Wednesday, December 31, 2003

Auld Lang Syne!

This was the year I turned 31 years old. As with every year, it was packed full of excitement:

Space Shuttle Columbia
Invasion of Iraq
West Nile Virus
SARS and SARSstock
The War on Terror
Mad Cow Disease
Toronto Blackout
BC Forest Fires
Legalization of Same Sex Marriage
Saddam Hussein's capture
FBI suspects Almanacs Users are terrorists


NEW HANGOUT: Hooters, West Edmonton Mall.

BEST GIFTS: I was spoiled this year. I got great books for Christmas - Salam Pax's The Baghdad Blog, Lou Paget's 365 Days of Sensational Sex and Mitch Album's The Five People You Meet in Heaven. I also had a great birthday as well!

FAVORITE SONG: Fallen, by Sarah McLachlan

BEST BOOK READ: Jennifer Lauck's Blackbird and Still Waters

NEW HOBBY: Blogging! And Digital Photography!

BEST MOVIE: Without a doubt, The Return of the King. Also, Master and Commander, Matrix Reloaded and Revolutions, Finding Nemo, The Last Samurai, Kill Bill Vol 1, and X2.

BEST DVD:"The Adventures of Indiana Jones"

BEST VIDEO GAME: Knights of the Old Republic.

BIGGEST CHANGE: I became engaged!

BIGGEST CHALLENGE: Moving to Edmonton

BEST JOKE: When George Bush said "Bring 'em on" daring Iraqi terrorists to attack American troops. Oh wait, that wasn't a joke...

BIGGEST BLESSING OF THE YEAR: My children's wonderful report cards (almost all A's) and their repeated excellent academic performance that earned them both awards of Distinction from their new school.

MOST STIRRING POLITICAL ISSUE: Same Sex Marriage/Equal Rights and The Invasion of Iraq.

LOOKING FORWARD TO: Schindler's List on DVD, our wedding, and a honeymoon!!!

PREDICTIONS FOR 2004: Stupid Bush will likely get re-elected. Where's a good regime change when you need it?



Here's Wishing my Friends, Family and Reading Audience all the best for a safe, happy and prosperous New Year. Here's hoping that in 2004 we learn to be a more peaceful and less greedy species.

Let me be a channel of peace,
that where there is hatred, I may bring love;
that where there is wrong, I may bring the
spirit of forgiveness;
that where there is discord, I may bring harmony;
that where there is error, I may bring truth;
that where there is doubt, I may bring faith;
that where there is despair, I may bring hope;
that where there are shadows, I may bring light;
that where there is sadness, I may bring joy.
may seek rather to comfort than to be comforted;
to understand, than to be understood;
to love, than to be loved.
for it is by self-forgetting that one finds.
by forgiving that one is forgiven.

HAPPY NEW YEARS EVERYONE!!!!!

Monday, December 29, 2003

It's all about taking it easy



This is what I see most on my TV lately. It's a game that I got Duncan for Christmas, Need for Speed Underground. Very good. He is enjoying it immensely, and I am enjoying watching it.

We enjoyed having Duncan's Dad visit after Christmas. We went to see The Last Samurai (which I really enjoyed) and he took us out for lunch! Never mind the not dressed up state, we are on holidays!



I have also been enjoying reading. Yes Kim, the 365 Days of Sensational Sex is very good. Lou Paget is one of my favourite authors (on the subject) and I highly recommend this one to anyone looking to expand a long term relationship sexually. I may write more about it later.

Oh, and Quynn - where are you????


Thursday, December 25, 2003

A Christmas Gallery



Duncan commanding his Counter Terrorism Squad in Rainbow Six 3 RavenShield



Wesley trying out his new TV, Game Cube and various games



Raven's favourite gift was her Game Boy Advance SP, and Pokemon Pinball



Zoe was so excited about her gifts she even opened hers before everyone woke up



I was spoiled this Christmas! I am excited about getting to some reading (Notice I was given Salam's book - first blog in paperback) and enjoying my other gifts

I am going to take a mini blog hiatus for the holidays, just a couple of days, but I hope these pictures will tide you over. Take care everyone, I am happy that you visit; the pleasure is all mine!

Hope all is well with you, best wishes for the Season and a safe, happy and prosperous New Year!

