Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Rib Fest Approacheth

Apparently Rib Fest '09 is starting up already.

I'm assuming you've heard of Rib Fest? If not: a) I pity you... and b) I'm going to wager a bet that you can guess what Rib Fest is all about. (Rib. Fest.)

Andrew and I discovered it last year over labour day weekend. We, along with a few other friends, wandered from booth to booth, sampling the fare which included everything from ribs (but of course) to blooming onions (think giant, greasy fried onion with batter...mmm...) corn on the cob and beer.

Each booth claims that their ribs are far superior to everyone else's - and the only way to determine if they're right or not, is to sample them.

And sample them we did.

We all walked out of Rib Fest '08 with full bellies, feeling more than content, and not sorry at all that we participated in a fest that is centered around nothing but gluttony. We also decided as a group that we would make it an annual event. Every labour day, we plan to meet up and go to Rib Fest together. (Such a lovely, healthy tradition, no?)

Imagine my delight when Andrew told me that Rib Fest was going to be around on Canada Day and friends of ours wanted to know if we'd like to go. You mean I don't have to wait until September for ribs and greasy fried onions?? Someone up there really likes me.

So that's what we'll be doing on Canada Day this year. I tell you, folks - nothing says patriotism like stuffing your face with meat.

Man, I love this country.

Friday, June 26, 2009

The Week of The Writer's Block

I honestly wish I had interesting things to say this week. But I just don't. Am uninteresting. Am failure. Must hang head in shame until some brilliant writerly-inspiration hits me smack in the forehead.

Apologies to you, Internet. Feel free to shake your head disapprovingly at me.

Go ahead. I will wait.

**Pausing for well-deserved Internet disapproval**

Will write something when interesting again.

Don't hold breath.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sunshine, lollipops, rainbows and...

I'm turning into a whiny little twit with nothing exciting to say.

I feel for you, dear readers.

Last night, after going out for dinner with friends, I went home and unloaded on Andrew. Poor guy. I had kept all my annoying "things" inside during dinner (didn't want to ruin the pizza we were chowing down on), so I had to let loose on someone who wouldn't look at me like I was the WORST dinner companion EVER afterwards.

First, it was about how cranky I am lately. Then I went on to discuss how things people say really rub me the wrong way.

In conclusion: I was a delight.

On top of my crankiness, I've been exhausted and feeling sickly this week. Fun!

So, as you can see, my lack of blogs are actually saving you from the torture I've been putting Andrew through. Consider yourself lucky, readers!

And... have a sunshine-filled day.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Vacation, vacation, what's your function?

I'm REALLY feeling the need for vacation lately.

Although, I'm not quite sure why. Of course, other than the fact that I've realized I repeatedly walk into work in a chipper mood and end up downright cranky 2 to 3 hours later.

Nobody does anything in particular to bug me. There aren't any blow-ups or arguments (generally). I just get cranky.

Fun, eh?

So, that's usually a tell-tale sign of me needing a vacance. Not that I lead a stressful life or am overworked or need to get away from the craziness that is my life. I just need to leave stuff behind me and spend a few weeks with Andrew.

(How good does THAT sound right now? Pretty darn good, that's how.)

Sleeping in. Eating without abandon. Not checking email (well, not regularly, at least). Seeing new things. Doing whatever we feel like.

It's all about recharging the batteries. And other such clichés. (Like: Taking some "me" time. Unwinding. Getting a break from life. Taking care of number 1. And so on.)

Whatever way I choose to say it... I needs me some.

Monday, June 22, 2009


Sorry for the lack of blogging - again.

Honestly, just can't think of anything to write. It's the dreaded writer's block. Urgh.

Anyway, had a fabulous weekend, which included all of the following:
  • Getting a pedi
  • Having my hair did
  • Shopping
  • Going out for dinner with the fam for Ma's birthday
  • Baking a birthday cake
  • Eating lots and lots and lots of said cake
  • Having a barbecue for Dad's day
  • Purchasing a gold medal ribbon ice cream cake
  • Eating lots and lots of said ice cream cake (notice there is one less "lots" in this instance. I ate a little bit less of the ice cream cake than the birthday cake - and that's only because my Dad insisted on taking the ice cream cake home).

All in all, it was a good, gluttonous weekend. Hurrah!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Art, art, bo-bart...

Last night I went to an advertising industry event called: "Art from the Unexpected".

The premise was this: leading CEOs, suits and other very important business folk (in other words, NON-creatives) in the advertising and marketing industry were asked to create a piece of art based around a certain concept.

They then had exactly one minute to present their art to the crowd, explaining the inspiration behind what they created. After that, all pieces of art were up for bid in a silent auction with all the proceeds going to Sketch. (An organization that helps homeless or at-risk youth by providing them with opportunities to create art).

