Monday, October 31, 2011

Hello Hallowe'en Candy!

It's 7 pm on All Hallow's Eve and I've just eaten my first Hallowe'en candy. I guess the secret is to delay buying them until 5 pm the day of. Who knew? All those years of eating the entire stash weeks before and then having to replenish for the big night. Of course, we all know the best time to buy is the day AFTER Hallowe'en when you can pick your favourite treats for 75% off!

Happy Hallowe'en!!!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Our Family is Growing!

No, I'm not pregnant. I thought I'd bypass all the sleepless nights, breastfeeding and potty training and go straight to adolescence. What???

My youngest sister (the product of two nomadic parents) has decided to come live with us for her high school years and attend the same school as our daughter. They are only a year and three months apart, but two grades due to birth months. So I'd like to welcome her to the Gogina family.

I will be the Other Mother.


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

For Sale: Spell-check. Never used.

Whenever I want a good laugh, I pull up craigslist and mock the sad spelling in some of the posts. I can't help it.

A common one is Winnie the Poo. Maybe The Book of Poo is not the book I'm thinking of with the bear whose head is stuffed with fluff. It's possible that Disney made a movie about Poo. I'm even considering naming my next bowel movement Poo. I have fond memories of Winnie the Pooh but I suppose there's room in my heart for another Poo or his ghetto brotha Winnie the Phoo. "Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, phoo?"

Another is cats that are "spaded". I don't know if that means hit over the head with a spade or buried in the ground by one but either way it is not a selling feature. Oh, and a male cat is neutered, not spayed.

Here's an uncommon one: Shrek and Leona. I guess Fiona didn't want all the publicity hassle of having her mug plastered all over McDonald's glasses so she changed her name. I get it.

Ah...the loveable chiwawa. Unlike the Mexican chihuahua, the chiwawa is a great dog for the phonetically challenged.

I realize that spell-check won't recognize all these errors but the sad thing is that these people probably aren't ESL or learning disabled. They probably graduated from high school, possibly even university. They might be our doctors, city planners, politicians or aircraft controllers. We're going to hell in a hanndbaskt, people. Be afrayded.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Monday, April 4, 2011

Are you smarter than a new Canadian citizen?

Who was Sir Sam Steele? What are the three parts of Parliament? What minerals are still being mined in the northern territories?

Do you know the answers to these questions without consulting Google? I quizzed three intelligent Canadians who were born, raised and educated in this true north strong and free. The results? We would not pass the Canadian Citizenship test. But, as my German-born friend pointed out, “You don’t have to pass the test; you were born here.”  I am helping Erica study for her upcoming Citizenship test this month. While there are many things I already know, I have learned a lot of Canadian history that I didn’t know before. If I had taken the test before I helped her study, I likely would have been among the 20% of test-takers that failed. Even though the 20 questions are multiple choice, some are tougher than others.

For example:
  • We all know that the War of 1812 was in 1812, but did you know it was fought against the Americans who wanted to conquer the British colony of Canada, and ended in 1814? 
  • The term “responsible government” may seem like an oxymoron, but it was Sir Louis-Hippolyte La Fontaine, a champion of French language rights, who became the first head of a responsible government in 1849. 
  • You see his picture on the five dollar bill, but do you know who Sir Wilfred Laurier was?  He was the first French-Canadian prime minister since Confederation and he encouraged immigration to the West.

Sure, you might be able to guess the correct answer out of the four options presented, but with a 75% score needed to pass and a 30-minute time limit, you might start to second-guess yourself. The right to remain silent, while familiar, is not one of the fundamental rights in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Nor is the right to drive. That is actually a privilege. The Mobility Right is not the right to own a mobile phone; rather it is the right to move and live anywhere in Canada.

For fun (yes, I am that nerdy), search the internet for Canadian Citizenship tests and see if you would make the grade. I am willing to bet you will be surprised and mildly ashamed. And for the record, Sir Sam Steele was a great frontier hero, Mounted Policeman and soldier of the Queen. The three parts of Parliament are the Sovereign (Queen or King), the Senate and the House of Commons.  Gold, lead, zinc, copper and diamonds are still being mined in the northern territories.

How did you do?  

© 2011 Miz Dinah
Citizenship & Immigration Canada, “Study Guide – Discover Canada: The Rights and Responsibilities of Citizenship”; Wikipedia, “Canadian Citizenship Test”

Friday, March 25, 2011

Bloggis Interruptus

Clearly I seem to be on hiatus. I just thought I would make it official.

