Military men in the living room

Merry Christmas

This was a fun find in my email tonight! I hadn’t thought of this in a long time.

That’s me in the pink shirt. I cannot explain my haircut at all. I really don’t understand it. And even though I’m not in focus, it does not disguise all that bronzer. I loved bronzer so much in 1990! We had figured out that Fake & Bake machines were not healthy in about 1989, so I replaced my love of the tanning beds for sparkly, orange make up.

This was Christmas 1990 in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. We had Christmas during the Gulf War (the first Gulf War). Here we are, supporting the troops by having them over (4 or 5 at a time) for dinner. We had dudes over for dinner at least once a week – sometimes they were Army guys, sometimes Marines. I think this batch were from the Army.

I learned quickly that these guys could barely eat anything. They had been eating MREs (those military rations called Meals Ready to Eat) for so long, their stomachs were tiny. They’d eat one small helping and that was it. We mostly just chatted, sometimes they had laundry to do, but mostly we just ate dinner.

I wonder where they are now? Hopefully enjoying the upcoming holidays with their families.

Side note: This also reminded me of some of the planes I saw in Desert Shield including: Tomcats, B52s and Stealth Aircraft. Also, there were tons of helicopters with the double propellers on top.

AND, guess what tomorrow is?

Advent Calendar DAY 1.

Already! It’s here.

The best things in life are $1.99

Tree topper

I found this tree topper at the thrifts a couple of months ago for $1.99. It’s oldie time for sure! It came in the box with that nice, vintage font and it’s made of glass. You can kind of see from this angle that there are trees painted with white glitter. It’s delicate and very light. I can’t believe my luck!

So, the tree is up, it’s just naked on the bottom – totally needs a skirt. Just so you know, I have excellent taste in Christmas Tree Skirts. This is the one I would totally love to own. $175.00. Not very thrifty at all! Oh well. I may have some time to make one before Christmas comes. I just don’t feel I’m good a managing my time these days, so it just may be a blanket wrapped around the plastic legs of the tree. Whatever works, right? Right!

So for now, I’m focussing on the ornament section.

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A man with a gun

A man with a gun

Today marks a very important day in the history of being with Mike. He suggested he put up the Christmas lights outside. WHAT? I should have checked his temperature because this is just not his thing. Christmas lights? Outside? I don’t think we’ve EVER hung outside lights up. So, armed with the electric staple gun, his Christmas sweatshirt (also his idea. He wore it to breakfast this morning.). I don’t even know who I’m married to today!


Breakfast update: We’re still doing Faturdays, but getting up early on a Saturday for breakfast is becoming nearly impossible. Today we tried. However, by the time we got there the parking lot was full and there was quite the line up. UGH. IHOP. How could you? We went for a very nice breakfast elsewhere. The hash browns were so lovely, but it definitely lacked the whipped cream and berry factor that IHOP always provides. I think next weekend, we’ll have to get up early.

Just so you know.

Anyway, Mike took some time today to decorate the carport.

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Shiny and New

70s Christmas Tree

I wandered past the shiny and new Nordstoms tonight to meet an old friend for dinner. Now, here’s a Pro-Tip for you! If you ever need a Groovy Hipster, all of them, every last one of them, are at Chipotle’s on Howe Street. That place was crawling with slouchy toques and super long beards. Dinner was delicious. I opted for a chicken burrito. It was delicious and filling. So many beans! So much rice! It was Lime Cilantro Rice. YUM. I must try this at home one night.

Anyway, after my gab session and Mexican dinner with Irene, I headed over to the skytrain and walked by Vancouver’s newest fancy store, Nordstroms. It is looking rather nice and is giving Holt Renfrew a run for its money. Sadly, I don’t even think The Bay is part of this fancy competition at this point. I haven’t been inside yet, but it looks like they sell candy, so there may be something in there for me, after all!

I am really liking the style of this Christmas Tree. It’s Scandinavian meets It’s A Small World meets the 70s.

And this makes me miss that part of my old job where I got to see the Visual Merchandising students make their windows.

Slow burn

The other neighbour's lights

Thanks to Facebook, I was reminded Christmas is exactly one month away. Oh man. We need to get our Christmas photo taken PRONTO. I’m starting to think this Christmas is mostly going to be a quiet affair. I’m just looking forward to a few days off.

Facebook also reminded me that we were in Vegas one year ago today. Oh man. I miss that place! I miss the cross stitching store that Maria and I visited, the delicious all you can eat breakfast at The Paris (with tiny breakfast ice cream cones), Fremont Street, the lighting of the Christmas Tree at the Venetian, seeing Tori Spelling, Cirque du Soleil…so much fun all in one place. It makes home feel a little boring. But I can always cross stitch at home anytime!

We started watching a very sad British show called, River. OOF. Good thing it’s only 6 episodes. The lead actor is Stellan Skarsgard (Eric Northman‘s dad IRL!) and his character has a very hard time of it. The story is so good and so is the cinematography. But the content is pretty heavy and dark. You can find it on the Netflix.

Patrick – now with more nerd.


Did I grumble today when someone at the office said, “Hey. The skytrain is down.”. YES. Did I initially turn down the offer Heather made to pick me up at the skytrain in Richmond (that skytrain is NEVER down. It’s newer and is privately managed.)? Yes. I let her know I would be good to take the shuttle to Broadway Station and then hop on the skytrain home, but thanks for the offer. Once I got to the shuttle bus line up that was 2 BLOCKS LONG, I got back on my phone and messaged Heather back letting her know I would be happy to wait for her boyfriend, Patrick (shown above with the lightsaber), at the train station and we’d go to Richmond together. *PHEW* Crisis averted.

