Sep 27, 2012

New Direction

In order to encourage me to blog more often I'm going to be redirecting the content of this blog to writing and books.

I've had an idea in my head for a book for a long time and I'm finally in a state of mind where I've been able to start first drafts of scenes. I have an alpha reader lined up and research is starting to pile up. I'm really excited about diving into this project. I know the odds of being able to live off of writing are very slight. But just being able to say "I wrote a book" would be really awesome. And I'll be able to cross it off of my bucket list :)

I'll also be gushing about books I've been reading or have read. I don't claim to be a book reviewer by any means, but maybe you'll see something that peaks your interest!

And for now...

That is all.

Jul 23, 2012

Running up that hill

I ran yesterday. Not just the short sprints that I normally do while playing ball. But an actual run until I can't run anymore kind of run. It was wonderful. I really missed it.

Because I've been out of the game for so long, I'm starting slow and only did the 2km lower bench loop. I was able to do the first km without stopping and wound up with a respectable time. The second klick was a little rough though. I wound up icing my legs as soon as I got home. I have ball tonight...and despite some stiffness I doubt I'll be able to hold back from sprinting as fast as I can.

All that said, I'm a bit more confident that I'll be ready for the Emperor's Challenge come August 11th. As long as I can get my endurance back to where it was before my foot injury, all should be well and good :)

Jul 21, 2012

A quiet Saturday morning :)

Brandon is off on a 10km hike to Crumholtz Circular. I would have gone, except that I'm not sure my foot is quite ready for that long of a trek (though I'm getting there!) and my right ear is plugged and nothing seems to help, so I doubt the elevation of that hike would have been pleasant.

So here I sit sipping on some coffee that tastes like a cookie (add a teaspoon of cinnamon to the grounds and a splash of hazelnut Int. Delight to your mug!) and chilling with the puppy :)



BTW the above video...very awesome cover :) Came across it as I was scouring the interwebs for any information concerning the casting for a particular character in a book turned movie that starts filming next month. The book is callled City of Bones and is part of the Mortal Instrument series by Cassandra Clare.

What I find slightly more exciting, is that if this series does well in theatres, there's a good chance that her other series, The Infernal Devices, will be made into movies as well. Where the Mortal Instruments is based in 2007 New York City, The Infernal Devices is set in Victorian London which is one of my favourite eras.


In other news, at work we're working on a pretty cool contest to help promote local trails and to get people out hiking them. It's based loosely on geocaching, except we've tweaked it so that people without GPS can do it. We've even lined up some amazing sponsors and prizes...the Grande Prize includes a Garmin Montana 650 GPS!

On the home front, it's pretty quiet. Archer is doing awesome and has mastered swimming on his own, without us having to carrying him into the water. He also does truck travel without too much complaint (as long as he can fall asleep near the air conditioning vent at my feet ^_^

My foot, as mentioned, is doing better, though not completely fixed. I'm slowing trying to get myself ready for the Emperor's Challenge and am pretty sure I'll be able to finish, though not in the time I would be aiming for if my foot was 100% fine. Still, I'm going to try. Worse case scenario I'll need to be driven down the mountain. 



Jul 15, 2012

Portrait fun and a wet puppy

The editor at the newspaper I work at is also a photographer. For the month of June he did a portrait a day, and I was his day 29. Being nerdy, like myself, we decided that I'd put on my (still in progress) steampunk outfit, and borrowed a huge wrench from the Fire Hall (thanks Brandon!). Below is the result!!

The Airship Mechanic
I'm pretty darn happy with how it turned out. I generally dislike pictures of myself, but I guess having someone take the picture who understands about lighting and positioning helps a lot.

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In other news, it has been VERY hot here this past week. Unbearably so, in fact. Luckily it stayed a bit cooler on the main floor of our house so we spent a lot of time draped over the couch trying very hard not to touch one another. And then an idea hit us...WE ARE SURROUNDED BY COLD CREEKS!

So off we went!!

