Thursday, December 31, 2009

Here comes 20zen!

Well, 2009 is just about over. Bring on 2010! I'm ready. As a whole, 2009 was good. My sister got married and she and her husband bought a house. My twin found his groove. (He met a new girlfriend, bought a new truck, went on a trip and adapted a new healthy, lifestyle). The best part is that he gained a lot of confidence. Thumps up for him. My older brother moved into a new house and he and his wife are now expecting a baby. Mom has been maintaining her exercise routine and healthy eating. She looks great. I'm so proud of Mom. Every day I thank a higher power that she is here. Dad is his usual, sweet funny self. He still enjoys his work, which I count as a huge blessing. We learned how to go home on the subway together. Riley has calmed down from her crazy puppy stage, but she's still as cute as the day she arrived. Jack is still his quiet, reserved, feline self. He puts Riley in her place more. I guess even cats have limits.

As for me, my health has become a major focus. I'm feeling better. Since ending my relationship with the Observer, I know rough patches are ahead. I pray for acceptance, strength, and peace.

On that note, Happy 20zen!


- OCG

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Another day...


Remember how I couldn't stop eating on Monday? I have to admit that my binge didn't stop until later that night. I went to Starbucks and ate two huge oatmeal raisin cookies, followed by a cinnamon dolce latte. You'd think I would have been full, but sadly this wasn't so. I finished the night with half a piece of raspberry cheesecake and then a slice of blueberry cheesecake. I should have felt sick, but I only felt full and guilty. It was windy and snowy as I wheeled home. I stopped at Shoppers Drug Mart and a sweet teenager helped me put my mittens on.

Forgiving myself for Monday's feast is hard. All I can do is let it go. I'm surviving. I'm fatter, but I'm doing the best I can. I couldn't think clearly enough to put my feelings into words yesterday. My head, brain, and heart didn't feel right. I went to the dollar store and bought gum. Within an hour, I had chewed the whole pack. Isn't that odd? I think so, but I still do it. Gum chewing is my addiction. These days I am trying to control it, but I'm not always successful. After realizing I wasn't in the writing mood, I went to the grocery store. A young sweet guy helped me find splenda and Almond Breeze. His kindness made my day better. Almond breeze is almond milk. I have wanted to try it for a while. It has a nutty flavour. Almond Breeze isn't bad, but I think I prefer soy milk. The flavour is a bit stronger. I went to Timothy's last. The coffee server knows me now. She knows that I am always looking for the flavours they offer. Yesterday's was Irish cream. The coffee was yummy.

When I got home, a kind attendant helped me with personal care. The usual Tuesday full time attendant is on holidays. I'm happy about that. She's a miserable person, but this staff is sweet. I found a coffee gift card in my purse that I didn't even realize my parents gave me for Christmas. My Mom and Dad rock. I wore some fluffy blue socks and new pajamas too. I have the same kind of fluffy pink socks and they are my favourite. Mom buys me the most awesome socks.

I sat in my couch chair before bed and watched Corner Gas and My Name is Earl. Both shows are silly but fulfilled my need for mindless entertainment. My cough kicked in as soon as I called the Observer. We still talk every night. I call him. Maybe I'm not being fair. We're both trying to survive. It's more painful for the Observer. We both have amazing families. We'll be alright. Hopefully the Observer has warm socks too.

- OCG

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Happy...

someone once told me that you have to choose what you win or lose
you can't have everything
don't you take chances
you might feel the pain
don't you love in vain cause love wont set you free
could stand by the side and watch this life pass me by
so unhappy but safe as could be

CHORUS so what if it hurts me
so what if i break down
so what if this world just throws me off the edge
my feet run out of ground
I gotta find my place
wanna hear my sound
I dont care about other pain in front of me cause
I'm just tryna be happy,
yea just wanna be happy,
yea holding on tightly
just cant let it go
just tryna play my roll slowly disappear,
ooohwell all these tears

they feel like they re the same
just different faces,
different names get me outta here
well i can stand by the side and watch this life pass me
bypass me by

CHORUS so what if it hurts me
so what if i break down
so what if this world just throws me off the edge
my feet run out of ground
I gotta find my place
wanna hear my sound
don't care about other pain in front of me
cause I'm just tryna be happy
just wanna be happy
oooh
so any turns that i cant see i'll count a stranger on this road

but don’t say victim
don't say anything

CHORUS so what if it hurts me
so what if i break down
so what if this world just throws me off the edge
my feet run out of ground
i gotta find my place
wanna hear my sound
don't care about all the pain in front of me
cause I'm just tryna be happy
just wanna be happy

Leona Lewis (Happy)

Monday, December 28, 2009

Waves...


Christmas was as good as Christmas always is. There was family, laughter, food, love, tears, gifts, unwrapping, and memories. I enjoyed the day. What's not to love about Christmas? I've spent the last two days lying low. My voice has been dodgy. My attendants and people around me have to strain to hear me. I went to HMV on Boxing Day. It was crowded. Big surprise, huh? When I asked for the album I wanted, I had to repeat myself. It must have sounded like a whisper.

Mom and Dad came to see me later that night. I was sitting in my couch chair watching Last Holiday. Everyone went to my sister's house, but I wasn't up to it. Mom and Dad dropped off laundry and put me to bed. I think they came mainly to check on me.

