The Future’s so bright, I gotta wear shades

Often we make friends because there are commonalities among us. We like similar things, our humor is the same or our children are friends.

Being friends because your children are friends isn’t always the best idea. When the kids fight and separate, things can become awkward between the adults if you let it. My Chatterbox had has an ongoing friendship with a gal since kindergarten. This girl’s mom and I have been friends that long as well – actually more so. We would go on girl only weekends, scrapbook together and we even share the same birthday.  Our girls no longer ‘play’ or ‘hangout’ together, and they go to different schools, but that doesn’t stop them for being Facebook friends, or speaking fondly of each other. Friendships change and evolve. I do not have the same friends from kindergarten, nor do I expect my children to have those same relationships. But I do think fondly of some of my childhood pals, and I hope my children do too.


Today on Facebook, all my mom friends were posting first day of school pics and comments about their child toddling off to school. My youngest toddled off to Grade 10 this morning, running to catch the bus for fear she would be late. Her friends showed up 5 minutes later and I sent them towards the bus stop. I paused to think about my first day in High School. I stopped by to pick up a friend and we walked to school together. The weather was similar as it was today, warm and sunny, with wind blowing gently. It was a melancholy day.

To me it is just another sign that my children are growing in independence and I have less hands on time with them. To make up for this, I make sure I am available for when they seek me out to chat. I heard about her day and the comparisons that were made between her and her brother. I heard about her plans to out shine her brother in some areas and make her own mark in others. I definitely have a confident girl. (*Author’s Note: I rarely talk about The Boy, mostly because he forbids me. I respect that. It has nothing to do with favorites – because obviously I am their favorite.)

Conversations drifted from drama and the improv team to cheerleading and running. It looks like she will give the Cheer Team a pass and go out for the Cross Country Run Team.


I have to admit to loving this idea a whole lot. (We ran together last week at a 5k race in Edmonton and are planning a girls trip to WDW together so we can run the 5k together there. It is cool for me to run with my girl, just as cool as it was for me to run with my dad.)



When she was in grade 6 she was determined to be a cheerleader. I think it had to do with the High School Musical rage at the time. She made academic choices to head towards schools with a cheer team that was active in the competitive community, and not just about shaking pom poms for football. She enrolled in a school with a cheer team that consistently wins and travels to the US for competitions. Now that high school has arrived for my girl, she thinks she is a runner.

I like watching her run. She has that Gazelle stride I dream of having. It is something she is good at with little effort, so applying a lot of effort may have her see moderate to high success. I think its great to find something you excel at in school. I wish I had when I was her age, I was a late bloomer instead. That’s okay too.

She may decide that running isn’t for her either. Also okay. That is what high school is all about. Trying new things and figuring out the learning curve. Meeting new friends who share similar interests with you. My friend’s daughter said, “High School is for finding bridesmaids.” Isn’t that the truth! Find great friends, laugh and cry with them. Try new things and fail miserably at some stuff while you succeed at others. Take risks and play it safe, all within the same week.

ChatterBox was ready for bed at dinner time today. She managed to stay awake long enough to enjoy her evening.

It is shaping up to be a fantastic year.


Why did you not tell me there is a Harry Potter Prequel?

Apparently I live on a different planet than most geekdom fans. Although, I can tell you all about the Disney Star Wars sequels and the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special, I had NO IDEA THIS HAPPENED! Why did no one tell me???


This apparently came out in 2008 and I was… hmmm… I was… I have no idea what I was doing but it wasn’t reading the prequel to Harry Potter, that’s for sure because NO ONE TOLD ME! I am pretty sure I wasn’t on Facebook yet and my kids were still young-ish. Had I known, I would have read it immediately. Why you ask? Because Sirius Black is a delicious male character. Not Gary Oldman from the movie because the same sex appeal is just not there. But Sirius Black from the books? Prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

He is the ultimate bad boy with a good heart. Every girl’s dream when I she isn’t dreaming about George Clooney or Mark Messier or Doctors or Mr. Big or Mr. Darcy… anyways….

