Saturday, July 31, 2010


On my 101/1001 list I have a goal that I have kept to myself for many years.  #10 - run/jog a 5k marathon.  I have always wanted a fit lifestyle.  The type of lifestyle where fitness isn't something you reward, it's just something you get out and do on a daily basis - it is it's own reward.  I did not grow up with that type of lifestyle AT ALL and most days I find it completely against how I was raised and currently live.  So in wanting to change for the better, I find it extremely difficult to find the motivation to get off my lazy ass and get outside.  Running a 5k is probably the biggest challenge I added to my 101/1001 list.  It is not only testing my motivation, it's testing my determination and some of my fears as well. 

I've always needed a 'buddy'.  Someone to come with me to an event or to join a club at school with me.  I have a hard time putting myself out there and just doing something by myself - for me.  With my parents - who do not lean towards the life I want - and not many friends around, I have to do this on my own as Mr. Penguin is needed to be home with the kids if I'm out.  I have no doubt I can run 5k with enough training - it will be only having myself to push me onward when my muscles hurt that will be my biggest obstacle.  So I am fighting back against myself.

  • I have purchased a treadmill at an AMAZING price (under $100!!) that will be delivered in August.  I no longer have the excuse of 'it's raining' or 'too hot' to get outside.  I can walk my ass to the basement and get my training in for the day.
  • I went to Walmart yesterday and treated myself to some nice - but cheap (as I'm still broke and working on my debt) - work out clothes.  I got a tank top that is cut for running and some shorts that aren't stolen from Mr. Penguin's drawer.
  • I purchased the above in a cut that flatters, but also fits me.  This means that the world can now see where I carry my weight, but not in a way that suggests I stuffed myself into shorts too small for my butt.  If I have a problem with that - I can get moving and lose some weight to make them fit better.  ;)
  • I have purchased an app for my iPod to be my trainer - Couch to 5K.  I tested it tonight.  And although I was unable to complete the 'week 1 day 1' session, I know I am going to love this app and it will make all the difference in my progress.  I recommend it for anyone training.
  • I have scheduled in AT LEAST every Sunday for training.  I will be adding 2 evenings a week as well - although these will be more flexible based on Mr. Penguin's school schedule and the kid's activities.
I am also putting myself out there for the world to see.

Current weight: 225lbs
Size: 18-20

I am 28 years old - still young and in no way an excuse not to start an exercise program.
I have 2 kids - so what, why should that stop me?  It may take more planning some days, but the results will always be worth it.
I am over weight - well, the weight won't get rid of itself, now will it?
I have a busy schedule - the exercise will help my stress levels, show my babies the importance of doing something for yourself and help me sleep better.

No more excuses.


Friday, July 30, 2010

101 things I've accomplished to date

I figured since I'm attempting to create 101 new goals and memories, it would be fun to look back on some of the things I've accomplished to date as well.

So here goes...#99!!
101 things I've accomplished to date.

