Confessions of an over-packer

2003-05-23 - 11:27 a.m.

We're off to TO for the weekend. (For those of you non-Canucks, that means Toronto, Ontario.) Being from Montreal, it always seems to be a big deal to go to Toronto.

First of all, people ask you to bring bagels. Again, if you are not Canadian, you must be wondering, don't they have bagels in Toronto? Well, sure they do, but not MONTREAL bagels.

Then, there are chains of stores that we don't get in Montreal, so going anywhere that has them is very exciting: Old Navy, Restauration Hardware, J Crew (not in Toronto either), etc. So planning a trip has to involve planning time to shop, which my husband lovingly indulges me in.

Finally, there is the reason we are going in the first place: our friends' wedding on Sunday. It's a middle of the day affair followed by lunch. Here is the dilemma: I don't know what to wear, so I actually packed 3 dresses, which means 2 pairs of shoes, a vest and a wrap as well. Then my hubby informs me that the weather might be chilly and rainy, so I had to bring several outfits to get me through Saturday and Monday. We are leaving today and coming back Monday afternoon, and I'm already dressed for the day, but none-the-less, I packed: Shorts, Jeans, Linen Chinos (for the out-of-towner dinner), the 3 afore-mentioned dresses, 6 t-shirts, 2 sweaters, underwear and 3 pairs of shoes (plus the ones I am wearing). Overdoing it much you think????? I KNOWI won't need most of it, but I just wanted to be prepared for anything. I did notice however that you can pack lots more in a suitcase when you are a size 8 then when you are a size 22 (which I used to be), so I don't feel too guilty because everything, including shoes, hair-care machinery and beauty products all fit in one small wheely suitcase.

TV TalkJust wanted to write a few words about Season Finales again. The Bachelor: Call me crazy, but I actually like those 2 together and think they might stand a chance. Law and Order: too many stories "ripped from the headlines", too many stories rolled into one, just too much happening there, I fell asleep during the end of the second episode but didn't care enough to rewind and watch it again. 24: It was OK, but you really had to be paying attention to realise who that woman was. Also, it makes me wonder about next season. Will it pick up the next day, which would be really hard on Jack, or will it skip ahead in time, and we'll be missing tons of stuff in between. All in all, not as satisfying as the Alias finale. But how could anything be.....

Can't wait for Amazing Race to start again next week, that should keep me going through the summer season.

Back on Tuesday!

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A Modern Fairy Tale of Revenge

2003-05-22 - 10:31 a.m.

Once upon a time, Sweet, Innocent, Hard Working Mortimersmom used to work as a PR and communications specialist in the very male dominated field of airline regulations. She was 1 of only 2 "girls" in the department above the level of secretary and was much younger than anyone there.

This somewhat uncomfortable situation was made worst by the fact that our Fair Maiden reported to two foreign-born masochistic pigs who saw all women as useless twits. These Ogres constantly made the maiden work through the night, only to take credit for her work the next day. They insisted on asking her to fetch coffee, even though she didn't drink any, and it definately was not in her job description as assistant manager of the department.

The Maiden tried to complain to the Human Resources Fairy, only to be told that even though she had several degrees and spoke 5 languages, she would never advance past this level because of the Ogres. She was disocuraged from further complaining and repeatedly told that maybe the airline business just wasn't for her.

After a particularly nasty incident with Ogre #1 (she worked for months on a project and he secretely rescheduled the presentation during her grand-mother's funeral so he could take all the credit and make her look like she didn't care), the Maiden quit her job.

Her life turned out very well. With the help of her Prince Charming, they opened a lovely little store where they have lots of fun and enjoy themselves everyday.

Yesterday, a former co-worker of our Fair Maiden emailed her to ask if she might be available for contract work. It seems Ogre #1 has pissed of several of our Maiden's replacements since her departure 2 years ago. Now their big annual project is behing schedule and he's afraid Ogre #2 might find out Ogre #1 never actually did any of the work. But too proud to grovel himself, he had one of his minions get in touch with our Fair Maiden.

The Fair Maiden rejoiced at this news! She told her former co-worker to go ahead and release her secret whereabouts to the Ogre. She's not sure she interested in the work (although a few extra gold scheckels wouldn't hurt), but mostely, she would just love to go to the meeting, have him ask for her help and just laugh in his face.

Ha! Ha! Revenge is Sweet.

The End.

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Turning into my mother

2003-05-20 - 11:26 a.m.

Update: here is a picture of the project: Despite all my best efforts, I'm turning into my mother. This is scary.

My mother is a work horse. When I was a kid, she moved a piano by herself, she was constantly moving large heavy objects from one room to another without help, and her favorite thing was to redo an entire room while my dad was on a business trip.

