Thursday, 31 January 2008

Flu Bug

Blog 365 – Post 31/365

Middleman stayed home from school ALL week. He has the flu, you see. A pretty nasty strain of it…it knocked him off his feet, that is for sure. The worst part of it all was the weakness…he slept 15 hours most days and then took an hour to two hour nap each afternoon. He had a fever for the first day, vomitting on days 1, 2 and 3, diarreah (still) and terrible stomach cramps until yesterday. Poor kid.

I have had a sore throat all week and I feel SO tired. I just want to sleep all the time.

Now, Threepeat is off his game…diarreah, fussy, fever yesterday, not sleeping or eating normally. UGH.

I shouldn’t complain…we have had an uneventful winter illness wise, but man oh MAN it’s hard when the kids are sick.

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Wednesday, 30 January 2008


Blog 365 – Post 30/365

Oh yeah…this post is sure to ruffle a few feathers.

The Toronto District School Board has approved a “black focused school”. The story is here.

Now for my opinion…

Martin Luther King would ROLL in his grave. He, and many others like him, struggled and fought for black unity. They stood up for what they believed in and in doing so, achieved great, great things for black people. And now, the people who are calling for this school are doing exactly what Martin Luther King, et al fought to stop! This school will be a school for black children to attend…oh yes, white children are “welcome to attend” as well, but the focus of this school will be for black kids. Apparently, this school will teach students from junior kindergarten to Grade 8 and will have more black teachers and mentors. It will also focus on students’ heritage and more parent involvement.

Why does a school need to teach children about their heritage? Why don’t Chinese/British/Pakistani/insert your own heritage here kids need special focused schools? Why are we blaming the public school board for black kids’ poor grades and violence? (FYI: it is not MY opinion that they have poor grades and are violent, this is the reason stated in many of the articles I have read on the school)

This is not a black/white issue. This is a parenting issue. It is the vicious cycle of welfare children growing up and raising more welfare children. White AND black. Many of the black children who will attend this school were born in Canada, as were their parents. Yes, heritage is important…I was born in England and Joe’s parents were born in Italy. We will teach our boys about their heritage. I want to know what is different about the black heritage that needs to be taught in a separate, SEGREGATED school. I think it is more important to teach white children about the oppression that was placed on black people so that we never go there again!

Can someone please explain to me what is different about black childrens’ need to learn about their heritage as compared to white/other races? In school, my kids are learning about the Underground Railroad and they celebrate National Black History Month. They do not learn about other heritages in as much detail. So, again, I ask, what will teaching black kids about their heritage do to lessen the violence and poor grades?

I get the idea of having more black teachers and mentors, but that should be the way it is in ALL schools, not just a black focused one.

I think this is a HORRIBLE idea. We are going back to a place in history that I was glad not to be a part of.

Stepping down from my soap box now.

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Tuesday, 29 January 2008

My blog needs a new name

Blog 365 – Post 29/365
I am buying a new address for my blog. I am running out of space on and have decided to buy more space and a new name,

The problem is that I am drawing a blank on a new name! I want it to be something that reflects who I am, something easy to remember and something creative/funny.

Any ideas? Help me out…PLEASE?

P.S. is taken. WAHH!

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Monday, 28 January 2008

Writer's Block on a Special Day

My brain can’t think of anything profound to write today, so I am posting a reprint…maybe something will come to me later, but for now, this will have to do…I miss her so very much.

A tribute to my sister…Joanne S (01-10-72 to 01-28-06)

Christian, Wife, Mother, Daughter, Daughter-in-Law, Grand Daughter, Sister, Sister-in-Law, Aunt, Cousin, Niece, Friend, Neighbour, Co-Worker, Mentor, Confidante……..

She was a lot of things to a lot of people. She had done so much in her short life and yet, she had so much more to do…so we mere humans think. God had other plans. God knew that her mission here on earth was done. Everyone, myself included, says she was much too young to die. That’s our human mind talking. I now believe, wholeheartedly, that Joanne was put on earth with a specific purpose. A purpose that was fulfilled so much quicker than those of us left here on earth could imagine. It all makes sense, if you take the emotion out of it…let me explain.

Joanne was a born again Christian. She took Jesus into her heart early in her relationship with Mark. Her unwavering faith was a source of inspiration and comfort to many people. Many people have told me that she inspired them deeply, even those who never knew her in life…only through her death. Actually, Joanne told me once that she thinks Jesus came into her life when she was only about seven years old. We had neighbours who were born again Christians. They prayed with Joanne and actually scared the daylights out of her because of their very strong words and their threat that if she didn’t accept Jesus into her heart, she would never get to Heaven. After several nights of nightmares, Joanne told my parents about the neighbours’ words and my parents did their best to quell those fears and Joanne put it out of her mind…She admitted later that the nagging feeling inside was always there, but she continually pushed it aside. Only when she met Mark, did she start going to church and really start acknowledging that nagging feeling, eventually being born again.

