Thursday, August 27, 2015


This is NOT a sponsored post.  I repeat, NOT sponsored.  Just me. In love.  With Netflix. 

So, this has been the "Summer of Netflix".  We have had Netflix for a few years now, since before we moved to this house.  I've been enjoying it for quite some time.  We typically pick a couple of shows we like to work our way through together and watch episodes before bed (Psych, oh how we loved Psych!).   This isn't new, we love Netflix.  I am a "binge" watcher of TV and probably have been since way before it was this convenient to do it.

However, I don't think I've ever worked through so many shows in one summer!  Or, perhaps I have but I'm forgetting that.  Here's what I watched on Netflix in Summer 2015:

Orange is the New Black, season 3
I've been watching OitNB since it began, and was so excited to have a new season to work through once I was done the school year.  I saved it so I could binge it.  It was awesome of course.  I actually don't care that much for the main character, Piper, anymore.  I think this is a common sentiment.  I care a lot more for the other characters.  I love the way the show always gives some back story for one of the inmates, leading you to understand how they got to prison but never quite finishing their story.  It just draws you in to wanting more, and wanting to discover which character's back story will be featured with each new episode you play.  A good friend loaned me the book, and I read it last April, so now I also find it interesting to see which parts of the show are drawn out of snippets from the book.

House of Lies, seasons 1-3
Not House of Cards!  This is the show with Don Cheadle and Kristen Bell.   Decided to give it a try, and made my way quite quickly through the 3 seasons available on Netflix.  It is funny, the characters are good, there is plenty of drama-llama.  There is also a lot of adult content, haha.  This was also the summer of me keeping my blinds closed sometimes in case neighbourhood kids could see into my windows and wondered WHAT I was watching midday... yipes! haha!  I've seen a few episodes of Kevin Spacey's House of Cards (it didn't grip me so I never continued), and so as much as they mix up the names of these shows at times, it is also interesting that Don Cheadle does that thing where he turns and talks to the camera sometimes.

Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp
I started by watching the movie Wet Hot American Summer (2001), because I had never seen it before.  I figured it made sense to watch the movie first, then the series.  I was interested in giving this a try because of the cast -- almost all of whom I love in everything else they do.  It is a funny, quick 12 episodes.  Very silly humour, but enjoyable.  Hilarious to see these 40-something actors play 16-year-olds.  They seem to know what they are doing, and making it silly works just fine (the movie is campy/silly, too).

Schitt's Creek, season 1
Gave this Canadian show a try, and Mark and I both enjoyed it.  The characters are spoiled brats, so I could see how the humour may not be for *everyone*... but I liked it.  By the end of the season you definitely understand the characters and get a chuckle from their behaviours.  I look forward to watching more.

Started and still working on:
Sense 8
We've only watched the first couple of episodes so far.  I've heard good things about this, and it is intriguing.  I'm hooked enough to keep watching.

Bojack Horseman
We watched the first season and we like this sort of silliness, the actors in this show, and anything that might spoof Full House or similar, so this appeals to us.  We have started season two, but are just a couple of episodes in.  Now that we have finished Schitt's Creek we may go back to watching Bojack right before bed (must finish my evening on comedy/silly not on the drama/thrill of Sense 8, haha).

A show I had actually NEVER watched, and decided to give it a try since they have 9 seasons on Netflix and an 11th season airing this fall, figured there might be something to it -- I'm in season 2, it's actually quite cute/funny.  I like procedural shows like this (CSI, Criminal Minds, etc), but I like that it is lighter in nature than those (Criminal Minds can be downright SCARY, yo!).   I've been binge-watching this one like crazy this week since the weather has been so grey and it's my last free week before I start setting up my classroom.

Planning to eventually watch:

Other shows I watched on Netflix prior to this summer, and will continue to watch when new seasons are available:
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Brooklyn 99

Other shows I watched on Netflix prior to this summer, and are now finished the series:
Psych (<3 Shawn & Gus)

So, I've been Netflix-happy this summer and loving it.  I've always been a TV junkie (better vice than some!), so it is fun to get to indulge in so many programs.  We also like watching stand-up comedy specials on Netflix, and some movies too.  I definitely use it most for the TV shows. :-)  It is easy to watch a lot of shows when many of the seasons are only 12 episodes or so.   I do wish I was able to watch Parks & Recreation, but it is on American Netflix and not Canadian (yes, we have the ability to see it but not as conveniently as I'd like).

