Not To Be Trusted With Knives

The Internet’s leading authority on radicalized geese

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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:

Thomas:

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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! []

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Doing All The Things!

So apparently I’ve decided to do all the things, which means that I have eleventy billion things to blog about and no time in which to write said blog posting1, which can only mean one thing. It’s time for a bullet list! List all the bullets!

  • Both my teams’ winter hockey seasons have come to an end. My Burnaby team got knocked out of the playoffs yesterday, but we made a decent showing in both of our playoff games and besides, this was a rebuilding year. My Coquitlam team made it all the way to the finals and lost a heartbreaker in OT.
  • Speaking of hockey, remember the beginning of the NHL season when I joined a fantasy hockey league? As it turns out, I abandoned all gimmicks after week one and actually changed my picks each week (it’s the kind of pool where you get to pick new players each week) and would you believe that actually putting effort into it, rather than being goofy, resulted in me winning the pool? Now I am the proud owner of all the bragging rights!
  • Also, speaking of hockey, I’m taking another set of hockey lessons. I signed up for a class called “Shoot to Score” and based on this description: “The Shoot to Score program is designed for adults wanting to exclusively improve their scoring ability. The program will incorporate skating, passing and puck control but a major emphasis will be placed on developing a players wrist shot, snapshot, back hander, slap shot, one-timer and shooting while in motion“, I made the silly mistake of thinking that I’d be learning to shoot the puck. Instead, the class is being taught as “forward” class, with the other half of the rink being “defenceman” class and then at the end of the lesson they put the two groups together and run drills against each other. I’m a bit disappointed, because I really wanted to work on my shot, which is terrible, but I am learning a bunch of stuff that I think will improve my game, so I’m still going2.
  • Speaking of lessons, our salsa dance instructors told me that I’m good enough to move on to level “Intermediate 2”3! We are just at the start of our third set of “Intermediate 1”, so I think that’s pretty good, as they actually have 4 different sets of “Intermediate 1” classes that people can go through. The problem, however, is that our instructors don’t offer “Intermediate 2” on a night that we are available, so we have to hope that in the next set of lessons, they switch up the nights or we may need to find a new dance studio.
  • Speaking of working on stuff, I’m just 17 days away from my next half marathon4! Since my usual running partner, Alicia, isn’t running this race with me, I decided to sign up for a Sunday morning running clinic that was set up to train for the BMO half, so I’d have people to run with, as the long runs start to get a bit boring by the end of the training if you don’t have company. The group is run out of Fit First in Burnaby (the same place I did my running study) and I’ve enjoyed having company to run with5.

    Here’s a photo of my running clinic group – aren’t we a good looking group?

    I have more to say about my training, but I think that I’ve got a whole blog posting on that (spoiler: there’s a spreadsheet involved!), if only I can find the time to write it. I will say that my ambitious goal, which I’m not sure I will be able to achieve, is to run a sub-2 hr half marathon, which has been on my “to do” list since forever and is currently sitting my list of goals for 2015.

  • Speaking of my “to do” list, I’ve completed yet another item off my list of 101 things to do in 1001 days: #64: Go on a Paddle Wheeler cruise down the Fraser River). Daniel and I went on this cruise last Friday and we had a really good time. We tried to take a selfie that I could put in this posting, but could not get anything even halfway decent (at least in part because I didn’t think to take a photo until after we’d gone out on the ship’s deck in the rain and my hair becomes a complete rat’s nest at the slightest sign of a drop of water). Also, by sheer coincidence, a woman from our salsa dancing class was there with a bunch of her friends, and while there was no salsa music, we all had lots of fun hitting the dance to some old school tunes mixed with some current hits.
  • And speaking about my 101 list, I’ve also knocked #7 – “Be written about in the New Westminster Record” off the list, with this article about the Arts Council of New West, where I happen to be on the board of directors. I really like the photo we had taken:

    For the record, I didn’t know everyone else was going to be wearing black, grey or blue when I chose a red shirt!

