Detroit Rock City

Back in 12th grade, a production company came to my high-school painted, changed signs and dressed a bunch of us up like kids from the 70’s and filmed a movie called Detroit Rock City.  Now this movie stars a very obnoxious Eddie Furlong (who I originally had a crush on, but as the filming went on I learned he is actually a pretty big douche bag) and it wasn’t very good or very popular, but it is something CCI can be proud of being a part of!   
I had only been to Detroit once at this point, when I was in 7th grade and I slept through it because I was so sick.  A few years later (like 10 years) GBF had to pick up baseball jerseys so we drove across the Detroit border but I don’t remember even getting out of the car.  I had never really been to Detroit – like to see it and live it and love it.  
However this past weekend, GBF and I (again) drove across the border and spent the weekend walking around, watching the Tigers lose to Minnesota and shopping – so much shopping.   
The Detroit border is WAY better than the Buffalo border – but much farther away too!  The drive though is scenic.  It’s beautiful and as the sun set Friday night we chatted and joked around, watching the scenery pass us by.  
Riding shot gun!
Riding shot-gun!
 
Setting sun was bright and beautiful!
Setting sun was bright and beautiful!
After crossing the border and finding our EXTREMELY large hotel we checked in and went downstairs to the lobby bar to have a drink and watch the Miami Heat game (such a disappointing loss…).   
My orange Creamsicle drink at the bar watching the Miami play!
My orange Creamsicle drink at the bar watching the Miami play!
On Saturday we drove into another part of Michigan to Somerset Mall – which isn’t really a mall so much as a building with a lot of stores that only rich people can afford.  It had Gucci, Louis Vutton, Coach, Tiffanies etc.  It was a lot to take in and as much as I really wanted to buy a pair of Jimmy Choo’s from Saks Fifth Ave. I knew I couldn’t justify it.  I walked away empty-handed and a little sad.   
In the afternoon we took the People Mover (Detroit’s version of the Scarborough RT for you Toronto readers) to Comerica Park and watched the Tigers get beat by the last place Minnesota Twins.  Not much happened during this game that made it exciting, but it helped check off part of my bucket list:
 photo 3 
 
I will visit every major league baseball diamond
  
American Pride - in drink form!
American Pride – in drink form!
MICKEY!!!

MICKEY!!!

By the time we got back to the hotel I was exhausted and took a cat nap while GBF watched Women’s fast pitch on TV.  
This is where the story went downhill for a minute.  After deciding to go to the casino – we took a cab to Greek town Hotel and Casino because not only was there the casino – but Shots Sports bar which sounded good to both of us!  We got to the casino and asked an employee where Shots was.  He told us upstairs to the left.  We went upstairs.  Asked another employee to point it out and she said downstairs to the right.   
HUH?? 
We went back downstairs another girl told us to take the elevator to the third floor and turn left.   
REALLY?  
We went to the third floor and I saw someone who looked like a manager and she told me we would have been lost if trying to find it on our own (duh) so she walked us to another set of elevators and told us to take it to the first floor and it was exactly to the left of the elevator. 
At this point my feet hurt and I was starving. 
But, we found Shots finally!  YAY??  
We walked in and saw it was as big as my bedroom – and crowded and we were again unimpressed.  We took a random seat at a table built for 4, but we didn’t care and finally a waitress came by and took our order – they had beer and hard liquor – that’s it.  So GBF had a beer and I had a vodka OJ.  My vodka OJ was cheap vodka and it was harsh.  On an empty stomach this was not looking ideal so we paid the bill and left.  
Our night picked up when walked over to an amazing bbq restaurant for dinner and to finish watching the San Antonio basketball game.  Our waitress was asking about OUR accents (really??) and she was so funny.  She spent almost our entire time there with us and we loved her immediately.  The food was also delicious as was my Bellini!  YUMM!
 photo 6
 
Sunday we did more shopping, I bought a tonne of shoes, GBF bought a tonne of dress shirts and by the time we left Michigan we were ready to be home.  
The thing that surprised us the most – we drove up to border patrol and they asked how we were, we said good and gave them our passports – he looked at them, handed them back and said have a nice day!
WHAT? 
No questions?  No third degree?  No being pulled over and having the car torn apart?  We were so confused. 
We looked at each other bug-eyed and left.  That was the craziest border crossing ever!  
If we had known that we each would have bought way more liquor from Duty Free – GBF was over his allowed limit either way and was fully expecting to pay. 
The drive back to TO went smoothly from there and I was so happy to see my bed!  I crawled in and thanked God because truly there is no place like home!
Have a great day!

