Monday, August 29, 2011

Toast with me!

Well, I've officially been a black coffee drinker for a week today. Is there an anniversary celebration for that event? Is somebody going to throw me a party? I deserve it, I think. Somebody could at least buy me a coffee!

Yesterday I discovered something. Flavored black coffee. It was a large medium-light roasted Caramello from Second Cup. Having had nothing but black Tim Horton's coffee thus far, this seemed like a deliciously sweet blend of black coffee. I loved the aroma of it and each swallow left a pleasant coffee-caramel aftertaste. Call me a happy camper!! I've never been a Second Cup fan, really, but I'd totally go back there for that blend again.

Now. I have to share this with you too. At Tim Hortons, their special promise to us, the customers, is that there's never a pot of coffee that's more than 20 minutes old. However, their signs promoting that promise don't reflect that. If they open say at 7am, and put a fresh pot of coffee on at 20 minute intervals that should mean that the white pencil thing that they do on each pot should only ever be in increments of 20 minutes, technically speaking. So every coffee pot is started at 7am, then switched at 7:20, 7:40, 8:00, 8:20, 8:40, 9:00, 9:20, 9:40... etc. See the pic below? Understand my cause for concern? I demand to know who's not making the coffee on time and why did they chose to use that coffee pot model as the one for their ad campaign if they wanted to gain the trust of their customers? I only thought I'd mention it because I'm not entirely sure this is truthful based on a cup of super bitter and old tasting coffee that my lips came across on Saturday from there.

(photo courtesy and copyright of Tim Horton's Canada)

Okkkkk.. so I understand how it happens to land on an odd time. Literally thousands of people flock to Tim Hortons every day and for great reason, so undoubtedly a single pot of coffee doesn't last for more than 5 minutes in that chain, plus you have to add in the minute or two that it takes to clean the old coffee grounds out and put new stuff in to brew. So if that's the case, new pots are being started at odd increments throughout the day. But really.. on first glance, you get the mismatch, right? Orrrr... did I just put too much thought into a sign design?

Jules :Oahhhh..

Sunday, August 28, 2011

What's in a title, anyway?!

Oh my goodness. Help me out with this one.

At what age do you stop being called "Miss" and start being called "Ma'am"?

Because all of a sudden i've been crossed off the "Miss" list and etched into stone on the "Ma'am" list and this is doing nothing positive for my self esteem. I thought I still looked young enough to be a "Miss".

Is it determined by how young you look? Or the vocabulary you use, or how mature you act? Is is a maturity/age thing at all? Or is it just what people have been taught to say in certain situations?

For example, the bag boy at the grocery store.. maybe he's been coached specifically to say "Sir and Ma'am" to the customers and can't use the title "Miss" at all. If that's the case, maybe I don't need to freak out. However, if they take a look at me and just think "She's obviously past her prime, I'll call her Ma'am.. I mean look at her, she's pretty much a borderline "cougar", then I have to say that just sucks crusty pucker. I mean, it wasn't all THAT long ago that I got ID'd in the liquor store.

I know I can't stay young forever, and I enjoy my "maturity". i think I get prettier as I grow up (or maybe I just have better hair). I've always felt like I was at least 10 years older than I really am (or more) and I tend to make the best of friends with people older than myself. But really... can't I be called "Miss" for a little while longer?

Jules :OX

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

black is my new tan.

I'm officially making the switch to black coffee. I've been having a bit of a sugar overload again, largely due to the fact that just about every day I have an XL or L French Vanilla from Tim's. **GASP** Don't calculate the cost of that per month. I said DON'T. ;P So this morning I had it just black and what to you know.. I apparently have developed an appreciation for black coffee, thanks to Thor. He's been training me. LOL This will be much cheaper too and I do have a coffee maker, so I might even venture into making my own here in the morning sometime.

Other news.. I went on a bike ride again today. I did almost 48 kms in 2 hours and my average speed was 23 km/h. I did take some photos, but I think you're probably tired of seeing pics associated with me and my bike, so I'll lay off that for a day or two. Tomorrow I'll go again.. maybe for even longer, though I will pack more to eat than I did today because come 2pm I was bonking, just returned home at 1:45 or so.

My son's been in soccer camp all week so far. I put him in it so that (truthfully) I could get used to being without him all day. I do thing it's important for him to have that sort of adjustment period and get used to listening to rules and be on a schedule before he starts grade 1 on the 1st, but it was for me to get over the separation anxiety too. Monday I was lost. The bike ride that day helped. Tuesday I was a bit easier. Today rocked and so will the rest of the week. I didn't realize how calm and serene doing errands could be, and how fast I can accomplish things with no-one else with me.

