Friday, December 28, 2007

sweeney todd

So Marc took me on a hot date today to see Sweeney Todd and I am on the fence. Obviously, it's a musical. I hate musicals. But we went cuz it's Tim Burton and if nothing else, it will be beautiful to look at. And it was. Other than that, it falls victim to the Burton-izing of every movie he does. Much like Wes Anderson, he sticks with the actors that work for him and while I've got absolutely nothing against Johnny Depp I just couldn't stop thinking that he looked like a perfect merging of Edward Scissorhands and Ichabod Crane. Maybe he needs to hire someone other than Colleen Atwood to do the costumes -- at least for one movie?? I really think, for me, this movie really suffered because I've seen this pairing too many times -- the whole Tim Burton and creepy Johnny Depp character. And that's saying something because I do think those two have a genius connection and have done some amazing work together. I also read some trivia and saw some of the other actresses that were considered for the role of Mrs. Lovette and I gotta say, I would have rather seen any of them in place of Helena Bonham Carter. And the girl who played Joanna was an exact replica of the Christina Ricci character in Sleepy Hollow -- and I mean exact! Really Tim? Same hairstyle and big doe eyes and everything?
All that being said, it is stunning to watch. The sets and colours are trademark Tim Burton and are gritty, stony, dirty and gothic. Kudos to the special effects dude -- the throat-slitting scenes are some of the goriest things I've seen and not for the faint of heart. Kudos for Sacha Baron Cohen for doing a great job with the small role of Adolfo Pirelli. And kudos for Johnny Depp for holding his own vocally -- that dude can sing! Helena...not so much.
But... it was still a musical. And I hate musicals. I'm not sure I can get over that.

merry christmas baby... sure do treat me nice!!!
Another season has come and gone and we're finally coming up for air on the other side of it all. All in all it was a great holiday with both friends, family and pets. As I mentioned last week, this year all past traditions went out the window which resulted in a much quieter Christmas for Marc and I. In the past, Christmas day saw us go to my parents, then to my mother-in-law's for dinner #1 then out the valley for my aunt's dinner #2. It was exhausting and super hard to do when you have a dog waiting alone at home
for almost the entire day. Marc and I usually have our own Christmas on Christmas Eve and exchange our gifts then as it was pretty much the only time we had alone. This year, Marc's family celebration was moved to Christmas Eve thus nixing our "alone" Christmas. But the celebration out at my aunt's on Christmas Day didn't hap
pen this year leaving us with only one thing to do on the 25th. Which is strange because that has never happened before. Ever. We almost didn't know what to do with ourselves. A whole day just in one place?? You can do that?? Yes you can! And it's brilliant!! It was like a whole new world! And it allowed Marc and I do have Christmas morning at our house before going to my folks' place. Here's a pic of Bailey enjoying his new big sheep Santa brought him.
And Bailey wasn't the only one who got to play with new toys, Tara didn't make out too badly herself. Some fave items of the day included the unexpected injection of more cashmere into my closet (lord knows that's never a bad thing), a Slow-Cooker (yes I actually really wanted one of them!), a Panini press (can you say panini party??), gift certificates to my 2 favourite coffee places downtown, my Willie Nelson official fan-club Christmas ornament (yes, we're members before you ask), this adorable crystal button cardigan and this citron coloured boatneck sweater from J Crew (which, by the way, is having a CRAZY sale right now), a fantastic peacock platter from Pottery Barn (which helps dull the pain of the matching dishes being too small for me to justify buying), the Emile Henry pasta bowls that we registered for when we got married, and a pile of other great stuff plus more chocolate than a girl really needs to have within arm's reach.
The nieces are getting older now and really starting to love clothes so it was super fun to watch them open things and hold them up and ooh and ahhh over them. We got a family portrait done for my folks this year and that, of course, was the big tears gift of the year. Every year my brother and I compete to see who will be the one to get the "crying" gift for my mom. Awful I know but if you know my mom at all you can see why that can be a bit fun. You never know what it's going to be. Some years it's the little 4 inch Santa ornament that pushes her over the edge, other years even the biggest most sentimental offering gets you nothing. It can be a real crapshoot and it's sick fun for my brother and I. Call us awful if you like.
Boxing Day was function #3 with a pile o'family over at my parents' place. Unfortunately, in the middle of having a great time with the extended family I got a killer headache, my temperature went though the roof, I broke into a cold sweat and literally had to run out on the party without so much as a goodbye to anyone other than my mother. My brother drove me home and I spent the rest of the night on my sofa with the blankets up over my head cuz I couldn't make it up to my room. I spent the 27th pretty much the same way. And then it was gone. Who knows what it was but I'm happy it's gone.
Overall, Christmas 07 was piles of fun and I hope everyone else's was the same. I look forward to catching up on my blog reading and seeing everyone soon!!

Siposberry 2007

Has it come and gone again so fast? Sigh...such fun was had at our annual Siposberry gathering held at party power couple Mike Sipos and Jocelyne Heneberry's house (hence the name). Not only was it a Christmas party but it was also a Christmas sweater party and folks came out decked in their holiday best. Me, I sported a holiday cardigan complete with shoulder pads that I liberated from my mother's closet. For Marc, we scoured Value Village and scored a sweet sweatshirt that read "Add Me To Your Wishlist." Beyond sweet...
Foodwise, it was a raging success yet again. We had a tapas theme this year and Mike and Joc outdid themselves yet again with plate after plate of delectable eats, fancy meats, fancier cheese, ceviche, Miss Gomm's kick ass cheeseball, so much good food and it lasted until the wee hours. We didn't tuck into my dessert until after 1am but sweet jebus was it worth the wait. I took a stab at the Dark Chocolate Gingerbread Trifle from the holiday issue of Food and Drink and it just may be the world's most perfect food. I highly recommend making it for yourself or for your next party. It's pretty impressive for not a whole lot of effort.
Also on the agenda was the annual gift stealing. This is definitely the gang to be in for the gift stealing game cuz there is never a dud to be found. No getting stuck with Santa pot holders with these folks!! I scored a gorgeous vintage playing card pin-up girl notepad from Kate Black's Etsy shop that I might have to fight Marc for. Also in my steal, a pretty freaking hilarious bottle-opener button offering 5 cent mustache rides...classic. My gift steal item was $10 worth of mixed hazelnuts, brazil nuts, almonds and walnuts that couldn't have ended up with a more appreciative recipient. Marc lucked out with an Isaac Hayes 3 disc box set. He's been wiggling his hips and winking at me ever since. I'm afraid....