Once Joanne accepted her faith, there was no stopping her. She was an active member at her church and at Awana. She truly led a Christian life in everything she did and said. She stuck up for Christianity whenever necessary. She had no fear, no embarrassment. What she had was pride and purpose. She wanted to tell everyone who would listen (and even those who wouldn’t listen) all about Jesus, and what was in store for us in Heaven…if we’d just believe in Him.

Oh, the arguments Joanne and I used to have about passages in the Bible! She believed that the Bible should be read in the literal sense. What was written actually happened. I believe that a lot of the stories in the Bible are more like examples for us to learn from as opposed to living literally. She would come back to me after a few days, armed with her biblical ammunition, verse by verse to prove me wrong. 99% of the time, she did just that! I would just laugh at her and her “bible thumping” ways. She never denied being a “thumper”…she knew and was proud of it, even calling herself a thumper!

Joanne was hungry for knowledge. Always. She would ask questions of people about their religions. Muslim, Jewish, Christian, you name it. She wanted to understand WHY people believed what they believed and if there was a chance that she could “convert” you, she would. For she so believed in Jesus that she wanted everyone else to believe too. She was on a mission to SAVE people. To make sure they would get to Heaven, just like her. Make no mistake, she knew with every fibre of her being that she was headed straight to the top…straight to Heaven…on the express route. She knew that all it took was to believe in Him. And man oh man, did she believe.

Joanne raised her young children to be Christians first. Church was of the ultimate importance and it was crucial that her girls led a Christian existence, following the Bible literally and faithfully. It was the only way to ensure that they would all be together again in Heaven. Only in her death have I seen just how important that foundation is for her girls. Their faith, passed on by their mother, comforts them immensely. They know, without a shadow of a doubt, that their Mommy is in Heaven with Jesus. In fact, Courtney, Rebekah and Danielle give the adults strength. Joanne achieved something that most parents spend a lifetime trying to achieve…she instilled the core values that will stay with those girls for the rest of their lives. Sure, those values still need to be nurtured, but the important foundation is there. Joanne alone can take credit for that. Mark played a part, but only in Joanne’s death has he really had to step up to the plate in the values department. Not that he was a bad father by any stretch, in fact, exactly the opposite, it’s just that Joanne had all of the bases covered when it came to faith. Mark was more of an re-enforcer.

The number of lives that Joanne touched still amazes me. She rarely traveled, and yet, I believe she touched more lives from her home in little Alton, Ontario, than some traveling salespeople do! I don’t even think she tried to reach out to people. It just happened. She would meet someone in the grocery store line up or in the girls’ schoolyard. We had people at the funeral who said, “My name is ****. I never had the pleasure of meeting Joanne, but we spoke on the phone once or twice and I just felt compelled to come here today.” THAT is incredible. We had over 1,000 people at her funeral. It was more than any of us even dreamed. It was a tribute to the life that Joanne led, larger than anyone had ever imagined.

So, as I said in the beginning of this tribute, it all makes perfect sense. Her dying young is not so shocking when you think of it outside of the emotional human brain…I strongly believe that Joanne was sent to earth differently than most. I like to think of her as having a special job, almost like Jesus had. I am not trying to say that Joanne was anywhere close to the level that Jesus was, but I believe that she, like Him, was put on earth with a specific purpose, a purpose that she was able to fulfill within a short time. She told me on numerous occasions that she was “so, so excited about going to Heaven.” She simply couldn’t wait to get there. That gives me great comfort. She knew where she was going and she knew she’d get there quickly. Joanne was more Christian than anyone I have ever met. More than all the priests and the Bishop I have met, more than anyone.

I know, with every ounce of my being, that she is in Heaven. She is there with my Dad, who she can take FULL credit for saving. She begged him to become a believer before he died. Her efforts were unrelenting and my father and I would chuckle at her insistence, acknowledging that it was Dad’s fault for her being so stubborn!!! Towards the end of his illness, Joanne prayed with him and he finally took Jesus into his heart.

And so, they are sitting on comfy chairs, looking down, smiling, knowing that they have one more Christian who will join them someday! I plan to live my life as close to the way Joanne lived hers as possible. She was an inspiration. She planted the seed. I need to nurture that seed, and spread the Word, so that one day, we will all be together again!

Rest in Peace Joanne. Your legacy lives on and on… Pin It

Note to heart from brain...she's gone

My brain knows the horrible truth…Joanne is gone. Dead. Passed away. Never to return. Now if the memo that my brain got could only be sent, special delivery, to my heart, things would be groovy.

I have thought of nothing else today. Joanne was on my mind from the moment I woke up until now, at 9:42 pm. It’s crazy. It’s just another day on the calendar. Why am I so affected by it?

I miss her. I miss her phone calls, her laugh, her silliness, her “blondness”, her hugs, her advice, her…everything. I miss having a sibling. I miss all the bad stuff too…I miss her opinions, her judgment and our fights. I.JUST.MISS.HER.

