Falling off the wagon kinda hurts...except that Original Lays chips just feel so good going down. Hurt...good. Watching old school episodes of Girls, which makes me feel ok eating chips.
Feb 2, 2014 Permalink

Party For 20, You Table is Ready.

On the menu:

Hand-pulled BBQ Pork on a golden toasted roll, served with a side of crunchy cole slaw featuring hand rubbed kale ribbons.

Grubs ready to go, unfortunately the party moved to someone else's.

Good news? I've got a party waiting in the fridge!
Bad news? No one eats my cooking unless forced to a gun point.

I try not to do that anymore.

Feb 2, 2014 Permalink

Frosted Quakes

Bullets fired under the earth
Shake the house
Wake me up, again.

Jan 24, 2014 Permalink

Where's My Hassenpfeffer?

Back in the kitchennnnn...cookin' for ma famileeeee....! 
They seem to disappear....on Sundays....when I'm experimentin'.....

If you're a good cook, consider it a gift, a talent, a prize.

I commit attempted murder on perfectly fine food stuffs every year at this time with the war cry, "THIS IS THE YEAR I WILL FEED MY FAMILY!". Poor foodstuffs.

So far this year I've almost killed a perfectly decent roast beef, twice, every cruciferous vegetable known to man and my latest attempt on kale has lead to full desertion of my youngest child. I thought I KILLED IT! He thought I killllllled itttttt. 

I admit it. It's not my thing. I can bake. Not as well as my brother but I can turn out a pretty decent Christmas cookie. But that once a year baking binge under a cloud of angry smoke and determination baked into every bite probably doesn't represent the true love I should feel. The baking frenzy actually wasn't as bad this year. One afternoon, three generations in the world's tiniest kitchen (my mother's) decorating and taste-testing. It was actually delightful. But it was only once. Ever. 

Maybe buoyed by the success of Christmas baking I thought (foolishly) that cooking is also a sign of love and caring and even I should be able to do it. The husband can cook. He doesn't fret or look anxious or start planning all week for one meal to be served six days later. He strolls in at 5pm, day of, figures out what he 'feeeeels' like, then starts to assemble a perfectly turned out meal. With flavour.

The collation of ingredients for the shopping list starts on Monday for about ten dishes I think I have a chance at pulling off. So all the items are on a list, with no distinction between the actual dishes. I divide the list into grocery store rows so I don't have to retrace my steps back to find the damn mustard seeds when I'm already at the dairy case. 

Starting at the veggies there is usually one or two items I can't find so I defer it to the freezer section where I either forget or can't find what's missing from the list. This happens frequently enough in every section that when the cooking begins there can be up to three items missing from each recipe. 

It's never intentional but by Sunday I can almost make one dish following the exact recipe or go back and cherry pick at the grocery store AGAIN. Well that won't happen. 

After the first bite the Husband usually asks, "Did you follow the recipe?"

(Of course I did, how insulting, if you don't like it don't eat it!)

"Ish", I answer honestly.

He cannot fathom how I can improvise on something clearly written out instructions, reviewed by others, given multiple stars on a website and it doesn't even resemble food. It looks like grey road kill that steamed all day in a crock pot. 

"I had to make some substitutions", I offer.

"No kidding". 

The fridge overflows with these experimental left overs of attempted food murder. No one touches them again but I faithfully wrap and store the leavings because throwing foodstuffs out in the garbage is wasteful. By day four it's mercy killing. 

The crazy part is when I finally find that missing ingredient like curry leaves for that rice dish I love that Jamie Oliver makes, I buy a bushel. Then it sits in the fridge because its the ONLY ingredient I have now. 

Damn mustard seeds.

One day. As God is my witness. My family will not go hungry on the nights I try to cook... again.

Jan 21, 2014 Permalink

Another ledge... but this one moves!

Not mine for a change.

The twenty-five year old...
Quarter century club ...has almost fully left the nest, again. 