Have a great day!

 
XOXO Nikilee
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I’m a little bit country?

A couple of weeks ago Crazy Cat Lady requested my presence at her cottage for the Saturday-Sunday of the long weekend (okay really she asked if I was free and of course I was so I said why not).  Now I have never been to CCL’s cottage, but I assumed like other cottages I’d been to, that I would drive up to some small housing structure that smelled musty and had bugs roaming around and I’d spend most of the weekend swatting mosquitoes off me.

However as CCL and I were driving up north (North of Barrie) she said her brother would bring the boat around to pick us up and take us to the cottage.

Say what?

This cottage is on an island – no roads – so we park in a parking lot and you need someone who has a boat to pick you up from the dock and then you take the boat to the cottage.

photo 3photo 4photo

Okay, I was okay with that – seemed a bit more rustic than I was used to, but sure – why not have an adventure.  So we drove, and drove and finally the inevitable happened – we had to pee.  No, sorry I had to pee and when I said it CCL immediately had to pee too.  I saw a sign that said a Country Style donuts and gas station were at the next exit so I whipped over to the right hand lane and got off and I am pretty sure we were on another small highway.  There was nothing – no exits no Donut store and no gas station.  So we kept driving and driving for about 15 minutes and FINALLY, thank you Lord, we saw the Country Style donuts and gas station.  Let me tell you – that damn sign was misleading.  If it wasn’t for me making random turns we never would have made it.

After taking some pics and emptying our full bladders we drove into the small town of Mactier and did some grocery shopping and headed to the dock.

photo 8photo 9photos

CCL’s brother came to get us and we took the boat to the cottage.  As CCL pointed out this cottage I immediately knew I would be a happy camper.  This cottage was beautiful and high up on this beautiful cliff and the closer we got the more pretty everything seemed.  We were greeted by her father, Omi, Opa and her dad’s girlfriend. 

Having a great time!

Having a great time!

photo 7Love this woman!

Amazingly the inside was even more beautiful than the outside.  CCL and I shared a room with two single beds so we dropped our stuff and went out on to this huge deck and I soaked up some cancer rays sun while CCL hid her white skin under the umbrella. 

Sharing drinks and laughs, the ladies gossiped and we all got to know each other as the boys worked on the new dock.  Her brother took us out on the new speed boat and we drove around the island at speeds that seemed illegal but was so much fun! 

Dinner was lobster tail, beef tenderloin, mashed potatoes and caesar salad with birthday cake and cupcakes for dessert (we were celebrating CCL’s dads 50th birthday). 

We were in bed early due to the warm air, wine and filling meal and happily I dreamt away with no anxiety – no meltdowns.  I was in complete peace. 

The next morning we had breakfast, relaxed played Crazy 8 countdown (CCL won 2-3) and then took the boat back to the dock so we could go home.  I was just starting to really feel like I could get used to the isolation – be engulfed in the peace and quiet of country life when we pulled up the dock her dad pointed out the worlds largest, creepiest dock spider I had ever seen and just like that I was ready to come back to the city. 

We survived!

We survived!

This Cidiot can be a little bit country – but deep down, my heart and my incredible fear of spiders will keep me in the big bad city!

XOXO Nikilee

Spring is in the air!

Every spring I tell myself I am going to garden!  I am going to carve out a section of my weeds grass and plant some pretty flowers to admire!  And every spring I get lazy or cheap or bored or sane and it never gets done. 

However – this spring, spring 2013 I, Nikilee30 will be gardening.  I even went to Crappy Canadian Tire and bought my supplies – minus the flowers cause I am not planting them yet – I need to prepare my garden.  I brought Crazy Cat Lady cause if anyone understands me, it’s her and she can handle my craziness for abnormally long amounts of time. Also she wouldn’t balk at the amount of money I was planning on spending cause we are both shoppers!

We walked through the entire “seasonal section” while I tossed things into my cart (she wouldn’t let me buy the axe even though I was pretty sure I would need one for something – besides having an axe is pretty cool!).  I bought my “supplies” in purple of course because if you are going to garden, you might as well do it fashionably – except my new gardening gloves are pink…a light pink which I am okay with because they feel really cool! 

I needed dirt of some kind I assumed since I would be tearing up weeds sod.  I decided to do this intelligently and ask someone since there are about 8 million kinds of dirt!  The very kind lady, who I’m pretty sure assumed I was some sort of princess since I had no clue what I was doing and seemed absolutely fascinated with everything, told me to buy top soil and triple mix.  I figured (foolishly) that two bags would be enough so we checked out, paid for everything and left. 

