Be Amazing

images (3)I follow  my kid’s school on twitter to get regular updates and happenings going on in and around the campus because here is a surprise, I don’t hear it from him until 35 seconds before I need to do something about it. Like bake for the theatre cast rehearsal.

The thing I like about those tweets is every morning they end with “Go out and be amazing today!”

I like that sentiment.

Last week was a hard week emotionally for me. I took the tragedy in Boston hard. I just found it profoundly sad that innocent people were hurt or killed and the bombers had a sucky social life and blamed Boston. I am not a vindictive person, perhaps it is my Canadian upbringing, but wow – that kid put the gun in his mouth on an apparent suicide attempt and karma still makes him face the consequences. I think about how his life might have been awesome last Monday had he did something different.

I am currently reading Life after Life by Kate Atkinson. The premise is the main character dies, the world goes dark and rewinds to the moment before her death with things changed slightly to prevent the death. It is an interesting concept. I think it will generate great discussion as to what moment could you change to slightly alter your life.

What would I do?

Well, I wouldn’t change anything I did last week. The events made me think about my life a little bit harder. I spent time with friends, I ran 33km, I had lots of mom time with my kids, I had a lovely dinner with the trusty steed, I made plans with dear friends, I spoke up when I felt hurt and did nice things to make others feel good. I was grateful, appreciative and thankful for my life events last week.

Weather was another story – But there was sunshine today! That always makes me smile.

So heading out into the new work week tomorrow, I am going to depart this little life changing tidbit:

Go out there and BE AMAZING this week!




Question: what is your existential crisis right now ? Seriously – I’m good, nothing to look at here. Keep moving.

Existentialism in Calvin and Hobbes
Existentialism in Calvin and Hobbes (Photo credit: Lst1984)

I had a message in my twitter feed last week that asked me this:

Question: what is your existential crisis right now ?

I looked at it and thought about it. I understood what it meant, Wikipedia explains it as this:

An existential crisis is a moment at which an individual questions the very foundations of his or her life: whether his or her life has any meaning, purpose or value.[1] This issue of the meaning and purpose of existence is the topic of the philosophical school of existentialism.

I was immediately offended. Why would someone think that my life doesn’t have purpose. Or anyone’s life for that matter? We all have a purpose, good, bad or indifferent. It doesn’t have to be job related, it could be relational. The fact of the matter is it is personal. Not something that needs to be shared – unless of course THAT is the purpose!

My answer to this question was simple:

I don’t question it. I know my life has meaning and purpose.

Some-days it is more obvious to me than other days, but purpose is there and I don’t have to look very hard. I know this question was meant to be well meaning and a conversation started on a philosophical level, but dude, I no longer need to analyze everything to death. It’s okay not to know the answer to every question. The hard part is accepting that. That could be your current purpose.

Tourism straight from my geeky dreams: Commander Chris Hadfield tweets from space

NASA Astronaut Chris Hadfield
NASA Astronaut Chris Hadfield (Photo credit: gnews pics)

Lately I have been astounded by technology.  Not that I am agog with the instant nature of social media. It is annoying to me that the ‘news’ is already old by the time I hear it. I rarely listen to it any more. Social media takes care of that for me. What I do miss is the in depth reporting that use to happen. Everything now is done in 30 second sound bites. Reading and learning about issues has become something of a dinosaur.

What does amaze me are tweets from Chris Hadfield LIVE FROM SPACE! This is stuff of my geeky dreams. A tourist destination to write home about! I know there are several of you who don’t use twitter or ‘get the point’ of twitter. It is about who you follow and what you search. I don’t banter much on there because A) my favorite funny friends aren’t there – they are on facebook and B) I am caught up reading news or events I don’t hear about on TV news, unless it is the BBC (for the record, BBC is proper news). Some days I prefer to read about what other readers are reading, or I like to laugh at Wil Wheaton who is hilarious, or find out about comic con. I admit to following geeks, humor and running stuff, but the other day I saw this tweet from William Shatner:


As my son would say, “I had a TOTAL NERDGASIM!” First of all a Canadian Astronaut was tweeting random stuff FROM THE SPACE STATION! Are you kidding me? How cool is that? He isn’t on Earth. Think about that, the DUDE is ORBITING the EARTH – not from a different country, he was in the space between the EARTH and the MOON. If that doesn’t impress you, then you need to think about why. Come ON! SPACE! Okay… then he clearly watched enough Star Trek to know the details to tell Captain Kirk. Classic Canadian Humor. Wiseass to the nth degree!

Then the next day two very cool things happen. 1) Commander Chris Hadfield tweets the following:

I’m proud of being Canadian, but after yesterday’s twitter conversation am starting to question wearing this red shirt.

For those of you not in the geek circle, Wear a read shirt on Star Trek means certain death. They are ALWAYS the dudes on the ‘away mission’ that no one knows and had never seen on the show before AND they are wearing RED -always… well in the original series. This has become the secret inside joke, many other movies and shows make reference to it. No, really they do. Watch for it.

