Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Skiing with a camera...

... is definitely worthwhile. And it isn't really that hard. Especially when you don't fall more than twice during the whole day.

I can't believe I'm about to say this, but I think I might need a fanny pack. Ugh. I know. But really - to ski with any excess gear at all means that either your pockets are awkwardly stuffed, or you need an immovable holster for the gear. Let's call them waistpacks. It just sounds better. (Aside: I think this one in granite is my favourite, hun.)

I'm hooked, by the way. I think next season I'll be either getting my own skis, or doing the season-long rental.

Looking back at the lodge.

Looking down.

Looking through my (Keith's) goggles.

Looking around once the snow finally let up and the sun came out. Really.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Busy, busy, dreadfully busy...

Those of you who are familiar with the first few Veggie Tales movies can pretend to throw random objects at my head now. Sorry. I just enjoy the lilting "whateverness" to the song that speaks so specifically to the balancing act I'm playing out. Kind of like the coffee-questionnaire that wanted to know how I deal with stress, I'm normally I'm a proactive, get-the-job-done kind of gal. Thankfully, it takes a lot to get me completely unglued.

I'm not saying it can't happen, mind you. Just to clarify.

I just tucked Kai into bed... half an hour of playing in the bath while I chatted with my mom, quick wash-up, toys-away, towel-off, sticky-moist legs and arms poked into PJs, train-set dismantle, pick-a-story, read and cuddle, lights off, two songs, kiss, hug, sleep tight my sweet.

A few variations here and there depending on the circumstances, the nighttime routine has been my bonding time with Kai over the last year and a half. I cherish it, even in the midst of a busy busy week.

So I'm back to work in a few minutes, but I wanted to at least say hello before I dive back in. And since we're on the topic of things that cheer my heart, I give you this:

This is what is waiting for me for whenever I need to pause, look around, and evaluate the world around me.

Not the slippers. The dog.

Although I do love my slippers. Boy do I love them. It's so beyond fashion. Obviously. And oh, how I love them when it's -20 deg C outside and we have no basement. Like it is right now. With the cold and the lacking of the basement.

But I digress. Back to the dog...

I can't get over how much he loves me. It is truly unhuman. Likewise, I can't get over how much I love him. He's really my first dog. Sure, I had Shorty when I was a kid (ahem. yes. Shorty. I wasn't responsible for naming him - he was 5 when I first opened my eyes), but that's different. This is the first time I've been responsible for a dog. And the devotion is almost unnerving.


But not entirely.

Okay... yes. Busy. Be good. Talk to you soon.

Now where's that coffee?

Thursday, January 11, 2007

And now for a word from our coffee pot

You know those annoying 5-question surveys in the chick magazines that you can't help but take when you're waiting to be called at the doctor's office?

Thanks to Pieces, I was led to this little gem.


You Are an Iced Coffee

At your best, you are: hyper, modern, and athletic

At your worst, you are: cheap and angsty

You drink coffee when: you're out with friends

Your caffeine addiction level: medium

You are a Black Coffee

At your best, you are: low maintenance, friendly, and adaptable

At your worst, you are: cheap and angsty

You drink coffee when: you can get your hands on it

Your caffeine addiction level: high
What Kind of Coffee Are You?

I love that at our worst, we are both cheap and angsty. Oh, and that I'm hyper. The only really wrong thing here is that Keith really isn't addicted to caffeine AT ALL. He pretty much has coffee when I make it and he notices it's there.

And for the record, we're both black coffee drinkers.

Thoughts on Action

Photo courtesy of First People

This post started as a lengthy comment on BubandPie's last post, but as I was writing it, I was concerned that it might not reach as many people if it is buried under 16 other comments, so I transposed it to my, er... somewhat recently increasingly frequently-visited blog. (Is it legal to string that many adverbs together?)