Yesterday I watched Christmas Carol in black and white and parts of The Sound Of Music. The night was long and lonely. Today has been hard. I'm sad. I've been stuffing down my feelings with food. Today, I had toast, quiche, four granola bars, chicken and then a grilled cheese sandwich with a waffle for dessert. That's gluttony if I ever heard it. Pain comes in nauseating waves. I hear the Observer's laugh. I see places we used to go and I hurt.

We have been talking every day. Though comforting, I find it hard. He's as sweet as he always is. I feel like saying, "How can you be so sweet to me when I broke your heart?" Then again, I don't think the Observer knows how to be anything but sweet....Eating like a horse doesn't change anything - except maybe my pant size.

- OCG

Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Christmas!

Last night I went to visit my family at my sister and brother-in-law's house. Luckily, I was able to get a ride at the last minute. I surprised my family, which was fun. Arriving late, I showed up with a coffee in hand and hopefully a big smile. Only my sister knew I was coming. Candles lit the house beautifully. My twin came and it was great to catch up. He's amazing.....My brother-in-law's mother also joined the dinner. I don't often see her. She's a bit socially awkward. As soon as I saw her, I complimented her on her hair. I think it made her a bit edgy. At the end of the night, my brother in law played the piano. He's quite good. I kept requesting all the long difficult carols. It was funny. Being that my brother-in-law's mother is a librarian, I tried to talk to her about books. My sister had made yummy appetizers. I ate about a pound of prosciutto wrapped in figs. We had a yummy chicken dinner with sticky toffee pudding for dessert. Mom also made cookies with cranberries and nuts. I ate three. My pants are tight. Why am I not surprised? I have a bit of a cough. Fortunally, it hasn't damped my festive spirit. Talking about my cough, I asked my Mom if coughs mostly come out at night. When she noodd, I said, "Kind of like misquitoes?" My sister laughed. Logic can be funny.

Part of me really wanted to go to church alone last night. I wanted to say a prayer. A difficult time is ahead and I am going to need strength. I am worried about the Observer. Loneliness sucks. How can one lose a best friend and NOT be lonely? There will be tears and long, solo days. There will be times when memories are painful. Love is beautiful, but for every one of life's joys, there is polar heartache. Reality hasn't sunk in. Once Christmas is over, life will change. The right decision often breaks our hearts - just as much as the wrong one does. Christmas Eve is once a year. I will have lots of opportunities to pray in church. I binged on food last night. I regret eating so much. Maybe it was habit. Maybe it was stress. Whatever the reason, today's Christmas. My prayer for the future is to have just enough - enough love, friendship, forgiveness, challenge, family, happiness and time. I wish this for you too.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

- OCG


Thursday, December 24, 2009

stuff...

There is a famous Beatles song with lyrics that say I'm So Tired. I haven't slept a wink. Today these words describe exactly how I feel. I know I'm not the only one. Last night I told the Observer that I am no longer in love with him. Ouch. How we got here, I'm not sure. All I know is that things have changed since that painful talk. The truth can be heartbreaking. It hurts to hear, to understand and most of all, to accept. The Observer hurts differently than me. He must accept the choice I initiated, even though his own would have been very different. I know he loves me. I have never doubted his devotion, affection and loyalty towards me during the five years we've been together. He's a guy who loves with his whole heart. To be loved by the Observer is to gently hold his heart in your hands. Last night I squashed it. I am so sorry...........



The reality that I am losing my boyfriend of five years hasn't sunk in. How can it in less than twelve hours? It's going to take a while. The longer we love someone, the harder it is to accept change. I know I dated the greatest guy around. They don't come any better. He is so easy to love. On some level, I realized I couldn't be a wife. Marriage has always been very important to the Observer. It's a rite of passage. With all the inner demons I have been dealing with lately, I have been snappy and rude towards the Observer. When I get too comfortable and start unloading on the people I love, it's not right. When I heard my miserable, snappy tone, I knew something had to change. He deserves to be treated with respect.


- OCG

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Home....as always....


Tomorrow is Christmas Eve. Like most people, I can't believe the holidays are upon us. They come so quickly every year. I feel a bustle in the air......people are busy getting ready. Dad called to see if I wanted to take the G0 Train home with him. I declined, but now I'm wishing I said yes. There's not much going on for me tonight. I'm probably going to watch TV.....not too exciting, is it?

Last night I had horrible gas. I couldn't stop laughing when my attendant was putting me to bed. My laugh was a nervous chuckle. This is my reaction when I'm uncomfortable. It's weird and must be very annoying to people around me...It's hard to control and explain. The Observer had a bad morning with his attendants. Poor guy.... My morning wasn't too bad, but my attendants were chatty. I didn't feel like talking and wanted to say, "Please be quiet". I held my tongue. A comment like that would be rude...

I decided to go home to my parents after visiting the Observer's family tomorrow night. I can't think of being anywhere but home on Christmas morning. This choice took me a bit to make, but I think it's the right one....In hindsight, I always knew what the right choice was, I just needed time to think.

- OCG

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A hankering for home...

It's cold out today................I'm not complaining too much though. Christmas is three sleeps away. I ate too much AGAIN last night. I'm in an eating slump. Argh! Why can't food just be food? Why do I think and worry about it so much?

