First Family Vacation Day 2

Well we are all still alive🤣. Oh and Happy Christmas Eve!

Exercise:

Yesterday I ran around the community where we are staying. I learned the loop is only one kilometer so I started doing cul de sacs and got the run up to 2.69km. Not much, but better than nothing. It was funny though to see people absolutely bundled up and I was just in capris and a t shirt.

Shopping:

After lazing around, my mom and I headed out to the used bookstore that was close by. The Book Rack was wonderful! Bright, neat, clean, and well organized! My mom finally hauled me out of there and we went home and spent the afternoon putting the puzzle together that she had bought.

Knitting:

I’m working on a market bag, but I don’t have anything to use for a round marker so I may have to frog it and start again:(

Family:

My other brother, his wife and their children arrived in the afternoon, in surprisingly high spirits for their adventure!

We just sat around talking and catching up. Sheilagh and i went to get groceries and we had barbecued burgers for dinner- so yummy!

After the football game ended we had a second viewing of The Grinch. It was just as good the second time!

Blogmas:

My favourite gift received this year was a stack of Hallmark Christmas movies. I will be happy all month long!

Have fun!

AJ

First Family Vacation- Day 1

It was an interesting start, but I learned quick not to complain cause someone else always has it worst.

It started when I got up super early and spritzed on a new perfume sample that I instantly hated, but didn’t have time to shower off. Of course it was also very strong:(

We got to the airport and through security. I bonded with the security agent over how much fun it is to travel as an adult with your parents🤣🙄😜🤪

Then we sat:( Our flight ended up leaving an hour late and it had and it had a crazy dog and two babies on it.

The flight was fine though I had a Chatty Cathy mom beside me. I even gave up most of my bag of chips to my dad who was sitting behind me. No, I couldn’t get seats together, but that was probably a good thing.🤣

My first car rental experience went smoothly. He upgraded me to an SUV, didn’t charge me for an extra driver and took ten percent off. I’m happy. It was just a mistake to let my dad drive from the airport. Him and my mom have an interesting communication and navigation style. I have heard it was similar in my brother’s car though.

We found the house but we’re an hour early, so we went to the nearest shopping centre. We wanted to go to the Beer Hunters Sports Grill, but it was packed! We had forgotten that it was Sunday! We ended up at a Mexican grill and then went grocery shopping at Von’s. There’s now enough food in this house for an army for a month.

I enjoyed chips and guacamole for dinner while my family ordered pizza. I’m just fine with that.

I also really enjoyed a dip in the hot tub. I have been warm since and I had forgotten what it was like to be warm through. There will be many dips for me this week!

We ended the night on the couches watching the new (2018) Grinch movie, well the adults all watched it, the kid was in the games room. This may be the best Grinch movie yet so if you haven’t seen it, do so. It is super cute! My dad and brother realized they are grinches!🤣

After all our foibles, we learned that my other brother’s first flight had been delayed by several hours as the plane was unrepairable. They then missed their connecting flight and were stuck for the night in Calgary. See, someone is always worse off than you! Hopefully they get here today.

Blogmas:

I love to give presents I have made. Every year since I’ve been a kid, I have given my friends an ornament I have made. This year I have all of my friends a market bag, except two who got shawls I had knitted. I’m always hopeful they realize the gift says how much I care about them:)

I’m off to find a running route.

Have fun!

AJ

A Start

Yesterday was my first day of winter break, but it was just so busy!

Exercise:

Dennis has asked if I wanted to run a few Km’s. I pictured 4, but we did 7! It was tough at parts, but he’s an awesome running buddy and stayed with me. Probably a good thing as I ended up eating more than planned!

Shopping:

I grabbed toiletries with my mom after checking us all in online. I also looked at American Eagle for jeans, but learned they have little in store and you have to shop online for variety:(

I also picked up three new sweaters for going out, but didn’t end up wearing any of them🤣

Cooking:

I had a party to go to this evening and my running Brenda told me about an easy appetizer dish. It was all gone when I left the party so I’m going to take it as a success.

