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Saturday, November 26, 2011



Right now, as you read this, your mind is in a state of panic. What could I possibly mean by a 'Pagan Christmas'?  Well, it's not that far fetched as you might think. Christians 'borrowed' a lot of Pagan traditions to form what is now known as the Christmas Season. 

Over the next couple of weeks leading up to Christmas, I'll be exploring different aspects of the holiday and how they relate to Paganism (specifically Wiccanism) and Christians alike. 

Celebrations are universal. No matter what you celebrate or which religion you practice (if any at all), we all enjoy spending time with family and friends. We love good food, good times and presents of course. 

Spend this holiday season learning different ways to celebrate this wonderful time of year.

Merry Yule!

DAILY TIP NOV 26 2011..the Holiday Version

Christmas versions!

From now until Christmas eve, I'll be showcasing some of my favorite websites for those hard to buy, last minute and unique gifts. 

Today's suggestion is for the 'Nerd' in the family. Think is a quirky website that has something for everyone in the family; including the family pet.

If you love Star Trek, Dr Who, Star Wars etc; then this is your website. Great prices, excellent shipping (and quick). Safe and very user friendly. 

Friday, November 25, 2011

THINGS THAT MAKE YOU WONDER (satirical humor here)

**warning the following is all satire and not meant to be serious at all**

  • Is biting your nails considered cannibalism?
  • Is an identical twin an actual copy?
  • If Eve was so bad for eating an apple then why do all the scourges of women start with MEN?
  • If only need one shoe, can you still get a BOGO?
  • Why during menopause do you get to stop shaving your legs and start shaving your face?
  • Why do they call them hot flashes? They are more like volcanic eruptions.
  • If a man is watching hockey all alone, how does he get his beer?
  • Do hookers get workman's compensation for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

Just a little humor to break up the day. Seriously, sometimes you need a little humor to make life tolerable.


DAILY TIP NOV 25 2011 

A ladies' guide to Winter Driving Survival. To survive a winter of driving, you should always carry the following (just in case):

  • SHOVEL (digging out a car with your bare hands takes just too long)
  • BLANKET (in case you forgot to fill the gas tank before you hit the highway)
  • WINDSHIELD WASHER FLUID (not only does it help the wipers keep your windshield clean, but it will melt snow around your tires if you get stuck)
  • BATTERY CHARGER (just in case you left your lights on while shopping)
  • BOTTLED WATER (not just for thirst, it can also help melt snow)
  • CHOCOLATE (in case you get hungry waiting for a tow from any of the above)
  • SCRAPER AND BRUSH (lightly wiping snow off the windows to see won't cut it so make sure the whole car including lights are cleared of snow)
  • CANDLE AND MATCHES (it will provide some heat if you need it)
  • EMERGENCY KIT (band-aids, rubbing alcohol, gauze, scissors, hypothermia blanket, flares, flashlight (with extra batteries), change of underwear, socks and outfit (if you commute long distances), supply of daily medication (enough to get you through 2 days if needed), gum, dried snacks (long lasting in packages like jerky, dried fruits etc)
Kitty Litter is also good to carry as it will also melt snow (try and use biodegradable litter to be Eco-friendly)

You can pack most of this into a nice sized tote bag that you can toss in the back seat to keep handy. Being prepared helps prevent panic. If you get stranded in the snow, stay in your car (other cars could slide into you if you stand in front or along side your car). Make sure your phone is fully charged before you leave to get to your destination or charge it in the car as you are driving. If the weather is bad, it could take hours for a tow truck, so the water and food will come in handy as will the blanket to stay warm. 

Santa Claus Obsolete At The Mall?

Has The Internet Made Santa Claus Obsolete At The Mall?

Santa Claus, the jolly man in the big red suit who for centuries has been the 'commercial' focal point for the holiday season seems to be falling victim to online convenience shopping.

