Welcome to Toronto

I spent a few days in Toronto before coming up here for school. Just figured I would share some of the best parts of the short but sweet trip. I didn’t fall in love with Toronto instantly the way I did with New York City, but I did fall in love nonetheless.

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The CN Tower at night!

I ran into this festival at the harborfront.

I ran into this festival at the harborfront.

  One of the things I love most about cities is that you can just go out wandering and you’ll find something interesting to do.

Comedy of Errors in the park

Comedy of Errors in the park

I’m eternally grateful that someone recommended heading out to see some Shakespeare in High Park. It was brilliant and I would go back without a doubt. I highly recommend it if you’re ever in Toronto.

What do you see?

What do you see?

The Religious Studies student in me needed to take a picture of this sign. When I first saw it I read God is Nowhere – which seemed odd given it was a booth done up by a church. But, on second glance I realized it could also say God is Now Here. Apparently the pastor planned it that way to get people to give it a second look. It certainly worked!

Hard at work at the Osgoode Hall legal library

Hard at work at the Osgoode Hall legal library

On my last day in Toronto I took a tour of the old Osgoode Hall where there are courts and the home of the local law society. Seeing this in the library there made me feel just that much more like lawyers are not so different than me. I’m not sure who was using this computer – be they law student, articling student, or lawyer – but whoever they are, I salute you.

I miss Toronto already, but my new place is starting to come together, my roommate wll be here tomorrow, and on Tuesday orientation begins and I will be able to officially call myself a law student. Weird.

  • Kali

Family BBQs

Imagine this: its early Sunday afternoon the sun is shining, a gentle wind is blowing, tables and chairs are set up across the backyard, and a pig is roasting over a spit. This was the scene of my last family BBQ, and boy did we have a lot of fun.

I’ve only been to one pig roast before, and I’m pretty sure that they didn’t cook the meat long enough because it tasted a bit off, so I had no idea what to expect from the meal, other then the usual massive amount of food. Papa built the spit himself 25 years ago, and just loves having any excuse to pull it out. I was very pleased to taste the pig and find it delicious and moist. Everything tasted delicious as usual.

I think the cherries in the eye sockets made her look demonic...

I think the cherries in the eye sockets made her look demonic… but the apple looks delicious.

There were so many of my relatives there, half of them haven’t seen me since I was a toddler if at all, but that was what made it so much fun. I got to spend the afternoon wandering from one group of relatives to the next, catching up on all the latest family gossip. We even had relatives there who live in Japan and have for the past 20 years, it was really nice to see them for the first time in my memory and hear the stories that generation had to share.

All in all, it was a pleasant afternoon that stretched into the wee ends of the day and accompanied by delicious food, hugs, and smiles.

  • Rachel

3 Hours Ahead

Well, I live in Ontario now and that’s super weird. Before this I had never lived anywhere else so this is a major change. Go big or go home it seems to be in my world.

Decision made!

Decision made!

Myself and my future roommate went and visited Kingston the other day and we found a place to live. We did it all in one loong day, but it was a success. Our place is in a cute little neighborhood only a 15 minute walk from the university. Kingston’s a lot smaller than Victoria, but it kind of seems like a miniature version of my hometown which is comforting.

I feel like I keep calling everything ‘cute’ or ‘quaint’ or ‘adorable’ – but it really does look that way to me. There seems to be a lot of sweet little neighborhoods all done up in brick and stone. I miss the west coast for sure (and my family and friends out there), but so far I like Ontario. I imagine this might change once winter hits though!

  • Kali

A Clear 180

Well here’s a spot I never thought I would be sitting in. The last time I wrote here I was feeling sad and pessimistic about my chances of getting into law school which had been my dream since I was 13. Well, 8 classes, 2 LSAT writes, and one convocation ceremony later and I actually have a difficult decision to make.

I’ve received admission to two of my top choices for law school starting in September. Western and Queen’s. I’ve already paid a deposit to Western as I’ve only recently received admission to Queen’s. It’s a difficult decision, but one that I’m thankful to have.

I don’t have long to reach a decision, but I’m excited that a new chapter of my life is beginning. And it includes LAW SCHOOL!

Decisions, decisions.

– Kali

I’m Alive, I Promise

My last blog post was 1 year and 7 months ago. Life has been crazy, but is that any excuse? All I can do now is apologize for disappearing without even the curtesy of a good-bye and hope that my readers will forgive me.

