Today is a special day, it was once our anniversary, but that date changed when we got married. We already had September 7th memorized so after we adopted our St. Berdoodle Summit, we decided that our old anniversary date would be perfect to celebrate as her birthday!
The image above was taken the day that Summit and I met (Chris was out of the country)! She was much more timid back then, but I could tell that she was incredibly sweet and would be a good fit for us (I didn’t realize just how lucky we were to find our match).
Summit is about 3-years-old according to the vet, but her birthday celebrations won’t affect her age. We just wanted a day to spoil and love her EVEN MORE than we already do.
When I got home from work tonight, Chris and Summit jumped in the car and we headed to the pet store. We chose one doll each to give to her and bought her a special wet dinner. She was so excited about getting spoiled and she proudly carried one of her new toys (Calculator) around the aisles! The cashier loved her so much that she told us that she was definitely going to follow Sum on Instagram (@Summit.the.sweetheart).
Summit played with her new dollies immediately and she loved her birthday dinner even more. She is an amazing doggo who has gotten so comfortable with us, I’m so proud of how far she’s come in less than a year (read about when we first got her hereand the last update on herhere).
Happy Birthday Summit – I bet you were the cutest pupper I would have ever seen.
Chris and I recently started paying for CraveTv on top of Netflix each month to expand our non-cable using television selection. I have to say that CraveTV has one of the worst browsing interfaces I have ever encountered and it WILL drive you crazy, but it also has a number of quality programs that Netflix Canada just does not provide. There are three BIG CraveTV wins in my books, the third being today’s blog topic inspiration, it has: Broad City, Nathan For You, and Frasier.
I have really fond memories of watching Frasier while I was growing up! My whole family appreciated it and I had been wanting it to come onto Netflix for years. Like anyone who was growing up during Frasier’s run on air, I saw them when the television allowed me to see them and my schedule permitted. This means that I had definitely not seen every episode and with watching odd re-runs now and then I had not seen them consecutively either! Despite missing these story elements, I had fallen in love with Frasier many years ago. The older I got, the more I loved it (and understood the wit).
Finally, CraveTV granted my adult wish to watch Frasier all the way through to the end!
FUN FRASIER FACT: During my re-watch, I learned while exploring a google search about the end credits (because that’s the kind of cool I am [researcher cool]) that the black and white photos of celebrities at the end of the credits were callers in that season of the show! As in, celebrities would call a direct line and often improv their fictional problems on the spot (read more on this here).
This re-watch did not disappoint!
I surprised and impressed myself with how much I remembered from a show that I grew up with, but had a late start in actually watching due to being young when it premiered. Frasier ran from 1993 to 2004 with a hefty eleven seasons including twenty-four episodes each for a total of 264 episodes. This past while, no matter what kind of day I had, while Chris was working in Malaysia for the month, I would come home to Summit and laugh with Frasier. It’s definitely the kind of go-to show to make me feel happy and that’s a pretty great quality to have.
MY FAVOURITE FRASIER MOMENT Nothin’ But Net for Niles My all-time favourite scene is when Frasier and Niles go to a Sonics game with their dad. Niles wins/gets seat-selected to shoot a basket from centre court for a chance to win prizing including some sort of pick-up truck (very Niles). I love this scene so much and it was all the way in season eight – I had to wait so long! Season 8 episode 15, Hooping Cranes, has my favourite scene, this is how it plays out:
As a whole I really love Frasier, but it’s impossible to deny that the last season or so lacked a little in wit and included one too many horrible wigs. The writers did still end things nicely for their fans by giving us key moments and completed character story arcs. The finale went down easy like a classy glass of sherry that I have never tried, but Niles and Frasier would adore.
In my opinion, Frasier is one of the best sitcoms and deserves a proper re-watch (or first-time-watch for some of you), I encourage it!
For this weeks Throwback Thursday I took inspiration from a drawing that my my niece, Zoey, made for me. Zoey is less than a month away from turning 8 years old and is an awesome little artist, the featured photo above is a portait of me that she drew just last Saturday!
