12 Months of Celebration – Month 10 – October

An auspicious year…

I always look forward to October because of the gorgeous cool, sunny weather; the colourful trees and crisp leaves; Thanksgiving dinner; and… my birthday.

If you tuned in earlier this month you will know that I celebrated my 50th. Yep, the Half Century birthday! Amazingly, I hardly feel decrepit at all. Although I was recently diagnosed with Tennis Elbow and I know perfectly well it is from excessive computer use! I was actually afraid it was arthritis, or the doctor would tell me I’m getting older and I can expect aches and pains from now on. Whew!

I did give one suggestion to Rom for a gift (since he asked) and I was thrilled to get one of these from Etsy, which is only recognizable by older folks:

Test: What Is This?

Test: What Is This? (see bottom of post for answer)

He also gave me a LEGO book (you know how addicted I am) and another vintage item, a copy of my favourite toy from the 1970s:

The perfect combination of art and math!

The perfect combination of art and math!

Since Rom and I had gone out to two shows the previous week, we had a quiet dinner out for my birthday evening. We went out for wood-fired pizza and a fine Valpolicella. Ahh! Since my birthday always falls near Thanksgiving and so does my dad’s, we always celebrate together with a combined birthday/Thanksgiving meal, and we had a fine festive dinner with the extended family.

Another big celebration is yet to come – I spent the year saving for a 50th Birthday trip to New York City! We were not able to schedule it this Fall, but it feels good to know the funds are there for a vacation next Spring. I will enjoy planning the trip over the winter.

There was lots more fun in October:

The first show Rom and I saw this month was an evening with Dan Savage, whose book The Commitment I recently reviewed. As mentioned previously, he is a renowned sex advice columnist who is featured in our local weekly, The Coast. The audience members wrote down their questions on index cards and Dan answered them for a couple of hours at the mic. It was very entertaining. You might not have guessed, but it was also quite poignant: some people seek relationship advice and are in sad situations, while others appear to lack the most basic sex knowledge or (just as bad) civility.  Mr. Savage is a very affable guy and it felt like hanging out with a liberal, opinionated friend.

Next we went to see Joe Satriani, a guitar god famous for his album Surfing with the Alien in the 80s. He has a sharp touring band. Joe is in his mid-50s but youthful-looking. He has a second guitarist who looks his age and is also very accomplished. They do all-instrumental rock music with slick projections suited to the song. We are rock guitar buffs at our house and enjoyed it thoroughly.

Band: Braids (Photo: swide.com)

Band: Braids (Photo: swide.com)

Later in the month we went to the Halifax Pop Explosion for 4 nights in a row of back-to-back music. We saw 14 bands – 6 local and 8 Canadian, with an emphasis on punk, loudness and noise. Our local bands held up really well and in some cases, we thought they were better than the headliners (yay, Motorleague!) For the record, the headliners were Wavves, Fucked Up, Braids, and Japandroids. We got to wear plastic wristbands to work all week! Three of the nights, we went directly from work, so we were out of the house from 8 am to midnight. Most nights standing for 4 hours. I must say it was a bit gruelling but much fun was had. I reminded myself that if I had a week like that when I was 21, I would have slept until 1 pm the next day…not like now! My days as a lie-about are over. Too much to do!

Board Game: Forbidden Island

Board Game: Forbidden Island

Something new this month was the opening of a board game café for adults in our city. We’ve been twice now. They have a collection of over 400 games to choose from, and staff who will set up the games with you and teach you how to play. They also serve yummy grilled cheese sandwiches! We liked playing Forbidden Island, and different variations of Time Line.

This month I watched Season 1 of Downton Abbey on DVD which I loved (as you might guess). I’m happy there are multiple more seasons to watch, already released!

I’ve reported on my reading for October, but I also went to my book club meeting at which we discussed 419, previously reviewed here.

On October 8, we had a provincial election and I was pleased to exercise my democratic rights by going out to vote.

Finally, a special joy was that our nephew, age 12, stayed with us for 2 nights while his mom worked back-to-back night shifts. Rom had a willing Magic the Gathering player, and I got to bake cookies with a kid! It was a pleasure having him around and I look forward to next time.

Here in the “relief” section, I will report that (a.) an extra 40 hours or so of volunteer work were completed this month and it should be lighter duty for a while; (b.) my dental work is done now, and (c.) the fruit flies are past their season now, yippee!

How was your October?

I am off to Toronto to visit Link so I will have much to report when I get back! (I will have time to read and comment here and on other blogs but not sure about posting).

PS – The budget this month was only out by 4 cents – no more cinnamon buns, LOL!

These are adapters that allowed a record with a big hole in the middle (a "45" or a "single") to fit onto a record player that had a skinny spindle in the middle to hold records with small holes in them (LPs or "albums.") Photo: lolamouse.blogspot.com

These are adapters that allowed a record with a big hole in the middle (a “45” or a “single”) to fit onto a record player that had a skinny spindle in the middle to hold records with small holes in them (LPs or “albums.”) Photo: lolamouse.blogspot.com

A record player with an album on it - notice the small spindle in the centre that you put the record on. (Photo; lockestreetaudio.com)

A record player with an album on it – notice the small spindle in the centre that you put the record on. (Photo; lockestreetaudio.com)



  1. Deb

    The pendant is a replica of what you would insert in a 45 rpm record to be able to play it on your Hifi.

  2. Have a great time in Toronto 🙂

    I have no idea what the thing from Etsy, but I do recognise the Spirograph. They must have had a revival in the 90s because my sister had one and we loved it.

