May 10, 2011

Friend of Foe?

Filed under: Day-to-Day,Garden — Chantelle @ 10:11 pm

Welcome to the first edition of Friend or Foe, where you tell me… friend or foe??

This is the first year that I have ever been able to (sort of) say that I have my own garden. It still isn’t really what I’d call a garden… but it’s better than pots by far!

We moved into the house last August, and I prepped last fall by pulling up the grass where we couldn’t mow (resulting in a natural curvy shape), and planting some perennials. I didn’t know if any would survive the winter, but I thought it was worth a shot anyhow!

Now the spring has come, and I’m starting to see some of these perennials, among other things, come up from the undergrowth… when I look closely.

This is what my garden looked like when I started digging and pulling a few days ago…

Lovely, no?

In one section of the garden there were many plants that look like the picture below. This is the first plant I need your help with. It is obvious that it is an invasive plant, as it is taking up much of the garden  but I have no idea what it is. Any ideas?

Click on pictures to make them larger.

Here is a close-up. Note the tiny ball-seed things?

In other news, I do have six bunches of irises that I planted in the fall coming up.

See? See?

I also planted two bushes today – a bleeding hearts bush, and a potentilla bush.

This is the potentilla bush. Right now it is about t6″ wide and 8″ tall, but will eventually grow to be about 2′ each way. It gets covered in small yellow flowers in the summer.

While this bush is pretty sad looking right now, I’m hoping a little TLC will perk it up.

I love the way bleeding heart flowers look.

I also have this plant growing. I am pretty sure it is something that I planted in the fall. My best bet is that my marigolds actually went to seed and that this is the result, but I am far from sure. What are your thoughts?

All in all, I had a pile about 3′ wide and 2′ high of deadgrowth and pulled grass by the time I was done. This completes the first phase, and hopefully by this weekend I will be able to plant some seeds in there!


April 29, 2011

It’s my birthday, I can cry if I want to…

Filed under: Day-to-Day — Chantelle @ 3:11 pm

Today has been such a weird day.

I slept in. I had a hard time getting dressed because Guen was incessently attacking my feet. The city decided to be idiots and put a bus stop right in the middle of the Clarence/College traffic clog. I got stuck behind a street sweeper. I got stuck behind a beginner semi driver. I cried when I saw Liberal supporters touting their signs…

Wait. What?

I have two stress signs. 1) I start crying at absolutely nothing. 2) I get really sick.

While I am coughing a bit, I am not very sick so I am considering myself to be within the first stress sign. And why shouldn’t I be? I have been insanely busy at work and at home.

But yesterday was good. While the workday was nuts, Darla gave me a Timmy’s gift card as a thank-you gift, and Gilles and I had our first dance class. And this morning wasn’t that bad – I got to work only a couple minutes late, I got to wear jeans to work today… and the day got better from there – Darla got me a picture frame (and a funny card) for my birthday, and I won the VIP Parking spot for the month of May.

Tonight my mom and sister are getting up to the city, and joining Gilles and I as well as thirteen other friends at Tusq tonight! I have a groupon where I paid $30 for $60 of food and drinks that I will use, and plan to have a grand old time of it! Then tomorrow I am shopping with Mom and Kelsey – I am hoping to go to the non-mall stores. Mark’s Work Wearhouse, Reitmans, Walmart, Giant Tiger, and Zellers specifically. The more I can stretch the money I get the better!

This is Tusq, the restaurant/bar we are going to tonight. It’s classy for a change! (Not that Tusq isn’t always classy… the places we go just usually aren’t).

April 5, 2011

For the love of blog!

Filed under: Cartoon,Day-to-Day — Chantelle @ 4:36 pm

I love blogs.

While I may not have been blogging long, (I am approaching my one-year anniversary though – wow!) I have definitely been reading blogs for a long time. This has made me somewhat of a subjective blog reader. Unfortunately, I don’t pass many of my blog reading habits on to improve my own blog. For instance – If the blog post contains no pictures and lots of words, I will read roughly the first third in depth and skim through the rest. (With exception to a few blogs, or exceptionally interesting posts). I blame this habit on university, and getting a thousand emails a day at work.

I have a few blogs that I read religiously. The moment I see a new entry fall into my blog reader, I am opening it up to see what the writer has to say. Some of these blogs are great to read, some are embarrassing to admit that I read. My ‘must-read-now’ list includes:

Crow Seer’s Blog – This is the blog of a good friend of mine. She is just getting into the blogging world and doesn’t post very often, but when she does, she takes time to think about what she needs to get out into the universe.

The Splines – This is one of those ones that you hate to admit to loving reading. But, it is like reading a fiction novel – it isn’t real peoples’ lives, and it is a story all the same… and I love me some Sims.

Advertising/Design Goodness – This one shows the industry that I work in. This blog is always full of great ads, perfect for getting the creative juices flowing.

HELLOmynameisHeather – While not frequently posted in, and related to an actual company, this blog frequently has things that inspire me creatively for my arts and crafts.

