Still haven’t tried out Word Press for the iPad

I know I said I’d post from the iPad (not that it makes a difference to you folks) but I haven’t. I don’t get to McDonalds enough…never thought I’d say that. I’m still posting from my BlackBerry, which is unfortunate since I don’t know how to post pics. Hopefully that will be rectified with the iPad.

I’m about to go against my animal rights beliefs and brutally murder my dog. With school starting back up she is insisting on barking at every child who walks by since apparently they are all up to mischief (being children and all). I’ve been trying a few techniques. Taking her away from the situation by bringing her inside, putting her in her kennel for “time out”, and/or yelling mercilessly at her. We’ll see how it all pans out.

My iPad is going splendidly by the way. It’s very exciting to read my books, write my diary, and play Pocket Frogs all on the same item. I can’t wait until we have wireless internet and I can expand that list to include looking at LoLs cats and watching YouTube. Awesome!!!

Speaking of iPad, I downloaded the movie 2012 to watch on it. I stupidly watched it by myself and proceeded to not sleep because I was positive the world was about to explode. I didn’t hear any reviews on it, but I thought it was kind of fun. I love disaster/explosion movies (Michael Bay is my hero) so it was right up my alleys. I could do without all the little love stories, they just aren’t my thing, but if a person is in to that then they’ll enjoy that aspect of the movie.

I also watched Hot Tub Time Machine for the second time. Now, I don’t claim to be an intellectual or nothin’ but that movie makes me look like Einstein. But it is seriously hilarious. One of my favorite stupid movies. It gives exactly what it says it will. For crap sakes, it’s called Hot Tub Time Machine…what could you possibly expect from it?

As for environmental aspects of my life, I really haven’t gone anywhere or done anything lately that required an e-mail or letter or comment. I’m enjoying Apple’s products with the whole digitizing and paperlessness so that’s all good. We’re about to buy the super special edition of Gears of War 3, so I’m assuming that is so packed full of unnecessary packaging that it requires a crane to lift it. I’ll have to see what’s recyclable and what’s not. Sigh. But they’re such good games and my partner so desperately wanted it and I just can’t say no to him! Plus with all the changes he’s made, I figured this one little (huge) item is deserved. Oh well, I’ll fight the man in other aspects of life. No more TP packaging!!!

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The Guilt, The Guilt!!!

I was cleaning out a drawer the other day and came across an old bottle of perfume from my chemical laden days. Vanilla scented. Completely synthetic. But, it was beloved by me then. I was just about to throw it out when I thought, hey, let’s take it for one more spin. So I spritzed (just once) a little on my trembling wrist. I inhaled the vanillaish aroma…and coughed. Was that really how I had smelled regularly? Eeew.

So, I’m walking around cleaning and all I can smell is this horrid aroma following me around the basement. It’s stinky, it’s strong, and to all the people I had nasty thoughts about because they dared to tell people what they could and could not wear based on allergies…I’m not sorry but I understand a little. I still don’t think they have a right to tell people what to do but that is a debate for another post.

Needless to say, my days of synthetic perfumes are done. For the moment I can’t do much about the apparent fragrance in my sunscreen and I certainly won’t stop wearing it as I’m fairly sensitive to the sun. Although I noticed Burt’s Bees has a sunscreen out that I would like to check out. Perhaps my prayers (if I prayed) have been answered.

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Misgivings

Despite the fact that I know how good it is for my hair and the environment I still have trouble admitting that I only wash my hair every 3-4 days. I remember back when I was blind to the ways of hippiness, if I heard that somebody hadn’t washed their hair for 4 days (even around college exam time) I cringed and made faces. How could a person stand to have such greasy itchy hair?!?

