Friday, November 30, 2007

The waiting is the hardest part

Photo courtesy of GenkiGenki on Flickr
I'm no fan of the waiting game. I've been forced to play it all week and it's sheer torture. Monday. Monday is the day. I feel like there is electricity running through my veins. I'm a bundle of nerves, even though I probably shouldn't be.
I've spent so much of my life worrying and holding back. The thing about worrying, is that it doesn't accomplish anything. I know that, I really do, but I continue to do it. What I've been working on is not holding back so much. The biggest lesson that I've learned of late is just to live life. Take a chance, try it once, you can do anything you want to do. I have reached so many goals and seen so many of my dreams come true over the last couple of years that I am forced to believe this, even if purely by default. It has been proven to me that I can accomplish what I set out to, yet I continue to be afraid. These accomplishments have not come without stress or bumps along the road and they have certainly involved several leaps of faith and whole lot of hard work on my part; but they have come nonetheless. I'm quite sure that I will always think too much, overanalyze and want to discuss, I'm a Gemini, it's what we do best. Monday. For once, Monday can't come soon enough.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

I'm jaded and you're beautiful, I'm deluded and I'm envious of you

Photo courtesy of domo arigato on Flickr

While changing after my workout at the gym today, I got to thinking. At the gym or the swimming pool, no matter where it is, the change room is an interesting place. I awkwardly tried to keep myself covered with a giant towel as I very quickly put my clothes on after emerging from the shower. I couldn't help but notice all of the other bodies around me. The vast majority of them were gloriously imperfect, not to mention naked as jay birds. Many of the women were older than me. Some had breasts that drooped towards their waists, their nipples pointing towards the floor. Lots of them had cellulite or stretch marks or both. Why was I standing there, so ashamed of my own body, so afraid to expose myself? Why couldn't I remove the image of what I think I should look like from my head? What did I think that these other women expected me to look like? Why did I think it mattered to them? I wondered if I could ever be fully naked in a room where nakedness is not a big deal. I wondered why I couldn't imagine feeling comfortable showing it all off in there. Whose judgement was I afraid of, anyway? Even as a teenager, when I was changing for gym class or basketball practise, I always went into a stall, never feeling confident enough to peel my clothes off where anyone could see me. Other girls were quite content to parade around in the buff. I, on the other hand, was too shy even to stand around in my bra and underwear in front of the other girls. I'm not sure exactly what it was, or continues to be, about that situation that makes me anxious. Is it the same for guys? My buddies who play hockey have been showering together since they were little boys and seem to have no qualms about stripping down in front of their friends or other male strangers.
Would I feel differently if I had a perfect, little size two frame? There have certainly been moments, and situations with certain people who make me feel good, that I have felt comfortable with my body and my nakedness. Most days, I would give up my breasts in an instant, if only I could just be really tiny. As I stood in that change room this afternoon, self critical and uncomfortable amongst these confident, beautiful, uninhibited women, I wished more than anything that I could be more like them.

Shanghai'd in Shanghai

I can honestly say that this is the first cycle of ANTM for which I have not chosen a favourite and stuck by her for the duration. Last night, it was "go-see" time and the girls had to impress designers not only with their looks, portfolio and walk but also with their charm and personality. This proved to be quite a challenge for some of the girls. The translators tell the cabs to take the girls to their destinations, but once the girls get out of the cab, they still have to navigate themselves to the right studios. Plus, they have to be back at the agency on time.

Saleisha jumps out of the cab in the pouring rain and runs into the first designer's studio. She doesn't impress him; he thinks she dull. Poor Heather is lost. Chantal is scolded by one of the designers for wearing bright pink booty shorts rather than nude underwear, and her walk doesn't impress the designer either. By the time all the other girls have completed two or three go-sees, Heather still hasn't done her first one because she can't find the location. When she finally finds the first designer's studio, she is told how important it is to make eye contact, something that she struggles with. She is again awkward and obviously uncomfortable despite the fact that she has a look that the designer likes for China. After this, she heads back out, only to get lost a second time. She decides to go back to the agency so she doesn't get disqualified, but can't find her car. Cut to an awkward amount of footage of Heather walking around Shanghai aimlessly. Saliesha and Bianca are the only two who make it back to the agency on time, so the other girls are disqualified from the challenge. Bianca, who impressed the designers with the perfect mix of personality and beauty, is the winner.

Our favourite hunky judge, Nigel Barker is the photographer for this week's photo shoot. The models pose in a garden with people dressed in beautiful Chinese lion and dragon costumes. This means that the models have to be on their game, they must be super fierce to stand out in the shot. Nigel tries to coach Jenah, but she gives him attitude her sarcastic attempts at humour seem to do little more than irk him.

You see, this is where I'm torn. In my opinion, Heather and Jenah had the two best photos this week. However, they are both seriously lacking in the personality and "pulling it together" departments. I favoured Bianca this week, for the first time- she definitely rocked it in her go-sees and though I'm not particularly a fan of her face in her photo, on the whole, it was a good shot.
Five stand before Tyra, but she only has four photos in her hands. Saleisha is called first. Next is Bianca, then Chantal. Jenah and Heather are in the bottom two. The name that she doesn't call must return to the hotel, pack her bags and leave. Jenah. Heather is eliminated. I wasn't surprised. Beautiful and photogenic as the girl may be, I just think that she lacks the professionalism and confidence that it takes to be a top model. Can you really see Heather walking a runway, doing speaking engagements, or nailing a commercial for some new mascara? Can you imagine her at charity events, schmoozing at a high profile party, or doing whatever other highly visible tasks a model is required to do on a daily basis? I certainly can't. I was pleased with the judges' decision to send the girl home this week.

What do you think ANTM fans? Gus your secret choice still in the running? We're getting close to the end here, folks!
All photos courtesy of The CW

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Paris, je t'aime...

Photo courtesy of shshawna

I've been hitting the gym hard this week and back at pilates, because the time has really come to whip myself into shape again. It's funny, many people worry about "winter weight gain" over the holidays, but I have always been the opposite. I've always been my thinnest through the winter months and tend to gain a little over the summer. It seems that peppermint mochas and Christmas baking are easier for me to have willpower over than appies and drinks on a patio. For some reason, November hits and I'm suddenly motivated. I've always been like that. This year is no exception. I'm assuming that it's as a result of tuckering myself out more than usual during the days that I have been sleeping better at night. I have battled insomnia for as long as I can remember, and this has certainly been a stressful week for me, but exercise really does work wonders to help with both of those things.

