September

September has turned out to be a very busy, very interesting month to say the least. A lot has been going on and a lot has happened, and I’ve been doing a bit of adjusting.

The biggest thing that has happened is I finally made the decision to speak to my doctor about medication for my depression. My doctor was very receptive and listened to my concerns and asked appropriate questions. He agreed that medication was a reasonable option, and I walked out of my appointment with a prescription he felt would be a good fit for me. I started the medication that very day and haven’t looked back. I started noticing improvements around the four-week mark, just as my doctor said I should. Here I am almost 6 weeks later, doing better and feeling better than I’ve felt in a very long time…

…Aside from my stupid foot! Earlier in the summer I did something to my foot and initially it was no big deal, but it progressively got worse (mostly because I kept walking and didn’t rest it; my fault, I know). Earlier this month I finally started taking it easy and lo and behold! It started feeling better! Then, just shy of two weeks ago, I had to run to catch a bus to make it to an appointment on time. As I was running (of course I was wearing flip flops), I felt a horrible twinge in that very same foot and it starting hurting again just as much, if not worse than before. I felt like I just couldn’t win! So, as it turns out I strained my foot. Bye bye flip flops for the rest of the season! It has been less than a week wearing my cute and comfy polka dot shoes and my foot is already feeling better. it is amazing how a minor change can manage that! Anyway, foot is officially on the mend and I will be walking 10,000 steps a day again in no time. That makes me very happy.

Unlike the close call I’ve had with Tobi this month! My poor sweet fat cat has had a rough go. Tobi started acting a bit unlike herself, agitated and such. She was also a lot less snuggly, but she was eating and drinking fine so I just kept an eye on her. THEN she had a couple accidents. It was time to go to the dreaded vet, as she NEVER does her business outside of her box, nor does she leave it uncovered. I knew something was up and had a pretty solid idea of what it was. It’s not a new issue for her. She needed or bum squeezed again (a.k.a. her anal glands expressed). Yes, it is exactly what it sounds like and it is exactly as gross, but it helps my baby. She went in two Saturdays ago, and I am SO thankful I talked a friend into coming with me. The tears started flowing as soon as I heard her start to cry. It had to have been painful. THEN the veterinarian came out and told me that when she expressed them, one of Tobi’s glands was about to rupture it was so full. It was a super close call. The vet put her on antibiotics to prevent infection, and a new food to help with the root of the issue. I felt so bad for her. It was a lot to go through. The good news is a week and a half later, she is back to her old self and is more snuggly and active than ever! I am hoping for no more close calls with her. I’ve had 8 great years with her and I want a MINIMUM of 8 more!

In other news, I started a bullet journal earlier this month and I freaking love it. Not only is it helping me keep better track of appointments and events, it is helping me to keep track of daily tasks, habits, and the nice little things that happen in a day that we often forget. It is also allowing me to get creative with decorating it! October is almost upon us, and I will be making a few tweaks for October that will hopefully help keep my reboot on track. It’s a small thing, but it has created a huge positive change for me. I like positive change.

I also started my second course for my CIP (Chartered Insurance Professional) designation. Let me tell you, this one just dove right in! There is a ton of material being covered, and I already have my hands full. I am pretty sure I will have to put in a lot more effort than I did for the last one. That’s okay though. It’s nice to sort of have that feeling of being in school and learning again. Especially that learning part…Even if it is the driest subject matter know to man… I kid, I kid. Or do I?

And guess what?! My new computer is close at hand! I had a small setback in timeframe due to Tobi’s impromptu almost emergency trip to the vet, but things are back on track again and I dont have to wait too much longer before I have the money available – probably only a month or so. It will be VERY exciting to have a computer I can play games on and use Photoshop and Office without it freezing on me every little while. Don’t get me wrong, my MacBook has served me well these past several years, but it has done its time. I am ready for a change (and a computer I can play World of Warcraft on again)!

Along with the resurrection of weekend MTG nights with Steph and reading more than I have in a long time, and weekly Alice visits, I have managed to keep incredibly busy. Super awesome nerd-friend-coworker is doing the CIP class with me, and I think it’s going to really help with motivation and keeping up my studies for this term’s class. Some apple-y goodness may also be in the near future now that autumn has arrived, and probably a trip to Sparta too. In all reality though, I am looking forward to the fall wind-down and some cozy nights in. I want to get back into blogging more regularly and I think that just might be the time to do it.

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Fall Garden Wrap-Up

We’re into October now, and it is feeling like time is really flying by. Life has been very busy lately and I’m not sure it will be changing anytime soon. While life is keeping me on my toes the same can’t be said for the garden. The garden is pretty well done for the season and is requiring a minimum amount of care at the moment. I had considered planting some small fall crops, but decided against it for this season. Now it is pretty well cleaned up since most everything has gone to seed.

Outside I currently have sage, chives and my black-eyed pennies left. All are still doing well. I had thought to bring the chives and black-eyed pennies indoors, but I really don’t have the room so that likely won’t happen. They will stay outside until another solution is potentially found for next season. You may recall that i did have pansies outdoors, but I transplanted those into some stoneware pots and brought them inside. They are part of the reason there is no more room inside for anymore plants.

The pansies have taken well to their new pots, I have just run into another issue. Spider mites! Those darned spider mites!  They have infest my pansies and I am still in process of getting rid of them. I have had good luck with a pyrethrum-based spray in dealing with spider mites on the parlor palm, so I am trying it with the pansies. Spider mites really are becoming the bane of my gardening existence… Okay, I’m not being completely honest about that. The bane of my gardening existence is two-fold. Spider mites…and squirrels.

