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  • How will you remember?

    October 20th, 2011 she Posted in Lighter Side, Random Burbling, Those Who Volunteered   8 Comments »  

    Veteran’s Week takes place from Nov 5-11 and this year Veterans Affairs Canada is asking Canadians to Make remembrance more than something you feel. Make it something you do. (2011 theme was How will you Remember?).

    Shamelessly stolen from the Veterans Affairs website:

    “Your challenge is to make remembrance more than something you feel. Make it something you do. There are many ways you can show that you remember and honour our Veterans.

    • pin a poppy above your heart;
    • attend a local Remembrance Day ceremony;
    • follow Veterans Affairs Canada on Twitter;
    • download the “We Remember” mobile app;
    • listen to Veterans talk about their experiences;
    • create a mashup and share it on the Veterans Affairs Canada YouTube channel;
    • visit the Veterans Affairs Canada fan page on Facebook, write on our wall and share how you remember;
    • change your Facebook profile picture to a poppy, write on your wall about how you remember or create your own remembrance fan page.”

    In 2010 I decided to donate funds to friend’s Movember campaigns based on the number of poppies I saw people wearing as I randomly walked through Edmonton. In 2011, I expanded my list of charities to donate to (Movember, Kids Need to Read, Boomer’s Legacy, WoundedWarriors.ca and CaliCan Rescue Foundation). I haven’t yet decided who the beneficiary of my 2012 poppy count will be.

    As always, I’m donating $0.10 to each charity for each poppy I see people wearing as I wander around Edmonton & Ottawa from the Poppy Campaign’s launch date until November 11.

    will be counting poppies on my way to work, at work, and running normal day-to-day errands (shopping, bill payments, etc.).

    I know 10 cents per poppy doesn’t seem like much, but I’m since I’m planning on counting poppies for approximately 20 days and will be attending the Remembrance Day ceremony at the War Memorial in Ottawa this year, I expect the dollar amount to add up quickly. I’m optimistic; hoping to see far more poppies in 2012 than I did during my previous counting experiments in 2010-2011.

    Why no donation to the Royal Canadian Legion you might ask? My husband and I are Legion members and donate to their programs throughout the year. I also have an annual tradition of purchasing a new poppy each day of the campaign. And Honestly? I suspect that the Legion’s poppy campaign will benefit more from my poppy purchase traditions than from my poppy counting project.

    - side note -
    In 2010 I also decided to try and collect photos of poppies on people’s jackets from the date the poppy campaign began until Nov 11. Instead of randomly photographing strangers, I asked friends and family to send in a picture of themselves wearing a poppy. Sadly, my collection was tiny and the project was a bust. I received less than 5 pictures of people wearing poppies.

    I think I need to reconsider how I’m collecting the poppy photos.

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    movember challenge continues

    November 6th, 2009 she Posted in Lighter Side, Popularity Contests, Random Burbling   1 Comment »  

    After a day off to re-think my fundraising strategy – I’m back. I’ve decided that my personal goal is to try and reach $880 before anyone else on the team. In order to get there I’m going to need every one of you, my loyal blog readers (that’s at least 5 people, right?), to donate a few shekels to the cause. I’d ask my “Facebook friends” but apparently they’re already sick of my daily #movember status updates and not as friendly as they make out to be.

    I’m also silly enough to agree to wear a fake moustache at work at the end of the month (or perhaps even while at a convention in LA in a few weeks) if I surpass the goal.

    There might even be pictures.

    Highlights of today’s begging post:

    1. My goal is to raise $880 (more is always welcome) for Movember before the end of the month.
    2. If I raise the $880 before any other member of my team, I’ll get a fake moustache and wear it to work.
    3. If I raise the $880 before Nov. 20, I’ll wear the fake moustache at a convention in LA where friends and strangers will have ample opportunity to heckle me.
    4. If you haven’t already please donate to the cause. Help in the battle to wipe out prostate cancer.

    I’m going to pretend the glass is half-full today and assume I can make the goal. Cause I know y’all love me and support my charity works. That said, anyone know where I can get a fake moustache in Edmonton?

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    Movember – Day II

    November 4th, 2009 she Posted in Lighter Side, Popularity Contests, Random Burbling   No Comments »  

    Today marks day two of my involvement with the Movember challenge. My “friends” are offering suggestions for obtaining a moustache. Drawing seems to be the most popular. Followed, oddly enough, with the advice to skip the moustache bit and just let the leg hair grow to show support *shudder*
    Get involved. Grow (or draw) moustaches. And don’t forget to donate to the cause.
    Also, I think I need to set a fundraising goal. Any suggestions?
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    Movember

    November 3rd, 2009 she Posted in Lighter Side, Popularity Contests, Random Burbling   No Comments »  

    Some would say I’ve yet to meet a charity I didn’t like. While that may not be 100% accurate, I do seem to be getting involved in fundraising and volunteer work more often these days.