If you have Netflix recommendations, send them my way!  Just don't tell me more about House of Cards, I know people LOVE IT, but it wasn't my cup of tea.  I don't seem to be into political shows.  Just, apparently, nearly everything else! ;-)

Sunday, August 09, 2015


I'm back from three weeks of vacation!

I spent two weeks in South Carolina.  I've been going there with my family since 1990, making this the 25th anniversary of my first visit to Myrtle Beach.  25 years!  Amazing.  We used to travel there with my grandparents, and since my grandfather's passing ten years ago I appreciate the memories we made on those vacations there so much.  This time around, I really missed him and remembered so many of the good times we had together there.  We visited an arcade that we used to go to as little kids, a place I hadn't been back to in many years (since we haven't stayed in a hotel in that area in awhile).  The place hadn't changed AT ALL.  I was a little overwhelmed with how much I missed my Poppa in that moment and with how fast the years have passed by.

I had traveled down South with my mom and youngest brother so we could have a full two weeks vacation.  This also gave my youngest brother and I time to bond, as we haven't spent as much time together lately as we used to.  The first Thursday of the trip, Quin flew down to spend a week there with us which was extra fun for me (and hard on my wallet, but the outlet shopping was SO GOOD!).   Saturday, Mr. Lock, my dad, and my middle brother drove in to join us for the second week of the trip.  We had amazing, super hot weather.  I loved being on the beach in the sunshine.  The ocean was 85 degrees Fahrenheit!  We went to some great restaurants, great shops, and I highly enjoyed playing four games of mini-putt!  The mini-putt courses in Myrtle Beach are so much fun.

We drove home after two great weeks in one of my favourite places in the world, and then Mr. Lock and I were off to the cottage his family rents each year for the next week.  It was very relaxing up at the cottage, cooler than South Carolina for sure, haha.  It was refreshing to swim in the cold lake, and I was able to read books on the dock, and just breathe in the fresh air and relax.  Gryphon seemed to enjoy the lake.  He LOVES the water!   He is a little nervous to swim when we have him in the deeper water, but he will go in to the shallow part of the lake quite willingly and loves finding a shallow spot to lay right down in the water and cool off.

So, I had a wonderful three weeks.  What a pleasure to have the summer off to be able to freely enjoy traveling when the opportunity comes up.  I can't believe I have another three weeks ahead of me before I'll be heading back to school.  It feels good, very refreshing after a hectic and somewhat stressful school year (kindergarten is a joy, but is also VERY difficult and tiring!).  I think I will be a better teacher in September after having this time to unwind and recharge.

Thursday, July 16, 2015


Being home in the summer reminds me that I'd appreciate having a hobby.  Some form of crafting or project work that I could pick up and do during the mid-afternoon when I definitely don't feel like cleaning my house.

Let's Consider...

1) Scrapbooking. 
I've said I'd like to do this forever.  I own Scrapbooking supplies, and I have tried my hand at it.  I'm just not particularly... good.  I mean, who cares really because I'm only Scrapbooking for me... but... eh.  I have a vision, I've seen others who have made amazing Scrapbooking pages and then I try it, and it *always* looks like it was a page made by a 9-year-old.  I think I get sticker-happy!  Also, EXPENSIVE.  What the heck, Scrapbooking supplies can be very expensive.  Also, my autocorrect on this tablet I'm typing on keeps capitalizing Scrapbooking, so I suppose that tells us something about how Hip and Popular it has become.

2) Knitting.
I've said I'd like to do this forever.  I envision myself as one of those people who always have a large bag with them, and who can pull out their latest knitting project wherever they are.  Only, I do not know how to knit.  Sometimes, I try to find YouTube tutorials.  Then I realize I don't own the supplies.  Then I think about spending money on knitting supplies, and remember they will probably end up sitting in the cupboard beside my Scrapbooking supplies.  Then I give up and watch TV instead.

