Showing posts from July, 2011

Reason #813 Why I Love Living Downtown

    I’m on Waterfront Toronto’s email list and last week, got a notice that Sherbourne Common was officially opening on July 26. With a party and politicians and music, so why not go? Especially since it’s a 10 minute walk from my place. Wandered down there on the weekend by the quest for no work and some peace and took a lot of pictures of a very cool area that I'll post another day. Today is about Tuesday and why it is reason #813 I love living downtown. Sherbourne Common is part of the Waterfront Toronto project that is revitalizing the New Blue Edge     Remember Sugar Beach ? Not just the accessibility work , but taking the Tinks there and having a blast. Sherbourne Common is more than just park – it’s a water sanitation system that takes the area’s stormwater, treats it with UV filtration, sends the clean water – almost potable, actually – into three 9m high towers   Then it falls down into beautiful pools in a curtain and is sent out to Lake Ontario

Climbing Everest with Rheumatoid Arthritis: An Interview with Jeffrey Gottfurcht

    I talked to a really interesting man last week: "Jeffrey Gotfurcht is climbing seven mountains to raise awareness about Juvenile Arthritis (JA), as well as raising funds to make dreams and wishes come true for kids with JA. Jeff has rheumatoid arthritis (RA)." You can read the rest of the interview here .    

Book Review: Forever

    (ed: I have fixed the Dragonisms ) I thought Shiver , book one in the Wolves of Mercy Falls byMaggie Stiefvater may have been the most perfect book I'd ever read. I loved Linger , book two, although not with the same fervor - most likely because living up to perfection is pretty impossible. I have looked forward to Forever , book 3, with the kind of anticipation that actually had me put a note in my calendar on the release day so I'd get it as soon as possible. I may or may not also have repeatedly checked Audible between midnight and 1 AM on July 12, just in case they actually listed it exactly as July 11 became July 12, but they didn't. Might have something to do with time zones or staff not being around listed that such a time, but either way, having to wait until I got up in the morning was torture. So I got it, started reading. Sort of, because in the first couple of days, I had almost Forever avoidance. Reading the book meant being finished

Oh, Brother

   “Is that your brother?” We get this all the time, The Boy and I and I don't know why, except that we are both somewhat rounded and wear glasses. Well, that's not actually true, because I do know why. It's because able-bodied men don't date women in wheelchairs. To be even more specific, women in wheelchairs don't date. People with disabilities aren't usually allowed the imaginary leap it takes for others to see them as three-dimensional human beings who can have all the different kinds of personalities that others do - yes, even be jerks! - or experience the myriad of emotions that come with being a person, even love and desire. Having a chronic illness can make it hard enough to be seen as someone other than the Poor Suffering Martyr, but if you have a visible disability, forget about it. In the eyes of the rest of the world, we are asexual beings, dropping off our wishes for love, longings to kiss someone who knocks our socks off and desire



A Free Spirit with JA: An Interview with Gabi Rojas. And Vitamin D

    We're still celebrating Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month on MyRACentral and I had the opportunity to speak to Gabi Rojas, a dancer: "Gabi Rojas grew up in the circus, traveling through cities in the US, making friends wherever she went. When her mother changed jobs from being a trapeze artist to a dance instructor in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Gabi went from tumbling to dancing and found her happiness in expressing her thoughts and feelings through movement to music. She became known as The Dancer in school and appeared in talent shows. Until the pain started. Until she was diagnosed with Juvenile Arthritis. Until at 13, she had her first full-blown flare and stopped dancing, stopped walking." You can read the rest of the interview here . I also did a post about an interesting study that found that Vitamin D deficiency increases the risk of autoimmune disease and certain cancers .   

