Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Happy Holidays!

And so this is Christmas...
I'm going on holidays TOMORROW. At this time tomorrow I will be... at work... ok ok, at this time plus one hour I will be on my way to the airport to hop on a plane (where I will work on my wtr) and fly to Calgary! I land early afternoon which means I will be in Banff before dinner... which means I can nap! I'm mostly packed for it, just a few things left like getting the baking out of the freezer and a few other things.

It finally feels like Christmas is coming. Last week I wasn't feeling it at all but I think that's because I was stressing out about all the stuff I need to do before I leave. Yesterday night I made the decision to forget about my WTR for the time being and just enjoy my last few days with friends. I figure I have a total of 18 travel hours in the next 2 weeks that I can utilize for wtr-ing. I had a birthday party on Saturday, house dinner last night and work dinner tonight - all of which would have been miserable had I been thinking about my wtr. Really, letting it go for a few days was the only sane option. So, party saturday was FUN, dinner last night was GREAT and dinner tonight will be GREAT also, as a result of my decision.

My boss asked me for an xmas wish list today... I haven't made a wish list in almost 10 years! Better get thinking...

Special holiday wishes to Marcia, Davide, Carmen, Graeme, Nik, Robela, Davela, and Jan!
Happy Holidays y'all! I will be back January 9th!

Thursday, November 30, 2006

They say that when you are sick it's best to sleep because your immune system can work best when you are asleep. What if you can't sleep? Well the answer is, you are sick forever. I know this because I have been sick for 8 days. I have not had a good nights sleep in about 2 weeks. Tuesday night I woke myself up because I heard my bed creeking violently. Turns out I was having a coughing fit in my sleep. Last night I didn't fall asleep until extra late because I had to sleep sitting. This was the only way that my sinuses would stay relatively clear. All in all it has been a brutal time for me. I have been trying to quit baking until I'm better because no one wants to eat cookies full of erica snot, but it's hard. I've been freezing alot of dough, figuring if I bake them when I am well, any sickness in the dough will bake off!!

Sometimes I gross myself out.

This weekend is Jesssssssssica's birthday so we are going out Friday night for that. Should be a good time, lots of people are coming out AND I have a new top. Woo! Saturday night is my work xmas party, I think it will be fun because I really like the people I work with and this gives us a chance to hang out in a more casual environment.

Oh yes, and I will be working on my work-term report. No woo.

Monday, November 27, 2006

weekend etc.

A few things:

-Went to see "Wicked" Friday evening accompanied by 2 very fine ladies. It was pretty good, I think I had very high expectations for it so that kind of ruined it. It was good though, just not as good as I was hoping. It was a lot of fun to get all dressed up and such.
-Did a million errands on Saturday, got some xmas/bday gifts. Most notably however, I took my new cell phone in to "get fixed". I got this phone on Monday and it has a little memory card in it. Well the memory card goes in a little slot on the side of the phone. Well all week I have been trying to get this little piece of crap to stay in the phone and not pop out. I'm thinking "This phone is brand new, this can't be happening, I'm going to bring it in and tell them to fix it or I'm going to caused a fuss and I'm sure many others are having this problem and we all deserve refunds and this is simply not fair!!!". Well I get to the Telus store, show them what's wrong, get the response of "You just have to press it until it clicks - like this" *click*. Erica R. Waugh - Total Moron.
-Saturday night I made brownies to freeze for xmas. (The "Brownie" recipe for joyofbaking). This recipe has 24oz of semi-sweet chocolate in it. These brownies tasted like 24oz of semi-sweet chocolate. They were very good, however all frozen up in my freezer now.
-Sunday was my LL's Birthday Dinner so I got up early to get groceries and make the dessert and eventually the lasagne. Everything was really tasty however, I think we were all tired so it was a quiet dinner.
-Oh ya, I also worked on my Work Term Report but no one wants to hear about that.

This week I have to ... work on my work report, write 2 presentations, start my xmas cards and bake some more. I have my office xmas party this weekend so I need to think of what I'm going to wear and more importantly, who I'm going to bring. Oh yes, I will also be baking. More sugar cookies as well as muffins to freeze.

Monday, November 20, 2006

I have come across a goldmine of a website! www.joyofbaking.com is my new favorite passtime. The receipes (seem) tried and true and the pictures are great, there are good explanations and suggested alternatives, there's even a history section! If you bake at all (if you don't, we are so not friends anymore) go to the "Christmas Baking" tab on the right, I want to make every one of those!!! I made the sugar cookies last weekend as I was looking for a basic sugar cookies recipe and this one was perfect. When I was little my mom used to make "Lori's Smart Cookies" which were essentially sugar cookies named after a girl down the street... for some reason, but these could easily compare.

On that note, I wonder if the feeling of "that reminds me of home" will ever grow old? I get it alot around the holidays but that's probably because a big part of the holidays is family. Doing all of this holiday baking has been a major contributor. One of the very far off memories of my dad that I have is baking with him at Christmas and thinking "Why does mom bake every other day in the year, dad is so good at this!" when really most everything I know about baking is stuff I learned from my mom. Probably because my mom would just give me a recipe and let me go, whereas my dad liked to do it with me. It was as if my mom took a break at xmas and my dad pitched in with the cooking/baking, probably because he could easily get me to help. I remember when my mom first taught me how to measure butter using cold water and to always add dry to wet gradually. She taught me so much!