3) Painting. 
But, really... what would I do with my paintings?  You know, if they didn't always look like a 9-year-old painted them.

4) Gardening.
Hey, we have a house now.  I'm going to be an awesome gardener.  Except, we aren't fenced in yet and there's no point in landscaping.  Also, plants are expensive.  (What the heck?!)  How about I just tend this small garden out front, oh look the perennials grew back and it's watered... so.

5. Cooking/Baking?
HA. HA HA HA.  I mean, I could do this.  I'm home and could make us amazing dinners.  I could cook my way through a cook book and blog about it (That's a fresh idea, right?).  But... I have a husband who is an awesome cook and who enjoys it and... well.  I don't really enjoy it.  Also, I can't just bake all the time.  I'm already gaining weight as I get older and forget to exercise.  I shouldn't keep indulging in sweets (after I finished the cake and chocolates left over from my 30th birthday celebrations, of course). 

6. Exercise!
Well, doesn't this solve all problems?  I have a gym membership.  I could spend this random afternoon time over at the gym, even walking the treadmill would be good.  The gym is open, it's not far away, the power is in my hands.... but.. I mean.  Let's just move on, okay?!

Ah well.  Being crafty, or active, is overrated.  I've got a list of TV shows I'd like to watch on Netflix, anyway.  Plus there's always that house cleaning (HA. HA HA HA.)

Wednesday, July 15, 2015


Yesterday was my 30th birthday.

It just sounds like such a grown-up age.  My husband is 31, and I have friends in their 30s, and it never seemed like a big deal to me.  Yet, on the last day of being 29, I actually felt wistful and a bit emotional.

I don't personally *feel different*, as you rarely do when you age as an adult (I barely feel different than I did turning 19), but wow.  I am a 30-year-old now.  I'm in my 30's.  It seems like it should be different.

It seems more mature.  I feel like I have more authority behind my ideas and opinions.  I'm happy to go back to work in September as a 30-year-old teacher.  It feels as though I should be taken even more seriously now, even though I know I've been a knowledgeable and great teacher for the past six years anyway.

The fact that it's a whole new decade of life seems meaningful.  Life between 0 - 10 was childhood wonder and imagination, life between 10 - 19 were teen years based on forming identity and individuality, life between 20 - 29 was about independence, career, and establishing meaningful relationships.  It was also about reconnecting with family and learning to appreciate family relationships as friendships.

Now I begin 30 - 39. 

My predictions:  Hopefully these are the years of establishing our own family.  These will be my child-bearing years, our years of snuggling our sweet babies and managing sleepless nights.  Changes in our social time as we start a family... though hopefully our friends and other family members will begin to start their families too and our social activities will just shift.  These are the years I've been looking forward to for a long time... I'm such a maternal person, after all.  I feel like this is my decade to "shine".  I'm established as a permanent contract teacher, I have a home and a husband, I am ready for the next phase.

This may be a decade with loss.  It's hard as I get older not to consider those around me who are aging too.  Ten more years with three living grandparents doesn't seem possible, as an example.  I'm fortunate enough to have three grandparents in my life at the time of my 30th birthday.  With having children later and later now, this won't be the reality of future children I'm sad to say.  Loss is a part of the cycle of life, though, and to be honest... at least I feel better prepared to manage my emotions when thinking about this sort of change.

Another important point about turning 30, I have to admit that the anxiety that plagued my life for so long is currently under much better control.  I'm a more flexible thinker, I handle change better.  I'm able to relax and take more in stride.  I feel more confident in my personal safety in many ways compared to how helpless and scared I used to feel. 

Is my anxiety gone? 

No.  Not at all. It still lingers below the surface as a gentle buzzing across my skin... I'm just certainly better at keeping it at bay, and am better at rational thinking than when I was younger.

So, I'm thirty-years-old.  I'm in my 30s.   I'm a mature, independent adult.   I wonder what my life story really will be in this next decade?  I'm ready for it.

Monday, July 06, 2015


I've spent my first two weekends of summer up at my friends' cottages.  We no longer have a family cottage of our own, but I'm so lucky that two of my best friends have cottages we can visit for a weekend every summer.  The cottages had the added bonus of also being the location for celebrating two of our best friends turning 30!