Put tinfoil or other covering on a cookie sheet and lay a rack over top. Spread out a layer of plain crackers (saltines). Put about a teaspoon of brown sugar on each cracker and then carefully wrap half a slice of bacon around it.

Put it in the oven for two hours at 250. It turned out super yummy!

Socializing:

I went to my friend Corianne and Bruno’s Christmas party. It’s the one party I go to each year. It was fun and I talked to one new person this year. He was very nice and it was a lovely evening:)

Blogmas:

I love smelling candles in the store but never seem to buy any. I have the tendency to not go for the overly sweet scents. I like the peach Bellini, etc.

Every time I go to buy a candle, I can hear my uncle Dale, a fireman, telling me that candles left burning is the most common reason for a house burning down. I wish he had never said this to me!!!

Well I’m off to the airport!

Have fun!

AJ

A Solution

So today the solution to my always being cold at work became clear to me as for the first time ever, I wasn’t cold once! I just need to wear flannel pajamas and a robe to work every day!🤣🤣 Happy pajama day!

Exercise:

I worked out with L this morning even though I didn’t have the energy to push ashard as I usually do. We did about 24 minutes on the treadmill with hill intervals and then did floor exercises that included banded lateral steps, step ups,squats, power sit ups, planks with leg lifts, and lateral lunges. I just keep telling myself that something is better than nothing.

Teaching:

I can’t say that I did much teaching today. We had music this morning, then after quiet time we coloured stockings and gingerbread men while watching the original Grinch Who Stole Christmas.

After lunch we had planners and silent reading and then watched The Muppet Christmas movie which was a mistake. I had wanted to show the children the Jim Carrey Grinch movie but it is rated PG so I showed the muppet movie whose box said rated G. Turned out it was way worse than the Grinch ever was and I will never show it again! Let’s just hope I don’t hear from parents about it!

Knitting:

This evening I had a massage and then have been trying to pack. If anyone has any helpful hints for deciding what to bring, please let me know!

I have spent the evening restarting my blue market bag. I won’t be giving it away until the new year so I have the time, but need to get a few more projects done for my goal of 40 projects this year.

Movies:

Tonight I watched the Hallmark movie, The Christmas Club. The premise of the movie- that our good deeds keep going around- is one I love, but I didn’t love the movie as much as the one I watched last night.

Reading:

I did finally finish the book, Those Sweet Words by Kait Nolan. This is book two in the Misfit Inn series. I enjoyed this book a lot and loved the strong presence of family and community. Now I just have one more to read and I’m done that series.

Blogmas:

I’ve never been a huge board game player as my family always played cards when I was growing up. I have accumulated a few board games in the hope of playing more, but it just hasn’t happened yet. Maybe it will in the future as it always sounds so wonderful in books and movies!

Well that’s it for me today.

Have fun!

AJ

Blogmas

Sorry for no post last night. It was a pretty typical day of teaching Christmas -crazy children, going for a run and watching the very cute Hallmark movie, Write Before Christmas. It so reminds me of Love Actually.

The Nutcracker Ballet is actually something I have never seen. As I write this, I realize I have never seen any ballet before. I guess I had better change this at some point!

Well I’m off to battle the grade ones!

Have fun!

AJ

Priorities

I guess we all have our priorities and they’ll be different for everyone:)

Teaching:

It felt like I spent the entire day setting up for and then doing the gingerbread cookie decorating. The children were super excited and could barely contain themselves. I had a bit of an internal meltdown when we didn’t have enough icing for a scoop for each child. We were disappointed in the bakery because we had repeatedly asked if it would be enough! Next year we’ll just buy the icing separate from Thrifty’s!

We all survived and there were no tears so I’m calling it a success!

