Friday, February 27, 2009


finished chapter 3!  it was a real beast.  

now i need to get all these edits approved by the head honcho, write a conclusion (i have to conclude something? yuck!), edit my appendix proof, re-edit everything, send it off to the rest of my committee, re-edit again, find an external examiner, fix up my footnotes and formatting, write an abstract (ha ha ha, yeah right), and then declare it done and send it off.

then i get to defend, throw up in front of everyone or start shaking uncontrollably in nervousness and hypoglycemia (domestic feminist has seen this, tonnes of fun!)  generally make a fool of myself, maybe even get tongue tied, yay!  fun for all!  i even plan on inviting all the lower years so they get to see how its done!  oh goody!

then i get to re-edit everything, and maybe send off copies to people who have inspired me, like the guy who wrote the book i quote all the time, and my old boss who let me use this data.

then a few years later, i will look at it again and maybe make it into a few articles.

oh, yeah, i feel great after writing all that out.  so much to look forward to!  

(can you tell i come from a long line of sarcastic people?)

no wonder!

i was always so confused at UVic because the style of formatting for footnotes and bibliographies was slightly different than what i was used to.  nothing major, just stuff like commas where i would have put periods and v.v.

this was kind of difficult for me, having memorized Chicago Manual of Style over the years.  I thought everyone used Chicago Manual.

so anyway, as a grad student, i blithely continued on my merry Chicago way, stubbornly refusing to change for anyone.  I was right.

as a T.A. though, i was forced by a prof i didn't like very much to mark the student's style by the manual that was given in the front of the student's coursebooks and on the department website. then he called me up to his office and spent twenty-five minutes of my 15 minute coffee break from work telling me all the things i did wrong in marking things exactly how he had asked for it to be done!  when he started in on how i had corrected footnotes, i pointed out that that was exactly how it was done in the manual he had given us and all the students.  he said "oh, well that's full of mistakes!  why did you use that?"  now you know why i didn't like him very much, even though he was most student's favorite prof.

so anyway, i just decided to read the Thesis Guidelines PDF before i started in on formatting my final copy (its not really there yet, but i have high hopes for these chapters!)  and i finally found out what is wrong with the style my department uses!

It apparently follows the "Turabian Guide"

what the hell is that?!!!!  

according to my trusty elves on the internet, it is based on Chicago Manual, but it allows you to use parenthetical references if you don't want to use footnotes.  ha!  that is soooooo not allowed in our department!    but bonus!  it says you don't have to put newspaper references in your bibliography!  yes!  no ten page biblio for me!  i will stubbornly stick to this and see what happens.  maybe i should switch to parenthetical references and see what my advisor says.  =innocent eyes= "but i am sticking to the style" =blink= =blink=

yes, that's right C, eek out some kind of control over this situation.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

mardi gras!

happy pancake tuesday everyone! i hope you are all taking advantage of today to eat pancakes for dinner!!! i just finished mine. yummmm. pancakes and sausages, they are so good for you!

ash wednesday tomorrow, first day of lent, i get ashes on my forehead after we burn last year's palm fronds from palm sunday.

what should i give up for lent this year?

not blogging, surely!

Monday, February 23, 2009

happy day!

Life is very stressful still, because i have less than a week to get my thesis entirely done!  i mean, entirely entirely done!  but i am happy anyway, so lets document this fact:

1. The sun is shining today, so even though it is brain-numbingly cold outside, some rooms in our house are boiling and we had to close curtains.

2. My first chapter is done.  well, according to me it is.  it has also been sent off to the supervisor.

3. I got to play with numbers all day yesterday and for most of this morning!  so. much. fun!

4. Chapter two is in an almost final edit right now, thanks mom!

5. We have daffodils, hyacinths and hibiscus flowers in bloom all over the house.

6. On the way home from taking my dad to the gym i looked in my rearview mirror and saw the kid driving the car behind me making the craziest face ever!  he had his head cocked to the side, his mouth wide open in the biggest "o" shape, and he was batting his eyelashes.  i giggled all the way home.

7. There are pictures of my brother in a kilt.  full dress regalia.  i haven't asked him if i can post them yet, but i can tell you, he looks really good.  my brother is a big burly guy with a red hair and beard, of course he looked good in a kilt! (you can see him making a silly face with a frilly apron on in this post)

Saturday, February 21, 2009

And now for a petition

geez, i am putting you guys to alot of work this week, but this horrible news was just brought to my attention!

the new federal budget is allotting a certain amount of money to the graduate research funding bodies, aww, ain't that nice of them, until you see this sentence:

"Scholarships granted by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council will be focussed on business-related degrees."

that means no more funding for the arts. Sociology, Anthropology, Languages, History, etc, etc. of course, no restrictions are going to be placed on NSERC, or the CIHR (Health research).

so, here is where i ask for your help again! here is what you can do:

1. Sign this petition - it will literally take 10 seconds - less if you are a fast typer: (Please also encourage friends and family to sign this petition)

2. Send a letter of protest to the minister of finance( and your local MP ( (i can email you a copy of the sample letter if you want to write)

who voted for these guys???