Jules :O)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

today's ride

Hope you don't get bored of seeing pics of my bike trips, cuz I'm excited about this new sport (for me) and it makes me feel good when I go out. So today I went out of south east RD, up a highway... I really should look on a map and see what the name of that highway is, but I don't want to right now, plus I should have some sort of anonymity I suppose. Anyway, I cycled 16 kms just about, and it took me 50mins. The ride out was almost all a gentle incline, so it was more difficult but not hard by any means. The ride back was therefore faster and more fun. My house is somewhere in about the middle of that photo, waaay off in the distance sort of a ways behind that telephone pole.


This farmer's field not far off my final destination (turn around point) was really pretty. The camera took a dark photo of it and I don't have time to lighten it, but really, it was nice to look at and it smelled great. There was just enough cloud cover so that I didn't get too hot as well.


This is me at the turn around point. It's just outside a bunch of houses that exist on top and around that hill in the above photo. I glanced at the sign, but right now I can't remember it.

Here's what my Endomondo App said I did today. I have to attempt to find my exercise watch so I know how many calories I'm burning each time. I went 3km/h faster on average than yesterday's ride.

Jules :O)

Monday, August 22, 2011

accomplishment

From where I live, I took off at 1:10 and arrived at Discovery Canyon in the Riverbend Recreation Area by 1:45. I then said to myself... "self.. do you want to go down that hill and have to climb back up it again?" And my self replied "it looks fun... yes, yes I do!" So down the hill I went. But not having been faced with a hill this size since having Breezy, my Schwinn, I decided to play it a bit safe and gently pump the brakes from time to time. Still, I was going super fast, as it's actually quite a large hill (you can't see the bottom in this photo).

So I arrived here... and then went back up that hill above... and then back home. There's really only one other little hill along the way which dwarfs in comparison to this one. The rest is fairly flat with only slight inclines and declines.

So altogether, my Endomondo app said it was 21 kms (13 miles) and it took me 1 hour and 17 minutes. I'm proud of myself for climbing that hill on two wheels, and for doing it without having a heart attack. I realize that for serious (or even mediocre) bikers this is hardly an accomplishment, but seeing as how I've only had Breezy since July, have only been out on her a dozen times, and that the last bike I owned was in high school, I think today was awesome. Tomorrow I've got a different course in mind and plan to bike for 2 hours, as long as the weather's suitable.

I really must thank Thor again for giving me Breezy and for equipping me with new tires recently as well. I think I'll really enjoy her. :*

Jules :Oyay!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

random

Some randomness for you.

Tell me what your first impression of this photo is (without reading the words on it).

Cuz to me it looked like a silver ass imprint. And when I think of an ass imprint being on my kitchen counter or stove top, it doesn't evoke appetite. Hey wait! Maybe I just stumbled upon the newest diet aid!! Of course there's the other side of this. I could imagine the ass imprint was caused by a hot lustful night with my lover in the kitchen. In which case it might make me more hungry. Either way, I wish my own ass imprint was shapely like that one is.

Moving on. Am I just obsessed with cereal or does your pantry shelf resemble mine? The scary part is that I just finished off 2 other kinds of cereal and so a day ago this shelf would have had 2 more varieties. I mean seriously... it takes up 3 feet of space. Is this really necessary?

Jules :O)

Saturday, August 20, 2011

down

Cancer
June 22 - July 22
If there is something you need to fight for, this is the time to do it, Cancer. For a while now you've been doing research on the best way to proceed. The time has come to take action. You have an extra boost of vitality, and your warrior instinct is strong. You feel like a volcano ready to expel boiling hot lava. Trust and follow your instincts.
...................................................................................................

This is true. I do feel like I'm going to explode and I do want to take action and fight for what I desire most.

But.

I'm afraid to. Afraid that I'll be rejected. And what good is taking action when you're afraid of the outcome? Well, it might end up being a good thing.. but it's an almost impossible thing to release the beast, so to speak. I don't think I've ever felt like this before. Every day seems like a struggle with this internal battle. Do I go for it and just hope I succeed? Or do I stay silent and hope things go where and when they need to? I don't know.

*tears on my pillow*

I hate being alone with my thoughts, sometimes.

Jules :'O(

Thursday, August 18, 2011

making friends is good, right?