Forget boomerang generation, can you say trampoline? Lots of momentum and speed and buoyancy propelling you up only to come right back down. It may include a lot of strutting and posturing and wild-armed gesticulating providing what appears to be even greater momentum but you still come right back where you started.

Probably sounds like a complaint, right? 

Well this recent move back home  lasted more than a year  and it caused some ripples on this patch of rubber and spiralled her into a full-on regression to her teen years. My cute, personally painted, so-close-to-being-my-little-nest front room was ravaged by huge mounds of laundry and Doritos, a combo smell that may never leave. 

That probably sounded like complaining too, right?

Truth is I got a year back with her at home. She's been a dear, lovely, helpful. Wow that sentence wrote itself, my brain got hijacked there. she really didn't want to be here and some members of the family didn't make it easy for her either notnaminganycoughjaynamescough.

But finally clarity came, school plus work equals money times freedom equals and off she went full of... indecision.

She didn't gather up her forces and bound into her next life. She grabbed a little laundry here and there and dragged them to the apartment. Piece by piece (or so it seemed). What's the problem, aside from the fact the place's main living space is in an un-airconditioned attic; that it smells like all kinds of smoke; that the walls have been mired with tinged shades of old cloying nicotine? What's wrong with that? Oh yeah, the extended play heat wave, yeah that sucked the energy out of everyone but why is there still a room full of detritus from her days here? Is this a sign she's bouncing back again? 

Would a yoyo be a better metaphor? 

Determined to get her settled for good I intervened. 

"What's the problem?"

A gushing well of issues, life-questioning, future prospecting ensued. Yes, hers, very funny.

I nodded and listened and nodded some more. What could I tell her?

Your life is in kickstarter mode, you will need a little funding and encouragement from well-meaning family and friends to get your project called: "Life of insert name here" started. That it's risky, decisions are hard, adjustments take time but everything is supposed to lead to a goal of happiness, contentment, fulfillment, and bitterness that some people get that so easily and talk about on facebook ALL THE TIME. That's life. You'll work hard, it will pay for your lifestyle but there will be life changes good and bad along the way.

She knows all of that. It's not her first (or second) time living on her own. So it was a surprise to hear that she wanted to move again. Barely two weeks in and having not quite settled into her nicotine-haven near the beach. 

I summed it up in an email to a friend.

Fun Friday Fact: when your daughter has issues adapting to new environments don't feed into her crazy.

She's not settling in to her new place well SOOOOOOO she decided she needed to move AGAIN. 

Being the accommodating mother I turned to KIJIJI and found a place, booked an appointment, visited it, took pictures, and sent pictures of it to her at work.

She loved the enclosed yard! The laundry room! The location! Then she came over, we discussed the negatives, she still wanted to see it today, then she went to her (practically new-not even fully moved in, yet) place and talked to her house mate who talked her off the ledge and by 2 this morning it was decided she is not moving AGAIN. They're going to work together to make it the place they now share a home and wait out any decisions to move until they are in a better financial position to move AGAIN.

I love that she worked it out without me. I love that I got to engage in my reckless real estate-loving, decorating-judging hobby and this time it didn't cost me anything (or the husband). 

Now instead of measuring rooms and paying off someone else's rent I'm free this weekend. So I'm going to help a friend pick paint colours for her new home in Florida and shop to furnish it! And that won't cost me anything either (or the husband).

As for me and my house, I'm staying put.

Jul 20, 2013 Permalink


My friend Jane had an old cat who passed away today.

This is the tribute I sent to her.


I'm so very sad to hear about the passing of your wonderful cat, Matisse.

We will miss his commanding presence and regal composure.
He was always true to his feline nature with his outward sense of superiority
and his unrelenting demand to be acknowledged AND ignored simultaneously, a feat lesser cats would envy.

That he put up with you for so long is a testament to your ability to live down to his expectations.
He owned you.

Well done.
Apr 10, 2013 Permalink


for the pre-menopausal....

If you don't like this personality, wait five minutes.
Jun 16, 2012 Permalink

Darth, I get it.

