Archive | November, 2020

The Beginning of Christmas

30 Nov

When does your holiday season start? For me it starts right after boxing day sales end, not kidding, I start my countdown then! However, I do wait to express my crazy to the world until closer to the actual time of year Christmas happens.

Doesn’t stop me from casually telling people how many days until Christmas at random times during the year, especially on hot summer days, but that is neither here nor there.

Normally I don’t decorate for Christmas, I go home to my family for Christmas and enjoy the decorations there. This year, as we all know, is a weird one, and I am not travelling home for Christmas, so it will be the cat and I making our own little traditions.

Step one was decorating!

My bestie Nicole years and years ago, when I moved away, mailed me a present in November. When I opened it I found a table top Christmas tree and all the lights and decorations for it. She knew I hadn’t brought any decorations with me when I moved and being a poor student couldn’t afford to go buy any, so she surprised me with them. Talk about thoughtful!

This year I pulled the tree out of the box, tried not to jump when a dead spider fell out of the tree when I was fluffing it out, and decorated it, all under the supervision of Striker, The Cat Overlord. That is his new title by the way, he gave it to himself earlier this year.

It’s beautiful and I love it!

Lucky for me Striker (the Cat Overlord) does not care even one little bit about the tree, even though he jumps up beside it to get to the windowsill. Apparently the tree is beneath his dignity to bother with.

Sometimes I think I have the least cat-like cat out there…

I also took a mini tree to work for my office, because why not?

I have a set of 3 baby Groots and thought I’d use the mini tree to make hair for one of them. Random? Sure. But it makes me smile so who cares?

Continuing with my enjoying the beginning of the season I watched my first holiday themed thing today, actually no, that is a lie, my bad. I watched Rise of the Guardians the other day and while it isn’t technically a “Christmas” movie, I think of it as one so I guess that was my first seasonal type thing to watch.

This evening after work I channeled the inner child in me and watched the Disney Holiday Sing Along. It is basically a bunch of celebrities singing various Christmas songs, but never the entire song, just a snippet, accompanied by Disney clips interspersed with their performance. I’ve never watched it before so don’t know if it is normally this format. It wasn’t amazing, and this is coming from a person who loves (1) Disney, (2) Christmas, and (3) singing when alone and no one can hear me.

I mean c’mon, if anyone was poised to enjoy this it was me, but alas, ’twas not meant to be.

The lovely sushi dinner I ordered in for myself, to get this season off to a yummy start was great though! I suppose if one of the things had to be not up to expectations better it was the show and not my dinner!

What do you start your holiday off with? Decorating? Shows? Food? We all do the holidays different, and this year we will all be doing them different than our usual traditions, but I hope yours gets off to a happy start, and continues to be happy all the way through! 🙂

Staycation 2020

29 Nov

Oddly enough I had a bunch of unused vacation days and with the year quickly coming to an end my work wanted me to use them. I wasn’t so psyched on the idea, I mean, I can’t go anywhere, so what is the point? Turns out there didn’t have to be a point, just a strong nudge towards picking some days to take off.

I picked a random week in November and tried to get excited for it. I decided I’d do at least one all day hike, and hopefully more smaller ones, I’d paint the apartment, hang with friends (in a socially distant way), maybe do a day trip somewhere, and just use the time to live a relaxed life.

In keeping with the theme of 2020 the week I chose ended up being one of a two week time period where we went in to tighter restrictions in an effort to stop our Covid numbers from rising. This meant I wasn’t allowed to go anywhere unless it was an essential trip, so no hikes, no hanging with friends, no day trips out of town, no random fun shopping errands or days out doing whatever I wanted (within reason of course!).

Want to know what I was left with? Painting. The one thing on my list the tighter rules couldn’t take away, in fact, Dr. Bonnie Henry probably would have loved it. A human, alone in their apartment, for 9 days, with a project to keep them busy, she probably wishes all of us in BC would do that.

I will admit I didn’t start vacation with a great mindset, I was feeling like I was being grounded, even though I have been following all of the rules, and I was a bit cranky about it.