I've attached various photos from the night that include shots from the gift steal, the annual shotgunning (that I didn't partake in), some key holiday sweater shots as well as Lisa's annual mounting of sleeping Shad (which I think he's now wised up to but that doesn't make it any less amusing).
Buckets of thanks to the Siposberry's for yet another fantastic holiday soiree!!

Monday, December 24, 2007

weekend round-up

So close!!!! Almost Santa time! As a result, I spent the weekend squeezing in every last second of prep and holiday cheer that I could. Big event of the weekend was the annual Siposberry Christmas soiree that is so big it deserves its own post so keep your eyes open this week for a full discussion. In a nutshell for now though, it was a stellar night in true Siposberry fashion. Out of this world food, signature cocktails, gift stealing, good friends and puppies.....we all secretly wish Siposberry was every weekend.
As a result of Siposberry Christmas, Sunday was spent doing very, very little. Couch napping, snacking, movie watching and a whole day spent chipping away at the annual Globe and Mail Christmas crossword puzzle. About 1000 clues and so up my alley for a lazy Sunday although my newspaper is almost falling apart from so much flipping and folding and flipping back and folding again. I'm so keeping it until next weekend so I can check my answers....

Obviously, as is the case with many bloggers, posting will be sporadic over the next few days due to holiday revelling. I'll try to do a full post maybe after Boxing Day but I'm not promising anything. We've got a full schedule and this year our normal traditions are a bit out of whack due to some new plans so we're not quite sure how it's going to shape up. I am a creature of habit and fear change, especially around the holidays. This year things are happening on different days and for the first time in my entire life we get to stay at my parents' place all day long. I'm not sure what's going to happen and how my body will react. I suspect quite well as all I've ever wanted was to spend the entirety of Christmas day at my parents house at least once. So Happy Holidays to all blog-readers!!!! I'll see you after it's all over!!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Favourite Stuff of 2007

So Dennis tagged me to revisit all of my great loves of 2007. Phew....this one is gonna be tough. Kaili I drag you into this challenge!

Seriously?? This is going to be borderline impossible -- there were a lot of great records this year. Let's go with the hardcore greats for me and then throw in some honourable mentions.
  1. Joel Plaskett - Ashtray Rock: The only thing I love more than Joel Plaskett is Joel Plaskett and the Emergency. This record is highschool in a record. It's fun, catchy, sing-songy and translates impeccably into a live show.
  2. The Weakerthans - Reunion Tour: In all honesty, this record could have been garbage and I still would have loved it just cuz it was a new record. After eons of nothing from them they put out this glorious glorious record that is all things you love about the Weakerthans.
  3. New Pornographers -- Challengers: And I thought Twin Cinema was a great record....little did I know what was to come.
  4. Wilco -- Sky Blue Sky: It's not like anything they've put out over the last few years. Jeff Tweedy said himself this will be the last record like this they will make. Whether he's backed by a huge cacophany of sound or just one guitar, Jeff Tweedy really is one of music's best songwriters.
  5. Feist -- The Reminder: It's an outstanding follow up to an equally outstanding first album. She delivers every song live in the same calibre as it sounds on the record and if you've really listened to her stuff, that says a lot.
  6. Arcade Fire - Neon Bible: Really there's nothing to say about this record that hasn't already been said. They faced the near impossible task of following up Funeral and they did just that and then some. I don't care what the uber-hipsters say -- these guys are amazing and put on one of the best live shows I've seen.
  7. Honourable mentions: The Sadies - New Seasons, Jenn Grant - Orchestra For The Moon, Immaculate Machine - Fables, The Pipettes - We Are the Pipettes, Peter Elkas - Wall of Fire, Nathan Lawr & The Minotaurs -- A Sea of Tiny Lights
Yet another tough one....
  1. Away From Her: Even though I saw this in 2006 I'm including it in this year's list cuz it wasn't released everywhere until this year. I hadn't seen a movie that affected me quite as much as this one did in years and years. It really makes you treasure those around you and frankly, terrified me for what might come in the future. Getting to shake hands with Gordon Pinsent after the show didn't hurt either...
  2. Superbad: As a rule, I don't really like movies like this. Considering I laughed almost start to finish I had to include it on this list.
  3. The Darjeeling Limited: As I said in my review of this movie earlier in my blog, even Wes Anderson's lesser movies are better than most other director's best movies. Beautiful to watch, perfect soundtrack, great casting and a bit of a more serious tone than past movies. Wes would have to go pretty far off track for me to dislike his work.
  4. Lars & The Real Girl: Maybe cuz it's fresh in my mind I'm including this one. I just thought it was so touching and sad and very well done. It could have so easily gone bad and for me it was just right.
  5. Run, Fat Boy, Run: I never miss a chance for some great British humour and this movie did not disappoint.
TV Shows
Obviously the return of old faves like The Office and Weeds need no mention so let's focus on the new stuff
  1. Dirty Sexy Money: The return of primetime soap opera drama "Dynasty" style and Peter Krause? You had me at Dirty....
  2. Pushing Daisies: This show is charming and pretty to watch. If I had a fraction of Chuck's wardrobe I'd be a happy girl. The full skirts, the dresses, the hair ribbons, the updated 1950's chic?? Talk about my dream wardrobe...
  3. The Tudors: As per my blogpost a couple of weeks ago, The Tudors has become a bit of an obsession for me, it's that good.
I didn't really get my hands on too much new material this year as we were really trying to focus on reading what we already had in the house. When you combine the libraries of two avid readers you end up with more books than you can read. Before we started bringing more books into the house, we're trying to make our way through the piles so here are some things I did manage to get to.
  1. Harry Potter & The Deadly Hallows - JK Rowling: Yeah this one is new and I had to read it. They're great escape literature and just good fun and I am sad there will be no more.
  2. Love In The Time of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez: I'd never read this book and found it in a box of Marc's so I thought I'd give it a go. It was so good it was hard to put down. Romantic as all get out, epic and touching, it's got everything you need. Of course it will make a great movie..
  3. Lullabies for Little Criminals - Heather O'Neill: John Samson's pick for Canada Reads so I thought I'd give it a go and it didn't disappoint. Hard to read at parts due to the subject matter but brilliantly told from the prospective of a pre-teen girl.
  4. The Bloody Chamber - Angela Carter: I read this collection of fairytales in university as part of a Gothic Literature class and loved it so much I decided to go through it again. Carter re-tells classic fairytales and folk tales in very gothic and sometimes disturbing manner -- these are definitely not kid friendly stories. Rainy nights, magic, werewolves, blood and stuff.
  5. A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry: My aunt and uncle bought me this book for Christmas last year as one they had both loved. It's heavy reading and really brings you into the life of those living in poverty stricken India. It's beautifully written and yet not easy to read.
This one is a bit easier for me as I'm not gadgety and didn't really get any new gadgets this year anyway.
  1. My Ipod: I don't know what I would do without it. Except maybe get a bigger one.
  2. My treadmill: Does this count? I'm including it anyway cuz it's great. It keeps me from getting fluffy(ier) and that's a good thing.
  3. Being able to order bagels online from St. Viateur and have them show up on my doorstep in 2 days. It's not a gadget but it's technology and I love it.

