Sunday, November 22, 2015


Join me this post in wishing my newest pup a happy ANNIE-versary. You see, it’s a year ago today she joined our family.

I’ve never really written about that time before but let’s just say, as I boarded a plane to the Caribbean, my daughter boarded a Greyhound bus with her then boyfriend, to return to Alberta. It was a very emotional time for our family, as she'd dismissed us from her new life for being vocal about our feelings about her idiotic shithead, I mean future 'husband'.

As you can imagine, at the time I needed a 3rd dog running around the house like I needed a hole in the head but with my daughter gone, I needed an outlet so that I didn’t focus on what had ultimately unfurled; and Annie was exactly that. Celebratory wishes to my pup aside, I can't begin to describe the joy we felt when she expressed that she wanted to returned to Ontario less than six months later. Once we understood what had transpired, we had her home in a little better than 72 hours, with a promise not to ever dwell on our time apart. We never have.

It pains me to remember just how emotionally spent and somewhat broken she was when we picked her up at the airport. She’d invested her trust and love to a person that was not only mentally unstable but extremely abusive. As silly as this may read, as a mother, the first telltale sign for me how lost she was, was that she’d dyed her beautiful long curly hair jet black.

Well, as the snow begins to fall a year later, I believe that she has made great strides in healing. She's working hard at a full time job, made some exciting new friendships, not to mention nurtured and re-established solid friendships she’d left behind. More importantly, she's finally let certain people go. Those that have ultimately lied and betrayed her over and over again.
Sweetie taking a good look at her very bright future.
TAKEN: NOVEMBER 14th, 2015
(Photo Credit: Our other GOOB)
How cool is it that almost a year after her leaving our home, she posted this photo that I am sharing today. One of her best friends (and someone very dear to our family) had taken it and I absolutely love it. 

So many things come to mind for me when I look at the picture but first and foremost it tells me just how far my daughter has come.

The quite, teary mouse, that returned home, has now reverted in the firecracker we know and love. Though there are (and probably always will be) scars, I think she realizes that her future is much brighter than the darkness that surrounded us a year ago.

As an aside, she allowed me to strip the black hair dye from her hair yesterday afternoon. As I sit here and type with tears rolling down my face, I can assure you my tears a year later are much different. They are truly tears of joy.

You see, in my eyes, something as simple as changing her hair colour... is just another small and simple step to her finding her way back to her very loving and confident self for good. 

Monday, November 16, 2015


Since starting my work commute with the Sweeney Meister a few months ago, we quickly discovered that we'd both be away on vaycay this month. You may find it odd that I have only been at my new job a minute and a half and I'm packing up to go away for a week; but the truth of the matter is, before I was formally hired in July, I was open about the fact that I needed to travel in November and again after the snow arrives but most definitely before it leaves. Luckily for me, they still offered me a job. 

Well, all these months later, this afternoon I officially wished my carpool buddy a bon voyage. I blew her a kiss from the passenger door and asked her to send word of her travels via Facebook. I am truly excited for her. Though she's never traveled this time of year before (as someone that commutes daily in our Hollywood North winters) I've promised her that she would never NOT want to travel this time of year again. 

Luxury Don Pablo Collection ~ La Romana, DR
TAKEN: NOVEMBER 16th, 2014
The funny thing about that last bit is that when I arrived home from work tonight, I discovered that it was exactly a year ago today that I landed in the sun for my very first November vacation. I truly remember how that trip changed my outlook with regards to my winter life.

I find it interesting how others react when I speak openly about Seasonal Affective Disorder. Some want to challenge me on its validity and look for statistical proof that my happy lights work, others want to discuss how they are personally impacted this time of year. When it comes to yours truly, no matter what the dialogue path, I am open and honest. 

Here's the deal: 
For years I struggled to understand what was happening to me as a person. I had hated the festive season and from the time the clocks fell back until they officially sprang forward, I was not a nice person to be around. I knew by my symptoms I wasn't depressed per say, just always lethargic with a real desire to literally hibernate. The dead nuts honest truth is there were weekends in the winter 15 years ago that I never really got out of my PJ's and tended to entertained the kids with movies/TV in bed. It's like I had to save all of my energy to make the Monday to Friday winter facade exist as if it were July. Suffice is to say that is no longer the case. 

Looking back at my pic from a year ago today, I am pleased to admit that I am happy with how solid my mind set is. Where this time last year I craved a vacation, this year I am feeling blessed and truly looking forward to be able to relax and enjoy one. Life is amazing, the several pairs of cement shoes that were weighing me down have been disposed of, and I am in the best physical condition that I have been in since 2012.

Now, if I could figure out why (as a 29 year old I have so much gray hair) I'd be elated!

Sunday, November 8, 2015


Last week I discovered a very good friend was unexpectedly going through a very tough patch. So, after texting back and forth all week, we hatched a plan to try and make her feel better. In the end, we decided to head out to Orilla Lake; enjoy a bonfire and ultimately howl at the moon.

