Friday, September 28, 2007

Terry Fox day

Today is the Terry Fox National School Run Day. All 3 of my kids are involved and I will be joining them later on today for a walk. Such a worthy cause raising funds for cancer research. Years ago, in a previous life it seems, I was part of such a research team, studying the fundamentals of cancer onset at the DNA level. It was such an intellectually stimulating and challenging period of my life, working side by side with some great minds and fun-loving people.

Thankfully up until now, cancer hasn't permeated our extended family. I pray it will remain that way.

As for Terry Fox, what a hero, in the true sense of the term. The Marathon of Hope, 1980. I so vividly remember following his day to day progress while preparing to enter my first year of university starting an undergraduate program in microbiology and immunology eventually leading me towards the aforementioned cancer research. Terry's spirit may have very well, in some small way, led me there.

But what is truly amazing, is how his dream is still living and strongly at that.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

hard decisions

Last Friday, hubby and I went to a meeting. Not a really fun one. But a necessary one.

We are redoing our wills.

Our original ones were done up when we first got married, when life in a sense was much simpler. No assets of any kind. We were young and picking guardians and executors was easy: our parents.

But now, 21 years later, our lives are at a whole different level. Many more assets and 3 kids makes drawing up a will so much more complicated. Discussing what would happen if one of us would die is gruesome but required. Taking care of the monetary aspect is one thing but how do you decide whats best for your kids if you are not around. Who would take care of them with as much love as we have? Who would have their utmost best interest at heart? Who would be well enough and committed enough to take care of that? Hard decisions to make. We have some serious thinking to do.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

ode to september

September is such an expensive month. Back to school supplies, new clothes and shoes, registration for extracurricular activities and all the paraphernalia/equipment that comes with that, it certainly adds up. Worse than December it seems.

I'm sitting here at my desk gazing at this stack of papers. A stack that really irks me.

A stack of what you're thinking?

Fund raisers.

Why is it that everywhere you register they bombard you with fund raisers? Between the kids' 2 schools, gymnastics, badminton, hockey and 2 dance schools, I'm faced with a multitude of vending options: the ubiquitous chocolate bars, cookies and muffins, magazine subscriptions, cards and wrapping paper, gas coupons, labels, calendars, Christmas cards and decorations, tea and coffee, golf tournaments, walkathons for CHEO and Cancer research. Will I be harassing my neighbor and friends and family with all of this? Most probably not. I'm not comfortable with sending the kids door to door. I may approach a few people perhaps. Ultimately, I usually end up giving a contribution myself.

Want to buy something from me?

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

in memoriam

Life is settling down to some routines now that we are in our third week of back to school. Which is a good thing. I get to go back to the gym or do my daily walks more regularly and I even can throw in some "down" time to read a book and even the newspaper!

Two stories have caught my eye. Two people have passed away this past week. Two well known personalities, different genders, different life stories, different areas of expertise YET both have contributed in their own way to better the world we are in. What a great legacy to leave behind. Something we should all strive for.

First Luciano Pavarotti: that voice which enchanted millions of people worldwide. This particular song gives me goose bumps each time I hear it. His collaboration with countless of other singers broadened the spectrum of his genre of music. A true and unique virtuoso.

Then Anita Roddick: mother, environmentalist, entrepreneur, visionary, humanitarian, founder of the The Body Shop and actively involved in countless charities worldwide. Truly inspirational.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


Just how many of those can we fit in one long week-end? And how much equipment does one need to participate in all of them? Answers: many and lots and lots

It started off with skating. yes, indoor ice skating. You see, baby boy is starting hockey this season and is actually having try-outs next week-end. SO, we wanted to make sure he was still able to skate, which he is of course, but more so skate with all his new equipment. I swear, he looks like a linebacker on skates :)

We packed the hockey bag: 5 pairs of skates, all of his hockey paraphernalia and other gloves, helmets and long pants and such. Very weird to go skating when its warm and sunny outside and we 're all wearing shorts. So off we went for an hour skate. By the time we were done, we were sweating and hot and even more hot when we got outside so the minute we got home we all literally plunged in the pool. So then we swam for over an hour. The day was still beautiful, so we decided to go golfing, just a little 9 holes. Off to pack 5 sets of golf clubs and dress everyone accordingly. The twins had a blast in the golf carts and kept score for mom and dad and big sis.

Next day, started off with some roller blading. So on came the elbow pads, knee pads, wrist guards and all. A good hour of that. Of course, everyone was warm afterwards so in the pool again. Followed by some kite flying, basketball hoop contest and then some biking (helmets and guards back on). They actually learned how to start on their own now too.

Following day, met up with a few families and had a fun impromptu game of soccer, kids versus parents. What a hoot! Then some more swimming followed by a drive to the local tennis courts for an hour of ball whacking.

Phew, all that exercise helped to compensate for the all the food and alcohol intake;)

Monday, September 03, 2007

suburban incident

Now, I don't live in the burbs having traded that years ago for life in the countryside. But most of my friends do. One particular couple and their children moved into their brand new dream home in a brand new suburb a few months ago.

A few nights ago, they were all sleeping peacefully when at 2 am the front door rang. Alarmed and groggy, the man of the house went downstairs to find a neighbor (who just returned home from work) holding onto a teenage boy! Apparently this boy was caught breaking into the family van parked outside. The boy, all of 14, was squirming and complaining that they were holding him too tight and they were hurting him so they loosened their grip. Mistake. The kid took off on foot. A few minutes later, the cops came and they all went searching for him and found him along with a buddy in crime roaming the streets. The cops actually KNEW him having been caught a few times before.

This story has had me enraged for the past few days. First I feel for my friends who've had to go through this. But my biggest questions are: where were these kids parents? what are 14 year olds doing roaming the streets at 2 in the morning? shouldn't these parents be held accountable for their kids' actions? how come these kids get away with this type of behavior? they've been caught before, but nothing gets done about it and they get to go back home and glow in the knowledge that they got away with it and most probably getting a rush out of it intensifying their desire to do something else again. There's something wrong with this Young Offender's Act. If they're old enough to think out such crimes, they are old enough to suffer some consequences: a fine to be paid by the parents? community work? a day or two in jail? something!!!