With all of this sleep, I have been having the most crazy, intense, vivid dreams. Last night, I was in Paris. Paris is a place that I have never been but have always felt a kinship with, like I did with New York before I ever visited. I'm drawn to it for so many reasons. Funny enough, I have been to France, but Paris was not on the itinerary. Have you ever heard anything more ridiculous? Watching Amélie while feasting on brie last week planted the seed again. I found myself looking up flights to Paris online. Two of my best friends are currently living in France, so I'm certain that there would be no shortage of places to stay or people to show me around should make the voyage. Perhaps a summer trip to Paris is in order. I'm sure Eddie will agree. (Who, by the way will be back in Vancouver for Christmas in exactly 16 days!) Also making an appearance in my dream last night were these beautiful Frye boots. Apparently, I'm pining after them. I better tell Santa.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Would I be whining if I said I needed a hug?

This morning, I felt as though I could have stayed in bed all day. My alarm squawked seemingly louder than usual at 6am. I was so cozy, nestled beneath my covers, that the thought of emerging and facing the day seemed unfathomable. There were no excuses though, warm and snuggled as I may have been, I had to haul myself up and get into the shower. Work was calling; and it just wouldn't shut up.
It was a beautiful drive to the office, over the Lions Gate Bridge. The North Shore mountains are glittery white, covered in fresh snow this morning. They took my breath away as I approached them. I could not be more excited about the upcoming snowboarding season and our regular trips to Grouse for night riding above the city.
At the moment, everything feels up in the air. On one level, I'm feeling more settled than I've ever felt in my life and on's a world of unknown. Eager to take it all on, while at the same time plagued with self doubt and grappling with anxiety, I am sitting on the edge. I am still waiting patiently for the opportunity to jump into my future. There will be no safety nets when I do, but everything inside tells me that all of my hard work, blood, sweat and tears will pay off. I hope that these things have armed me with the experience I need to excel in the next phase. The confidence will come...I hope.

Things are changing, people are leaving, opportunities are knocking.

My focus is on "positive thoughts, positive thoughts...son of a bitch." I think that really says it all.

Monday, November 26, 2007

A blind man on the corner said it's simple, like flipping a coin, don't matter which side it lands on if it's someone else's dime

Photo courtesy of The Blackbird on Flickr

The headline seemed to scream at me this morning from my list of feeds: Child poverty rates unchanged in nearly 2 decades: report. Here we are in Canada in 2007 and he rate of child poverty is the same as it was in 1989. It has been eighteen years, and despite a 50 per cent increase in the size of the economy, the child poverty rate remains unchanged at 16.8 per cent when income was measured before income taxes; that means that one in six children in Canada lives in poverty. Not only does that absolutely break my heart, but it also makes me feel sick to my stomach.
I wasn't surprised when I clicked over to Matt's blog, knowing that he feels the same way that I do about this cause, to find that he had already posted about the article. Go here to read this thoughts and the discussion that has followed.
I have continued to be astounded, especially recently, not only by how many people are absolutely ignorant with regards to this issue but also by the number of people who turn a blind eye to it all together. In June, the UN released a report referring to Vancouver as a "scarred paradise."
The report describes Vancouver as a "breathtakingly gorgeous" city with a sizzling economy."But there is trouble in paradise. And nowhere is it more evident than in the Downtown Eastside -- a two-kilometre-square stretch of decaying rooming houses, seedy strip bars and shady pawnshops," states the UN agency."Worst of all, it is home to a hepatitis C (HCV) rate of just below 70 per cent and an HIV prevalence rate of an estimated 30 per cent -- the same as Botswana's."
A city with staggering wealth and soul-crushing poverty is far from unusual in the world's largest cities, the report notes."What makes the Downtown Eastside so different is that it is located in one of the most prosperous cities in one of the world's most prosperous countries."The UN Population Fund says next year, for the first time in history, half the world's population -- 3.3 billion people -- will live in urban areas. The number will swell to almost five billion by 2030.The report calls for pre-emptive action to deal with lack of housing, employment, good governance, and environmental stewardship.

To say that this is a sad facet of modern Canadian life doesn't even begin to capture the harsh reality. This is a national travesty and it needs to be addressed.

You shook me all night long

This weekend was all about spending as much time as possible with Jessica before she jumps on a train to Los Angeles tomorrow morning. Saturday, it was side by side mani-pedi's at Pure Nail Bar and then shopping for trek shoes and last minute necessities at Mountain Equipment Co-op.

After a double header of farewell parties on Friday and Saturday, last night with bellies full of spaghetti and meatballs, four exhausted girls sat inside GM Place to watch the Canucks kick some Chicago Blackhawk ass. The boys played a one-goal game down to the wire before coming out on top with a 2-0 victory over the Blackhawks, which propelled them into a tie with the Minnesota Wild at the top of their division. Luongo's shut out earned him the first star of the game. The Canucks may have started the season with a 1-6 home record but more recently, Luongo has backstopped three straight wins for our boys at GM Place.

On Sunday morning, I went for a long walk and ended up spending a small fortune on new cleaning products. I'm becoming so much more domestic as I get older. The Shoppers Drug Mart Life brand has launched a line of environmentally friendly cleaning products. The company touts them as being "fresh, biodegradable, non-toxic and phosphate-free." This excited me very much so I totally stocked up. My friend Danielle's ways have clearly rubbed off on me as I'm much more "Monica Geller" now than I ever have been before. After pilates, I cleaned my apartment from top to bottom with the result being bright, sparkling, clean perfection. I am loving my new apartment so much. I actually wake up in the morning with a big grin on my face upon looking around my very own happy, little home. I couldn't ask for a better building, friendlier neighbours or a more fabulous hood. Being a stone's throw from the beach with a plethora of shops and restaurants to check out is more than a girl could ask for, so I thank my lucky stars every single day.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

It's time we made a place, where people's souls can be seen and made safe

Photo courtesy of Simone Hudson on Flickr

Earlier this week I had dinner and a beer with an old friend who I hadn't seen for a couple of years. Leah and I went to high school and played basketball together as teenagers. Not only is she a creative and gifted photographer, but she is hands down one of the funniest human beings that I have ever known. I must say that I was pleased to find out the other night, that she hasn't changed a bit. The girl could have been a stand up comedian, seriously. What she is doing (aside from making people laugh), I discovered, is something absolutely fantastic and utterly perfect for her. Leah works for the Union Gospel Mission in Vancouver. Some of you may remember that I blogged about donating clothes there last month. She's their "every woman" and takes on a multitude of creative tasks and assignments for this totally stellar organization.
Those who know me, know how passionate I am about this cause. Living in Vancouver, homelessness is something that I see on a daily basis, you probably do too.