Merry Christmas Everyone

May peace and blessings be upon you!

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

Dear Santa

I have been a very good girl this year, and I thank you for the continued years of happiness and joy you have brought me.

For this Christmas I want to ask for something special. A small Christmas miracle by your standards. I want everyone to be at peace. I want everyone to feel safe, even if just for one day. To have every little kid in the world wake up and not worry about dying this day – and everyone to have enough food and water, and time to smile.

Oh yeah, and Santa? If its not too much trouble, my own island would make me very happy as well!

Allie

Santa's on his way!

Santa Claus began his annual trip around the world on Wednesday morning, taking off from the North Pole, and heading for the international date line, Norad reported. The North American Aerospace Defence Command's radar and satellites began tracking the sleigh and its nine reindeer as they flew over northern Canada and the United States.

Bloggers who want to track Santa's journey can find regular updates at NORAD.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

My Favourite Christmas Memory

Christmas for me is all about that magic you feel in your heart before you get old enough to know better. I still feel it, but I rarely admit to it in order to avoid the skeptical stares from judgmental grown ups. But yeah, Christmas and me go a long way back. In the midst of a troubled childhood, my most treasured memories settle in around Christmas, Santa and that glimmer of Magic. Little miracles can go a long way.



I was a pretty smart kid, and the Christmas that I was four years old I thought I had it all figured out. Mom and Dad were actually Santa, and when I went to bed (early, under pain of Santa not coming) they put the presents under the tree, expecting me to believe they were placed there by Santa Claus. So I concocted a plan to reveal this vile adult plan for what it was: I was going to get up after my parents went to bed and check under the tree.

I barely ever slept, so I don't remember it being hard to wait up. My parents went to bed and I waited until they were finally snoring (I remember they both sounded like bears when they snored) and ventured slowly out into the darkness. Checked baby brother, still sleeping (I didn't want to get caught out of bed if he were to wake everyone up), and double checked parents room to ensure they were actually sleeping. I crept down the stairs, slowly. I remember debating with myself what I might do if I did run into this Santa, cause everything I had ever been told was that he wouldn't come if there were kids awake in the house. I decided to be quicker.

Into the living room I bolted, it was lit only by the lights from the tree. I immediatley noticed there were no presents under that tree. Not even one. I went to the fireplace, where the embers had almost all died out, and checked each stocking... empty. I looked out the window. It was dark. There were no cars on a normally busy road. It was very late. I looked behind the couch for presents, in the hall closet and in the kitchen. Where could they be, I wondered... I went back to bed, perplexed slightly, but intrigued.

I slept a while, and woke up when I heard my baby brother making some manner of complaint. He wasn't loud enough to wake anyone else and eventually he went back to sleep. I snuck into my parents room to carefully inspect each adult as sleeping in the bed. Yep, still snoring. I snuck out of the room and down into the livingroom once more. The sight that beheld my eyes I will remember for all times.

The tree was filled with presents. There were even little presents in the branches! I crept forward, holding my breath, and reached out to touch them, wondering at the packages that would be for me (despite my previous doubting of the Santa Claus). I spun around to make sure I wasn't being watched, and my attention was drawn to my stocking - which was also full. I ran over to it and grabbed it down from the fireplace and cradled it in my arms. I knew I was allowed to open my stocking gifts as soon as I got up no matter when, but I sat down first to survey the room.

Everything seemed perfect. Santa's milk was gone, the empty glass sat beside a plate that sported a few crumbs left behind from the cookies I had placed there earlier. I inspected closer - there was a ring of milk under the glass that was still fresh. I looked out of the window and wonder began to fill me. I looked into the skies and wondered if it was possible... but doubt nagged at the edge of my brain and I realized that "Santa" always left a gift at the end of the bed and I hadn't seen anything there when I had woken up. I ran up the stairs, still clutching my stocking, sure that I had caught them in the act - and turned on the light as I burst into my room.

There on my bed was one of the biggest wrapped boxes I had ever seen. Almost too big for me to stretch out fully on my bed - how could I possibly have missed that? Holding my breath, I backed out of my room slowly, into the hallway where I could listen to the measured breathing and snoring coming from my parents room. Yep, still asleep. My ears strained for the slightest noise anywhere in the house. Nothing.

