Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Felix.


This past sunday we had to put my cat Felix down. He was 15 years old and was... an amazing cat. There are good cats, and amazing cats, and Felix was one of the amazing ones. Losing a pet is always hard, but this time... I don't know. I want to say it was harder, but I don't know how it can be easy. Fee was born in my mom's bedroom, an accident between our two cats before we could get them neutered.
We adopted him out to our eye doctor, who abused him and his brother. We took them back, and through my tears, mom agreed to keep Fee for good. He didn't trust humans for years. He had his moments, he would sometimes jump on your lap, or lay beside you, most often behind you on a couch. He was an outdoor cat, a hunter, catching rabbits and raccoons bigger then he was, and coming out of them without a scratch.About 4 years ago he started to get closer, wanting to sit on your lap and be close, and finally when mom moved into a condo he started to really... be our cat. He wanted to sit on our laps. When I would house sit, he would cuddle up beside me, instead of just sleeping at the foot of the bed. Same with mom, he would sleep pressed up against her side.About a month ago, he started getting lethargic. 3 weeks ago we took him to the vet for being lethargic, and a small lump on his lip. This sunday, we took him to an emergency visit at our vet, to put him down because the cancer progressed so fast. Mom and I were in Mexico the week before, and my boyfriend had to take him to the vet, where we were informed they could keep him alive till we got home, but it would be a fight. We did that, and had 5 days with him when we returned home, before we couldn't put him through anything else. The saddest thing I've seen was seeing our cat Sullivan curl up beside Fee's body after we put him down, licking him one last time.
RIP Felix. You were one in a million.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Feliz Navidad

For Christmas, I went to Mexico with my mom

It rained, so I did a lot of this. It was actually pretty awesome.


I also did a lot of this when it wasn't raining. That's my mom and her sun-cape. What's ridiculous, is she had that and SPF 60, and came back more tanned then I am.


We went to Tulum and Coba, This was Tulum.


The Flowers were GORGEOUS.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I'm done!

I've finished the first semester of my Masters, and it feels GOOD. We had our last group project presentation today, and I handed in my 1300 take home. Which is AWESOME.

We finally got a menorah to go along with our tree.

I am 100% ready for a month off, a week of that which will be in Mexico.


But while I'm here, I love this city, even without snow, and when it's freezing.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Oh Christmas Tree.

I love Christmas. So much. I was raised pretty solidly worship at the altar of Santa, and to this day Christmas is about that. Hanukkah is about family, and togetherness, and meaning. Christmas is about family, togetherness, and presents. I love it. Having a tree, presents, seeing how thrilled kids are that Santa's come.


This was our tree.Look at this Tiny... cookie-man?
Oh! Hello Santa.And now this is our tree.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Pépé.


Pépé is 98, turning 99 in February. He has a nicer webcam then I do, and msn's with his son-in law every night. He speaks 4 languages, is a photographer, and edits his pictures on the computer. He feels it's much better then how he used to have to edit them.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Chalk is fun.

The bear you see is named Bearable. When I was a kid, my dad's job was bringing adopted children home. One year, at Christmas, we didn't think he'd make it home. He dropped the baby off in Dallas, Texas, and the family gave him this bear so he wouldn't have to spend the holidays alone, and so it would be bearable to him. He made it home.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Loved, and were loved, and now we lie/ In Flanders fields.

I don't quite know what to say about Remembrance Day. It's a day of silence, reflection, respect and honour. My grandfather on my dad's side was in the Merchant Marines and the Legion was a huge part of his life - every Friday and Saturday was spent there. My mom's side lost everything in the war - their family, their homes and part of their souls. I remember my aunt Fanya showing me the numbers tattooed on her arm, and I remember her scaring me when she told me that I could never forget. I have several very dear friends who are in the army currently, one of whom has been on several tours of Afghanistan and I fully admit that even though we've lost touch I'm terrified every time I hear of another soldier dieing.

I don't care if you support the war, but you support the people who fought/fight/will fight/died in and lived through it.

These people are the heroes. They deserve our respect.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Georgian Bay

A few weeks ago Dad and I decided to take our annual trip a little bit north to see the leaves. And apparently a waterfall. And to steal apples - a yearly tradition. Why should road side fruit trees go to waste? And then Beau got attacked by a goat. Seriously. I have never seen an animal go after someone so vehemently.












Sunday, October 18, 2009

Autumn's here

Southern Ontario in the fall is... gorgeous.
The great pumpkin sacrifice is in the early stages

The streams are icy cold
The leaves are coating the pathsWe went to Hoggs falls. We even found the damn place!


Me and pops.
Dad hiking up the trail to the falls.
Southern Ontario has its flaws.... but damn if the highlands aren't wonderful

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Catnip and Fish chowdah.

My thanksgiving this year was not the normal gluttonous feast that thanksgiving normally is and... I kind of liked it. Sunday we had a delicious fish chowdah made with halibut and tonight we had a roast beef. Turns out the stress IS the best diet- I barely ate anything. Beau's dad also kills the vegetables dead, and soaks them in butter and garlic, so I don't feel the need to stuff myself because they aren't really vegetables anymore. Still good, just not vegetables.

