The Bug Series Part 5: The Mothssacre

Mar 22, 2022

When I considered this next bug story, there was a part of me that really didn’t want to tell you about it. Why? Because a few weeks ago, I shared about how much I value life and didn’t want to kill the bee that got stuck in my house. Today’s story involves killing bugs, and I didn’t want to tarnish my reputation as a non-insect-killer, but that wouldn't be the whole truth and so here we go; vulnerability, confessions and all. 

Sometime in 2021, in the place we lived before we moved last June, we started to notice moths on the ceiling. They were few in number (at first) and so we just kind of co-existed with them. They were mostly in our little storage/laundry room and so all was well.

Within a few weeks, they started to multiply (as bugs do). They also began to emerge into the rest of our condo, onto the kitchen and living room ceilings. Hoping the problem would resolve itself through blatant ignoring, that’s what I did. Sadly, it didn’t...

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The Bug Series Part 4: Thunder and Lightning and Rockslides; Oh Fly!

Mar 15, 2022

Welcome to the fourth week of my musings on the unexpected self-care lessons I’ve learned from bugs. Who knew there was so much to say? I guess the little critters have influenced my life in more ways than I would have thought. They can still keep their distance, but I must admit to feeling quite grateful for all their (inadvertent?) teachings. 

Today I would love to tell you about the rockslide and the fly. This is probably my most tender bug story.

A couple of summers ago, Paul, Zoe, Oakley and I went on a backpacking trip. We’re talking the kind of backpacking where you carry all your food, shelter, clothes and paraphernalia on your very own back. The way we go about these trips works very well for me. Paul does all the planning and preparation and I show up for the adventure. 

On this particular expedition, we had to hike in for several hours to get to the backcountry campground somewhere in the middle of the Rocky Mountains. It started out as a lovely day....

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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...

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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....

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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