reveal the shape of the maze to protect those who might soon traverse it.
  5. Worked a little. ugh. Not my favourite of things.
  6. Went to see A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum at the Avon theatre. meh. It was OK, but the lead role was performed by the understudy and it lacked something. The original actor (Bruce Dow) I guess was ill...but ill in a way that they know he's not coming back, so they have lined up Sean Cullen to replace him for the duration of the run of the show beginning in September. So I caught it in the middle period. And the understudy just didn't have the pull...the theatrical gravity...that I would have wanted from him. So I might just have to go again to see Sean Cullen. Maybe it that both Bruce and Sean are "fat guys" and the understudy is a lot trimmer...just doesn't take up the same theatre space and fill it well enough. I dunno.


L. Bruce Dow as Pseudolus in Stratford. R. Sean Cullen.

See, they're of similar build. Big people make funnier comedians, I think.

I've also been painting closets, scanning through oodles of old old postcards (friends, beware), and mom says I need to tackle the stamp collection soon. Some of you might end up with a lot of 5 cent stamps on your letters. They're not worth much to keep, really.

I also went to the St. Jacobs farmer's market today. I did a killing in cheap, fresh produce. Apples, grapes, peppers, spinach, organic corn/light rye bread, strawberries....and a few more things I can't remember. real tasty. OH! and I bought an eggplant. Tonight I'm going to try grilled eggplant with basil and some cheese. I'll have leftover EP, so lemme know if you have a recipe for 1/2 of one. All good stuff. I'm really glad I went. But I always like going. In comparison, the Kamloops farmer's market is kids' stuff. This one is huge. I only spent time looking at the produce stuff, and I was there for 2 hours! There are several barns and the main barn is two stories! It's about a 1/2 hour's drive away, so we can't go all the time. But, the apple fritters are worth the drive, and we go to that stand first. They basically cut an apple into slices (cored, the slices look like little CD's) and fry it in dough, then cinnamon and sugar. Because they'res always a line, you always get them handed to you still too hot to eat right away. Amazingly good. I have a deep fryer back in Kamloops, and I just might try making them. *drool*

OH!!!

I didn't tell you about attending my very first buck-and-doe party! Here's a photo of me and the bride:
Her name was Bronwinn. I walked in and I was like "Hi, I need to buy a ticket to get in. I've never been to a B&D....could you point out the bride so I can say hello and feel less bad about crashing"....and the girl at the door was like "she's standing right beside you!" ahha.

For those who don't know, a Buck and Doe party is basically like a big drunken dance party for a couple getting married. Well, not always drunken because some people opt to have theirs a family affair (but maybe it's an "age of majority" party after 10 or something), but anyway...So they put on this big party and advertise it in the newspapers, and everyone is pretty much invited. The plan is to throw a party in hopes of raising some money for the wedding itself, or for the honeymoon. Apparently, at a good one you can raise $4k. Not bad. So I went! and I went alone!

As it turns out, a friend of my mum's was there with her hubby and she introduced me to everyone and showed me the ropes. She got the DJ to play me a song (it was a Lady Gaga song) since it was my first time. There weren't a ton of people there because it's wedding season and people have already been to a bunch. From what I hear, the winter ones are door crashing since there isn't much else to do!

One of the things they did to raise $$$ was do a toonie toss. Stand at the line and toss $2 coins at a large bottle of Jack Daniels. Closest to the bottle wins it. The juice was donated.

Made friends. I'm friggin awesome. These girls are sisters.

Another fundraiser: buy tickets and put them in your favourite door prize to win it. This guy, Jake, was really effin drunk. He ended up winning this gem: a dual deep fryer and crock pot, so you can make hot wings at the same time you're cooking your french fries. yum. He could barely hold it up for me to take this picture. But mum's friend sais he was harmless, and she's known him for years. Once she said she came home and found Jake curled up on one of her carpets. He got drunk and couldn't find his way home or something, lol. He was nice. Asked for my number...lol

The B&D pig. Story goes that a group of friends stole it while on a stop during a stag party. They were mini golfing. The pig was pilfered. So now, the pig gets passed on every time another person in that group of friends gets married. The deal is that you have to keep the pig until the next wedding. The couple before them had to keep it a month. These poor blokes have to keep it until next October...I suggested seasonal dress!

That's all for now! bye!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

PaArty like a Rock Star!

My ears are still ringing. Shouldda brought ear plugs.

Actually, one of the best places - I though - to listen to the music was from here:



It's the club's ladies' washroom. Slathered in thick pink plaster and dotted with dozens of chunks of mirror, it was under the stairs, almost right underneath the stage. But I couldn't stay there -mostly because it was a bathroom....

But anyway...

I drove the 30 minutes from Millbank to downtown Kitchener to go to this (was it a CD release party?) gig at the -


After trying forever and nearly getting lost in Kitchener, and having to maneuver the giant Buick LeSabre, I managed to find a parking spot. pheuf.

So I walked around a little bit because the gig was supposed to start at 9, and it was quarter to, and it's never a good thing to come early because there's nobody around, and these things often start late.

When I went in, sat at the bar and ordered my one drink for the night (since I had to drive home and I barely knew where I was anyway). And I asked if I could go up to the patio upstairs. Yes. But I had to put my drink into a plastic cup. fine. The bartender led me up the stairs (coz I didn't know how to get upstairs, the stairs were slightly behind the stage), and I had the whole patio to myself. Kinda nice.