This prequel was too short, but so smart-ass fantastic, just like you’d expect James and Sirius to be. Only 6 pages long, it left me wishing for more. The worst of it? J.K. Rowling writes a note ” Not the prequel I am working on, but this was fun!’

DUDE! Ouch! I am sure it would be WAY better than A Casual Vacancy, that was just boring. At any rate, I had a taste of what I had been missing for a while. Now back to my regularly scheduled book Solar by Ian McEwan – with a little Pride and Prejudiced on the side.

You can get a free copy of the prequel here.

What does your status update look like?


<—— Facebook Profile Picture

Facebook Status: ChatterBox  is filming a horror movie and is making me scream for the trailer.  My life is a cartoon.


Status updates on facebook make me laugh…well usually. People just randomly post stuff that is mostly meaningless. The posts I like are the ones that are seemingly bad but end up positive with a funny twist. Like this one (I am not posting who wrote these, if they want to come clean they will admit it in the comment section) :

  • Ended up at the hospital yesterday, after my week-long cold wouldn’t go away. Diagnosed with bronchitis. Got some super-terrific cough medicine, and now I feel super. Super! Like everything should end in exclamation points! Sometimes more than one!!

Tell me that isn’t funny? The guy is sick yet he still cracks me up. Now I know he is stoned too!! I now have all the information I need to understand how he feels without feeling depressed in the process. He very clearly articulated the problem.

Lets take a look at this one:

  • So apparently for the last house showing, I left out a bottle of Advil PM and half a bottle of Champagne for the potential buyers to see (two different rooms!). They probably saw that and stopped touring the house, thinking they were going to stumble upon a body.

    Totally should have smooshed up a bunch of pillows under a blanket in bed.

Not only did I laugh, but I now he is trying to sell his house! Very informative yet comical at the same time, win/win. Then there are those statuses that are funny but weird:

  • Wow. The amount of aftershave this guy is packing plus the friction of those corduroy pants equals a damn fire hazard.

Clearly he is on the subway people watching. Those are usually funny statuses.

My point is this, this is facebook people! People come here to laugh and forget about their crappy life for a while. When you post how sucky your life is, we all can relate because our life is sucky too. Save it for work. Crab and whinge to people who don’t care about you, then it doesn’t matter and you get it out of your system. Better yet, flip your status to the positive. Don’t write “I Hate Mondays” Write ” Friday, I miss you”. Says the same thing but has a different tone.

Change your tone and soon your tone changes you. I promise. Plus, I will like you better and really, who doesn’t want more fake facebook friends?

Speaking of Facebook friends…come be mine please pretty please? I will like you back, I promise 😀

The Edmonton Tourist on Facebook

On the Playground with Scarecrow

Every Monday I write for the Scarecrow Festival in support of ABC Head Start. Today’s post can be seen here .

Come take a peak and visit often! Maybe learn a thing or two about preschoolers and yourself! Today’s offering is about the games I played as a child on the playground and how you can thank a Teacher for knowing how to do it!

Think about your life and all the teacher’s you have had. From Grandparents and parents to neighbors and actual teachers. You are able to accomplish so many wonderful things because a Teacher taught you how.

Scarecrow Festival






I am a big believer in giving of your time for social justice causes. Especially if you have a talent of knowelege that will help someone out. This year my time and effort is going towards the Scarecrow Festival. The Festival raises money in  support of ABC Head Start. A Charity very near and dear to my heart. ABC Head Start works with low-income families and their preschool children to achieve success in learning and life.

I am now blog writer for the Scarecrow Festival. I invite you to come and read my weekly post here. I will be there every Monday morning bright and early. Please feel free to like and comment. Then head over to Facebook and like Scarecrow there. You will learn lots about weird scarecrow trivia like this one: In Kojiki, the oldest surviving book in Japan (compiled in the year 712), a scarecrow known as Kuebiko appears as a deity who cannot walk, yet knows everything about the world.

