Thursday, October 27, 2011

Oranges and lemons, Say the bells of St. Clements...

I eat a lot of apples. They are the only thing that was not on my diet this spring/ summer that I really missed. Since my eating plan has very little sugar in it, I ate very little fruit until it came into season and was locally grown... and even then I ate very little fruit. The apple is a very convenient little thing, add a little nut butter and you've got an almost complete meal that you can eat in about 4 minutes. For me at this time of year as a buy retailer a full meal in 4 minutes is worth it's weight in gold!
Since apple season is upon us I have given up my ban on them and consumed them like crazy! Spy's, Russets, Macintosh, Cortlands all kinds of fun ones. Last week I sent my staff to get my apples from the Dundas Farmers' market. I told him to get a mix of eating apples. They were all fine, but he brought me some yellow delicious apples. I have often wondered what God was thinking in calling the Delicious apple "Delicious" ... because to me it really isn't. The red delicious apple tastes kind of like a characature of an apple... almost like it's trying to say HI I'M A RED APPLE! I'M DELICIOUS... and that's all it's got. No great flavour, No tartness, too sweet etc... Just an all around average apple. But the Yellow Delicious? Really? That's an apple? It's like the apple that got forgotten when they gave all the other apples their character. It's like the plain Jane, wallflower, go on don't mind me I'm a boring apple apple. It's like the red delicious had an affair with the half dead house plant in the corner and spawned a sweet, but flavourless pasty looking child.
Just my opinion of course...

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Run Forest Run! aka Running in the Forest

So, I don't blog much. Mea Culpa. Sorry to you poor buggers out there who like to read my blether.
Today I went for a run. Strangely... my first real run of the season. I used to run quite a lot. Last year was my summer of the least fitness since I quit smoking(August 2000 yay me!), other than my summer 2008 when I hung out at "Camp Chemo" and even that summer I did a little triathlon. Last year was the first year in 7 that I did only one race(stupid grown up life gettin' in my way) I did a ton of awesome snowshoeing in the winter and joined a crossfit gym as the cold rainy horror we called spring happened in Ontario. My friend Glenn had been talking about his gym, so I tried it for a few weeks and loved it.
During the crossfit initiation period there was a lot of running, jumping, weight lifting and sweating. I was in a class with people that seemed to like it, but I haven't seen them since that first 6 week Boot Camp class. The weather got better, I still never went for a run. Lots of reasons, few of them good... but I didn't run. One reason was I was trying an experiment from a book I read, a body hack if you will.
The idea was that I could lose fat with some simple, short weight workouts (similar to some crossfit principals)most especially including kettlebell swings. I joined the Boot camp class just a few weeks before I read the book, so I started the eating plan and the class within a week of each other. Somewhere in there I started to see results with a lower fat percentage, and I was losing inches in some places, and gaining them in other cool ones. I also fell in love with kettlebells.
But the running, the whole point of the bloody blether... the running in my class was short, 100-400m type stuff, mixed with sets with my beloved bells...
I've known since my cross-county running days at Parkside that intervals were important to running. There's lots of current articles on Tabata type running workouts and 200m sprints until you barf... but in high school in the 1980's we had the pleasure of doing the fartlek. If we could get through the workout without laughing outloud at the name, it was a hell of a workout. Fartlek's never made me faster I don't think, but my coaches spent time with the naturally faster, taller (and in my mind prettier)girls so getting fast wasn't gonna happen without more help. Maybe if Uncle Ed gave me a kettlebell to swing while he coached Debbie Perfect, and one of those other tall blondies ;) I would have been happier, or stronger or somethin'

I'm not a fast runner. I run alone mostly, and until recently didn't track my speeds or distances. I have always run for time, to train for triathlons and to hide in the woods without anything bugging me from work or the aformentioned pesky grown up life.
I knew about a month ago that crossfit classes were making my running better so I tested my endurance on a short 20m/3k run AFTER a 45m long killer crossfit class and I was kinda stunned I could actually finish the planned 20m. Today, I aimed for 30m, but used a light kettlebell workout to warmup. At 25m I decided I was aiming for 40m. Did it.
So, with only a 3k run under my belt since LAST fall, I kicked through a 5k with little grief. I may not walk well tomorrow and I know from the tight feeling in my core that I "kept my chi" through the run.
I also did the whole thing "barefoot" in my VFF's which were not ideal for the gravelly trail I was on but... I did it.