    This month my efforts will be focused on Movember. What’s Movember you ask?

    Movember is an annual, month-long celebration of the moustache, highlighting men’s health issues – specifically prostate cancer.

    The money raised in Canada goes directly to Prostate Cancer Canada. Prostate Cancer Canada will use the money raised by Movember for the development of programs related to awareness, public education, advocacy, support of those affected, and research into the prevention, detection, treatment and cure of prostate cancer.

    - Blatently stolen from the Movember website at http://ca.movember.com/about/

    Like most women, I have no desire to grow a moustache. We pay good money to get rid of even the suggestion of a moustache. And, like my follicle challenged team leader, Landon, my husband is equally unable to grow a decent moustache. Not for lack of trying on his part. I believe the end result of his most recent attempt was nicknamed the “70′s porn ‘stache” for good reason.

    moustache

    You can donate to moi or my Movember team using your Credit Card or Paypal account. All donations are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.

    Let the men wear their moustaches with pride and send me all your cashy money ;)

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    What goes around, comes around

    April 4th, 2009 she Posted in It's a Living, Lighter Side   4 Comments »  

    Once upon a time I had a very incompetent co-worker. One who spent hours each day talking to friends on instant messengers or surfing the internet, took 3-10x longer to complete assigned tasks than her brand new co-worker, and couldn’t follow written or spoken directions. My boss, co-workers and I did everything we could think of to get her work to meet the bare minimum standards. We were unsuccessful. Finally, my boss had a ‘come to Jesus’ meeting with her and discussed her performance. She quit immediately. We could say it was in a fit of pique but honestly it was probably to pre-empt being fired by the boss.

    So, now that my office mates and I have found new jobs and my former boss is gone, who does the department hire to fill in for D for the final few months of the project? If you guessed the sweet but clueless former co-worker treat yourself to a cookie.

    I feel for D who must spend the next few weeks trying to train her. The re-hiring justification is that since she used to work with us she knows the software and processes. For the moment, let’s ignore the fact that she never learned much beyond the basics of the old LMS we were using and took weeks to complete a 4 hour assignment with less than 70% accuracy. The program converted to a new LMS a few months back. One that she’s never seen before. Every process in place when she was working for the dept. was refined or replaced with the advent of the new LMS.

    I think they’re in for a rude awakening if they think she’s capable of doing even 10% of what D or Big Momma R used to do.

    None of us should be surprised by this hiring decision as it’s a perfect representation of all that’s gone on in the past, but I have to admit, the absurdity of the situation is making us giggle on our way out the door.

    You just can’t make this stuff up.

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    Sundown

    November 17th, 2008 she Posted in Art, Vittles & Beer, Flan-dom, Lighter Side   2 Comments »  

    I love listening to music. My iPod has thousands of songs. A few hundred of my favourites have also been transferred to my iPhone. At work I’ll load up iTunes to distract me and keep me motivated when the workload becomes too heavy.

    When it comes to music my tastes are pretty ecclectic. I love traditional Celtic folk music. Pipes and drums. Blues. Opera. Classic rock. Alternative. Electronica. You get the idea. There’s not much in the way I won’t listen to.

    The song is a bit different when it comes to purchasing concert tickets. The price of tickets means that we can’t afford to see all the concerts I might want to so I have to be more discerning.

    Over the past year we’ve managed to see Ozzy and Rob Zombie, LIVE, Elton John, and Buddy Guy. Did I mention the Buddy Guy seat was in the 3rd row?

    Tonight I picked up tickets to Gordon Lightfoot. The show isn’t until April but the tickets were going fast so the best I could manage to Lightfoot were tickets in the first row balcony. I’m all aflutter.

    Now if only Leonard Cohen would tour out west. I’d be in heaven.

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    it’s going to be one of those days

    June 11th, 2008 she Posted in Lighter Side   5 Comments »  

    Some days I just shouldn’t get out of bed.  I woke up this morning, did my standard ablutions, got dressed, and toddled off to the car to drive into work.  The morning drive was pretty uneventful and traffic seemed really light.  There are bonuses to school being out for the full-time students – traffic and parking most notably.

    I was feeling pretty spiffy since I’d managed to find a nice little suit jacket to pair with my outfit today.  It dressed up my jeans nicely while still allowing me to enjoy the relaxed dress code over the summer months.  I was plotting out my day and dreaming of my first cup of Timmies. 

