Blog Archives

Oot and Aboot

Not going to lie, this recovery business is a little boring. I’m by no means a “go getter” type person. But I like to feel like a productive member of society. At the very least, I need to get out of the house everyday.

IMG_5784

I honestly don’t remember if I got out of the house the week after my surgery. I was stoned on pain meds. But this week I’m feeling the itch. The view of the Ottawa sunshine from my sister’s balcony lured me out. I felt ready to be amongst my people again.

IMG_5785

I took a bath, put on mascara and adorned my cape.

IMG_5793

I think I need a proper one to fit over my sling…

What’s a good blog post without a Seinfeld reference? ;)

The weather was just at freezing, which in my opinion is the perfect winter temperature. However my elbow throbbed in remembrance as I walked over the “Carnage Canal.”

IMG_5798

In case you’re new, I fell skating on this canal almost two weeks ago. I shattered my elbow and had reconstructive surgery. I wanted to yell out in warning to the skaters down there!! Dontdoit!

IMG_5796

Instead I kept far, far away from the ice and walked around the university. It was nice to be amongst TREES again. Where I live in Toronto is barren of any plants or wildlife. Hell, I hardly ever even see grass.

IMG_5802

A nice professor stopped and asked if I wanted my picture taken while I had my camera out snapping shots. Sure!

IMG_5799

I look like I have three arms. Such a stark contrast from my last visit to Ottawa in June ‘10.

IMG_8887

I wasn’t just wandering around for the hell of it. Nor did I accidentally wander into Quebec like I had in the above picture. I was off to the mall!

IMG_5804

I just broke my third laptop adapter and had to go to the Rideau Centre to pick up a new one. While there I also got a few pick-me-ups for myself. I NEVER spend money on myself besides restaurants. Funny how a few new items can perk up my poor injured spirit :)

IMG_5806

Two new stretchy t-shirts I can fit over my cast. Concealer, mascara and lipstick for a little oomph. And delicates that are noneofyourbusiness!

Walking around Ottawa is funny because almost everyone gives me a “look” towards my arm and half the people ask me what happened. All I have to say is “canal” and they immediately understand. Apparently the Carnage Canal strikes frequently. Stories usually follow.

Here’s what my full arm cast looks like:

IMG_5783

Mind the peejays, I snapped it before I ventured out! I have a fibreglass splint running the length of under my arm, then all wrapped up with bandage. My elbow has to stay bent and my hand pronated because of how I injured the joint. The pronated hand is unique, usually a person has their palm facing their torso. This position is SO awkward. I always feel a pulling in my wrist from the rotation. Hoping I get it off at my next appointment on Friday!

xray

The requisite x-ray shot. Not that exciting since I smashed my elbow into little pieces so you can’t see anything… All you can see are the screws. Although, you could see a floating bone in the pre-op shots.

Well friends, that is all she wrote! My adventure today has left me exhausted. I still feel like recovery is going slow, but it’s nice being able to do a little more with each passing day.

Question of the Day: What’s your favourite thing to spend money on when you want to treat yourself? I’m thinking my next splurge may be a massage or manicure. I’ve never had either and I could really use both right about now!

Advertisements

Perdue Dans La Belle Province

Today was a wonderfully relaxing day. I have been feeling the need to relax more than usual here in Ottawa. Decompressing after my week trekking through Alberta, and preparing myself mentally for starting a new life in Toronto on July 1st.

IMG_8829

Today was the first day in a while that I woke up naturally after 8 hours of sleep. You know the kind – when you roll over, sigh, stretch out long, and let your thoughts wander to the kitchen.

IMG_8837

Or, my first thoughts are always in the kitchen anyways. I need breakfast in my belly a-s-a-p!! Today’s was a breakfast sandwich with an egg, mayo, and chicken bacon.

I have issues buying real pork bacon. I think it’s because I’m a label reader. No matter how hard I try, I can just never muster the strength to throw a package into the cart.

IMG_8839

Today’s coffee is brought to you by Ottawa’s own Bridgehead Cafe. Ethiopian! It was a little lighter than expected, but otherwise good. I think that’s a wonky heart shape in that mug, or a whale. Or the Twitter bird. Or maybe the Twitter whale? Also, I feel like I can legitimately drink out of an Alberta mug now that I’ve been there. Both my sister and my dad lived in Edmonton!

