A heavy heart

loss

Sorry readers, this isn’t going to be a fluffy, happy post, tissues may be required.

Whether it’s the loss of a parent, a friend, sibling, co-worker, or beloved pet, loss is tough. This has been a rough week for people I respect and admire.

I’m not a stranger to loss, it’s been a constant companion my whole life.I have lost all of my Grandparents, my older sister (she passed before I was born), my father, my aunt, and various friends, co-workers, and 2 cats. Today I write about the loss of others.

One of my favourite author’s and a a man I admire has let us know that he has lost his beloved cat Glaghghee. Having followed his blog for a number of years and reading his books I can tell you that John Scalizi has a heart of gold. His cat was the cutest thing and seemed to have much knowledge. I find having gone through losing my 2 cats some years ago that the fact Glaghghee passed on her own terms should be a comfort, she felt so safe and loved. If you want to read how the loss has impacted him here is the link to his post speaking on it: http://whatever.scalzi.com/2015/01/25/ghlaghghee-2003-2015/. If you haven’t read his blog or his books, I highly recommend him.

My friend Crystal is grieving for her dear friend today, who passed away officially today but left on Friday medically. I asked Crystal what I should write about today, she said she didn’t know. I wanted to write something that would cheer her up I fear this is whole heartily the opposite but writing is all I can do besides being there for her as I have been. Out of respect for her friend I will not say her name or describe exactly what happened, those close to her reading this will know for whom I speak, the information is not mine to give. I wasn’t lucky enough to know this sweet woman but listening to Crystal tell stories and laugh makes me even more sad that I will never get to know her. She had gone through a rough few years and was so close to getting everything she wanted. I had just slipped the RSVP to her wedding in the mailbox the other afternoon after work, I’m truly saddened to think her fiancee will have to open that, Crystal and I were getting excited to go buy some “hoochy” dresses, and I was getting excited to get to know her more and hang out with her. Instead I will be celebrating the life of a lovely person who has left us way too soon, who on the cusp of true happiness that was more than deserved will shroud us in sorrow.

Loss of a loved one or friend never makes sense, when it’s unexpected and sudden you will always be left with more questions than answers. I know there are those who believe and take comfort in the grand plan that God has, for those who know me, they know that this is not something I can get on board with. For me it will never make sense but for the simple fact that we are not immortal, we will live, we will die, the time we have left is not predetermined just a matter of time. The loss of a child is for me the hardest thing I can imagine, knowing my mother has gone through that, that one of my co-workers is still struggling with that is beyond my comprehension and one reason I’m OK with not having kids. I have been good up to this point putting one foot in front of the other but if I had a child and I had to go through that, it would unravel me, for this I am sure.

Many of us who are helping a friend or loved one through a loss it’s an odd role but extremely gratifying and important. I like to think that my past losses give me a unique perspective I know that there will never be the “right thing to say” that you shouldn’t force the conversation. I listen, I laugh, and as I did today with Crystal I reminded her that it’s ok to be pissed off, it’s ok to not understand what the heck just happened, it’s OK to tell a person whom your not close with that it’s not really the best time to come and talk to you. Crystal told me today that she was thankful for the chance to say goodbye to her friend, I’m so proud of how strong Crystal is even if she doesn’t see it in herself at this moment.

Random writings inspired by “642 Things To Write About” part 3

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So for today I asked my brother-in-law John to open’er up and pick a page. He picked a very interesting page with 3 questions on it.

1) You are a brand-new suicide-hotline counselor. Describe how you feel during the course of your first call

I have read this questions a few times and the first thought that comes to mind is panic. To be entrusted to talk to a person going though that amount of pain, but to have the strength to call for help would be huge responsibility. I’m not sure I can really answer this, I know that these programs provide extensive training and I think I would rely on that. I’m a naturally good listener and good at making people laugh, I would hope to be able to connect on a human level. To be able to be the sounding board that person needed at that exact time. I know that I would not make them feel small or stupid, I would try to help them see what is good about them, try to find the one tiny thing that went right on that day, even if it was calling for help. My win would be if I got them to crack a smile or even a laugh, my fear of failure would prevent me from ever being in this position. Again amazing volunteers who man those lines deserve some highest honours anyone can get.

