I started writing the following post way….way, back in February and I was using a computer I wasn’t familiar with (and that wasn’t mine) and couldn’t figure out how to get pictures off of my phone to port to this post. I wasn’t able to write in a while due to lack of good computers but an amazing Facebook friend saw my plight and sent me a brand new Acer E laptop so that I can do more writing. This post is dedicated to her, she wanted to remain anonymous so I won’t name her but I will take his time to THANK HER! She has a couple of knitted doggie blankets coming to her soon…as soon as I finish the baby blanket I’m still working on that I started on this trip. So everyone can expect more posts since I now have a working computer YIPPIE so happy and so very thankful to you know who!
Last year my Orthodontist asked me to be a part of a fundraiser called Ski For Kids. She had asked me to come last year (and probably the year before) but things just never worked out. This year she very much wanted me to be a part of it and asked if I would be the guest speaker. Each year she has one of her patients come and talk about themselves in the hopes that the attendees will connect what they are raising money for to an actual person. So in February I was able to take part and had a great time.
The fundraiser is in support of The Hospital For Sick Children in Toronto’s cleft lip & palate and craniofacial anomalies research fund. Let me tell you more about the Ski For Kids objectives as it was posted on the flyer for this year’s event;
~ Orthodontic care for children born with cleft lip & palate is the key part of the overall corrective process SickKids have a number of research studies underway designed to enhance care and determine best practice treatment.
~Clinical study is examining the effects of outcomes of infant orthodontic devices designed to prepare infants born with cleft lip & palate for surgical repair. A second study is using 3-D imaging to assess the outcome of the use of these devices.
~ Children born with cleft lip & palate often require numerous surgeries initially and during development. Orthodontists are reviewing surgical techniques to improve outcomes and ultimately optimize best practices.
~ A population-based research study is examining the costs associated with care for children born with cleft lip & palate to determine if nasoalveolar moulding is cost-effective.
~ Medical studies have shown that children with cleft lip & palate have a greater chance of having cervical vertebrae anomalies. SickKids orthodontist are looking at these anomalies in conjunction with how these children develop overtime.
For me that weekend was a whirlwind of fun. I’m not one to always have fun on my own so I brought my good friend Donna with me. The even was held in Collingwood Ontario about 2.5 hours away from where I live. Donna and I started out after she finished work at 12:30pm Thursday afternoon and got to the hotel after 3pm or was it closer to 4pm…hmm.. anyways we got checked in and explored our room. We stayed at The Westin Trillium Hotel and WOW is that a really nice place to stay. If you are ever in Collingwood and want to stay in a friendly clean really nice hotel I highly recommend that one! See the pictures below.
After settling in for a few minutes we were asked to come to Alpine ski club where everything was being set up for Friday’s event. Donna and I were introduced to the committee members who were doing a fantastic job getting all the stuff together. Donna and I helped fold information pamphlets in half and put them on the tables where the attendees would sit when they come in to rest from skiing. We talked and watched as things came together. After a few hours the whole group went out for dinner at a place called The Huron Club.
This is where the weekend had a low point, as Donna was manuvering her car in to a tight spot the tire caught some ice as she went to hit the break her foot slipped and hit the gas. You can already see what happened, can’t you? Well thankfully we were going super slow but she ended up hitting a concrete pole. The impact was hard enough that the bumper cover popped off on the passenger side. I haven’t felt that helpless in a long time there was nothing I could do. Donna was upset and after consulting with her brother and having the guys in our group come to look at the damage it was determined to be minor and that the car was drivable which was a huge relief. Once Donna got home she had the car looked at and it’s going to cost $1600 to replace the bumper cover, and rebar that was bent. Again I feel so helpless like me Donna lives at home with her mom and supports her mom so like most of us it’s going to be hard to come up with $1600 as when it rains it pours.
When we had got the car bit sorted out dinner was AMAZING I had the trout which were served with maple glazed brussels sprouts and a potato pancake type thing and man was it yummy. As an appetizer I had crispy calamari, my orthodontist had octopus as an appetizer and she made me try it. To my utter amazement I actually enjoyed it but I have to say I will not just “try” octopus it would have to be at that restaurant and that preparation. For dessert I had cheese cake…yummy! Donna had the fish tacos and I’m kind of sad I didn’t try those maybe next time as fish tacos are one of my favourite dishes.