In other news, I'm drinking peacetea. Blue Vervain, Lemon Balm, Catnip, Oat Straw, Red Bergamot, Chamomile, Hops, Motherwort, Valerian, Sweet Gale, Skullcap and St John's Wort all mixed together and drank it makes me feel like everything's alright and I can sleep. Which I basically haven't done in... a few days.

Goddamnit. I don't need to do this again.

The tea is good as a sedative, anti-depressant, sleeping aid and good for irritability and nervous exhaustion which basically sums up my life right now.

Algonquin Tea Company makes a ~very~ similar version to mine, and it's where I go when I can't mix it myself. Their site has a pretty good list of what each ingredient does.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I want to work in a ~book~ library

It's somewhat fascinating, our class seems to be in love with the holy concept of books - we were talking about digital librarianship, and "bookless" libraries and our whole class got up in arms. It's something of a discussion topic- what are libraries without books? I personally feel that times are a-changin and we have to change with the times. I don't believe fully in the concept of bookless libraries (really, just look at the 8 full bookshelves of books taking up my 750 sqf apt) but I do feel that there's a huge generational shift in the past 5 years. Kids don't read anymore. Plain and simple. If we want them to read, we have to put it in a framework they understand so if we make a library digital in part, then there's a better chance they'll come to love learning, and through that will hopefully see how wonderful books themselves are.

I don't feel books are an out-dated medium, I just feel that very harsh lines are drawn between the new digital era and the holy temple of books.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

It was the best of times, and the worst of times

I always used to make fun of people who said that. Or people who would say "High school will be your best memories" or "You'll look back at university, and those will be the best years of your life." I thought it was ridiculous. The best times of your life are when you're living at home with your parents, thinking sneaking a drink or a joint was amazing? The best time of your life is moving away from everything you know, and being young, drunk and dumb? That's ridiculous.

Well yeah. It kind of is. And... it's kind of wonderful. Two of my dearest friends from University are getting married. They will make the 3rd & 4th of my roommates to get married- as a bonus to me, to they're getting married to each other. I'm going back out east for their wedding at the end of October, and the memories are flooding back. It's not the drinking, or the parties, or the classes, it's the memory of sitting with my friends, under the stars, on the bridge, staying up all night and stumbling in at noon after falling asleep under the stars, on the bridge. The best times were sitting in your room, listening to music, and dreaming of tomorrow- the tomorrow that surprisingly came true for both of us.

I remember the party, where the kid did four hits of acid, and we were young, dumb and scared, so we threw him out. We bought him a cab, and we didn't know his brother had just been hit by a train.

I remember freezing, cause we thought if we acted like scared wild animals, you couldn't see us.

I remember walking over to the bar in our pajamas, and having it feel more like home then home did.

I remember having classes where the professors not only knew my name, but where I lived, and cared about how I was doing.

I remember going for drives, just to see if we could get lost.

I remember the 24 hour diner, and the pizza with the sweet sauce.

I remember walking through the waterfowl park, while the ducks slept, but the fishers hunted

I remember losing you. All of you. Every one.

I remember how sometimes that town felt so wrong, and I still wonder what happened that still echos so painfully at night when there's no other noise to drown it out.

I remember when I wasn't surrounded by concrete and steel, but wood and grass.

I loved falling asleep under the stars, on the bridge.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Living as a home

It occurred to me that where you live, has a great impact on how you live. I haven't lived in one place for more then 6 years now, and that has defiantly altered my perspective on what my idea of home is: to me, it isn't where I live that is home, it is where the people I love are.

I lived in Toronto till I was 2, then moved to Stratford. when my parents divorced when I was 3, so mom and I moved again when I was 4. In grade 5, I moved in with my dad while mom moved jobs, and I moved back to Toronto when I was in grade 6. Mid way through grade 7, I moved back to Stratford, and in Grade 9, I moved back in with mom to Waterloo. In grade 11, I moved to Spain for a while. Then, I went off to MTA, where I lived in a different place each year, then moved backhere to Toronto.


I think what struck me, is how much STUFF makes it home. My computer, my pillow, my pictures, my books. That seems horribly materialistic, but when you're living in a place and not a home I think this is what makes the difference. Stuff is memories, comfort, familiarity and truly something that matters. It doesn't have to have a cost, just a memory that reminds you of a place that felt more like home.

All I know, is I love my appt, and don't want to move anytime soon, but I know I will. We just painted (one wall is a chalkboard!) and moved furniture around, and got a new workspace, bought a new bed (king size!) and will soon be inviting friends over to draw on the wall- instant art that means something.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Food as more then just food.

I was raised surrounded by food. My mother's side is Jewish and food was a central part of life. My Dad's mother was an amazing baker. My Nanny was Italian, and taught me to hold a cleaver as soon as she thought was reasonable- I was about 4. My mom was the first ED of a fairly famous Chef school (one that currently has it's own tv show) and I grew up having cusine - not food, cusine- as a huge part of my life. There was one restaurant that arguable defined my childhood. The owner and chef are two men who I have always admired, respected and looked up to- though this didn't stop me from demanding to be made pasta instead of fois gras. The owner introduced me to amazing food, wine and what true service should be.