Exercise:

I couldn’t help myself- I went for a run this evening. Just 4km so super short and in the pouring rain, but it still felt good to get out. I did feel like I was going incredibly slowly though, and I turned off the wrong tracker when I started to walk:(

Shopping:

I grabbed my prescription and a box of chocolates for the principal. Since we have no idea if our regular principal will be back after the break, a bunch of us are going together to get our replacement a thank you/ Christmas gift. I was in charge of picking up the chocolates. It’s always so hard to pick a group gift and of course no one is ever around to check their phone and give an opinion:(

Knitting:

I also got some laundry finally done tonight and a few items laid out to consider taking on my trip.

Mostly I spent the evening finishing another market bag for my co teacher at work. I did the produce bag pattern that is free on Ravelry in Berrocco Indigo. I have to admit I wasn’t really happy with either. The pattern ended with a three needle bind off which really limits how much can be put into the bag and the yarn had multiple knots in it:(

Thankfully only one more bag to go!

Blogmas:

I have never been one to write a wishlist. I prefer to be surprised as I have often found that the people buying gifts for me come up with way better ideas than I ever would!

Well I had a huge list but I guess my prescription and a run took priority for me. That’s okay- everything else will still be there tomorrow!

Have fun!

AJ

Trivia Tuesday #35

Sorry for no post yesterday. The day was normal, but then I went downtown and went for dinner at Nightingale. It was fabulous! I have never had a restaurant do such a thorough and great job about my allergies. The food was amazing! We shared roasted cauliflower, roasted Brussels sprouts, Arctic char and then I had carrot cake for dessert. I would highly recommend this restaurant as it is fancy enough for a Christmas gathering or a special event, but not hoity toity or snooty.

ok today..

Teaching:

We literally spent the entire day working on and finishing our parent gifts, but they did finally go home with the children today!

I also spoke with two more parents about the report cards so at least I’ve spoken with four parents. That should mean I shouldn’t have any more than 18 emails to come back to!

Medical:

I went to meet a new doctor today and was super pleased. Hopefully everything comes through. She has ordered three more iron infusions for me, and another blood test as my platelet levels were low. I hope I get one more infusion before I leave, but I somehow doubt it:(

Knitting:

I am furiously trying to get another market bag done for Thursday, but I’m not sure it’s going to happen:(

Shopping:

I was right by the mall so grabbed two new pairs of jeans, though I wish I had taken someone else with me and that I had tried on more styles. I really shouldn’t be trying to do anything with this foggy brain!

Blogmas:

Thanks Abbey for making me think about things I just take for granted. Lol our tree skirt growing up was an old red piece of fabric that was raw edges and all. I have no idea where it came from, but it survived as our tree skirt for my entire childhood. I dream of cross-stitching a fancy tree skirt, but always decide not to bother as I rarely put up a tree🤣

Trivia:

Tonight was the last night and we did okay on the first and last round, but horribly at the middle two. Some of the questions we knew:

Who gave the Statue of Liberty to the US?

France

Who wrote Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde?

Robert Louis Stevenson

What is the third most common use of the word beaver?

Busy beaver

What is a group of owls called?

Parliament

Who are the members of the Brat Pack?

Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr.

Which city is in the central time zone?

Regina

What is the nickname of the Loch Ness Monster?

Bessie

How do you spell seize the day in Latin?

Carpe Diem

Well I’ve been dying since round 2 so I’m off to bed.

Have fun!

AJ

Grateful Sunday

It was a nice day though I know ya just the calm before the storm.

Exercise:

I did show up for my run this morning. My running partner Dennis was amazing and stayed close the whole way. If you knew how fast he is, you’d know what a big sacrifice this was for him. I figure he was probably running backwards at times. I hit about four km and struggled from there, but another run got done and I only have 39.1km left to do before I make my yearly mileage goal.

I also did a small, easy Hallmark movie workout this evening. I did:

60 reverse lunges

52 crunches, 53 reverse crunches

10 pushups

20 jacks

15 burpees

35 squats

10 plié squats

5 dips

5 rows

10 curtsy lunges

40 front kicks/ side kicks

15 bicep curls

Thankfully I have had multiple naps today and have spent all my other time on the carpet.

