Monday, December 16, 2013

Our apartment

I often tell people that I can't wait to move, to find a little house, or a downtown apartment with a view...but truth be told I am happy to live where I do. Sure the rent is tragically high, and our neighbours are mostly Asian students with no desire to converse, and our parking garage looks like the roof is about to collapse...but it is home.

Our apartment is located at that delightful spot where the sunlight hits in mid afternoon...if I were actually ever home in the mid afternoon this would be a highly enjoyable trait. We have a cozy fake fireplace which I LOVE. We have two bedrooms AND two bathrooms which has made the whole marriage thing a much easier transition. Yuri has his office space, and I have a bathroom that I can clean to my personal standards. We have a garbage chute literally fifty feet away that does not require going outside. We have room for guests to stay, should they so desire. Aside from the clacking of our upstairs neighbour's dog walking around at strange hours, we have an abundance of peace and quiet. It also protects us from the bitter Winnipeg cold which has been particularly harsh as of late.

All in all, I am content to call this place home.

Monday, December 09, 2013

Blue Christmas

I'm feeling bluesy tonight, but I'll try not to spoil your holiday cheer.

I'm feeling the realities of adulthood upon me. No longer can I rely on others to bring the holiday spirit to me, it is time to create my own magic.

Alas, magic is hard to create when one is in the midst of a drastic cold snap (-32 tonight), when one has to work on Christmas day itself, when one has a cankersore that has decided to set up permanent residence in one's mouth, when one's kitty has destroyed the lower half of a carefully decked Christmas tree, and when one lives three provinces away from one's family.

Let me be clear, I am incredibly blessed to be sitting here with my cup of Christmas tea (all the way from England thanks to my mother-in-law), my alpaca socks all the way from Kazakhstan, an adorable (sometimes) grey cat curled up by the fireplace, my pot of Christmas smells simmering on the stove (bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, cranberries, cloves, lemons and oranges), and Frank Sinatra crooning in the background.

 I am also blessed to not be truly alone.

The First Aid Kit ladies help make this song sound truly tragic, and it comforts me.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

la la la

A mellow Sunday evening made even more relaxing with the inclusion of the smooth vocals of Laura Veirs and fair trade hot cocoa.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Yuri would call this video incredibly "hipster" but it reminds me of Nelson and makes me deeply homesick for BC. I happened to see Dan Mangan (the singer with the tambourine) perform live on a warm, sun splattered July day when I was home for a summer holiday. I sat on the grass listening to his music and dreamed of a life full of travel and adventure. I thought that if I could only explore the world I would finally understand my part in it. Two degrees, a husband, and several years have occurred since. I feel somewhat more accomplished, but still just as perplexed. Particularly in regards to the ever pondered question: "But where to live?"

Tonight, I pick the mountains.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Some Autumn Photos...

 Chloe entertains with her amazing musical talent

 I entertain with my, well, non musical talent

 A lil' Thanksgiving feast

 A precious moment

 A Thanksgiving bake off with my worthy opponent

 So sweet...

 So crazy...

 So happy...

 So grumpy...

 So innocent...

 So proud...

 So carefree...

 So helpful...

 So cold...Finally!

 Going on an adventure!

 Nature will bear the closest inspection. She invites us to lay our eye level with her smallest leaf, and take an insect view of its plain.
- Henry David Thoreau
Fun Family Fotos

Monday, November 04, 2013


There is something strikingly grey and melancholic about the month of November. Earlier now, the days are getting dark. Tonight as I left work, snowflakes swirled about me in anxious haste. My nose is in a constant state of cold and I still don't have my winter tires on.

I recommend Jordan Klassen's latest album "Repentance" as heart warming reprieve from these cold days. I also recommend a grey cat and a fire place.

"With your hand in my hand, go to me"

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Last week

While Yuri was in a very exciting work related conference last week, I decided I would go along and keep him company. It doesn't hurt that it was located in our Nation's capital city, the lovely city of Ottawa. An abundance of lattes were drunk.

                                                         I am a girl of simple pleasures.

Monday, September 09, 2013

A couple of months ago a resident at the nursing home I work at passed away. Death is not a surprising phenomenon when working with seniors, but it is still one that I often find difficult to process. Some days are harder than others. The resident who died, had only hours before been helping me put tomato plants in the garden. He talked proudly of his garden at home and the many years he had tilled the earth. As the tomato plants have grown, flourished, produced fruit, and are now starting to whither and die, I find myself remembering him. I remember his stories, his humour, his love for nature.

"It is not from ourselves that we learn to be better than we are"
-Wendell Berry

Saturday, September 07, 2013

“The crickets sang in the grasses. They sang the song of summer’s ending, a sad, monotonous song. ‘Summer is over and gone,’ they sang. ‘Over and gone, over and gone. Summer is dying, dying.’
“The crickets felt it was their duty to warn everybody that summertime cannot last forever. Even on the most beautiful days in the whole year – the days when summer is changing into fall – the crickets spread the rumor of sadness and change.”
Charlotte’s Web

Thursday, September 05, 2013

There is an air of magical happenstance in the air today...perhaps it's the early Autumn glow. And I feel I must write, even if I have nothing of brilliance to share. In fact, Yuri and I find ourselves in the midst of a rather exhausting, run-of-the-mill work week. Both of us are fighting some sort of head cold that simply prefers to drip and linger as opposed to leaving us be, and work demands from us our precious remaining energy. This is why, I firmly believe, we as humans, need the beauty of thought, creativity, and art, to give the world some whimsical joy just when it so desperately needs it.