The weekend weather was absolutely perfect, so we were able to be outside almost the whole weekend.  We sunbathed on the dock, read books, played cards and board games, had a campfire, and one of our friends who is a yoga instructor gave us a yoga lesson on the dock!  It was so peaceful, relaxing, and just plain FUN to be away with our Sitcom Group of Friends for the whole weekend.

There's just something so soothing and special about being by the water.  I love lounging in the boat reading a book as the lake gently rocks me.  The sound of children laughing and splashing in the lake from neighbouring cottages reminds me of my amazing childhood memories of time spent at my grandparents' cottage.

We had our family cottage from before I was born, until I was about 20.  My grandmother chose to sell it about a year after my grandfather passed away, fearing a family feud should something happen to her and my mom and her six brothers had to deal with selling it.  Fortunately, it's been about ten years and my grandmother is still going strong... but the cottage was more work than she could handle and my grandfather had wanted to sell it anyway, so her decision made sense for her.  We miss it a lot, having our own place on a lake.  We are often nostalgic for our memories there.  Rather than dwell sadly about it, however, I try to remember it as a wonderful piece of my life story, but to be okay with the changes that happen as life moves forward.

Following the sale of our cottage, my parents ended up putting in a pool in their backyard and we have certainly enjoyed that and have made many new memories of BBQs and pool parties at their house.  I've highly enjoyed having my friends over to swim, and always get a kick out of it when my friends with kids come by.

I also continue to appreciate the cottage experiences I get through my friends' families, and Mr. Lock's parents' too -- the first week of August, we will get to head up to the cottage they rent every summer.  I'm looking forward to it.

Thursday, July 02, 2015


You see, I want to blog.  I want to keep updating it and reaching out and enjoying the social atmosphere that blogging provides online.


I just don't know what to write about!  You see, I live a pretty average life.  I have a wonderful husband, I take care of my dog, I watch TV, I spend time with friends, etc etc.. nothing overly crazy or interesting happens worthy of writing about it!  I often start a "new post", and then abandon the idea of writing anything because I do not know what to write about.

It's a bit sad, because I *love* the act of writing.  Even this post that is about nothing, I feel great typing it out.  I want to share and connect... I just have no particular story to tell at this time!

I think I get stuck with how much personal information to share, not having a blog that has reviews or other general information to put out there, and then having a totally average, not that exciting existence.  Not that I'm saying that in a bad way.  I love my life.  It is totally normal and full of things like "today I did the laundry" or "today I watched three episodes of Psych on Netflix".  It is a happy life, just not necessarily full of much blog fodder.

So, that's where I'm at right now and that's why I hardly update... I rarely know what to say!  I'm going to try to keep it going, but for now I will admit it, if you stumble upon this blog... it may be pretty dull reading the Journal of an Average Josephine (what is the female version of "Average Joe"?).

PS -- if anyone out there really is reading this and would like to toss out some topics I could write about, go for it in the comments!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Counting down to summer!

This is the time of year teacher's love... the countdown to summer break!  I need a rest... kindergarten is so fun, but it sure tires me out!  I am crazy busy right now preparing and keeping up with all of our end of the year activities.  Last week was our special spring concert, and my students did an AWESOME job on their dance performance for their families!  I was so impressed, and their parents loved it too!  The spring concert is one of my favourite events of the school year.  It is so important that our students have a turn performing on the stage at least once a year!

This week we are very busy with Father's Day, a class year-end party on Friday, year-end assemblies... and finishing some projects that weren't quite done yet!   Next week, we will be taking home lots of our work, having a day to play in the sprinkler and water tables outside, and next thing you know it will be the end of another school year.

I will miss my students a lot, however since I am teaching kindergarten again next year, I will continue to have my current JK students for their SK year.  This is my first time being able to do that, and I am so excited to see how they continue to grow and learn as they head in to year 2 of the kindergarten program.  They have made incredible gains in just one year, how exciting to follow that through!

We have only 7 more school days together, 10 days until the break if I include the weekends and next Friday's PA Day.  The count down is so on!