Sunday, November 30, 2008

Last weekend, Patrick modelled for his friend April-Anna, who is an amazing multi-talented person. She is an artist, specializing in body painting, but she's also the person who taught Patrick his Reiki level 1. Anyways, just look what she came up with, pretty cool eh? No, he's not wearing a shirt; it's actually blue paint! If you're interested in more of her work, check out her site

And to continue on the "blue" theme, here's my new haircut. I was playing around on picnik, which shows how much I'm procrastinating....
Last night we played cards, sang some karaoke and played DDR (dance dance), which we haven't done in literally years! More photos to come soon of the evening, and the cards and layouts that I've made recently.

Oh, one more thing! Nathalie "awarded" me with a blog prize if you will... I am honored! It's nice to know that people take interest in my little life and artistic endeavors. I'm glad that we can all be connected through the wonderful world of blogging and scrapbooking.

So it's my turn to pass it on... to Jessica, Ruth and a long-distance pal Katherine . Take it away girls!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

I have short hair and bangs now! gasp! I would have got a photo last night when it was nice and purty but Pat's camera died before I got a decent shot. Now I have bed-head, which will need to be fixed before I show a picture... and I'm not sure how I will reproduce what my hairdresser did, but I will try my best.

I am presently procrastinating from writing a paper (can one procrastinate from? not sure if that's a correct expression, but you get the gist). I am not in paper-writing mode; I am in lesson-planning mode. Making the switch is not very easy. But I will need to do it by 5 pm on Tuesday, because that's when it's due.

The kids were adorable yesterday (for the most part). They were helping each other practice their power words (high frequency words) and they were all into it and being really supportive. I was actually getting teary-eyed to watch (I know, I'm such a sap...). We also started this project where they write a letter to their parents every Thursday afternoon, and then the parents have to write back to them as part of what we've called "parents homework", which is a kick for them. It was really touching to read the exchanges. I think it's a great idea, and of course being a scrapbooker makes me more aware of how important little gems of writing like that really are. It's arranged in a writing workbook, so we'll be able to see the progress over time. All in all, a really nice activity all-around that I will definitely use in the future.

Alright, paper, here I come. Wish me luck. I will post photos later. Cheers!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

So here's the first thing we did yesterday, the Titanic exhibition at the Eaton's center. It was very interesting as you could see a lot of artifacts from the actual ship, and the recreated some of the rooms from first and third class. Also, they give you a ticket with a real passenger's name and info right at the beginning, and then at the end, there' s a huge memorial wall with all the names of those who survived and those who perished, and you can find "your" name, so it makes it more personal. We noticed that there was a David Gregory and a William Cross among the service men who died, so we wondered if it was anyone of relation (both names from my dad's side of the family). Since we don't have much info from my dad's side, it could very well be that they were distant relatives. What wasn't so great about the exhibition was how disgustingly packed it was. They are really milking it for the money and let it WAY too many people at once - it felt like we were lining up for a ride at Disney World and I was getting overheated and claustrophobic. So I definitely wouldn't recommend going on the weekend.

Next, we walked through the irritating crowds of people in the dreadful cold to go see the display in the Ogilvy's window. My mom had this fantastical vision of it in her head since she used to walk by it every day when she worked downtown, and she loved looking at it before Christmas. It is really cute! She said she remembered it being a lot bigger than it actually is. Anyways, I wasn't going to pull out the camera because of the huge crowd, but finally forced myself to. Somebody was nice enough to take the picture for us. For a brief few seconds, I was worried they would make a break with it, but I guess I was being too paranoid. After the trip downtown we came back to the shore to eat at Regal which was good, and then we headed off to experience the best part of the day...

We went to Sky Spa at the dix30! It was so many shades of wonderful! We went in the outdoor hot-tubs on the roof of the building, and even gathered up the courage to take a cold plunge a few times (only for a few seconds). We also went in the different types of saunas and relaxation rooms. We were there for over three hours, and it was so serene... I will definitely be going back there. Next time I think I will rent a room at the hotel it's attached to and then spend the evening at the spa, for a romantic getaway.

