Thursday, December 17, 2009

A Husband's Nightmare

Hi, my name is Cindy and I'm a handbag-aholic. I've shared some of my past obssessions, like Tokidoki and Burberry and how my poor, confused husband fails to understand why I need more than one handbag. Silly boy.

Luckily, my friend Nicole understands. Understands, shares and supports my addiction. So, yesterday, we hopped into a car and drove 4 hours to Utopia (aka a premium outlet mall in Tulalip, WA). We drove around the entire mall twice, just to inspect the different stores and a complicated mathematical parking/shopping strategy that involved:

∑ (optimal parking location + proximity to favorite stores) * probability of purchases ≈ the number of bags to carry/exhaustion and fatigue = maximum limit on credit card

My primary motive was the Burberry store but it was rather anti-climatic. The asian sales girls were haughty and silly ("please don't take photos in the store" - seriously, what?) and items were only 10-20% off the regular retail price. You don't drive 8 hours for a measly 10%. Finally, they didn't have the handbags I really wanted...which was always a possibility since it is an outlet store.

Lucky for us, Kate Spade saved the day. This store is visual candy. We just walked from shelf to shelf, ooohing and ahhing. And it's more my personal preference* - clean lines without all the busy blingie stuff that the most recent styles are sporting. [*ed. My Tokidoki fascination notwithstanding.]

In a store filled with orange, pink, red and green, these are the handbags I collected for consideration. Are you surprised?

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

I Learned A Bad Thing

I am not sure how long I can bear to have this here but for the time being, I am amused...

[ed: Okay, I couldn't take the crazy, blingy photo on the main page anymore. So you'll have to make the jump.]

Jamie


Monday, November 30, 2009

Jaw Story: Revenge Of The Fallen

No, this is not a review of the Transformers sequel (though that movie was a rather mindless yet pseudo entertaining romp). No, this is about my epic saga to achieve the ideal bite.

Anyone who has visited a dentist or his evil cousin, the orthodontist, knows of their obssession with the "ideal bite". Nevermind that my teeth were straight, my bite was all wrong. So I underwent one incredibly invasive jaw surgery and several years of braces. I thought that was all behind me until I went back into the dentist last month with some muscle soreness in my right jaw.

Fast forward to today. I need braces. Again. Luckily, they've ruled out additional surgery. Just braces. And my ortho has agreed to put the braces back on for no additional charge. So, I really don't have any reason not to do this.

Except for the fact that I hated every single second that I had those braces on.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

What's Happening Part 2?

I'm undecided.

Just read about some genius who decided to send some pot via FedEx. After he had paid and left, the FedEx employee, suspicious that someone would spend $55 to ship a package that had a mere "$100" value, opened up said package. $1500 of marijuana later, the police were called in.

Now there are lawyers involved asking questions such as "what's to stop a FedEx Employee from opening any package valued at under $100?"

The obvious massive stupidity and criminal issues aside, I too am left wondering about the whole privacy issue. FedEx would have us depend entirely on the "very invovled and extensive training" their clerks receive. Hmmm.

Maybe there should be a dog at the front desk as well. A human to weigh the package and tell you how much they're overcharging you... and a dog to sniff it.

[ed: I need to get back to blogging with photos! These news articles are interesting enough but I know you're all dying to see pictures of my latest purse, the overhauled craft room. Stay tuned though, I have decided that this year's Christmas theme is going to be "TACKY"]

Thursday, October 08, 2009

What's Happening?

This morning, as I was sipping my decaf (long story) coffee and reading a community paper, I came across this little tidbit.

"The roller-coaster tracks I installed in my Northeast backyard extend slightly over my neighbor's property. He's asking whether I have permits. Does my neighbor "own" the airspace above his house? What permits is he talking about?" - Somedumbassmofo*

I promptly choked on my coffee. Howzat?! Errrr... Wuh!? What's happening here? The sheer stupidity behind this letter stopped me in my tracks - has still stopped me. Obviously, this man didn't go through the permit process before building his roller-coaster. Obviously, this man has no sense of property laws if he thinks the air above one's house is up for grabs.

Obviously, this man should NOT be building roller coasters in his backyard.

Obviously, we're looking at someone who will be shortly leaving the gene pool.

Tell Darwin I said hello.



*That wasn't really the name he signed the letter with (he actually used his own name and last initial) but I think I was more eloquent.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Bad News, James

While I am still a fan of Tokidoki purses, my attentions of late have meandered over to Burberry.

