Posted in Books, Food, Holidays, Uncategorized

7 Ways To Survive Your Kitchen

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2017/03/23/7-ways-to-survive-your-kitchen/The sun set; dusk fell on the shelf, and lights began to appear along the stove. That which blends, so held, in hand or all alone, such power, to mix, to mash, to merge, to fuse, once individual, now as one, together. The upper reaches, the place of monstrous leftovers, marked ominously with a date, huddle in the brooding gloom of fridge light, mocked by the enticing garish glare of magnet cradled take-out flyers.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2017/03/23/7-ways-to-survive-your-kitchen/

 “And this,” she noted suddenly, “has to be one of the dark places of the earth.”

 In the static of their surroundings, the slightly scornful pots, pans, knives and other pointy things lurked, growled their promise, ready to play the food game.

 She doggedly tried to follow the medically suggested diet; the worst that could be said of her was she wanted to believe.

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 Food is not for the faint of heart, it beckons, it bubbles, it boils, it brews, it even burns...Food, as perplexing as the definition of fake news. My food feelings? Let’s just say, my kitchen and me, we’re officially changing our relationship status to, “It’s complicated”.

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Let’s Play – 7 Ways To Survive Your Kitchen!!!

1. Have your recipes, like blog posts and/or synopsis ready – in your head, online, or written down. Have all your ingredients out first, nothing worse than being halfway through and notice you’re not rising to the occasion.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2017/03/23/7-ways-to-survive-your-kitchen/2. Cooking is time-consuming, like blogging, like writing, like life itself, but if you clean up as you go, it’s easier. Try baking soda and vinegar – ecofriendly, frugal, and together they’re an explosive combination, seriously you can make a volcano while cleaning. Don’t forget to snap on your rubber gloves and clean that dirty, dirty oven. Maybe you’ll have naughty dreams about kitchens – hot, steamy dreams about someone else cooking/cleaning for you, oh yeees!!!

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3. Tempted by takeaway/takeout, fast food, even processed foods? Remind yourself it’s bad for your waist and wallet. Same goes for blogging, fast and processed, you can get that anywhere, isn’t it better to go for the real thing.

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4. Easter is an egg-cellent time to dye eggs, naturally, with family, friends (even imaginary ones), and furfriends. Then you can still eat them, the eggs, not family, friends, or furfriends. Is your egg a good egg? Fill a bowl with water. Gently place “suspicious” egg in the bowl. Does the egg stay on the bottom sideways – a good egg! Does it stand up, but lean drunkenly to the side – still good, but better really a pickled egg. Stands straight up, still ok, but use, like right now. Floating? A bad egg (cue the Veruca Salt song from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory). I am the maker of merriment, the dreamer of dreams (in case you were away https://yadadarcyyada.com/2017/03/09/heres-to-the-ones-who-dream/).

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 5. Beware The Pointies! It seems like kitchen gadgets, utensils, tools, gizmos, appliances, etc. are designed to somehow maim, mangle, or even murder those innocently trying to cook.

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Kitchens are deathtraps. Be safe.

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6. Lettuce us celebrate cooking! Like blogging, writing, social media, friendships, relationships, work, and life in general, it can be a time-eater. Orange you glad we didn’t make a big dill about this game? Romaine calm, even if you feel like you’re playing ketchup with all the relish you can mustard. Just beet it and spaghetti out of here.

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7. Life is like a paper bag…You just never know when you need to cover, conceal, meltdown, carry, ripen (seriously easy way to ripen your avocados, bananas, apples, tomatoes, etc.), and you really never know when you’re going to need a puppet. Be ready.

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Oh life, it’s bigger
It’s bigger than you (doesn’t feel like it on a bloat day)
And you are not me (not even on a bloat day)
The lengths that I will go to,
the chocolate that adds to my thighs
Oh no, I’ve ate too much
I didn’t eat enough?

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That’s me in the corner
That’s me in the spotlight
Losing my willpower….
I thought that I heard you baking
I thought that I heard you grill
I think I thought I saw you fry

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Consider this
Consider this, a hint of cake and cookies
Consider this, the stroganoff
That brought me to my knees
That was just a dream
Try, cry, why try
That was just a dream
Just a food dream
Just a food dream

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Well, dear readers, do you want to keep playing? Awesome, then tell me your: food battles, food love affairs, diets, tips, advice, recipes.

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 I’d like to thank those who inspired the game: food, Joseph Conrad, Martin Sheen, R.E.M., Liam NeesonI don’t know who you are. I don’t know what you want. If you are looking for onions or garlic, I can’t have them. But I do have are a very peculiar set of skills, skills I have acquired over years of cooking…

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2017/03/23/7-ways-to-survive-your-kitchen/

Posted in Blogs, Canada, Chocolate, Food, Music

You Had Me At Cake…

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2016/09/16/you-had-me-at-cake/Humans are capable of greatness, but too often it’s just us saying we’re great. With all reverence, I’ll paraphrase the magnificent R.E.M.: In the eye of a hurricane, feeling your insides churning as you hear the pain. Bored of people only mis-serving, wanting to believe, can’t perceive their own needs.https://yadadarcyyada.com/2016/09/16/you-had-me-at-cake/

Change the world, stop being fed up, instead follow through and follow-up.
Shriek after shriek, holler after holler, anyone will do anything to worship at the dollar, Bumbling, stumbling, perfectly baffled, trumped…

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Tethered, biased on all sides, “winning” in a tournament of lies; chopped, cropped, plopped in front of another scream, another screen…

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Another moment too obscene. Vitriolic, patriotic, slam fight, bright light. Feel like turning it all off and only watching Psych (you know that’s right)

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It’s the end of the world as we know it (had some time alone). It’s the end of the world as we know it (in a media cone). It’s once again the end of the world as we know it…and I feel behind.

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It’s been a stuffy, screeching, spooky, sweltering summer abundant with the bafflings of humanity and nature alike. Here I am, an oldening woman who blogs alone in a skiff in the Blog Stream trying to find the ‘best words’ and had gone sixty odd days now without blogging a post. Whether I shall turn out to be the heroine of my own life, or whether that prodigious station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show.

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It is a truth universally acknowledged that a blogger, despite being in a break, cannot in good conscience ignore her blog birthday, a wonderful opportunity to thank her dear readers, who stick with her through ups and downs and even the not hanging around. Some years ago – never mind how long precisely (ok, Summer 2013) – having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on TV, I thought to blog about a little and see the bloggery part of the world.

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It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. At any given time it can seem like the worst of times, but is it? There’s no world war. No Inquisition. No Ice Age. No plague. No killer bees. No asteroids hurdling toward the Earth (no worries, Bruce Willis will save us anyway).

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No hoards, Attila the Hun, saber tooth tigers, or Genghis Khan. No cannibal galaxies hungering for galactic flesh (not to be confused with cannabis galaxies hungering for galactic munchies). No cat overlords, er, well, maybe a few cat overlords. No alien invaders (although there is that signal from HD164595, no worries, Will Smith will save us).

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Last I checked, no zombie apocalypse, unless you count the overabundance of movies/TV shows about zombies and of course, smartphone users.

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That’s not to say everything is wonderful. How could we not have problems? Over seven billion humans trying to coexist with each other, as well as animals, insects, fish, birds, and of course, Bigfoot, The Loch Ness Monster (Hi Nessie!), Yeti, elves, golems, El Chupacabra, dragons, Kala Bandar, vampires, werewolves, and all manner of magical beasts.

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I don’t know about you, dear readers, but I struggle with first impressions. My instincts, often right, are second, third and fiftieth guessed. As I get older, I’m trying to listen to those first instincts; Maya Angelou was so right, “When someone shows you who they are believe them; the first time.”

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It’s sooooo easy to sit around a kitchen, coffee shop, newsroom, living-room, bar, boardroom, online and fix all the world’s problems, but as Edward R. Murrow warned us: “Just because your voice reaches halfway around the world doesn’t mean you are wiser than when it reached only to the end of the bar.”

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Cooking competitions, game shows, reality shows, sports – all answers are easy unless you’re actually doing it.

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Lies are seductive, there’s no need to prove them, they just float out there in our new Fact-Free World. WTF (What The Fact).

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Options? Just believe what we want to believe because we like who says it or how they say it. Forget the facts, it’s all about the feels. We feel like something is true, so now it is. I feel like I’m watching The Blair Witch Project instead of an election and as we know, what we feel is more important than the facts.

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The biggest feels, fear…but if Star Wars and Yoda have taught us anything, it’s this, “Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.”

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And it’s been announced Trump is going to write, direct, and star in the next Star Wars film, Star Wars VIII: Make The Empire Great Again.

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Oh la la Politics and the Public, seems like a Bad Romance. Elections, like watching children scuffle over a toy in a sandbox, caring less about the toy itself, but the prize of winning it. Divisive politics, like passing gas, it sure feels good, a relief to get it out there. Then what? The stench, the disgust of others…Passing gas is a necessity of life, although the reasons for more gas can be avoided.

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I don’t like gossip, rumour, innuendo, speculation, tittle-tattle, lies, hyberbole. I like facts. I miss when the news was news, actual facts and events, not just guesses, conjecture, speculation, and supposition. Taglines, soundbites, and slogans – more important than substance, service, and civility; mocking has become an acceptable form of communication…

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Blindly following anyone or anything, without questioning, doubting, challenging, like it or not, no matter what you call it, you’re in a cult…or a mob…or a joke.

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When I paused my blogging I felt so far behind I didn’t even know who shot J.R…yes, that far behind!

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Now I feel a little better, more caught up.
I’ve been writing a book, well, an outline and a chapter.
I’ve been reading. Resting. Visiting. Appointmenting. Decompressing. Researching. Regenerating.

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Sadly, I was viciously attacked by migraines, but some downtime hooked up to an IV gave me time for deep thought…just kidding, I was thinking the doctor, McDreamy might fall in love with me, Grey’s Anatomy style (preferably with less whining). Also thinking a hospital would be a bad place to be during a zombie outbreak, but with a lot of potential weapons. I also wrote this post in my head, so it might be a bit scatty. Revisiting aspects of my life, including my wardrobe, still going for comfortable, but maybe hobochic. What do you think, dear readers?

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What else have I been up to? Planning. Playing. Re-watching a few things, the newer Battlestar Galactica (So Say We All) and Warehouse 13  – thank you dear Teagan https://teagansbooks.com/ for making me want to revisit The Warehouse; I’m always happy there. It reminds me that the biggest adventure, is life itself, and that the spirit of The Warehouse is inside us all, the spirit of endless wonder.

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I even know who Gossip Girl is (I’ll never tell xo xo). Caught up on John Oliver back despite popular demand, funny and truth, can’t get enough of that. Almost lapsed into a cheesy made-for-TV movie coma with never-to-be classics such as but not limited to: TV adaptations of Joanne Fluke’s Hannah Swensen murder mysteries https://yadadarcyyada.com/2016/05/25/crapathy/ Murder, She Baked (where ex-soap stars drop by for a cookie break; Cookie Monster should make a guest appearance!).

