1) How did you meet your hubby and how long did it take for you to realize that he is "The One?"
We met through mutual friends of ours. They set up a blind date and we went to their house for supper one night. We had been talking on the phone for for a few weeks before we met and then decided it was time to meet. Even though we lived 4 minutes away from each other, we had never crossed paths before. Our phone calls lasted 4 hours or more sometimes! John says he was hooked by the first phone call. I knew there was something special when I spoke to him the first time, but I think I knew he was "THE ONE" the first time we met. I know it sounds silly and cliche...and right out of a movie, but it's true! There was just something so sweet, and genuine about him.
2) What was the hardest part about leaving your "city life" for the island? What was the easiest part about it?
I think the hardest part of leaving my "city life" was leaving behind a job where I knew I had a paycheck every two weeks! I also knew I'd be leaving behind some very good friends, the access to movie theatres, lots of great restaurants, shopping, etc. In the city, it's so easy to get what you want, when you want it. The easiest part about leaving my city life was leaving behind the traffic, gruelling commuting to and from work, the congestion (too many people!!), the hectic lifestyle. I don't miss living in the city. If I want the amenities of the city, I just go for a visit. I go for a weekend, a few days, or a week...but there's a sense of relief knowing that I will be coming back to the island.
3) If you could travel to one place that you've never been, where would it be? What one place that you've already visited would you want to go back to?
I have always wanted to go to Australia ever since I was five years old. I have a tremendous weak spot the Aussie accent! LOL! Plus, I have always wanted to see the Great Barrier Reef, the Outback, and all the neat wildlife that exists there. I've also wanted to go to New Zealand because I've heard from some kiwi friends that NZ is absolutely breathtaking.
Hmmm...the next question is soooooo difficult! If I could revisit one place I've been to, it would have to be San Jose, Batangas (the Philippines). That's where my grandparents are from. I've got extended family there. It's such a great place, where people are so warm and have really big hearts. I can't explain it. It's just so down to earth and there, the less you have, the more you give. It was interesting to finally get in touch with my 'roots'. I'd been to my dad's homeland (Trinidad and Tobago) many times, so visiting my mom's country for the first time was special.
4) How did you begin hosting/tutoring students in your home and what do you most enjoy about it?
Short version or the long one? After university, I supply taught at a public school and the kids were brutal. It was the hardest job of my life, but I loved it because of the kids. However, I decided I didn't want to teach in public school because the kids we had there were such a challenge. I ended up going to Japan to teach and it was such a great experience. I loved my life in Japan. After two years, I returned home due to family reasons. My dad had gotten sick and that made me homesick and I decided to return to Toronto. I continued to teach ESL (English as a Second Language) at a school in Toronto and after 4 or 5 years, I moved to Manitoulin Island. I have wanted to open up my own Study Holiday Program and this is what I did. We host students and I teach them ESL. I follow a curriculum that I have tailored for each student, depending on their needs.
The thing I enjoy the most about my job is that the students not only learn the English language, but they also learn about life, friendship, Canadian culture, life in a rural North American setting, etc. Seeing the students' progress is remarkable. It's such a rewarding feeling.
5) What would your pefect day be like?
A perfect day would be just spending some quiet time with my husband! Perhaps going for a walk on the beach with Hubby and our pup...watching the sunset :) I know...simple and corny. That's me!
|Your Personality Is Like Ecstasy|
You're usually feeling the love for the world around you - you want to hug everyone.
And while you're usually content to sit back and view the world with wonder...
Sometimes you're world becomes very overwhelming and a little scary.
|You Are a Hot Fudge Sundae|
Classic, simple, and divine.
Why mess with perfection?
I used to be exotic, adventurous, spontaneous, full of surprises. Now I'm just a hotfudge sundae...LOL!
1. Add a direct link to your post below the name of the person who tagged you. Include the state and country you’re in.
Nicole (Sydney, Australia)
2. List out your top 5 favorite places to eat at your location.
#1 The Garden's Gate Restaurant on beautiful Manitoulin Island.
#2 Royal Michael's Bay Golf and Country Club Resort also on Manitoulin Island.