  • And also speaking of my 101 list, I have just booked a trip to Halifax in May, which will knock #46 – “Go to Nova Scotia” off that list and will leave me just one province short of having been to all the provinces in Canada6. I’m going to a conference in Halifax to present some of my research, which will be fun. I’ll also get to stop by Toronto on my way home to visit the fam for a few days, which will be awesome. And, as it so happens, I’ll be there for my nephew’s birthday party, which will be doubly awesome!
  • Speaking of trips, Daniel and I have registered for the Montreal full and demi-marathon, respectively, in Montreal in September. So I’ll get to see some family then too, as I have family who live there and my mom plans to go there while we are there too.
  • And speaking of seeing my family, my sister is coming to present at a conference in Vancouver in June and my mom is going to join her for the trip. The kitties are very excited to see their grandmother again and to meet their Aunt Nancy!
  • And finally, speaking of people visiting, I get to see Sarah on Sunday, as she is going to be in Seattle, so I’m going to drive down there to hang out! So excited!

So, as you can see, I am clearly doing all the things and I haven’t even talked about, you know, work, teaching, and various other gadding about that I do. I also hear there’s this cool thing called “getting enough sleep” that I’d totally love to check out someday, if I can only find the time!

  1. As a microcosm of my doing all the things, while writing this blog posting, I’m also doing laundry, doing dishes, baking cherry squares for the bake sale that my office is having tomorrow, watching the Winnipeg Jets v. Anaheim Ducks playoff game and being kneaded on by Crick. Oh, now I’m being climbed all over by Crick. Crick is really turning into quite the lap cat, especially when I’m trying to type something. []
  2. Incidentally, if anyone knows of any good classes where I can actually learn to shoot the puck, let me know! []
  3. Daniel’s done Intermediate Level 2 before, so it’s just been me that needed to develop my skills a bit more so we could move on []
  4. The BMO Vancouver []
  5. Though to be totally honest, I really miss running with Alicia! []
  6. Newfoundland, I will conquer you one day! []

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My Weekend

Spent the weekend on the Island, as my friend Rachel invited me to give a guest lecture on stats in her research methods class1.

On the ferry on the way over to the Island on Friday night I was pleasantly surprised to run into my friend Bronwyn, who I haven’t seen since graduation back in May. It was awesome having a chance to catch up with her and the ferry ride was over in a flash!

Friday night, we just chilled, as Rachel had been teaching prior to picking me up from the ferry and we had to get up the next morning to teach. Teaching was fun, as I’m a nerd and love talking about stats and her students were very engaged – asked lots of great questions. I remember the same thing happening the last time I taught her class, but I’m always a little concerned when I start teaching about stats because many people aren’t stats-loving nerds like me, so I always fear having a room full of disinterested people staring at me. Happily, those fears were unfounded in this case.

After my guest lecture, we grabbed lunch and then Rachel continued teaching while I went off to do a 11 km run2. And then we got to spend the weekend celebrating the survival of having worked on a Saturday. Celebrating included such things as getting to see Rachel’s adorable 21-month-old son (who had been asleep by the time I’d arrived the previous night), hanging out with some other peeps who were also visiting for the weekend, lovely wine, a delicious dinner, an amazing chocolate raspberry trifle3, and a rousing game of Apples to Apples (a.k.a. Wholesome Cards Against Humanity), at which I did disastrously bad.

Today we spent a super relaxing day – had some breakfast, went to a beach in Parksville, lunch at a local pub, playing in the backyard, a walk around the neighbourhood, a delicious dinner – all of which time we got to spend catching up, which was awesome because it’s been a long time since we’d had a chance to do that.

And now I’m heading back on the ferry feeling rested and relaxed!

