Thursday, December 29, 2011

Skywatch Friday

This week's Skywatch feature (posted from my new laptop!!!) is taking us on a little trip to Rome. It is a view of the dome of St. Peter's Basilica through the arms of one of Piazza San Pietro's lamp posts. I took it a few years back when I was on vacation in Rome with my Sweetheart :o)

I hope you enjoy it and that you are all enjoying the Holidays :o) To see more Skywatch photos from around the world, stop by the Skywatch Friday blog!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Today I...December 27th

Today I... sharing these photos of my Christmas celebrations with all of you. The Christmas tree is my mom's and the two other photos are some of our dinner plates at my aunt and uncle's and M. Snowman, who likes to hang out on the backs of chairs, as you can see :o)I had a lovely time celebrating with my family over the weekend and I hope that you all did too!

...accompanied my Sweetheart to the metro station. He stayed over last night and we were very happy to see each other again. He told me all about his trip and we had a nice dinner and relaxed together. I will be seeing him again later this week, Friday for sure since we are going to a Christmas-New Year's Eve party with some friends and hopefully once in between.

...don't have very much planned. I may call my brother to see if he wants to go laptop and fish (for my aquarium) shopping with me, or I may have a nap (still recovering from how tired out I got through the month of December) or I may watch a movie...or I may do all of the above. Ah, the freedom to do what one wants when one does not have to go to lovely!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Today it...

Today it...

...SNOWED!!! Finally :o) Everyone was so happy to see the snow staying around, we are going to get our white Christmas after all :o) I tried to get the picture I took with my cell phone onto here, but the format wasn't compatible and I couldn't change it. mom lives out in the country though, so I'll try and see if I can get some good photos while I'm out her way tomorrow :o)

I am now off work for two weeks and am so very happy about it and looking forward to some well earned rest and time with my Sweetheart. Looks like we're going to have to wait until at least Monday to be together though as his consulting firm ended up getting the contract to supervise some emergency work that needed to be done on the Louis-Hyppolite-Lafontaine Tunnel, a tunnel that links Montreal to the South Shore by running under the St-Lawrence river. He was at the tunnel until 11:00 P.M. last night and had to go back again today. He got home just in time to make a huge batch of chocolates he was meant to make last night, toss his clothes that had been sitting in his washing machine for a few hours into the dryer and run out to get some food since he hadn't even been able to do the groceries since getting home on Wednesday night. We are naturally going to be with our respective families over the weekend, so Monday or Tuesday are looking like our best bets for finally being reunited. And the 7th day, God started stocking up all the patience he was going to endow me with. My apologies if any of you were short-changed in the patience area because of me.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Skywatch Friday

This is my first Skywatch for a few weeks and I've missed sharing my views of the sky with you guys!

This week's feature is a photo Of Notre-Dame College with it's pine trees decked out for Christmas last year. It's not a 'fresh' picture, but I wanted to go for something seasonal and since we have no snow yet this year, I decided the best option was to go digging through my archives to find something nice and Christmasy.

I'd like to take this opportunity to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas or Happy Chanukah! I May not get a chance to post again before next week as I'm going to be pretty busy over the next few days with my family and I hope you all get to share the Holidays with those you love as well :o)

To see more Skywatch photos from around the world, go you can go and check out the Skywatch Friday blog.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Today I...December 21st

Today I... sharing this photo of a snowy Oratory taken last December with you. Still no snow here of course. thrilled that my Sweetheart's plane landed safe and sound, despite the freezing rain coming down in and around Montreal. He had to circle around quite a bit though, they made his plane turn back and circle over norther Vermont and New York for a half hour before finally letting it land. hoping to speak with him tonight or tomorrow morning, depending on what time he makes it home. curious to know if he found Christmas gift while he was down south.

...gave my last tour of the Christmas season today and then checked over the schedule several times to make sure it really was my last one! happy :o)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Today I...December 20th

Today I... sharing this photo of a WestJet winglet which I took during one of the flights back from Florida I took them at some point during the dozen years my grandparents lived down there. hoping that my Sweetheart, who will be flying home with WestJet tomorrow actually makes it in, as they are now announcing quite a bit of bloody FREEZING RAIN here tomorrow. For crying out loud, where is our bloody SNOW??? Planes can land in the snow, they do it all the time as long as the runways are cleared, we're kind of good at around here. They do not land or takeoff in the freezing rain though, it's against Transport Canada regulations, which is quite understandable. I want my Sweetheart to be safe more than anything else, naturally, but at the same time I know darn well that this particular flight out of Punta Cana only leaves once a week and that at this time of year it is very difficult to find any flight out of anywhere that has a seat free on it. Knowing him though, he'll find some way out of the Dominican Republic before Christmas if it's at all humanly possible. I just want him HOME, I miss him like crazy, I haven't heard the sound of his voice in two and a half weeks and have had to survive on four text messages and one tiny little e-mail. So has he, mind you, but he had sunshine, palm trees, his buddy, load of work and then an all inclusive beach resort to help get him through it. I had tons and tons of work, not enough sleep, stress and more tons of work. I think I kinda got the short end of the stick here, wouldn't you say? Anyhow, if we're hugely lucky, the weather forecast will change and if not he'll hopefully have airport wi-fi to let me know what's going on. Maybe he can get a flight into Toronto and then get on a train?