I wonder if I should do a blogger buddies meet. I've been wondering it for quite a while. I think I first thought of the idea last year sometime, though I don't recall the actual time and date. I've known other bloggers who have gotten together at a local establishment because they've all lived reasonably close and had a great time just laughing and drinking and telling stories and some of them even created long lasting friendships from being able to do this. Perhaps what's stopping me from doing it is fear of going somewhere, waiting for my lurkers and/or commenters to show up and having nobody come join the party. That'd be embarrassing.. little ol' me, all alone sitting there waiting and then eventually just drowning my sorrows in Malibu and rum! I know there are quite a few people that read my blog from within Alberta... but I can't reveal my sources.. ;P Mwaahahahaha

It's still summer. The weather's pretty good, the roads are travel-able. Who's up for it? I'm not gonna do it unless people say they want to on here, or via contacting me some other way, so let me know!

Jules :O?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

wee-ooo-wee-oooooo

I think there should be some law against having commercials or songs with sirens playing on the radio. There's nothing worse than hearing that as you're driving along and feverishly trying to find out where the emergency vehicle is coming from, being unable to find it as your eyes dart as fast as they can in literally a 360, nearly mimicking the chick on the Exorcist, coming up blank and then just pulling over anyway because you can still hear it so you know it's got to be passing past you any second.

Ok, so I haven't actually pulled over.. normally I realize that it's on the radio before I get to that point, but there are certain songs or commercials that when they're new to the airwaves actually set me off like that.

Where is it? Whozzat? What's going on.. whoozzaa.. wherezit.. God Bless.. huh?
Oh. It's the radio.
Damn commercial.
...........................................................................

On a different note, I burned popcorn tonight and now despite the whole air freshener and windows being open thing, it's still all I can really smell. I wonder how long it will stick around for. I want to run my self cleaning oven deal tomorrow while I'm guaranteed to be out of the house for a few hours. It'll really stink up the place too. So I'm guessing that by September my house might smell decent again.

Crap. I forgot about my peppermint tea.

Jules :O)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

a tree with a statement

I recently went to Radium.. again. I'd love to retire in a place so beautiful such as Radium or the like. Somewhere in the Rocky Mountains.. preferably with a decent-ish weather system.. although being in the mountains, you have to deal with a bit of unpredictability.

Anyway, on a hike with Thor, we came across a Peace Park in the middle of the trail and this giant cedar tree with happy almost neon green moss was standing there loving life. So naturally, I took its picture.

Next time we go back, we'll do the whole trail. We didn't have time to go all the way to the top of the ridge and look down. Something tells me that I missed out on seeing something amazing up there, but time was too much of a consideration that day.

Jules :Owow

Monday, August 15, 2011

the gas factor is really inconsequential

I put this on my facebook profile earlier, but it's a blog worthy thought too.

The only times I like living as a single person are when I don't feel like cooking, when I have gas, or when I feel too lazy to make myself look good (say, on a weekend morning).

So lets take a look at that statement.

In the grand scheme of things, it really doesn't matter whether I feel like cooking or not, it still has to be done cuz I'm responsible for more than just me here. So really, that's negated.

I don't really have gas all that often, and even if I did, it doesn't take much to walk out of the room and then back in (I'm not really all that comfortable with passing gas in front of people). And we really mustn't count burping in the passing of gas, because if kept to a dainty "pffffff-ahhh" it's totally acceptable. So we'll consider this a 5% of the time issue.

Weekends.. well I only really ever have the opportunity to stay in my jammies and not do my hair and makeup all day long like once a month, if that, and I think I could still do that with a man around the house if I really felt like it. They have to know women can't be beautiful 100% of the time.

So basically, this living alone thing could really quite easily go all to heck and I'd be okay with that. For the, what.. 10% of my life that I actually want to spend alone, I think I could still pull that off even with a guy around all the time. The gas thing might be a challenge, but like I said, I don't have to deal with that too much anyway.

Excuse me while I go get lost in my dreams for a little while.

Jules :Oj

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Raj

4 days of intense labor with 2 people helping, having to cook for everyone, look after my 5 year old and make sure he doesn't get killed on the construction grounds, having to tend to my Autistic roomy, running errands, cleaning up after everyone... and it all leads to this grand accomplishment. My back yard garage that I've affectionately named "The Raj". We're almost done our part of the build. We are hiring out the rest, except we might attempt the siding later on, I'm not sure yet and we're installing the windows and man door. But roof sheeting and shingling, soffits/fascia/trim, the overhead door, eaves troughs and electrical will all be hired out. Thank God. What a loooong and exhausting 4 days. Every part of my body is aching, especially my wrist, that actually got hurt in the process, late in the day today. I'm sure it will look awful for a while, but hopefully it won't stay this sore for too long. anyway... here's what we accomplished. It's 20 x 22 and I am thankful to still have a substantial amount of back yard left to garden/play in.