Shocking! Unthinkable! I know, I know. Me and plaid?! Such a combination would have been ludicrous just a few short months ago. Wasn't I the one who systematically purged all the hideous plaid Eddie Bauer shirts from the boy's closet shortly after we started dating? Yes. Guilty as charged. I still don't regret that move; it had to be done.

So, why plaid now? In my defense, Burberry is awesome plaid. Lovely, elegant plaid. I even like their tan/brown version of this check. But this purse is swoonworthy.

I covet *sigh*. Seeing has how I've blown through my birthday and our anniversary present allotment, it looks as though it's up to Santa this year.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Taking The Shot

Hard at work in the finished studio (oops! I haven't posted photos of the finished room - will remedy that shortly). I fiddle around with my many hobbies and the boy puts together lego sets. It works well.

And after building his soccer stadium, we were left with one question: What if the War in Star Wars could have been avoided with a plain old shootout?!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Another Chapter

Where have I been? What am I doing?!

Things have been a whirlwind of activity the last few months. Between our trips, house guests and home remodelling, the summer has flown by. We're in September now, folks. September!

And I don't think things will be slowing down anytime soon. I accepted a position as the Program Director for a local non-profit (details to follow once we have an acceptable website). Major change of pace from my usual software/corporate background and a welcome one.

Since resigning from my corporate job, I promised myself when I returned to work, it would be to something that I was passionate about, something meaningful ... where the end goal wasn't just about maximizing shareholder profit.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

August INC!!

I promise.

We have soooo many things going on right now that I don't know where to start... kitchen remodel, exterior house and studio renovation, new electronic toys and birthdays, oh my!

But I plan on having many, many stories and before/after photos in a few short days and weeks.

[ed. for those of you who don't play online games, "inc" means incoming!]

Monday, July 27, 2009

To A Good Home

I bought this bed back when I was single. Still living in Toronto, rooming with my friend Shelly in our trendy, urban Bloor Street condo.

I remember falling in love with it at first sight. At the time, it was my single most expensive purchase (I think around $1200 or $1500 with the mattress). But it was worth it to have a real bed of my own, one that wasn't a tiny single, that wasn't a futon... just beautiful, comfortable and above all, adult.

Ironically, now it reminds me of fun, carefree days... of youth. Of anticipation.



For the last 10 years, it's been banished to the spare bedroom. And it served there very well for our infrequent overnight visitors. Slowly, our aesthetic changed and though we both still love the sleigh bed design, we favor wood in dark hues.

Since I have the green light to put my studio together, a guest bedroom that sits empty 51 weeks out of the year seems silly. So, I finally bit the bullet and Craigslisted the bed this morning. 3 hours later it was gone. To another house, to another spare bedroom.

I miss it.

Monday, July 06, 2009

One Post for June?!

Wow, I suck.

I can't remember blogging so little since I started this thing. Granted I have been incredibly busy with multiple projects, house guests etc but still... one post? That's disgraceful.

But when we do have some downtime, Netflix to the rescue! The boy and I started watching the HBO True Blood Series. We're both fans of the books by Charlaine Harris but I was rather reluctant to give this a try.

Considering the massacre that was the TV adapation of Jim Butcher's Dresden Files, I had low expectations for True Blood.

Surprisingly, it's a pretty faithful interpretation of the series. Too much so at times - dialogue is pulled straight from the pages. While other items are completely re-vamped (har har).

There are 2 things that prevent me from truly enjoying the show.

1) The way Bill (the guy on the left) says "Sookie"... the main character's name. He breathes heavily into it.. "Suuuhhhkieeee". It makes my skin crawl. I looooathe it.

2) Anna Paquin. Yes, the little girl from the Piano. Everything about this selection fails, from the dyed blond hair to the horrible, horrible southern accent to her attempts at looking soulful and deep - more like constipated and confused.

Other than those minor irritants, it's been a fun distraction. Carry on.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Miles To Go

Consider it preparation and conditioning for our two week trip to the Grand Canyon and Yosemite. Unless there's a something like a Rock Band party, we've been hitting the great outdoors. It's only taken us 9 years but we've very slowly jumped onto the outdoor bandwagon that is so prevalent in the Pacific Northwest.

However, after the pain of our first hike, we decided to go for something a bit more low key. Luckily, there's a lot of beginner hiking possibilities in town. So, we loaded up the backpack and headed to Balch Creek. Half of this trail isn't so much of a hike as it is a scenic stroll ... which is probably why people looked askance at the 60 lb bag attached to the back of my boy. Hey - we're conditioning him.

Hard to believe this is 6 minutes from downtown Portland.