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 It seems the reports of my blogdeath have been greatly exaggerated https://yadadarcyyada.com/2016/07/08/so-long-and-thanks-for-all-the-fish/ but despite all these words, I still don’t know if I have the best words. What do I know? I know I was sad to hear about the passing of Gene Wilder. The first thing I thought was, “Put… the…candle…back!”  https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/04/28/young-frankenstein-2/ https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/07/20/charlie-and-the-chocolate-factory-turns-50/  https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/06/03/happy-40th-anniversary-blazing-saddles/ Thank you, Mr. Wilder, for the joy, you’ll keep us laughing for years to come.

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I know my heart was heavy and uplifted as The Tragically Hip sang a very public goodbye, a final gift of music to everyone they love: fans, band members, family, friends, hometown of Kingston, Ontario and Canada…I alternated between singing and crying, sometimes both at the same time.

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I know I’m thankful to everyone who continues to support my blog – my wonderful readers, fellow bloggers, also, the lovely ladies at #BloggersPitStop for all the support. I know I’m grateful you could stop by for my belated blog birthday bash. Enjoy the party games – watch out, you don’t know what will be pinned where these days!!! Enjoy the virtual cake (as always, you have me at cake) – even chocolate has no calories!

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Feel free to visit, we’ll pretend we’re under the sea in an octopus’s garden – that’s where I’d like to be, under the sea, in an octopus’s garden in the shade.

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So maybe the best words are…please, be kind, what the hell do you have to lose?

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Posted in Blogs, Chocolate, Food, Uncategorized

Through The Blog Storm

1afood59Through the blog storm,
we reach the shore
We give it all
but they want more
And we wait for views
With or without you
Can’t blog with
or without views
And you blog yourself all day
And you blog, and you blog
And you blog yourself away.
If this had audio you’d know I sang it just like Bono of U2, it’s like we’re twins, ok, maybe closer to the Swedish Chef from The Muppets, but it’s all good.

Blogging is a lot like cooking. Some people do it instinctively. A pinch of this. A dash of that. Somehow they know just the right blend. Others follow a precise recipe.

1. First thing you need to decide, what kind of cooking, I mean, blogging do you enjoy? Home-cooked, formal, informal, sugar-free, spicy, sweet, sour, no artificial flavours or colours, grilling, gourmet, fusion? Do you want to indulge your readers with moist, sweet chocolate brownies (my secret, melt the butter, let it cool then slowly add it to the mixture) or spicy chipolte chicken taco with guacamole (drooling)…

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2. With blogging, like cooking you need an appreciative audience. Those who don’t just eat to live, but live to eat. Those who don’t just like blogs, but love them.

3. Posts can fill up our email like a meal can fill up our stomachs, but too much of a good thing can be overwhelming, sometimes a snack is the way to go.

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4. Processed food, junk food, fast food, sure, they call themselves food, but really, food by any other name is not always food…same goes for blogging.

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5. The blogging community is family style dining, so just dig in, reach over, around, share, like, join in, engage! Don’t just invite others to your table, sit at theirs too! Eat up! Even indulge in blog parties…
Jason – https://aopinionatedman.com/
Elena – http://blogsharelearn.com/blogsharelearn-linky-party-may-1316/
Niki – https://therichnessofasimplelife.wordpress.com/
Shawna and Shareen #LinkYourLife – http://honeyquill.com/
Danny – http://dreambigdreamoften.co/
Carolina –  https://yesterdayafter.com/
Vicky – http://www.singlemotherahoy.com/
Pop Down Under – https://amommasview.wordpress.com/
Janice and all the lovely ladies that give us
Friday Blogger’s Pit Stop and Inspire Me Monday –
http://mostlyblogging.com/

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6. Don’t think if people will: Like it, share it, reblog it, tweet it, agree, disagree, hate you, be a troll under your blogging bridge, or if you’ll end up looking like Mr. Bean with a turkey on your head. Just do what you want to do…that turkey looks good on you.

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7. When you don’t have time to prepare a meal, aka a post, or you need some comfort food or a comfort blogging advice post…
https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/10/im-hooked-on-a-feeling/
https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/08/27/message-in-a-bottle/
https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/03/26/why-i-will-never-be-freshly-pressed/

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8. Sometimes you slave over a hot stove aka computer, plate your hopefully tasty content, and serve it up….you wait for readers to gobble it up, but sometimes they never come to the table, even when called repeatedly. Maybe they’re busy, after all, when they open their email, it’s like a giant buffet has been served up, how much can they possibly eat? Maybe they’ve already eaten or are dining elsewhere. It happens. Try again.

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9. Get out there, be a shameless social media self-promoting bloghussy (like me), most of all, enjoy!
Where I’m a complete twit: https://twitter.com/yadadarcyyada
Endlessly baffled by humanity: https://www.facebook.com/yadadarcyyada
The desert where I wander: http://www.pinterest.com/dpark2/
Where I google, not nearly as fun as it sounds: https://plus.google.com/112672588892199127381/posts

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10. You can tell someone how to cook or blog, but that doesn’t mean they can do it, or do it like you. Or should. Cook what you want, blog what you want, eat what you want. Taste life.

My best advice about blogging and cooking? Don’t miss the donut by looking through the hole. Dear readers, any favourite blogging tips or recipes you can’t live with or without? Bon Appetit!

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Posted in Blogs, Books, Chocolate, Family, Food, Internet, Movies, Music, Parenting, Star Wars, Televison, Uncategorized

Ex’s and Oh’s

1blogs69Dear Readers, how are you today? Happy, I hope.
Lately I’ve been in a shall we say, reflective mood, thinking of the highs and lows, cons and pros of being human.
I know, like so many things, it’s complicated.

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Let’s start with the Pros:

1. We’re amusing.
I never understand why people go to the zoo when they can watch people instead, such as, on public transit. In one ride I saw: a guy with a bag full of copper wires sucking down a giant blue slurpee who collected paper transfers from the bus floor, tore two apart, licked them, put them together then showed ‘it’ to the driver; another guy was reading a scientific magazine, upside down; a photoshopped woman talking loudly and graphically about her knotty/naughty love life via cellphone; an older gentleman wearing PJs, cool, I did that too, in high school, the top one day, bottoms another, but as I get older I just think, sure, that looks comfy, you could get off the bus and right into bed. Who needs The Oscars? Hop on a bus, be awarded.

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2. We’re ingenious.
Really, we came up with all kinds of stuff, like: flying, fire, medicine, books, family, duct tape, technology, chocolate, the internet, music, blogging, swimming inside in the winter, batteries, politicians, money, cake, saunas, friendships, trains, Johnny Depp as a pirate, pool noodle under fitted sheet so a child doesn’t roll out of bed (wish I’d known this when my son was young), driving, driving with dogs on our laps, wait, someone needs to explain this one to me, does the dog think he’s driving, does he even comprehend what driving is, I doubt he passed a driving test, I mean, how did he fill out all the forms, reach the pedals with his paws, not bite the instructor?

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3. We’re endlessly curious.
We ask questions such as, but not limited to: “How bad can it be?” (very bad); “Could it get any worse?” (yes); “How stupid can you be?” (have you heard some politicians?).

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4. We’re brave.
We live on a planet where the earth shakes, volcanoes spew lava, mountains of snow grow, and storms make us remember there’s no place like home…and then invite tourists, cause it’s that awesome.

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5. We fall in love and out of love.
Love can go from oh’s to ex’s…ex’s to oh’s or so I’ve heard…at least, in song. Our hearts can stay, stray, delay, relay, live to love another day. Don’t think my ex’s or oh’s haunt me, but I’d like to think someday my Prince Charming will ride in on his baggage cart and sweep me into his manly arms, yes, apparently in my flight of fancy I’m dainty and light as a feather, his bronzed flesh glowing, huh, glowing? Too much of the X-Files reboot? But I digress…he’ll have room on his baggage cart for my baggage too and we’ll be off, into the sunset (Risky Business-style sunglasses firmly in place), hopefully not ending up like Thelma and Louise, Romeo and Juliet, or Butch and Sundance

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6. We yearn.
For more, for other worlds and explore them through books, movies, TV…finally saw Star Wars The Force Awakens aka A-New-Hope-revisited when I took my son to a movie marathon for his birthday. It was great, but I have to wonder, what is it with people dropping children off on desert planets? Do they think it’s desert daycare? Do they think the children might go all Home Alone on the scum of these wretched hives of villainy? At what point should we just admit they’re bad parents?

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7. We all want to be heroes or funny anti-heroes.
Yeah, I saw Deadpool and laughed so hard my sides hurt. I’m having a bit of a Ryan Reynolds week (how often can you say that?), saw Woman In Gold too, how does Helen Mirren do it? But we don’t have to wear a cape, or a mask, have mutant powers, or fancy gadgets…just be good to one another. But if you get a chance to be be Batman and drive the Batmobile, do that too. Kindness is true heroics.

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The Cons? Maybe another time, or…all of the above? Anything you want to add?

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Posted in Blogs, Books, Canada, Cats, Chocolate, Family, Fibromyalgia, Food, Movies, Music, Uncategorized

There’s A Nap For That

1hate8As a writer I have to believe words have power. One of the words I dislike is hate (note I didn’t say I hated hate). It’s overused. People hate their life. Family. Weight. Home. Car. Cats (maybe they sense your hate). Government. Politicians. Job. Hair. Cake (you are so reading the wrong blog). Books. TV shows. Songs. Actors. Movies. Vegetables (how do you hate something plant-based?).

I’m tired of hearing people say they hate…I’m not sure they know what that word means. Hate should be reserved for really, really bad people and things, like: child abusers, rapists, murderers, Hitler, warlords, dictators, alien overlords, stuff like that.

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1. Let’s review, do you really hate your life or just certain aspects? Your whole life is a big category with many moving parts, pick the right part to hate, let the rest roll on.

2. Standing in the middle of a room silently or loudly screaming, “I hate my life” or “no No NOOOO!” repeatedly will probably make you feel slightly better for about 30 seconds, but it’s not a long-term ‘fix’.

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3. This is usually the point when advice-giver types tell you to change your life. That’s all well and good, but what if some things are beyond your ability to change? Should you just accept them, or rail against them, lay down and kick and scream until you feel better, or until someone offers you ice cream to stop, or threatens to call the authorities (and no ice cream)?

4. How much time do you spend each day ‘hating your life’, I suggest you cut that in half, help others with the other half, you’ll feel the hate drift away.

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5. Take a deep breath. This probably won’t help you hate your life less, but hopefully you might get a nice breath of fresh air, or the smell of fresh-baked goods.

6. Do something, maybe something different, or something to help someone else, again, may not make your life full of singing and woodland creatures doing your housework, but it might remind you of the good things.

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7. Take charge of your life, unless you wouldn’t feel comfortable having you in charge, after all, do you even remember where your keys, or the remote is right now?

8. Are you at least changing the things you hate about your life? You’d hate to get stuck in a rut of hating the same things for decades.

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9. Check your birth certificate. Are you old enough to hate your life? There are some weird laws out there, you don’t want to be breaking any.

10. Write down what you hate, maybe there’s a great book, or movie or TV show, song, etc. in all that hate. As much as people say they love positivity, so many popular shows, movies, books, plays, songs, etc. are about dysfunction, hate, crime, death, destruction, apocalyptic worlds, and misery, including Misery.

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Maybe the haters just need a nap. A nap always makes you feel better. I’ve been enjoying a tiny bit more sleep (even when awake) in the past week (new meds).