...had a second quieter day at work. I still had plenty to do, but managed to get it all done by the end of the day, despite having a very long lunch hour since the boss was treating us all to lunch at a local restaurant.

...finally got around to buying some AA batteries. The batteries in my TV remote died...oh boy, nearly a month ago I think, but I gave the situation a lick and a promise by taking the battery from my battery powered back-up alarm and replacing one of the two dead ones in the remote. You're never supposed to do that, I know, but I needed to try it to be able to tell the Videotron technician I had on the phone if that had fixed my problem or not. It did, I was happy to be able to change the channels on my TV again and I figured that the odds of the power going out were low enough for me to be able to do without my backup alarm clock for a while. I went grocery shopping a few days after this incident and asked for batteries at the cash (the only place you can get them, don't ask me why) and the store wasn't carrying any at that time??? Don't ask me why that is either. So that was at least two weeks ago and tonight when I got off the bus I reminded myself how annoyed I was getting with not having my backup alarm working anymore because when I get up to go to the washroom during the night now (about once every second night) and want to know what time it is, I have to walk up to my alarm clock on the way back to bed to check since a) I'm slightly myopic and can't read the clock without squinting and b) it's too high up on top of the sound system which is on top of my dresser, so I wouldn't be able to read the time even if I wasn't slightly myopic. So into the corner store I went and I grabbed a magazine, the batteries and then splurged on a lottery ticket since it's up to 50 million and I figured since the draw is on Friday night right before Christmas, God might like to send me a bit of Christmas cheer. That way if my apartment building get converted to condos, I can either buy one or laugh it off and buy elsewhere. Even just a million will do. That and a working alarm clock and a magazine to read for once put a smile on my face...until the bloody freezing rain forecast for tomorrow came along :oJ

Monday, December 19, 2011

Today I...december 19th

Today I... back! sharing this video of the choir of New College Oxford's singing the Rocking Carol with all of you. It has always been one of my favorite Christmas Carols and the choir of New College is another one of my favorites! I don't know about those ruffs on their cassocks though, they just don't look very comfy in my opinion. happy to report that last Thursday's concert went even better than our first one. also happy to report that I have all of my Christmas shopping and wrapping done! feeling more relaxed than last week. getting hugely eager for my Sweetheart to get home! He'll be back on Wednesday :o) looking forward to Friday at 4:30 P.M. when I will walk out of the office for two whole weeks!

...can't believe I made it through the past three weeks, what a rough go of it I've had!

...found out that my apartment building was sold and that my former landlord seems to still have some part in the running of the place since my rent checks have to be made out to someone else and mailed to the new owner??? I don't get it and I am NOT HAPPY about it! I'm afraid of a rent hike and lost checks and what will happen to the building! What if the new owner decides to make condos out of it and evicts us all??? I'm in one of the last conveniently placed, well maintained, cat friendly and affordable places in my neighborhood!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Today I...December 15th

Today I... posting this from work very quickly in a rare quiet moment thus breaking my self-imposed 'Thou shalt not blog from work.' rule. doing this to let you guys know that you may not see another post from me until Sunday or Monday because tonight I am singing in a concert, tomorrow after work I'm going to try and finish off my Christmas shopping, Saturday I'm having lunch with my mom and my brother for his birthday and Sunday night I'm going out to a fancy-dancy restaurant with my father's family to celebrate my Grandpa G's 85th birthday and Sunday I'm going to try and get my wrapping, laundry and cleaning done on top of having an appointment out in the West Island. Phew!

...was very happy when my Sweetheart texted me to let me know that he and E were waiting at the Haiti/Dominican Republic border in a bus. He is out of Haiti, hooray! hoping you have a lovely weekend and that it will be more restful than mine! I should have fun though, so that'll be nice!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Today I...December 13th

Today I...

