Monday, August 31, 2009

Bowling Night!

Friday night we decided to go bowling. Leah was occupied but Steph, Matt and I decided to give it a go. It was a lot of fun and really amusing since it happened to be the bowling alley's 50th birthday. There were a lot of announcements about door prizes (we weren't eligible since we're not league members) and free cake. We had some laughs and kicked Matt's butt. I've always liked bowling. When I was a kid we were involved in league bowling. If I had a regular schedule I would totally look into joining some sort of fun league.

This banner caught my eye at the bowling alley. Apparently five pin bowling is the 4th greatest Canadian invention of all time. I found the list and was a bit surprised that bowling managed to beat out the pacemaker, the electric wheelchair and the zipper. It's fun but does it really change people's lives? Yeah, I don't know about that.

Friday, August 28, 2009


Life has been busy. I don't know where August went, actually. You can see from the picture that Matt has started to study again for his LSAT rewrite. He's started his new job and really enjoys it too. My job is going well but is pretty crazy these days. I'll be relieved once the other two new full time workers start because right now all the casual workers are going back to school so there are a lot of shifts that need covering. I work a lot this weekend and really cherish my days off so I'm not too keen on picking up extra shifts (especially since they would be paid out at a lower wage). I guess I am a bit selfish but I need my down time. Tonight I am hoping to do something fun but I'm waiting for Matt to get home from work before we plan anything.

Letting Go

With Leah moved in and the living filled with fabulous new furniture it was time to say good bye to an old friend. I know you're all looking at these pictures and saying "What is the big deal? That is the most hideous chair I've ever seen!". There is history though! Goldie was my first piece of furniture. I still remember how I went to the the thrift store in my 3rd year of university with my friend Cameron (who had a big jeep) and picked her up. It was the first time I had my own room and I had space for a reading chair. She's a pretty awful color (I can admit this) but she is funky and comfortable and perfect for reading in. She stayed with me in my first apartments and Matt wanted me to throw her away before we packed up for Korea but I resisted. It's so sad seeing her by the dumpster outside (and someone has knocked her over!) but I know it's time to move on. She represents someone that I used to be. So good bye Goldie, thanks for the memories.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Look Who's Here!!

It's Leah!!! She arrived on Tuesday night all safe and sound! She drove to Edmonton from Vancouver all by herself! Brave! So now our apartment is complete! She's been a busy girl- she's already got a job, a bed and a date! Haha! Anyway, I am sure you'll be seeing and hearing more about her soon. Isn't she cute? Matt's family has good genes.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Book Recommendations?

So today I spent a lot of time reading (well, I also went to the doctor since I'm trying to get to the bottom of this vertigo business that is plaguing my life) in Chapters. I have been reading Wicked for about a week now and I am not that into it. I find it pretty boring so far, honestly. I'm pushing through (almost halfway!) but if I keep picking boring/hard to read books then I will never make my goal. I am looking to my dear readers to help me out. I need a few compelling, well written fast reads. They don't have to be "easy" and really, I am a snob, I hate really fluffy stuff. I actually read almost half of a book in Chapters- a memoir of someone with Asperger's syndrome. This is an easy read for me. Can anyone give me some suggestions? Some of my favorite books are by Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman, Wally Lamb... I also like non-fiction stuff but it has to be interesting. I am particularly bad with history or anything dry or really complicated. No Stephen Hawkings for me. Also no Rudy Wiebe. Thanks in advance!

So Many Delicious Baked Goods...

As if having a fridge full of cupcakes wasn't enough, this weekend Steph went home to visit Mom and they did a lot of baking. Because they are awesome and love me they made two of everything. So yesterday I got my tasty care package. I have banana bread, zucchini loaf and rhubarb strawberry cake! I think I will have to start jogging or something or invest in bigger pants. Haha! Leah is going to love living with us!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Is it a hamburger or a cupcake? IT'S BOTH!