Lucy Knisley – A comic artist whose posts are (almost) always roll off your chair funny, and inspiring. Her latest comic encompasses the entire first four books of the Harry Potter series.

Live out Loud – Once upon a time I went to see a play called The Full Monty. I was very impressed by the lead actor’s performance, and subsequently ‘googled’ his name to see what other plays he was in. I was disappointed not to find anything at the time, but did find this blog, belonging to his wife, also an actress. (Wow, that’s a lot of commas). Subsequent commenting on each others’ posts has now blossomed into a friendship, for which I am grateful.

PostSecret – While its growth from a niche website to a large company that publishes books and has tours has somewhat devalued postsecret for me, I still enjoy looking at the post cards that are sent in.

In addition to my ‘must reads’, I also have many other blogs that I follow. I read them daily, all of them good. As soon as I get tired of a blog, or find that I like it but it posts so much that I feel unundated, I simply ‘unfollow’ it. I am not going to read a blog that I feel is too imposing upon me. Basically, if a blog posts more than once a day, I will not read it – with a couple exceptions. I have to really love the blog to read that much. But this is for good reason – according to my reader, I am currently I am following 147 blogs! I’m not doing so bad if I say so myself… my ‘must-reads’ are all read, and I only have 795 posts currently unread in my reader (The oldest dating March 24, 2011). I try to get it down to 500 by the end of each day, but that won’t be happening today as it accumulated more than usual over the weekend.

How many blogs do you read? Do you use a reader to keep track of them?

March 25, 2011


Filed under: Day-to-Day,Learning — Chantelle @ 2:32 pm

Maybe it’s because I’m living in the city now. Maybe it’s because my friends see that I’m not in university anymore and go ‘Oh, she has extra time and money now.’ Maybe it’s because of my age, or maybe it’s because I am a woman. I don’t know. What I do know is that I have been invited to a lot of parties lately. Six this week, in fact. Arbonne, Mary Kay, PartyLite, Lia Sophia, Mom’s Pantry, Stella Ertois.

Now, being a commerce student, and a marketing major especially, my immediate thought as soon as I am invited to yet another party, is pyramid scheme!! Run away! (Okay. Maybe my reaction isn’t quite that extreme, but I do feel sorry for the people who get sucked into thinking that they are actually getting what they are putting in).

I am not going to go into details of why pyramid schemes are evil, or how unless ‘consultants’ are willing to make it their full-time job, they will spend around half the money they make on upkeep (after all, you need to buy the new magazines, the new product to show, and there is a monthly fee if you want a website). You can read about most of that in the link I provided.

What I am trying to get at is that many of my friends are not only agreeing to host parties, a few of them have become consultants. And being the person I am, I then feel obligated to attend their parties to help them raise money, buy product, and go to any conventions I am invited to. (After all, if I don’t who will right?) This was okay when there was just one here or there, but like I said, I have been invited to six parties this week. I don’t have that kind of money.

So, after all this gracious help and money spending, I finally started to say no. And out of all the parties this week, I only went to one.

I have to admit, it felt good. The first parties I veto’d were those of my co-workers. I don’t normally spend time with them outside of work, so I felt less of an obligation to attend their parties. (It also helped that they were hosts and not consultants.) That eliminated the Arbonne, the Stella Ertois, Lia Sophia and the Mom’s Pantry. Okay, two left. Which of these two are hosting and which are consultants? Both are consultants. Crap. Which is a closer friend? They are both close friends. Which night do I have less going on? PartyLite. Done. Sorry, Mary Kay.

I will continue to attend parties and support my friends when I can, but I will not break the bank doing it, and I will not attend more parties than I have time for.


What I’ve Learned Today: March 24th, 2011:

It doesn’t hurt to stick your neck out there. Most people aren’t willing to take a bite at it.

March 21, 2011

What I’ve Learned Today – March 21, 2011

Filed under: Cartoon,Day-to-Day,Learning — Chantelle @ 1:31 pm

Elsie mentioned something on Saturday that got me thinking. She said ‘You are supposed to learn one new thing every week.’ (Or something to that effect).

Of course, me being my hyper-exaggerated self, transferred that into – “You need to learn one new thing a day.”

To which I thought, What a great blog idea!

I won’t promise that I will make it on here every day. But I will try.

In addition to my usual postings, I will now feature a ‘What I learned today’ section.

So, what did I learn today?

I learned about a great website called

The lowest unique ‘bidder’ wins a gift certificate. It is great advertising, and a lot of fun.

March 18, 2011

New feature

Filed under: Change,Day-to-Day — Chantelle @ 1:19 pm

I have been trying out twitter lately, and I must say it is a bit of a rush when someone thinks you are important enough to subscribe to.

My twitter account has actually been active for… oh, probably a couple of years by now but I’ve never really taken interest in it until now.

If you read my blog in its actual page (rather than in a viewer), you may have noticed that I added a twitter feed into the sidebar. I am not sure if this is where it is going to stay, or even if it is going to stay at all. This is a trial run.

