The Liebster Award

Rules for the Liebster Award

(Copied and pasted from another blog)

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you

2. Answer the 11 questions given to you

3. Nominate 11 other blogs with less than 500 followers

4. Post 11 questions for your nominees to answer

5.Tag your nominees & post a comment on their blog to let them know you nominated them

Rules are rules, people. It is not a quick post to where you can cut-copy-paste all the blog links, get to the blogger pages and tag the ones you really want to be nominated. But then road to victory (good times etc. etc.) is seldom easy, they say. Right?

So first off: thank you benjaminsolak for the nomination!!! (Sorry it’s not a link…this app confuses me) I’ve never really done any of these “nominate someone” things before so this is super exciting 😀 You’re a great writer, and even though I’ve only been following you for two days, I’ve really enjoyed looking at all of your work 🙂 so to whoever may be reading this: check this dude out.

Now down to the nitty gritty – the questions.

1) What’s the one thing you’ve always wanted to do?
Hmm…starting it out with a toughie I see 😛 😀 I haven’t always wanted to do this, but it have been itching to go to New Zealand for a while now, and I’d really love to get there at least once. It just sounds awesome (and the accents do too).

2) You’re stranded on a desert island, and can only bring one book, one movie (desert island has working TV – don’t question it) and one board game…go!
I’d probably bring the book Roots by Alex Haley, because it’s a really great story, and it took me a long time to read, which is quite unusual, as I usually blast through novels like kids running for the ice cream truck. For movies…does season 5 of Breaking Bad count?? If not, I’ll be watching The Book Thief. Aaand board games…well that really depends on how many people are stranded with you. Different games are made for different numbers or players, so I’m just gonna keep my trusty deck of cards.

3) Favourite superhero and why (bonus points if it’s Spiderman)
Awful fact about me: I haven’t really watched any superhero movies or read any comic books. I know, for shame. So I’ll go with Kickass, even though he’s technically not a superhero…sorry folks.

4) You can have lunch with any five combination of people, deceased, alive, or somewhere in between. Who?
As you can see below, I’m having a casual fun lunch with people – deeper thinking is more for supper time, ya know?
– RJ Mitte
– Darren Criss
– Ellen Degeneres
– Rupert Grint
– Emma Stone

5) What quality in people always endears you to them, trivial or deep? Same question, but really bothers you?
I love it when people are genuinely sweet. Like holding open doors, saying hi when you pass, and cute jokes. A guy might find it emasculating to be called sweet, but honestly, I think it’s the best thing around.
What I can’t stand in other people: manipulation. It’s just dirty and mean. It’s hard to trust someone who toys with people’s emotions.

6) Do you speak any foreign languages? If so, what?
I speak enough French to get by in Québec (maaaaybe France), but I’m still far from fluent.

7) Favourite sports star? Why?
Mark Scheifele, from the Winnipeg Jets, simply because I’ve read that he sings High School Musical songs in the change room. Really, you can’t beat that 😀

8) What five things, abstract or concrete, do you value over all others?
– family
– love
– friends
– open-mindedness
– faith

9) Tea or coffee? Sunset or sunrise? Rock, paper, or scissors? France or Spain? (If you live in one of the two…Hawaii or Bahamas?)
a) tea usually, unless I get one of those cold frappa lappa chocolate coffee thingers from Starbucks (I’m not too great with their naming system)
b) sunrise – love the beginning to a new day, and seeing the sun come up gives me energy
c) rock – wins every time
d) I haven’t been to Spain, so I’m defaulting to France

10) You’re on death row. Last meal?
Appetizer: fresh Prince Edward Island mussels
Main course: lamb chop, well done, with asparagus on the side
Dessert: chocolate brownie/fudge/cake with vanilla ice cream
…mmmmmmm……

11) What is morality? What is justice? What is ethics? What is right?
Well…..the big guns just came out. I can’t decide anyone else’s morals, but for me, what I live by is love, and if you love the way that Jesus loved (sorry not trying to get preachy), then your actions will reflect it and intertwine themselves with everything else you do.

