Sunday, December 9, 2012

Sunday Update

Can you believe Christmas will be here in 16 days?!? I swear every year it seems Christmas creeps up faster and faster. I've decided against posting from my iPad because it's so dang slow and it's very frustrating trying to maneuver pictures around. Blogger already make that hard enough as it is and I don't need Apple to make it harder. I just wanted to give a few updates on what's been happening in the life of the Khau's. I had my very first after-hours Christmas party. Can you believe that after 7 years, this is my very first one?! It's sad but true. Jamie was sporting his Movember mustache, which I wasn't a huge fan of but at least he shaved the rest of his face. 

We've been having regular family dinners and Jamie's side of the family has been held at their new house on the north side. They're doing a lot of painting and they're smart to not actually move in until the painting is complete. It's much closer to drive there and there's a huge fenced backyard for Khuno too! Jane's been crocheting up a storm, just in time for the cold weather we've been having. Here's Khuno posing in a neat little accessory Jane made. It's a hood/scarf, hoarf? 
Now I know all of you have heard about the new roasted kale chips craze. It's the bee's knees right now of "health" snacks but what we have discovered is roasted brussel sprouts! They taste almost like roasted kale chips except meatier. All we did was pick up some gorgeous looking sprouts at Costco, quartered them up, drizzled them with oil and sprinkled them generously with salt and pepper. Pop them in the oven and roast at 375, checking on them regularly until they're nice and burnt toasty. They're so good I ate them at 11 the other night as chips. 
This last picture is to update you on our camera situation. After we took photos of James and Julie, Jamie dropped our camera and broke the shutter. The beloved Nikon D60 is quite old and when we asked about repair costs, it just isn't worth us spending the money to ship it to Nikon for fixing. So we hummed and haaa-ed about whether or not we should get a new camera for the last couple of months. One Saturday afternoon we stopped into Vistek to do some window shopping. You all know where this is going. Whether it's home, furniture, SPCA window shopping, it's always a bad idea to go and "look". In this case, it was no exception. We are now the proud owners of a new camera and although we couldn't afford to get a new lens to go with the sexy new camera body, Jamie's previous thinking ahead and buying a FX lens saved the day. Hopefully this upcoming year will bring back some better photos. 

Bringing it around back full circle to the Sunday update, Jamie spent most of the day working and I spent it crafting while listening to Christmas Pop music on Jango. I managed to sneak in some crocheting after lunch and some intermittent reading of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Top that all off with a home cooked meal and I must say, it wasn't that bad of a day. It's dinner time so I bid you all good night. 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Quilting Complete!

This is my very first post on the iPad mini and its not all that easy so this will be short and sweet. Can't even figure out how to move the picture and I'm not wasting another precious second on it! This rail fence quilt was such a great project to start with. I dabbled with free motion quilting and loved it! The certificate is nothing fancy, just something for completing the class. There was way more homework than anticipated and even now that the class is over, I have to hand stitch the binding. Paper crafting is taking a backseat right now because I've been bit by the sewing and crocheting bugs! Have a great Sunday night! 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 59: Quilting Update

I started a quilting class with my friend, Jinnee, a while back and I thought I'd post an update! I was driving one day and saw a sign for Sew Divine. They had an evening beginner quilting class on which worked perfectly with our schedule so off we went! It's a very basic Rail Fence quilt and I've learned over the last few weeks that it's very forgiving and if you have mistakes, it doesn't show in this quilt. One might ask why pay $120 for a class that you can learn through YouTube videos and such, but I like the social aspect of it and sometimes it's just easier having someone tell you what you're doing wrong instead of realizing the error when you're too far along. Some basic skills we learnt include how to cut fabric, square blocks off and press things properly. I'm very anal about getting things aligned so I admit, I'm a pinner. Just take a look at my photos! It's insane the amount of pins you need but in the end, it's worth it. I'll post the finished product once it's done. This week we basted our quilts and next week we will learn how to quilt all three layers together! 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 58: New Scarf.

