Sunday, January 28, 2007

January's Quotes

"This month has been a very political month for me. Our government is sending more troops to Afghanistan, a move I really disagree with. Women in Black has stood in vigil against this movement of troops. We believe that rather than sending more men and women to Afganistan we should be bringing our troops home. Not supporting the war, does not mean that we don't support our men and women who are sent to fight a war they have no business being involved in. CBC Radio interviewed me and 2 other members of the Fredericton Peace Coalition. At the end of the interview, the reporter asked me if I had anything more to say. The only thing I had to add was that I wished that the people of Fredericton who do not support the war would be willing to stand up and be counted. Here are some quotes that address the issue of being afraid to speak your mind, of being afraid of what others might think of your activism.

"Courage is not the absence of fear, it's the control of fear."
~Dickey Chapelle

"The accomplice to the crime of corruption is frequently our own indifference."
~Bess Myerson

"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says, 'I'll try again tomorrow'"
~Mary Anne Radmacher

"Anything I've ever done that ultimately was worthwhile . . initially scared me to death."
~Betty Bender

"I'm tired of being labeled anti-American because I ask questions."
~Susan Sarandon

"The most effective way to do it, is to do it."
~Toni Cade Bambara

Will you speak out?" I whisper.

Are you listening?

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Tiny Dancer

"I just finished reading an inspiring book entitled "Tiny Dancer" by Anthony Flacco. This is the true story of a little girl from Afghanistan who was horribly burned in a household accident. It is the story of a father's love for his child, a love in stark contrast to the world in which he lives. It is the story of a child's unconquerable will. It is the story of how she came to America for surgery and the people who made a future for her possible. It renews your faith in the human spirit and the potential for good our species has. I am sure it will inspire you as well," I whisper.

Are you listening?

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Invocation to Lakshmi

"A beatiful prayer to the Indian goddess Lakshmi.

'I am whatever is. Whatever is, I am.
I am whatever is visible. Whatever is visible, I am.
I am whatever is invisible. Whatever is invisible, I am.
I am whatever is alive. Whatever is alive, I am.
I am whatever moves and breathes. Whatever moves and breathes, I am.

I am the very spirit of life. The very spirit of life, I am.

Everything that exists in time is part of me. I am everything that exists.
When time ends, I will end. I will vanish, disappear, dissolve.
And with me, everything else will vanish, disappear, dissolve.
I alone can create, and I alone destroy, this universe.

Everything that exists is mine. Everything that exists is me.'

Blessed Be." I whisper.

Are you listening?

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

American Idol

"Okay, so once again I've watched an episode of American Idol. I only watch one or two a season. I find it painful, humilating and extremely sad to watch people do this to themselves. My daughter loves to watch, so I watch with her. But I certainly can't watch an entire season. What would make 99% of the people that try out believe that they look and sound good? What fantasy world do they inhabit that they cannot see themselves clearly? How can their family and friends let them humilate themselves like they do? Why do people feel the need to be the focus of such a spotlight? Do they have no depth to their lives, nothing that enriches them beyond superficial things? I ache for them," I whisper.

Are you listening?

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Rally for the Troops

"On January 26 the Canadian military will start the deployment of 1000 men and women to Afghanistan. Most of these troops will come from the Maritimes, a great number of them from CFB Gagetown, our local military base. On Friday a huge rally is planned to show "our support" for the troops. My partner works at the base. He received an email today "requiring" him to attend the rally and events planned around it. I know that the turnout that results from this order being sent to personnel, both military and civilian, will be seen as "supporting" our troops and their mission. When in reality it only shows the control that the military and government have over the people who work for them. This is freedom? This is a democracy?

I show my support for the men and women in our armed forces by standing in vigil with Women in Black twice a month against violence of all kinds. I show my support by signing the NDP's Bring 'em Home petition. Our young men and women should not have to die needlessly in a war that they are only fighting because they will bring home 30 to 40 thousand extra dollars for 6 months work. They should not have to die or be wounded in a war over which they have no say. They should not have to die at all." I whisper.

Are you listening?