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Vote for Heather!

My friend and neighbour, Heather is applying for The Best Job in the World, and would appreciate all of your votes and views!

So, click here to see her application video and vote for her! Vote for Heather
Edit: ok, so apparently the real voting does not start until march 2, but giving her high ratings (five stars) and viewing her application video means that she goes higher up the charts and therefore gets more views (she'll show up under the "most popular" and "most viewed" buttons), and eventually more votes. i'll post her link again in march when the voting starts.

oh leonard!

ok, so i listen to a lot of leonard cohen, mainly because i have the "essential" collection and loaded the entire thing onto my itunes.  plus he is awesome.  anyway, yesterday i was listening to "Anthem" and one line that repeats is "there is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in."

and it drove me nuts, because i knew i had heard someone quote it recently, and i couldn't remember where!  at first i thought TV, but the recent NCIS was in my head, and it was just too intellectual for Denozo.  Then i thought maybe it was a recent sermon at church, our minister used "darkness" as a theme during advent, and is now using "light" for epiphany.  but he is far too aware of the older people in church to use a pop culture reference, even if it is over 20 years old.

and then it came to me: Dr. Tom!

my mom and i have been watching Being Erica on CBC, and Dr. Tom is her shrink who spews appropriate quotations.  he used this quote as one of the many to assure her that things don't have to be perfect all the time.   oh, Dr. Tom, you are so wise.

and i remembered just in time too, because they put Erica on a new night and i almost forgot!  it is such an awesome show, my mother actually likes it, and will sit still long enough to watch an entire episode, and feel badly about missing it.  She wanted me to tape last night's episode for her because she was going out, but i assured her that a) we have no blank vhs tapes anymore, and b) full episodes are available on the CBC website.  I don't think my mom has been this excited about a show ever.  if you haven't seen it, you need to, it is extremely good.

ok, back to thesis and more leonard

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Shiny Happy!

It is snowing and grey here today, so i need some shiny happy, and i decided to share with you, except i haven't a clue how to include video, so you will have to follow the link.  So follow the day and reach for the sun, and then tell me what you think!

The guy who introduced me to the Polyphonic Spree said "You don't listen to them, you take them, like Prozac"

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Hells Bells

In case you were wondering, i have finally downloaded my pics from the weekend, so, drumroll please, I hereby introduce you to my new doggie best beastie, Miss BellaBellaBella:

she was ginoring me because i was flipping the end of her tongue. Who can resist the drying out end of a puppy tongue? And look at all that glorious flabgas! She was also on lookout for her friend "The Duffer", the 'possum that she has caught a few times. So this look is pensive concentration, not a mean "i am this close to biting you" look.

like i said in the previous post, her tongue does not fit in her mouth, poor thing. The mean things we do to dogs to breed them for specific things. boxers were bred for bull baiting, so their noses are so far back so that they can still breathe while they are biting onto a bull. American boxers have had their noses bred out a bit longer again, but apparently, Bella is a German style boxer.

(for those out of the know, flabgas is the nice ripply jowly bits on dogs, best seen flopped over when they are lying on their backs, or flapping in the breeze when they stick their head out the window)
Edit: I should probably have spelled that "flabgass", with two "s" because the second syllable is pronounced the same as "gas" for your car. so hard to know when it is a made up spoken word. It is generally spoken in an "aww, cute puppy" voice while manipulating said flabgass to give the dog a variety of funny faces.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

i'm back! did you miss me?

my mom and i went down to my cousin's in michigan for a few days to shop and hang out. who doesn't have fun hanging out with your cousins and spending American money from the b&b? it doesn't feel like real money when you don't have to go to the currency exchange for it. ;D we got a whole host of cute tops and i got some fabric from JoAnn for a number of projects i have in the works. awesome.

we got really good deals on the clothes, some things were 40-50% off already sale items. it was kind of sad because i realized that the prices were so low because michigan is one of the hardest hit states in the economic crisis because it is all the automotive industry. it was weird going in to some shops that had four or five people on the floor and we were the only customers. a lot of the stores that we used to see have closed and the plazas they were in have already started to die in their absence.

on a lighter note, i finally made friends with bella the boxer. bella is my cousin's dog, and she is really quite ugly, she has about an inch of underbite, and her tongue doesn't fit in her mouth, her shnoot looks like she rammed her nose into a table repeatedly, but didn't bash the lower jaw. As a result, her nervous habit is to constantly keep her tongue moving, licking everything in site, especially feet and faces. she also had her tail docked, and so wiggles her entire body instead of just her tail. I never really warmed up to her because she never stopped moving, even if her body was still, her tongue wasn't.