If YOU reading this ever need to reach out please don’t be afraid to message me, I’m not a stranger and I’m here to help. there are other great organizations as well. On Wednesday I will be talking more about this as I will be promoting Bell Let’s Talk Day.

2) Do you have a superstition? What is it, why do you have it, and how do you follow it?

This is the specific question john focused on after flipping through the pages for a bit. Not sure why because I really don’t have any superstitions. I do have a few quirks that my close friends know about but not superstitions. So guess I will reveal my quirks, no judging ok? First is that I hate to take a shower right after someone, anyone. If I know my sister is going for a shower I need to get in before her, or John. The way the bathroom gets all steamy and inside the shower is all wet really just makes me feel weird. I know that they are my family and I love them, I do (LOVE YOU CRYSTAL) it’s just something inside me that just doesn’t like it. My other quirk is socks….I will not wear another pair of socks someone else owns. I also know my own socks just by putting them on and how they feel. If I’m at a friends house and my feet get cold and they don’t have a blanket or slippers I will just stay with my feet cold. I will wear my sister Crystal’s sock in a pinch but i would prefer not to. Again I know it’s weird, I know they are clean…just weird.. And my last quirk is with lettuce, if I think about it or handle it my jaw automatically clenches. No idea why, I have no aversion to lettuce just have this automatic reaction. Do you have any quirks or superstitions?

3) Explain to your boss why you spent $5000 during one business meeting and why he should reimburse you.

I had to go out and impress these new clients, they were offering us a huge contract and I couldn’t seem desperate to them, that we REALLY needed their contract to keep us afloat. I wined, and dined them and rented a helicopter for an hour to take a tour of the area. They have never been to this part of the world so I thought what better way to get them relaxed before our dinner then to share a potentially life threatening excursion. We laughed, we bonded, and we ended with a great dinner with some really great food and wine, oh and they really appreciated that 16 year old single malt we gifted to them! They are totally on board with what we can offer, and as we sit here debating my methods I believe you should have the papers coming through now!

I had a rough day!

***WARNING THE FOLLOWING POST CONTAINS IMAGES SOME MAY FIND DISTURBING***

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One of the questions I get asked most is “How many surgeries have you had?” To be honest, I’m not actually sure but I thought today I would list the ones I remember. Also will talk about the lovely procedure I had today which might be on the top of the worst things ever list!

1) Jaw reconstruction #1

One of the earliest memories I have is being home after my first attempt at fixing my jaw. I know it was during the summer months because I don’t remember being bundled up or any snow. I remember being in the hospital getting special treatment from the staff. I remember what 8C of Hospital For Sick Children used to look like, the smells and such. What I don’t remember is the actual procedure or any pain. I remember being home an having to take lots of medication and a weird memory of my mom telling my older sister that I had an infection and would have to go back to have the reconstruction undone. I was seven at the time.

2) Rhinoplasty #1 (aka nose job)