My friend came by to pick up her boyfriend's Christmas last night. Coming from work, she looked polished. People like her can look polished without even trying. I was wearing my pajama bottoms and felt a little frumpy but I think she understood. My bowels were not my friend yesterday. Today has been better. I feel like visiting home. Dad called to see if I wanted to take the Go Train home. Tomorrow might be a good day for home.......I am lucky I can go home.

- OCG

Monday, December 21, 2009

Don't pee on the floor...




Yesterday I met the Observer near his parents' house. My parents met me halfway at Sherway. Being so close to Christmas, the mall was packed. I didn't realize that I turned my phone off until they had been searching for me in the mall for a while. I stopped to get Mom a pink Gerber daisy. I was suffering with bad stomach cramps and knew I had a grumpy scowl on my face. Mom and Dad knew I wasn't well. They can always tell right away. Being miserable when I only saw them for such a short time made me sad. They understand that it's not them, but still. The people I love deserve the best of me. While waiting at the mall, I ran into my estranged aunt and uncle. We chatted for a bit. I don't see them often. There is old family strive. Our talk was pleasant and they helped me get oatmeal cookies from my bag.

Once at the movies, the plan was to see Old Dogs, but I was very hungry. We went to Casey's where I ate like a horse. I told the Observer that I'm not very happy and maybe we need a break. Understandably, he got very upset and left the restaurant. Thankfully, the Observer returned. We talked and I got some feelings out.....I love the Observer. He's the best boyfriend I could ever want.......but........I feel like we're more friends than lovers. Is this fair to either of us? Maybe that's my fault, but it's how I see us right now. I know the Observer wants to get married for certain. I'm on the fence when it comes marriage. I don't want to string the Observer along or waste his time. The truth is hurtful. I'm trying to figure things out. The Observer shows his pain by getting angry. Most men do. I hate to make him angry, but isn't it important to be honest? I haven't been looking after myself. Last night I ate cake and nine cookies. I think stress from our talk made me eat. Our night ended OK, but I still feel like there are things I need to face. The Observer is my best fried. I can't imagine life without him, but I want him to live his dream of becoming a husband. Maybe that dream involves me. If not, at least the Observer will be happy. I love him and his happiness matter as much as my own.

Today hasn't been great. I've consumed about four pounds of grapes due to waking up feeling guilty after I ate too much last night. My stomach was giving me troubles and I was miserable. I had a big yucky accident, but my attendants did a stellar job of cleaning me up. I am so thankful they were so understanding. At least there was some good in a dirty time. I took Klean Prep and it worked in a big way. The superindent had the floors cleaned. He joked with people not to "pee on the floor." I almost said, "I didn't pee. I pooped," but that would have been too much information....

- OCG

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Everybody's Fine...


Yesterday the Observer and I went to the city's newest movie theater to see Every body's Fine starring Robert Deniro. We were in the elevator with a handful of friendly people, including a local newscaster. I couldn't resist wishing everyone a Merry Christmas. We were treated like gold by customer service who helped us get to our seats and buy popcorn. The film focuses on an aging, recently widowed father of four. Advised to take it easy by his doctor, Deniro is determined to visit each of his children to catch up. His mission is to arrange for each of his kids to share a meal all seated together at the table.Lonely and in ill health, Deniro is searching for family connection. He finds each of his children happy but struggling with life's common challenges. Deniro asks each of his children if they are happy. All of their yeses seem to satisfy him. Deep down however, Deniro senses trouble when he is unable to see his most troubled son and finds his other children hiding the truth. Struck by a health scare while travelling, flashbacks reveal each of the character's demons. Deniro learns his mysteriously absent son died due to a tragic overdose.



Every body's Fine is a realistic portrayal of real families with dysfunction, love and a need to protect each other. My heart broke for Deniro, especially as his health deteriorated. The film made me cry when it was learned that Deniro's son commented suicide. The message was that the truth can be hard to hear. We sugarcoat reality because it's easier to handle. In the end, if families are all somehow able to come together, a father can safely say, "Every body's fine." We cannot change people or their problems. All we can do is love each other. Focusing on good keeps us sane, even if good is only part of the truth.



After the movie, we went to Starbucks. The server who helped us was amazing. To make up for the Observer having to wait for his drink, she gave him a coupon for a free beverage. Now that's service.



- OCG

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Warmness of spirits...

I love where I live. I love the area, the building and most of the care could be called top notch. Of course I have issues now and then, but that's how life is, right? Yesterday was the Christmas Party for staff and clients of Tobias House, my attendant care organization. The party room in my building was set up to look festive and welcoming. Mingling with staff was fun. I sat with my favourite attendant and a very spunky fifty-year-old lady who makes me laugh. She really wanted Kaluha in her coffee. One of my favourite attendants made delicious strawberry cheesecake. I dropped my last hunk. My other favourite attendant spilt her slice with me. Tobias House gave gave out scarfs and hand sanitizer as a holiday gifts. Their gift selection impresses me every Christmas. One year, we got fleece blankets, the next picture frames, and last year it was an LED night light. I love that they treat their consumers with such respect. I love that the organization values independence and freedom of choice. I love that they celebrate holidays, not only with gifts, but by coming together. I love my home and can't imagine leaving.

mom cried when i said i needed space. i felt awful. we talked and are on a similar page. we love each other - sometimes too much.