With my coconut milk, baking soda, castille soap shampoo I don’t get greasy or itchy hair. Well, a little greasy by day 4, but not the greasy that it got with commercial shampoo. I could explain this to a person but I’d still have to admit that I don’t wash my hair often. I wash my body or, if unable to (say, like camping) the important bits but still. It’s a big admission. I’d admit that I don’t often wear deodorant (they can smell the results of that) before I’d willingly admit that they very hair they’re staring at had been washed Friday. And it was Monday.

But I have a lot to brag about in that respect. My scalp never gets itchy like it used to and it doesn’t get anywhere close to the level of grease after only 1.5 days!!! Maybe that is a worthwhile goal. Practice telling people. Come out of the water closet so to speak. Wish me luck.

Oh, and my next post might come from my iPad should I find wi-fi. Exciting!

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Return From Smog City

We’ve returned (and somewhat recovered) from our trip to Toronto. What a week. I have a father who insists on using plastic and claims he loves chemicals and additives in his food and products. It may be a defeatist attitude but I don’t even try to argue with him. There are very few people that I won’t try to sway. He is one of them.

His attitude toward everything (religion, politics, environment, food, locations other than Toronto, hotdogs…) is disgusting. He’s racist and bigoted. I don’t know where he got his hateful close minded attitude from, or how it manages to survive in a cultural smorgasbord such as Toronto, but I’m glad I did not inherit it. I just sit silently and ignore him when he says something truly ignorant. He used to be able to draw me into arguments at the drop of a hat, but no more!

Other than all that it was nice to see his wife and my sisters, one of which I was meeting for the first time. It was also neat to walk around downtown Toronto.

Aaron and I took a train from my dad’s suburb to downtown Toronto for a day of shopping, food, and experiencing the cultural smorgasbord I mentioned above. We started our day at St. Lawrence Market which is STOCKED with an amazing selection of dry goods, cheese, meat, fish, baked goods, pasta…and a nice coffee shop in the basement. I also found waste disposal units that included a recycling AND a compost bin. That was very exciting.

We wandered up Queen St. where we found an awesome little vintage clothing store full of neat clothes, belts, shoes, and accessories for $10 and under. Aaron had to stop at the XBox store of course to play with the Kinect. Then up Spadina through Chinatown. What a cool place! It’s so full of markets, people, color, and smells. I had to stop and eat a sesame ball (squishy hollow ball full of red bean paste and rolled in sesame seeds).

Last time we were in Toronto we accidentally wound up at a delicious Italian restaurant called Mercatto. They have three locations so we went to the one on College St. Tasty as usual. I recommend the risotto balls. They aren’t vegan but they’re nice and crispy and we have to indulge now and then, right?

We were going to head to the Royal Ontario Museum (just north of Mercatto) which has free admission on Wednesdays after 3:30 but my feet had started feeling like somebody was punching the bottoms of them. We walked back to Union station and took a train home.

The rest of the week was just as interesting in that we ate. A lot. We hit up Wasabi, an all you can eat sushi bar which Aaron said he never wanted to leave. There was a night of East Indian food where I finally got to meet my dad’s in-laws. They were very nice but informed me they didn’t speak much English (they’re from China) and I said that was okay because I didn’t speak any Chinese so we talked about the Indian food. It’s a tradition for us to go for dim sum when we come out for a visit. It didn’t disappoint as usual.

I finally got to see and play with an iPad. I loved it so much that I ordered an iPad 2 as soon as we got home. I can’t wait for it to arrive. I assume it will be just as awesome as I remember. I mainly played Angry Birds, but I’ll utilize much more with my own…heh.

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Attempts at Swaying the Masses

Aaron and I arrived in Toronto yesterday morning where we were greeted by my father and sister. We had to get in fairly early because my dad was having a bbq with family and friends in the afternoon and he had lots of prep work to do. Aaron worried that these would be high brow sort of folks and he wasn’t wrong, but they were also very down to earth despite being richer than most people we know.

The conversation came around to my veganism (what with being at a bbq full of meat) and this led naturally to my natural products (which made it here no problem on the plane). Everyone was actually really interested in my homemade deodorant, shampoo, etc. I was happy to tell them all about it and a few ladies said I should start a business selling these items. It’s a neat idea and one that I’ll definitely give some thought to.