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Fibromyalgia and sleep don’t get along, but as much as I can hate the pain it inflicts on me 24/7, the constant  fatigue, feeling left out of life sometimes, there’s no point, it is what it is. I have a choice, I can choose hate and be all grumpypants, or I can choose love and keep enjoying what I have and hoping for better days ahead.

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If I said anything wonky during my blog party  https://yadadarcyyada.com/2016/01/29/always-on-my-mind-blog-party/ (still open by the way, drop by anytime and promote your blog, for free, yes, free  – we hear that word often, but it’s rarely true, in this case, it is) – I’ll blame it on the drugs (totally legal ones). Thanks to all those who came out. Happily, my bed and I are back on speaking terms, for now, and we didn’t even need sleep counseling.

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Haters gonna hate, so let’s bake them a cake…seriously, who can hate when eating cake?

Be brave. Be bold.
Choose love…and naps…and cake
(not necessarily in that order).

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Posted in Blogs, Books, Canada, Doctor Who, Family, Fibromyalgia, Food, Jane Austen, Movies, Music, Star Wars, Televison, Uncategorized, Zombies

Stand By Me

Posted in Canada, Family, Food, Movies, Music, Political, Televison, Uncategorized, Zombies

10 Ways To Be Grateful Even On Bad Days

1grateful1Life is full of good things and bad things.

Sometimes good things go bad.

Sometimes bad things go good.

Sometimes a bit of both.

The good stuff doesn’t always make the bad stuff easier to take, but the bad stuff doesn’t always ruin the good stuff either.

We should try to be grateful for the good stuff, especially when there’s bad stuff.

We Could Be Grateful For:

1. Family and friends. The memory of family and friends. The possibility of family and friends.

2. Knowledge, free will, and finding respectful ways to agree to disagree.

3. Enjoying what you have, instead of always thinking about what you want.

4. Remembering both the good times and the bad – and not living in either.

5. Enjoying the everyday things. Life isn’t about the big moments.

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6. Finding happiness, peace, or contentment, especially by making others happy, peace-filled, or contented.

7. Life and knowing that most people know it’s worth.

8. Being you. Don’t compare yourself to others.

9. Bad times, so you can appreciate the good times.

10. Giving – stuff, time, comfort, inspiration, hope, information…you.

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Terror, in many forms has wormed it’s way into our lives, not just with violence, but with weapons such as: fear, rudeness, abuse, inequality, neglect, distractions, complacency, disrespect, self-righteousness, ignorance, intolerance, lying, scandal, gossip, corruption, manipulation, dogma, bullying, blame, and all those ‘gotcha’ moments.

We can change. Some will say we can’t, or worse, that’s just the way it is. Expect change. Be that change.

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People can disagree, debate, wrangle, bicker, even argue, hopefully respectfully.
There’s also no need to agree, you have the right to disagree, again, respectfully.
Attacking anyone, verbally or physically, for their beliefs is pointless.
We can’t overcome hate with hate.
We can’t win by fighting.

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Even if you feel hate, choose love or at least, forgiveness.

Even if you feel indifference, choose compassion.

Especially if you feel despair, choose hope.

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I worry being ‘shocked’ every time something terrible happens, posting platitudes, changing profile pictures, holding vigils, leaving tokens, decrying the monsters, and placing blame gives the illusion of doing something when really, it’s mostly shopping, social media, socializing, and symbolism.

Wouldn’t it be more comforting to help those in need? To donate food, clothing, money for shelter and medical care instead of making piles of flowers, candles, stuffed animals, and flags that will just become garbage? I don’t understand, if we want to show respect why not help those who are still alive and suffering?

We need to find out how to change what’s happening, or brace ourselves for more of the same, or worse. The first rule of holes, when you’re in one, stop digging, and try to find a way out.

What’s coming will come, so instead of focusing on those who do harm, who spread fear and hate, let’s be grateful for those who help, who protect – those who do good in this world. They deserve our focus, not just after a tragedy, or crisis, or disaster, but all the time.

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My heart goes out to the family and friends of those who have lost loved ones, death is tragic, no matter the circumstances…and to anyone suffering, everywhere.

Posted in Blogs, Books, Canada, Food, Movies, Music, Star Wars, Televison, Uncategorized

Go Home Star Wars You’re Drunk

1starwars43Regrets
I’ve had a few,
then again
too few
to mention.

So what if
my life is riddled
with plot holes
and logical gaps?

I have flaws and quirks (I say adorable, some may beg to differ).
I’m thoughtful and thoughtless.
Brilliant and oh so dumb, sometimes astonishingly, at the same time.
I’m a gloriously human jumble.

So why do we expect our entertainment to be perfect when we aren’t? As humans, we get caught up in things, even now, computers are galactically buzzing about the new Star Wars, loving it, trashing it, or both, and it hasn’t even hit theaters yet. I admit, my unease intensifies as The Force Awakens.

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There were times, I’m sure you knew, when I bit off more than I could chew-ie and I didn’t want to become blaster fodder. And Disney buying Star Wars made my complicated relationship go full Death Star explosion (scared of it I am). But Star Wars On Trial looked interesting, so I let the tractor beam pull me in (that’s no moon, that’s a blog post!).

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I consider myself an intelligent viewer (is that an oxymoron?), so I selected the 8th charge against the accused iconic franchise, The Plot Holes and Logical Gaps in Star Wars Make It Ill-Suited for An Intelligent Viewer.

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I agree, sometimes watching these movies, I just want to say, go home Star Wars you’re drunk, but I believe those who consume the story are culpable, not the storyteller.

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Upon first review of the charges, perhaps it does seem like only morons would enjoy movies like Star Wars I’m paraphrasing, the witnesses for prosecution, Nick Mamatas and defense, Don DeBrandt were actually quite witty and eloquent. Star Wars certainly did it all and not in a shy way, oh no, let the record show George Lucas took the blows, and did it his way.

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I’ll state my case, of which I’m sorta certain, the details of the story aren’t nearly as important as the story itself. Why? Because we are the story.

  • We are Yoda, who trained Luke (more or less), but once said Anakin was too old to train, back in the days of surplus Jedi.

  • We are Obi-Wan Kenobi, I mean, Ben Kenobi hiding Luke Skywalker in plain sight, on a barren planet where most everything wants to kill him – guess we know who the favoured child was.

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  • We are Darth Vader (really, you didn’t recognize your own kids?), Han Solo, Amidala, Picard, The Avengers, The Doctor, Sherlock, Buffy, Leia, Luke (ewww, dude, you kissed your sister), The Lorax, Bugs Bunny, Scarlett O’Hara, Rick Grimes (You think it’s a plot hole, but it ain’t!), Rocky, Capt. Jack, Batman, Frodo, C-3PO, Scully, Mulder, Scrooge, Kirk, James Bond, Edward Scissorhands, Simpsons, Reddington (The Blacklist is a logical gap, who cares, watching James Spader read menus would be entertaining),

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  • Chewie, Daryl Dixon, Darcy, Katniss, Joker, Boo Radley (having a moment), The Griffins, Keyser Söze, Willy Wonka, Don Draper, Bridget Jones, Charlie Brown, Harry Potter, Walter White, Spock, R2-D2 (the real hero of SW) and more…

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No spoilers, I enjoyed all the sci-fi and fantasy authors, including, but not limited to David Brin and Matthew Woodring Stover who diligently prosecuted and defended the idolized, intriguing, yet infuriating series while the Droid Judge (This isn’t the Droid Judge you’re looking for) attempted to keep order.

Star Wars, innocent, guilty, or just in the wrong place at the right time, you decide, vote at http://www.smartpopbooks.com/star-wars-verdict/ or www.BenBellaBooks.com

And enter to win a free copy of Star Wars on Trial from BenBella Books (Canada or U.S only). In the comment box below, tell me your most hated or loved plot hole or logical gap (any book, movie, TV show, or life). Notification via droid (or me) November 15, 2015 – all contact will be confidential.

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I would say life isn’t logical. How could it be when we live it on a baffling blue ball twirling in space like a tattered ballerina in a vintage music box?

Stories are told by humans and therefore, delightfully flawed.

Think of it like extra cheese on lasagna, yes, it’s irrelevant, but does that mean it shouldn’t have happened? Life is messy. Take a bite.

 And Star Wars has Muppets…isn’t that enough?

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 Your true destiny? To always…do it your way.

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Posted in Blogs, Books, Canada, Chocolate, Christmas, Environment, Family, Food, Holidays, Jane Austen, Movies, Music, Political, Televison, Uncategorized

You May Say I’m A Dreamer

1apeace22All that peace and love stuff, it’s just idealistic mumbo jumbo, right?

Or is it?

While I admit I don’t understand a lot of stuff, but as long as it’s not really hurting anyone, why would I care?

Too often, the commonly held view seems to be that if we don’t agree, we’re at odds.

Like somehow 7 billion of us are suddenly going to start agreeing, or we have to battle it out Star Trek style.

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For example, I find the rise of pumpkin spice alarming – apparently pumpkin spice is a season now, so the pumpkin spice must flow.

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Here’s a completely incomplete list of stuff people do that I don’t ‘get’, or want to (no particular order):

1. Touching wet paint or wet cement – yes, it’s wet, move on.
2. Running water after going to the bathroom instead of actually washing your hands.
3. Lying, lying, and what was that other thing, oh yeah, lying.
4. Judging a person based on their skin tone, religion, race, nationality, whom they choose to love, clothes, home, family, etc.

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5. Walking into traffic looking at a cellphone.
6. Bad driving.
7. Hurting others, especially children.
8. Loving something just because it’s endorsed by or has the name of a celebrity.

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9. Using racism as a political strategy.
10. Fat shaming, and also those who say fat shaming is wrong, because they’re also calling people fat.
11. Having fictional conversations in your head with others (ok, done this).
12. Not smiling back at a child or being impatient when an elderly person is slowly walking down the stairs in front of you.

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13. Yelling at furniture that jumped out and stubbed your toe (ok, I’ve totally done that).
14. Wearing uncomfortable shoes (especially with stubbed toes).
15. People who pretend they don’t fart (you do, we all do, own it).
16. Reading the instructions after you’ve done something.

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17. Saying “I’m sorry” when you’re not sorry.
18. Unenvironmentalists (you know that should be a word).
19. Buying non-orange pumpkins.
20. Pretending you don’t wish some cool movie-like thing would happen to you today instead of just the usual stuff…come on, you really haven’t done this?

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I can’t understand how people find the time or energy to judge, fight, or generally care so much about everyone else’s business. Does this have to do with our fight or flight response? Not running from sabre-tooth tigers (mostly), our fear response is now triggered by shopping (prices are terrifying), finding info on the internet (bloodcurdling), and politicians (I’ll take the tiger). Obviously our fear of scarcity has survived, so maybe those who are different or disagree feed into that fear. I’m just guessing, frankly, I’m baffled.

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The internet just seethes with fear and loathing which is why I’m happy when I find bloggers who make me smile. David Prosser, a wonderful, funny, and caring blogger from Wales offered the world his Buthidars philosophy https://lorddavidprosser1.wordpress.com/ – a hug, a good deed, a simple gesture, a smile…forging a path toward peace.