I’m not 100% sure how old I was but before I had the procedure I remember Dr. Posnik and my mom asking me what would I like to change most. I had no answer for them, I think I said I didn’t really care, or I said my jaw. Little did I know they had already decided what was going to be on the agenda and I think they wanted me to have a sense of control. I was a pretty smart kid and didn’t buy it one bit! Dr. Posnik asked if I would like my noes done, my mom responded saying “yeah wouldn’t you like to be able to breathe better?” I’m almost positive I shrugged and said “I guess”, knowing full well the decision wasn’t mine. I don’t remember the procedure although i think I remember walking to and being in the OR. It was a long stay in the hospital they didn’t just do the procedure and send me home I stayed until I was fully recovered. One of the strongest memories i have of this stay is meeting a girl I think around my age named Tarra Stevenson, I have a picture somewhere but I can’t remember where I put it. It’s of the 2 of us in her bed with crazy plastic top hats on that we had just finished decorating with stickers. I had a cast on my face, yes an actual, honest to goodness cast like what they put on your arm when you break it. If anyone has had a cast on you know how heavy they can be, now imagine that on your face…I remember having the hardest time lifting my head. I blame some of my current neck problems on that thing. The other very strong memory is having a catheter taken out, it had been in for some time and I was suffering from burning sensation and pain. Of course I didn’t say anything but it got really bad on the day they were taking it out so I just held my pee in, mom and the nurses asked if I wanted to use it just before they took it out and I lied right to their faces and said I was good! They took it out, it hurt, they left my room and I told mom to help me off the bed so I could use the bathroom! She gave me heck for not saying anything but I didn’t care at that age I was already good at sucking it up and not saying anything. Tara got to go home before me, and I remember changing rooms to one further away from the nurses desk, I also played with a group of older patients and we got in trouble for making too much noise. It was one of the best times I’ve had. I never got the chance to play a lot with other kids while at home so I really enjoyed myself.

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3) Jaw reconstruction #2

This one happened when I was 16, I was just finishing up grade 9 and was exempt from all final exams because the date of my surgery was at the end of the school year. It was on my sister’s birthday June 10th, 1996!There were days, and days of preperation for this one. My mom and I were in Toronto a lot and had to stay sometimes for a week, this was before Ronald McDonald house so we stayed at the hostel located across the and down the street from the hospital. They had a safe in the room where parents could leave their personal belongings locked up however it appears the staff were a bit shady because during one of the days we were there someone got into the safe (must have had a key there was NO signs of forced entry) and stole all the money my mom had in it. I’m not sure if she ever got it back, I also remember babysitting some of the younger kids while my mom and some of the other moms went to Honest Ed’s.

In those days you generally went the night before got admitted however I can’t remember if I did go the night before or if we got there really, really early in the morning. Everyone was there, my sister, and my mom. Since the first reconstruction failed they decided to take the tibula from my left leg due to it having it’s own blood supply and reshape it to a graft. I was in the ICU for about 4 or 5 days, I only remember bits and pieces and I’m pretty sure I had some weird hallucinations. I had an NG tube and was on a ventilator, I was so swollen I wasn’t able to open my eyes for a good few days but I don’t remember having a lot of pain. The only painful thing I do remember when being in the ICU was my left heel really hurt for some reason the had asked if I was in pain and I was able to write and tell them. I heard them say that the drainage tube shouldn’t be causing that paid. I had about 5 drainage tubes, on on on the bottom of my leg, one on the top part of where they took the bone, just below the knee, one on the right side of my ribs where they took cartilage, and a couple in my head and neck area. I had so much wanted to see my sister Crystal, I had wrote asking to see her but because she was also a minor they wouldn’t let her in so I had to suffer with writing notes to her however I was on some good pain killers and it took a lot out of me to write. I was happy to get the breathing tube out and that meant after another day or so in the ICU I was allowed to go up to a room. This is after Sick Kids had renovated so I got a nice room all to myself where my mom could stay in the room with me. She stayed as much as she could but she was not there every day. My sister was able to come visit me now which was nice and she brought her good friend (now my good friend) Becky with her, I remember going downstairs for MOCHA JAVA!! I was in the middle of a sentence when I fell asleep when I woke up only Crystal was there with me and told me Becky had to go. I had to get up and start walking which was nice but with a splint on my leg and my ribs bandaged up it was slow going but every day I set a goal to walk normally with the splint and I met those goals. The last drainage tube to come out was one near my head they gave me morphine before they did it, it didn’t hurt but felt so weird I asked to have it done again, we all had a good laugh. The rib area I will say was the most painful thing, even with all the pain killers I could still feel that so anytime I hear that someone has / had a broken or bruised rib I wince because I know that hurts SO bad! I was starting to think I should be a nurse around this time because one night a nurse gave me liquid Tylenol through my NG tube instead of just letting me take it orally, I told her that wasn’t the way to do it and warned her it wouldn’t end well but she thought she knew better and did it anyways. It didn’t take too much time for me to bring it back up, I called for help when I knew I was going to vomit but it wasn’t the same idiot nurse who made the mistake as I hoped it would as having to vomit through a small hole…well..I’m sure you can imagine it wasn’t pretty. While in my room one night the friend of another patient came in with home made cookies (his friend’s story is for another day) he probably should have given them to the nurse to distribute because not everyone would be allowed to have one (including me) but he didn’t and i gladly accepted, knowing fully well I wasn’t allowed since I was on a clear fluid diet at the time. I hid the cookie under the blankets and took tiny pieces off and shoved them in the hole that they leave you when your mouth is wired shut. I was in the hospital for about a month I want to say, I remember getting home and it was still summer, I remember going to the Multicultural festival here and having to carry wire cutters just in case of an emergency and lots of towels because I was always drooling. I got the wires out just before we took a trip (the fastest trip ever) to BC in August, we drove to BC stayed for like 2 days and drove all the way back, the days we spent there were awesome but not the greatest vacation ever!