Then later that day, Commander Hadfield was in the SPACE STATION orbiting over Canada and he takes THIS picture:

Edmonton from the Space Station

This is Edmonton people! This isn’t black and white photography, this is colour. White stuff is snow, grey stuff is snow, dark stuff is river and ice. The grey stuff is delicious! HaHa … actually it is a sand/salt mix so I can drive around the city. If you squint you can see me running outside to wave at the Commander.

Commander Hadfield tweets daily. His adventures are incredibly interesting and you can talk to him yourself if you set up a twitter account. You can also visit his Pinterest page where he posts all his photos taken from the Space Station.

45 years ago the space program was new and fledgling. This was in my life-time. Can you just imagine where the future is going to take us? The geekness of my dreams may actually come true.

Thank you Commander Chris Hadfield, and may the force be with you or Live long and prosper or beware of the Bad Wolf. Take your pick, which ever is your favorite. Real space heroes get to choose their own favorite quotes.

Follow Commander Hadfield on twitter @Cmdr_Hadfield or click here on Pinterest 

I Won Again? I Must be Dying and No one Told me

I have bad news, or good news depending how you look at it. I won a contest. That usually means great things to people. When I win, great doom usually ensues. So far so good and nothing bad has happened…yet. I will keep you posted though..

To see the results of my winnings….click here.The prize was a virtual trip to South Africa. Very Cool! Unlucky me!

If nothing bad happens, I’ll be back tomorow….If I am dead…I will be otherwise engaged.

Happy Thursday!

Are You Having Fun Yet?

Hmm… Are you?

Today I was in a session where we talked about a myriad of things. One being FUN. When I started my journey I knew I was lacking in the fun department. I set out to take risks and try new things. I forgot to add HAVE FUN. Fun and Funny are not the same thing. I make people laugh all the time. It is hard to make me laugh, and if you can, you are amazing… just saying.

Fun takes the chore out of chores. When big changes happened at work in November, I asked Mrs. Bosslady if the new person they were bringing in was fun. She wouldn’t answer that question. To her the important part was could she do her job well. I had years of people just doing their job well. I wanted some fun for a change dammit! Interesting that I inherently knew 3 months into my journey that I needed fun in spite of the fact I didn’t put it on my list. At work I had a few people who were fun but they were always just out of my reach. I could laugh with them sporadically but never got to work with them long term. FINALLY I have the opportunity to work with FUN people! WOOT!!! BOOOOYA! So, Mrs. Bosslady, are they fun? Yes ET they are fun! YIPPEE!  Check that off my list, work is becoming fun again…first time in decades.

Moving onto my day to day life…

Is that fun? Ummm no. Well, it wasn’t.

Chatterbox and I went out and tried new things, we had fun doing that. In fact we still do. Best of all, I know her so much better than I did before and an added benefit is she is FUN AND FUNNY! So random weekend things are fun with Chatterbox.

I met some pretty amazing people here on this blog, on Facebook and on Twitter. They are FUN and often FUNNY! So again, huge bonus because I get both for the price of one! I would chat with people, learned amazing things, found common interests, cheered for the same hockey teams, exchanged Disney Tips, I loved every minute of that. That for me was FUN!

Then I went off and met someone who told me I needed to nurture myself. That meant I needed to stop putting myself last on the list and start prioritizing FUN. Okay, I could do that…but I felt guilty. This person gave me permission to have fun, in fact it was Doctor prescribed. This is what they taught me:

  • Fun gives you more energy than it takes.
  • Giving up an enjoyable activity REDUCES your energy in the long run
  • Fun activities reduce stress and depression


So with her permission I went out and found some fun. I went to the Art Gallery, I went out for dinner a few times with my girls from work, I had friends over for a laugh, I watched movies curled up on the couch, I played rockband with my children, I swim – I swim and find that FUN! But tonight I have a new challenge.

I need to name 5 activities that I use to enjoy but haven’t done in long time. This one is harder. I can think of fun things I want to do but there are road blocks in the way. For example: I want to have fun in New York City, but can’t do that yet. I want to go to a New York Ranger Hockey Game wearing a Mark Messier jersey, I can’t do that yet either. I want to go to Walt Disney World as a DVC member, can’t do that either. I want to have season tickets to the Oilers in a Sky Suite box, I can’t do that yet either. Wishful thinking is not getting me anywhere, I need to be practical.

Where was I? Oh ya, 5 things I USE to do that I found enjoyable.

  1. Air guitar in front of my mirror. Oh BOY that was fun for me! I could give that a try again.
  2. Go to a chick flick with a bunch of girls. I TOTALLY NEED TO DO THAT ONE!
  3. Talk for hours on the phone with my best friend…I should give that one a try too!
  4. Have a shopping day with my mom, gran and aunty. I would love that one too!
  5. Karaoke with my sister…HEY SISTA’ invite me over for Karaoke!!!

All of those doable, all of those are fun. I need to get started. What is your 5?

I’ll read your answers later, Billy Joel is inviting me over for a bottle of red and I need to grab my air guitar.

Are you Blogvoyant?

How many of you can say you know a Blogvoyant Ninja Oracle? I can and, because I do, I have the most unbelievable story to tell. Only the unbelievable part is, it’s ALL TRUE. Cue the Twilight Zone music please.

