Monday, April 30, 2007

So Cool

Suddenly, everyone's blogging. And it's awesome! I started blogging in 2003, while I was preparing for my first marathon for Joints in Motion - and though the location of my blog has changed, I haven't been able to stop. It's too important to me. It's a way for me to journal and process and celebrate my life, and it sometimes makes me laugh to think that all these mundane happenings and ideas are interesting enough for other people to stop by and read :)

The interesting thing about this 'new' blogging group is that lots of you are a little bit older than me. We didn't hang out when I was growing up - you were the girls I totally looked up to. You were SO COOL.

And now, as adults, the years between don't seem to matter as much. Through your blogs and your little comments, I have the privilege of actually getting to know you a little bit. And not just taking note of how cool your hair is. I'm getting to read little pieces of your heart, and you know what? I was right all along - you're very cool. I still look up to you. I admire your authenticity, your faith, and your desire to be strong and kind women.

And your hair, of course :P


Sunday, April 29, 2007

Crazy Weekend Roundup

Let's see...

On Friday after work, Geoff and I went to check out the Palliser/EQ3 warehouse clearance sale. The Boy found a dining room table, a bunch of chairs, and bookcases - all for ridiculously good prices. We grabbed dinner, and then I headed out to Niverville for the weekend. My house is so chaotic right now with people finishing school and moving out and away that I just needed some peace and clean and quiet to try to get my health back on track.

I watched a movie with my mom - correction, half a movie - before I fell asleep. On Saturday, I went on a field trip with my parents to pick up Geoff's purchases from the day before with their van and trailer (Geoff was working)... And my parents did a little damage of their own. They picked up a bunch of the same dining room chairs, plus a new reading chair and ottoman for my mom. The rest of the day was gloriously low-key.

And today, we went on a road trip out to Falcon Lake to check out our family's seasonal spot there this summer. I'm so excited for another summer at the lake... There are no words for how wonderful it feels to have a little place in the world that is totally and utterly relaxing. In the evening, Geoff bribed me with ice cream to go to Cruise Night with him. We'll call it a cultural experience and leave it at that. Not really a 'normal' Sunday night activity for Lindsay, but it was super interesting :)

At the end of it all, I'm feeling better than I was on Friday - but I'm still kind of frustrated that I'm not feeling BETTER. A little bit of fatigue, and some weird muscle pain in my back and legs lately. But tomorrow's a new day, and the start of a new week. And I've already decided that it will be a great one :)

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

Great Buy

I know there are some deal-lovers out there, so... Thought I'd let y'all know that Office Depot has 1GB flash drives on sale for 19.99 - actual price, no rebate. Not sure how long the sale's on for (or how many they have in stock), but I picked one up the other day. And it's a great price, if you're in the market for a flash drive :)


Home Again

Who says you can't go home again? This week, that's precisely what I've been doing - and it's been really, really good. There's something about comfortable people and places that just makes your soul happy.

On Monday night, I spent some time with Emily. We met at St. Vital Park for our first picnic of the year, then went for a walk, grabbed some ice cream, and went shopping for a while. It was so good - and we laughed through most of the evening, I think. Em and I were roommates for so long that time with her is deliciously comfortable. We get each other, and all of our flaws and quirks are right out there in the open. There's something very special about friends like her.

Tuesday was spent with my family plus Kris - having dinner at my parents' place, hanging out in the hot tub, drinking tea with my mom, playing video games with my brother. It was nice to have that down-time. And hearing about what Kris has been doing in Guatemala over the past couple of months definitely helps to put things here in perspective. Kris has an uncanny ability to make the people around him smile - I always feel encouraged when I've spent some time with him.

And last night, I was hanging out with Geoff (who's coming off a couple of consecutive night shifts). Another person I love, and another person I'm so comfortable with. We went for dinner, then crashed on his couch and watched a funny, brainless movie. It's like God knew that I needed a couple of nights 'off' - some time and space to let go of all the stress I've been carrying around with me.

I'm a person who simply craves HOME. It's so interesting to see how - in the absence of a space that really feels like home - we seek out and create home wherever we are. Home is people as much as it is places. It's a feeling. And it's a good feeling :)


Wednesday Morning Smile

toothpaste for dinner


Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Still Winning

Something that inspired and encouraged me today, from - a website for women in the workforce with chronic illness.