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And he shares his life each week at: https://barsetshirediaries.wordpress.com/ and kindly shared one of his novels, The Queen’s Envoy, with the caveat, it wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Perhaps, but I emphatically enjoyed the fanciful flight of fictitious foibles. It reminded me of watching Bond movies with my Dad. As a child I didn’t understand what Pussy Galore, Holly Goodhead, and “Oh James!” really meant, but the spirit of adventure always made me feel like anything was possible. I like that feeling, wherever I can find it.

It’s Thanksgiving this weekend in Canada; I’m thankful we can all agree to disagree, eh. I don’t tell people they’re stupid for their beliefs and I don’t expect them to understand my complicated relationships with: chocolate, spiders, TV, sleep, housekeeping, kale, Jane Austen, gravity, technology, toenail clippers, Christmas, pools (you know, cause of sharks), clowns, Thanksgiving, meat, and life in general.

We don’t have to agree to have fun, be respectful, and add love and hope to the world.

All we are saying is give peas peace a chance.

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Posted in Blogs, Books, Cats, Chocolate, Doctor Who, Food, Movies, Televison, Uncategorized

Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)

1age44Dear readers, I admit to being in a bit of a pickle.
In youth, life seemed limitless, infinite.
Writing was the same, I just wrote, not a lot of stopping to think.
Such is the power and joy of youth.

And as we age limitations don’t just come from the outside, but from your own body:

  • Sagging (oh no, those should still be much higher).

  • Weird spots randomly attach themselves to your skin (“Out, Damned Spot!” doesn’t work, believe me, I’ve tried).

  • Eating cake may seem more exciting and less work than other, er, strenuous activities…

  • But if you’re not aging, you’ve discovered the Fountain of Youth (good for you, care to share?), or you’re dead and you just don’t know it yet.

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Sigh, so many things I wish I’d done or not done.
Sweet dreams lost, given up, given away, or stolen…
Sweet dreams fulfilled, waiting in the wings, and yet to come…

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There’s also a certain grace, a wisdom, a knowing that comes with age, even for books. Remember how those new and shiny ebooks were going to destroy the book industry? Make books into relics only viewed in museums? Those dire predictions may have been premature. The texture and weight of a book in your hands tells you so much about the content; ebooks all feel the same.

Deep in our DNA, we’re storytellers, not just those who write, but those who read. We don’t just want to experience the stories, we want to share the stories. It’s about connection.

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Many of those stories are by independent authors, not backed by a marketing budget larger than most of us will earn in a lifetime. Does that make them somehow less? Personally, I never cease to be amazed at the talent, the passion, the wonder never appreciated, just because it isn’t a bestseller.

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1teagan1I’ve reviewed books on and off for 30 years, yet ironically, I’m not always a fan of book reviews. I don’t enjoy a book report disguised as a review (we got it, you read the book, now, why should I?) and being told I should like or dislike a book. That’s silly, no one can tell you if you’ll like or dislike something, just why they liked or disliked it.

I love a story that transports me, takes me with the characters on their journey. I want to be there, a part of the story, which happened when I called upon Atonement, Tennessee…and never wanted to leave.

Teagan Riordain Geneviene kindly and brilliantly invites us to visit a small Southern town where things are not as they seem, but instead, is full of mystery, intrigue, murder, dashes of magic, romance…even a cat naturally more attuned and intelligent than her human counterparts (guess that goes without saying).

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I admit being a tad miffed Atonement, Tennessee didn’t come with a warning label, something like: Don’t start reading if you have anything else you need to do for the next couple of days. Of course, obsessively reading this book also helped me cast the movie and/or TV series, let’s see, how about Ian Somerhalder, Richard Armitage, and David Tennant? Look how cute and cuddly they are…oh, and there’s cats too!

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This is fantasy at its finest, but still left me wanting more…more…more…

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And thanks to technology, we can have more on Teagan’s wonderful blog, including her online serial, and even hints of a sequel, Atonement in Bloom (waiting with bated breath): https://teagansbooks.wordpress.com/
https://www.facebook.com/TeagansBooks
https://www.pinterest.com/teagangeneviene/
https://twitter.com/teagangeneviene

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 Maybe I could 100% honest review your books too, just contact me, see, over there to your right – ‘Sending Me Stuff’.

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Age can sure make you restless, even more so than in the bloom of youth, for we have the knowledge of what has been, what never was, and what could be. I guess what I’m trying to say is, no matter what your age, and the only real limits are those of your courage and your convictions.

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Posted in Books, Chocolate, Food, Movies, Music, Parenting, Televison

Shout! Shout! My 2 Year Blog Birthday! Let It All Out!!!

1funny652It’s been 2 years since I started blogging and I feel like I’ve won the lottery…accept without any of the money, so yeah, I’d still like to win an actual lottery.

I’m so thankful for your support, likes, comments, shares, advice, encouragement, comfort, and more. I’m also thrilled and privileged to be able to read and view your works. Thank you all.

So come on, I’m talkin’ to you, help me Shout! Shout! Let it all out to celebrate my 2 year blog birthday by leaving your blog address or a link to a post in the comment section below…please!

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Now to play catch-up. I’ve fallen behind on my Changes for Happiness project, not the doing, just the writing about it. Will a weak, ‘it’s been hot’ explain the lapse?

Here’s the first 5 weeks:
https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/06/03/dont-worry-be-happy/
https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/06/09/to-blog-or-not-to-blog/
https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/06/15/rock-me-amadeus/
https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/06/25/in-my-life-i-loved-them-all/
https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/07/03/how-to-be-good-to-one-another/

Week 6

1. What happens at Costco stays at Costco.

2. Looked at some old photos, I cried, but remembered to be happy it happened, not that it’s gone.

3. Watched something I wanted to watch, but didn’t feel I had time.

4. Bit the bullet (not literally, high dental bills) and made that appointment.

5. Tore up that shirt I loved, to use as rags – it lived a full life.

6. Craved a burger – If I liked it then I should have put an onion ring on it.

7. This was the birthday of my friend of 30 years, Rose, who recently passed away; she would have wanted there to be music and cake.

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Week 7

1. Cleaned first…then checked emails.

2. Decided on 3 fun things and did them (within the limits of time, budget, circumstances, etc.)

3. Broke a bad habit, snapped it over my knee (not that knee, the other one).

4. Don’t like to go shopping, don’t do it often…going to do it even less.

5. Time is flying…going to catch a ride.

6. Added 15 minutes more exercise, Tai Chi and yoga per day.

7. Hell On Wheels is back – I was frontiered and I liked it.

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Week 8

1. Rewatched Jaws – that shark was a handsome devil, wasn’t he?

2. Picked up a random book (eyes closed) from the new release section of the library.

3. Was it weird the random book ended up being Stephen King’s Finders Keepers?

4. Tried again to learn how to juggle.

5. Remembered why I don’t juggle – kept ice on my cheek.

6. Sang Shout! by Tears for Fears at the top of my lungs (received odd looks).

7. My hair is edging toward the Mary Tyler Moore look, unless I’m planning on wearing a hat and tossing it in the air – I need to think about getting a haircut.

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Week 9

1. Kept writing that book.

2. Tried to accept the idea of Ben Affleck as Batman – isn’t doing the impossible good for the soul?

3. Wrote down 5 things that make my life tough…tried to eliminate or mitigate their effects.

4. What would I do for those Klondike ice cream cones on sale? Don’t ask, don’t mmmm, ice cream.

5. Tried to go cold turkey to stop binge-watching Haven…mmmm, stuffing and gravy and biscuits.

6. Wrote about Haven, sadly it didn’t work it out of my system.

7. Rewatched Clueless – wow, Paul Rudd is now Ant-Man, 20 years can really be harsh. Whatever.

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Week 10

1. Little brown bird landed on my shoulder as I was walking, then flew off (and no poop) – briefly like Snow White.

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2. Thought about going to a movie; watched one at home instead, cheaper and just love the staff.

3. Dreamed about sleeping in.

4. Noticed that it’s my 2 year Blogiversary/Blogaversary/Blog Birthday on WordPress, since I’m having company for the weekend – invite everyone to the party early!

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5. Pack up a box of stuff and give it away.

6. Trying to accept that some people will never change…and would I trust them again, even if they magically did?

7. Deep breathing. Note to self, don’t do this while calling people.

Thank you for dropping by to celebrate with me – you realize, of course, all of the above involved chocolate, right?

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Posted in Books, Canada, Cats, Chocolate, Food, Internet, Jane Austen, Movies, Political, Televison, Uncategorized

Support Bacteria – It’s the Only Culture Some People Have

1funny778The occasional broken heart (some courtesy of good-for-nothing teen heart-throbs leering suggestively from glossy magazine covers), the enforced cleaning of my room, scrapped knees and elbows, the tedium of school, bullying, losses…still, I consider myself lucky to have grown up in a time where we knew little.

Sure, pesky facts sometimes showed up, but we were quick to scare them away and defiantly let our ‘ignorance is bliss’ flag fly!

Of course, I knew horrible things had happened and were happening, but for inexplicable reasons (I blame chocolate and kittens), I seemed to believe things would get better.

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I don’t know, maybe it was growing up in a small town, but even with all my extensive sci-fi reading and viewing I could never have imagined this strange new world I would someday live in where Donald Trump could be President of the United States; someone would list their dog as a job reference; Kardashians are deities; people fawn and argue on social media over food while many don’t have any food at all; we would still believe governments and corporations who regularly and flagrantly lie to and cheat us…where fiction is fact and fantasy masquerades as reality.

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The news, entertainment, internet, politics, business, sports, relationships – it’s like we’re watching The Tudors or The Borgias and the only thing that has changed are the outfits…and the quality of the acting. Lies, intrigues, shifting alliances, hypocrisy, machinations, double standards (like when someone does whatever they want, but when someone else does the same thing or less, they’re outraged, shocked, appalled – insert Fox Newsworthy propaganda rhetoric here).

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Tired of the daily circus, I eagerly plopped down on my couch, green tea in hand, sore feet on the exercise ball (hey, it has to be good for something) to distract myself from the distractions and marvel at Colin Firth’s magnificence in Magic in the Moonlight.

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But alas, I found the movie full of philosophical questions about the meaning of life. Sigh. Is nothing sacred? While enjoying the witty banter, I also had to think about whether this is all there is. This day-to-day, this cycle of life, the collective cultures, religions, the systems and wealth of knowledge obtained from human history and common experiences…Or is there more? A higher power, a divine plan, magic, a metaphysical world beyond the rational. Are there plans or is it all spontaneous and just happening as it’s happening? Perhaps I should have just revisited the pastoral peace of Pride and Prejudice, but then, I’d probably wonder again whether I would really like Mr. Darcy if I met him, or think he was a rich, pompous jerk.

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My brain was awash with questions…and green tea. Do we need illusions or even delusions to survive and then more and more as stress levels build?
Is that why the world is looking more like the final days of an empire?
It might also explain why pop culture has become an avant-garde-Spanx-clad-Salvador-Dali-painting-on-Viagra.

Oh well, off to Outwit, Outlast and Outplay another day.

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Posted in Blogs, Books, Food, Movies, Music, Televison, Uncategorized, Zombies

Rock Me Amadeus

1funny524No one ever talked or did stuff like they did in 80’s movies. Ever.