and i HATE dog kisses.

i do not like to be slimed, thank you very much. when i was little, i was very little for a long time, and my face was just at the right level to be licked by dogs, which i was afraid of. i like dogs now, but i still hate dog kisses. but bella is now three years old, and has calmed down a bit. this time she was only crazy for the first few hours, and then when we went down to watch a movie, she curled up on my lap and went to sleep. and i was suddenly her best friend. she hung out with me for the rest of the time we were there, and took great pleasure in waking me up in the morning. and apparently misses me now that i am home.

so, all in all, a successful trip, although i could have done without the doggie hair gel in the mornings bells.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

wish me luck

i just wrote the internet exam.

i opened the file and immediately panicked. "i don't know how to do any of these things!" but i decided to just get started on it, and hopefully something would come to me.

My attitude with a previous job exam was to just answer to the best of my ability, and if my common sense and personal experience was what they wanted, i would get the job. better that than cram for the test, get the job and be completely out of my depth.

Of course with this one there was nothing to cram for, you either know it or you don't, so i gave them what i know. If it is good enough, i might get an interview, if not, well, i probably shouldn't be in that job right now anyway.

wow, i sound so blase about it, but now that it is over the nervous belly-dropped-out feeling is back. trying really hard for the zen of "let it be".

Monday, February 9, 2009

silver lining

my dad had his watch stolen at the gym today. while he was having a shower.

and while the fact that he had something stolen is slightly disturbing, it is actually kinda funny.

my dad's watch doesn't work.

he has been wearing it for the past year and a half, insisting that "it works sometimes" but still asking us what time it is every few minutes either to check if his watch was still keeping time, or to adjust it to the proper time. it wasn't a battery problem, it was just dead, and dad refused to believe it because "i have a perfectly good watch, i just need to figure out what's wrong with it."

so mom and i are pretty excited about today's little misfortune. he can finally buy a new watch like we have been trying to get him to do for the past year.

i wonder if the thief will ever steal from that locker room again?

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Always the way

so. bowling with the church choir=my parents friends and my parents.

and what happens?

of course we are sharing a ball dispenser with a group of good looking young men.

and of course i recognize two of them as having gone to my highschool. =sigh= luckily i remembered they had been a couple of grades behind me. so i had the edge of seniority.

i took it as a sign of being grown up that i did not get flustered and embarassed and actually ended up having a pretty good time bowling with the old fogeys. i even shared a few "oh old people" eye rolls with the young guys when one of my team-mates did something silly.

one of the guys even talked to me. he teased me about dancing while waiting for my ball (its all disco balls and dance music after 9). i laughed. that counts as answering right?

when we were driving home my mom says "i think you need to practice your flirting." what? you mean sneaking glances at guys when you know they aren't looking doesn't count? then she says:
"I guess its kinda hard to flirt when you are surrounded by old folks."

yes mom, that is my problem entirely. =sigh=


I am done! finito! hurrah! huzzah!

ok, well not quite, i have only sent in my last chapter to my advisor, i still have to edit the first two chapters again, and then edit this one when i comes back, then put it all together and read it all at once, and then write a conclusion. argh! so much left to do.

but yay! done this step!

and i got to sew this afternoon! i finally made my mom's birthday present, a table cloth for the kitchen table. i will post pictures tomorrow because we have decided to but a backing on it, so i have to find a piece of fabric for that. i am thinking old b&b sheet.

anyway, off to go bowling. with my church choir. yup, i am a wild and crazy girl.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

old favorites

Well, I am being edited right now, huzzah! I know I will have a bit more work on it before it can be sent away to the advisor because i wrote this chapter in little bits and now i have to find an order for them. But it is 26 pages, so I am happy, and so are my editors (mom and dad :D)

To gear up for my sewing exploits which have probably been postponed till tomorrow because leaving this house seems like a better idea right now, I thought I would show you two of the things that make me happy whenever i see them, and that is all the time because they live right here in my room.

The first one is a pillow I had to make for Fashion Design class in highschool in grade ten. I designed the applique myself, and then once i started it quickly realised that appliqueing those sun rays on was hell. There was no freezer paper or fusible web used in this project, i tucked all those edges in by hand because nothing else worked. I embroidered the face and some stars on the moon side to even it out, and then quilted it by stiching around the edge. Its faded now, it used to be a bright royal blue, but i still love it, even though it makes me think of all the work that went into it!

Now this is the best quilt ever! My Grandma Lou made it, and I love it the best of all of the ones she made (which i will likely show you more of in the future). It is very similar to the stacked coin quilt in Last Minute Quilted and Patchwork Gifts, but with a bunch of short stacks whose ladder ends don't quite match up.