"We [my friend and I] started talking about what I, personally, require to be successful in business. And then she said the most amazing thing. She said, “Joan, you were ill for many, many years and you’ve only had your full energy back for two years. You’re really doing very well and you need to give yourself a break.”

"I don’t know if you, too, feel the importance of these two sentences, but they made a world of difference to me. I’d never stopped working - unless you count disability leave - so I didn’t understand the real impact of being ill for so long. I was just living my life, doing the best I can.

"Now I see my present situation differently. I see that I’m actually on track to regain my financial capacity to take care of myself, and that I’m in a very similar place in my career path as I was before being ill. This time I’m in business for myself, working in partnership with some great people to get our work done. I’m a trainer, once again, but in a different field. Hm. Time to look through a different lens, don’t you think?

"It was real. I was derailed, and so I think I’ll appreciate and love myself a little more today. Will you do the same for you?"


I know that Old Lindsay was really good about keeping her worries to herself. But I relate to this article so much, and New Lindsay isn't afraid to be honest.

Being sick just becomes a part of 'normal' and you lose track of all the ways it affects you. I know that, for me - just between missed work, medication, alternative therapies, and surgery costs - it's been incredibly expensive for me to be sick. And that financial strain has caused so much stress for me. No person as young as I am should have to be paying back personal loans that covered surgery costs.

This past year, it's been *finally* feeling like it's maybe going to be okay... Thank god for families who love us and support us and co-sign for us :)

I've spent way too long feeling ashamed of where I'm at and what I've accomplished. I mourn what's missing instead of celebrating everything I have. This month marked fifteen years of my life with chronic disease, but I know that I'm still winning.

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Garage Sale Announcement

Some of you know about this, but I have not been very healthy the last week or two. I've made a decision to postpone the Garage Sale we'd planned for this weekend.

I'll definitely still be doing a Garage Sale, just not for a couple of weeks. So you have a couple of options... Feel free to save up your stuff to donate then, drop it off at my place already - or drive it over to Steve and Esther's place. They're doing a Garage Sale at the end of May to raise money for their foreign adoption costs and for the orphanage their kids are living at right now. It's an awesome cause, and I know they'd appreciate your support!

In the meantime, don't forget about the Safeway Tag Day on May 12! It's going to be lots of fun :)

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Adventures in Grace

I've heard stories from friends about the intense decision-making process involved in choosing a tattoo design. Not me. I knew what I wanted years ago... The decision was really whether or not I actually wanted a tattoo. In the end - I did. I made the appointment on my 25th birthday, last summer in Montreal. And I haven't experienced a moment of regret.

Until this weekend.

See, in the middle of my back, I have permanently inked four simple characters that together form a Greek word: GRACE. I have literally chosen to make this word a part of me, a piece of who I am. And that's easier some days than others. I found myself in a situation this weekend where I wanted to be very UNgraceful and UNgracious. It's the strangest thing to carry your commitment around with you. I knew in my heart of hearts that I needed to extend grace to the person in this situation, because grace has been extended to me. I'm not perfect (shocking, I know), so I can't expect others to be.

That sucks, doesn't it? Took the wind right out of my sails, and the bite out of my tongue - and that bite was going to be so very [temporarily] satisfying :)

And that's kind of the beauty of this whole concept of grace. It gives us the freedom to be and to live, mistakes and all. Because the one who made me knows what's inside the very core of my heart - and he thinks it's beautiful. Most days, that simple truth totally blows me away.

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Dealing with Disappointment

So Feist is coming to Winnipeg, which actually makes me about as excited as JT. Unfortunately, she's in town when I'm not. But I'll be in and around Vancouver at that time, and know who's playing there? JOSS STONE. Which makes me probably MORE excited than JT - I know... The mind boggles. But the Joss Stone show is sold out. Which means that I'll just need to suck it up and be grateful that I'll get to see Justin this summer. Because that's still AMAZING.

Well, that was the attitude I had about it until I turned on the TV a second ago - and Joss is performing on Leno as we speak. And she's amazing. SIGH.

I really need bigger problems :)

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I was tagged by Gloria. Now I tag... Sherri and Esther and Allison (I know you're blogless, but you can post it here as a comment).