And then about 10 minutes later, a guy comes up onto the patio. He looks like he works there. His name is "Ace." He's shaved bald with a goatee. Says this place is his backyard....he needed and job, so they let him work there. mmk. I don't mind talking to him. We talk about me being a nurse, and other random-ism's. Then he asks me to tell him, seriously, what I think his age is. I tell him "well, since we've been talking, you've mentioned at least being 25 years old, and that something has happened at least 8 years since then, so I'd put you at your mid 30's...." slight jaw drop. "Oh, well, you're quite observant...thanks for yor honesty..I'm 40." mmk. then he goes on to tell me how there are "certain" ladies who frequent the bar who like to butter him up....

And then the bar guy (owner?) comes upstairs and there's a trade-off. Obviously, kind of ick, but they're friendly, so I don't mind.

Oh, I didn't mention that when Ace came upstairs, he says "oh, so you're the girl from BC". Stunned, I realize that the bartender told him I was up here after I showed him my ID after ordering my beer. *eye roll*

(FYI, they never had a chance, baby)

But later, after Ace comes and trades off again with the bar guy, the bar guy yells up to the balcony that the show's about to start (an hour late). So I go down.

First gig is Extinct or Alive. My ears burn. They seem young, or at least one of the guitarists is. He's wearing a real baggy tshirt and his ball cap on backwards. They tell us their CD release party is next week. cool. I'm sitting at the bar on a stool, next to (insert South American name here). Seems nice, though I can see he's not here for the music. Just likes to hang around bars. The bartender gave him the remote to the TV and he switches between baseball and a special on ABC about tornadoes. He sees a commercial for G.I. Joe. Asks if I've seen it. Then asks if I want to see it...with him. I tell him "I don't know what my boyfriend would think about that." oh, dang I imagine he's thinking. meh.

Next act...Derive (with an accent on the first e). More loud, but more polished. me = tapping to the music. Ears more hurt.

Just after this band finishes, I go to see what swag these bands have to offer. I figure I'd like to support local music, and since the profits from the compilation album they're peddling go to a local charity that supports music education, I buy one. And so begins my introduction to the band members of the DGB. They play last. All blond guys with long hair. haha. One guy gets up from his seat at the table and offers it to me. They're pretty cool guys. I'm pretty much lame. meh. They seem to enjoy my company. I bought three of their band's buttons (each one has a different one of their faces on it. I stick the buttons next to Barak Obama on my bag). Cool. I'm "in" with a band. Maybe. But they're good company and I'm here all by myself, so I'm happy. Plus, they're younger than 40. One's a mailman, one works at CanTire, and one works for a construction company (owned by his parents.) The 'construction company' won't let him have the time off to tour in western Canada later this year. Lame.

Don't remember what this guy's name is, but....
This guy is David Greer, the namesake of the DGB (david greer band).

So I'm sitting at the table by the door, and the next act is the Yage Letters. Now, pretty much the reason why I came to this gig was to stalk (of sorts) a friend I went to Jr. High with 10 years ago. I got a random facebook invite, so I thought I'd go, just for S&G. This whole night, I'd seen him and I recognized him from his fbook pictures, but frankly I felt weird thinking I'd just walk up and be like "oh hay...so you remember me?" so I actually didn't go up and say hi....even though there were only like 20 people in the bar. meh. But anyway, he was in the Yage Letters. 4 guitars and drums....and no vocals. Pretty cool actually. Good music. By now, my ears actually hurt, though.

I wonder if I've accumulated any real hearing damage. meh.

Yage finishes. I'm still sitting near the door and have met lots of the other musicians, and Andrew (old friend) keeps walking by taking his stuff out to the band van. I wonder if he recognizes me because he doesn't say hi. hmm. So I mention this to one of the guys I'm sitting with...and he stops him. Andrew's like "oh yea, I know her, we go waaaaaay back" and then continues on. He doesn't much ask what's happening or "hey, thanks for coming"...and even the guy I'm sitting with was like "so that's weird, I'd be more excited, or at least say hi....but I guess that's Andrew.."

So that part was kind of lame. So I'm glad I had a good time otherwise.

To tell you the truth, I wasn't epecting much. I just thought it would be an adventure either way. And anyway, I was friends with him-ish, and in Jr. High, he wrote a song about me...behind my back....to the tune of a Blink-182 song. It wasn't nice. I figured that was through....but meh.

I stayed to listen to the DGB. But my ears hurt so much that I had to go outside to listen. I felt bad because they were so nice and they asked me to promise I wouldn't ditch before they played. ears bleeding. so loud. But I did listen from outside.

By the end of their set, it's 2am. I'm exhausted, and I have to figure out how to get back home according to the google maps directions I'd written out.

Figuring out east and west is so much harder when you don't have a valley or an ocean (like Van or BC) to reference things to. I got lost a bunch of times, and went the wrong way on a highway, and took a couple of wrong exits, but in the end I got home safe. At 3am.

Me so tired. It's the next day and I'm still exhausted. I guess it didn't help that I'd been awake since 530 in the morning because I was at work!

So that was my adventure.

Extinct or Alive
Derive
TheYageLetters
TheDGB
Frankie's Song (Non-profit organization)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Coinage

Task for the day: organize and label the coin collection in prep for the auction.

tons and tons of coins. I found a 25 cent bill - Canadian - from the thirties. But there's also a fair chunk of change that you wonder why so much was kept because a lot of the dates are still in circulation. And there are dozens and dozens of the same coins from Canada's Centennial year. Sure, they're kind of special, but there are at least two mint/never circulated or opened collections of the set, and to have dozens of a coin that I find in my change is kind of silly to be checking for dates and categorizing and hoping to sell at auction.