Hot Bunny Radio Playlist for December 20th

Hot Bunny Radio -- A Hot Bunny Christmas
CKLU 96.7 FM
* denotes Canadian talent
italics denotes a new release
  1. Girl Nobody -- Grandfather -- Balaclava Casino Heist *
  2. The I Spies -- I Love the Middle Mind -- In The Night *
  3. Sea Wolf -- Middle Distance Runner -- Leaves In The River
  4. Toots & The Maytals -- Christmas Feeling Ska -- Christmas Greetings from Studio One
  5. Medeski, Scofield, Martin & Wood -- In Case The World Changes Its Mind -- Out Louder
  6. Stars -- What The Snowman Learned About Love -- Heart *
  7. The Flaming Lips - White Christmas -- Maybe This Christmas Too?
  8. The Grass -- Crossfire -- Report All Ghosts *
  9. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds -- Let The Bells Ring -- Abbatoir Blues
  10. Luscious Jackson -- Queen of Bliss -- O Come All Ye Faithful: Rock For Choice
  11. Mike Watt & The Crew Of The Flying Saucer -- The Little Drummer Boys -- O Come All Ye Faithful: Rock For Choice
  12. The Hives -- You Got It All...Wrong -- The Black & White Album
  13. Trailer Trash -- Daddy's Drinkin' Up Our Christmas -- Trailer Trash Christmas
  14. Sonic Youth -- Santa Doesn't Cop Out On Dope -- Just Say Noel
  15. Two Minute Miracles -- Since We Were Married -- Volume IV: The Lions Of Love *
  16. Hawksley Workman -- Merry Christmas (I Love You) -- Almost A Full Moon *
  17. Rilo Kiley -- X-mas Cake -- Maybe This Christmas Too?
  18. Stolen Babies -- Swint? Or Slude? -- There Be Squabbles Ahead
  19. O Santa Where Art Thou? -- Blue Christmas -- A Bluegrass Christmas
  20. The Barmitzvah Brothers -- Show Promoter -- Let's Express Our Motives *
  21. Kristy MacColl with The Pogues -- Fairytale of New York -- Galore
  22. John Prine -- Christmas In Prison -- A John Prine Christmas
  23. Southern Culture On The Skids -- Merry Christmas Baby -- Just Say Noel
  24. The Be Good Tanyas -- Rudy -- Maybe This Christmas Too? *
  25. Corb Lund -- A Leader On Losing Control -- Horse Soldier! Horse Soldier! *
  26. Bert Collins -- Little Ski-Doo -- Imaginary Friends *
  27. Dr. Teeth & The Electric Mayham -- Fozziwig's Party -- The Muppet Christmas Carol
  28. Juliana Hatfield -- Make It Home -- O Come All Ye Faithful: Rock For Choice
  29. Beck -- The Little Drum Machine Boy -- Just Say Noel
Notes for this week:
  1. My childhood Christmas centered around the Imaginary Friends record. Come on...Sunflower Joe, Hector, Ethelbert the Elf, Harvest Moon Garden Party???? It really didn't get any better;
  2. Dear Sonic Youth: If every Christmas song had screaming and feedback I'd be a total fan;
  3. The Juliana Hatfield song made famous in the Christmas episode of My So Called Life when Angela meets Juliana in an empty classroom at school and she turns out to be the ghost of a runaway girl and Ricky ends up homeless and then Angela has a big fight with her mom cuz she wants to invite homeless Juliana home for Christmas dinner and then she runs away from home and goes looking for Ricky and finds him in an abandoned warehouse along with the Juliana ghost so she gives ghost-girl her new boots and ends up at a church with Ricky and Mrs. Chase comes down to get them and meets the Juliana ghost outside who tells Mrs. Chase how her and her mom had one of those fights that feels like the fight is having you and the Mrs. Chase goes into the church and finds Angela and Ricky there and they have a big teary reunion........sigh, so good.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

general hospital tractor beam

Inevitably, whenever I'm not at work be it on holidays or home sick, I somehow end up watching General Hospital without even realizing it. It's like at 3:00 I'm drawn to the TV like a zombie and unconsciously turn it on to see what's going on in that great city of Port Charles. I can't help it!! It's been my soap opera of choice for years and while others have fallen by the wayside (sorry Y&R), GH somehow maintains its hold on me. It doesn't help matters that it takes all of 25 minutes to be completely caught up on 6 months of storylines either. Well, it's happened again this year. It's Thursday and I'm moreorless sucked right back in despite still being a bit clueless about some stories -- Georgie's been strangled??? Luke is in the hospital and appears to need some kind of transplant?? Elizabeth and Jason have surrendered to their passion once again??? Soap opera's most perfect chararcter Sonny Corinthos is shacked up with some totally new woman that's not Carly???? So many questions. So much to learn.

ahhh holidays...