It slowly dawned upon me... Santa MUST be real. While I was downstairs peeking under the tree with excitement, he left this present here on my bed, even knowing that I wasn't in it. He must have been in the house the same time I was awake! And I didn't hear a thing! Not only was Santa real, he was magic too!

As I sat on my bed that morning opening each gift I knew that in trying to prove that Mom and Dad were tricking me into believing in Santa that I had proven to myself that Santa was real. I was filled with a warmth that would last me many Christmas's, and even to this day I know that Santa and Christmas is more then what we banter around in the commercial, corporate sense. And I love seeing that mirrored in the eyes of my own children!

And Santa, I still believe in you!

This post is part of a Photojunkie Christmas!

Monday, December 22, 2003

My Holiday Favourites

Favorite Holiday Decoration:




My Stocking! I have had my stocking since I was a baby, when it was lovingly made by a family friend, just for me. It has always been very special to me, and perhaps began my prediliction with Rudolph the Red nose Reindeer. I always smile when I see it full of little surprises waiting for me on Christmas morning.

Favorite Holiday Song:

Old Toy Trains – sung by Nana Mouskori. The song itself speaks to me of that magic on Christmas Eve when a parent and a Child search the heavens for a sign, any sign, that Santa was drawing near. It's one of my favourite times of the season when my children stand with me and stare into the night, looking, searching, believing. I still believe in Santa Claus! When I was young (very very young) we had this on 8 track, but my parents old 8 track was completely broken so I could no longer listen. One Christmas, for some reason, I turned that old machine on, plunked in the Nana Mouskori 8 Track and to my surprise, it played that song. Nothing else, just that song. For an eight track that was some stroke of luck - and to this day that has been one of my Christmas Miracles.

Favorite Holiday Tradition:

In our home, each Christmas Eve Santa leaves gifts on the end of everyone’s bed. They are meant to be opened as soon as you wake up, and usually occupy everyone until we are all ready to gather around the tree and open the rest. Almost every year of my life I have awoken Christmas morning to a gift on the end of my bed. One year when I was a little kid I woke up and couldn't find a present anywhere. I was perplexed, knowing for sure I had been a pretty good girl, I thought maybe Santa had just forgotten, until I found out my brother had his gift at the end of his bed. I looked everywhere. I even cried. My parents followed me around in expectation, until finally my search brought me to the basement where a tiny little kitten was waiting for me.

Tomorrow I will write about my Favourite Christmas Memory! I hope all is well with all of you!

Thanks Quynn!

Lookey what I learnt to do with my new digital camera! It's using the "cross filter" option on the camera itself!



I've been spoiled already and it's not even Christmas yet!

Sunday, December 21, 2003

Why I love Christmas Holidays


Imagination Play!

Raven has been reading the Black Stallion Series with a fervour on her days off. I loved the same series when I was a girl, so I was happy to introduce her to them.


LEGO!

Wesley has more time for his creations with Lego. I love the way he can spend hours building, playing and being quiet. That's almost the best part!


Zoe the cat. Hear her roar.

Wesley has just "prepared" his stocking for Christmas Eve, brushing it and primping it, only to have Zoe decide it be the softest place for her next nap.


Civ III

More time for Duncan and I to play Civ III PTW together. Games can get pretty long but we are always eager to see how the world will turn out. I have so much fun playing Civ III with Duncan, it's like a board game but better!

Saturday, December 20, 2003

Yes Virginia, There is a Santa Claus

From the Editorial Page of The New York Sun, written by Francis P. Church, September 21, 1897. Church’s editorial, “Yes Virginia, There is a Santa Claus” became one of the most famous editorials ever written. From 1897 until 1949, when the New York Sun folded, the editorial was reprinted annually.

Dear Editor

I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, 'If you see it in The Sun, it's so.' Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?

Virginia O'Hanlon
115 West Ninety-fifth Street


Virginia, your little friends are wrong.

They have been affected by the scepticism of a sceptical age. They do not believe except what they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no child-like faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and un-seeable in the world.

You tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

Friday, December 19, 2003

I always have a great Christmas!