In addition to working 40+ hours per week, raising our little family and volunteering sporadically at our daughter's school, I thought it would make sense to go back to school.  Sleep is for sissies.

I want to get my Bachelor's in Business Administration.  However, the Statistics course requires Math 12.  I graduated with Math 11 (the bare minimum).  Let it be known that I dislike math.  I am not a very good mathlete.  So naturally I should get a degree in numbers.  I have enrolled in Math 12 through the local distance education program, and if that isn't enough I also enrolled in French 12.  Even though I passed French 12 with a B and took two semesters of university french.  This is more for personal growth.  I use it in my job and my daughter is in late french immersion so it is to my advantage to brush up on ma langue secondaire.

Unfortunately this places my blog at the bottom of the food chain.  Along with shaving my legs, taking the cats to the vet and putting away the laundry.  Not that your expectations are very high if you are following me, but I may be even more sporadic.  À bientôt, mes amis.  I need to finish my homework.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

If I may be so bold...

I am not a coffee snob; however, I do appreciate a nice bold roast (Ethical Bean Rocket Fuel, Starbucks Sumatra, Kicking Horse 454 Horse Power).  I will shun the weaker Pike Place in favour of the Komodo Dragon. Bypass the Breakfast Blend for the French Roast.

Why oh why are we having such issues with the coffee at the office? Aside from the fact that we don't grind our beans fresh before brewing, that is. Even so, it is possible to get a good cup of coffee from pre-ground. Finding the Tim Hortons and certain House Blends/Colombian too acidic, I insisted suggested we try a darker roast. But with the volume of java being consumed here on a daily basis, 1lb of Starbucks doesn't go very far. We could buy the big Costco-sized French Roast but it only comes in beans and grinding would be too noisy for our office.

We started buying the Seattle Mountain Sumatra at Costco because you can grind your beans right at the store.  At first it was good but it is increasingly less so.  All of a sudden the colour and flavour is very inconsistent. The last few pots were really weak so I added a whole bunch little extra to the most recent pot and it was like drinking ass water. Or what you would expect ass water to taste like. You know that really expensive Kopi Luwak coffee that is trendy right now?  The one where the Indonesian civet cats eat the coffee cherries and crap out the beans and then people pay a shit-ton of money to drink it? This is what you'd expect coffee that came out of an animal's butt to taste like. (I just want to know who was desperate enough for a caffeine hit to even consider roasting and brewing a log of cat shit.  But I digress...)

We have a nice Cuisinart brewer with a reusable filter that we wash. We are putting in one heaping Tbsp. for every two cups of water, which is what I do at home with my considerably cheaper Oster. The only differences are that I use unbleached filters (which I compost) and I grind my beans fresh. And I buy better coffee.  I suppose that last part might play a small part because my coffee tastes like black nectar from heaven. Still, WTF is wrong with our coffee at work? Is it the grounds, the filter, the brewer, the atmosphere? Is someone adding pencil shavings? I don't get it. I am going to bring in a paper filter and some of my coffee and see if it tastes halfway decent. Life is too short to drink bad coffee!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

How is a cat like Viagra?

It can get you up in bed.

I was woken up at 7 this morning with a little kitty shiatsu courtesy of Gordon. I'd like to say he does it out of love but I think it has more to do with an empty food bowl. He is a heavy fur-boy but he does hold back the claws, unlike his sister, Zoey, who is lighter but performs cat-upuncture. When the massage failed to rouse the food lady, he stuck his wet nose in my ear and purred and snuffled, making me giggle. So I'm up early on a Saturday and the cats and rabbit are fed. The child is asking for breakfast now. If she stands on my back, I'm done for. I'd better get cooking. But

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

I'm Blogging. Period.

Gentlemen, avert your eyes.

Where have all the tampons gone?  I don't mean the little bean-sized ones.  I mean the UPPERCASE TAMPONS.  The venti-sized tampons.  These ones: 

I went to Shopper's Drug Mart and Save-on-Foods today and there was a gap right where the o.b. Ultras should have been. This is day 2, people.  Super-plus isn't going to cut it.  How do I know?  Because that's all I had, and it wasn't cutting it.  Thus the lunchtime shopping trip to restock my supplies and acquire a new pair of jeans. (On the plus side, the jeans were on sale so I got two pairs.)

According to the o.b. web site, there is a temporary supply interruption in North America resulting in (gasp!) a shortage of tampons!  Crank that puppy up and get the supply flowing again!  You've got 28 days.  1-2-3-Go!