From a previous trip to Quality Falls (where we forgot to bring a camera) we discovered that Archer was quite the natural swimmer. When we got to Flatbed creek we decided to see if we could get him to come into the water without us having to carry him in first. And he did!!
 
Watching Dad cross to the other side of the creek.



Not wanting us to be too far from him, Archer followed us in.

We were pretty proud. It was pretty fun to watch him swim across while getting slightly swept off by the current of the creek (**note** he was never in any danger.). But he pressed on, determined to catch up with us.

Although it's pretty hazy today (smoke from some big fires way up north is my guess), we might head back down there today if the temperatures get into the 20s.

Jul 8, 2012

Summer is finally happening!

Holy smokes! The weather has done a complete 360 from cold and wet to hot and dry. I'm definitely not one who enjoys hot weather (I prefer warm and breezy), but somehow today was very enjoyable.

The morning was well and good. Woke up early to start cleaning house. We threw open all of the windows and let as much of the cool morning air in as possible. From there I went to a friends how to play a little bit of DnD. We got about an hour of play in but then a bunch of distractions followed so we called it quits.

I got home and Brandon and I decided that it was just too hot to stay home, so we grabbed the puppy, hopped into the truck and went to Quality Falls. The hiking was made bearable by the very shaded trail and our reward at the end was a wonderfully cold creek with a pool at the foot of a small waterfall. Michelle and Aaron met us there along with their dog and we just hung out with our feet dangling in the cold water. We also found out that Archer can swim!! Though he wasn't very happy about this discovery and sulked off by himself for a little bit ^_^

Now we're at home and Brandon's been sleeping on the couch for the last 1.5-2hours. Archer is doing the same just beside him on the floor. My boys are very adorable that way.

In other news....

~ We are getting a temporary room-mate. There was a sign on the board outside the grocery store for a person with a dog looking for a room to rent until the end of September. Brandon called her up and she came by earlier this week to check out the room and see if it would be a good fit. All was deemed well and she should be arriving with her stuff in about an hour.


~ My foot issues are more or less sorted out. Nothing is wrong with the bone or the joints. The doctor is fairly certain that it's just some soft-tissue damage. I'm on an anti-inflammatory which is working quite well. So much that I've been able to do a bit of jogging and hiking without any pain. I'm pretty thrilled because the Emperor's Challenge is a month away and I'm very behind in my training. Here's hopping all goes well!


Jun 16, 2012

Archer's First Week at Home: 7 weeks old

Last week Brandon and I bought a puppy. We'd been thinking about it for a while, and finally started looking for local breeders of mid sized dogs. In the beginning I wanted a Beagle. Then we found a breeder of Miniature Eskimo Dogs up in Fort Nelson. Our third (and eventually top choice) was an Australian Shepherd. We chatted to a handful of breeders, but the price for their puppies was very much outside of our budget. 

His first time in our yard.

So, we took to kijiji. Among all the large dogs and designer puppies we saw a picture of an adorable little brown thing. I emailed the seller asking the breed. I got an immediate reply saying it was a male Australian shepherd and that yes, he is still available. So I called her to set things up. They were in Sexsmith, Alberta, so the drive to get there was convenient since we go to Grande Prairie a couple times a month.

After his first bath at home.

And that's how we came to own Archer, our Australian Shepherd pup ^_^

 
The first few nights were definitely the worst. Waking up several times a night is definitely something to get used to when you're used to 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep. At first we didn't have a crate, so we kept him in the upstairs bathroom at night. Once we got the kennel, he started being able to sleep for longer stretches of time. The best night so far was taking him out at 1:00am and having him sleep until we were ready to get up at 6:30am. 

Under the couch. One of his favourite spots.

Other than 4-5 incidents on the first couple of days, he hasn't peed or pooed inside the house, always waiting to go outside. He's taken to crate training very well. He's shown himself to be as smart as his breed is reported to be. 

Both boys, tuckered out from some intense play time.
 While he's bonding really well with both Brandon and me, he's definitely shown himself to be much more of a daddy's boy.

ARCHER!





Jun 5, 2012

Quick Update Before I Find Something Else To Distract Me!