In Which I Scare a Dentist

  I'm beginning to see why people get their teeth yanked. It all started last Thursday late in the evening when I cracked a molar eating Oat Squares. Managed to get squeezed in to see my dentist Friday morning and was told it either should be extracted or I needed a root canal and crown. At some point I'll lose the very back tooth behind this particular one because I can't open my mouth wide enough to do any work back there, so I elected root canal and crown to protect some degree of chewing surface. Despite my insurance not covering crowns, but that's what credit cards are for, right? By the way, do not let this story prevent you from buying Oat Squares. It is a lovely and tasty cereal and not at all hard - if I cracked a tooth eating that, it was going to crack soon anyway. I spent the weekend twitching with anxiety – it’s amazing how much work you can get done when you’re avoiding thinking of something – but did check out the endodontist’s website. It briefly



Pros and Cons

I've been commenting lately. More specifically, I have been lusting after an iPhone. I don't know why this has suddenly come over me - they've been around for what, 4 years? and I've never had the urge to have one before, but now, it's preying on my mind. I want one, in much the same way a pregnant woman craves pickles and ice cream at 3 AM. As illogically and undeniable an urge, one that I have been trying to combat for a good three weeks. Hence, I have compiled a list of pros and cons. To whit: Pro I could play Angry Birds every day! Con I would playy Angry Birds every day. To the point of injury. Pro It's a really cool phone. Con That I can't hold to my ear Pro It comes with a loudspeaker! Con I primarily use my cellphone as a watch and really only for outgoing calls. Once or twice a week. Pro I keep seeing things when I'm out and about that I want to tweet Con I don't have the manual dexterity to text/type from a cell phone. That's why I&

The Annual Peony Post

    Ken and I got to talking about peonies the other day. Well, a few weeks ago. About their short-lived beauty, about how they're exuberant and blowsy and really? Sort of vulgar. In the best way possible. And this was just around the time they were in bloom, so the day after, I went peony hunting in my neighbourhood. And found these    And speaking of Ken... he is cycling to Montreal for the Friends for Life Bike Rally again this year. Please consider sponsoring him .   


    Last week, I wrote about an experience at Winners where it was impossible for me to pay for my purchase due to the pin pads at the cash not being accessible. I intended to also communicate with Winners directly about this issue, doing the advocacious thing. Especially as they have a link on their home page to their participation in the Sunshine Foundation Dreams forKids , an organization that works to fulfill the dreams of kids with disabilities and life-threatening conditions. This commitment seemed ironic given the lack of access I'd experienced. Long story short (because you don't need to hear about the time I wasted trying to find out who the head honchos were so I could send them a letter. They’re not listed anywhere at all on their website and when you call them, they claim not to have a CEO. Really??) - where was I? Right. I ended up talking to their Manager of Customer Service, a lovely woman named Charmaine, e-mailed her the blog post and we had a more in-dept

Tinks at Sugar Beach

    The kids (and their parents) visited to celebrate the long weekend. We hung out at mor's first. Liam's obsessed with reading and already reads at a grade 3 level. They just graduated kindergadern. I'm so proud I could burst. then conspired with David about sharks and elephants and which could be invisible. There was some diaagreement. Morgan haslost a lot of teeth lately making her look a little like a tiny, adorable vampire   the we took them down to Sugar Beach for their first exposure to sand. A freighter was being loaded with the sweet stuff and proclaimed something rather obvious. At least I thought it ought to be obvious, but I'm not nautical, so what do I know? the kids had fun with the fountain built their first sandcastle and a great time was had by all      

Growing Up with Juvenile Arthritis

    July is Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month in the US and my first contribution is the story of being a kid with JA: "It started when I was four years old. That deep in the bone pain gnawing at my right wrist, making it difficult to use my hand. The mysterious swelling that appeared out of the blue and disappeared again just as suddenly. And the doctors who didn't believe, so many of them. Except because I was four - and five and six and more - it was my mother whom they accused of making it all up. One even suggested she see a psychiatrist. And then, when I was nine, a doctor took one look at me and told me I had Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis , just like that." You can read the rest of the post here .   

This Again?

    Sometimes, it comes in waves…  One evening , not too long ago, I was captured by the light of the lowering sun and headed out with my camera. I'd already changed into my not-going-out-again evening outfit of red tartan flannel pants and a comfy cardigan (I call it The Lene Andersen Street Urchin Collection). My attendant had left, so there was no opportunity to change, but when the light is like that, you answer the call regardless of attire. After I was done photographing, I decided to swing by Winners - a clothing-and-more store with discounted designer stuff` - as I was in need of a top that looked somewhat professional. And this is where it gets interesting. I poked around in the aisles in the women's section of Winners and found a top and a nice, light cardigan that together with a pair of pants already in my closet might even qualify as an "outfit." Decision made, I head for the check-out line. Once it's my turn, the clerk does what needs to be done

Happy Canada Day!