  1. I have sung in a choir. 
  2. I've been tidal bore rafting in the Bay of Fundy. 
  3. I speak two languages (English and French).
  4. I did not have any sons - I only wanted daughters - and I got my 2 girls. 
  5. I learned to drive a standard car and all vehicles I've owned - except the van - have been standard. 
  6. I am good at the work I do - and was hired based on my reputation. 
  7. I have been up in a hot air balloon. 
  8. I planned (with Mr. Penguin) every single detail of our wedding. 
  9. I designed and created our wedding invites from scratch. 
  10. I've lived in England for 2 years. 
  11. I'm a little rusty, but I can french braid someone else's hair. 
  12. I can cook and usually make up recipes as I go. 
  13. I've seen Jann Arden in concert (twice) and almost cried at both shows. 
  14. I've ridden a motorcycle. 
  15. I have silk-screened an art project. 
  16. I've been skinny dipping. 
  17. I can sew a button on by hand. 
  18. I can bake (even though I tend not to follow recipes exactly). 
  19. I am an experienced cake decorator. 
  20. I have been stung by a jelly fish. 
  21. I can cross-stitch. 
  22. I've ridden the largest roller coaster in the South-East part of North America. 
  23. I have successfully lead a cheer leading squad in a routine and created a pyramid (and I didn't drop the top player on her dismount!) 
  24. I was head treasurer of my high school's student council. 
  25. I have created my own clock out of wood. 
  26. I've participated in the 5k walk for MS. 
  27. I've taught both my girls the song of "itsy bitsy spider" complete with hand signs. 
  28. I changed the sink and plumbing in my second home from a pedestal sink to a full cabinet by myself. 
  29. I completed a modeling course (way back when) which included stepping out of my element and working with make-up and public performance. 
  30. I can balance a check book or company financial statements (and actually enjoy doing it). 
  31. I have completed a French trip that involved only speaking my second language at all times. 
  32. I've streaked my hair. 
  33. I have sewn my own beach bag. 
  34. I've experienced a dinner theatre show. 
  35. I have implemented work strategies to improve paperwork, work flow and productivity - and seen results. 
  36. I have successfully grown green peppers. 
  37. I have bottled wine. 
  38. I've been on a ferry. 
  39. I have taken a plane trip on my own. 
  40. I've created artwork that hangs in both my and my parent's homes. 
  41. I have never tried any form of (illegal) drug. 
  42. I've started a blog/journal to help me through my emotions and thoughts and help attain my goals. 
  43. I've seen the ocean at sunset. 
  44. I was the top scoring female in my Lacrosse league (as well as the female with the most penalties). 
  45. I have petted a dear. 
  46. I'm a pretty decent pool player. 
  47. I've been best friends with my BFF for 13 years. 
  48. I was a master double-dutch skipper in elementary school. 
  49. I've seen Beauty & the Beast on stage and loved every single moment of it. 
  50. I've seen a movie in the theatre by myself. 
  51. I saw Bon Jovi in concert. 
  52. I married my Penguin. 
  53. I've created my own cards to give to others. 
  54. I own my own tools. 
  55. I've made my own bread. 
  56. I've canned my own tomatoes. 
  57. I've made my own jams (pineapple blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, cherry). 
  58. I can beat Warpath (against 3 enemies!) in under 15 minutes. 
  59. I have volunteered my time. 
  60. I have performed on stage. 
  61. I've been camping. 
  62. I've waxed my legs.  <---- NEVER to be done again! 
  63. I bought (and then later sold) my dream home. 
  64. I've tried bison meat. 
  65. I've completed "History of Design I" - even though I HATE history. 
  66. I have seen a moose in the wild. 
  67. I moved half way across the country from my parents at the age of 18 to live on my own. 
  68. I have appeared on television. 
  69. I successfully beat Mr. Penguin every time we go bowling. 
  70. I have owned my own cat. 
  71. I've painted each of my houses to suit my tastes. 
  72. I lost 60 pounds - but gained it back (hence why it's back on the 101/1001 list!) 
  73. I've designed company logos, letterhead and websites. 
  74. I've held an owl perched on my arm. 
  75. I have taught friends how to drive a standard car. 
  76. I've been tubing and water skiing (although the water skiing part wasn't very successful). 
  77. I've written my own resume - and even helped others tweak theirs. 
  78. I've interviewed and got all of my jobs on my own. 
  79. I've been to Disney World. 
  80. I've been to Busch Gardens. 
  81. I can do a hand stand. 
  82. I've driven a speed boat. 
  83. I know my 9x table on my fingers.  ;) 
  84. I've survived child birth (twice!) 
  85. I've been to the Toronto Zoo. 
  86. I have a good relationship with my Mom.  We talk almost everyday. 
  87. I have successfully assembled my own IKEA furniture. 
  88. I've accomplished one of my only original life goals of owning my first house before the age of 22 - by 13 days.  (I am now on house #3.) 
  89. I have held a bird in the palm of my hands and made it comfortable as it passed away. 
  90. I've never smoked a single cigarette in my life. 
  91. I have sewn my own curtains. 
  92. I have stood up for myself and what I needed when it was extremely hard - this includes divorcing my ex. 
  93. I have ridden an up-side-down roller coaster. 
  94. I've taken myself out to dinner and dined alone. 
  95. I was the replacement secretary at my high school and was occasionally called out of class to help with the phones. 
  96. I've written poetry that still is as true about me today as the day in junior high that I wrote it. 
  97. I've fired a rifle. 
  98. I've gone fishing - and caught a fish. 
  99. I've been up in a helicopter. 
  100. I only had my first alcoholic drink at the age of 19. 
  101. I've made my own ice cream from scratch.

Whew!  I had to think for a few days on this task.  I tend to think of 'accomplishments' as these grand things...but every little thing counts.  It doesn't have to make the local paper or have people talking about it for months to mean something to me.  Or to who I am.  This exercise helped me see how far I've come.