I've always been a knitter and if you know my hubby, you'll know that he's a knitter too. Recently I picked up crocheting instead because Jinnee peaked my interest in it by showing me some of the items that she's made. I found a pattern on People Webs and it seemed easy enough so I gave it a go. It took about 5-6 times of undoing and redoing with a whole whack of fudging with the help of my sister-in-law, Jane, to finally get the hang on this darn pattern. It's actually called a Catherine Wheel so if you YouTube it first, you'll understand the pattern a lot better. I thought it'd be a good idea to use chunky yarn since it's a chunky scarf. Big mistake. The scarf is too chunky! I'm on my second one with regular weight yarn to see if it'll be better. If any of you crochet, I'd love to see some of your projects too!! Stay warm everyone! 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 57: Swimming Time!

How ridiculously cute are these two? My brother wanted to go to the dog park a few weekends ago so instead of driving all the way to their end of town, we made them come to us! If you've never walked along the Gold Bar off-leash train, please go! It runs parallel to the North Saskatchewan River and it stretches on and on. We used this trail to train Khuno how to be off-leash. It's not a big open field and yes, there are bushes he can run into and rivers he can jump into, but we usually manage to keep him coming back to us by running in the opposite direction. My brother wanted to bring along Chalkie too. We had three dogs under control for almost the entire walk. 

Right at the very start of the trail, there is a bend in the path and a little direct pathway that leads down to the river. Khuno disappeared so fast down that river path and Audi joined in on the fun. We looked down to see that we were 30 seconds too late and both dogs had jumped right into the frigid water. We climbed down to the river to have some fun with them since the dirtiness was already done. Little Chalkie doesn't have experience with moving water and since he loves hanging with the big boys, he hopped right into the water with them. His head dipped under and as he pounced back up to get air with little legs frantically doggy paddling, his eyes showed instant panic. I shouted to everyone that Chalkie was going to drown and my brother was on it! I mean, ON IT. Within a split second, he whipped the water bottle strapped around his chest off and threw it to the ground all while running into the water to grab his beloved dog. Joke was on him though because Chalkie's little legs got him far enough in that he was able to touch the ground and hop back onto shore. It was definitely scary though because if you know pugs, their breathing sucks. And inhaling dirty river water can't be a good thing. 

We hosed Khuno down in the front yard because he had way too much dirt clinging to his underbelly and then bathed him in the tub. We don't do this often as you can imagine the amount of work it is, but one trick to drying him after a bath is to use a shop vac. If you plug the hose into the other end of the shop vac where the air shoots out, you instantly have a cool air dryer! Works great and I feel a lot safer using that than a hair dryer. 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Happy Boss's Day

That's right, it's National Boss's Day. Did you wish your boss an extra happy day today? My staff did! I don't post much about work on here because I want to keep this blog about my extracurriculars and work just doesn't fit. I started a new job just over 3 months ago. It was a hard move because not only was it a new site, but it was an entirely new role. I had to leave my union and go "out of scope" which was very scary for me because that leaves me with no protection in this new job. I would also lose all my seniority within the union if I ever chose to go back. I've learned a lot these past three months. Some lessons were rotten and gave me a nauseating black hole in my stomach every time I went to work while others were great ones that allowed me to learn a little bit more about myself. 

You all know the saying, "Time to wear the big girl panties". I use this analogy a lot. I chose to make the leap over to bigger panties so I have no one to blame but myself. Sometimes I will slip them on just to get acquainted with my new intimate wear. Sometimes I look away and pretend they don't actually exist. Other times I will dream about my old little girl panties that fit oh so snuggly and comfortably, but alas, they are only a dream now. The few times I have slipped on these new panties, they were awful, just plain awful. I questioned how others could wear them for such long long periods, some longer than I've been alive! I'm learning different ways to put these panties on so that I can keep them on for longer than 3 minutes. Am I succeeding? Absolutely. Is it fun? Absolutely not. But I feel challenged, excited, anxious, and nauseated all at the same time and since I can't differentiate if these feelings combined equal good or bad... I'm just gonna go with the flow and see how I can make these panties feel like a second skin. Like I'm wearing nothing at all. 

