Tag Archives: conestoga college

Forget His Shadow, Where’s the Groundhog?!

Just as predicted, the major “snow event” did indeed move in overnight. All schools are closed, right from preschools through the universities and colleges.

Thanks to the stormy conditions, Groundhog Day has taken a backseat!

if i was a groundhog, i'd be in no hurry to stick my nose out of my cave! (photo snapped this morning when i ventured out)


It is kind of funny, all the hoopla this weather situation has generated…while the snow is for sure accumulating, it’s by no means a Storm of the Century, or anything!

B was quite disappointed that his college closed down today – ironically, his third semester students were supposed to have a practical Ice Rescue training day! Quite the hassle, now, to reschedule and make up this missed class day.

Things did not seem too bad at all, earlier today:

clear sidewalks on the main downtown thoroughfare!

It was better to be out on foot than driving, I do believe!

how can the sidewalk be in better shape than the road?!!

Mom and Dad K, I was totally thinking of you this morning! You’ve got the right idea, enjoying some Florida time!

A welcome sight for commuters who had to be out:

man's best friend!

Wouldn’t want anyone to be deprived of a java fix (hey, I get. it. now!) – some places never close:

business as usual

Good timing, buddy! Thanks!

my own personal snow plow!

Mid-morning, B and I scornfully surveyed the outdoors…the snow had stopped, and it seemed relatively calm as we peered out the windows of the Condo Casa. A premature decision to shut down the city?? But now…

it's looking pretty white out there....

Needless to say, Aunti Day in Toronto has been shelved for this week…first time this winter that I haven’t been able to visit, though, so we haven’t done too badly.

Plan for the rest of this snowy day:

  • errands: bank, health food store, grocery store (again – twice daily trips are not that unusual, actually!)
  • purchase iTunes?? (this has been on my To Do list since late November, no kidding)
  • knit! (the second sleeve of mom’s sweater will be finished up today!)
  • Jersey Shore tonight!!! (We’re on Episode 8, Season 2)


Thank you for sharing your comments on the last post, Oprah Goes Vegan. This “hot topic” generated a lot of discussion around the blogosphere! Quite a few bloggers have discussed the Oprah episode. Angela, vegan and author of the wonderfully enjoyable blog Oh She Glows, wrote a beautifully comprehensive summary of the show. Read it here if you’re interested.

I casually mentioned the vegan-for-a-week concept to B this morning…he didn’t say no! His only response, actually, was we’d have to do it during Reading Week when he’d be home, and close to…*the facilities,* if you catch my drift! Such a man…


Seems like today’s snow closures stretch from Dallas to Boston to Rochester, NY! That’s a lot of groundhogs not seeing their shadows! A near end to winter, then??? We can only wish!

Congratulations, Class of 2010!

Last eve was the celebratory graduation banquet for B’s college students. Last year, I had just started blogging when we attended our first banquet.

Just like last year, we snapped a couple of photos before we left. It’s not every day we get out our spiffy duds!

mom's shoes (!) again; aran cardigan that i made (philosopher's wool & pattern)

b looks a little intense/stressed! MC duties on his mind?!

that's better!...although "natural lighting" is not very forgiving on laugh lines!

In September, B was promoted to Program Co-Ordinator; as such, he was MC for the night’s festivities:

b in action!

To back up for a second, today was a really snowy Saturday in southern Ontario. The banquet location was located in a hicktown hamlet 20 minutes from our place. Happily, B drove and our Toyota Tundra capably handled the snowy roads!

the roads were better by late aft than earlier in the day!

The banquets remind me very much of a wedding reception. Exhibit A:

black and white colour theme, with red touches

 Exhibit B:

table assignments - we were priviledged to be at Table #1!

 Exhibit C:

graduation cakes!

cake decoration...

Will I be able to create such masterpieces after my course?!

…And Exhibit D: live music! The students found this duo at one of their favourite pubs (from our own ‘hood, actually!)

cover tunes covered laudably pre-dinner and during our meal

Before dinner, I enjoyed chatting with Sherry, wife of Firefighter Scott, a part-time course instructor.

we easily found many subjects to talk about: work, family, fitness - plus we discovered mutual connections/six degrees of separation!