When I was younger I used to go away to summer camp and off to visit my relatives and then I eventually left when I was 14 for Winnipeg, never once did I get homesick. These days though I feel closer than I ever have with them. I talk to my mom 5 times a week usually, message my brother a few times a week and I try to talk to my dad as often as he can. I miss them all and I can't wait to pack my suitcase full of the little gingerbread family I'm going to make. I can't wait for Christmas!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

I decided to stop at the specialty baking store on my way home from work today, as it is conveniently right beside the bank where I also needed to stop. Anyway, it was a great idea initially because this store is so effin cool and they just have everything you could ever need when baking. Like a million different cake moulds, a billion cookie cutters and a trillion different gadgets that I have no idea what they do. So to back track a bit I'm going to be making alot of gingerbread cookies this xmas and I wanted to decorate them like my co-workers (there's only 5) and my family (only 3 others). Well, who knew decorating cookies was such an ordeal! There are piping bags, piping tips, tools for cleaning this things, different knives, sprinkles, sparkles, dregees (not dreg-eeeees but dradge-ays...huh?). Man, it just goes on! So back to the store, I spent a bit of cash, nothing I'm ashamed of. You are thinking "Oh Erica, what's the big deal? A few more baking gadgets to the bin... please! That's nothing!" and then I saw the poster. "Christmas Cookie Decorating Class - only $35 for 2 Saturdays!". What a deal! That's 5 hours of learning about something I already want to know about. BUT THEN they throw this list at me. This list titled "Things to bring to the first class". Remember all those tools I mentioned earlier? I need all of them... but times 3. The tools alone could cost me $50!! So in the end, I decided not to sign up right away and instead I'm going to try and talk my roommate into it with hopes that she can borrow a bunch of stuff from her mom.

So to rid myself of the "I'm in over my head" feeling, sided with the "I THOUGHT I knew a little about baking" sensation I came home and made ginger snaps. They are good. They don't have a fondonte coating or dregees rolling off or even little royal icing piped daisies. They are just good.

....though I still may take this class

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Check List

So there's a lot that's been running through my head lately. Namely, Christmas, my work report, work in general, CFES stuff, and mostly all the things I need to do before I go on holidays.

SO I've already stated that I'm pumped for xmas. I've been looking at recipes and such to get started on. I plan on making lots of gingerbread and shortbread cookies. (BTW if you have any good xmas recipes, please share!!). Also I've started putting together gifts etc. But this is all old news.

My work report has not been started yet. My boss agreed to let me do it on the topic that I wanted so that's cool. However there is nothing "cool" about having to write this bloody report and I am not one bit looking forward to it. Doesn't help that I need to finish it before I go on holidays because it's due the week I get back. Marry effin Xmas Erica.

Work in general is alright, there are good days and not as good days. The people are really nice however we are all irritable at times. Happens to everyone. I won't be thrilled to leave however it will be nice to be back at school.

CFES stuff is piling up to a point where I am almost overwhelmed. I have so much to do before the end of November. I'm not sure when I'm going to get it done but I suppose I'm going to have to make some sacrifices as a result.

I'm going to see "Wicked" on the 24th with my roommate and classmate, I'm looking forward to it and it has received very good reviews. I'm also going to see "Menopause Out Loud" this weekend with my aunt, cousin and step-grandma. I'm really looking forward to it as it will be fun to see them all. It's too bad it's on a Sunday, I usually bake/do laundry/housework on Sunday. Again with the sacrifices.

I've noticed (if it's even possible) that I don't have the same energy or enthusiasm I had in first year. My first co-op job I was so happy all the time, I had no attitude about anything and it was all "yes ma'am, no sir, right away boss". Now it's more like "You want me to do what? Can't you see I'm busy?". I'm not sure why but I definitely have an attitude and it's been growing for the past 2 years. It doesn't reflect well on me when I act like this. I try to stay happy and positive and accept feedback with a smile, it's just not as easy anymore. I get so frustrated when people get in my way or interrupt me as if what they have to say is more important. It's frustrating because I'm trying to be positive but it's not working all the time.

Hopefully I will all be caught up by December 20th, that way my holiday can go smoothly and worry-free.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

2 posts in 2 days... Could it really be happening??!!

Last night after work I drove to Waterloo to look at a house. So far I have looked at about 8. At this point I was getting frustrated. We (myself and 3 roommates) were looking for a place for the winter term. Essentially 90% of the people I know had already found something!! Hence my frustration. So back to my story, upon getting to Waterloo and driving up to the place I was going to look at my only thoughts were "THIS HAD BETTER BE GOOD OR I MAY HURT SMALL CHILDREN THAT GET IN MY WAY!!!". There are certainly some major dumps in Waterloo. So ok, I walk up, trying to stay positive...

WELL

WELL, turns out the townhouse I'm looking at currently houses my landlord and his family. (Family = clean and organized!! Students = gross and smelly ie: Lester St). WOOHOO this place is great, it's super nice, everything is brand new! There are 2 FULL bathrooms and brand new washer and dryer. The rooms aren't huge but C'mon... 2 FULL BATHROOMS! Ok so I'm sold. I emailed the guy last night telling him we want it, I just have to wait for him to get back to me. I really hope this all works out, I'm so ready to end this search on a good note.

In other news, it was my roommates birthday on Sunday (Happy Birthday Lizard!) and so we are having a birthday dinner for her tomorrow. She requested spaghetti and meatballs. Tonight I will make the meatballs as well as a chocolate cake. Tomorrow Deb has agreed to make the spaghetti and the sauce. I'm really looking forward to it, everyone in the house gets along so well and we really enjoy each others company. That and meatballs are so easy and so tasty! I can freeze lots of them for later too. This is the recipe I use except instead of BBQ sauce I use Italian Dressing and I also add onions, real garlic, oregano, basil, pepper and thyme - oh ya, make sure you grease the cookie sheet! They are so easy to make and they freeze really well. I don't have the chocolate cake recipe handy but I will post it when I do. I made it at Thanksgiving and my brother asked me if it was my moms recipe (when we were growing up my mom's chocolate cake was so amazing). Turns out the recipe I use is almost identical to my moms but I found it online!

Try making something new tonight, I find boys will eat anything and tell you it's good. I guess it will be a real confidence booster for me when I move in with 3 boys come January...

Monday, November 06, 2006

on holidays

I just adore Christmas. Love it love it LOVE it.

And it's almost here.

I've tried to be a little more thoughtful with the gifts I will be buying this year. I have a little more freetime so it has been easier this year. I'm also trying to buy more unique things. A big part of that is it will keep me away from the mall. I love shopping more than acceptable but man I hate the mall at Christmas.