I bet you had no idea scarecrows were that old, did you? Then come to the festival and bring your kids, or come to the Gala and leave your kids at home. Either way, you will have funa nd support a great cause. Changing the world starts with one person…you.

@edmscarecrow  on twitter

Be Mine…or else

Oh Valentines Day, how I do I love thee? I don’t really…

I have one Offspring heartbroken about tomorrow and the other baking cookies for their valentine.  I was told on the weekend that my Valentine is taking me to Cats! All of this for an over rated holiday in the middle of winter.

Back in the OLDEN DAYS called the 1970’s, Valentines were paper with the occasional box of chocolate or flower given out. I had a boyfriend who looked at flowers as a waste of money, so he would give me a plant. I would kill it out of spite. I wouldnt even get a card from him. Then there was the year he had his wisdom teeth removed on Valentines Day…ya I became jaded. He did want to ever give me a box of chocolates, but he did give me an exercise bike. I know…he was a keeper – she said dripping in sarcasm.

I feel for one Offspring and am excited for the other, it made me a little nostalgic for the cards we would make as kids and give out to our pals. I made a card for everyone…sadly I never received a lot in return. That was saved for Leslie, the blonde Goddess of the third grade. Oh if Brad had only noticed me then… Who am I kidding. Short Italian kid who is likely still only up to my knees… but he was cute in a Marty McFly kind of way.

As I was searching for Valentine Cards to make to give to my Valentine, I stumbled up on vintage cards and had a real laugh. Corny with a capital C! That is what makes them so amazing! I am SURE you will find the perfect sentiment for your Valentine!

Valentines for those Domestic Types

Give Your Valentine a Politically Incorrect Card!

Seriously? A Hanging is romantic?

I Hope I win the Hobo!

Nothing Says I Love You more than a good killing

Domestic Abuse Valentine

Sure ya did….”rash” looks like bruises to me!

The Classic Double Entendre Valentine

I am leaving you with the ever Creepy Valentine – from me to you

Because really, who are we kidding, Valentines Day is all about the creepy stalker if you don’t get what you want from who you want it from. I know you will be creeping facebook and twitter to see where your valentine is.

Please be my Valentine…or at the very least Don’t be my Valentine and see if I care.

Happy Valentines Day!

Late to the Party…again

As usual, I am late to the party again.  This happens to me plenty.

I am always late when it comes to seeing newly released movies. I can’t get my act in gear to get to the theatre early to buy tickets to sit in a sold out theatre. Edmonton needs more movie theatres…like one near my house. Not that I think this will help me get there on time to BUY a ticket, I will likely leave later because it is so close to my house thus giving the same results. You would think I would use my iPad app or iPhone app to buy tickets…it never occurs to me. See? Late to the party.

I am always late when it comes to reading new hot buzz books. Why you ask? It might be because I only read the paper on my iPad. I am too cheap to buy the subscription so I miss out on the cliff hanger of the New York Times Best Seller list. The Edmonton Journal is a liberal pacifist paper and promotes lame Canadiana books….not the great ones… So my eyes glaze over when I look at the books with buzz. I had not even read the 20th Century’s top 100 books. I am trying but seriously…who picks these books? Eyes glaze over…. I did start reading Water for Elephants yesterday and !!!!! I cannot seem to put it down! Again…late to the party.

I do not have the iPhone 4Gs. Nope not me… it’s not like I have a flip phone, but I do have an iPhone but its a 3G. It isn’t even a 3Gs. It has reached the point where Apple considers it obsolete and doesn’t support software upgrades any more…don’t EVEN get me started on my alarm clock not working anymore because I can’t do a software upgrade. My F***en phone package wont even talk to me until I am 2 1/2 years into my 3 year contract. That is this summer…hopefully the 5 (rumor has it) will be out. LATE TO THE PARTY AGAIN!