Monday, January 15, 2007


"It's snowing. It is finally starting to feel like winter, cold, dark and snowy. I love this time of year. I just wish it had come earlier. I hate leaving here in 2 weeks for my holiday in B.C. and leaving Sarah alone to cope with 2 dogs, 2 cats, 2 birds, getting to and from school and all the other things she has to deal with if we are going to have bad weather. I know a friend will come and plow the driveway if it snows alot; another friend will check on her to make sure she is surviving; her brother will come out once a week to empty the 2 kitty litter boxes (pregnant women do NOT handle used kitty litter!); and I can keep in touch via text messaging and phone calls. It's not the same thing though, as being here to give her a hug when she is down, making a cup of tea for her when she is too tired to climb the stairs or watching Grey's Anatomy on Thursday nights curled up on the couch together. Now, instead of wishing for snow and cold, I am hoping we have only good weather. Weird isn't it, we are just never satisfied with what we have. We always want something different." I whisper.

Are you listening?

Friday, January 12, 2007


"Yesterday was a world action day calling for the closure of Guantanamo Prison, so today when we held our bi-weekly Women in Black vigil we handed out flyers detailing information of Guantanamo and on the three detainees being held in immigration detention in Kingston (Canada) under security certificates who have been hunger-striking for over a month to demand urgently needed medical care and other basic needs. They have all been detained for more than five years now, without charge or trial, and their cases drag on endlessly. January 11 to 15 have been declared Days of Action to Close "Guantanamo North" - the Kingston Immigration Holding Centre.

Here are three things you can do to help:

1. Write and Call Stockwell Day, Minister responsible for the Canadian
Border Services Agency (which runs the KIHC). Demand that he meet
immediately or appoint a neutral party to immediately resolve the crisis at

Stockwell Day, MP,
House of Commons, Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6
Phone: (613) 995-1702
Fax: (613) 995.1154 or

2. Contact the new immigration minister, Diane Finley, at (866) 496-3400.
This is her Simcoe constituency office. Ask that she meet with the families
of the detainees (who have requested a meeting) and that she also take
action to meet the reasonable demands of the detainees.

3. Write a card of support to the detainees (let the folks know at if you
have, so we can monitor if mail is getting through): Mohammad Mahjoub,
Mahmoud Jaballah, and Hassan Almrei can be reached at:

Kingston Immigration Holding Centre
c/o CSC RHQ Ontario Region
440 King Street West
PO Box 1174
Kingston, Ontario K7L 4Y8

We can't live in a country where people are imprisioned without being tried, let alone charged with a crime. What kind of people are we turning into?" I whisper.

Are you listening?

Thursday, January 11, 2007

A Puzzle to Play With

"I love doing jigsaw puzzles and wanted to share one with you,I should be able to embed this puzzle, but it won't work, so go to the
site and have fun,"I whisper.

Are you listening?

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Children of Men

"Saw this movie last night and I have to agree with the critics this is a wonderful movie. I always enjoy a good "end of the world" type movie and because this is set in the immediate future, it is not only recognizable but terrifingly possible. It tells of a time when women become infertile. Now along with all of the stories we hear about the need for invitro fertilization, surrogate mothers etc. I am also reading stories about men's infertility, caused by chemicals and, believe it or not, cell phone use. With all of this, it is not hard to invision a time when no children are conceived. I sat beside my daughter, 6 months pregnant with her first child, knowing that birth really is a miracle and wondered what would a world without the possiblity of such event really be like. I don't want to ever find out." I whisper.

Are you listening?

How to be a Hero

"My Inner Hero - Wizard!

I'm a Wizard!

There are many types of magic, but all require a sharp mind and a cool head. There is no puzzle I can't solve, no problem I can't think my way out of. When you feel confused or uncertain, you can always rely on me to untangle the knots and put everything back in order for you.

You're intelligent, educated, and just a bit superior to everyone you know. If you're still in school, you probably make A's, if you're not too bored to waste the effort. If you work, your annoying boss relies on you to solve the problems no one else can figure out. You've never met a puzzle you can't solve. When it comes to leisure, you'd rather read, play a strategy game, or surf the 'Net than run around getting sweaty. You're a brainiac, and you're not ashamed to admit it.

Above all, you're a mastermind and a great thinker. You see the unknown as territory to be conquered, and the mysterious as something to be systematically unraveled. You don't have time for fools; you only spend your time with people who can comprehend your obfuscatory convolutions. You enjoy amassing knowledge, both useful and trivial.

What kind of hero are you?" I whisper.

Are you listening?

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

New Year Resolutions for 2007

"This year I feel far more positive about success with my resolutions than I ever have. Maybe because I feel good about last year and what a good year it was for personal growth. That after all, is what I believe that most resolutions should attend to. So here are mine for 2007 in no particular order.