So today I spent the whole morning hanging out with my friend Liana at her coffee shop downtown drinking coffee, doing crossword puzzles, reading gossip magazines, chatting and doing crap all. It was so fun I left briefly to run an errand and then stayed for lunch. I could so easily be one of those people.....

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

confessions of a housewife

So I'm on holidays and I know it's only Wednesday but I have completely fallen into the routine of a dutiful housewife. And I'm kinda loving it. I've got quite a little routine going and I've been sucked right in. Walk the dog, hop on the treadmill, throw some laundry in, make some muffins, make some cookies, visit my grandpa, prep for dinner, wrap some gifts, run some errands....and then at 5:00 I'm all "Hi Honey how was your day?" And I love it. I'm sorry if that makes all the feminists angry but I do. Now I just need to win the lottery or something so I can do this every day...

Monday, December 17, 2007

weekend round-up

Yippee!!!!! Friday was the very start of my Christmas holidays and I happily closed my office door and will not think about it again until January 7th. To kick it off, we had Marc's staff christmas party and got all gussied up and a fun time was had. Considering we weren't overly jazzed about going, we ended up closing the party with friends Mike and Jocelyn. On a side note, you know how at around this time of year you see those stories on MSN etc that say "Top 10 Things Not To Do At Your Office Christmas Party?" Well, there are some in Marc's office that really need to re-visit some of those points. Mainly the ones that say "don't dance on tables," "dress appropriately and leave the dress slit up to you private parts at home," and perhaps the most important one "when dancing, resist all urges to bend fully at the waist and have female co-worker slap your ass." Yeah....let's just say it got real old real fast and I really have zero patience for that kind of stuff. And just in case you're wondering, yes she did fall down at one point. Of course she did...

Other than that, the weekend was spent wrapping a pile of presents, eating yummy cheese from the new fromagerie downtown and thinking about being on vacation for three glorious weeks. I'm going to try and be productive and resist the urge to watch Melrose Place DVDs. Today Pa Levesque is having eye surgery (ewwww) so we'll go over and visit the patient when we get the all clear. Does anyone else have eye issues like I do? I can watch someone slit their face open but god forbid someone starts talking about eye surgery.....

Saturday, December 15, 2007

quelle fromage!

Attention cheese lovers!!! The Fromagerie on Engin is officially open!!!! There's been talk for a few months now but at the risk of being heartbroken cheese snobs, we didn't get our hopes up. Well this morning Marc went out to innocently buy a paper, spotted that it was its first day open, did a U-turn right on the spot and came home with a bag o'deliciousness. The biggest treat -- a black truffle pecorino that tastes exactly like the pecorino we brought back from Pienza! Exactly like it!! Wha??? Today is a good day. Cheese snobs rejoice!!!

Friday, December 14, 2007

whole lotta love

Check out this pile o'baby cuteness! I love it!! This is Charlie, our friends Mike and Tara's daughter, modelling the cuter than cute Led Zeppelin onesie that we bought her upon her arrival into the world. Happy to see she's finally grown into it! Not as happy as Mike probably is though!!

Hot Bunny Radio Playlist for December 13th

* denotes Canadian talent
italics denotes a new release

  1. Reverend Horton Heat -- Nurture My Pig -- The Full Custom Gospel Sounds
  2. Five Blank Pages -- Smile Like You Mean It -- Last Blush *
  3. The Black Keys -- Yearnin' -- The Big Come Up
  4. Christine Fellows -- To A Prize Bird -- Nevertheless *
  5. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros -- Tony Adams -- Rock Art & The X-Ray Style
  6. Shotgun Jimmie -- Dark Cloud -- The Onlys *
  7. Beck -- Guess I'm Doing Fine -- Sea Change
  8. Frank Black & The Catholics -- Llana Del Rio -- Dog In The Sand
  9. The Constant C -- Doom -- Capes and Crowns *
  10. Nick Drake -- Day Is Done -- Five Leaves Left
  11. Katie Moore -- The Waiter -- Only Thing Worse *
  12. Yo La Tengo -- Last Days of Disco -- And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside Out
  13. Corb Lund -- The Horse I Rode In On -- Horse Soldier! Horse Soldier! *
  14. Vince Guaraldi Trio -- Christmas Time Is Here -- Royal Tenenbaums OSR
  15. The Damned -- Hit or Miss -- The Black Album
  16. Ray Charles -- Unchain My Heart -- Anthology
  17. Dance Hall Crashers -- I Did It For The Toys -- O Come All Ye Faithful: Rock For Choice
  18. Whiskeytown -- Lo-Fi Tennessee Mountain Angel -- Faithless Street
  19. Andy Swan -- You Got The Diamonds (I Got The Shaft) -- Ottawa *
  20. Cub -- Voracious -- Come Out, Come Out *
  21. Jonathan Keeley -- Bourbon Moon -- The Hanged Man
  22. Jarvis Cocker -- I Can't Forget -- Leonard Cohen: I'm Your Man (Live)
  23. The Lovely Feathers -- Rod Stewart -- Hind Hind Legs *
  24. David Bowie -- Eight Line Poem -- Hunky Dory
  25. Sebadoh -- Elixir Is Zog -- Bubble & Scrape
  26. Jim Bryson -- Travelled By Land -- The Occasionals *
  27. Ween -- Fiesta -- La Cucaracha

Notes this week:

  • Jarvis Cocker is the single reason to love British boys;
  • David Bowie for Suzanne who always used to request that song;
  • I really love cheesy country song titles (see Andy Swan);
  • Oh Cub you make me feel 15 again;
  • If you ever get the chance to see The Lovely Feathers live run, do not walk, to the front row;
  • Ween. Scares. Me.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

the good side of christmas music

It's not the holidays until you hear "Fairytale of New York" by The Pogues. I was reminded of that today when I heard it for the first time this season over lunch at Respect. Nothing says Christmas quite like the lyrics "Happy Christmas your arse, I pray God it's our last." My friend Brittainy is spending Christmas in London and picked up tickets to see them complete with Shane MacGowan on vocals (if he can manage to show up and remain standing). Here's a great live version of the song with the original/late Kirsty MacColl, Joe Strummer and David Byrne to kick you into the holiday spirit!!

tis the other season

The beginning of awards season! The times where celebrities join together to tell each other how great they are and revel in their collective greatness. And I love it! Golden Globe nominations were announced today and here are some of my faves and disses:

Best Motion Picture Drama:
No Country For Old Men: I haven't seen it but the Coen brothers are probably my favourite filmmakers so go team!!
There Will Be Blood: PT Anderson's new movie that nobody's heard of and yet everyone is raving about....interesting.

