Category Archives: Rambling Text

Huge Post of Epicness

I thought about doing a bunch of separate posts with all the stuff I’ve been meaning to blog about this week, but then I though EFF IT so now you get this huge post of epicness! Enjoy!

Popsicles!

Popsicle Party Banner

First of all, even though I haven’t been posting them, I HAVE been making popsicles.

Orange Popsicle

Fresh squeezed orange juice popsicles! These were Sym’s pick, and quite delicious, although A LOT of work.

Blackberry Smoothie Popsicle

Leftover blackberry smoothie popsicles! I made these with the smoothie that Sym didn’t finish and I accidentally almost turned into jam.

Cherry Popsicle

Super-sweet cherry syrup popsicles! I don’t remember what I made this cherry syrup for, I think I just had some cherries that were getting old? WHO KNOWS? I think I must have put in a ton of sugar though, these were INTENSELY SWEET.

Arts & Crafts!
I’ve been making some really fantastic glitter banners and friendship bracelets recently. I did a Sailor Moon-themed craft swap with Rhiannon, and made her a banner of Luna, Diana and Artemis’ heads

Sailor Moon Cat Glitter Banner

… and Outer Senshi friendship bracelets.

Sailor Senshi Bracelets

I’m very excited to see what she’s made for me, so look for a post on that in the future!

I’m also really pleased with the banner I made for my friend Sonia, which has her name in Hindi. I’ve had people ask me before why I don’t use pre-cut letters and shapes for my banners, and this is why.

Sonia

Don’t forget to “like” my shop on facebook and remember, there’s less than a week left to get 15% off your order with the code UNICORN15

With the other friendship bracelets I’ve made recently, I’ve been experimenting with metallic embroidery floss. It’s tricky to use- you have to knot it fairly tightly and that tends to make the bracelets curl up on themselves. I’ve found using a mix of half-metallic and half-regular works best.

Metallic Friendship Bracelets

The blue and silver one on the right was my favourite, but I lost it on Wednesday night, cry cry. Hopefully someone found it and gave it a good home!

Sym's Mini Arm Party

These I made for Sym, you can see here that I put chains and clasps on them instead of just tying them on, except I’m not super adept at it yet and they sometimes fall apart (which is how I think I lost my blue one). I still have a couple more that I made for myself, a purple and gold one, and an all-gold one with vintage aurora borealis crystal and gold-tone metal filigree beads (the later aren’t visible), pictured here with my silver Tiffany bracelet and my brand-new and amazing evil eye bracelet from Hippie Speedball.

Tiny Arm Party

Vacation!
Seeing as how I’ve been on vacation this week, I managed to find time for a quick getaway to New York.

Me in New York

OH WAIT NO I DIDN’T. But while I was out shopping on Wednesday I stumbled across my absolutely favorite show in the history of tv being filmed. THAT’S RIGHT, FRINGE!! Unfortunately there was no Joshua Jackson BUT I stood across the street like a giant dork and took pictures of Anna Torv and John Noble, aka Olivia Dunham and Walter Bishop, shooting a short scene where they walked fifty feet up Burrard street. Over and over again. tbh working on a tv show looks boring as hell.

Walter & Olivia

Vancouver Canadians!

Sunset Over Nat Bailey Stadium

Later that Day Taylor and I headed out to Nat Bailey Stadium (or I guess it’s now Scotiabank Field and Nat Bailey Stadium? Whatever) to catch a Canadians game. We’d been a couple of times before, but this was the first time I’d ever paid for tickets, and they are super affordable. Unfortunately the season is basically over, but next summer I definitely want to go to more games. If you are like me and like sports you can scream at while you drink beer, then this is definitely for you.

Taylor Turns 32!

Happy Birthday Taylor Banner

Of course, this weeks most important event was yesterday, when my darling and adorable husband celebrated his thirty-second birthday. He’s been working from home this week, so he slept for most of the day while Sym and I baked and hung decorations.

Cake and PresentsSparklers!