Back to the whole point of this post, National Boss's Day. I know it may seem like a ridiculous... holiday? Occasion? Event? But the card I received from the girls at work made me feel so good. Today made all the hard panty days worth it. Happy National Boss's Day everyone. 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 56: Twinsies!

Last weekend I had the pleasure of photographing some of my good friends who are expecting TWINS! We got up super early to catch some of that morning sun and although I don't have a lot of experience in using this golden light, we still managed to capture a few decent shots. Here are some of my favorites. 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 55: Amsterdam

It's been too long since my last post and I apologize! Between the new job, weddings and home renovations, it's been hard finding time to blog. As I slowly work my way through all our honeymoon photos, I'll continue sharing photos that I have a story about. We booked over half our accommodations through airbnb and for the most part we had a great experience. This is the view we had from our balcony on the top floor of our Amsterdam bed and breakfast. We were warned about terrible stairs in all the reviews and past guests weren't exaggerating. The angle of the skinny steps were approximately 80 degrees. I had to actually turn my feet sideways or just use my toes to get up and down. I ended up slipping on the stairs on my way down for the first time. The stairwells were so long that they had separate light switches at every floor. 
We were fortunate enough to have the entire top floor to ourselves. This included a separate bathroom, kitchen with eating area and private balcony. We only got to enjoy the balcony once because of all the rain but it was fabulous sitting there sipping wine and eating cheese, even if it was for just one evening. 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 54: Wicked!

I knew I wanted to catch a show in London so the toss up was between Lion King or Wicked. Our Londoner friend, Anita, suggested we go onto to find cheaper tickets. We were really skeptical about booking because the seats you end up with are based on random drawings. Their disclaimer basically said they try their best to give you the best selection. After an hour of comparing prices and looking up restaurant reviews, we decided to book a dinner and show combination at bbar restaurant. We were pleasantly surprised with the level of service. Despite having a very set dinner menu to choose from that was already prepaid, the servers were still very attentive and earned their well deserved gratuities. We absolutely had to have a picture with the sign but with few options of passerbyers to lend us a hand, we opted to use the famous stick. It really isn't meant for heavy cameras but we made it work. Couldn't keep the stick out of the photo though. 
We got to Wicked and I was so sad to find out that they sold candy, chips and alcohol but no popcorn! I know, ludicrous right?!? Wine in tetra pack juice boxes but no popcorn! Empty handed, we headed up to the second balcony to our seats. A few minutes after settling in, some girls inform us that we are in their seats! I pull out our tickets and we were in the correct seat number. My thoughts were, "Nooooo... lastminute screwed us!" I seek out an usher to tell him our dilemma and he tells us we're in the wrong section of the theater! We were actually on the floor level! "Yeeees! lastminute is awesome!" Wicked turned out every bit as wonderful as everyone has boasted. Jamie didn't even fall asleep so that in and of itself, goes to show how good the show was. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 53: Phonebooth

That's right folks, I am 100% posing with a phone booth in London. We had just finished our pre-show dinner at bbar Restaurant and were heading to the Apollo Victoria Theater to catch Wicked. We saw a lot of typical London things and I'm glad we were able to prop our camera up on some pole, set the timer and run back to be a poser by the famous red phone booth. Turned out pretty decent for having no one actually behind the lens. Looking back at this photo makes me smile because Jamie looks like a little school boy and he's just so darn cute. As for me, I'm just trying to be too cool for school. We only carried our big camera around in London because it was just so convenient to take iPhone photos instead. I haven't gone through all our Europe photos yet so hopefully I don't regret tucking away our main camera. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 52: Shedding Season