Best Performance by an Actress:
Cate Blanchett: She shouldn't even have to show up, they should just give her every award always cuz she's that good.
Julie Christie: Away From Her was the saddest movie I've ever seen and completely wrecked me as a person. She could win too. She was that good and is so breathtakingly gorgeous still it's almost unbelievable.
Kiera Knightley: She can just suck it. The other women in this category should embarrass her as she is not fit to shine their shoes.

Best Motion Picture Comedy:
Kind of a strange mix I'd say -- was Hairspray really that good?? Why do I think there were way better movies this year that got ignored?

Best Actress in a Comedy:
Amy Adams: for Enchanted??? Wow.....if she wins I'll just say it's cuz she didn't win anything for Junebug which she was so great in.

Best Actor in a Comedy:
Now this is a category!! Johnny Depp, Ryan Gosling, Philip Seymour Hoffman, John C. Reilly and Tom Hanks. One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just doesn't belong.....Tom Hanks! Go sit with the other guys who used to be funny...

Best TV Series Drama:
The Tudors: Yay for Brit porn!!!!

Best TV Series Comedy:
No Office???? What the........but yay for Pushing Daisies and 30 Rock! I guess that's better than nothing.

Best Actress in a Comedy Series:
I'd like it to go to Mary Louise Parker but really, as long as it doesn't go to America Ferrera yet again I'll be happy. Attention everyone: Ugly Betty is NOT a good show! You are being tricked!!

Best Actor in a Comedy Series:
Lee Pace: Now I like Pushing Daisies a lot. But there's no way Lee Pace is funnier than Steve Carrell or Alec Baldwin. Sorry Lee, you can probably just stay home that night and eat pie.


As the season rolls on many folks are blogging about their favourite holiday movies and I've noticed that one keeps popping up that concerns me. Am I the only one who thought "Love Actually" was a really really terrible movie???? It certainly seems that way as so many bloggers of note are touting it as the most romantic/best holiday movie ever and I just really hated it. I guess I'll just stick to "Scrooged."

she's an iceland girl....

So last night I found out that my delightful friend Michelle from high school, who has been living in Iceland on exchange, has her very own shiny blog! It's called Michelle's Sense of Snow and chronicles her semester spent in and around Reykyavik. This also means that the Icelander that Sitemeter tells me has been reading my blog is, in fact, Michelle! HvaĆ°a a suprise!! Not long ago I found a ridiculously cheap 4 day trip to Reykyavik that I wanted to take so badly and reading Michelle's blog has only made it worse. Note to Kelly: let's ditch American holiday plans and go for Icelandic holiday!!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

so pretty!

Even though I can't afford anything on the Orla Kiely website I keep going to it cuz the page opening is SO pretty!!!! The colours, the flashing -- I feel like a baby mesmerized by the TV! And then the pictures! So pretty and whimsical and blustery-day like. I want to hang out with those girls in those clothes in that coffee shop. Kay let's watch the beginning again.....

lars and the real girl

Marc and I were invited to see this last night and I am so happy that it really was a great movie. My biggest worry about this movie was that it would be gimmicky. Remember that awful movie with Matt Damon and Greg Kinnear where they're siamese twins? Horribly gimmicky. Not that I thought Lars would be like that but it could have very easily been a stupid comedy with neverending sex-doll jokes. It was touching and sad without hitting you over the head with it. Yes, the scene where they first introduce "Bianca" is hilarious but then it's done and from that point on she really does become like another character in the story. Patricia Clarkson is so good I'd see her in just about anything but I wouldn't say I was on the Ryan Gosling band wagon. He was, after all, a Mousketeer. A show that I watched. It's hard to get past that. That being said, he was outstanding in this movie. He plays the twitchy, emotionally wounded guy so well it's uncomfortable to watch. I think I actually dated this very guy earlier in my life. But I digress.


Obviously in a movie like this you know the big "breakthrough" is coming so you do spend the movie waiting for it. It didn't come the way I thought it would though which is always refreshing. This wasn't a movie for stupid people where they tell you exactly why someone is a certain way and exactly how it gets fixed and give you the whole family history and tell you who specifically is to blame. They tell you enough for you to just go with it and figure it out which really is fine by me. Clearly he's got issues with death and with his dead mother as he wears not only his baby blanket as a scarf but also what I assume to be his mothers shirt as an undershirt. At Bianca's funeral you can see he's wearing her pink sweater under his suit coat which is really quite sweet after you really get to know this character. Some people thought the funeral took things too far. I'm not convinced. The whole town rallied around this guy and a full funeral was what had to happen for him to have closure. I thought it was just as sad a funeral as if she had been a real person in the movie. On a side note, the girl who plays Lars' eventual girlfriend is just so hopelessly nerdy and adorable you just want to put her in your pocket.

Overall, I really really loved this movie. It was funny, sad and strangely charming. I only hope that if I lose my marbles at some point people will humour me like that.

it's really all about...

...Christmas holidays. 2 more sleeps until 3 glorious weeks of vacation for Tara. This picture illustrates what Bailey and I will be doing. Well, we'll at least try our best. In actuality I'm going to run on my treadmill every day in an attempt to get back up to where I used to be, try and make at least a few yummy dinners all by myself, bake a few things, bug Liana at her coffee shop for at least an hour one day, and play with all my new Christmas toys. Oh vacation, you truly are the bestest!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

pretty for girlies...