Alright well I've gotta go because Patrick has started the movie, Tropic Thunder. Cheers!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

So now that I have a bit more time, I'll finally respond to the tag that Katherine sent my way... 7 random facts about myself:

1. I'm into older men. Just take my boyfriend for example, who is almost 9 years older than me, and my life-long celebrity crush, you all know who, who is is 12 years older than me.

2. I want to teach in England for a year, next year, but I don't know if I have the guts to go through with it. It would be a great experience I think, but I'm not sure if Patrick would be able to come (not sure if he could get a visa), and I don't know if I could do a whole year apart. Plus, it's a very daunting task to go to a new place you've never been and just adjust to everything. I've never traveled on my own and I'm a little overwhelmed by the whole idea. But I know people who are doing it now, so if they can do it, so can I.

3. I have a very persistent upper back/shoulder injury that keeps me from training at the level I would like to. My posture doesn't help. I use a foam roller and heating pad almost every day.

4. I've never been published in a scrapbooking magazine, although I've submitted a few layouts here and there. I have decided that I don't care one way or the other. I am scrapping for myself, not for others. I should be less caught up in the hype of it all, the thrill of new products and such, and just focus on the memories.

5. I am a very indecisive person, but I'm working on it. Even just while writing that sentence, I had trouble asserting that statement. So annoying!!!

6. I tend to appear more negative than positive, but inside I feel more positive than negative. In other words, I vent too much, but at the end of the day, I love life. I need to work on expressing that more.

7. I waste too much time on the Internet, but I love browsing around, finding creative ideas and inspiration.

Okay, well I've gotta go get ready for a busy but fun day. So I'll leave you with a layout I made recently. I actually used my Silhouette for the letters. I really need to use that machine more, it's great, just a lot of work to set it up, so I tend to take the easy route of letter stickers more often. But the end result is so worth the extra effort.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Last night and today was the teacher's convention - it was interesting. Lots of people were there and I felt a little claustrophobic. But I did get a free stapler and calculator from the Bureau en Gros booth, so that was nice. I didn't buy anything because I wasn't too sure what to get, especially since I don't know what grade I'll be teaching...

My keyboard is still broken and I really do have to go buy a new one ASAP. It's exasperating to type like this.

I can't wait for tomorrow! My mom and I are doing a girl's day: shopping, exhibitions downtown (maybe the one about the Titanic), eating out, and going to Sky Spa at the Dix30. Some much needed pampering will be taking place. Meanwhile, Patrick will be giving an EFT workshop at Spa ZaZen in Old Montreal. I'm very excited for him!!

I scanned this old photo of my mom recently (for a purpose I cannot yet reveal incase she is lurking on my blog, which I highly doubt, but you never know...). She is 17 here I think. My dad took her on a trip across the US that summer for 2 months and so they camped out and slept in the car the whole time. I think they had a really good time and visited a lot of famous spots. I'm not sure where the photo was taken exactly. I had to touch it up a bit because there were yellow spots on it for some reason. The quality is still crap, but you get the idea.

So, some fellow bloggers have been answering this, so I thought I'd partake in the fun. I still have another one to answer since I was tagged by Katherine from the UK!! I will get to it soon, I promise ;) But for now, I'll leave you with this.

100 Questions

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch

15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you're not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelos David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job (my first job ever and the woman was a bitch)
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a new car (well, it was new to me)
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper (when I was a kid, my family and I were photographed on Christmas Eve walking in the street, but it might have only been a local paper, not sure).
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone's life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous (semi-famous - the guys from Treble Charger... also, does Jon Lajoie count, I guess not yet, eh? soon enough. Oh, and Alicia Cuthbert, I went to school with her)
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Read an entire book in one day

I still have a lot left to do! The next thing I hope will be visiting the birthplace of my ancestors...

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Saturday mornings are so wonderful, especially on days that I don't have to work. Love the feeling of having the whole day spread out in front of me. Today is rainy and cold, so I'm still in my PJ's and slippers, sipping coffee and browsing the Internet to get my inspiration. I love scrapbooking. I love looking through all my older layouts and feeling accomplished about all the memories I've captured.