So the gift giving is awesome, I love planning everything out and knowing that someone is going to love what I got them. For instance, my parents don't really have alot of time to decorate etc. However, if you give them something they will use it. Like a new throw blanket will make it to the couch and framed paintings will make it on the wall. Also my brother and I have been away from home for so long that they only really have pictures of us when we were young. So all of this equals me putting together a set of pictures for Christmas. I finally have a picture of the four of us as well as a bunch of the dogs etc. I can't decide whether or not to get it done customly or to try and find a frame on my own. I still have lots of time and it's not like pictures frames are going to sell out before I leave on holidays.

Again with the holiday season comes baking. Oh baking. Oh oh oh baking. I cannot WAIT to bake for a week solid and then pack everything into my suitcase and cart it out to Calgary so that we can munch on Christmas goodness in the hotel.

Theres also the snow. Not the wet slushy stuff, but the dry soft stuff that crunches under your boots. It's so pretty.

I just can't wait.

What are your holiday plans?

Monday, October 02, 2006

monday

The other day at work my boss and I were chatting a bit and he asked me what I was looking to get out of this workterm. To be asked that on the spot kind of sucks because it's the type of question that you want to give a really good answer to. I don't really remember what I answered but I'm sure it was great. Some possible answers could have been:

-gain a better knowledge of project management
-become familiar with a different type of site
-make money to spend at the mall
-make money to start a drug habit

It's sad because I could have said any of these and possibly meant them. Well not exactly but still. The point is I really have no idea what I want this term... What I want next term... What I want any term! I mean really, why did I chose engineering? Why do I keep choosing to work in construction? Why doesn't Mississauga bother me a little more like it should?

I think the answer to that last question is because it is so safe. Not safe as in I can walk around alone at night safe but rather it is neutral, and unexciting. It is a safe haven. I have lived in that neighbourhood and now it well. My independence has not been challenged. At work it is essentially the same deal. Though this is a new job, I am not being challenged and I'm questioning what it is I really want to do with the rest of my life. Not that I have to decide any time soon... I should at least be thinking about it.

So far these are the options I'm considering:

Architecture school. Tack another 5 years of school onto the 6 I already have to finish. It would be insanely cool though to have a Civil AND an Architecture degree. Lots of work though... LOTS of work. I like this idea the most though, I miss the creative thinking involved in architecture and I've heard arch students say they miss the math and certainty of engineering. Really it's a fabulous idea... In theory.

Next off I could accept my degree (which I have no trouble doing) and just go with it. Get a job, live my life, la-ti-da. This seems slightly dull... Though an easy option.

And lastly if money weren't an issue I would go to chef school. Do what would make me the happiest though with (most likely) the most struggles.

So really, you can see that I have no idea what I want in my life. I know what I don't want at least!
I don't want to:
-be a doctor
-be a history major
-get married right after my undergrad
-have kids before I'm 25
-be in debt
-die
-make dinner tonight
-be at work
-drive alllll the way to Waterloo tomorrow
-write anymore

Monday, September 18, 2006

Today was so very busy at work. I didn't have a chance to sit down and breath until almost 3:00. Not bad considering I finish work at 4. The day flew by and before I knew it I was on my way home! 2 stops: gas (yay 79.9!!) and bank (yay 2 late paychecks and some cahs to deposit! - YAY MONEY!). All in all today was pretty good.

Once I got home I watched Rachael Ray's new talk show. I have concluded after one episode that I think I like this show, she talks over her guests, I want to be just like her. I think I have the overly happy, super fast nonsense chatterbox going for me already. Superstardom here I come!

Eventually my landlord got home and decided that we should all have dinner together. That is myself, Liz, Mark, and Fred (LL). It turned out so great! There was BBQ chicken, french bread, salad, corn on the cob and... crab legs!! Only for Fred and I as we dibbed them a few days ago. In any case it was a really great meal and we all worked together to make it. Oh yes and we had dack-er-eees (I have NO idea how to spell that!). In any case it was way fun to chill out with everyone. I'm pretty lucky to live with some great people.

Now, after all the dishes and clean up (did I mention I also made muffins?) I am sitting on my couch chillin out before I go to bed. At this point in my life I am used to being alone often, especially on workterm. Friends and boyfriends are most often a weekend thing and family is no where to be seen. I'm not sure if I'm completely happy with it or if I will start to feel lonely as the term progresses - or if I'm lonely already. I think it is to my benefit that Liz is here because she is good company and is usually around during the week. Otherwise it sometimes gets hard to plan the weekends as there is so much to do and so many people to see. During school it's easier because I see my friends everyday and so going out isn't such a big deal. I find on workterm I spend more time getting ready to go out and more time getting things ready when people come over. Is it just because I have more free time and feel the need to fill it or because I miss out on all the primping and busying during the term - OR is it that I am just more concered with what others will think now that there is more time? I'm not sure. I've been baking so much lately and I think it's because I don't like to go to bed after spending the whole evening in front of the tv - baking seems to make me feel productive and useful.

In any case, it is bedtime. I hope I sort out all my confusion eventually.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Today:

Liz and I walked to the pizza place on the corner. Pretty much the parking lot is always full so we figured the pizza must be good. Tunrs out everyone is going to the Indian grocery store there, not the pizza place. The pizza was ok.

THEN I made brownies. I used a recipe for allrecipes.com but changed it drastically. I appreciate it when sites change their recipes as per reviews etc. allrecipes.com does not do this. It's kind of annoying because then I have to read ALL of the reviews just to be sure I'm not setting myself up for dissapointment. Alot of the time people will give a recipe 5 stars which is good but it's more like "after I changed this and this and this... it was perfect... 5 stars!" LAME. So you see the review-reading dilemma... sometimes there are hundreds of reviews!! kraftfoods.com changes their recipes I'm pretty sure, they hardly have anything posted with less than 4/5 stars. Pretty decent track record there. Their stuff is fun to make and easy too.