Consider being homeless for a few confused, long and lonely days. Consider spending years on the streets after being kicked out of home by an abusive, alcoholic parent or after the wing you live in is shut down in the mental health care facility that you inhabit. You have nowhere to turn. Everybody has their own story, but most people don't choose to end up on the street.

It was such a pleasure not only to catch up and reminisce about old times with Leah, but also to hear about all of the amazing work that she has been doing. Here's a little background from the UGM website:

"Union Gospel Mission exists to offer Hope to the Hungry, Hurting and Homeless. In 1940, the Mission began as a small soup kitchen. Since then we have grown dramatically to meet the needs surrounding us. Many people who have walked in the corridors of loneliness,hopelessness and despair have found UGM to be a place of new beginnings."

Union Gospel Mission is committed to caring for the hungry, hurting and homeless of Greater Vancouver through:

-Emergency meals and clothing
-Shelter for those without resources
-Proven drug and alcohol recovery
-Innovative learning center
-Community outreach to men, women, families, children and youth
-Long-term housing solutions
-Low cost Thrift Stores
-Broad-based Community volunteer opportunities

Hearing the first hand stories about the difference that this organization makes, warmed my heart, even though I know that there is a massive amount more work to be done.

Yesterday one of my sales managers stood up in our department meeting and told us a story:
I awoke early, as I often did, just before sunrise to walk by the ocean's edge and greet the new day. As I moved through the misty dawn, I focused on a faint, far away motion. I saw a youth, bending and reaching and flailing arms, dancing on the beach, no doubt in celebration of the perfect day soon to begin.
As I approached, I sadly realized that the youth was not dancing to the bay, but rather bending to sift through the debris left by the night's tide, stopping now and then to pick up a starfish and then standing, to heave it back into the sea. I asked the youth the purpose of the effort. "The tide has washed the starfish onto the beach and they cannot return to the sea by themselves," the youth replied. "When the sun rises, they will die, unless I throw them back to the sea."
As the youth explained, I surveyed the vast expanse of beach, stretching in both directions beyond my sight. Starfish littered the shore in numbers beyond calculation. The hopelessness of the youth's plan became clear to me and I countered, "But there are more starfish on this beach than you can ever save before the sun is up. Surely you cannot expect to make a difference."
The youth paused briefly to consider my words, bent to pick up a starfish and threw it as far as possible. Turning to me he simply said, "I made a difference to that one."
I left the boy and went home, deep in thought of what the boy had said. I returned to the beach and spent the rest of the day helping the boy throw starfish in to the sea.

We may not be able to help every single person in the world, but every effort and every single gesture does make a difference. I've noticed a belief that somehow optimism lacks intelligence, and that optimism must stem, then, from a lack of experience and naivete. I don't believe that. I believe optimism is a choice. Cynicism isn't smarter, it's just safer. You can help and so can I.

Friday, November 23, 2007

I'm your angel standing by

I'm feeling emotional today, in fact my eyes are welling up as I begin to type. It's the end of an era, so to speak. Everything is changing and nothing feels the same.
Every so often, if we're really lucky, somebody comes into our life whose positive energy shines on us like sunshine. Last year, Jessica was the new girl in my office; we were matched up as partners at work who shared a territory, working closely. It didn't take long for us to click and begin a friendship. Right out of the gate, we laughed at the same things, held the same values and beliefs in our hearts and felt comfortable confiding in one another. The fact that we made one hell of a team was clear from day one. As the year has gone on, we have only become tighter. Last winter, we both took up snowboarding and did many a road trip up the sea to sky highway together for weekends full of riding at Whistler. This summer, we learned to surf together at the Roxy Camp in Tofino. Party nights, movie nights, days at the beach, dinners, shopping, you name it. Lately we've been big on our Monday night trash tv fests with Aero Caramels and battling laptops. We are who they are talking about when they say "BFF's"...

Jessica is one of those people who lights up the room with her bright smile and positive energy. Her laugh (and trademark snort) define her spirit, which warms the hearts of those around her with kindness, compassion and integrity. She is such an absolutely beautiful soul, inside and out.
On Tuesday, Jessica is embarking upon a grand adventure; a six month long backpacking adventure beginning in Los Angeles and taking her all through South East Asia and Central America. It's going to be an absolutely mind blowing and eye opening experience for her. I can't even tell you how proud I am of her for following her heart, and going off to explore the world and live out her dreams. To me, her courage in doing this is such an amazing inspiration.

“Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for awhile and leave footprints on our hearts. And we are never, ever the same.”
Words can not express the amount of love and support that Jess has given me over the last year. There is no doubt in my mind that the friendship we have built will last a lifetime. No matter where we live or what we're doing, our connection will always be there.
So on this, her last day of work in the cubicle beside mine, I wish to tell her that she has indeed left footprints on my heart.
Bon Voyage, Smith! Please know that you will most definitely be missed.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Look up, the stars are fading

Last night, I went to my friend Shawna's for a yummy tofu dinner and copious amounts of black licorice tea, plus my favourite guilty pleasure, this week's edition of America's Next Top Model. I have to say that I'm officially at a loss after last night's episode. My girl Jenah did not impress me this week and I haven't got a clue who my top choice is now. I hear that Saleisha's still number one in a lot of viewers hearts, but not mine. To be honest, I don't really like any of them very much at this point.

In China, the girls got a lesson on body movement by a martial arts expert and were challenged to perfect the poses while in mid-air on high wires. Bianca's fear of heights prevented her from even participating. Later, the models had to showcase their personality in a Cover Girl commercial and photo shoot. I don't know if the colour on Shawna's TV was off or what, but none of them looked good to me on set for the commercial. Everybody's hair was a weird colour and I thought the caked on makeup did very little for any of them. Most of the girls couldn't remember their lines and generally lacked any kind of professionalism on set. Lisa and Heather were definitely the worst. Lisa's eyes welled up with disappointment in herself throughout and she looked to be on the verge of tears during every single take. Heather, even while being fed the lines by Jay behind the camera, couldn't muster up one usable take and continued to flub the lines and make silly faces each and every time she messed up. This was the first week that I really liked Chantal. She came across as being the most professional during the shoot and represented the Cover Girl brand the best, in my opinion.

