tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
2016 has been pretty good for me. I know some people had a sucky one and I hope I have been supportive wherever possible. For me, this year has been one of the better ones, the highlight being Graham finally moving to Canada and gaining residency status. Nobody close to me died this year, though I have a feeling 2017 might not be so kind. I have one aunt who is visibly failing and that will be difficult whenever it happens.

I always make a goal to do/try/see new things. Some years are a stretch and all I can say is that maybe I visited a town I hadn't been to before but this year had a couple of cool firsts, we went whale watching and to a local sci-fi fantasy convention, Hal-con. Whale watching was overwhelming. The boats do not putter close to the whales, they have to stay at a specific distance and they do, cutting their engines so they float there while the people on board can watch but if the whales are curious and decide to come up to the boat to check things out, they have no control over that and we were very lucky in that respect. Hal-con was good fun and I think the next time we will go for the whole weekend and spread out the events. There were other things that were new, mainly new places visited including a cafe here in Halifax where you can sit and play board games!

Work was ok this year, nothing really exciting but nothing really bad either. I think 2017 might be interesting with the chance of using some new training we got last year. My coworker has just left so I do hope that isn't going to cause too much extra stress. I've already told my manager that if they expect me to do it all, they'll be looking for 2 positions to fill instead of one. They do know I can retire any time.

We are planning to go on a trip in November to celebrate G.'s birthday (a milestone) and our belated honeymoon. We'll be visiting Vancouver and Victoria which are not new to me but new to him and then flying to Hawaii from there for 4 or 5 days. That's the real honeymoon part. I've got Aeroplan miles for the east to west coast flights and the husband of my best friend has offered to get us tickets at a discount for Hawaii so that's excellent news if he can manage it. With the money saved there, Maybe we can book a hotel a little above the budget we'd planned. The Tall Ships will be here in the summer which is an event I always love.
Year in review, by month )

And in my reading life, I usually try to read at least 90 books. This year I upped the goal to 95 and went past that though to be fair, a handful at least were novellas and very short books including a couple of graphic novels which I can burn through in one sitting. Having said that, I've never read graphic novels before so that's another first. I'm going to try out an audio book this year, too as part of a challenge on Goodreads in a group I follow for fans of Canadian Literature. I don't know how successful that will be since my attention tends to drift listening to things like that. I guess audio books aren't a first actually, because I have downloaded a couple of books and radio plays in the past and that's how I know my attention drifts. I will have to make more of an effort. I've also started borrowing ebooks from the library, something I had been planning to do for years even though I'm still buying books, too! At year's end I have three books on the go and I won't finish them by tonight. Still, I think I'll still count them in 2016 books since I've read over half of at least two of them already and a good third of the other one.

And to wrap up my book list...

I read quite a few Christmas themed books as part of a Goodreads challenge and tried to make sure most of them were a bit different than the usual feel-good sentimental stuff.
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Reading Woman)
Books, books books,. I keep track of the books I read and do stats on them etc. ever since I've belonged to a Goodreads group that encourages people to read Canadian authors. I have increased that but i still read a lot of US, UK with a smattering of other nationalities. I do all this in a Google drive spreadsheet. Been looking over this year's books and these have been my top rated ones, with ** marking the ones I'd particularly recommend. Some are a bit bleak but still very good. There's a little bit of everything there from non-fiction history to chick-lit aka "women's fiction" (though it's still thing all the same isnt' it?) to comedy and general "literary" fiction.There's even a graphic novel in there.  "Do Not Say We Have Nothing" has won a lot of awards this year and it's very good. I think Ragged Company was my favourite book of the year  and most of the other 10/10 with ** were a very near second.
If you are interested, my Goodreads 2016 shelf has them all, with links to the book's page and also to my reviews if I"ve done one.