Squirrels have been sniffing about my balcony and garden quite a bit recently. I am assuming they are looking for places to nest for the cold season. Judging from last year my balcony is pretty appealing for some odd reason. Thankfully this year there wont be a chance for them to destroy my seat cushions . That all being said Jay and Dizzy have been doing a pretty good job of keeping the squirrels at bay. The same cannot be said for Tobi who seems to be quite afraid of the squirrels after her experience last year with them.

So now, the highlight of the last week:

First Black-Eyed Penny Bloom

It’s the first Black-Eyed Penny bloom! Considering I planted these late in July I wasn’t expecting much to come of them. They are the cutest little flower, and I love the colouring. I guess they are called Black-Eyed Pennies for a reason!

I’m going to go ahead and call the gardening season for 2013 almost at an end.  We will soon be having frosts in the evening and at that point the growing season will be over. I have big plans for the garden next year as well as potentially planting a small plot (or a big one, depending on how everything goes!) Details on the changes to my garden will come over the winter months as I plan. Looking forward to doing it again next year.

A Stroll to Celebrate the First Day of Fall

This Sunday past was officially the first day of Fall (though you wouldn’t really know it around here!). Being that Fall is my favourite season, I decided I wanted to celebrate in some way. As a result, Jay and I ended up heading to Starbucks for some pumpkin spice lattes and going for a stroll through Springbank Park and along the Thames River.

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It was a beautiful morning even though it was a little bit on the cloudy side. The late were delicious and the park was humming with activity, which was great considering it was a Sunday morning. And this humming activity didn’t just mean people!

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Squirrel scampering off to hide his chestnut
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Geese everywhere!

There was very little in terms of changing leaves around the park, but it was beautiful nevertheless. There were peeks of oranges and reds and yellows and I managed to catch a bit of it on camera while we were walking through the park.

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Little bit of red…
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…and a peek of some orange

The park also offers several kilometers of paths along the Thames and we took to those for a little while as well. We have had a lot of stormy weather recently and the river was quite high and moving very quickly. I was thankful for the fences along most of the path (at least the part we travelled).

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High water to the left…
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…and to the right
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There is normally a sandbar here…

I think the highlight of the walk though (aside from the quality time with my significant other, being as it was his first weekend home after being away at work for two weeks) was the crowd of ducks along the edge of the river.

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A duck party!

Some were sleeping, some were feeding, preening, and others seemed to be just hanging out – playing it cool. They were mainly mallards both male and female, although there were a couple we couldn’t place and a lone Canada Goose joining the crowd. It looked like a huge planned social gathering and it was kind of cute. They made me smile and we stayed there watching them for some time.

I guess last but not least, I can’t forget the little surprise we found across the river from us while we were walking.

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Abandoned house across the river

I think we sometimes forget that decay can be its own kind of beautiful. The house across the river was boarded up and falling apart, but there was so much detail and character in that place that I think if it could be accessed (I’m really not sure)  that some amazing photos could be taken. In the meantime though, I guess I can continue to appreciate it from afar.

It was a fantastic first day of fall to walk and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I hope Jay had a good time as well because I hope to do it again soon.

Summer is Ending and Fall Begins

I came to the realization recently that summer is truly coming to an end. You may ask what made me come to  this realization?  Well, let me tell you. I wake up in the mornings at 6:00am and it is STILL DARK. Not to mention the mornings are SO COLD! I have enjoyed waking up and seeing the sunrise each morning when I open my eyes all summer. It has saddened me quite a bit. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not hating on fall and winter at all. In fact, Fall is actually my favourite season. I was saddened by this realization because it means my season stuggles with my moods will begin soon.

Though I have no official diagnosis it is akin to (or may actually be) Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD (link). Starting about mid-fall, I get lethargic, feeling generally low and just downright miserable. It becomes a struggle every day to get up in the morning and go about my daily activities. I have tried many suggested remedies, but I have yet to find something that helps me. Mind you, I have a habit of not giving things enough of a chance to work. The main thing I haven’t tried is light therapy, but getting started with that is a bit on the pricy side. This has been a personal struggle for years and it feels like it gets worse each year.

If it wasn’t for Jay and my mom and my closest friends being so understanding and supportive I don’t know that I could handle the winter season as well as I have in the past. They are my rocks through this tough season. This year, it is even going so far as Jay helping me to figure out what things can be done to make me feel better and making things easier through the dark winter months. It even includes looking into that pricy light therapy more. We have come up with several new possibilities and I am willing to give them all a shot if it means a less depressing cold season this year. It seems there may be a serious lifestyle change in my future.

Although I know I have some struggles ahead of me this fall and winter, I am still looking forward to the crisp fall weather, the leaves turning bright beautiful colours, and even the first snowfall and mahor snowstorm. I am also looking forward to some wonderful evenings curled up with a cup of tea and a good book or some stitching. I’m hoping this year is even just a little bit easier than years past!

A Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

It completely went over my head as I posted my last post that it was my 100th post! It’s an exciting milestone for me as I never really expected to keep this up as long as I have. Next up, a year of blogging! Whee!

Anyways, back to the reason for this post. This past Sunday I finally got out and about using my new camera. I have had it for almost a month now, and every single time I have wanted to get out either the weather has been awful or something else comes up. The fact that we only had a couple of days last month without rain definitely didn’t help matters. Anyways, we went for a fall stroll in my “backyard” with my favourite model – Oyster Boy. Here are some of my favourite shots!

Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

Fall Stroll with Oyster Boy

Obviously, Oyster Boy had as great a time as we did getting out and finally enjoying some proper crisp fall weather.  Of course, clicking on the photos will link you to my Flickr account where you can see the full res photos. I am hoping to get out more now, and look forward to some great winter photo opportunities!