Last night we went to a surprise party (which was really dinner at Roma Antiqua) for my friend Darla's 25th birthday. We actually managed to surprise her, which is pretty impressive, since she is the type to investigate and control details, lol. She seemed to have a clue about it, but wasn't sure if it would actually happen. I'm glad we went - we don't often hang out with them, but it's always really good to catch up. There were a few different crowds there and all of them super nice. My Pat and Darla's Pat really like each other, which is good - whenever they hang out they're joking together and having fun. Hopefully we will see each other more often.

Stage is going well, "my" students melt my heart sometimes, and other times, exasperate me, but it's normal. I just have to remember that they're only six years old and still learning a lot of things, and I'm there to facilitate that process. It's mostly the "miss" cries that throw me off, when they all come at me at once. They can be so needy, but also so mature at times. Normal fluctuations I suppose. The thing that I find tricky too is maneuvering around someone else's classroom, keeping their structure and everything in place. There are plenty of things that I love that are being done, like SoundPrints and Daily 5, things that I, without a doubt, will incorporate in my future classroom. But there are other things that I'm not sure I will do the same, but I must respect the way they are being done now, and accept that I have my own choices to make in the future. I think everyone is experiencing the same thing on stage. It's nice to be able to talk to the other student teachers at the school I'm at, as well as Tania, which always reassures me. I'm so grateful for that friendship! Next week is the teacher's convention, which I am really looking forward to, along with the 2 ped days. I've been feeling run-down, so those will be a huge help. Of course I will still have lots of work to do, but having no students present will let me catch a breath.

I've been trying to think of a Christmas list for my mom, who keeps asking what I want, and for my boyfriend's family, since we are doing a gift exchange. It's hard for me to come up with things this year, but here are some ideas:

1. Mac makeup (or other good quality makeup).
2. Plates
3. Pots and pans
4. Books (for my future classroom)
5. Headphones
6. New camera lens
7. Oasis DVD "Lord Don't Slow Me Down"
8. Scrapbooking store gift certificates

Anyhow, I was supposed to be finished lesson planning by now, but alas, blogging seems to have been top priority. I will leave you with a digi layout that I made the other day. I think I'm starting to get the hang of Photoshop, finally. It's a start, at least. Sometimes I am really tempted by the ease with which you can scrapbook digitally, but then you have to factor in printing the layout, and I think it would be a hassle. Anyways, here's the layout. Have a great day.

Friday, November 7, 2008

I made a mosaic for the photos I took during the month of October. I kinda slipped up towards the end of the month, but since I took a lot of photos each day before that, it evened out. It's fun to look at them side by side.

I got my snow tires taken care of this afternoon, so that's one more thing to check off the to-do list. I had some time to scrapbook this evening while Patrick watched hockey (that's the deal we've got going). I seem to be more inspired when I have him in my presence. I will hope for a sunny day tomorrow so I can take photos of my new layouts and post them.

I still need to buy a new keyboard since the enter key is still stiff, and it's getting super annoying!

Also, I'm sick again - first it was a soar throat, now sniffles, sneezing, and raspy voice. I'm hoping to take it easy this weekend and fight it off. Why hasn't my immune system built itself up yet? I've been exposed to kids and germs for long enough, you'd think it'd be a lot better by now...

Alright, time to go read under the covers.
This totally made my day.

Oasis - I'm Outta Time

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Life in a grade one classroom is fun. A good handful of students are challenging and still need to be constantly reminded about appropriate behavior and school skills (being polite, raising your hand, not calling out, not talking while the teacher is talking, etc). Aside from that, which I think is quite normal, they're great. They are little sponges and it is so rewarding to see how much they're learning. They are always coming out with hilarious things. Today for instance, one boy told me that I had a tomato on my nose (since he had spotted a huge zit). Gotta love those little gems. They really notice all the little (albeit unflattering) details. It's also rewarding that some of them wrote really beautiful poetry in their journals after I had read them a poem about feelings and asked them to write how they felt today. They are really starting to understand how to write; even if they don't know how to spell a word properly, they sound it out, and it's adorable to see what they come up with.