She’s always had such an amazing imagination that has made me laugh, especially when we do art or play together. There are two stories I’ll tell today that are favourites of mine as they involve two favourite people of mine: Zoey and my husband Chris!
A Zoey Story
After a year or two together with Chris, Zoey began opening up her trust to him and it was fun to watch them interact! Zoey would have been about 5 or so and was visiting us for a sleepover (us being my mom and I [pre-moving in with Chris]).
Something that I love doing for Zoey is painting her nails, I’ve been painting them since she was about 2 years old and she has come to get so used to it that she sometimes makes the most ridiculous demands that even her aunt Cassy can’t quite figure out (“draw this on this nail, and then this other animal on this nail” etc. Her nails are tiny canvases that don’t always stay still). On this particular day, Chris was over as well and when Zoey excitedly asked me if I could paint her nails, he jumped in and answered her first! Chris, thinking that he would be funny and get a flat no in response, asked Zoey in a slightly exargerated voice, “Hey Zoey! Want ME to paint your nails?!” To Chris’ surprise the often shy five year old said “okay!” and he was committed to his spa service proposal.
From there, he got kind of into it and started advocating for a colourful set of paws, using a different colour for each finger across all ten fingers! Zoey and I didn’t jump on board right away, but I think that even Zoey could tell her future uncle Chris wanted to have fun with it so she agreed to his wacky taste. She let him paint her nails while the three of us sat on the couch.
This is one of my very favourite memories I have with Zoey because it was like she accepted Chris, who I had already fallen in love with. It’s also mainly one of my favourite memories because it was EXTREMELY cute and I loved every second of him painting those tiny nails with delicate care (kind of).
I love them both and I hope you enjoyed the story… now it’s back to 2017!
Facebook’s On This Day feature loves reminding us about things we don’t always want to think about. Frequently, they remind me of my dead dog, my dead grandmother, or to change the privacy settings to “only me” on a lot of old photo albums, but today was different!
Today’s On This Day photo was from a seven-year-old Facebook album with photos of a day trip my mom and I took in 2010. At 19, I had never been to Kensington Market and was vintage-clothes-obsessed so I knew I had to go. My mom and I took the Go-Train into Toronto and explored the Kensington Market streets together (my mom brought her digital camera [neither of us had smart phones yet]), getting smoothies, browsing retro jewelery collections and racks of vintage dresses. That day I bought a 1960’s dress, a 1940’s turquoise hat, and a tie-dye Twiggy print tshirt (I still own the last two).
I remember this day quite well and it’s because my mom and I had such a great time! I’m lucky to have a mother who I also consider a friend. I feel like we’re even closer now than we were seven years ago and it’s probably thanks to adventures like these – I appreciate our time together (even if this appreciation is amplified in retrospect!).
Today’s blog will be a brief one, but an important one (to me at least).
As I’ve mentioned in the past, I’ve always thought that I’d go to post secondary school for art and become a children’s book illustrator when I was… well the age I am now. Instead, I chose a different route, but I tried to promise myself that art would be an ongoing hobby or possibly more if I tried hard enough.
After my teenage years, I practised art a little less – this made me lose some of my artistic confidence. At the age of 26, I have now regained the confidence that I once had as a 17-year-old aspiring illustrator and have been putting myself out there art-wise. What does that mean? Before landing my marketing job, I had been taking a number of custom illustration commissions! I loved being creative again and pushing myself by trying new techniques. Then I contacted a shop about displaying my work.
The town of Millbrook has a delightful café called the Pastry Peddler with a unique Bike shop on the second floor. I’ve often admired the building for it’s beautiful interior architectural structures like the gorgeous old staircase at the back of the building that leads up to Frog Cycles. The hallway from the café section to the washrooms, as well as the back staircase, features different artists each month and this month I’m lucky enough to be displaying a collection of my own work!
I created a handful (maybe a little too many) of hanging layouts ahead of time and am happy with my final choice. I’m proud of myself for this small accomplishment, we should allow ourselves some personal pride on occasion. It’s not an art gallery show, but I’m putting my art in front of the public-eye – putting a part of myself on display to be judged. Art is personal and I know mine won’t be for everyone, but if it makes one person stop to take a double look (one that doesn’t read as “ew, gross”), I’ll be a happy girl!