Alrighty, so now for the 11 other blogs. I nominate:

This Ain’t Even Funny
The Heart Shaped Life
Butterbeerholic
Write and Day
Orman Slices
JoeWritesHisWrongs

Errmmm…I don’t actually follow any others that have less than 500….guess it’s just six 😛 But they’re an amazing six, and all of them should be checked out! Their writing makes up for the other five, I swear. (Also sorry I still don’t know how to link to people, but I do know how to link to posts!! So I’ll comment somewhere on your blog)

Okee dokes, now onto the asking.

1) What is your favourite genre of music to listen to?
2) If you could live in any other time era, when would it be?
3) If you could spend a day with any fictional character, who would you choose?
4) Breakfast or lunch?
5) Favourite TV show? (If you don’t watch TV, movie or book)
6) If you were given a business to run, what would it be?
7) Do you use a lot of social media?
8) If you were a type of baking, what would you be and why?
9) Clearest memory you have before the age of 20?
10) What is the best sport out there?
11) Where would you love to travel?

That’s all folks!! Have a great day and a good time participating! Definitely got me thinking 🙂

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Did I hear “Computer”?

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My computer science class is almost anything but. Don’t get me wrong, i love it a lot, and it’s my favourite class, it’s just that not much gets accomplished. This may have to do with the fact that the whole “computer” aspect immediately implies Internet connection, and as we all know, the Internet is the best distraction of them all. But hey, I’m not complaining.

Our class works very simply – you get a textbook from the shelf, log in, and work through the chapters and assignments at your own pace. For this class it’s a very good system, because everyone’s at a completely different understanding level, and the textbook is pretty darn thorough at explaining things. However, with every class a work class, there are the inevitable moments of not doing anything for a solid hour. Example: last class was spent with everyone playing games together while the teacher sat at the front doing her own thing, oblivious to what we weren’t programming.

But before you get your little wagging finger out, telling us how we should buckle down or pull up our socks or otherwise adjust our clothing to make us smarter, not all of the distractions are student-initiated. A good portion of them are also caused by our teacher, who is a sweet, somewhat older lady who loves telling us stories about her grandchildren and the current events in her life. She also enjoys spoiling us – I can’t remember the last class we had that didn’t include a box of Oreos. However, one of the things she likes most is to teach us valuable life lessons, things like:
-don’t make faces at the preacher when he takes too long
-don’t date a guy just because he asks you once…make him ask at least twice before saying yes
-if nice people think you’re annoying, you’d better watch it, because the real world people are gonna beat you up
-you can fix anything with duct tape, including your jeans (in this case, she actually took the person with the crotch-ripped jeans into another room and taped them up for him….only after exclaiming that she “could see his testicles” loud enough for the entire class to hear)

Needless to say, she also happens to be my favourite teacher. Almost everything she says can be take as a hilarious quote, and her enthusiasm for teaching and for talking with students makes me smile every day. Computer Science at my school is hands-down amazing, but not even remotely for the reasons that you may think.

Procrastination Station (caution: rant)

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Everyone’s been there. That one assignment that you just don’t want to do, or that one test that you just don’t feel like studying for. That’s me….right now. Last week there was a physics test, and not very many people in the class did very well. But wait – let me tell you about that.

I can’t stand my physics class. It’s not just that I don’t understand a lot of it (though that does contribute somewhat); I do have legitimate reasons. Here they are (if you know that you’re a teacher at my school maybe skip this short list):

1) It’s not actually what I signed up for
Or what anyone signed up for, for that matter. The class is supposedly Grade 12 Physics, yet our teacher is constantly saying “ok guys, technically you don’t learn about this until university, but let’s do a unit on it anyways.” Great, thanks. I love learning about things that I don’t need to know! But really, if I wanted to take first year university physics, I’d sign up for that next year (which, by the way, I’m definitely not going to do).