I completely understand.

You were cranky, tired, mean and vengeful for a reason.

You had sleep apnea. I can see why you'd have your breathing machine on at night but don't understand how you could stand it on all day, maybe you liked the way it made your voice sound -all bassy, resonant and inhale-y.

Not sure what the statistics are for people dying from sleep apnea, probably not that many, I wonder how many people were killed as a result of someone's sleep disorder. It's no fun to wake up tired, crabby, tired, everyday especially when you think you just slept through eight hours of uninterrupted sleep. It's enough to make you want to kill.

Perception vs reality.

A sleep study is a mild form of torture. Imagine a floor in an old office tower with multiple examining rooms all beautifully appointed with double beds and romantic florescent lighting. Once you get in your p.j.s they Franken-wire your entire body with archaic methods like sticking toothpaste in your hair to hold the probes on. Probes are placed all over your head, face, chin, jaw, neck, heart arms and legs. Two straps go over your waist and chest and a heart rate sensor is clipped to your finger. Each probe has multiple wires that lead back to some kind of a CPU, beside the bed which in turn sends the signals to some room where supposedly someone stays awake all night watching the signals. I imagine it looks like the bridge of the Enterprise. 

     I also imagine Scotty telling Kirk, 'the engines canna take it!'. Every twitch registers, wakefulness is timed and calculated. An infrared eye stares at you from above and the room's audio is also recorded. 

As I lay there uncomfortably trying to fall asleep, thoughts raced through my mind. What if they count the number of times I fart? What if I have to get up to go to the bathroom? 

Igor's disjointed tinny voice pipes in through a speaker, "Call me if you need to visit the bathroom, I will unhook you, just say my name, I'll hear you." (Say my name? Really? Lie here and just declare, "I need to go".)

 What if the probes can READ MY MIND and Igor and his Franken-buddies are sitting together laughing and placing bets on how many times Gotye will grind through my teeth and mind maddeningly keeping me awake! Can THEY HEAR MY THOUGHTS? Did I think of anything racist, rude, evil, etc? Do my thoughts offend, whoever you are? WAIT! I am totally lying in an office in the downtown core on the tenth floor in a bed I can't get used to and my thoughts won't turn off! Is this real life?

I try to toss and turn but my movements are met with resistance, millions of wires try to pull me back but I drag them over to my side with me. The adhesive on my neck bandage is starting to itch, the probes continue to pull back stubbornly. 

"If you want me to sleep I have to get comfortable and that means tossing and turning 'til I find the best position, get it!" I internally lecture the probes and wires. I imagine the wakeful probe watchers snickering at my attempts at comfort. Finally, things loosen up, I feel my mind settling, drifting to...

Igor walks in the room and plugs me back in.

I'm wide awake again. Wondering if I'll just stay awake and ruin the study.

"We never got a sleep reading, Cap'n, but you should check out what she was thinking all night."

"Dammit, Scotty. Not another night of Gotye! I hate that song!"

(You didn't have to count me out...)

"We gave it our best, sir."


I give up trying to sleep and will Igor to come in and unhook me. No response. Igor must have fallen asleep.

"I have to go to the bathroom" I state as if Igor is beside me.

No response.

"I have to go to the baffroom" I call out like a potty-training toddler.

Igor arrives. Unplugs me and stuffs the miles of wires into my waist band. I go into the brightly florescent-lit hallway and do my business, looking up for signs of an infrared eyeball or a microphone. I try to pee quietly.

Back in bed the wires are untangled and plugged back in, I settle in for more hours of wakeful, teeth-grinding, fun.

Finally after hours of lying awake waiting Igor walks in unplugs me and sends me on my way. I try to scrub the toothpaste off my face, it smears around instead. I pat the top of my head and there's more toothpaste pushing through my hair. It's five am, I've been awake all night and now I have to ride public transportation home with a full head of toothpaste. Talk about your ride of shame. The only good news is that no one is awake enough to notice.