Those that have been to my house might think that Khuno sheds all year round but he has his periods of massive shedding. You can usually tell it's shedding time when you can pull large quantities of fur off his snout. This past weekend Jamie and I decided to tag team the brushing and after 2 hours of brushing and Olympic catch up on the PVR, this is what we were left with. I ended up trimming a lot of his gross fur, especially on his underbelly. Jamie said he looked like a sheared sheep. What I really enjoyed doing (kinda sick I know...) was taking my metal comb and slowly picking at the underbelly fur. It was almost like combing a fro or what I'd think picking at a fro would feel like. I was able to take his super short underbelly fur and just work it with my comb until the fur became long and loose again. I was able to extend his fur by almost an inch! Eventually Khuno got tired of getting manhandled and we figured one grocery bag of nasty fur was enough. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Swedish Jewellers, I Have Not Forgotten.

Remember over a year ago when I blogged about my hatred for local Edmonton store, Swedish Jewellers? They came up in conversation yesterday and not for a good reason. I was watching TV and noticed a weird noise when I was playing with my rings. It almost sounded like a "clink". I look down and decided to check my diamond and of course, it's so loose that I can almost rotate it a quarter circle. I've never owned rings with stones set in them before so I really have no idea how normal it is for a diamond to get that loose, but come on! I had it checked last winter by Independent Jewellers and the gentleman assured me that the diamond was fine. I'm not saying that Swedish did a crappy job. I just want to share the fact that they were indeed, the last ones to do any work on the ring. You can bet your bottom dollar that I am not returning to them to get this issue fixed, even if they do offer lifetime replating with every ring purchase. Screw you Swedish Jewellers. I. Still. Hate. You. 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 51: Olympics

That's right folks, it's throwback time! I thought I'd share this rare photo I have in spirit of the Olympics. Can you recognize the fine gentleman in the photo? Better yet, can you recognize the young adolescent female? The photo below is of myself and Olympic gold medalist, Simon Whitfield! He came to visit our humble grocery store, Save On Foods over 10 years ago. All the girls were starstruck and I was working in the photo lab at that time. I remember we all gushed and asked, "Should we ask for a photo?" and the front end manager said, "Sure why not?" I was so excited to get the photos developed that I accidentally opened the camera before I had a chance to roll the film! I gasped and slammed the camera shut, saving all the photos. That's why you see the exposed red streak along the side. It worked out, giving Simon a nice place to put his autograph. He didn't fair so well today in London but he's an amazing athlete nonetheless. Thanks for the photo Simon! 

Saturday, August 4, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 50: Puppy Love?

Khuno's cousin, Audi, came over for a play date the other night. They can play for hours as long as Khuno gets rest periods every so often. That night they were taking turns rolling onto their back. Cynthia managed to capture Khuno giving Audi a little lovin'. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 49: Ghetto What?

Ghetto rain coat, holla! All this rain has made it miserable walking Khuno. This is especially true when it's non-stop rain all day and Khuno's gotta go. I was able to slap on my long rain coat and rain boots but since I was home alone, I didn't want to have to deal with a soaking wet dog on my own. I had bought him a rain coat way back but it was one (or two or three) sizes too small. His underbelly fur gets wet and full of grit so I really wanted to minimize underbelly exposure. I couldn't bring the bag all the way to the end because then he wouldn't be able to pee. I ended up using my hair tie to secure the bag to Khuno's tail. It was working great until the bag started slipping forward, causing his front legs to get tripped up. I had no choice but to pull it back a bit and I got stuck with some pee going into the bag. I'll have to whip up something better in the future, but for now the ghetto rain coat kept a good portion of him dry. Don't judge. Unless your judgement is, "Wow so smart!"

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Another Year Wiser

With the wisdom comes many other things... Age, gray hairs, fine lines, belly fat, the list goes on and on. With each birthday that passes, I find myself less wanting to celebrate but more wanting to reflect on the year gone by. Remember when we were young and birthdays meant family dinners because we hadn't started school yet to make friends? This was me up until grade 7. I had the occasional birthday with neighborhood friends, but because my birthday is in the summer, I never had classmates come. Fast forward to the age where birthday celebrations meant nights out with friends and significant others, eating, drinking and celebrating. I've done my fair share of those as well. The past couple of years I find myself more wanting to revert back to the good ol' days where birthdays were celebrated with a gathering of family and good food. 

