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Thursday, February 14, 2013


So I have good news, and bad news.  The bad news is that we are going to miss the biggest production the Keyano Theatre has ever put on, when over 100 people are going to be in Hometown The Musical starting this weekend.  I have been looking forward to it since it was first announced last spring, hmm, wonder if someone will tape it for me?  LOL... it should be an exciting, fun show.  The good news is that because we can't go, we have tickets to give away!  And I have always wanted to try a contest on this blog, as I love contests, and what can be more fun than giving something away?

I have two tickets, and they are for next Friday,February 22, at 8p.m. at Keyano.  So here is the catch, you have to be in town, or you have to know someone who is in town that would like to go.  All you have to do is send me your name, and I will put them all in a draw on Monday at lunch time, and get Shayleen to do the draw by video so everyone can see it was done blindly.  So if you have a son or daughter working out here, or a best friend who needs a great night out...enter!  You never know...I entered a contest for Valentine's Day, and won, so tonight Tim and I get supper for two at a great local restaurtant, and a jacuzzi suite for the night, after Matt Minglewood at the casino of course! 

You can either leave me your name on the blog wall, or send me an email at:  And good luck!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Ever feel like you run through a day?

Lately with the kids schedules, and hubby being back to work, and just life in general, I feel like I get up in the morning, and run through the day.  Yesterday at 5p.m I realized I had 45 minutes to pull off supper, finish writing a column, change, put some make-up on, and get out the door to do pick up three children at different spots, do my weigh in, drop the kids off at cadets and go to a meet and greet for some people who were in town.  And today is worse, lol.  I love when the experts say to fit in time for yourself, and exercise, because some days I literally forget to eat. 

So, I had set a goal for myself that I would lose 9 pounds before Matt Minglewood, and I gave myself 4 weeks to accomplish that, and I failed by .2 of a pound.  I was suppose to lose 1.8 this week, but only pulled off 1.6.  But I still lost, and I am feeling the difference, in my clothes, and in my attitude.  I feel like "I got this" this time around.  I want to feel better, I want to have more energy for my busy days, and I have a few personal goals as well.  The first is that I want to put my wedding rings on again, and I am ready to do whatever it takes to slip them back on my hand.  So last year before Christmas I was sitting at my highest weight ever, 232 pounds.  Last night I was at 195.6, so the next goal will be to get out of the 190's....only 5.6 pounds!  I can do that!  I have to break it down in small goals for myself, or the numbers seem too huge...if I had started out thinking that I needed to lose 60 pounds, I would have been overwhelmed.  And really, it was more the stress, braces and Tim's accident that helped me drop the first 30 or so.  It really has only been since Christmas that I started making some lifestyle changes to help me feel better.

I hope you are all still on track, I can't believe how fantastic some of you are doing...18 pounds in 4 weeks, 15 pounds from a busy mom, 14 pounds from someone who has not lost any weight in 15 years, I am loving the stories, and draw inspiration from them all.  If you are interested in joining us on Facebook, add "Losing it from Fort McMurray to Nova Scotia"!

This is going to be my big challenge week, and I know it!  Matt Minglewood will be in town, and to get a table, we will have to be there early, which means we will eat there, and have a few drinks with our friends.  My goal is to dance off every extra calorie I consume, so I will see you on the dance floor!  

Sunday, February 10, 2013


I have a weird memory, really, I don't forget anything.  But it also is inlaid with songs, so when I hear a song, a memory from 20 years ago will pop into my head and I can be right back in the moment.  It is fantastic as it helps me remember many wonderful memories from over the years.  My husband has a horrendous memory, and I often joke that he just keeps me around so I can tell him about his past life.  In preparation of Matt Minglewood coming to town this week, I have been listening to every single one of his cds and tapes(yes, I still have some of his tapes), and the memories are overwhelming.  But when I think of Matt Minglewood, Valentine's Day and a snow storm the thoughts of all my girlfriends over my life are the ones that come back the strongest.  Yeah, I never said I was normal.  So my love note today is going out to all my girlfriends, past and present and the good times we had, the good times to come, and all the listening you did over they years.

Where to start?  As women, we all have wonderful friends, and they all come and go in our lives, so my challenge to you this week is to acknowledge some of them that you may have not seen for years, but who you would love to talk to or see.  You know the ones, the girlfriend who when you see each other again you fall into each others arms, and laugh, and cry, and wonder why you don't keep in better in touch.  Sadly, I have quite a few of those girlfriends, distance keeps us apart, and lack of time keeps us all busy.  We say we will keep in touch, and then the phone calls dwindle, but if something happened, they would be the first to call and it would be like no time at all had gone by.