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Raw(e) - 2(6)

This week's challenge for Raw(e) is 2(6)...what we had to do is go into
our 2nd folder of photos and post the 6th photo there. Didn't matter what it was.
How silly, how beautiful, how awful, how embarrassing-didn't MATTER!!!

So here's mine:

This is my eldest at a friend's princess party 2 years ago.  All the girls dressed in their nice dresses and came together to play, have some cake and socialize.

Sunday, July 25, 2010


My babies are the exact opposite of one another.  One hates being dirty, the other loves to make a mess.  One loves quiet, the other loves yelling.  One listens and does as she's told, the other looks around to see if you're watching her as she dives into anything and everything she's not allowed to be touching.  Amazing how two little girls can be so opposite from one another.

They both love each other madly though - and that's all that matters.


Saturday, July 24, 2010

iPhone or BlackBerry?

I have borrowed Mr. Penguin's old iPhone (now loaded with the iPhone 4 features) to test if I like it.  If I do, I can keep it as my own.  Mr. Penguin no longer uses it and has moved on to the Google android phone instead.  YAY free stuff!

I'm not sure how much I'm liking it though.  :(  As much as I curse my BlackBerry and it's crappy features, it is a phone - not a computer.  My BlackBerry is a flip phone, which is why I got it.  I love flip phones because the screen isn't exposed and they have a proper keypad.  I also love the click it makes when I close it.  LOL The iPhone has better apps, a bigger screen and is more user friendly...but it's not a very good phone.  Isn't a cell phone supposed to be a phone first?

What do you love about your cell phone?


Friday, July 23, 2010

It works!

You may remember that back here, Mr. Penguin and I had decided enough is enough with our finances.  We want more in life and it really shouldn't be that hard to balance a budget.  You may also remember that *I* am the bad one for spending in our relationship.  I know it, he knows it...I couldn't seem to change it.

We may have solved the problem!

In a weird and backwards move, Mr. Penguin and I divided our finances beginning July 1st.  Most couples have separate finances when they start dating and need to join everything together later on - not us.  We've had a joint account since 2 days after dating!  Yeah, we're special.  ;) 

We kept the joint account where the house bills currently pull from, we just opened our own accounts too.  I am now responsible for my car payment, my personal credit cards, my loan, my cell phone bill and anything else I choose for myself that isn't a "house expense".  Mr. Penguin has the same things on his end - plus his school expenses coming this fall and his past student loans.  So now if I spend too much - *I'm* broke, not him.  We also calculated that I make 40% of the income and him 60%.  So we determined that I would put 40% of the money required into the house account and him the other 60%.  This way we're both contributing equally based on our salaries and neither of us is beyond poor.

I'm liking this.

I feel like I'm contributing to the bills now and not just dumping my entire paycheck into our account and him paying for everything else.  I also don't have to account for every penny I spend from *my* money and I can purchase things I want without thinking about the house bills.  It's a new freedom.  It is also helping me with Mr. Penguin's spending money.  With him bringing in a larger salary, he can be free to go back to school - which he is doing - or take a trip home for a week and I will not be wondering which part of the "house" budget is paying for it will come from *his* money. 

I feel this will help with our issue of "well you got to do/have X, when do I get to do/have X?"  When it all came from the same pot it was like it all had to be equal to justify the expense.  It was exhausting.  He makes more = he gets more.  Simple.  It is also motivation to clear my debt and start saving for what I want for me.  And that's exactly the point of this - I need to retrain myself financially. 

We're open as a couple to changing things - no matter how weird they may seem - to get to our goals and live in harmony.  If it doesn't work, change it.  So we did.


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Raw(e) - Mirrors

This week's theme for Raw(e) is mirrors.  Quite the theme to jump in on!  Well, my first thought was of a picture I took of my eldest when she was learning to brush her teeth.  It was taken with a film camera and I'd have to scan it, so it didn't really qualify.  Bummer.  BUT!  I recently made that picture into a scrapbook page for an album and took a picture of that (to send to a friend) which was taken with my digital camera and untouched.  So I'm using it.  :P

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Fitness goals

I got out and walked today.  A really long walk with hills and spurts of jogging and stairs and stretching.  It felt good.  I can't remember the last time I jogged.  I'm taking it slow and planning on adding a little bit more every time I go.

Run/jog a 5k is on my 101/1001 list.  There's no time like the present.  I really liked the time to myself too.  Mr. Penguin and I have an agreement that Sunday mornings until noon are my own time while Mr. Penguin takes the kids.  I've just never left them and gone to do something.  This will be a habit I want to keep.