4) Exploration operation

After the trip or before the trip to BC I can’t remember exactly i noticed that I wasn’t able to keep my balance as good, I was falling over and just unsteady. It came to a head when one morning getting up from eating breakfast I wanted to go one way and found myself against the wall in the opposite direction and the result was i broke one of my mom’s faviourte statue elephants, felt so bad. My mom made an appointment and I was seen by the ENTs at the hospital, after one hearing test they thought maybe I had too much wax in my ears so they took care of that and I did a second hearing test. The results were not that great so they had me come back so they could explore my inner ear. I went home the same day and it was determined that the graft they put in essentially made me deaf in my left ear as it had closed off the ear canal. Nothing could be done.

5) undoing jaw reconstruction #2

Over the course of months from June 1996 until November 1996 I went back to school, and thought everything was good, back to my old routine and looking forward to moving from our apartment to a really awesome town house and being allowed to stay at the same high school. It meant taking 2 public buses to school everyday but I was ok with that. I’m not sure who noticed the infection first, I know I didn’t feel like crap, I felt good however we noticed an unusual growth on the left side of my face that wasn’t getting any smaller. My plastic surgeon was called, and just after my classmate informed me I was leaking (the growth started oozing out nasty stuff) then the phone rang in my class advising me my ride to Toronto was there to pick me up. We got to Sick Kids in the early afternoon went right to 8C where my surgeon was waiting for me. We went to a treatment room on the ward used for burn patients he took one look at me and informed me I wasn’t going anywhere…I had not expected this, I had NO clothes, no PJs, nothing, just my school bag. He told me that the graft had once again failed, that my body was absorbing/rejecting it and he would have to go in and fix it. The next morning i had surgery to fix it but no ICU stay this time. and a short 1 week stay in hospital where everyday twice a day I had packing taken out and put back in from a hole at the side of my head. i was given morphine after the first time it was taken out the day after the procedure where the nurse cursed the doctor for really packing it in and when she yanked it out I cried it hurt so much. I got morphine before they went a head and tried to put new packing in and got morphine every time after that until it was healed enough for me to go home. I went back to school and every day after school a VON nurse came over to change the packing. The good thing about this procedure was that I missed the moving completely, when I went in to hospital I was living at one address when I came home I was living at another without having to do anything, well I had to unpack the boxes that were in my room but that wasn’t too bad. It was also the first time I spent 1 week by myself with no visitors I was the most boring week ever!

6) Septo-rhinoplasy

A few years after my jaw I started having a lot of sinus pain so I had to have my deviated septum repaired they also decided it would be a good idea to do another nose job! The day before the procedure my mom got a call that it had to be rescheduled because of an emergency case so I had to wait a few months I think however my condition go worse and the day after I went for a final consult and them pressing on my nose so bad, I became the emergency case. My face had swelled up and I had to put ice on my face. I was working at Tim Horton’s at the time and going to university, I had the procedure done on a Thursday, my Aunt took me and stayed until I was done and came back home relaxed for the weekend and was back to work and school on the Monday. It was near Halloween so I decided to use it as part of my Halloween costume at work and dressed up as a hippie and told customers that my character was beat up by police. Most of the customers thought it was just part of my costume..alas it was not! One of the first classes I went back to was with a professor who always came off as a bit cold, and uninterested. I always sat at the front because I can’t hear well or see well so when he came in that day he did a double take, stopped in his tracks and came over to ask if I was alright. I told him what had happened and called me crazy for being there but was always super nice to me after that day!