What are your thoughts on twitter (and/or twitter running in conjunction with a blog?)

March 16, 2011

Adorable, with a capital ‘A’

Filed under: Change,Day-to-Day,My cat — Chantelle @ 8:39 am

We found our kitten.

Actually, we found four. We can only take one of them though. 🙂

I posted an ad on kijiji, stating that we are looking for a kitten to become an indoor cat, stipulating that it must be shorthair and born in February or March. (I’m not picky at all, am I?)

A girl from Radisson, SK answered the ad, saying that her cat Mitzey had four kittens over the February break. Of course I jumped on the opportunity. The poster goes to school in the city, and her mom works in the city every day. They will drop the kitten off at my house. It will be interesting to see how scheduling that will work.

Of course, as I said the litter is of four kittens. I only get one.

I asked her to choose it for me.

Okay, now the part of the post that you have been waiting for… the kittens.

March 15, 2011


Filed under: Change,Day-to-Day,Life's Like That — Chantelle @ 9:03 am

It’s melting! It’s melting! Hurrah!

… Logically I shouldn’t be as happy about this as I am. After all, my allergies are going to go haywire (pardon the pun) any moment now, I won’t be able to access my driveway again because the driveway will be gunk, my car is being assaulted with both salt being splashed at it and water getting into all of its insides, I won’t have clean pants for weeks, Gilles will be tracking in mountains of mud from his job sites, it will freeze overnight turning my car into a popsicle daily (re: nightly), people will get spring fever and forget how to drive on ice, I will have to arrange to get my winter tires off, and I will have to finally fix that hole in my bumper… But holy jemima I’m happy, because it’s spring baby!

(Granted, the forecast doesn’t quite agree with me yet… this week’s forecast was updated today to include snow flurries all week. But, they still say that the lowest high this week will be -4, and that the rest of the week we will get up to 0….) I’ll take it!

This means that soon I can go walking and biking, and that I can start my plants now, and I can go outside without a jacket soon, and soon I will be able to feel the hot sun beating down on my face… glorious.

And I have an overwhelming urge to clean.

Can somebody say spring fever??

March 14, 2011

Bad Blogger

Filed under: Day-to-Day,The Wedding Files,Weight loss — Chantelle @ 11:26 am

I still haven’t remembered to put up the craft pictures. Bad blogger!

But, I do have some other things to talk to you about.

First of all, and foremost in my mind at the moment, look at this!

Crikey batman, I think the sun may have finally stopped being quite so shy of us. Could that actually be… melting temperatures? Catch me now.

Okay, but seriously. I wanna garden. 🙂

In other news, I am a huge success and an utter failure so far. Ain’t it dandy?

We’ll start with the depressing failure news.

I like food.

(I bet you thought it would be something a little less obvious, right?)

The problem is, I like food way too much. So much so that not only have I not lost any weight since my last update here, but I’m back up to 186 lbs.

Heavens to Betsy.


I’m not giving up yet. Gilles and I are getting a Saskatoon Leisure Pass after work today, and we are exercising. Like for real, not just a palsy walk. We are going to gym it. And I am going to stop carb-loading. That is my biggest problem – I love me some pasta. And I don’t know when to stop. Tummy hurts? Shift your weight so you can fit more lady, cuz that’s some good food right there!

I am back on the mostly veggies and only allowing myself healthy meats when I eat meat at all diet. I will still make Gilles seperate food, because he gets really mad when I starve him. (He does work a much more physical job than my computer typing after all). But there is a lot of broccoli and fish in my future.

I am finally giving myself the right tools to do it though. Gym? Check. Vegetables that don’t break the bank? Check. (We bought a Costco membership Sunday). Healthy cooking options? Check. (Dad gave us their old bbq Saturday, and I do own a steamer.)

I don’t wanna be a fat bride.

So what is the good news you say?

Well, I am now employed full-time, permanent.

Thank-you West Wind Aviation!

I am now officially a gradumicated working woman. Hurrah!

(Oh, and more news on the kitten sitch coming soon!)

March 7, 2011

Winter Daldrums

Filed under: Change,Day-to-Day — Chantelle @ 10:00 am

Wow. 6 posts in February and my first in March on the 7th. Pretty pathetic.

I have lots to talk about, but my pictures are all at home, where I never have time to blog. And I forget to bring them to work to use during my break. It’s a vicious cycle, which I hope to break soon. In the meantime, I have far from forgotten about my blog and wanted to say just that.

Foremost on my mind?

(image credit: Shanna Murray via Design Crush)

I am so over winter. Seriously? I think I would thrive in L.A. if it weren’t for the fact that everyone I love is up here.

Aside from the upcoming weekend, the longterm forecast brings hope though.

I am beyond anxious to see all this snow melt away. I planted a bunch of perennials and bulbs last fall, and am ready to see if they survived the four foot burial by snow.

Sorry Frosty, it’s time for you to go away.

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