Friday, December 30, 2011

a big year

i can't believe that the world is ending in just one day! just kidding. seriously though, 2011 was a pretty great year. it was a toughie in some ways, but it was also fun and funny and fancy and friendly. 

first we celebrated a wonderful new year with all of our homies. 

then i met my snisters and a ton of wonderful friends in vancouver. we had a hoot!

then ian graduated from teacher's college! (and i finally paid up on a bet that originated in 2005)

this is where ian spent most of the summer. worth it! 

then my sisters came to visit me! are you wondering how i got stuck with brown eyes? i am too. when i was a kid, sandy and ashley tried to convince me that i was adopted. unfortunately for them, i'm not! 

we went to the cottage in early september and it was beautiful and relaxing.

then we went camping a big black bear was scared off of our campsite by an even bigger and hairier bear.

then i left a really great job and really amazing colleagues. for reals, i miss my peeps. 

then we moved to nunavut. we arrived in a snowstorm and i looked like a tool for three months wearing my canada goose coat while locals wore hoodies. now it's finally acceptable. 

thanks, first air!

some other great things about 2011:

- i didn't injure even one single toe this year! i have 10* toenails.
- two of our very best friends got into masters programs and moved to toronto (just in time for us to leave). 
- william and kate got married! what? who cares? not me. i definitely didn't get up at 4:30am to watch that shit. 
- ian turned 30. lots of other cool people had birthdays too. come to think of it, all of the cool people i know had birthdays this year! what were the chances?? happy birthday everyone. 
- two other really exciting things that i'm not allowed to talk about. 

*saying i have 10 toenails may be a bit of a stretch. let's settle on 9.5 thanks to 2010's incident.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

merry christmas!

hey, i hope you had a good christmas! we did. it was sad to be without our families but we had fun and did lots of video chatting. 

we also hung out. 

and watched love actually. 

how can you resist liam neeson?

Thursday, December 22, 2011

ho ho ho!

iqaluit is crazy about christmas. it's pretty neat, because i love christmas too. one thing that i think is really great is that there are a ton of christmas lights all over the place. there's even an annual contest to see who has the best lights! the other night, ian and i drove around to get a good look at some of the lights in town. 

unfortunately right after i took this picture i got caught by a man standing in that green window there. how embaaaaaarrassing. 

the photos below are of my favourite house in the universe.

our electricity bill is $100 a month and we don't have any christmas lights. i'm guessing that this family's bill is outrageous. worth it! 

**just in case you're wondering, the bigger red lights you see on the top two photos are not christmas lights. "duh, jenessa, we're not stupid. they obviously don't look like christmas lights." you might be saying. sorry! i just thought i'd explain what they are. a lot of the city of iqaluit is on the utilidor (above-ground piping system for water and sewage - separate pipes for water and sewage thankfully) but a lot of the city is not! houses with red lights on them are not on the utilidor. that red light tells the city workers that those houses don't need their water tanks filled up. when the light is off, they do need water. that means that sometimes families need to conserve their water so they don't run out (like this week, for example, since the trucks won't be out certain days because of the holidays). sewage is pumped out every day so there's no light for that. we won't have a light because we're on the utilidor since our building is new. 

you may think that the water tank and sewage tank system is a bit dated, but you should just be thankful people aren't still using honey buckets. actually, i should be thankful for that. i am. that's a lesson for another day, though.

today's message on iqaluit's water and sewage system is brought to you by polar bears and muskoxen. 

Monday, December 19, 2011


ian took a picture of this very interesting door ornament when we were in apex. 

it's a real bird! a real dead bird, of course. just for the record, the ravens that we usually see hanging around are generally much MUCH bigger than this. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

busy busy day

what a day! ian's last day of work before christmas vacation was yesterday, so today was a big day of fun. i have to admit, though, that i'm feeling a bit jealous. i have to go back to work for a whole week before my vacation starts. damn! anyway, here's what we had going on today:

here's the sun rising. this photo was taken at 10:00 am. today was the first sunny day in a while (usually it's just greyish) so it was nice!

here's the sun going down. this was about 1:30 pm. see you later, sun. it was fun while it lasted!

