Not To Be Trusted With Knives

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Birthday Report

So I had a birthday. Apparently my cats knew it was my birthday, because they gave me a present: one of their toys was in the bag that I take to work when I got up on Monday morning. So thoughtful of them.

Kitties gave me this present for my birthday

At work, some of my coworkers took me out for lunch, which was very sweet of them! And that night a group of friends took me out for dinner to El Santo, a new Mexican restaurant in New West that everyone has been raving about. I completely forgot to get a photo of all of us at dinner, because I’m old and senile. But I did manage to get a shot of me with my birthday dessert – Potted Tres Leches – which the restaurant gave to me for free, what with it being my birthday and all. It was delicious!

Birthday dessert at El Santo

The next day I received a hard copy of the latest issue of the Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation, in which I have an article!

Hard copy of a journal article that I wrote

Then I didn’t really do anything birthday-related until Saturday, when I had my birthday party, by which point I’d kind of forgotten that it was even for my birthday, which seemed like eons ago. Before the party I told myself “I’m totally going to remember to take photos, because I never take photos when I have a party and I totally should.” And then I took zero photos. Cath took a photo of Watson smelling her sock, because he was smelling her sock for like 5 minutes1, but as far as I know that is the only photographic evidence of the event. I suppose this is actually a sign of a good party, as I was too busy actually chatting with all my guests2 to think about photography. Anyway, the Coles notes version of the party is that I had a blast – my friends are awesome and my cats were very entertaining – despite not going onto the very top platform of their new cat tree despite everyone’s attempts to get them to do so. Thanks to everyone who came, thanks for all the lovely gifts (which you totally didn’t need to bring), and special thanks to Michelle for making a delicious salted caramel chocolate cake and to my sister for sending an edible fruit arrangement3

I would also like to point out that since 2016 is a leap year, I get to have a whole extra day before I turn the big 4-0. I think this was an excellent choice on my part.

  1. Cath has two cats, so I’m betting Watson was picking up Google and Saba’s scent. []
  2. As well as mixing the occasional drink and putting out the way too much food that I made. []
  3. And she wasn’t even able to come to the party! []


Happy 4th Birthday, Thomas!

Saturday was a lovely day for an Ironman-themed 4th birthday party. My nephew, Thomas, has recently become obsessed with Ironman (which he pronounced “eye-ron man!!!”), so he decided that he wanted an Ironman cake instead of his previously requested Superman cake. My sister had borrowed my aunt’s Superman cake pan, and fortunately, it’s quite easy to cut the cape off of the cake to turn it into basically any other superhero. So there was an Ironman cake, complimented by a giant Ironman balloon, and Avengers table cloth, Avengers Happy Birthday banner1, Avengers plates, etc. Sadly, I didn’t get photos of any of that because although we decorated inside the house, everyone went outside because it was a nice day out, so the whole party ended up taking place in the backyard.

My Aunt Eileen got some great photos though2:

Ironman cake. The icing didn’t turn out quite as red as we would have liked, despite putting in a full container of concentrated red food colouring (!). Thankfully, it was the no-taste red food colouring:

Thomas, taking the candle off the cake:

Thomas, with his entire piece of cake on his fork:

My niece Madeline, and my mom:

The only decent photo of me from the entire party, which I’m posting just to prove I was there. Uncle Harry and his dog Frosty also look good in this photo:

I like this photo because it looks like that glass of wine is Madeline’s. (For the record, it is not.):

My Uncle Harry & Aunt Arlene’s dog, Frosty:



Happy 4th birthday, little buddy!

  1. Thomas is very into reading out any letters or numbers he sees, so upon seeing the banner, he proclaimed “H-A-P-P-Y-B-I-R-T-H-D-A-Y! That spells Avengers!” []
  2. All photos in the posting are courtesy of Aunt Eileen. Used with permission – All right reserved! []


Happy Evolution Day!

November 24th is Evolution Day, in honour of the anniversary of the first publication of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species in 1859. To celebrate – and not just because it happened to be convenient day for me – we are having a little soirée.

To make this party authentically evolutionary, the following provisions are in place:

  • All attendees are required to have evolved by means of natural selection.
  • We are serving 8 layer dip, which evolved from 7 layer dip, and potatoes wrapped in bacon, which evolved from scallops wrapped in bacon
  • The will be an evolutionary biologist in attendance.
  • My Flying Spaghetti Monster has been put on display.

The frogs will also be on display, though I sometimes wonder how their ancestors managed to survive natural selection, given that these guys are sometimes so clueless that they can’t find their food when it is literally sitting on top of their heads.

Happy Evolution Day, everyone!


