It’s day 6 of the 30-Day Blog Journal and I’m still going strong and haven’t missed a day yet!! woot!! go me!! Today’s challenge is to write about 20 of my favorite things!!! So, in no particular order, counting down from 20:

20: My family- my husband, and two wonderful daughters are the reason I get up in the morning. Even when they are being a pain in my ass, I love them more than life itself and can’t imagine living without them. Hubs is my best friend and I am so so grateful for him- he’s an amazing father, and I truly could not ask for a better man to be a part of my life.

19: My inlaws- yes, I have said it before and I will say it again: my husband’s family is the BEST family anyone could ask for. His mom and dad are life savers, and truly inspirational as parents. I can talk to them about anything and cherish the relationship I have with them. My s.i.l. (my husband’s sister, whom I call Sissy) is a riot and a good and beautiful person- I love her to bits! (and her fiancee too!!) Aunts, uncles, cousins- I love them all!!

18: My house- As sad as it may seem, I live in military housing. So, my house is a rental, but it’s brand newly updated and gorgeous. 2 stories, 4 bedrooms 2 baths… a really awesome kitchen that is just PERFECT for me. (not small by any means, but not so large that I feel like I’ve run a marathon after cooking a meal!) Hardwood floors, open concept, huge windows!! A garage and a HUGE yard. It’s not my dream home, but it is most definitely our HOME… and I love it! Even when it looks like a tornado has ripped through the interior, kinda like it does right now!!

19: My community- I live on a teeny tiny little military base in the middle of bumfuck nowhere, Canada. It is heaven! (as long as you don’t require decent medical care or big-city amenities). My oldest can pretty much run wild and free and be perfectly safe- and have about a dozen tag-alongs at any time. My home is often filled with brats who come in for snacks, to play the wii, or just to make a mess!! It is a dream come true! There’s about a dozen different playgrounds for the kids, a spray park, a dog park, trails for ski-doos and quads. There’s also the family resource center with daycare and day camps for school-age kids during summer and school holidays. The general hall with an indoor walking track, gymnasium, pool and gym. (there’s even a spin class!!) Any given night you can look out the window and you will most likely see a family going for a walk. There are dogs, and kids everywhere. It’s like a throwback to another era- if your kid does something wrong, you will know about it before they get home, because someone will tell you. We have our own little police force of military police, and they ensure that the area is safe! They even pulled over my father-in-law (who is ex-military) while he was out for a drive with m.i.l. down memory lane (the base I live on is the first one they were posted to after they got married, and where they lived when all three of their children were born)- just to check them out and make sure they weren’t doing anything unsavory! We’re far enough from the city to avoid it’s problems, but close enough to enjoy the amenities that are there. It really is the perfect little community!

18: Autumn- I love the fall leaves, I love the smell, the crispness in the air. I love that the temp is neither too hot, nor too cold. If it could be fall all year round, I would be a most happy girl! I was married in October, and had a very autumn-themed wedding. I made all my own floral arrangements and even used wheat in them. I had pumpkins, large and small. For wedding favors, I canned up my very own homemade salsa! I just love all things about fall! Even as a child, the beginning of school in the fall was enough to make me get butterflies in my tummy!

17: Halloween- as with all other things in the fall, my favorite holiday is in the fall. Halloween!! I love Halloween in a way that should almost be criminal. I start planning and thinking of Halloween around about June. (sometimes earlier!) I customarily make all our costumes myself, and we usually go all-out with decorations and candy at our house. My inlaws had one of the best haunted houses in the city while they were still living there- people would drive from all over the city to see their house and be spooked. My husband and I are attempting to continue the tradition and slowly building up our collection of spooky paraphernalia. As a child, Halloween was the ONE holiday my parents never fought. My mother would actually spend time with my brother and I making our costumes, and my father was a makeup whiz! Halloween is one of the few good memories I have of my childhood. And quite frankly, I can’t understand how someone WOULDN’T like dressing up, and running around getting free candy!! Or having a party!! Halloween is the best. holiday. ever!!!

