Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Mr. Rupert, the big guy with the big issues, was ready for some attention. He loves the love.  Posted by Picasa

Chengo and Penny sleeping together on L's suitcase so she can't leave again ....ever! Posted by Picasa

More of the garden.  Posted by Picasa

More pictures of the front garden since I feel that it's been neglected on the blog. L. and R. did the front garden together. It really looks spectacular now.  Posted by Picasa

I brushed Svetlana. Posted by Picasa

I made stuffed peppers with mango and coconut rice. They're cooked in the slow cooker.  Posted by Picasa

My days off.

I watched soccer (not here, but this suggests the result). Posted by Picasa

I played tennis...

Then I came home to visit the kitties.

Yesterday and today.

A few photos will be posted to show you what I've been up to on my blissful days off.

I woke Ruggles up. Do you like his new "lion" cut? Posted by Picasa

a visit with Chengo Posted by Picasa

front yard garden hostas and astilbe.  Posted by Picasa

Sunday, June 25, 2006

The Party's Over

I made it! I catered every night and worked 4 LV shifts this week. I saw very little soccer (I was home for the Italy game though-- Forza!), very little of the cats, the garden, and D. However, I did an unusually large amount of laundry since I needed my white shirt for catering almost every day (this is rare since we usually wear all blacks), and showered 2-3 times a day (after each shift and a couple of times there was a run in there). I ate pretty well considering the 0 time I had for making my own lunches (thank you D. for vegan bolognese, pizza and stirfry and thank you LV for the potluck Saturday). The week started with a stuffy cocktail party where I had to stumble around an uneven lawn in the dark looking for discarded napkins and wine glasses at the end of the night to...tending a faux kids lemonade stand at the front of a house where i looked absurd at the short table in my tie and was clearly 2 feet taller than I should be for a lemonade stand. Now, the party's over. I'm home. I've got two days to myself to write, draw, garden, clean, read, watch soccer and play with the cats. It sounds like heaven.

Friday, June 16, 2006

The World Needs More Gardeners

We're away from Whoville today. We drove on a most gorgeous day away from the city. True, we drove to another city but we're still outside Montreal in Pierrefonds so it's a little more peaceful. I'm looking forward to my morning run here before the heat settles in and the construction and traffic noise fills the air. It's lovely running along the water here. There's also a beautiful little park called Bois de Liesse (i think) that is softer trails and it connects with the bike path that cuts across the town. All this and it's completely flat. Whoville is pretty hilly when I think about some of the running routes I have. It's pretty difficult to do a long run and not have to conquer some pretty steep inclines.

the garden.
Our garden. I miss our garden. Talking to sis on the phone tonight, she mentioned a job interview for a landscape company that she has on Monday (which is great for her!) and how happy she is in the garden. The time flies by and so much is achieved and there's a wonderful connection with the earth and life from the soil, the plants, water, the air. She's excited about this new direction in her life and I get it. The world needs more gardeners. This is especially true of those committed to organic gardening (which she is -- like all of us at our humble home in whoville). There's a great reward in the garden and it greets you everyday. I recently spoke to a catering colleague who has a small plot outside her tiny home. She took a prefabbed garden installed with the architecture town homes (there must be a set of plans out there that all these places build from because everything is starting to look the same. When did it become about the mulch?!). She took her tiny allotted plot and turned it into a perennial garden. She expressed the joy she gets by seeing her little plants thrive and watching them change everyday.

While I'm away from home, I miss my cats but I also miss my garden and watching it transform with each day. Already our tomato plants have flowers and a few small tomatoes have started to form. The hydrangea is about two weeks from blooming and has doubled in size from last year. The purple echinacea and white coneflower are also just waiting for their day. So...I've included some garden photos here. I'm so excited to be adding photos to my blog again. The white oriental poppy came and went so fast. It just seemed to be there one day and I snapped it's photo on its final day before the petals dropped. I'm also including one of the sky taken from my sister's deck because she gets the best views up there and I always try to remember to look up at the sky and see how it's changing.

Tomorrow we're off to the city to watch the Italy game at Romolos with D's brother and a friend. It'll be great fun I'm sure. Hopefully photos will follow again.

For now enjoy the moments of the garden.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Today's Astrology...

this first quote is from a fortune cookie I opened (yes, their vegan!). I wanted to collect popular "words of wisdom" or daily bites of advice and caution from the stars so the rest are bits from the first few lines of various daily horoscopes.

"You are a dreamer, and your thinking is inspirational."