I’ve had other minor things done after this including having my sinus drained and deviated septum repaired again but these are the ones that I remember that were pretty intense. I had a lot of procedures as a baby that I have not much knowledge on.

**BELOW THIS PARAGRAPH IS THE IMAGE WARNED ABOUT**

Today I had to have the very back molar on my left side removed and had to go to an oral surgeon because my regular dentist didn’t feel safe trying to take the sucker out. I’ve had teeth taken out before (2) one at Sick Kids when I was younger with the use of “laughing gas” and the other at my normal dentist office with just normal freezing, both went well with very little pain. Today was a whole new level of pain / torture… I went in he froze me up but because of my anatomy they always have to put way more freezing then they think they will need so the number of needle pokes is really not fun and they were very painful. I thought that would be the worst of it, I was oh so wrong, he did warn me it wouldn’t be easy because of where it was, because I couldn’t open my mount very wide, and because the roots of the tooth were unusually long. It was seriously one of the worst things I’ve been through and that’s saying something, it was even worse than the time my mom accidentally pulled on my NG tube and ripped out a stitch, it was way more painful than the recovery of my ribs from the surgery I had to fix my jaw! After he worked on it for a bit and got most of it out he stopped, he told me that there was a small part of the tooth still in and he wanted an x-ray. After the X-ray was ready to view the brought it in to show me and informed me that he didn’t want to take any more out. Because of the 2 failed bone grafts what jaw bone I have in that area is very thin, he was very worried that he would fracture my jaw if he continued and he wants the part where the tooth was taken in to fill in and see how I heal to decide if the rest can stay in or has to come out. I asked him about the one wisdom tooth that I have if it’s safe or would need to come out I didn’t get a straight answer but he did say it would be way easier than the tooth he just took out that. He informed me that the one he just took out was the hardest one to come out of my mouth. It has finally stopped bleeding after almost 12 hours and I’m keeping up with the T3s I was given so I’m feel much better as I write this than I did earlier today!

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This is most of the tooth that was taken out. As you can see a good chuck was missing.

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In the waiting room after I was done, I noticed this artwork! It did make me laugh!

The most amazing animals, and their humans

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One of the things I have grown to love about the internet is how we can connect to causes, people, and places like never before. I know this isn’t new information as I have said it before but today I want to highlight something that really is amazing that couldn’t have happened 10-15 years ago. Animal celebrity! I want to focus today’s blog post not on famous animals who are only famous because they live with famous families and are treated better than our homeless population, no, I want to focus on animals who are doing good and have amazing families that help them.

Meet LENTIL BEAN

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https://www.facebook.com/MyNameIsLentil

http://www.mynameislentil.com/

Look at him…so cute! Lentil (or Bean as he is also called) was born to in a litter of 4 puppies all of whom were born with facial differences but sadly only Lentil survived. Lentil is a french bulldog who is looked after and loved dearly by Lindsay Condefer who was born with a cleft lip and plate. When he was born he needed to be tube fed every 2 hours 24 hours a day 7 days a week for 3 months, I couldn’t imagine getting no sleep for a for that length of time but but Lentil is special. Lentil had surgery to correct the defects to his palate, so that he would be able to eat and drink without assistance which also means a better quality of life.

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Pictures of Lentil Bean as a puppy.

All grown up Lentil has now become an “ambassodog” for children with facial differences. When I first saw a puppy picture of Lentil I squealed, how could you not! His mom Lindsay has done a super fantastic job seeing an opportunity when it jumped up, and has done a lot of really great work to help bring awareness about facial differences.