This is the second layer cake I’ve made (the first was the rainbow cake earlier this summer) and it turned out really well! I still need to work on making my icing look pretty, but the inside was SPECTACULAR.

Blue Gradient Cake

We had a yummy dinner of our traditional Thursday night poutine & Dr Peppers, then presents, then cake & milk, and after Sym went to bed, tv shows and beer.

The Birthday Man

Love him ♥

Anyway, that’s pretty much what I’ve been up to this week! On Monday it back to work for me (incidentally, today is the fifth anniversary of Starlight Family Childcare! Also the longest I’ve ever held a job, haha), but at least I still have this afternoon and the weekend of freedom left!

Cat's Pissed

Happy Friday! (But not from Claire, she hates everything.0

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Lockout

Yesterday there was a serious situation at my house: I got locked outside. This was no accident, someone DELIBERATELY locked me out of the house.

Earmuffs!

I’d taken the daycare kids out to play in the backyard at the end of the day, and only had my phone with me, not my keys. A couple of neighbor-girls were out too so I called Sym to come outside and play, since she’d been holed up in her room almost the entire day. Sym didn’t want to come out, but I said she had to and she got really irritated with me. After whining and complaining on the phone she came out and sat next to me, whining and complaining some more. It was really frustrating, so I told her that if she was going to behave like a brat she could go back inside and go to bed. Which she did, and promptly fell asleep (note to self: look into re-lowering her bedtime), but not before LOCKING THE DAMN DOOR.

I didn’t realize what she’d done until after the kids were all picked up (luckily I had all their stuff outside with me), but if there had been some sort of accident or emergency it could have been really bad. I tried banging on the door and calling both Sym and Taylor but they were both asleep so eventually I had to go around the far side of the house and climb through a bunch of scaffolding (my house is being painted this week) and bang on the window to wake Taylor up. By this point I was RULL MAD so Sym go a very very serious talking to, by which I mean yelling at. She’s now grounded for a week, which means no:
• tv
• computer
• videogames
• iphone
• non-emergency phone calls
… so she’s going to have plenty of time to think about what she did.

The Heartbreak of Head Lice

Hey, long time no blog (four days is a long time for me, okay?). I have some stuff to post about (fireworks, mostly), but no nails or crafts or anything fun, because this week my house is suffering from the heartbreak of head lice. Warning: do not read this post unless you are prepared to feel really itchy. Also, I promise not to post any pictures of lice.

I never had head lice when I was a kid. My sister’s and I all had hair down to our butts so if there was even the slightest hint of head lice at our school my mom would keep us home. For weeks. A whole month even! Once 80% of our school was infected and I think I was technically homeschooled that year.

Anyway. This lack of lice experience has grown up with me into a total paranoid fear of lice, to the extent that I check Sym’s hair all the time. She is prone to having a dry scalp (like me) and doesn’t do the world’s best job of washing & rinsing her hair, both of which contribute to itchiness and flakiness and oh-my-god-are-those-nitsiness, but in spite of numerous outbreaks at her school she’s never been infected.

UNTIL NOW. As you may recall she was away for most of the last week and a half, only coming home to go to the fireworks with me on Wednesday. On Sunday evening I walked down to meet her on her way home from her dad’s and when I saw her I was like “oh, you have a little bug in your hair!” (my neighborhood is INFESTED with these no-see-um midges that hang in swarms over the sidewalks). I went to pull it out, and that’s when I realized there wasn’t a little bug in her hair- there were TONS AND TONS of little bugs.

It was super gross and I was horrified but I didn’t want her to be sad or embarrassed or ashamed, so I managed to keep it together and play it off like it was no big deal. I did make her wait outside the house while I dropped off the dog and grabbed my wallet though (I’m so mean) but I figured the less time the lice spend in the house not being killed the better.

It was about 7:30pm when we got to the drugstore and can I just say how happy I am to live in modern times where drugstores are open at 7:30pm on Sunday? Waiting until Monday to buy delousing treatment would have sucked. After talking to the pharmacist I decided to try a non-pesticidal treatment, since not covering your kids with poison is usually the best option.

