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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

I am so glad this wasn't taped.

I have finally found some motivation. Yep, nothing like trying to get all dressed up and stand in front a few hundred people to get a person motivated. While I tried to enjoy the evening on Saturday, while getting ready I kept thinking that I hoped that those spanks were going to work their magic. And afterwards I kept thinking it's time to really start working towards some goals.

So this morning I did my first Jazzersize class at Oranj. And yes, at the end I felt like I had accomplished something, and I had finally started, and I didn't pass out, throw up or feel completely out of place. But I think Tim(hubby) may be right, and in certain situations, I think too much. And I am guessing that during hard fitness classes is one of those situations, because my brain was going off in different directions every other minute. So much for the yoga classes and learning to quiet the mind.

The one thought that kept going through my mind was, "If it doesn't kill you, it makes you stronger." It seemed kind of funny to me at the time, since I actually sign up and pay to go to these classes. It's not like anyone is trying to kill me, but at moments, I thought the instructor might have a personal vendetta against us all and really was trying to kill us all, or at least make us pass out for a short period of time.

I learned from one of the other women in the change room afterwards that the instructor, Angel Jutzi is a dancer. I had kind of figured since she and several others had seemed so graceful and coordinated. Unlike myself. I realized today that one side of my body is more coordinated than the other, and none of it really wants to work with me once we got about 40 minutes into the hour long class. And let me tell ya, I kept wondering every three minutes or so, "HOW MUCH LONGER?"

My only motivation was that looking around the room I kept thinking that I wanted to some day squeeze into one of those t-strap shirts that the skinny girls wear, and I also want my butt to some day look half as good as Angel's. Yes, I can dream, leave me alone. I will at least settle for getting into one of those shirts without it turning into a wrestling match, where I am sweaty just from getting dressed.

But in all seriousness, I met some great ladies today who welcomed me to the class and told me their horror stories afterwards, so it was all good. I enjoyed it enough to come home and see when the next one was, and to pick out my class for tomorrow. Thanks to Angel and all the ladies, staff and patrons who are already helping me on this new challenge.

Oh, and it was still a good thing that Angel reminded me to breath again today, so that will be another goal in the coming classes, to try to remember to do that without someone having to tell me. And when she was smiling and encouraging us to do the same, I might have thought the following....for just a second.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

What the hell was I thinking?

When was the last time you agreed to do something and then as the day drew closer you thought, "What the hell was I thinking?" I am totally having that reaction this week. As I shared in the last blog post, I will be co-hosting the Festival of Trees Gala on Saturday night in Fort McMurray along with Kim Rizzi, and Phil Meagher will be joining us on stage to auction off the trees. At the Remembrance Day ceremony yesterday I casually said to Phil that he will be my go-to man if I get stuck, and he laughed. Little does he know that I will be looking to him to provide guidance through out the night.

So many of you have sent such nice messages, wishing me luck, saying how proud they are off me and how we are involved in our community, and lots of advice. Funnily enough, the biggest advice was to either have a drink, or imagine everyone naked. Not sure how well either of those will work for me, as both could make me giggle and blush or both at the same time. I really truly have some wonderful people in my life who believe in me, and are my biggest cheerleaders. Some are friends, and I am lucky enough to have met so many online who are always so happy for us. You will never know how much your kind words, support and your friendships mean to me. Of course, a special thanks always goes to Tim, who not only supports me, but listens to me second guess myself all the time. I saw this quote the other day, and thought of everyone who has been so happy to share in all my happiness over the last year, and of Tim. Thank you each and everyone of you, my goal is to not disappoint anyone on Saturday, including the hard working organizers who believe that I will represent the Northern Lights Health Foundation in a respectable manner. Your trust means so much to me, and I will keep repeating, "Don't screw this up" to myself all night.

Unfortunately, with being so busy with the gala, I will be missing out on another wonderful event in town on Saturday night. I grew up in Mabou Harbour, Cape Breton, and our closest neighbours that were not related were either the Beatons or the Cummings families. Shelley Cummings was and still is one of my oldest and dearest friends. We grew up across the field from one another, worked together, lived together, laughed and cried together and she really is one of the most genuine people you will ever meet. Her baby brother, Eddie, was quite a bit younger than us, so I did not get to know him as well over the years, but I have fallen in love with his talent. On Saturday night, Eddie will be taking the stage at Live Bar and Grill to entertain the crowd, and I am so sad that I will miss seeing him play. If you don't have tickets to the Gala, you really should go check it out. For those who may not know, Live is located under the Keg downtown, and the food is out of this world. You all know I love a good meal out, and I have never been disappointed by the food there, and the service is also always the best of the best. Andy and Tammy are my favourite servers there! I can assure you, the effort will be worth it if you go, and he's coming all the way from Cape Breton, so please make him feel welcome!

Friday, November 7, 2014

A huge community event and another secret revealed!