Royal Michael's Bay is a great place for special events, with its enchanting view of the water. What a relaxing place to dine. Just soak up the scenery and enjoy a nicely prepared meal. My choice: Pasta Napolitana (tomato sauce and fresh basil).
#3 Cafe Santropol- located in Montreal, Quebec. Since I'm a Montrealer by heart (okay, so I wasn't born there, but I spent most of my life there!!), I recommend one of my absolute favourite places to dine.
This place is cool, trendy, artsy...and a vegetarian's paradise. There are a few items on the menu that aren't vegetarian, but for the most part, you'll find heaps of selections for the vegetarian or vegan in your life ;) My pick: Midnight Spread (cream cheese, peanut butter, honey, nuts and raisins on traditional Santropol bread, served with fresh fruits and vegetables). To drink? How about a nice Chai latte?
3. Tag 5 other people (preferably from other countries/states) and let them know they’ve been tagged.
What I love most is that he's got these really great caption contests, where he PhotoShops himself into scenes of popular TV shows! Go check him out...and vote for me, while you're at it!!! No, you don't have to vote for me ;) Just check out his blog and keep going back because he's always got great stuff on there!
Q. What is your salad dressing of choice?
A. My homemade balsamic vinaigrette. It's deeeeelish!
Q. What is your favorite fast food restaurant?
A. Don't hate me...but I really don't like fast food :(
Q. What is your favorite sit-down restaurant?
A. The Garden's Gate Restaurant on beautiful Manitoulin Island ;)
Q. On average, what size tip do you leave at a restaurant?
A. Usually around 15% but more if service is excellent. I tend to be generous with tipping though.
Q. What food could you eat every day for two weeks and not get sick of?
A. Lasagna!! I'm with Karen on this one!
Q. What is your favorite type of gum?
A. Excel Peppermint (again, same as Karen)
Q. What is your wallpaper on your computer?
A. It was a wedding pic of ours, then a pic of my pup, then a pic of my 5 week old nephew. Now it's back to the original, generic Microsoft scene of the green hills and blue sky...because someone told me that a pic as my wallpaper would take up too much room and slow down my pc. I don't know if this is true, but I will be the first to admit that I am technologically challenged!!!
Q. How many televisions are in your house?
A. Two. One for watching TV and movies and one in the games room for our PS2.
Q. What’s your best feature?
A. Probably my lips? I have no idea!
Q. Have you ever had anything removed from your body?
A. HAHA! I once had an allergic reaction to earrings (hence the reason I cannot wear anything that is not 100% silver or 100% gold- no cheap cosmetic jewelry for this girl, unfortunately), so I had developped keloids on both ears. They were like little cysts and they had to be removed by cosmetic surgery. I think I was more horrified because I had to walk around with my ears bandaged for a few days! LOL!
Q. Which of your five senses do you think is keenest?
A. Smell. It's a curse. I am very sensitive when it comes to smell.
Q. When was the last time you had a cavity?
A. Probably in high school. I don't have much of a sweet tooth, so it helps.
Q. What is the heaviest item you lifted last?
A. Probably 60 + lbs. of wood! I had to lift some wood onto the splitter so I could split it and then pile it.
Q. Have you ever been knocked unconscious?
A. I can't remember! I once fell down the stairs at college and ended up with a huge egg shaped bump on my forehead. I smacked my head since I fell head first. I remember blackness, bells ringing in my ears, my head hurting and then there was this awfully white light. Then I had to write an exam...Don't remember much else!
Q. If it were possible, would you want to know the day you were going to die?
Q. Is love for real?
A. Very real.
Q. If you could change your first name, what would you change it to?
A. Hmm...I used to think I'd like to have been named Crystal Erika or Amber. I've grown accustomed to my name though, so regardless of how boring and common it is, I don't think I'd change it.
Q. What color do you think looks best on you?
Q. Have you ever swallowed a non-food item by mistake?
A. Probably, but I likely not on purpose!
Q. Have you ever saved someone’s life?
Q. Has someone ever saved yours?
Q. Would you walk naked for a half mile down a public street for $100,000?
A. Possibly, but I'd have to have a few martinis just before...and it would have to be a street where no one knows me! LOL!