Everyone started with the caveat: "I'm SO not a creative, but -" The truth was, they did some really cool shit.

Of course, when it came time to the silent auction, I can't help but feel that politics came into play. You know... so-and-so really wanted to make a business connection with that one guy, so he bid $600 on his art, even though he didn't really understand it. Or - this guy has a big name in the industry and so-and-so wants to network with him, so he bid on his art, whether it was good or not.


The point is - some cool art was created, LOTS of money was raised for a good cause. And I got to hang out at the Steam Whistle Brewery and nibble on some delicious foods while enjoying myself at a creative event. Not a bad evening, I'd say.

Oh - and, being who I am (very resistant to the whole schmoozing/name dropping crap that comes along with advertising), I didn't even attempt to hand out a single business card or chat up some person I didn't know.

I will go far in this biz, I tell you.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

As I don't want to disappoint my readership (Mom and brother), I am writing this new blog for you right now.

Of course, I haven't much to say. Well, actually that's not true. Lots to say, but don't know where to start.

So instead, I will show you pictures of me eating in various locations.

Here is a picture of me eating gelato in Italy. Note the giant scoop.

Here I am in my kitchen, eating some kind of vegetable that is difficult to make out. It's green though. Good for me.

This is me at a wedding, eating ice cream. Note the look of pure joy on my face.

Finally, here I am with twinkie in mouth at my brother's 30th. It was a white trash theme. I don't normally where that much blue eyeshadow. Honest.

Monday, June 15, 2009


My apologies for my lack of bloggy-ness today.

Fun and merriment to come tomorrow.


Thursday, June 11, 2009

Tell us what you're really thinking

And now, a pause from the regular blog content to bring you something I've needed to do for almost a week now:


Ah yes, that feels better. Much better.

Said sigh of relief refers to a personal situation I've been internally dealing with. Since this is my blog about all things personal, I have a feeling I can speak of it openly here. Actually, I think I need to speak about it openly. It's cathartic and all, y'know.

So. Last Friday, Andrew and I got some upsetting and scary news about his Dad's health. Without going into every little detail, it had to do with the big, freaky "c" word. The one that rhymes with "dancer".

And without going into the details of Andrew's feelings and how we reacted and how we dealt with it and all that... I'll just say that we were worried. Very worried.

We held onto each other. We cried. We talked about it. And then we decided to be very positive about the whole thing because that's how Andrew's Dad was dealing with it. And if the person who it actually physically affected could be positive, then - by golly - so could we.

So, when we saw Andrew's family on Sunday, we didn't really talk about it. I didn't really express my feelings to Andrew's Mom or Dad. I didn't say what I was thinking. I didn't even really hug them as tight as I wanted to. I was, in other words, awkward and unsure of how to act.

I chalk that up to the fact that I'm quite an emotional being. Yes, I know how to be positive and think the best and not dwell on the hurt. But, as everyone who knows me well knows, I have to get it all out. I have to let my emotions show. I have to say exactly what's on my mind. And if I don't, I either fester, or I get all awkward.

Fast forward to yesterday, when Andrew's Mom called me with very, very, VERY good and positive news. Andrew's Dad is going to be fine. It's not the life-threatening doom and gloom it could have been. He'll have surgery and that will be that.

As I was sitting at my desk at work, she told me. I listened. The organized side of me shone through when I took notes about the prognosis so I could relay the information to our friends and family later. I was happy and elated. And then...

I burst out crying.

I told her that I was so relieved and that I was very happy, but my goodness - I could not stop the crying. I turned into a big, emotional mess, blubbering and all. Every feeling that had been pretty much internalized when I was around my in-laws came pouring out of my tear ducts.

And then, once I got myself under control, I felt so much better. I felt relief. I felt as if I got it off my chest.

I realized something I guess I've always known about myself. A good cry... It's invaluable to me.

Well, that, and I've got a whole lot of love to give you, if you'll allow me to show it.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Taxi cab confessionals

Working in the advertising industry means that sometimes you have to be a mover-and-a-shaker. Rub elbows. Drop names. Schmooze, if you will, with well-dressed, slick and fancy industry peeps.

That's what I did last night. (Except that, I mostly stuck to my own group of coworkers, while eyeing the food and helping myself to free beer all night long.)

Afterwards, I took a cab home. And, whenever I take that long cab ride home from downtown to my house in the burbs, I like to chat with the cab driver. They're generally very friendly people who like to talk about themselves. I find their stories very interesting. And I like learning about different cultures, religions and ways of life from passionate people.

So, last night I initiated the conversation by mentioning to my cabbie that it was too bad he would have a long ride back with no fare. He told me he'd be stopping at a nearby mosque to pray, so it wasn't all bad.