Yesterday I received my blog subscription in the mail to Adventures and Insights, smiled as usual because I have come to enjoy commenting on this blog. I know, fairly selfish on my part. However, in my defense, it is a great blog worthy of commenting. I opened the email, read the blog and this part really interested me:

It seems that I have some kind of power over WordPress.

The strongest evidence of this comes from yesterday’s post. You’ll remember that it was about the fact that there aren’t many blogs about space and time travel and other such sciencey things. Did you also take a moment to check out today’s Freshly Pressed?

There it is, right there. WordPress bends to my will. A Freshly Pressed post from a science blog. About space and spacey things! Using a picture I also saw in the interwebz last night as I compiled my post about the lack of space blogs.

The link above will give you the entire post. He goes on to say just comment bla bla bla and you will be Freshly Pressed! So I made a humorous little comment on being a Blogvoyant Ninja Oracle. (Read an earlier post by him to find out why he is a Ninja. I call him an Oracle because he lives in the future and knows what is going to happen. He is quite accurate and once provided me with the winning lotto numbers. Although that didn’t work out so well for me because someone else actually owned them. He failed to share he was a thieving oracle. BUT THAT’S OKAY! He is still learning to adjust to his great power.) For some unknown reason my comment crashed and wouldn’t post. Suddenly, 22 email comments show up in my in box. I thought…odd, the most comments I receive is about 10 or so. Then 40 more showed up and I had a feeling I was Freshly Pressed! I wandered over to the main page and there I was. My Blogvoyant Ninja Oracle did it! He does indeed have the power.

If you don’t have a Blogvoyant Ninja Oracle, I do recommend getting one. They are quite marvelous really. However, FIND YOUR OWN! This one is mine and I found him first. *but please feel free to subscribe to his blog and be his grasshopper*

So great Blogvoyant Ninja Oracle, thank you for using your powers for good. The next time you are in Edmonton, Timmy’s is on me.

Where is a Swat Team When you Need One?

I was standing in line waiting to vote today and I heard the instructions informing me how to fill out the legal declaration. These were the instructions from the incredibly nice and patient lady who met me at the door: Fill out your name, your address then READ this section and DO NOT SIGN! You may sit at the table over there and fill it out. Then proceed to the line and give the declaration to a person sitting at that table. This is a seven step instruction. Perfectly reasonable for an adult who can read English or French who has reasonable intelligence. No one of reasonable intelligence was in front of me, or possibly behind me.

I got in line AFTER filling out my declaration only to discover the couple in front of me had not filled their paper out. I heard the nice lady explain to them what to do then she asked them “do you understand” They both nodded yes. While standing in the line they were not suppose to be in, they were looking around and noticed people sitting at the table. The gal turns to me and says “what are they doing?” I reply “filling out the paper you have in your hand” “What paper?” was her reply. Seriously? Isn’t there an IQ test people should take before being allowed to vote? So they left. I moved forward towards the beginning of the line. Remember when the nice lady said “DO NOT SIGN IT!”?

The man in front of me signed it before he got to the table. Not the correct action for the task at hand. He had to re-do his paper. With ANY legal document, you need a witness to your signature or it is not valid. Secretly I was hoping for a swat team to sweep down from the ceiling at hold him at gun point for document violation. But I live in Canada, packing heat and asserting authority is frowned upon in a community school. I think I watch too much Hawaii Five-O. Book him Dano! They let the guy re-do his paper without much fan fare. I was very impressed the the patience the people have to be able to deal with the non listening voters. Kudos to the electoral officers! You have a mind numbing job.

Why is it so hard for people to listen to the instruction and then follow through with them? I must admit I will tune out people if they drone on about something I don’t find interesting. But I will say, “sorry I wasn’t listening because I am bored”. My Dad you just hand me stuff to figure out because “I can’t be bothered Rob, you are good at that stuff anyways”. Fair enough, at least he is honest! It really frustrates me when people complain about something then don’t offer a viable solution, here is my dad’s solution. Everyone receives an electronic bracelet at birth. The person giving instructions has an electronic device in their pocket that sends out a current that snaps the non listening person into attention. Problem solved. I really want swat teams to repel down packing heat. I know that is not a viable solution though. So here is my viable solution: It is as simple as consequences fitting of actions. Every time an adult does not listen to instructions given in public, they must give me five. If you don’t work in preschool or kindergarten you may not know what this means.

Give me Five

1. Sit criss cross apple sauce in the center of the room

2. Your hands are folded neatly in your lap

3. Your lips must be quiet

4. Your eyes must be on the adult giving instructions

5. You must use your listening ears.

Every 5 year old knows how to do this. They use it to hear multi-step instructions. If they don’t understand, they raise a quiet hand for clarification. Simple. You know this would only ever happen once, then the adult would start listening to instructions in public. We are an information society. You must pay attention to the world around you, it provides ques and clues to what you should be doing. Better yet, use the default and let your children listen for you. They are practiced Professionals and are quite capable. I know it is hard to release the power and give it to your children. I did it in Europe. I made Genetic Offspring be in charge of the map. It was a huge wonderful risk for me. One that I am going to take more often.