Jingle Bells
You are 'Jingle Bells'! Full of enthusiasm and good cheer, you are excited by the first appearances of Christmas decorations in shops and have been heard singing along to the piped music. Your attitude to Christmas is one of childlike delight - with a slightly mercenary streak. You definitely believe in Santa (you get more presents that way) and will put up your Christmas tree as early as possible. You really like carolling, and presents, and mince pies, and pudding, and will insist on getting everyone up at dawn to open presents immediately. So long as the food and presents are good, you will have a great Christmas.

What Christmas Carol are you?
brought to you by Quizilla


Hey Duncan, notice it said insist on getting everyone up at DAWN... not 430 AM - like last year when you woke up and bounced up and down on our bed claiming "It's Christmas morning, It's Christmas morning!"

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Today is a new day

My world is different today then it was yesterday.

Yet it seems strangely the same.

The story is complete!

Return of the King was amazing. I think the Lord of the Rings triology is the most beautiful story I have ever had the pleasure of seeing. I can't wait to see all three movies together.

Thanks to Quynn for taking us to RoTK as an early Christmas present. We were doubley blessed.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Burninating the countryside...

Disturbing dreams last night. They are getting harder to remember - as I become more awake the details slip from me. Essentially, we were nuked. (Twice - for good measure - of course, as any city over 100,000 should be. Especially one with a large military base and the seat of government). But it wasn't just Edmonton in the dreams, Canada was nuked, and then invaded, by Muslims. I only knew they were Muslims because of conversations I had with the men in my dreams. I was pregnant (twin girls) and made to justify the lives of my children, including the unborn ones (that religious study degree came in handy then!). I spent most of the time in the dreams making sure my family survived the blasts and then was able to find safety afterwards.

I suspect the actual details themselves may be meaningless, but I can't shake the feeling like my brain is trying to tell me something and I am just not getting the message.

I am a child of the Cold War Era. When I was a pre teen, I often had nightmares of Nuclear War. In those dreams I was always the only survivor. There were times in my childhood where I went to bed, or woke up, thinking "Will this be the day?" It seemed so inevitatable at times. The geo political scene appeared so unstable, even to me as a child. I spent hours in the library learning more about how to survive that which haunted my dreams. 'Know your enemy,' I thought, and you can be successful. My study did offer me confidence, but it also entrenched within my mind an external enemy, and an enemy that in a way wasn't really "my" enemy.

In the Army we trained against an enemy that was nuclear capable and ready, an enemy understood to be "Communism." Eventually, with the end of the Cold War, this was changed to the "Fantasia Army" as our "enemies" became our "allies," but in my mind Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Warfare training was still a result of the realities of the Cold War, created by the two super powers.

When the Cold War ended, the americans lost their enemy. Years upon years of foriegn policy was based on harrassing and containing this enemy, but with this enemy suddenly no longer a threat, what were they to do? With no purpose and no focus what would a huge force like the US do with themselves? It only took them a little while to look around and find their new target.

Islam.

The transition was almost flawless in my mind. Exit communism, enter Islam. One enemy replaced with another.

My dreams last night reflect this new reality, but perhaps even something more. In a world culture based on fear, somehow it is being managed that I (and by I, I mean We) am to believe Islam is my enemy, and if I fear that I will fight that, or support that which fights that. It's how psycholgical propaganda works. We are being brainwashed.

Or maybe I am just playing too much Civ III.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

International law? Well, let me call my Lawyer... oh wait.

"We demand a fair and legal trial, not one held by the governing council, which was appointed by the occupier," said Raghad Saddam Hussein, on arabic TV along with her sisters Rana and Hala. "The truth is that I am proud this person is my father... We all know the intention of the way he was displayed. Where is the democracy? Where is the immunity that state leaders are granted?" she also said.

The americans currently hold Saddam in a secret location, while he is being "interrogated," although I am not sure international conventions allow for this type of behaviour. His family says he should have a lawyer, and they are right. I for one would like to see a public trial, by an international tribune, so the whole story can come out.

Is anyone really that worried that this guy might be found not be guilty? We all know he is guilty, lets give him a fair trial and let justice be done.

Monday, December 15, 2003

Saddam returns to the arms of america





"Ladies and gentlemen, we got him." What a crass, yet typically american, way to announce the capture of Saddam Hussein.

