ch..ch..ch..changes

Remember when I had a blog that I loved and updated regularly? 

Well, you might not. But I do. 

You know how sometimes you love something so much, so you dive in headfirst and you spend as much time as you possibly can trying to make it as awesome as possible? And after days/weeks/months/years of putting it before nearly everything, you remember that, you know, life outside of it is important too. So then you decide to make time for life, and make the blog less of a focus. And then you pretty much forget that you have a blog until you decide that you need to rant about your cat but it's way too late at night to text anyone and suddenly you're 'OH RIGHT. I KNOW WHERE I CAN RANT ABOUT MY CAT REGARDLESS OF THE TIME OF DAY OR NIGHT!'. So then you write up a post, get embarrassed that you typed a crazy cat lady post well after midnight, and choose to schedule the post instead? 

Yeah it's been like that around here lately. I just got to the point where I was blogging solely because I felt like my sponsors needed to get their money worth--well, and also to keep up with the Joneses, you know? Because everyone in blogland has sponsors, and participates in giveaways, and puts up photos of their super cute outfits (that pretty much never repeat, AS IF THAT IS ACTUALLY REAL LIFE), and they post their awesome recipes, and photos of their pyrex finds, and I was trying to keep up. I was failing miserably, I might add, because I hated every minute of trying to keep up. 

Dudes, I'm not cool. I'm not the person that sets trends or starts the new fad meme that spreads like wildfire throughout the blogging clique. 

Also: I hate blogging cliques. Seriously. 

I started seeing my blog colors and fonts everywhere, but other people were using them so much better than I was. There were bloggers that were producing painfully creative content every single day, including downloads and printables and recipe cards that were so cute. I started hating my blog, and hating my writing, and I even got to the point where I stopped pinning--because I felt like everyone was pinning better stuff than I was, for goodness sake. 

Although I love each and every person that I've met through blogging, I really don't care about the number of GFC followers I have. I don't check Bloglovin or Feedburner to see how many subscribers I have, or check how many likes I have on Facebook. Keeping up with all of the stats and graphs and pie charts was making me crazy, and more importantly it was making me feel inadequate. 

I took a step back, re-evaluated how I was judging myself and discovered why I was judging myself. 
I am not Martha Stewart. When you walk into my condo, you will see a few dirty dishes in the sink and a half-assed attempt at a few DIY crafts. You will not see scrapbooks (that I made, at least), you will not see closet organizers, and you certainly will not find bunting. I fucking hate bunting. 

I am not Shrimp Salad Circus, or The Boot, or IHeartOrganizing. I love all of the bloggers dearly, and I read their blogs daily, but right now I am not going to post perfectly photographed recipes, or create daily DIY tutorials, or even walk you through the renovations in my home. I tried all of the above, and failed horribly at it, because those aren't things that I really enjoy doing--or blogging about. 

For now on, I'm not going to have ads in my sidebar. I don't enjoy the pressure that they bring, nor do I enjoy having to say yes to one that might not normally simply because it sucks being the person turned down for an ad. I'm not going to be buying ad space on other blogs, for now, because then I'm not only pressured to blog frequently, but I also feel pressured to take part in the giveaways. Lets be honest--everyone is sick of the giveaways where people win ad space or a guest post somewhere. I don't have a shop of some sort, and I don't really feel like buying into a big prize just to gain followers, so it just doesn't make sense to me. 

This turned out to be far longer and rambly-er that was intended. Recap: I'm going to post what I want to post, instead of trying to keep up with you ridiculously stylish and creative people, and I'm not going to participate in sponsorships right now because of pressure and stuff. 