NOW I'm sitting in front of my computer waiting for my brownies to cool then I'm going to go get ready for bed and read a bit. I'm reading "Snow Falling on Cedars" it's pretty good and easy to read. It has taken me a long time to get through it because this past month has been so busy! I'm hoping that I finish it by Monday. Then I'm thinking I will look into John Irving... I need a library card or something. But really... I hardly ever feel bad spending money on books... like seriously, its not like I'm buying porno or anything. Just popular fiction!

In any case brownies and packing for tomorrow (waterloo woo!) are calling.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Now that I finally have some breathing time...

Updates since exams finished:

Did well on exams!! For the first time ever!! Yay me!

Went home for ten days. Pretty nice, weather was very good, spent lots of time in the garden with my mom. I took lots of pictures and will try to post them on my msnspace someday. I went to Winnipeg and saw a few high school friends as well as Carmen and Marcia. I miss them all!!

Moved to Mississauga. What an ordeal! I have way too much stuff and desperatley need to put some in storage. My car still has stuff in it and I moved in more than 2 weeks ago. Whatever, my room is big and great and so I have lots of space to sort through everything.

Started work. Not too bad, just learing stuff at this point. I got to shadow the old student before she left so that was a plus. Hopefully all goes well!

Frosh week! Man, what a week. I left Mississauga Friday Sept 1, 06 and came back Sunday Sept 10, 06. It was 10 days of exhaustion but still lots of fun. My group didn't win but I really enjoyed myself and I made so many new friends. Awww...barf. I got to dive into a mud pit twice which was fun, too bad I am still coughing up sand... whatever, FUN.

Now I am back at work. It's quiet but it's a nice change compared to the last month of hectic-osity...?

Last night I took pickle to see M. Ward for his birthday, it was a pretty good show and he played lots of the stuff that I knew. He even played TWO encores, no one does that! It went a little late for me though, I didn't get home until 1am and then I had to be awake at 6:30. I am hurting. And by hurting I mean tired. When I get home from work today I am going to do my dishes and then go to sleep. Eff to dinner and eff to laundry. Eff to anything that is not me asleep in my own effing bed.

So far the transition between terms has been pretty crazy but it's looking like it will calm down as I get into the routine of workterm.

Things I'm looking forward to:

-Living with Liz and baking like the baking mofos that we are
-Living with Liz and CHRISTMAS baking like the CHRISTMAS baking mofos that we are. I may even do some Hannukah baking... though really it would just be putting a different name to it... whatever.
- Halloween! Woo! Need a costume. Need to start looking now. Need something GREAT!
-Christmas shopping. Last time I was on Co-op before Christmas I had all my X-mas shopping done at the end of October, or at least the majority of it. Mostly I will bake for people.
- Christmas holidays! Going to Banff again it looks like. Last year was great and I hope this year is similar, I won't be worrying about getting any marks back or anything.
- Christmas BAKING. wow, so excited.
-OH MAN THANKSGIVING. wow. I already have 2 invitations and I may have to do some cooking of my own as well.
-THANKSGIVING BAKING. wow. pumpkins. wow.

Now that this post has gone in a million directions I am hungry.

Too much energy for a Tuesday morning.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Much to the dismay of the entire Waterloo community, it is 43 degrees Celsius out. It was 42 when I went to bed last night and 41 when I woke up. I doubt it varied much over the course of the night. In any case I am lucky enough to have a window air conditioner… or at least lucky enough to have a brother willing to steal his roommates air conditioner for me. So I’ve been running this thing on high for the past three days (yay not paying utilities!).

This morning I woke up and went to the bathroom. As I opened my bedroom door to the outside world I was welcomed by a blast of heat only comparable to entering the deepest pits of hell. To think my roommates slept through that…In any case I peed in a rush to get back to my ice box. I walked back into my room and closed the door. Well apparently while I was gone a fly made its way in. Not a mosquito, one of those bigger ones that fly really fast. I figure “whatever, he will die or stop buzzing soon”. How wrong I was! This stupid moron proceeds to fly in clockwise circles around my room annoying the crap out of me. Eventually I decide to take action. In my history of fly experiences, I know I can’t catch this guy or swat him for that matter, he is way too fast. I take the next logical step, open my door with hopes that he flies out or that I can shoo him out. I stand doing this for a bit, all the while getting more frustrated with the buzzing but mostly angry at the fact that I am standing with my door open. Heat is gushing in, fly is remaining stationary. I kept following him trying to swat him out but he is determined to be as cool as I am. Like no way was I going to make him go into that insane heat! If you’ve ever tried to follow a fly with your eyes you know how tricky it is. Against the white walls I can follow him no problem, against the dark carpet he disappears. It really felt like that when I was watching him as I could see him so clearly and then poof he was gone! Only to show up buzzing behind me. It’s like this guy was playing a game with me. So eventually I realize that maybe the flies-are-attracted-to-light…or-at-least-I-think-most-are tactic might work. I turn my light off and turn the hall light on. What does he do but fly to my window and go behind the blinds completely proving my light theory just not in the way I wanted!! Well he’s behind my curtains, now I’m in power. With one swat he is mashed against my window.

Sorry buddy, I never intended to kill you.

This is the most exciting thing that has happened in the past 6 days. Exams rock my socks.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Today I had a very miniscule amount of school. 2 hours. 9:30-11:30. First hour I had a Mods quiz, second hour I did The Post crossword puzzle when I should have been learning thermo. No one is perfect. I also ate my lunch. Cold pizza, surprisingly delicious, homemade from last night. Then I walked home.

Once home, I watched an episode of Grey’s Anatomy because it is great. I have one more episode of season 1 to watch. I figure I have to finish it now because otherwise I will be watching it during exams. That is what Sex and The City Season II is for.