I am grateful for having reliable, supportive running buddies in Brenda and Dennis. They listen to me make goals for next year, but remind me I have to get healthy first.

Knitting:

I have spent a lot of today knitting a market bag. It is the last one I need for tomorrow so I am glad I got it done tonight and can get all three gifts wrapped up tonight. I did the market bag/ produce bag free pattern off Ravelry and it was a quick, easy knit that looks great! I used Indigo by Berrocco and I think it will be a great bag!

I’m thankful my grandma and mom taught me to knit so I can accomplish something even when I’m on the couch and that I can use my hobby to make gifts for others. I am also thankful for Ravelry that gives me access to so many awesome patterns that I may otherwise not know about.

Movies:

I watched the Hallmark movie, Road to Christmas. This was a very cute movie and I remember last year it inspired my around the world Santa study with my class. The movie does a great job of highlighting the Christmas traditions and the importance of family at this time.

As I’m only allowing myself one Christmas movie a night, my second movie of the day was Valentine in the Vineyard. This is the continuation of the story of Nate and Frankie. I really do love how Hallmark has started doing sequel movies so you get to see what happens to couples after they initially get together.

I’m thankful for good entertainment that leaves me feeling happy.

Blogmas:

Thanks again to Abbey for hosting this Christmas Blogmas. It’s been great thinking about items that I probably take for granted too much.

As a child we opened presents on Christmas morning. My next oldest brother would wake me up early to open our stockings which had an orange, some life savers and usually hair accessories and something little to do. We then had to wait for my grandma to arrive to open the presents under the tree. I remember always wanting to put off opening presents as long as possible as I like the anticipation so much!

For the past ten years or so, my family has not done presents. It was tough to get used to, but now I love it. First, I am one of the few of my social group who is not in debt in January. Second, it has given me a lot more time to just enjoy the season. I can go to the mall and just enjoy the atmosphere without going crazy trying to find the perfect gift. It has given me the time to make gingerbread houses with my niece and nephews. I get to make cookies and look at lights. It has taken the stress out of the holidays. Thirdly, I love not having a whole bunch of “stuff” to dispose of come January. You always have the one gift you’re excited to give and then you run around trying to find something to give everyone else. It’s pretty nice eliminating this from life:)

I’m grateful for getting to enjoy the important parts of the season- friends and family.

Well other than some food prep and napping, that is my whole day!

Have fun!

AJ

Super Saturday

It was a lovely day but I am exhausted!

Blogmas:

I had an advent calendar most years that I was growing up. It definitely wasn’t like the advent calendars that my students have these days- chocolate, lego and hot wheels seem to be very popular. My advent calendars were put together by mom and grandma and set me up with an amazing collection of Christmas ornaments. I just loved opening a little gift each morning and I don’t think it would have mattered what was in them, though I love having all of these ornaments now.

I also have to mention my actual advent calendars as I love them as well. My personal advent calendar was created by mom and featured two little mice that she had cross stitched and then sewed red ric-rac pockets for the numbers.😍😍😍. However, I also got to put the numbers up on my grandma’s advent calendar which was a tree and featured cardboard numbers. I still do both of these advent calendars and love them just as much today!

On a different note, I am very intrigued by the many advent calendars offered now. I have actually tried a tea advent calendar twice and it was lovely both times. I have thought of a yarn advent calendar, but just haven’t found the right one for me yet:(. I have also thought of creating my own advent calendar by buying stuff on Boxing Day so I won’t even remember what I’m getting by the next Christmas, but it hasn’t happened yet.

Knitting:

I am busily knitting on another market bag which I need to finish tomorrow for Monday. I am doing Farmer’s Market/Produce Bag which is a free pattern on Ravelry. So far it’s an easy pattern to follow and hopefully will go quickly!

Socializing:

I went out with three friends from work. We started with a couple of errand stops at MEC, Starbucks and a spa. I managed to only buy a slap reflective band at MEC.