we drove down to apex to hang out for a while. have you ever heard of apex? it's a part of iqaluit, but it's a few kilometers down the road. the road is called 'road to apex' so if you're ever kicking around and trying to find it, don't worry. you'll find it. anyway, apex is where mainly inuit people lived when iqaluit was a military site. it's basically just a very small neighbourhood. 

here i am in this boat. i was going to sit down but it was cold and i didn't want to get you-know-whats. you know what, right?

here's one of the husdon's bay company buildings. it's on the beach in apex. there's another one next door to it.

here i am as an elf. i was helping with the city of iqaluit's kids christmas party earlier and it was a real hoot and a half. i was a very popular elf in a giant elf suit. 

now we're watching elf! i think this is what it feels like to have come full circle. 

please don't judge the one strand of popcorn on our tree. i'm trying to get the gusto to finish the popcorn stringing but it's messy and my fingers get greasy! 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

cool dude

hey, do you guys miss ian yet? i think we all know that the most charming thing about that guy is how clumsy he is. earlier tonight he was being helpful by filling the pepper grinder with pepper. unfortunately for him, he filled the salt grinder with pepper. 

anyway, other than that we don't have a whole lot going on. we've been having lots of fun with friends and we've also been getting ready for sad christmas. oh, you want to know what sad christmas is? it's christmas without family and friends. don't you worry, though. i've been saving up all of the important christmas movies (home alone, christmas vacation, elf, love actually, etc.) for when my vacation starts. 

i'll be in good aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaands. 

Monday, December 5, 2011


this is where the sun chills out at noon here right now. 

Sunday, November 27, 2011

sea ice!

it has been EXTREMELY cold in iqaluit over the last week or so and there were lots of very interesting and cool things happening to the bay. there was misty mist rising from the water as it began to freeze. today we went down to the beach and i was very surprised to see that it's really really frozen! 

it was neat to see how chunky it was along the edges. the tide is out in these photos so the ice is all jagged and otherworldly. 

those dogs wanted to kill us and that raven was getting ready to eat us. 

look what we found! a very very very huge bone! i heard that it's one of the bones from the bowhead whale that was caught near iqaluit in august ( the bowhead whale catch was a pretty huge deal since (as you can read in the article) bowhead whale hunting had been off limits for decades until a few different communities were granted permits to hunt this year. there are a lot of extremely cool things about the way the whale meat was harvested. it was shared with the entire community and EVERYTHING was used (including the bones). something that i thought was really neat is that nobody is allowed to sell bowhead whale meat - it has to be shared. so nice! 

something happened to this house. i'm not sure what. ian said it looks like a fire. ??

Monday, November 21, 2011

monday?! more like funday.

just kidding! today isn't fun. we did have a very fun weekend, though. 

on friday night we had some friends over for some drinks and snacks before we all headed out to the legion. the legion! what a hoot! the legion here in iqaluit is not like any legion i've been to before. for example, before we left we were warned that we may have to stand in line outside. this confused me because i half expected to walk in and see a bingo game or a seniors aerobics class happening. not so, friends. not so. 

thankfully we didn't have to stand in line. after we checked our parkas, we headed left into the "quiet lounge" where the band we went to see was playing. we found seats and got drinks (i had a coors light like a very classy lady). the band was AMAZING. no, seriously. they were so so so good. not only that, but during their set breaks we got to hear live throat singing. !! ian is very lucky to live with me because i have been officially practising throat signing non-stop since that night. 

at one point during all of the singing and dancing, i looked across the room and suddenly realized that i was staring at a guy i went to high school with! what were the chances? we also lived on the same street as each other for many years. so, that was really neat.

after the band finished playing, the group we came with started to dissipate slowly. where were all of our friends going? oh, i'll tell you where they were going. they were going to the other side. the non-quiet area. at this point it was approaching midnight and i had to get home FAST to put up my orthodics and take off my compression stockings, but we did step into the non-quiet area for a few minutes. let me tell you - it was not quiet. it was very dark and there was lots of dancing happening. there was a dj who was blasting some heavy bass tunes. it was like electric circus (just kidding. but seriously, i wish!). 