In any case, after this I was bored and felt like sugar. I made a cake. I made a chocolate cake. It had 2 cups of sugar in it which seemed sufficient for my sugar craving. Too bad the whole process from initial thought to actual consumption took 2.5 hours. First, mix the batter, next bake it for an hour, next let it cool, next make icing, next ice cake, next refrigerate so icing is hard and crackly and tasty, next consume. It was however worth it as it is a very moist, very chocolate cake. Now I have 9/10ths of a chocolate cake in my fridge. This cake will not last forever. If you are in close proximity to me please come consume this cake. I would hate to toss it. Though now I am realizing I must start studying for exams beginning tomorrow meaning that I will most likely want more of this cake for myself… if you are in close proximity to me and kind of want cake but promise not to eat all of it then by all means, come over. I will share, I don’t have milk, and I can only offer water and celery as a side. No promises on either.

In other news I have been on a cooking/baking frenzy. I go through withdrawal and so I overindulge. Last week I made turkey patty thingies (Rachel Ray recipe), homemade macaroni and cheese, oatmeal banana muffins, potato chips, pizza, smoothies. This week I have made a chocolate cake. Now that exams are coming I imagine I will procrastinate by cooking and cleaning. Cleaning has a limit, cooking does not. It also has the advantage of using all of my food before I have to move/go home. Too bad I will be the only one around.

And for the sake of giving an actual update: last day of classes is tomorrow, then I study for exams, I write 2-3-4-8-10, I’m going home on the 16th or 17th, coming back on the 23rd, moving to Mississauga, hopefully starting work, doing Frosh week and then working more, after that it will be Christmas. I have nothing planned for the work term though I would enjoy it if Natasha asks me to visit her in Waterloo. Also, I’m looking forward to baking with pumpkin and cranberries for fall/winter.

I told Rob I would give him a shout out. Hi Rob, come have cake.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

a few things

To change about me:
- Fix tummy problem, that is, make it flat
- Write more snail mail
- Be more tactful and think before speaking
- Learn to keep my mouth shut, talking all the time is not attractive
- Learn better time management
- Learn to say no, even if it seems really exciting
- Learn to like mushrooms, at least pretend
- Get a tan
- Wear contacts more often
- Wear Birkenstocks less often
- Be more computer literate
- Stop shopping as much
- Don’t be so concerned about how I look

Things I want in my life:
- a career
- children
- live near fabulous shopping
- go to Memphis
- learn to make pastry, or learn to make better pastry
- enter a cooking contest of sorts
- have a massive collection of cookbooks
- a massive collection of books generally
- learn to BBQ – sad that I haven’t yet
- Make sure my parents retire somewhere great so that going to visit them is even better
- To live somewhere long enough to decorate
- Have a closet with a door
- A lab, a happy jumping full of too much love Lab that loves me no matter what
- Make it to my high school alumni Christmas party some year
- happiness!!
- use something i learned in university in my job (not likely?)

Things I want right now:
- A clean refrigerator
- Someone besides me to take out the recycling
- Real curtains on my window
- No school tomorrow
- My air conditioner to be in my window on “10” and not on my floor on “off”
- More loonies for laundry
- A stamp for the letter sitting on my desk
- A glass of water
- A bowl of fruit
- No aphids on my Rosemary
- More jazz in my iTunes
- Sex and the City Season 1 completed downloading
- Posters on my bare walls
- to be finished my fluids lab
- to be reading my book (memoirs of a geisha is amazing, go read it now)

Things I can’t change
- I talk too much
- I’m blonde but it’s darker than it used to be
- I like pop music, I cannot deny it any longer
- I will never be good at doing ponytails
- I will always love carbohydrates and will never be able to give them up
- I am just like my mother in more ways than imaginable
- I am from The Pas
- I am headed towards a male dominated career
- I can’t get sunscreen on my right shoulder
- My left shoulder is higher than my right
- I have glasses
- I live for wearing layers
- I watch too much tv
- Left side flips out, right side flips under
- I am a 35 long and it is not as great as people think

Saturday, June 03, 2006

saturday

Today is saturday and it is everything a saturday shoudn't be.

When I was little I remember waking up so early on Saturday (If only my body still worked that way). I would sit in the living room in my pajamas watching The Littlest Hobo, My Secret Identity, and Bill Nye the Science Guy (Science ruuuuuules). It was pretty sweet. I'm sure it was then followed by getting dressed and callin the neighbour's "Hithisisericaspeakingmayipleasespeaktocarmen/marcia/graeme" and then running across the lawn to watch tv/build forts/sit in the garden/eating freezies. After which I would either stay over night or come home to bed just to wake up Sunday morning and do it all over again.

Today on the other hand I woke up at 10, vaccumed, took the recycling out, wiped all the surfaces and windows, did the dishes, went for groceries, made lunch. Now I am sitting here writing this instead of studying for my Differential Equations midterm. And tonight (given that I will most likely not go out due to the amount of studying i have to do) I will go to bed and then wake up do the dishes and study.

At the moment on a 1-10, today gets a 3.

However I am baking later today so that rating may go up to a 6 depending on the success of the cake and cookies I want to make.

My parents will be here in 2 weeks. I'm making dinner for them and my brother the day they get here. I'm planning on making this which i made on Sunday and it was pretty good, very very easy to make. I'm nervous to cook for them but my philosophy is "I went to all this trouble, eat it or leave".

In any case it's time to start DE's.... or make macaroons.... with the way today has been going I think I will go bake.

Have a good rest-of-weekend, hopefully it will better then what mine has been so far!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

florida etc

Since my last post...I've been to Florida and back and have started school once again.

First off: Florida!
We drove from Hamilton and the drive was tooooo loooong but very pretty!! We stopped at a few places to check out some sites.

Driving through Georgia was only the prettiest thing ever! I would live there in a second. They have fabulous highways (or "freeways"). Driving through Atlanta we almost hit a cow. It had fallen out of a trailer and was in the middle of the road, wood chips and all... ok wait I lied, it was actually half a cow. eep.

We spent 5 days in Florida and the weather was great. I managed to not get sunburnt but I did manage to get sea-sick. Though thankfully that was on the glass bottom boat tour and not the alligator tour!! Otherwise we spent lots of time in the sun, ate REALLY WELL and had a pretty good time. Oh ya and I shopped, lots and lots.