I tried to watch Polar Express yesterday. I had stomach issues and was feeling yucky. I couldn't focus on the move. It did look good. I'll try watching it again before Christmas. Last night was bad timing. I opted out of a Christmas party with the Observer. Given my tummy troubles, it turned out to be a wise choice. A higher power must have been watching over me. As much as I missed the fun, tummy troubles ruin all parties - no matter how fun. My attendant was super sweet and did a stellar job cleaning me up. In the Dollar store line-up today, a sweet woman bought my gum. Life is good. it's cold outside, but there are many warm hearted people, which makes any winter more tolerable.

- OCG

Friday, December 18, 2009

Warming and waxing up...


Do you ever get chilled to the bone? If you're human, of course you do. I'm not sure why I'm so chilly this morning. After showering, my shirt got wet, so maybe that's why. Last night wasn't a good sleep for me. I watched Dr. Oz on the Star channel. Daytime shows are repeated. It's handy if I miss the show's original time. I got help wrapping my friend's Christmas gift. Getting one wrapped and ready felt satisfying. I have one or two gifts left to pick up, but I'm not too worried.

My sister sent her wedding pictures. There are over five hundred. I looked at some, but five hundred is a lot, even if I consider my sister's wedding one of the best days of my life. I'll work my way through them slowly. Speaking of working up for things, I have been wanting to get my eyebrows plucked for ages. Today I think I'm finally going to do it. I'm nervous. I KNOW I will jump out of my skin. I jump when the phone rings on any day. Having a strip of hot wax pulled off my hairy eye region is bound to startle me. I will warn the eye waxer. Hopefully, he or she is a calm person. Waxing hurts, but I'll feel better afterwards. I always say, "Beauty knoweth no pain." In my case, beauty knows how to make me jump, but most things in life do.

- OCG

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Gummed out...


I had a sweet evening with the Observer last night. We met at Sherway. He had some quick shopping to do and I wanted to look around. We met up at around 7:30. By then we were both starving, so we grabbed a quick bite at the food court. I had a salad with grilled chicken and he had Chinese food. The food court was busy. The people at Cultures where I bought my salad from were swamped. Two sweet ladies helped me get my utensils. I perused the music store. There are a bunch of Christmas specials that are tempting to purchase, but once Christmas is over, they will lose their appeal. I'm practicing self restraint and purchasing practicality.......




Dad keeps calling me. Since our talk where I said that I wasn't happy, I think he feels the need to check up on me. I am feeling smothered. I want to say, "Leave me alone please..........I love you, but I'll love you more if you give me room to breath...."I have a hunch that Dad is having alcohol troubles. When I go home, sometimes there are empty bottles suspiciously stashed in my cupboard. Mom doesn't drink, so couldn't it only be Dad? Alcoholism runs in his family. Ironically, last Friday, he told me a story about how he drove to the liquor one day at noon. My older sister and brother were small and sitting in the back seat of his car. He'd already had a few beers by then, so he was driving buzzed. Catching sight of himself in the rear view mirror, Dad made the wise decision to turn the car around. Given the empty bottles I have seen recently, I can't help but be suspicious. Could Dad have been trying to tell me that he is struggling with demons of his own? Maybe I am being too emotional and analytical, but he's my Dad. How can I not worry? On a similar level, I'm his daughter, so I suppose it's hard for him not to worry about me too. Having parents who love and care about me is a blessing. I still need to breath.



Speaking of addictions, I went through a whole package of spearmint gum yesterday. Isn't that crazy? I didn't buy anymore today. I've bought coffee every day too. Timothy's is the greatest coffee ever. Passing by a store today, I HAD to get myself a coffee. I old the lady who works there that they make the greatest coffee. She smiled and said, "That's always nice to hear."

We all have vices. It's a matter of enjoying them in moderation.

- OCG

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

what's your purpose?


I'm cold........Winter is here today. This morning I had big plans to go shopping, but spent the morning on the toilet reading. Oddly, I enjoyed the quiet time. One could say it was productive, but not in the way I originally intended. My stomach is happier, so that's good. I read a health book by Dr. Joey Shullman. I didn't learn anything new, but it was still relaxing.



The phone woke me at eight thirty this morning. It was my oldest brother. Being so early, I thought something was wrong. Isn't it a bit sad that my first assumptions are so negative? My brother was calling to say he was in the area and to ask if he could stop by. Thankfully, nothing was wrong. Unfortunately, timing didn't work out. I went to Timothy's for coffee. My machine is blinking, so I could have missed my brother's call. I haven't had time to check my messages. I was the only female in Timothy's. The shop was full of pairs of men. I didn't mind....it's where I live and I love it.



Last night I went to Starbucks. I was treated like a five star coffee drinker. They remembered that I needed a straw. At home, Kleen Prep kicked in (again). The first attendant was accommodating, but I can't say so for the second. Oh well, I avoided a disaster. I watched White Christmas for a second time and chewed gum. I think the message of White Christmas is that we all have a purpose. Maybe my purpose yesterday was keeping my attendants busy helping me in the washroom.



- OCG

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Rough one..


My stomach is REALLY hurting me right now.........ahh. I HAVEN'T HAD THESE CRAMPS IN SO LONG. I forgot how awful they feel........ouch. I'm tired and suddenly sucked of energy. I had the same feeling yesterday. Weird...