Rating Title Author
10    **Ragged Company   Richard Wagamese
10    **Medicine Walk   Richard Wagamese
10    **Do Not Say We Have Nothing   Madeleine Thu
10    **Commonwealth    Ann Patchett
10    **The Way the Crow Flies    Ann-Marie MacDonald
10    **Walt     Russell Wangersky
10    **The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden    Jonas Jonasson
10    **The Little Shadows     Marina Endicott
10    **And The Birds Rained Down    Jocelyn Saucier
10    **Against a Darkening Sky    Lauren B. Davis
10    Virgins: An Outlander Novella    Diana Gabaldon
10    Unseemly Science     Rod Duncan
10    The Secret World of Og    Pierre Berton
10    The Little Book of Carla Connor    Glenda Young
10    The Invention of Wings    Sue Monk Kidd
10    The Gallery of Lost Species    Nina Berkhout
10    The American Boy    Andrew Taylor
10    A Woman With a Secret    Sophie Hannah
9    **Under This Unbroken Sky     Shandi Mitchell
9    **The Nightingale     Kristin Hannah
9    **The Invisible Bridge     Julie Orringer
9    **Crow Lake     Mary Lawson
9    **Amazing Grace    Lesley Crewe
9    Wire in the Blood    Val McDermid
9    The Winter Folly     Lulu Taylor
9    The Torment of Others    Val McDermid
9    Breathing Lessons    Anne Tyler
8.5 The Witches of New York    Ami McKay
8.5 Angel Catbird    Margaret Atwood (graphic novel)
8.5 A Tale for the Time Being    Ruth Ozeki
8   Tooth and Claw    Jo Walton
8   The Virgin Cure    Ami McKay
8   The Three Sisters Bar and Hotel     Kathleen Govier
8   The Stupidest Angel    Christopher Moore
8   The Mermaids Singing     Val McDermid
8   The Hounds of the Baskervilles     Arthur Conan Doyle
8   The High Mountains of Portugal    Yann Martel
8   The Heart Goes Last    Margaret Atwood
8   The Birth House    Ami McKay
8   The Best Laid Plans    Terry Fallis
8   Silk     Penny Jordan
8   Reader, I Dumped Him    Lorelei Mathias
8   Midnight Sun    Jo Nesbo
8   Mercy Among the Children    David Adams Richards
8   Deafening     Francis Itani
8   City on Fire    Garth Risk Hallberg
8   By Gaslight    Stephen Price
8   Barometer Rising    Hugh McLennan
8   Arctic Drift     Clive Cussler
8   Annabel    Kathleen Winter
8   A Train in Winter     Caroline Moorehead
7.5 The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz    Mordecai Richler
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
One of my coworkers has a new job. IT's good for her but I'm already feeling a bit anxious. She and I do pretty much the same job, though she does some different things and has more knowledge in some areas. I'm feeling like they're going to dump it all on me because there isn't anyone else and I know I can't do it all. I even remarked to my manager yesterday that if they don't replace her, they might have to look to replace two positions. They have a habit of that here, taking an empty position and using it for something else. There is someone else that can do some of it but i haven't had any other communication yet as to what's going to happen. I really am pleased for her as she's not really been that happy for awhile and she's really excited for the new job.

Hoping to have a low key weekend. I need to get some housework done, finish decorating the tree, get gifts wrapped. Graham has two cartoons to finish and he's started work on the song he does for me each year. We will also start organizing his Christmas radio show. I always participate in a comedy opening he writes and I pick out some songs and introduce them. This year I can record it directly instead of sending him prerecorded files that never sound quite right. I"m also going to have to get in gear and wrap his gifts, i have most of them here at work, planning to wrap them here and take them home. There's one still at home hidden and one at my mother's.

The clutter is starting to get out of hand, too so I really need to start weeding through it and either thowing stuff out or finding a place to put it away.

And a catch up on the book list...
Have been reading Christmas themed books lately as part of a monthly challenge on Goodreads and it makes a change from some of the heavier stuff I'd been getting through.
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
Not a lot to report. The baby shower was good, love to have snuggles with a newborn. He was passed from lap to lap most of the afternoon without a complaint. Our gift of the Star Trek "Kirk" onesie and black trousers was met with appreciation. The Ping didn't happen, there was a mixup with the booking dates with the pub so the ping will be this Sunday instead. We didn't know until we got there so we stayed for lunch anyway.