We then hit Fort Langley which is a lovely little township. I had suggested this outing as I had heard about a vegan charcuterie board at Bench Snack Bar, so we headed there first. What a mistake! We ordered four cups of tea, a normal charcuterie board and a vegan one and it took AN HOUR to get our food:(. And unfortunately we were all very underwhelmed by the boards that finally came out. I had two small pieces of vegan cheese, 8 small crackers, a tiny dish of hummus and about five pieces of pickled vegetables. And it cost $25!!! I was not impressed! The normal board was slightly better as it had some condiments, meat, egg and bread but the ladies said it definitely needed more. It also wouldn’t have taken any of us an hour to make these boards:(

We then wandered the Main Street shops. Liane had the longest list, but I probably spent the most money. Sue bought a present for her daughter and her boyfriend, Robyn bought a cute book and a placemat, Liane bought a hostess gift of a centerpiece, a necklace for her mother and chips and dip for her party tonight. I went crazy and bought a pair of Blundstone boots, the same cute book as Robyn and some groceries as there were several places that sold gluten free, dairy free treats ( which have all been frozen!)

It was such a lovely day with great friends:)

Movie:

I watched Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses. It was not the best Hallmark Christmas movie I have seen. It just didn’t seem very Christmassy to me:(

Exercise:

I did do a short Hallmark workout. I ended up doing:

25 reverse lunges

5 crunches, reverse crunches

20 pushups

10 jacks, 10 cross jacks

5 burpees

55 squats

10 plié squats

10 moguls

15 upright rows

20 high knees

30 curtsy lunges

15 front kicks, 15 side kicks

20 bicep curls

I at least did something, but I’m so tired now that I’m going straight to bed!

Have fun!

AJ

The Perfect Gift

Thanks to Abbey for letting me play along on this Christmas Blogmas!

I had better get going on it though or I won’t be done for Christmas.

I have to admit that my books of the season are the sappy Christmas romances. This time of year is super busy with both Christmas concerts and report cards so I really just want something easy and happy to read!

I have already downloaded a whole bunch of these types of books to read on my holiday.

I have a few favourite authors for this type of holiday romance:

Shannon Stacey

Sarah Morgan

Debbie Macomber

All guaranteed to entertain me and leave me with a smile:)

Teaching:

Today was a slightly better day:) We has music, finished our Christmas mini book, did a fun, successful pattern math activity and had centres.

I really think the math activity was the highlight of the day. I paired up the children and gave the pair a card that had a pattern on it- composed of snaps, claps or pats. The children had ten minutes to practice and then presented their pattern to the class who then guessed what the pattern was. It went so great!! We’ll try it again next week:)

Socializing:

After a lovely nap, I dropped off some stuff to a friend. I was pretty impressed with myself that I could pull her Christmas present together that quickly!

I also stopped in at my brother and sister in law’s as they had told me they had a birthday gift for me. They got me a hoodie that says, run, knit, read, repeat. Obviously my SIL knows me well!

Movies:

I watched Merry and Bright this evening. It was cute but I can’t say it was my favourite movie because the solution seemed so obvious right from the start and I found it annoying that it took until the last five minutes for Jodi Sweetin to figure it out.

Exercise:

I got a very slow and very short run done in the pouring rain today. I wanted to get my blood flowing as I woke up with a severely swollen left hand this morning. I was super worried I was going to have a Shrek hand for the rest of my life😳☹️. Thankfully the swelling is mostly gone now, just a bit left and the ladies at work figured it was just fluid from the amount they pumped into me last night.

I also did my Hallmark movie workout.

25 crunches

20 pushups

30 jacks

10 burpees

15 squats

10 plié squats

10 high knees

10 curtsy lunges

5 deep squats

10 front kicks

I know I should probably take it easy, but I’m tired whether I exercise or not so I figure I might as well exercise and be happy!

Well I’m going back to bed!

Have fun!

AJ