More people are avoiding the malls and heading either to big box stores, destination shopping or the worse possible situation for Santa, online shopping.  It's the online shopping that may end Santa's reign. If parents are shopping online to avoid the line-ups, get better deals and get the convenience of home delivery. Then there is no need to drag the kiddies to the mall to wait in endless lines, push through mobs, contend with the tantrums just to sit on the jolly man's lap for a $25 picture and a broken candy cane. But wait, it's not just the convenience of shopping that is making Santa obsolete at the malls and leaving thousands of elves unemployed and Mrs Claus looking for peace and quiet. It's the ability to talk to Santa face-to-face via the Internet.

That's right parents, you can now book an appointment for your child to speak to Santa on the "Net". Several websites are offering the opportunity to speak to Santa. 'Show and Tell' is going to be hi-tech, when little Susie comes to school with her 'Tablet' and brings Santa right into the classroom to talk to everyone on his very own Podcast. Not to mention that parents and children can follow Santa on Twitter, Facebook, as well as other social media websites. Don't forget you can track Santa on Christmas Eve as he crosses the earth with the help of Norad (North American Aerospace Defence Command).  Norad has been protecting and tracking Santa on his journey since 1955.  Their website also has Santa's Workshop and activities for the kids to keep them occupied while waiting for Santa to get to their location.

With all this amazing technology, I only have one problem: how to get the candy cane from the Monitor.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Celebrating American Thanksgiving on Canadian Soil

Celebrating American Thanksgiving
Canadian Soil

It happens every year without fail. Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving in October, and Americans celebrate Thanksgiving in November right? Wrong, Yes, those are the months they are indeed celebrated but more and more Canadians are hoping on the turkey bandwagon and marking the November holiday with just as much enthusiasm as their neighbours' to the south.

We have always celebrated both dates in my home. Being not only a 'border baby' but also half American, it was a normal occurrence. The almost 'ritual' now is watching Macy's Thanksgiving Parade (85th annual this year) followed by the National Dog Show and Miracle on 34th Street (original b&w version only). Let's not forget the football!

Embracing all the traditions of the American Thanksgiving by watching the TV. shows, watching the football and dining on turkey with all the trimmings is becoming big business in Canada. Canadian merchants are finally jumping on the 'Black Friday' train and using it to make a bigger dent in their holiday profit targets.

Personally, it's brilliant! I remember standing in lines and mobs during Black Friday just to put a $20 pair of jeans for $5. I'd much rather do that on Canadian soil and contribute to my local economy. Of course, now in the age of 'web commerce', waiting in endless lines and pushing through crazed mobs is on the verge of obsolesce. Ordering online is easy, painless and security measures have greatly improved making it safer and more attractable to consumers.

This is a day to mark the official end of harvesting and the beginning of the 'holiday season'. Not everyone celebrates Christmas, but almost every one celebrates Thanksgiving. It's a time for family, friends, joy, food and laughter. It's the one day out of the year that I am truly homesick.

So Happy Thanksgiving to my fellow Canucks who are celebrating and of course to my cousins, friends and family in the United States. May you all find joy, happiness, and love today and the rest of the holiday season.



Happy Thanksgiving! If you want to dress up the green bean casserole that is a traditional side dish, try using cream of cauliflower soup instead of cream of mushroom. Can also try using mixed vegetables (like a medley of carrots, peas and corn). Don't forget the deep fried onions for the topping!

350 degrees for 35 mins and you are happy happy! (great make ahead dish that is easy to warm up)

Enjoy a safe, happy and very special Thanksgiving and a great start to the holiday season!


Today is my favorite holiday in the whole year. Yes, I'm obsessed about Halloween but Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday by far. 

It's the one day out of the year that family means everything. Not everyone celebrates Christmas but everyone celebrates Thanksgiving. It's not by fluke that today is the busiest travel day in the United States. Students, far away relatives all flock to the main homestead to spend the day/weekend watching t.v., devouring more food than you can shake a stick at, arguing over who is gonna kiss that weird Aunt first. 