"Remember: your friends are mere mortals just like you. We are all disappointingly imperfect. Whatchyagonnado? That's life. The fact is too many people miss the silver lining in life because they were expecting gold. Oh yeah. Think about it. "

"Buckle up and get ready for a storm to hit -- there is a strong wave of confusion and resentment coming, and you might be right in its path."

"You will have opportunities now to improve your earning potential and family security. Do not spend money frivolously today--there could be some unexpected expenses tomorrow."

" Invite friends or relatives into your home. Don't push your luck with authority. Misunderstandings could cause confusion and upset."

"A string of various aspects flitting in and out today suggest that youĂ­ll be lacking in the necessary energy to take advantage of everything the day might bring, which is plenty. Keep yourself focused (a piece of amethyst might help here) and stay open to the various possibilities."

"You find inspiration from the highest sources to the most unlikely ones. Just remember that this energy can easily go over the top. Remember to take in all the possible perspectives now, not just yours."

"Some very strange and bizarre, yet beautiful dreams could come your way today. You should write them down, as they are trying to tell you something."

"Financial troubles due to an emotional matter will cause worry. You can be helpful without paying for others' mistakes. An older relative will be difficult to deal with. Recruit help from other family members."

"You'll probably have original, unusual ideas in more than one field; hurry to exploit them. In your work, don't hesitate to take some audacious initiatives. Risk of insomnia: go without stimulants and eat lightly in the evening."

"Take a break. A weekend getaway restores your calm MO when work gets crazy midmonth."

I'm taking a break this weekend. Off to Montreal to see mom's play "Gorgeous."

Monday, June 12, 2006

Italy wins!

Italy played its first game of the World Cup. I was nervous as usual since games in the past have proven to be frustrating to watch a group of very talented players not live up to their expectations as a strong team.
The game had already started by the time I got home from work. I purposely biked through little Italy just to see the crowds that turned up in the cafes and bars for the game. I rushed home and was seated in time to see most of the first half and the first goal.

In the last world cup my sister and I went to a cafe at six in the morning to get seats (this was when the world cup was in Korea/Japan so the games were at odd times here). It was great fun to watch with a crowd and listen to all the conversations. Saturday we'll be in Montreal for mom's play so I hope to get to a cafe there and watch Italy's next match.

People keep assuming that my choice to support Italy as a team is because of D's Italian background. I chose them before I met D. since I was a soccer fan long before we got together. Afterall, at the serie A club level, he's a Parma supporter and I'm a Juventus supporter. I tell people that when I found out D. was a soccer fan it was just another sign that we should be together. So...Saturday will also be fun because we can watch the game together. Can't wait for more!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Monsieur B.

After all the craziness of my week: writing, making phone calls (did I mention that I've been doing admin assistant work for a friend since April until the end of June?), work, double work, a visit from the vet, a bad night catering in terms of some poor choices made by colleagues, world cup fever (I still haven't seen the Argentina game -- D. taped it for me while I was working, but...the tape broke). After all this...none of it is really worth getting worked up over. This was nothing compared to my mom's week. On Friday, June 9th my mother had to make the awful choice of euthanizing her beautiful kitty Mr. B. My poor mother has had a hectic week. She had to deal with bed bugs that came from??? no one knows for sure (her suitcase, or from the moth problem she had recently? Aparently, they can hitch a ride with you from pretty much anywhere or can exist in an empty place for months. So, she's dealing with getting rid of things, washing bags of laundry, tossing the mattress, buying another one AND she's about to have her play, Gorgeous, open in the Montreal Fringe and is trying to poster, flyer etc etc. Meanwhile, Mr. B. is sick and getting worse. Fortunately, my sister was in town working and helped mom make the decision. My mother's closest friend (and a great admirer of Mr. B's) went to the vet with mom. I'm so grateful mom wasn't alone.

Again, if I could put photos up I would. I'll get photos up as soon as I can of Monsieur B.

It's frustrating being far away and not being able to get away sometimes. I just wanted to be there for mom. Of course I'm sad for Monsieur B. because I loved him like so many of us did -- he was such a sweet little guy (big guy really) -- but I was more upset for my mom, knowing how distressed she was, is and will be. I'm grateful she's busy so she can have moments to take her away from her grief. Maybe that's part of the grieving process? Maybe we can't grieve unless we have those moments of normality that remind us of the loss when we return to our place of grief because eventually we are confronted with a disruption in that normality? There's something quite beautiful in those moments when we forget about our grief. We become grateful for life as it is.

