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BC Weed smells like skunk, no joke! Theres a contractor staying across the way from us at our temporary living space and he's a chronic smoker. He even smokes at 4:30am before he heads off to work. They should really start drug testing those guys as well as regular employees, its a safety risk no matter who they are! Yesterday he was sitting outside and someone came to visit him. I guess he was rolling some more and the guy says "You making cereal?" and he laughs and goes "Yeah". I was thinkin to myself 'yeah weedies!" Damn potheads.

So we've been here for over a month now and we all like Princeton. It's warm and dry most the time, it barely ever rains. We hit a bit of a cool spell this weekend which kinda sucked because it was the local music festival. They set up two stages on the main street and get a bunch of bands to come and play. Its all traditional music so you get a lot of country music but there was some great Celtic bands, an awesome Native American guitar/fiddle player and some cool dance troupes that sporadically danced on the street. The best part is the whole thing is free, so you can come and go as you please without having to worry that any time spent away from it is money lost. I planned out our weekend in a way that we caught all the Celtic music and we also got to hear some great Sea Chanteys yesterday morning. It was really good because everyone gathered in the gazebo they have on the main street and the acoustics in there are way wicked for that. The people holding the Chantey workshop had really great voices too. Hopefully we'll get to go again next year because I'm looking forward to seeing some of the same  bands play again. It's a shame that they only get 30 minutes to an hour to play, depending on the band. I would have liked to hear a whole set from some of them. We did manage to get a CD for two of the bands we saw.

There is lots to do here, Princeton has many events over the course of the year. A lot of their events are from May-June when we couldn't be here but we'll definitely check them out next year. Coming up next weekend now is the Agricultural Fall Fair, so that might be pretty interesting to check out. Then next week the town celebrates 150 years, and I hope we're around to check that out. If not we'll be heading back to Ontario to get the rest of our stuff so we can move into a house. I'm really not looking forward to that long drive again! Especially since our stay in Ontario will probably be very short.

I've been spending most of my time here enjoying the nice weather outside and catching up on a lot of reading. It does get pretty hot here sometimes but walking is also a regular daily thing. The stores are all within close walking distance so we barely take the car out for anything. We've really only used it for the few times we've gone looking at houses. We found one house we really like, but house prices are through the roof compared to what we're used to. We're hitting some snags in that department but I'm hoping everything will turn out for the best. It's a big commitment and none of us are taking it lightly. It gets pretty stressful.

I hope everything is going good with all of you guys. I know I have a lot more to say about this town, but its hard to think of it all and cram it in one post. I can't wait to get the pictures I've taken up on flickr for everyone to see. Take care and I'll post again soon, hopefully with more info and some good news!
I know I promised an epic entry on twitter, but I had one started and accidentally closed the tab and instead of saving a new draft it restored an old entry. So instead of writing it all over again I'm just gonna be brief.


The major thing going on in my life right now is the fact that I will soon be moving. Not just down the street or to a new town, but to a whole new province. My Dad has been laid off for a year and a half and finally has accepted a new job. The catch - it's located in British Columbia and re-location is the only option. The destination - Princeton (Not to be confused with the stuck-up US School) which is located in the Okanagan Valley in Southern British Columbia. Princeton is a magical place of temperate climate, little rain (any other year but this one), loads of wildlife (deer, elk, mountain goat, bighorn sheep, wolf, coyote, etc), fresh fruit & veg including grapes! and many many places to explore by car, foot and bicycle. The downside of this is I'll be even further from my few Canadian friends and most (99%) of my family. But I get to reinvent myself in a new place where no one knows me! Maybe I'll even have a social life? a job? finally move out on my own? Only time will tell!
Sean is awesome....



that is all.