Last year Lindsay started the “Chews Kind” tour after exceeded her Kickstarter goal she has been able to make a few trips (with more planned) to visit with kids with facial differences. She has also worked with CCAKids “Children’s Craniofacial Association” (http://www.ccakids.org/). I hope one day to meet Lindsay and Bean. I love what she is doing, I love that Lentil is here and that kids with facial differences and look to him and realize that they are not alone.

Meet MONTY The Cat

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https://www.facebook.com/Montyboycat/timeline

I was introduced “virtually” of course to Monty from both my sister and a friend who wanted to share that there was another animal ambassador for differences. Monty was adopted from a shelter in Denmark, where I can imagine people just passed by him because he looks different. Monty was born with a chromosomal abnormality which left him without a nasal bone or bridge. Monty’s human’s are spreading the message that appearances don’t matter. I couldn’t agree with them more!

Meet MARNIE

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http://marniethedog.tumblr.com/about

https://www.facebook.com/MarnieTheDog

https://twitter.com/MarnieTheDog

Marnie the dog is an ambassador for the adoption of senior pets. After being found at the age of 10 on the streets of Connecticut, she was brought her to the shelter they named her Stinky because of her foul odour. Marnie’s head tilt is noted to be caused likely by Vestibular Syndrome and her tongue sticks out simply because it’s really long. Having followed Marnie’s various social media sites I can tell you she hangs out with some pretty cool people. Marnie is one of a kind. Marnie is so lovable and makes me smile when I’m having a bad day. Thanks Marnie!!

Meet

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https://www.facebook.com/iamlilbub?ref=br_tf

http://lilbub.com/

https://twitter.com/iamlilbub

Lil’Bub was rescued from a barn and is believed to be the runt of the litter. Bub has a sweet personality and is quite famous, she has written her own book, has her own TV show, and amazing people have got tattoos in honour of her. She has over come many obstacles in her life and she is cute as a button who is always raising money for animal shelters.and to help other special needs pets.

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Baby Bub

I will do another post in the future featuring more amazing animals on the internet. Some more famous than others.

Random

Well guess it isn’t surprising that the cold that’s been going around has finally hit home. I seem to be always the first one to get it here, hoping that it’s doesn’t get much worse. I feel achy and half my throat is sore….my ear aches. What do you guys do when you get a cold? I have to say I’ve been lucky I have never had the flu but seem to get hit with a nasty cold at least once a year. When I was a kid I used to get a cold at the turn of every season, without fail. I’m lucky as a grown up that doesn’t happen, maybe all the garlic I eat helps. Usually I drink loads of tea and take pills to help deal with the symptoms.

Today on my way home I was forced once again to deal with having a facial difference. Again not like I don’t know I have one, just wish that it wasn’t a surprise to the rest of the world. Waiting to get on the last bus of my trip home at the mall when this young punk (yeah I know that isn’t nice, I don’t care) with skateboard, trucker hat, and really nice curly blonde hair saw me trying to walk past him then as he past me did a double take saying “whoa…”. I kind of wished to take the skateboard and beat him with it until people walking by would say “whoa”. I’m tired, I’m hungry, I’m coming down with a cold the last thing I need is some young punk making me even more crappy about my self. Public transportation, and malls are the biggest pains for me some days. This incident comes just days after I was riding the bus when this family gets on and the boy just sits there and openly stares at me. Thankfully I was reading a novel so I put the novel up pretty high to intercept his stare. I tried shaking my head to let the kid know that I could see him less than 2 feet in front of me but he didn’t get the hint so up went the book until I got off the bus. ugh…..sometimes I hate being me!

Not that my day started out that great, my bus was early and I had to run for it because sometimes they will just go right by you. If I miss that bus i will be late for work which would make for an even worse day. I get up at 4:50am and get the 5:34am bus which takes me to King & University I have about 15 minutes to wait before the next bus takes me in front of my work so I stop in at Starbucks because it’s been too cold to sit out side. This morning the Batista accidentally knocked over the travel mug she just filled with coffee and it landed on my cozy warm mittens. I know she felt so bad, she wouldn’t stop apologizing. I got my order for free but had to go the rest of the day without mittens. On the plus side, they smell like coffee!