Now it’s been a couple of weeks and I have not started – but my lawn boy has dug up part of the front for me.  I cannot wait to take pictures and show you all – I will be doing this!  Monday I am taking the day (weather permitting) to complete what needs to be done!  I am excited!  I am completing a ten-year long journey to make the front of my house look good!  It could be a disaster, but I am hoping for a dream come true!

Fingers crossed bloggers!

XOXO Nikilee

The Face of Fear

My chest tightens, the tears fill my eyes and within a few seconds I feel fear, of what I don’t know.

My heart physically starts to hurt and my breathing quickens…am I having a heart attack at the young age of 32?

I don’t want to go out, yet get upset when I know my friends are out together doing something I am not invited to.

I actively make up excuses for being overweight yet I complain when people say anything about it or suggest I should do as they say, they don’t know me – they don’t know what it’s like.

At times I bite the heads off people I love because the heat in my chest is bursting to get out, they have been the ones to make me cross a very thin, invisible line that I walk everyday.

Whats wrong with me you ask – nothing.  Like thousands of other men and women I suffer from anxiety and have been on a medication called Ciprolex for the past three years.  For some reason, none that I can pinpoint, my anxiety has gotten worse over the past month.

I have spent the past three years trying to get my head on straight, make changes, adjust my friendships, forgive people who desperately sought me out and do what everyone wanted me to do – work, date, go out and do whatever it took to be “normal”.  But inside, deep inside my heart, I want to curl into a ball and do none of the above.

Suicide is an option for many people with anxiety-others may just have a physical reaction by either vomiting or having excessive bowel problems, I am fortunate that my anxiety doesn’t manifest itself in any of these ways.  I’m not going to sit here and pretend I haven’t thought how easy it would be to end it all or tell you I’ve never had stomach cramps that beg for me to throw up, but I always manage.  I always get myself under control.

Anxiety and depression aren’t things we talk about with strangers and sometimes not even with those who love us most.  A girl who I have known my entire life I recently re-connected with through her blog www.worthcourting.wordpress.com and like me, she is single, in her 30’s and suffers from anxiety.  Now, Court is a much stronger writer then I will ever be, but our stories are similar.  She is brave.  She is beautiful.  She has made this taboo subject not so taboo. I am grateful that I have read all that she has to write on this topic and praise her for being so candid while so many of us suffer in silence.

Because of fear I have been having lately, I felt a need, a need to write it down.  I ask those of who know me personally to not ask if I am okay.  Don’t ask what you can do.  Don’t tell me I will be okay.  I don’t have any response to those questions or concerns and it just makes me more frustrated when people talk to me about it. I get it – its frustrating to you to see me hurt, to see me cry, to not be able to help, but guess what:

I can’t care right now

I see a doctor, she knows my issues and I am bothered by the fact that due to something completed unrelated I no longer want to be under her care, but I will continue seeing her until I can find someone knew, because regardless of how unstable I feel – I am responsible enough to know having a doctors guidance and support is of more importance right now than our disagreement.

The amount of people I know who have or have suffered from anxiety and/or depression astounds me.  I have friends who have attempted suicide, who have been heavily medicated because of this horrible disease.  It is not a disease that strikes only white, middle class women, though we are the ones who usually come out and talk about it.   This horrible illness effects people – regardless of race, socio-economic status and gender.  It beats you up, it can and does kill you.  It eats you alive from the inside until the only thing that seems normal is not feeling normal.

I write this because I have approximately 44 followers and numerous others who read my blog for whatever reason.  I am asking everyone to realize that you most likely know someone who is suffering right now.  Someone you know is hurting and doesn’t have the resources and support that I do.  Please make yourselves available.  Talk, but please listen.  Pay attention to those you love, check-in and if you are the one suffering, please get help, tell a trusted doctor.  You do not have to be alone.

XOXO Nikilee

 

 

 

 

Cairo

When you walk into E’s house, invited or uninvited, Cairo, their almost 7-year-old Doberman will bring you a shoe in greeting.  Is it a cheap shoe that he chews on you ask?  No…no it’s not, it might be J’s dress shoe or Nike running shoe or E’s stilettos or wedges!  Yep, Cairo had a liking for good quality shoes and bringing it to you was his sign of accepting you into their family.  I’d often find shoes, slippers and sandles in his bed, long thought of as lost or forgotten.