The Pier 1 damask tape measure. Finally something that's not hunter orange and it has a wrist strap. Pretty meets practical.

more from abbey...

...Oooh and she also tells tales of some fun custom silhouette artwork from Karl Johnson which are not only super fun but also on sale. His work looks like this...

Or I bet if you ask nicely my friend Harriet would do it for free. Her work looks like this:

i knew it...

...a while back I blogged about a necklace stand post by Abbey. Well today I see she bought it and photographed it in all it's glory and it's official. Tara must have it. It's exactly what I'm looking for and looks high enough that your long chains don't droop on the dresser. Not to mention cute as all get out.

beware the pre-holiday sale

So JCrew is having this ridiculous pre-holiday sale that makes me want to cry. They're practically daring me to buy stuff. Like this cashmere bateau neck sweater that is only $35 down from $98!! And this felted wool jacket that is only $69 regularly $195!!!!!! Seriously JCrew, you have to leave me alone until at least February...

Monday, December 10, 2007

canine couture

Fewer things in life are funnier to me than putting hats on Bailey. Bailey in my winter toque is no exception.

Weekend round-up

What a weekend it was! So much to talk about, so many pics to post best get started.
Friday Marc and I babysitted for some friends and I am a complete convert to highly regulated sleep-trained babies. First I mocked then saw it for my own eyes. This baby who doesn't know us from a hole in the ground went down like a lead balloon. In all of my years babysitting, I have never seen a baby go to sleep so easily -- especially with a stranger!! Kudos to Shannon cuz clearly her months of hard work have paid off. Yay sleep training!
Saturday was a trip to the theatre with my 2 nieces and their little friend for "Cinderella" and a fun time was had by all. There was laughing and giggling and borderline delirium when they got to meet Cinderella and get everyone's autograph. Sometimes you forget how cool it was to see live theatre when you were a little kid. The scene changes, fancy lights and all the stage trickery and costumes -- through the eyes of a 6 year old is pretty darn cool. It was nice to be reminded of that. And then the buckets of questions that followed went something like this: "Are you guys really sisters? (to the ugly stepsisters)," "Does that guy really have a tail? (about the guy who played Maurice the cat)," "Were there really horses backstage? (about the big pumpkin carriage)," "Is the fairy godmother really magic like for real?" Etc, etc, etc....
Saturday night we used a gift certificate for The Keg that we got as a wedding gift. Now Marc and I aren't Keg people. We really aren't chain restaurant type people at all. But this card has been gathering dust in my purse since the summer and after a day at the theatre cooking was out of the question. So off we go. Now in addition to not being Key types let's also remember that I only started eating red meat again this past year and even saying that I've "started" is a stretch. So this restaurant is a big step for me. I order a filet mignon because when in Rome right? I haven't had filet mignon in easily ten years. I almost died. It was buttery and delicious and the baked potato was probably the best restaurant potato I've ever had not to mention the exquisitely cooked asparagus. Colour me surprised. Yes I felt like cattle the whole time I was there, the volume of noise was deafening, my waitress acted like my best friend when in actuality I prefer my waiters to be borderline icy and when our table was ready, instead of being fetched like civilized people we were summonded by something that beeped and flashed. But the food was, in fact, delicious. So I suppose it was everything I hate about chain restaurants but with a pleasant surprise.
Sunday was breakfast with the folks and our 2nd annual foray into the bush for the gathering of fallen boughs to decorate my windowbox. Off we went down old logging roads and finally found a glorious fallen down tree with boughs a plenty. Bailey even found a big pile of old deer bones to roll around in. Fun for him, kinda gross for me. It was good to get out into the almost eery quiet of the bush and it was a beautiful day for it. It was snowing that kind of snow that feels like it's coming down in slow motion and being released one snowflake at a time.

As a result of this weekend I think we are almost completely decorated for the holidays. Tree is up, lights are up (except for one wayward strand awaiting an extension cord) and festive spirit is in place. Here are some pics of my favourite corner in the house.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

local girl makes good

Well, well, well look who's kicking some ass at the big kid's table! Canada's very own Leslie Feist just got nominated for a truckload of Grammies today! How do you like them apples? She's up for Best New Artist (to win is a sure sign we'll never hear from you again), Best Female Pop Vocal Performance up against folks like Christina Aguilera and Fergie, Best Pop Vocal Album against Sir Paul McCartney and Bon Jovi no less and Best Alternative Music Album which is probably the best represented it's been in awhile -- she's up against Queen Bjork, The White Stripes, The Shins and fellow countrymates Arcade Fire. Interesting.......very interesting. We're big fans here at Cowgirl and if you get the chance to see her live I highly recommend it. If not for her amazing live performance then just to see how teeny weeny she is in person and how giant her guitar looks. I just might watch the whole show this year.
On a side note, I also learned there's a Best Hawaiian Music category. Who knew?

attention ottawa music lovers...

...that means you Kaili and Sean. Our friends Nathan Lawr and Kate Maki are doing a couple of kick ass shows in Ottawa this weekend, joined by the musical stylings of other pal Dan Levecque. Kate's show is first on Dec. 7th opening for Howe Gelb at the National Archives and Nathan's show is Dec.8th at Babylon as part of Andy Swan's CD release party for his new record aptly called "Ottawa." If you're oot and aboot, swing by and check it out and tell them we send our high-fives. You won't be sorry.


Last night was our staff Christmas party. There was Prosecco, tequila shots, grappa and many other embarrassing things. Today everything is far too bright and far too loud. We hoped a full Perkin's breakfast would help. It did not.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Happy Birthday Justin!

Today is B-day for my brother Justin so I want to make special mention. As with many December babies, his birthday often gets lost in the Christmas shuffle (along with his wife who is also a December baby!). Not this year!! Happy you day big brother!!!

