Saturday, March 26, 2011

Rebellion or Destiny?

Picture this. It's near the end of the year, grade nine. I'm in sewing class (Room 222!) talking wiht friends. The last dance of the year is coming up. I've asked my parents if I can go and, not unexpectedly, they said no. I'm lamenting this to my friends and somehow in the course of our conversation the concept of the extra-curricular Student Leadership class comes up. They're taking sign-ups in the main hall right now and they host the dances. If I joined Student Leadership I'd have to go to the dances! I'd be "working". Sweet! Iget permission to go to the "bathroom" and go immediately and sign up.

I was very active in Student Leadership (and yes, attended my share of dances which got old *really* fast) for grades ten and eleven. In grade twelve I was getting lazy and didn't want to have to be at the school for 7:15 am anymore so I didn't sign up. My teacher called me during the summer to convince me that he wanted my name on the list even if I didn't attend all the morning meetings. (Free credits! Sweet!) That year he also took me along with a few other kids to two separate leadership conferences. The provincial one at Silver Star and a local valley one.

Since then I've been on multiple committees and boards including my most recent appointment, as a "Directrice" of the French Club for the 2011/12 year. And it all started with "tricking" my parents into letting me to go a silly high school dance.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

15 Places

My friend Erin shared this article on Facebook: 15 places kids Should see by age 15
Click the link for the full article. I'm almost twice their suggested age of 15 (and a Canadian to boot) but of the 15, I have only seen four of the places on the list. I am interested to see how many more of these places I'll be able to knock off my list in the coming years. Numbers 3, 4, 7, 13 are near the top.

  1. Grand Canyon - Arizona
  2. Redwood National Park - California
  3. Monticello - Virginia
  4. The Freedom Trail - Massachusetts
  5. Niagara Falls - New York
  6. The National Mall - Washington, D.C.
  7. Williamsburg - Virginia
  8. Walt Disney World Resort - Florida
  9. Independence Hall - Pennsylvania
  10. Alcatraz Island - California
  11. Ellis Island - New York
  12. Yellowstone National Park - Wyoming, Montana and Idaho
  13. Fenway Park - Massachusetts
  14. Craters of the Moon National Monument & Preserve - Idaho
  15. San Diego Zoo - California

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Not the "Change" I had in mind

I moved to Ontario because I wanted a "change". Today it snowed more than five inches (and it's still falling) plus it's really windy and blowing the cold wet snow everywhere. It's one of the most miserable cold weather days we've had since I arrived...and it's March 23rd.

This is NOT the "change" I had in mind.

I get that the weather here is different than in BC but this is getting ridiculous. Spring was here. The geese were all back, the snow was all melted, the mittens and gloves were put away and BAM! Yi yi yi!

Good thing I don't have to go anywhere until 5pm when I work, and for that I can catch the bus. Hopefully the wind will have stopped by then. In any case, getting to the bus stop is better than digging my car out again.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Le Salon Gastronomique

Our latest homework assignment for French Class was to pic a country, find a recipe typical of that country or region, prepare it and present it at the "Salon Gastronomique" on Friday afternoon.

I did my last project with a girl named Tyanah and we paired up again for this one. She decided that we should do dessert crepes. I admit the concept scared me but she was so confident that I just agreed to go along with it. Her mom jumped on board big time as well. Mrs. T, with Tyanah's help, ended up making almost 100 mini crepes (about 5" in diameter), cutting up tons of fruit and providing us with all sorts of syrups and toppings (icing sugar, whipped cream, chocolate sauce, syrup, and the ever popular nutella). Tyanah even borrowed soccer jerseys from her brother so we could be wearing a "costume" from France.

My help came in with assembling the poster. Tyanah came over to my place with some poster board and we used my scrapbooking supplies to create a pretty awesome looking poster. I freehanded the outline of the Eiffel Tower and cut "Paris, France" out using my Sizzix. Then we printed all the other requirements (map, recipe, history of the food, pictures of famous monuments) and matted them on cranberry paper. I think it turned out pretty darn good.

The day of the Salon, our booth was one of the most popular. Lots of peole had two or three crepes, and we STILL had leftovers! The diversity of food there was incredible. It was supposed to be French speaking countries. A short list includes: Switzerland, Morroco, Madagascar, Tahiti, Some-island-that-Survior-was-on...Vatanu?, Quebec, Canada, other regions of France like Breton (they made the most yummy cookies) and so many others.

My friends Kinsey and Heather made to-die-for truffles.

Maria and Heather dressed up as French maids.

When we first got the assignment it seemed daunting but in the end it turned out to be really fun and I think we all did really, really well on it :)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

This IS my home now

As the school year draws to a close I find I'm getting lots of enquiries about my summer plans. I wish I could tell people what they are, but that's another post. The big question though is if I'm going "home" to BC. No, this (Ontario) IS my home now. Most people don't realize that the idea of moving came WELL before school. They think I moved here to go to school. It's an easy mistake. The thing is, I didn't. I moved here because I want to live here. I have so many things to see and do in my new province. Now that the weather is getting warmer, and when school is over, I'll be able to get out and see those things. Even if I'm working. At least I won't be stuck at home doing homework and writing papers.