    After meeting up with a co-worker on the sidewalk outside the parking garage, I noticed something very strange.  My pockets weren’t jingling.  I couldn’t hear my keys.  I did the mad dash pocket pat.  I put hands in empty pockets repeately.  In.  Out.  In.  Out.  As if by dint of repetition my keys would magically appear.  They didn’t.  My co-worker (bless her) and I trekked back up the stairs to my truck.  I had visions of keys sitting on my passenger seat roaming through my head.  I distinctly remembered locking my door when I exited the truck.  I always do.  As we approached my truck I knew it was far, far worse.  Not only had I locked my keys in my vehicle.  I’d locked my keys in my running vehicle.

    Go ahead.  Get it out of your system.  Laugh it up.  Someday this will happen to you and I’ll be pointing and laughing with the rest of them.

    I knew we had spare keys.  I knew exactly where those spare keys were.   They were attached to the hubby’s keyring.  I have his spare keys on mine.  Where was Drew?  On base.  At work.  For hours.  Not only did the driving world – or at least all drivers parking in the parkade this morning – have to know about my shame, but uniformed men and women were soon to discover my idiocy.  I know a few of them already suspected I was absentminded and slightly loony.  Now they have confirmation.

    Today would be the day when I’d decided I didn’t need to bring a cell phone with me.  I had put it into my pocket this morning, had second thoughts, and decided that I should perhaps plug it in.  Too lazy to bring the power cord to work, I plugged my cell in at home.  My co-worker (double bless her) handed me her phone.  

    How many people know the phone number for their local military base switchboard off the tops of their heads?  Yeah.  Me neither.  That’s why I have phone numbers stored in my cell’s contact list.  They’re not there to make me look popular.  I called 411 – dialing “0″ gets you no where on a cell – and struggled through the NLU phone menu.  Idiot drivers racing through the parking lot made it hard to hear.  I’ll pretend that’s the reason I was offered the phone number for the Edmonton Infant Death Support Society (or something similar) when I asked for the number for CFB Edmonton Garrison.  Much button pushing ensued and I finally got to talk to a live body.  She kept offering me the phone number for Canadian Forces Recruiting.  I kept insisting I wanted Edmonton Garrison.  If I hadn’t been so stressed it might have been hilariously funny. 

    When I got the number for the switchboard I waited on the line to talk to an operator.  I needed the extension for the area Drew works in.  If you don’t have that tracking a person down on base can be an exercise in futility.  It’s not like the MP’s will wander the base calling “Here Drewey Wooey.  Come on boy.  Here’s a good boy.”  Then, instead of patching me through, the operator hung up. I called the number I’d managed to piece together and landed at the Sgt’s desk.  Rather than passing the phone to Drew, he gave me Drew’s extension and hung up.  So there I was.  Standing in the parking lot with my truck running, lights on, and doors locked.  Calling Edmonton Garrison for the third time. 

    Brrrriiiing.  Brrrriiiiing.

    And then Drew’s voice was on the line.  Which meant I had to tell him what I’d done.  I really needed that spare key.  It couldn’t be helped.  I spilled my guts.  Drew asked where I was.  I told him.  He hung up on me before I could tell him which floor of the parking garage I was on.  Ah well. He’d find me when he arrived.  Depending on traffic, it’s a 20-45 minute drive to the college from Base. 

    I waited.  Despite being patrolled by security guards, undesirables sometimes made their way through the parking garage.  Occasionally the air in the stairwells would be thick with dope smoke or a vehicle would be broken into.  Leaving a locked truck running just seemed like too much temptation to me.  So, after profusely thanking my co-worker for the loan of her phone and keeping me company I sent her on her way. And I waited. 

    More of my co-workers drove by and witnessed my foolishness.  Some stopped to chat.  D, the last in the office before Drew arrived, promised that his lips were sealed and that he wouldn’t tell a soul.  I warned him it was all for naught.  Everyone else already knew.  *sigh*  At around 8:30am (so much for getting to work early this morning) my knight in not-so-shiny uniform arrived.  He switched his car off, handed me his keys.  I opened my door, got my keys, and walked back to him loudly begging me NOT to lock his keys in my truck.  Ha. Ha. Ha.  He’s such a funny guy.

    I offered to buy him coffee.  He declined.  Some silly nonsense about having to get back to work as soon as possible.  Keys in hand, I headed for the office.  And forgot to stop for coffee.  It’s just going to be one of those days…

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    prison diary: day two

    March 23rd, 2008 she Posted in Learning & Education, Lighter Side   4 Comments »  

    Today, I resumed battle with the evil Psych paper. The purpose is to take a series of personality tests – the assignment provided a list of links of which 1/4 are not longer valid and 1/2 require payment to receive completed results – and evaluate their use, validity and the construction of the instrument. The topic could be interesting if I could just stop wandering the Internet aimlessly searching for free Personality tests. I’m cheap. I’m already paying over 600$ a class to attend school. I can’t afford to pay 8-85$ for test results just so I can complete my paper.

