Thursday, January 31, 2013

An Eclectic Week

So on Monday night I went to my first Oiler game with my minipac.    It was very exciting to me.  My team won against the Avs, but I was a bit disappointed that Gabriel Landeskog was not playing for the Avs, he might have a concussion.  My seat is in a good spot.  Then on Wednesday I went to the opera with Allison.  She has a friend who is in the chorus and gave us comp tickets to the dress rehearsal.  There were several school groups there, and I was a bit apprehensive that they would be noisy during the  performances, but they were not and seemed to really enjoy the show.  During the intermissions members of the opera in their costumes were out in the lobby, mingling with the guests answering questions.  It was really fun.

On Saturday I had a long day at work, I worked the regular shift from 10 to 3, then we had a wine and cheese for the teachers who are in out building to mark departmental exams.  It was crazy, there were people all over, all the dressing rooms were full and we made a LOT of sales.  I left around 6, and the rest of the ladies were there until 8. 

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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The depths of winter

When I have time and inclination to post, that means nothing much is happening to post about.

We are in the worst part of the year as far as I am concerned. Still the middle of winter and I am still feeling blah. The weather has been awful, cold with lots of snow today. I injured my back standing in the shower on Sunday and it has been really sore all week which has not helped my mood at all.

We stopped over to visit Courtney and Kane the other day and when it was time for us to go, the little guy just cried and cried. He lay down on the floor sobbing, I mean real crying, not a tantrum. We felt terrible for breezing in, upsetting him and taking off again to leave Courtney to take care of it all.
It's only a couple of weeks until they leave for Hawaii, then we get Booboo for a few days. Looking forward to it. Jude has begged to visit while he is here, so I guess we will let her. But she will owe us big time.

Geoff has been plugging away at the basement and it is now possible to see the end of that project. We have also been clearing stuff out of the basement basement. Anne told us she had gone through all her stuff but there are still about 20 boxes there. I think she has forgotten about the stuff she left here a couple of moves ago.

Geoff has got a job sort of lined up and is just waiting for the paperwork to go through Calgary. (Around here everything goes through Calgary.) Just as well he's not working in this weather. 


Sunday, January 27, 2013


Richard and I just got back from skating. we bought cheap skates a couple weeks ago and have gone a couple times now. The 1st time Richard said "I better bring my Care Card", but he didn't even fall-I fell twice.

we are going to Vancouver for Family Day weekend. Having a long weekend in February makes it bearable. We are staying at the Metropolitan. I am not sure what we'll do while we are there. But the room has a soaker tub, I am not sure anything else matters. There was another hotel that looked really nice, but no bathtub, so not able to stay there.

Handed in 1st essay for my class. I had a dream last night that I was totally off on the wrong tangent and did miserably on it.

Did nothing yesterday except read By Blood and When Quietness Came. Both good.

Today we cleaned the house, went to church, and went skating, so more productive, though I should really have done some school reading.

conversation at work:
"Lisa, you are Jewish"
"Actually, I'm not"
"Lisa, you are Scottish/English/Jewish, you just don't know it"

It's very possible.

Monday, January 21, 2013

More Snow

I am sitting in my living room, looking at more snow coming down.  Even though I don't have to shovel, I still get tired of it, maybe cause I walk in it, and not everyone is conscientious about shoveling.  I have the January blues too, just don't feel like doing much at all.  Even had to cancel my dinner date with Grace yesterday, cause I just did not have the energy to cook.  I plopped myself in front of the TV and watch the Oilers beat Vancouver in a shoot out, which made me feel marginally better.

I am planning on going south in February, to Rocky.  A visit with T&G will be good, and as an added bonus, Kane will be visiting too while Tim and Court are in Hawaii.  Something to look forward to.


Saturday, January 19, 2013


I had a funny thing happen today.  I was meeting with a family about a funeral.  The service is for a woman who died yesterday.  She was fairly young, in her fifties, and I married her and her husband this fall.  They knew she was dying, and wanted to spend their last months together married. 

Anyway, it was quite a crowd - there was her brother and sister, her parents, her husband and his brother and sister in law, and a family friend.  Pat, the woman who died, was from Alberta, near Lethbridge, and we got to talking about Alberta.  I told them I was from Rocky, and as it turned out, her brother, David, had lived in Rocky for a few years in the late eighties and early nineties.  He asked who my parents were, but didn't recognize their names.  His mother then told me that she had worked in the Red Deer Health Unit, so I told her and David that Grandma had worked at the Rocky Health Unit.  She asked what grandma's name was, and  much to my surprise David said "Now that name seems familiar..."