Excuse me while I take a nap

Excuse me while I take a nap, all that eating was exhausting

Cairo also had a love for food – any food, cake, meat, flour, paper towel?  Oops that’s not a food item, but trust me, if you left it in his view, it would be chewed to pieces and remains would be left all over the floor, couch, kitchen table for E and J to clean up later.

My guess is he see's his bff Heyab or a squirrel, either way he gets so excited!!!

My guess is he see’s his bff Heyab or a squirrel, either way he gets so excited!!! Imagine him sitting in your lap…

He was the smartest dog I ever met.  He managed to figure out how to get himself out of locked doors time and time again – the contraptions E and J have on their bedroom door looks more for prisoners or escape artists than for a Doberman, but Cairo was clever.  He had no trouble doing exactly what he wanted to do, when he wanted to do it. 

He loves children - especially little Avalyn, and she loved him right back!

He loves children – especially little Avalyn, and she loved him right back!

You’d think that maybe this made him unlikable, but it was actually quite the opposite.  Cairo, and their other Doberman Vegas, are probably two of the most loved dogs that have ever existed.  I don’t mean just by their owners, I mean by everyone who lays eyes on them. 

What a poser!

What a poser!

If someone new came around, Cairo demanded attention. If your hand was not placed on his head or body he would push his head onto you until you gave up and petted him, and don’t you dare stop after a minute because the whole process will start again.  He looked terrifying – he was a 90 pound Doberman after all, but I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t hurt a fly if it landed on his nose.  I’ve never seem him aggressive, he loved  E and J till his last breath and we, his friends, loved him just as much.

There are a lot of sad people today.  Cairo passed away yesterday two weeks before his 7th birthday.  His brother from another mother Vegas will now be alone and E and J are heartbroken.  Their dogs are their everything.  I miss him.  I’m grateful he is no longer suffering, but the selfish parts of us want him back, want him to give us our shoes when we come in and shove his way onto our little laps in order to receive some loving.  I’d do anything to have the opportunity to push him away and giggle when his massive body jumped on the couch with our noses touching to have my hands petting him.

Goodbye Cairo, my friend.  Wreak havoc in puppy heaven!

XOXO Nikilee

Baseball season

The smell of dew on the grass, soaking my new flip-flops and making me regret not bringing boots.

The crunch of gravel under my feet as I drag my lawn chair, purse, a clip board and a couple of pens the 15 minute walk from the parking lot to the diamond. 

The guys grunting their hello’s as they get in “game mode” (some of them clearly hung over as they down Gatorade and coffee at 8:00am). 

The wives and girlfriends hugging hello and chatting about kids, life and anything but baseball until baseball ACTUALLY starts at 9:30 am. 

The coach pacing the grounds until his latecomer finally show up with seconds to spare and threatening to bench him(typically GBF). 

The cold morning breeze giving way to a heat wave a couple of short hours later and jackets, sweaters and coffee cups being thrown everywhere.

Baseball season is beginning for my boys this month.  My ex’s, my friends husbands, my friends.  Every year for the past 6-7 years I have been a part of this time-honored tradition of spring and thoroughly enjoyed every. freaking. minute. of it.  This year, will be a bit different.  I have no boyfriend who is playing.  I have no one to follow.  I have no team I am dedicated to as all my friends bf’s and husbands are on different teams this year. 

I just looked at your roster and threw up in my mouth

I will be an outcast – the one who comes to watch, even though no man will be hitting home runs for me or kissing my forehead as they run on the field.  Am I sad?  No, not really.  Watching boyfriends play, having a certain team to follow to every game is exciting.  It brings a different level of contentment.  However, the early mornings will now be by choice, not force.  The cold, wet days will be spent inside realxing, not under a leaking blue tarp shivering.  I can pick and choose which guys to cheer for and which guys to boo and cuss out.  I can spend time with my girlfriends, chatting, drinking, smoking, whatever I want.  I no longer will be a score keeper.  I will not have arguments with the ump about whether we had 5 runs that inning or 6.  I will not have unsure, insecure girls running up to me from the other team to give me their line up only to change it five minutes later.  I will be a cheerleader.  I will be a visitor.  I will enjoy. 

Don't forget your baseball team can easily bounce back from a slow start to have an epic end-of-season meltdown

Yes this year will be different, but as long as the sun comes up and warms our beautiful diamonds, I will be there – showing my support to a great group of guys who have done nothing but be sweet and polite to me – their friend.

And also – GO JAYS GO!  A whole other reason to be freaking excited about ball season – professional ball is back too!!!!

 XOXO Nikilee