strike feature image

How the Strike Stole Christmas

This post was submitted by concerned Ontario College student Emma Harris.  It was 5 weeks before Christmas, And all through the campus, Not a student was stirring, Not even a hippocampus (apparently). The seasons have changed but the strike has not. With Christmas fast approaching, over 500,000 students in Ontario are waiting to hear a solution to this historic strike. In the weeks leading up to the strike my classmates and I were reassured that “it’ll only last a week or two”; and that they’ve "never lost a semester before”. That is obviously not true now that we are entering…

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gifting basics

Building A Better Wish List

Do you ever feel like Christmas gift giving is going over the top? For me it got to the point where I felt like I was buying and buying and buying but it was not satisfying. It felt hollow to just pile on another present that is nice but not really necessary.  Plus, how many gifts do your kids really use after they open them anyway? My son has a bunch of things in a bag from 2 years ago that he hasn't even gone through since he unwrapped them and took them up to his room.  It makes me sad thinking about…

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a cup of tea

When I was a little girl my mornings would start with a sweet milky cup of tea on my bedside table. I’d open my eyes and see the back of my Dad as he headed to the next of the four kids to tell us it was time to get up for school. I had a white cup with Mickey Mouse on it and I could only drink it out of this cup. I remember sitting up in bed with my covers around me, putting the cup to my lips and tasting the warm sweetness of that first cup of…

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The Core Needle Biopsy I Had to Check for Breast Cancer

Every year for the last 10 years I've been getting an annual mammogram. I started going fairly early on because I had some nasty mastitis issues during my breast feeding years and my doctor wanted to keep an eye on the scar tissue. Then I was added to the breast screening program and it became a regular thing.  The process is pretty straightforward - go in, take everything off from the waist up, have a technician put your boob on the cold glass plates, flatten the plates around your breast and crank it really tight. Turn this way, grab that…

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Very Scary

Are you a fan of scary movies? I am not. At least not any more. Something about being in control of my own life and having kids made me a scaredy cat of all that crazy stuff. When I was "not an adult" and had very little responsibility for my life, I loved scary movies. No longer. I just can't do it. Nope. It's not about being afraid of every day stuff - I can deal with that. It's when my imagination gets engaged and I realize all the things I am SURE are not real suddenly look so real!…

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Easy Cheesy Potatoes

Cheesy Goodness My sister and I have this cheesy potato recipe from our Dad from many moons ago. We make it all the time and bring it to dinners and potlucks. It's the perfect dish to travel with and if you can make it ahead of time, you only need to heat it up right before serving. Highly sought after, this dish is super easy to make.  But I must warn you, if you make it once, you'll have to make it many more times. It's very easy though so you won't mind. A sure winner at all dinners and get togethers. …

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apples Feature

Apples, Apples Everywhere

I’m so excited that it’s 'apple picking season’. I have a TON of memories about apples in my life. Growing up in Ontario I have been so blessed to be able to enjoy this fruit fresh picked every year.  I remember going out with my Dad each year to pick the perfect apple. My three siblings and I would resist going to the apple farm early in the cool autumn mornings but then we wouldn’t want to leave. My dad would force us to get bundled up soon after the new school year started and we’d begin the trek out.…

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Chilly Cozy Time

It's that time of the year where the weather in my area turns the warm muggy days of summer into the chilly, darker days of fall. This is my favourite time of the year and not just because the kids go back to school. It's also the beginning of bath season! With both my kids living away from home for college and university I am finding I have more time to take care of myself. I am a creature of comfort and tactile pleasures - I love the feeling of clean sheets on my bed fresh from the dryer, or…

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empty nest bingeing

Empty Nest Bingeing

Up until a few weeks ago, there would probably have been great discussion about what show we should watch during the infrequent times we'd watch tv as a family. As the kids have grown up, we've spent less and less time together watching movies and shows. It's not that our interests became different - actually we all seem to watch the same kind of shows now that they are older. It's more that we had different preferences for when we watch. I'm more of an early evening kind of watcher whereas my kids prefer to stay up later. empty nest…

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A Hand Up, Not a Hand Out.

Food banks are so important to communities and it's getting to be that time of the year when people start thinking about them. Here is something I bet you didn't know: I will admit that in the past five years, my family has needed help from them. A Hand Up I was in school full time, just starting the second year and bound by contract to complete the course. My husband got laid off from a job he'd had for twelve months and a day with no notice or severance. Right before Christmas. It isn't that we weren't trying to…

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Wandering in Perth, Ontario

When the kids were little we used to drive into a new area and explore it without a plan or a map and we called these trips 'Adventure Drives'. This summer marked the last time my daughter and I would have any adventures together until she returns from her first 18 months of college. We decided to bring back this old tradition to make fun memories to last the whole school year by visiting a few new places around Ontario. One of our stops was Ottawa where we walked our feet off checking out all the anniversary celebrations - stay…

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decisions

Decisions, Decisions…

Have you had one of those nights, or days, when you couldn't decide what to watch? Sometimes we want sci-fi, or comedy, other times something educational. I like that about Netflix - they separate shows and movies into categories to help us decide. We want to make sure that the rare moments we get to sit down together and enjoy some tube time are satisfying, entertaining and useful. I find when I have had a particularly adventurous day and am especially pooched by the end of it that science fiction or adventure is what I look for. I like disappearing…

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look

Look Deep

I just sat and stared into my husband's eyes for 4 whole minutes. It was worth the look. I was surprised that I went through a range of feelings from being uncomfortable, happy, sad, bored, laughing, crying, strange. How bizarre that was.  I thought how handsome he was, how serious looking, this man who usually can't sit still for that long. I was embarrassed that I was crying. I wondered how much longer we had to go. It felt like forever. I wanted to hold his hand. I marvelled that his eyes were able to hold mine for so long. I wanted…

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Unique Tattoos

Ever since I was a young child I've been able to see veins through my skin. Not ALL - that would be gross! Just some veins here and there. I have pale skin. You can see my skin change colour like a chameleon when I am embarassed, have a bit of caffeine, a sip of red wine or now, a hot flash. (Ahem - Tropical Moment.)  It freaked me out to be told my veins were 'spider' veins until I realized one of my favourite superheros was Spider Man. Then it was ok. Sort of. As I grew up I…

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netflix

The Meaning of Netflix

I ran a contest on my Instagram account recently for some free Netflix and the qualifier was to nominate a friend who didn't have it. I thought that would be a tall order - doesn't everyone have it by now? Why would anybody want to have cable with the commercials, delays, and frequent broadcasting disruptions?  I was very surprised to learn that there are people out there who don't have it. Crazy right? I was asked 'What is Netflix' and I had to think about how to properly answer this question. Technically it is a service that allows you to…

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