Despite turning out a stunning photo in the post commercial shoot, Lisa was sent home. I wasn't surprised because she hasn't exactly been the strongest candidate. If you ask me, it could have just as easily been Heather who was sent home though. The question begged to be asked is: is there a place for models who are not able to speak on camera? What's everybody thinking about this week's show? Favourites still the same? Do tell! Next week should be interesting!

Photos courtesy of The CW

Will you greet yourself when the sun arrives

The Patz-man tagged me, so here I go...

The rules: Each player lists 8 random facts/habits about themselves. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning before those facts/habits are listed. At the end of the post, the player then tags 4 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know that they have been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

  • I have a crazy memory for detail. Often, I am teased by my friends about my ability to pull out random facts or recount detailed happenings and direct quotes from the past. I can probably tell you what outfit I was wearing to every single event that I have ever attended. I'm not kidding.
  • I can put both of my legs behind my head.
  • As a kid, I was obsessed with repeats of the 60's television show The Monkees , I owned tapes of all their music and I wanted to marry Davy Jones.
  • I am a master at the game 21 and can out shoot all of the best basketballin' boys and girls I know...even when I'm wearing a dress and heels.
  • I am addicted to buying magazines; fashion, sports, music, tabloids, you name it. For years, I kept them all and housed a massive collection in my bedroom. It got to the point where my parents forced me to purge most of them, for fear that the floor of my room would cave in. I am currently in recovery for this addiction. The only magazines that I usually still buy monthly are Nylon and Vogue. And I read magazines from back to front, always.
  • I sing at the top of my lungs when I'm alone in my car; my favourites to sing along to? Matt Good and Alanis Morissette. I actually prefer to drive places alone because I love to sing in my car and won't do it if I have a passenger.
  • The Montreal Canadiens were my favourite hockey team growing up. I was head over heels in love with Patrick Roy. At age 10, I could be seen walking around fully decked out in Habs gear. I had it all, including boxer shorts (which I wore hanging down underneath my Umbros) plus an array of t-shirts, hoodies, hats and track pants. I even owned Habs socks and running shoes.
  • My undergarments, socks and toe nail polish always match my outfit.

Now, for the next victims...



Gus Greeper


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Quickly, quietly lost

She tilts her head up and closes her eyes
Holds out her hands and starts her lonely cries
Though no one can see her, she sees all their lies
Slightly faded skin, as if in a dream
Her strong outer presence, not all it may seem
Still, every day hiding all of her that is tainted

With all of her flaws, she's so very aquainted

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

They say it's your birthday, we're gonna have a good time, I'm glad it's your birthday

On Saturday morning, we woke up at the crack of dawn and hopped on a Greyhound bus bound for Whistler. In honour of Kristina's Birthday, we planned the perfect ladies weekend detail was spared- with jello shooters and a magnum of champagne in tow, we invaded Whistler for one awesome night of celebration.
Shopping in the village with flurries falling on our heads and Starbucks in hand by day, pre-drinks in our fine hotel room and then dining at 21 Steps and doing some solid gold dancing at Garfinkel's by night.

To spice things up a little, we also planned a secret mission for the birthday girl. Since she was turning 26, we thought it would be fun to give her just that many tasks to complete before the end of the night, a Scavenger Hunt, if you will...whether she honestly completed every task or not, nobody is sure. One thing is for certain though, there are lots of blurry, tequila soaked memories of good times had by all and some damn funny photos to prove what a blast the entire night was.

Here's a glimpse at some of the trouble that we got her into:

Task #1: Giving her number to the bartender.

Task #2: Getting a guy to take his shirt off.

Task #3: Getting a guy to give her a piggy back ride.

This was just the beginning, and I'm sure that you believe me. Girls gone wild, what?

Recently, I have sounded like a broken record with regards to talking about how much I currently despise the club scene. I'm big on finding other things to do, which can sometimes be difficult because I'm not exactly out of the age group of people who still like to go clubbing. I'm just not one for pretentious places with arrogant guys wearing big chains, trying to grind up on me and who clearly just want to get a piece. Neither, am I a girl who is impressed by guys buying me drinks all night, hoping for something in return. I can get my own vodka soda, thank you very much. I'm also not there to find the man of my dreams, I'm pretty sure that he hates these clubs as much as I do. It's not about being snobby because it's not even that the pretentiousness is directed at me. I just don't want any part of an atmosphere that's all about egos. There is also not a part of me that longs to be one of those bleached, bar star, orange skinned girls with Louis handbags who prey on horny boys flashing dollar bills. Honest to God. A few weeks ago, I found myself at a club in the city. I paid $15 dollars to get in the door, plus another $3 to check my coat. I'd dropped $25 before I even took a sip of my first drink. Trying to plot my escape, I ended up calling a friend of mine who is a self professed shut in, "Nights like tonight make me understand why. I could really go for a cup of tea instead of this right now..." I told him. I'm definitely a dinner and drinks, beers at the pub, or quiet night at home with a bottle of wine kind of girl. (I never said that I don't like to drink!) The club scene is just not for me anymore.

That being said, there's something about the Whistler club scene that's different. It's so much more casual and laid back up there. What I do love about going out is busting mad moves on the dance floor with my friends, and what we call "dumb dancing" know, pulling out those old school moves like the running man. That's what I'm talking about! Saturday night in Whistler was so much fun that I didn't even want to drunk dial anybody to rescue me. Make no mistake, a nice Pinot Noir with friends is much more "me" most nights; but sometimes, you just have to step it up a notch for your best friends. I'm definitely glad that I did this weekend because I had a ball! Happy Birthday Kristina!