Crossfit rocks...
Oh ya... oops...forgot... my speed on todays run was a PB for average speed for all my tracked runs of the last year sans that one race. That race? At a high school reunion... and one of the many tall blondies from my old team won. Some things change.... and some things never, ever will. ;)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

It's a Girl! ;) Exciting ellënoire news!

After almost 9 months of waiting & hoping ellënoire is finally ready to birth its new permanent location! We’ve secured a spot at the Dundas Post Office which is under construction to become a new shopping destination in a stunning old stone building. You will have to wait until late summer to see our new baby because she needs to be dressed up perfectly for your first visit. The new Boutique will include everything we do currently: Handmade Bath Products & Custom Scenting plus your favourite Bath & Body Brands like Badger Balm, Vermont Soap & of course the DevaCurl products along with an exciting addition…a baby sister if you will.

We will continue to offer Curly Hair Services: cutting & colouring but in a full service salon right inside our boutique. The Sulfate Free Curly Hair services we have offered for the last year in our private salon are so popular we cannot keep up, some of our non-curly clients are getting in on the sulfate free action too! We will be cutting right up to the day of the move, & selling products at 2 Cross St, Dundas so don’t worry, you can still get your ellënoire fix of the fun & functional things you love & enjoy a frizz free summer.

Our website, email & phone number will remain the same as always,, 905 627 9379

Come & see us at 2 Cross St soon & look for the news of our opening dates at the Post Office!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Store news

Dear Customers, Friends and DevaCurl Enthusiasts,
I’m writing to fill you in on news.
Do not worry, WE ARE NOT CLOSING!
This is news about our upcoming location which will house the Ellënoire Boutique along with a brand new Natural & Curly Hair Salon. Our current location at 53a King Street west was only a temporary location as many of you know. We will be closing this location on Saturday April 30. 5 more shopping days!

We are currently negotiating with a new landlord to move to another location in downtown Dundas. Unfortunately due to some timing issues it appears we will be without a street front location for a few weeks. Do not worry, WE ARE NOT CLOSING!
Over the next little while you will be able to get your favourite products in several different ways. Our website will remain active, and we will make arrangements for local customers to have their products available for pick up at a central location or in some cases delivered. Do not worry, you will not be charged the shipping fees you see on the website.

Our part time private Deva inspired curly hair salon will also remain open with cutting dates in May & June in both our St Catharines and Dundas based locations.
Please feel free to ask questions, and we wish this situation was a little different, but the details are beyond our control.
In the meantime everything in the store is on SALE. I’d rather sell it than move it!
Getting in touch with me by email will be
We’ll see you soon!

Sincerely, Noëlle & the ellënoire staff

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Nasty is not welcome here

I have been avoiding blogging like the plague for awhile. Not fair to my readers and really, not fair to me. I like blogging. I like talking about the things that are important to me.
There was an Anonymous comment on my last entry that made me give a second look at a lot of stuff with regard to how I communicate and how it affects other people. I didn't really come up with anything that I want to change, but I am trying to pay a little more attention to how public I am about my feelings and opinions.
Anonymous, whoever you are. You are not my friend. Whatever possessed you you say what you did I am not sure, but clearly you are angry at me, or the world or something. I have never, not once blamed anyone for my getting cancer and anyone who is really close to me knows that.
My only reply to you is that perhaps you should read the title of this blog again. This blog is mine, and I can say whatever I want here and I will continue to do so. Nasty is not welcome here. Many people have told me to ignore your comment, sadly I am far too emotional for that.

