The Bug Series Part 3: Mosquitoes, Sacrifice and Receiving

Mar 08, 2022

Welcome to the third instalment of the Bug Series where I’m answering the age-old question: 'What do bugs and self-care have to do with each other?' I suspect it’s been burning in your soul for decades, and now, finally, there are answers. You’re welcome.

Today’s story is about your favourite pest and mine: the mosquito.

Before we had kids, Paul and I cycled in France for 5 weeks with my parents. Ooh la la, it was magnifique! We had many memorable experiences such as discovering that wine bottles fit in the water bottle holders on our bikes, that the French love cyclists and that even the tiniest French villages have poignant war memorials. Plus: fresh croissants every day!

Another memorable experience (but not because it was wonderful) was the night we stayed in an old French farmhouse. It was the opposite of wonderful, which fortunately made it hilarious in retrospect. 

Here’s what happened. The summer we were there broke many records due to a...

Continue Reading...

The Bug Series Part 2: The Bee and the Broken Window

Mar 01, 2022

You may not think that bugs and self-care really go together (and I kind of wish they didn’t) but I’ve had some profound lessons from those little guys and so here’s part 2 in the series. (If you missed The Ant and the Shower and your curiosity is piqued, you can find that here.)

Today we’re moving on from ants to bees. Specifically one bee that had a big impact on me. 

A couple of homes ago (I love to move), we had a kitchen with a big old window in it. I hadn’t paid it much attention until the day I heard a low and loud drone in the house. A thumb bee had found its way in (I don’t know the real name for that kind of bee, but we call them thumb bees because they’re as big as your thumb… almost.)

Dismayed to be home alone with a bee in the house, I realized that I wouldn’t be able to call on my kids or husband to remove said bee. My daughter, Zoe, actually likes bees; she even pets them and they seem to like it....

Continue Reading...

The Bug Series (even though I’m not a fan): The Ant in the Shower

Feb 22, 2022

How do you feel about bugs? In my opinion… blechwalaugghh. (Translation: I don’t like them.)

Of course, I appreciate bugs and know they’re an integral part of the ecosystem and that we wouldn’t exist without them and at the same time; blechwalaugghh. 

All antagonistic feelings aside, I’ve had enough interesting encounters with the tiny ones to know that there’s more going on there than what it seems. I’ve learned some really valuable lessons from the creepy crawlers, and so I decided to do a petite ode to them.

Today’s lesson comes from a little ant in the shower.

In the house we lived in a few years ago, we had a gourmet shower downstairs. It had multiple shower heads, beautiful earth tone tiles and lots of space. It also had a window near the ceiling that opened into the back yard, which meant that sometimes bugs found it an enticing refuge from the outdoors. 

On such a day, I was happily enjoying the luxury of...

Continue Reading...

Effective Strategies to Get Through Physical Pain

Feb 15, 2022

How do you feel about going to the dentist?

I’m not a fan. Although I spend a lot of time on my oral hygiene (I’ve literally flossed every single day since I was a teenager - even on my wedding night!), there are still things going on in my mouth that lead to intense discomfort when I go for my regular cleaning and check ups.

Although I love our dentist’s office because it’s filled with lovely people who practice bio-dentistry (the least chemicals possible and no unnecessary procedures), I was not looking forward to last week’s cleaning. 

I have a bit of gum recession that leads to some pretty intense nerve pain, and well, that’s just not exciting to me. Of all the kinds of pain, I find nerve pain to be the worst. Stinging - no problem. Bumps and bruises - it will pass. Labour - it’s not forever. Nerve pain - get me out of here!

*me fleeing dentist

During my cleaning, there were 4 things I did that helped get through the pain, and so I...

Continue Reading...

What I learned from King Richard

Feb 08, 2022

Last weekend, our family ventured out into a movie theatre to take in King Richard. It felt so good to be seeing a movie outside of Netflix - woohoo! And the theatre was more full than we’ve seen it in years. It was so fun to laugh, gasp and cry with other people. Delicious.

The movie was based on the true stories of Venus and Serena Williams and their family, particularly from their father’s view. It was so powerful - highly recommended if you haven’t seen it yet.

A central theme of the movie was the idea about making plans and following through with them. 

One of the prominent sayings in the Williams’ family was the good old: If you fail to plan, plan to fail. 

There was a very interesting dynamic going on underneath the surface with that theme and it had to do with masculine and feminine energy. 

Both masculine and feminine energy are good and important. AND, if we tend to focus on all of one while excluding the other, things get a lot more...