You can see right through me

"And the day came when the risk to remain in a tight bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." -anais nin-
Photo courtesy of apdonovan on Flickr

Monday, November 19, 2007

I got that boom boom, that you want

Photo courtesy of Daily Mail
Last week, the first Agent Provocateur store in Canada opened on Alberni Street in Vancouver. This hot lingerie label co-founded by Joe Corre, son of punk scene veterans Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren, is a British import. It's somewhat of a fantasy boutique, if you will. In contrast to cookie-cutter chains like Victoria's Secret and La Senza, Agent Provocateur has a much more playful, more openly naughty attitude. Inventive designs like trimmed satin corsets and transparent tulle babydoll dresses have helped attract a star-studded clientele. Yesterday afternoon, I had a chance to check out the Vancouver store for the first time.
Besides the plethora of beautiful lingerie, the store itself is pretty incredible. There's an amazing 3D black lacquer forest upstairs which is truly something to see. There is also a custom-made fuschia-on-pink floral carpet and matching silk chairs, walls and drawers made entirely of laser-cut mirrors with intricate filigreed patterns, an absolutely gorgeous antique four-poster bed on the upper level, plus a pair of birdcages large enough to hold lingerie models for special living window displays. The store boasts an incredible collection of bras, knickers, hosiery, suspender belts, corsetry, garters and so much more. You can even pick up a set of pasties! I highly recommend their massage oils and I absolutely fell in love with the Gwendoline. Since everyone's idea of what is sexy or feminine or erotic or sensual is different, or it may be different on different days of the week, Agent Provocateur aims to be able to provide all of that. I'd say they've been pretty successful.
Demure damsel or dominatrix, French maid or femme fatale, whatever your fantasy -- or your partner's -- Agent Provocateur exists to fulfill it.
I also must mention that quite possibly the best part about the whole store is the fitting rooms. I swear that the mirrors add three inches to your legs and subtract three from your hips. I didn't want to leave.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Who you gonna call? Ghostbusters!

I'm back in the city, and completely exhausted after a whirlwind weekend. Friday night after the Mavi Opening, we met up with the gang for Alfred's going away party at The Players Chophouse, where we rubbed elbows with Dan Akroyd. If you haven't been to Players, I suggest that you try it out. Delicious food, a fun atmosphere and amazing service. Which, sadly, seems to be harder and harder to find these days. It has quickly become our favourite place for dinner and drinks on the weekend.
Saturday morning, it was off to Whistler for Kristina's birthday extravaganza (more to come about this later). It was strange to head up there this time of year without all of my snowboarding gear. Last year was my first season as a snowboarder, and we made many trips up for weekends jam packed with riding. This was opening weekend for the mountain, so everybody was buzzing. Walking through the village, snow falling on my head, passing the people with their boards on their way up to or back from the mountain made my heart pound with excitement. It also made me wish that I was in my riding boots instead of my Uggs. I just can't wait to get out there this year!
Visits to Whistler are always a little bittersweet for me, as the past lives there and it is hard to walk through the village without a slew of memories popping into my head. The ghost of that relationship seems to haunt the whole town.
I have so much more to say but I'm exhausted and I'm going home to take a bubble bath now.

P.S. I will be officially connected to the net in the comfort of my own home again as of tomorrow night! Thank the Lord!

Friday, November 16, 2007

The wings are wide

I didn't sleep very well last night. I was tossing and turning and having crazy dreams all night long. I woke up this morning feeling a tad dehydrated. I suppose that's what a night with the girls and a lot of red wine on a Thursday will do to you. Perhaps my exhaustion is a result of the realization that this is just the beginning of a weekend jam packed with events and engagements. There will undoubtedly be much more eating, drinking and shopping over the next few days.
Photo courtesy of DC Shoes
Last night was the Girls Will Be Girls event at Underworld. A few of us met up after work at The Granville Room to share some yummy appetizers and enjoy a couple glasses of Inniskillin Pinot Noir. Then it was on to the event, sponsored by Underworld, DC Shoes, Lou Lou Magazine, and Barefoot Wine. It was an evening of shopping, catching up with the girls, fabulous clothes and shoes, manicures, and me personally tasting every single one of the wines that Barefoot way too many chocolate covered pomegranate seeds to count.
Out of Sonoma County, Barefoot's wines are delicious and very affordable, I definitely recommend that you give them a try.
Tonight, I'm heading back to the old hood to attend the Mavi Jeans launch party for the new store opening in Kitsilano on West Fourth Avenue, being put on with Strut Magazine. I'm looking forward to being able to check out Mavi's latest Fall/Winter collection, sip on "Mavi-tinis" and Strut cocktails provided by Skyy Vodka and walk away with tons of fantastic swag! The gift bags sound amazing: containing the latest issue of Strut Magazine, L.A.M.B Fragrance by Gwen Stefani, Covet by Sarah Jessica Parker, Gravity Pope discount coupon, Pure Nail Bar gift vouchers, Mavi Jeans discount cards, CDs from EMI, Rimmel and Vichy Laboratories beauty products. How can you go wrong with that?
The rest of my weekend plans include farewell dinners and birthday parties. As much as I usually look forward to down time on the weekends, for once, I am anticipating being out and about and having so much to do. I will be playing the role of social butterfly for the next three days.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

When I'm feeling sad, I simply remember my favourite things and then I don't feel so bad

Photo courtesy of paige_eliz on Flickr

I got a little visit from the list fairy and she asked me about the top THINGS that I can't live without (or would rather not, anyway...) I love lists, so of course, I couldn't resist. Please share your list in the comments if you're a fellow list lover. Here's mine:
  • My camera: The big thing I can't live without is my camera. I love taking pictures. I'm learning not to see everything as a Kodak moment. (I guess that expression is a tad out of date now, since I don't even use film anymore....) The truth is, as soon as you start documenting the moment, you're stepping outside of it. Pictures are so great though. There's something so magical about capturing a moment in time. I love to take pictures, be in them, display them, frame them, look back at them (over & over & over again). A picture is worth a thousand words...(right Danielle?)

  • My lap top: Some would say that I spend too much time on my computer...not having access to the internet whenever I want over the last couple weeks has been harder on me than I'd like to admit. Plus, my laptop is perfect to lay in bed and watch movies on!

  • Face lotions & potions: I know I'm only 26, but I've already started thinking about wrinkles. And yet, I actually like character lines on other peoples' faces-they make a person beautiful. I think if someone smiles and doesn't have little creases on the sides of their eyes, they look like a robot. But I am obsessed with moisturizers and creams and masks. Yay Benefit, Origins and Kiehl's! It's super important to me to take incredible care of my skin. Plus, trying new products is just so much fun!

  • My toothbrush & floss: Somewhere along the way, I've transformed from "good brusher" into "OCD brushaholic" (must be Vanessa's influence!) I am now one of those people who brushes her teeth in the bathroom at work after lunch, thank you very much. Embarrassing. (I always turn off the tap while brushing though!)

  • My ipod: I can not live without music in my life. My ipod is definitely one of my favourite things in the universe and comes everywhere with me. Is there anything better than having a whole catalogue of your favourite music in one tiny little package? Perfection.