Three Things That Scare Me:
1. Mice
2. Snakes
3. Knowing something bad is going to happen and not being able to stop it

Three People Who Make Me Laugh:
1. Sophie
2. Emily
3. My Dad

Three Things I Love
(aside from god, friends, family):
1. Superfox jeans that fit perfectly
2. Vanilla Fudge Brownie Lattes from Second Cup
3. Those times with friends when you giggle until you think your stomach is going to explode

Three Things I Hate:
1. Being lied to
2. Email forwards with animal pictures
3. That taste in your mouth when you don't swallow a pill quickly enough

Three Things I Don't Understand:
1. Why some people are healed and others aren't
2. Why bad things happen to kids
3. Why everything on a car always seems to break down at once

Three Things On My Desk:
1. Dwight Schrute bobblehead
2. Mr Clean bobblehead
3. Cup of coffee

Three Things I'm Doing Right Now:
1. Trying to finish this so I can leave work and go meet Emily for a picnic
2. Listening to voicemail messages
3. Playing that super-catchy Timbaland song in my head

Three Things I Want To Do Before I Die:
1. Write a book
2. Boycott a Christmas and go volunteer somewhere instead
3. Become Geoff's wife

Three Things I Can Do:
1. Find flaws in other people's grammar
2. Bake really amazing cookies
3. Obsess about strangers' opinions of me

Three Things I Can't Do:
1. Give myself a french manicure
2. Impressions and sound effects
3. Draw (other than stick people... I draw pretty awesome stick people)

Three Things I Think You Should Listen To:
1. Your Mom
2. Your gut instincts
3. The news, so that you're aware of what's going on outside your own selfish little bubble

Three Things You Should Never Listen To:
1. People who are mean
2. Religious people who don't live the way they talk about
3. The music they play when someone puts you on hold

Three Things I'd Like To Learn:
1. How to love myself exactly as I am right now
2. How to cry without wrecking my make-up
3. How to drive standard

Three Favourite Foods:
1. A really amazing steak with mushrooms
2. Just about anything that involves pasta and fresh salmon
3. Greek pizza

Three Shows I Watched As A Kid:
1. Fraggle Rock
2. Full House
3. Sesame Street

Three Things I Regret:
1. Being too scared to really relax and enjoy every single moment
2. Caring so much about what other people think
3. Thinking I was fat in high school

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Cheesy But Good

Kind of cheesy, but one of those email goodies that always makes me smile... I'm so grateful for all of my 'soggy' friends who kick my fridge closed, sweep my floor, and call me way too late :)


A simple friend, when visiting, acts like a guest. A real friend opens your refrigerator and helps herself (and doesn't feel even the least bit weird shutting your 'Pepsi Drawer' with her foot!).

A simple friend has never seen you cry. A real friend has shoulders soggy from your tears.

A simple friend doesn't know your parents' first names. A real friend has their phone numbers in his address book.

A simple friend brings a bottle of wine to your party. A real friend comes early to help you cook and stays late to help you clean.

A simple friend hates it when you call after they've gone to bed. A real friend asks you why you took so long to call.

A simple friend seeks to talk with you about your problems. A real friend seeks to help you with your problems.

A simple friend wonders about your romantic history. A real friend could blackmail you with it.

A simple friend thinks the friendship is over when you have an argument. A real friend calls you after you had a fight.

A simple friend expects you to always be there for them. A real friend expects to always be there for you.

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Whirlwind Weekend

It's one of those Mondays where I'm happy to be back at work, so that I can catch my breath for a second after the weekend. Crazy.

On Friday night, Geoff and I met a few of his friends for the Interpol concert. It was a great show - and great music - but the best part was the crowd-watching. Geoff and I were playing a game of 'count the Castro hats' and we topped 30 before we even went inside.

On Saturday, I ran errands in the morning (including the very important task of picking up some Billabong flip-flops before my size is all sold out), then helped out at Anica's birthday party in the afternoon. Fourteen six- and seven-year-olds, all hopped up on sugar... Exhausting. But very fun. Then Geoff and I headed to Morris, where my family was helping my grandparents pack up for their imminent move to a seniors' apartment - including transferring a pool table from their basement to my parents' basement. Poor boys.

Yesterday, I went to church with Geoff. then to the final concert of the year for the Winnipeg Wind Ensemble. I forgot how much I enjoyed live instrumental music... It was a really fun afternoon. Then, a walk and ice cream (at Dorothy's - delightful's the only word for it), and a quick trip out to Niverville for my sister's last coffeehouse performance with her band.