2009

Book List

I Am Legend - Richard Matheson
The Martian Chronicles - Ray Bradbury
Stardust - Neil Gaiman
Alice Through the Looking Glass - Lewis Carroll
About a Boy - Nick Hornby
I, Robot - Issac Asimov
The Magician's Nephew - C.S. Lewis
The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe - C.S. Lewis
The Horse & His Boy - C.S. Lewis
Prince Caspian - C.S. Lewis
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader - C.S. Lewis
The Silver Chair - C.S. Lewis
The Last Battle - C.S. Lewis
Bourne Supremacy - Robert Ludlum
Northern Lights - Phillip Pullman
The Subtle Knife - Phillip Pullman
The Amber Spyglass - Philip Pullman
Lyra's Oxford - Philip Pullman
Twilight - Stephenie Meyer
Eclipse - Stephenie Meyer
New Moon - Stephenie Meyer
Breaking Dawn - Stephenie Meyer
Blood & Chocolate - Annette Curtis Klause
House of Night: Marked - P.C. & Kristin Cast
House of Night: Betrayed - P.C. & Kristin Cast
House of NIght: Chosen - P.C. & Kristin Cast
House of Night: Untamed - P.C. & Kristin Cast
House of Night: Hunted - P.C. & Kristin Cast
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas - John Boyne
Second Glance - Jodi Picoult
Song of the Humpback Whale - Jodi Picoult
Pay it Forward - Catherine Ryan Hyde
Anita Blake Book One: Guilty Pleasures - Laurell K Hamilton
Edgar Sawtell - David Wroblewski
Anita Blake Book Two: The Laughing Corpse - Laurell K Hamilton
Anita Blake Book Three: Circus of the Damned - Laurell K Hamilton
Anita Blake Book Four: Lunatic Cafe - Laurell K Hamilton
Anita Blake Book Five: Bloody Bones - Laurell K Hamilton
Jodi Picoult - Handle With Care

Year in Review

01. What did you do in 2009 that you'd never done before?
Got a 'job' as treasurer for a local artisan shop. (& sell prints there too)

02. Did you keep your New Year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Don't make them, they're silly. If I want to change something I work on it when I think to change it, I don't use a new year as an excuse.

03. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Nope

04. Did anyone close to you die?
My Great Grandmother.

05. What countries did you visit?
Just Canada, where I live anyway!

06. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009?
A nicer summer would be wonderful.

07. What dates from 2009 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
I don't think there are any, half the time I don't even know what day it is anymore anyway.

08. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I started selling prints of my work. Truly am starving artist now.

09. What was your biggest failure?
I can't recall any major failures.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Still having major issues with my shoulder. Going to get it checked out again in a week.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Cotton Carrier System - Expensive but very nifty camera harness. Takes the weight of the camera off the shoulders & neck. & Sigma 70-300mm APO DG lens.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
A neighbour led us to a colony of Bald Eagles. Nothing major but pretty freaking awesome.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
An artist in the group I'm part of now. I'm still very angry and the situation still needs to be resolved.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Artist shop & camera gear.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Getting really close to Bald Eagles (still not close enough for me) & being able to visit the Wye Marsh Birds of Prey show again.

16. What song(s) will always remind you of 2009?
Maybe anything off the New Moon soundtrack. I don't usually think of years when I hear songs though.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? happier
ii. thinner or fatter? thinner
iii. richer or poorer? bout the same

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Wildlife Photography. (Still need pictures of those elusive foxes!)

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Sitting at home waiting for the rain to stop.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
Christmas is over, we didn't do much. Dinner with the family on Boxing Day.

21. What LJ users did you meet?
None, but I ran into a guy from flickr in Wal-mart one day.

22. Did you fall in love in 2009?
Only with photography.

23. How many one-night stands?
None.

24. What was your favorite TV program?
Don't watch much of anything.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Nope.

26. What was the best book you read?
I read a lot but none of them were super amazing.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Iron & Wine are pretty good.

28. What did you want and get?
A better harness for my camera & telephoto lens.

29. What did you want and not get?
An Ipod touch would be nice.

30. What was your favorite film of this year?
I didn't really watch many movies from 2009. The new Harry Potter was pretty good though.

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I probably did what I'd do on a normal day. 25.

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If I had been able to get some of the shots I wanted to. Or if my lens was functioning properly to begin with!

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2009?
comfortable.

34. What kept you sane?
Photography & Music.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Why would I waste my time with something like this?