Weeks later I'm back at the clinic for a follow up.

"It took you 39 minutes to fall asleep" the doctor reported.

"But I didn't sleep at all".

"Yes, you slept for five hours" he said a little too smugly. 

I gave him the side eye and sneered. He said there were some signs of insomnia. (Really) and when I slept I snored. (Sure, uh huh). 

"And you stopped breathing approximately 13 times per hour" he declared a little too triumphantly. 

"So you have sleep apnea" 

Not a surprise. The husband said at night I had bouts of complete silence followed by loud gasps like I was struggling for air and very LOUD snoring. 

We ended the appointment with another one set for that night to try at CPAP machine to register the differences. Great. Another night of Igor, probes and now a lovelySnuffleupagus mask.

"Just like somebody that I used to know" he whistled as I walked out.
Jun 9, 2012 Permalink

Chronologically Speaking...

SIX SYLLABLES! Not even a Monday! Although I'm still sore about the Thursday syllable bomb: multi-generational. (Seven) Way to go Maria F.

You can add multi, micro, able and ally to lots of words to stretch them out but it's better when they're multisyllabically fortificated without.

But I digress.

I'm half way. I've decided to live to 106 so tomorrow I'll be half way there. to honour another year of life four of us went to Bella Italia on vacation. Three of the four share the same birthday. It's more coincidence than anything but we used it as an excuse to celebrate. I've been back for two weeks but I still dream all things Italian. The wine, the food the culture in your face, the beauty that doesn't stop. Breath-taking. I want to go back every year, for at least the next 25 years.  

Who knew when I was a kid being schooled in Italian swearing by classmates that 40 years later I would get to think of those words again in their home country? One Italian boyfriend taught me to say horrible things that I turned into cute little rhymes. He refused to introduce me to his parents. He said it was because the only girl who could ever meet Italian parents was the one marrying their son. I think it's because he was afraid I might drop the fanculo-bomb at dinner. 

That and I was a manga -cake (actually strudel) so I would never do.

In real Italy I never heard anyone swear, lots of muttering under the breath but no overt, passionate yelling. It made me feel like I didn't really live the real Italian experience. It did come close at a couple of restaurants but I blame the Prosecco. I won't begin to describe the land, the food, the gelato, it's too fresh, too raw to relive just yet. But I can't think of a more wonderful place to have a holiday. Some  places were so unreal we thought Disney had come in and created their own version of the historical cities. Now having experienced Italy off the beaten track, without the cruise ships and tour guides I feel like I lived it and I'm ready to go back.

Maybe next time I'll get to use some of the colourful words ingrained in my brain.

Happy birthday to all my fellow celebrants! May the 28th be with you.
May 27, 2012 Permalink

One Step Forward...

(two steps back)

You ever get the feeling your life is not in forward motion? Like while your innate sense is to feel yourself marching, moving, aging with time, going progressively toward something with a semblance of momentum, it's like everything is bending, bobbing and weaving away from the linear timeline just to MESS YOU UP?


It's kind of like dodge ball but the ball is looping around you rather than hitting you, you know it's supposed to connect and there will certainly be pain so you just want to get it over it with but the ball keeps hovering around, teasing, making you feel like you should dance with it, help it find it's way to make that equal and opposite thingy happen like life is supposed to. 

Yeah, just like that. Only with more sentences. 

It's not even standing still it's defiantly moving in an unexpected way, mostly backwards. Stupid life. You need to upgrade, get a new one. 

Unless of course this is the course. Bob and weave, duck, roundhouse kick back. Cha cha cha. Looks like there's a new rhythm in town and it's unpredictable. 

Buckle Up.
May 27, 2012 Permalink


I’m a work in progress — a wife and mom and a member of the TV industry.



100 things about me



1140 posts since 2004.


Accordion Guy
The Extraordinary Mundane
Mighty Girl
In Palinode’s Palace
Miss Doxie
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My Boring Ass Life
My Life Is One
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so the fish said