But....

I found this coin.


Apparently, someone gave it to my grandpa when he was in Europe during the war. I figure that it would be bad karma to sell it just yet. I don't know if you can read it, but it says "Britannia" at the top, and "1797" at the bottom. A keeper. Or, mom says maybe a keeper for another 50 years until I really need money and then sell it for a high price to a collector...

I might just keep it.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A Night Out!

Last night I went to see Rice Boy, a new play by a local guy, at the Studio Theatre in Stratford. Let me recount the details of my adventure:

Left for Stratford at about 530 for the 8 o'clock show. I like to go early so I can walk around a look at things.

Ate a small dinner at Bentley's restaurant and pub. Parsley and Pineapple soup with Greek pasta salad. mmm.

While eating dinner, glanced up to see Eric - actor Jenni and I accosted after seeing West Side Story a few weeks ago - but only briefly. Still...

Walked around towards the theatre. Bought a pen from the theatre's gift shop. Used it to update my journal. Nice pen.

Found my seat in the theatre. Nice space. I'd never seen a production in that theatre, so it was nice to finally get to know it. The stage space was about as big as that at the TRU theatre, but more seats- and the seats are stacked really high up.

My seat mate is a woman names Eleanor. We chatted for a while before the show. Turns out, she's a retired theatre teacher from New York City. omg. She's really nice. She's only in Stratford for 6 days, and is seeing 2 plays a day, plus on on Sunday before she has to go back to Florida where she lives to be closer to her daughter. She said she'd get to Manhattan at least a few times a week, and she misses being there a lot. duh. So we kibbitz about what shows we're both seeing, and how much we like being here.

Show Starts. Good show. A little complicated to explain, but an Indo-Canadian dad and son (mom died a few years ago) having a rough time in Canada go back to India for a while to be with the family. Things turn out imperfect but ok.

about 1/2 way through the first act, I see that an usher has had to attend to an audience member. Because the space is so small, it's quite distracting. I figure maybe her headphones aren't working (they give those to people who have hearing difficulties). Then, two ushers come. More distraction...

...Then all of a sudden a woman in all black with a headset walks into the theatre and right onto the stage. It took a second before I realized that she wasn't an actor. But as she walked on, the lights came up. "We apologize, but we have to pause this performance". ???. And they escort an elderly gentleman out of the theatre. I assume he must have been having chest pain or something for them to warrant stopping the show. But a few ushers helped him walk down the stairs, across the front of the stage (that's the only way in and out), and out towards the lobby. I hope things turned out o.k. for him. eek. That was the first time I'd been party to a production needing to be halted midway through!

Show continued smoothly. After, more chatting with Eleanor. It was nice of her to say so, and it totally made my day since I already admired her, but we parted with her saying "I wish there were more people like you coming to the theatre". I assume she meant young people who were passionate about live theatre. Whatever it was, it was nice, since it was coming from someone who's around theatre types all the time.

Left the theatre. Didn't feel like going home yet, so walked to Othello's pub next door. Took about three hours to have a rum/coke and a fuzzy navel. Did some writing and some knitting in the almost totally empty pub - it was a Tuesday night after all. When I'm 1/2 way through the Navel, this gangsta looking young black guy swaggers into the pub. He belines for me. uugh. I hope he's not drunk or on drugs right now. I don't have any money, and now I can't leave in case he's trying to cop a ride...I think. He's got droopy eyelids and talks with a slurr. He's also a little slow on the uptake. But he seems nice. After he's tried to get me to buy a copy of his CD, and asked me about my shoes, and what my name is and where I'm from (I'm vague, and say my name is "Sam"), finally the bartender, Brad, comes over. While this guy is writing down the name of a website I should visit, I mouth is he ok? to him.

Oh, I forgot to mention, this guy's name is Bailsey. He introduces himself, and I can't understand, so he spells it, but spells it wrong the first time.

But apparently "Bails" - as everyone calls him - is "cool." He plays drums, and often plays gigs in local pubs around town. He's just a bit slow. But Brad (bartender), says then that I must not be from around town because everyone knows Bails. haha. And just as I'm leaving, the remaining waitress (it's 1230 by then) mentions it's cold, and suggests she might close the giant patio doors. She turns, and Bailsey is already doing it for them.

So I go home, feeling pretty good. I talked to Brad for a bit, and find out that he's "just" a bartender for now, but won't be forever. He's pretty much here in Stratford to be close to the theatre. I mention that I'd just seen Rice Boy, and he wanted the deets, since one of the main characters kept coming into the pub and was always talking about the show, so he wanted to go. It was a good show, and I told him that.

I left, and Brad said he'd be happy to have me darken the pub's door late on another Tuesday night.

A pretty good day.

Here's proof of knitting while at a bar. That's a Fuzzy Navel.


This is Brad the bartender. Bails wanted to take a picture, but I suggested he ask Brad first. Here's how it went:
Bails: Hey Brad!
Brad: looks over
Bails: CLICK
Brad: I thought you were going to ask me first...


This is the Infamous Bailsey. Take from it what you will, but please disregard the fact that my mug is also in this picture.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Getting Back to Business


In about 10 minutes (or whenever I finish this post) I'm going to go to the gym.

I haven't been in a week.

I'm not feeling motivated. For two months I was going an average of 5 times a week. I think that's pretty good. But, aside from some minor achievements, I don't feel yet like it's anything I can see. Maybe a bigger shoulder muscle. I mean, I can now run 3 km's, which I can't remember ever running before, but I wish all that work (and I did work. I sweat so hard every time) would at least show up a little more. I suppose it's probably true when they say that most of the effort is in what you eat, and it's tough when you live so close to Amish baked goods, but still. I wish I could see more results for all the work I'm putting in.

