Aug 29, 2014

KIDS | Off to the Races

VIDEO | Going Bananas

Ever wonder how that banana you're enjoying got to your local grocery store's produce department?  This video from Dole, shows us the process.

Aug 28, 2014


It's funny how one thing leads to another sometimes. After watching So You Think You Can Dance, I was hooked on a song used for a Bollywood routine. I went on You Tube and came up with a few great songs by Ranbir Kapoor.

Judging by this striking performers credentials [should you Google him ] and you will see he is both a musician and popular Indian actor.

There's no shortage of songs by Ranpir Kapoor on You Tube and their infectious mix of upbeat funk, club and Indian pop is hard not to move along to.

I particularly love this video for a few entertaining and enlightening reasons. Rampir can really shake what his momma gave him and misses no opportunity to wiggly and gyrate throughout the video. Then there's the two -count them TWO - love interests, both of which he woes, with an interesting outcome.

Looking for something a little different than what you may usually listen to or watch? Give this a try.


Aug 27, 2014

Aug 25, 2014

Aug 23, 2014

KIDS | Munchkins

Neil Blythin entitled this pix of his kids William and Keira "Cooking Marshmallows for the Munchkins" when he posted it on facebook.

William and Keira aren't the only "munchkins" in the Blythin family.  One year old twins Evelyn and Rachel may be too little to enjoy gooey marshmallows off the fire right now, but soon enough, "Fire Master" Neil will surely be roasting the fluffy treats by the dozens.  LOL!

Aug 21, 2014

ART | by Angela O-Neill Whiteley


We're used to seeing our Nova Scotia pal Angela O'Neill-Whiteley's artwork on display on living canvas. That's because most of her talents are painted on to her body and those of family, friends and clients looking for a unique way to express themselves.

Her body art has become a major hit.

But we found this pix on Angie's facebook and as you can see, Ang is just as skilled using a more traditional media....flat canvas.

Wow, Angela, you are indeed the Queen of wait, that's what I sometimes call myself...LOL...well I guess I will surrender the title to you.

Aug 20, 2014

KIDS | Keeping Up With the Quinlan's

If you happened to stumble across the lemonade stand above, could you possibly walk by without making a donation?

With a little help from the grown-ups, Jodi Quinlan's daughter Morgyn and her little friend Olive, set up this lemonade and lollypops stand on Keith Street in Niagara Falls, one day this Summer.

Although a bit young to be a sales girl, Morgyn's little sister Moli (top right) was on hand to add that extra "cute factor" to the scene.

The lemonade stand was only one of many MANY things the Quinlan family during Summer break.

Below, we see Jodi, Matt, Moli and Morgyn as they head out on a road trip which would take them to all sorts of places, including The Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. 

Aug 17, 2014


Big, beautiful Bart, who passed away on Aug. 15th, was originally my sister's boyfriend's cat, before the couple moved to a new place together.

Bart became one of 3 cats the family would grow to include over the years, and he made it very clear, he was the alpha male of the group (and we're not talking about just amongst the other felines...LOL)

With his long black fur, Bart often looked to be very large and ominous, but whenever he was given a lion haircut, it was clear that under all that fur, he wasn't quite as tough as he would like you to believe.

Maybe it's because I'm soft spoken. Perhaps it's because at 5'4", I don't come across as much of a threat. Whatever it is, most cats seem to like me.  Bart was no exception.

When I lived in the same apartment building as my sister, I often babysat the cats. Bart needed insulin for a while, to treat his diabetes. So whenever Bart heard the door open and looked up to see it was me, he knew what was coming next...his needle. While he could have tried to hide, run away or give me attitude, Bart was a good boy, letting me do what I had to so we could then enjoy some quality time together.

Through a change in diet, in the past few years, Bart no longer needed insulin, which was great news for everyone involved. 

Although Bart was a cat I'd consider to be pretty laid back, that didn't quite apply whenever Timmi was around. Bart did not like Timmi. Not at all. Sometimes he would even charge at Timmi from a hidden position under a coffee table or chair.

Bart's cat siblings are Toonces and Pussyfoot. Like their big brother, both Toonces and Pussyfoot also have their own unique personalities.

Pets are a lot like people or snowflakes...each being unique in their own way. Some shine or stand out just a bit more than others and to me, Bart will always be a pussycat I remember as being very special.

My sympathy to you Jane, Ken, Graham, Toonces and Pussyfoot.

[EDITOR'S NOTE:  Despite their differences, Timmi has asked me to also send his condolences. JJ does as well]

PETS | Timmi's Ten!



Dave Webber, Diane Murray, Amanda Bergsma, Tim Whyte, Jeanne Prince, Bob Farquharson, Michael Poirier, Sharon Prior, Clayton Hachey, Tyson Lee, Jim Triemstra, Steve Sauder, Gil Beaulieu, Tony St Louis, Julie Turner, Michelle Bertrand and Linda "Babycakes"..... 

Milk Bones for everyone....WOOF WOOF!

Here again is an encore presentation of the silly video I created in Summer 2012 featuring the birthday boy and I.