Last week I wrote about signing up to volunteer, I will be writing about different events each week, but just to mention again, the Syncrude Food Drive, and the Habitat for Humanity both still need volunteers, you can sign up using these links: and

Next weekend is the weekend that everyone in Fort McMurray seems to love, it's the Festival of Trees! It's a great way to kick off the lead up to the holiday season, with events for everyone in the family. The Ladies' Luncheon and The Ugly Christmas Sweater Party are sold out, but the public can go to lots of other events, including the Santa Workshop and the Family Fun Skate. Of course, everyone loves to go down to look at all the beautifully decorated trees and all the beautiful decorations. You can see the full list of events for the entire weekend here:

On Saturday night, the last I heard, there are a few tickets left for the Christmas Tree Festival Gala. You can purchase them here:

This year is the 25th anniversary of the event, and it literally continues to grow every year, with more groups and businesses from the community getting involved. The foundation does so much for our community, and it is always heart warming to see the outpouring from the community in support of their work during this weekend. The programs and services that the foundation provides are far reaching in our community, so the more they are supported, the more the residents of Fort McMurray benefit. I don't want to just mention a few, so you can read all about the great work they do using this link:

This year I am pretty excited to reveal that I will be co-hosting the Gala evening along with Kim Rizzi, who is the General Manager of the 2015 Western Summer Games. And the community minded, Leaf loving, Phil Meagher will be entertaining us while doing the live auction. I am both honoured and terrified by the challenge, and can only hope that I do not disappoint the organizers. Usually if you find me at a gala I am in back cleaning up the plates. And therefore I have to mention, the whole weekend is a success because of the the generosity of the donors, but it runs on volunteers. There are literally more than a hundred people behind the scenes, so if you can't get a ticket, how about donating your time? There are literally jobs for everyone, so sign up the whole family! Here is the link to sign up, please share this blog and encourage your family and friends to get involved. When we moved to Fort McMurray, this was the first event that we got involved with, and we are happy to say that the tradition will continue this year! It's a wonderful way to meet wonderful community members while giving back to the health foundation.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Find out what I did for the first time in 6 years!

So the last few weeks I have been saying I want to start looking after my body again. Yes, it's true, like many women, I make sure the kids have so much physical activity, I encourage my hubby to get to physio, and I just assume my body will do as I tell it. Alas, I haven't lost much weight, and I heard myself saying to Shayleen yesterday, "You can't just expect to learn all your words right away, we will keep practicing and it will happen." And for some reason that clicked with my own body issues. If I don't do something for it to help it be healthy again, it's never going to happen.

Shayleen will be six in February, and it has been that long since I have been inside a gym for myself. SIX YEARS, how the hell did that happen? I can remember when we were young and newly married and I so naively told myself I would never be one of those women that gained weight over the years. I was going to eat right and exercise and all that bullshit we tell ourselves when we are young and have no kids and think we have all the time in the world. What the hell did I do all day before we had kids? I don't even remember, but even back then, I didn't go to the gym, lol...back then I never had issues with my weight. Even after the boys were born, I didn't have weight issues. It was after I lost two babies that I first started noticing that I was keeping extra weight. And more honestly, in the last two years, since Tim's accident I have come to realize that I have some major guilt issues about the fact that I am able to be more active than he can be. So I haven't been. It was about a month ago that I finally admitted this to Tim, and of course, he told me not to be so crazy and that if I wanted to join a gym again, I should. So I started looking. I wanted to find a gym that would be a good fit for the challenges that I would face, where I would feel comfortable, and where I would stay committed to a plan. I was honest with myself while I went looking. I realized that I would not feel comfortable right away jumping back into the things I liked before, like weights and water aerobics. I am just dealing with too many issues to feel comfortable. I finally settled on Oranj here in Fort McMurray, which is just a year old this month, and it is more a studio setting, with dance, fitness, yoga and spin classes.

I had taken a few yoga classes last year and really enjoyed them, so I thought, that will be a good way to start, so this morning I went off to my first class. If someone had been taping it, in maybe a year's time I would laugh, but I thought I would share it all with you so that you could have a laugh, but you could also realize that we all have our insecurities when in settings that are a bit out of our regular routine.

The first thing I noticed when I entered the room was that I had no idea which one was the instructor, they all looked pretty fit, and like they knew what they were doing as most were already laying on their mats and doing some type of yoga pose. Crap, where should I sit? I took a breath and gave myself a pep talk. I picked a spot and rolled out my mat. Two minutes later the tiny little instructor informed me that I had my mat upside down, and wouldn't you know it, I picked the spot right beside the instructor up at the front of the class instead of blending into the back like I had hoped. Crap, crap, crap.

Overall the I enjoyed the class, but every time I caught myself and others in the mirror, I couldn't help but notice how much work I actually have to do. I am embarrassed that I have gained this much weight, but even more so, I realize that if I don't do something the weight could potentially affect my health. And many years ago, after being given a second chance at life, I swore I would never take my body for granted. Yet here I am, I have done everything I swore I wouldn't. But if I don't acknowledge it all, it will never get better. So here I am, laying it all out there, and starting again.

Yes, I was sweating at the end, yes, every time the instructor said to breath she was probably talking to me directly as each time I realized I was holding my breath. And yes, it will take some getting use to, and I forgot my water bottle already, lol. But I did it, I started, and I have so much more to share about what is going on in my life right now! It's an exciting time for me lately, and over the next few days I will tell you some more BIG secrets!