...turned my computer on for the first time since Saturday. Sound familiar? sharing this photo of what the Oratory and its surrounding area looked like on December 23rd last year with all of you. I seriously doubt it will look anything like this next week unless something major changes. We have a very tiny bit of snow on the ground and although it snowed most of the day today, nothing stayed and some of what we already had melted as it was above freezing. Not by much obviously, but still. happy to report that my concert on Sunday went quite well. My next one is on Thursday and that will be the last one for this session.

...had a very good time at the employee Social Club's Christmas lunch, even though I didn't, as usual, win any of the door prizes.

...went out to dinner at Juliette et Chocolat with V after work. It was lovely to see her and we had a nice chat as we hadn't seen each other since October! looking forward to my Sweetheart coming home. He will be back on Wednesday of next week. off to watch Flashpoint!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Today I...December 10th

Today I...

...had a very laid back day and spent a lot of time lounging did my furry felines. I love it when they cuddle like this :o) the laundry done and was exempt from dish washing as I ended up doing that last night.

...watched two movies on Bravo!, 'The First Knight' and 'Serendipity', both were excellent.

...called my mom to chat with her when I started feeling lonely and missing my Sweetheart too much. As much as I need a rest from work, at least when I'm there, I'm so busy that I don't have time to think about the fact that my Sweetheart is away! looking forward to my concert tomorrow.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Today I...December 9th

Today I...

...took half the day off because I was completely exhausted when I got home from choir practice last night and knew darn well that I would be flirting with the point of no-return if I made my tired self run on too little sleep for much longer. I haven't been sleeping very well lately, you see. I've been having crazy dreams, even when I have been sleeping deeply. Even four chamomile pills and exhaustion weren't enough to get rid of them last night, even though I did sleep for 10 hours straight. I don't know what's causing these dreams, but I hope they go away soon, because with them messing with my sleep, the heavy workload I have at the office and all my choir practices and concerts, it's getting to be too much!

...enjoyed watching the snow fall all day. Unfortunately it didn't stick very well because it was still just a bit too warm for it, but it looked pretty while it lasted! a text message from my Sweetheart. He is someplace in Haiti called Mirainco that isn't even on a map. I'm not sure if that's the village where he and E are hoping to get a contract build a school or the village where he and E are hoping to convince the population to help them build them a public shower to replace the one they have now, which does not use water safe for human consumption.

...was hoping to get my laundry done, but I'm too tired. I think I am also too tired to wash the dishes, so I guess I'll just do all that tomorrow morning. planning to have a nice, quiet day tomorrow, which will mean wrapping Christmas presents and doing to laundry and cleaning, all this of course after sleeping in to my heart's and body's content!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Today I...December 7th

Today I... sharing this recording of Eric Whitacre's 'The Seal Lullaby' with all of you. Here are the lyrics to it:

Oh! Hush thee, my baby, the night is behind us,

And black are the waters that sparkled so green.

The moon, o’er the combers, looks downward to find us,
At rest in the hollows that rustle between.

Where billow meets billow, then soft be thy pillow,
Oh weary wee flipperling, curl at thy ease!
The storm shall not wake thee, nor shark overtake thee,
Asleep in the arms of the slow swinging seas!

I hope you take the time to listen to it, because it truly is a beautiful, haunting piece of music.

...had another crazy day at work.

...had a real coffee at lunch, not a decaf one. I very, very rarely drink coffee. We're talking once every two months normally and 95% of the time when I do drink coffee, it is decaf. If you ever hear of me having a real coffee, it is for one of two reasons: my Sweetheart made it and it was a tiny little cup of espresso or I am really, really knock out tired. In this case, I was really, really knock out tired.

...gave a tour to a group of volunteer tour guides from the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. It was a tiny group of five and they were really great and to top it all off they gave a free issue of the museum's magazine and two passes that are valid for any temporary exhibit at the museum until January 31st! I will have to see what is going to be going on there and head over with my Sweetheart when he gets back into town!

...could not believe the damage that the group of high school students that used our group lunch room this afternoon did to its bathrooms. Two of the urinals in the men's' room are damaged beyond repair, one with a hole knocked into its drain and the other with an even bigger hole knocked into its drain and a large crack in it and the ladies' room had every single one of its toilets blocked with huge amounts of toilet paper jammed into them. They were so badly plugged that they began leaking into the store room for the gift shop that is underneath the bathrooms, that is how we found out there was a problem. We were all completely flabbergasted of course and we fully intend to bill the school for the damages. They are coming with another group tomorrow and a third one next week and before they do anything tomorrow, we're going to see to it that the staff know to keep a serious eye on their students. letting you know that I will not be posting tomorrow as I have a dress rehearsal all evening for my concert with my choir this coming Sunday. I should be back on Friday :o)

ETA: I have no clue why my post came out highlighted in white. I tried to fix it, but blogger wasn't having it. Weird...