I've been working a lot and was really looking forward to my days off. I had a pretty jam packed Sunday, actually. I spent the morning hanging out with Severin and we had a pretty wicked brunch (I had eggs Benedict with bacon, tomato and avocado in it!!). Then I went to see Choon Hyang: True Love at the Fringe. It was adorable and made me really miss Korea.

So how could I keep the awesome rolling? By making cupcakes that look like hamburgers, of course! I can't take credit for this idea (I found it randomly on the internet) but I did make these myself. Not from scratch since I don't have a million days off. But you get the idea. I am so proud of these and think I will bring some to work with me tomorrow so the kids I work with can try them. They already know I'm a geek so why not hammer that point home? Haha.

So now I have a dilemma. What to do with all the cupcake parts that didn't get made into hamburgers? This would be a good time for my friends to visit and eat cupcake type things. Please save me from myself!

Friday, August 21, 2009


Wow, look at my awesome new TV that my Mom bought me! Between this and the living room furniture from my Dad and Sharron my apartment is starting to look awesome. Matt is basically in love with the TV and spent a long time telling me about every detail of it. Flat screens are neat! Thanks Mom!!!

Thursday, August 20, 2009


Saturday I wore one of my new dresses that I had made in Vietnam for the first time. I think it's pretty cute although I am worried it makes me look a bit huge and like I lack a waist. I can't complain too much for something that was about $20 though. It was fun to dress up and pretend I was Audrey Hepburn for a day.

Fringe Pictures

Here's a slide show I made of some of our Fringe Festival pictures from last weekend. It's over a couple of nights. On Sunday we even ended up at a bar that was having karaoke night afterward so that was exciting for me. First time I've done karaoke since being back in Canada! More pictures over here.

Edmonton Fringe Festival 2009

There are still a few days left of this year's Fringe. If you are in the area I highly recommend checking it out. It's one of the best Fringe Festivals in North America! I have been working a lot lately so I haven't gotten to go to as many shows as I want. I did squeeze some in on the weekend though and Matt has seen a few on his own. I figured I would give some mini reviews of what we've seen. We know a few people participating in the Fringe since Matt has a lot of old drama ties from university/post-university improv days.

Here's what we've seen so far:

Noncommittal- Matt saw this one on his own in order to support a former colleague. It's about relationships and the trouble with men avoiding commitment. Matt thought that it had a lot of potential and was pretty good but maybe could have used some more rehearsal or a stronger director. A bit like watching a long couple's spat. 2.5/5 stars

The Secret Love Life of Ophelia- Matt and Stephie went to this one. It's about Hamlet and Ophelia's secret love letters to each other. The script is a bit raunchy and written in elevated Shakespearean language. They thought it was interesting but a bit on the pompous artsy fartsy side. 1.5/5 stars

Skirmishes- We saw this one together. It's the story of a pair of sisters, their strained relationship and their dying mother who is present in the room the entire play. Everyone involved with this production has an impressive resume and is really experienced and talented. It was an emotional story surrounding sisterhood, family, death and dying. The acting was solid although I think they were having a bit of an off day when we went since they flubbed up their lines a few times. Generally I wouldn't be so critical but you should read the credentials of those involved. Overall, excellent show. 4/ 5 stars

Victor and Victoria's Terrifying Tale of Terrible Things- This has been our favorite show so far. I had high hopes since we know and love the director (Kevin Sutley) and basically every Kill Your Television production is an amazing one (and I've seen quite a few). This show was creepy, hilarious, spooky and just a delight. I love how KYT often uses a simple prop (in this case a bed sheet) and manages to transform it into a plethora of things. Must see! 4.5/ 5 stars

Die Nasty- This long running improv soap opera never disappoints. It plays every night at the Varscona theatre at 11:30pm. Matt used to work with one of the standard players (Tom Edwards) and really this is just one of those things that you need to go to. Between Rapid-fire Theatre and Die Nasty we have a healthy improv community here. My highlight of this "episode" was the tribute song to Heinz ketchup. Pure comic gold! 4.5/ 5 stars

Old Wicked Songs- We're seeing this one tomorrow and anticipating it to be awesome. Timothy Anderson stars and he's one of Edmonton's best kept secrets, in my opinion. Every met a person and just known they were ridiculously talented and special? That's Tim. He's also a brilliant musician, writer and all around kind, humble person. Go see his show!!!