Anyhow, I was commenting because there have been a number of people responding to me and B&P that they, too, are concerned about our climate, but feel kind of like I did: "now what?" So here's what I came up with:

/comment mode on

I think one of the most important things we as individuals can do is to communicate our concerns with our MPs, congressmen and women, senators, MPPs, etc. They are our elected officials, and it is their job to care about the concerns of their constituents. Both Canada and the US are going through rather chaotic times politically, which means that having an ear for the public is crucial.

Contact your MP/congressman/woman/etc. and tell them that you are concerned about global warming/climate change, and that you want to see stronger initiatives being implemented. The "Clean Air Act" in Canada is really a joke, people. Something needs to be done SOON, not by 2050. We need to put pressure on the policy makers to turn things around over the next decade.

I'm very encouraged in the US over the decision to put polar bears on the "threatened" list. That means that there are arms/factions in the Government (US, primarily here) that are listening to the concerns of scientists and environmentalists. We need to encourage them to keep it up.

/comment mode off

It's a start. I'll let you know if I come up with anything else...

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Just keep posting posting posting

How exciting! Sweet, sweet BubandPie has nominated my two recent soapbox posts for a Just Post recognition. As well, she has reminded me of what a gushing romantic I evidently was when Keith and I were still in the midst of our newlydating throes. (ick. really? was I really like that? ah well.)

Anyhow, I know there is a good deal of randomness to what I blog about and that many of you aren't looking for an environmental rant when you come by looking for pictures of our kid. But it is good to know that my thoughts and concerns aren't just dissolving into the Ether. Thanks BubandPie!

For other nominees, click on this:


Saturday, January 06, 2007

Chilly morning

We had yet another snow day yesterday. For the third week in a row (!!!), a winter "storm" delivered more than a foot of snow to our doorstep. It started in the middle of the night, and continued until around 3 PM. I still had to go to work so I didn't take any pictures yesterday, but by this morning the sun was out and it was a chilly 7˚F outside. This makes for a very beautiful blue sky which contrasts so nicely against the crisp clean snow.

Oh, and remember the mountains that were hiding? They're in their full glory this morning.

For more pictures, check out flickr.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Soapbox Revisited

I know I don't live in Ontario, but an innate need to know what's happening at home combined with the pathetic lack of reporting in the US on the World Junior Hockey Championships prompted me to check out the online version of The Toronto Star yesterday. I happened upon a couple interesting articles that address Global Warming. Which brings me to my aside:

Global Warming v. Climate Change.

Last night there was nothing [interesting] on TV. I wandered around the usual On Demand options and found a couple Daily Show clips. In one clip I was naively surprised to learn that there are some people who think that the term Climate Change is a right-wing spin on Global Warming, presumably to make it sound more benign. Noncommittal. Uncertain.

I'm not going to claim I know the entire history of both terms, but I can tell you one thing: in the geosciences the more generally accepted term is Climate Change. Even though global warming was used first, it is now understood that climate change caused by human activities, or climate forcing, may result in not simply an overall warming; some areas may actually cool. But there are other effects beyond temperature changes: increased droughts in some areas, increased severe weather in others, changes to the salinity of oceans, and possibly even drastic changes to ocean circulation (and hence the possibility for very drastic temperature changes, positive and negative.)

Change is a little more all-encompassing than warming.

But I do realize that the general public is more familiar with global warming. I can live with that. No worries.

Back to the Star. The first article I found paints a rather descriptive picture of what life will be like in 2050. It is rather grim (as the title of the article suggests), but it is also sadly quite realistic. The second article I found was a book review for Hell and High Water by Joseph Romm which I think I might have to read. It sounds like an interesting take on both the political and scientific aspects of climate change. I recommend reading the articles if you have 20 minutes.

Finally, as Meg mentioned, and as has happened many times over the last year (hottest on record), the past month of warm weather in Ontario has made many people think seriously about global warming. As most conservative (and I use the term literally, not politically) scientists warn, however, one shouldn't assume that all warming trends are proof of global warming. It very well may be directly caused by climate change, but the obvious pitfall to this kind of thinking is that the next cooling trend could cause doubts into the legitimacy of global warming.

We're a cautious bunch, us scientific types. Maybe that's our collective downfall.