So this is why I'm unmotivated to go back after a week "off." I mean, what's the point, right? It's not like I look much better...maybe I do, it's just there's nobody I've seen that can see the "before & after"....the only other person who's seen me, really, is my mom, but she's been with me the whole time so she probably can't see much of a difference anyway. So I'm all blah. Why work so hard? Besides the fact that it's "good" for you? And it's not like I was going the 3 times per week that my gym routine suggests (when I started going, the trainer created a routine just for me) - I'm going 5 times average. But I always try for 6. grrr.

And it's whenever I finish this blog post that I have to drag myself there. So maybe I'll just keep writing on and on for a while to drag it out.

I thought I was motivated before. I'm a natural born competitor, so I was always trying to best myself. I didn't just put in the minimum when I was there. I'm now able to bench press (though, really with two 30lb free weights) 60lbs. I'm pretty happy about that. And every time I go, I add on at least a couple more reps. In my mind, there's no going back, or stagnating. Always moving forward. But why keep causing pain if all the results I'm going to get are just me knowing I'm doing good. I realize that I'm never going to have rock hard abs and rippling muscles, but a little give in that direction would be nice. Blah. I'm not expecting magic. I just want a return on my effort. I've got another month or so left on this summer membership. I'm 2/3 of the way through. Do you think that there will be a week when things start to show up? Coz if I have to got to the gym 5 days a week for the rest of my life to look "moderately decent," then I'm out. I'll cut my losses.

Ugh.

Post done.

Time to get 'a running.

double ugh.

Friday, August 7, 2009

New Blog to Follow


After much admiration for someone who could actually follow all of the recipes in Julia Child's cookbook for a year (after discovering this through the magic of cinematic previews), I thought I would go ahead and read this woman's blog. It's rather fun.

I've posted the link on the side bar. She didn't start it until late August of 2002, so it's too early to read one of her postings a day, but who cares.

I like that there's so much use for butter!

You know, I don't mind cooking, but I sometimes wish I had a passion for it the way others do. I mean, I like to cook a meal, but I don't know if I can see myself strapped to the kitchen every night....but who knows...
Romans 8, 28:31

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Of Service

Things I'm glad I was able to do for my grandpa:

I came to Ontario without really knowing if I'd get regular work, but wanting just to be able to work at Knollcrest where he lived. I wanted to come back for one more summer and help him feel more comfortable.

I sat with him at meals and helped him to eat when he could no longer feed himself

Mum and I (and later Aunt Mary) sat with him every single evening for dinner (on my days off from work) and we usually stayed for 3 or 4 hours to keep him company

I was able to advocate for him when I worried about the quality of the nursing care he was receiving. I also helped mom and Mary to advocate for when I wasn't around. And in many ways, we were successful. I'm glad I could do that for him.

When he died, we rushed to the care home. Mom and Mary waited outside the room, but I wanted to be able to help the other care aides clean him and fluff his pillow and tuck him into bed just right.

I decided then, on the Sunday night, to knit him the socks. I'm exhausted from several late knitting nights (followed by stressful days), but I'm so happy that I was able to give them to him.

At the funeral, I did a reading for him. It was a good one, though it was asked of me rather spontaneously, so I can't remember the verses. Will post later.

I was a Pallbearer. Unfortunately, when you live to 102, there aren't many young people/friends around. So I offered to help. I helped carry his casket into the church, and again out and into the Herse, and then to his final resting place. When he was little, he would carry me. Now it would be my turn to carry him. It was only natural to help especially considering how few able bodied men were in attendance.

He was a good man, and he did a lot for so many people. I wanted to make sure that someone gave something back, and I did it in the ways that I knew I could.

A Good Pair

So it took a lot of hours and two nights of staying up far longer than comfortable (like, to 4am), but I managed to knit a pair of socks in 4 days so that my grandfather could have them. I had always meant to knit him a pair, and I had started a few attempts but never managed to complete them. So, when he died on Sunday, I decided that I would do at least that for him. Here they are.


These are a pair of socks that nobody will ever touch except grandpa and me. I used the green wool that a friend of mine brought back for me from Ireland (where he was originally from) to sew in the words " [heart] U Grandpa" and GPSS, which are the first initials of each of his grandchildren. I sure hope that they fit. I know he used to have large feet, but in the last few years they seemed much smaller...But they're all his, and I hope they keep his feet cozy in heaven.

I had a really good grandpa. I met him when he was in his eighties. Many people die then, but I got to share another 23 years with him, and that was a gift in itself. As far as I'm concerned, it's like he lived two lifetimes. But after that, I'm sure anyone would want a rest.

Thanks to everyone who has offered their well-wishes. It means a lot to me to hear from you, and be reminded about how much love there is circling around.

Friday, July 31, 2009

FINALLY!

I have high-speed internet!!

BIG YAY!!

*sigh* feels better.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

KS?

I've been thinking a lot about kindred spirits lately.

What might a KS be like for you?

Do you think they exist?

Do you have one?

Just thinkin'...

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

[East] Side - of the country - Story!


Jenni came to visit!

Had a great time, though I wish we could have done a few things that didn't just work out.

Wednesday we drove to New Hamburg to go to a knitting shop. Delicious yarn. I bought some and I shouldn't have. Eek. but Jenni bought some for herself and some yarn for a friend of hers who is ill and needs something new to learn. Jenni learns to purl and do a cable stitch. She begins her cable knit scarf. She gets hooked on knitting.