16: Puppies- I know, who doesn’t love puppies, but seriously, I looooooooove dogs. Mostly big dogs, but even a small dog with a sniff and a lick can have me melted like butter. I just love dogs. It makes me sad that my husband is more of a cat person, and so convincing him to let me get a dog has, so far, been unsuccessful.

15: My car- we purchased our beautiful RAV4 almost 2 years ago now, and I can honestly say I have NEVER once regretted purchasing it. It’s sleek, and beautiful and exactly what we need for our small family. Living almost 1/2 an hour away from the nearest grocery store (we have a store, but it’s limited in what you can get for groceries- the entire “produce section” is about the same size as my refrigerator!) we really need to have the space for groceries- and our RAV is perfect for that! We can fit car seat, kid, stroller, groceries, me, dad and other shopping in it just fine. It’s roomy, good on gas, has a pretty kick-ass stereo system (for a factory stereo) and drives like a dream. Yep, I love my car!

14: Canada- I am CANADIAN! And it truly is one of the best places in the entire world to live in. Even the rudest people still say please and thank you! lol But the best thing about Canada is the natural beauty all around you. Wide open spaces, deep dark forests. Lakes and streams and rocks and trees… And all the different things to see and do. We have our big cities, and our itsy bitsy teeny tiny towns. We’ve got mountains, and valleys, and oceans and… My goal is to one day drive from one end to the other and see everything there is to see. I’ll probably have to wait until I’m retired though!! lol because there is A LOT to see!!!

13: The Interwebs: Most of my friends live there… It’s amazing to me the things you can look up and learn, and the people you can meet. I have found solace in my blog, and in “meeting” people who truly seem to “GET” me… I am very grateful for this amazing invention!

12: Shoes- the only part of my entire body that isn’t plus-sized. I have beautiful(?) feet. Slim and a perfect average-sized 7/8. So, to make up for the fact that my short-ass is fat and clothes look like shit on me, I buy shoes… beautiful, shiny, gorgeous shoes. I can (and do) regularly strut around in 3+ inch heels, but I ❤ flats too. I love finding a unique shoe and plotting a whole outfit around it.

11: Little Wee Purses- I love ALL purses. Pretty pretty purses are my friend. But I HATE carrying them. Contrary to what people may think because of my weight, I am an extremely active person, and a purse just gets in my way. So, I used to just carry a wallet. But I am a twit, and I always used to lose my wallets… And so, I have discovered the joy of a little wee purse. I cram them like nobody’s business, and then I have a convenient little wrist-strap. The best thing about little wee purses too, is that if I ever have occasion to switch up to a bigger purse, or as in the case of right now where I’m lugging around a diaper bag, my little wee purse fits INTO the bigger bag so I don’t have to change out all my stuff! ahhh… how sweet it is! I love me a little wee purse! I get the advantages of looking fashionable with a fashion-statement purse, without the inconvenience of having to lug around some huge bag! 😛

10: Books-I am a total book whore, and I will read pretty much anything. I have shelves and shelves and shelves full of books, my nightstand is regularly covered in no less than 3 or 4 books, and I have tote-bins stuffed with books that I just don’t have room on shelves for. As it is, the shelves I have are deep enough for at least two, in some cases three rows of books… And they are stuffed. I have books stacked on top of rows of standing books. And I have an e-reader. That I just ordered a memory card for… The reader can hold around 1000 books on it’s own… Yeah, I like books… and PMG (my oldest daughter) has inherited my love of books- she’s got her own stack started!!