That's it, other than the tiny detail that it was Prov graduation weekend - which means that there are about a hundred extra people at my house right now... I'm not really used to that. I can handle people and commotion and chaos only up to a certain point - then I need to decompress.

I'm craving a little bit of calm and quiet. I'd love to just sit with a cup of tea and read a book for half an hour. Doesn't that sound amazing? :)


Friday, April 20, 2007


Signature Awards nominations were announced yesterday. Cocoon's been nominated 13 times - including an Illustration nomination for last year's Art & Soul invitation that makes us all *extremely* happy.

And my brother Aaron's work has been nominated for a couple of awards at the University of Winnipeg Student Film Festival next week. I wish could post them here, because they're awesome... But he's waiting to hear back on some other awards, and he can't release them online until then. BUT you can head out to U of W next week Wednesday and Thursday and check them out for yourself :)

You can see some of his other (older) work at (click on 'Video' on the top nav).

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Blood and Guts

Fancy schmancy... Last night, Geoff and I made an appearance at an awards ceremony and reception at the Lieutenant Governor's house. Geoff was being honoured for reaching a very impressive milestone this past year: his 100th blood donation. It sounds dorky, but I was really, really proud of him.

It was one of those formal social situations where you want to giggle, just because you know that you shouldn't. Our entrance was so choreographed, and we were ushered from room to room until we reached The Room - where we gave our names to a man in a funny coat. The man then turned, and yelled our names at (insert proper royalese title here) John Harvard and his wife before we were permitted to approach and shake their hands. Funny stuff.

The ceremony itself was kind of inspiring. Everyone there had reached either 100 or 200 donations, which is really cool because each donation helps an average of 3 people. When you do the math... That's a lot of good deeds.

One other person was honoured last night. He was one of two Manitobans to donate bone marrow last year. Kind of insane, to think that someone could be brave enough to undergo painful surgery for a stranger. He's actually getting to meet the recipient next week - a now ten year old cancer survivor from California.

In the light of everything in the news this week, it was so cool to meet these people who give of themselves to others, and to honour their bravery and dedication. To see that there's a little good left in the world.

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Gong Show

Too many stupid, funny things happened at work today for me to possibly refrain from commenting.

I witnessed someone burning themselves on a hot dish from the microwave at lunchtime. This would not be noteworthy, except that EVERYONE does it EVERY SINGLE DAY. And then the jump around and mutter bad words, and everyone makes fun of them. Because we know they'll do it all over again tomorrow.

I had a client confess earlier today that they absolutely don't like and are not really interested in their core business. Which is more sad than funny, but the way this information was confessed was particularly amusing to me. Especially because this has happened before - a clandestine, guilty client confession. They are always funny.

Almost as funny as our printer repair company sending someone to fix the colour on our printer yesterday - and sending someone who is literally half-blind and couldn't see the problem.

And Chuck and Asta BOTH blinded themselves a minute ago by looking out a window, directly at the sun - accidentally, and one right after another. So hard not to laugh... Actually, I don't really know. I didn't try at all not to laugh.

And the finalists for the Signature awards are announced tomorrow. Which could mean all kinds of humour. Then Cocoon's annual Big Al eating contest on Friday (you don't want to know).

Spring is in the air, and everyone is smiling again. Love it :)

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Good Morning

Funny how little it takes to declare a morning 'bad.' Today, it was some deep muscle pain in my legs, a zit on my chin, a house full of mess that isn't mine, a couple of bad drivers, and no cream for my coffee when I got to work. Nothing really earth-shattering, just a laundry list of annoyances.

But it's also funny how little it takes to turn it all around. One just-because email - and an adorable picture - from a friend in my Inbox, and I'm smiling again.

That could also just mean that the caffeine in my tea is working :)


Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Elect Susie Flynn

"If You Knew Susie"
by Stuart Flynn (New York Times)

Every two years, the word "campaign" takes on a double meaning as marketers sponsor advertising with election themes, making believe that they are running their brands, endorsers or mascots for Congress or president.

For instance, in 1996, Nike pretended to toss the baseball cap of Ken Griffey Jr. into the ring. The Miller Brewing Company urged voters in 2004 to select Miller Lite and Miller Genuine Draft as the "president of beers."

And last year, the Mayfield Dairy Farms division of Dean Foods held a "Flavor Decision '06" vote in four Southern states to select a new variety of ice cream. The winner was blueberry cream pie, which campaigned on a platform of "Making tomorrow sweeter."