Well, the good news is that once we arrived and got settled in we never went back outside. The bad news is that because we drained the pump last weekend, we had to draw our Saturday night dish water out of the lake. No big, that’s how things roll out there until we stop going in at Christmas. The difference being, at Christmas we fill all our buckets in the daylight (not after dark when there’s been a light sleet that’s super slicked the stairs and ramp to the dock). Suffice is to say, imagine my surprise when bucket in one hand and cellphone flashlight in the other, I slipped off the ramp and tumbled into the lake.

Getting water this morning via Toby's Rock...NOT the dock!
Taken: November 8th, 2015
Because it was black dark out and I wasn’t sure what I’d hit nor where I’d land, I relaxed and went into the water so I could get my bearings. Problem was, because I was so heavily clothed (and my bucket was filling fast) I wasn’t floating back up. 

When I finally did head to the surface, it was with a fully stretched arm reaching for the moon that was clenching my phone. THAT's what came out of the water first. 

As a person whom when given lemons always tries to make lemonade, I have a couple of important notables I'd like to report from the events of last night:
A) Since purchasing the cottage, I’ve never swan in November before, so that was a first.
B) I’ve never gone off any dock (at that time of night) wearing a stitch of clothing ever; yet another first.
C) Using international judging rules, the American judge gave me a 9.5 for my dive.

Not a bad score I suppose. Though when I filed an appeal this morn and questioned why I wasn’t awarded the 10 I felt I deserved... The bitch told me it was because my arm was bent when my cell phone came out of the water and that my reach for the moon was lacking the proper creative emotion. 

I guess I should be thankful for the mark and be glad they didn't hear my language. That shit was full of emotion and the one thing I didn't need last night was to be disqualified for unsportsmanlike conduct. 

Peeps.... Ya Gotta Laugh About It!

Thursday, November 5, 2015


Like most seasonally challenged people, I totally land on my ass after I "fall back" for the reprehensible time change that's just happened. Just as my doctor ordered, I'd  pre-planned to soothe my severe deep buttocks bruising, with a trip to Cabo San Lucas at the end of the month.

So, with my e-tickets in hand, you can imagine my surprise to once again discover Mother Nature off her meds. Feeling very blessed at her misfortune, all I'll say is that I gladly threw her absentee pharmacist a c-note and called it a win. Why am I feeling so generous? She’s unexpectedly delivered me a much appreciated Indian summer.

Just a sleeveless Tee, light blazer ... and a 7am smile.
Not going to lie, it almost borders on bizarre. All week long I've walked to meet the Sweenymiester (a tad before 7am) in some amazing morning light.

With a skip in my step I was in shock that Tuesday morning I was kept warm by only a sleeveless t-shirt, light blazer, and a smile.

No coat, no gloves but most exciting of all, there was no need for an umbrella, nor a pair of snowpants. Crazier than my wardrobe share is the fact that we've had the air conditioning on at work. This week has definitely been a true (gal off her meds) gift!

Calling this HELL YA out to Mother Nature, reminds me that I used to faithfully read a blogger that said she was winding down her blog because she refused to talk about the weather. I was sad to see her stop but at the end of the day, when you keep an electronic journal like mine, you begin to fully understand that at times like these, the weather pulls more strings in your life than you'd like to admit. I'll admit it, I need the light and it's nice to see Mums au Natural play nice with me for once.

Let's face it, at the end of the post, my question has to be... Who is the only woman most perceive to be a bigger bitch than me? ...Mother Nature.

With a close second going to a couple of gals I went to High School with. Just sayin'.

Sunday, November 1, 2015


Well, Mother Nature was kind enough to allow me to spend yet another Saturday night at the cottage. I’d had a pretty busy and emotional week, so I was both grateful and excited that with everything I had on the go, things didn’t freeze.

I was going to go in yesterday morning and just shut off the water but the forecast called for a mild rain mid-afternoon so I decided to head in with the intent that I’d be hunkered down inside rather than closing it down. Going in with a plan to keep me busy, I knew there was a kick ass jigsaw puzzle I wanted to sink my teeth into but when I was in the grocery store I decided that the pups and I would carve a pumpkin.

As you can imagine, leaving it so late, my selection was limited. Compounding that, I didn't want to hall a thirty pounder down my 55 stairs, so there was really only one option left. As I picked her up and loaded the bit of a thing into my cart, I was excited about my night before November investment of exactly $1.50.

I hadn't carved a pumpkin for Halloween since 2009... I really did enjoy doing it again.
TAKEN: OCTOBER 31st, 2015

I’ve never spent Halloween night at the cottage before. I wasn’t scared, rather more excited that I could still venture in and be cozy. The wind and rain howled and woke me in the early hours of the morn but I just popped in a movie and waited out the storm.

As I do every year, I hate the thought of closing it. Not because I don’t have other activities to keep me busy but because I feel a real sense of peace when I’m there. So, as I promised myself, I got up this morning and drained the hot water tank, drained the water pump, put plumber's antifreeze in the traps and hauled the intake pipes out of the lake. 

I'm not saying I won't return before the year is over, just resigned myself to the fact that as of last night, the 2016 cottage season is officially over.

For those of you that truly know me, you know I did it kicking and definitely screaming!