In light of the crisis surrounding Syria, I leave you a slice of thoughtful art:

Monday, August 26, 2013

A lovely summer tune...

I know we are in the midst of a summer heat wave (+30's all week), but the elderly keep reminding me in a depressing realistic fashion, that a long, hard winter is coming, and it's right around the corner. Even the most positive person would crumble beneath the frigid foreshadowing.

And so, this last week of heat, I shall cherish and delight in. Because the thought of cold weather makes my toes curl.

Yuri and I have made a point of enjoying as much of the outdoors as possible this summer...camping trips to Ontario, bike rides, trips to grand beach, and trail runs at Bird's Hill park.


Monday, June 17, 2013

Last Year...

                                                                       June 2012

Last year I lived with two great roommates in a quirky house in one of my favourite areas of Winnipeg. I had a backyard with a garden for all my tulips and tomatoes. I was happily dating the cutest Russian boy.

One year later....I'm happily married to that cute Russian boy. I live in an apartment building, and get to co-parent a fluffy grey cat, and develop my indoor gardening skills.

I wonder what next year will look like?

Thursday, May 30, 2013

I wish I could Whistle

 This song makes me excited about the approaching summer...

Monday, March 11, 2013

Wine, Vomit, and Wintry Ventures

We just sprang ahead an hour, which is a tell-tale sign that Spring is near. I am so eager for it's nearness as this winter has felt darker and colder and snowier than most. One of the biggest contributors to this "dark winter" was the absence of any holidays from work since our honeymoon. I am facing a condition I have faced many times before: Burnout. I NEED a break soon. You know you need a break from work when the elderly residents begin asking if you have a room there.

February began hideously cold. Yuri and I decided to fight the dark wintery spell by going to a B&B close to Selkirk, MB. We wanted to celebrate the equally cold night we met a short two years ago. I was so excited about our romantic getaway, and as we embarked on the drive there I had images of us nestled inside the log cabin, sipping wine and basking in Manitoba's nature. We arrived to our beautiful destination, and settled into our room with it's sloping wooden roof, and golden lamp glow. Our idealistic evening hit it's first snag when we realized that we had forgotten a cork screw to open our wine bottle. After much deliberation over which one of us would venture to ask our hostess for a corkscrew, Yuri bravely went pajama-clad to plead our case, and returned victorious. We sipped our wine and toasted our happiness, and shortly after I realized something was amiss. The room was spinning and waves of nausea were hitting me over and over. In retrospect I appeared to be having a nightmarish allergic reaction to the wine we were drinking. Yuri, bless his heart, had the intuition to grab the A&W paper bag we had in the room and stick it under my chin. I kept repeating, "I'm fine, I'm fine, I'm fiiii..." until I began vomiting into the paper bag. I will spare you the gory details, but I will add that paper bags are unfortunately not made to endure the magnitude of a poor girl's stomach contents. Ultimately this night showed me the depth of love that Yuri and I share *cheesy moment* as he cleaned up the aftermath (with his t-shirt I must add) and lovingly tucked me back into bed with the adage that I "owe" him for this. Which I do.  

Further wintery adventures include fighting a sinus infection valiantly until I ultimately had to resort to antibiotics, my car getting egged in -35 temperatures, and my car breaking down in the middle of busy Route 90. The tow truck couldn't find my car, despite my repeated pleadings that I was close to "Tip Top Tailors". Seriously, how much more clear must I be?

I'm hoping that the rest of March will bring some more sunshine, warmth, happiness, and less challenging opportunities.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

How was your Monday?

Yesterday happened to be "Blue Monday" which is reportedly the bluest of all Mondays. It falls on the Monday of the last full week in January, and is the bluest for a myriad of reasons: weather conditions, debt level, time since Christmas, and the often inevitability of failing one's new year’s resolutions. These are all factors into making this day the most melancholy of the year.

What did my monday look like?

Weather: -35 with wind chill of -45. Most likely the coldest week of the year for ol' Winnipeg.

Debt Level: Higher than I would like.
New Year's Resolutions: I resolved to make it to work on time. Result so far? Failure percent rate  85 %

Health: If the snotty kleenexes, Buckleys and woolen socks are any indication, less than sublime.

Holiday Time: Nonexistent for another 4 months.

The good news?

It is now Tuesday. And only -29.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Christmas in Pictures

For our families and friends who are far away, I present you:

A Winnipeg Christmas

                                              Chloe and I hanging out while
                                             mommy and daddy go shopping.

The leg o' lamb meets his match in Yuri's 
cooking vengeance.
                                             A lonely, yet beautiful Christmas Eve
                                                           with just each other.


                                                         Our tree of many blessings

 Christmas Morning!
Lindsay, Chuck, and Chloe arrive just in time for blini

Tatyana arrives with more food. 
Russians love food. 

Waiting for dinner to commence.

Reveling in the rare glory of doing...nothing. 

Chloe is ready to eat.

A few days later...

Celebrating 3 months of marriage. 
A trip to the forks. 

At Saucers Cafe.
Jennie's favourite Tea Bar. 

Revisitng the place we got married, 
Assiniboine Park.

On our way to Otterburne for a New Years

Uncle Yuri gets..."The Look"

Despite the lack of mistletoe, these two still snuck kisses.

Beautiful day in the country.

Chuck and Yuri relaxing.

Skyping with Nanny, Papa and Uncle Will in BC