#1 Work on my spiritual life - I will find time each day for some contemplative act, reading of a spiritual book, or spending time with others in a spiritual manner.

#2 Build an even stronger relationship with my daughter - As we have very different personalities, I will put aside what I like for some time with Sarah doing what she likes. I will really listen when she talks to me, involve my whole self in the conversation, not just my ears, but my heart and mind as well.

#3 Continue to work on improving my health and therefore my weight - I will follow my eating plan from Eat Right For Your Type and drink water on a much more regular basis.

#4 Having built a tenous relationship with my eldest sister, I will continue to nurture it's growth and developement.

#5 Actively work within the Peace Building Community here in Fredericton and help to change the attitudes towards peace as a way of life.

#6 Enjoy time with my partner and actively involve myself in the building of our model train layout.

#7 I will finish things I have started. I will again aim for one a month and see how I do. Next year I will be cheering instead of rolling on the floor laughing!

#8 I will continue to encourage the growth of my relationships with others. I will keep in touch with those whose company I enjoy.

#9 I will work even harder at being myself in ALL situations, not just those where it is easy or convienent.

#10 I will actively work on my genealogy, including talking to my mother about her past and recording what she tells me.

#11 I will write letters to all those in my life with whom I correspond in a prompt manner.

#12 I will find every opportunity to bring creativity into my life. I will let go of the past that says nothing but negative things about my abilities and I will try new things and not be a afraid of failure. What are your goals for 2007?" I whisper.

Are you listening?

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Review of 2006's New Year Resolutions

"This is the time of year I always set my goals for the rest of the year. Last year I posted 10 goals for 2006. In review I didn't do too bad, but wasn't perfect either. I guess that means there is still room for improvement.

Here is a look at how I did.

#1 Lose 20lbs - Well I must admit this one was a total flop didn't lose an ounce. But I also didn't gain anything either, so it wasn't as bad as it could have been.

#2 Spend more time with my daughter - This one was a partial success. While she wasn't at home, I did have some "dates" with her and loved them. Now that she is back home, we have been spending more time together, but it is still something that I need to pay attention to.

#3 Write my mother weekly - Well some months I have managed fine and others I haven't. Over all though, I did much better in 2006 than the previous year. Still there is room for improvement.

#4 Maintain Friendships - Now this one I have done really well on. In fact I have expanded my list of friends and have deepened the relationship I have with friends I already had. I count this a success and will continue on this path.

#5 Finish things I have started - Does everyone know what ROFL means. Cause that's me right now. Don't think I finished one thing. Ah well, there's always this year.

#6 Read more books - The number stayed the same 50 books in 2006. The vast majority were non fiction and much longer books. Does that count? I have read some great books this past year. Boy there are such interesting ones out there. If only there were more hours in the day.

#7 Enjoy Nature more - Well, this year I did get out more than the previous year, but not as much as I would have liked. One thing I have done though, is enjoy every full moon sitting at our fire pit with my partner. That has been very centering for me and it is a definite part of our life now.

#8 Be more environmentally friendly - This was a great success. I have gone to ebills, paperless bank statements, increased what I recycle and have donated lots through freecycle. My house is much emptier and my spirit much lighter without the clutter. I have found new places to recycle things like egg cartons and plastic containers. Our local food bank takes them. Altogether a success.

#9 Spend more time developing a spiritual life - This has proven difficult. Something I really need to work on.

#10 Be me - I think this has also been a tremendous success. I am happier and more content when I am authentic. It might have caused problems in at least one relationship but over all it has only benefited me. A resolution I would highly recommend and one that I shall continue to make part of my life.

What should I aim for this year?" I whisper.

Are you listening?

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year

"Another fresh new year is here . . .
Another year to live!
To banish worry, doubt, and fear,
To love and laugh and give!

This bright new year is given me
To live each day with zest . . .
To daily grow and try to be
My highest and my best!

I have the opportunity
Once more to right some wrongs,
To pray for peace, to plant a tree,
And sing more joyful songs!”
~William Arthur Ward (American dedicated scholar, author, editor, pastor and teacher)
This poem and other quotes on New Years can be found at

I know, it's a bit corny and it rhymes, but it does express how most people feel about the new year. At least, I think they do. It's how I feel about it anyway. I always feel like I get a fresh start and it's a good feeling. I hope you feel good about this new year as well." I whisper.

Are you listening?