Last night I watched White Christmas. I enjoyed it. My eye is swollen today. Gee, I sound rough. Tomorrow is halfway here. I feel like a coffee, but it's 5:30 now and I don't want to be awake all night. Decisions....decisions! If that's the toughest one I make today, I really can't complain, can I??



- OCG

Monday, December 14, 2009

Talkless...


Yesterday I chatted with Dad. He reassured me that the Observer would be alright. Somehow, I get the feeling that Dad has had his share of hang-overs. Thankfully, the Observer felt better by late afternoon. He still sounded a bit rough, but we had a helpful heart-to-heart. My guy is the best listener I know.

I bought myself yummy vegan pizza and ate it in a funky underground mall. A cute guy helped me take it out of my backpack. We chatted a bit. He was sweet. Later, I had coffee with my friend who hosted the party. We had a good chat. She's alright.

Today I'm drowsy because I took my Kleen Prep. Yuck! On the upside, it worked. I'm very tired and don't feel like talking to anyone. Maybe a higher power is telling me that I talked enough yesterday.

- OCG

Dear Ian.....

Today is your twenty-seventh birthday. I hope you're enjoying yourself. I think of you every time I see Jim Scott on the bus. You remember him from hockey, right? Jim works at Wall-Mart and still plays hockey. He says your family is doing well. Your Dad is on the Board Of Directors for the league. I wonder how your sisters are doing. Vicki must be a veternarian by now and Christine is probably doing something sports related. Mostly though, I wonder how your Mom is doing. I loved her and always will. We shared a deep love for you. You are such a Mommy's Boy, but I respected that. As a dady's girl, how can I bash you? Your Mom kept your heart soft and your Dad kept your ways reserved.

The last year has been good. The U.S. president is black. I think you'd respect him. Nothing is new with me, except that I have high cholesterol. hopefully I'll be here for a while. If not, I take comfort in the thought that you'll be around to meet me at the gates of heaven. Life is sweet. I wish you were here.

Happy Birthday Ian.

Stay peaceful.

- OCG

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Poor Observer....


There was a party with drinking last night. The Observer got sick. Poor guy. He had vodka and rum and coke. Mixing drinks in this way isn't easy on the stomach. The Observer kept apologizing and saying he hoped he didn't embarrass me. I wasn't embarrassed. I didn't know what to do. I called him when I got home and he was still throwing up. I've seen the Observer handle a lot of alcohol without getting sick, so it must have been the mix. I should have known to say "enough." The Observer went home to his parents. They will look after him, but I know his Mom will be mad. To my knowledge, the Observer has never been hung over before. There's a first for everything. I haven't heard from him today. I hope the Observer is holding up OK.

On the upside, my friend's boyfriend was sweet and helped the Observer get cleaned up. I think my friend should marry her boyfriend. He's a good soul. Seeing friends was fun. My friend made chicken satay, Asian salad and pasta. I ate more than anyone at the party. When others drink, I eat. The pita chips and hummus were a hit. My friend gave me a set of miniature cocktails. I think I'll give them away as a Christmas gift to a friend. I don't think the Observer would want them today.

- OCG

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Pursuit of Happiness...


I always enjoy seeing Mom and Dad. They are my favourite people in the universe. Mom brought me a pretty, pink peseta. It makes my apartment look festive and adds a feminine touch. Sometimes I think I need to get more in touch with my feminine side. While Mom cleaned, Dad and I went to a nearby underground shopping center for coffee. In the mood for fancy, flavoured coffee with soy milk, I suggested that we go to Timothy's. In my opinion, Timothy's has the best flavoured coffee. I enjoy the sugar bush maple brew best. They weren't brewing any yesterday, so I settled on toasted coconut. I drank it in two seconds flat. Minutes later, I got myself a second coffee and a morning glory muffin for Dad. I can't ever remember buying two consecutive coffees. I was one coffee craving girl. The second coffee was gone in a flash too. I think I am coffee dependent. Actually, I KNOW I am...



Mom was pretty well done cleaning and decorating by the time we got home. My fiber optic tree makes my apartment look very Christmas-like. There is also a ceramic tree in my bedroom. The tree has got to be over twenty years old. The lights are old pieces from a vintage children's game called Lite Brite. Mom was going to throw the tree out, but I spoke up. I don't know why I love that tree so much. I suppose it reminds me of my childhood and home. Both give me the warm fuzzes. Mom didn't through anything out (other than an ancient container of Metamucil that I didn't get too torn up over). I suggested we sift through my junk. We got rid of a full garbage bag worth of junk, which felt empowering. We also moved my couch chair and now my living room looks more sitting friendly. Mom made me a huge salad with carrots, pecans and chicken.



We had a heart-to-heart talk. My parents are concerned that I'm not looking after my health. While I can appreciate their concern given my history of eating issues, I am OK. I do feel unproductive because I don't have a real job. The Observer is an excellent role model for me. He works every day. I need a purpose. In tears, I told them my feelings. They hugged me and said I need to look after myself. I do eat, but I'm afraid of getting fat. Both Mom and Dad gave me big warm hugs. Our talk was rough, but the hugs were special.



I watched the English movie called Happy-Go Lucky. It's about Poppy, a thirty year-old kind hearted free spririt who everyone falls in love with. The movie was cute. It reminded me of Bridgett Jones Diary. It's a feel good flick.