Picture is 24 years ago, and I am just about to turn 16.  It is Valentine's Day, and the weather forecast does not look good.  It is also Carnival Week in Port Hood, and I am determined to go to a coffee house, or some such thing on a Thursday night.  I don't remember how we got there, but Shannon MacNeil(now Beaton) was somehow talked into being my sidekick for the night.  Someone dropped us off early and we went to babysit first with my other best friend at the time, Elaine Murphy(MacDonald).  By the time we got back to Elaine's to get ready for the night, we found out it was cancelled, the roads were all ice.  And when I say they were all ice, I mean that we could barely stand.  But we somehow convinced Elaine's brothers to take us home and it took them a half hour just to get the truck out of the yard.  Shannon had white pants on, and we both had on the suede boots that were so cool at the time, you remember the ones that laced up and were as thin as anything?  Yeah, those.  There was no way the boys would make it up my lane when we arrived in the Harbour, and we convinced them that we would be fine walking up.  Well, by that time it was raining, kind of like sleet, and there we were on Valentine's Day, holding each other up, trying to find a piece of gravel on the "big hill" so we wouldn't slide back to the bottom.  By the time we got to my parents house, we were frozen to the bone, and exhausted.  But my god, we laughed, and when she reads this, she will laugh again.  What the hell were we thinking?

Elaine was beyond far my best friend through high school.  She was the first friend I had that made me voice my opinion, even when I didn't want to.  She shared my love of reading, and we had the best con versations, hands down.  But we could also be together, and we were together a lot, and not say a word, and we were comfortable with that.  When we went our "separate" ways at college, I thought my heart would break, we wrote each other every day.  I am hoping to see her this summer, and if I do, it will be the first time in about 12 years.  Holy, where does the time go?  Wow, I didn't realize it was that long.

Colleen MacDonald-Novak and I went to more Matt Minglewood dances together than I can even remember.  But now sadly, it has been about 16 years since the last time we went to any dance together.  The last one was in Port Hood, the long weekend of May in 1997, I was eight months pregnant, and when Matt started playing Whiz Kids, we still got up and danced together.  Two best friends who never care what others thought when we were at Matt, we were there to dance, and have fun, and we always did!  I must have looked cute with my huge belly ready to pop dancing like a fool, but we danced like no one was watching.

Tracey MacDonald(MacDonnell) and Shelley Cummings worked with me, and grew up in the Harbour.  My god, all us girls from the Harbour were so proud to say we were from there.  We have history that no one can take away, and we laugh at silly things that even if I told you the story, you would not think it was as funny as we always do.  We "get" each other, and no matter how much time goes by, we literally can send a message, have a visit, or make a phone call and it is like we have never stopped.

Tammy Kersten was my absolute best friend, rock and all round amazing person in my life after I had kids.  I actually thought about not leaving Cape Breton because I was going to miss her friendship so much.  I can remember her telling me, "You will make other friends in Fort McMurray, and they will be as good or better than me." So I moved, and at first I called her religiously, and we still knew every aspect of each other's lives.  But life started taking new turns, and I would forget to tell her some news.  But I still love her fiercely, and we won't be spending Valentine's together this year baking for a class party, but the next time I go home, you can bet that we will be together, and I will say, I wish we could be together more.

And now my life is different again.  Again last year, I "lost" my best friend.  Tim's sister, Michelle was my Fort McMurray rock, we celebrated with the kids during pretty much every holiday/event, and I called or texted her about the most mundane things that would get on someone else's nerves.  When she left, I had a huge gaping hole in my life, that I still have not gotten use to, and I will always miss sitting on the deck in the summer evenings with her.  She, like Tammy told me I would be fine, and I am, but the change was difficult.

I never realized I had someone standing beside me the whole time, listening to me cry about losing Michelle and how much I missed her kids.  It was really not until Tim's accident in July when my eyes popped open, and I realized that Kerin MacLean had quietly stepped up the plate of putting up with my insane way of being a friend...she knows I hate the phone and has learned she will get a better response by texting me...we can go a week without chatting but we know what is going on with each other.  She did things during those first few weeks of Tim's accident for me that I did not even realize I needed.  She lent a hand however she could, but even more importantly for me, she gives me a total kick in the arse when I need it.  You know you have a best friend when they say, "What the hell are you doing?" or, "You need a break."

I am the first to admit I am not an "easy" friend.  I can be weird in my ways, I don't like the phone, like I mentioned, I don't like to talk about being sick when I am sick, and I am constantly on the run with the kids, and generally don't take time to do girl evenings, even though I love them when I am usually forced to take one.  But I will tell you one thing, I treasure my friends, and what they have done with me, or for me over the years.  I still love the ones I don't see anymore, and still consider them wonderful friends.

Did any of my memories remind you of some of your friends?  I hope you call them, or send them a message this week.  I will be going with some of my girlfriends to the casino, and I hope we make more great  memories, it will be my first time without Michelle out here for Matt, so I will be thinking of you girl, and still missing you! 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

YES! I am from Mabou!