The drive home was just as nice with stops at barnesley gardens, this shows you a nice picture. In our guide book it was described as "the most romantic place on earth" which it totally was except for the fact that we really weren't supposed to tresspass like we did... ok what happened was we just wanted to stop in and see these ruins the book talked about (Gone With the Wind scene filmed here!!). We get to the gate and the gatekeeper goes on and on about the history etc which we don't really care about. He then tells us the gardens are closed but we can go drive arouond. So we drive right past the "pay admission here" sign and begin the tresspassing! It was so gorgeous and anyone who has the chance should go here or get married here. Ok so next stop we try to stop at the Mayfield Dairy (Tennessee) where the "worlds best icecream" is... but we drive by it at about midnight so no luck there. HOWEVER.... the next day we stop at the "Country Music Hall of Fame" (Kentuckey) or something... and they have Mayfield Icecream... and lots of square dancers... anyways pretty cool. Or last stop on the drive is at... SUPER WALMART! We needed some food. This was more scary then the alligators and more scary then the glass bottom boat... it was bigger then Costco and bigger then anything you have ever seen... and full of Ohio hicks... yikes!

So finally at 8pm the next day we got home only to have to pack up once again to head back to school.

I still can't figure out how to post pictures here so go to my MSNSpace (link in the sidebar) and there are a few pictures there.

Sorry to make this post long but so much has happened in the last few weeks. School is alright, not a bad course load however I have lots to do for this week. I'm doing the charities thing again hosting biweekly pancake breakfasts to raise money for Breakfast for Learning. Otherwise things are pretty chill.

In terms of baking I've been doing so much and it doesn't bother me that at age 20 my favorite thing to do is stand in the kitchen up to my elbows in flour... my roommate doesn't seem to mind either! In fact him and I made this cake and my friend Liz and I made this pie both turned out REALLY well. In the pie we used strawberries instead of the other berries they asked for and if you do make the cake (it's unreal, seriously!) it will be SO runny when you pour it in the pan... like the consistency of milk but that's ok AND the recipe they give for frosting is very sweet so you may want to consider a different one.

That's all for me now, lots of homework to do today, I hope everyone enjoyed their long weekend.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

The greatest addition to my cooking portfolio has come in a black box with pink stickers. I am the proud owner of a KitchenAid Stand up mixer in baby pink. It is gorgeous and wonderful and I will thank my mother every day for letting me have it. My cooking can only go uphill from here. Too bad it weighs about 35 pounds. I guess I can exercise off all of the weight I will gain from all the baking I will be doing. Kharma.

Tomorrow is a day off and I'm going to bake for the first time in 2 weeks. Normally I don't go more then a day or 2 without baking but I've been so busy moving around and re-locating for work that I just haven't had time. So on the menu for this weekend is a gluten-free mixed berry pie and enough shortbread to fill my car. Now the pie is kind of a cheater thing because I bought frozen pie crust but gluten free pasty is SO hard to make. I will get it one of these days, for now this will do. My mom sent me her cookie press (if you don't know what that is go here )so I will be using that for my shortbread.

Otherwise life is pretty dandy. I was suddenly moved to a new work site for the last three weeks of my placement but it's not so bad, I get to live with my Uncle and his family. The job pays way more too so it's a nice little extra for the end of the term. Though I imagine it will all go towards Florida, oh well. Maybe for once I won't be out of cash at the end of a term.

I haven't tried any new recipes recently but this is my new baby *drool*

Happy Easter and Passover to everyone!!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

chef dreams

If the opportunity came up I would be the host of my own cooking show in a snap. Man that is so my dream job. Cook all day, have other people clean up after you, be on tv, eat good food, write a cookbook!! Ya man, I WISH!!

So in the past few weeks these are some of the things I have made: Ok but first let me tell you that baking pans were buy-1-get-1-free at Zellers so I got a Bundt pan (aka tube pan, aka pound cake pan) and a loaf pan. This all means that I obviously tested them out. SO... I made:

Blueberry pound cake - gluten free AND no milk products

Aw crap, I may have forgotten to mention that at the moment my cooking audience involves 2 people who can't eat gluten (found in wheat) and 1 that can't have any milk products.

Ok Ok, stop for a second. Cooking gluten-free has probably been one of my biggest cooking challenges so far next to finding a mixing bowl with rubber on the bottom. It's difficult at times and I usually just try to avoid flour because using substitutes isn't always the best. Gluten free flour tends to be quite soggy at first and then extra soggy and crumbly after a few days. It also means that I have to make my own flour because there isn't just a straight up substitute for flour. That means that for cakes and pastries I use one combination flour (rice flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, corn starch, xanthan gum) and another for breads and things like that (starchier flour - 2 rice flours and tapioca flour). this is all because different combo flours produce different results. Ya this is all boring to you but it's what fills my mind everyday. As for the milk, it's best just to avoid it.

So...

-Blueberry Pound cake - gluten free and milk free
-White Chocolate Orange Cranberry Pound cake - gluten free and AMAZING!!! I will post this recipe soon as it deserves everyones attention
-Orange Cranberry loaf - gluten free
-Meatballs!! SO EASY and SO GOOD
-Vegetable Barley soup (barley is a wheat, sorry champ!)
-Spaghetti with tasty EASY meat sauce
-cranberry chicken - easiest chicken recipe you could ever come by

Tonight I am making porkchops with homemade apple sauce, found the recipe in Rachel Ray's 30 minute meals cookbook. Takes only 30 minutes!!

So as you can tell my head is constantly filled with cooking and baking and everything related to it. I look forward to grocery shopping and even more to leftovers. Everything I make usually takes no time at all as I usually make it during the week when I get home from work at 5:30.

Tomorrow I have to make (ok I don't HAVE to but I'm GOING to) 3 loaves of banana bread, 2 to freeze and 1 to eat right away!! On Thursday I'm going to make another type of loaf that will be gluten free so that everyone is happy. This is an unusually busy cooking week but that's because I'm going to the cottage this weekend and wanted to have something to bring.