  1. I gave this same type of lecture 4 years ago, but haven’t been back to do it since then as I got busy with that whole MBA thing, so I couldn’t make it over on a weekend when she was teaching as I was always in class. []
  2. Half marathon training cares not if you are having a weekend away. []
  3. Made as a Valentine’s Day dessert but happily shared with all the visitors, as Rachel mused that had she made that trifle for just her and her husband, it would have been a crazy amount of rich dessert to have! []

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Trip

Wrote this on a plane on Thursday night. Plane arrived at 1 am. Then I spent the next two days having fun with my family and completely forgot to post this. So now I’m posting it from the Toronto airport as I await my next flight. Better late than never, right?

So here I find myself on a plane heading to Toronto and I realize that I haven’t even mentioned a thing about my trip here on ye old blog! But now I’ve got 4+ hours on a plane and, sure, I have work I could be doing1, but my brain is pretty fried from all the work I’ve been doing of late, so I figure I’ll write this blog posting now and leave the work for later, as there will be plenty more flights and sitting around in airports in the next week!

So yes, about the trip. I found out about a month ago that I was getting the opportunity to go to a conference for work. The conference itself looks fantastic – so many interesting sessions to go see and lots of great networking opportunities. The conference is being held in Kansas City, Missouri2 and while Kansas City was not on the top of my list of places that I wanted to travel to – hell, it wasn’t even on my list at all – I’m not one to turn down free trips to interesting conferences and I have been assured there will be excellent BBQ to be had.

Anyway, unsurprisingly, there are no direct flights from Vancouver to KC, so I started looking at flight options and, weirdly, I saw a flight through Toronto. I say “weirdly” because Toronto is not on the way to KC and that flight had another stopover in addition to Toronto, but at any rate, it got me thinking about tagging on a leg of the trip to go see my family3. The conference starts on Sunday night, so I first thought I’d fly out after work on Friday and get to spend Sat with the fam. But then I looked at the calendar and realized that Friday is Halloween and no way was I going to be spending Halloween on a plane! So I took tomorrow off and booked my flight for this evening so I get to spend Halloween at my sister’s place. Which means I get to go trick or treating with my niece and nephew for the first time ever! I moved out to Vancouver before either of them were born and have not had the opportunity to be in Toronto on Oct 31st since then4, so I am super duper stoked to go out with them!

Also, my sister bought a pumpkin for us to carve and, because she’s the best sister in the whole world, she bought a big, big pumpkin, because she knows I love big pumpkins (and I cannot lie.). When we were kids, my parents would take us to the pumpkin patch and my sister would always choose the most perfectly shaped, round little pumpkin she could find and I would picked the biggest one (obviously compensating for my own short stature by choosing a pumpkin that is bigger than me. Go big or go home, I always say). So it’s super sweet that she got us a giant pumpkin, because her own pumpkin preference is little and perfect!

After Halloween, I get to spend Saturday hanging with the family some more and then I’m jumping on a plane on Sunday morning to make my way to Kansas City. I have a 1 hr stopover in Chicago – Chicago *is* on my list of places I want to travel to and so I’m a bit choked that all I will get to do is run through O’Hare airport to catch my connection. That won’t stop me from crossing “Visit Chicago” off my list of 101 things to do, but getting to actually go to Chicago and see the city is still going to be on my list of places to travel!

I’ll be in Kansas City for three days of learning all the things, and then Wednesday night it’s back to Vancouver with a 1 hr stopover in Denver. And then back to work on Thursday! No rest for the wicked!

As per usual, let me remind any would-be thieves that I do have a house sitter who will totally kick your ass if you try anything, along with 2 attack cats and 4 vicious (not viscous) attack frogs. You have been warned.