Anyway, I am back. I had a bunch of cancer appointments since I last wrote and so far things are ok. I don't have to see the onco for another 10 months. I got to schedule my mammogram at another hospital. Now, I don't have to go back to the horrible Juravinski Hospital Breast Cancer Centre after they treated me and many other women so badly in January. I saw my breast surgeon and he says I am a good candidate for breast reconstruction.
I'm not sure how or when we can schedule reconstruction this year, but I'm going to try. I want to race in some triathlons and/or ride some long bike tours this season and we have to move the store again soon so it will hard to manage multiple surgeries and recovery periods.
I started a fabulous new eating plan a couple of weeks ago to get rid of the last 10-15lbs that I put on during surgery, recovery and chemo in 2008.I'm going to start talking about it on this blog really soon I think. As far as I can tell it's a fantastic plan for everyone , and if it can get rid of this impossible chemo weight I will shout it from the rooftops. I feel great and a lot healthier. More on that very soon I promise.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Shut uuuuup! You're alive!

Oh man, this'll be a doozy 'cause y'all soooo did not get what I was saying yesterday. Most days my reaction to people and all their whining amounts to one thing. SHUT UP! YOUR'RE ALIVE!!

I'm glad you enjoyed your Family Day. It's not like I didn't enjoy my extra day off either, but I just didn't see the point. In the big picture. I'm exhausted to the very core listening to people act like they are entitled to long weekends and short Fridays and blah blah blah. No, that day off was a priveledge. Oh, sorry you really "needed" that long weekend? FOR WHAT? To whine that it was cold out? To drive to Buffalo and spend your money there, not stimulating your home economy AGAIN? Did you have a great big "Family" dinner? (LOL! see previous blog entry re cooking a Family) As far as I know the airports weren't brimming with family members racing home to be together for Family Day weekend. NO! 'cause we only just annoyed each other over how to mash the damned potatoes 6 weeks ago at Christmas! I was a lovely day off but an unneccesary one in my opinion...

In my town the weekend mangled the economy of many small retailers. Typical long weekend stuff. Friday was dead, Saturday was dead, Sunday was dead and Monday we were closed. We still had to pay staff for the holiday too...
I understand there was a huge mall in Toronto that was open, and did a booming business. Hooray! Except for as a small business I can't afford the fines I would have to pay to be open on a stat holiday.

Yesterday was also quiet, apparently due to the fact that it was cold out. IT'S BLOODY FEBRUARY OF COURSE IT'S COLD OUT DEAL WITH IT!
Weather Whining is constant. I think some people just have the need to complain that it's hot, or cold, or the sun is shining in their eyes or something negative about the weather. Perhaps it's facebook, perhaps I just have to many "friends" and seeing over half of these people post negative crap about the weather makes me want to scream! I have to work today, but the sun outside is gorgeous and I would kill for the time to be outside in it. Instead I am writing to you. ;p

Someone posted this yesterday and started an interesting fall out on Facebook: "Happiness is a choice" I basically rung in with... "well duh!" Anyone knows that.... realizing of course(after being yelled at by a very unhappy person) that some people never ever work that out. My whole point here is (sadly) the name of a Hannah Montana song. Life's what you make it! Take what you have and make it the best you can. There will always be something in everyday that will suck, but there will ALWAYS be something in everyday that is great too! You don't NEED a vacation or a day off or a shopping spree. You don't NEED a specially designated day to celebrate having a family. You don't NEED much other than food on the table, a roof over your head and maybe one or two people on the planet that care about you. And some people never get this. Some people had no family at all on "Family Day" (are you finally getting that the name bugs me more than the day off???)
My Cancer group friend Dana, the one that died this week was one of the happiest people I've ever met. Through 5 or so years of cancer treatment she was still happy! My mom was the same during her treatment. They were physically uncomfortable, in pain, pissed off, scared but somehow through all of it they found ways to be happy. Dana didn't need "Family day" to celebrate family, not at all.
Accepting the hand you are dealt is the only way to function I think. Bitch and moan all you want, but if you really believe the outside stuff like time off work and new shoes will help then try it, but trust me it doesn't help. Miserable? Call that friend you haven't seen in awhile. Hungry? Well, likely there's something in your fridge to eat even if it's not the thing you are craving. I think you get the picture.