My body was scrreeeeaming for a rest day today, so I gave it what it wanted. I didn’t even go to a Hatha Yoga class. Nope. I just sat on my butt. Ironically, it’s my glutes that are screaming.

IMG_8846

Lunch was made up of leftovers.

IMG_8849

The black bean burgers were half-cooked from the earthquake fiasco yesterday. I finished cooking them today and stuck them on some pita.

IMG_8852

Worth the wait – these are my best veggie patties yet! Click here for the recipe :)

It poured rain for the first half of the day, but then it cleared up. I was getting antsy from being inside all day, so left on a mission to visit the National Art Gallery.

IMG_8860

This is part of my running route here! Gorgeous scenery! Only complaint is the paved trail, my body prefers soft gravel.

People who know the area may be cluing in to the fact that this picture is not in the direction of the Gallery. Or at least I don’t think it is. I wouldn’t really know, since I never made it there.

IMG_8862

I somehow managed to walk to Hull. I should have clued in when the signs on the giant bridge I was crossing started reading French first. For those of you who may not know, Ottawa borders the Quebec city of Hull. Apparently, it’s really easy to accidentally wander over there!!

Or perhaps I was just naturally drawn La Belle Province with it being St-Jean Baptiste Day and all ;)

IMG_8863

Thankfully, I ended up only about 2 km from the Canadian Museum of Civilization. It’s no National Gallery, but good enough for me!

IMG_8864

Plus, admission is free Thursdays after 4pm!

IMG_8868 

IMG_8875 
Historical museums aren’t really my thing, I’m more of an art gallery or science centre gal. But I did stumble across some interesting exhibits.

IMG_8876

Look familiar? It’s Lake Louise! I was just there!! I kinda miss the mountains already…

Look who else I ran into.

IMG_8877 
Bahahaha, I love how it says Flamboyance! on the poster behind him. Pierre Trudeau was Canada’s rock star prime minister in the 60s and 80s.

IMG_8881

These heritage commercials never get old. They were playing the Nellie McClung one, but I think this Superman one is my favourite. “Strong man in tights Joe, but it’ll never fly!” “Fly, no. But he can leap over tall buildings…”

IMG_8884

Some of Ottawa’s tall buildings on my walk back to the Ontario side.

IMG_8886

I think that’s the hill Sara made me run up the other day!! Damn. That was tough. I want to do it again.

IMG_8887
Some nice Dutch lady took my photo in front of the Parliament buildings. I am going to have to come back when Parliament is back in session so I can see our elected officials at work. (*nerdalert*)

IMG_8892

It took me a while to get back what with my unexpected detour and all. I went for the quickest thing ever – tuna salad with hummus and mustard on bread. Notice how I had a sandwich for every meal today? Oops.

IMG_8893
Paired with an apple. Simple, yet incredibly satisfying. Hey, I can’t make boeuf bourguignon every day!! ;)

 

That wraps up the shenanigans for today. I am going to go cuddle up with a book :)

 

Question of the Day: What fitness topic would you like me to cover? It’s been a while since I did a fitness-focused post. Let me know if there’s something you’d like me to explain!

Bonus question for Canadians: What is your favourite Heritage Minute? My second favourite is the one with “Patrick, Patrick O’Neill.” ;)

Tourist For A Day

My oldest sister is so cute.

She and I are very alike in some ways. We both laugh the same way at the same things, we share a mop of unruly hair, and a love for cinnamon rolls.

However, she is also very different from me. More motivated, driven, passionate. And apparently requires less sleep than I. This is why I thought she was a madwoman when close to midnight last night, she suggested we set the alarm for 6am to go run before she left for work.

I am a princess and require my 7-8 hours every evening otherwise I get cranky and anxious and all around miserable. Sara however lives off 6 hours every single night. She says it’s the only way she has time to work out in the morning. When I suggested going to bed at 11pm instead of midnight every night, she claimed “I’d never thought of that before.”

Ahhh, to be ambitious.

The tables definitely turned this morning when it was her getting my lazy butt out of bed to run (I’m usually that annoying person saying working out at an ungodly hour “will be funnnn!”)

She took me on her usual loop, full of steep hills I would normally avoid, but beautiful sights I would also normally miss. And while I didn’t really wake up until my heart maxed out at 178bpm somewhere around mile 3, I should probably thank her for getting me up. But next time, we’re going to bed earlier ;)

IMG_8636

Post run breakfast is the same thing I have every day. It’s what I craaaave.