Music is yet another party I am late to – often. I use to be up on all the Bill Board 100. Itunes is now my source. It is not hip and right now music for the most part, especially since the Black Eyed Peas “I got a feeling” is still on their list. My other source are my teens. ChatterBox is better at it than Genetic Offspring. Still…I ask her what that song is and she replies with “I don’t know, I heard it on the radio 2 summers ago” Again…late

I was the LAST PERSON in the WORLD to buy UGGS

I was late watching Oprah’s final episode. I PVRed it and watched it way late. I just recently watched her interview with Michael Jackson, you know the one where Liz Taylor was STILL alive and MJ wasn’t considered an alleged pedophile yet. Once again LATE TO THE PARTY.

I have NEVER had a party where the police are invited, nor have I ever attended one. I did get invited to a couple…but you guessed it, I was late to the party and the police had broke it up already.

I was about 4 years late in joining Facebook, late joining twitter, I do have G+ but not a soul uses it and this week I finally got an invite to Pinterest of course LATE and all I can say is… I need addiction support.

This place is like a magical magazine with just pictures and fabulous stuff I want to look at. I don’t pay for it, I don’t have to smell a multitude of fragrance ads, I can look at hockey, muppets, Tiffany and New York all I want….OR I can look at what my friends like OR I can browse anything I feel like from Sparkly stuff to Vintage Posters. This place is a magical marvel in creating dreams – new ones – or wishes!

For those of you who have never been, this is a screen shot of my Pinterest board:

It is like a bunch of cork boards that you “pin” pictures and stuff too because you like looking at them I have created my own boards “5 4 fighting” – no not the music group – although BEST NAME EVER! (hey mom, 5 for fighting is a term in hockey) Ode to Tiffany – no it isn’t full of diamonds it is full of Tiffany blue and white things. My board is pretty. I have a Practically Perfect board… my Mary Poppin’s Tribute. Vintage stuff, art, travel, you know, all the things that make me full of awesomeness. I have friends who follow my boards and I follow my friends. You can look at anyone’s stuff and pin it onto your board. I just love it. You can open your boards up any time to grab a link to a recipe or song or saying or DIY project or book list of want to reads. Here is my Ode to Tiffany board:

Look at those SHOES! How fabulous are those? I have those pink capris already! sigh This page is too pretty to look at…

I’m off to look at books to add to my list of must reads on Pinterest. If you sign up, follow me and I will follow back. There is a wait list, so you will be late to the party too…

Now that I am dead, facebook can help me disapprove of you and other fun stuff to do posthumously

I have a couple of facebook friends who have passed on. I don’t mean they stopped updating their status’ because they are too busy to care if I know what they ate for breakfast. I mean… they DIED. This may be painful for some of my friends to read. So I will wait until you click over to another blog….it’s okay. I understand – just come back tomorrow okay?

When someone dies these facebook pages just sit there. Sure people come over to it and write things on the wall about missing them, wishing they were here…stuff like that. Unless someone knows your password to delete your page, then what? I have one “friend” who died 2 years ago. It was too painful for me to see their name pop up from the facebook monkey’s suggesting I write on their wall, or suggest friends to them. I had to unfriend them. Weird but true. I know they aren’t offended, they are dead. If they are offended…seriously get a life  haunt me already. Knowing them the way I do, they could care less if I unfriended them.

Mashable posted this

I Die lets “you” post a final message to your wall and loved one when you’re dead. After installing the app, you choose three “trustees” (Facebook friends) who are charged with verifying your death. Users can then record videos or craft any number of Facebook posts to be published posthumously. When your trustees confirm your death, your messages can be published all at once to your Facebook wall or released on a designated schedule.

I think I could have a lot of fun with this! Posting little messages weekly, reminding people things or just looking at them in a disapproving manner and saying – I can see your every move. I know what you are doing in the car when you think no one is watching. This could be the ultimate revenge!

But what would I say? And more importantly who do I trust (that is sure to live longer than me) to post this video to my facebook wall?