It took him a while to think of why, but he worked in the Health Unit building! 

It's a small world!

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Thursday, January 17, 2013

In other news

Life is moving along in its' January slowness. Except at work, which has been quite busy. Not in a bad way, for me at least, but busy nonetheless. Why do people keep arriving at hospital? Flu season? Unhappy? Life getting them down? Needing increased care? I don't know, we have not been crazy busy on our floor, but the rest of the hospital has been non-stop. Which eventually affects us. I was walking into work and thinking, 'I feel like I am doing more than 1 job at the moment'. Which normally happens for me, being educator, you end up doing some of everything. Or at least on our floor that is the case. Which makes my job interesting and always changing, which is good, it keeps me interested. But every so often I feel that I would like it to slow down just a bit. Today was also very busy, but I was mostly focussed on 1 patient for the morning, so really it helped me feel less like being-pulled-in-all-directions, as compared to yesterday when I was doing groups on the unit and orienting a person who was new to the unit and doing a few other things as well.

I have an essay due in my course already-for this upcoming Tuesday. Apparently, I am becoming laissez-faire about writing, as I am quite fine about doing it the weekend before. When I started school for my bachelor's, I was all 'I have to write this as soon as possible because it will take me forever' Now I am all 'Whatever, I'll do it and get it done in time to hand in'

It is an interdisciplinary course and the social worker from our unit is in it. We are in a group together, along with another nurse from Alberta, who is quite lovely. I feel optimistic about it. The group that is, the course, who knows?

We have Family Day now! Hurrah for another stat! I wonder if we will go to Hotsprings? Maybe I could convince Richard to go to Vancouver for a couple nights?

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


I was at work, about 5 minutes before leaving, talking with Jana

Looked down, thought, 'hmm, one of my shoes is more scuffed than the other'

Realized I had been walking around all day with 2 different shoes on.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Post for Mom to Write About

Mom can you tell us where this  photo was taken? Did all the boys wear overalls?

New projects

So, I still haven't heard back from my supervisors as to whether I passed the exams, but did hear some sad news. One supervisor's mom died in early January, so she is out of town and understandably out of touch. So this will delay. But I do feel good about them, and so I am not going to get anxious about it. In the meantime, I am working on my proposal -- it has to grow to about 60ish pages, so I have a use for which I can use all those reading-list-exam notes.

I just got the email: I PASSED EXAMS!!

And, I have a new thing I am working on. A woman with the prison committee is doing a monthly writing group (taking over for a couple of volunteers who did it before and can't any more) -- and I will be the second volunteer! I am very excited. We've talked with the inmate librarian about how it might work, and what things people enjoyed doing in the last workshops -- lots of super interesting ideas. Some writing prompts, but also maybe getting the women involved to write based on pictures, or music, or other things.

I am enjoying my leave immensely. It's amazing to be able to completely organize my own day. I must, however, be careful of not falling into sloth. Or overvolunteering.

A History Question

Did Jim's imaginary friend Boo-Boo come from the Harry Belafonte song?


Sunday, January 13, 2013

Recovery Room

Had a bit of a disappointing day yesterday. I was told before Christmas that my final 10 week practicum would be in the OR in Leduc. I was pretty excited as OR was one of my top choices and I wanted to do something completely different. Then in my first class my instructor said everyone's placements were confirmed...except mine. He didn't seem overly concerned about it, so I tried to not stress over it. Come Friday, he still had not heard from Leduc, but had found me a recovery room at the Royal Alex who could take me. He said I could let him know Monday whether I would take that placement, or wait to hear from Leduc. Then yesterday I got an email saying Leduc had contacted the placement coordinator late Friday saying they "declined" my placement, so I will be going to the recovery room. I am pretty frustrated about the whole thing. Not quite sure how the Faculty of Nursing could tell me a month ago where I was going without actually knowing if they would take a preceptorship student. But, all I can do is make the most of the experience. I'm sure I'll learn a lot, and maybe even really enjoy it even if it was never one of my top choices.

New Authors?

Jude suggested that Del should be able to post to the blog, so I have invited him. While I'm at it, anyone else who wants to be able to post? Send me an email or comment here!