2) The teacher
We all know that a good teacher can make even the worst subject exciting, but the same also goes in reverse. I could see myself enjoying physics (or at least not itching to leave every time I enter the classroom) if the teacher we had was actually good. Instead, we have a large ego telling us what we should know, based on the fact that he finds it easy. Because of this, things aren’t explained completely, as we should be “smart enough” to get it, and answers to questions are usually insufficient. Once I asked him a question that he did answer helpfully, but then later was told by my brother that said teacher had made fun of me for asking such a dumb question in front of my brother’s film class. Talk about professional behaviour.

So that’s what the class itself looks like. Not too keen on that. Because of these things, only one or two people in my class of 30 did decently on last week’s test, and so we have been given permission to write a re-test tomorrow after school, so as not to reflect horribly poor grades onto our teacher. I know I should study for it, because I need close to 90% for a certain university scholarship, but I don’t really want to. I mean, look at it. You wouldn’t want to immerse yourself in this for hours either. Unless, of course, physics is your thing, in which case that’s cool too.

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So here I am, seven questions in, understanding enough of it to happily get by, and now I’m stuck. I can’t manipulate the formulas to give me something useful, and my physics genius friend isn’t on Facebook right now to ask. I’ve decided to view this as a dead end, mostly for the reason that I’d rather not look at it again. I’m not really sure how much studying I’ve actually done today, either, because as it turns out, I’m better at distracting myself than I am at physics. Here’s an example of my thought process:
“Ok, so, the formula for Work and Kinetic Energy. Ummmm….. This would be better with music. Ok, music, great. Study now. I love this song! I wonder what the lyrics are? I’ll look them up, it’ll be quick. Oh look, my wordpress is open.” <– (where I'm at now.)

Summary: I haven't done a whole lot.

So this one goes out to everyone in the same procrastination boat as me – it's all fun and games until you realize it's due tomorrow. Cheers, yo.

Wink Wink

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I have a problem with winking. I’m not exactly sure when it started, but it was approximately a few months ago that I winked at one of my friends for a joke. It was strangely fun, and the expression on their face was priceless. Since then, I’ve kinda started integrating it into other conversations, enjoying the slight discomfort of my friends when I do so. Though rest assured, I only do wink at my friends….and brother. He seems to take it better than they do and usually winks back, but I’m crediting that to having lived with me for the last 17 years. My favourite winking experience so far has been through a window towards a class of grade eights – out of the group that noticed, half looked scared and the other confused.

However, a few days ago, my little bit of fun went horribly wrong.

I was taking city transit home, and the group of students from my school had just got on the bus. Since so many of us get on at the same stop, it can get pretty crowded, so I sneak into this little corner that no one ever seems to notice exists, and am provided with somewhat of a personal bubble. From there, you can look around the whole bus, and I saw my brother standing beside the back door. Being relatively bored, I caught his eye and winked at him. He winked back, and all was good. But wait. The guy standing next to him, who happens to be in my class and only kind of but not really my casual acquaintance thinks that I was winking at HIM and HE WINKED BACK TOO. Now, I’m the type of person who somehow manages to be put in awkward situations, and I’ve become used to dealing with them. However, this time I was the one who had put myself in the awkward situation, and I just couldn’t handle it. I looked down, immediately texted my friends to freak out, (all of whom made fun of me and laughed in large quantities at my misfortune) and did not look up for the rest of the bus ride. Since then, I’ve been paranoid about making eye contact with the guy, and have no idea how many of his friends he’s told, making me look like I’ve got a few screws loose. :O

Anyways, the moral of the story is: winking is fun, but you never know whose winks you’ll receive in return. Also you could scare some people off. That’s a very real possibility too 😉

Shovels of Fun

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Living in Manitoba, I feel like it’s almost mandatory to have at least one post that revolves around “cold”, “winter”, and “snow”. Today, with the weather being as seen above, seems like just a good a day as any. I’m not sure how much it actually snowed today, but rather that it was blowing around with the force of a birthday kid intent on putting out all his candles in one breath. Nevertheless, it was hectic. One of those days where you just have to sit back and resign yourself to the fact that you’re going to have to shovel the driveway at least three times before the sun goes down. Lucky me was tasked with round two ._.