Getting Mom to take me out Christmas shopping on Saturday so I can get G.'s gift, which she will then hide at her apartment. Our Christmas project, well, it's his really, is done and ready to proceed to the next step, printing. I don't want to say more because I never know who's lurking in the shadows here! My sister knows about it and my mom has a suspicion about the nature of it but nobody else does.

I'm late getting my Christmas shopping done this year though because of the project, there aren't many to actually purchase which lessens the pressure. I have one thing to mail to the UK and I have to get that off this week. The other thing will not have to be sent far and I have to get some DVD labels printed up for that and I better get on that. I don't want to give them the dvds with  just the name of the movie scrawled on it in Sharpie black. I also have to make the turtle candy but I can do that on a weekend afternoon. We also have to do something with the stack of boxes which sits right where the Christmas Tree has to go. I have no idea where we're going to put them. G. can go through the boxes and we might be able to unpack some stuff like his dvd box sets and cds but much of it has to stay packed because there's no room anywhere until we eventually get a larger apartment.
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
Next year is the country of Canada's 150th birthday and apparently there will be grand celebrations throughout the year, the grandest likely to be on Canada Day in Ottawa, the capitol city. But for New Year's Eve, there was funding granted to a number of cities to hold special celebrations leading into the new year and I believe Halifax was one of them. That means extra money for the New Year's Eve show apparently and they're advertising the biggest fireworks in Atlantic Canada. I don't know why that is. Any time I go to see fireworks here they last about 10 minutes tops. Never mind. I still like them. We got talking and decided to book a hotel and go to the outdoor free show at City Hall where there will be entertainment and the fireworks at both 11:30 (smaller, just to help the province of Newfoundland see in the New Year, they're in a time zone 30 minutes later so New year's comes there first. I dont' think it's broadcast in Newfoundland but there certainly are a lot of Newfoundlanders living here) and then the one for Halifax. Since the show doesn't start until 10:30, we'll have a nice dinner somewhere first. Nothing too fancy because I don't want to get all dressed up. It'll be cold outside. It almost always is quite cold that night. If the weather is bad, the show will be cancelled but otherwise, it'll be fun. Then we just half to walk a few blocks to the hotel afterwards. We could take the bus home. The transit system is free after 6 on NYE and hours are extended until about 2 a.m. so people don't have to drink and drive. But why not? Our first proper NYE together here in Canada.

We did get to spend it together once, back in 2004 into 2005. I flew to the UK though it was delayed a couple of days due to a big storm here. I got there in time for it, though and we had a nice evening. We went to London for a couple of days before I came home as well.

Anyway. The hotel I booked is in a heritage building with lots of antiques. I got a government rate so saved a bit of money. You know what it's like on New Year's, a lot of places jack up the prices and the restaurants will all have "special" New Year's menus at double the price but I figure if we're going to splash out on a nice meal, we could try to save money on the hotel to balance it out. Will have to keep an eye on the advertisements in December when the restaurants start advertising their New Year's menus and prices. I know most of the hotels do something and perhaps the one we're staying at will as well. They are supposed to have a nice dining room. We could then dress up a little for that, then change and head to the parade square. We'll see.
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
Gosh, October already (tomorrow). Graham has been here for six months and has his permanent residency for 2. He's getting a good long rest and not bored yet staying at home. He spent nearly 10 years in a job he hated with every fibre of his being and I really wanted him to relax and regroup. He's hoping to get some income doing his artwork, has already done a couple of cartoons this year on commission. If it doesn't work out, he'll probably look for something part time but it's nice that he knows he doesn't have to work to help make ends meet. Here's hoping he will never have to struggle to pay the bills again. I remember well what that's like. It shouldn't happen because even living on my pension alone will be enough to get us through, even if we would then have to curtail our travel but by the time I reckon on actually taking my work pension, I should also be able to apply for Canada Pension and that will make up the difference. He'll be able to get the Canadian old age pension whether he's a citizen or still a Permanent Resident plus he can get the British Old Age pension, and he's got a British Gas one for the time he lived there.

