November 2014 archive

The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year!

The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year!

No. I do not mean Christmas. I do not mean the holidays, not a Winter Wonderland, not anything covered in a blanket of snow. What I mean is something covered alright, but covered in HAIR.

Movember. Sweet sweet Movember.

Remember remember the hotness of November.

Oh man, do I love a moustache. It ups the sexiness of man 87%. (According to my totally made up statistics.)

This probably comes from being a child of the 70’s and 80’s. My TV crushes were Magnum P.I., Simon and Simon, Isaac from the Love Boat. While most girls probably crushed on Luke Skywalker, or swooned over Han Solo, my heart belonged to Lando Calrissian. (How you doing, Chewbacca?”)

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Growing up, on my street were two of the COOLEST dads EVER. On one side, we had Mr. M., who looked like a dreamier Patrick Swayze. (I know, you are saying “that’s not possible!” but it’s true. Because of the facial hair!)

On the other, Mr. L. who looked and dressed like (young) Elvis, drove a hot rod, wore coveralls and high heeled boots, and wait for it, ROCKED THAT STACHE.

So, you see, my love of the moustache runs deep. I love November so much! I see guys of all ages and styles, sporting moustaches, for a whole month, and it makes me get the lady tingles!

But, hold on. What is all this noise I hear from wives and girlfriends that have the hate-on for the stache?? I have also heard a lot of men are not participating in Movember this year, because of this.

This is where the joking around stops.

Movember is an amazing campaign to raise awareness and funds for Men’s Health. Since 2003 this project has raised $677 Million dollars, and has brought men’s health to the forefront. It has also started worldwide dialogue, getting our guys to feel comfortable being proactive about their health, and more importantly, seeking help when they need it!

The month is almost over. So ladies, if you forbid your guy to participate this year, please find a guy who did, and donate to this worthy cause! PLEASE rethink the facial hair ban for next year. And, if I can take a moment to brag, last year my very own facially (hair) blessed husband was crowned Man Of Movember at his office!

Let him give it a grow. You may just end liking it!  I can’t be the only one who loves a good stache, can I?

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That’s What You Get For Waking Up In Vegas…

I’m sure most women, when they get engaged, start dreaming of their big day, either in June, with flowers blooming and bare arms showing, or, better, a tropical getaway, saying their “I do’s” on a beach, surrounded by sun-kissed loved ones. Well, in case you haven’t already realized, I am not like most women! My first thoughts were “YES!!! Lock it in!! Free drug plan!!” followed very closely by “LET’S HAVE SOME FUN.” I’ve never been a big fan of weddings. My fiance had been married before, and I had a child, soooo, I couldn’t really ask my retired parents to cough up some cash for “my special day.” Besides, in my life, every day is my special day, it’s kind of how I roll. 😉

So, off we went to Las Vegas. Just the two of us, and Elvis of course!  We had a BLAST. We decided we’d go away, somewhere hot, every year for our anniversary to celebrate, since mid November is a pretty sucky time of the year to get married.

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Well, we just hit our ten year mark, and guess how many times we’ve been away to a warm destination? Zero.

That’s right, NOT ONCE IN TEN COLD NOVEMBER YEARS.

Given it was a big one, I wanted to do something. A trip was (again) not happening. I sat Googling warm places I wouldn’t be going, when something new popped up (literally) on my Facebook feed. Dee Brun, the fabulous Cocktail Deeva, had opened the Gorgeous Olde Bridge Place B and B in an old converted garage, right at the base of Kissing Bridge, the last covered bridge in Ontario! How’s that for romance??!!?? Not your typical B & B, though, but a completely private apartment, where your kitchen is full of local goodies for you, and you do not have to socialize with others over awkward breakfast!! No “so tell me a little about yourself” over frittatas while you’re actually thinking “I hope they didn’t hear us through the paper thin walls”. I booked us in, and off we went!

Dee’s place is delightful. Soaring wood covered ceilings, two fireplaces, total privacy, spectacular views, and, wait for it, quiet and calming. Nothing in my life is usually either of these things. It was SO GREAT to just have a couple of days of silence. We sat by the fire, had some wine, read some books. Reconnected. The only sounds we could hear was the Grand River flowing by, and the clickety clack of Mennonite buggies crossing the bridge. (This happens all day, so if you see one, and aren’t ready with your camera, calm down, they run as regularly as a city bus!!)

I woke up early, made some coffee, wrapped myself up in a blanket and sat on my private little balcony, and watched the local firemen hang Christmas wreaths on the snow covered bridge. We lounged around, had a late breakfast, then visited the nearby towns of St. Jacob’s and Elora. It was a really relaxed way to celebrate a milestone. I can’t wait to go back!