I love meeting people so don’t mind the schmoozing that these events necessitate!

our table! L-R: Cindy and Mac, Wayne and Pauline...

(pauline) doug, dennis, b...

b and i rounded out the table group!

As MC, B did an awesome job. He kept things moving along, linking speeches, presentations, awards, and thank you’s with minimal “filler chat.” The students expressed heartfelt thanks for the time and energy and passion that B brings to his leadership role with their 18-month college program. Proud of you, B!

It was really heartwarming to see all the family members present, too. Parents, grandparents, wives, girlfriends, young siblings…one fellow had 1.5 tables of family in attendance!

The students were so thoughtful, and kindly presented us with tokens of appreciation:

i received a beautiful rose, b a personalized, engraved trophy

During the banquet, I especially loved meeting and visiting with the (former) students. B often talks about “so and so” when we debrief about our day, at home. It was a pleasure to put names and faces together (I refrained from making any comments along the lines of “Oh! So YOU’RE the one!…”).

Hearty congratulations to each one of these graduates!

group photo time!

It was a real priviledge to be included in this graduation celebration!

The next class graduates in May…that class is comprised 100% of male students, and they have done a TON of fundraising for their upcoming banquet. Can’t wait!


It’s going to be an early bedtime tonight! I’ve had three later-than-usual (all for fun occasions) nights in a row, now, and worked three days in a row at the store, too. Can I stay awake long enough for a li’l Jersey time??!

Mr and Mrs Dress Up

When I was little, I dreamed of the day when I would be old enough to wear spiky high heels, thick make-up and designer dresses all day long. Well! The reality is that my favourite fashion labels are Sugoi, Lululemon and Nike. Daily make-up routine is blusher, eye liner and a dab of mascara. Spiky high heels? I currently do not even OWN a pair of high heels.

This proved to be a bit of a dilemma when we were invited to attend the Graduation Banquet for the 2008-2009 Conestoga College Pre-Service Firefighter Program. The Banquet was held this past Saturday evening and was a semi-formal affair. Brad was all set; we brushed off Old Faithful, his go-to suit for all events requiring such level of dress. I decided upon my handknit mohair dress. I last wore it to Chris and Ana’s wedding in October 2005; luckily, knit dresses are classic in style!

photo opp pre-banquet

Shoes? Mummy to the rescue! I gratefully borrowed her brand new pair of patent heels that she generously and kindly offered to lend. These gorgeous lovelies deserve a close-up:


Now on to the Banquet…The organizing committee is to be commended for the fantastic banquet they orchestrated. Several times throughout the evening, the comment was made that this was the best banquet in years. Certainly, great attention to detail was evident in the decorating, seating assignments, catering selection, and organization.

When we arrived at the venue, the Romanian Cultural Centre in Kitchener, first year students greeted us, gave us our table assignment and escorted us into the main hall.

Since this was my first Conestoga College-related social, I appreciated the chance to meet Brad’s colleagues and some of the firefighter instructors who help out with the program.

Craig (centre), his wife Anna (L), Brad (R)

I was really impressed with the number of family members who attended to support their son/daughter/grandchild/spouse etc. Over 200 guests were in attendance, the highest number yet for a graduating class’ banquet.

Brad (L) with Class President Marty Long (R)

Full Circle: Brian Ertel, friend from years ago, now is an instructor, too

Following cocktails and mingling, we enjoyed a three course buffet of salads/apps, hot dishes, and desserts. Thank you plaques were presented to area fire departments which support the program, and awards were handed out to deserving students. We were very touched with our thank you gift of gorgeous flowers:


All in all, it was a lovely evening out. The next banquet will be held in January 2011, but after that we will have one to attend every three months as the Pre-Service Program continues to grow and new classes are added. It’s an honour to be included on the Guest List as the students celebrate the end of their studies and anticipate joining the fire service. (I think I will likely invest in my own pair of heels…) 🙂