Now, an organization with more on its mind than peddling a product is adopting the tactic. To generate support for a plan to make sure all American children are covered by health insurance, the Children's Defense Fund is sponsoring a "healthy child" campaign centered on a highly unlikely candidate for the nation's highest office: a 10-year-old girl.

The campaign - that is, the ad campaign - is called "Elect Susie," after its spokeswoman-cum-candidate, Susie Flynn. Television commercials, print ads, posters and a Web site ( adopt the trappings of a campaign - that is, an electoral campaign - complete with flags, bunting, slogans, messages of encouragement from supporters and disclaimers ("Paid for by Friends of Susie Flynn and the Children's Defense Fund").


Read More: The official website - and all the campaign commercials - are here. The full NYT article is here.

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Off to a Good Start

It was a very good morning. At Cora's, I discovered something that totally made my day, possibly my week: 'real' yummy Montreal bagels. Ms. Groeneveld introduced them into my world this summer, and I've been craving them ever since my plane landed again in Winnipeg. Turns out, Cora sells them by the half-dozen - just minutes from my house. Awesome.

My hair is *slightly* lighter than it was yesterday, when I had a minor freak-out over my witch-like appearance. It's kind of growing on me. (But I'm still contemplating stripping it all out and being blonde for the summer, one last time before I'm probably too old.)

And today is field trip day. My media class is heading over to the new CTV studio after work for a tour, quick seminar on how to effectively plan and buy a television ad campaign, and observing their live evening news broadcast. Should be mildly interesting.

Now, I must go discover why a coworker just walked past my desk muttering 'WOMEN!' and shaking his clenched fist in the general direction of Christine, Asta, and I :)


Monday, April 16, 2007

Time Well Wasted?

In today's New York Times:
Best-Informed Also View Fake News, Study Says

Americans may have more news outlets today than two decades ago, but they still don’t know much more about current events than they did then, according to a new survey by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. But here’s one big difference: the survey respondents who seemed to know the most about what’s going on — who were able to identify major public figures, for example — were likely to be viewers of fake news programs like Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report”; those who knew the least watched network morning news programs, Fox News or local television news.


Weekend Update

My weekend, Memento-style.

My hair is now darker than ever, compliments of a late-night dye job in my bathroom yesterday. Not sure how I feel about it - it's practically black - but it's fun, at least for now. It's only hair.

Geoff and I get to meet George & Lara's new addition, Zyra, last night at St B. I wish I had a picture to show, because she is an absolutely gorgeous baby girl.

Spent Sunday with the fam - lunch at Jessie & Kevin's, then the afternoon with my parents and Aaron & Cait. I finally got around to copying some of my mom's recipes that I'm constantly calling her for and then losing.

Went to the Boys Like Girls and HelloGoodbye concert on Saturday. Holy cow. I have never felt so old in my life... Overheard: 'Wanna go get a Slurpee? We should totally go get Slurpees. But, like, my mom will be here to pick us up at 10.30. So we should totally go get Slurpess, but we totally have to be back by 10.30 or else my mom will KILL ME.' Also overheard: 'Did you see the picture I took with my cell phone? It's totally going on my MySpace tonight, and Tracey will be SO jealous.' And also overheard: 'Let's all wear our t-shirts to school on Monday!'

Spent Saturday shopping with my mom, after brunch at Cora's (yum).

And now you're all caught up :)


Saturday, April 14, 2007

Asking Good Questions

Guess I'm awake for the day. WOO HOO.

Overall, I think I'm a good question-asker. I ask questions all day - directed to clients, suppliers, and (the trickiest species to extract information from) designers - and I must believe that at least a couple of them are good questions.

In my personal life, it turns out that I suck at this. See, one of my roommates mentioned that they'd been talking with another student about doing a joint garage sale this weekend. What I failed to inquire about was the location of said garage sale. Not like it matters, but I would have bought earplugs or talked about a later start time or something.

You guessed it. People have been running up and down stairs, yelling, going in and out of doors, and just generally 'doing' a garage sale since 7 am (and until well after 1 am last night). I'm trying very hard to be flexible and understanding, but I need more sleep than that in order to recover from my week and try to be pain-free again. It's occasionally simply a bad deal to live with someone who lives with a chronic disease.

