Looking at my reaction and not liking what I see

When I heard the news on Sunday night that the CBC and Jian Ghomeshi’s “relationship had ended”, I was shocked. I was quadruply so when his Facebook post showed up in my stream hours later stating the fact that he was fired from CBC and his show Q over how he conducts his personal affairs in the bedroom. He was amazingly forthcoming in the nature of the what those affairs in the bedroom entailed, and then explained that he is now a victim of a vengeful ex-girlfriend’s smear campaign.

I was outraged! How could the CBC be so cowardly as to fire him when such allegations are still just allegations? They have had such a string of bad news lately (e.g. loss of NHL Hockey broadcast rights, reduced budgets and programming, staff layoffs) that it amazed me that they would invite further negative attention until the truth was sure. I pressed the “Like” button on Ghomeshi’s FB post to show my support and share my outrage.

In the cold light of Monday morning, however, I started to probe more into my reaction. Why did I so quickly trust his version of the story and, more disturbingly, accept the fact that the ex-girlfriend was vengeful and crazy-bent on trying to destroy a good man? Looking at my own reaction was disturbing and uncomfortable – was it somewhat misogynistic, in it’s own way? Continue reading Looking at my reaction and not liking what I see

DIY Snowy Owl costume – success!

[su_heading size=”14″ align=”left” margin=”10″]The Backstory[/su_heading]

[su_expand more_text=”Show more (i.e. I want to read the rest of the backstory!)” less_text=”Show less (i.e. just get me to the How-to portion!)”]At the start of October, we had a conversation to start planning what costumes the girls wanted for Halloween. E2 wanted to be a mermaid again, reusing our homemade costume from last year. (sweet!). E1 at first wanted to be a fairy princess. *sigh* I’ll bet 80% of the girls in her grade will be a variation of a princess, with a significant portion being Elsa from Frozen. I begged her to reconsider being something else and threw out some random ideas, to all of which she said no.

After a few days passed, however, she came to me and said, “I want to be a baby snowy owl for Halloween.” Aha! I think I can work with this! It will can be puffy enough to allow for both mistakes in sewing AND to fit the jacket needed to go trick-or-treating outside in Toronto.

I am not an experienced seamstress by any means. I was originally considering using a glue gun to attach the feathers, but realized sewing would probably be faster, neater and more durable. So off we go to borrow a sewing machine. Prior to this, the last time I sewed with a sewing machine was back in high school home ec class where I made things like pin cushions and shopping bags. But I remembered the techniques, and had the time to plan and figure it out. I did have to spend a couple of hours reading the sewing machine instruction manual to figure out how to thread the machine and fill a bobbin.

The girls and I searched Google images for a couple of hours for ideas on how others have DIY made their owl costumes. I have to give credit to several sources of inspiration for how I ended up with my own design. I decided on making the body of the costume to have a bubble dress shape as it’s base to give a cute roundness. Thanks Google for landing me on this tutorial for sewing a bubble dress that I followed nearly exactly.


[su_heading size=”14″ align=”left” margin=”10″]How to DIY Sew my Snowy Owl Costume[/su_heading]

Continue reading DIY Snowy Owl costume – success!

Hiring a life coach was my best decision this spring

I admit when I first started, a part of me felt that getting a life coach might be hokey and questioned whether I’d be doing exercises like walking barefoot over hot coals and repeating positive mantras in the mirror. The larger part of me though was more pragmatic: having a coach should make this self-analysis more efficient, help direct me toward forward momentum and hopefully as an outsider see something that I’ve been blind to for ages. Without a coach, I feared I might end up naval-gazing to the extreme, potentially ending up wallowing in self-doubt, negativity, and guilt in wasting time ‘searching for myself’.  So I decided to take the plunge and invest in the time , money and energy with her.

Now as I wrap up my last session with my coach,  I have a bunch of various emotions: Continue reading Hiring a life coach was my best decision this spring

Attack on Parliament Hill and War Memorial

What is there to say so soon after such a shocking and astonishing day? John Doyle of the Globe and Mail captures my sentiment exactly: “Language is beggared by such events”. Perhaps I’ll be more articulate in the days to come, but I feel compelled to chronicle at least something on the day that surely will be historic.

Obviously my thoughts go to the family and friends of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, the reservist killed by the gunman at the War Memorial where he was one of the ceremonial guard on duty. I am so thankful to the men and women of our police who did their job to stop the shooter and prevent further casualties, and the armed forces for their daily duty to protect our country and the freedom that we often take for granted.

I cling desperately to the hope the gunman was a crazed individual, and not further evidence of the theory that there is movement of radicalized Canadian-born planning to seed further terror in our country. However, with it happening so close to the events on Monday, the timing is chilling.

One of my fondest memories of Ottawa comes from attending Canada Day celebrations at Parliament Hill. Thousands of people, all happily congregating freely on the Hill grounds and the public spaces surrounding it, proudly being patriotic without feeling like a braggadocio. I recognize that there will need to be improvements made to security procedures, but I sure hope that freedom and joy we have won’t be tamped down for the sake of excessive security. I hope that we can keep calm and carry on.