In my lifetime, my family had a Border Collie who I don’t personally remember, but have seen pictures of, namedHook(like the movie). He herded us a bit too much for our young ages (apparently we cried at the nipped heels) so they found another home for him. The next pup we had been a white German Sheppard named Coach(Craig T. Nelson‘s greatest character).I remember bits and pieces, but my main man growing up was my pal Duke.
Duke was a beautiful two-year-old Flat-Coated Retriever (we think) who we adopted fromThe Animal Guardian Society (TAGS). The organization really wants to make sure that the family and the dog are a good match and within the process there is a two-week
period where the dog can stay at the house. Duke had been living in a small apartment and was kept in a crate for long hours so he thought that our wide backyard was paradise. He ran and ran, I sat on top of out patio table to avoid his speedy laps. When he settled in and I began to fall in love with him our epic friendship began!
I loved him and he loved me. I hugged, kissed, and shared secrets with him. I was also a very sick kid with a lot of physical health problems, he was my cuddle buddy. My mom remembers me falling asleep on him and he’d notice and rest himself to not disturb me. He was far from perfect in his rescue-monkey ways (some bad habits that never really went away), he was some sort of stomach-of-steel-dog who ate crazy things!
Firstly, he loved drinking mom’s cold coffee left in mugs on livingroom tables. Then we get into the stuff that he ate that he was definitely not supposed to: batteries; candles; garbage. One time he got into my brother’s Halloween candy and ate only the red suckers, somehow leaving the sticks and wrappers for us to clean up later.
He was trouble, but he was mostly a happy boy who we all loved so entirely. He put him down when his body began to fail from a type of cancer when I was 13 and I remember missing him so much for so long. I didn’t think that I’d love another dog again, but we all know that didn’t come true.
Thanks for reading this week’s Behind the Throw Back Thursday! What was you first true-dog-love?
There are so many distractions in life that pile onto our plates and, at times, carrying that plate can be pretty stressful for me. There are a few hobbies that I try to dedicate time to throughout the week to help me de-stress. The three that I’ve chosen to talk about are ones that work best to take
my mind off of ever multi-plying deadlines by refocusing my attention to things that make me happy!
This combination is the key to my happy place when I’m on my own while Chris works internationally for a month at a time.
I, of course, watch an immense amount of television and movies in my spare time, but when I’m not doing that I like to go to the dog park with my St. Berdoodle/partner in crime Summit. She’s been a part of our family for eight and a half months and is adjusting to her new life so incredibly well. Summit loves going to the dog park and, admittedly, I think I love it almost just as much! The majority of the park that we walk is off leash and my mind is kept busy making sure that Summit is having fun while also being good. She never looks happier than when running through the dog park and sniffing other dogs’ butts (did that make you smile?). Her happiness fuels my own and then on top of that, I get to meet, pet, and watch other amazing doggos who are also in their happy place – it is all around, the greatest distraction from anything not dog related and negative!
If you don’t have a local dog park nearby, play tug of war with your pup in the house or play hide and seek in the upstairs bedrooms. If you don’t have a dog, volunteer at your local shelter or rescue organization to help find homes for adoptable pets! Just put yourself in situations where you get to see and/or be with more dogs… this is the best advice I could ever bestow upon you!
When was the last time that you did a puzzle? During a 1998 rainstorm at the buggy lakefront cottage your family rented? If it’s been that long, you really need to give it another go as an adult!
My sister and I both love doing puzzles and she’s the one who got me back into the hobby in the last few years. Often times, I would visit my sister and she would have a puzzle started on her table in front of the television. We would put on an easy background movie and focus on piecing the puzzle together while munching on snacks. When puzzling by myself, I often have smaller chunks of time to work away at it and spread out the completion for a week.