I love all of your faces. 

 photo ranununculous-signature.png

sorry i'm not sorry

photo via Amna on weheartit.com | caption by me
...for leaving my makeup on the bathroom counter. 
...for only liking one brand of pen. 
...for not caring that my car is messy. 
...that I drink coffee with my milk.
...that I prioritize sleep over blogging when I get busy. 
...that I prioritize spending time with Little A over absolutely everything. 
...that I hate winter. Period. 
...that I take a {timed} Pinterest break when I feel overwhelmed at work, because it really is the best way to empty your mind of everything. 
...that I still laugh when someone makes a fart joke. 
...for being sensitive.
...for having high standards and expectations for myself--and the same standards and expectations for others. 
...for not being empathetic towards people who refuse to help themselves.
...for having specific drink orders for Starbucks and Second Cup because if I'm going to pay $6 for a coffee, it's going to be made my way
...that I'm entirely ok with a woman choosing plastic surgery to alter a portion of their body as long as it's not a substitute for self esteem. 
...for being traditional. 
...for being compassionate, and loving. 
...for being completely over the "BLOGGING IS A BUSINESS" thing, because too many people stopped being nice when money got involved. 
...for wanting a large family, a dog, and a proverbial white picket fence.
...for not being able to finish books, yet still buying more. 
...that I always use those "spend $50 and save $10" cards that my favourite stores give me because I am going to spend money there anyways, so why not save at the same time? 
...that I talk a lot. 
...that I have a loud voice. 
...that I speak my mind. 

What are you not sorry for? 

Books! The Best Weapons In The World.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10
11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20
21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 

All of my life I have been an incurable bookworm. I would devour any book that I could get my hands on, and frequently I would get in trouble for staying up all night because I had to read just one more page. These past few years, for whatever reason, I've very nearly stopped reading. I continue to buy more and more books, and I start most of them, but the last book that I was able to finish entirely was Fifty Shades of Grey--not exactly my proudest moment, let me tell you. 

I want this year to be different. I want to lose myself in books again; I want to be immersed in different times and places. I miss falling in love with fictional characters

This is the first part of my reading list, a digital library neatly organized in iBooks; the second half of my reading list is scattered around my condo in haphazard stacks of paperbacks and hardcover books. This year, I am going to rediscover my love for reading books--and praying that I don't end up hate-reading horrible books again. {There might be a few trashy novels in the summer because that's what summer is for!}

What is your number one goal for 2013?




Card-Carrying Member


I am a proud Canadian. I may complain about the weather from time to time, but ultimately this country is my home. I was born here, I was raised here, and there is a good chance that I will die here. I have followed Canadian politics since junior high school, and since turning eighteen I have not missed a single civic, provincial, or federal election. 

I've known since my grade seven social studies class where I fall on the political scale--or, more accurately, I have always known what I believe but this was the class that allowed me to understand and label my beliefs. And even though I have known which party I am akin to, I have always kept track of the platforms of each major political party in Canada. Uninformed voters make me angry, so I have vowed to never be one. 

Even though I have done more than many Canadians to stay informed and stay involved in the democratic process, I still felt as though I haven't been doing enough. 

So today, I officially joined the NDP party, and then I signed up to volunteer with them as well. Call me a political nerd if you must, but I am really excited to get my membership card in the mail. 


Have you ever joined a political party?


Life, or Something Like It


Source unknown; found on Pinterest

I am a bit neurotic. I am a compulsive planner. I am obsessively organized, and it will bug me incessantly if I somehow mess it up. Failure is not an option for me, so when I do fail at something I am incredibly hard on myself. Leave me alone for too long in a quiet room, and I will start to go crazy. I constantly overbook myself, because I don't enjoy having nothing to do. In fact, I thrive on action-packed or stressful situations. Or, rather, I will get overwhelmed and cry, but as soon as my cry is over I will thrive. 

If you know me in real life, you will know that these are not startling revelations. 

It isn't always easy to live in harmony with my quirks; instead, I often feel as though I am battling against them. I am uncomfortable with change {if it is sprung on me}, so it tends to make me {more than} a little bit hard to live around. 

I had a plan for my life. I had set goals and deadlines, as well as establishing check-points to ensure that I was on track in order to live up to my plan. Instead of changing the deadline, I would alter the method that I would use to reach my goals. Everything was incrementally mapped out, the way one would lay out the route for a marathon. 

Are you surprised to hear that my life has not gone according to my plan? You shouldn't be. I'm not even that surprised, if I'm completely honest with myself. But that doesn't mean that it is easy to give up The Plan. It means forgiving yourself for not meeting your goals, for taking turns in life that you didn't ever expect yourself to take. It's about letting go of the constant that you had to rely on that is no longer even a remote possibility.

