Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Be The Change You Want to See in The World

So you want to "Be The Change". And you're Canadian. Here are some places to start.

Youth Empowerment Support Services (Edmonton): "YESS is a relentlessly dedicated not-for-profit organization that shapes the future of Edmonton by supporting youth facing difficult realities. YESS offers distinct and invaluable services through a variety of channels that range from immediate emergency shelter to ongoing support programs and individual guidance."

Your local food bank. Edmonton Food Bank: "To be stewards in the collection of surplus and donated food for the effective distribution, free of charge, to people in need in our community while seeking solutions to the causes of hunger."

These first two organizations are near and dear to me, and I invest heavily in them throughout the year.

Sexual Assault Centre of Edmonton: "The Sexual Assault Centre of Edmonton is a feminist-based not-for-profit charitable organization that supports children, adolescents, and adults who have experienced sexual abuse or assault, and educates the public about sexual violence."

Equal Voice. "Equal Voice is a national, bilingual, multi-partisan organization dedicated to electing more women to all levels of political office in Canada."

Canadian Civil Liberties Association: "CCLA fights for the civil liberties, human rights, and democratic freedoms of all people across Canada. Founded in 1964, we are an independent, national, nongovernmental organization, working in the courts, before legislative committees, in the classrooms, and in the streets, protecting the rights and freedoms cherished by Canadians and entrenched in our Constitution."

Greenpeace: "Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning organization that acts to change attitudes and behaviour, to protect and conserve the environment and to promote peace."

Action Canada for Sexual Health and Rights: "Action Canada for Sexual Health and Rights is a progressive, pro-choice charitable organization committed to advancing and upholding sexual and reproductive health and rights in Canada and globally."

Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada: "The only nation-wide political pro-choice group devoted to ensuring abortion rights and access for women."

Native Women's Association of Canada: "The Native Women's Association of Canada (NWAC) is founded on the collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of First Nations and Métis women within First Nation, Métis and Canadian societies."

Canadian Women's Foundation: "We empower women and girls in Canada to move out of violence, out of poverty and into confidence."

Feminist Alliance for International Action: "Our mandate is to advance women’s equality in Canada by working for the full implementation of the international human rights treaties and agreements that Canada has ratified."

Egale, Canada Human Rights Trust: "Canada’s only national charity promoting lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans (LGBT) human rights through research, education and community engagement."

After I started looking for amazing local & national organizations to support, I realized there were SO MANY! I am going to do a series of these posts to capture as many organizations as I can.

Times are tough right now, especially for so many in Alberta, but I believe that if you don't need charity, you can afford to give. Every penny counts. Wait...we don't have pennies in Canada anymore. Um, every nickel counts?!


Monday, November 28, 2016

Christmas Scrapbooking

The Story behind the photos...

I booked some time with my new friend Jamie to have some FALL photos taken on Thanksgiving weekend. We woke up the Sunday morning to snow and wind and an early winter. Jamie & I chatted and decided to postpone the photos until the next day, hoping that the sun would come out, and the wind would go away. So right on schedule, at almost the exact hour we would have been getting the pictures done, the sun came out, there was blue sky, and it turned out to be a beautiful Sunday.


But we had already rescheduled, so we made our way to Minchau Park the next day, in the cold (damn cold!) and the snow. And you know what? I LOVE these snowy photos! I think this will become a new winter tradition for us.

Also, these are our first photos as a new "family" of three. Squeeee!!!

And for those of you who might like to know...
The majority of the paper and embellishments are from Simple Stories.
Gold letters are Heidi Swapp
Ribbon & sequins are randoms from my stash


p.s. Thank you Nadine for pushing me out of my comfort zone with these Christmas-themed papers. I kind of love them (don't get too excited or anything!)

Friday, November 25, 2016

I Fell Off A Cliff*

I Fell Off A Cliff

I mean, not literally. Maybe it's more like a rabbit hole. At any rate, I am somewhere I don't want to be, and I am just hanging out there until I can find a way to help myself get the hell out of there.

I feel like I am waiting for something to happen. That everything is in flux, or in status, or in a holding pattern. I can't quite put my finger on the why or the how, but this is the overall feeling I am getting about 2016.

I wrote the above back in September/October.

I still can't put my finger on it, but 2016 seems like it was a really weird year, y'know? I am entering these last months (shit balls!) with a lack of energy, and a desire to just get through the year and start fresh in January.

On the other hand, that's not really fair.

To myself, to my goals, to anyone.

I had a little "check in" with myself the other night. I wrote in my "Dear Lisa" notebook for the first time in a couple of months. And I have decided to make room in my life for room. For reflection. For a small plan to make the most out of the rest of 2016 and start 2017 on the right foot. I've already got some BIG PLANS that are going to take time and effort to execute. I am nervous and excited. And I am so damn ready. I might even get a cat.