    The board game cafe sounds like a great idea – do you go there as a group or do you play against strangers?

    The fruit fly season has just begun here unfortunately 😦

    • I don’t envy you the fruit flies 😦
      At the board game cafe, you go as a group. So far Rom and I have just played two-player games.
      We love Toronto and I’m sure we’ll have fun regardless of the weather.
      I added a description of the Etsy thing to the bottom of my post.

  3. Sounds like a great month all around! I believe the Etsy item is what you use with a record player… To play singles?

  4. What a great October! My partner and I are also planning a trip to New York City next year! I’ve never been and haven’t had a real vacation in years, so I’m really looking forward to it.

    • We have never been to NYC either! It’s a bit overwhelming to decide what to do, so we thought we’d make this trip an overview and learn what to come back for later. You are much further away!

  5. Happy belated birthday! Sounds like you had a wonderful month!
    I remember buying 45s every week and that centre piece was a pain at times.

  6. Happy birthday!

    Sounds like a real celebratory month! I don’t think I could have lasted the full 4 nights of a pop Explosion. I fact, I know I couldn’t. And definitely not with all your other activities.

    I loved Spirograph. I bought one for my boys when they were little. They never got into it like my sister and I did. I always thought the way it made patterns was so amazing.

  7. laura / move to portugal

    Another wonderful month!
    I have no idea what your necklace is…although I should know cos I’m older lol!

    Have a great time with Link.

  8. Angela

    It looks like the emblem of the Isle of Man ! Or is it to do with nuclear disarmament? I am 53 already (how did that happen? ) and recently visited Toronto with my husband for the first time ever and had a super time there. Hope you do too. bTW I live in the UK. Happy November.

    • Hi Angela, thanks for stopping by! We love Toronto – it’s Rom’s 2nd trip there, but I have been many times, and love it – so much to do. Hope you have a great November, too! I am adding a photo of that object to the bottom of my post with a little description.

  9. EcoCatLady

    OK… you’re makin’ me feel old with the 45 record thing. I can remember hours of fun playing my parents LP’s at the 45 or even 78 speed. Oh, the chipmunks never had it so good!

    • Yeah, not too many people would remember 78 speed; it was always fun to change up the speed of records!

      • EcoCatLady

        Back when I worked at the music school we had a little lending library, and somebody donated a whole truckload of old 78’s. It was amazing stuff… well, amazing if you’re into vintage folk, blues & jazz. Anyhow, that was when I realized how the term “album” was coined because they were like these little books with 8-10 records in each one. Pretty cool when you think about it.

  10. Fiona

    Love the idea of the Board Game Cafe! Hope you have a wonderful time with Link in Toronto.

  11. Ooh, I love NYC! It’s our traditional fall trip and we got engaged there, so it holds a special place in my heart 🙂 I hope you have a great time!

    I enjoyed my spirograph as a kid – in fact, one of my creations is still on the fridge at my parents’ house, haha. That thing would keep me occupied for hours.

    • What are your favourite places to see and go in NYC? I had a lot of patience with my old Spirograph, too!

      • We’ve gone to see a show at Radio City Music Hall several times, and enjoyed every one. It’s so grand in there, not like seeing a show at home! There’s also tons of stuff playing on Broadway. We always visit Central Park – you could easily spend a half day there just wandering on the paths. One of our favorite things is the big rocks left behind by the glaciers that used to be there (very different landscape than where we live) so we like to spend some time exploring and doing some light rock climbing. Central Park is bigger than it seems though – we’ve visited at least ten times and still haven’t seen the whole thing (probably because we spend too much time climbing and watching the ducks, haha). The Metropolitan Museum of Art is another place we can never seem to see in its entirety. Foodwise, we rarely eat at the same place twice, but Lombardi’s (pizza) and Rock Center Cafe are always delicious. We also do a lot of just wandering around the city, walking into places that look interesting along the way.

        I can’t wait to hear about your trip 🙂

      • I hope we have good weather to do those kinds of things! And of course a Broadway show is a sure thing. Meanwhile we are in Toronto this week!

  12. LOL looking at your necklace it actually took me about 30 seconds to figure out what it was…it did look quite familiar (especially since I used to have a huge collection of 45s!). I too need to get started on Downton Abbey–looks like a wonderful show. Happy birthday!

  13. What a delightful round up! I think you may (or may not) know that I LOVE LOVE LOVE NYC (up there with Paris), and when we disembarked in Sydney, and saw the ‘international transfers’ desk after countless hours travelling, the BF said ‘how’d you feel if you were transferring to NYC now?’ (knowing how much I love it) and I just groaned!! Thankfully, we were heading home to sleep off the jet lag.

    Enjoy seeing Link!

    • Thanks, Sarah! You’ll have to tell me your favourite things to do in NYC. All I know is I need to go to MOMA, see a Broadway show and at least one music gig, and visit some famous rock history spots! This is our 4th day in Toronto and we are having lots of fun hanging out with Link and taking in the sights. It’s a lot colder here than I expected, though – brrr!

  14. Sounds like you have been having a great time. The Spirograph brings back memories I still have mine (sadly one missing piece) found it clearing out my mums house. I have been watching the new series of Downton but I am not liking it as much this time as I feel it has turned into a period soap – I only watch now because I love the Maggie Smith one liners.

    • I am always afraid to go too far into series and sequels in case they keep getting worse, but of course you always want to know what happens to the characters. I am sure November will fly by because we will have been on vacation for the first 11 days!

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