We could afford to have people come in and help with heavy jobs, like say, re-soding the lawn, or putting in a fence, or shoveling the triple wide driveway, but my mother the work-horse did it all herself, despite my father's pleading to call someone.

I never thought I would be like that. While I do enjoy decorating and doing some reno work on my own, I also enjoy having a man mow the lawn and tend to the trees around the house. Luckily for me, my dear hubby comes from a background where you don't get dirty, you call someone. So up to this point, I've done lots of little jobs on my own, but big jobs always involved "a guy".

This weekend, however, my mother's genes took over, big time. Our driveway is on the side of our house. There is a lovely path from the front sidewalk to the front porch, but when you get out of the car, you have to walk the length of the driveway back to the street, then 30 feet on the sidewalk and then again the length of the driveway, this time on the rock path. Obviously, we don't do this. We cut across the lawn to the front door. The first summer, the house was a mess, so we didn't care. In the winter, we pack down the snow and make a path. But with summer coming round again and the grass looking so green, I decided we needed to fix the problem. I didn't want a path of dead grass from the car to the front door.

What did I do? Ask the gardener to put a rock path? Call a brick man and have them do a little something for me? NOOOOO! I dug up some large flat rocks from all around the house and proceeded to dig holes in the lawn to lay these stones to form a path....

Why is this so worthy of a blog entry First of all, I didn't have a proper shovel, so I had to go buy one, along with several bags of river stones to fill in between the large flat rocks. Second, there is a huge maple tree in our front yard, which turns out to means lots and lots of roots right below the grass. So rather than just digging up an inch or two of grass and loose earth, I was busy cutting through though roots.

It took about 6 hours, but I got it done. All along, I was telling myself I had bitten off way more than I could chew, that this project would not come to an end without calling someone, yet I kept going. I was in pain, I was hot, I was thirsty, but I just couldn't stop myself.

It looks great, I'll try to take a pic and post it. But what I got out of this experience is this: I am turning into my mother. This is something she would do. This is a good trait, I'm happy to have inherited it. But I'm worried about other things she does that I don't necessarily like. What if I start doing those as well? How do I keep it from happening? I couldn't stop this, will I be able to keep myself from putting down my kids, or dismissing their feelings? I always thought I would, but I couldn't stop this.....

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breaking up is hard to do

2003-05-18 - 1:10 p.m.

Well, the search that lead this person here is rather disturbing......

It's been a great weekend so far! Friday, we went to see A Mighty Wind. It was absolutely hilarious! I love Guest's movies, but this one was just too funny. Even the web site is a hoot!

After Synaguogue on Saturday, I spent a few hours in the yard planting some flowers, herbs and even a few veggies. I'm not a very good gardener. I've very excited about it, but I don't have the discipline to actually tend to the stuff. I forget to water, then I over-water to compensate. I'm going to try to be more consistent this year.

The chives from last year came back all on their own and seem to be doing very well. That's the kind of plants I need: hearty and impossible to kill!!!!

We had dinner with best friend IH and her hubby to be (yummy food, good company, a lovely time was had by all), then concluded the evening with a family walk with Mortimer. 2 neighbour dogs were out (with their humans) so we joined them for a while. Mortimer did great! He's usually weary around other dogs when he's on his leash, but after a few seconds to warm up to them, he was a champ!

He even made friends with the dalmatian from across the street, who's been barking at him for the last two years. Turns out she's really friendly and has been trying to get him to come over to her house all this time! Her human turned out to be very nice too. Guess I'll have to stop calling him "crazy old guy across the street". (he's constantly washing his numerous cars and cuts his lawn with nail scissors.... you've never seen grass like this, not even in grass commercials!)

I have a hard time breaking-up with people. Not boyfriends, just people in general, friends, aquaintances. Sometimes, their time is up, but I just don't know how to tell them. There is this girl I worked with years ago, I never was particularly close to her, but she went out of her way to stay in touch with me, for years. I never called her, never returned her calls, yet for years she kept in touch, although I showed no interest what-so-ever. There is a woman that came to the store this week to sell me some pet jewelery. Her stuff was cute, so I bought some. She hasn't stopped visiting since. Wants to make other things, frames, plates, mirrors. She even called me at home 3 times yesterday because she spotted some things at a garage sale she tought I might be interested in. I didn't call her back because I don't use the phone on Saturdays. But she didn't get it, she was at the store first thing this morning! I tried to politely dissuade her from making too many samples, letting her know that we are pretty full right now, but I have a feeling she'll be around lots and lots. I don't know how to let her dwon gently. She's a very nice woman, I can tell she's had a hard time and is trying hard to make a go of her business. But I'm only one person and I can't take on everything that she makes. I also don't have hours to speak to her everytime she stops by..... These breakups are hard for me.....

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