The Globe and Mail’s editorial response says everything else I’m feeling: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/editorials/after-the-attack-were-still-canada/article21248043/


Leadership of Virtual teams: Strategies and Tactical tools

The reality is that the composition of my teams in the past 8 years of my work at Accenture has increasingly become more virtual. I know there have been times I’ve struggled to adapt to the differences in being a part of, and managing, these teams that are not all located together. Further challenging the situation is the frequency with which the teams change, and the typically aggressive schedule for completing the work. Unfortunately, the training and mentorship I’ve received from Accenture to date on managing virtual teams amounted to little more than cross-cultural awareness and how-tos for the collaboration tools available.

Yesterday I attended a great lunchtime learning webinar hosted by the Emerging Leaders Network (ELN) on “Real Leadership in Today’s Virtual World”.  Finally, some strategic and tactical tools to learn! Continue reading Leadership of Virtual teams: Strategies and Tactical tools

Portrait of my younger daughter E2-Age 4

E2, so cute she’s delicious. The last vestiges of toddler chub remain on E2’s body, so I get my nibbles in whenever I can. “Mommy, people are not for eating!” she protests to me. But how can anyone resist squeezing or nipping those cute chubby cheeks, roundish belly, and juicy legs? Already this past summer she has been lengthening out, and I just know by the end of this winter my baby will be transformed fully to little girl. Continue reading Portrait of my younger daughter E2-Age 4

Portrait of my elder daughter E1-age 6

*Sigh*, my first baby is no longer a baby, not by a long shot. Six years old and E1 is already so mature. I totally trust her to keep herself safe and not initiate trouble or take excessive risks–she is a bit of a scaredy-cat. Her limbs and torso have lengthened out and that baby chub she had as a toddler is long gone. She has a generally sunny disposition and even temper. The following are other random tidbits about E1, as a profile: Continue reading Portrait of my elder daughter E1-age 6

How deep is my love? Some anniversary thoughts

Hi Honey,

(feel free to play the Bee Gees song below in the background while reading)

Happy Anniversary, my love. Just like that, 8 years passed. Eight years since we said our vows to love, respect, and support each other through our adventures in life as husband and wife. While we didn’t know exactly what would happen, you were game enough to face that unknown with me. Continue reading How deep is my love? Some anniversary thoughts

Our method for delegating petty tasks: Scenes from a household

My beloved husband and I have a highly scientific method for determining who gets to do the unwanted petty task of the moment. These petty tasks have in the past included:

  • bathing the children
  • before we had a working dishwasher appliance, hand washing the dirty dishes
  • now that we do have an awesome dishwasher, hand washing the dirty dishes that don’t fit in the dishwasher
  • getting out of the comfortable, warm bed to trudge over to the light switch by the door to turn off the bedroom light before going to bed
  • getting out of the comfortable, warm bed on the Sunday morning to deal with the kids who’ve woken up and decided they now need attention
  • taking daughter to the potty and reading to her Dora (the Explorer)’s Nursery Time Adventure for the three hundredth time

What is this systematic and foolproof method, you ask?

Rock, Paper, Scissors“, naturally. We often limber up with some quick pre-showdown warm-up exercises, including shoulder rolls, warm-up jumps, hand dexterity exercises, and head rolls. We wouldn’t want to hinder our chances of victory by hampering our reflexes. Then when ready we square off and appraise each other cooly in the eye. Contestants’ hand is shown after the count of three. Rounds proceed until the first clear victor, no “best X out of Y” tournament.

For whatever reason we always seem to both choose Rock first. It almost seems like an amuse bouche round before we get to the real decision. Things do get heated though when more than one round goes by with us shooting the same hand. There was that epic showdown in late 2013 where we matched the same hand for 7 or 8 rounds. The tension and adrenaline just kept getting notched higher and higher with each passing round…until victory occurred, the tension was released, and the petty task of giving the kids a shower at grandma and grandpa’s house proceeded.

The funny thing is I don’t even remember who won that day. Perhaps I lost and that is why I’m suppressing that particular detail from memory. So that next time a petty task comes up I can face the challenge without the humiliating memory of defeat lingering in the background. :-p

But tonight…I think the girls can skip the bath tonight, right Honey?


World Ballet Day 2014!

There is essential information you need to know about today, Oct 1 –it’s World Ballet Day! Five world class ballet companies around the world are each going to stream 4 hours of company classes, rehearsals and interviews:

  • Australian Ballet
  • Bolshoi Ballet
  • Royal Ballet
  • National Ballet of Canada
  • San Francisco Ballet

20 hours in total. I typically only get to see the National Ballet of Canada, so it’s wonderful to be able to see the other companies. I’m going to be glued to Youtube for much of today! :-S