Okay, so I debated writing something about Mabou and the news in all the media all day.  And since you all know I will write about anything, I thought I would throw my two cents out, not that even that is worth anything!
Do I know the MacNeils?  Yes, do I know them well enough to judge them, and the situation they are in?  Absolutely not!  All I know of the situation is what I have read in the media.  And let me tell you, the media is not always reliable or truthful, and it is really good at only telling half the story.  I have read nothing balanced.  I have read that something happened on the plane they were on, perhaps they were smoking, I don't know, as I was not there, and have not talked to the MacNeils myself.  Anyhow, the plane was diverted to Bermuda and they were detained for not following lawful commands, and smoking on a plane.  Granted, not the best decision they have ever made, and I am sure they will be the first to admit it.

But come on!  Stand up and take a bow if you have never, ever made a stupid mistake!  Mabou is use to media attention mostly for our musical talents, the likes of John Allan Cameron, and of course the Rankin family have given us great pride over the years.  So we may not like the negative press.  But one incident by one family does not a family, or community make!  I would be more humiliated if our tiny village turned their backs on the MacNeils than whatever they did on one flight.  They did not abuse their children, they did not commit a murder, they did not abandon an animal, so let's get a little grip.  It is unfortunate that other's travel plans were disrupted, but in the grand scheme of life, they could have done so much worse.

I am sure Father Angus will have a little something to say, with a joke added in on Sunday, and I will leave their penance to him.  Because as Father Angus knows, I am no saint, so I have no stones to throw.
Am I from Mabou?  Yep!  Do I know the MacNeils?  Yes, damn straight, and they are good people and I know when I was living in Mabou and called David to say I was out of gas, he would have come to lend a hand, and if I met Darlene at the store, she always asked how I was doing, and had a smile on her face.  I  hope they do not pay for this mistake for the rest of their lives, as no one is deserving of that.  If you see them, say hello from me, and tell them Mabou loves them.  And thanks to Steve Rankin for the beautiful picture, go check out his Facebook page, at Steve Rankin Photography!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Monday, and it is weigh in time!

So I am starting to think that the thought of having a few thousand people checking in with me on Mondays to see if I gained or lost weight is a good thing!  When I first thought about putting it out there and then "telling" on myself every week I was not sure if I could do it, but you know what?  Something has really clicked with me this time, and I am not sure why, but it has, and the thought of eating a quarter pounder and fries almost turns my stomach.  I say almost because I am sure there will be a day when I have a craving and I am running late, and it will be easy.  But for tonight...I am still down, I dropped another two pounds this last week!

My initial goal was to lose 9 pounds by the time Matt Minglewood came to town.  So this means that I have to lose 1.8 pounds this week before my weigh in next Monday.  And then I am going to buy myself some new pants and boots to wear to see Matt!  So there is my goal for the week, what's yours?  Are you going to start your weight loss journey with me and all the others who have joined our facebook group, "Losing it from Fort McMurray to Nova Scotia"?  I saw a little motivation poster the other day and all it said was, "If you don't start today, you will still be the same in a year."  Well, hopefully in a year's time I will be down about another 30 pounds, and feeling healthy and comfortable in my body.  Oh, and thanks to everyone who is sharing their journey with me, it feels like we have our own support group and I love how we all give support, or a kick which ever is needed.

Oh, and I almost forgot, I got the most amazing app on my phone, and it has made my lifestyle changes so easy!  It is called My Fitness Pal, and you can put whatever food in the world you are eating, and it will show you the calories, and track them for you.  You can also keep track of your water, exercise, and your friends!  I love how it tracks my calories, and if I am running out for the day, it motivates me to do some exercise.  If you have a smart phone and are trying to lose weight, this app is a must!  K, have a great week!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Honey lime Salmon with warm black bean and corn salad

This was supper tonight, and I must say it was both delicious, and filling!  I did not add as much spinach as was called for in the recipe, and you could adjust the other ingredients as well(mom would leave out the onion).  And I used can summer crisp corn.  So here it is!

    2 T. Olive Oil
    1 Med. Red Onion
    2 large Garlic Cloves
    1/2 tsp. Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
    1 tsp. Ground Cumin
    3 T. Honey
    1 tsp. Chili Powder
    7 6oz. Slamon Fillets
    1 Box Frozen Corn kernels, defrosted
    1/2 C. Chicken Broth
    1 15 oz. can Black Beans, drained and washed.
    3 T Fresh Cilantro
    6 C. Baby Spinach
    2 Limes


In a skillet over medium heat with 2 T of the olive oil add the onions, garlic, red pepper flakes, and cumin. Cook for 3 minutes.

While the onions are cooking combine in a small dish the juice of 1 lime, honey, and chili powder. Add the salmon and toss to coat thoroughly. Place on a hot grill and cook until flakes with fork.

Once the onions are cooked add the corn and cook for 1 minute. Add the chicken stock and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the balck beans and cook unitl the beans are just heated through. Remove the skillet from heat and add the juice of 1 lime, the cilantro, and spinach. Toss to wilt spinach and then taste and adjust the seasoning.  Serve the salmon on top of the warm black bean salad.