"Dear Lisa. You need to be a little selfish right now and figure out what you need to do to give yourself some peace and happiness. You are allowed to be low and sad, but you can't focus on that! Remember 2013...that was a tough year for you, but it was also a great year! Just think, and you will discover and remember why that year was awesome and learn from it."


Sunday, November 20, 2016

Christmas Scrapbooking

Working in scrapbooking-retail means Christmas products start showing up in August. We always feel a little sorry-embarrassed when well meaning shoppers ask us where our new Christmas product is in December. It's gone lady...we sold out in September!

But seriously, This also means, that I get to scrapbook last year's Christmas photos in August thanks to my Design Team role. Which can be a challenge for this scrapbooker!

This is the latest. Not sure how I am going to fit it in my 8x8 December Daily album...

The black letters are really OLD Making Memories rub-ons. This was a supply that us gals HOARDED, and couldn't get enough of. And they still work perfectly. Making Memories had their shit together, that's for sure.

Now, being that Christmas is just over the horizon, I have started thinking about this year's December Daily. Every year in November I tell myself that I'm not going to do one, and every November 30 I give in and am scrambling to pull something together! Last year's will be the first I have ever completed...once I print these last two photos!! HA!

So with that BOOMING success in my life, why not just give in to the inevitable and start planning now?!


Wednesday, November 09, 2016

November 9, 2016

posted to Facebook this morning in response to the results of the US election yesterday.

Dear Canadians,
Okay people. Yes, be grateful you live in Canada, and have Tim’s coffee and poutine or whatever. But remember that we are not immune to what happened to our neighbours last night! We are always a few years behind the trends in the US, and I for one don’t want the Canadian version of Trump ruling our election cycle at all ever thank you very much.

For those of you who don’t believe that it could happen here, please look to what is happening in Alberta right now. Two very smart, and qualified women were just grossly bullied out of the PC leadership race, people are calling our Premier a “c**t” and threatening her life, racists attacking cyclists, and citizens brandishing confederate flags at an anti-carbon tax rally. And in terms of our federal politics, we need look no further than Kellie Leitch and her “values test”. The US rewarded a racist, misogynist, bully with no political experience, with their highest elected office, and racist, misogynist, bullies everywhere are cheering. We can point fingers and wring our hands all we want, but the truth is, it could happen here.

Now, my privilege allows me a little bit of a step back here, but there will be people who are immensely effected by this who can’t just “ignore the bad stuff” and have the strength to abide the things they can’t change. My privilege also affords me a little more wiggle room in how I can respond to this. This is not a time to just complain and be complacent. We must take action.

Start by donating whatever you can to organizations in your community who fight for things you believe it. Whether they be political organizations, grassroots, community assistance programs, or whatever! Not only do our most vulnerable people need charity during these tough times, there are organizations in a position to oppose the hateful, divisive politics and ideas that people like Trump espouse. And if you can afford to help them out, please do so in whatever way you feel most comfortable. We vote with a ballot as much as we vote with our dollars and with our voice. Please ensure that those organizations that best represent your values get your support, in order to continue doing their good work.

Call out racist and sexist and other–ist shit when you see it! Do you have a racist uncle-cousin-high school friend, telling rape jokes, and cheering for the bully? Don’t let them get away with that shit! If you feel safe doing so, call them out. Ask them why they think it’s funny, ask them why they support those positions. Our silence emboldens them, and makes them think that everyone feels the same way they do. Well, I for one don’t and I am not afraid to say so. If you don’t feel safe confronting them (in person or online), please don’t endanger your safety…you don’t owe anyone that.

And finally BE KIND TO PEOPLE! Don’t call someone an idiot just because they voted a different way from you. This election was about fear. Fear for jobs and the economy, fear about the war happening in Syria. People voted the way they did because they thought it would help them, and they don’t deserve your condescension because that looks a different way than what you wanted. We need to work together if we are going to make it out of this alive, but please keep in mind my point above. Remember that some people voted the way they did because they hate women and couldn’t stand to see one in the White House. And remember that some people voted the way they did because they hate black people, and want to take the country back to a time when POC and women weren’t allowed to vote, had no rights, and were treated like property.

When a man like Trump sees the success he has, it emboldens the darkest corners of his supporters. And they have come out swinging, literally, at POC, at women, at gay & trans people. At anyone who doesn’t look like them (straight white American males you’re probably still doing okay!), and anyone who doesn’t agree with their hateful message. Be kind to minorities, to immigrants, to people of colour, and to LGBTQ+ in your lives and in your communities. They are going to feel the brunt of this decision, and things are going to get a lot worse for them real quick. They need allies, and support, and love right now.

If this election cycle has taught me anything, it is that there are elected officials out there who are still full of love and hope for their country and for their citizens. And I intend to do everything in my power to make sure those people hear my voice and have my support up here. We’ve got our work cut out for us. Love Trumps Hate.