I start school this Wednesday, and my mom seeing how frazzled I was suggested a trip to where I grew up for a theatre & food overnight. We saw the wonderfully done "A Funny thing happened on the way to the forum" and then ate dinner at Rundles. Which was as always, amazing.


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

September.

I start school in exactly a week.

Also, I painted a wall in my condo chalkboard.

Friday, August 28, 2009

I'm a first Generation Canadian

My mom's from NYC (Queens- Forest Hills- not the nice part). She was born in... I don't actually know. She originally had German citizenship, but she was born in a camp (yes, one of those camps) and for some reason I think it was in Russia. She has a brother who is about 8 years younger then her. I found out he exhisted when I was 13- a shocking truth as far out from left field as you can imagine. We've had a pretty contentious relationship- I met him as my Bubbie was dying and the meeting... didn't go overly well. He's a hustler baby (really) who's had some trouble with authority (always) and is arguably the most interesting person I know. He's always tried in his own way, and even though I haven't always understood that he was trying, once I figured it out it's meant a lot to me. He lives in Las Vegas and does... stuff. Not illegal ... stuff. Just, stuff. He's been in and out of trouble since he was 13 and has lived a pretty amazing life.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Well I love the rain the most

Living in the big bad city sometimes you forget that there's a real world out there. You can walk down streets forever, with only trees surrounded by concrete and grates, and even though your heart breaks a little, the concrete of the city somehow seems to live.

Our condo is this amazing oasis. It was built in the early 80's, when real estate wasn't at as much of a prime downtown. The condo part is L shaped, and the square is completed by another L of townhouses. Inside is this amazing courtyard, with trees and grass and a pool. I don't look into someone elses' condo, I look out into a tree in summer, and the snowmen we build in the winter.

Today was a storm- Severe Thunderstorm Warning and Severe Tornado Warning. In Toronto... Dorothy, we ain't in Kansas anymore. It got pitch black outside, and then silent, and then it just started to storm. Then thunder and lightning and the rain was sideways, and the trees were bending. The rain makes me remember how much I miss smoking with mamak, laying out on the grass in the middle of a downpour. I miss walking home from class and stopping to splash in the puddles while the Carney's shouted that the crazy white girl seemed to have a good idea and joining in the fun. I miss it being sunny, then storming, then sunny, then storming, then sunny then snowing (??) all in one day.

I also miss being able to see the stars. I think I miss that the most

Monday, August 17, 2009

Nothing better then a kiddie pool, and watching other people roof

Two of our very good friends and their adorablechild live in Barrie, normally about an hour away in good traffic. We went to Barrie this weekend, me to watch the mostadorablechildever and for Beau to roof. I had a blast, B... didn't so much have a blast.

Look! Here he is climbing in the window. oooo. fun.


I refuse to put pictures of children on the interwebz. So, here is a picture of themostadorablechildever


I had a slurpee... err. FROSTER. Fact of the day: They do not have these on the East Coast. 4 years of university, and none of them had these. First thing I would do after returning to Ontario was to go to 7-11 and get one of these. Then 7-11 started keeping their slurpecino's in the same mixers, and my coke slurpees always tasted like vanilla coffee & coke. Fast forward 2 years back in Ontario, and the best.frozen.coke.drinks.ever. are at Petro Canada- they make them with this terrifying high pressure something. Anyways, I had a coke FROSTER.


Spent a lot of time watching him do this (and more time chasing after him):


I would like a kitty more then ANYTHING.


Almost back in Toronto. The traffic was ridiculous. Long story short, while driving up friday night, there was NO traffic. Virtually unheard of while heading north to cottage country on the nicest weekend of the summer. Fast forward sunday night, and traffic is bumper to bumper, prompting B to state "what the hell is the point of buying a cottage you can't get to?" Stranges thing was, once we got into Toronto, it was deserted. Less traffic then we've ever seen.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Phone Pictures

It's no real secret that I love taking picture. I USED to love photography, but that changed as I got busier, had less time to devote to the craft, less disposable income and arguably most importantly a complete lack of a camera. Not entirely true, I have a great film camera, and had a cute little digital canon. The film camera is largely unusable, and the digital camera... well... the screen got stepped on by a drag queen.

At any rate, I'm stuck with my camera phone. Most of the pictures on here are from my camera phone, and I think they're pretty damn good for it being a camera phone. Anyways, below is my life in pictures.

Viva Las Vegas- be as it may from a different angle


Lilacs are my favorite flowers. Those and lily-of-the-vally


Some random child at Marineland. Both of his parents were completely passed out and napping on the grass. ahh the boundless energy of the young.


Boat Cruise Boat.

You can't see it, but this is a "Back of the Bus Bible Verse." Fascinating in Downtown Toronto