We went to Stratford. Did the usual tour of the chocolate shops and Ken's Fry Bus. Delish. Saw West Side Story. I won't go on about how great it was because I'd bore you, plus I don't think I could put it into words. So great. We stayed after the performance to attend the post show Q&A with four of the actors. I managed to screw up the courage to ask a question. "Given the history that the Sharks and the Jets have, do you think their issues stay respolved, or do you think that their history gets the better of them and they return to being the rivals they once were?" I got both a yes and a no. On the way out, we bumped into one of the actors - Eric. Jennu and I chatted him up. Super nice. Jenni's first brush with fame, haha.

Saturday wasn't too exciting. I don't actually remember what we did. Jenni is nearly done her scarf, though. She's turned into a mad knitter. I'd wanted to go to Hillside festival (hippied music festival) in Guelph but it's sold out. I don't get how an outdoor mysic festival can be sold out. It's outdoors.

Sunday was rainy. We drove to Elora. Saw the gorge. Got rained on as we paroused the shops. In one shop, there was lots of artisan blown glass. As we leave, Jenni says "I don't think I could own anythin like that because I'd be afraid of breaking it"...and then just as we open the door to leave we hear this huge crash from around the corner of the shop. And then silence. And then "omigod." One of the employees had knocked an entire shelf off while dusting. Jenni and I left, worried that we'd jinxed her. I also bought a "Joan the Wad" pendant from a curio shop. Joan is the Queen of the Cornish pixies. There is only one female, anyway, but if you carry her with you, she'll bring you good luck. And she's chums with Jack-o-the-lantern. Jenni finished her scarf. She's addicted to knitting.

Monday I drove Jenni back to the Waterloo in so she could catch the bus back to the airport. Sad to see her go. It was nice to have a friend around! Drove to the town of St. Jacobs to check things out. Ran into a woman at a shop who was from New Zealand, and we kibbitzed about how much we love the Pacific Islands and Samoa. *sigh*

Today's cloudy. Maybe a beach day will come up soon. All rainy days, it seems. I'm sad there wasn't a beach day while Jenni was here...but she's going to the "Great Heat" of Kamloops, anyway!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

You''l Have to Wait!


Sorry guys!

I forgot to bring my camera cord with me to Ontario, so the completed sweater will have to remain an enigma...for now...

Just dream about it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Did I actually do that?


Oh Shiz!

Give me a "hands up in the ayr"!

After a really really long time (I'm talking years, here) I finally, FINALLY finished knitting Mike's sweater.

(insert sigh of relief here)

Now it's time to move on to (or continue with) my smaller knitting projects - like the socks I'm knitting out of 100% soya. The pattern is really neat and comes out like tree bark. They will be my tree socks since they're also being knit in a brown. They'll be soooo nice.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

More Pictures...

The internet was being really stupid. I waited forever to upload pictures from my computer onto my blog, and then the internet kicked out before it saved...

So here's some more photos...


Here's a shot of me at the Grand Canyon. Just chillin', you know.


To the left is Kaan. This was at grad. Guess what he was wearing to convocation....



I had fun in nursing school. Yes I did. This photo was from a fundraiser.



Here's Mike's grad photos. Can you guess which one ended up in the class composite to be framed and hung on the walls of the Engineering Sciences buildings for all eternity..



Picture from my grad. I like this photo even more because I got the results back from my RN exam, and I PASSED! I'm a REAL REGISTERED NURSE! YAY!

More pictures soon...






Thursday, July 16, 2009

Hampster


I just wanted to post some pictures I had laying around. Enjoy!This is Dwight. He's My first "neo-hampster"...I had many when I was younger, but he's the first of the new generation. Now I have Jude....

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Moving On



So I've been in Ontario now for nearly 5 weeks.

5 weeks.

It hasn't seemed that long. Mike said that last night, and I think that it's good because maybe the next 8 weeks will fly by quickly and I'll get to see him sooner. That would be nice.

Last week was a bummer. My dad called to tell me that I got a letter from the Ontario Nursing people saying that I was missing a piece of information in my application and that my application was stalled. I called the BC nurses (that was the piece missing) and they said they couldn't send that piece needed because I hadn't got the results back from my exam. So there was nothing I could do, and my application for RN status in Ontario was stalled. I was hoping to have it all DONE this week. Now it could be three or four more weeks. I was so angry and so upset because I'd put in so much time and it was all going so wrong. I was mad that I had asked direct questions about things and didn't get all the right answer from people the first time. I was angry that I had to still be working as a care aide when I should be working as a nurse...for twice the way. I was angry that I felt so incredibly helpless in this process. I did everything I thought I was supposed to do based on the information people gave me. When I called the woman in BC and told her my plight, she seemed empathetic. I mean, I asked her what I needed, then explained my situation and was told "yes, we send this and it's always fine"...and then it wasn't. But she called me bacl 10 minutes later and told me to call her the minute I got my exam results back and she'd have the correct form send immediately, and free (the first form, which was wrong, cost me...and I wasn't happy already that I'd put in so much money for a job I'd hardly work at). Literally, I started to cry on the phone. She said she'd help me out, and then "I hope I've made your day a little"...and she had. This whole process has sucked. I don't ever want to go through this again. And for one person to say that they'd actually do something for me, I just felt like someone had listened. Someone wanted to help. I've done this completely alone, and, honestly, have made a lot of mistakes. There wasn't any one person who could give me all the information as to what I was supposed to do, or how, or where. I got tidbits of information from Ontario and BC....and it didn't always match.