I like this trail very much - it's lovely, easy and despite the amazing weather, fairly uncrowded. It also has its fair share of the unexpected. Like the remnants of this stone building. Romantic, eerie and beautiful - gorgeous place to take wedding photos if you didn't know its history. Or if you like taking photos in broken down crappers. Yes, this was a restroom.



Want more? What about a tree with a nutsack? I took a lot of photos of this tree from many, many angles, laughing the whole time. "Do you SEE it?", I yelled when we first came upon it. I wish I had a tree like this in my backyard. Green thumb meet green penis.



A fairly short hike (about 4 miles total), we did learn a few things. Never, never eat at Cheesecake Factory BEFORE going on a hike. I blame the boy for that - he should have known better.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Where's The Elevator?

The sun decided to shine for a bit today so to celebrate, we went on a short hike up Multnomah Falls.

Here's the thing... if you haven't been out hiking in a while, picking a trail that's "a moderate, 2.2-mile hike with 700 feet of elevation gain to the top" is probably not the best way to dust off your hiking boots. There's an even more difficult version of this hike to Wahkeena Falls that's over 5 miles with a 1,600 foot elevation. Next time, something on more level ground.

But it sure is pretty.



Apparently, half the city of Portland had the same idea. Which made for some interesting people/shoe-watching. People don the most inappropriate footwear to climb a fairly bumpy, slick and mossy trail. Flipflops, penny loafers and ballet slippers. Seriously? Really?

And I was able to test out shutter speeds on water. Not bad despite the lack of a tripod.

Friday, April 03, 2009

A Library Card

Is a thing of beauty, really. Not counting school cards and University IDs, I haven't had a real library card since I was 14 or so. I remember during summer vacations, I would bike down to the local library in Edmonton and spend hours reading. I loved that library. Loved it.

But as I grew older, libraries became places I was forced to go for research materials or a quiet place to study. As for books, a quick trip to Borders or even faster trip to Amazon took care of my recreational reading requirements. Slowly, the boy and I acquired a small library of our own with shelves and shelves of books. Until the great purge of 2008. Too many books, too many shelves, too much clutter.

So we drifted through the last year or so without buying new books. Until I couldn't stand it anymore and walked into the local library and came out with...



Ahhhh. The blessed, blessed joy of reading. How I have missed it. We went a little overboard and brought home over a dozen books, including some I haven't read since I was 14.

And you know what's better than a good book? Reading it next to a sleeping kitty.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

I Love...

That there are photos like this. Where the hair is beyond perfect and the shorts are almost non-existent. And his smile is still his smile after 28 years.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Play With Me

Yesterday the boy called me from work with the suggestion that he take the day off. But what would we do? We threw around a few ideas until I said, "Lego". And then we were on our way.

For Christmas, I received the Green Grocer which is just an amazing blend of doll house/Lego. But I dragged my feet and hadn't even opened the box ... until I realized that we always, always do Lego together. So, we drove down to the Lego store to get something for James, picked up the Republic Attack Shuttle and spent the rest of the afternoon in our respective Lego worlds.

It's not the sexiest looking ship in the Star Wars collection but the Attack shuttle has tons of interactive pieces: missiles, torpedoes, etc.



Here's the inner bay with the weapons rack and green torpedoes that auto advance after you drop one. These little things seems to really impress the boy.



Meanwhile, in another galaxy, a little market was coming together nicely. I only got the first floor of the building done - what can I say? I'm a slow Lego builder and that was with some assistance from a very anal-retentive Lego sorter. It's not missiles or bombs but look at all the little fruit! And the mailbox in the far right! Too cute!! I think I played with the mailbox and envelopes for a good 15 minutes.



Alas, peace was short lived. Unfortunately, it seems that the Star Wars lego contingency in our house is rather a violent one so it wasn't long before the Attack shuttle started flying over head and dropping bombs on the market.

A banana is no match for a light saber.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Couch to 5K

Let me be very clear. I hate running. I have never, ever enjoyed running and always detested it. Flashback to elementary school. Back in the 70's and 80's, we suffered through the joy of the annual "Canada Fitness Tests". A grueling trial of situps, pushups, flexed arm hangs, 50m dash, etc and of course, the dreaded endurance run. Based on your age group, there were pre-determined fitness levels that you had to hit in order to receive a bronze, silver, gold or excellence medal in each event. If you sucked, you got a plastic participation badge. Awesome.

I always tried my best until the endurance run. I'm not sure how long it was - I'm tempted to say about 100 miles but I'm pretty sure that's not correct. Anyways, I always ended up walking that event as a means of saying "F@ck you" in my 8 year old way.