Things have been awesomely busy around here lately. The weather has been mostly awesome which means a lot of time spent outside. Here's what's new.

1. Brandon and I joined the slow-pitch league. We play twice a week with the occasional practice. I'm a little obsessed and always excited about playing.

2. I haven't been running because I buggered up my right foot and anything more than a quick sprint becomes pretty painful. I probably shouldn't even play slow-pitch, but I'd likely go nuts if I wasn't doing something active.
 
3. Our yard is starting to come together! The dandelions on the front lawn are unsightly, but we'll be taking care of them this week/end. Brandon also got a few truck loads of dirt to help level the back yard out and then seeded it. Lots of work still to be done, but completely worth it!



4. We finally had our first backyard fire in our fire pit. It was maybe a little too hot out for a fire, so we didn't sit by it as long as we might have liked.

5. Good weather also means geocaching adventures! Since we've found all the local caches, we have to drive at least an hour for new ones. So last Saturday we got 13 while taking some back roads to One Island Lake. Found some really beautiful spots that we're planning to explore further. Might even be camping at one of them this weekend!

6. We've been re-watching the original Star Wars movies. Awesome, they are!


I'm sure a lot of other stuff has happened. But of course I've waited too long to blog and I've now forgotten well over half of everything else I was planning on sharing. But that is the way of things I suppose. 


Apr 23, 2012

Social Punk

About a month and a half ago I was approached by Monica Leonelle to be a part of her blog-to-blog book tour. Instead of going from town to town, bloggers across the web take part by "hosting" a stop. Admittedly I was a little skeptical, but when I replied to the email I got a real human response. The book seemed right up my ally, so I said "Yes, I'd like to take part in this!".

I nearly forgot that I had this on my list of things to do. As you can tell from my recent blogging history, it's been fairly quiet here. Luckily I got a reminder that the end of the blog tour is nearing and now here we are :)

 *****************************************************************
Ima would give anything to escape The Dome and learn what’s beyond its barriers, but the Chicago government has kept all its citizens on lockdown ever since the Scorched Years left most of the world a desert wasteland. When a mysterious group of hooded figures enters the city unexpectedly, Ima uncovers a plot to destroy The Dome and is given the choice between escaping to a new, dangerous city or staying behind and fighting a battle she can never win.

Distopian fiction. That alone peaked my interest, and from what little I've managed to read with my hectic schedule, I'm really enjoying it. Below is an excerpt from the Social Punk's prologue and below that is a contest! 

Excerpt from Social Punk by Monica Leonelle:

Twelve cups of water sat on the table, four for each of them. Next to each cup sat a pill—yellow for fat, red for carbs, blue for protein, and green for vitamins
.
Vaughn took the red pill, ripped it in half like a pack of sugar, and poured it into his cup. He set his cup into a contraption on the table and it whirled and hissed. When the machine finished, the cup had a pink, swirly liquid inside.
Nahum looked at the four cups in distaste.
“Not up to your standards?” Vaughn asked, shooting his drink. He swallowed the mixture in one large gulp. “I would get you something else, but we’re rebuilding our hash. We can’t afford real food, plus it’s bad for you anyway. Extremely difficult to maintain a balanced diet.”
“Synthetic food can’t cost that much,” Nahum countered. He grinned. “We had it in our little fake world, at least.”
Vaughn chuckled. “Synthetic food is even worse for you than real food. Shortens your life. We stopped eating that stuff at the turn of the century. It gave people long-term hyperactivity, which can kill you. LTH took out a lot of the population, kind of like cancer in your day, except a bigger deal because the population had dwindled so low already. Plus, people live indefinitely now.”
Nahum’s nose twitched as he laughed. “People don’t live indefinitely.”
But Vaughn looked genuinely surprised. “Of course we do. Have you seen anyone who looks over the age of twenty-five to you?”
“What does that mean, though?” Ima asked out of curiosity. “How could you live indefinitely? You may not look older, but you still age.”
Vaughn grinned. “Like I said before—there’s a lot you don’t understand about this world.”
Monica Leonelle is a well-known digital media strategist and the author of three novels. She blogs at Prose on Fire (http://proseonfire.com) and shares her writing and social media knowledge with other bloggers and authors through her Free Writer Toolkit (http://proseonfire.com/free-writer-toolkit).