I'm glad I've had the opportunity to work as a care aide for a while, and get to know the facility before I'm supposed to be in charge of it for a shift, but I don't want it to be all that I do. I already feel left behind when it comes to m classmates. I missed out on Undergraduate nursing last year, when I could have been working in interesting nursing placements (the ER, ICU, neonatal...whatever..) because I attempted to work in Ontario (they waited 3 weeks to tell me they didn't hire for the summer, and in the meantime I missed the UGN application date), and now I get all the facebook updates of my classmates finishing their specialty courses and working in cool places, or of them getting their first real nursing paycheck...just getting out there and doing the things we worked so hard at to learn in school...and I'm stuck wiping bums all summer.

I'm being pretty harsh, and I know that in 10 years, this slow start isn't going to have made a lick of difference, but when you already feel like you've missed out when you haven't even begun, feeling like everyone else is "making it" when you're stuck in a web of bureaucracy really F%&@ing stinks.

And the worst part is, is that the more I feel like things are going wrong, the more I feel like "of course, it shouldn't be a surprise if it turns out I failed the RN exam" ...Like, things are already on this sucky path, it would only be natural for me to be the person who fails. Something else I have to do - another hurdle for me to jump over while everyone else drives past me.

And so last week, after the woman who told me she would help me hung up, I took the keys to the Buick LeSabre and drove to Stratford. I just needed to drive. To get out and be able to yell and scream and cry. I thought "I should go see a play - that would certainly take me out of my life" but I needed to have the car back for supper...and I ended up doing some "shopping therapy"...expect it was at Giant Tiger. GT is like a discount Zellers. My shopping "spree" was $33....because I'm broke (working as an on-call care aide doesn't exactly rake in the dough) and I have $1800 in debt on my credit card. I can't even mourn for the perceieved loss of my life properly.

I am feeling better now, almost a week later. It's still hard to talk about it, especially when I meet new people at work and they find out that I'm a new RN grad, and "when do you start as an RN?"...and I can't tell them, or even explain it because it's so damn complicated...

That's what's happening in nursing land this week...blah.

But the good news is that I think I'm on the mend

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

One Week Later

I'm trying to keep up with the blog. Still a bit tough considering the slow dial-up connection, but I'm on it.

So I'm now finished all of my orientation shifts at Knollcrest. For a while (nearly a week) I was worried that I wouldn't get any work, and that I'd be in the lurch at the end of the summer despite all of my efforts. So far, though, I've been called to see if I could work at least once per day. This morning, for instance, I had already made an agreement with another staff member to take her evening shift, but I was roused at 730 am by the charge nurse to see if I could come in for a day shift because someone didn't show up. I'll put in at least 40 hours this week. I'm hoping I'll get one more shift so I work 5 days, but of course I'll take what I can get. I truly hope that this holds up all summer. Most of the work I'm getting is because it's summer and people are trying to get vacation time in. I'm loving when people go on vacation here.

My plan will stand that I'm going to go and see a show at the Stratford Festival Theatre for each paycheck I get. Last week I saw Cyrano de Bergerac, and I drooled the entire time. I snagged a front row seat (though off to the side) and was totally sucked in. There was an epic battle scene near the end, and I could feel the heat as the explosions and gun shots went off. Steve (friend of mine who'd come to visit) could see me from his seat (he and Tori had the best seats I've ever seen and I'll be eternally jealous because I'll never in my life have seats like that) and said that he laughed when he could see me with my mouth hanging open. I'm OK with that. It was brilliant. They couldn't get me to shut up afterwards because I was so giddy. *sigh*

So anyway, I'm looking at seeing another show this weekend. I'd like to alternate between the three theatres, so I'm looking at seeing one of the shows at the Avon Theatre. The Avon was where I saw Sara Polley for the first time when she starred in Alice through the looking glass. I was 7 and had been watching her for years on tv. I remember that my mom and grandma had bought two tickets, and they split up. Grandma and I saw the first part, and mom and I saw the second half. Then, grandma bought me a ring from the shop across the street that showed all of the characters from the show holding hands. I really liked the ring, but I was young and I didn't take care of it, and it got lost to the ether. But I've always wondered if I could find abother one like it.

There isn't a lot else going on around Millbank. I'm still fumbling my way through work, and often feeling like I'm slowing everything up and making things harder for the other women I'm working with, but I keep reminding myself that I'm just new, and that I've agreed to take lots of shifts, so I'll get better. But it's still rough in those rushed moments when I whished I had the same instincts and experience. blah.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Happy Canada Day!


Drink something ice cold and see some great fireworks!

My Canada Day has been less than thrilling, but I'm definitely having a proud Canada Day. In this area, it's difficult not to. The local newsletter came with a 81/2 x 11 sized window flag, and the neighbour had a fluorescent maple leaf sign. I find that celebration of Canada Day is slightly different here in Ontario than in BC...not that people in BC aren't proud Canadians, but there's a definite sense of Canadian establishment here that isn't quite in BC. People have been living in Ontario several hundred years longer than they've been settled in BC, so I feel like there's a deeper sense of "our land"...It's difficult to put a finger on, but either way, it's all good.

I haven't written in a while because I'm working with a 56K dial up internet modem. It takes forever to do anything, including posting on a blog. It took be nearly 4 hours to download 4 minutes of a 9 minute video. blah. But I'll try to post once a week, maybe.

The weather here's been pretty rainy and wet. I don't mind that, but it does mean that when the rain all finishes, it'll be extra humid.

