Thursday, February 15, 2007

One more 'do-do'

That's right - one more sleepy-sleepy and I'll be on my way! This time tomorrow I'll be arriving at the airport getting ready to cause havoc with my two big hockey bags. My excitement has been building steadily.

It's a good think I have work to keep me occupied today because otherwise I'd be packing, unpacking and repacking over and over and over (like I haven't already done 100 times).

Updates may be a little sparse over the next two weeks but I'm pretty sure I'll have a few opportunities to logon.

Until then, keep safe (says she who nearly slipped in the same spot again this morning), keep warm (am so never going to Siberia because that's what it felt like when I was walking to work going against the wind) and you know ... be good (or whatever comes close for you).

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

What was I thinking?

And then I decided to try on bathing suits during my lunch hour.

Black Wednesday

It would seem that Black Wednesday attitude has permeated far beyond my own personal little world.

I was surprised to be feeling more hopeful this year and not nearly so blue as I have felt on previous Black Days (i.e. Valentine's Day). Not sure why exactly, but I was not going to question a more positive attitude. (I'm even wearing a touch of white amidst all my black.)

However, people have pissed me off and generally been just plain mean to me for no reason other than they must be celebrating Black Wednesday too. OK, people, listen up - if you're going to celebrate Black Wednesday, the first rule is to just stick to yourself. Don't go being mean to other people for no good reason. It's just bad karma and will come back to haunt you. Got that? Right then, on to today's escapades so far.

This morning at the gym I did my warm up, then signed up for the next available elliptical trainer. I had to wait 5 minutes but that was fine. 5 minutes go by, I see the guy using the machine is still going but give him an extra 3 minutes because I figure he must be finishing up soon, right? Wrong. 3 minutes later I asked if he was going to be done soon. He tells me "3 more minutes". Well, you know what, this is not OK anymore. This means that my workout is going to be at least 6 minutes shorter. Anyway, I decided to just go and lean against the wall until the machine was free. I had no intention of starting an argument at that time of the morning. Well, a moment later one of the gym instructors asks me if there is a problem. I explained the situation. The instructor went over to look at the sign up sheet, came back and then had a quiet word with the guy using the machine. That didn't go over too well. He got all huffy, stomped off, stomped back to wipe it down and then got up in my face and practically spits at me, "you're not supposed to sign up in advance, you know!" I backed up, kind of surprised, and immediately felt guilty - FOR NOTHING!!! The person who had signed up in advance had crossed off their name after this guy had started, I guess. So I mentioned (politely) that I had only just put my name after his about 5 minutes ago (closer to 10 now). He goes off all red in the face, sputtering away. So much for exercise making you feel good. I got on the machine, did my workout and the short lived stress I felt pretty much disappeared. I have no idea what the hell that was all about but now, nearly 3 hours later, I've got a hundred comebacks ready for this guy.

Then, on my way to work another ass managed to totally deflate my now lessened good humour. It's snowing here today, we're expecting about 15-20cm of snow (little in comparison to other areas). Visibility isn't great right now, but the roads are still pretty good for driving downtown. I was crossing the last street before getting to work when I slipped on some ice hidden under the freshly fallen snow. Luckily I didn't fall on my ass but I did come down hard on my knee and took a second to get my balance before trying to stand up on the ice. This took way too long for the car that was stopped beside me though. I'm sure he saw me fall. But instead of waiting patiently for me to get out of the way, he started honking at me! So the next thing you know I'm scurrying out of the way so this asshole can get to where he's going that is so much more important than maybe leaning out of his window and asking if I'm alright. Well, that's when I said "enough!" to myself. He probably never heard me but I flipped him the bird (OK, inside my mitt) and shouted "asshole" as he passed me by.

Man. My good mood from exercising is completely gone and now I'm all full of rage. And I have nothing good to say about anything.

Black Wednesday hits again.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

From -32°C to +32°C

This morning's windchill has brought the temp down to -32°C. Pleasant, no?

Thankfully it's already Tuesday and that means by 8:30pm Friday (3 more 'do-do') I will be in +32°C temperatures. What a relief! If everytime it got this cold I knew I would be in the complete opposite 3 days later, I might be able to deal a little better.

Or not.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Friday Night

Ever wonder what someone does on a Friday night after a horrendous week?

Here's what I do.

Friday, February 09, 2007

The Final Countdown

This time one week today I will be about halfway to Miami, on my way to Panama.