Jules :O)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

backyard visitor

If it hadn't already captured 10 aphids, I'd probably have gotten rid of this creepy thing. But instead, I admired it's hunting ability and decided to take it's photo. I didn't realize it would be so hairy.
By the way, does anyone know if this kind of spider is poisonous?

Jules :Oewww.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

I used to believe that love was the one thing that could make anything happen. I'm not so sure lately that my belief system is correct.

Riots.
People holding onto hard feelings after years and years have gone by.
Love not being able to move mountains (the song lied).
War, hurt, starvation, global economic crisis, suffering.

..... these are things love can't diminish completely all on it's own.

**sigh**

Monday, August 08, 2011

Oink.

I just ate two cupcakes (but I scraped off the icing).

Damn boredom, loneliness and a kind neighbor who wanted to thank me for looking after his dog.

:(

Takes soooo long to take off the pounds, and they get put back on so easily.

Jules :O/

Sunday, August 07, 2011

I love: LOVE

I went to Banff today and found this petal laying in the sand exactly as you see it here. Amazing, no? Is there anything better than love? Really? Other than sex.. but you're not supposed to have sex without love, so really love wins there too.

Here are my footprints in all the pedal, sand and icy water bliss. Ahhh.. refreshing! It's always cool how it looks like it's in 3D when you do this type of pic, but really it's not.

Ok... and my feet too. Just because my toenails match what was going on there...

Jules :O)

Friday, August 05, 2011

boring update

Went to the doctor. He referred me for an ultrasound that I'll be having done in the middle of the month this month. Here's my prediction... based on no scientific evidence, just a gut feeling (no pun intended). I think they'll find scar tissue from the ablation I had done a year ago and that since it's scarring, there's nothing they can do about it as trying to fix it would likely just create more scar tissue. So I'm destined to live this life with this new pain. But it's still better than the pain I used to suffer prior to the ablation, so far. The crappy news is the doctor that did the ablation is gone now and there's a new doctor in his place. The good news is that the new doctor is a woman and is just stepping in for a smooth transition, so I should be able to see her if necessary without too much hassle, being an existing patient.

Here's some totally unrelated news.

My mom is building a garage in my back yard to house my deceased step-dad's truck. I had to pay the cost of the permit and I get a garage. Seems like a good deal. It's causing me some stress though, and with this pain of mine, I'm not sure how much I'll be able to put my handy-woman abilities and extreme talents to use. I'll try. I've never built a garage before. I'd have been stupid to have said no though.. as it will increase the value of my property by about $20,000 and I'll have a fully finished back yard after it's done.. including fenced off completely providing me with better security and a place for my son to play, worry free. And since the truck will be stored here, I'm sure I'll be able to use it more often and more easily. I guess I'll park in it once in a while, maybe in the winter, too.

If anyone in my area wants to come help build a garage, do stop by! :) We're starting on Monday.

Jules :O/


Thursday, August 04, 2011

Gettin my drink and my freak on.


This is the kind of day I had... or rather the sort of days I've been having lately. How many nights can a girl cry herself to sleep? I'm not saying how many of these I plan to have, nor how fast I plan to drink them....nor whether or not I'll omit the hot chocolate part in near future. That's my little secret.

Whatever World. Whatever.

I have another thought. I'll post a video. I really am not in love with BS, because I find the tone of her voice to be annoying, but I really love this song. And sometimes I feel like really getting my freak on, as the song suggests. Ya. I can be freaky when the feeling hits me... as I recall a playful tent-capade recently. ;) "I Wanna Go" too, Britney.

I just don't understand the reference to the whole "Terminator" thing, and I really think that's some kind of "freaky" with the whole milk drenching enjoyment. Watch the video and you'll see.

Jules :Ofreakyj*

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

I'm still trippin'

Inside Kootenay National Park again with Thor. These pics are actually in reverse order of how I took them, but I'm too lazy tonight to reverse them. So this first pic (last pic) was taken from Marble Canyon which turned out to be a really extreme gem. I'm happy I stopped there to collect myself after parting ways. It was just what I needed. It's in a Canyon that was ravaged by forest fire in 2003, and the extreme opposite between the burned bits and the new bits just makes my heart sing. To know that even from ashes arises something so beautiful is both reassuring and breathtaking. When I look at an area burned by forest fire, I don't see loss, I see survival.


I must be getting braver. This was the second spider on a daisy that attracted my attention..


Looking off towards the highway, you don't see the greys of the fire. All you see are these enormous mountains and a plethora of wildflowers. There were so many colors.. blue, purple, pink, red, orange, yellow, white, all the shades of green... a natural forest in bloom is really an amazing sight.


A happy (bug free) daisy basking in the glory of the warm sunlight.