So I said that my day hasn't been all that exciting, but I like it that way. Usually I'm stressed to the max, even when I'm on vacation. But I barely have internet, I have no social obligations whatsoever, and I work casual-on call. So I've spent a lot of time knitting, playing the guitar I rented for the summer, and writing hand-written letters to my friends. It's been really nice that way. I've also got a summer membership to the gym in the next town over, and I go there probably 4 times a week. That's been really good for me. I'm just getting myself sorted out, and taking care of myself.

I'm planning on going Strawberry picking on Friday. I haven't done that in years. I used to go with mom when I was little, and I'm pretty sure I ate more strawberries than I put in my basket (which I'm sure mom should have paid for, haha). I want to get a bunch so I can eat 'em, and bake with them. I just want a giant bushel of strawberries. They smell so good. mmm. Also, I want to have a pie baked for my really good friend who's going to visit me here on Saturday. It's pretty much the most excitement I'm going to get in a while, so I want to do it with a flourish!

Monday, June 15, 2009

leaving on a Jet Plane


And I really don't know when I'll be back again.

I suspect I'll be back in Sept sometime, but Mike and I are planning to go away, and there's always the thought that we'll leave directly from Ontario....In that case I wouldn't be back until October, maybe...

I'm excited to go, but I'm going to miss a lot of things...namely my friends (and my hampster, Jude, who according to Air Canada can't come unless I pay $150 for him to go in Cargo. I like him, but...)

I'm leaving tomorrow. eek!

I'll have access to internet in Millbank, but it'll be dial-up, so I won't be hanging out on the compute all the time, probably just long enough to send emails and write the occasional blog post.

I think I'm all packed. My suitcases are zippered up, but there's still the stuff that I'll need before bed and in the morning that I need to organize. I'm going up to Mike's parents' house for dinner tonight...gotta say g'bye.

On that note....G'BYE!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

It's Official.


I'm leaving BC on Tuesday, June 16th (Grandpa's 102nd Birthday) for Ontario. For the whole summer.

Crazy.

I've tried to make it happen, and now my empty bank account says it is so.

My potential boss has given me the go-ahead to work as a nurse's assistant until my paperwork comes through, so I said I'd be there asap. Pretty nutty.

I'm going to miss Caravan Farm Theatre. But I'm going to get to see all of the Stratford Theatre I can handle.

I don't yet have a car. Which is good coz I just booked a flight. Now I have to scour craigslist for something that will transport me to work.

There's a lot to to!!! And not very much time to do it in!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Time to Move On.

I graduated last week.

On June 4th, I became a real recipient of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. I get to put "Sarah Ball BScN, RN" after my name.

That's pretty freakin' cool.

The ceremony was held outdoors at 2pm in the blistering heat. That's right, I had to wear a black polyester robe in 35 degree heat. We lucked out because the university thought to put up little white tents for us to sit under, which was nice.

I've got plenty of photos posted up on facebook, and if you'd like one of my "official" grad photos, just give me a shout!

LOOK DOWN!

Oh, something I wasn't sure I'd mentioned:

I put a "Einstein Quote of the Day" bar at the bottom of the page. check it out.

I'm Still Here!


I've had a bunch of things just happen, so I've been lame with the posting...

It's late, but I just wanted to acknowledge my lack of postage.

I'm SO EXCITED for Tori and Steve going to Europe!!!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

The Day of Reckoning is Upon Me!


I've got 9 hours until I write the Registered Nurses' Exam.

9 hours until I finish 4 years of work.

9 hours until I get to break free!

9 hours until I have to settle down to work for 6 hours worth of multiple choice questions.

9 hours until I can officially say, "I'm a nurse!"

9 hours until I can prove that I'm ready to say that I'm a nurse...

Feels exciting. Feels nerve-wracking. Feels like a really happy feeling.

I used to day to review. I should technically have been reviewing for a while, but I'm feeling confident in my ability to do this exam...I've done the 4 years of work, I participated in class, I passed all of my courses, and I soaked up as much as possible. It's going to work out.


Then, the next day I get to Graduate...for real. I've been going to school for 5 years, and Thursday will be the day when I get to toss my silly square hat in the air and be inducted into the realm of the smart people. And, I get to do that with lots of family around. I think that that's what makes me happiest. My parents and my brother and Michael, and his two parents will be there. That's 6 people who will be there for me, and just for me. A little selfish, but I don't have that opportunity often. I'm not one of these people who has a billion family members who live nearby, and who always come to everything. My grandparents are all but gone (Except for Grandad), and I don't have any relatives living west of Ottawa, so it's really special to know that there will be a few people to stand by me on Thursday.

I'm working on finishing my dress for the big party afterwards. It's a little black dress - cocktail style. It's made of black linen, and will have a wide black ribbon tied around the waist. I also have an off-white beaded flower that I think I might wear as a pin...we'll see. I'm also going to wear my white pearls from Samoa and my white heels (and they're wonderfully unsensible). I've spoken to one classmate who has a floor-length gown...Mine is considerably less dressy, but it's very very classy. I can't wait for it to be finished!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Gonna Try It


I'm going to take the RN exam prep test. You get two hours to do it on the internet. I'm hoping I don't discover that I'm totally out to lunch!

Wish me luck! (I'll let you know how it goes.)