Sometimes, in order to be a better mother/wife/person, you need to have time alone.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

I'm scared

Actually I'm terrified.  I can handle life changing around me - different job, different house, different city, whatever.  But I have never had so many changes within my personal relationship before.

Things are going to be ok - I do know that.  We're growing as individuals and are just getting our footing - but it's a big change that I'm not quite sure how to deal with at the moment.  I'm learning and growing into who I want to be, Mr. Penguin is doing the same.  For me that means blogging and time alone for reflection and to get back to my hobbies.  For him it means getting more exercise and going back to school.  It is a lot all at once.  We have a ton of responsibilities already with the house, two kids, jobs and still finding time for one another.  I want to be our own people and pursue our own interests outside of our marriage, but I want to make sure that 'US' stays the top priority too.

All of these changes have shaken my 'base', the thing I rely on in my life.  When everything else was going to shit, I could turn to my relationship and feel safe, secure and that I could handle anything.  I know I can handle anything that life throws at me, I do.  Right now I'm just a little more timid in my stance is all.

I am giving into the fear.  I am loving with my entire being and embracing all the changes we are experiencing and loving my penguin with all that I have.   

Our marriage is totally worth it.

It's just going to take some getting used to.  I am very thankful that I have such a wonderful man to hold my hand and make the jump with me.  <3


Sunday, July 11, 2010

Have you...?

Do you ever get to a point in a rough patch where you don't know how you got there?  After all the hurt feelings and accusations, through all the silences and harsh you ever wonder why you're fighting in the first place?

Have you ever stood back and wanted to not necessarily take words back (as they were honest and how you feel) but to still be able to hold the other person?  To let them know that you love them and that you're not just saying that to make it all go away?

Have you ever fought with yourself to be a better person and to work on what causes issues in a relationship, only to feel like you're the only one having to accommodate all the time?  What if the other person feels the same way?

What if your feelings don't matter and it's not about you?  What if you're looking at things from a skewed perspective?  Will any of it matter in 10 years?  5 years?  Next month?!  What if your reactions to the situation aren't as important as how your partner feels right now and what they are going through.

How do you truly be there for someone when you yourself need a shoulder to cry on?


Saturday, July 10, 2010

Our office

I put up Mr. Penguin's Father's Day gift today...

I love it!  It looks as good as I had hoped.  :D  His side of the office is coming along nicely...mine is still a work in progress.  I have some art projects to complete and some more organizing to do, but it's slowly becoming a wonderful Penguin office.


Friday, July 9, 2010


As I stated in this post, happiness is a habit.  A habit I've broken recently and am trying to repair.  It's funny, one of the blogs I follow touched on this and explained it better than I ever could.  See here.  Focusing our attention on what we want out of life is what I was trying to say in my post - but I said it in a less direct way. 

Having attention problems running in my family, I find focusing on things difficult at times.  And it's during the times that I lose focus that I tend to slip in my happiness.  Recognizing this makes it easier to correct it.  And gaining a new focus and purpose makes everything a little better.  Life is what you make it.

Just something that's got me pondering on this wonderful Friday as I head into the weekend.


PS - Mr. Penguin arrives back home in FOUR days.  My happiness is about to get a whole lot bigger!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Changes to 365

I have moved where I keep my photo challenge to here.  I wanted to be able to upload directly from my BlackBerry on the go making one less thing for me to worry about.

Follow me if you like, or just pop in to make sure I'm keeping on track.  Either way, thanks for your support.


Yummy coolness

The heat here is insane.  Not a good insane either.  We're experiencing 35 degree weather for the past 3 days before humidity (which is currently at 75%) and mugginess like no one's business.  Yesterday it was over 42 degrees when it was all combined.  People are irritable and wanting rain or at least a break in heat.  I'm ready to live in my freezer full-time.

As I was searching for local water pads in my area I came across a brilliant recipe that I will be making tonight.  Behold...Coffee popsicles!  (originally found here)

Coffee Popsicles (only for parents!)

These are best served in oppressive heat when spirits and energy are flagging and you can’t get yourself something cold and caffeinated at your local coffee shop.
You will need:
  • ⅓ cup sweetened condensed milk
  • ⅓ cup hot espresso or very strong black coffee

Maybe I'll make a batch and bring them to work in a cooler for the boys to have tomorrow morning.  We all need our morning caffeine, but the hot stuff isn't so nice now that our a/c at the shop isn't working properly.  Maybe it'll lift some spirits.


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

My new glasses have shipped!!