then we went home and i fell asleep on the couch. the end! 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


hey! do you want to see our apartment? i took some pictures when we first moved in so i thought i'd give you a show. they're not great photos because we still hadn't really unpacked so please forgive the untidiness. 

here's a picture of the living room. at this point i'd be standing with my back to the kitchen and on my right would be our door outside.

here's ian doing what he does best (work) at the kitchen table. at this point i would have had my back to our bedroom door. the door with the ugly blanket on it is our door to the outdoors (our porch and stairs). the whole door is a window! we had to put a blanket on it! give me a break!

here's the kitchen. the bathroom would have been to my right at this point. if you're standing with your back to the ugly blanket door, there are four doors on the opposite wall - sealift room, bathroom, closet, bedroom.

more kitchen.

here's the sealift room (off the kitchen). i like it because it houses my wealth of toiletries. if you grew up a warren girl, you know how important it is to stock up (and i mean WAY up) on toiletries. right mom?

i didn't include any photos of the bedroom because we haven't you say...unpacked it yet. i also didn't include the closet or the bathroom because those things are pretty self explanatory. what's that you say? you don't know what a bathroom looks like? well okay!

Friday, November 11, 2011

honey, i'm home!

oh hey, do you guys want to know what a loser i am? last friday i went aaaaalllll the way back to ontario for work and i forgot the camera! doy. i was just too excited to bring any of the important things that i needed. don't worry, though, i did remember to bring an empty suitcase (that i happened to bring back filled with 70 lbs of things. THINGS! how can i resist things?!).

i had a really wonderful weekend in guelph seeing lots of friends and family. i even got to go to TWO birthday parties (!) and i was able to kiss my sweet nieces over and over. unfortunately they were both sick so i didn't do myself any favours. after family dinner on sunday night, my very nice father in law drove me to toronto where i did some work things and i also got to see some more of my favourite people. it was all fun and games until i left my hotel for the airport at 4:00 am on wednesday. i hate you, 4:00 am! i was very glad to come home, though. the apartment was filled with ian's tears.

now there's a blizzard outside. tonight the winds are supposed to get up to 100km/h. yikesy. we're going to brave it to go to a games night. worth it!

Monday, November 7, 2011


hello loyal friends! thanks for coming back for more. i thought i'd post some more photos of our adventure last week. after we drove to the end of the boring road to nowhere, we did some more exploring. iqaluit has a lot of cool nature to look at. although i really miss trees, it's nice to live somewhere with very high coolness-visibility. sometimes it's like having x-ray vision. 

here is a picture of the sea. 

this is also the sea.

we ended up going to sylvia grinnell park (a provincial park) and roaming around. remember that time ian beat me in a race i didn't know i was participating in? payback alert! i totally rocked this race. 

after we explored the park, we drove past the landfill (i took pictures but i don't know if i'm going to post them. the landfill is really sad and stressful) to the old breakwater. well, i'm pretty sure it was the old one. there's the "old breakwater" and the "new breakwater". either way, we were hanging out on a breakwater and looking out on the bay. 

ian spotted a seal! unfortunately it had been bludgeoned to death and tied to a rock. he kept touching it and poking it. i was all "???" and "let's go!" but ian insisted on making friends with it. he took some very close up photos that make me barf. 

Friday, November 4, 2011

road to nowhere

last saturday we spent the day exploring and galavanting around the country side. it was a very beautiful, sunny and cold day. the first thing we did was drive all the way to the end of our street. the road ends about 4 km from our apartment. since we arrived here a month ago i've been really curious about what's at the end of the road to nowhere. nothing? a body of water? a family of bunnies with top hats? nope. 

here's a lake that is on the road to nowhere but not at the end. all of the lakes are frozen over at this point but the bay hasn't frozen yet. 

these big giant rocks marked the end of the road. 

ian noticed right away that there were about 1 million bullets casings scattered along the ground. i was confused and a bit alarmed by this. "why would people be hunting right here?" i thought to myself. 

surprise! the mystery at the end of the road to nowhere is a shooting range. boring. 

here's my reaction to how anticlimactic this was.