He's keeping busy at home and then we usually try to go somewhere on the weekend if possible. We're going to a movie tomorrow, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Tim Burton). I've read the books and they're great! Fantasy, YA, but quirky too. Yea, full of CGI but what can you do? I pre-paid for a summer movie pass back in June so we could go to four movies together. This was the last weekend but they've extended it by a week. It worked out quite well, giving us the movie tickets about 3 dollars cheaper per person per movie. We also have three free movie passes because we were at a movie in the summer, with Mom as well, where the projector light wasn't working properly. The new STar Trek it was. The whole movie seemed a bit dark, darker than usual and they apologized and handed out passes. Thank you. I'll have them. Plus my movie points card has enough for another free movie so that means there's two more movies for free that we can go to.

Used up almost all of my vacation time for the year but am taking the Christmas week off. We have Thanksgiving long weekend next week and the November 11 holiday is on a Friday this year too, so that's another long weekend. Breaks up the time. Our last contract raise kicks in on November 1 though it isn't much.

Now that Graham has PR I could add him to my health and dental insurance at work and yesterday he went to the dentist. He hadn't gone for about 10 years because he didn't have the extra money for it and his job didn't have that benefit. Needless to say he needs a bit of work done so it will be spread out over a few months. Ouch! We have a pretty good plan though so most of it is covered. Also, my plan turns out to be way better than the individual Blue Cross he had before, for his diabetes meds. Between that, and getting them at Costco, we're doing much better. On the individual plan, diabetes supplies were 70% covered while prescriptions wer 80%. On my plan, prescriptions are 90% covered with a $10 max per prescription and the supplies are covered completely (can't remember if there's a 500 a year max on that or not). The Costco drug prices are about 20 - 30% cheaper than the drugstore's. It certainly makes the Costco membership worth while, just for that! Just for what we will save on the diabetes supplies alone will pay for the membership fee in no time.

Better catch up on books read, too.
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Reading Woman)
I'm currently reading a quirky little book right now called Tooth and Claw. (by Jo Walton) It's all about family, two brothers and three sisters who lose their father and then have to contend with expections, dowries, law suits, love and betrayal. The quirk is that they're all dragons who eat their dead, the infirm and sometimes their young because that's how they get larger and stronger while servants have their wings bound and parsons bind their by choice. young virgin females have gold scales that go pink when they aren't any more and get redder and redder with each clutch of eggs they hatch. They become grey scaled when they're very old. The society rules are old fashioned but it's very inventive. Liking it a lot so far.

Books have always been in my life and I cannot imagine life without them. eBooks have been a godsend, now I always have something to read. I have been borrowing ebooks from the library using either Adobe Digital Editions to put them on my ereader or through an app called Overdrive. I've just discovered Open Library, an online library from where you can also borrow books in epub or PDF format or they also source the book in real libraries and link to various places you can buy a copy, hard copy or e-copy since I don't think they lend out kindle format books. I don't think Kindle will read epubs yet, right? My Kobo will read mobi format which is Kindle though I did have one that wouldn't work. It might have been DRM locked possibly. If i find a book that's only in mobi format I can convert it using Calibre anyway. You can go the other way and convert an epub to mobi and load it on the Kindle through the probram (Calibre that is).

Quite pleased to find it because i was looking for a copy of The Diviners by Margaret Laurence which is an older book and one that i need to read for a Goodreads monthly group read this month. My library hasn't had it available and yes, I could go to the library and see if they have a physical copy but i do prefer e-books. All the ones for sale were a stupidly ridiculous price which makes no sense as it's a good 40 or 50 years old. Someone pointed me in the direction of Open Library and they have it though I'll have to download it from home because I don't have ADE here at work. Or do i? Nope. Thought i might have had to install it for a course last year.

Long weekend this weekend. No plans. No decent movies on either.

My cousin is getting married today and the weather looks decent so far. Not sure when they're doing it. It's a very small, immediate family only ceremony. They're heading to Barbados tomorrow for a week and having a big party later in the month. He lost his wife suddenly nearly three years ago in December. He met this new lady through a Facebook group for people that grew up in Dartmouth and they were both at Dartmouth High School at the same time though I think she was a year behind. She offered the hand of friendship after his wife died with no intentions of more than that but it grew. Yes, they faced some disapproval due to it being less than 6 months after his wife died but she's proven to be a really nice, very genuine person and they have been very happy together. His adult children have accepted her from the start and they're the only ones whose opinions really matter. They're happy he's happy. I liked her immediately AND she's a Coronation Street fan!