 I have been back for almost a week now. Had an awkward conversation with my supervisor about holiday time - I forgot how crappy it is in America. Turns out there is an official policy that postdocs get 12 days PTO per year for everything - holidays, dentist appts, whatever. (Plus a couple of sick days). Quite grouchy about this as I said upfront that I would need to do some travelling to go see Del if I took the job, and he seemed quite happy with that at the time. I don't think he knew there was an official policy. I have negotiated some "working from home" time for days I am gone and I think he will be okay with that if I don't push it. (Apparently three weeks off at Christmas was kind of pushing it, whoops!)

But anyway, probably no visits now till April and I do end up working most weekends it seems, so it's not as if I won't be in the lab a lot. I guess if there turns out to be a problem I will start keeping track of hours and "working to rule", and since in my experience most postdocs work way more than 40 hours a week I think that should get me some time in lieu. It is weird though - my American colleague is coming from a job where they complained when she actually used her sick days and barely let her take a few days off for her wedding. She thinks it is great that we have more flexibility here and that no one minds if she gets sick. Meanwhile, I am chafing at the thought of only 12 days PTO after years of extremely flexible working/school, where I would be in the lab 10 or 12 hours for months and then take all of August off to escape to Oxford and do some writing or whatever. Personally I think the American system is messed up, but hopefully I can make it work somehow, because I really can't go an entire year with only 12 days to see Del... not to mention anyone else!

Other than that things are okay, though. Have a lot more energy than before Christmas - think I really needed the break. Obviously the trip back was ridiculous, but I recovered fairly quickly. I am busy writing a grant that would fund my salary for a year. Not very likely to get it, but coming up with some cool ideas and hoping maybe I could slip them in to existing visits anyway. We shall see.

 It was so great to see everyone at Christmas. Going back to a totally non-social existence is a bit of a shock. Helena has finally got her paperwork (after they made her miss Christmas) and headed back to see her family and do her embassy appointment on Friday. She has booked an open ticket and is not sure when she will return. I will definitely miss her but am thrilled they finally sorted things out.

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New Years Resolutions

Is everyone's NYR to update the blog more?  We have not seen so much updating in a long time.  Mine is to scan all my pictures, that gives much more choice when it comes to loading birthday pics.

Back in the swing of things, going to work.  I have a new convert to the store, Jovita came and bought a new dress.  I had breakfast with Grace and Jovita at the De Dutch, they have opened downtown and it was fantastic.  I really recommend the perogie pannekoeke, bacon, hashbrowns, cheddar cheese and sour cream, how can it miss?

Last weekend Anne, Del, Grace and I went over to visit George and Kay.  It was a really good visit, G&K liked Del and vice versa.  Kay was very impressed with Del's wonderful red hair.  Deanna's son Nathan got engaged to his girlfriend Lauren over the holidays, so a wedding for the other Sivaks in 2014.  they have already booked the Jasper Park Lodge for August 2014 for the wedding.  Haley's boyfriend has applied for Canadian citizenship.

Anne stayed over on the night before she was leaving for her horrible trip home.  I borrowed the car from Grace, and got up to drive her to the airport, for an 8:00 am flight.  After I read her blog about the  trip home, I was glad that at least the start of it was uneventful.  On my way back to the city, I realized I did not have Grace's address with me, I was just going to drop the car at her place, so I picked a spot in what I thought was the general area of her place, then sent a note to her telling her where I left the car.  Turns out I was just about smack dab in front of her place, glad she did not have to search all of McKernan for the car.

We were supposed to have the first S&B for 2013 today, but Diane is fighting a cold, and the rest of us decided that we did not want to risk catching one so it is postponed until Feb.

Now that the lockout is over I have to decide what to do about my Oiler tickets, right now I am leaning towards cashing them in because I am still disgusted by the behavior of the owners and players.  Supposed to get an email today with some more info on what my options are, so I guess I will see what they have to say before I make my final decision.

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Saturday, January 12, 2013

Mom, I forgot to mention before that Anne tried our wedding dress on while she was here. Apparently her shoulders are broader than ours; apart from that it fit quite well and looks good on her. Thinking of a way to get it altered. Grace gave me two tickets to see the Harlem Globetrotters for Christmas. The game was this Wednesday so we made a quick trip into the city. Grace and I really enjoyed it. We were extra excited because Flight Time who was on the Amazing Race a few seasons ago was playing. We haven't seen Kane for quite a while so were happy to have him come over for a bit today. He is even cuter and smarter than ever. And he definitely calls me Baba. Geoff has a couple of lines for work and now has to decide if he actually wants to do it. Have been sorting out downstairs and have cleared out a lot of stuff. Maybe the dreams I have been having about being in a huge house with all kinds of hidden rooms will subside.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Happy Birthday Mom

