Thursday, September 29, 2016


For the last number of months, I had been talking with a really fab co-worker about a milestone birthday she had approaching. Though I repeatedly tried to convince her that she was worthy of a kick ass destination celebration, she'd decided to take some time off and celebrate in a very low key fashion. 

Well, from her announcing that 'low key was she' mindset, every chance I got, I encouraged her to pack up her man and get on a plane.  Short story long, when they decided to bolt to Jamaica, I squealed with sheer delight.

A tad puzzled by my overzealous reaction, I explained my story that all of you regular readers are all too familiar with. That my mother died at the young age of 57, which has left me with a very deep (and somewhat distracting energy) to embrace adventure; which includes getting as many different stamps in my passport before I arrive at the age when she passed.

I don’t know what it is... but the thought or news of death rocks me to the core.

Trying to ensure my mother shared our day...

I’m not sure if it’s because I started experiencing death from a preteen age, or it's the long standing deep seeded feeling I have that I will die young. Either way, the last couple of days have affirmed what I've believed since my mother passed in 1987; life is short and be sure not to let it pass you by.

Why so reflective? In the matter of 24 hours, two young lives were lost in the small town which I live. One was the age of my eldest and the son of a friend I went to high school with, the other a business acquaintance that occupied my Sales & Marketing lane. One was somewhat expected due to illness, the other, my lane occupier, was a very sudden loss that has left a large part of our community in shock. 

As I began searching for a photo to accompany my post, my thoughts immediately shifted to my Mom. In turn, I rummaged though boxes, dusting off all of the proofs from my wedding day in 1988. Out of the blue I remembered asking the photographer to take pictures of me with the last photo I have of my mother before she became ill.

When I was done reminiscing over all of the proofs, I realized something. In almost 100% of the photos taken at the house, her picture is propped on the handmade coffee table my brother made, as well as her last Lazy Boy chair is in sight. I honestly never noticed that detail until tonight.

I can't believe it. Almost 30 years later, how amazing is that?

PS: I couldn't help but put the photo focus on my Mama.

Mom and Me with my Jr. Bridesmaid Joni.

Thursday, September 22, 2016


Well, it’s official. Today marks the first day of Autumn.

Though I am quick to admit that it’s my favourite season, I loathe what the last six weeks of my fave represent. Shorter days, longer shadows, ending with the grand finale labelled the shortest day of the year. As I embrace the trees glowing in beautiful colour, I truly have to prepare myself mentally for going to (and arriving home from) work in the dark.

To make matters worse, this year marks the earliest I have ever started using my happy lights. Not by months or anything, but when you obsessively track total daylight hours, a week can feel like an eternity; added on to your already light deprived sentence. As of today, it will take all my waking energy to keep me upbeat until I get on my plane into the sun at the end of November.

Whatcha talkin' bout Willis...!
TAKEN: August 6, 2014
Seasonal Affective Disorder whining aside, I wanted to share that I noticed this morning that my move into town is taking its toll on the pups. More specifically, Puddin’.

Just as the change in daylight affects me, her lack of cottage freedom is seriously effecting her. 

When it comes to being at the house, she needs to be tied 100% of the time. Yes, it’s true. This beautiful pups pic is posted on the 'Most Wanted' bulletin board at our local bi-law office. Not because she’s violent or aggressive, just a tad too vocal and enthusiastic when people pass our house; hence why she instinctively knows her gig is up.

As I got myself ready for work before daylight this morning, I noticed her sprawled out on the love seat at the end of my bed. She was lethargic and didn't even bother to lift her head when I tried to cheer her up. As I wandered back into my ensuite, I couldn't help but acknowledge her aloud... "Suck it up, Buttercup," I said.

"... There's absolutely NO money in the budget for you to go into therapy too!"


Sunday, September 11, 2016


Yesterday was one of those forecasted rainy days that I'd been looking forward to all week. Got my indoor cottage chores done, got my in town shopping chores done, then headed to the salon and had my hair chopped off. Hold your gasps of disbelief, it's not like I ordered a number 3 razor buzz cut. Yet, my long curls that flowed to the middle of my back, are now the shortest they've been since 2012. No regrets here. I'm glad I did it. Just like in other areas of yours truly, I was in need of change.

At this stage in my life, I consider myself blessed. I knock wood because nothing is neither tragic, nor conflicted; though I will admit that some thing's been bothering me for an extended period of time. It was never a great big boulder in front of me, more an annoying pebble in my shoe. For whatever reason, I'd buried that annoyance deep, as well as any ability to deal with it. As part of this next wave of change, I am pleased to report that the pebble has been dealt with .

Like every single person that is reading this electronic journal entry, I have some very serious crap that is buried deep. It's taken me a long time to compartmentalize specifics (which is code for defining a personal coping mechanism) but it works for me. My epiphany was when I recently realized, that over the last 30 years, 25 of mine have been about seeking light at the end of the tunnel, and the last 5 of mine have been the real journey. Those were the years that have been spent learning how to embrace the light that has been chased so hard and earned.

Out of clutter, find simplicity. ~ Albert Einstein
Speaking of light... I woke in the dark this morning, grabbed my robe and slippers, then headed outside to watch the sun rise. Bundled up, I went up from the dock, grabbed my camera, then snapped my photo at 7:08am. With my moment captured, I finished my coffee, packed everything up, and moved everything home for the season. Not gonna lie, it feels different this year, and finding the words to describe are hard.

If I had to find one word, if I had to choose only one?

I guess I'd just simply define it as... peace.

Thursday, September 1, 2016


Well, today’s September 1st and I'm sitting in my home office at dusk, wearing an over-sized sweatshirt, yoga pants, and a really hideous pair fuzzy socks. As it comes to a close, one thing I do know for certain is that my day was especially cool for a couple of reason. One being when I woke up this morn, the temperature was a balmy 9C. (Which is 48F for all my non-metric focused peeps).

When I rolled over at 5:45am this morning, clicked on my happy light, then simultaneously received an email alert; which is not uncommon for yours truly. You see, a large part of my job is employee relations. As an internal customer service, our payroll software sends out birthday and work anniversary notices to me for everyone within our company, so I may personally offer good wishes. That said, when I picked up my Blackberry this morning, my awaking email cheerfully announced the work anniversary reminder was for... Me!

I posted this to Facebook exactly a year ago today.
(C) IDP Muskoka

The graphic I am sharing was the Facebook cover shot I prepared to announce (a year ago today) that I was transitioning. I remember being both nervous and excited as I walked to meet the Sweeney-Meister and Coop for our very first carpool adventure. A year later, I am grateful for that time we've shared. This last year has evolved into an amazing job, as well as a very important friendship I am grateful for.

You know what? All of that said, temperature wise this morning and this evening may have been cool... But I mentioned today was cool for a couple of reasons.

My 1st official Tamarack North anniversary? 

Pretty freaking cool!