Friday, November 27, 2009

Monday, November 23, 2009

mind over matter

So, last weekend The Husband and I cashed in my "employee of the month" award and went shark diving in Manly. Somehow I thought this was a great prize and I was really excited... until the time came to actually do it. I was pretty nervous. It wasn't the sharks so much as it was the breathing through a tube whilst under water thing. Not exactly easy. In fact, once we were suited up and ready to go, I had more than one thought of running away screaming. Except, I was wearing about 200 lbs of gear at the point, so I couldn't exactly run.

And then we were diving. And I admit, there were sharks and giant fish and rays and other stuff, but I didn't really see any of it. For me, it was about 30 minutes of remember to breathe... remember to breathe... dump water out of mask... remember to breathe. And when it was over, I was glad I had done it, but I was exhausted. And I think that I have decided that - while I may be up for snorkeling - scuba diving is not my cup of tea.

Next time I am employee of the month, I may go for the day spa package.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Well... I did it. I got my Canadian passport. Pretty cool to see a passport with blank pages. I haven't had one of those in years. It makes me think of all the places I have yet to go and the stamps I want to see in those pages.

The Husband and I have been reading the blog of a guy who's goal is to visit every country in the world by 2013. read it here I am pretty much in awe of this guy, and I keep asking - why couldn't we do that? And really, while I am more of a "savour the experience" traveller, and less of a "check em off the list" kind of gal, the truth is that nothing is keeping us from seeing the world.

The question always then comes back to which countries to choose. There are so many that we want to see. And so, we approach it in the same way we approach everything... with a list and a plan.

A few months ago, The Husband and I set out to make a list of goals for ourselves. And one of them was to complete a round the world trip, encompassing a number of the geographic areas that we would like to see as well as return to a few that we have already seen, albeit not together. There are obviously many details of this trip to be ironed out, but we have given ourselves a goal of 2011. Two years to save, plan, and execute. We are pretty excited about the possibilities.

First, we will hopefully be completing a number of trips in and around Australia. And the one that I am most looking forward to is an upcoming trip to the Cook Islands. Now... show of hands if you can actually tell me where the Cook Islands are without a search engine. No? Here is some help:

Basically, the Middle of Nowhereville, Pacific Ocean. Not a huge country to check off the list, but an interesting one, nonetheless.

And while we are on the subject of goals, here's where we stand with a few others:

1. Take a knitting class
2. Get my Canadian passport
3. Learn to kayak
4. Take a sushi class
5. Go to the Cook Islands

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


In Flanders Fields

By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
Canadian Army

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Today is Remembrance Day. (Veterans Day for my American readers.) A day to remember the men and women who give of themselves in service to our country. I wore a poppy today in honour of those who are no longer here, and for those who are serving now. And especially for my cousin's husband, who is currently in Iraq. (Thank you, Jeremy!)

I spent the morning on Canadian soil, applying for my passport at the local consulate. It seemed a fitting thing to do on this date, as it's the 5 year anniversary of when I landed in Canada. I thought back to that day as I waiting in line this morning. It was a cold, dark day November day in Buffalo, but when I finally got that letter saying I could move to be with The Husband, it was a sunny day for me! And today, as I stood in queue, this time under a sign that said "Canadian citizens only" - it felt like I was home for a few minutes.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

november milestones

November is a month of anniversaries for The Husband and I. We were eating dinner the other night and reminiscing about all the milestones we'll be celebrating this month. It was November 1993 when we first met - 16 years ago! Seems like just the other day... and yet, a lifetime ago. We have now known each other for more than half our lifetimes, and we have known each other longer than we didn't know each other. Wow. Now I feel old.

It was November 2004 when I moved to Canada. The last five years have flown by. The visa process seemed like it would never end, and here we are - five years later already.

And it was November 2008 when I became Canadian. I can't even describe how fast the last year has passed. Although I was born in the US, and will always have a soft spot for it, I truly do feel like Canada is my home. I am so proud and happy to be Canadian. I know that wherever life takes us, Canada will always be the place we "go home" to.


Possibly one of my top 5 favourite things about Australia.
Definitely my favourite thing about November in Australia.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


I just wanted to mention that right now, it is 102f / 38c here.
That's all. Just thought you should know.

Good thing The Husband is out of town tonight - I can blast the AC without feeling guilty.

Oh, and I won $26 on the ponies today. Woohoo. Love me some Melbourne Cup. Big hats, fancy frocks, and a day off work. Gotta love it.