Friday, April 29, 2011

airport workout

Flying home a day early to keep an appointment with my surgeon was frustrating (although I did work overtime to make up the lost day of work placement). What was even more frustrating was arriving at the airport two hours early. This should ensure I am at the correct departure gate with time to spare, correct?

Instead, what happens is that on any given day, each plane scheduled to arrive is auto-assigned a gate number. As planes are late landing, delayed taking off, or required to sit at the gate while they're being repaired (landing gear or engine problems? YES PLEASE ground it until it's fixed!), the numbers shuffle so planes that haven't yet arrived are told to prepare for a different gate.

By the time my flight arrived, it had been through four gate numbers and instead of the calm, collected me that entered the airport, it was a rather confused and hurried me that made sure, several times, that gate # the fourth was in fact the landing place of my flight home.

Lesson learned: arriving early doesn't always save you time and hassle.

Monday, April 25, 2011


I'm fortunate to have a big family, which includes many aunts. Despite being a bratty child, these relatives have always been kind to me, and a recent stay with one aunt in Ontario landed me a pair of shoes. It's not the first time this has happened - a visit to another aunt in Alberta led to a ransacking of her closet (done by her, of course) and many new items of clothing in my suitcase. I'm starting to think that my aunts save up all their no-longer-wanted clothes, shoes, and accessories to pass on to me - and I'm totally fine with this. Whatver I can't use, I pass on to friends or family back home.

Friday, April 15, 2011


It's spring, and I'm thinking about paint.

My lovely character apartment has walls that didn't get much love when the previous tenants moved out. And I've decided I need my own room. The one I'm getting has three grey walls and a greenish one, while the master bedroom will get some brown and taupe paint, much softer than the deep purple that's in there right now. We'll cover up the gouges in the plaster, the places where the second coat didn't quite cover up the colour underneath it, and the place will look amazing.

Oh, and the paint was free. All of it.

My parents don't throw anything away, and of the cans of paint they opened for us to look at, about half were still in good condition to paint with. As far as I can tell it's all low-level VOC emission stuff, so even if things do get a little heady despite open windows and an air purifier, I won't be killing myself slowly.

If you're looking to paint, talk to the friend who just renovated the kitchen or who had the living room repainted a couple years ago. The leftover paint will probably still be useable and the people storing it will likely be glad to get it off their hands. And who knows, they might have really great colours too.

(image courtesy of daino_16 at

Friday, April 8, 2011

Tough Stains Get Tackled

As a last-week-of-classes blog post, I'm going to post a list of some unusual yet useful stain removal tips I've come across. Before you take your clothes to an expensive dry-cleaner's, try these!

1. Lemon juice and baking soda: Supposed to be fantastic for removing discolouration (i.e.: if you washed a blue shirt with a yellow one and parts of the yellow shirt are now green). In my experience, the discoloured parts became fainter but did not entirely disappear.

2. Salt: Sprinkled on a fresh red wine stain, salt is supposed to help remove the stain. Haven't had occasion to try this one yet.

3. The freezer: If you've got gum stuck to your clothes, this trick actually works. Place the soiled item in your freezer for about 15 minutes, remove from freezer, and scrape off the solidified gum.

4. Hairspray: Removing red ink from clothes is a breeze with this trick. Don't wait longer than 24 hours, though.


5. Tea tree oil: This concentrated oil is a natural astringent. It's good for your skin because it clears up acne, but it can also remove nail polish (though this makes a nasty smell) and the goo that always gets left on your skin after you remove a Band-Aid.