I have to say it. It’s about bloody time. I will also add that I am fairly un-impressed, to be honest. What are they so proud of? The biggest armed forces in the world, the biggest security and intelligence agencies in the world, the most intense man hunt in history, the most money (ever) being thrown at this effort (and a 25 million USD reward), and the most (reputation, re-election, justification, etc) riding on it… and it takes them almost 10 months to find a 66 year old man who was only a few kilometers from his hometown? A man who was obviously waiting to be found? Where the heck were they looking in the first place? What took them so long?

What’s to be proud of in all these celebrations? Is it a “triumph?” Not likely. The manner with which the americans are carrying on about this capture is embarrassing.

“Got him?” He was pretty much right where you left him.

I am happy with the long overdue capture though, although it would be correct to say I am skeptical that justice will be served. It is a good thing that Mr. Hussein may now be made to answer the charges for crimes he has committed against humanity, if this is actually the case. Parts of me really don’t care if he is treated fairly, but then other parts just want it to be done right. Saddam should be tried in an international tribunal rather than an Iraqi Governing Council tribunal.

However, it is improbable that Saddam will stand trial in an internationally recognized court as undoubtedly the evidence presented in his defence would be embarrassing for the americans. I predict they leave him with Iraq and hope they kill him as soon as possible.

Bush said he had a message for the Iraqi people. He said they “will not have to fear the rule of Saddam Hussein ever again.” Nope. Now all they have to fear is Bush.

Final thoughts… finding Saddam does not lessen the need for regime change in the US.

Let he who is without sin throw the first stone…




We should not let the celebrations and successive propaganda-like-rhetoric blind us from the underlying reasons and conditions that brought Saddam Hussein to power, kept him there all these years, and further enabled him to commit these crimes we would now hold him accountable for. Where are we so eagerly pointing our fingers? Things are not always as they seem.

Iranian Government spokesman Abdollah Ramazanzadeh was right when he said an international court "should determine who equipped this dictator to disrupt our region." The reference, of course, is indicative of the support that Saddam enjoyed from the West, mainly the americans, and it is apparent that some in the world have not conveniently forgotten. Iran will emphasise the american role in backing Saddam during the (Iran/Iraq) war, establishing his power and strengthening his hold on Iraq as well, and rightfully so. If Saddam deserves to be on trial, some would suggest the americans should also be tried as accomplices in his war crimes.



Rumsfield and Saddam (1980's picture).


For what it’s worth, my advice to Saddam

My name is Saddam Hussein, I am the president of Iraq, and I want to negotiate.”

From my military training in counter terrorism: Never negotiate with your captors.



Sunday, December 14, 2003

I don't know what to say...

Life went on about as normal today as possible, even though Saddam Hussein was caught. I certainly didn't notice much difference. Civ III was still played, I still went shopping, I updated Yahoo Pictures, and we lounged around like any Sunday should be spent.

I will think more of what to say tomorrow.

Friday, December 12, 2003

Rock, Scissors, Blog

It's been a long week! It certainly is a busy season! I took Duncan out to Hooters for Beer and Wings, and he bonused a cute orange balloon from the Hooters girl... or was it an orange balloon from the cute Hooters girl...?

I am happy that we have found ourselves at the weekend. I am happy that we can stay up late to finish our Civ III game and sleep in tomorrow. I am happy that we are about to consume the bottle of Baja Rosa I just brought home...

I found this in my inbox a couple of minutes ago...

From : Duncan Wojtaszek
Sent : December 12, 2003 8:39:14 PM
To : Allie Smyth
Subject : Re: tonight

Listen baby.

I lvoe you . YOu are the best. My vewry favourite girl.

DUncan

PS: I am drunk. But I think I could type better if I tried. Maybe.


Happy Sigh. You can't always get what you want, but if you try real hard, you just might get what you need...

Bring on the weekend

Thursday, December 11, 2003

I defy convention

Galaxy
You are a Galaxy-class Explorer, a top of the line luxury-liner with teeth. You prefer refinement and appreciate beauty. You're well-apt at diplomacy and are trusted to handle crises. Despite a changing world, you still have a reputation for unparalleled excellence.