While my homestead in 3300 miles away, my homestead here is embracing the tradition of American Thanksgiving as well. Since I can't make it home, I do what I can here to make it as festive as I can. 

My day is almost ritualistic after so many years. Macy's annual parade, the dog show, Miracle on 34th St (only the black and white version for me today) and food. OK, so there is football in there too (shh this is a hockey house) I love the aroma of the fresh baked pumpkin pies merging with the sweet smell of savory sage and apple stuffed turkey. It is how I know that the holiday season has officially started and it's time to get my ass in gear and start to Christmas shop, decorate, bake and generally be nicer. (who am I kidding, I'm not 'Mary Poppins')

Thanksgiving has always been about celebrating the end of harvesting and cherishing things that are important to you. If you consider that as the motive, why wouldn't you celebrate it twice?

Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving in October, but I'm here to tell my fellow Canucks that there is nothing wrong with celebrating Thanksgiving twice. Twice as much love, happiness and turkey. What more could you want?

I know:  The great deals that start tomorrow!!!! Black Friday, the #1 highest grossing sales day of the year. Tomorrow is how most merchants will gauge what their year end will be like. It can be a make or break day for some retailers. 

I say, eat turkey, shop, enjoy your family and remember that the feelings that the holidays bring should stay year round.

Happy Thanksgiving to all and a very safe, blessed holiday season!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011



3 types of friends

1. A good friend will listen to your problems

2. A very good friend will help you with your problems

3. An amazing friend will know all the good hiding spots for 'problems' 

pigs will eat anything and virtually leave no evidence. (great line to tell your daughter's first boyfriend) :) 

Black, White and Grey areas

Today in BC, the courts upheld an earlier decision stating that Polygamy is unlawful. Religious attitudes aside, the whole situation falls into the category of 'Grey area' for ethical debates.

Sure, most people will say one spouse is quite enough. That doesn't mean that we (as society) have the right to intercede and place our ethical morals on someone else. Just because society has an issue with multiple marriage doesn't mean it's wrong. I have several friends that are in 'poly' relationships and they are happier than some monogamous relationships.

Is that lifestyle choice for me? No, cause I'm a greedy little miser and I like my man all to myself. Would I begrudge someone else because they opted to have two or three or four? Nope, it's their choice and their lives.

That all being said. Here is where the ethical debate falls victim to lawful issues. Marrying a minor is rape! Plain, simple, easy. It's pedophilia, it's vile and it's a blanket for molesters to hide under and call it 'religious freedoms'. Have a wife, have two. Just be sure they are of 'legal consent' age.

If all the girls involved were of age, I highly doubt any real attention would be given to these communities and rightly so. Utah is known for their Mormon sect and the 'poly' families and there is never a television show about them. Then again, they aren't the ones that are breaking the law either.

The ethical debate of polygamy won't die out either unfortunately. Until we can have a society that doesn't 'lean' heavily due to the 'power' of the 'religious right'. I was always taught there was a clear line separating Church and State. If that is the case, they why are some of the laws that are on the books based on 'religious' no no's? I'll tell you why. Because the powers that be who wrote the laws were 'religious' to begin with.

You cannot be both judge and jury on one side and then claim victim on the other because the rule of the law doesn't suit your 'religious' opinions. Don't even get me started on abortion and women's bodies!

For those who want to multiple marry, I say 'have at it'. As long as you are marrying someone of 'legal consent' age. Here, legal consent for me means over 16 thank you very much!

This is a large can of worms that isn't going to go away. Until there is a real separation of Church and State (personally I think the church should mind it's own business), there will be arguments and court cases about this hot button issue.

It's not black, it's not white, it's a whole lot of grey area that will continually be discussed.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


To most people washing the dishes, doing laundry or cleaning the bathroom are mundane, necessary duties in order to maintain a home. For someone who suffers from Chronic Illness, those are milestones!