EDITORIAL | Blurred Lines


Robin William’s sudden departure stunned the world. Legions of fans, his family, celebrities, friends, strangers whose lives he had somehow touched....all felt an immense over-powering loss, while asking themselves; “Why?”

Why would someone with fame, fortune and notoriety take their own life? Surely someone of William’s stature could afford the finest help in the world, why wouldn’t he have sought out that help? Did he lose sight of all the people who loved him and treasured his comedic genius?

The truth is, we will never really know with all certainty what was running through Williams head. Superficial wounds on his wrists suggest hanging himself was not his first attempt at taking his life that agonizing night. All while his wife was sleeping, oblivious to what was going on only a few rooms away.

He leaves us with a legacy of memorable performances, both on screen and off, as we remember the man who made us laugh and now makes us cry.

Williams death hits very close to home for me. A very bitter pill to swallow.

In my past, I have attempted suicide. An overdose of drugs and alcohol was my method of choice. 

In my irrational stupor, I entered the home of a nearby friend. No one was home except the family dog, so I sat in a chair petting him, uncontrollably bawling my eyes out one second and laughing hysterically the next.

My friend arrived home, extremely shocked to find me sitting in her living room on a drug-induced, manic depressive roller coaster ride. She called the girl next door who came right away.

I would soon find myself at the hospital E.R. where they removed the contents of my stomach. This would be followed by several weeks in the psychiatric ward, where I learned there were other options when it came to facing my problems.

In 1990, my estranged father, whose life story could act as the definition of mental illness, committed suicide. We were not close (the results of an abusive childhood) but at his funeral I got to witness firsthand how taking your life affects those who love you.

I told myself this was the lesson I was to take away from this surreal situation, something I would remind myself over the years, whenever things seemed unbearable.

With medication, therapy and plenty of counseling, I have learned to accept myself for who I am. It is a continuous work in progress, which has rarely been a walk in the park.

Even as recently as this past Spring, I found myself “going there”. Back to that oh-so-familiar dark, dank, depressing place, where hope and logic dare not enter.  Where the demons within me turned the volume to max with their macabre allure of a permanent solution to the mental and physical pain I once again felt.

It is at that desperate time and in that horrible place, when divine intervention has always somehow stepped in. Sometimes charging in like a hurricane, other times merely a whisper, but always there, just in the nick of time.

When the storm has once again passed and the sun pokes through the dark clouds, I usually find myself feeling a rejuvenated sense of appreciation for the good things in my life and the fact that I am still around to enjoy them.

When I first heard that Robin Williams had taken his life, I doubled over in shock. I was not alone. People around the world shared my disbelief while collectively asking “how could he do this?”

The reality is clinical depression is a disease which knows no boundaries. It doesn’t discriminate. It doesn’t care if you’re rich and famous or penniless and a virtual unknown. 

Robin Williams used humour to mask his pain and distract his demons. But beneath that beaming, bright, contagious smile was a troubled soul. Someone who fought with their own demons, over and over and over again.

Where was divine intervention on that fateful night when Williams ended his life? Was it just outside the closed door?  Was it whispering when it should have been screaming?  Was it even there at all?  These are questions we will never have the answers to.

For only Robin Williams knows what was truly going on inside that room and within himself. Was he weak?  Did he not know how much he was loved and would be missed? I believe he indeed knew we cared, he knew he was gifted and he was far from being weak. 

When I have been at the depths of despair, I have envisioned what the outcome of killing myself may be. It’s never, EVER been a matter of not knowing or caring how taking my own life would hurt so many others. It’s always been about making this all-consuming torture and agony stop. Just stop, please for the love of god, just fucking make it stop!

In life, Robin Williams made us look at the world around us differently. In death he does the same.  It is my hope that his shocking death will not end up as merely a discouraging footnote, when in the future we recall the life of this amusing, caring, one-of-a-kind individual.

I hope mental illness remains in the forefront and those of us living with it can find the courage to remove our masks, thus allowing the world to see us and this insidious disease called clinical depression in a more realistic light.

From an act of great pain, sorrow and confusion, let the seeds of hope grow again.

Rest in peace Mr. Williams. Nanu, nanu.


Aug 14, 2014

VIDEO | Hands Down - Paws Up!

One of the most enjoyable acts on America's Got Talent this season is hand-balancer Christian Stoinev and his lucky little pal Scooby.

With Christian's smoking hot looks, charm & skills and Scooby's talents, this dynamic duo is destined to go far.....hands and paws down!

Here's a clip from their recent appearance, a crowd-pleasing routine that America voted to move ahead to the top 12.

DAMN... I wish I was Scooby!

Below is Christian's debut on America's Got Talent.... Scooby is not in this one but the stuff Christian does more than makes up for that.... you won't believe what he can do....

Aug 2, 2014

YOU | Honouring Her Brother

Jocelyn Duguay [above] joined family and friends as they once again gathered to remember Jocelyn's brother Zack in their second annual fundraising event.

The event was held Sat. Aug. 2, "kicking off"  with a football tournament and later a fundraiser event to raise funds for young athletes who are pursuing football careers.

The day was a celebration of the life of "gentle giant" Zack Duguay - a renown local football player - who passed away on Aug. 3, 2012 at the age of 21.