Full disclosure: I was VERY grumpy while waiting. I soothed myself with a coffee while I waited. It helped.

I was in a better mood after half a cup of coffee and seeing Patrick come through the crowd with his new treasure. He had a long, skinny box with him clearly labeled, “STAR WARS”. We stood in line for a few minutes, got on the Canada Line and even got a couple of seats about 4 stops before we had to get off the train. Not a big deal. Heather was waiting for us and everything. THEN we grabbed some dinner. Suddenly this day got much, much better.

Mike wasn’t scheduled to leave work until 7:30 and the train was still broken, so we just stayed in Richmond and picked him up as well.

On the way home, we stopped for gas and Patrick could not contain his excitement. Lightsaber time at the gas station!

I don’t think I have ever seen him look so happy:

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The grumpiest superhero

Rainy bokeh

This bokeh was taken through the window on the skytrain tonight. It was a little rainy and a little chilly. But it didn’t snow! No arctic temperatures were experienced today. The weather person was incorrect. That hardly ever happens. And it looks like it’s nothing but sun for the rest of the week. Delightful! No danger of forgetting my umbrella on the train again, like the last time. And the time before that. Oh, and the time before that time. I have started to buy the cheapest umbrellas and lunch bags I can find. The city of Vancouver is littered with my irresponsibility.

All day yesterday and tonight we’ve been watching Jessica Jones – a netflix show about a super hero named, well, Jessica Jones. She is a very grumpy, reluctant superhero. I understand, she’s had a hard life. But jeez, Jessica, lighten up! Apparently this is somehow related to Daredevil (another superhero show that I really, really loved) and the villain in the show is an old Doctor Who (David Tennant! Yay!). I won’t say how many episodes we watched yesterday, just know that tonight we’re watching the very last episode of the season.

This was quite the binge watch! Also, so much stabbing. And mind control is no laughing matter.

Remember that!

The nerd is strong.

What in Christmas is on the roof?

I didn’t leave the house at all today. I worked hard making Lentil Shepard’s Pie and Apple Crumble. I did have to make a trip over to the compost, and when I walked through the door to go that way, I saw these two on the carport roof. We share a carport with the neighbours, and these were on their side.


I asked to borrow Mike’s gigantic camera. It is the world’s heaviest camera, I’m sure, and it is NOTHING like my little Nikon. Bummer. I thought I could easily figure it out. Sadly, nothing’s the same. CRAP. I’ll have to spend some time trying to break the code of how to change the aperture. I did figure out how to change the shutter speed, though, so one point for me. By the time I figured that out, my arms were aching.

Happily, the photos are in focus, so maybe I just need to work on my upper body strength and persevere    with this night time camera. The sensor is awesome in low light.

Anyway, what the heck is on the roof? I put the hood up on my hoodie and ventured out in the night. Side note: we’re supposed to be experiencing arctic winds tomorrow and maybe even snow. EVERYONE PANIC! Snow on the roads! NOOOO! I should just call in sick NOW.

WAIT. What is on the roof?


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Incapacitated. Clearly.

WARNING! Gratuitous kitty photos below. But first, let me take a selfie.

What a couple of layabouts!

Sheesh.I can't move. Obviously.

I think it’s the chilly weather, but the kitties have been insisting on being snuggled up on us these days. Oscar is always in his spot by right near Mike, pressed up against the computer. Today, Donner fell asleep on me. What could I do? I had to oblige. Just rest quietly while the kitty slept on top of me. I have to admit, it was pretty lovely. He’s a little heat generator, himself.

He seemed extra relaxed today – his tongue was out a lot. He’s our kitty who had all his teeth removed due to an extremely bad dental infection. He’s been 100% better since this surgery and just eats wet food now – and any food he can steal. EXAMPLE: he stole meat out of my mom’s sandwich when she was visiting last week. He’s a little food thief. He’ll also steal bacon (in and out of the frying pan), cheese, lettuce and popcorn. Cooking can be a challenge when he is in the vicinity.

His lack of teeth doesn’t stop him from being a little bandit and it doesn’t help him keep his tongue from falling out of his mouth. Whenever he shakes his head, his tongue flops out. Sometimes when he’s just sitting still on the stairs, his tongue will just slide out a little bit.

And when he’s really relaxing?

Well, it’s just laying out there for the whole world to see.

They will be foxes

They will be foxes

They may not look like much now, but they will look like foxes by tomorrow. I’ve got until Saturday to get them done and I can stay up late tomorrow night to get them finished.

Also, worst photo ever. I used the flash! It’s horrible! Just bear with me. I’ll do my best to get some natural light photos of them when they’re done. For now, shiny flash photos. BOO!

Tonight I sat in bed, crocheted and watched Master of None – a show by Aziz Ansari – the dude that played Tom Haverford on Parks and Recreation (I TOTALLY miss that show!). I heard him on the WTF podcast with Mark Maron this week. I would recommend this show to anyone but my mom, and now that I think about it, my sister. It’s just not their speed. Also, swearing! Oh. Those swears. And adult situations.

Something I’d recommend to anyone is a podcast called, The Message. It’s very War of the Worlds and they’re short, little 12 to 15 minute podcasts. I am totally in to the story. I can’t wait for next week’s episode. I listened to 7 in a row. WHOA. I just checked and it’s ONLY 8 weeks long. NO!

And now I need to find my crochet hook. I have lost it somewhere in the bed and that could be dangerous in the night. Or I could just break it by accident. It’s a pretty flimsy hook. I just bought it for the colour (cobalt blue).