Ever since then, I've had a hate/hate relationship with running. But secretly, as I passed an early morning jogger while sipping coffee in the comfort of my warm car, I'd feel a twinge of envy.

But this year, I'm going to LEARN to run and I found this Couch to 5K program that should help. Granted there are easier and less painful ways to get fit (which I'm doing as well)... but running has always been my nemesis.

I went out yesterday to test the waters ...

Now I make funny noises as I laboriously climb up and down the stairs. A good sign indeed.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Pick-Me-Up

Exciting, historical times! Depressing, worrisome times. Which is it? Maybe a bit of both. I don't know about you, but reading/watching the news lately has been a trip down anxiety lane.

So, things that make me happy, in no particular order:

1. The ocean. A few weeks ago, I went to Seaside to ummm... relax from my hard life. Here's a view from our balcony at the tail-end of sunset.



2. The Office. One of my favorite shows on TV right now.

3. Stickers.

4. Books from my childhood. Right now, I'm jones'ing for some Beverly Cleary books.

5. Playing Rock Band with the boy.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Sing With Me

Valentine's day is right around the corner and here is my gift to you all... my Top 10 "Most Awesome, Do you love me like this? I think I'm going to cry" Love Songs. For readers of the male persuasion, take note. This should score you some cootchie if you play your cards right (bonus points for learning the lyrics and singing along). Trust me.

10. Separate Lives by Phil Collins. Sadly, not every love story has a happy ending. Some go on living separate lives.

9. Say You, Say Me by Lionel Richie. Watching the crush of my life walk across the Jr. High gymnasium floor, to ask me to dance to this song. [Note: For those savvy enough to realize that the boy and I didn't even live in the same country when I was in school, technically, my husband is the love of my life - crush means an unrequited thing *sigh*. You know who you are, Raymond!]

8. Everytime You Go Away by Paul Young. Because we need to know how crippling our absence will affect those we love.

7. Almost Paradise by Ann Reno and Mike Wilson. If you don't see Paradise in your lover's eyes, then you're not drunk in love enough.

6. I Honestly Love You by Olivia Newton John. Bonus marks if you can sing this in the same pitch as Olivia, while wearing a headband.

5. I want to know what Love is by Foreigner. Hey, it’s Foreigner.

4. You’re the Inspiration by Chicago. Isn’t that what we’re all looking for? The kind of love that lasts forever. (This should be in a Hallmark card or something).

3. Nothing Compares to You by Sinead O’Connor. Nothing is sexier than the reek of desperation.

2. Careless Whispers by Wham! The anguish of love betrayed. This should serve as a warning to all those who might be tempted to stray. Don't do it! You'll never dance again ’cause guilty feet ain't got no rhythm. You’ve been warned.

And my favorite…

1. Lady in Red by Chris De Burgh. The Ultimate. ULTIMATE. Everything else is less. Just less… *fade out*… I love you.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Featured Blogger

It's been a while since I featured someone. It takes a lot to impress me so a few years have passed. But it's been worth the wait - I'm sure you'll all be super duper amazed at this young man's talent.

Ultimate Outsider is fairly new on the blogfront, as far as blogfronts go but I think this one is a winner. The blogger, a young man who leads a quiet life of masturbation, has assured me that he's working on cranking out 2 posts per month.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Motion Picture Appraisals

[note: I decided to take my original post and run it through MS Word's synonym machine. This is what I resulted with.]

A week within the innovative Year. I reflect it still feels to a quantity of extent sanitary and new-fangled but these grey, overcast days are starting to transport me despondent. I necessitate supplementary snow!

We at most recent got approximately to watching some movies (by means of our Xbox 360 no a smaller amount – I discern, we’re technological infants).

Ratatouille: A rat who fancies to be a chef. Yup. I reflect I distinguish where they were going by means of this but I’m repentant, my solitary rejoinder when seeing a bushel of vermin spilling over a kitchen is to tremble. No matter how arduous you endeavor to influence me that they’ve been sanitized and disinfected. Just an uncanny, creepy theory. Someone necessity have been smoking something when they green-lit it.

Pirates of the Caribbean 3: I think WE ought to have been smoking something whilst we observed this. Perchance it would have made more sagacity. Truthfully tortuous story lines and oodles of Johnny Depp eye makeup. Meh. Not awed. Even though I did reverence the Keith Richards’ character part.

Quantum of Solace: Not as superior as the unique. Nevertheless, it has Daniel Craig so I am capable of exonerating it. The solitary thing I don’t worship is the way he purses his orifice. What’s up by way of that?

This was fun!

p.s please comment in the same stratum!