Of course my dad ripped on me every chance he got as father’s are wan to do. He went on about loving meat, plastic, and chemicals. He mostly got poopooed. All in all it was a fun party. Aaron got to talk about hockey and CP Rail and I got to talk about vegan meals and homemade face masks. Success!

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Trial Run Through at the Airport

On Saturday I will be flying from Winnipeg to Toronto. Not a major flight, but I can see if my weird products will make it through the check-in screening. I’ve packed my homemade toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, hairspray, mouth wash, deodorant, oil face wash, and honey wash. I know I said I won’t be taking a lot of this stuff on my Europe flight but if I can get it through on this trip then the few things I’m taking to Europe shouldn’t be a problem.

I’ve put each product (except hairspray and mouth wash) into a baby food jar then placed them in twos in ziploc bags. I then took old socks and shoved each bag inside to prevent breakage. In case you’re wondering why I’m packed already I’ve come to my friend’s house to stay a few days before flying out. She’s babysitting my dog so I thought it might be nice to acclimate my dog to the household. All my products survived the drive out here without leaking so I’m hoping they’ll survive the air pressure.

Everything is pretty snug in my big suitcase. I’ve packed more for this 5 day trip then I will for my two month trip which I find humorous, but I have to be fancy when visiting my dad. Just in case.

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Eco-Friendly Travel

I make a lot of my own products. Deodorant, hair spray, toothpaste, laundry detergent, shampoo and a few more things. I also use honey and oil to wash my face. These are all fairly eco-friendly but may not look that great going through an airport scanner. I don’t want to be detained because I have a baggie full of baking soda that looks suspicious. So, here’s what I can bring, what I can’t, and what I’ll have to make-do with.

Shampoo:
Usually I use a mix of coconut milk, castille soap, and baking soda. The coconut milk easily goes rancid so I can’t premix it and I’m not carrying 18 cans with me. I already stated that I won’t be bringing the baking soda with me so I’ll buy it there, bring castille soap (they just have to smell it to figure out it’s soap), and I’ll mix the baking soda, soap, and a little water when I have to shampoo.

Conditioner:
Apple Cider Vinegar mixed with water is my choice for sealed ends and shiny strands. I’ll just buy it in Europe otherwise it could explode in transit. A bottle should last me for my trip easily.

Deodorant:
Unfortunately my deodorant, while being quite nice and not Alzheimers causing, melts and leaks very easily. I’ll have to go commercial since no eco-friendly deodorant I’ve found contains the musk and moisture. Booo.

Castille Soap:
I use this as my daily body wash and with a properly sealed bottle it will be easy enough to bring over. No problems there.

Face Products:
I use unpasteurized honey in the morning on my face and every few days I use a mix of castor, olive, and avocado oil. I won’t be able to easily transport any of these. This makes me sad. I’ll be looking for a good facial bar and my face is tough enough to be able to use soap in a pinch with no real damage. But it sucks. A lot.

Other than all that I don’t think my detergent will be a problem since people have to bring detergent in smaller containers on trips like this anyway. I’d like to avoid using plastic baggies but I’m not sure how since I have to make room and they are ideal for storage. I’ll have to be super eco-conscious over the next few months to really balance it all out.

I’ll also miss my tea. But I’ll make do with beer and wine.

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My Favorite Travel Guides

I’ve been hitting up the library fairly regularly these days. First there was that huge book sale but now it’s a good resource for planning my trip (if indeed it will be happening). One of the books I happened to grab during the sale was Rick Steve’s France and it was the best $.50 I ever spent! I’ve pretty much completely planned the France portion of my trip based on the guidebook. I’ve now borrowed (all Rick Steve) England, Spain, Europe City Walks, Europe Through The Backdoor, and Italy.