I spoke to mom today and she told me about the great success of her opening night last night for the play and how elated she was. She had fun and enjoyed the company of all her supporters and a near full house! She saw another fringe show and thoroughly enjoyed it. She told me about her journey home and getting on the wrong bus, or thinking she was on the wrong bus. She got off and found everything to be quite still and calm, very quiet. She felt a little down. She ran into a friend who said it often feels like this after an opening of a play. There's another layer for mom though (I think). There's an emptiness or...the thought of Mr. B with her. Fortunately, she also has another kitty at home, Filston, who didn't really get along with Mr. B. but they coexisted as best they could.

Mr. B. will be missed by many people. He walked into my mother's life while she was in the hospital. In '97 my mom had a pretty severe accident that kept her in hospital for several months. My sister stayed at my mom's apartment a lot and this poor street tomkitty who was nothing but bones and this big, big face would eat outside the apartment. He had been on the street for several years. I don't think anyone really knows his age or how long he'd been on the street. My sister and my mom were well aware of who he was. I think sis convinced mom to take "Big face" into her home. Mom called him Big face because of the size of his head in relation to his body. Soon however, he filled out and just became a big cat...a really big cat.

He was gentle and loving. For a "tough" street cat who had once been shy and skittish he certainly warmed up to people. He had a community of people who loved him. Mr. B. loved a lap and would purr very loudly while kneading his paws on your lap or stomach or wherever he settled. I'm grateful that I was able to see him in April when I drove L. and the cast of characters to Montreal. He was a great cat and will be very much missed by many people on Waverly and all over who had the chance to know him.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Sunday Update

Well, the cast has returned, but the crew left again for Montreal. L. has a few days work on a series and an audition in Mtl so I'm back on cat duty! Woo hoo! Red jane has kindly offered some of her free time to help me out because y'all know how busy I've been lately. This week does have a little more breathing space. However, i did want to use some of my free time for things like writing, going to yoga, maybe even see a movie. Imagine. I don't really want to spend all of my free time chasing Rupert and Chengo around and breaking up fights between those pesky boys. I suppose it's a bit selfish. So I am grateful to red jane (i know you're reading rj so thanks in advance!).

I did miss the crazy cast. This week I'm wondering about new conflicts with them. Will Rupert take his medication without tricking me and spitting it out later? Will Chengo win the battle and get to go out late at night? Will Penny try to outsmart me at the door and run for it? Will Prima make a break for it and escape upstairs?

Today I have free time. We're going to Fiesta Farms, my favorite local gardening store. I'm going to add a few annuals to the border garden in the back, just for colour. I don't want to get many perennials since I'll get too attached and we have to move soon. I'm hoping I can take my rhododendron with me. The blooms on it are stunning in April and I'd love it to stay with me. I'm very sentimental about it since it was my first successful attempt at gardening. Also today I'm going to tend to the veggies and seedlings that have sprouted to thin them out a little.

The sky is getting bluer as the day continues and the air is cooler with very little humidity. It's a good day to be on the bike.

The day is mine!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Of an Unknown Origin

Yesterday's blog title came out of a phrasing that stays with me for some reason......

When I was a young teen (a "tween" it's called now) my friend Trina's brother worked at the local movie theatre. There were two theatres in downtown S.J., which makes a total of three screening rooms. Trina's brother let us into the movie for free and we chose theatre 1 out of the two. We saw Of Unknown Origin. This was my first cinema horror experience about a family man in a new home that is ruined by a mutant rat. Suburban vs. Urban I suppose. I can't remember all the details because it was 20 + years ago, but I do remember watching parts of the film through my fingers and screaming with Trina. I was horrified for months following (maybe even years) haunted by images of this giant rat leaving a trail of slime behind it (I'm not sure why this image remains, but probably because it was the most sickening).

So...Of Unknown Origin as a phrase has always stuck with me because it suggests mystery, terror and things that cannot be explained. Okay, so maybe it doesn't fit with the L.V. title of yesterday, but there is a certain monstrosity to the LV consumption that D. and I have participated in. No?

Now some more unexplained fun...
The film was directed by George Cosmatos who was born in Florence, Italy (my favorite Italian city -- but who doesn't love Florence once they've been there). He died in Victoria, B.C. (my favorite Canadian city). It turns out that the film was a Canada/U.S. co-production. I had no idea this was a Canadian content film. When I look at the cast list now, it seems to have been made here in Canada.

So...what does all this add up to? Nothing really. It's kind of neat though isn't it?