Vacation, to me anyways, means travel of some sort, at least one activity that gets my adrenaline going and has the potential for death, and I dunno, excitement. These 9 days weren’t looking to have any of that. In fact, they were going to be…productive. Who has a productive vacation?!

In true me fashion I did manage some entertaining moments, entertaining in a face palm kind of way that is. See, I was painting part of my bedroom, living room, and kitchen, and I was working on all the walls at the same time, none of this work in the bedroom, get it finished, then move on to the next room. Why be organized like that? So every room in my apartment was in chaos. Furniture moved to the middle of rooms, things draped with tarps, my dry food packed up so I could move the pantry, you know the drill.

One of the days, fairly early on, I stopped for lunch and realized that I couldn’t access my food. The dry stuff I packed away was completely inaccessible, somewhere in the middle of the living room hidden by furniture. My fridge, well, I could get to it, but was only able to open it a little wider than a jar of mayo. So not super wide. I thought about ordering take-out but had also blocked my door, and wasn’t sure if I asked the delivery driver to hand the food to me through the window if they’d go for it. This meant I had to find something in the apartment I could reach, and eat without cooking. I had buns on the counter already and with a lot of stretching was able to reach the shredded cheese and the mayo, so my meal that day was mayo and cheese on a bun, with a mini can of Fanta and also a cup of tea.

On the plus side, I’d forgotten how much I like mayo and cheese on a bun, it is super simple but enjoyable. On the not quite a plus side, it was the only meal I was able to put together for days because it took that long to be able to move things so I could open the fridge door wider. Oh, another plus would be I lost weight during the 9 days, thanks to manual labour and limited access to food lol.

In the end, I’m not upset the walls got painted, or my furniture rearranged, or that I worked on the apartment. And because I wasn’t doing anything but working in the apartment on my vacation I extended the areas I was painting and did more than intended, making it look even better.

Am I still a little salty I didn’t get to do one hike or day trip? Well sure, I’m human after all. But I console myself with the reminder it rained all that week so I wouldn’t have wanted to hike in that weather anyways, and not doing a day trip out of town saved me money, and the place does look a lot nicer now.

I guess my lesson learned is that a productive vacation isn’t all bad, it is just different than what I am used to, and adjusting to something different than what I am used to is basically the theme of 2020. I got used to masks, and social distancing, and virtual concerts, so I guess it isn’t much of a stretch to get used to a different kind of vacation…right?

I thought I’d share some pictures to show the changes in paint colour. The first slide show is from my bedroom, the wall in there is a weird wood paneling that is a super smooth texture. Originally I was just doing the wood panel wall but extended it out to both sides of the little hall that leads in to my room and the closet area. The colour I chose was a grey-blue but it turned out more blue than I anticipated. I don’t hate it, and if you think I’m going through all the work to paint over it just to get a slightly different colour than you need to find a therapist to bring you back to reality my friend.

The next slideshow is the living room and kitchen. The wood paneling there was more textured, grainy, like actual wood and not a shiny panel. I only took a before picture of the living room but that wood wall went all along the living room wall, over the door frame, and extended down the kitchen wall. I picked a white with tinge of grey because no way would I be able to match perfectly the white in the rest of the space and I was well aware of my limits and that I wouldn’t be able to paint the entire living room and kitchen. So I wanted a neutral that was obviously intentionally a different white than the rest of the walls but not shockingly different. The darkness of the walls underneath the paint, plus the texture of them, gives the area a different look than I anticipated, but I’m liking it. I haven’t put any art up on the walls yet, I’m still sorting out what I want to put up, but I’ll get there eventually. In the kitchen I was originally stopping where that wall juts out but I ended up moving the shelf unit and painting all the way to the door.

I removed the bedroom door, I never closed it anyways, and that really opened up the space, now that I don’t have it blocking a chunk of the living room wall. I still have to pick covers for the light switches and plugs, the ones I took off were dark brown, so they matched to the wood, but I don’t want them against the paler colours, so I’m taking a look for which ones I want. Oh, and I need knobs for the closet doors, which fyi, I accidentally painted shut and had to fight to get them to open again…but that’s a story for another day lol.

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