Archive for January, 2010


meal planning

January 31, 2010

I’ve been doing quite well with my meal planning as of yet but I haven’t had time to do much in the way of documentation. That’s going to change starting now!

One great surprise I’ve had this year is that in cooking for myself I’ve been able to make meals stretch a bit longer than usual. That’s about the only part I like about cooking for one:)

In any case, I’ve learned that planning for 5-6 meals in a week is all I can do. I rarely get to day 6 and never to day 7. Before I lose track of the meal plans I’ve been enjoying I’d like to share what I’ve had over the past two weeks or so:
* zesty garlic (soba) pasta with beans and roasted peppers
* lentil soup
* oven fries, sockeye salmon and broccoli
* refried wild rice with pecans (one of my favourites) and salad
* quinoa, salad, canned salmon (lazy meal!)
* vegetarian chili
* turkey tacos (with rehydrated Don Antonio salsa… mmm mmm good). These lasted me a few days because ground meat packages are so big!
* roast potatoes, broccoli, jerk chicken
* vegetarian mulligatawny stew
* minestrone soup
* pasta with stir fried chicken and veggies
On Friday’s I’ve been enjoying meals out with classmates

My housemate has a big celebration going on here tomorrow so I’ve been working like mad to empty my part of the fridge but in a few days it will be time to get back into my meal planning. I’m leaning towards a few more veggies, a little less meat and sticking to my $100/wk for everything but rent. I’ve already made a sizable dent in this weeks budget by going to a play, a storytelling session and a contra dance but fortunately I’m enjoying the challenge. That, and my freezer stash is fairly healthy right now!

Have a good week!


interesting observation

January 25, 2010

So… while I was hurt I ate a lot of oven fries since they were a quick and easy way to get potatoes into my diet and didn’t involve pain. One day in the grocery store I came across some surprising math:

something is wrong with this picture

or is it this one that is wrong

Two different labels, two similar fat contents (as measured in grams) but two very different reports on the percantage of the recommended daily fat allowance. Maybe they’re using different assumptions but it seemed like one of the parties might be guilty of false advertising. Just my thoughts anyways.


two thumbs up

January 25, 2010

Yeah! I have my hands back, and with them a much improved outlook on life.

I find injuries so frustrating because it means taking a break from the activities I love and in a sense, losing a piece of myself too. No matter how hard I try I can’t seem to avoid the frustration that reluctantly draws me inwards and away from the light. It seems especially silly given what sorts of things other people around the world are dealing with every day.

In any case, I’m happy to be “back” and to celebrate, I experimented with drawing this weekend. It’s a tepid start into something I’ve done so little of but I hope to carve time for more of it in the future.

experimenting with chalk


math geek

January 15, 2010

Okay, I don’t really think that’s me… Kevin is much more likely to fit that description but there might be a change brewing.

When I returned to school for the New Year we had a one week math course with a math professor/Waldorf parent and it got me all fired up about math. Then I learned that I would be with a middle school class during their geometry block, starting this week. The geometry I got in high school was easy enough for me to follow but it always seemed sooo dry and boring. Actually most of high school math was like that or missed me completely (I’m thinking the calculus we did with graphing calcuators – ugh).

After last week I was all excited about math, but concerned about the unfamiliar task of working with young adolescents and terrified about how to bring geometry in a way that would actually connect with them. I’m so thankful that I get to work with such a wise and sense aware mentor. I’m eating up all the new and interesting things I can learn about the golden section, compass and straight edge geometric constructions and the platonic solids. My head is spinning about all the cool things I need to investigate further and at the same time, I’m getting to experience some things that don’t usually come with math in school. Namely, looking at the golden section as used in art, exploring geometry with clay, leading meditative reflection, discovering the meaning of “new” words, finding an appetite for my own inner reflection and so much more.

And yeah, this math part… that piece about wanting to be a math teacher, the very thing that motivated me to even think about becoming a teacher so many years ago, is burning ever brighter within me. I love it and can’t wait for next week’s adventures!



January 13, 2010

An outdoor Christmas tree

decorated suburban fence

In between settling into being back at school and away from Kevin and starting another practicum, I’ve been busy. I’ve taken a few photos since I got here but figured it was time to share some of them.

finished crayon rolls


This last photo is of the golden ratio calipers I made out of scrap card. I’ll be bringing that story and an exercise where we can use the calipers to class tomorrow. Wish me luck!

golden ratio calipers


melancholy monday

January 4, 2010

I was some how able to keep myself upbeat during my last post but by last night I was a wreck. I’d had the day to reflect on things both past and future and to add to the mix I was thinking about my late friend Cory.

Today would have been his birthday had he not had leukemia or rejected the bone marrow transplant. I know I can’t turn back the clock but even though it was 9 years ago his memory is still fresh. Having had an earlier run in with cancer he lived each day as though he might not see the next but with such youthful and energetic enthusiasm. It was contagious at the time but as each year passes, I’m reminded of how much further I am from living life that way and it’s upsetting.