  1. In addition to work work, I also have to make some edits to my online stats course, which I will be teaching again at the Justice League and I have a talk to write for a workshop to give to some med students that I was just invited to do today and I have a journal article that I’ve been meaning to start for ages! []
  2. Not to be mistaken for Kansas City, Kansas. Why the hell Missouri decided it was a good idea to name their biggest city “Kansas City” when there is already a Kansas City right there in the state of Kansas, I’ll never know. It would be like New Brunswick saying “You know what would be a good name for a city? Quebec City, New Brunswick. Yeah, I like that way that sounds!” []
  3. Once you are flying, it’s way cheaper to tag on a side trip than to book a flight on its own. I have to pay the difference between what my flight would have cost if I’d only gone from Vancouver to KC and what it cost to add on the Toronto leg, which was only $150. A flight to Toronto from Vancouver is usually in the range of $800, so I’m totally fine with paying $150 to get to see the fam! []
  4. The closest I’ve been was a couple of years ago when I was in Toronto for the Hoot and Howl fundraiser at my niece’s school and we had Thankoween dinner. []

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My Last Vacation Was So Fun, I Think I’ll Have Another. And Another.

Last week I was on holidays to spend time with my mom and my aunt, who were visiting for my graduation. We had a lovely time being Vancouver tourists, doing such activities as:

  • shopping on Robson Street
  • various delicious meals with various delicious wines
  • visiting Granville Island
  • walking along the New Westminster Quay about a million times
  • my graduation
  • dinner with project group from school after graduation at Cioppinos
  • grad party on the Yaletown Keg rooftop patio
  • chocolate tasting at Xoxolat

This week I was back at work. And while I love my job, work has significantly fewer lunches where someone says “Let’s share a bottle of wine” than does vacation, so I’m going back on holidays after tomorrow.

Actually, I’d already planned this second vacation even before all the wine-based lunches of last week. I’m going to a conference in Ottawa the following week and since I had to pay for the flight out east, I figured I should take some vacation time to visit my family. So all next week I’ll be in Toronto, visiting family and friends, getting in some very important aunting time – I haven’t seen my niblings since Christmas! – and, undoubtedly, having more wine-based lunches. Then it’s off to Ottawa, where I’m going to the Canadian Evaluation Society conference. I’m staying with Sarah & Dave while I’m there and I would not be surprised if there was some wine drinking involved.

But lest you think I’m drinking too much wine – do not fear! I’m starting my holidays on Friday night at a craft beer event with Cath. Right after my massage appointment.

And as if my two vacations weren’t enough, just 9 days after returning, I’ll be setting out for a long weekend in San Fran to celebrate Kalev’s birthday! In those 9 days, I’ll be running a half marathon and moving, so I think I’ll  be ready for another vacation!

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The National Art Gallery and the Royal Canadian Mint

OK, so after that wee diversion on the whole blogivesary thing, I’m back to blogging about all the crap I meant to blog about from my trip!

The National Art Gallery

One of the things I like about going to Ottawa (in addition to seeing Sarah and Dave, of course), is that there are tonnes of cool cultural things to do, what with it being the national capital and all. On previous trips I’ve had such awesome adventures as attending Question Period at Parliament, going to the Canada Science and Technology Museum and my favourite – the Diefenbunker! I had not, however, been willing to go to the National Art Gallery, because, for some reason that is completely beyond my comprehension, they decided to install a GIGANTIC SPIDER outside the front door. I’m talking GIGANTIC. And I am talking SPIDER1. Up until this trip, I’ve been unable to go near the place, despite the fact that I really wanted to see the art there, because of my terror at the site of even the smallest eight-legged monster2, let alone a GIGANTIC one3. However, with Sarah’s assistance and reassurances, I was able to steel myself enough to be near the place – basically, Sarah told me that we could drive in through the parking garage, so I wouldn’t need to walk by the statute to get into the front door. And I could keep my eyes closed when we drove anywhere near the statue – including when we were walking inside the Art Gallery where you could see the statute through the window4. Plus, she scored us a Groupon5 to go for high tea there. And who am I to turn down high tea? So we managed to get me into the NAG without me having to actually face my fear, we enjoyed a leisurely high tea, and we walked around a few exhibits. I wish I had something intelligent to say about the art, but I really am a neophyte when it comes to art6. I basically look at it and go “Wow, that’s awesome. I like how the colours are bright.” Or, “Meh. This one is boring to me.” I did, however, enjoy our afternoon of perusing the art, because there were lots of cool things to look at, even if I’m not able to appreciate the nuances of it all.