I’m trying not to be excited for this trip because (and call me a pessimist) I think something will happen to prevent it. Like, we’ll need more money than we thought for the mortgage, or Aaron won’t be able to get the credit card in time to pay for flights and things (I don’t have a job so I can’t get one).

Despite fighting the growing excitement, I am still planning pretty hardcore. The second it’s all a go I will be able to hit the ground running because I’ll know where I want to go, how, and when.

To be honest though, I started reading about Southeast Asia and that is MIGHTY tempting. But I’d rather wait for Aaron to go on that one.

So far I’ve decided on transportation (train-15 day 2 month Eurail Flexi-pass), countries (Greece, Croatia, Montenegro, Italy, Spain, France, England), my activities in France, and. accommodation type (hostel). I’ve also got my packing list pretty much complete and will be starting my passport process shortly. So much to do and it’s all so exciting!!! I also need to find a good backpack and day bag. If anyone has any suggestions, please feel free to mention them in the comments section. Happy travels everyone!

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What a Weekend!

My friend’s wedding came and went, I made the cupcakes and they were delicious. The night was fairly entertaining. My boyfriend usually doesn’t drink and isn’t a terribly loud person decided to relive his high school days with some of his buddies (we all went to school togather, groom, friends, me, boyfriend) and had a “Frank the Tank” reprisal. He yelled, leapt, wrestled, ran…then puked. Poor man. No lesson learned.

I wore fake eye lashes for the first time. In the heat they felt like they were melting together but they seemed to feel fine in the cooler air. Of course all the pictures were done in heat so hopefully they look okay.

The reception was at the Viscount in Winnipeg. Nice venue, horrible food. I do not recommend it. Even the breakfast buffet the next day was terrible. Don’t go if you can avoid it.

Now, everything is done (except my trip to Toronto) so I can concentrate on my trip to Europe. I’ve nailed down the countries (Greece, Croatia, Montenegro, Italy, Spain, France, England) but I need to know if I have to fly to the Caribbean from Heathrow for my friend’s baby’s birth or not. So the last days of my trip are not quite covered. I’m working on getting my passport today and my boyfriend is going to see about getting a credit card to purchase plane tickets. I have a massive list to get through but lots of time, so one thing to worry about per week. I’m trying not to get excited since it feels like something might go wrong, but it’s hard not to plan and hope. So, here’s hopin’ I guess.

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A Journey, You Say?

I’ve recently been informed by my partner that I will be going on a journey of self-discovery. A little background; I’m a wanderer. I can’t stay in one place for very long so to have been in one province for almost 6 years is mind-boggling. Needless to say I’m itching to get out. My partner on the other hand is happy to stay in one spot forever. Literally, one spot. Preferably with internet access.

So, for the five and a half years of our relationship (and he knew me for years before we started dating so he knew what he was getting into) I have mentioned going on a trip now and then. Over the past year that urge has increased 100 fold. Finally, he said that I had to go so that he didn’t feel bad about holding me back.

Keeping in mind that I’m terrified of being in social situations by myself this will be good for many things. Good for our relationship (I’ll get the travelbug out of my system for a bit and we’ll both appreciate eachother more), good for me and my social issues, and good for him because he’ll actually get peace and quiet for a bit. Well, as much peace and quiet as can be afforded with 5 animals. On the plus side, we’ll most likely be able to afford the trip and a house. I’m waiting to hear back from the mortgage people before I start any concrete planning, but the basic planning has been fun.

Where to go, Asia, Europe, or South America. It’s a two-month trip so wherever I go has to have good transportation (busses in South America, trains in Europe and Asia). I’ll most likely go to Europe since I don’t have to get inoculations and things like that. They cost more money ya know.

Other factors to take into consideration are the fact that I’m a single woman. Not a huge deal, but could be an issue in some places. Plus, it will be winter in Europe so I’ll have to pack a bit heavier if I go there.

I’m so excited to see how this unfolds! Will update as I go. Ciao!

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