I have to plan my fun. I went to the hockey game last night only because I knew I'd be able to sleep in this morning and let my body recover. I really, really need more sleep than this to be able to extract a little bit of fun and/or productivity from my weekends.

If you pray, pray for grace on my behalf today. I'm hurting.

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Sweet, Sweet Sweetness

Woohoo! Guess who has JT tickets? :)

Softens the blow a little over not being able to nab Il Divo tickets, and not being able to afford BB King tickets.

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Painful Goodbyes

This article in USA Today made me think of a conversation I had with Crystal on Wednesday night about our mutual inability to start watching Lost. I just can't do it. I can't risk investing and then having a lame ending. I'll wait and make sure it was good, then watch the DVDs.

Read it here:
Why doesn't TV know when (or how) to BOW OUT?

Also on-topic (and always amusing):

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Friday Morning Quiz(zes)

Not so much a surprise, hey?

(PS - Who says 'crushing on'??? I'm pretty sure that's something that old, uncool people say to appear to be young and with it... but that no young person has ever actually said.)

You Are Most Like Charlotte!

You are the ultimate romantic idealist
You've been hurt before, but that hasn't caused you to give up on love.
If anything, your resolve to fall in love is stronger than ever.
And it's this feminine optimism that men find most appealing about you.

Romantic prediction: That guy you are seeing (or crushing on)? Could be very serious - if you play your cards right!
Which Sex and the City Vixen Are You?

And because I really needed to smile this morning... Here's one more:

Your Sloth Quotient: 17%

You're certainly not lazy. If anything, you're super charged, hyper, and always going.
Slow down a little. You can enjoy a slow afternoon without becoming a total couch potato.
How Much Sloth Do You Have?


Thursday, April 12, 2007

Mission Accomplished

You know that feeling when you cross something off a list that's been on there for a while? No? Maybe I'm a freak. But it's a huge rush of adrenaline and a self-esteem boost. It means that it was worth getting out of bed that morning.

Well, I just FINALLY hit 'send' on a document I'd intended to deliver weeks and weeks ago. And it feels GOOD. Kind of a nice almost-finish to my week.

The *real* finish will be the Moose game tomorrow night with a big group of friends who are coming out to support my Joints in Motion project - and the second-last regular game of the season, of course :)


Wednesday, April 11, 2007

You're It!

I'm signed up to do Tag Day for The Arthritis Society on Saturday, May 12 at the south Osborne Safeway location. All the money I raise goes to my Joints in Motion project.

What's Tag Day? Officially, it's when annoying people trying to raise money for charity hang around outside a grocery store with a box around their neck and ask you for change - and then you 'tag' them with a sticker so that you don't harass them again on their way out. It's not *quite* as horrible as I've described it, but I won't lie - it's TOUGH.

I'm determined to do my Tag Day with a little more style. So here's my idea.

I did my first and only full marathon in 2004, and it took me 8 hours and 27 minutes to walk 26.2 miles. That's a LONG TIME. My idea is to set up a treadmill outside the Safeway entrance, and have friends and family stop by to keep that treadmill going all day - from 9.33 am until 6.00 pm - and demonstrate how much farther we can make it when we're all working together.

We'll still have a table set up for donations (and I'm checking to see if we can sell hot dogs, bring face paints, and some other fun stuff), but we'll have a draw and a story. Plus, I absolutely love the idea of getting all of you involved.

Interested? AWESOME. I need you to email me and sign up! I don't care if you can run 5 miles or if you can walk 5 steps, I just need to know that you're coming. I'm going to be in sweats and sneakers, and I'll help... But I'm going to need all of you to make it all the way.

I'll also need people to come and sit at the table to take donations, for hot dogs and face painting if that happens, and to just hang out and chat with the people who stop by - everyone has a story to tell about how arthritis has affected them or someone they love.

So... Are you in? :)

PS - Don't forget about the Garage Sale happening on April 28!

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The Pursuit of Truth

When I was teaching the Self-Management Program for The Arthritis Society, one of the most important things we tried to teach participants was positive self-talk. Basically, we talked about trying to clear out all the lies in our heads that say we can't do something, or that our worth is wrapped up in what we're able to do physically. It's (much) easier said than done. Those lies can get such a strong foothold in our minds, and they aren't easy to shake.