Thor and I went on a 2 hour hike to Dog Lake in Kootenay Park. There was still little bits of snow on the peaks of the mountains in the background there, and Stanley Glacier isn't too far from this location, by car. The water seemed clear until we took a swim in it and stirred up the silty mud beneath the surface. I think I sank up to my knees. Still, it was fun to be a bit naughty.


A forest full of wonder. I wondered what would happen if Alice ate these mushrooms...

At the start of the hike (remember we're going in reverse order here) we passed over Kootenay River on this really fun bouncy bridge. I want to make love on that bridge at night. I think it'd be fun.. except for the danger of being eaten by a bear. I don't know why you can't see the mountains here, because they surrounded us 360 degrees. Just the wrong angle or the trees were too tall from this vantage point, I guess.

This was the first daisy I stopped to take a pic of this trip, and low and behold, it contained a spider. If you blow it up and look at the spider's body, it looks like an alien brain. Well it does to me. I really do think I'm becoming used to these little critters.. somewhat. If you know me at all, you'd highly praise my ability to even get this close to one.

Radium Hot Springs took up the remainder of our time this trip. It's so relaxing and entertaining to be immersed in the springs. It's especially perfect after a day of hiking on the park.

Jules :Oahh!

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

the pain game

I've had some physical pain again lately. Hmm. Decision time. Do I go into the doctor and risk becoming a patient again? Or do I just ignore the pain and have a nice pleasant summer and maybe go in once the cold weather hits and I won't care about being locked up inside recovering from whatever they'll choose to put me through?

I think it's just some cramping as a side effect from the ablation I had done almost a year ago now. I don't think it's anything major and I don't really think anything can be done about it. But there's the off chance that it's something else, I suppose. How well do I know my body, I wonder.

I'm tired of being a patient. I just want to enjoy life.

What to do, what to do.

Jules :O?

Monday, August 01, 2011

Final Vacay Days - West Glacier National Park

Okay, so it's back to the final days of my trip to the states. We left Flathead Lake early in the morning on day 7 and drove up to West Glacier National Park where we set up camp in the very beautiful Apgar Campround next to the Village of Apgar (click the links to see a live webcam). After setting up camp, we went for a bike ride to explore the campground and the village. We did some shopping and then decided to get our water-sporting on. Here's Thor at the edge of Lake McDonald. Those mountains in the distance are enormous and gorgeous. You can never quite capture the size of the mountains on camera... nor the impact they have when you see them live.

We spent the next 3 or 4 hours on the water, kayaking around. Near the edge of the lake it was glass calm, but unwise me, I decided to cut straight across the middle of it and found out I really should listen to Thor, LOL. A water-baby like him really knows the wind patterns and water surfaces. It was a bit tougher to paddle in the wind. One kayaker said he got stuck in the middle of the lake for about half an hour, paddling but getting nowhere. Mostly, our ride was incredibly calm and relaxing, a pure joy.


After supper we went for a bike ride down towards Avalanche Creek, but not nearly that far. Came across this really pretty little clearing with this little mountain spring waterfall. I totally love this photo.

The evening brought about some more general campsite fun as well as some peppermint schnapps. After the schnapps and the beer, I found the following pamphlet to be really hilarious. I mean come on.. I really had my heart set on grabbing some bear balls whilst in the park.

The next day we set off to hike on Logan Pass. We went there last year as well, but there wasn't nearly this amount of snow. It was hot though and there were just a couple of spots on the mountain we climbed that had little patches melted off. Here are some wildflowers on the little spot we chose to sit and eat lunch. The purple stuff is rock, the rocks there are amazing, so bright and colorful! Happy little flowers, hey? How could they not be, in that location!!

Thor set up his tripod and snapped 4 of these photos. This one was the best. It shows our elevation well. I loved everything about this day... and being up there. It was like the world belonged to us. No-one else was anywhere near there. It was peaceful and quiet and warm and smelled amazing. It really takes your breath away being in such a stunning location.

I didn't really see much wildlife this trip. This happy little goat was walking down the "Going To The Sun Road" on the wall barrier as we were leaving at the end of the day.

Back on the bikes, Thor snapped this pic of me on my bike "Breezy". We just went for a little ride around the area as the sun was setting. Thanks for taking such a nice photo of me, Thor (and for letting me post it and the mountaintop one)!

It was an amazing vacation, with the most wonderful and appreciative company! The next morning we had to pack up camp and head back home, we'd already made plans to get together 3 more times before summer was over. We've just gotten back from going to Radium Hot Springs again (our home away from home spot), and had another fantastic time. I'll post a few pics of that trip tomorrow or the next day.

Jules :O)