IMG_8639

A fruit salad made up of plum, banana, pear, cherries, honey and cinnamon.

IMG_8641

And those runny egg yolks. Get me every time.

Because I was up and running first thing this morning, I waited until I was alone after breakfast to do my 20 minutes of meditation per my Challenge of Silence. I was actually nervous for my first day of meditation, not knowing what to expect. I set my cellphone alarm to go off after 20 minutes, and promised myself I wouldn’t open my eyes to look at the time. I perched on the sofa and sat in dead silence the whole time.

What did I do? A body scan. One of the main reasons why I’m so excited to start this is to get in touch with what my body is feeling. I’m keeping a journal of my meditation experience each day… and here are some things I noted on my first day:

  • I have a tickle in my throat that I didn’t notice up until this point
  • My hands feel very warm
  • My lumbar spine is under stress

Not bad, eh? Surprisingly the 20 minutes flew by and suddenly I could hear the distant noise of my cellphone alarm. As a side note, I am also really hoping this experiment in meditation will help me cope with my social anxiety, seeing as now is a time when I need to manage it the most.

I also hit up a Hatha Yoga class at noon to get in a few sun salutations for summer solstice ;) I am loving this 2-week pass I have!!

IMG_8648

Lunch featured something I found in my sister’s freezer…

IMG_8627
Pipsi, aka dried arctic char, that she bought while in Iqualuit, Nunavit. I know, how cool is it she got to go to Nunavit!?

IMG_8645

I ate it on a bagel with hummus. Verrry interesting! More like “fish chips.” The only seasoning on them is salt, and you couldn’t really taste it. Odd, because I’m so used to dried meat being so salty!!

IMG_8651

Milk chocolate hazelnut Lindt?? Yesplease.

Today I also played tourist.

IMG_8653

Canada’s Parliament!! For those you who may not know, Ottawa is Canada’s capital, and this is where all the governmental happenings…err… happen.

IMG_8660

IMG_8662

That would be a stage they are building on Parliament Hill for the Canada Day celebrations on July 1st. Thank goodness I am leaving here on June 30th. That is a mess I do not want to be a part of (aka thousands of dudes drunk off Molson).

IMG_8667

Parliament has three main buildings – the East Block, Center Block and the West Block. I took a  free tour of the Center Block. It was pretty lame, but I did get to see some notable spots.

IMG_8669

Don Newman fans may recognize this location. It’s often where reporters gather to pounce on members of Parliament as they exit the House.

IMG_8671

As we approached the House of Commons, a young girl beside me said “Hey! It’s the green room on TV!”

IMG_8672

Not surprisingly, it was way smaller than expected. And the chairs looked really uncomfortable. No wonder they get so cranky by the time Question Period rolls around…

IMG_8674

Back in the day when Ontario and Quebec were known as the “province of Canada” and before the Western provinces were part of it at all.

IMG_8678
Unfortunately, Pamela Wallin was nowhere to be found near the Senate Chamber.

Up top there was a beautiful view of Ottawa!!

IMG_8679
That my friends, is what I’ve been running next to since coming to Ottawa. Actually, you can see part of the trail we were on this morning to the left of the photo!

All this tourist work stirred up my appetite.

IMG_8681

A High Protein Banana Maple Bar. Pretty dense, and surprisingly filling! 

However, it was late by the time my sister got home and we were simply staaarving. The gorgeous day called for one thing: drinks on a patio.

IMG_8688

IMG_8693

Sangria – the only way I like to drink wine.

IMG_8694

I ordered the Gringo Chicken: A grilled, marinated chicken breast. Served with Mexican rice, black beans, salad, avocado slices, and a side of tomatillo sauce.

IMG_8698

Of course, I dumped the green salsa all over everything and mixed it all up to create a big messy plate (minus the avocado – I’m “allergic”). Delicious!

IMG_8699

Sara got the vegetarian enchiladas which were also very good. Although I still think the sangria was my favourite part ;)

After dinner we went out to another pub patio for drinks with Sara’s friends. Their excuse for drinking on a Monday night was that it’s summer solstice – good enough for me!! :)

 

Question of the Day: What is your favourite thing to order at a Mexican restaurant? I actually lovelovelove taco salads.