Parade of belongings

I’m sitting at home on my deadline day, checking off numbers as movers offload a truck the size of Summerville with 129 pieces of our life.

Some of this stuff I haven’t seen in two and a half years.

Hello, cello! Come here, let me tune you up.

There goes the red-lidded bin that I moved all my worldly possessions home from France in. That was 10 years ago, and everything I owned that was worth moving between continents fit in two 4-cubic ft containers.

What is that strange, lumpy package? Oh, it’s two baby gates, a shoe rack and a poster tube, of course.

The table! To the kitchen, please. I can’t wait to sit at a matching dining set again.

That’s my canoe strapped to the side of the truck. Let me take that, I’ll just put it in the back yard along by the fence. This weekend we are going to take the kids paddling. It will be Caroline’s first time in a canoe! Sylvia was only months old the first time I had her out.

Pots and pans in the kitchen, please.

The bed goes upstairs, to the spare room. (Hear that? A spare room! We can have guests now!)

There’s the bench Nan bought Travis and I for Christmas one year. It can go by the back door; I’ll fill it up with hats and sunscreen and sandals later, some day when I am not on deadline.

All that’s left now is the couch. It’s made many moves already, first with my aunt on multiple military postings, and now three with me, two of them inter-provincial.

Ok that’s it, got to sign the paperwork and get back t the office. This has been fun!


Tomayto Tomahto

I didn’t figure out that not everyone could read music until I was in my twenties.

Apparently it has taken until my thirties to figure the same about triathlons.

The idea of going for a swim, bike and a run with Sharpie-inked numbers marked up and down my arms and calves is not foreign to me. Though I’ve been woefully nonathletic for several years now, I’ve registered for a triathlon which takes place in six weeks. It’s only a sprint distance, so it’s really no big deal, but people go nutso when they hear about it.

I must remember that a triathlon to some is like Scuba diving to me.

That is, no way no how.

Give me a tri any day over underwater pressure and compressed air. Now THAT’s my kind of terrifying.

Kitchen fails

I love to cook. I have a menu board in my kitchen which I fill out every weekend after finalizing our meal plan for the week. Seriously.

(You should try it. It makes grocery shopping and meal prepping so much easier and also healthier and also cheaper).

Week-day meals are generally pretty good; we tend to stick to the dishes that are in regular rotation at our house. Things like homemade meatballs, cod-au-gratin, homemade soup and sandwiches or macaroni and cheese. But just in case you think I’m all Martha Stewart/Nigella Lawson over here, I must confess I’ve made two crappy suppers in a row now.

Saturday night was “Enchiladas” wherein I attempted to make my own corn tortillas. Every recipe I read emphasized the importance of a tortilla press. I do not own a tortilla press. So that was one hot mess. What a waste of cheese.

Tonight I made cauliflower wings (which were delicious, as usual: equal parts buttermilk+flour, plenty of garlic or garlic powder and a tablespoon of melted butter. Chop cauliflower into bite-sized pieces. Pour batter overtop, mix to coat, let stand awhile, bake at 375 for 20min or so, remove from oven, toss in favourite sauce – bbq, teriyaki, etc. – and pop back in the oven for a few minutes).

I also made a honey-herbed chicken, which was bland. I know it’s bad when nobody goes for seconds.

A week ago I made a terrible quinoa+chicken+broccoli casserole. Another waste of cheese! Turns out, nobody likes quinoa only me. I ate the leftovers for the next four days.

The week before THAT, I tried making lasagne for supper on Saturday. Except lasagne takes an hour in the oven, and it was coming on bedtime before I had it ready to go. So we ended up ordering pizza. Which is an epic fail in itself, because we generally make our own. (Sylvia at first didn’t want to eat it, and then couldn’t understand the why or the how of somebody bringing pizza to our door.)

Swimming again

The local swimming pool has a 200-km challenge where you register to swim 200km in two years. If you finish the distance within the allotted time, you get a towel! And presumably your name etched in one of their exterior bricks. No? Okay, just the towel then.

I’ve been trying to go at least once a week, twice when I can manage it, on my lunch break. So far I’ve done six km in three weeks, which would put me on track to finish 200 in two years. I started about six weeks after everyone else, so I have some catching up to do.

All the same, I’ve taken about six minutes off my 1000m time already. I’m not going to see that kind of drastic improvement in the next three weeks, obviously, unless I start swimming so fast the clock goes backwards.

And it’s not about speed or personal bests. It’s about how quickly I can squeeze a workout into my absolutely nutso schedule. Today I managed to swim 1000m, shower, dress and get back to work in under 40 minutes, despite a woman hogging the only change room mirror the entire time I was trying to get ready.

I’ve committed myself to a triathlon in May (sprint distance) so I should probably get out for a jog or a ride sometime soon. Maybe when the temperature gets above -20!

She’s not a wine drinker, but apparently her mother is

Sylvia: “Mommy, are you drinking water or wine?”

Me: “Wine.”

Sylvia: “Will you be drunk after you drink all of that wine?”



…. It was ONE glass! I swear!

High hopes

I start a new job on Wednesday. Very exciting!

We just completed what might have been the fastest move ever. Between accepting the job and unpacking in our new home there was a seven-day time lapse. Almost to the minute, in fact. The kids are enjoying their new ‘Daycare School’ (Sylvia can’t wait to go to actual school, so we started calling it school and wonder of wonders, she can’t WAIT to go every morning!) and I have a couple of days’ grace before starting work in which to wrap up a few freelance assignments.

It was hard leaving our friendships behind.

When I moved back to Canada after two years in France, I sold all my books. Parting with them was rough, and I promised myself I would never unwillingly sell or discard any books again. (I said unwillingly. This one doesn’t count!) Although I’ve moved 10 times since then I’ve more or less made good on that promise and packed my books with me. (I’ve also accumulated far less in recent years, this being the era of e-readers and Internet).

I can’t pack my friends though. And while I’ve kept in touch with the best ones from each of my homes over the years, it get harder each time to start over at building friendships in a new town.

I may be talking a big talk here, but I hope this is the last time I have to open each social interaction with “Hi, I just moved to town…”


How to maintain your sanity while moving: One simple step!

1. You don’t.