Oh and before you say it... anyone who knows me knows that I bitch and moan about a lot of stuff but to me it helps to get it out "better out than in" I like to say...
Winter Haters, this is for you. Yes, you can bitch and moan too, I get that... but seriously do you have to do it all the time? Taking your Vitamin D is good for you it will help you get through the hard season S.A.D and all that.. but you still can't live without sunshine! Go outside!!! 10 minutes a day it will help! Just "wear more wool" as my mother would say...
Really, much of the time you are the ones I want to say SHUT UP!!! YOU'RE ALIVE to.

Today, I will spend a lot of time thinking of an very old friend whose infant son was sick with cancer the same time I was. Somewhere in this blog I think I mentioned him. Yesterday was the third anniversary of his diagnosis, just a few weeks after mine. He died, I didn't. I will never ever, ever, no matter how hard I try be able to think of what the heck to say to his mom without feeling crappy that he died.... and that I didn't. Ya, survivor's guilt, I know... not much I can do about it... but it sucks. So, I will be sure to think about Harry when I go out in the sunshine for my 10 minutes(or more if I have time) and remind myself "Shut up.... You're alive!"

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Family Day?

So, in Ontario yesterday we had a statutory holiday called "Family Day". A day to "celebrate family" I for one am not sure why it exists. I understand there had been some strife over the fact that we didn't have a statutory holiday in the month of February so we had to create one. The US get's President's Day so we should get a holiday too!? It's not a federal thing, we still got mail, you could still get a passport. I bet those people in those jobs would have liked to spend the day with family but too bad for them!
In my opinion most Canadians work too little anyway. Two days off a week, two weeks of vacation plus dental, prescription, etc etc benefits. Nice gig if you can get it! What the hell do you need yet another day off for? To sit around and do nothing? To have yet another dinner with people you are related to that you may or may not like? Family day was created to get your votes and that's all. Do you really need more than 30% of the month off? Because in this 28 day month that's what you got!

Family Day? *Raspberry* at you!!

Sure, I'm cynical but I'm the one who saw almost no family support during my cancer treatment. My Dad and son were around and I was grateful for that help... but my brother, my sister and most of my "family" didn't bother to call, let alone show up. I only just found out that the bulk of the family on mom's side didn't even know I was ill.... due to the fact that one family member that did know " didn't feel like talking about it" so didn't tell anyone else!

Family Day? In a time where family-as we like to pretend it -means so little. People duct taping their babies to walls and chairs. Same Sex families having trouble getting married, adopting children, sharing their partner's/ spouses benefits, next of kin rights etc. The family unit as the movies tell us it should be barely exists so telling us when and how to "celebrate family" is crap to me.
If you aren't celebrating the people you love you shouldn't get to have a them. If you need the government to ask you to vote for a day to spend with your family then you clearly need to spend more time with your family on a day to day basis anyway!

I have a family, a small number of them are here where I live, some are blood some are not. I have family in lots of other places too. Glasgow, Texas, New York, Australia and many places in between. My cancer family is with me today because we lost another one of our group this week. Dana succumbed to the breast cancer that spread to her brain on Sunday.
Personally I have a long list of other things I would like to have a special day for:

-Stimulate the economy day -EVERYONE Gets a half day off, all the stores are open and we have to SPEND money in Canada on Canadian goods. So sorry, no spending money in the US today... or Walmart for that matter.
-Kids go to school but Parents get the day off day!Going back to bed required.
--People should spend more money in my store so I can go to Texas for a funeral day.

But really folks. You got your day off. With no traditions to follow like we do on Easter, or Christmas what did you do? What meal did you cook? Turkey? Ham?
What does one slow roast in the oven on Family Day? A Family? ;)
*rant over*