Monday, January 07, 2013

New List Christmas 2013

Here is the new list

Mom has Richard
Theresa has Jim
Geoff has Mom
Jude has Geoff
Laura has Anne
Jim Has Allison
Sandi has Lisa
Lisa has Jude
Richard has Del
Allison has Will
Anne has Sandi
Del has Grace
Will has Laura
Grace has Theresa

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Sunday, January 06, 2013

I only had three decorations up and have not managed to get them down yet.  the flowers we received will go out today but they have lasted very well.  Christmas was different this year first time in a long time since I have not even helped with dinner.  Wilf missed the left overs so we made 1/2 a turkey once we got home and it was good, not too many left overs.  I start as an employee with Finning tomorrow and will receive my uniform soon.  I will not have any decision regarding what to wear as they have shirts they supply, different.  It should be ok there, only myself to worry about as far as work goes, they were interested in my previous experience as they do not have a hr person but I think I was pretty clear, not interested. 

Saturday, January 05, 2013

So long, holidays

I got back on Thursday night, and found out that all sorts of things had happened while I was away.  We have been working at implementing screening procedures for volunteers, as well as job descriptions for volunteers, criminal record checks, and all those things so that our vulnerable popuations will be as safe as possible.  Some parishes have been dragging their feet on this, and St. Luke's didn't meet the Dec 31 deadline the Bishop sent.  So, I came home to a very pointed letter - a copy to me, and a copy to the parish - telling us to get our rears in gear (not the technical language) or the Bishop would suspend operations at the parish, including worship.  We have a lot done, but have quite a bit yet to do.  We now have til the end of January.  I gather we were far from the only church to recieve a letter like this, and it did sent a bit of a shockwave through the place. 

In addition to that, there are the usual parish things that I came back to - a couple deaths, some missing readers for Sunday.  Tonight I went to a parishioner's house for Armenian Christmas, which was great.  Armenian food is a lot like Greek food, and is very good.

The cat was very glad to see me home, and has hardly left me alone since I've been back.  She is currently sitting on my arms as I try to type.  I've heard that cats purring is a natural healing method, so maybe this will help with the cold dad gave me!

Home was great!  It was nice to surprise mom and dad and Jude, and great to see everyone.  Last time I saw Del I had my Barkerville beard, so I thought it was good to reassure him I look normalish most of the time.

Also hols over

I was going to post about taking down Christmas decorations too, and Theresa beat me to it.
It is good to have things back to normal. It now takes me an afternoon to take stuff down, though I also cleaned carpets. Not as extensively as Richard would have done, but the stairs are also done.
I am listening to Earth, Wind and Fire trying to decide what to have for dinner-mac and cheese?
It was a short work week, and yet it felt like a full one. Not in a bad way, but I feel somehow that I worked more than 3 days.
I start class next week. sigh. This class has not been well received from other people I know, but I am trying to keep an open mind.
The last one was fine, but we didn't do anything that was particularly interesting. Again, I say, nursing theory who cares? Thank heavens we didn't focus on it in my undergrad, or else I may not have finished.
It snowed today, about 5 cms. Maybe Richard and I will go for walk before watching Harry potter?
OK, will go start supper, mac and cheese it will be.
I wish I had a warm vacation to look forward to this month.

Hols over

Spent the day taking down the tree and decorations. I didn't put as much stuff up this year but it still seemed to take an inordinate amount of time to get it all down. The house did look nice but it's good to have things back to normal.

Geoff and I drove Will to the airport on Thursday. Grace, Anne and Del had come back the day before so Anne and Del planned on making supper Thursday night. When we got back from the airport at about 9:30 they were just sitting down to eat. Del's steak and Guinness pie took longer than originally thought. The good thing was we could have some too and it was very good.

Those three left yesterday after lunch so we were all alone last night and Geoff was sad.

It was so good to have everyone home during the holidays. Who knows when that will happen again with people living far away and perhaps with in-laws to share them.

There seemed to be a lot of Irish whiskey and Scotch around this year. I drank a bit of Will's Scotch on New Year's Eve but couldn't handle more than a few sips. Will took care of the rest for me.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Happy New Year

My New Years company, a really fine looking group of people.

There has been one request for inclusion in the Christmas draw, anyone else out there want to be included?  I will do the draw on Sunday with Grace and then post the new list.

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