2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
Shoe-Quest has been successful. G. has been looking for new sneakers and hasn't been able to find either what he wants or the size he needs. Going by the UK/US equivalent, he should be a men's 8.5 but they don't seem to be quite right so he's had to go up to a 9 mens'. He likes plain white. no other colours and it's getting harder and harder to get that style. We ordered something from sears but they didn't fit right. Since we were out by Sears, I suggested we go into Marks Work Warehouse which carries some shoes. We got lucky, they had a shoe clearance on and they had a couple of styles of plain white lace up sneakers. He ended up with one that he was happy with, Sketchers brand, and they were under 50 dollars, all taxes included. Win! The clearance sale offered a buy one and get another at 75% off but neither one of us could find a pair that we liked or that fit. No point buying just for the sake of it. If they'd had a second pair of Sketchers in a 9, he could have had two pair. I hope I can remember next year when they have their sale, we can check there first!

Meanwhile, I really could use a new pair as well. My poor feet are in such bad shape that even though mine aren't visibly worn out, they aren't supporting my feet like they should anymore. We were near the shop where I got them yesterday and they had my style on for quite a bit cheaper but not my size. However, they're going to have a sidewalk sale this week and he said they were getting 70 pair of shoes shipped in for it. He took my details and will call if they have anything in my size. I probably won't be so lucky.

We went to see Suicide Squad at the movies yesterday. G. had been wanting to see it. I wasn't keen but there wasn't anything else we both fancied and i thought i might be pleasantly surprised, stranger things have happened. It turned out that neither one of us were happy with it. It was a disappointment, very disjointed and almost incoherent in parts. Many of the characters were quite good (I always like Will Smith) but the story was awful. I don't follow comics so I have no opinion on how well they've portrayed these comic book villains but other reviews we've seen were complimentary about it.

Speaking of comics, I read a memoir by Stan Lee and it's actually in graphic novel format, which is appropriate. It's called Amazing, Fantastic Incredible: A Marvelous Memoir. In it, he describes his early life, and rise through the world of writing for and eventually publishing a comic book empire. The artwork is bright and there are exaggerated reactions that feel very comic-book-like. I found it a bit less personal, though there were things from his personal life but it tended to be more about his professional career. I am not a graphic novel fan as a rule but on Goodreads, in one of the reading groups i follow, they've had a "bingo" card to be filled with various types of books, authors or genres and a graphic novel was one of them. They encouraged reading Canadian authors to fill the card aside from one square which was to read something by an international author with a story set in Canada. They had the opposite also, a book by a Canadian author set outside of Canada. Fair is fair! Anyway, I liked it well enough.

That leads me to the rest of the book catch up
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Reading Woman)
Just a book catch up. They are almost all Canadian authors because in a Goodreads group I belong to, they've posed a challenge for July to read only Canadian authors. The first book was started before July. They've got a similar one for August, to read books with titles starting with the letters of the month, preferably Canadian (because that's the main focus of the group) though I don't think I'll be able to get through that one. I have an advance copy of a book i won from a Goodreads giveaway that i want to read and review which isn't Canadian authored and is not titled with one of the letters in the month of August either.

2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
We took an early bus over to Halifax to see the Tattoo parade (mostly participants in the Royal Nova Scotia International Tattoo held here every year the first week of July). Because it was a holiday the busses were on a reduced schedule and I thought catching the 10 o'clock bus might have us missing the first part of the parade so we had to leave on the 9 o'clock one and kill some time. I didn't realize the parade was only going to last about 25 minutes! It was nice but I don't think I'd bother again. One group in the parade was carrying a rainbow sign and flag, Tattoo for Orlando and that was touching to see.  It is nice to see the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in their dress red uniform and I do like to hear the massed Pipe and Drum bands. Unfortunately, though i did take of movie of the pipe band, I deleted it accidentally when i reformatted my memory card after copying the files in the photo folder to my hard drive. In my last camera, all the files including video were always in the one folder. This one has video separately! Doh!