Today I celebrated my birthday by going to the downtown City Market with my husband. We had a great lunch at Dauphine's Bakery & Bistro, which included the Trio Plate and the Croque Monsieur, both came with fresh farmer's market salads. Jamie got a latte and it came in this massive bowl that neither one of us has seen before. The waitress said that's how it was traditionally served. 
After lunch we stopped into our favorite coffee shop, Credo, for a London Fog w/ Rooibos tea and a latte.Sipping our drinks, we strolled along the market and purchased a variety of goodies! Fresh peaches from BC, more fresh organic peaches, lemon stuffed olives, whole wheat pita with chili hummus, cherry tomatoes, assorted tomatoes, dandelion honey, and elk antler/bones for Khuno. I also dragged Jamie into my new office building to show him where I work now. 
We got home shortly after and I came downstairs to find a hand drawn card from my hubby, inspired by the London's famous, "Keep calm and carry on" fad. Then we headed off again with Khuno to Rivercree for a buffet dinner with my parents, brother and sister-in-law. We left Khuno with Audi together alone for the first time and when we returned home, poor Khuno was so exhausted. 
It's been a while since we had a fire pit night so we cranked that baby open and made some s'mores. My amazing friends came over and brought birthday cinnamon buns with them for roasting on the fire, something that we've never done before. Something about fires that just makes people want to roast things on a skewer! 
This past year has been full of changes. We became husband and wife, went on an amazing honeymoon, witnessed several of our friends get married, and I took on a new challenge in my career. It really has been a year for adventure and I know the next one will be just as, if not more, exciting for our little family. Our next big project: re-shingling the roof. 

Sunday, July 1, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 48: Europe

Hello. Hallo. Bonjour. Ciao. Hola. We're back from our 4 week long honeymoon and it was amazing. We got to 8 different cities, 12 if you count all the Cinque Terre towns, 13 if you count our 5 hour layover Parliament visit in Ottawa and 14 if you count the Frankfurt airport. We aren't big planners as you could tell from our wedding procrastination and it was no different with our honeymoon. We stayed up late into the night booking hotels the day before we left and figuring out our Italy itinerary. It's a good thing our flight out wasn't till 10:00 PM the next day. We packed for most of the following day and headed off to Europe. Over the next few weeks months, I'll be sharing random photos and any stories that go along with it. This photo was actually taken at the last stop of our trip, Barcelona. The beach there was gorgeous with nice soft sand and beautiful golden flecks throughout the ocean water. We tried writing in the sand a couple times and could hardly snap the photo fast enough before the waves washed it away. You can see in the bottom left hand corner that the wave was already fast approaching! Although I miss laying on the beach, it's nice to be home. Happy Canada Day everyone! 

Sunday, May 27, 2012

See You Later!

In 23 hours we will be on a flight off to our honeymoon! Hope everyone has a great summer and we will be back soon (sort of)! 

Monday, May 14, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 47: Big Ol' Eyes

In case you didn't think my dog was already stinkin' cute, today I have proven you wrong with this photo. His eyes are usually almond shaped. One lady at the dog park even went as far to say, "You can tell he's a samoyed because his eyes are slanted like Chinese people." I kid you not folks, those were her words. And she said it over and over again. Khuno's eyes definitely aren't slanted in this photo. They are what we like to all call "big puppy dog eyes". In case you're wondering why he's got those big ol' eyes, please look to the left of the photo and make note of the Dentastix sitting on the edge of the bed. He's just waiting for me to say okay! Happy Mother's Day everyone. =) 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 46: Administrative Week