Tomorrow is a ped-day, and I have been invited to attend parent-teacher interviews. I think it should be a very interesting/educational opportunity. I am also pretty low-energy right now, so it will be nice to have a day without the kids who demand a lot of resources!

I am so glad that I don't have to work at the library this weekend. Two whole days off in a row, wow, heaven! I don't have plans yet, but we'll see...

I haven't written much about the home front lately, mostly because when you don't have anything nice to say, you shouldn't say anything at all. My father's behavior towards us has been less than stellar, to say the least. It's to the point where my mom and I just avoid being around him, because anything can set him off. It's really heartbreaking, and I do think his meds are playing some part in this, but he insists that he is fine, refuses to let us go to the doctor with him, and so forth. Last time my mom went with him, anyways, the doctor told her that he was perfectly fine (although the doctor is an idiot, from personal experience, and the experiences of friends close to me)... so what can be done? The breaking point seems to have come and gone, so now we just live in numbness and avoidance. Sad to say, that's the reality. So, sorry for the grim bit of info. I am not letting it effect me because I am busy with my own life. Such is the case with Patrick's family situation as well. No wonder we were meant to be together...

Well, on a happier note, here are some layouts that I made within the past few months. Have a nice evening, cheers!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Gaining one hour of time this weekend is a beautiful thing. I was up and doing cardio at 8:30 this morning, and now I'm all ready for the day way before schedule, which means that I have time to update my blog and take some photos of layouts and cards. Here's a quick layout I made quite a while ago now, about when Patrick and I went to New York over six years ago. I never scrapped anything about this trip before because I thought the pictures were all crap. But finally I decided to crop some down and I actually really like the way it came out.

Here's another older layout about the Oasis concert. I can't seem to photograph it well because the photos themselves are quite dark and the color is off. But you get the idea. I have so much crammed onto this page that I actually had to do some journaling on the back as well. The writing is only in pencil at the moment, and I wish I could just leave it like that because I actually like the effect, but it won't last over time. It's going to be a lot of work going over all that writing in pen and I'm dreading it, but I should eventually get to it. I adore the first picture of Liam - it melts my heart. I didn't take it myself - it's from a photographer who was at the show, but unfortunately I can't remember the name at the moment.

I have to work at the library today, but I'm hoping that everyone will be out enjoying the great weather, and not concerning themselves with borrowing or returning books. Quiet, peaceful afternoon with no obnoxious customers, please. That is what I'm envisioning right now.

Halloween was pretty fun in a grade one classroom. We dressed up after lunch and the kids were super excited. We danced, played games, and ate cupcakes, cookies, chips and popcorn. My CT wasn't there, but the substitute was pretty on top of things, so it turned out fine. After that party, I went to visit the daycare because it's already been two weeks and I miss them immensely. Thankfully they all still remembered me. It is so rewarding to be greeted with "A-ley" or "Lee" from two year-olds. Apparently, all the parents really appreciated the scrapbook that I put together with the kids, about things they did on their summer vacation. Some parents were touched and impressed that I wrote down exactly what the kids told me, cute mistakes and all. I guess it's not something that comes naturally to everyone, so hopefully it will encourage parents to record their children's quirky sayings and document all the little moments. It's very fulfilling to know that you have made a small impact on peoples' lives like that.

So I promised I would post a few Halloween pics from the party. Truth be told, they are all crap quality - dark and grainy. But whatever! I'll post some, but I haven't finished editing all of them. I really hope Julie's came out better so we can swap. Here's the "d**k in a box" duo. Pat super-sized it a little. Ryan has the "official" box, don't ask where he bought that from, I'm really not sure, probably some weird Internet site.

Yesterday I took a trip to the scrapbooking store to stock up on some goodies. The discount side was 70% off, so I was able to get some MM stamps and a heart-shaped chipboard album. I even got some free stuff because of the sale, which happened to be some older Basic Grey paper, score! Anyways, I'm gonna go play with that right now before work. Cheers.