So to end off, here is my favorite recipe for cranberry chicken:

4 chicken breasts (I use boneless-skinless, your choice!)
1 can cranberry sauce (pureed or with whole cranberries your choice - I think it's 16 oz)
1 pkg dry onion soup mix (no name brand is like $0.57 a package, what a deal!)
Catalina salad dressing - a few healthy swigs (if you want, I don't use it but my mom does)

Dump cranberry sauce, soup mix and dressing into a casserole dish - mix well!
Place chicken into dish and coat well with sauce. Try not to stack chicken, doesn't cook evenly this way. You can stand them up on their sides if there isn't much room just no stacking!

Put cover on dish and refridgerate for 4 hours or overnight. I usually make it the night before because it takes 5 seconds to put together.

Preheat oven to 350F. Bake for 1.5 hours, take cover off for last 15 minutes.

And as my mom says "goes well with rice and a vegetable!"

That's all folks! If anyone actually makes this recipe please let me know what you thought!!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

the long and slow learning curve...

So now that I've had this blog for almost 2 years I'm finally starting to figure things out. For example I know now how to put links on my sidebar and can also put links right in my post like this! I'm honestly the worst person to ever have sat in front of a computer so being able to use html is a big deal to me even if it's just cutting and pasting. In any case I've decided that with my obsession of cooking, baking and all things kitchen I'm going to start putting recipes on here that I've tried along with the everyday (or every month as it is turning out to be) banter.

So to start, I usually use this site to get my recipes however this one is fun as well, though way less content. I prefer baking over cooking and bundt cakes over pies, oatmeal over peanut butter and starwberries over everything. If you are looking for a recipe let me know and I will most likely be able to find one for you!

My favorite cooking shows where I get TONS of ideas from are Sugar with Anna Olsen, Everyday Italian with Giada De Laurentiis and Rachel Ray's 30 Minute Meals, all can be found here with links to a few of their recipes too!

Oh man, I totally just spent 30 minutes getting those links to work so you better use them!!

For now I should get back to work.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Bananas

I have decided that I like bananas for the following reasons:

1) They smell good. Not too potent but nice and almost calming
2) They taste great and even melt in your mouth
3) They are very easy to peel
4) You can throw the peel out the window
5) Even though the peel may appear bruised and weathered, the inside is usually safe and protected (Unlike apples)
6) You can watch them change colours – it happens so fast!
7) They are easy to throw in your purse
8) They have high potassium, low sodium, low fat, and high fibre!
9) They are cheap
10) They are cheap year round
11) Banana bread is great and easy, especially the part where the banana goes rotten and you freeze it and then mash it to make bread!

In conclusion, bananas are great.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Today at work it’s just learny learn for me. I’ve been asked to learn how to use MS Project. I was given a “how-to” book and sent to work. So far it’s pretty easy, there are little activities to do that I’m getting through quite quickly. Eventually I should be able to use this without my little handbook (as my boss has already told me that he will have my life if I don’t return it). In any case it’s going alright, I can learn at my own pace and I like that.

So I always thought that given a good excuse I could lose weight/tone up everything pretty easily. This is wrong. I’m planning on going to Florida in April (ie: bikini time!) yet I have no will or want to get in shape. It’s insanely difficult!! Mostly because I’m at the point where eating healthy just isn’t going to cut it… I’m going to have to… EXERCISE! ACK COUGH GASP PUKE. Ya… I’m not so sure that’s going to happen. I’ll try my best though!!

Looks like I may be going to Montreal next weekend, not really sure if I want to. It’s for a conference thing that I should go to but I’m just not in the mood for traveling these days. I hate living out of a suitcase because I swear that’s what my entire life has been to this day. We’ll see what happens.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Now that it’s been over a month I figure it’s time to post an update.

What’s been clogging my head for the past month:

Planning a trip to Florida! Totally can’t wait, I don’t want to jinx it because it seems almost TOO good to be TRUE. I’m planning on going at the end of April just before school starts. Hopefully I won’t come back looking like a tomato but really… there’s no beating it, I will get sun-burnt. So YAY

Charities Commissioner for the Canadian Federation of engineering Students. I got elected to do this for the next year and I know it’s going to be a lot of fun, I just need to get the ball rolling. There’s a lot of work involved wit the bulk of it being writing emails. It’s so fun though, I get to work with some great people and there are a lot of wonderful experiences for me coming up!

Working… working…. Working… It’s boring but I’m getting paid so I shouldn’t complain. I don’t get nearly enough to do and as a result I waste my time doing mundane things such as photocopying and other pointless tasks. I’m so not being challenged.

I really want to go to Cirque de Soleil in Toronto but tickets are $100 and well… realistically I would totally pay this much BUT I don’t know anyone who would come with me. The tickets are quite steep and I’m not sure if the show is even worth that much… I want to see it though!! If only the tickets could just fall from the sky…

Really that’s about it, I’ve been keeping busy knitting, painting, BAKING and the sorts. Mostly baking though because you get results WAY faster.

I’m also in the process of looking for a topic for my workterm report. In reading the English requirements of the report I came to the conclusion that my English grammar skills are the worst. More than awful. Worse than a diaper full of Indian food. I’m so failing the English requirement. Good thing it’s 60% of the mark… yep…

Hoping everyone’s term is going well and to Meredith, glad to hear you are coming back! I will get in touch with you one of these days…

Friday, January 13, 2006

my enlightenment

Yesterday after work I took a little trip that ended up as quite a treat.

Only intending to hang out and watch some tv and eat some snacks I ended up having my tarot cards, my aura and my palm read. Oh ya and there’s a little old lady following me – well the ghost of a little old lady anyways.