Writers' strike

I stole this youtube clip from Dennis' blog cuz it is truly priceless. The writers strike continues and as much as it sucks to be sans new episodes of The Office, we must support the writers. They've been getting screwed out of their profits from the wild west that is the internet market. So if you've been feeling the squeeze of more bad reality tv and lack of Jim and Pam check out this video.


Last night I watched the Victoria's Secret fashion show. It's official. I'm wearing a big turtleneck and baggy jeans for the rest of forever.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

food drive goodness

Attention all Sudbury folk! In mid-November we put out some boxes for a food drive here at our office with all proceeds going to the Sudbury Food Bank. If you want to swing by and drop stuff off, the boxes will be out until December 17th. They're starting to really fill up but we can always use more stuff!!

Monday, December 3, 2007

I'm it...

....I've been tagged my cousin/blogger Kaili to talk about gratitude since it is the season for us all to *hopefully* think happy thoughts about all those fun and important things that make our lives great. The deal is to list 7 things you are grateful for so here goes:
  1. I think as a newlywed I'm obviously thankful for my shiny new husband Marc. He loves me even though I don't always rinse out my milk glass, makes me feel safe and taken care of, makes me feel good when others make me feel bad and is the kindest person I've ever met. Yes, I wish he'd close cupboard doors and drawers behind him but overall, he's my perfect balance, my best friend, does all the cooking and does it SO well, makes exceptional coffee that has spoiled me for all other coffee, makes sure there's always wine and good chocolate in the house and I get queasy when I think about ever having to live without him;
  2. Ma and Pa Levesque cuz I know if anything ever happened they would be fighting people off to be first in line to help. Of all the important things that have happened in my life, none of them would have been possible without their help -- be it manual labour, advice and ideas, emotional support, late nights, you name it. They are exceptional people and thankful is not enough of a word for what I am;
  3. My nieces because when you're like me and not really down with the whole having babies thing, the best you can hope for are great neices or nephews. Well I've got 4 wonderful and adorable nieces who are turning out to be just great kids all around. All babies are cute and of course you love them but the real test comes when they start turning into little people with opinions and thoughts. So far, these kids are polite, considerate, loving, smart and truly unique little human beings and my brother and sister-in-law have done an incredible job raising this pile o'kids. They're just good kids and are the best substitute for kids of my own;
  4. My home because there was a while there when I was convinced we'd never find what we were looking for. We knew exactly what we wanted and kept seeing houses that were anything but. Suddenly, this house fell into our lap and 2 seconds later we were the proud owners of our dream house. It's got smack dap in the middle of the neighbourhood we wanted with all the charm of a house that's almost 80 years old. It was rough enough that we could afford it and truly make it our own. As much as I complain about the work, it's a remarkable feeling to look around and see everything we've done and the amount of sweat that's gone into every detail so far. There's still lots to do but every weekend it gets closer and Marc is learning tons with each project he undertakes. We got married in the backyard and if we ever move we'll have to bribe the new owners to let us stand in the garden on our anniversaries;
  5. My work because it allows me to feel like a contributor to the Canadian music and film industries in my own little way. We work with companies that want to film in the North and artists who want to live and work out of the North without having to cave to the "big city" machine -- for a Northern girl that can be very satisfying work. And being a non-profit allows me to feel like I'm not part of the "corporate money making" side of things. Not to mention, when we go to work conferences they usually involve having to hang out in clubs watching great bands schmoozing with label people. Which I'm guessing is more fun than say a life insurance conference. The people are fun, my office is orange, I can wear band tees to work and sometimes there's puppies-- it's a good thing;
  6. Speaking of puppies, I'm grateful for puppies! Puppies of all kinds, all shapes, all ages and all levels of furryness. I love all the puppies in my life and miss all the puppies that came before. I truly believe a good dog makes your life better in every way. They love you unconditionally and who doesn't love that? They force you outside to exercise them (and you in the process) and provide a level of responsibility to those of us that are without children. Puppies = completely awesome.
  7. I'm using #7 as a catch-all cuz I'm out of numbers. I'm grateful for my whole clan of family both new and old, my friends who tolerate my bad friend habits (ie: never calling), internet shopping, Indian food, movies on Sunday afternoons, finally getting to Europe, Fluevog shoes, expensive bedsheets, people who send letters, good cheese, old records, and all things that make my life more fun.

I tag Dennis , Jane and Jamieanne cuz they are all bloggers of note.

puppy love

Congrats to Kelly and her new rescue puppy Katie!! She's so cute she makes me want 100 puppies! But what doesn't really? I can't wait to meet her and that big brown nose of hers. Congrats Kelly, after years of campaigning finally puppy success!!

Weekend round-up

Ah tis the season for sure now! We got walloped this weekend with the first big storm of the season. And on December 1st no less! Needless to say, much of the weekend was spent either prepping for said storm or recovering from said storm and not much in between.

I started to maybe feel like I was coming down with something early in the weekend so Friday night I stayed in and Marc met up with our friend Ben for drinks. We did manage to get the tree up if not decorated on Friday too so at least I got to look at a beautifully lit tree for the night.

Saturday we did a monster load of groceries as it felt like we hadn't shopped in weeks. We got a million things done including cleaning out our fridge. There's really nothing that makes you feel like a filthier person than emptying your fridge and seeing all the spills and crusty stuff hiding in the corners. I always find it embarrasing and gross and we've implemented a new fridge organizational system as a result. After that, Marc took me out for a lovely dinner at the new cajun/creole restaurant in town. Delicious! I had alligator that was super yummy and watched Marc down some oysters which was less than pleasant for me. He seemed to like them though so it's all good. High point of ridiculous for the evening had to me the pair of girls at the next table. For most of the night I thought they were having a fairly indepth and intellectual conversation about a book they read. I thought they might be a tiny little book club or something. That is until I heard one of them say "Voldemort" and I realized that they'd been discussing Harry Potter the whole time. Now don't me wrong, I love the Harry as much as the next girl but under no circumstances are you to spend the better part of an hour picking the books apart and analyzing the symbolism of why the Weasley's have red hair and picking apart the order of what happened in each book and absolutely under no circumstances are you to quote full sentences from the books. Ever! It was really something. It was like they were picking apart War and Peace and I just really wanted to shake them.