Continue Reading...

It’s Official! (and I never thought this would happen)

Feb 01, 2022

Although I don’t have the documents in hand (because they are being mailed from the US and lately that means about a 3.7 month wait) I recently completed my certification to be a Body Awake Yoga Instructor. Let me tell you why that’s a surprising statement that I never imagined saying (or typing). 

For approximately 20 years (maybe more) I tried very hard to love yoga. I heard that it was so good for you and since I generally like things that are good for me, I signed up for classes. All the classes I could find. 

I tried Mysore, Ashtanga, Restorative, Pre-Natal, Flow, Vinyasa, Yin, Iyengar, Power Yoga; even Yoga for Dummies. (I feel like Bubba relaying all the ways to cook shrimp to his good friend Forrest Gump. I did Mysore Yoga and Ashtanga Yoga and Restorative Yoga…) 

And guess what happened? I didn’t like it. Plus, I always seemed to get injured. Even in Pre-Natal yoga (how is that even possible?). One time, I decided to just do sun...

Continue Reading...

You can’t argue with the truth

Jan 25, 2022

As I’ve worked with clients over the years, I’ve often heard them say things like:

  • I’m so behind/I’ve got to catch up
  • At my age, I thought I would have been further along
  • I should know better by now
  • I thought I dealt with this issue - what’s wrong with me?

Sound familiar? I used to say those things too. That is, until I discovered that these phrases and thought patterns are designed to do the one thing that’s most threatening to the part of the mind that wants to control everything…

These phrases and their relations are ways that we perpetuate our old habit of being hard on ourselves. Oh so hard. (I was going to include a simile about being hard, but that might take things in a different direction, so I’ll just leave it at that.)

You might wonder: why are we in the habit of being hard on ourselves?

Well, it’s just that, a habit. Also, it’s easier to be hard on yourself and focus on your shortcomings until it...

Continue Reading...

Our building flooded (and here's what I learned)

Jan 18, 2022

Lest you’re under the impression that my life is constant angel song and Leave It to Beaver moments, let me tell you a story.

Last week, Paul, Oakley and I were eating breakfast (Zoe was already at early morning choir practice) when all of a sudden, the fire alarm started blaring. You know, the piercing shriek that takes up residence in the very center of your brain? That’s the one. 

Having been through countless fire drills at school, Oakley started gathering things that were important to him (including his bread tag collection) and urged us to leave the building immediately. Since we have many easy exits, though, Paul and I took our time. We told him it was probably nothing. Eventually Paul and Oakley went outside to see what was happening when the fire trucks actually showed up in multiples.

A little while later, they returned (finding me with noise cancelling headphones on to protect the very centre of my brain) and said that a pipe had burst (since it went from...

Continue Reading...

The Myth of the Strong Independent Woman

Jan 11, 2022

The ‘Strong Independent Woman’ idea has been coming up a lot lately in my life, so hopefully this will pertain to you too. (And if you're a man reading this, it totally applies to men as well so just substitute him for her and man for woman as you see fit.) 

Once upon a time, when the world was more about survival, people looked up to the strong independent woman as a fortress of consistency. She didn’t crack. She would give of herself completely, no matter what. She didn’t need help. She could get through it all herself. W.O.W. Don’t you want to be just like her? 

I hope not, because the strong independent woman is a myth. What I’ve learned, from personal experience and from working with my clients is that the strong independent woman is really just a sad and lonely woman.  

Common Experiences of the ‘Strong Independent Woman’

She doesn’t know how to ask for help, or when it’s offered, she...

Continue Reading...

Happy New Year and how’s your email inbox?

Jan 04, 2022

Happy New Year! I just love a fresh start, don’t you? The new tube of toothpaste always seems so much more appealing than wrestling out the last bits of the old one. 

Despite it being -30 Celsius on New Years Eve, we still went out and did our releasing fire. We felt pretty epic, I must say. Two down jackets, leggings, fleece pants, snowpants and double socks did the trick for me. 

My phone froze so I couldn’t take photos to share with you, but picture this: a midnight blue sky filled with stars, 2 feet of snow (we had to clear out the fire pit with our mittened hands) and a family of four dancing around the fire as we threw in our scraps of paper where we’d written what we wanted to release and then call in for 2022. The most visually stunning part was that we burnt our wreath made of evergreen branches. At one point, it looked like a golden orb of glittering fire. Pretty spectacular!

Speaking of clearing out old energy, I had an idea that I’m...

Continue Reading...