Wintery weekend

Had a good weekend. It was my birthday weekend so that was fun. I used to hate birthdays. My birthday comes so close to Christmas that lots of people are still away, good restaurants - if open - have a skeleton staff, and everyone is broke. Good times! But this year, I was kind of looking forward to it as it marked a new chapter. New year, new age, new house, new life.

I got spoiled with lots of soft sweaters (including a gorgeous cranberry Alpaca one - yum!). And a new pair of shoes: black quilted leather heels with patent leather toes. Delicious!

I had a a pal over to see the new place. I was in a cooking mood so I made fusilli with shrimp and homemade pesto. Yummy! I also made kale chips and baked blueberry spelt muffins since I was feeling all Gwyneth.

So, Saturday was the kids' first ski lesson of the season. I love skiing. Love! I hate organizing everyone to go skiing. Hate! There is just so much stuff to schlep and everyone skis at a different level so it makes it tricky to manage things on the hill outside of lessons. I dread it every year and it is one of the few activities where being a single parent puts you at a real disadvantage. This year I arranged for a locker at the ski hill to cut back on the amount of stuff we have to carry back and forth to the car so I thought that it would solve most of my problems. Well, of course not! It's a new hill so we planned to do a practice run before the lessons started as my kids were nervous about the chair lift. The lift was no problem, but the run was steeper than we thought. My son got unnerved by the hill height and would only ski in a snowplow, holding onto my waist while I snowplowed straight down the hill. People, do you know what that does to your thigh muscles? Nothing good. I got him to the bottom of hill to discover we were on the opposite side of the hill from the ski school. Gah! Asked directions and we were sent to an even steeper hill equally far from the ski school. We skied that, got sent up the chair lift and were told that an even steeper run was the only way back. At this point, the lessons had started and we were stuck on the hill. We all sat down in utter defeat. Luckily the ski patrol came by with a snowmobile, Hurrah! Unfortunately, there was not enough room to take the three of us  down the hill and neither my son nor daughter wanted to be without me. Another ski patroller arrived and we agreed that I'd escort the snowmobile most of the way back to the base and another ski patroller would escort my daughter down the hill since we were worried she might not be able to keep up with us. Anyways, we all made it down in one piece. We were late for the lessons but the ski school people agreed that we'd had enough practice for the day. So we went home, stayed in our long underwear for the balance of the day and watched DIY and HGTV. The kids agreed it was the most fun ever. I needed vodka via IV. So, Saturday, I did not dress up at all. Oh well.

Sunday, I dressed up. It's church and I am not the type of person to show up to the house of God in yoga pants (OK, that sounds a little judgemental I realize, but it's how I feel.) I wore an Anne Klein alligator-print embossed leather skirt in a deep espresso colour that I got at an 80% off sale in the summer.  I paired it with a navy sweater and I wore a camel-coloured wool coat (I live October to March in a coat that looks like a sleeping bag since I am always freezing, but for church, lunches downtown or work stuff, I wear pretty coats.)

January 6 outfit

Banana Republic cable knit sweater / J.Crew coat /

I'm liking this let's-enjoy-what-I-already-own thing. It helps me stay out of the stores and keep to my budget.

I've been pretty focused on how I spend my money. I've been reading an awesome book by Sarah Ban-Breathnach (remember Simple Abundance?) Well, it turns out that she and a rogue ex squandered most of her Oprah money and she is in the position so many of us find ourselves in: rebuilding our financial house. The book is called Peace and Plenty, and I'll do a full review of it once I'm finished. Ban-Breathnach takes quotes from a number of women's magazines that were dispensing financial advice during the great depression. One of the quotes I loved was from a 1928 copy of Modern Priscilla:
The word budget seems to frighten some people. They think of it as a beast which will devour, or as a tool by which the homemakers arbitrarily, almost automatically, cut themselves off from the possibility of ever obtaining the things they want. On the contrary, it does, if well made and well used, prevent careless expenditure for things outside the scheme of life. It prevents us from wandering thoughtlessly into debt. It insures the purchase of many things which, however desirable, would have been counted among impossibilities or extravagances, if the careful survey demanded in making the budget had not shown them to be possible.

Budgeting is what makes dreams possible. I love that idea! So, of course, the trick is figuring out our dreams: what we want and where our priorities sit. A pal of mine is having a visioning board party at the end of the month, so perhaps that will help me clarify things a bit.

I do know that one of my budgetary line items will be flowers, especially in the winter when we are so starved for colour. I found these gorgeous fair trade roses at Sobey's for $9.99. The cashier said that they will last about 10 days. So, $1 per day! Gorgeous and worth every penny!

Well, that's it for today. Hope y'all had a terrific Monday!


  1. I do remember Simple Abundance and I loved it. I'll look for this new one. It sounds right up my alley. Yes fresh flowers...a must. And as you say, a dollar a day, well worth it.

    1. It was a great read. Thanks for commenting!


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