When you do try this, you’ll see that you’re so focused on finding the pieces that you can’t think of those outside distractions that you were worrying about earlier. You might also find that it’s fun – yes, I said it! Fun. You get a similar self-satisfaction that you might feel when completing a tough sudoku or Sunday crossword. Plus if you buy a fun themed puzzle like this Barbie puzzle that my sister just leant me (I recommend that you listen to Aqua if you get a similar image), you will get to reminisce about childhood toilet paper fashion creations that you made for your toys.
Cassy’s Puzzle Tips:
Cassy’s Puzzle Tip One: If you get your friends in on the puzzle-trend (I don’t think that’s a real thing), then you can swap to save money on new boxes.
Cassy’s Puzzle Tip Two: Make sure you don’t have friends who lose things easily… like puzzle pieces.
Cassy’s Puzzle Tip Three: If you can live with the puzzle missing a piece or two, check out your local thrift store. I know that Value village carries a ton of puzzles for a good price.
Cassy’s Puzzle Tip Four (way more puzzle tips than expected even for Cassy): If no one wants your puzzle when you’re done and you don’t think that you’ll ever do that same puzzle again, give it to a local retirement home or a community centre. There are a ton of people who would enjoy the puzzle around town that you might not have thought of before.
What is chick-lit? Female oriented fictional literature based on the adventures of women working otherwise mundane jobs, who get into funny situations (often solving small-town murder mysteries before police authorities) and stumble upon love with the men of their dreams (frequently drawn out in a formulaic series of at least 12 books).
It is what it is and I love every bit of it. I love this genre of books because they make me happy, I almost always laugh out loud when reading a good rom-com novel. They’re light, funny, romantic, usually predictable, occasionally ridiculous and they are genuinely enjoyable reads. After a night of reading some of my favourite chick-lit books, I have woken and wondered what hilarious sit-com I had started watching only to remember that it was just a really great book.
I read a lot of classics when I was younger and I love a large number of those, but after a long day of work and a short commute, I look forward to laughing at a clumsy female-lead who has problems much more pressing than my real-life deadlines. The stories make my life look easy in comparison, but what really matters is that I fall asleep with a smile and an entertaining scene in my head to inspire my dreams at night.
One for the Money by Janet Evanovich (ongoing series currently consisting of 23 books [Love the books, but I recommend skipping the movie])
You don’t have to stick to high-culture’s unwritten rules! You can admit that your taste ranges on a large spectrum that includes authors like Ken Kesey, Jane Austen, George Orwell, and Janet Evanovich! Join me in being honest about loving romantic comedy novels and you will be happier for it.
There you have it folks!
What do you do to keep happy when you’re by yourself? Do you also love dogs, puzzles, and chick-lit? Let me know!
One month from today marks Chris’ and my one year anniversary (married… it’s unfortunate that the four years together pre-marriage get thrown aside for tracking)!
This meant that today’s throwback thursday post was an easy choice. The above photo was taken the moment after Chris and I had officially been declared husband and wife. I had just finished crying after going second in reading our personal vows and Chris had kissed the bride. We walked back up the aisle to a major Chris song (that I also like) called You Make My Heart Beat Faster by The Distillers, you should give it a listen and then take another look at the featured photo above. We had so much fun at our wedding and it was very us – thrifty and quirky!
They say that the first year of marriage is the hardest, but I wonder if that’s changed since people have started living together more commonly as unmarried couples. Chris and I had two years or so in the house before we got married so it’s not like we needed to get used to each other or were learning about each others’ habits. Our wedding was less like a new beginning to an adventure and more like the third chapter in a novel that has already built a foundation to build a story around.
Wherever we are in our unwritten novel, we’re doing really well. We are just as in love as ever, but what’s more important is that we’re still best friends who watch comedy
specials while drinking bourbon or play board games competitively together. We have fun and appreciate our time together – we also know that no ones perfect and that honest communication is key.
We’ve known each other for almost five years now and expect to continue to learn from our shared experiences (especially mistakes). Just because we’ve been married for a year doesn’t make us experts, but who’s to say that we’re not doing it right? We’re doing what’s right for us and that’s all I hope my loved ones do for themselves too!