On the way out of the NAG, we decided to stop in at the gift shop, just to see what they had. I jokingly said, “I hope I can get a postcard with the giant spider on it to remember my trip here!”, to which Sarah replied, “Uh, don’t come over to this section!” And then, just when I thought all was safe, we headed to the door to leave and what do you think was right in front of me? A freaking T-shirt with a freaking picture of that freaking spider statue on it! Gaaaahhhh!!! So close, but yet so far.

The Royal Canadian Mint

The next day, we decided to go to the Royal Canadian Mint. The Mint, for the uninitiated, is the place that makes coins7. The Mint in Ottawa makes collector coins and medals (like, for example, the Olympic medals), whereas circulation coins (i.e., the ones in your wallet) are made in Winnipeg.

Ordinarily on a weekday tour, one would get to see the Mint running through its production. Unfortunately, the day we went the workers weren’t on the floor as they were all off doing some sort of union voting thing. Instead, they had videos of all the processes, so we still got to see how they make coins. I learned a tonne of stuff, most of which I can’t remember. But I do remember that I learned that the Canadian Mint was the first place that was ever able to make 99.999% pure gold – usually “pure” gold is 99.99% pure. Also, I got to pick up a bar of gold that was worth more than $500,000!8. The other highlight of the tour was when the video showed how the edges of coins are formed, a process known as “rimming.” That’s right, “rimming.” During the tour, Sarah stayed at the back of the crowd, as she had baby Veronica in her stoller and didn’t want to get in the way of people trying to see things on the tour (she’s been on the tour before) and had suggested that I should go ahead to get a good view. I think this was a very good thing, because I’m sure that *neither* of us would have been able to keep a straight face if we’d been standing together as the narrator on the video kept saying “rimming.”

And finally, here are photos of what coins would look like if Sarah and I were on them:

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  1. For the record, even typing the word “spider” wigs me out. []
  2. And typing the word “eight-legged” also freaks me out. Ugh. []
  3. Did I mention that the statue is GIGANTIC? []
  4. Basically, Sarah just led me around as if I were blind so that I could keep my eyes closed and not walk into any walls. Or people, for that matter. []
  5. Or maybe it was one of the other Groupon-type sites. []
  6. Though I believe that using the word “neophyte” in that sentence will give me some snob cred to make up for snob cred lost by knowing nothing about art []
  7. Paper bills are made elsewhere. []
  8. That is not, however, the most expensive thing I have ever touched. When I was an Intern in the Alumni Office at McMaster in the summer after my fourth year, the Director came around with a cheque, saying to all the alumni employees: “Touch it! Touch it!” It was a donation from the estate of an alumna who had recently passed away and left $1,000,000 to Mac. []

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Falsifiability is the new hot pink

About eleventy bazillion years ago, I did an invited guest lecture in Dr. Dan’s class. I had such good intention of blogging about it at the time. Better late than never though, right?

Picture it! The course is Dr. Dan’s graduate level Experimental Design course. The location is a classroom in the hallowed halls of my alma mater #2 of 3, the University of Guelph1.The topic is The Scientific Method. Which is awesome because it allowed me to wax poetic – and engage in discussions with the students – about such things as philosophical world views unpinning research, qualitative/quantitative/mixed methodology approaches to research, falsifiability, and “what is an experiment, exactly?” In case you are interested in such thing, here’s my Prezi:

Now, the Prezi doesn’t really stand on its own, given my belief that one’s visual aids for a presentation should be a visual aid that compliments the person yammering at the front of the room (i.e., me) rather than replacing them. After all, if the Prezi was a complete package without me, then no one would want to pay me the big bucks to do these invited guest lectures2. Also, I’m a big fan of getting the class into a discussion about the material3, so that isn’t really captured in the Prezi either. In conclusion, you had to be there. Which you weren’t4.