In the future, they’ll probably dig up 80’s movies and come to conclusions like: Ferris Bueller was a god, aliens could phone home from Earth, “wax on, wax off” was a common phrase, and paternity results were only told to your child in space, after you cut off their hand. They’re going to think the 80’s were even more messed up than they were.

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And what was with romance in the 80’s?
Why sit on a table with a birthday cake and a cute boy? I can think of much better things to do…with that cake.
Everyone was dancing – dirty dancing, flashdancing, Kevin Bacon dancing (don’t know what else to call it).
A guy with a boom box and a trench coat outside your house…nowadays, restraining order, or it would go viral, or both.1funny560

Officers, gentlemen, risky business, funny business.
Adventures, in space or babysitting, as long as they were most excellent, dude.
Supernatural, psycho, science, time travel – sometimes all at once.
Where’d they get all the gremlins, goonies, vampires, muppets, and aliens?
Actually, that all sounds like the soundtrack to my 80’s.

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Know what also ruled in the 80’s? Political incorrectness. Who could worry about offending anyone when girls just wanted to have fun and boys wanted girls to have fun, especially with them?

I kind of miss it. Sure, political correctness is good in theory, don’t say unto others what you don’t want said to you, but has the correctness over-corrected? I don’t know if you can change human nature, people just say weird stuff.

  • “That’s the best kind of cancer to have.”  Let’s review that sentence. Nope, still looks weird. The best kind of cancer is no cancer.

  • “Don’t worry.”  Why are they telling me not to worry, is it because they know I should be worried and they don’t want me to panic?

  • “Do you have a bathroom?”  Did you mean to ask if you can use my bathroom, because yes, I have a bathroom, I don’t ‘go’ in the yard.

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  • “Money won’t make you happy.”  I think money and I would be very happy together, we’d make the perfect couple (couple of million).

  • “Time heals all wounds.”  Not true. Time doesn’t heal anything, it just passes.

  • “If you get lost in the woods, don’t panic.”  Of course I’m going to panic! I’m lost, in the woods!!! Surrounded by bears, badgers, and bugs, maybe zombies in the dark (when I picture being lost in the woods, it’s always dark), and with my luck, zombie bears, badgers and bugs (note to self, pitch a spin-off to AMC, working title, The Walking Bears, Badgers, and Bugs ).

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  • “Everything happens for a reason.”  Technically correct, but I’m not sure that’s how people mean it.

  • “I think therefore I am.”  Not true for everyone, have you been on the internet?

  • “I know you are, but what am I?”  This one is actually timeless.

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 Back to 2015, my Don’t Worry, Be Happy 365 day project enters Week 3, will I falter?
Week 1, amazing: https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/06/03/dont-worry-be-happy/
Week 2, a revelation: https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/06/09/to-blog-or-not-to-blog/

Week 3:

1. Remove 15 minutes or more per day of sitting time (replace with dancing, but with less enthusiasm to Falco’s Rock Me Amadeus, my knee will thank me).

2. Remove another 100 calories per day (Again, not veggies…perhaps cake, but not, like chocolate cake, right?).

3. Remove 15 minutes or more of screen time per day to read or research.

4. Do 1 thing I’ve put off doing.

5. Read a book I said I’d never read (doesn’t leave me the range you’d think it would).

6. Pay it forward, aka do something good and don’t tell anyone what I did.

7. Try a food I haven’t tried (I guess I can’t sneak cake in and pretend?).

1funny541

Posted in Canada, Environment, Family, Food, Internet, Movies, Uncategorized

The Internet Has Spoken

1funny301I feel like I’m drifting away.

Connection is such a tenuous thing, physically or emotionally. You want to connect, to trust, but how do you know when the connection is toxic, or failing, or broken?

Each day, I try to tiptoe around the world for as long as I can, but the internet has made this challenging.

It’s a Catch-22, if I don’t connect to the internet I drift apart from the world, but if I connect to the internet, I’m bombarded with stuff : news, ads, studies, misery and success, and just, well, stuff.

Page after page, link after link of:

  • People with diseases and those pretending to have diseases, really? Pretending to have a disease? Stuns me every time.

  • Finding life on other planets – shouldn’t we concentrate on keeping what little intelligent life we have on Earth first?

  • What’s getting deflated? Definitely not the egos of athletes!

    1funny310

  • Governments lying to us again…still?

  • Bragging, boasting, whining, complaining, rudeness, trolls and trouble.

  • Turtles and snakes in toilets, transformed food, books, social media, movies, cats, TV, music, royalty, and endless things going viral we won’t remember next week.

  • Riots, wars, conflicts, comets, poverty, abuse, slavery, rape, murder, mutant ants, fires, biker wars, shootings, floods, terrorism, volcanic eruptions, killer bees, public shaming, teachers having sex with students (in the wise words of Pink Floyd, Hey! teachers! leave the kids alone!)…1funny304

  • Hoaxes, scams, and stunts, aarrgghhh, my head is spinning!

  • NSA, CIA, IRS, CSIS, OMG, ISIS, UFO, LOL, NASA, it might be fun to stay at the YMCA, if we weren’t drowning in abbreviations.

  • Studies explaining things they think I should know, like: food, drinking, sleeping, the environment, politics, parenting. I figured out parenting, at first you’re disoriented, exhausted, scared to say or do the wrong thing, a bit like being abducted by aliens, then you realize, they’re adorable aliens, like ET and then, they have you, you have X-Files Stockholm Syndrome and you can’t get enough…or wait, is that politics, not parenting?

    1funny311

  • Ads and commercials for things we don’t need, but apparently should want more than breathing.

  • And remember when we only knew a little about celebrities and their lives? I miss that.1funny283

Remember in Poltergeist, where the eldest daughter is standing in the street screaming, “What’s happening?!?”sometimes, that’s me, inside my head.1funny331

Don’t get me wrong, despite my woes, I’m happy to wake up alive every morning, as opposed to waking up dead, which is most inconvenient and usually alters your plans, not only for the day, but the foreseeable future. Yet I’m struggling, dear readers, to find a balance between using technology and being consumed by it. I suppose it’s the same with any relationship, you need boundaries, compromise and…

1. Mutual respect. If you’re feeling bad when using the internet, take some time away, explore other interests.

2. Independence. If you depend on it for everything, it’s likely to let you down one way or another.

3. Dreams. Does it inspire you to write that novel you’ve always talked about writing, talk to an old friend, travel, try new things, explore, take a chance…dream?

Perhaps sometimes you have to drift to make connections; strong connections, not overpowering ones.

1funny315

Posted in Blogs, Chocolate, Family, Food, Parenting, Uncategorized, Weight

50 Things to Get Busy Doing Before 50

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/ 1. Reach 49.

2. Forgive. Doesn’t matter if they deserve it, you do.

3. Some people will be negative and hate, so what, what’s that got to do with you?

4. Learn your parents, family, and friends’ stories.

5. Ignore people who tell you to try surfing or skydiving or extreme sports if you don’t want to do it, they’re not going to spend the time in hospital or rehab.

6. Help someone who needs help and don’t tell a single soul you did it.

7. Learn to compromise.

8. Conquer a fear. Doesn’t have to be a big one.

9. Take the time to write that email, make that call, write a letter, visit, send a card, it may not matter, but what if it does?

10. Ask for help. Accept it gratefully.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

11. Smile. Laugh. Often. Quit thinking about why. Smile. Laugh.
12. Cry. Into someone’s shoulder, a pillow, a cat or dog, a tub of ice cream, a gooey chocolate bar, but cry.

13. Walk. Look around. Walk some more.

14. Quit measuring. Your food. Waist. Accomplishments. What others have. Still measure before cutting wood, fabric, and when you bake.

15. Nurture yourself so you can nurture others. The world works best when everyone cares for someone.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

16. Say yes more often.

17. Say no more often.

18. Do something you didn’t think you could do. Maybe you still can’t, but isn’t it glorious that you tried?

19. Read. Doesn’t matter what.

20. Laugh so hard it hurts and you think someone might call in help because there’s something wrong.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

21. Don’t be too serious, it causes wrinkles and it’s no fun.

22. Believe in something, stand behind it, no matter what.

23. Find some magic, whether it’s in a book, a sunset, a blog post, a smile, a party, a kiss, a moment…Find it and keep it.

24. Belt out a song at Karaoke, especially one you don’t know or with inappropriate lyrics.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

25. Watch the stars…sleep under them if possible.

26. Roll down a grassy hill with your friend (make sure there’s nothing in the way first).

27. Change your hair, not to follow a style, or to cover gray hair, or because someone tells you that you should.

28. Let go of hate.

29. Lay and watch clouds for a minimum of one hour. You’re welcome.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

30. Sit alone in a restaurant, don’t hide behind a book or your phone or pretend to be engrossed in your noodles (they’re not that fascinating). Look around, be in the moment.

31. Make an unrealistic wish on a shooting star.

32. Have a huge crush that can never be returned. It’s freeing.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

33. Follow a dream, even if everyone tells you it’s ridiculous, especially if everyone tells you it’s ridiculous.

34. Move forward. You don’t have a time machine.

35. Compassion first. Compassion second. Compassion third. You get the idea.

36. Be so completely wrong you’ll never believe how wrong you were.

37. Be so completely right no one will ever believe how right you were.

38. Visit Niagara Falls, really, any enormous waterfall will do. You will walk away with a million and half questions about the universe.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

39. Don’t follow trends or fads, do what you want, your time is limited.

40. Be like your parents.

41. Don’t be like your parents.

42. The answer to life, the universe and everything. Use it wisely and sparingly.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

43. Stop saying, ‘Life isn’t fair’. It never was.

44. Be happy with what you have and what you are – at least it’s real.

45. Have goals. Fulfill some.

46. Stop using the word ‘impossible’. Substitute ‘improbable’ if you must.

47. Spend a whole day just listening.

48. Spend a whole day telling the truth.

49. There’s no scorecard, so be yourself, quit trying to get points.

50. Life is too short to do someone else’s bucket list. Be your best you….at any age.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/04/19/50-things-to-get-busy-doing-before-50/

Posted in Blogs, Chocolate, Family, Food, Uncategorized, Weight

It’s Not The Years, Honey. It’s The Mileage

1indie16

Our bodies might be temples, but mine is starting to look like it needs an archaeological dig.

I’m going to agree with Indiana Jones, “It’s not the years, honey. It’s the mileage.”

Sigh, it might also be the years.

Maybe it’s just that women need more upkeep…or we’re told we do.

1indie21

  • Women spend an inordinate amount of time trying to remove hair from their bodies…and if we can’t remove it, then we need to curl it, cut it, dye it, straighten it, lengthen it, wax it, shave it, shape it, and give names to the shapes.

  • Men generally just want to hold onto every single hair they have, for as long as they can.1indie22

  • Women spend hours they’ll never get back trying to pick out just the right shade, tone, tint, texture that’s going to: smooth, cover, cleanse, conceal, reverse, resist, beautify, bronze, define, alter, prime, primp, plump – for the dry, normal, oily, sensitive, acne-prone, combination; all of which will then be removed.

  • Men leave the house, perhaps after brushing the precious hair they have left and hopefully their teeth.1funny103

  • Women will do everything short of selling their souls (and that might be up for consideration) to keep themselves looking young, including being injected, operated on, rituals, who knows?