Some Recent News: From Then to Now
– I lost my job at Target due to all Canadian stores closing, but on the plus side this has opened me up to be able to start working with a medium that I have always enjoyed; fabric
– I’m going to be creating an online store/fb page for my own recycled clothing design shop “Pretty Things” more in a future post on this
– There is a very real chance of me moving across the country for schooling and adventure

I hope you will accept my apology and take a moment to enjoy the cute that I am sharing with you all.
Please Forgive Me

~Rachel

Bittersweet

I know I haven’t blogged in forever, but I needed to write out my thoughts and I suppose that was the intent of this blog in the first place. Today is my class registration day. My last one ever. There are a few reasons I’m just not as excited this year – partially it’s the fact that though I’m excited for some of the classes I’m planning, I’m kind of disappointed with this years offerings as a whole, but more importantly it’s the fact that this is the last time I’m guaranteed to be doing this. 

Like most people my age I’ve spent the majority of my life in school – 17 out of 23 years. I took one year off between high school and university and even though I was unhappy at the time, some good things have happened because of it (I went to Wrockstock, I started doing NaNo, and it meant I met the friends I have now). Even during that year though I knew I had school to look forward too. I am fortunate that I live in a country where if you want to go to university you’re going to get to go. Sure, you might have debt (I do), but it’s not insurmountable and a university education is basically guaranteed if you want it. However, I’m now at the point where there are no guarantees that I will get to continue my education even though the idea of not being in school is absolutely terrifying.

I make average grades (a B+/A- average) and I’m not that great at logic games. These two things combined make it unlikely I’ll get into law school. I’m certainly still going to try – I’m planning to take the LSAT in October – but realistically I don’t know what I’m going to do. There’s no way I’m getting into grad school as I’m not in honors in either of my faculties (not smart enough in poli sci and it’s not even offered for religious studies) and you need honors to get into grad school most places. 

I guess I’m just in a kind of melancholy mood thinking about all this stuff. I even found myself going through my old high school yearbooks this morning. I don’t wish I was back in high school (then I’d still have to take math – yuck!), but I do miss the certainty of knowing what came next. And looking back at my yearbooks and seeing all the things people wrote made me think of how hopeless I am at staying in touch with people. I had a group of really close friends in high school and we referred to ourselves as G-STRMNICK for all of our names. I was never all that close with everyone, but I was really close with the S, the T, the R, and to a lesser extent the I. The S and the R both went to school in Calgary, but the T and the I are still here in the city. I even still see the I sometimes as we’re both at UVic. However, I’m not really in touch with any of them anymore. And it makes me worry that in 4/5 years I won’t be in touch with my current close friends either – Rachel, Aaron, Kylie, Ashley, Emma, Steph… among others. 

I don’t like uncertainty. I never have. And even though people (and by people I mostly mean my mom) call me a drama queen, I think my worries are pretty standard. I’m trying to keep upbeat about all of this, but it’s kind of depressing to think that this is the last year. I joke that I’m going to be a mess this year, but it’s not really a joke. The thought of what I’m going to do next is paralyzing. I’m not prepared for the real world, but I know I’m not smart enough to do more school. That doesn’t mean I’m not going to try to get into more school because I am, but I don’t know what I’m going to do with myself when I don’t get in.

One Handed Count Down!

Finally, the count down to Nanowrimo is down to one hand.

With only 5 sleeps left, the little voice in my head is getting louder and louder about developing my novel idea. It screams for character development, while begging for more information about the world.  It insists that I need a plot and secondary characters before I can start. I disagree, as I always do, when it comes to advance planning for a novel. None of my previous novels got much advance planning, so why should this one? And that’s exactly what I tell the little voice when it starts. Now, as you can imagine, this leads to arguments between me and this little voice which is proving itself to be just as stubborn as me. I’ll win, because I know that the clock will run out and Nanowrimo will start before we come to an agreement. And that’s fine with me. As a peace offering, though, I am dedicating this blog post to that little voice in my head.

Now, that said, it is probably time that I got more into the mechanics of Nanowrimo for those of you who don’t know about it. NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, and its when authors (yes some people call us crazy, but we don’t mind) write 50,000 words in the 30 days and nights of November. We have from 12:01am November 1st to 11:59pm November 30th to write and submit our novel of at least 50,000 words. Now, this may sound scary but its not. It’s exhilarating and challenging, but at only 1,667 words a day it is manageable. Everyone has a novel or story inside of them that is dying to be released into the world; to see the brightness of your electronic device’s screen as its typed, or to feel the ink soak into the paper as its written out by hand. This is the wish of every story yet to be written, and Nanowrimo is responsible for a lot of those wishes coming true. So, feel free to join both Kali and I this year (here’s a handy link for you) as we fulfil the wish of two more novels. If you already are, here’s a hug and some hot cocoa.

– Rachel