"Pray? Now??" I said. (It was 10:30 at night).

"Oh yes. Muslims pray 5 times a day."

I told him I thought that seemed like a lot. He just chuckled and said that the required number of praying times per day used to be much higher for Muslims. And Muslims like praying, anyway.

He also told me that if he couldn't find a mosque, he had a rug in the trunk of his cab, and would pull over to pray. I admired his dedication.

He carried on with more and more details of the Muslim faith until we neared my house. It was only at that point that we spoke of something other than Muslims (and I think he was just trying to be polite). He said that the street I lived on was lovely, and his wife would love a bungalow. I said thank you, I was very happy with our street, but my goodness would the construction ever end??

We laughed a little.

And then he gave me his business card and asked me to please call him if I needed a ride home anytime I'm in the Bloor/Yonge area.

"My name is Mohammed," he said.

I put my hand out for him to take. "Nice to meet you, I'm Heather."

His face shone with excitement. "That Muslim name!" he exclaimed in his strong accent.

"Um... I'm pretty sure it's Scottish" I smiled.

He started at me blankly for a moment. "Heda?"

"Heather," I repeated. "H-e-a-t-h-e-r."

His face crinkled up into a smile. "Scottish" he repeated. "Did you know he won the World Cup? Scottish. He won!"

"Soccer?" I asked.

"No, no... cricket. Scottish - he won!" he said excitedly.

I smiled broadly. "Very cool."

Just like my cab ride home.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Book report

On my way into work this morning, I finished reading The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. And then I sighed as I stared into space and smiled to myself.

It's that kind of a book.

Written by Mary Ann Shaffer and Anne Barrows, it's the story of a writer named Juliet Ashton, who's looking for her next book idea. She eventually finds her story in the letters sent between her and a group of people living on the British Island of Guernsey. (The story's set in 1946... hence, the letters. No email. Or blog posts. Or other forms of cold communication that show no emotion.) (Or so some people say.) (To them, I say: ha! I am queen of showing emotion online. Just check out this emotion: :) I'm happy.)

Anyway, as Juliet becomes more and more involved in the lives of the people she meets through her correspondence, so did I. I am fully aware of how cliché I sound right now. But honestly, I totally got wrapped up in this book and the characters and their lives. I couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen with them, each time I opened the book.

It's a quick read - partly because I didn't want to put it down, partly because it's written in a simple style. And to me, the simplicity worked. It was exactly what I needed at the exact right moment.

A happy, feel-good story that made me smile to myself.



Monday, June 8, 2009

Woe is me, with a capital Woe


Did I have a crap week, last week.

It started on Monday with fever and chills and body aches. Ugh, how I hate that feeling when your head/hair/skin hurts. Anytime Andrew tried to touch my head, or run his hands through my hair, I would cringe because my skin was so achey to the touch.

Despite feeling like death, I went to the doctor to get my ankle looked at. Cankle needs much rest. Possibly physio. So - no working out for me for at least another 2-3 weeks, I'm guessing. My body needs rest. Which, no! I hate not being able to do any physical exercise whatsoever for weeks at a time. So hard.

Anyway. I called in sick on Tuesday too, as I wasn't any better yet. But the thought of being off work for two days in a row was making me feel guilty and apprehensive. So I showered off the sick for Wednesday and made my way into work.

I actually managed to make it in on Thursday, too. But at around 3ish on Thursday afternoon, my right ear just completely clogged up. And, I was going to try to just ignore it, but whenever I moved my head, my ear hurt. (I figured that wasn't a great sign).

So, I did what most people would do when feeling sick and sad and hurt. I called my Daddy.

He told me to go to a clinic right away because it sounded like an ear infection and I could NOT fly like that (I was supposed to be flying out to Ottawa the next night at 7pm for a weekend with my favourite girlies). So I went to a clinic.

And it was an ear infection. And I could NOT fly like that. (The doc told me I could rupture an eardrum and lose my hearing. Ummm... great.)

So no girls weekend for me. Which - maybe was okay, because my body was obviously shutting down on me, part-by-part and I was a little too slow on the uptake to notice the signs and just give myself a rest, already!

So I stayed home Friday, too. And spent the day in bed, on the couch, and then - with my arms wrapped around Andrew, trying to be strong for him. (Not the time to go into that right now, though.)

Overall, I'm feeling a bit drained. And kinda exhausted. But I'm on the mend.

Ready to embrace the new week.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Boo to the flu

Oh my lanta... have I been sick as a dog lately. Got knocked on my ass by a flu on Sunday night/Monday morning and have felt awful ever since.

I just crawled out from under my bed covers today to face the world again.

A much funner, more eloquent post will follow when my flu-brain goes away.

Soon, I hope.