The product I bought is called Resultz, and it works by dissolving the exoskeleton of the lice, dehydrating them to death. Just like my other favourite insect killer, diatomaceous earth! A treatment kit (a bottle of lotion and a comb) cost about $40 and let me say it was WORTH EVERY PENNY. I was able to coat all of Sym’s shoulder-length hair with 1/3 of the bottle, leaving plenty for a second treatment for her or a first treatment for myself or Taylor if we get lice (knock on wood). The lotion wasn’t smelly or gross (it just feels like a really watery soap, kind of like bubble liquid), and in just ten minutes every. single. louse. was dead.

Of course, the treatment doesn’t end with dead lice; you still have to comb out all their little corpses and eggs, which is the really tedious part. I washed her hair twice with tea tree oil shampoo and deep conditioned it so it wouldn’t be a tangled mess, and then I got to combing, first with a regular comb and then with the special fine-toothed lice comb. You have to do the hair in sections, and after each pass through the hair you have to wipe the comb off with a tissue and put the tissues in a ziploc bag. I also rinsed the combs in hot water several times.

After three hours of combing I was fairly certain I’d gotten all of the bugs, if not all of their eggs, so I put Sym to bed and then went crazy on the laundry and cleaning. I don’t know when she was infected so I’d already stripped all the linens and toys off her bed and remade it with white sheets, which would show any remaining bugs better than her Hello Kitty sheets. All the toys that couldn’t be washed went into a garbage bag, which was tied shut and won’t be opened for two weeks. Her washable toys, blankets, sheets, pillowcases, pillows, the clothes she was wearing, the clothes in her suitcase, the clothes I was wearing and all the towels we used in the treating/washing/combing process needed to be washed in hot water and dried in a hot dryer. Basically I was up until 3 in the morning doing laundry.

Even though lice are highly contagious, particularly in a child care environment, they don’t spread diseases and are therefore considered more of a nuisance than a health hazard. I didn’t have to close down, but I did call my clients and let them know that there was a case of lice in my house so they could make their own decisions about coming or not. Thankfully, my only clients on Mondays kept their kid home, because in addition to being exhausted, I had more laundry to do and guess what? MORE COMBING.

After the first treatment you have to comb the hair every day for a week (and then treat a second time), and since there were still quite a few eggs stuck in Sym’s hair it took another three hours yesterday afternoon. This is mostly because the plastic comb that came with the Resultz was kind of crap, and I ended up picking the nits out of her hair with my fingernails. Yes, I was LITERALLY nit-picking. Gross. The lice glue their eggs to the hair shaft and you have to pull them all the way down to the tip of the hair to get them off. This is both time-consuming and gross, but her dad was able to find a metal comb at the drugstore by his house (the one by mine didn’t have any) which he says works really well.

This whole process is ongoing and nasty and a big hassle, but now that I’ve been through it (well, two days of it, haha) I feel pretty good about my ability to deal with it, and I’ve learned some interesting things.

1. Websites with information about treating head lice like to have pictures of enormously magnified head lice on them, which I find sadistic and cruel.
2. Lice are much more likely to infest the hair of white children than black children. Racists.
3. When you tell your kid to choose a movie to watch while you comb and pick nits out of her hair, she will unironically choose Disney’s Tangled.

So that’s what’s up with me. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I caught this in time and the treatments are successful (so far no one else seems to be infested), and I hope to be back to my regular scheduled blogging about nail polish and glitter soon! And a special note to Rhiannon, Erin and Bethany: your crafts/banners do not have any lice in them, I swear.

This Whole Weekend

I there anything better than a long weekend? In the middle of the summer when it’s sunny and gorgeous and there are tons of amazing events going on? I didn’t think so! Luckily after complaining about being sick and sore I became miraculously healed by the power of the internet so I was able to go out and have fun!

