When someone says “get stuffed”, it’s not always a bad thing


There’s a lot to be said for the joy the holidays bring – or any celebration, for that matter.  Whether it be a birthday, Thanksgiving, Christmas or a reunion, the ease of the conversation, the steady flow of wine, the melodic sound of laughter and the joy of being with a close-knit group of people is unequalled.  There is an undefined comfort level that allows us to become absorbed in the festivities that surround us. The fact that we can gorge ourselves and have an excuse to eat everything in sight with only a few fleeting moments of guilt is sublime.


The molecules change in the room when family and friends get together for a holiday celebration.  There is something intrinsically sacred about holidays and the memories that are created within those moments. Time has a way of strategically obliterating those precious seconds as it marches on at a frantic pace, but our memories have a way of stopping that clock, if only for a few moments.

Holidays are a portal.  They can freeze time and create a vortex that allows us to travel back and relive certain periods in our lives.  The memories wrap themselves around us like a blanket and soothe us with the warmth of the times that have engaged us and truly breathe a bit of life back into our frenzied lives.

Although many holidays have passed and are collecting dust in the books of my hallowed history, watching my brother “float” his dinner in gravy brings back a rush of nostalgia, and that, to me, is what the holidays are truly about….personal moments that any other person would find arbitrary but, to me, define my holiday experience.

Our Canadian Thanksgiving begins today and the glaring items that will be missing, as always, will be my mom and dad.   I know they will be with us in spirit, especially during the making of my brother’s always spectacular turkey dinner which may be delayed by a week this year.  Undoubtedly, they will be looking over his shoulder, whispering secrets into his ear, so he can make her stuffing just the way she used to and carve the turkey in a way my dad would heartily approve.

Embrace your family, enjoy the moments and get stuffed with those memories.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

I should have paid more attention to my Physics teacher


It never ceases to amaze me – the amount of hours one works in the real world is directly proportionate to the eradication of the creative mind in the artistic world, especially following a long season of working in the hospitality business.

I remember my Physics teacher in Grade 11 throwing around words like ‘inertia’ and ‘for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction’ but I don’t remember studying the direct correlation of physical exhaustion to prolific brain death.  Sure, the basic functions in my body still happen – I breathe in and out, I walk and talk, but the rest of me seems to be on autopilot – like that object in motion that tends to stay in motion.


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I want to be an object at rest and I want to remain at rest for at least 48 hours.  I want to have my brain back – the brain that wakes me up at night, swirling words around in circles until I can grab them all from those cartoon word clouds above my head.  I want the ability to form those words into whimsical, thoughtful or romantic lines and be able to feel that creative flow coursing through my veins.

I wonder what Newton’s theory would be on my chances of winning the lottery and being able to spend my precious moments writing a best-seller?  Time + creativity = true bliss.  Until that moment, I shall struggle through the hours required at my job and hope my brain can keep up the frantic pace until Thanksgiving comes and goes.  Then, and only then, will I finally be able to strip myself of my frenzied schedule and bathe myself in lethargy.



Discovering what is hidden


Admittedly, I am going through withdrawal.  I have not gone on a cleanse nor have I given up an addiction but I find myself recently emancipated from certain friends who truly know my soul and I feel somewhat lost.

Cultivating a friendship from a distance becomes easier as more time passes.  The initial shock of distress subsides and the feeling of isolation is adapted to and accepted.  But when that friendship is reanimated at a one-on-one level it makes the strain of separation that much more painful when those friends have to leave again.

I had effortlessly assimilated to a quiet lifestyle and one that I enjoy very much.  I had been very content to come home to an idyllic piece of property in a secluded location that I share only with my dog.  I had become ensconced in a life of post-work anonymity.   And then the axis of my world shifted.

After decades of being complacent, I found my mind wandering.  After years of feeling satiated, I found myself yearning for something I had not known I was seeking.  The thought of a different lifestyle became abundantly clear and my mind was in turmoil.

I have not invited any of these conceptions into the realm of my existence at this point, but knowing I have the opportunity to entertain these strange thoughts is exciting.  Having the ability to welcome these curious ideas into my life is liberating.  And just thinking that there is another chapter of my life possibly waiting to be written is extremely enticing.

“We are so accustomed to disguise ourselves to others that in the end we become disguised to ourselves.” ~ Francios de La Rochefoucauld


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I want to think I have not lost myself in the process only to discover I have missed out on writing that new chapter.  I wish to believe that the well of ink still exists and will allow me to continue creating the story that is my life.  And I will never know if that story continues here or exists in another place until I become brave enough to turn that next page.