So, first stop on the way to accomplish this duty – my room. There I bundled up in leggings, jeans, two pairs of socks, shirt, long sleeved shirt, and large sweater. Once my range of motion was sufficiently restricted, I headed out to put on my parka with the hood that eliminates my peripheral vision. Stepping outside, I was greeted by snow in my boot, making my feet both wet and cold. I sighed internally, and got down to work.

My job wasn’t without entertainment, though. No, as I scooped up shovelful after shovelful of snow, I got to watch and listen to my neighbour clean his driveway with his fancy shmancy snowblower. I spent at least five minutes thinking at him how now I’m going to be stronger and warmer (and sweatier) than him, then changing to ask him through telepathy if he wanted to show some neighbourly love and help me out. I don’t think he got the message. The one-sided conversation continued on until a snow removal pickup truck drove down the street. My other neighbour had hired them because she just can’t clear snow like she used to, and they had her driveway completed in less than five minutes flat. I stared after them as they started to drive away, and then, miracle of miracles, they turned around and came up into my driveway! 😀 (<– my face when that happened) What would've take me another half hour to finish was completed in a minute and a half. After the guy in the truck said hi and I stammered thanks close to ten times, he drove away and I went inside, a smile plastered to my face. Kindness is awesome, especially in -35C weather.

Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree

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I love Christmas traditions, one of my favourites being the decorating of the Christmas tree. My family puts on the carols, break out the advent snacks, and get down to work. When I was younger, my family used to get a real tree every year, a living thing to water and chop and throw out a week after the big day. However, things changed when we got our little dog, Abby. She’s incredibly energetic, and we don’t exactly trust her around the low branches of a tree. The first Christmas with her, we tried the idea of a shorter tree that we could put on a table, so that we wouldn’t have to “settle” for fake. In all honesty, I’m pretty sure it turned out worse. The bush-type foliage wasn’t a true evergreen, closer resembling a fern than anything else. The needles were soft and it came in a pot, almost wider than it was tall. I dubbed it “Fernandez the Christmas bush”, and surprisingly enough, my family didn’t object. My guess is that I wasn’t the only one who wasn’t satisfied with its holiday performance, not to mention the lack of ornaments that it was able to hold.

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Needless to say, that didn’t happen again. By the time Christmas had rolled around once more, my dog, albeit older, was still no less energetic than the year before. Refusing to return to a potted plant Christmas, our family came up with another solution to the “real tree vs dog” problem – we’d actually release the Charlie Brown tree that my mom had obtained years ago from its permanent captivity in our basement. At first we hemmed and hawed about it, but no one had any better ideas than to keep it up, and since then, the little tree has become our new holiday tradition.

With less ornament hanging space on its scrawny little branches, however, we needed to cut down on what we put on it. Every year, my family travels somewhere in the world, and we buy a keychain or ornament for the tree. Hanging beside the regular bulbs, they really are the stars of the show. It made the decision all that much easier what to keep, and they are the ones that make it on to the tree every year now, as each one of them brings back a different memory. This year, we had a really weird vacation gone wrong, so the only ornament that we were able to purchase was one that I thought was absolutely hilarious, found in the Mall of America. Ever since I went to an Amish town in Pennsylvania and bought a keychain that said “I

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Not In My House

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I don’t mind bugs, I really don’t. Well, let me rephrase that. I don’t mind bugs as long as they stay clear of me. Outside, you see a wasp or a bee, and it’s okay, because they can fly away to anywhere in the world and leave you alone. However, as soon as they enter the house, it’s a whole different story. I become instantly paralyzed with fear, the only possible course of logical action to open a door and cross my fingers that it flies away. Man-made housing is not a place for nature, especially the kind that flies.