Which Class of Federation Starship are you?
brought to you by Quizilla


I won't miss him

"I will miss many things," said Jean Chr├ętien, who added "I will observe from home, and as I promised, with no comment. If they go too far to the left, I will say nothing. If they go too far to the right I'll say nothing. It's not my business."

We can only hope.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Nothing is harder to bring to light than that which is hidden in plain sight...

I didn't realize it at the time, but once upon a time, I fell in love with my best friend, who was at that time, a married man.

I do remember that it felt like my love for him had no beggining, almost as if he was there before I knew him, there before even I knew myself, it seemed. Trying to understand how I felt was like trying to understand a new meaning of forever. Until that moment I had no idea that love could be so beautiful, so rewarding, so simple, so unconditional and yet so very, very complex. Very complex!

He spent a summer by my side, we were inseparable, just doing the things that best friends did… listening to music, talking, riding bikes, sharing our thoughts, bonding. As I came to know how terribly unhappy he was with his decaying marriage I realized that I believed strongly that he deserved much better, that he deserved the world, and I felt sad that he didn't have that. I did not know that he felt the same way about me that I felt for him. I enjoyed being with him and just having him in my world and I didn't want to endanger that. Everything was brighter, more beautiful, more intense because of him. Nothing was wrong, and everything was right. I was smiling all the time.

It took me a long time to admit how I was feeling. My girl friends all teased me like I was some kind of blind and daft girl who couldn't see the obvious in front of her face. There it was in plain site, Allie was in love, and everyone saw it except me. Or maybe, looking back, it would be more fair to say I didn't think I was allowed see it and feel it, given the circumstances, so I tried to see it as something else instead.

Nothing is harder to bring to light than that which is hidden in plain sight...

It seemed to me then that I had lived so many lives, and yet had not really lived until that moment. I had been lost in a dark place for who knows how long, and when I stretched out my hand, he was there to take it, and he didn’t let go. I had been found.

Eventually I learned that he did love me in return. That long ago day was three years ago, today, Dec 9 2000. The day my world both fell apart and was reborn. The day I became who I was meant to be.

It’s funny that we use the term “falling” when we talk about "falling in love." The "falling" actually occurs once you realize that you are already in love. The falling is an intimate invitation, permission for another person to see your most extreme vulnerabilities in a state of pure trust. It’s a falling into another person, of two becoming one, a spiral into each other that is delirious and mysterious, passionate and consuming, scary and yet ultimately comforting. It’s like finding a safe place where only the two of you can be, a place that can only be with the two of you there together.

Duncan is the only person that, when I look into his eyes, I see myself. And I know I belong there.

So, today is our three year Anniversary. How does it differ from all the rest? Well, we are together now, we are engaged, we are looking towards our future with excitment and anticipation, and we are warm at night.

Duncan, Sweetheart, I love you with every fibre of myself. Thank you for being part of my world, for choosing to share your path with me, for holding my hand on our adventure together. You deserve to be loved unconditionally; you deserve to be cherished as the gift you are; you deserve to be worshipped like a god; and I thank you for letting me have the chance to show you that. You are amazing in every way, my best friend, my lover, my confidant , my support, my correlative.

I love you!

Monday, December 08, 2003

Lame Blogger Excuse #279

I meant to blog this weekend, really, I did.

We were VERY busy. We had TONNES of fun. We went to two parties, Duncan took me to breakfast AND we played CIV III. I will blog more later, but right now it is 2:12 am, and I wanna go bed.

Friday, December 05, 2003

You have to try this!

Go to GOOGLE, type in "miserable failure" into the search window, and then hit the "I'm Feeling Lucky" Button.

Words preserved between the quotation marks...

Quotes. Almost always memorable, whether they bear truth, wisdom or falsehood - and they have always fascinated me. Ever since I was old enough to write I have been scrawling down statements and sayings that have touched me in some way. All a quote has to do to get my attention is have an impact on me in some fashion and I am recording it for prosperity.

My online quote collection is only a partial attempt at putting together this collection (click BACK TO QUOTES to see the main menu). With 6 billion people on the planet, people are saying things everyday that strike me as important, shock me or make me angry. I almost can't keep up.

I have reams of quotes I keep meaning to add, and today I have determined that I should get around to it - but don't quote me on that.

What is your favourite quote(s)?

Thursday, December 04, 2003

Sex is good for you!