Life is about the simple things


“If I am what I have and if I lose what I have, who then am I?” ~ Erich Fromm

I sold my gazebo in the spring.  It was a beautiful structure but grossly underutilized.  Now when I look out across my lawn I see nothing but nature.  Apart from what looks like a crop circle where the gazebo once stood, it is simple, it is unencumbered and it now more honestly represents the way I live my life.



I am not the sum of my belongings.  I appreciate the eclectic and not the expensive.  I am more comfortable in second-hand jeans and a sweatshirt than I am in a designer dress.  I do not own a coordinating set of anything.  My furniture blends but it doesn’t match and the colors inside of my house reflect the colors outside of my house.  Greens and browns soothe me and that will never change.  It is how I grew up, it is how I live and it is how I thrive.

Life, for me, is about the simple things.  I am not inundated by random possessions, I am not overwhelmed by clutter and I am not constricted by a collection of things that are meant to impress anyone other than myself.

I tend to be a homebody and spend more time with my dog after work than I do in public places.  I like to think I am not anti-social but merely selectively social.

Finding happiness in the simple things brings me a sense of peace.  I am not constantly striving to keep up with any trends other than my own.  I am not seeking a status that I never initially wanted and I live by my own rules.

Happiness has a unique definition to each person who has the luxury of finding that elusive feeling.  Mine is a rudimentary definition, explained with simple words and carried out in the most uncomplicated way.  I live honestly, I live sincerely and I live knowing that I will never be defined by what I have, but rather by who I am.

2 more sleeps lead to 2 important words


clouds 005

As the dusk envelops an absolutely beautiful day, I prepare myself for one of the remaining two sleeps until my best friend walks down the aisle.  The last-minute details are falling into place.  Decorations are being completed, rehearsals are being performed and speeches are being fine-tuned.  And for me, the cake is being designed and the tissues are being collected and stored in accessible pockets.   The day is near.  Time has passed unusually quickly and the dawn of her wedding day is almost upon us.

We sat tonight, a group of random strangers who immediately became friends because of a common bond we have with the bride and groom, and we shared some precious moments leading up to the big day.  Not only did I meet some wonderful people, but I inexplicably became engaged to a delightful couple from Calgary!

Weddings bring out the best in people.  There is something inherently special about celebrating two people who have found “their person”.  There are details.  There are embellishments.  There is food, wine and dancing.  But above all of the tangible things associated with a wedding, there is a deep-rooted knowledge that the only really important detail about the wedding day is love.

I will proudly make my way down the aisle to stand beside my best friend as she says the two words that will mark the beginning of her new journey.   May they both remember the path that led them here and may they both embrace the adventure they are about to begin.

It’s not what we have in life, it’s who we have in our life that matters.

Clearing my own sky



Lost in the clouds,

wondering where I have gone.

Have I been trapped in the light,

or lost in the wisps of reality?

The true me is there somewhere,

obscured between the light and the shadow,

pushing my way out from behind my feigned existence.

I have been living,

but there should be more life in my life.

There is so much more to me

than the me I currently am.

But how do I harness that concealed energy?

How do I reign in

that part of me that exists in my mind?

How do I grip that vapor,

and turn it into something real,

something tangible,

something I can take from those clouds

and make it a genuine part of my world?

How do I brush those clouds away

so the lightest parts of me can shine?

Ahhh….the profanity comes flooding back….

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I don’t have children but my countdown to the beginning of the school season is just as exciting.  There are no giant red X’s on any calendars but the anticipation for the first week of September is palpable.   While the teachers prepare their rooms with the letters of the alphabet strung across the top of the chalk boards, I am only concerned with three of those letters.  N-F-L


(one of my favorite pics of my dad)


My child-like excitement for the sport is well-known throughout my friends and family and especially by many others who are members of my football pool.  My incessant emails begin during pre-season and escalate substantially as the NFL ramps up to the first kick off of the regular season.

I prepare my dog for the blast of profanities (my sports-related Tourette’s syndrome) that will inevitably be passed from my lips only to fall on the deaf ears of the referees.  This is a beloved family tradition passed down from my grandparents and who am I to argue with tradition?  They were masters of the verbal barrage of expletives and were not selective when it came to yelling at referees  – hockey, football, baseball umpires, nobody was safe.  I reserve my assassination of the English language specifically for the line judges, field judges, side judges and back judges of the NFL.  There are also a few well-placed curse words expelled during fumbles, sacks and interceptions.  (I don’t discriminate.)

I have been busy over the last few days preparing my three pages of football sheets for the over 60 participants in my football pool.   Let the games begin and let my grasp of the English language be slightly marred.  Hell hath no fury like a woman watching football!!