Had day old timbits as a snack today, you wouldn’t think that they would be all that great the next day but I ate all the chocolate glazed left and managed to take a dent in the honey dip ones which I usually avoid the next day due to the fact that they are stale but they were not half bad.

I still haven’t managed to get a character to level 100 in World of Warcraft yet, at 97, so just 3 more levels to go..GO ME! I know there are so many people who have leveled multiple characters to 100. My brother-in-law says I’m the very definition of a casual player.

As I write this Crystal is watching video after video on YouTube of Honest Trailers. If you have KNOW idea what that is you need to check them out. So funny Here watch:

I love the Guardians of The Galaxy one… heck I love all of the Honest Trailers.

If you think about it it’s kind of funny when I post this blog you won’t know how long it took me to write it. Above this was written a few hours ago. I got distracted by watching those honest trailers, then it was time for dinner, then I had a shower and watched some of the Leafs game with my mom. When Ottawa scored that 3rd goal I was out of there! I will always be a Leafs fan I just wish they would get their act together and win some games…heck at this point I would settle for some goals being scored. Ah well….

Well time to go make a coffee and have a slice of pie, going to relax before going to bed. Tomorrow is my FRIDAY!

Random pics from my phone

I’m tired….I have to say I love my current 7-3 shift but I’m not a great at going to bed early so I suffer from getting up at the crack of stupid!

So today I figured it might be a stretch but today’s post is going to be me closing my eyes and randomly select some pictures from my phone and give you the background story. Sorry if it’s not exciting, I do have a list of other blog post topics so no

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Ah our trip to San Diego this picture is of a vulture if I remember correctly. This was taken on one of their bus tours we were sitting on the very top and I was able to get some really great pictures when we went to the zoo. It was colder than I was expecting in California but wouldn’t stop me from visiting again.

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This one was taken at Sea World on the same trip. I preferred the zoo, Sea World didn’t have that many attractions and the layout wasn’t that great. Then there is the animal rights issue…yeah…can’t ignore that.

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OMG Ellie and Crystal my 2 favourite gals. Look Ellie sticking out that cute tongue. She was in between grooming so she was a little shaggy. When we first got Ellie home she didn’t like to be held, wouldn’t curl up beside you or sit with you it took a long time for her to sit with someone. I was lucky to be the first I remember she sat on my lap and I think that is when she felt at home.

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On my other Facebook page I post inspirational pictures such as this one. I keep them on my phone sometimes so when I’m scrolling through pictures and see it it can help me through a bad day.

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I was in Toronto a few months ago and went in to RW & Co (http://www.rw-co.com/) and found this awesome blazer. It fit so NICE but I ended up leaving it behind. I’m glad I did I was eventually able to pick it up when they had a really great sale just recently. I haven’t had the chance to wear it yet.

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LOVE this picture of my co-workers. From left: my previous manager Lisa (LOVE her she is such an amazing boss and an even better person), “Auntie Crystal Beautiful” Crystal she a really great friend and the person who’s wedding I’m planning (HI NORMAN), Paulina who’s shindig this was as she was leaving our team for a different position in another center, Me wow I really am short, and another great friend Ashley who I was lucky to know before she started working at Rogers. Now we are on the same team again and it’s awesome! This was a fun night, after we had dinner, Paulina, Ashley, and I went to a club and got seriously drunk. I was on vacation that week so I did not suffer having to go to work the next day!

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Well if there was any doubt that I actually was just randomly picking pictures this should clear that right up! This is when I was out at the mall doing a bit of shopping and found these amazing boots for my sister Crystal. Instead of just texting her to say the boots were $84.99 I decided I just had to send a picture of the price tag. They were on sale for $19.99 plus I had another 20% off coupon for being a member. They are some sweet boots, sadly they didn’t have any in my size.

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Another inspirational quote picture from my other Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/penlokerr?ref=bookmarks). I do like this one!