Friday night was the Davie Street Pride Weekend Dance Party, which I wanted to go to but then these happened…

Friday Night
Mint Lemonade + Gin

Hendrick’s gin + my own homemade mint lemonade of deliciousness (recipe at the end of this post) + club soda. This is LITRALLY my favourite thing I’ve ever had to drink, and after a couple few of them all I wanted to do was eat junk food and watch Tom Cruise movies. If that sounds like your kind of evening you should totally drink these!

I decided not to go to the farmer’s market this weekend and instead spent most of Saturday lazing around; I think we ran some errands and I must have eaten something but I can’t even remember now. I think it all got wipe out by the four-hour nap I took in the evening, oops. I woke up just in time to get down to the Sunset Beach Park to watch China’s entry in the Celebration of Light, which is a fireworks competition Vancouver holds every summer. Unfortunately Taylor chose not to bring his camera so the only pictures I have are from mine, and they all look like this:

Poorly Shot Fireworks

Sorry, China. Okay I have some that are a teensy bit better.

Poorly Shot Fireworks
Poorly Shot Fireworks
Poorly Shot Fireworks
Poorly Shot Fireworks

Wow, look at that bokeh. OKAY DON’T WORRY I’m pretty sure Taylor IS bringing his camera on Wednesday night so I’ll have some better pictures to share of Spain’s entry later this week.

Vancouver Pride Parade 2011

Sunday was everyone’s favourite day of the summer: Pride Parade Day! Okay confession time: I had NEVER been to the parade before. I KNOW IT’S CRAZY. I’ve always either been out of town, or lazy, or dating someone who hates parades. This year I was like FORGET IT I’M GOING and I got myself and Kichou all ready

Pride Dog

Just kidding Kichou didn’t come. But I wore my rainbow striped tank top with my bright orange maxi skirt and later I put Kichou’s rainbow lei around my topknot and felt like the Mymble’s daughter in the play Moominpappa writes in Moominsummer Madness (if you didn’t get that reference you should just really go read all the Moomin books).

Happily for all of you Taylor DID bring his camera, and took hundreds and hundreds of pictures, many of which you can see here (begrudging warning: there are boobs, scantily dressed dudes and local politicians in that link).

Vancouver Pride Parade 2011
Vancouver Pride Parade 2011
Vancouver Pride Parade 2011
Vancouver Pride Parade 2011
Vancouver Pride Parade 2011

This parrot was Taylor’s favourite costume.

Vancouver Pride Parade 2011Vancouver Pride Parade 2011

A unicorn!

Vancouver Pride Parade 2011
Vancouver Pride Parade 2011
Vancouver Pride Parade 2011
Vancouver Pride Parade 2011

After the parade was over we went shoe shopping, then went home to cool off by eating a million pounds of watermelon before taking the dogs to the park and for a long walk around the seawall.

Dogs in the Park
Dogs in the Park
Dogs in the Park

Since Sym is away this whole week we didn’t have our usually Sunday evening junk food & tv night, although she did call me to sing the “Make a Man Out of You” song from Mula (one of my personal favourites).

Mint Lemonade Recipe
1 cup sugar
24 mint leaves
5 cups water
3 cups fresh lemon juice (Martha Stewart seems to think you can get this much lemon juice from, like, 8 lemons, but it took me 20)

In a small saucepan over high heat combine sugar, 1 cup of water and mint leaves. bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat, allow to simmer for ten minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely. Strain out mint leaves and combine resulting mint sugar syrup with lemon juice and remaining 4 cups of water.

I’m Still Here

Still Sick

I feel like recently this blog has been pretty low on the Tanie content, but that’s only because I’ve been having basically the worst time of my life. A couple of weeks ago I got sick with a terrible summer cold which coincided PERFECTLY with throwing my back out; back when I was seventeen I messed it up breaking into my Crackton apartment (don’t ask) and every few years it goes wrong again.

I can’t go from standing the sitting, sitting to laying down, or laying to standing, I can’t step up onto things and I can’t bend over or pick things up off the floor, which goes really well with a job where I have to carry heavy toddlers around. Fun fact: I’ve been picking small objects up off the floor with my toes because it’s easier than using my hands right now.