  • Men age.pablo39

  • Women worry about every bit of food that passes their lips, weigh ourselves obsessively, worry about body fat, calories, diets. They will fast, cleanse, purge and look too often into the abyss (aka the full-length mirror).

  • Men eat.1diet6

Obviously these are generalizations, but why are there such differences between the sexes? Is it our brains? Bodies? Society? History? It should be about acceptance. Men and women aren’t that much different, except women usually get paid less and their products and services cost more.

1funny108

We’re all human (well, most of us, there are exceptions), we should accept each other and work together.

In Raiders of the Lost Ark they should have said, we have top people working on it.  Why? Because we may just be passing through history, but it doesn’t mean we have to keep reliving it.

ROTLA1

Posted in Blogs, Canada, Chocolate, Family, Food, Parenting, Uncategorized, Weight

Old Habits Die Harder

pablo27

Don’t you think this would be a perfect title of the next Die Hard movie? Call me Bruce, we’ll talk…

Oh, you know there’s going to more, this isn’t over yet.

I woke up in the night with my leg in a bear trap. The pain was excruciating. It was dark and there was no one around to help me. As I struggled to my feet, feeling at my ankle for blood I realized I’d been dreaming. My mind, trying to process the pain of the fist-sized charley horse in my leg had incorporated it into my dream.
I’d done a prolonged and unusual activity the day before, sadly, it wasn’t nearly as exciting as it sounds. I had broken a habit of procrastination and avoidance. OK, maybe I’d at least dented the habit.

The trouble with habits, these sometimes helpful, sometimes hurtful patterns of behaviour – they so can easily become addictive and breaking them is complicated.1habits2

  • Phase 1 Some call it denial. You don’t have a problem, everybody else does. This habit isn’t hurting anyone. Phase 1 can last for years and years.

  • Phase 2 You consider you might have a bad habit and contemplate whether to part ways with the habit. This phase can also last a long time.

  • Phase 3 You start looking at the good, the bad, and addictive. I like the habits, no, I hate the habits. Pros and Cons lists are made. Arguments for and against are hotly debated in your head.

    1habits3

  • Phase 4 – The most public phase. Until now you fought the habit war in your head. With action, people will know. It’s all out there. You’ll get narrow-eyed looks, comments, praise, questions, and/or criticism. But your resolve is firm.

  • Phase 5 – Staying the course. You’ve done it, kicked that habit to the curb! It’s not going to run your life, you are in charge. This is when you have to maintain. They can take our habits, but they can never take our freedom!

  • Phase 6  – When the ugly stats that 9 out of 10 people relapse back into their habits within a year. And the older the habit, the harder is it to break. You get the bad news, you have Chronic Reversion Syndrome. The tests all show, the habit is back. Your family and friends fear the worst, but you know you’re going to fight it.1habits4

In your rush to recover, you should be  careful, to change a habit, you need to move toward something new and better, not just away from the habit you’re trying to kick. Or try to replace a bad habit with a good habit.

How do you quit bad habits, dear readers?
Have you had success or like me, do you suffer from Chronic Reversion Syndrome?

pablo25

 

Yippee Ki-Yay,
dear readers!

Posted in Food, Holidays, Movies, Uncategorized

We’ll Always Have Pancakes

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/02/17/well-always-have-pancakes/Tuesday isn’t Friday. And it never will be.

Tuesday Weld (Susan Ker Weld) legally changed her name in 1959. She was born on a Friday. While filming Wild in the Country (1961) Weld was professionally and personally involved with Elvis. Elvis died at 42, on Tuesday August 16, 1977. There are those that believe otherwise…

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/02/17/well-always-have-pancakes/

Tuesday is thankful it’s not Monday; people seem to really hate Monday.

Ruby Tuesday, the classic hit by The Rolling Stones was originally titled, Title B. Hmmm, would a chain of restaurants called themselves Title B ?

People are allegedly the least ‘frisky’ on Tuesdays.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/02/17/well-always-have-pancakes/

October 29, 1929, also known as Black Tuesday, when the New York Stock Exchange crashed, signalling the beginning of The Great Depression, which may have been badly named.

Tuesday June 6, 1944, D-Day. Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy, France to liberate Nazi-controlled Europe.

If You Give a Pig a Pancake by Laura Numeroff, illustrated by Felicia Bond is one is a series of children’s books that teaches cause and effect. The usual effect for me? When reading it to my son, I wanted pancakes.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/02/17/well-always-have-pancakes/

Tuesday is allegedly the most productive day of the work week. If you’re reading this at work, that may not be true.

Shrove Tuesday, Fat Tuesday, Pancake Tuesday – all the same day. Shrove Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent for many Christians. Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras is a time to celebrate and feast on foods not allowed during the austerity of Lent, most of which are rich in fat…now I’m drooling at the thought of pancakes. Even if people don’t observe Lent, many celebrate Pancake Tuesday or Fat Tuesday.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/02/17/well-always-have-pancakes/

Here’s one of my favourite pancake recipes:

½ cup flour (your choice)
1 ½ cups of oatmeal
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
Mix together lightly in a large bowl.
Add 1 tsp vanilla
1 cup sour milk (you can make milk sour by adding 1 tsp vinegar)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large egg
Mix gently and cook with a small amount of butter/olive oil mixture to grease the pan.

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/02/17/well-always-have-pancakes/

Garnish to taste and enjoy!

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/02/17/well-always-have-pancakes/

“He respects Owl, because you can’t help respecting anybody who can spell Tuesday even if he doesn’t spell it right” ~AA Milne

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2015/02/17/well-always-have-pancakes/

Posted in Chocolate, Food, Movies, Poetry

Lazy SuperBowl Sundae

 

I know it’s Super Bowl Sunday
That means I should be
worshiping
the gods of football

Yet when I hear Sunday
I think of many things
people might do:
relaxing
1asunday5cleaning
Sunday dinner
volunteering
#SundayBlogShare
day at the park
drive in the country
fun with family
and friends
brunch
Downton Abbey
museum
movies
walking
tea
Masterpiece Classics
or Mystery!
board games
The Walking Dead
video games
sledding
Sunday Bloody Sunday
staying in bed
curled up with a good book
Broadchurch
cookies
Pokemon
laundry
swimming
The Blacklistblackl3sleeping
shoveling
church

But mostly I think of
rivers of chocolate flowing
down
over snowy white
mountains
of ice cream
majestic whipped cream
caressing icy peaks
crowned by a plump
red
rotund
cherry
all on a lazy sundae1asunday2So whether you’re watching
Super Bowl
Puppy Bowl
Zombie Bowl
Or cleaning your toilet bowl
Hope this day, at least,
is treating you kindly.

Posted in Christmas, Food, Holidays, Movies, Uncategorized

We are Santa’s elves

1elves11Unseasonably warm, it seemed a beautiful day to go for a long walk. Little did I know chaos had broken out at The North Pole. As I wandered off to do errands and go to the library, behind the scenes, disgruntled elves had declared war on Christmas! Tired of deplorable working conditions, the Elves went on strike.

Santa seemed bemused, telling the media, “I’ve spent more money on elves, especially Veteran elves than any other Santa in the history of Santas.”

The elves shot back with a list of demands.

“We’re tired of being pushed around!” Chief SpokesElf Snowball exclaimed. “We don’t have glamorous jobs like fighting to save Middle-earth, making cookies in trees, being a warrior in Hyrule, or saving Harry Potter, we just make toys!”

Other elves murmured their agreement.

“We love making toys, but day in and day out, it’s torture!” Snowball climbed up on a festive stool to point at the growing crowd of elves. “No one talks about the harassment we endure when we go into town, we can’t even walk down the street without hearing, Hey Sugarplum, or Twinkletoes, Peppermint Buns, Angel Ears, Sprinklepants.” Snowball sat down heavily on the stool, head in hands, as if unable to carry on.

Another elf patted Snowball on the back and continued, “We want to work, but we have to sing the whole time and some elves, I won’t mention any names, cough cough, Buddy, sing loud for all to hear, off key. And why does Santa’s Workshop have to be at The North Pole, why not Aruba or Belize?” Holly sighed and raised her hands in a gesture of defeat. “We have a mandatory diet of cookies, candy canes, gingerbread, candy corn, do you know what all these gumdrops are doing to my diet?”

Cries of Here, Here! and One Two Three Four Eating Cookies is a Bore! rang through the workshop.

“We have to wear these outfits all the time,” Holly sighed, pointing down at her tacky elf outfit. “And now they’re loaning us out to sit on shelves, what’s with that?”1elves8

But while the elves were rallying, the reindeer escaped and went flying around the world, stuffing themselves on fast food and samples at Costco; getting liquored up before knocking down unsuspecting pedestrians. This is where I come in, one minute I was walking, the next I was on the ground, in the mud. The reindeer didn’t even stop, it kept talking on it’s cellphone, at least, I think it was a reindeer.

With only 19 sleeps before the Big Night, let’s hope Santa and the Elves can work this out.

Posted in Chocolate, Family, Food, Holidays, Uncategorized

12 Hours of CyberMonday

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/12/01/12-hours-of-cyber-monday/

In the first hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me a Star Wars Christmas Tree (The Christmas Force Awakens?).

In the second hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 2 Christmas sweaters (or jumpers, either way, not sure I’m that cold just yet).

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/12/01/12-hours-of-cyber-monday/

 In the third hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 3 motion-activated candy dispensers (it says motion, that burns calories, right?).

In the fourth hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 4 boxes of chocolates (aaaand, they’re gone!).

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/12/01/12-hours-of-cyber-monday/

In the fifth hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 5 Lord of the Rings action figures (you had me at action).

In the sixth hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 6 personalized mix tape pillows (really, couldn’t even make me a real mixed tape?).

In the seventh hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 7 robotic vacuums (wait, is he saying my house is dirty?).

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/12/01/12-hours-of-cyber-monday/

In the eighth hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 8 paint your own rain boots kits (really, that’s a thing?).

In the ninth hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 9 zombie survival kits (be nice, I’ll share).

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/12/01/12-hours-of-cyber-monday/

In the tenth hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 10 Disney Frozen Sparkle Princess Elsa Dolls (any guesses what my donation to the toy drive will be this year?).

In the eleventh hour of CyberMonday my true love bought for me 11 live video camera drones (I love what you’ve done with your bedroom!).

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/12/01/12-hours-of-cyber-monday/

In the twelfth hour of CyberMonday my true love…oops, his credit card was declined.

The shopping force is strong in people around this time of year.

Shop wisely, regrets can be expensive…

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2014/12/01/12-hours-of-cyber-monday/

Posted in Canada, Cats, Christmas, Food, Holidays, Uncategorized

Oh Snow, You Didn’t!

1snow3Looking out my window last night, into the dark, still night as I always do before bed, you know, as everyone does to make sure there are no zombies, aliens, purges, or other issues, I noticed a new menace!

This was a foe I’d met before.
Sneaky and untimely, it had arrived.
On the surface it was bright, sparkly and gave the street a contemporary Currier and Ives appearance, but I knew it for what it was!
Snowmg, this was too soon.
I thought, Oh Hell Snow!
Snow way!