Later, in bed, I watched the old Hallmark movie The Christmas Shoes. Mom LOVES it, so I've seen the movie many times. It's sad, but I watch it because it reminds me of Mom...It's a bit like how the Christmas tree made of Lite Brite bits reminds me of home. Some things hold sweet memories, so why not surround ourselves with them whenever we can? Maybe the more I do, the happier I'll become.



- OCG

Friday, December 11, 2009

And so it begins...


Well, the winter is here. It's freezing out there today. I shouldn't be surprised. It's mid-December after all. Mittens and a winter coat are essentials. I had trouble sleeping last night. I couldn't relax. Mom is coming over today. While I love seeing her, I get a bit stressed. She can be nosy and critical. All Moms can be, I suppose. I do have a pretty amazing Mom though. It'll be good to see her. Mom loves me and means well.

I had physiotherapy for the first time in a while last night. Our session was productive and fun. Moving around felt good. It's been a while since I've seen my physiotherapist. Seeing him is like catching up with an old friend. I kept the heat off all last winter to save energy and keep my skin from drying out. My apartment got pretty cold at times. This year I will use my thermostat. I don't want to freeze.We all deserve heat.

- OCG

Thursday, December 10, 2009

What Happened???




After four and a half years of being the Observer's girlfriend, I'm pretty in tune with his moods. Yesterday I called him before going to the mall just to say hello. He answered his cell phone by saying "What happened?" The Observer only says this when he's grumpy. It's my hint that he's had a bad day. The way the Observer says, "What happened?"reminds me of a typical, old Italian man. It's a gruff, funny tone - much different than the Observer's upbeat, cheery nature. I teased him by saying, "Some body's gruuumpy!" He smiled a little. After getting to the mall, I learned that the Observer was feeling disrespected at work. Throughout the whole evening, I kept repeating, "What happened?" The Observer was a good sport. He's pleasant ninety per cent of the time, so what's a moment or two of shortness? We went to the music store and ate dinner. He had chicken terriyaki and I had salad and a pita. The salad was overpriced. They threw in the pita for free, so they scored there.

On the way home, a favourite city bus driver told me about how the power went out at her house and she was convinced a tree was going to fall on her roof. She was up most of the night worrying. Seeing her was fun.

The Observer and I have made a few Christmas plans. We're each going to buy each other tickets to two different concernts. None we really want to see are on sale, so we're going to wait. Why buy concert tickets just for the sake of buying them? The point of the gift is to share a sweet, fun memory. We decided that I will go to the Observer's parents on Christmas Eve. Dinner will just be the four of us. I don't often see the Observer's parents, so a chance to talk and celebrate the holidays will be special. I will miss the Observer on Christmas Day, but family comes first. Family has always been the corner stone of my relationship with the Observer. Years from now, we'll remember why we weren't always together on Christmas Day. There will be no looking back and asking, "What happened?"

- OCG

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Sludging through the snow...




This girl needs a coffee. It's rainy, damp and slushy on this mid-December hump day. Typically, it's snowing this time of year, so we can't really complain about a little rain. On the upside, it's not too cold. Last night I went to the grocery store and bought sweet peppers. One I bought looked like a jalapeno. I love heat, so I was really looking forward to eating it. At lunch today, I was very disappointed to find the pepper tasteless. I needed heat. I suppose I need to be more up on my peppers. Before bed, I watched Shrek The Halls. It was cute and festive. I love Donkey and the gingerbread man. I also watched Dr. Oz, but I do every night. Two nights ago, Dr. Oz was talking about what to do in the event of someone losing consciousness due to a heart attack. He advised slipping aspirin under the person's tongue. I didn't know aspirin could be so powerful. On the day of Mom's heart attack, she was given aspirin in the ambulance. I love Dr. Oz.

Discovering I was out of oatmeal, I sludged through the wet streets to the same grocery store. In another month, it will probably be freezing, so this morning seemed like as good a time as any to brave the wet streets. My glasses got soaked but they dried. I put my hot cereal and hummus to go with the pita chips I'm bringing as an appetizer to a party on Saturday. I'm not really looking forward to going. The Observer will be there. Once it starts, I'll be glad I went. I have a few days left to gear up. First, I need a coffee.

- OCG

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

A great time to be alive....


Today began with a long talk with the Observer. It was a good way to begin my day. Last night he was watching Monday Night Raw, his favourite show, so I didn't want to disturb him. We didn't see each other at all this past weekend. I miss the Observer's voice. I miss his laugh. I miss the Observer's shiny head. I miss his hugs. I miss him. Period. We'll see each other tomorrow, so I'm looking forward to it. He's working afternoons today. Thursdays are usually his day to work afternoons. Change once in a while must be refreshing.


Other than my morning phone conversation,I haven't done much today. A hard-working attendant helped me shower. She kept getting annoyed with me for moving my head when she was trying to do my hair. She wanted to get it right. I appreciated her attention to detail, but I was more interested in getting up and moving. My hair isn't always my top priority. Of course, I value a good hair day as much as any female, but I don't worry too much if it doesn't look perfect. I spent the morning listening to music and standing on my pole. Not too exciting, right? On the street near my apartment, a kind looking woman said hi to me. We chatted and she told me she had a daughter who just got her first wheelchair. The woman asked me if I lived alone and worked. I explained how I finished university and that I work part-time, but still need a career. Wanting to say something true and positive, I looked the woman square in the face and said, "Life is good. It's a great time to be.......alive."