First off the lady: it all started off when my friends mom asked me if I knew someone named Lily or Lilian. Noppers. She asked me about my grandparents etc. None of this phased me as my friends mom has always been chatty and nothing she really asked was out of the ordinary (Were you close to your grandparents etc.) So ok she asks about this lily character and that’s it. My friend and I head upstairs. The second we get into his room: “My mom is a medium – she sees spirits – that’s why she asked you about Lily”. At this point I am a little skeptical but I keep listening. Apparently he’s grown up with this – him and his siblings have always been told that so-and-so is following them etc. Cool. So with my skepticism at hand we go downstairs to talk to his mom.

This ghost type lady has merely said that her name is Lily – or that shes looking for someone named Lily and then something about a man being 80 and have heart conditions and kidney failure. Cool… I guess I’ll be watching out for someone named Lily and see what type of health my grandpa stays in.

NEXT UP: my aura. The cool part is that she tells me I’m orange AND that she’s only ever met THREE orange people in her life! Which was cool because I always love being an individual but not cool because she doesn’t know much about them. Orange means that I come across as being very confident and I’m not actually confident on the inside. Which is spot on! She says orange is only ever a transition stage –no one stays orange for there whole life. Usually people go from pink - orange - yellow. Or yellow – orange – pink. She figures that I am going from pink to orange to yellow. Pink implying that I as spoiled as a child – ok fine its true. Yellow being very clinical and extremely creative – sweet!! Orange would mean that I am in a transition phase.

LASTLY: my cards and my palm. Essentially she looked at my palm and saw lots of learning lines implying I’m a smartie and something else which I don’t remember. My cards – I got to ask 3 questions – so 3 different readings. My first question was about this new position that I’ve taken. Its a lot of work and my cards confirmed that it will be a lot of work but I will do very well at it. Also though that I will be faced with quite a big decision relating to this, specifically about my career path. Next question was about work and if I would ever be recognized as an intelligent person in my office. She told me that it would be an uphill battle and that I’m going to have to work really hard to even get a little but of recognition. My office is 99% male and she says that’s a large contributor. My last questions was about my painting and if I could ever be as passionate about it now as I was when I was young. She emphasized the fact that I was extremely creative and desperately needed this outlet back in my life. She said that once I start up again I will only get better.

I’m sure I forgot a few details here and there but that’s all I can remember at the moment.
It was overall pretty cool – I liked the cards best because those are things that I could believe – I mean I realize they are only predictions but still things to think about. As for the lady following me – I am a little skeptical but I suppose I cant prove it right or wrong so I’m just going to go with the flow.

That's all for now - now that I'm back at work I have a little more free time to blog - hopefully I will follow through!

Sunday, January 08, 2006

my whirlwind - the conlusion

2 big things

Christmas holidays
CFES Congress 2006

First off Christmas. So I finished my exams on Dec 19th. They went poorly but not so poorly that I cant come back to school in the summer. So thumbs up to that. The night of the 19th was our end-of-term class party which was held at a classmates place and was just ridiculous. There was not one sober person in sight. Except me. Not because of my usual “no I’m fine, I’d rather drive home when its -15” but rather “no, I’m fine, I have to leave waterloo at 4am…. Which is in 5 hrs…” so ya, I stayed sober but I stayed out until 2:30. got home finished packing and then had a…. “nap” for a hour. Woke up my roommate and headed for the airport!

Got to Calgary early to have my mom be late. Oh well, such is life. Hopped in the truck and headed for Banff! Once at the hotel all I wanted to do was fall asleep considering I had only had 1 hr of sleep in the past 32. No no I had to have lunch with my parents etc… finally at 3pm I got to bed and slept for 4 hrs.

Next 6 days were full of snwboarding and shopping. The snowboarding was to-die-for. I had 2 lessons from an incredibly hot british boy. *swoon* and learned more in those 2 days then I have the whole time I’ve been riding. MAN it was awesome. Snow everyday and just gorgeous. I didn’t want to go back this year but I went anyways and now I cant WAIT to go back next year. My mom took a lesson too which was cool because they other person in her group was a mother her age, she had fun until she tore a ligament in her leg. Gimp mom for rest of trip. My brother came to the conclusion that he is the best skier n the world and wants to become an instructor. He’ll just have an engineering degree in his pocket… he confuses me but I say “ do what makes you happy!” so hey now I have somewhere to stay in banff for free. W00t.

Shopping was swell, my mom and I went out on boxing day and had a blast… though she couldn’t walk very well. Oh well, I rolled in the bday gifts nonetheless. Encore w00t.

And then… I turned 20. umm.. maybe w00t? I’m still coming to terms with it. Yes I’m a big baby but… go to hell. Its not so bad, most of my friends are older then me anyways, it just makes it less awkward when he answers 23…. *blush*

So that was Banff. I got on a plane on the 28th back to Toronto. Everything was delayed. Crapola. Whatever. In any case got to waterloo safe and sound due to the almighty dave.

So i spent 24 hrs in waterloo packing like a fiend and trying to get a million things done so that u could make in to Hamilton asap.

Went to Hamilton for 3 days to see nik. Had some fun, went shopping, celebrated new years playing a huge game of cranium (dorky I know but SO MUCH FUN!!)

On Sunday the 1st I got in my car and headed for waterloo, picked up my co-delegates and headed for the… 38th (?) annual CFES (Canadaian Federation of Engineering Students) Congess. Wowee. Holy crap. And omg. It was probably one of the greatest weeks of my life.

It consisted of ~250 gung-ho engineering students spending a whole week in Windsor. We had all sorts of speakers and lots and lots of discussion. In the end I left with the title of Charities Commisioner and a brutal hangover. Ok so maybe I had the hangover all along considering we went out EVERY NIGHT. That’s 6 nights…. And less then 3 hrs of sleep a night. It was the longest and greatest bender of my life. I had a blast.

So I guess that brings me to yesterday when I got back to waterloo and fell asleep at daves house. Woke up this morning and headed here. I start work tomorrow. And I must say I’m excited for a break in the chaos that has become my life.

Ok that was a very quick wrap up of the past… month or so. I’ll do my best to write something a little more intelligent soon.