*Note: The title of this blog posting was shamelessly stolen from Rick’s comment on Dr. Dan’s blog posting on this very topic.

  1. To which I had not been, I will add, since I finished my Master’s back in August 2000!! []
  2. For the record, I was paid no bucks, as is customary for guest lectures, but I may or may not have been paid in Americanos and coconut milk ice cream. And an offer for a Dr. Dan guest lecture in one of my classes. []
  3. The class was maybe not so into that at first, but I find that if you leave enough silence, they’ll get talking. And they did! []
  4. Unless you were, in which case, how the heck did you find my blog? []

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At The Airport

Time flies when you are having fun! Seems like I just got to Ontario and now I’m at the airport, waiting for my flight home! Since I last blogged, I:

  • had breakfast, lunch1, and dinner with Kalev
  • had breakfast with my mom, Aunt Eileen & my sister
  • had lunch with my friend Jen W at Mercatto
  • had a family dinner for my dad’s birthday
  • walked to Mercury Coffee for a delicious Americano

In short, I ate a lot.

And now my flight is about to board, so I better pack up my computer! See you on the flipside!

  1. in beer & onion rings form []

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Another Summary – A.k.a. I am a delinquent blogger

Since clearly I’m way too busy to actually write all those blog postings I said I was going to write, here’s an even shorter summary of what I’ve been doing since my last summary:

  • Monday was a (mercifully) low key day, after all the crazy busy-ness of the first several days of my trip. I got to walk my niece to school – late, as she slept in, which she apparently *never* does. Clearly I am Bad Influence Aunt. We did, however, learn the sign in procedure for being late at her school. After that I came back to the house to hang out with Nancy, Jeff & my nephew. And also to work on my guest lecture for Dan’s class.
  • I made “chicken” pot pie1 for dinner and then we went to Ed’s Real Scoop for some freaking delicious ice cream.
    Ed's Real Scoop - Types of Cones
  • Then Nancy, Thomas and I headed off to Guelph. Since Dan’s class starts at 9 a.m., we figured it made more sense to head there the night before rather than try to fight morning traffic. Nancy and the baby stayed at her in-laws and I stayed at Dan’s. We may or may not have stayed up until 12:30 a.m. chatting and working. And he may or may not have introduced me to coconut milk ice cream.
  • Tuesday was a day spent in Guelph. Dan & I rocked his class, with my Prezi awesomeness and his stats-y genius. After that we went for lunch at the Grad Lounge2, then meandered around campus – where I haven’t been since I finished my Masters there in August 2000! Then suddenly it was suddenly the end of the day. We took a grand total of 0 photos, despite our best laid plans of taking planking and jump shots. We were clearly too exhausted from being awesome all day to arrange photo shoots.
  • Next it was off to my sister’s in laws for dinner. Dinner of amazing deliciousness – homemade spring rolls, baked potato, deviled eggs, a huge salad, and steak for the meat-consumers. Followed by banana splits! For those of you counting, that was my third ice cream in a 24 hour period!
  • Then it was back to Toronto in time to tuck my wee niece into bed!
  • And now I’m writing this blog posting! Go me!

Plans for the rest of my trip include:

  • Wednesday = Kalev Day
  • Thursday = morning with my mom, Aunt Eileen3, evening = a belated birthday dinner for my dad.
  • Friday = my last day in Toronto!
  1. Or, as my friend Jody has no dubbed it, “brave pot pie.” []
  2. Spicy tofu tacos and beer for me, pork tacos and beer for Dan. []
  3. Who are both retired and thus can meet for breakfast on a weekday morning! []

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My Trip So Far – A Quick Summary

Hey, remember when I said that I was planning to do a much better job of blogging this trip than I did of blogging my last trip. Apparently, I was full of crap. So, let’s see if I can do a quick summary of all the awesome things I’ve been doing instead of blogging. Let’s begin at the beginning.