We all have a plan, whether we admit it or not. Those vague ideas that flit around in your head of when you want to get married, have kids, buy a house, or even what job you want to do: those are all part of your plan. Mine was detailed; methodically laid out in a logical sequence complete with concrete deadlines. 

I did not make those deadlines. It's extremely difficult for me to reconcile the fact that I failed, and even harder for me to accept that I have had to change my timeline so drastically from what I had originally envisioned for myself.

The next time I'm having a hard time accepting that my life didn't go according to my plan, remember that I'm happy. I'm so happy with so many aspects of my life that it can be overwhelming at times--but that doesn't stop me from lamenting what I see as failures. 

Are you hard on yourself about anything?

The Time I Ugly Cried Over the Cat That I Always Complain About

I remember walking through the door to my friends' condo, and finding eight tiny little kittens running around. Audrey immediately sat down on the floor to laugh at their silly antics. They were jumping, and mewing, and playing robustly. One little kitten broke away from the pack, and crawled into her lap. 



"This is Gilford." she said triumphantly. "This is my kitty."

"Are you sure, hunny? There are so many. Do you want to play with them first?" I asked, wondering if her decision was rash. "Of course it was rash, she is only three after all." I told myself. 

"No Mom, I don't need to play with the other kitties. This is Gilford. Can I please have her collar?" Audrey rolled her eyes as she spoke, clearly impatient with my questions. I handed her the purple collar, and showed her how to put it on. 

"Well, that was easy." I thought. "Now I just need to find my kitten." 

They were all so fluffy and cute. How could Audrey make it seem so easy? So I took Audrey's lead: I sat down on the floor, and I played with the kittens. There were kittens crawling into my shirt, climbing on my shoulders, and sleeping in my hands; as cute as they were, I knew that none of them were my cat. I was feeling discouraged, and pressured to choose one. Suddenly, I felt a sharp pain in my toe. I quickly looked over, and found the source of the pain: there was a kitten attached to my toe, happily chewing away. I don't know if it was the insolence of chewing on my extremity, or the way he seemed entirely comfortable doing so, but I knew that this was my Toulouse. I popped his black collar onto him, loaded our new family members into their kennel, and we drove home.

Toulouse is on the left, Gilford is on the right. I think.

They spent most of their first few months doing what kittens do--sleeping in their box, making messes in my previously immaculate condo, and generally raising hell. They were too small to climb into their litter box on their own, so I created a makeshift staircase leading up to it using a stack of hardcover books. They ate more than I thought possible, and their litter box was always full. But dang it if they weren't sweet as heck, just indescribably sweet.

Apparently they didn't get the memo that you don't kiss your sibling with tongue. Awkward.

Slowly, as they grew up, I started to realize the pitfalls of having two cats in a small condo: everything was covered in cat hair, no matter how many hours I spent vacuuming; the litter box would be full after only a day, so a second was required; most problematic was their penchant for playing from 1-5am--jumping across my bed, stepping on my head, usually with claws out. I couldn't leave the bathroom door open, because everything would end up on the ground and the garbage would be knocked over and strewn across the room.

A deceptive photo; this was taken during his midday nap.

While Gilford has always been an easy-going cat, Toulouse became more of a problem as time went on. He became very possessive of me, to the point that he simply wouldn't allow me out of his sight while I was home. He would follow me from room to room, climbing up my body so that I would be forced to hold him. Heaven forbid I should close the door when I had a bath--he would have a fit, scratching at the door and meowing like he was in pain. If my daughter wanted to snuggle with me, he would push between us and get cranky if I tried to move him. His most irritating habit was his licking; while it might be his way of showing affection, I was being woken up multiple times each night by him licking my face or arms. I am allergic to cat saliva, it turns out, so this led to uncomfortable hives and lots of itchy skin. He would lick and chew on our hair while we sat on the couch--basically, he was a bit of a (super cute, non-violent) menace. 

This is the face of a menace, I swear.

I chalked this up to being a "stage"; he was only a year old, after all. I thought that with time, he would ease up on his intense need for affection and cool it with the constant kisses. "Orange cats calm down with age," said everyone I know with cats. "Just give him time," said they. 