    Yesterday, I switched over to my official locked in the basement blog theme. The original plan was to switch to the black/grey theme when I was feeling particularly cranky or moody. Upon reflection, I think it’s the perfect theme for all those sunny weekends when I’m locked in my basement writing papers or studying for exams when all my friends and neighbours are out playing. Wheeee! I sound like a 12 year old sentenced to summer school…

    Amy stopped by and offered a companion. Everyone locked in a basement should definitely have one of these to protect them. Of course, I have two of the larger, crankier versions on the lookout for the evil prison guard. He randomly stomps into the room asking impertinent questions – “are you done yet? “, “when can we eat?”, “do you know what your personality is yet?”, and my particular favourite “I’m an extroverted exhibitionist with pyromaniac tendencies. See, it’s easier if you just make it up.”

    Update: Found some freebie tests that offer full responses without requesting I fork over some form of payment. At least that part of the process is now complete.

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    A little midweek humour

    March 5th, 2008 she Posted in Lighter Side   3 Comments »  

    My doctor said…

    Q: I’ve heard that cardiovascular exercise can prolong life; is this true?
    A: Your heart is only good for so many beats, and that’s it… Don’t waste them on exercise. Everything wears out eventually. Speeding up your heart will not make you live longer; that’s like saying you can extend the life of your car by driving it faster. Want to live longer? Take a nap.

    Q: Should I cut down on meat and eat more fruits and vegetables?
    A: You must grasp logistical efficiencies. What does a cow eat? Hay and corn. And what are these? Vegetables. So a steak is nothing more than an efficient mechanism of delivering vegetables to your system. Need grain? Eat chicken. Beef is also a good source of field grass (green leafy vegetable).And a pork chop can give you 100% of your recommended daily allowance of vegetable products.

    Q: Should I reduce my alcohol intake?
    A: No, not at all. Wine is made from fruit. Brandy is distilled wine, that means they take the water out of the fruity bit so you get even more of the goodness that way. Beer is also made out of grain. Bottoms up!

    Q: How can I calculate my body/fat ratio?
    A: Well, if you have a body and you have fat, your ratio is one to one. If you have two bodies, your ratio is two to one, etc.

    Q: What are some of the advantages of participating in a regular exercise program?
    A: Can’t think of a single one, sorry. My philosophy is: No Pain…Good!

    Q: Aren’t fried foods bad for you?
    A: YOU’RE NOT LISTENING!!! …. Foods are fried these days in vegetable oil. In fact, they’re permeated in it. How could getting more vegetables be bad for you?

    Q: Will sit-ups help prevent me from getting a little soft around the middle?
    A: Definitely not! When you exercise a muscle, it gets bigger. You should only be doing sit-ups if you want a bigger stomach.

    Q: Is chocolate bad for me?
    A: Are you crazy? HELLO Cocoa beans! Another vegetable!!! It’s the best feel-good food around!

    Q: Is swimming good for your figure?
    A: If swimming is good for your figure, explain whales to me.

    Q: Is getting in-shape important for my lifestyle?
    A: Hey! ‘Round’ is a shape!

    Well, I hope this has cleared up any misconceptions you may have had about food and diets.

    And remember:

    ‘Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways – Chardonnay in one hand – chocolate in the other – body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming ‘WOO HOO, What a Ride’

    For those of you who watch what you eat, here’s the final word on nutrition and health. It’s a relief to know the truth after all those conflicting nutritional studies.

    1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
    2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
    3. The Chinese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
    4. The Italians drink a lot of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
    5. The Germans drink a lot of beers and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

    Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.  

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    Survivor – Alberta Style

    February 6th, 2008 she Posted in Lighter Side   1 Comment »  

    Due to the popularity of the ‘Survivor’ shows, Alberta is planning to do it’s own, titled “Survivor – Alberta Style”

    The contestants will start in Cold Lake, travel south to Medicine Hat then west to Lethbridge, Fort McLeod and on up to Calgary. Then they will head north to Red Deer and Edmonton. From there they will proceed west to Hinton and north to Grande Prairie, then up along Highway #2 to Slave Lake, Westlock and St. Albert. Then they will go to Ft. Saskatchewan, Vegreville, Vermillion and Bonnyville before eventually returning to Cold Lake.

    Each will be driving a pink Volkswagon with Ontario license plates and a large bumper sticker that reads “I’m gay, I’m a vegetarian, beer is harmful to your health, Conservatives stink, Rae in 2008, deer hunting is murder, and I’m here to confiscate your guns.”

    The first one that makes it back to Cold Lake alive wins.

    Good Luck to all contestants!

    Note: My friend Wendy sent this to me and I couldn’t resist posting it ;)

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