36. What political issue stirred you the most?
Humans are stupid.

37. Who did you miss?
I miss a lot of people, but realize it doesn't do to dwell on things like this either.

38. Who were the best new people you met?
I didn't really meet anyone new.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2009.
If you want to do it, just do it & don't let people tell you you can't.

Just curious...

1. Who are you?
2. Are we friends?
3. When and how did we meet?
4. Do you have a crush on me?
5. Would you kiss me?
6. Describe me in one word.
7. What was your first impression?
8. Do you still think that way about me now?
9. What reminds you of me?
10. If you could give me anything what would it be?
11. How well do you know me?
12. When's the last time you saw me?
13. Ever wanted to tell me something but couldn't?
14. Are you going to put this on your LiveJournal and see what I say about you?

Chaos

So my life lately has been incredibly busy. I never thought I'd see the day to be honest and I can't remember the last time I've been bored. Lots of things have changed for me over the summer (if you can even call it that) and I'm still living in this stupid ass small town.

In August I was approached by someone from the town to attend a meeting of artists. A friend and old school teacher had mentioned my name and that I was a photographer. I was curious to see what it was all about so I went and eventually that lead to me being on the board of directors/treasurer for a group of artisans. We have our own shop in town where we sell our stuff and work a few times a month on a volunteer basis. It takes up a lot of my time between taking pictures, getting prints and frames, working a few shifts a month and working with spreadsheets and making deposits and filling out cheques. Not to mention the monthly meetings.

Speaking of taking pictures, last year for Christmas I was given a new dSLR camera. Back in April I purchased a 70-300mm lens for my birthday present to myself. All of this eventually lead to discovering birding. I've clocked roughly 1400km on my bike and I'm not sure how many on foot. Between biking around town and hiking the local trails we've identified and taken photos and videos of 90 different birds. I've also lost maybe 10-15lbs doing all this!

Then if I couldn't make my life any more crazy I noticed an ad in the local paper. Another old teacher of mine is looking for people to get together and start an acting group. This is one of the things I discovered late in my school career and by the time I realized I really enjoyed it the drama club came to an end due to lack of interest. It really sucked when that happened cause it was one of the few things I actually enjoyed doing at my school. So this new opportunity to get back to acting is something I'm definitely going to take up. I've emailed in to say I'm interested but unfortunately I was unable to attend the first meeting due to a family emergency. Now I'm just waiting to hear again when the next meeting will be. I think this will be a good way to spend the winter months and hopefully will also help increase my brain activity having to memorize some lines.

Finally last month my Great Grandmother died at the age of 96, 5 months short of 97 years old. We drove down to Aurora for the funeral (roughly 17 hours of driving) and spent some time with my grandparents along the way. The funeral was ok, I got to see a lot of family I otherwise never see and probably won't see again in my lifetime. Its kind of a relief that she died because she had Alzheimer's really bad and she stopped talking and eating, so it was really hard on my grandmother. The next little while are going to be hard for her, because in the last couple years her mother was a huge part of her life. She'll be ok though because Doug (her partner) is great and he really looks out for her.

The rest of the time spent down south was nice and relaxing. We stayed with my Grandpa in Orillia before and after the funeral. When all the funeral stuff was over we just hung out with him and did stuff together. We took him to Wye mash to watch the birds of prey show (which was really awesome again) and we went to Barrie to see my aunt and found a wetlands there that's really great and has loads of wildlife that visit there. We even took him geocaching, which is something else we've really gotten into this summer. Using the GPS you enter coordinates and then go out and find containers hidden by people with tradeable items and/or a logbook where you sign your username from geocaching.com then you go on the website and log your visit again on there. It's incredibly fun and my grandpa enjoyed it so much he's out doing it on his own now. We left Orillia and stayed a few nights in Capreol. My grandma was disappointed we were only going to stay for 2 so we decided to stay for one more and spend more time with her. She was still pretty down from the funeral and all that. We went shopping with her and went out to dinner and all that stuff, then Doug took my brother and I to some places around Capreol to look for wildlife. Since it was so cold though the birds were off hiding in the trees though, so all I managed to get pictures of was the fog rising off the lake (which looked pretty cool).