It took a long time to accept that I wasn't the right parent for my little furbaby. I just couldn't give him the love that he so clearly wanted, and needed. I loved him so much, yet he drove me beyond the edge of crazy with those sleepless nights--they caught up to me, and I knew that I needed to find him a new home. 

A rare moment where I'm kissing him, instead of the reverse.

I couldn't bring myself to put an ad on Kijiji; I didn't want to give my baby to just anyone. I wanted him to go to a home that would love him the way that he needed to be loved. 

On Sunday afternoon, that is exactly what happened. 

A friend from work came over with her boyfriend, purely to "meet" Toulouse. They brought their furbaby, a gorgeous Border Collie named Burt, to make sure that there wouldn't be any personality conflicts between the two of them. After an hour and a half they had fallen in love with my little man, just as I knew that they would. I stayed calm, upbeat even, the whole time. Even while packing up his favourite toys, bed, dishes and litter box, I was calm. I knew in my heart that this was the right decision for Toulouse. 

I walked them outside, and helped load my little boy into their car. I said my final goodbye (he would barely look at me, his anger over being shoved into a kennel and taken by strangers was written on his face), I stayed calm. It's the right thing to do. 

Then I turned away from him, said goodbye to my friends, and walked back into my building. And good lord, did I cry. I ugly cried in my kitchen for over a half hour, again at my boyfriends' house, and even more later that night in bed. Deep down, I know that I did the right thing. He has only been at his new home for twenty-four hours, but he has already settled in nicely. He has claimed his spot on both their bed and couch, and has declared which windowsill shall be his throne. 

I know that I did the right thing. But I miss this face more than I ever thought possible. 


Are You Pro or Anti Choice?

I try really hard to stay out of the political spectrum on this blog. I am not a political blogger, and I don't really care to be. Every once in a while, though, something political happens to make me incredibly upset. Motion 312 has does exactly that.  

Now, let me start by saying that I'm not entirely opposed to revisiting the idea of when a fetus becomes a living being. We really do not know when a fetus starts to actually feel (not just react to stimuli), or think. However, to me it does not seem appropriate at all for this discussion to take place as a political debate. This is something that should be in the hands of the scientists, the people who are actually able to prove and disprove theories. 

I have read the political and social commentaries that discuss the Motion, and I am well aware that the Motion does not, in itself, give the government the ability to criminalize abortion. What the results would do, however, is alter when in a woman's pregnancy an abortion can be performed. Ultimately, this would result in limiting a woman's right to choose abortion as an option. 

I'm not writing this because I champion abortion. I don't--in fact, I can't imagine any situation where I would choose abortion for myself. But that's my choice, not yours. What is important to me is having the choice at all, to be the only person making the decisions about what is and isn't right for my own body. Let me frame this another way: I am not a Mormon. I have made the conscious choice to not follow Mormonism as my religion. Does this make the people who choose Mormonism bad people? Does it make Mormonism bad? No, of course not! Why is this different? Why is it OK to choose which faith to follow, but not OK to choose what to do with your body? 

It grinds my gears that people have decided what the labels of each side should be--Pro Choice vs. Pro Life-- as well. Being Pro Choice does not mean that I am anti-life. Logically, they should be labelled Pro Choice and Anti-Choice, or Pro Free Will and Anti-Free Will. Because any way that you slice it, so-called "pro lifers" are actively advocating the government to take away a women's right to choose. The term 'Pro Life' is incredibly misleading because it assumes that the other side of the argument is Pro Death. Do I need to repeat that this isn't at all the case? 

{For the religious crowd: The only one that can judge me and my actions is the God that I choose to believe in. And please, don't quote me Bible passages; because I've read Titus 2:14 and Isaiah 1:18, and I know that the Lord will forgive me for my sins. Even John 3:16 reminds me that He sent his  only Son to wash away my sins. All of my sins, all of your sins. He doesn't pick and choose, he loves us all unconditionally.}

It is not my place to judge the choices or actions of others. So what makes you so special that you can dictate to other women what they can and cannot do with their bodies?