  • My journal: Writing is such a form of catharsis for me. Writing in my journal is a way for me to keep my sanity in times of complete chaos, and a way for me to remember good times and personal journeys. I often look back and re-read old entries. It's interesting to go back through your thoughts. Patterns and lessons are exposed. It's a form of expression and a good way to release stress, tension and ideas you're not ready to share with the world yet.

  • Vitamin C: I have become obsessed with Vitamin C tablets. I have these little chewable citrus flavoured ones that I take everyday. I am convinced that they save me from getting sick very often.

  • My voicemail: Since I can't say "my friends & family" because this is a list of "things"...I'm going to say my voicemail. My friends leave me the best messages in the world. Sweet, thoughtful or gut-bustingly hysterical--messages are fantastic. I'll save a really good message for months and just listen to it when I want to smile.

  • My silver ring: My best friend Eddie gave me a ring for Valentine's Day when we were in grade 9 that I still wear on my hand everyday. It symbolizes our friendship and everything that we've been through together. He means the world to me and that thoughtful gift holds so much sentiment.

Just a shimmy and a shake, uh huh, I can't fake, we're on top

I'm finally on the ball with a day after the show post about Top Model [pats self on the back.]This week, the models went to FIDM where they were paired with student designers to be their creative muse. I'm so intrigued by the whole design process from conception to creation, so I found this part of the show particularly interesting. Some of the muse matchups were more successful than others. Heather was pretty adamant that since she's a fire sign, there is no way that she could embody "the ocean" as expected by her designer.

The next day, the models worked the runway in a show and had to talk about the dress they inspired. Heather was painful to watch in this segment as she simply couldn't put the words together with confidence. Saleisha won the challenge but if you ask me, my girl Jenah was a rockstar on the runway too. During water cooler discussion of the show with a few of the girls in my office this morning, I discovered that Saleisha is the most popular top choice. I'm sticking by Jenah, no matter how little she impresses me in the judging panels and confessional footage, she continues to produce my favourite photos and certainly impressed me on the runway.

Later, the girls were sent to the desert where they participated in a photo shoot with a burning car. Once again, Jenah's photo is my favourite. Ambreal is sent home, deservedly so, in my opinion. I have never really liked her much or thought that she possessed the qualities needed to be a strong model, though she is a beautiful woman. Something seemed to be missing. I feel the same way about Heather.
Next week, the models are off to we get closer to determining who will become America's Next Top Model.
Photos courtesy of The CW

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Welcome to the good life...

Perhaps design maverick Marc Jacobs' appearance on MTV's The Hills a couple of weeks ago was a sneak peak of things to come. The latest buzz in the biz, is that Marc wants his own reality show. Apparently, his concept is for the show to cover "everything, all aspects of my life. All the drama, the intrigue, the sex, the romance, the work. I'm a shameless human being." He admits that, "The whole thing’s sort of egotistical, I suppose. But I do find myself entertaining.” He promises that it will be worth watching. The question is, would you? Does it say something about me that I would most certainly tune in? I love Marc Jacobs and have often listed him as number one on my "must meet" celebrity list. (Yes, I realize the acknowledgement of such a list also says something.) I was stoked when it was announced last month that the much hyped about documentary Marc Jacobs & Louis Vuitton, which follows the designer around his own brand and at Vuitton, will make its television debut on the Sundance Channel in February 2008. The film shows every aspect of the design process, following Marc through New York, Tokyo, and Paris, and featuring appearances by Marc's muse Sofia Coppola and Vogue editor Anna Wintour. Mock me if you will, but I find Marc Jacobs most fascinating and brilliant. A look into his life interests me, for how long, I can't say. There would certainly have to be some substantial content to warrant an actual television series. Still, I would personally rather have Marc Jacobs dress me than any other contemporary designer. As for the show...would you tune in? Or is this idea just another case of a super inflated ego? Is reality television getting out of hand?
Photo courtesy of

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Pack your stars, here's a big wind for your sails

Photo courtesy of jamescrowle on Flickr

I am all over the place, yet somehow still in my head.
On a lonely Tuesday, I am relieved there are still things that make me smile.

Monday, November 12, 2007

I weep at your feet, and it rains and it rains

Photo courtesy of robertm10000 on Flickr

I am cold and damp, back in the corner of a coffee shop, listening to Joni Mitchell, with my computer and a big cup of warm green tea, watching the torrential rain pour down on the other side of the window. This weekend has been sublime and exactly what I needed in every single way; time with the girls, time with my family and time with myself. I am looking forward to the coming week for reasons that are very obvious to me. I have made the last couple of months busy on purpose, and I think it has been good for me. Focus: yours truly. I don't feel selfish. In fact, I feel more fulfilled than ever. Top two indulgences this weekend: bubble baths and photo shoots in the mirror with myself.

I'm still feeling somewhat shaken up by that unexpected call from the past the other day. I wish I hadn't answered, I wish he hadn't called, I wish he would disappear forever from my world. He had his claws in my heart for so long. Toxic as it was, there was a time when the idea of life without him was absolutely unfathomable to me. Even when I knew that he was hurting me, I could not walk away. I used to think that perhaps I could go forward into the rest of my life and learn to manage without him, but that I would never really be "over" this person who I once considered to be the center of my universe.
I've always bought into the idea that we should live to love the people we love and not live to be loved by them. A charming thought, indeed, but this has also gotten me into some trouble as far as allowing myself to be taken advantage of. I would do ANYTHING for the people I love. As it turned out, he would not be there for me again and again, at the times when I needed him most.

The concept of moving on is an interesting one. You see, even if they don't impact us profoundly enough to deserve a lifelong label such as "significant other" or "love of your life," we let people impact us in all sorts of ways when we become involved with them. Hell, we let them affect us as soon as we allow them to touch us (physically or emotionally). Do we ever really forget these impacts made? At least for me, the answer is no. But I have learned that it is possible to get over it. I used those words so many times without really meaning it, now I do. It was the strangest thing. After putting up with so much for so long, one night, I just hit a wall. That was it, I was done. I'll tell you, in the midst of the intense emotional hurricanes, I never could have imagined myself getting to this point. I sit here today and I can honestly say that there is not a part of me that would go back or that wishes it could have worked out.
Ironically, the very night that I had that epiphany, the night that he broke me for the last time, I connected with a soul who had been impacting my life indirectly for years and I began a real and direct friendship with this person. So, how can I not believe that everything happens for a reason? If I were to regret any of the pain of my past, I would not be embracing the lessons that I have learned and I would not be the woman I have become. Hard as it may be to remember sometimes, the shit really can lead us to paradise.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Some get broken, some get mended, some can't surrender

I walked all over the city today in the sunshine. I have the blisters on my feet from my poor choice in footwear to prove it. Now, here I am, for the second time today, sitting in a coffee shop with my laptop...sucking up this "excellent" wireless connection while I can. Who would have thought that in 2007, I would have such a tough time getting wireless internet service in my apartment? The question that has been plaguing me for the last few days is this: what the hell happened to customer service? Does it no longer exist in this day and age? The complete lack of answers, assistance and general politeness thrown my way in trying to check this task off my to do list has been utterly appalling to me.