The only dashing I wanted to do was down to the park to play some tennis or to take a long walk, in shoes.
No jingling. No jangling. No turtledoves or French hens.
No lords leaping or otherwise.
No fat man with a hidden address going on my roof. What is with Christmas anyway? Having children sit on some strangers’ lap and tell him the thing they want most in the world so he can break into their house, eat their food, drink their beverages, leave them gifts after watching them sleep. That’s just freaky.

1snow1

I don’t want wassail or fruitcake, wait, it’s cold, I’ll take the wassail, but not the wassailers, too early.
4 cups apple cider, or apple juice, or 6 cored apples & 4 tbsp. sugar, honey, or maple syrup (or a combination depending how sweet a tooth you have)
2 cups cranberry juice
2 cups orange juice
3 tbsp. lemon juice
2 cups water
4 sticks of cinnamon or 1 tsp. cinnamon
2 tbsp. Cloves, ginger, nutmeg (or not)

All the ingredients in a large pot, on low for 6-8 hrs; all day in a slow cooker.
Add wine or brandy or rum for adults.
Orange slices and cranberries for decoration.

Snow is not a signal to start Christmas cheer yet. No shopping and definitely no fa la laing. No singing loud for all the world to hear. Signed, The Grinch.

chrisstmas131

I was enjoying other people’s posts on snow, then it got real. How can I originally be from near Sudbury and still be this traumatized by snow? No idea.

Fine. Bring it on.
Polar Vortex. Snowmageddon. Snownado. Snowzilla.

Snow wars. Snow conflict. Snowpocalypse.

Quietus snowus. Snow-nihilation.

Snowreaper. The oncoming snowstorm.

Just know that I will grumble. I will say, How about this snow? Brrr, it’s cold and the classic, Is there more snow than last year?

Snow there, Mother Nature, snow there!

1christmas8

Posted in Books, Christmas, Food, Holidays, Televison, Uncategorized, Weight

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

1FOMO7

Society is degenerating to a constant state of anxiety and fear, especially the fear of missing out. What if we missed an email, text, post, tweet, party, sale, invitation, night out, gossip, especially about celebrities, trips, trends…what if we just missed something? The only thing we don’t fear missing out on…voting.

1FOMO8

While reading Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by the stunningly beautiful, talented, and hilarious Mindy Kaling (Three Rivers Press) I had an a-ha moment. The book itself was funny, charming, authentic, very much what you’d expect from the writer and star of The Mindy Project and The Office, she’s a hot mess and makes it work, but I started thinking about why more and more people are more depressed, stressed, anxious, suicidal, homicidal, etc. than ever, even children. I’m sure there are multiple reasons, but being in constant contact, rampant consumerism, extreme inequality, and fear of missing out must be high on the list.

So a bunch of money-grubbing, self-regulating corporations appeal to natural human curiosity, use culturally complex language, jargon, fear of missing out, pop culture references, celebrities, and even bullying to ensure we feel compelled to consume, which leads to wanting and buying and consuming even more which leads to, well, you get the picture. This isn’t just adults, we’re letting our children be groomed, to be exploited, for profit. Isn’t there a name for that?
The good news, there’s no need to stop consuming, or watching TV, or going on the internet…we just slow down and consider the source, who will profit.

Symptoms of  a fear of missing out may include, but are not limited to:

1FOMO5

1. Forgetting those you love or those in need while rushing around trying not to miss out.
2. Rationalizing buying products manufactured under deplorable conditions.
3. Describing wants as needs or worse believing wants are needs.
4. Obsessing about products, services, and activities.
5. Putting items above people.

There is hope. Some people might be doing things you’re not or having things you’re not, that doesn’t mean they’re happier or more content. It’s not a contest. Hopefully this will all level out and people will finally see what’s important instead of what’s advertised.
Since the holiday season is already being forced on us to stretch out the shopping and socializing so we’ll spend more, don’t fear missing out, celebrate what you have.

1FOMO4

Posted in Books, Cooking, Food, Holidays, Televison, Uncategorized, Zombies

The Joy of Cooking on a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

1cookz2Some days I love cooking, but what about cooking on a terrible, horrible, no good, really bad day? I still want what I cook to be delicious and healthy, but how could I do that, say, during a zombie apocalypse? I don’t want myself and any loved ones who had managed to survive to simply subsist on self-contained, shelf-stable foods. We might be prey, but that doesn’t mean we’re stuck eating MREs (Meal Ready to Eat). Think fresh and available. What could be tastier than cricket, kelp and mushroom bourguignon?1cookz6

 After reading The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse: A Cookbook & Culinary Survival Guide by Lauren Wilson, illustrated by Kristian Bauthus (Benbella Books) you’ll be thinking you should get a head start on this new way of cooking. While I know this book was meant to be tongue-in-cheek (I think that may also be a recipe), it could be a great book to have on hand, just in case. Enjoy this detailed, funny, and practical cookbook as you re-watch or catch up on The Walking Dead to be ready for its return on Sunday October 12th, which coincidentally, is the Canadian Thanksgiving…turkey and zombies, this completely changes the phrase, surviving the holidays.

If nature turns against you, turn that frown upside down – think of it as a fresh start, going back to basics.1cookz4World crumbling around you during a zombie or other apocalypse?
Doesn’t mean you can’t make a wonderful apple crumble in your ammo can oven!

Just because the living dead can’t think of anything but eating human flesh doesn’t mean you have to give up being a foodie.

Posted in Autism, Books, Christmas, Cooking, Environment, Family, Fibromyalgia, Food, Holidays, Internet, Jane Austen, Movies, Music, Parenting, Political, Televison, Uncategorized, Weight, Zombies

My 1 Year Blogaversary!

1birthday10August 8, 2013 wow, that seems like a lifetime ago.

That blog post was, Fibromyalgia is a  Four Letter Word (it still is).

https://yadadarcyyada.com/2013/08/08/fibromyalgia-is-a-four-letter-word/

Since then I’ve made a lot of mistakes, did I say a lot I meant a ton, or perhaps a tad more; probably said a lot of things people don’t agree with; and had some wanting-to-pull-my-hair-out moments, no worries, it’s still there, more or less.

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I’ve learned a lot. Had some revelations about people I thought would be supportive, turns they weren’t, and still aren’t.

I’ll take it as a life lesson.

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Plenty more people have been extremely supportive.
Thank you to family and friends, those who have pressed like, or shared, or reblogged, or followed, or subscribed, tweeted and retweeted, given me awards, or a combination. It means more than you’ll ever know, really.

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I have 1birthday6‘virtually’ met some awesome people who are kind, supportive, funny, helpful, generous, hopeful, caring, and have mind-blowing things to say and they share it. Thank you.

This year has opened up new portals for me.

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I’m reading books I might never have read, learned things I didn’t know my brain could learn, but most of all it’s given me hope that maybe I can be more, it’s given me a glimpse of me, a me that I sometimes fear is gone forever.

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So please join me for this virtual celebration of my 1st Blogaversary or Blogversary or maybe it’s a blogbirthday!

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Drop by and say hi, read some of my older posts, apparently there are like 450 of them, hey, I did warn you with the tagline, Vague Meanderings of the Broke and Obscure.

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Have a slice of virtual cake, wear a silly hat and join me for another year of who knows what!!!

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Posted in Books, Chocolate, Doctor Who, Food, Movies, Political, Televison, Uncategorized, Weight

Charlie and The Chocolate Factory Turns 50

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I’m celebrating 50,000+ views on my blog (Thank you! Thank you!) and the 50th anniversary (published 1964) of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, published 1964.

Loved with this book, then I saw the movie, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory – my mind was forever altered.
A factory full of chocolate? It was one thing to read about it, another to see a river of chocolate

I still love the 1971 Gene Wilder version best (directed by David L. Wolper), maybe because it’s steeped in childhood memories or because for me, it’s Gene Wilder’s definitive performance.

This is where I fell in love. Gene Wilder and chocolate. Sign me up!

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Wilder is the ultimate Willy Wonka. He didn’t go over-the-top weird, instead opting for a subtle, damaged man-child who was trapped in his own reclusion, a Howard Hughes-like creative genius who couldn’t cope in a reality that wasn’t of his own making. Wilder’s transcendent blend of cordiality, callousness, awe, and animosity make you think he is Wonka, he just is.

Jack Albertson was delightful as Grandpa Joe, who apparently couldn’t get out of bed to get a job, but could dance a jig and spend the day at a chocolate factory.

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Charlie Bucket is the only child Dahl and Wonka even remotely like due to his meek and accommodating nature, but Charlie wasn’t as obedient as he seemed, he spent money on a chocolate bar that he wasn’t supposed to; so even in the most co-operative child Dahl found a fault.
The 1971 version was renamed Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory to cross-promote UK’s The Willy Wonka Candy Company who had bought the rights from Roald Dahl.

I never understood why Roald Dahl was classed as a children’s author, he clearly disliked children, at times rather intensely. His stories and books reflect this.
What he hated more than children were their parents, specifically parents who didn’t raise their children properly, at least from his point of view.

Imagine what Roald Dahl would think of children and their parents now?

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The Friday Project/ Harper Collins

I recently read A Brief History of Chocolate (Steve Berry and Phil Norman) which I must warn you will not only vastly entertain and inform, but make you crave chocolate.

Despite best intentions this book lacked something, what was it? Oh yes, chocolate. They should sell each copy with a chocolate bar or coupon for a free chocolate bar. There, a marketing idea, no charge…although I’d take a thank you in chocolate bars.

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I also loved the darker, creepier Tim Burton vision of Willy Wonka.

Johnny Depp played him weird and it worked. Also damaged, but in a deranged-metrosexual-game-show-host-who-moonlights-as-a-rock-star-on-acid-way.

Veruca Salt was a bad egg or nut in all versions, but really, her parents spoiled her. Also, Augustus Gloop, Mike Teevee, and Violet Beauregarde. All annoying children, but allowed, even encouraged to be so by their parents.

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 The first time I walked into the Hershey chocolate factory in Smith Falls, Ontario the smell was divine, like melted chocolate floating through clouds of more chocolate just before it rained chocolate.

I’ll never forget the look on my son’s face, the pure wonder as he watched row after row after row of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups racing happily along the conveyor belt.

I’m sure I had a similar look as I saw the giant vat of chocolate I wanted to swim in, not figuratively, literally.

No Oompa-Loompas, no chocolate waterfall, trees made of taffy, Everlasting Gobstoppers, no fizzy lifting drinks, or Wonka though, but lots of chocolate for sale and sample.

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Alas Hershey closed the factory after 45 years, losing a great tourist attraction, and hundred of jobs. Several other large employers closed, shipping more Canadian jobs overseas, 1ww10leaving 40% of the town unemployed.

Now a flame has been lit as Smith Falls rallies; the factory at 1 Hershey Drive now produces medical marijuana, which, in a great cosmic irony would have made more people buy chocolate.

There are still times, when I open a chocolate bar wrapper and think I see a flash of gold.

Posted in Canada, Food, Movies, Music

Happy Canada Day Eh

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I am Canadian.

Proudly Canadian, most of the time.

Canada is majestic, not merely our stunning landscape, but its people. Our cultural mosaic is a rich montage of various cultures, beliefs, foods, etc. that mostly blend quite well. Do we have differences? Definitely, but that could be part of our strength if we fight the real enemy, not each other.