I've tried to transfer this principle into other areas of my life - not letting these lies float around in my mind. Pretty tricky for a perfectionist who's harder on herself than anyone else could ever be, but I'm trying. One of the biggest steps I took was to let go of some friendships with people who were innately negative or condescending - getting rid of a powerful source of those lies. I'm still trying to figure out if walking away was the strongest thing I've ever done, or the weakest. But life is too short to fill it with friendships that tear you down instead of encouraging you and building you up. In my life, I choose truth - I choose to dwell on truth, and I choose to surround myself with people who surround themselves in love and grace and honesty and encouragement. And my life is so much richer because of it.

Now, the million dollar question is this:
What happens when the people who contribute to those lies are not people you can choose to exclude from your life? I feel like I'm about to find out just how tough I am.

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So apparently, I'm supposed to make a list of the seven songs I'd choose as the only seven songs I can listen to for the rest of my life. For life??? Are you serious??? This is a very tricky question. But here is my list of songs I can usually listen to on infinite repeat, singing along at the top of my lungs - subject to change in about nine seconds, of course.

Yellow - Coldplay
Hit Me With Your Best Shot - Pat Benatar
Alone - Heart
Hungry - Kathryn Scott
Beautiful Things - Em Gryner
Again - Lenny Kravitz
Inside & Out - Feist

Strangely, quite different than my list of essential CDs I'd choose. And shockingly, no Madonna on the list. Very interesting exercise.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Congrats to my little brother Aaron, ManLab's newest employee.
Welcome to the dark side, friend...


Monday, April 09, 2007

Grrr (Bad Day)

I have very nearly survived my day. All that's left is a load or two of laundry, a phone call to my boy, and an early bedtime.

It was one of those days that was just chock full of little annoyances. Is everyone coming off a sugar high? Is it a full moon? Or am I simply grasping at straws in a futile attempt to explain away a world full of chaos?

It was nothing major. A hurt feeling or two. A cranky coworker. Someone in my parking spot. I reacted reasonably well until probably 4 pm - since then, I must admit, I've been on a little bit of a tirade. I sought a little zen in a massage chair while I had a pedicure this evening, but the spell was broken when I re-entered the real world. The worst part is, I know that I'm being a bitch but I simply don't care.

I'm having dinner now in hopes that a little food in my stomach might help. But I think I'll officially quarantine myself from other humans until tomorrow morning. It'll better for world peace and all that.


Material World

Feel like you're the only person you know who doesn't own an iPod? Maybe that's because Apple has sold 100,000,000 units since the iPod was introduced five and a half years ago.

For you statistic junkies, that's the combined population of Canada, Australia, and South Korea. Or it's a measly and embarrassing 9% of the world's population who live without safe drinking water. If we guesstimate that the average cost per unit was USD$200, it's just 5% of America's estimated cost to date of the war in Iraq (check this out). But that same money could provide Amnesty International's operating budget from today until 2483.

These numbers sound like a lot, but it means that only around 1.6% of the total world population has an iPod. So buying those shares today might not be that stupid.

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Saturday, April 07, 2007

Hamming It Up

Yep, it's that time of year again: ham and chocolate (what a lovely combination). So strange how North Americans somehow manage to make every single holiday we have about food. And then we wonder why we're all fat.

I spent Friday with my mom's big family just outside of Portage la Prairie, and then headed to my parents' place for some hang-out time and a rescreening of 'Little Miss Sunshine.' Today, it was my dad's smaller family near Niverville.

Geoff and I took the evening off from family-slash-Easter stuff and went to the Snow Patrol / OK Go / Silversun Pickups concert at The Burt. Yes, THAT OK Go - the YouTube treadmill guys. It was a fun show... Three honestly great bands (one with a female bass player, which you KNOW I love), and decent seats despite the fact that it was rush seating and we showed up a little late. Oh, and excellent company ;)

Tomorrow begins *early* with a 45 minute drive to an 8 am soundcheck. Craziness. Can anyone say 'early morning Tim Hortons run'?

For the uninitiated, please see below:

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Thursday, April 05, 2007


The older I get, the more I appreciate my parents. That may seem like an obvious statement, but it's something that's so real and true in my life.

My parents are kind of cool. Evidence? Last summer, we invited a whole bunch of my friends to join us at the lake for the weekend, and it was so fun - it's maybe a little bit odd to have your parents thrown in there, just hanging out with everyone, nothing out of place at all. People were laughing, pulling pranks, cooking together, going for walks, having heart-to-heart talks... My friends actually seek out my parents to talk to them, to ask their advice, to pray with them. I hear all the time, 'Lindsay, you have the greatest parents.' And I think I might. Right up there, anyway :)

There is so much change in our family right now, and this time is a real test of true character. What I've learned about my parents in the process is that they are incredibly strong - and that they are really living out the things they taught me about being successful.