Q. Would you kiss a member of the same sex for $100?
A. Oh sure. Why not?
Q. Would you allow one of your little fingers to be cut off for $200,000?
Q. Would you never blog again for $50,000?
A. That's a toughie. Maybe. Maybe not.
Q. Would you pose nude in a magazine for $250,000?
Q. Would you drink an entire bottle of hot sauce for $1000?
A: I would try, but it's doubtful that I'd be able to finish it.
Q. Would you, without fear of punishment, take a human life for $1,000,000?
A. Never. That is such a creepy question!!
Q. Would you give up watching television for a year for $25,000?
A. Sure. I don't watch much TV except for Grey's Anatomy. I'd only do it if Grey's Anatomy were cancelled.
Q. Give up MySpace forever for $30,000?
A. Sure. Never been on it.
Q. What is in your left pocket?
A. Right now, nothing. Wearing pyjamas now.
Q: Is Napoleon Dynamite actually a good movie?
A. Haven't seen it yet. Should I see it?
Q: Do you have hardwood or carpet in your house?
A. Both. The only rooms with carpet are the games room and the guest room.
Q: Do you sit or stand in the shower?
Q: Could you live with roommates?
A. I guess I already do.
Q: How many pairs of flip-flops do you own?
A. Way too many. Dressy, beach, casual, expensive, cheap...you name it.
Q: Last time you had a run-in with the cops?
A. Years ago, when I was in Montreal. It was Christmas time, I was in university, the roads were blocked for the parade and I went down a side street. There were cars parked on both sides of the road and then when I was making a right turn, some guy pulls out without signalling and then hits me as I'm turning. I was young and had never gotten in trouble with the police and didn't know what to do, so I kept driving! Minutes later, the police were chasing me with their sirens and lights going! I kept driving. Hey! I was nervous! When I did pull over, they told me in French, that a hit and run is a criminal offense. I explained my story and they saw that I was sort of in the right but I shouldn't have kept driving! LOL! By the damage, the insurance could see that the other driver hit me. I still don't know why I was the one who was nervous though! I still can't believe I kept driving!!!
Q: What do you want to be when you grow up?
A. Awwww...do I have to grow up?
Q: Friend you talked to?
A. My student's mom.
Q: Last person you called?
A. My sister-in-law in Kingston. I called to check in on my little nephew and to wish my SIL a happy birthday. Turns out her b-day is in 2 days. I'm a dummy.
Q. First place you went this morning?
Q: What can you not wait to do?
A: Have some quality time with just my Hubby. We're so gosh darn busy all the time.
Q: What's the last movie you saw?
A: The Fast and The Furious: Tokyo Drift. Hubby wanted to watch it :)
Q: Are you a friendly person?
A: I sure am!!!
I tag Ms. Mamma, Curiosity Killer, and Doggie Mama. Have fun!
-your student gets up on time for a change!
-you are driving on the highway and see a fox, six sandhill cranes, eight deer, and a wolf...and it's not even 9 AM yet!
-the radio station you're listening is playing really great tunes from the '80s and '90s!
-your puppy greets you with that cute smile of his (I honestly believe Chance can smile!!) and the crazy wagging of his tail. Too cute!
-Hubby makes you hot chocolate before it's time to go to work :) (Those of you who know me, know I don't drink coffee because it has an adverse effect on me).
-The first person you talk to on the phone is your wonderful mother-in-law. I love talking to her. Even if we see each other regularly (she lives on the farm next to ours), I do love talking to her on the phone too!
-Your dad pops by unexpectedly at breakfast time, just to say hello :) I love my papa!
-Your mom calls and says they can make it over for supper. Even if we live 4 mins away by car, for some reason, I don't get to see my folks as often as I'd like. They're in the same town, but work always keeps us busy. It's nice to have them come over for supper :)
Oh, I had a conversation with a student about euthanasia, and it really made me curious about just how much students (whose first language isn't English) actually absorb and understand when they are listening to people speaking English. I wanted to see just how much they actually comprehend.
We were discussing reasons why people would be either pro or anti euthanasia. I tried to be neutral and not divulge my own personal feelings on the topic. The student was really upset to hear that people would be against euthanasia and said, "I can't believe people are so racist!"
