Skate away

There’s a Joni Mitchell song called River, where she says “I wish I had a river I could skate away on”. Now, I don’t really want to skate away, but I love, love, love that song and I think about it every time I go skating. Sometimes I sing it too!

My friend Jess and I went skating on the Rideau canal, which is the largest skateway in the world. The canal was created in 1892 to connect Ottawa and Kingston. It is 200km long. The skateway, however, is not that long! It is used for boats in the summer and skating in the winter.

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It’s been really cold lately, and while I’m not a winter hater, I have no desire to spend the day outside when you turn into a popsicle after 3 minutes. The day we went out was lovely. Not too cold, no wind, my toes didn’t even get cold!

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The best thing about skating on the Rideau canal, if you ask me, is the Beaver tails. Beaver tails are an amazing Canadian invention. Stretched out, fried dough covered in cinnamon and sugar, shaped like a beaver’s tail.

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I try to go at least once a year, because it would be a shame not too! Plus, skating is the only sport I actually do really well, so I like to get the most out of it!

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Playing dress up

I’ve been wearing dresses all month, because December is Dressember! Now, while this is surely much easier for people who live in a warmer climate, I’m enjoying myself. There were a few very, very cold days where I had to add several layers over my dresses and tights before I could go outside, but it’s worth it.

Here’s a recap of the last couple of weeks or so. For the first part of the month, head on over here.

Day 10 – My Minnie Mouse look.

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Day 11 – My birthday dress! I bought this dress from Modcloth and wore it for the first time on my birthday in November.

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Day 12 – A photo in my classroom before the students showed up. The only calm moment of the day!

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Day 13 – My first pair of coloured tights. I wasn’t sure the look would suit me, but I like it!

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Day 14 – It was so cold, but I wanted a picture outside!

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Day 15 – A little photo shoot in the snow!

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Day 16 – Purple for Monday!

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Day 16 – I’ve had this dress for years, but last year, when I did Dressember, it was a little too tight! I’m very happy it fits properly again.

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Day 18 – Another dress I’ve had for a while. I’m loving how Dressember is making me rediscover some of my dresses!

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Day 19 – Two looks for the 19th, a day look and an evening look.

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Day 20 – Some sparkle for Christmas brunch!

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What’s a girl to do?

I’m not a winter-hater. When you live in a country where there are four seasons, it’s either embrace it or hate it. If you hate it, you’re miserable for a long time because let’s face it, winter seems longer than all the other seasons combined.

But.

Last week, there was a really mild, spring like day. You could hear water dripping everywhere and the air smelled different. It made me think of wearing skirts and dresses with boots but no tights (my favourite time of year, both in fall and winter).

I’m trying really hard not to be sick of winter.

I really wanted to go snowboarding, and I did, last Saturday. That was the last winter thing I really wanted to do. So now, I’m ready for crocuses, Easter eggs and rain boots.

Then today, this.

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Yeah. All day.

It was a fun day at work, because it was our winter activity day, so the snow was good for that. The kids could go sking, skating, tube sledding or snowshoeing. I was with the skating group and we went to an indoor rink, so the snow just attacked us on the walk there and back. The other groups got drenched. It was like huge, falling, slush flakes.

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Although fun, it was one of those days. You know, with a few sucky moments that take all your energy. Report card glitches. Running around all day. Forgetting my lunch. Having my hair turn crunchy from the snow/hairspray combination.

On the plus side, the school day ended with a snowball fight. Now, snowball throwing is not usually allowed, but there were four teachers throwing snow at each other, so the few kids who had not yet been picked up by their parents were thrilled. As an added bonus, that takes care of number 69 on my list of 101 things to do in 1001 days!

After work, I figured I would go home, relax, then go to yoga.

Not so much.

I had to stop at the store to get a few things. (You would think I’d wait. But no, I just had to get toothpaste. Today.) When I got back in the car, I sat there eating Easter eggs, waiting for the windows to de-fog. I realized it might not be a great idea to drive to yoga, but I wasn’t ready to give up just yet.

I got home, only to notice that the driveway had not been cleared. Great. I tried to back up, and promptly got stuck. Like, stuck, stuck. Spinning wheels, flying slush stuck. Two really, really nice people stopped to push me out of my slush hole. Karma, send them something wonderful please.

So now, here I am, after a topsy turvy day, needing yoga. But I can’t go to yoga. So what’s a girl to do? That’s right. Wine.

Just call me Kristy Yamaguchi

When I was a kid, I loved figure skating. I watched all kinds of competitions on tv and my parents even took my sister and I to see different shows, like the Icecapades and Stars on Ice. My favourite was always Kristy Yamaguchi. I wanted to be just like her. I even took figure skating lessons. Only for one year though. When it came to doing some of the faster, face-close-t0-the-ice thing, I changed my mind and took dance lessons.

Even though I’m not a famous figure skater, I still love to skate. I’m not exactly athletic, and it’s always been the only winter sport I do really well.

One of the good things about living near the capital is having access to the world’s largest skating rink. It’s a canal that connects the Ottawa river to Lake Ontario. Part of the canal that goes through the city is turned into a 7.8km skateway.

I love skating on the canal. There’s so much to see! I went yesterday and it was such a nice day out. I would have loved to take better pictures, but I didn’t take my new camera, just my little point and shoot.

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There’s a festival going on called Winterlude. There are all sorts of activities and shows to attend. There are also ice sculptures, which are pretty amazing.

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Sure, it’s cold and it snows a lot, but that’s winter. It’s staying for a while, so I might as well enjoy it!

Baby it’s cold outside

This has been one of those weeks that wouldn’t end. My birthday was on Monday, and that was definitely the high point. After that, it was a long blur of sneezing, a runny nose and waking up each morning to realize it wasn’t Friday yet. On top of that, I lost a student today (but then I found her). I kind of felt like this all week.

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But today was Friday and that meant I could relax. I missed yoga. I didn’t go all week because I was sick. I felt much better today and I knew yoga would make me feel almost human again.

Walking into the hot room was the best part of my day. It was so cold today! Winter is definitely coming and I can see myself going to yoga more and more, just for the heat! It was the first time all day that I actually felt warm. Then hot. Really hot.

Class was amazing. It was a flow class, which was great. I’m not sure I could have managed a power class. I did a toe stand, then actually made my way into flying crow! It felt awesome. I tried to take a picture when I got home, but sadly, my inner crow was asleep. Or maybe dead. I fell down pretty hard and I think I squashed it.

This is what it looks like. Yes, yes. I looked as awesome as this. Ok, so maybe not. My head tends to get pretty close to the ground and I’m not sure what my back leg looks like. Also, I can only do it on one side. But I felt like I looked like this.

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I know, I’m fabulous. Namaste!