I got a call from the past today, rather unexpectedly. I screen my calls, so I can't help but wonder why I even answered. I can never stay mad for very long. Holding grudges is not my thing. Sometimes, you just have to make a clean break though. I have been trying to break the ties that bind for quite sometime now. This is important, especially when all that said ties are doing is keeping me tethered to a time in my life that I have so importantly moved on from.

If anything has struck me recently, it certainly is the realization that I like to be connected...and not having that luxury is a tough pill to swallow. I am not a happy camper when I don't have access to the world wide web. Sad, but true.

Maybe you were right, but baby I was lonely

Okay kids, it's time for another rundown on the latest episode of America's Next Top Model. As the girls compare their body weight and sizes while getting ready for bed, Sarah admits in confessional that she is beginning to feel uneasy about her weight. "It's weird; you are around all these skinny girls who are so thin. So maybe I go to bed not feeling as good as I did when I woke up," Sarah said. (Note: Sarah is the plus size model on the show)

This week, the girls get a lesson in "model sexy" from Tyra and then are transformed into "gothic, underground club-goers" to shoot a music video with Enrique Iglesias, for his new song "Tired of Being Sorry." Sarah is self-conscious in the tight black outfit she is handed to wear. All of the girls have a chance to put their new modeling skills to the test in front of the camera, but Lisa and Heather end up being the ones chosen to actually be featured in the video.

Cut to the judging panel: all of the judges notice that Sarah seems noticeably uncomfortable as she watches the footage of herself in the music video. They are concerned that the uncertainty Sarah feels about her weight is coming across on film, and also that her weight loss is pulling her out of the plus-size model category. I've always thought that the whole "plus size" thing is interesting. I mean, it seems to me that they are missing out on most of the size spectrum. At a size 10, you're too small to be a plus size model; however, you'd have to be at least a size 2 to model for high fashion. Where does that put the rest of us who are between a size 4 and 10?

"The judges feel that you are very good, but they also feel that your place in the industry is kind of confusing right now because models are so skinny or they are plus sized," Tyra tells Sarah before eliminating her. point exactly. I'm not saying that I agree that this is how it should be, but there is certainly a gap in the body types and sizes represented in the modelling industry, if you ask me.

Corinna mentioned that she has made a decision regarding her pick to win (although she has not yet divulged who it is!) I am going to admit right here, right now, that I still favour Jenah as my top pick. Thoughts, opinions, who is your favourite at this stage of the game?

All images courtesy of The CW

Friday, November 9, 2007

This is my current single status, my declaration of independence

Photo courtesy of HBO

In response to my post earlier in the week about single women, I received an e-mail in my inbox this morning from Ruta in New York. She runs a company called Divine Diamonds and has created the first and only diamond ring for single women. I was intrigued, so I clicked over to her website to check it out.

The Ah Ring (A for 'available' and H for 'happy') is an amazing diamond pinkie ring created with the single, confident and content woman in mind. Engaged and married women get rings, why not single women too? I think that this is a fantastic idea, why shouldn't we celebrate our happy status?

Ruta has definitely earned the right to call herself a trendsetter as far as marketing to the single woman. However, as the website says, The Ah Ring can also be worn by engaged or married women (A for 'attached' and H for 'happy').

The brilliant idea for this ring reminded me of the Sex and the City episode when Carrie’s shoes go missing at a party where the married mommy hostess couldn't care less. Carrie then registers at Manolo Blahnik for the $485 shoes, and sends a single card to the hostess announcing that she’s getting married to herself, and is registered at the shoe shop for the pair of shoes. The single girl has been to so many engagement parties, bridal showers, bachelorettes, weddings and baby birthdays. Maybe single people should be able to throw a "happy I didn't marry that loser" party, like Carrie suggests. I mean, if you support your friend's decision to get married and have kids, your friends should support you in being single and buying a ridiculously expensive pair of shoes...or a really beautiful diamond Ah Ring, right?


Divine Diamonds ships to Canada as well, so whether you're available and happy or attached and happy, click on over there to check out The Ah Ring, plus all kinds of other amazing jewellery.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Thank you India

Image courtesy of Fox Searchlight

Last night Shannon and I hit up a quaint little Japanese restaurant for dinner (sans Sapporos, as this particular place did not have a liquor licence, much to our dismay). Then we headed off to the Fifth Avenue Cinema to catch a showing of The Darjeeling Limited. We had both been wanting to see this film for a while, having heard good reviews and being fans of Wes Anderson's work (Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, Life Aquatic). What I love about Anderson's comedies is that they are perennially tinged with melancholy and dysfunction but also wrought with humour, and my favourite kind of humour to boot.

Reading the synopsis of this film intrigued me further:
"Three American brothers who have not spoken to each other in a year set off on a train voyage across India with a plan to find themselves and bond with each other -- to become brothers again like they used to be. Their "spiritual quest", however, veers rapidly off-course (due to events involving over-the-counter pain killers, Indian cough syrup, and pepper spray), and they eventually find themselves stranded alone in the middle of the desert with eleven suitcases, a printer, and a laminating machine. At this moment, a new, unplanned journey suddenly begins."

Source: IMDb

Add to that the fact that it's starring three of my favourite actors: Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody, and Jason Schwartzman and it seemed to be a masterpiece waiting to happen. Thankfully, the film did not disappoint. It is clever, well written and those three boys play off each other in perfect harmony. Adrien Brody's character Peter, is by far my favourite. Every character is very real though: fascinating, absurd, pathetic and majestic, all at the same time.