So my summer (if you can honestly call it that) was pretty hectic and I have a feeling my winter is more than likely going to be just as chaotic. I have a whole bunch of things I have to get done and want to do and I don't even know if I'll have time to do them. I've got a to-do list started and hopefully eventually I'll get around to doing it all. As it is this blog took up enough time that I probably had time to cross a few of them off the list. Oh well...

Zen

You make me feel like a kid again... one who's lost their favourite teddy bear and is still pining after it while the new fluffy one is cradled in the arm. I fucking miss you and I hardly knew you. Hell I didn't even know your name until after the fact. I just wish you knew that even after all these years that you're always there in my mind, the one true bright shining star that I will always remember.

Year in Review...

Best Time: September's trip to southern Ontario. I don't think I've ever had a better  vacation in my life. Either that or I'm just beginning to appreciate things more now that I'm older.

Worst Time: February 15th when my Uncle passed away. I still think about him every day.

Something re-discovered: Bike riding & Hiking. These are two things I really enjoy and have forgotten about.

Best Online Experience: Researching digital SLR cameras with my Dad. We don't really spend a lot of time together.

Worst Online Experience: Finding out a game server I enjoyed playing on had to be shut down due to legal issues.

Biggest Accomplishment: Establishing a tentative photography business. So far my only customers are family and I don't charge them but I'm really enjoying the practice. Honing my skills in both photography and digital editing as I go along.

Biggest Disappointment: My dad getting laid off in October. He's still out of work.

(Best Purchases does not necessarily mean a new item, simply one new to my owning.)

Best Overall Purchase: My laptop!

Best Novel: The Ice & Fire series, this story really sucked me in.

Best NonFiction Book: Night by Elie Wissel. A non sugarcoated recollection of his time in a concentration camp. I don't think I've ever read a more human book. Not many people would admit to the things that went through his head during that period of his life.

Best CD: Red Rock by Northern Cree. I could probably listen to these guys forever...

Best older CD by a band I've finally checked out: Living in Clip by Ani DiFranco, probably one of the best collections of her live performances. Also contains most of my favourite songs.

Best DVD (released this year): Looking back I don't recall any good movies released in 2008, none that I've watched as of yet anyway. The only 2008 DVD I've actually purchased is Where the Light is a concert DVD by John Mayer.

Best DVD (not released this year): Spring Summer Fall Winter and Spring... this movie was really captivating and beautiful. Really well done in my opinion. I could watch it again for sure.

Best Software: uTorrent, for where would I be without it? This isn't new to me this year, I just couldn't survive the years without it! Heh.

Best New Computer Game: I haven't played any 2008 titles. The Witcher was probably the best game I played all year though.

Hopes for 2009: That I make it through the year unscathed. Ohh and maybe a pony!

2008 Book List

Didn't reach my goal of doubling last year's list, oh well...

A Clash of Kings - George R.R. Martin
A Storm of Swords - George R.R. Martin
A Feast for Crows - George R.R. Martin
Girl, Interrupted - Susanna Kaysen
A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess
Clapton: The Autobiography - Eric Clapton
My Sister's Keeper - Jodi Picoult
Bridge to Terabithia – Katherine Patterson
The Spiderwick Chronicles: The Field Guide – Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black
The Spiderwick Chronicles: The Seeing Stone – Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black
The Spiderwick Chronicles: Lucinda's Secret – Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black
The Spiderwick Chronicles: The Ironwood Tree – Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black
The Spiderwick Chronicles: The Wrath of Mulgarath – Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black
The Amulet of Samarkand – Jonathan Stroud
The Golem's Eye – Jonathan Stroud
Ptolemy's Gate – Jonathan Stroud
P.S. I Love You... - Cecelia Ahern
Into the Wild - Jon Krakauer
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Bad Beginning - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Reptile Room - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Wide Window - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Miserable Mill - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Austere Academy - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Ersatz Elevator - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Vile Village - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Hostile Hospital - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Carnivorous Carnival - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Slippery Slope - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Grim Grotto - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The Penultimate Peril - Lemony Snicket
A Series of Unfortunate Events - The End - Lemony Snicket
Night - Elie Wiesel


Happy New Year everyone

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