Update: Did the test. I took one hour and 6 minutes to complete the 100 questions in the allotted 3 hours (so I was 2 hours faster than I needed to be!). The real RN exam is two sessions of 3 hours, so I suspect it'll be like writing this practice test twice (with about 125 questions per 1/2)

I came out with a 73% average. In all seriousness, it absolutely does not matter what my grade is except that it's over a pass. When you get your results in the mail, they only tell you if you've passed or not - doesn't matter if you get an A+ or a C, so long as you get enough questions right. I'm sure they just stop marking it after you're beyond the passing point.

So it looks like I should study some of the medical tests, arterial blood gasses, and some more of my medications, but I feel very reassured that I'll be just fine. Feels good! Only 6 days left!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Work Update



Just had my phone call with Knollcrest. Went well...super well.

We decided that my first day of work would be June 15 (with, neatly enough, is the day before Grandpa's 102nd birthday, so I'll be there for that!).

Huzzah!

She asked for me to send her my references, but just because she has to. This thing is mine.

The only problem now is making sure we get all the paperwork straightened out. The thing is, it's not simple paperwork that Knollcrest has...it's crazy inter-union stuff. We're not sure if my current registration with the RN's union of BC is at all transferable to Ontario. Vicky things maybe...but I'm more doubtful. I would be fine with registering with Ontario, but of course then that paper trail could take a while to finish up...I'd hate hate hate to think that I have this job in the bag, but I couldn't work because I have to wait for weeks for someone to stamp "approved" on it and take my money.

So I've been calling the unions, and "HealthForce Ontario" to try and get the info. Of course, they all seem to be on lunch break, and I've had to leave messages with these people. Blah.

But it's really really really nice to know I have a start date, and that I have for SURE 25 shifts between then and September (though more are likely to come up once more paperwork is filled out)

*sigh* feels good.

Update on Theatre: Got an email back from Lori Marchand. The regular auditions are through, and Jeremy Tow (the new Artistic Director of WCT who's doing the auditions) is now away for several weeks. She said she'd work to get me a meeting with him in July. Of course July, while I'm away. I'm really tempted to save my pennies and just fly back for whatever day they want to see me. Still, it was incredibly nice to know that they were thinking of me. In addition, I now have the ability to go to this "Midsummer's Ice Cream Dream" event held for Project X Theatre on June 13th. It would be a great opportunity to hob-nob, and I might even run into Jeremy. (Wouldn't that be nice?). The only problem, of course, would be that I would have only one possible day to fly to Ontario (if I WAS going to fly - there was talk of me driving in whatever car I purchased) before I start work...

I'm really super good at making things waaaay more complicated than they need to be.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Social Circles...



So I'm trying my best to get 'er done.

I'm hoping that all my years of putting my fingers in all of the social pots may have paid off...even a little. It's that "it's not what, but who you know that counts," that I'm hoping will work in my favour.

I mentioned a few posts ago that the Western Canada Theatre was putting on a bunch of great shows this season - among them My Fair Lady and The Miracle Worker. So here's the scoop:

Through this and that, I came to know Lori Marchand of the Western Canada Theatre. She was warm and friendly and had seen some of my theatre performances. A year or so ago, before I last auditioned for the WCT, I went to the theatre to submit my resume. Lori was there, and she brought me in and showed me what I should do to make my resume good, and what a good headshot looks like (she pulled me into David Ross's office, and pulled a resume off his desk, and then showed me his headshots). She seemed to really support me trying to get involved. great!

So, on Friday I had my dance show. When I finally got home at midnight, I saw that earlier in the day I'd recieved an email from a guy named Julian at the WCT through Facebook. He said that Lori had suggested that I would probably like to come an audition for My Fair Lady, and that I should call him on Monday. He didn't leave an email address. So, of course, I sent him a facebook email back immediately. Again, this was Friday night, late. At the very least, I was hoping I'd hear from him via facbook my Monday.

I couldn't call this Julian guy on Monday, because I wasn't anywhere near Kamloops on Monday (for Mike's Grad - yay!), and I didn't hear from him at all...

So today is Tuesday. The day of the auditions. I know of one woman who went to them (and bumped into her at the supermarket later in the day once we'd returned from Vancouver), and I definitely wished her well....I like her :)

But, Tuesday has passed, and I didn't hear anything back from Julian. In my facebook email, I'd mentioned that I couldn't be around for any Tuesday audition because I needed to be in Vancouver for Mike's UBC grad (I said family member, because saying 'boyfriend' somehow doesn't feel like as much of a committment), and I'd asked if there was any possible way I could have another time....but of course, I heard nothing.

Seeing as I didn't have this Julian guy's email, I sought out Lori Marchand's address, and I utilized that social contact. I let her know of my plight, and asked that she give me any information (including if I'd no hope in hell of getting an audition now...)

So, now we see if years of creating a meticulous social web has paid off.. I'd be thrilled if I could just get into an audition, let alone a part. I mean, what was most wonderful was knowing that there were people thinking of me during the process, and someone actually came out and ASKED me to audition.

But, my next adventure will be my audition for the Olympic Opening Ceremonies on the weekend! Back to the coast...

UPDATE: I made some changes to this post once it became apparent that some of the things I'd written came out on paper wrong. I want people to know that I'm not the type of person to "use" others, and that in certain communities I have friends, acquaintances, and of course enemies (though more often than not, there aren't any enemies). In any case, I'll be friendly to my friends and those I don't know so well. In certain circles, like I said: It's not what you know, but who, and it never hurts to be kind. In this situation, something actually worked in my favour, and I was incredibly surprised and delighted that someone would have remembered me. I very much appreciate these things, and I would hate to have people believing that I might employ "false friendship" tactics in order to get a leg up. I'm just saying it pays to be friendly.