When I left Vancouver on Tuesday night, I was sad that I was going to miss being in the city for game 7 of the Stanley Cup. As it turned out, the thing I’m actually sad about (well, in addition to the Canucks not winning) is that a bunch of punks decided to act like complete assholes, burning up cars and looting stores and wrecking my city’s reputation to boot. On a more happy note, many of those jerks were stupid enough to commit their crimes on camera, so they are getting nailed for it, as they should. They don’t represent my city or my team. The real fans and the real Vancouverites are the ones who were out the next day cleaning up the mess left behind by the jerks.

Anyway. Bygones.

Wednesday, before the unpleasantness that was Game 7, Sarah and I had a lovely time at the National Art Gallery. The NAG will get its own blog posting, because this is just quick summary posting of my adventures so far, but suffice it to say that with Sarah’s assistance, I made it both into and out of the NAG without having to see the massive spider outside. It was not an easy feat, but I accomplished it.

Thursday I got up much later than I’d been hoping to, mostly due to having stayed up late watching coverage of the riot, but also because I’d only slept for about 3 hours on my red-eye flight from Vancouver on Tuesday night. Regardless, we still had enough time to enjoy the day. We got to tour the Royal Canadian Mint – which was my first choice for things that I wanted to check out that I hadn’t yet seen1. The Mint is totally getting its own blog posting as well, because it’s freaking cool and I learn many interesting things that I’m sure you are all dying to know. Suffice it to say that I picked up a gold bar that was worth more than half a million dollars2! On the way back to Sarah’s we stopped by 24 Sussex Drive for some photo opps.

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While we were there, Prime Minister Harper got a Coca-Cola delivery:

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You know who else gets Coke deliveries to their house? Totally normal people.

Thursday night Sarah made us some kick ass eggplant parmesan – her Nonna’s recipe – and we drank some lovely Stoneleigh wine. We also watched “Too Big To Fail,” which was rather mind-blowing. If you haven’t watched it, I suggest you do!

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Sarah and Baby V

For Friday morning, we’d thought about fitting in one more tourist-y thing before we headed out to drop me off at my family reunion, but decided it would be a much better plan to just relax around Sarah’s place – definitely a good call on our part3. Then it was off to pick up Sarah’s Nonna in Kingston, with a quick stop at Canadian Tire so I could pick up a Father’s Day gift for my Dad, and then off to drop me off in Gananoque for my family reunion.

Worton Family Reunion 2011

The family reunion will require a blog posting of its own, but definitely the most exciting thing about it was that it was where I *finally* got to meet my nephew in person! He’s the cutest little baby boy I’ve ever met! Here’s a picture of me, my nephew, and my niece4 :

Day 362

Now I’m in Toronto at my sister’s place. It’s getting rather late, so I think I’ll hit the hay. Tomorrow, I have to finish up my guest lecture for Dr. Dan’s class, make something for my parents’ upcoming 40th anniversary (!) and make a “chicken” pot pie5, because I’ve been telling Nancy & Jeff how freaking delicious it is and now I have to prove it!

  1. There are sooo many cool things to see and do in Ottawa, what with it being the capital and all, so despite having been there a few times, there’s still so many things I have yet to see. On my last trip we did the Diefenbunker – have I mentioned how much I loved the freaking Diefenbunker? []
  2. But which is not, however, the most expensive thing I’ve ever touched! You’ll have to wait for my Mint blog posting to find out what is! []
  3. Plus, I know I’ll be back to visit again, so I’ll get around to visiting all the sites I want to visit eventually!! []
  4. Who just so happens to be the cutest little girl ever! []
  5. Note: Does not actually contain any pot []