We walked around on the waterfront for a bit, checking out the Ribfest but didn't eat there. It was a bit too early for lunch at that point. We sat on a bench in the shade for a bit and people watched which was fun. Lots of people were wearing red for Canada Day in addition to other silly things like hats and other ornaments and a few people wore the flag as a cape. Lots of flags and canada related tshirts and things. I did wear red though didn't bring my little flag.

We had lunch at a restaurant on the waterfront that had people queuing up for tables on the patio but the inside was almost empty. We sat inside. Air conditioning has a lot to offer! Back across to Dartmouth on the ferry which was free yesterday. Naturally it was so packed we didn't make it on the first boat. I was all for turning around and going for the bus but one of my friends from work saw us and we ended up sticking with them while waiting and on the boat. The ferry was running every 15 minutes at least, which was unexpected as normally a Sunday/holiday schedule is half hour-ly but for the waterfront events I suppose it was increased. We didn't go back down for the fireworks in the end later on though. All that messing about for 10 minutes of fireworks.

Going to do a bit of shopping today with Mom. My sister's birthday is next week and we need a few groceries. We ran out of a few things all at the same time! Feeding two seems to mean a lot more trips to the grocery store than when I was feeding just me, but on the other hand, we're eating proper meals most of the time which I wasn't really doing  as much on my own. We also want to go to a movie this weekend so that will be tomorrow. I took part in a deal through Cineplex where you could buy a movie pass for a certain number of movies over the summer. Saved about 3 or 4 dollars per movie that way which is a decent saving. I bought the 4 pack and it works out to about 9 dollars a movie with all the taxes included. A regular movie is about 11 plus 15% tax per person. We are planning to see the new Independence Day this weekend. We have until the end of September to use the passes.

More books:
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Reading Woman)
I've been very lucky with my book choices lately. I think out of the last 6 or 8 almost all of them would rate top marks for enjoyment, or nearly so. Even the one that is very much a "chick" lit type book was enjoyable. I know we're not supposed to use that term anymore as it's sexist but in my mind it remains as a description of a certain type of book. I read less of that nowadays but I do still enjoy them if the characters are good and the plot is fun. I think I'm also fairly generous when rating a book, as well. Ratings are so subjective and really, if you like it, you like it and it doesn't matter if it's not serious literature though I do prefer it to be well written, consistent, good characters and dialogue. The dialogue can be written in slang if that's how the characters talk or should talk. There's nothing more jarring than reading a historical novel with current day idioms.

Here's the list of recent reads, and I'd recommend all of them.
2016 books )
I've started three new ones this week including one by an author i've read before and really enjoyed (Deafening by Frances Itani) and another one is one of a series of historical fiction about a lawyer during the time of Henry VIII that ends up solving various crimes and mysteries, as recommended to me by a friend. The Shardlake series by C.J. Sansom.

Combined birthday do for my nephew and niece on Saturday. Must get the cards and gifts today since it's seniors' day at Lawtons so I get 20% off stuff! Not off the gift cards though, but the birthday cards for sure. I'll admit to being over 55 if i get a discount like that! 
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
2016 books update: Some good, a couple were meh.
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
Going to a guitar festival on Saturday. Graham will be in heaven! They have performances of all sorts, lots of vendors, a "museum" or exhibit of old guitars I think. That will be interesting. It's a bit out of the way to get to by bus but I've got it all figured out. These are the drawbacks to not having a car. I don't like to borrow Mom's because we had it last weekend and I don't like to deprive her of her vehicle too often though she doesn't mind. I do, though if we did have it, we could have gone to a 50th birthday pool party (as in the game, not swimming) for one of my many cousins. The location is too far for a bus. Well, let's just say it's a long slog by bus, so unless i find someone from town that's going, we'll have to miss out on it.

2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
The temp was near 0 this morning. *sigh* Most people on my morning commute are still wearing winter coats though I noticed last week when we went for our bloodwork one silly woman wasn't wearing a coat at all and it really was quite damp and chilly that day.