LG4CF Launch Party – Who Wants To Come With Me?

Saturday is a launch party for the Longest Game of Hockey for CF! Who’s coming with me?


If I Had a House Warming Party, Would You Come To It?

So, I’ve had an address in Surrey for almost a year now1, so I’m thinking it’s about time to throw that housewarming party I’ve been meaning to have. I mean, my place is big enough to hold a small convention in, so I certainly have the space. And I love to cook for showing off purposes, so there’d be excellent food. The problem, however, is that I don’t have much faith that anyone will come.

I’ve had a few friends who have been brave enough to make the trip out to my place for dinner2, but it’s really few and far between. And I can’t blame people for not coming here more often – I don’t live anywhere near a Skytrain station and since virtually all my friends live in Vancouver, a lot of them don’t have cars and taking Skytrain plus a bus that doesn’t come around very often is not exactly good times. When my friend Patrice lived in Surrey, she threw a housewarming party and almost no one went to it, but when she moved to New West, her place was *packed* for her housewarming. Coincidence – I think not.

Anyway. I’m putting this out to you, blog readers. If I threw a housewarming party, would you be willing to make a trip all the way to Surrey to attend?

  1. nope, not yet able to say that in “live” in Surrey. Because really, can you call what happens here “living”? []
  2. and I love you all for that! You know who you are []


(no title)

Tonight is my work Christmas party, which doesn’t start until 8 p.m.  But it’s down in White Rock and I didn’t see the point of driving all the way back to Vancouver, only to have to turn around and drive right back to the ‘burbs.  So I’ve been sitting in my office long after everyone else has gone home, marking papers1.  And it’s probably a really good thing I stayed, ‘cuz I’m pretty tired and I’m sure that if I’d gone home, I wouldn’t have come back!

  1. the neverending pile o’papers []


Alicia’s Bachelorette

Yesterday was my friend and running partner Alicia’s bachelorette party!

The first event of the day: a pole dancing lesson at Tantra Fitness:

After that we headed to Alicia’s friend Negar’s place for some refreshments and to change into our evening wear:

IMG_4718 by you.

Then we went to Lux for dinner1. At Lux, Alicia’s friend Wendy gave her this educational book:

IMG_4723 by you.

After dinner, we headed to Bar None where we were on the extra special list2 that got us past the line up.  Line ups are for suckers.

IMG_4739 by you.

I don’t seem to have taken too many photos of Bar None, but Alicia was positively camera happy, so I can’t wait to see hers!

Anyhoo, all this to say that I had an absolute blast of an evening and I can’t wait for the wedding!!

1My review of Lux: Food: crappy. Service: even worse.
2It wasn’t the VIP list, because the people at the front of the VIP line had been waiting an hour by the time we got there, and we got right in. I don’t think the people in the VIP line liked us very much.


‘Tis The Season

I’m actually amazed I made it this long before hitting the hard core holiday party season.  I mean, it’s Dec 10th already and I’ve only had one holiday event!  So, for the record, because I know you are all dying to hear about my plans, my holiday parties this year consist of:

  • dinner with a bunch of my trainees after our seminar this past Monday
  • drinks with a bunch of my friends from school (current and former students in my PhD program) tomorrow night1
  • my friend Erika’s annual 12 Bars of Christmas on Saturday.  This will be my third year attending this illustrious event.  Due to last year’s severe overcrowding, the guest list has been scaled back to only those people who attended the year before. Also new this year: everyone participating has to make a donation to the most appropriate charity: the Canadian Liver Foundation.
  • holiday party of my old lab group on Sunday.  Despite the fact that it has been over two years since I worked in that lab and the fact that I didn’t officially work in that lab2, I still get invited to the parties. Which is super nice, because they are a lot of fun.
  • office lunch at Sandbar on Granville Island on Monday
  • lunch with the Dean of one of the Faculties that I teach in on Wednesday
  • Blogger Meetup at Ceili’s on Wednesday as well

Man, just looking at that list makes me tired.  Thankfully, I’ll have lots of time to recuperate over Christmas while lying on the beach in Los Cabos for an entire week.  You know you are jealous.

1Depending on how late that goes, I may also try to swing by the Best of 604 par-tay afterwards
2My lab, which only consisted of three people, just kinda hung around their lab and used their stuff.


Pig Party!

Today was the day of my niece’s pig-themed birthday party!


The menu included “pig slop” (a.ka. soup) and pigaroni and cheese.


with a pig-in-the-mud cake for dessert:


The birthday girl blowing out her candles!


And gets to enjoy the pig cupcake!


Happy birthday, little piglet!