9: Music- I am a true lover of all things musical. I was classically trained in vocals as well as piano. Played clarinet in middle school, and half-assed self-taught guitar, and drums. I competed in several local competitions, and went out for every musical production in high school. I still unashamedly sing karaoke IRL AND online!! I love pretty much every genre with the sole exception of RAP (not really music) and country (which I find depressing most of the time) but have been known to even enjoy BOTH of those on the rare occasion (and admittedly I do love me some Garth Brooks, the man has a voice that could melt steel, and makes me melt like butter!) I love to dance and have been known to do so accompanied only by the soundtrack in my head… this is another love I have passed on to PMG- she sings, plays guitar and recorder, and has even started trying her hand at writing her own songs… at age NINE… 😀

8: Nature- I have to say I am a nature-girl. I love to go camping. I love to be outside, even if it’s just sitting in the grass enjoying the sun on my face, the wind in my hair, and the sounds and smells of nature. I love to jump in mud puddles and to dance in the rain. I love thunderstorms, the fury and force of mother nature in all her glory. (could happily do without the hail though!) I love hearing the birds chirping when I wake in the morning and the crickets creaking when I go to sleep at night. I could very happily live in a shack in the woods as a hermit and just enjoy being one with the world around me…

7: Shopping- as much as I say I’d love to be a hermit, I think at some point I might miss this… I love to shop. Even just window shopping. I love to spend hours comparing different products, and choosing which is best for my needs. I love the feeling I get when I purchase something for a great deal, or something I know I need. I get a great sense of accomplishment when I fill a need with something I have bought and made a smart purchase.

6: Cooking- I loooooooooooove to cook. I love to take a family favorite, and change it up a bit. I love to cook for a crowd, and I totally thrive on the compliments and adulation for a well-cooked meal. I enjoy baking as well, cheesecake is one of my specialties, as are ice cream cakes. It’s really very satisfying to try out a new recipe and have it work out well, and even if a dish turns out not as well as hoped, at least it can do for a laugh or entertaining story later!

5: My Pippalilly Sling- I should call it my friggin life saver!! I researched a few different slings/baby carriers while pregnant, and had picked out a couple that I thought might work for me, but held off on buying one as I couldn’t find a used sling to save my life, and hoped that someone might see them on my registry and purchase one for me- this didn’t work as planned and I headed into the city for a desperation shopping trip to find a sling. period. There was another woman searching out the same item as me at the store, and so I caught the tail end of the saleslady’s presentation on the different types of slings and carriers… the selling feature for the other woman was that her husband might just be convinced to wear a knapsack-type carrier as opposed to a sling… I bought the pouch sling because it’s similar to what I wanted in the first place, was cheaper than the ring sling or the carrier (which I hate btw- with large breasts, those things never fit right on me!) and it was pretty. (black with metallic embroidered dragonflies). The thought occurred to me briefly to wish that the slings came in more “manly” colours/designs, but I needn’t have worried. My husband LOVES our sling and uses it more often than I do!!

4: Laughter- I love a good laugh. I love hearing others laugh. My heart becomes light every time I hear PMG giggle or laugh out loud. I enjoy making others laugh and try to do it as often as possible. #1 biggest turn-on for me= sense of humour!!

3: and speaking of turn ons; SEX- it has to be said that one of my very most favorite things in the whole wide world is sex. I love it so much that I even requested it as my “reward” for birthing a 9+lb baby vaginally. As I was being STITCHED!!! I think my doc will be laughing about that one for the rest of her career! I pretty much love everything about sex. I love the contact, the intimacy, um ORGASMS!! There’s nothing NOT to love about sex… well, except maybe the mess!! 😛

2: My Bed- I love my bed. I love our ridiculously expensive pillows that we bought with our bed. I love the 800 count Egyptian cotton sheets I bought to go on our bed. I love my bedspread and the matching shams and throw pillows that make it oh-so-pretty… I actually, honest to goodness, have pictures of JUST our bed. All made up and waiting for us. It’s just that pretty… and best of all, it’s the most comfortable bed I’ve ever been in!! \

1: Tim Hortons Coffee… and timbits too… and their breakfast sandwiches… hell, let’s just say I love Tim Hortons- Canadian Icon and best coffee in the world!! Quite frankly, I don’t care if they DO put crack in the coffee- that shit just tastes good yo!

And that, concludes my 20 favorite things… I must say, this was a pain in the ass to write too!! Took me pretty much all afternoon! My first draft was saved at just after 1 this afternoon, and it’s now almost 5pm!!! Of course, I wasn’t typing/thinking that WHOLE time- I DO have a new baby after all!