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Today I...December 6th

Today I...

...turned my computer on for the first time since Saturday night.

...looked at my blog roll and realized that there is no way that I will be able to catch up with all of your blogs. Sorry, work is crazy right now and I have very little desire to spend much time in front of the computer when I get home. I will try and comment on one or two blogs every night though, if I can :o) sharing this picture of some palm trees in Naples, Florida with you. It is not a recent photo, I have not been to Florida since my grandparents moved away from there two years ago now. I will not hide that I miss it, while I do love their place in South Carolina too. I just miss the palm trees and the beach! I was so happy to sit on the beach in Santa Monica this past summer and I am not ashamed to tell you all that I hugged a palm tree or two while my Sweetheart and I were in L.A.

...picked a picture of a palm tree as a way to link this post to my Sweetheart. We got together on Sunday night rather than Saturday night and he left for Haiti yesterday evening. It was a long road for he and his business partner E to get to Port-Au-Prince. They had their friend J drive them to Plattsburgh, NY where their flight to Fort Lauderdale took off at 1:30 in the morning. They landed in Fort Lauderdale somewhere around 3:30 in the morning and then had a two hour layover until their flight to Port-Au-Prince took off at 5:30 in the morning, or at least that's how it was supposed to go. I will have to ask my Sweetheart how things went, because he was flying with Spirit Airlines *shudder*. I have never flown with Spirit and hope never to have to, because from what I've seen of their boarding procedures and their on-time (haha) rating, the whole company looks like a Turkish Bazaar. My Sweetheart said he fully expected to process to be quite similar to a bazaar and since he lived in Morocco when he was little, he knows what he's talking about. Anyhow, I'm quite curious to know whether his flight was on time and if anyone got body-checked in the stampede for a window seat since Spirit doesn't assign seats, not even if you're willing to pay. I'm also curious to know how long it took my Sweetheart and E to get their checked bag, because never have I waited for my luggage as long as I have had to wait on it at Fort Lauderdale airport! One of the last times I went, I would have had time to turn around, get on a flight to Montreal and be most of the way back home before my bag came out (remember that, Grandma and Grandpa?). They really, really needed to change their baggage carousels and according to my flight attendant friend M who flies into Fort Lauderdale quite often, they still do!!! It's a good thing my Sweetheart and E had a long layover... actually kind of glad that work is busy right now and that I have two concerts and two dress rehearsals with my choir while my Sweetheart is away. It will keep me nice and busy until he gets back on December 21st and will hopefully keep my worries at bay. He will be in Haiti until December 16th and will then be resting up in the Dominican Republic until December 21st. Yes, I am jealous of his holiday in the Domican and yes, he knows and feels no shame :oJ That's okay, I never felt any shame for going on vacation to Florida without him twice a year either! The payback sucks though :oJ

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Today I...December 3rd

Today I... back after a two day blogging break. happy to report that the concert on Thursday was amazing. The acoustics in Montreal's Maison Symphonique are the best I've ever heard, my Sweetheart and I were both floored by them and we cannot wait to go back for another concert!

...was stunned when I slept in until 10:40 A.M. this morning. I woke up at 8:40 and was still a bit tired, so figured I would let myself drift back off figuring I would wake up again around 9:30, my usual weekend wake up time, but I was obviously more tired than I thought!

...did my laundry and cleaning and then went Downtown to pick up a music score that I had come in for me at Archambault, one of a chain of music and bookstores unique to Quebec. Their flagship store on the corner of Berri and Ste-Catherine is a little piece of heaven for classical music lovers as they have an extensive classical music section for both CDs and scores. I can easily spend an hour browsing up there if I have the time.

...splurged on a CD for myself, Eric Whitacre's 'Light and Gold'. I'm sharing a piece from it above. I sang Whitacre's 'Lux Arumque' with my choir last year and was charmed by it. I love Whitacre's music and if you enjoy this piece, you should look up some more of his music, it's all over YouTube. Just uh...make sure and check the reviews of the video's you come across before watching them, not all choirs can master Whitacre's music properly and it would horrible if you were turned off of him because of a slip-up by a choir! hoping to see my Sweetheart one more time tonight before he leaves for Haiti on Monday night. It would go a long way to making me feel better about his leaving, or at least I think it would. I would just love to be able to spend some more time in his arms before he leaves and talk with him, but he has a lot of work to do. He was sent some stuff by his former employers two weeks ago and underestimated how long it was going to take him to get it done. He is now bogged down on his last few days before leaving and is finding it to be quite the drag, as am I. Anyhow, hopefully he'll call to tell me I can head over to his place soon, if not I'll try and get some good phone time in with him tomorrow.