I know that my view of the world is changing – I wouldn’t be maturing if it wasn’t – but it seems like fear keeps taking a larger and larger hold on me. Fear of falling, of breaking, of not losing weight, of failing at work and relationships, of not getting what I want in this life, of letting other people down, of making them uncomfortable, the list goes on. This isn’t what I want but at the same time how do I change it? Thank goodness for true friends who listened to me yesterday and helped me shed the most raw stuff. If I learned anything, it’s that I need to talk about these thing because getting upset and then trying to bury them isn’t working.

My winter holidays didn’t go the way I had expected – not even close. A big part had to do with house guests that didn’t leave but another thread, with a much longer history, is how I deal with injuries.

I get hurt a lot and I’m convinced it’s because there are lessons I haven’t yet learned. I gave up hockey, downhill skiing, mountain bike racing and now even cross country skiing because it seems that if I fall, I break something. Fracture number eight, which happened four years ago was so painful and persistent that I let a doctor convince me it was too risky for most of that stuff. Ooh it made me upset at the time but this thumb thing I’m dealing with now is serving as a good reminder for why it’s hard to turn back to those sports. I get frustrated from losing my independence and having to start over at ground zero again with my training.

At the same time, my social life has always revolved around sport and I have yet to find a worthy substitute for that or the adrenalin rush. I think that’s part of why I have a hard time accepting ball room dancing and swimming laps with wall hangers as my new activities. And heck, even though I love handwork it sure is hard these days and that makes me wonder what will it be like in another decade or two.  Should I even consider teaching handwork down the road?

It’s been a few years and I still don’t know what the answers are but I need to find a new determinism for finding what meets my needs for socializing and adrenalin. And of course, if you’ve been here and have any suggestions I would love to know!


reflecting on 09 and pondering 2010

January 3, 2010

New Year’s resolutions have never been my thing but Heather and Granola Girl have captured me with their reflections on 2009 and their hopes for the year ahead. I always thought September was more my time of year but suddenly I’m in the mood to take a look backwards and forwards.  There were some significant changes in 2009 and so many yet to be defined in 2010.

sewing on the beach

In 2009 I took care of a few items on my bucket list:
– learned how to use the pottery wheel (it was so good to use my bowls when I was home for Christmas!)
– starting this blog
– training for triathlon
– trying dragon boating
– going to Glacier National Park in Montana
– dipping candles
– visiting New England
– going back to school for teacher training
– getting involved in the (Vancouver) Olympics – I dreamed of volunteering at the games but the logistics didn’t work out and carrying the torch was closer than I ever imagined I’d get

Olympic toch relay

Plans are already in place for a few more items to come off the list in 2010:
– attending the Olympics (I still regret that I didn’t go to Sidney where I knew 10 people who were participating!)
– finishing teacher training
– starting a new career
– taking a cross Canada road trip

tenting on Maui

There are some things I’m really proud of from last year but need to go a step further with this year so I can truly say I love this life!

Getting fit. Getting into a cycling and swimming routine last year was great but it took a lot of work for me to get to the point where I enjoyed it (and these were both sports I loved when I was in public school and university). Then I lost momentum when I spent half of the summer without my bike and away from a pool. I’m not sure that triathlon competition will fit into the plans this year but I need to get back on the fit routine so I can enjoy hiking, photography, and whatever 2010 has in store for us. I think the key here is to remind myself of why I want to get fit and starting my day with exercise.

Glacier NP - view from the E!

A decade or so ago I went so far as to run a few nights a week so I could develop the endurance to hike longer and higher. If I could handle that, surely I can handle a few pilates, swimming and yoga sessions a week now!

artful attempt at shore protection

Finding rhythm. I know that I need to get to bed earlier so I can get up earlier and do more with my day but I can’t believe how hard it is to do when my days aren’t jam packed with activities outside of the house or something to proove in a competition. I’m hopeful that regular glimpes at this post will help keep me on my game but I’m also going to need to find a way to limit my time on-line. The rhythm I’m still struggling to find needs to squeeze my computer time out but make space for fitness, socializing, sleep and healthy eating so I can be ready for a summer of outdoor exploration.

silhouette at big rock

Doing what I love. Taking leave from the career I felt was destroying my soul was a big move last year but finishing my training and starting afresh are going to be big too. There are still a lot of questions about where we’ll be and what we’ll be doing seven months from now and beyond but the most critical thing for me is it to find what I love no matter what situation we end up in. That means being open to whatever our future holds and rediscovering the outdoor activities we enjoy but haven’t done much of lately. I also need to be open to enjoying new things and doing what it takes to love the work I’m doing.

Kev on the slackline

Having goals are a big help and so this year, I resolve to get outside, get to bed early, get fit and love life. Have a great 2010!