Tuesday, June 26, 2007

My trip to Cowtown

The picture to the left is Upper Kananaskis Lake. Apparently they had filmed a part of X2 here (yes, it's the scene where the plane goes into the water). You can't really tell, but the water's a lighter blue colour, and that's because the water's glacier fed. We hiked along the edge of the lake. It was 15km, not too much elevation, but still a loooong walk nonetheless. (Photo stolen from my friend RO who suggested the hike).

Shopping booty (BTW, PST-free shopping can really go to one's head; I really wasn't saving that much!):
  • 3 tops and 2 two dresses from H&M
  • Lots of underthings from La Senza (hey, they had a sale!)
  • A Tempurpedic travel sized pillow (for Paris and other trips, now I don't have to pack my regular pillow!)
  • A cute pair of really light and comfy sandals made by Naot, from Gravity Pope
  • A pair of Foxy Jeans from Unlimited Blue (for those of you who live in Calgary, this place rules!)
  • Body lotion from Origins
  • Lip Glass from MAC
What I won't miss about Calgary:
  • mosquitoes
  • sleeping on a lumpy futon mattress
  • the dry air
  • the fact that it always seems windy there
All-in-all, not a bad trip. I got to hang out with my good friend L, and Hubby did his male bonding thing with his friends, and visited his family. My mom came along, and although she was staying with a friend of hers, the logistics got a little bit complicated. But it certainly was interesting shopping with her. She even found something at Purr (another trendy store on 17th, love their stuff!)

Friday, June 22, 2007


I love H&M.

That is all.

Monday, June 18, 2007

This 'n that

Right. So this is what's been happening so far in my life.

1. Heath
Okay, I won't kid you. Finding out I have high cholesterol unnerved me a bit. Coupled with finding out that Sarah had died from her battle with cancer (and I think I was also battling PMS mood swings), I became a tad paranoid and ran to the doctor for... mild tendinitis in the wrist, aka wrist strain.

I noticed that I had an itchy spot on my wrist, and after a bit of prodding a poking around, I thought that I had a small lump in my wrist. Well to make a long story short, the lump turned out to be a bone, and now my doctor thinks I'm a hypochondriac.

I've been trying to find ways lower my cholesterol. I do feel that my high cholesterol is a result of genetics, but that shouldn't stop me from trying to be healthier. So far, I've found out that almonds help lower cholesterol, so I've been eating a small handful every day. We also trying to figure out which type of soluble fibres I should be eating more of, like oat bran. I don't anticipate changing my diet drastically, but I aim at lowering my consumption of saturated fats and salt, and eat less junk food while still maintaining a healthy diet.

If anyone has any bright ideas to help me lower my cholesterol, pass them on to me.

2. School
I've been feeling a little bit depressed lately because I didn't feel that my project was moving forward. However, I had a good talk with my client in Toronto yesterday, and a lot of things became much clearer for me. I now feel like things are back on track, and my motivation has returned.

3. Work
This thing about being in a leadership role is tricky business. I don't always feel that I'm doing the right thing, or that I even know what to do. Frantic prayers to God have become a daily thing, but I'm slowly plodding along and learning as I go. I'll be taking a couple of management workshops next month, so that should be interesting.

Other than that, I'm pretty busy as I have a couple of really tight deadlines coming up before my bit trip to Par-ee!

4. Family
Yesterday was Father's Day, and I did my due diligence and took my dad out for dinner. We had actually commented to friends of ours how whenever we go out for family dinner, one of us (me, my mom or my sister) always invariably ends up arguing with my dad in the car. It's a time honoured family tradition. Fortunately, last night was fairly peaceful.

Later this week, we will be going to Calgary to visit hubby's family. Notable things on the agenda include making a trip to H&M, and a 5 hour hike in the mountains. Hubby's just informed me that it snowed again, so the trail will be nice and muddy and wet when we go.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

A couple of articles

This post is more for me than anyone else, but please feel free to comment on the articles I've posted.

Ever since I've been promoted to Team Lead, I've been trying to make myself into a better leader. I'm not perfect, or anywhere near it. But I'm trying. And I need all the help I can get.

How to Be a Good Boss

The hardest thing for me to do on this list is "12. Learn to be an effective listener."

Other people are not broken

This really speaks to me as I know I tend to have a condescending attitude: "Forget your desire to alter other people’s behaviors to suit your own prejudices, wishes, and beliefs."

Rest in peace Sarah

I've been reading Sarah Toller's blog for the past year. She had chronicled her battle with malignant melanoma, a type of skin cancer.

Today, at age 30, she passed away wither her husband and mother at her side.

Sarah was a beautiful person, both inside and out, and a very brave woman in spite of her illness. Please take a moment to read her blog. I'm hoping that someone may learn from her story. I certainly did.