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We still hope to go back to Vegas next year. Let’s hope 11 is our lucky number. If so, I am betting it all on red!

Last thing. I grew up not too far from “Kissing Bridge”. We used to go there, late at night, as teenagers.

I didn’t know it was actually called Kissing Bridge until I was an adult.

But that’s a different blog post…

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The Cheese Stands Alone – Part 1

I am Toronto Proud.

I love my neighbourhood. I live in arguably one of the best, and now most sought after areas of our fine city. I am very active and involved in my community, and have spent years making good friends, neighbours, and acquaintances with the shop owners.

I love my house. It’s warm, solid, kind of adorable, and it takes care of my family through the seasons. I had planned to grow  eccentric old in my Junction cutie. That was the plan, until, last week, when something happened that has changed EVERYTHING.

It all started with my dog. She started acting weird. Aggressive, scared, angry, stressed. She would start barking and growling at the two heating grates in the kitchen and bathroom. She would run crazily sniffing along baseboards, at one point she jumped on the couch and started biting my hands. She would freak out and bark at what appeared to be nothing. WHAT IS IT GIRL, WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO TELL ME?

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Then, it hit me. My mouth dried, my heart started pounding, I got the lady sweats. I felt light-headed and sick. I knew what was making her act like this, there could only be one reason…

IT MUST BE A GHOST.

My home, that I LOVE, is haunted. I was devastated. I have always said I’d never move, unless, of course, one of my two deal breakers happened.

#1 – House is Haunted. (I know some people can live with this, I cannot. I am a total chickenshit of the supernatural. When the earthquake happened a few years ago, my closet doors started banging open and shut. I assumed it was a haunting, walked outside, and put up a for sale sign. CANNOT HANDLE GHOSTS)

#2 – Rats. (Sure, this is probably a deal breaker for everyone, right? But, I wasn’t concerned right now about rats, I had bigger problems, I HAVE A GHOST IN MY HOUSE.)

I sat on my bed, and I cried. Hard. For a long, long time. Once I started, I couldn’t stop. I sobbed and sobbed, and felt defeated. I know other people have it tougher out there, but I haven’t exactly had it easy. In a two day period I have lost my job, developed a kidney stone, and now, have a ghost in my house. And, I feel alone.

So alone. (Epic. Pity. Party. It was great, who doesn’t love a good cry, right?)

I needed to come up with a plan, and it would all be on me. It always is. It always has been. Throughout the years, as my many problems arise, I am left alone to face it, and deal. Don’t get me wrong, my husband is great at doing many things, like wearing fancy glasses, or buying wine, but he’s not so great with the house stuff, and really not great at the “Tara” stuff. He tries his best, but I am a handful. For every coo-coo thing that comes out of my mouth, there are 200 that stayed in. He’s loving and supportive, but I think at the end of the day, the best he can do is buckle up, as life with me is a bumpy ride.

Given my (lack of) job situation, I knew he would not agree to having a Medium come in, they cost a small fortune. I was going to have to do this one, all on my own.  I am a huge fan of Crossing Over’s John Edward, so I do know a few things. I also Googled “How to get rid of ghosts.” A few options popped up, a how to in 9 steps, and a how to in 7 steps. As per my m/o, I took the easy way out and went with the 7 steps.

I went into my kitchen, and decided to have a few words with the Ghost. I spoke out loud, in clear voice, and let my Ghost know that I just can’t handle it being in my house right now.  I explained about the no job thing, the poor health, and that I am just plain straight up terrified.  I also said I know sometimes Ghosts need help getting to the light, but that right now I am not the person to do that.  I’m not in a great place right now, I can barely help myself, so I will be of no use to them, and they need to find another guide. In a different house.  Maybe on a different street.  Please GET GONE.

I hoped this would do the trick.
I pulled myself together, picked my kids up from school, and took them out for dinner, for my favourite comfort food, Vesuvios. (Come on, you can’t expect me to cook in my haunted kitchen, right? Plus, I figured it would be good to leave Casper alone to gather his outer worldly possessions and scram.)WP_20141105_006

That night, when my husband got home from work, he said he had to tell me something the neighbours told him, about their house, and it was going to FREAK ME OUT.  We were whispering so our kids wouldn’t hear us.

“They saw something in their kitchen” he says. “They’ve called someone in to deal with it” he says.

Way ahead of you, I think, about to spring my news on him.

“I bet I KNOW what it IS” I whisper.

At the very same time I say “THEY HAVE GHOSTS” he says “THEY HAVE RATS”.

Wait, what.

WHAT??!!??

To be continued…

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