The woman said she hoped her daughter would say the same thing when she grew to be my age. I hope so too.

- OCG

Monday, December 07, 2009

Aren't these cookies beautiful?








I found this picture and recipe for Stained Glass Cookies in our local paper. From now until Christmas, the paper is featuring one Christmas cookie every day. I love how bright and dainty these cookies appear. They're pretty for the eyes and yummy in the tummy. (Though I haven't tried them, what cookie isn't delicious?)

The cookies remind me of some yummy peanut butter and jelly cookies that the Observer's mother made in the summer. They were so yummy that I ate the whole container in one sitting. (This was before I knew I had high cholesterol!) Sugar cookies are so pretty. Christmas brings out the best in food, but more important, the spirit of giving in others. If we're lucky, that means giving by doing yummy baking.



Pictured first is an Almond Spritz Cookie. It's another sweet, pretty, treat, isn't it?

- OCG

Couch doubts...


Well, I am not the owner of a new couch yet. Dad took me back to Leons, but I didn't feel confident about buying the couch. There were many stylish sofas, but none that really jumped out at me. When it comes to large investments, my philosophy is, "If in doubt, don't." (So I didn't!) The thing I dreaded most was talking to the sales rep. There was a red couch and a blue one that I liked, but I wanted to know if I could change the colour. After inquiring with the sales, rep, I learned that, at Leon's, what you see is what you get. That knowledge made up my mind. The red coach would be too juvenile and the blue one too grandmotherly. I need a happy medium and I think a brown couch is the winner. It's only a matter of finding the right one.

I ended up staying for supper last night. I have a hard time coming home. Once I'm there, I have trouble leaving. We had trout. It looked like salmon, but tasted fishier. I prefer sole. It's white and light. We had apple crisp for dessert. I had two helpings. Apple crisp is my new vice. My brother's girlfriend shared how my brother asked her out one year ago. After walking the dog, he taped a note to the dog's collar that said, "Will you go out with my Dad?" (As though, the dog were asking my brother's girlfriend out for him). Isn't that corny? I had no trouble giving my brother my opinion. He didn't ask me for it, but what are twin sister's for?

Dad drove me home. I was tired and not talkative. Chatting it up with the Observer was good. We barley talked all weekend. I missed him. I watched Brothers and Sisters and fell asleep early. I must have needed rest. I haven't done much today. This morning I saw one of my favourite attendants. She doesn't normally work until Thursday. Seeing her on a Monday was a treat. Outside is feeling more like winter, but it IS winter, right? If it didn't feel like the season, SOMEOME would be complaining...

- OCG

Sunday, December 06, 2009

To sit in style..


Dad loved Jersey Boys. I loved seeing it with him. The afternoon will be a wonderful memory. I was late meeting Dad because I went to the market and bought strudel. The plan came to me last night and I couldn't get it out my head. After waiting for me in my apartment, Dad looked a bit upset, but got over it. He loves strudel. I came home, ate fish, two pieces of strudel, a pound of grapes, crackers and watched Four Christmas with Mom. My brother came over for a quick visit with his girlfriend. They had celebrated their one year anniversary with a dinner at Iron Chef restaurant. To me, it feels like they've been together much longer than a year. They're a good fit. Like the Observer, my brother's girlfriend wears her heart on her sleeve. She's super sweet. One day she will be my sister-in-law.
Surprisingly, I slept well at my parents' house. I usually have issues, but I was tired. I spent the morning chatting in the kitchen with Mom and reading a health magazine.
Today we're going to buy a new couch from Leon's. I'm not sure if this is the exact couch, but it looks similar. Though I don't really sit on my couch, I need a new one. Everyone needs to sit in style. Some of us do it for longer than others.
- OCG

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Sounds Of The Season...


Sounds of the Season was a fun experience. CBC taped their news broadcast live, which was exciting to watch. The event was free. The only admission requirement was a donation to the Food Bank. The studio was packed, but they let me on through. Unfortunately they only had space for me to see the show with one guest, so Mom sat beside me while Dad waited outside. Being live, they told us to make lots of noise by clapping and cheering. I don't think the crowd disappointed. Hearing the live radio broadcast was my favourite part. We heard a similar traffic report a few times, but I didn't mind. Robert Fisher, one of the city's well-known broadcasters, has a distinguished, professional demeanor. Listening to him made me feel smarter. Matt Galloway from CBC Radio One was also a big hit. Julie Black sang a few songs. She's talented, sweet and down-to-earth. Her new song Running is fun and upbeat. Julie Black got the crowd moving. A Spanish singer performed as well as Kiosk. He did a song called I Wish I Knew Natalie Port man. He's quite an improtu artist. The ushers kept letting new people in as space allowed. Mom and I kept looking for Dad, but he stayed outside waiting for my sister and her husband. They didn't get seated until the later half of the show, but at least they saw some of it.