I experienced this great unexpected surprise this morning, an unwelcome being crawling around in a space that should never be theirs. Thankfully, it didn’t have wings that I noticed, so the whole “airborne” aspect was gladly shoved out of the question. I discovered in the bathroom, hanging out on the floor. Since I had only just stumbled out of bed, I didn’t have my glasses on, and at first glance assumed that it was merely a big piece of dirt or fluff. Boy, was I wrong. After brushing my hair, I turned around to see the fluff again, and bent over to pick it up and throw it in the garbage. Fortunately, before my hand reached the thing, it started moving on its own and I jumped back fast. Bugs aren’t abnormal in my basement’s bathroom, but they’re usually the small tan ones, not the unidentified monstrous black ones. Upon realizing that the creature in front of me was indeed alive, I assessed my options on how to change that fact. I could:

1) Step on it
Pros: it kills the bug
Cons: I get bug guts on my foot (gross)

2) Squish it under a Kleenex
Pros: again, it kills the bug
Cons: trying to get it through a layer (or ten) of tissue may not actually kill it, thus angering the threatening being and making it want to attack me

3) Smack it with my mom’s foot exfoliater
Pros: it would really get the job done
Cons: my mom would most likely be less than impressed

In all three of the possibilities that my groggy brain was able to think up, the cons managed to consistently outweigh the pros. This caused a quandary, because I needed to get rid of this thing, and fast. I needed to have a shower, and there was no way that I would get in there only to come out and be sabotaged by a frightening insect hiding in the shaggy bath mat. Never. But having no course of action running through my mind, all I could think of to do was stand there and watch it move around, willing it to crawl into the wall like the other bugs do, even though I knew it was too big to fit. Eventually it found its way out of the bathroom by travelling under the door, my intent gaze making sure that it was gone for at least ten seconds before breathing a sigh of relief. Crisis averted. Until, of course, my mom pointed out that it could have crawled into my basket of clean clothes by now.

The shirt I wore yesterday doesn’t smell that bad, right?

Roxanne….You Really Need That Red Light

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Ah, the last few days of classes before Christmas break. You can’t go home, but you can’t learn either. You have all of your last tests done before the new year, and then on go the projectors for non-stop movie watching in every class. It’s really the best few days of the school year. Though something that really ruins the mood is a bad movie. You know, those insufferable films that you just can’t bear to sit through no matter how hard you try. That’s what’s been going on in my English class, where we’re watching the ever-awful movie Roxanne. (If you’re not fond of rants, this isn’t for you)

The movie, set in 1990’s Vancouver, is based on the play Cyrano de Bergerac, written by Edmond Rostand in 1897. Already you see the problems arising, especially if you’ve also had the pleasure of watching the modern-day Romeo and Juliet or the Nazi Germany Macbeth. Needless to say, I have issues with all three of them.

So for the first rule of movie adaptations – if you want to keep true to the original story, you can’t bump the timeline up a hundred years. To make it successful, you’re going to have to change more than just a few minor details. That’s just how it works.
Secondly, this story features the protagonist, Cyrano, as having an obscenely large nose. In the film that showed the story in the times it was meant to take place in, the nose was actually done very well and looked entirely natural. Twenty years later, however, make-up crews seemed to have slacked off in their duties. The nose worn by the actor in the 90’s adaptation is obviously fake, a real/not-real line of goo smeared down his face. After seeing the first ten minutes, all that I could think of was the laughing gas scene in the old Pink Panther movie, where the disguised nose melts and drips and really is quite disgusting.

As well as Cyrano in this story, who is enamoured with Roxanne, there is another man who vies for her love, Christian, though he’s not very good with words. This is what made the original story beautiful to me, because he had feelings inside of him that he couldn’t express, and it made me really feel sorry for him. In Roxanne, however, his attempts at flirting make him look more like a chauvinist than a hopeless romantic. Here’s a great example: “Your breasts are like…melons. No, pillows. Can I fluff your pillows?”
CAN I FLUFF YOUR PILLOWS.
No. That is so wrong for so many reasons. Nobody should ever say that while flirting, and nobody should put it in a movie of any kind. Not even one of those ‘adult films’ should contain something as awful as that. The whole class cringed and groaned at the same time, half of us putting our heads down onto our desks to will ourselves not to leave the classroom before the final bell rang. That writing should never have seen the light of day. Or night.

Finally, after suffering through an hour of bad writing combined with the Cheaper by the Dozen actor displaying a grotesquely fake nose, our teacher stopped the movie and told us to go home. Sweet, sweet relief. In-class movies have scarred me more than I’d like to think, and I just hope that it’s over with soon when I get to school tomorrow.