I was surprised and puzzled, so I asked, "What do you mean?". The student said, "Why don't people like young people from Asia?!?!?!"
I was a little confused and then realized the student misunderstood and thought it was 'youth in Asia' and not euthanasia. After explaining the definition, we both realized that the student didn't understand. It's interesting to see how much my students really understand though.
A teacher friend of mine and I were discussing some of the things we miss most about our life in Japan. Among culture, travel, food, nightlife, social life, art, history, friends, colleagues and students, we both agreed that we missed Japanese TV! If you have ever watched a Japanese TV game show, you'll know why we miss it! This video clip of "Takeshi's Castle" reminds me of the fun we had in Japan. The TV show has been translated into English and can be seen on Spike TV as "MXC: Most Extreme Elimination Challenge".
One package of noodles contains a few bunches, so it makes enough for 6 people if you have other dishes to go with it.
I served the noodles with steamed fish and a bit of leftover casserole from the night before. Dessert was homemade applesauce made by yours truly. I made huge batches in the fall and just froze them in containers so I could thaw them out and have them ready for whenever I need them.
The kids and their Easter haul from the Easter egg hunt in SouthBay.
Pretty Easter eggs painted for us from one of the ladies at our church.
My wonderful blog friend, Jane, sent me this book a few days ago. The book was written by her mom and her sister. Let me just say that I simply could not put this book down! Reading its contents from cover to cover was not a difficult task at all.
As the authors wrote in Preconception Plain & Simple, there are many books out on the market about pregnancy and having babies, but not so many about preconception. It's all about preparing for pregnancy. How wonderful is that?!
What I loved most about this book was that it was light-hearted, funny, fun, positive and inspiring. I enjoyed the authors' writing style and felt it was very informal and fun. Just reading the book makes you feel relaxed and that the process of baby making isn't something stressful or anxiety filled...because it isn't (or at least, shouldn't be)! I don't mean the actual process of creating a baby, but rather the steps before one tries to have a baby.
The book talks about preparing your mind, body and soul for pregancy. There are lots of witty, sexy, creative, intelligent tips like what foods to consume for virility and motility (they even supply a grocery list!). Preconception Plain & Simple is also not laden with thick, heavy, overwhelming medical information. It's got just the right amount of info and they also include links to websites and references to books if you want to further research things yourself. I suppose one could also go to their doctor or specialist if one wanted full on medical information. Actually, I presume one would go to their doctor for detailed information and advice. However, I liked that this book wasn't all about that!
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Thanks, Jane, Sharon and Audrey!Just an added bonus: I also loved that the authors included quotes by some of my favorites! Clever and inspiring! I was so pleased to see that Sharon and Audrey also appreciated the words of H.D. Thoreau, Arthur Guiterman, Victor Hugo, Simone de Beauvoir and many others.
Author: Audrey Couto McClelland, Sharon K. Couto
Publisher: Pinks & Blues Publishing
# Pages: 256
Amazon Price: $19.95 US
One more thing!!! Check out the promo these wonderful ladies have done for my sister-in-law's sister!!! It's on their website. All the more reason why I love these ladies!!! You can also check out my SIL's sister's website for her baby series at www.canvasedge.com . You'll simply fall in love with Melanie Bailey's adorable baby series. I've already got mine! "The Baby Series paintings have even caught the eye of The Mom Show on Discovery Health Channel. Stay tuned next season to see The Baby Series used in a nursery make-over!"PS. Unfortunately, I have had to start using the "word verification" on my comments section, because spammers have found my blog. Grrrrrrrr! Sorry guys and gals! I know it's a bit of a hassle to have to type in the word verification...
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About the Blog Author
City girl moves to the country, falls in love, and marries a farmer. She tries to incorporate her city ways with her new country lifestyle and blogs to keep in touch with friends, family & students who live far, far away :) Can this city girl go country? Watch as she learns all sorts of exciting things about life on the farm and in a small rural community. *UPDATE* We are now parents! Our baby girl was born on Nov. 11, 2008 (at 28 weeks gestation- 12 weeks premature, but she's quite the trooper)!!!