I find all of Anderson's movies to be highly stylized, with amazing slow motion sequences, wide lenses that slightly distort the frame, and quirky, depressed characters with family issues all thrown together in a timeless, carefully detailed environment. Darjeeling was no exception. The film is engaging from the very beginning with a hilarious and memorable cameo by another of my faves, Bill Murray, trying to catch the Darjeeling Limited train in slow motion. Anjelica Huston's role as the boys' mother is notably brilliant as well.
A side note: the beautiful costumes and luggage in the film were created by Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton. An interesting article about the style in this film is here. FYI, the soundtrack also seriously rocks.

I should mention as well, that I highly recommend viewing Hotel Chevalier, a 13 minute short film directed by Anderson and starring Jason Schwartzman, available for free download online through itunes. They showed it last night as a prequel to the film. In this short, Schwartzman plays the same character that he plays in The Darjeeling Limited. Also starring is Natalie Portman as Jack's ex-girlfriend, who makes a brief cameo in the feature film as well. The short film helps establish Schwartzman's character, and provides clues on certain details of The Darjeeling Limited.

The emotional experience that is The Darjeeling Limited is a must see for any fans of Anderson's work. He explores facets of personalities that most never really give much consideration. Watching these three brothers on their journey to no particular salvation is an absolute pleasure.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

A single woman out on a private cloud

Photo courtesy of Hotel Chatter

This afternoon, my dear friend Eddie sent me the link to this article called The New Girl Order by Kay S. Hymowitz with the message, "Read this article. It's about you." Upon reading it, I discovered that not only is it about me, it's also about so many women that I know. It describes single women who are happy and independent in the world today.
"Conceived and raised in the United States, Carrie [Bradshaw] may still see New York as a spiritual home. But today you can find her in cities across Europe, Asia, and North America. Seek out the trendy shoe stores in Shanghai, Berlin, Singapore, Seoul, and Dublin, and you’ll see crowds of single young females (SYFs) in their twenties and thirties, who spend their hours working their abs and their careers, sipping cocktails, dancing at clubs, and (yawn) talking about relationships. Sex and the City has gone global; the SYF world is now flat."
The article looks at how the globalization of this "single young female" reflects a series of demographic and economic shifts that are pointing many of us toward this so-called "New Girl Order." The trends of delayed marriage, expanded higher education, labour force participation and urbanization, combined with global media and a little disposable income mean that we can say goodbye to many of the limitations that were put on previous generations of women. I think that the main thing is that we have a choice. At 26 years old, if I had found the great love of my life and felt ready to settle down with him, I would have no reservations about doing so. For me,
it's not a case of forgoing marriage in favour of endless girls' nights out and spending all of my hard earned dollars on myself. It's about there being an alternative. I have happily married friends with enviable lives and they still have no shortage of quality girl time. However, I should also be feeling good about what I have and celebrate being young, and happy. Right now, I am focusing on building my career, cultivating friendships and living the life that I have dreamed of living. Most importantly, I am trying to figure out just who I am and what I want out of life. Characters like Carrie Bradshaw remind me that I'm not a loser to be single at 26. There is no longer such a stigma attached to being single after a certain age. The terms "spinster"and ''old maid" are not thrown around as much as they may have been at one time. I can still have a rich, full life even though I haven't found my soul mate yet.
"The lifestyle also means whole new realms of leisure and consumption, often enjoyed with a group of close girlfriends: trendy cafés and bars serving sweetish coffee concoctions and cocktails; fancy boutiques, malls, and emporiums hawking cosmetics, handbags, shoes, and $100-plus buttock-hugging jeans; gyms for toning and male-watching; ski resorts and
beach hotels; and, everywhere, the frustrating hunt for a boyfriend and, though it’s an ever more vexing subject, a husband."
Consumption is not so important to me. Yes, I like nice things but the quality of things that I do in my life are much more important to me than the things that I have.

Speaking for myself, I hope to settle down at some point. I hope to find the man of my dreams who will be my partner in crime, my best friend and the love of my life. At this moment, I am focused on loving my life and learning to love myself, as I am.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Running, running as fast as we can...

Photo courtesy of DebFit

Inspired by the lovely Melissa, I have decided get my butt in gear and start really running again. Over the last year or so, I have walked all over the place, and I do still lace up my Nike kicks for a jog every so often when I feel like I need to blow off steam, or just have some 'me' time. Running is something that has given me great joy in the past, but I haven't earnestly made an effort to get into really good shape for quite a while, so I figure there's no time like the present. I'm not getting any younger and it's never going to get any easier. Old basketball and soccer injuries have wreaked havoc on my knees, and years of playing and running through the pain have not helped matters. I'm famous for going out there and trying to giv'er like I'm still in the best shape of my life, when quite obviously, I am not. With the proper training, I know that I can get back into it. Running is one of the simplest, fastest, most accessible ways to fitness and good health known to woman. I live in the perfect city for it. Time to get serious. I'm going to start back at square one. The Running Room has fantastic clinics no matter what your fitness level, and I am planning to join one with the ultimate goal of running a half marathon.
This week I have been feeling: unmotivated, uninspired and sans any kind of oomph whatsoever. This is my attempt at remedying that.

Monday, November 5, 2007

With nowhere to go, gotta shake this anxiety

So far the only downside to my fabulous, new apartment is the less than fabulous underground parking lot. Yes, I know that I am lucky even to have one of the few spots that exist in the building, but let me tell you...pulling in and out of my tiny designated area is enough to bring on a massive anxiety attack. So much so, that I contemplated parking several blocks away and walking with all of my newly purchased Ikea goodies in tow, upon arriving home last night from my shopping spree. I feel like Austin Powers trying to maneuver my car around in there. If anybody has been watching me, I can guarantee you that they have also been wetting their pants. It doesn't help that my space is beside a concrete wall, or that there's an old washing machine waiting to be disposed of right where I need to back up to. I am hoping that with practise, I will get more comfortable with how tight it is in there. My driving and parking skills are definitely being tested here folks, and I can only hope that I will be able to slide out with the greatest of ease before too long. Until I become an expert, slow-slow-slow is the key. I did end up edging my way into my spot last night and I also managed to break out of it without hitting anything this morning. In my nightmare last night though, I certainly caused a ruckus, as my car went bombing backward, completely out of control and I was smashing into things left, right and centre. I watched my little Jetta smoke that silver car beside me over and over and over again, as though it were on repeat. Finally, I awoke in a cold sweat, relieved that I hadn't actually demolished the entire parking garage.

Yet again, I prove the point that if there is something to stress about, I will find it and I will let it affect me. The small stuff, I know. The irony is, I really do have so much to smile about right now.