  • Canada is the world’s second largest country in land mass, surrounded on 3 sides by oceans which is why we have the largest coastline in the world…I wonder how that will work with rising ocean levels due to climate change?

  • We have tiny hamlets to sprawling cities. Farmland, fishing, fracking, factories, forests, in fact, over 30% of Canada is forest. Sadly, less each day as so much is clear-cut for timber and to make way for more oil sands projects, cities, roads, highways, shopping malls, etc.

  • Canadians are an obsessive people. Over 80% of our households have internet and we use it a lot more than other countries, maybe we pay so much, they know they have us hooked.

  • What else are we obsessive about? Tim Hortons, food, drinking, hockey, shopping, smoking, driving, boating, skiing, beer, gardening, gambling, golfing, traveling, sex, drugs (Mayor of Toronto, Rob Ford even smokes crack), rock’n’roll, candy, cake, cookies, chocolate, clothes, porn, baseball, basketball (our Toronto Raptors even have thier own Jurassic Park?), hockey, holidays, cooking, eating, wasting, stuff, video games,  hockey, TV (over 125,000 Canadian households even have a TV in their bathroom), movies, books, smartphones, well, you name it, I’m sure we’re obsessed with it. We generate well over 700 kilograms of waste per person per year. So proud.

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We gave the world:

William Shatner, 

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James Doohan, Terry Fox, Alice Munro, Joe Shuster, Michael J. Fox,

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Gordon Pinsent, Nathan Fillion, Neil Young, Margaret Atwood, Leonard Cohen, Yannick Bisson, Graham Greene, Great Big Sea, Mark Critch, Drake, Carrie Ann Moss, Eric McCormack, Cobie Smulders, Avril Lavigne, Peter Jennings, J.D. Roberts (John Roberts), Morley Safer, Leslie Neilsen, Tricia Helfer, Paul Gross,  

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Kiefer and Donald Sutherland, Tommy Douglas, Barenaked Ladies, Allan Hawco, Stompin’ Tom, Rick Mercer, Michael Bublé, Paul Anka, Jack Layton, Glenn Ford, Ellen Page, Eugene Levy, Sandra Oh, Billy Van, Al Waxman, Fay Wray, Rich Little, Raymond Massey, Norm Macdonald, Pierre Elliot Trudeau, Justin Trudeau,

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John Polanyi, Andrea Martin, Catherine O’Hara, Will Arnett, Dave Foley, Lorne Greene, John Candy, ’63 Monroe, Gordon Lightfoot, Sheep Look Up, Rachelle Lefevre, Frederick Banting, Lorne Michaels, Alex Trebek, Dan Akroyd, Ryan Gosling, Adam Beach, The Trailer Park Boys, Spirit of the West, Gordie Howe, The Guess Who, BTO, Wayne Gretzky, The Tragically Hip, Tom Thomson, Emily Carr and the Group of Seven,

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Dave Thomas (as the Beaver), Brent Butt, Jim Carrey, Lucy Maud Montgomery, Rick Moranis, Stephen Leacock, Pierre Berton, Robertson Davies, Mike Myers, Tommy Chong, Dave Foley, Douglas Copeland, Farley Mowat, Joshua Jackson, Margot Kidder, Seth Rogen, Chris Hatfield, Ryan Reynolds, Martin Short, Brendan Fehr, Victor Garber, Anna Paquin, Shania Twain, Joni Mitchell, Arcade Fire, Willard Boyle, Roberta Bondar, Rob Ford, Cory Monteith, Colm Feore, Bruce Greenwood, Justin Bieber, James Cameron…
too many to name. You’re welcome and we’re sorry, that should about cover it.

  • What else? 2 km underground, we have the world’s deepest lab, Snolab, in Sudbury (which rocks!).

  • 6 time zones and the world’s longest highway, the Trans-Canada Highway, over 7604 kilometers (4725 miles). Maybe Canadian Tom Cochrane’s inspiration for Life is a Highway?

  • Over 75% of the world’s maple syrup produced, mostly in Quebec. Sweet.

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  • We have 2 official languages, English and French. Queen Elizabeth II is somehow still our Head of State.

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  • Canada is also the world’s most amazing water source. Yes, over 20% of the world’s fresh water, more lakes than all the other countries combined, the world’s largest freshwater island – Manitoulin Island, Ontario and of course, the awesome Niagara Falls.

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  • I fully expect our H2O to get us taken over one day, or some government selling it all. Documentaries like: Last Call At The Oasis (CBC), Thirst (Bullfrog Films), Flow (Oscilloscope), Watermark (Mongrel), Liquid Assets: The Big Business of Water (CNBC), Blue Gold: World Water Wars (Purple Turtle Films), Tapped (Atlas Films), The Colorado River: Running Near Empty (Pete McBride) highlight that once we’ve destroyed the water and air nothing else will matter. Watch 1 less trendy TV show, blockbuster movie, or YouTube video each week; watch documentaries, see the world as it is, not the façade the corporations, governments, etc. are showing you.

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  • We have a poor track record with our First Nations people. Sadly we don’t treat our veterans as well as we should either. Too much of the time our government of the day (hopefully that will change soon, very very soon, did I mention soon?) acts like the only good veteran is a dead veteran, oh except on photo-op days when politicians fake smile while shaking hands they’re not fit to shake. We also don’t treat our seniors, special needs, some minorities, or women, well, who does that leave, oh yes, rich white men, they’re treated like gods in Canada, at this time.

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  • Once known for being polite, diplomatic, peacekeepers, kind, caring, hopeful, giving, socially responsible, progressive, innovative, funny, strong, and free, the Canada we are so proud of is slowly slipping away, but hopefully not without a fight.

“My friends, love is better than anger.
Hope is better than fear.
Optimism is better than despair.
So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic.
And we’ll change the world.”
~Jack Layton

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Canada’s literacy rate is over 99% so I know if you’re in Canada, you can most likely read this.

Happy Canada Day eh!

Posted in Canada, Food, Movies, Televison, Uncategorized

Bacon – Nature’s Evil Genius

I wasn’t shocked to find out that  there were reasons why bacon smells so good, like smoky greasy sirens luring unsuspecting people to their doom.

Science has now confirmed bacon smells so good because as it starts to cook 150 organic compounds release them on the noses of the world.

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The fancy name for it is the Maillard Reaction which happens when foods cook. It’s why bread baking smells so divine, or cinnamon rolls, coffee, apple pie, cookies, steak, cake, ok, now I’m just making myself hungry.

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What is it really? Sugar reacting with amino acids when the fat begins to melt. Hydrocarbons and Aldehydes weaving a magical olfactory ballet that makes even some vegetarians drool. Or is it the Pyridines and Pyrazines that make us forget how much we were rooting for Wilbur or Babe not to become bacon? There are 150 reasons and it’s hard to find even one reason to say no, well, besides the it’s not good for you, not eating animals, the treatment of animals, religious reasons, actually, there are a lot of reasons as it turns out. 1bacon6

Either way, the pork industry has little trouble selling their products especially when they have all the cooking shows promoting it and joining forces with Bacon – Nature’s Evil Genius sizzling away, making our noses smile.

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While I love the smell of bacon, I could take or leave the actual taste. Of course, being Canadian I should like Canadian bacon better or as the rest of the world calls it, ham. Now cinnamon rolls are another story altogether. I can smell them right now, in my mind.

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Is there a food you can’t resist, especially the smell of it cooking?

Posted in Books, Cooking, Food, Televison, Uncategorized

Jeeves and Wooster

jeeves&w1Understandable this clunky British 1930s era comedy isn’t for everyone…but isn’t that a shame? You really don’t know what you’re missing, then again, if you don’t know, you’re probably not missing it and are ok with that.
Jeeves and Wooster is a lenient, laconic, laughable dance. Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry onscreen are pure magic. Their chemistry is flawless.

Jeeves and Wooster are like:
Pasta and sauce. jeeves&w5
Cake and ice cream.
Oil and vinegar.
Tomato soup and grilled cheese.
Hot chocolate and whipped cream.
Chips and salsa.
Cabbage and tomato.
Peanut butter and banana. jeeves&w3
Peanut Butter and jam.  
Peanut butter and bacon.
They’re peanut butter and chocolate.
Oops, I’ve gone off on a peanut butter tangent. But you get the point. Things that could be great separately, but are superb together.
Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry are fantastic on their own, but together, they’re a magnificent treat that’s timeless.

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Hugh Laurie plays Bertie Wooster, an upper class British twit who gets himself in one scrape after another. He’s not a bad guy, he’s just kind of oblivious. Stephen Fry plays his long-suffering pragmatic, perfect, and always prepared valet who keeps Wooster’s escapades in check, or at least, he tries. The P.G. Wodehouse books these were adapted from are worth a read as well.

Gentle, carefree merriment.

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Posted in Canada, Chocolate, Cooking, Doctor Who, Environment, Food, Uncategorized

Baby it’s cold outside

cold1Hate to be one of those super obvious people, but it’s cold outside!!! I’m more than sure there are really warm places, but I’m not in one of them.

I’m going to say this is the coldest I remember, I haven’t checked my facts on this one, I believe when it comes to weather it’s important to exaggerate and use as much hyperbole as possible, after all, you’re cold.

No one’s even touched upon the real drama of this Polar Vortex, flyaway hair…

1. Heat yourself, not your space.  Best time for socks and/or slippers, long-sleeved shirts, pants, thermal long johns, sweaters (your choice of pattern), bridgetjones2blankets, robes, hats, scarves, gloves, mittens, etc.cold6

2. Candles add heat, as do fireplaces, but be very careful, fire is only fun when contained.

3. Thick curtains and blinds (open if the sun is shining; closed if lots of wind and at night).

4. Keep interior doors closed, stops the cold moving from unused rooms.

5. Bake lasagna, cabbage rolls, cakes, etc. Not in the summer when you need to use Central Air to cool it down afterwards. Use your oven’s heat to warm your house – smells fantastic and you get yummy food.

6. A great time for soups or stews, not sure if scientifically they keep you warmer, but it sure feels that way. More so if dumplings are involved.

7. If so inclined I’ve been lead to, er, believe hot toddies can be a lovely way to keep warm, or hot chocolate, tea or coffee.cold98. If you know any penguins willing to share body heat they seem dreadfully good at that whole sitting on someone to keep them warm thing. They’re also so adorable.cold8

9. Fat might be bad for you, but comes in handy during these extreme cold spells. Perhaps it’s not a coincidence that Mother Nature is freaking on us and the general obesity rate is rising. Food for thought.

10. When you’re going to brave the outdoors, be a Boy Scout, always be prepared. Remember, the key is layers. Cover exposed skin. Make sure you’re aware of places you can duck into to warm up, especially on a longer trek.

11. People think because they’re driving they don’t have to dress for the weather. Wrong. Wear or bring a winter jacket. Wear or bring winter boots. Have extra gloves, hats, scarves, blankets, candles, and other emergency supplies in your car. Just in case.

12. Body heat. Enough said.

13. Don’t be hating on the cold, embrace it. Go for a walk; shovel (lift with your knees, not your back. No twisting and take your time, it’s not a race). Go sledding, skiing, skating, throw hot water into the air so it turns into snow…

Relax. It’s winter, not Armageddon. We’ll be back to whining about the heat in no time.