SPACE FOR A HEADER PICTURE

Here's Nina!

October 21, 2014


Next awesome event on my horizon? Here's Nina! As you can see, it's a TERRIFIC evening in support of The Nina Haggerty Centre For The Arts.

My sister and I are playing some music at the VIP reception beforehand too. For a long time we've been wanting to form a sister cover band. Finally, the right opportunity presented itself! I figured, why would I just sit there and play sonatas on the piano when I could be singing with my sister and playing UKULELE. Much more fun!

We have a modest repertoire of 5 covers ranging from the Beatles to Death Cab For Cutie. And, we're called *mei mei.

*it means little sister in Chinese
*we're both little sisters

The thing I love about the Nina Haggerty Centre is that they inspire you to create. It's a centre where those with developmental disabilities can learn and practice their art, and develop into really impressive artists in their own right.

Are you free on November 4th? You should come! Especially since the amazing That's Terrific team will be there to make you laugh until your face hurts.

Long Weekend

October 15, 2014

Last week I rode to a Sign of Hope tour. Things are getting chilly, but I have yet to break out the winter bike. Soon enough… soon enough…

Alice came with me to do a site visit to the Jasper Place Library, where we're planning a wonderful event to raise funds for the library's Welcome, Baby program. In and around the brainstorming, Cory and Alice had lots of fun in the children's section.

There was some atypical treatment towards pumpkins too, with my "little" from Big Brothers Big Sisters. Turns out spray painting things is really fun! Make sure to stand back and take fresh air breaks.

I finally harvested these tiny potatoes from my farming experiment. Everybody I know grows things. They say it's easy. Then I tell them I'm the person who killed dill and mint. And they look horrified.

With some coaching from this one woman I keep seeing on the event circuit (I call her my potato coach), I decided to give the taters a try. When I took four small seed potatoes up to the cashier at Kuhlmann's Greenhouse, he just gave them to me for free.

Who grows four potatoes?

Well, me.

The yield was pretty meagre, but I didn't kill them! I think more room means more potatoes, so next year I might be brave enough to try putting them in a planter of some sort and "hilling" them.

They do taste amazing.

In a whole other strange universe, Don and I were at the legacy reunion for the 1984 Edmonton Oilers. I wasn't really prepared for what the event was going to be like, but upon arrival I almost peed my pants when I saw… Andy Moog! What a super nice guy!


It was wacky being at ice level too. Makes me wanna become a rock star!

Then we took a picture with this shiny cup!


A fortuitous run to the bathroom meant I couldn't go back into the arena until the team marched the Stanley Cup in there. So fun to see them all queueing up for their big entrance.

Later on, hanging out in the locker room with Kevin Lowe


And THIS GUY!


After losing my voice yet again (I can't get ahead of the loud talking at these late events), I woke up and rolled myself over to the lake to watch friends take boats out of the water.



Tom came too!

We ate at a diner where Don and I enjoyed our no makeup/no shaving selves.



Hung out on stoops while Don was purchasing trailer antifreeze.



Visited Mike and the boat he made. He can pull his pretty boat out of the lake really late in the season, so he's one of the only guys left.



Found an amazing fur coat at the thrift store. Too bad it's way too big for me.



Then it got cold, so it was time to go inside.

The next day we spent winterizing the trailer for the first time. With a lot of steps and help from friends, we were able to get everything in order eventually

Then it was Thanksgiving time! Check out the turkey that Dexter drew at school:


Am so lucky to have great family help me with the kids while Don and I are busy. The kids were at my parents' and Dexter also had a sleepover with his cousins! Good times watching movies and going to the park with Keira and Gabe (and Alice made a guest appearance). 

We ran errands. Ate one turkey dinner and one prime rib one. Ate pumpkin pie twice!

It was a busy one, full of lots of fun, but many other parts you don't see. I don't like to write about the unpleasant work-related things (like learning how to pump black water out of a trailer), because once they're done I generally like to forget about it. Rest assured, life is fun times, but it's also a product of lots of hard work.






Keeping It Real

October 9, 2014

You may or may not know that I am at A LOT of events. It's a part of the job, but what I am happy to discover is that many Edmontonians attend the same events as I do, as fellow supporters of the community. 

People often ask me if I get tired of going out, and although it is an investment of our time, I generally love learning about the various agencies doing great work in the city. Plus, you get to meet a lot of fun people! 

I figured from time to time I'd let you know about cool stuff going on - In this post, it's Keeping It Real for iHuman

iHuman describes itself as such:

The authentic culture at the iHuman Youth Society is one of acceptance, openness and a genuine willingness to support youth. The focus is to offer youth opportunities to meet with iHuman professional staff and other social agency personnel as required, to engage in harm reduction activities, and participate in arts-related activities that foster positive self-worth and encourage reintegration into the community

Share in the Celebration, Save a Young Life - Join Us at iHuman.


Learn more about iHuman and meet its friends and youth on October 26th! Don and I are planning to be there with the kids.

ModCloth Fall Layering Challenge!

October 7, 2014


Have you lady readers out there ever ordered from ModCloth before? It's a magical place full of pretty dresses and other covetous items. When they got in touch and asked me to pick some tops for their fall layering challenge, I accepted! 

I chose three items I could wear on the bike; in the studio teaching; at a meeting; out for a dinner; or, at the gallery with the kids. I'd start with Cute Do You Do Top on the bottom, throw the Long Time No Sequin over it as a vest, and drape the whole thing with the Simply Snuggly Cardigan

I've always wanted a buffalo plaid jacket or shirt, but haven't been able to find one in my size and in a style that I really like. I chose the Simply Snuggly Cardigan because it's a modern blend of the plaid I love mixed with a log-cabin vibe. It basically fulfills my desire to look like an urban lumberjack. The warm of wearing a blanket all the time, without the hay. 