The final pieces pulled together this week. I've done a preliminary packing of the two hockey bags I'll be taking and it's looking good for space (and still under the baggage weight limitations). Also finally got my passport so now I can sleep again. This weekend I will do what I can to finalize one of the bags. The second one I know there is no point worrying about until next Thursday night, after I do the last bits of laundry.

7 days ...

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Is it? Could it be?

Yes! It's my passport!!!

You cannot imagine how relieved I am to finally have this little booklet in my hands.

As soon as I get back I will be starting the process of obtaining a Canadian citizenship card so that I can, without any problems, travel using my Swiss passport.

What this little book has put through these few weeks ...

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


To go with the zuke soup, I felt I needed some homemade bread. But on a cold Sunday morning the last thing I wanted to do was spend all day baking bread so I found a recipe for some biscuits, which I thought would be fast, easy and tasty. I didn't know I could be so wrong.

I'd had this package of Bisquick mix in my pantry for ages now and had exactly enough to make one batch of "rolled biscuits". FYI - that is the last time I buy pre-mixed baking stuff like that. Sure they were fast and easy to make. But vile to taste. I ate one and threw the other 9 in the bin. Blech.

Bisquick Rolled Biscuits

2 cups Bisquick
½ cup milk

Heat oven to 450F. Mix ingredients until dough forms; beat 30 seconds. If cough is sticky, gradually mix in enough Bisquick baking mix (up to ¼ cup) to make dough easy to handle. Turn onto surface well dusted with Bisquick baking mix; gently roll in baking mix to coat. Shape into ball; knead 10 times. Roll ½ inch thick. Cut with 2 inch cutter dipped in Bisquick baking mix. Bake on ungreasted cookie sheet until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Makes 10-12 biscuits.

Drop biscuits:
Do not knead dough. Drop by spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet. Makes 10 biscuits.

Following that catastrophe, I opened up my Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook and found the perfect Sunday recipe. Here you go:

Nun’s Puffs recipe

½ cup butter
1 cup milk
¾ cup all-purpose flour
4 eggs
1 tablespoon sugar
Honey (optional)

Heat oven to 375°F.

Generously grease twelve 2 ½-inch muffin cups, including the edge and around the top of each cup; set aside. In a medium saucepan melt butter; add milk. Bring to boiling. Add flour all at once, stirring vigorously. Cook and stir until mixture forms a ball that does not separate. Remove from heat; cool for 5 minutes.

Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating for 1 minute with a wooden spoon after each addition or until smooth. Divide dough evenly among prepared muffin cups, filing cups about two-thirds full; sprinkle with sugar.

Bake in a 375° oven about 30 minutes or until golden brown and puffy. Remove from pan. Serve immediately. If desired, serve with honey.

Nutrition fact per puff: 137 calories, 10g total fat (6g sat. fat), 94mg chol, 114mg sodium, 8g carbo., 0g fiber, 4g prot.

Note from me: Super easy to make. Came out looking impressive. The taste however was a little rich for my liking. Soooo eggy. It was kind of like eating a quiche, or some freshly scrambled eggs. You can really only eat one before feeling slightly ill. I know this because I ate two.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Zuke soup

The other weekend I bought some zucchini and only used 1 of the 4 in the package. Figured the best way to use the leftover slightly wilted zukes was to make a nice batch of soup.

Curried Zucchini Soup

1 large apple, peeled and chopped
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
1 tbsp margarine
6 cups chicken broth
1/3 cup rice
4 cups chopped zucchini (not peeled!)
2 tsp curry (more if desired)
Salt & Pepper, to taste
½ cup evaporated milk

In large stockpot, sauté apple and onion in margarine. Add broth, rice, zucchini, curry, salt & pepper. Boil until rice is soft (about 45 minutes, dependind on the type of rice you use). Let cool. Purée. Return to heat and add evaporated milk.

Note from me: I generally find I don't need to add salt if I'm using curry in a recipe. Also, I just whatever milk I have in the fridge, generally skim. I love this recipe!

Monday, February 05, 2007

The joys of home ownership

Have spent the better part of weekend staring at my ceiling. Here's why.

Because I don't have enough other things to worry about right now!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Passport Problems

Please, can I have my passport? Pretty please? With a cherry on top?

It's been over a week since Passport Canada charged my credit card for my new passport but still nothing in my mailbox remotely resembling a pick-up notice from Canada Post. Argh! Am losing all kinds of sleep because of this.

16 days and then I'm away!