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Showing posts from July, 2012

"Optimisim 101"

"Have fun storming the castle!" ~ Miracle Max in The Princess Bride
Three unlikely heroes, one princess, and all that stood between them was an evil king and his army of brutes. How do you like those odds? Is the glass half full or half empty - or, should I say, what's the water level in the moat?
Last night I did a very cool thing. My niece and our friend and I went to the Fresh Air Cinema in the park and watched The Princess Bride. We spread our blankets on the grass to save our spot and then wandered around the park, visiting the booths of a number of great local organizations. My niece planted a seedling that, along with the hundreds of others planted that evening by other kids, will be replanted in gardens at local elementary schools. We tasted delicious gluten free coconut and chocolate chip cookies and learnt how to make organic fertiliser for the garden. We also chatted with friends that we ran into and even talked with strangers sitting on their blankets next t…

"Growing Pains"

One of my favourite movies is called Same Time, Next Year. It's the story of two lovers who meet at a quaint inn on the California Coast. The catch? They are both happily married to other people. They decided to continue to see each other but only once a year: "Same time, next year." The story spans the next 25 years as they both grow, change, and evolve in the face of life's challenges. I love it because it stars one of my favourite actors, Alan Alda, but it's also just a great story. Occasionally I will stumble upon it on TV, one of those simple, unexpected pleasures in life. I enjoy it as much as I did around 30 years ago when I saw it for the first time. Some things don't change.

But most things do change. Thank goodness for that.

I just spent a really wonderful weekend with my entire immediate family at my parent's house. We had a (profitable!) garage sale, an impromptu family BBQ with our awesome neighbours who are more like family than friends, and…

"Get Over It"

"Get over it. Get over it. All this whinin' and cryin' and pltchin' a fit. Get over it, get over it." ~ the Eagles
It's not that bad. Things could be worse. Don't be so sensitive. Don't take things so personally. And my personal favourite, Smile! I have heard them all. Comments from well meaning people who simply don't understand or who buy into the stigma attached to mental illness.
I was recently reminded of why I made a choice to not remain silent about my own battles with depression, why it's so important to me to tear to shreds every last bit of that awful stigma. A friend disclosed to his employer that he has been struggling with mental health issues. It didn't go great. His illness was minimised by a manager who just doesn't understand. It's hard for us to show our weaknesses, especially for men in our society. So just imagine how difficult it was for my friend to actually take that step to share something so personal. Such …

"Strength in Family"

"You never know how strong you are ...until being strong is the only choice you have."
I recently took a few days off from work and hopped in the car with my mom, dad, and 11 year old niece for a quick summer roadtrip from Vancouver to Alberta. The journey was full of fun and, pun intended, certainly a trip down memory lane. But I am not sure that I quite expected to go on a trip that would lead me so far from home and yet bring me so close. Confused? Let me explain.
The purpose of the trip was for my great grandfather, Andrew David Bower whom neither my father nor I ever met. He was a special man, and I really didn't realize quite how special until a weekend this past June.
Andrew Bower was the first warden in Canada to die in the line of duty. On June 6, 1925 he was thrown from his horse in Waterton Lakes National Park and later succumbed to his injuries. The runour is that poachers were somehow involved but nothing was ever proven. He died at the age of 39, leaving a…