Monday, June 11, 2007

High Cholesterol

Yup, apparently I have high cholesterol, according to my doctor anyways. It's not so high that I should be worried, but I do need to start watching my food intake a little more closely. My doctor was a bit puzzled that a mid-thirties, healthy female should have high cholesterol, but fact are facts. Fortunately, my levels are just above the maximum healthy levels, so I'm pretty confident that I can get them back down to normal.

From this site, I found some screening criteria for high cholesterol, and I suppose I do fall into a risk category:

If any of the following apply to you, talk to your doctor about having your cholesterol tested:
  • You are a woman over the age of 50. - Nope
  • You are a man over the age of 40. - Nope
  • You have cardiovascular disease. (You have angina, have had a heart attack, coronary bypass surgery, a stroke, angioplasty, atherosclerosis or peripheral vascular disease). - Nope
  • You have diabetes. - Nope
  • You have a first-degree relative (i.e. mother, father, sister or brother) with heart disease or high cholesterol. - Yup
Also talk to your doctor if you have two or more of the following:
  • You are overweight. The best way to determine if you are "overweight" is by calculating your Body Mass Index (BMI), or by measuring the fat around the waist (abdominal obesity). The waist circumference should be less than 102 cm for most men, and less than 88 cm for most women. - Nope
  • You are physically inactive: You perform less than 20 minutes of vigorous exercise three times per week or less than 30 minutes of moderate exercise per day. - Nope, I go to the gym about 3-4 times per week
  • You smoke. - Yuck. Nope.
  • You drink excessively. Moderate alcohol use - up to two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women and older people is not harmful for most adults. (A standard drink is one 12-ounce bottle of beer or wine cooler, one 5-ounce glass of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits). - Nope, not a drinker
  • You have high blood pressure. - Nope, normal.
So this is going to be a bit interesting. Before, I more or less ate what I wanted to eat, although I never ate a lot most of the time. I exercise. I have a fairly healthy diet. Okay, I eat a bit of junk, more than I should, but I don't think it's that bad. And except for one question, I responded negative to everything. So I think I'm fairly healthy.

Yet I still have high cholesterol. I sort of suspect that it maybe somewhat genetic. However, that's not a good enough excuse for me not to watch my diet a bit more.


Sunday, June 03, 2007

Watermark Restaurant

Tonight hubby and I went to the Watermark Restaurant on Kits Beach for hubby's birthday dinner. Today isn't hubby's birthday, it's a few days from now, but we decided to go tonight.

For starters, we had Lobster Dumplings. It tastes like lobster stuffed in a dumpling shell, with a bit of chili sauce. Pretty good. The New York steak that I had was very good, and done just how I asked it to be (medium). Hubby also enjoyed his sablefish dish. For dessert, we had a Strawberry Charlotte, which was some strawberry cheesecake layered with ladyfingers. Very yummy!

I give this place 8 out of 10. The food was very good. The only real complaint I had about this restaurant was that:
  1. They didn't serve any free bread. If I'm going to spend $100 on a meal, I think we should have gotten free something.
  2. Because it's right on the beach, you can see people on the beach in their bikinis and shorts, playing ball and paddling in the water. I don't know, but somehow this just felt like to me to have cheapened the ambiance, especially considering that I felt that anyone could have just walked into the restaurant straight from the beach. If I'm going to spend $30 on steak, I would have wanted the ambiance to be a little more sophisticated and a little less like a hot dog shack. (Just my two cents, take it or leave it)
Picture of the birthday boy:

Saturday, June 02, 2007

KOOKY: Golf!

Someone at work had arrange a golf outing for the people at work. So yesterday, we all trekked to the local public golf course and played golf.

I have to say that before yesterday, I was a golf virgin. I wasn't the only one; there were many others, and even one was in my group (he for some reason kept on hitting trees). The groups of 4 were arranged so that there was at least one person on each team who was deemed the "golf expert" and kept track of the score. We played a variation of Best Ball rules so that we'd continue to move along the course.

No one had showed me how to hold the golf club properly, so I ended up with a few scrapes and callouses and manged to take some skin off of my right thumb. But regardless, it was fun and the company was great.

Afterwards, we had a meal with the other groups and some more members of our team at work, so it was a real nice gathering, despite the less then stellar food and service. So a fun night all in all.

Some general odds-and-ends from yesterday:
  • After observing how some others do it, I managed to sort of figure out how to grip the club (although I still don't think it's entirely correct) and managed some decent shots. Well, I managed to move the ball forward, so big achievement in my books
  • My ball actually caught air once. I was chuffed about that
  • My teammates were amazed that I hit straight most of the time. Go figure
  • My best ball made it about 50-60 yards down the fairway.
Despite the fun, I don't think I'll ever take up golf as a hobby. It took us 4.5 hours to finish all 18 holes, and that was with cheating rules. It was warm and sunny out, and by the 14th hole or so, I wanted to just stop and go in, it was very fatiguing. I had to go pee, and I wasn't going to use the conveniently-placed Jiffy Johns. Plus, golf requires skill, and I have no patience nor talent for that sort of thing generally, which explains why I don't play sports.