A point of interest, there is a Korean children's group doing a production this year! It's an English theatre club from Seoul and they are performing Choon-Hyang: True Love. It's been a blast picking out the Koreans from the crowd and occassionally surprising them with a few phrases of my terrible Korean. I really miss Korea these days! Anyway, go to the Fringe people!!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I love paychecks!

I know I owe better blogs but I am working over 50 hours this week. I am working on it. Anyway, I got paid (my 2nd check) last Friday and here is the first thing I bought. Isn't it pretty? And the best part is all the compartments it has for cards. I have so many cards (Safeway, First Aid card, health cards, etc, etc) in Canada; way more than when I lived overseas. What do you think?

Monday, August 17, 2009


Expect updates soon! I will have my own internet starting tomorrow!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

I Still Plan on Using These...

While unpacking I found a lot of interesting things. There was a lot of crazy stuff from my university days that brought back some fun memories. Here's an old birthday present from my awesome friend Dylan. Ten victories!! In case you can't read what the coupons say- "This ticket hereby grants the holder 1 victory. The holder has the right to run up and down the halls whilst yelling, "I win, I win". Note: This voucher does not guarantee the right to a celebratory dance." I love my friends. I still have all ten waiting to be redeemed (there is no expiration date) so watch out people!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

We Make Miracles Happen

It was Miracle Day at Dairy Queen. Of course we had to take time out of our busy day to support it. Charity never tasted so good!

An Indian Feast!

Now that I am back in the real world (aka full time employment) I definitely savor my time off. On the weekend we went grocery shopping and it was fantastic. It's one of those errands I've always liked and as a result we had tons of delicious food options. We decided to make a huge supper filled with East Indian goodness. We had naan, aloo gobi, palak paneer, butter chicken and salad. We invited Steph and Alisse over and somehow managed to finish all the food. I kind of wish I didn't work so many evenings so I could do this sort of thing more often. Get a load of the massive cauliflower that we bought!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

SYTYCD Canada Premiere

So I want to talk about this but I have to find an appropriate picture/screen cap of Emanuel Sandhu's new-age dead raccoon-rooster haircut first. Stay tuned!

Post Hite Shenanigans

After our Korean extravaganza we met up with Stephie, had some dessert (cheesecake, drooool) and noticed that a new comedy club opened up on Whyte. Logically we dropped everything, bought tickets and ended up front row and center. The show was decent although it was a little awkward when one of the comics asked Steph's name and then proceeded to mime sexual acts while shouting her name.

When the show was over we learned that our tickets stubs were good for a free drink at the Chili's next door. We practically ran over there to claim them. We had the most apathetic waiter ever who recommended nothing (when we asked) and didn't care if we just had free drinks. We had spinach and artichoke dip anyway.

After that the night was a bit silly. We moved onto another place, had more drinks, Matt got tired and lame and went home, Steph and I drank a bit more and danced a whole bunch. We ended up eating pizza and hot dogs and talking to this random Korean guy (who was adopted so he doesn't actually speak Korean or anything). It was a lot of fun and I managed to document her first Fat Frank's hot dog. There are a lot of retarded pictures of me over here. I am going to try and branch out a bit so my blog doesn't become dedicated to goofy pictures of me and my sister. Hahah. Maybe I'll be able to throw my other family members in there sometime for variety.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Hite Happy

Friday night we decided to celebrate my weekend off by trying out one of the Korean restaurants in the area. It's called Lee House and it was decent. The gimchi wasn't as spicy as I like but they did have banchans (side dishes) included with the meal unlike many places around here that want to charge you $3 extra for some gimchi!

Lee House is small and homey and it reminded me a lot of authentic Korean places. It had only one poor little ajumma running around trying to serve everyone. We had the gimchi bokumbap (fried rice) and some bulgogi. Both were tasty but I would like to try some more dishes before I make my decision. I was excited that they served Hite beer.