Well, first of all they must be facebook friends, so that rules out my Aunt who is on top of all kind of details and would be PERFECT for this job. The fb friends must also be tech savvy, meaning they can add/delete and set privacy settings with ease. This rules out Joe because he can’t figure out how to let me and AnotherGoalSetter see his mobile album on fb. It also has to be someone who – chances are – will live longer than me. They must be younger than me but not too young that it would be traumatic, so not the OffSpring. I think the best choice is The Photographer Farrah Fowler. She is my wingman and co-admin on The Edmonton Tourist Fan Page. She is reliable and loyal to the nth degree. My next choice would be Chicken Hawk. Chicken Hawk would make a list and add me to it. Then a neat check mark would go beside my name and poof! My posthumous video would be on my wall for all to see. My third choice (because Mashable recommends 3 fb friends for optimum performance) is FavNiece. She is smart, younger and knows how to do illegal cool stuff with technology. Excellent choice Edmonton Tourist, if I do say so myself. Note to my wingmen – contact Oracle regularly. He lives in Australia the future and will know when I die.

Now what should me message be? I thought I would record a few samples like “Uncle Bloefeld – it’s TRUE you do need dracma to get passage to Hades” or “the winning lotto numbers are…” or ” up the hill, around the rock, over the bridge under the Lodgepole pine tree, 4th from the left but to the right of the Mountain ash, is a box burried in a hole about 2 feet down”

but I decided the “look of disapproval” would be fitting for most people I know. It can’t be suitable for different events in many different contexts.

What do you think? More importantly, what would YOU say?

WordCamp Edmonton 2011: ET still has a lot to learn!

Today I learned a valuable lesson about sharing. No I didn’t watch Sesame Street, and No, Fred Rogers didn’t teach it to me either. I was at WordCamp Edmonton 2011. The last place on earth I thought I would experience this type of networking and sharing of ideas.

WordCamp 2011 or affectionately known as #wcyeg is a conference set up to support and teach web developers and content users to create amazing  pages using WordPress. While I was listening to the information, my head was swimming with ideas for my mom’s site, my friend’s project he has going on for next year, work and of course my own blog! The potential is limited to what I can hold in my brain or research. I have great research skills…so I would say the potential is unlimited. I am very excited for tomorrow’s sessions! But the camp itself is not what this blog is about.

I was at LEAST 15-20 years older then every single person in that room. My knowledge is not vast in terms of programming and code, but it isn’t lost on me either. I felt like Amy Farrah Fowler in a room full of Leonards. For those of you not in the know…that is a Big Bang Theory reference. I felt smart enough to follow what they were talking about yet out of my element enough that this was entirely new information. HOLY CRAP I learned some cool stuff!! you want to know why? Those fella’s are into information sharing BIG TIME.

I find that comforting. It has been my experience that people of my generation are quite cut throat and not all that forthcoming  when it comes to sharing what you know. People are willing to teach or sell information but not all that keen on sharing information. This may be unique  to this  type of people. Meaning programmers and tech devs (my new jargon! Technology Developers). However, I don’t think this is the case, I think people of this generation are big on sharing information.

These people grew up with the internet ALWAYS being there. It isn’t “new” technology as some of my co-workers look at it. It is as simple to these people as understanding how a microwave works is to people  of my generation. This group share code, music, movies, books, and other information needed by just asking. Someone always  says…Oh I have that, or you can  find that here. That amazed me. That is a huge boost for humanity.

You may be thinking, well ET, if these young whippersnappers who need a shave share everything, how are they ever going to make it in this cut throat world? Good Point people! I’ll tell you how.

This group or generation will share a ton of information and create something that YOU need. They will sell it to you. They understand that Facebook is a new fangle tool that you don’t “get”. In fact, they developed the code and workings for you to use it and eventually “get”. They share it for FREE. So where does the money part come in? In  Advertising and YOU thinking you could use something like that for your business. Well, they aren’t giving it to you, they just shared something quite significant for free, caught your eye, and now you are hooked. Best self promotion ever! Now they are doing it with WordPress. It’s not just for blogs anymore.  Sharing amongst their peers to help each other out, then encouraging and cheering for each other along the way. It was a beautiful lesson in teamwork. Quite

frankly, it is a lesson we all can learn..

Team Work + Sharing = Hope