I ordered myself new glasses online.  The ones I currently wear are chipped a bit and losing their colour.  They are 3 years old, so I think they've served me well.  I received notification that the two pairs shipped yesterday!!  They should be here Thursday or Friday.  I cannot wait.

I was sent a coupon code last week from Clearly Contacts to buy one, get one free and figured it was the best time to get the ones I wanted plus a free one!  I have tried on the red ones, but not the black ones.  Here's to hoping they both fit properly!

Did I mention I was excited?!  I've nicknamed the red ones my 'SpiderMan' glasses.  ;)  I'm such a dork.


Monday, July 5, 2010


Stolen from Facebook a while ago...thought it would be funny to do!  Although mine turned out kinda serious.  Whatever.  If you do it yourself, please post a link to it!  I'm interested in seeing what people get.

Ok, here goes:

1 - Go to Wikipedia. Hit “random” or click here.  The first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.

2 - Go to Quotations Page and select "random quotations" or click here.  The last four or five words of the very last quote on the page is the title of your first album.

3 - Go to Flickr and click on “explore the last seven days” or click here.  The third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.

4 - Use Photoshop or similar to put it all together.

Here's mine:

"Fly...and resign yourself to the influence of each." by ShePenguin.


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Deck it to me!

I'm currently relaxing on our swing drinking my morning tea and watching my babies play. Life is peaceful and wonderful.

My thoughts last night involved thinking I might attempt to add onto our deck next year. I have a book with simple deck plans and how to expand and create different levels, and it uses basic tools that we currently have in my workshop. Now the plans themselves are a little scary, but I only looked at them briefly, so I think it could be done. It would definitely be an awesome project to take on with Mr. Penguin!! I'll see what he thinks.


- Sent from my iPod.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

I love my deck.

When my parents were over we rearranged the backyard deck.  I liked our deck before...but now I love our deck.  It's covered and therefore great midday when you should be staying out of the sun, but it still lets you be outside and experience the beautiful weather.

The way we positioned the swing now means less sunlight in the eyes.  The kid's pool and slide only get sun at sunset - so my babies won't burn.  There is extra deck space for the baby's outdoor highchair and still room for jumping from the slide structure and baby to crawl and me to stretch my legs...

It's perfect.

I relaxed on my swing this afternoon...not my usual nap, but enough to put a smile on my face.

<------ That's contentment right there.

Man I love sunny, breezy summer weekends!  Hope the weather is treating you all just as nice.


Thursday, July 1, 2010


For a stat holiday that should have been relaxing, it was anything but!  I started out the morning running between two consignment stores in the area to update their ancient computer systems.  The new tax system goes into effect officially today and the systems had to comply and the receipts had to reflect the new tax name as well as percentage. 

Jobs that were originally scheduled between 9am and 11am actually took from 9am to 1:30pm.  Computers are awesome.  I went armed with a CD to override old files and was hit with a computer at each location that did not have a working CD drive.  No problem!  In the end it all worked out and the systems are updated and the owners are happy.

Once I was free to actually start my Canada Day -- my parents were over and the work really began!  My Mom is a cousin of the Energizer Bunny.  She has to be!  For a woman barely into her 50's she has more energy than anyone I've ever met.  In the seven hours my parents were here we (and I'm a VERY loose part of the "we" I use here) accomplished the following:
  • Cleaned the kitchen
  • Washed a load of dishes
  • Steamed the kitchen floors
  • Steamed the bathroom floors
  • Washed two loads of laundry
  • Had supper
  • Folded and put away four load of laundry (I hadn't gotten to yesterday's loads yet)
  • Mowed the backyard
  • Pulled all weeds in the back and front yard 
  • Pulled the vine out that was attempting to kill my cedar hedges
  • Organized the shed
  • Rearranged the deck and set up the kiddie pool
  •  Emptied the dishwasher
  • Bathed the kids in the outdoor pool
  • .......I think that's it.
Like I said -- my Mom just keeps going and going and going...I think they wanted to help out as I have the two kids while Mr. Penguin is away.  Hey, who am I to refuse free labour?!

Both kids are now exhausted and in bed.  I'm getting ready to start my day super early tomorrow as I have to change the cash system at MY work to be tax compliant.  So early do-dos for me.  All in all it was a super productive day.

And I got a free pair of shoes out of today too!  One of the store owner's thought I was sweet and wanted to thank me for my extra time and also educating her on how to properly remove a flash drive.  hehe Bonus!!  Goodnight all.