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The Cost of War

This story in today's New York Times made me so sad... One kind of war story that we don't usually get to hear. It definitely made me think - but you can read it and decide for yourself.

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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

On Ice

Attention World:
I have 20 tickets for the Moose hockey game on Friday, April 13. I'm selling them for a minimum donation of $15 each (taxes included), and 100% of the money will go to Joints in Motion.

You can pay by cash or by cheque (payable to The Arthritis Society, with my name in the memo line).

Oh, and the April 13 game just happens to be the second-last home game of the season - so the first 10,000 fans will get free thundersticks, and someone in attendance will be walking away with a brand-new 2007 Toyota vehicle.

Interested? Talk to me soon, because these will go fast!

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Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Me Time

This week's big challenge has been insomnia... I absolutely fantasize about sleep, the way a normal girl would about chocolate - or other things.

It's relatively common in people with fibromyalgia - and it's a vicious cycle, where lack of sleep results in more pain and fogginess during the day. The only meds that are available seem to either (a) last so long in the morning that I'm unable to work until afternoon, or (b) increase my pain-related symptoms. And so, I'm left to figure out my own solutions. I actually slept almost 6 hours last night, which was AMAZING - but not nearly enough. I was seriously cursing my alarm clock when it went about half an hour ago.

On a kind of related note, I read another Chronic Babe article today that gave ideas for how to do a better job of fitting it all in and making time for myself. This article has some really awesome suggestions - and a few tips that I'll likely be taking away and trying to incorporate this week.

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Monday, April 02, 2007

Living Unlarge

This month, Azure magazine is featuring a story on Vauban - a nifty little community in Germany. I thought it was super-interesting and so I'm sharing it with you, my loyal blog readers.

Basically, it's a carefully-planned sustainable suburb designed to house 5,000 people. A few features:
- The project's structure integrates legal, political, social and economical actors from grassroot-level up to the city administration.
- All houses are built at least with improved low energy standard (65 kWh/m2a, calculated similar to the Swiss SIA 380/1 standard) plus at least 100 units with "passive house" (15 kWh/m2a) or "plus energy" standard (houses which produce more energy than they need, another 100 plus energy houses are planned).
- A highly efficient co-generation plant (CHP) operating on wood-chips is operating since 2002 and connected to the district's heating grid.
- Solar collectors (about 450 m2 until 2000) and photovoltaics (about 1200 m2 until 2000) will be common "ornaments" on the district's roofs.
- An ecological traffic / mobility concept is implemented with a reduced number of private cars to be parked in the periphery (about 40% of the households agreed to live without an own car), good public transport, a convenient car sharing system and a higher quality of living.
- Streets and other public spaces are playground for kids and places for social interaction.

This project is having a big impact. Already, participation is higher than anticipated. More than 50% of households have decided to go car-free. And it has sparked a friendly 'competition' with neighbouring Freiburg to see which community can come up with better new ideas.

You can read more about it here - or in Azure.

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Potato, Tomato, Church

Friday: Got my nails done at Riverstone (compliments of Ms. Pawich and her generous donation of a gift certificate to the Help Lindsay Feel Better Fund). Had a great experience, as usual. My nails always come out *perfectly* there, and this time was no exception.

Saturday: Went to the bank. Went grocery shopping. Went to pick up my laptop from the repair place. (Basically, a day full of errands and busyness.) Then spent the evening in with Geoff - made dinner and my potluck contribution for Sunday, and watched a movie.

Sunday: Went to church with Geoff (more comments on that below) in the morning. Potluck with friends from church in the evening.

Now the church thing is pretty interesting... Geoff and I believe pretty much the same things, and the churches we attend teach pretty much the same things - but they are so different. My church isn't really charismatic, but it feels completely *crazy* compared to his. It's really by-the-book and we sing all these hymns that I have never, ever heard of before (lead by a song leader).

It's funny because - at the end of the day - no one's right and no one's wrong. It's just two different ways to do church. There are things I like better about mine, and there are things I like better about his. They're just different.

But I must admit... I miss the drums :)

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