Category Archives: books

A Backlog of Words

Workouts:  don’t even ask.  Actually, that’s not true.  There have been some token workouts, but all-in-all, it’s been quite pathetic really.

The birthday season will officially end tomorrow with a last dinner with some business associates.  My enjoyment of the festivities has definitely reached a saturation point.

I need life to get back to normal.  Quiet-normal.  Boring-normal.  Most of all, thin-normal.

This summer of socializing has re-introduced a few pounds to my backside.  A new weight loss project is underway, with a focus on healthy eating, moving more, and a little more accountability.  I’ll blog about that within a few days, hopefully.

As for a backlog of words, not only have the frequency of my posts been suffering, my reading time has been severely diminished.

I have literary constipation, if you will.

Here’s the line-up of the books on my nightstand:

1.  Chi Running.  I haven’t even cracked it open yet.

2.  The Life of Pi.

A gift from Older Sis.

3.  The Glass Castle.  Another present from Older Sis.  Canadian author.

4.  Some mags and easy reading…..

and this (note the “easy fall recipes”!)

5. And last, but certainly not least, this was in my mailbox last week.  It’s an end-of-summer ritual….

6.  This neat gift has also not even been opened, although it’s been sitting on the coffee table for 3 weeks.

I’ve been wanting this for ages!

These don’t even include the cheesy cowboy-romance book that Junior Finance Guy (and his wife) included in my little cadeau.  You can bet that I’ll be enjoying that one sometime very soon, especially the steamy parts where the cowboy hero takes off those chaps.  Oh my……..

I may get in a little reading time tonight.  🙂



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Filed under books, career, dieting, fitness, friends, health, summer

Harry Lives!

Workout:  30 minutes before work this a.m.

I just cried my heart and my eyes out tonight.

With joy and sadness.

With joy because Harry lives!  With sadness because it’s so hard to say goodbye to Harry in the end.

If you haven’t figured it out, I saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 tonight.

I’ve been a fan of Harry’s since the first book came out.  I don’t like to jump on hype bandwagons, but I do love to read.  I’ve waited for each book and each movie with great anticipation.  There aren’t that many things in life that give that much joy, but J.K. Rowling has been the universe’s gift to all who read.  The books truly are brilliant and magical.

Do you know that I have a high school girlfriend who is “Christian”.  She grew up in a family with no alcohol, no movies, no dancing, no parties.  She has married and is raising her family this way (although she did have a few crazy years when we moved away from home and became roommates.  Lord, if her mama only knew!!!).

She refuses to let her children (now teens) read the Harry Potter books.  They are about black magic and witchcraft, she says, which will contaminate her children’s souls.  Her pastor says so.  Oh dear.

I am grateful for my parents’ encouragement to read, for the gift of words and ideas, and for their ability to let go and let us make our own decisions about what we will think.

And because this was given in a strict Roman Catholic household, it was a true blessing.

My deep thoughts on pop culture, literature and religion on this fine summer day.  🙂  Especially with a glass of wine on the deck.  How Irish of me!

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Filed under books, brain, friends, high school, joy, maturity

Last Day – William and Kate

Workout:  2 miles

Today, I’m taking a quiet day.  Quiet.  Easy.  No running around.  No socializing.  Just laying low.

One of the things I like most about being on holidays is actually spending time at home.  In my house.  In my yard.  Participating in my life rather than sending my energy out into the world.   Puttering in the kitchen.  Watering the flowers.  Reading on the deck.

Watching Will and Kate leave Canada on CBC News.  Last day for pictures from north of the 49th parallel….

The Calgary Stampede.  Looks like everyone is having fun!

Will wants to be a cowboy…I can tell.

Can you tell they are newlyweds?  So romantic….. ❤

Sad to see them go…..

Actually, I need to spend a little less time in front of the TV watching this, as riveting as it is.  Tomorrow I’m headed to a girlfriend’s cottage for a few days of lounging on the dock, reading, swimming, kayaking and generally hanging about doing nothing.

Since the cottage is on an island, we’ll be leaving from this dock.

Ahhhhh….it’s holidays!

Oh, and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is finally getting interesting….on page 450!  Talk about a slow beginning.

All the better to relax!

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Filed under books, fitness, friends, Kate Middleton, love, William and Kate

Busy Holidays

Workout:  Wednesday – none.  Thursday – 3 miles

It’s a perfect summer day – a bluebird day, as skiers say.  Not a cloud in the sky, no humidity (a big Ottawa problem), a lovely breeze, and 25C degrees.  Absolute perfection.

Yesterday was not so nice, but the thundershowers fit perfectly with my plans for the day.  After 2 1/2 months of dealing with a cracked molar that went south, my crown is finally done and I have a very shiny, better-than-new molar.  I’d take a picture and post it but who really wants to look inside my mouth at all my fillings?  If you do, too bad.  Not happening.

Downside:  no more excuses to eat frosting out of the can!!  😦

So I was up early for my 8:00am appointment with my 12 year old dentist (just seems that way – he’s really 30-something).

After that, I zoomed to Mom’s (90 minutes) to spend the day chatting and relaxing and eating too much of my Mom’s delicious baking.  She made a whole cake even though I only stayed about 8 hours!!  And I wonder why I have a hard time sticking to the mission…..  🙂

I was exhausted when I arrived home at 8:00pm – I did more yesterday than Will and Kate!  They only visited Slave Lake, Alberta, to comfort 2,000 people.  Not nearly as tiring as my day.

If you don’t know the story, a huge portion of this town of 7,000 people was gutted by forest fire that consumed more than 400 homes with only 10 minutes notice.  Thanks to the incredible first responders, no lives were lost.  However, it’s the second largest insurance disaster in Canadian history.