Some days even just folding clothes can be a challenge to large to conquer. There is no way to know what the next day will bring pain wise, so on the rare days that I'm feeling 'peppy'; I try and get as much of the housework done as possible. Usually, I end up in a heap of pain afterwards, but the attempt was made to feel normal.

The need for help has multiplied ten fold especially when it comes to bending, lifting and carrying anything remotely heavy. Grocery shopping is excruciating at best but I haven't got enough minions for that duty yet.

I would love to have a week where I could do my housework and still have enough energy to go out to dinner or watch a movie.

With no simple solution or cures and with the magic genie on strike, my house will just have to make due with what it can.

Now where did I put that bottle of Mr Clean?

Schieffer: ‘I would become a footnote of sorts’ in JFK assassination story | Poynter.

Schieffer: ‘I would become a footnote of sorts’ in JFK assassination story | Poynter.



Calling all chocoholics, there is a new dessert in Pitt Meadows and it has decadent scrolled all over it.

The Jolly Coachman Pub on Ford Rd in Pitt Meadows has come out with a new dessert. Chocolate Conspiracy is a six layer chocolate cake that has three luscious layers of moist chocolate cake and three deliciously evil layers of chocolate ganache. Topped with fresh whipped cream and a sprig of mint, it is not for the faint of heart dessert goers. This dessert is rich, sizable and enough to share. Although most chocoholics don't share!

The Jolly Coachman has daily specials for lunch and dinner to munch on before you try the dessert. Or just make it a coffee and dessert evening. 



Never take yourself too seriously. Humor can be the cure to many things. Nanny always said 'There is nothing better than a good laugh or a good cry to make you feel like yourself'. RIP Nanny 

It's my personal mission to give someone a 'depends' moment every day. If you can laugh so hard you almost pee your pants, I've succeeded. 

Monday, November 21, 2011



Some days you are the early bird and some days you are the worm. 



'Twihards' are squealing with joy over the Cullen's return to the big screen. Breaking Dawn Part 1 is the beginning of the finale of the blockbuster Twilight franchise. 

We enter to find Edward (Robert Pattinson) marrying his lovely mortal girl friend Bella (played perfectly by Kristen Stewart). The wedding ceremony and reception are fit for royalty and Alice Cullen (played by the delightful Ashley Greene) makes sure nothing is too much for Bella. 

With the wedding under way, we see the dejected Jacob (hunky Taylor Lautner) changing into his werewolf form and running off in anger to 'Northern Canada or somewhere like that'.  Everything is about to change for the lovelorn trio. 

Bella and Edward take off on their honeymoon where she is to become a vampire but not before the hilarity of the vampire-mortal wedding night bed destroying love making session. Robert and Kristen's chemistry is apparent and they exude it on the screen. 

14 days have passed since their wedding and Bella discovers that she is pregnant. Not only is it unprecedented but dangerous for Bella as the growing baby takes over her body leaving her at the brink of death. 

Can Edward turn her in time or will he lose his love and his life (the treaty now dissolved with the Wolf pack). 

This movie delivers powerful emotions, powerful scenes and a potent punch in the franchise's pocketbook. Great scenery, phenomenal effects and stellar performances make this movie one not to miss this fall.




Greek mythos fans get a chance to see the Greek Gods in action in the 3D movie IMMORTALS. Filled with bulked up beefcake actors like Kellan Lutz (Twilight fame), Henry Cavill (Tudors) and a very sexy Mickey Rourke. 

The story surrounds Zeus's chosen mortal Theseus to lead the mortals to battle against the Titans. Visually exquisite, the CGI effects blend masterfully with the rich colors and textures of Ancient Greece. John Hurt is simply brilliant in his duel role as both Theseus's mentor and Zeus. Mickey Rourke delivers yet another Oscar worthy performance as King Hyperion. The ruthless King whose soul desire is to rampage the earth and destroy humanity. 

Henry Cavill is convincing as Theseus and carries the role well. More attention and better dialogue for the Gods and Goddesses of Olympia would have enriched this movie and moved up into the realms of Epic movie status.