Sunday was more snow, snow and then some more snow. We hunkered down and put up our Christmas decorations, got the tree up and the mantle done (I'll post pics later) and Marc kept chipping away at our baseboards. They look so good and I'm so happy they're turning out! Cuz of the weather we opted for hardcore comfort food and made Butternut Squash Cannelloni with a Walnut and Sage cream sauce that was so good it's hard to describe. Thank god for leftovers I say.

It hasn't stopped snowing for what feels like forever and today I apparently was out before the sidewalk plows. By the time I got to work I thought my legs were going to fall off. Ahh winter least it's good for the calves.

Friday, November 30, 2007

for the spoiled and yet neat pet in your life...

...the pet Murphy Bed! I love this and everything that is just so wrong about it! They say it can support up to 200lbs of pet but I'd like to see a 200 lb dog in that tiny bed -- there's no way!! Still cute though...

why is everything small so cute?

I was just over at Tiny McSmall and had a moment of uterus pain after seeing some of their pictures. If you want to try to convince someone to have some babies, just direct them over there. That's a whole interweb of adorable I'd say. These are some of the real heartbreakers.

Hot Bunny Radio Playlist for November 29th

* denotes Canadian talent
italics denotes a new release
  1. Link Wray -- The Swag -- Rumble!
  2. Katie Moore -- Getting Older -- Only Thing Worse *
  3. Luscious Jackson -- Beloved -- Electric Honey
  4. The Replacements -- I Hate Music -- Sorry Ma, Forgot to Take Out the Trash
  5. Bettye LaVette -- You Don't Know Me At All -- Scene of the Crime
  6. Bob Dylan -- Oh, Sister -- Desire
  7. Andy Swan -- Maybe It's Love -- Ottawa *
  8. Julie Doiron & The Wooden Stars -- Au Contraire -- Julie Doiron & The Wooden Stars *
  9. Junction Creek -- Broad In Burma -- Twigs & Branches *
  10. Will Gillespie -- Fireworks -- Fireworks *
  11. Neil Young -- On The Beach -- On The Beach *
  12. REM -- 7 Chinese Bros -- Reckoning
  13. Dressy Bessy -- I Saw Cinnamon -- Sound Go Round
  14. Modest Mouse -- Lounge (Closing Time) -- The Lonesome Crowded West
  15. The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion -- Talk About The Blues -- Acme
  16. Corb Lund -- I Wanna Be In The Cavalry -- Horse Soldier! Horse Soldier! *
  17. Thurston Moore -- Blues From Beyond the Grave -- Psychic Hearts
  18. The Candidates -- Shotgun Wedding -- Fame, Fortune & Free Drinks *
  19. Jesse Harris -- I Don't Mind -- Feel
  20. Luke Doucet -- Emily, Please -- Broken (and other rogue states) *
  21. Beck -- Blackhole -- Mellow Gold
  22. Islands -- If -- Return To The Sea *
  23. Hawksley Workman -- When These Mountains Were the Seashore -- Treeful of Starling *
  24. Christine Fellows -- Spinster's Almanac -- Nevertheless *
  25. Volumizer -- One Chance -- Gaga for Gigi *
  26. Elliott Smith -- A Distorted Reality Is Now A Necessity To Be Free -- From A Basement On The Hill
  27. The Evaporators -- Where's the Butterknife? -- Gassy Jack & Other Tales *

Notes this week:

  • Saddest lyrics: "The only thing worse than having your heart broke is having no one willing to break it."
  • If John K Samson was my husband I'd get him to sing backup on my record too;
  • Oh REM, remember when you were so good it was actually groundbreaking??
  • I play a lot of Replacements just for Marc;
  • Congrats to pal Will Gillespie for finally finding his band and letting us here the music the way it's always sounded in his head. You had me with the sleighbells...
  • Thurston Moore you get to be on the list with Mike Ness;
  • Elliott Smith, why couldn't you have just cheered up? Such a waste...

our (proud) mascot

They unveiled the mascots for the 2010 Vancouver Olympics the other day and these are the results. *giant long uncomfortable pause*
Really??? These are what teams of experts and "top secret research" have decided on? That is truly unfortunate. The deal is that Sumi, Quatchi and Miga are supposed to appeal to children all over the world while portraying ancient legends, modern trends and portraying the values and essence of the 2010 games. To me, these look like creatures from a Webkinz game or an avatar in one of those bad games they give away in cereal boxes. Miga is supposed to be a snowboarding sea-bear. What the frig is a sea-bear??? And Sumi looks a bit too much like the turtle king character from Super Mario Brothers. And don't even get me started on the lovable but shy sasquatch with the tattoo. I have to say, I don't like these at all. There's even a sidekick to these 3 mascots. Cuz 3 mascots isn't enough you feel you should add another one? Why not make a dozen that way you'll make even more money cuz you'll have 12 different stuffed animals to sell in the gift shop. I don't know guys....I get you're trying to tap into the youth market with your hip anime-like characters but I just think it's cheesy and think they could have done something a bit classier. These poor guys just look like a big mess of symbolism. Perhaps less is more...


As you know, I'm a celebrity gossip fiend and therefore admittedly follow the Tom & Katie stories closely. I've especially enjoyed watching Katie turn from Hollywood cutie into a Robo-Hollywood Barbie doll. Check out this picture over at Lainey's. Have you ever seen her look less human??? It looks like Tom's hired a dominatrix for the night! She looks like a 45 year old woman and not a 28 year old girl. Oh Katie, I miss your crooked smile and Dawson's Creek ways. Now you scare me more than a little bit.

Thursday, November 29, 2007


I have to post about this mobile from Maidenlove that I bought for our friends Craig and Erin and their new baby girl Nikka. It looked pretty in the picture but when it showed up in the mail I loved it so much I wanted to keep it for myself. The picture absolutely does not do it justice and it arrives in the loveliest of packaging with a little handwritten note in an envelope filled with loose dried flowers and stars and other pretty things. I love elephants and this little mobile just sent me over the moon with happiness.