Oh Hite, so crisp and fresh. I love how your "open mark turns blue at optimal tasting temperature".

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Thanks KB!

She sent me this hilarious cartoon in response to my Le Guin review. I think it's totally appropriate!

Apartment Pictures

We have finally unpacked our books and we discovered that we have too many. So we still have a container filled with them and 2 jam packed shelves. We are in the process of getting new furniture so we decided against buying a random shelf in favor of waiting until we can buy nice things that match.

Anyway, I figured that people might wonder what our place looks like (perhaps Leah?!) so here it is. It's starting to come together! What do you think? Here's our kitchen/dining area, our bedroom and bathroom.

My Life Savings

While unpacking I have been finding a lot of strange and interesting things. I tend to be a packrat and I'm trying to break away from this habit. I found my childhood piggy bank (which some how has always been slightly broken) and decided to open it up and collect my riches.

Other strange things I've found are half burned candles and this box that held a coffee can full of foreign coins from when I had a million penpals and awards. See that medal? Yeah, you'll never guess what I won that for. I won the grade 10 Phys. Ed. award. Bwahah! It went to the highest mark in the class, clearly not the most talented at sports. Who knows what other goodies are hidden in these boxes!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Review: The Left Hand of Darkness

It's been awhile since I reviewed anything, probably because my reading has tapered off since I've been in Canada. It seems that I am too easily seduced by the distractions around me here and need to really focus and buckle down if I am going to come anywhere near to reaching my reading goal for this year. Of course, there have been other factors other than my laziness that have contributed in my reading decline- moving, job interviews, getting a new job, unpacking, etc. I am really trying to find some balance and today I started unpacking my books so I found a number of them which I haven't read yet. This should help motivate me to keep going.

This is my second attempt at reading an Ursula Le Guin book. Way back when I was a little reader I attempted A Wizard of Earthsea but failed brutally. It was just way too convoluted and dry for pre-teen Amber. We actually somehow have a copy of that book so maybe I will give it another try sometime. We'll see.

What drew me to reading The Left Hand of Darkness was that it was a book choice for my old book group, Bookleaves, and that it dealt with interesting gender ideas. This book is science fiction and is set on another planet, called Winter, where the population is essentially hermaphroditic. For most of the month they are androgenous and then they enter their kemmer cycle when they can mate and breed. Depending on the pheromones of their partner they can take on either the male or female gender during kemmer and therefore it's possible for them to impregnate a partner and later become pregnant themselves as well.

I was a bit disappointed that this fascinating gender concept wasn't really addressed or developed that much. Really this book is more about politics and about the relationship between the main character, Genly Ai, and his Winter companion, Estraven. Genly Ai is a visitor from another planet and is attempting to get Winter to join an intergalactic league of nations. They have a lot of trials and tribulations and that's about all I can really say without giving away too much about the book.

This wasn't a bad book but I didn't find it as enjoyable to read as I thought I would. There were short folktales interspersed with the main story and I found that I enjoyed those more. I found Le Guin's writing to be really dense and confusing at times. I only learned 3/4 of the way through the book that there was a chapter at the end that explained how the seasons and days worked on this planet. Also, I was often unsure about the acutal definition of the Winter words that were used throughout the book. I would have liked some sort of glossary or footnote to help me out because every time I came across a word I didn't know I was immediately pulled out of the story. I think this is the kind of book I would enjoy more as a movie or if someone summarized it and told it to me orally. I may brave some more Le Guin fare later on but maybe not now since I am trying to pick up my reading pace and I find her so cerebral.

Monday, August 3, 2009

New Couch and Chair!

We got our new couch and chair this week. Sharron and Dad bought it for us as a present. I'm so excited because it's lovely, perfect and new. I don't think I've ever had a piece of quality furniture that wasn't a) left behind by a previous tenant, b) found next to a dumpster, or c) given to me as a hand-me-down. Matt struggled a bit with the unwrapping but now things are all set up and look amazing! Thanks guys! Now I just have to work on getting new stuff for my kitchen and bedroom. Baby steps though!