I actually prefer sleeveless tops because I am often hot and sweaty after pedalling or walking briskly (I generally find myself running late these days). As long as I insulate the torso, I stay quite cozy, even in cold temperatures. I would 100% have gloves on too, probably long ones. 

I am rarely without earrings, and love the Honeycomb Away With Me pair. They're simple, but eye-catching. 

I would also belt this whole thing together with the Foxy Moxie Belt, because it would reduce the wind tunnel factor on the blistery days, and it reminds me of one of my favourite Wes Anderson Movies

Finally, a fall look isn't complete without boots for stomping and romping around town. I think the Steadfast Stride Booties fit the bill perfectly. Great shape, sturdy heels, and easy on/off for going in and out of the house. I can see them with rolled up jeans, leggings, and tights with chunky socks. On extra cold days? Add leg warmers. 

Can you tell that when I think about fall, I'm definitely thinking of a Canadian fall? We get the whole range of sunny, windy, rainy, snowy, warm and cold. Hence my obsession with layering - Add and subtract as required! 


Truck truck trucking along!

October 6, 2014


Have been lucky enough to enough lots of everything! City. Lake. Work. Family. 

Even though it has been cold, we made one of our last runs out to the lake in order to milk one of the last family weekends out of the lake season. The kids enjoyed the trailer and played in the sand.

But before that, I made a visit to my old high school, Ross Sheppard! I was getting in touch with my old social teacher to hatch plans about a youth initiative I'm working on with the United Way. It's funny being back at the school! 

Smaller. 

The funny thing was after I posted the picture of the Thunderbird online, so many people came out to say they also went to Shepp -Thunderbirds forever!

 Here is Dexter being cute and eating popcorn before bedtime.


Also, my Good and Cheap book arrived! Authored by my amazing friend, Leanne Brown.


My old editor was hanging around Edmonton for a little while, so we went for drinks and put on tattoos to express our love for our old newspaper

I rode the Pashley around at night, in the cold, in my Bano eeMee! I've never had a leather jacket before and it's wonderful! I saw his spring collection at fashion week and fell in love. Luckily, his beautiful leather goods are available here in town at Thread Hill and Bamboo Ballroom! My wonderful piece is called the Bolton.


So that's the city stuff! Here is the lake stuff:


Beautiful! It's October, but still sunny and gorgeous. The joy of the prairies.

 We had a rockin' time in the trailer with the kids!


Even in the fall, the kids keep taking their things off and going in the water. 

Back in the city, I was thrilled to receive a gift from one of my students. I've been working with this family for 12 years. Back in the day I would get fresh baked cookies for a gift. Now? Falsies from the Daiso in Vancouver! Love my friends/clients. They know me well. 

And finally, an early picture of the kids in their Halloween outfits. Dexter was hell bent on being an angry bird for Halloween. I looked into DIY options, but once Dex saw these costumes online there was no turning back. I warned him that having a costume you wore over your head might be weird, but he said it wouldn't be a problem.


The angry birds arrived today. The kids are overjoyed. 

And that's life, lately! 

Weekender!

October 2, 2014


My tutu and I riding Pashley home after a very late (and cold) evening

So last weekend, between teaching and all the fashion week business - I took the kids to go ride horses! Friends of ours have some beautiful animals out on the land nearby and we were long overdue to hang with the animals. 


Dexter had such a wonderful time taking care of this horse, only to rub his hairy mitts all over his eyes and face, and then have an allergic reaction. It was mostly superficial with puffy eyes and hives, without any difficulty breathing. Poor guy! He was a trooper and felt much better after I threw him into the bath and gave him antihistamines. 


Alice, on the other hand, had zero problems. She and Rachel had a great time!


Sunday was a quiet day, where I cleaned things and made food and hung out with the kids.

Alice has great bed head!


Dex, unsurprisingly, was a super sweetie.


I'm almost over the loss of my voice. That's what happens when you're in loud places doing your loud talking all the time. Sigh.

Other good news? One last romp at the lake this weekend! It'll be brisk, but I'm ready.



Fashion Weekend!

October 1, 2014

These looks from www.sarahpacini.com
Last weekend was a whirlwind of fashion and fun with my duties as honorary chair for the Edmonton Down Syndrome Society's live auction prize. I was auctioned off to escort the winner and her guests to a delicious meal at Woodwork (such generous sponsors) and then to see the collections at Western Canadian Fashion Week

The most hilarious part? In a Porsche Panamera. HILARIOUS!


As you know, I'm not really one to be into cars. When I first got the keys I was all, "Yeah, whatever". After I drove it around for a few days and then returned it? I missed it just a little bit


My wonderful new lady friends and I had the most delicious champagne cocktails and meal at Woodwork. When we were all done, Don came to take over driving duties and ferried us over to the Arts Barns for Global Fusion night at fashion week.


I've never been to a fashion week before - This was my first one! It was fantastic. With dancing, musical performances, and some gorgeous collections. The Parvesh Jai one in particular was breathtaking. The embroidery was impeccable and the fabrics were amazing.













That was Friday night at fashion week, and I also returned for Saturday night  for some collections. Loved seeing Kelly Madden's spring.


Was totally charmed by Bano eeMee leather jackets! So impressed that I went to Thread Hill just yesterday and bought one. And ordered another one for the spring from the collection we saw the other night (hint: the yellow one). The fit is amazing. 

At the end of it all, the photographers were pooped. They have this tradition of getting horizontal on the runway and photographing themselves up in the ceiling. 


And if you want to see a 5-foot person coerced into walking at the end of the show, in her civilian clothes... here it is:

video


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