Her girls miss her too. And Mark. And Mom. And everyone else who ever had the privilege of meeting her. She certainly was special.

She’s with Jesus. THAT is cool. She is with my Dad and my Grampy. She knows the meaning of life. She has seen the past, the future and she sees the present. She is here, there and everywhere. She is in euphoria. She knows no pain. She is pure and she is happy beyond our human comprehension. She is where she belongs. She is home.

I love you Joanne.

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Sunday, 27 January 2008

Juno = Must See Movie

Blog 365 – Post 27/365

As I mentioned yesterday, Wendy, Kathy and I went to see “Juno” last night.

What a GREAT movie. You HAVE to see this film. The lead actress was fantastic, the soundtrack was SO cool and the storyline was amazing.

My Mom and I had a bit of a debate. She feels that it glorifies teenage pregnancy. I disagree. If you have seen it, what did you think?

On another note, I had a great time with Wendy and Kathy. I am so blessed to have such good friends who are just so easy to be with. I met Wendy through Kathy and I feel like we have been friends forever!

Good friends, good movie, good dinner, good times!

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Saturday, 26 January 2008

Girls' Night Out

Blog 365 – Post 26/365

Tonight, Wendy, Kathy and I are going out for dinner and a movie. We are going to Yorkdale Mall and we will have dinner at Moxie’s and then watch “Juno”.

I haven’t had a girls’ night out in AGES….I SO deserve this!!!

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Thursday, 24 January 2008

Thursday Thirteen

Blog 365 – Post 24/365

Thirteen things on my Bucket List:

1. Take ballroom dancing lessons;

2. Own a horse;

3. Take my children to England to see where I was born;

4. Ride in a gondola in Venice;

5. Go camping for a weekend with the boys;

6. Go to Las Vegas again;

7. Have a huge party in my honour (hopefully my 40th!);

8. Hold a real, live snake;

9. Own a fully loaded minivan;

10. Learn sign language;

11. Forgive one person in my life that I haven’t forgiven yet;

12. Take my boys to a Maple Leafs game at the ACC;

13. Weigh what I should again.

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Wednesday, 9 January 2008

What Would Jesus Do?

Being Chair of the CATHOLIC school council is a difficult task. I have to keep my personal opinions to myself, which you all must know by now, is NOT one of my strong points. I am passionate in my beliefs, especially when it comes to things that affect children, animals, the elderly, the poor, the oppressed, ANYONE really that can’t defend themselves.

The fact that I am passionate is the reason I ran for Chair in the first place. I wanted to bring the focus of our Council back where it belonged…to the children. Last year, something happened to the School Council. I wasn’t there to witness the events that unfolded, but from hearsay, it was horrible. The Council attacked itself. There was a huge division in the members and by the last meeting of the year, all hell (for lack of a better word) broke loose. I wanted to bring back the unity that a School Council needs to be successful. I ran a teambuilding night, in the hopes that with so many new faces, Council could put its past behind it and move forward. I felt REALLY good about it afterwards, because everyone seemed to have a good time and I got alot of compliments on the activities and on my heartfelt speech…I really should post my speech here, as I am quite proud of it…hmmm…another day.

Anyway, our school has been in the media lately. I won’t go into details because I don’t want to identify anyone involved, but suffice it to say that the media coverage was not wonderful. The school (and the Board) were called to task on an issue that has been ongoing for a long time. Tonight, the School Board Director came to our meeting to try to smooth things over and to assure everyone that we are moving forward. A select group of parents, who haven’t been to any of this year’s Council meetings before, lined themselves up (literally, they sat in the middle row) to blast the people involved in the “situation” that caused the media coverage. The hate and the venom that was shown in their words and in their voices was sickening. The Board Director was there to erase the line that had been so clearly drawn in the sand and these women came in a clan like a pack of vultures, to spit anger and call for the resignation of a member of council. Their main objective was to cause trouble and to rehash old wounds. I have to say that it wasn’t so much WHAT they said, but the whispering, laughing and the obviously planned attack that was so apparent.

I wish I could go into details, and one day, once my Chair days are over, I will…just remind me. If you knew the facts behind the case, you would be as sickened as I am that these cackling hens came out to our meeting with no other objective than to stir the pot.

We are CATHOLIC. One of our fundamental beliefs is that we should do what Jesus would do. These people are hypocritical and fake. They send their children to a Catholic school, where they are taught to treat others as they would want to be treated and yet they pull high school antics like this. Shame on them. Shame, shame, shame. I only hope that they attend confession to repent for the evilness that we were subjected to tonight.

We all have the right to our opinion, but we can express those opinions respectfully and in a kind manner. Bringing a posse to cause a fight is pure evil.

One message for all these women: Put yourself in the other person’s shoes for one day…ONE DAY. Perhaps then, you could find it in your heart to do as Jesus would do.

I am going to help pull all the daggers out of my fellow council member’s back now, so I will leave you with this food for thought:

Mat 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you. Pin It
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