Last Saturday was Canada Day which meant that I got to enjoy an extra day off this past Monday too! Here’s a glimpse into my long weekend fun:
Chris dropped me off at a co-worker’s house last Friday morning; she wonderfully helped us out by driving me into work so that Chris and Summit could pick me up on the way out of town for the long weekend. The three of us (dog included) crammed into the car with all of our things (dog bed included [she’s very spoiled]) and set forth on our mini-vacay.
Traffic was surprisingly not as horrible as we thought it would be! It was more than usual, but we still got to our destination, Kincardine, Ontario, within approximately four hours. We stayed with my sister, brother-in-law, and their many animal companions: Dude the Bernese Mountain Dog, Sidney Prescott the German Shepard, Taco the lean grey cat, and Rafi the munchkin cat. Summit was very excited to see her fur-cousins and we decided to walk downtown Kincardine to see the end of the car show and get some ice cream. The car show had mostly ended, but we enjoyed a walk and some ice cream creations from Dairy Queen under a nice sunset. After a long day of working and sitting in the car, the guest room pillow was my new best friend.
Saturday morning, we got up and got ready to see the Kincardine Canada Day parade. We drove down and I almost immediately regretted not bringing Summit to the parade, but was also incredibly excited to point out and pet many patriotic doggos that were in attendance. The parade was really lovely! It wasn’t too long, many community organizations celebrated, my favourite town mascot was in the centre of it all (he’s a lighthouse), the famous hockey player Paul Henderson rode in a horse drawn buggy, and then everyone in attendance joined in behind the parade and headed toward the water. At a certain point, we got to the end and realized our best bet was to walk back the same direction we had come. The problem was that many other people were still parading down the street toward the water so we were walking against the traffic. My brother-in-law insisted that this was terribly bad luck (in a superstitious way) and that people were giving us dirty looks – he did this for my benefit, to try to make me paranoid – he really is my brother). We made it out alive and un-scolded by paraders.
The four of us decided to take the dogs for a walk nearby in the woods, this was perfect for Summit who would have missed the wooded dog park walks that she so enjoys every day. By the time that we got back to the house, my dad, stepmom, and step-dog-sister Lucy were arriving to my sister’s as well for Canada Day festivities. We had a BBQ, relaxed in the backyard and walked back downtown to get drinks.
We sat on the balcony facing the waterfront at Erie Belle Fish & Chips, had drinks, and shared stories for an hour or so.
The water looked so nice that we walked passed the docks and along the beach. Our party became a mini parade, marching one by one in the tide while families played in the sand and water around us. I smiled when I saw the big blue chairs that are a novelty to me every time that I see them – they never stop being fun! We took some photos as a family and a friendly fellow Canadian offered to take a full group shot as he watched us struggle to fit into a selfie. Our bodies began to ache and we got a taxi van back to my sister’s house halfway through the walk home.
We hot-tubbed and ate appetizers in the backyard until the late evening. Our cab driver hilariously dropped us off at/in the end of the parade and we jumped out quickly so that he could drive in reverse back down the road to get out of the way of the approaching tough-looking marching band in some serious kilts. We laughed and merged with the crowd to applaud and appreciate the band. The town then scattered to find and claim the best lookout spots to see the fireworks. As the sky started to darken, the air got colder and my blanket-like sweater became a sweater for two (my husband and I basically became Turk and JD fromScrubs). The fireworks were really incredible! I hadn’t seen fireworks like that in so long, I felt like a kid during the finale shots that totally blew me away. It was a
really fun experience to share with my family – especially my dad and sister who I remember watching fireworks with on a blanket in the grass as a kid.
Adult life can be hard sometimes, but I love those moments that remind you that you can still experience significantly happy moments similarly to the way you did as a kid – the ones that make you appreciate your life and you know that you’ll probably look back on this exact moment in another twenty years. What I loved about my Canada Day weekend was that it was spent with family and was very inexpensive (Haha)! Seriously though, Kincardine, like many other Canadian cities, provided a fantastic, accessible, public celebration that they should be proud of!
Happy 150th Anniversary Canada! And thanks Kincardine!
How did you celebrate? What part of Canada did you get to appreciate this year?