Top 5 reasons sex is good for you! (Shamelessly procurred from Bweezy's blog)

1. It's a great workout! Sex three times a week for one year burns the same number of calories (about 7,500) that running 75 miles would. I get sex 3 - 6 times a week, on average... and for each half hour of sex, it burns about 150 calories! This is the best calorie counter activity I can think of!

2. People who have sex 1 -2 times a week enjoy higher levels of Immunoglobin A, the antibody that helps fend of illness. So, [safe] sex keeps you healthy as well!

3. Sex makes you happy (well, duh)! Women who regularly come into contact with semen are significantly less prone to depression than those who don't get a dose of those potent sex hormones and naturally occurring opiates. MmmMMmm, opiates!

4. It reduces Stress. Orgasms are relaxing, and help you sleep better at night, or if your a boy, whenever.

5. Regular Sex with your partner helps you live longer - and LOOK YOUNGER! Hmmm, maybe this is why I keep getting ID'd at bars. Anyways, a British study has shown that men who enjoy at least 2 orgasms a week had half the death rate of those who did not. I am helping Duncan work towards his goal of living forever!

So, if you needed any prompting for reasons to go out and have sex beyond the obvious, here you go. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

"A study of plastic and Hallmark in conifer form."




As Jon pointed out in his comments, our tree is a "theme tree." Well, sort of. It is correct to say that it has a theme, as last year we bought all blue and silver decorations for it to match my angel. Shopping for decorations together was fun, and the tree itself came home with Duncan and Wesley one day last December as a welcome addition to the experience that was Allie and Duncan's first Christmas together.

But the tree is also an amalgamation of our respective Christmas's Past; my ornaments from when I was a child (even a 30 year old Snow White ball from when they were still made out of silk), my kids collections, ornaments they have made, Duncan's collection (there is a funny story there that maybe I will write about in another post) and stuff his Grandma gave us last Boxing Day from her tree. The tree is a history of ourselves that induces many memories. And there is lots. Eventually we will have to get a bigger tree!

All of these together means that there is a good representation of figures, from Rudolph and Santa, to Jedi Knights, Barbie, and Elvis. Heck, we even have Gordie Howe hanging on the tree (Jon, don't ask, just google). And ofcourse, the ornament that Duncan bought me last year to celebrate our first Christmas of actually living together.

Now I can't wait to fill that space under the tree!

The words we all want to hear...

Click here for some instant Flattery.

And know that I appreciate you to!

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

"Thou tree most fair and lovely"



A long time ago, people believed that evergreen trees were magical, as they always stayed green and healthy looking even in the dead of winter when everything else was brown. As such, the evergreen tree became a symbol of life. Candles were used to represnt the light of spring triumphing over the darkness of winter.

The modern tradition of indoor Christmas Trees was begun by Martin Luther in Germany, ages ago. The custom spread from there to the rest of the world, and tonight, into our living room. The rest, as they say, is history.





So, it's Officially Christmas in Edmonton, Alberta. Let it snow!

Take the red pill...

Where does your food come from?

For Christmas I want a new job

Preferably one that provides me with some personal satisfaction as well as the opportunity to affect change in a meaningful and helpful way.

I want a challenging job in a professional, yet fun and casual work environment, where the hours are flexible and realistic, the pay is good and my input is always appreciated, acknowledged, rewarded and encouraged.

I want to work with educated, intelligent and creative people, who are inspirational, happy, confident and part of a cheerfully productive team while also being able to do their own jobs free of dependance on others.

I want a supervisor who is understanding, encouraging, proficient in training/teaching new approaches for my work ethic/regime and is also capable of providing a safe learning opportunity to develop my current skill set while exploring myself and my potential to develop myself further for the benefit of an organization and my own future accomplishments.

I desire the possibilty to move upwards within an organization or into the respective field itself at some appropriate time, or even in a completely different direction.

I want to enjoy my work life. I want to grow, both personally and professionally, within my work environment, as equally as I want to contribute to said environment.

Oh yeah, and it has to be in Edmonton, Alberta.

Is that too much to ask?

Monday, December 01, 2003

Advances in the Pharmaceutical Treatment of Humour...

I thought I was done posting for the day, but then a friend sent me these jokes via email. I just had to pass them on... laughter being the best medicine ofcourse!