I Could Take You….I Think

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My brother and I have what some others call a weird relationship. Our personalities are extremely similar, and we rarely argue or fight in any way. He’s two years younger than I am, and we could probably not get along any better. This is why we’ve come to occasionally wonder, who would take who in a fight? He’s taller, I’m stronger, and we’re both about as physically fit as the average house cat. You know, the type that sits on the couch all day and only gets up to eat and use the litter box. So today we decided to finally settle it. Gloves off, time to fight. Except…….we also happen to be pacifists. Okay. So now what? How are we supposed to find out who would win a fist fight if we don’t actually want to throw punches? After trying some stare-down intimidation tactics, we decided that it would be more effective to go for wrestling. Here were the terms and conditions:

1) No attacking the “sensitive areas”
This was a more obvious one, because not only would it be painful for the receiving end, it would also be really awkward for the giving end.
2) No tickling/pressure points
This rule was hardly fair on my end, due to the fact that I don’t react to pressure points nor am I ticklish, but I conceded for the sake of my brother, who goes into hyperventilating giggles when someone so much as hovers their hand near his neck.
3) No biting
That one’s pretty self-explanatory.

Once those points were covered, off came the glasses, and the fighting began. It was pretty uneventful at first, both of us unwilling to make the first move, but eventually I jumped on his back and down we went. Quite honestly, if I’d been watching us, I’d say that it was the most pathetic fight in the history of our planet. Awkward hug-like moves combined with random pauses to talk about unrelated things made it look more like two dogs getting to know each other rather than a wrestling competition. We carried on for a few minutes, and then made another rule:

4) The highest you can stand up is on your knees

I mean really, we were getting nowhere. After this was established things went a little better, a few almost-pins on each side, but neither of us took out our claws and really went at it. After what was probably ten more minutes of stare-downs, thirty second chats, and kicking out locked elbows, we sat up and came to the conclusion that the result of who won would be undetermined. Yes, undetermined. While this did upset me a little that no real score was settled, it’s also kind of comforting to know that he didn’t beat me. We shook on it, stood up, and went off to do our own things. But I’ve got to say, the best thing that I took from this somewhat lame experience was that when it comes down to it, neither me nor my brother really want to hurt the other. Even when he gets mad and throws the remote at my face, it’ll always come back to the time when we tried to fight, and it just didn’t work. Pacifism and family for the win.

70% Cocoa, 100% Guilt

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At my school, it doesn’t take much to cause drama. Nothing intense or huge ever happens (the last fight was four years ago), so any misguided gesture could easily turn into a full-blown scandal. Example: three years ago two girls got suspended for putting sticky notes that said “I’m watching you” on their friend’s locker. It was actually the juiciest bit of gossip in the whole grade. Really, nothing happens.

Anyways, for the week before Christmas break, my school does a Secret Santa event, where you give anonymous gifts to someone in your grade every day, leading up to day five’s “big reveal” of who you are. Sometimes you’re able to be surprised by who had drawn your name, but with less than 100 kids in the grade, it’s usually relatively easy to figure who’s giving you things before Friday rolls around. I managed to guess mine yesterday, due to the fact that I got a very well-knit tea cozy, and not many people I know knit often, or at all.

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Today I opened my locker to find an assortment of chocolate, and was quite pleased, though when I went to eat some of it, one of my friends asked me, “where did you get that?”
It turns out that she had drawn the name of the person that I’d guessed was my Secret Santa, and had gifted the exact same package to her earlier this morning. :O Oh deary me. She was a bit offended that her present had been re-gifted, and we came to the consensus that it really was kind of rude to have done that. Then the bell rang and she went off to class, leaving me to stare down my newly labelled “guilt chocolate” during my spare period. (Though as the picture shows, I didn’t feel guilty enough not to eat it)

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So to all of the loud and proud re-gifters out there – I love saving money just as much as the next person, and do keep on with your white elephant excellence, but maybe wait a bit more than a few hours to get rid of the present that’s been handed generously to you. Chocolate is great, but it’s only sweet if you give it yourself.