Apr 8, 2012

Where we both end the week sick.

What a week it has been.

On Monday I had an appointment in Dawson Creek to see the gynecologist. After a quick exam and an ultrasound he's certain that I have polycystic ovary disease. He ordered some blood work to be done and I go back to see him on the 18th to come up with a treatment plan. Not much else to report until then.

Also on Monday, Brandon finally got himself started on his new hobby. Model trains. If I hadn't been there, I'm quite certain he could have stayed in that store for quite a long time chatting about trains to the owner.

On Tuesday Brandon got sick. He called be at work and in a very good Sheldon (from Big Bang Theory) voice asked for chicken soup for dinner. I honestly wasn't sure if he was being serious or not until I got home to a very mucus filled husband. So of course I made him some chicken soup.

Wednesday was uneventful as Brandon was still sick. We just had a quiet night at home.

Thursday I came home from work at 10am because I couldn't keep any food down. This is actually the second time I've had to go home from work because I was throwing up. My co-worker drove me home where I crashed on the couch and started watching Season 1 of Gilmore girls. Brandon came home and joined me on the couch where we stayed until bedtime.

Friday I was recovered, though Brandon was still sick. Regardless, it was a beautiful day so we went for a jog/walk down to the Lions Campground. It's was a 6km trip that did takes us a little long to do, but was well worth the fresh air. We even got caught in a short burst of hail. It was actually really need to walk in it.

Saturday, despite not being 100% well, Brandon went for a 15km run. It constantly amazes me how much stamina that guy has. Not to mention, that at 2pm we met up with Dr. Helm, his wife Linda, and another member of the WNMS (Thomas) at the Quality Canyon trail head to help them with clearing it of fallen trees from the winter winds. Holy crap was that a lot of work! The hike would normally take an hour and a half without stopping. We were there for 4.5 hours. It was completely astonishing to see how many big, healthy trees had completely uprooted. It was completely worthwhile (even though I had jelly legs at the end). I know Brandon was hoping to help them at Teepee Falls trail today, but he says he's still not feeling completely well and he's supposed to dress up as Sparky the Fire Dog for the kids' easter egg hunt at the elementary school today.

And now it's Sunday. I've caught whatever it is Brandon has, so I'll likely end up on the couch for a good portion of the day. And after yesterdays hike/tree clearing adventure I don't feel guilty about that at all.

Through all this, we forgot our camera every single time.

Mar 26, 2012

Just for fun, lets run up and down a mountain!

Spring is here! Temperatures are going above 0*C and I'm completely thrilled.

Brandon and I are signed up for the Emperor's Challenge Half Marathon in August and as such are glad that the snow has melted enough that we can run on the side walks. Trails are still hit and miss, not to mention muddy, so we're easing ourselves into our new, active routine (running on pavement sucks!).

I was pretty nervous when I was filling out the online registration, and the scariest part was hitting the confirm button for the payment. Now that I'm committed to it, I'm looking at is as though it's some kind of exam. To pass, all I have to do is run up and down a mountain...

Okay, maybe I'm still a little nervous.

But I'm pretty confident that I'll be able to finish. Probably not in the gold or silver time frames, but definitely within the 5 hour limit to receive a finisher's medal. And since this is my first race ever, finishing is the goal.

When Brandon signed up a few weeks ago, I was pretty certain that I would not sign up for it this year. I figured I'd spend this year training and sign up next year. Then I remembered that that's exactly what I had said last year. Now that I'm signed up there's no turning back!

We're trying very hard to be more social and active in town. We've signed up with the Wolverine Nordic Mountain Society (the outdoor activities club), and the Peace Region Paleontology Research Centre. Those two groups alone put us with all the super active people in town, so we're meeting people that we have plenty in common with.

Yay for making more friends :)