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This picture was taken while at Target, I had to show my sister that there were some pretty awesome pants available. Thought she would just have to have them…LOL..OMG no, I’m not a fan of them and neither was she. Goes really great with that awesome sweater beside no? Ok I actually might wear those pants but not with the elastic on the bottom of the legs.

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And to finish off this one is a funny! It does fit me sometimes I can be a bit OCD so I had to laugh when I saw it. If you like this the comic strip website can be found here: http://explosm.net/.

Well that concludes a peak into some of the pictures on my phone. Might do this again it was kind of fun. I would love to see a random picture from your phone…FYI rated PG! 🙂

Crazy articles on the web

Today on my Twitter and Facebook feeds there have been a few articles that have got a lot of attention so I thought I would share them and let the debate begin.

First up one by Globe & Mail they have a weekly column called “Financial Face-lift” and this weeks article as everyone agreeing that the people featured in the article need a reality check. Here read it for yourself then come back and read my thoughts, I want to see yours in the comments.

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http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/personal-finance/mortgages/debt-doubts-cast-a-shadow-for-this-professional-couple-with-five-kids/article22496585/

I can’t pretend to know what it’s like to be well off or wealthy. I have always lived within my means, sometimes a bit above but the couple article have more money than brains. To be fair the article has been updated with new information however based on the comments it has gone through a couple of revisions. My issue with the article is not the way it’s written, the subject matter, I think everyone could use some financial advice no matter how much they are worth, how much they have in the bank, or how much they make per year. My concern is that they make loads of money per year and they live RENT FREE and don’t know how they will pay a mortgage.

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I will not disclose my pre-tax annual income but I will say it’s less than $55,000 a year I own a house and have credit card debit. I don’t have kids, a car, “professional association fees”, or vacations but I have just about enough to get by. I would LOVE to have the income that the two listed in this article because I would be able to pay off my debt & home faster. I would also have enough money to go on a vacation to somewhere warm…but I wouldn’t need $2000 a year to do it. I would do one of those last minute vacations that cost about $700 all inclusive including air fare.

My advice to the two in this article, sell the $1.1 Million dollar plot of land and buy an existing house that is a bit run down and spend the money to renovate it to make it work for them. Also maybe take your kids out of that fancy private school and put them in the awesome public school, Vancouver has some great ones. Also I’m pretty sure they could trim down that $2000 groceries bill. by going to the markets. Vancouver has great outdoor markets and great places to shop locally and get fish. I understand that younger kids come with additional costs but still trim some of those expenses. If your wife is on mat leave a Nanny isn’t really required get help from friends, parents, family.

I don’t want to make light of their situation, they clearly suck at money management, most of us do, I know i do but he is a physician and she is a dentist they should have more smarts. Just crazy!!

The next story up comes from National Post not a normal weekly column but an article that came up in my twitter feed that had me scratching my head, and everyone else’s who read it.

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Here is a link to the article again go, read and come back:

http://news.nationalpost.com/2015/01/19/parents-billed-24-for-a-no-show-fee-after-5-year-old-son-misses-birthday-party/

So the gist is that a kid didn’t attend another kid’s party and the offended parent decided to bill $25USD because of the no show. My biggest issue is that kids party is getting so out of hand these days. I sometimes see my co-workers and friends struggle to come up with new ideas or to keep kids entertained. Most of my friends are what I like to call normal and just have a get together at their house, invite a few kids and family and make an afternoon out of it. But I have seen some stressed out parents trying to make 5 year old’s party epic and for what reason I have NO idea!

Again I don’t have kids so maybe I have no right to speak on the matter but invoicing a parent because their kid didn’t show up is a bit crazy. You are the one that decided to do some crazy party that involved spending boat loads of cash so you must be responsible to bare the cost. If you can’t afford it I would suggest doing a simple party at a community center or a house as I think that would be more fund for kids.

What was the craziest birthday party you attended as a kid? What has been the craziest party you sent your kid to? Have you thrown an over the top affair for a milestone birthday for your kid?