My Grandma did not have very much money, and being a child of the Depression, was very good at working with what she had. I am pretty sure all of the fabric for this quilt was thrifted, she bought most things at garage sales and bazaars. The quilt is mostly solids and ginghams with some very random patterned pieces. alot of the pieces have a seam down the middle, which she may have put in, but equally likely, it was there in the original piece.

See the random thriftiness? The pink striped fabric with the blue flowers will be recognizable to some as pillow ticking (with the seam down the middle) from the feather pillows that everyone in my family seems to have owned at some point. The brown patterned fabric beside it is a miniature toile de jouy pattern, with little trees and pagodas.

She quilted almost all of her quilts by hand with a simple scallop design in lines about 3 inches apart. My Grandfather actually cut her a board with the scallop design on it for easy tracing. I wish I knew where that board ended up, but i think she gave it to a friend.

well, hope you enjoyed them!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Since I can't do....

Since I can't sew until at least the weekend because the big thesis is not quite done (actually I am going to try for tomorrow during editing time:D its not like i am going to write anything more during editing time!), anyway, i am doing enough dreaming about fabric, i thought i would participate in Sew, Mama, Sew!'s Stash Talk, and answer a few questions.

For those of you just tuning in, I do sew, knit, crochet and embroider, but there has been a moratorium placed on such activities until my thesis has been finished, and I am very close, like two pages and some editing! But I do have a few crafty posts here, here and here. Edit: forgot about this one!

Ok, here goes:

What do you usually sew? I used to sew mainly clothes, but i do a lot of smaller things as well, like bags, oven mitts, aprons, pillows and duvet covers, and i have just started quilting.

When you shop for fabric, what size cuts do you usually buy? depending on what i think i will make out of it, and how expensive it is, anywhere from half a meter, to three meters. I really like buying up remnants though, and those come in any size. gorgeous expensive fabric i usually buy in a fat quarter.

Do you buy on impulse or do you go out looking for something you need? I usually go with something in mind, but these days i got to the quilt shop, see fabric i like, go home and think of what i could use it for, and then go back and buy it. not enough in the budget these days to be impulsive.

Are you a pre-washer? yes, i have had too much trouble with dye running or fabric shrinking not to be! i usually wash it when i bring it home because i am so excited to start a project!

Do you iron it? yes, after i wash my fabric, large pieces i put in the dryer for about 15 minutes and then iron them while they are damp. fat quarters I iron to dry them.

How do you sort it? i don't, although i do keep fabrics for a project together.

Do you have any special folding techniques? nope, as long as it is folded, i am happy.

How do you store your fabric? in rubbermaid totes, because right now, it is in the basement. i dream of one day having a sewing area!

What tips do you have for building up a well-rounded stash? i am just building mine, but my biggest problem is buying up too much of one kind of fabric, in my case bold colourful patterns and batiks, and ending up with nothing to use as a contrast because i find solids and white boring.

When do you say enough is enough? hmm, not yet! i am just now finding uses for fabric i bought when i was a lot younger (like, when i was ten) and never did anything with.

What are some of your favorite stash-busting projects? making all my christmas presents was really good at busting down the stash, especially some country looking stuff from my mother. i made oven mitts out of the scraps left over from making boxer shorts when i was a teenager, tote bags with patchwork strips on them, and my favourite was taking a whole cut of fabric that i knew i would never use for anything, adding a contrasting border (in style of fabric and colour), and making a tablecloth.

Do you have a current favorite print in your stash? Let’s see it! hmm, so many to chose from, i really like the Amy Butler fabric i made my cousin's diaper bag out of, and i have just enough of it left to make a purse for myself. i was so happy to discover that!

What’s your definition of the perfect stash? well, since mine is definitely not perfect, i dream of one that had enough of the basics, like solids, that i could start on a project as soon as i got home with a new fab fabric purchase, and not what i do now, which is get home and realize that to make anything i have to go back out again and get something for a lining or backing.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Sunshine inside and out!

This is what i wake up to:

we have been having bright, sunshiny, warm days here, which is ten times better on our snowy tundra. there is nothing quite like the joy of having to wear sunglasses in February. unfortunately, it means my good friend Wiarton Willy saw his shadow today, so 6 more weeks of winter.

we have been outside enjoying it, prying the icepack off the driveway and sidewalks, going for walks around the neighbourhood, and throwing the bunny into snowbanks. Baz had a wonderful morning outside helping her grandpa shovel the driveway and sampling the birdseed that has been knocked onto the patio. so wonderful that she dug her heels in and refused to come inside. dad had to call me to come and get her and she took off on one last tear around on the snow.

too bad i had to spend the afternoon inside writing. almost done though!