Adding to the total misery is the fact that every time I sneeze or cough I send my back out again. Every day I have to get up and decide which is worse: the back pain or the cold, and then take the appropriate medicine for the one I choose, since obviously I can’t take both. Fortunately my cold seems to be on the wane, and has now segued from fever and sneezing/coughing to an endless sinus headache. Yay

So that’s where I am. Not doing anything fun, wearing my hair in a messy topknot 24/7 and never changing out of my pajamas, and basically just weeping softly into a plate of cookies every day.

What I’ve Been Eating and Reading

… or more accurately What I’ve Been Eating and Reading and Why I’ve Been Eating What I’ve Been Eating Because of What I’ve Been Reading. That would be too long though.

Four Meals

right, top to bottom: cheese, tomatoes, lettuce & black bean humous sandwich; goat cheese mini-frittatas with salad; Mangled Eggs at the Templeton (eggs, brie and veggie bacon on a croissant) with rosemary potatoes; left: poutine with vegetarian gravy

So all of these meals have something in common: NO MEAT. Why? Because last week I read Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer and omggggg I am so grossed out now. I read the part about chicken processing while I was at the salon getting my hair done and I seriously almost barfed in the shampoo sink.

eatinganimals

It also made me feel really sad and guilty. The cruelty and abuse is just… ugh. I can’t even explain it. I know that the food industry in Canada isn’t quite as terrible as it is in the US, but it’s definitely not good. I even feel bad about the eggs in my fridge, and I bought them for $6 a dozen at the farmer’s market from an organic biodynamic free range family farm, but is that good enough? IS IT? I feel like I’m one step away from being these people:

I mentioned reading this book in a general discussion forum and these are the replies I got

if it wasn’t for bacon, i swear…

I feel like once a year I’ll read a book about the ethics and environmental problems caused by eating meat and then 6 months later I’ll crave bacon.

i read that and saw food inc which made me very concious of what i eat. i still eat meat but not lots of it and i try to know where it came from

reading that book convinced me to be a vegetarian.

I definitely ate some bacon from Taylor’s bacon poutine last Thursday, without even thinking because I ALWAYS eat bacon from his poutine. Should I stop doing that? Will I stop doing that? I don’t even know. I’m loathe to say “Oh I’m a vegetarian now!” because I mean WHO KNOWS how this bacon thing is going to play out, but right now I’m too grossed out to even consider eating meat.

Two Years

Two years ago I was lucky enough to be able to marry the handsomest, most wonderful man alive. Happy anniversary Taylor, I love you so much.

Sleepy Love

(This was before he went to work last night & he was very sleepy)
In a sort of celebration I finally put something up on the Tanie + Taylor page. Be warned, it has a billion pictures!

Some stuff I’ve been up to besides typing up that behemoth:

Ceiling Poms

Putting up more tissue paper pompoms in the naproom. I really just want to fill the whole ceiling with them. Is that crazy?

Breakfast at Tree House & Hot Chocolate

Finally framed my Breakfast at Tree House print, although I still need to find somewhere to hang it up. It’s pictured here with hot chocolate & marshmallow fluff.

Speaking of frames, check out this awesome one I bought this weekend.

New Frame
New Frame

It opens like a little cupboard! Just guess what I’m going to put in it. JUST GUESS. (If you said MICRO BUNTING give yourself a pat on the back). Other things I bought include a bulletin board for my office, pale purple paper for my next project, and new shoes (which I wore for too long on Saturday afternoon, giving myself tons of blisters, oops).

Essie Turquoise & Caicos
Turquoise Nails

Painted my nails again, Essie Turquoise & Caicos. Which I just bought. YES I BOUGHT ANOTHER NAIL POLISH WHAT OF IT. Actually I bought two. Actually Taylor bought them, so I guess I get a pass on my crazy nail polish obsession.

Now I have to go attend to a bunch of stuff, most notably this horrible laundry monster. I usually never do this, I swear, I just really didn’t want to fold sheets and towels this weekend.

Laundry Monster

It’s just the first of many things I have to do around here before the end of the week when I leave for vacation (more on that later!).