And I don't have a "home" to go to. I know I'd be welcomed at my parents if I really wanted to but I'm not about to make the reverse road trip this soon and I'd go crazy without a car. The home I had (my apartment) is no longer mine. I gave it up when I moved.

Even though BC will always be my "back home", Ontario is my home now, for now. For better or for worse.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Apparently God is British

I have a few different radio stations that I listen to regularly. If I am home during the week, at 7pm, the local Christian station plays "Adventures in Odyssey", a children's show I used to love. Now it provides a nice break in the middle of an evening of studying. Depending on the night (I haven't listened enough to figure out the exact schedule) different shows follow Odyssey. One is an older gentleman who plays a collection of what he terms "music for the soul". Old hymns, new ones, old ones re-done, lots of music from Salvation Army bands and a few marches here and there. He also plays clips of audio scripture. Right now the excerpt is from the book of Exodus where Moses is talking with God on Mount Sinai and getting the ten commandments. It makes me giggle because the guy who plays "God" has this big booming, authoritarian sounding voice...and a British accent! Apparently God is British. Who knew?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Waiting for the slam

I was listening to Keith Urban's song "But for the Grace of God" today. It's kind of scary how exactly like my life these lyrics are. Sad too.

I can hear the neighbors
They're arguin' again
And there hasn't been peace on our street
Since who knows when
I don't mean to listen in
But the shoutin' is so loud
I turn up the radio to drown it out
And silently I say a little prayer

But for the grace of God go I
I must've been born a lucky guy
Heaven only knows how I've been blessed
With the gift of you love
And I look around and all I see
Is your happiness embracing me
Oh Lord I'd be lost
But for the grace of God

It's not neighbours, it's my landlord and her on again, off again boyfriend. They were off, for good, a few weeks ago and we had peace for a bit. She's told him that he can stay until he finishes school in May though. That means that they're "trying to work it out". Today it all blew up again. There's nothing quite like waking up to angry shouting :(

They go through periods of not talking to each other (my favourite) and getting mad over every little thing. It's amazing how angry words can make you feel even when you're not involved in the situation. I have a new appreciation for any child who survived the divorce of their parents. My parents fought occasionally but not like this couple, and not with the swearing. Usually when it blew up with my parents it would end fairly quickly with a slam of the door as Dad left to go cool off. He'd go for a walk or a drive and then come back and they'd work it out. The people upstairs just stay and fight. I wish one of them would leave! I'm not saying it's a good way to deal with conflict but it would sure make the house a lot quieter.

Usually, like today, as the song says, I "I turn up the radio to drown [the shouting] out". Sometimes I leave the house. The other day they got into it a while before I had to leave for work so I grabbed one of the books I'm reading for class and headed out early. Dad called just as I pulled in and I told him what was going on. I told him "I liked the way you handled it better" which made him laugh a bit.

By the grace of God a bit of yelling is all I had to witness as a kid (which is healthy, no one gets along ALL the time) and now. I'm so thankful that there's no physical violence :( I can still pray that the shouting will stop though. Or that someone will just leave!

Friday, March 04, 2011

Version Francaise Incluse

Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a HUGE Disney fan. Well, Disney movie fan. I have yet to make it to the mecca of Disney fans (Disneyland/world) but I love watching the full length animated movies. Before I moved, while I was packing, I watched almost every Disney movie my parents own (and that was a lot). Recently I started visiting the kids section of the library (where I get 98% of my movies anyways, the library, not the kids section) and started renting Disney DVD's. I've seen them all many times so for the most part I just have them on in the background while I'm studying or scrapbooking.

Lately, to make them really interesting, I've been switching the language track to French! I know these movies by heart so I know what they're supposed to be saying, but the French version is great. It's not just dubbed either. It's totally redone, songs and everything. You think the Cheshire Cat is trippy in English? Try him in French! Or Jafar from Aladdin? (which I'm watching right now) He's sinister in English but down right scary in French. It's great! So far I've watched (in French) Sword in the Stone (my favourite Disney movie next to Beauty and the Beast), Fox and the Hound, Alice in Wonderland, Pinocchio and now Aladdin.

C'est bonne!

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Winter Walk

I walked home from the school today. I didn't technically have to go but one of my profs invited me to a guest lecture on border issues so I thought I'd go. I don't have classes on Thursdays so I'm not usually at the school but it meant that I had lots of time to walk home after the lecture. It's still cold outside but the wind died down today so it wasn't as bad as it has been. I did bundle up (winter coat, boots, mittens, scarf, ear muffs) and I was fine. I can't wait to walk without all the layers though! Walking takes me around 40 minutes. I did it a lot last fall. I look forward to doing it more as the weather warms up now.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

I broke my bra

How does that happen? I'm not talking about underwires popping out the end. That happens. I get it. But this one? The underwire actually snapped, mid cup. How??? And the most annoying part? It's my only light coloured bra. Which means I can't wear light coloured shirts until I get a new one (because I refuse to wear a dark bra under a white shirt. I just don't get that look. Sorry.) AND these bras are only available in the States. I've got to find out if Lane Bryant ships to Canada. That or it's another trip to Buffalo in the very near future. The good news is it's still freaking cold outside so I'm wearing lots of layers and dark colours, but Spring *IS* coming (or so I've been promised) so I NEED a light coloured bra. Preferably sooner rather than later.