I was starving as we listened. Mom gave me fig cookies she was hiding in her purse, which brightened me up. My gum chewing was driving her crazy. I started to want the show to be over. A choir from our local university sang and a man who used the Food Bank spoke on the positive impact it had on his life, or more specifically, how the Food Bank saved his life. He had a heart attack and couldn't see, work, or support himself for two years. His story was heartbreaking and inspiring. The man's story ended the evening on a high note. We got top notch entertainment for a worthy cause. Meeting up with my sister, her husband, and Dad, we all agreed that we needed to eat. I was hungry, cold, tired and grumpy and grumpy. I didn't care where we ate. I was hungry. We went to East Side Mario's - a mediocre, pseudo Italian chain restaurant. It's been years since I've eaten there. Mom and I couldn't decide what to eat. I devoured a loaf of bread before our food arrived. I had a salad with chicken, oranges, cheese, and figs. Mom and my sister had a portabello panni, Dad had a wrap, and my brother-in-law had pasta. We were so hungry, we would have eaten anything.

Today Dad and I are seeing Jersey Boys. The tickets are his birthday gift from me. I'm excited. Hopefully he is too. Dad wanted me to come home yesterday, but I needed space. I ate too much yesterday and felt very overwhelmed. After hearing the man's story about the food bank yesterday, I ought to be grateful for my family and the food I have, especially this time of year.

- OCG

Friday, December 04, 2009

family time...


It's chilly outside today. My hands got red from the wind. For December though, who can complain about a little wind? There is still a chill in my bones from outside. I was tired last night. I read People magazine. It's my guilty pleasure. I tuned into the show Private Practice. I don't enjoy it as much as Grey's Anatomy, but it will do. I slept well. My eyes closed before I could catch Three's Company. I awoke with just enough time to catch the last five minutes. Three's Company has to be one of my new favourite shows. When I get excited about watching a show at two o ' clock in the morning, it must be good.

Mom is picking me up soon to go to a CBC radio Christmas special called Sounds Of The Season. My sister, her husband and my Dad are coming with us too. I have never been before but they have. I hear it's fun. My family wouldn't keep returning if it wasn't. It's been a while since I have seen my sister or parents for any length of time. I have missed everyone.

- OCG

Thursday, December 03, 2009

More myself...


Last night was rainy. My sweet company took my mind off the dreary weather. The Observer and I watched a few episodes of Oprah on tape. One show was on the adult entertainment industry and interviewed Jenna Jamison. The Observer has been wanting to see the show forever. I've saved it on tape for ages. I saw some of the show, but it was more the Observer's style. There was some talk about the revolution of woman that was intriguing. The other show we watched was on the late Robert Kennedy. I'm not big on American politics, but it was a touching interview. The Observer cried. He's the biggest softy. I think Robert Kennedy cheated on his wife. Most of the Kennedys were unfaithful to their spouses. Even so, it was clear that Ted Kennedy was loved by his family.



Later we went to Starbucks. I was really craving a decaf coffee. When I'm tired, I do. It's odd. The warmth is comforting. The barrista kept wanting to give me a latte. A latte is not coffee. It's milk with coffee. To prevent getting a latte, I told the woman at the counter to forget the milk. I went over to another server and she put a little milk in my coffee. Sometimes when we want something done right, we need to find the right person to do it. The Observer thought the second barrista was gay. She probably was, but I only care that people are kind. The Observer was bagged. I appreciated him coming to visit. Hopefully he knows I do. We chatted before I got out of bed this morning, but not since. I wonder how his day went...it will be over in forty-five minutes.

I went to the St. Lawrence Market. After buying bagels for Mom and Dad, I ran into a friend. We had lunch together. I wasn't hungry or talkative, but it was good to see her. We had pitas. Mine was full of hot sauce and veggies. My eyes and mouth were on fire, but I loved it. At home, a sweet attendant made me coffee. After missing my scheduled booking, I appreciated her taking the time to make it. She's sweet. I'm in a better mood today. Each day is different for all of us. For that, I'm glad.

- OCG

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Not me today...


It's a sunny, bright warm day out. For the second day of December, we're sure lucking out. Even so, I'm ashamed to admit that I'm tired, grumpy and unfocused. I have no reason to feel this way. I just do. Last night I didn't sleep well, which could explain a bit. I miss home....I always do when I'm tired.

I was out for the morning enjoying the sunshine but not really doing anything specific. I stopped and ate vegan pizza with Yukon gold potatoes. I enjoyed it. I have books to read, but don't really feel like it............hmmmm.....what's up with me?

The Observer is coming over, so hopefully, I'll cheer up.

Life is good.

- OCG

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

A worthy pin...


My eyes are barely staying open. It's just after five ' o clock. It's going to be a LONG night. I just finished a Starbucks coffee. Usually they wake me up, but I don't feel any different. Come on coffee...work your caffeine magic! Outside is a bit cold. Considering it's December 1st, our weather isn't too bad. In the bitter cold of February, we'll be wishing for weather like today. On the way back from the music store, a friendly guy stopped and gave me a red ribbon for World Aids Day. He showed me a picture he took of me on his digital camera. At first I didn't know whether to be freaked out or flattered, but I realized that he took the picture for a worthy cause. Why not lend my support? The guy complimented me on my orange coat and made sure to tell me that the pin he was putting on my coat wouldn't leave a mark. I'm quite sure the guy was gay. He was friendly.

I went to an appointment later today. I was cold getting there, but now I'm warm. I still need to wake up. I smelled coffee. Why isn't it bringing me to life? Being tired isn't the worst feeling. People have far bigger challenges. All I need to do is look down at the red ribbon pinned to my coat to appreciate the major struggles other people face. I'll sleep well tonight or even tomorrow. For other people, their discomfort doesn't disappear so easily.

- OCG