We got back to the hotel and we had a chance to relax watch some TV and sit in front of the fireplace. We headed down to the lobby of the hotel to get some pictures and to have a coffee at the bar, that’s right we had a COFFEE at the bar, not a beer, although I could have used a Strawberry Daiquiri! I asked Donna to help me prepare my speech as I had not yet really planned out anything. I’m a procrastinator so I do typically leave things to the last minute. Every time I tried to think about what I was going to say a wave of panic washed over me and I just gave up. So sitting at the bar drinking our coffees it was so nice, Donna helped me have a stream of thought and an order of things. It was nice having her there and it was a huge help.
We got up early on the Friday had breakfast in our room (my first time having room service) we got ready and headed out to Alpine. Donna took my orthodontists husband to a local auto repair shop to get a first daytime look at the damage to her car. I stayed back and hung out eating and watching people as they were skiing. It was a cold windy day but everyone was having a great time. Donna got back and after she got her teeth whitened we decided to go snow shoeing. We were provided with a guide from the resort named Larry and Larry was amazing. They stopped the ski lift and we proceeded up to the top of the hills where there are trails after getting all sorted out we walked a bit down a trail and it was so calm and peaceful. If I hadn’t had to get back to do a speech I would have loved to keep going it wasn’t nearly as cold and windy on the trail as it was coming up on the lift. We were treated to a trip back down the mountain via ski lift which is not something Alpine Ski hill normally allows but we were treated like VIPs and the view was spectacular. My phone battery died so I was not able to get any pictures which makes me sad 😦
I had brought a change of clothes with me so that when I gave my speech I would feel confident however we were running a bit late so as soon as we got back from our snow shoe adventure the festivities got started. Dr. Dagys got it started with a very emotional speech that she couldn’t even get through and I thought I wouldn’t get through mine but I took the mic and just started talking. Since Donna had helped me the night before I had a rough outline and an idea of how I wanted to present what I wanted to say. When I started talking people were still having some conversations and than it started getting quieter until other than me speaking you could hear a pin drop. I want to say that I had not done any public speaking before this and it scared the living crap out of me but when I started talking I had no nerves. I had people laughing (which was one goal) and had people crying, when I finished the crowd erupted and got the greatest gift a standing ovation! WHAT! After my speech I was able to help with the raffle draws where I didn’t win anything but in the live auction someone bid and donated to me an amazing gift a $500 gift card for St. Anne’s Spa (google it) I am thrilled and super excited, and honoured, and speechless, and so grateful.
Once the evening wound down and everyone had gone home we headed back to the hotel to meet up with a group for dinner at the hotel. The restaurant in the hotel is Oliver & Bonacini and it’s so SO good. I had the tiger shrimp linguini, Donna had the salmon. For dessert I had smore cheesecake. I would eat that again if it was in front of me right now!
That Saturday morning marked the last day and we had to check out by 11am so we got up early to take a dip in the pool and the hot tub both of which are outside, yep so while it was -15 we took a dip in a nice heated pool. The fun part was getting from the pool to the hot tub….wow it was cold. After we got back we had breakfast downstairs where Donna and I each had the eggs benedict…oh I can’t even begin to say how good it was. We had a nice drive home where I knitted and we sung to some tunes. I am still knitting the blanket I started in February really need to work at getting that done!
I had a really great time, we raised a lot of money for the charity and I stuffed myself on really awesome food. Thanks so much to everyone who came. Dr Dagys for inviting me, Kelly-Ann Macknight who is the dental hygienist but more than that she is a friend who made the weekend so much fun, shout out to Kelly-Ann’s awesome 2 kids Sky & Ben and to both their husbands. A HUGE thanks to DONNA thanks for being there and supporting me always. I am so lucky to have you in my life.
Now for all the pictures:
Trail we were snow shoeing on.
Donna wasn’t really dressed for the snow so she ended up borrowing a jacket, mittens, and a hat. She is really impressed I took this picture. LOVE YA DONNA!
Donna was acknowledged for her volunteerism with this nifty tooth shaped vessel filled with awesome stuff!
One of my favourite selfies of this year so far! FYI it was cold and we were in bathing suits!