A few weeks ago it was Administrative Week so all of us in the office got together and purchased our clerical staff some flowers and a goodie basket of tasty unhealthy treats. This gorgeous floral arrangement was put together by the talented Leslie of Sugar Blossoms Floral Design. She's located in the same store as the Applebox Boutique located in Highlands. One of the girls at work asked if I picked this up at Save 0n Foods. I laughed and said most definitely not. That's what I love about independently owned flower shops. The store owners are so involved with the floral arrangements that their work is stunning. I used to work at a grocery store and they didn't provide any training for floral arrangements. So if you want to get someone a OOAK (one of a kind) arrangement, it's worth the trip to Sugar Blossoms. I'm actually sad that I didn't discover them before my wedding because Leslie's wedding flowers are so affordable. If flowers or the amazing hand painted furniture by Leanne of Applebox Boutique isn't enough to draw you into their store, you'll also find my hand stamped greeting cards there! Now you have 3 reasons to check them out! 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 45: Khuno Turns 4

Khuno recently celebrated his 4th birthday! People say this about their children all the time, but I'm going to say it about my dog. I can't believe it's been 4 years since we got him. He's growing up so fast and in human years, he's 32. Getting close to his papa Jamie's age! He gave me some mega new mom syndrome when we first got him. We were sleep deprived and so irritable with all this bad habits. He didn't listen and he pooped and peed in the house all the time. Fast forward 4 years and he's had a few accidents here and there. He listens sometimes and he's ran off after a rabbit twice. He can manage to be off leash at the dog park and not run away. He can also be off leash in the Gold Bar dog park on the trail that runs along the river, but we turn around the moment we see/hear ducks in the river. The one time we couldn't distract him from the ducks, he jumped into the river to chase them. His pulling on walks continues to drive me crazy but at least he only pulls when there's a reason now. It's either he needs to poop, there's another life form in front, a white car is driving by, or there's a hint of scent that something has left behind. Despite all the headaches and sometimes inconvenient responsibilities of a dog, I would love to have another samoyed. The love they show you when you walk in the house and the forced snuggles I get out of Khuno far outweigh the headaches. Happy birthday my Khuno-muno. 

Saturday, April 28, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 44: Chalkie

This lil cute fella is my parents' pup, Chalkie. He is the sweetest little pug around. Every week we visit our parents along with my brother and we both bring our dogs along. Chalkie has figured out that on the days where my mom stays home from work, it means his friends are coming over to play so he will sit at the top of stairs and wait. And wait. And wait. He'll sit there and not even go to my parents when they try to lure him with food. He survives on fresh yams, broccoli stems, whatever my parents eat and a little bit of kibble. The human food isn't good for him but we can't control what my parents feed him. Doesn't help that Chalkie sits there and whines for food all the time. You'd think that all three dogs get along but Khuno actually can't stand Chalkie. Perhaps it's because Chalkie constantly jumps up on Khuno and it annoys him like a fly would annoy us. There's a lot of low growls that happen throughout dinner. Hope everyone is enjoying the great weather. I'll be back tomorrow to post photo 45. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 43: Lashes

Remember baby Ella that I ported over from my other blog? Well, she isn't so baby anymore! She's growing into this adorable little toddler. Growing along with everything are her stinkin' eyelashes! Are they not amazing?!? It wasn't easy capturing this photo but I'm sure glad I did. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Baby Ella

I originally started a separate photography blog called Live Love Capture Photography (original, I know), but after the one post, I discovered myfotojournal and have since stopped using the blogger version. You can see my other blog here. I know what you're thinking, enough with all these blogs already! I totally agree! I'd like to keep my card making posts kept strictly on my StampNStuff blog, personal posts on here and photography only related posts on myfotojournal. In trying to pull away from the blogger version of my photography blog, I've pulled the one and only post over to here. I will try and find time to post it under myfotojournal as well. Here's what I posted back in November 2011: 

I wanted to start this blog as a little photography journal. I enjoy taking photos and I'd love to have a special little place to share it with everyone. My very first post is going to be sharing an afternoon spent with lil Ella. She was a trooper and by the end of the hour all she wanted to do was eat her lunch! Here's a few of my favorites from the day. Hope you enjoy them mama Amber!