By the way, my Mom thinks Kate is far too thin and desperately wants to invite her to dinner so she can “feed her up”.  Once again, I wonder why I have a hard time sticking to the mission.

Today has been a lovely day.  I had an early morning coffee at Tim Hortons before my walk this morning.  After a quick shower, I headed downtown to have lunch with the Hot French Lobbyist.

We went to Mamma Grazzi\’s for a lovely lunch on the patio.  Picture this:  cobblestone patio surrounded by heritage buildings.  Absolutely lovely.  Going to try to find a picture…..

We sat at the table in the bottom left hand corner of this photo.  My lunch is below (lifted from the restaurant website).


The rest of the day is going to be quiet.  Just me and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

Enjoy your lovely summer day.

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Filed under books, dieting, fitness, food, frosting, Kate Middleton, relaxation, sugar, summer, teeth, Uncategorized, William and Kate



Saturday:  3.5 miles;  Sunday:  3.0 miles;  Monday:  cut the grass/trim/weeding, 1.5 hours

I’m on holidays!  Happy July 4th to all my US friends.

Since we’re still drowning in love for Will and Kate in Canada, here’ s my favorite pics to share because I’m sure you can’t find any on the internet….

In PEI, Will won the dragon boat race.  How can you not love this picture?  Fun!

This is my favorite dress so far (Katherine Walker)…

Although this is pretty cute too (Alexander McQueen), with a ponytail….

And the chef’s coat may just be the best look yet….

I’m thrilled to be on holidays.  I’ve spent the last several days enjoying the steamy weather, lounging in Best Friend’s pool and getting lots of exercise.

This afternoon, after some running around to find it, I dropped into a chair on my shady deck to start The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

I’m only a year behind everyone else, but I hear it’s a meaty read and I wanted some time to get into it.  Unfortunately, I was drinking Skinny Girl Margs while I was reading and now I can’t concentrate!

They are actually pretty good, but they need a little extra sugar.  I might need some dinner before I pick the book back up again, or I’ll end sprawled face down in my book on the deck!  Isn’t that a visual???

On the agenda for tomorrow:  a walk on the canal at Dow’s Lake with Best Friend in the morning.

In the afternoon, I have an appointment with a potential new investment adviser, and then I’m having drinks with my physiotherapist in the evening.

Somewhere in there, I really must find the time to take a shower.  Just sayin’.

I really have to find something to do on this holiday…..I don’t seem to be able to keep myself busy!??!  Ha!

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Filed under books, fitness, friends, fun, Kate Middleton, love, Royal Wedding, sugar, summer, Uncategorized, William and Kate


Workouts:  3 45 minute walks after work last week, 2 30 minute lunctime walks.  Not sure what else – don’t remember.

I’m reading an interesting book (of course!) called The Habit Factor by Martin Grunburg.

The gist of the book, and I’m only half way through, is that much of our lives are governed not by concious action, but by habits, good and bad.  The author argues that it’s the snall consistant actions of our everyday lives that determine what we accomplish in life.  He has lots of great quotes from both historical giants and current great minds that support his theories – you may see some of them on the quote board shortly.

While I’m reading this, I’m formulating a short term (30 day) plan for better health,  As I move through the book, the author  will show how to apply his strategies to every area of life => career, health, energy, money, family, spirituality.

Interesting ideas.  I”m hoping that by building on my health experiments of this year and using some of the techniques in the book, I can reach some new health goals.

But first I have to get this freakin’ laptop fixed!!!!  It’s driving me crazy.  It’s going into the shop tomorrow for a couple of days, so bear with me.  Wish I could take some pictures of how pretty my wild roses and peonies are!  Here’s a pretty picture of what mine sorta look like.

On a completely different note (but not really), this is a small discussion about cycles and hormones.  And because I’m a math nerd, I have a graph…..

Isn’t it pretty?  God, I love numbers.

I am a creature of hormones.  Sometimes, I feel that I’m at the mercy of my hormones.  Just like my Mom, by the way.  My sisters take after my Dad.  I’ve kept a mood journal in the past to tie my state of mind to my hormones.  Here’s what I know for myself:

Days 1 – 14:  high energy, good mood, very moderate appetite

Day 14, 15:  high energy, high libido, party girl!

Day 16 – 24:  moody, lower energy, HUNGRY!  (This is new as I approach 50)

Day 24 – 28:  sad, exhausted, hungry (PMS)

Let me say that I’m never really outwardly bitchy because (if I do say so myself) I have very well developed social skills.  I mean, it’s only fair to the people around you to take responsibility for your words, right?

My goal as I finish this book is to take the knowledge gained from the experiments and work to formulate some small good habits over the next 30 days.

Stay tuned………


Filed under books, brain, dieting, Dukan, fitness, food, fun, health, joy, maturity, menopause, money, sugar


I thought I would continue the “days” theme, but just for today.  Then, it’s just old.

Workouts:  Saturday – 2 hours gardening;  Sunday – none;  Monday – 5km walk

It’s a gloomy holiday Monday, which is just fine with me.  I’ve been running errands, and working in the yard, and getting stuff done.  They don’t call it Vic-CHORE-ia Day for nothing!

Today, other than visiting a gardening center for flowers for the front planters, I’ve been lounging around the house.

I read this book – First Family by David Baldacci.  On sale at Chapters for $7.99.  It was pretty good.

Now, I’m watching Oprah – the third last show – and I’m blubbering like an idiot!  I haven’t watched the final season regularly, but this is quite touching.

Now I’m going to have to watch tomorrow and Wednesday (the final show)!

Tomorrow morning is my job interview.  Feeling a little nervous, but I think I’m ready.  Mom is going to Mass tomorrow morning and I’m finishing my research now.

Wish me luck.

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