It was nice to go to a Corrie ping with Graham and we're looking ahead and planning other things to do such as going on a winery bus tour in the Annapolis Valley with a friend of mine and her husband in August during the week I"ve booked off. There's a guitar festival/sale at an exhibition venue mid-May so we're going to that. It includes a little guitar museum and during the day there are battle of bands and things like that to take in. Our anniversary is coming up in a couple of weeks and we have a gift coupon for a lovely old historic inn in the town of Wolfville so I must get that booked. I have a cousin that lives in the area so must contact her to see if they will be around for a visit. We can also visit one of the local wineries ourself as they are all open for the season by then I think.

Book list
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
Lunch was lovely! It's so nice to spend one on one time with "the kids". Yes, they're adults of course, not kids but that's generally how we refer to them collectively. Takes less time to say than My nephews and niece! They are all great people.

Just for myself, the books I've read recently
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
I am having a massage in just about an hour, over my lunch hour. Don't sigh with envy. She beats the crap out of me. This is not for relaxation, it's to subdue the knots in my neck and shoulders.

On Sunday I am going to see this. It's a walk through the Uffizi Gallery in Florence and possibly with some views of the city as well. My friend is taking me for my birthday present. It looks pretty awesome. It's also a bit of a walk down memory lane. Nearly 20 years ago (in October) she and I went to Italy, took a bus tour and went to the Uffizi on our last day on the tour. We both really liked Florence, what we got to see of it and the gallery as well. I think perhaps we didn't fully appreciate it, though, because at the end of nearly two weeks, we were a bit burned out. Tired of looking at churches and galleries and pictures and living out of a suitcase. It was a great tour but we were ready to go home.  We'd had 4 days in London at the start, plus the 13 or so day tour, then we flew back to London but just overnight until our flight home the next day. Florence is a city I would like to see again, this time spending a few days or more there to just soak up the atmosphere and revel in the amazing art. I remember seeing Michaelangelo's David in the Accademia gallery. It was so realistic that you thought it would take a breath and step off the plinth! It's very impressive when an artist can make something of stone that looks so real.

2016 book catchup
2016 books )
tvordlj: (Meez avatar)
Almost back to normal. I didn't even sleep sitting up last night and I think I got a better sleep because of it. That sounds logical, doesn't it? I have been propped up against one of those bed pillows where you can sit up in bed. I use it for reading in bed but when slumped down against it, with a pillow against the small of my back, it's actually not that uncomfortable to sleep, especially if lying down causes me to cough. At least I can sleep though I think probably it's not a "good" sleep. This cold is really going around though. The woman in the apartment over me has it too. I can hear her coughing at night! Yes, the walls are thin in our building.

Expecting a miserable storm tomorrow, starting with rain in the morning and changing to heavy snow later. Ick... Will have to get to work and hope that either it's not too bad to get home or they let us go home early before the busses stop. I don't want to waste a vacation day. I've done that before, in anticipation of the weather and the weather ended up not being too bad at all. THey won't let us work from home though they don't mind if we have to implement a change from home at night or on the weekend.  (don't get me started)

I've been making arrangements for the trip to the UK. Got an airport hotel booked. Got the train ticket from Euston to Manchester. I need to book a hotel in Ipswich for when we're visiting his family and book a rental car. I think we'll end up driving the rental to Ipswich which is far more convenient than hauling luggage and guitars on the train. I'll have to do a comparison on the rental companies because dropping off at a different location incurs a fee and from what i've seen so far, how much it is varies quite a bit from one company to the next. I must also see if my nephew can get a corporate rate code (even if he doesn't work at his former company anymore. You never know. It doesn't cost to ask!)
2016 books )
tvordlj: (SnapDraggin)
I had a cold over a week or so in December and i've got another one now. Bleurgh. I started with a sore throat on the second day of the training and that night i hardly slept so i stayed home from work on Friday, slept a lot. Slept a tad better last night but also had another nap this afternoon. The sore throat has gone but now my head is filled. Was supposed to go to a Coronation Street fan thing tomorrow but i've cancelled. Then again, they might cancel it altogether because we're having a storm overnight and a lot of people might not be cleared out tomorrow.

Meanwhile i've started my new year's reading.
2016 books )

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