A woman walks into a pharmacy, strolls over to the counter, and catches the pharmacist's attention. "Can I please get some arsenic?" she asks. "Arsenic? What do you want arsenic for?" asks the pharmacist. "It's for my husband," she states. "Your husband!?!" exclaims the pharmacist. "I hope you don't mean what I think you mean!" She just nods. "Well, lady," he replies, "I'm an honest man. I can't sell you arsenic, and I wouldn't even if I could, and I don't know what made you think you could just stroll into a respectable store and expect me me to sell you arsenic!"

Not saying a word, she reaches into her purse, fishes out a photograph, and hands it across the counter.

It is a picture of her husband, in bed with the pharmacist's wife. Slowly the pharmacist looks up, over the counter, and then straight at her.

"Lady," he says, "why didn't you tell me you had a prescription?"



*****************************************************************


A girl asks her boyfriend to come over Friday night and have dinner with her parents. Since this is such a big event, the girl announces to her boyfriend that after dinner, she would like to go out and make love for the first time.
* * * * * * * * * *
Well, the boy is ecstatic, but he has never had sex before, so he takes a trip to the pharmacist to get some condoms. The pharmacist helps the boy for about an hour. He tells the boy everything there is to know about condoms and sex.
* * * * * * * * * *
At the register, the pharmacist asks the boy how many condoms he'd like to buy, a 3-pack, 10-pack, or family pack. The boy insists on the family pack because he thinks he will be rather busy, it being his first time and all.
* * * * * * * * * *
That night, the boy shows up at the girl's parents house and meets his girlfriend at the door. "Oh, I'm so excited for you to meet my parents, come on in!"
* * * * * * * * * *
The boy goes inside and is taken to the dinner table where the girl's parents are seated. The boy quickly offers to say grace and bows his head.
* * * * * * * * * *
A minute passes, and the boy is still deep in prayer, with his head down.
* * * * * * * * * *
10 minutes pass, and still no movement from the boy.
* * * * * * * * * *
Finally, after 20 minutes with his head down, the girlfriend leans over and whispers to the boyfriend, "I had no idea you were this religious."
* * * * * * * * * *
The boy turns, and whispers back, "I had no idea your father was a pharmacist."

Above all else, I believe in Love...

It's December 1st today. In just one short month, 2003 will end with the humble beginning's of 2004. Our December is packed full of partying, celebrations, food, gifts, anticipation, time spent together and happy memories. It really does have to be that way, in our darkest month at the coldest time of the year, we need love, hope and family/friends around us.

December is more than just the last month of 2003 for me. December this year is the month of our third year anniversary together. It's hard to believe that three short years ago we became a couple, and then on the other hand it seems like it has always been this way.

The year 2000 was the year my first marriage ended. It had, as all dying relationships have, been breaking down bit by bit for quite some time, but nearing the end of that year, I realized that I had fallen in love with another man, another married man even. A man I thought I couldn't even dream of having, a man I thought I would have to be content having as my best friend, a man I loved like I had never loved anyone else, albeit unrequited... or so I thought.

It was December 9th of that turmoilish and dynamic year, when I found out that he felt the same way about me. At that moment, I was reborn, my life completely changed, a new journey embarked upon, a new person to share the adventure with. The world was more beautiful then I had ever dared to imagine it could be. As they said in the movie When Harry Met Sally, "when you find that person you want to spend the rest of your life with, you want that life to start right away."

Although it would be somewhat revisionist history to let it seem like it was all that easy (because it was actually pretty difficult at times), it was a time of my life bourne of hope, trust, faith (in love, myself, Duncan and in the truth of "us") and in patience I awaited this new beginning to occur, always knowing it would, because that was the only thing that made sense to me.

That is what December means to me. It's not dark or cold at all, and if it is an ending of any sorts, then it is most definatly the beginning of a new year in the life that I am to share with Duncan, a new opportunity to show him how much he is loved and appreciated. And even more, this next year in particular will be the year that we get married, after three and a half years together, and begin the lifetime we plan to share with each other, our family, and our friends.

As Great Big Sea sang:

"Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end."

I hope that everyone's December, holiday season and New Years is full of peace, promise, hope, and above all... Love!