It's a great flick, the 3D effects make it mesmerizing and keep you stuck in your seat!


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Election Results

Municipal Election Results

Yesterday's elections in British Columbia brought forth a lot of status quo and very few pivotal changes. Here in Pitt Meadows, we saw the retirement of Mayor Don Maclean. Leaving the seat open for newly elected Deb Walters (who had previously sat as a Councillor) for Pitt Meadows as Mayor.  

The remainder of Pitt Meadows City Council elected are: Doug Bing, Bruce Bell, Janis Elkerton, Tracy Miyashita, Gwen O'Connell and David Murray. 

In the big city of Vancouver, Vision Vancouver put a firm hold on their City Council with seeing the (r)election of Mayor Gregor Robertson and several of his team. While I'm not entirely sure I agree with the Mayor's vision and his direction for the city. I do agree that changes are necessary to help the homeless situation as well as the 'Go Green' initiative. 

I certainly don't want to see more gas taxes to fund a transit system that I never utilize nor have access to living out here in the Valley. Our transit system is pathetic at best. A change I would like to see coming, would be the implementation of full day/night WestCoast Express Train service. The system is there, the tracks are in place. Lower the fares, raise the travel frequency and guaranteed driver's will utilize the train rather then paying for parking downtown or fighting traffic.

No matter what, we have 3 more years now to see what transpires before we can either vote everyone back in or out. 

If you didn't vote. Keep your mouth shut! You didn't earn a right to say anything. 

Are Schools Going too Far?

It recently came to my attention that some schools are not 'allowing' harmless snowball tossing in the playgrounds anymore. When did this become a heinos act? This is a truly 'Canadian' activity. We (those of us who grew up with snow), have always played in the snow. We have built forts and lobbed snowballs at one another  to beat the blues that can come from the coldness of a Canadian winter. 

Ok sure, sometimes injuries happen from snowballs. Perhaps there was some 'ice' in the snow or the snow was just really hard or it was an unfortunate ACCIDENT. That doesn't mean that you squash the activity just because someone 'might' get injured. That's like saying, 'You can't go outside, you could get hit by a car'. My god people GET A GRIP!!!

When does it become too much and over doing it. You cannot put children in a 'safety' bubble, they can and will get injured during their lifetimes. If we stop all the fun, what is left for our children to have? Thanks but no thanks!

To the school boards who thought this was a brilliant idea to avoid phone calls from parents who can't deal with 'accidents'. Clearly, these people need to be shown what they were like as children. I wonder, the people who boycotted and commanded the NO snowball rule ever played in the snow as a child? 

If they answer Yes, to that question, then you really have to wonder what the real reason is for the pathetic excuse of a rule.

Let the kids play, let the kids enjoy winter like a normal Canadian child should! 


Well it's official now! BC Lions will definitely be in the Grey Cup next weekend. They will be facing the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in what is certain to be one of the most police monitored sporting event ever. Given the recent misadventures in Vancouver after the dreadful loss of the Canucks after the Stanley Cup final was over. It would be prudent of both the Municipal and Provincial governments to get together and make a decisive plan on how to handle the crowds that will be celebrating/partying/after game in the downtown core. I highly doubt that the Vancouver Council (now recently (r)elected yesterday) will want another smear on the Vancouver Tourism face. One more blow like the riot in June would undoubtedly label us as a 'violent' city and lower us as a desirable vacation location. 

My comments to the citizens of British Columbia are simple, easy and direct. Don't be stupid, Don't give in to inflammatory situations, Don't and I repeat DON'T RIOT!!! Nothing is worth losing your dignity, self respect and freedom over. Remember at the end of the day, it is a game and there will always be another one

To the police I beg you to plan ahead and prepare for the worst and hopefully receive the best. 

Vancouver is a beautiful city, flawed at times but beautiful. Let's keep it that way!

Go Lions Go!