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Overheard at Tim Hortons

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Happy Boxing Day to you all and no, Boxing Day isn't named after people fighting over after-Christmas sales....although it would seem rather apt. Here on the island, our stores are not allowed to be open on Boxing Day but Tim Hortons did re-open this morning so off John and I went. There were several really excited children there but one little boy really stood out. He was in the line up and couldn't keep still so finally his father told him he could go up to the display case and wait there. We were chatting him up and asked him what he was going to have and he said, "either one doughnut or five timbits". His father said, "no, the deal is four timbits or one doughnut". The little four year old boy pipes up with "but its Christmas and Santa said I could have five this time" (we applauded his negotiation skills). But the funniest thing was when his father warned him that Santa was still keeping an eye out on little boys and girls and the little boy puts his head on an angle and said, "Daddy, everybody knows Santa is sleeping all day today".

Anyway, we are off to spend our evening meal with family and to exchange our presents. Maddy and Lou have to stay home but a neighbour will walk them for us. I walked 3.5 km last night despite a really sore throat....maybe not the wisest thing to do because the dampness certainly didn't cure my throat. My husband is wishing my voice would go....just for a few hours...or so he says! Ha!

Have a great day!

P.S. Timbits are the centres of doughnuts for all you non-Canadians!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

S3XYDIVASMOM 12/27/2010 12:43AM

    What a cute little guy. I LOVE that story and, I agree. If Santa has any sense at all he is sleeping today. Also love your husband's teasing. It seems both of you have well developed senses of humor.

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KANSASROSE67 12/26/2010 11:29PM

    Happy Boxing Day...in my German-American community, it's "Second Christmas Day." I had never heard of a timbit...love it!

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 12/26/2010 10:13PM

    emoticonHappy Boxing Day!!! emoticon

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KMICHA 12/26/2010 8:29PM

    out of the mouths of babes! Happy Boxing Day!

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KAYDE53 12/26/2010 7:35PM

    Happy Boxing Day!!

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LESLIES537 12/26/2010 3:56PM

    emoticon cute! Timbits, donut holes...like tomato, tomato lol ;)

Hope you had fun today and your throat feels better! Tell hubby he wouldn't get THAT lucky... emoticon hehe

Comment edited on: 12/26/2010 3:57:36 PM

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CBEVNOW 12/26/2010 3:37PM

    When we come to Canada for our fishing stay, i love Tim Hortens, I discovered it the first time we were there, which was years ago. We usually come to Pointe AU Baril, Ontario. Its so clean and beautiful too.

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SHERYLDS 12/26/2010 3:26PM

    Your blog is going to have me smiling all afternoon .
Have a very Happy New Year

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JHADZHIA 12/26/2010 2:21PM

Enjoy your get together! No more emoticon!!

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HOPEFULANGE 12/26/2010 2:01PM

    emoticon Too cute!

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JLITT62 12/26/2010 1:41PM

    Ah, thank you for explaining what a timbit is -- never heard of them! Hope the throat gets better soon. Probably one of the things I hate the worst.

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THEWINNER33 12/26/2010 1:27PM

    Have a Happy Boxing Day. Loved the blog.

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ERIN4771 12/26/2010 1:25PM

    too funny!!! we are in the states...but happy boxing day!!!!

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OLDERDANDRT 12/26/2010 1:18PM

    HOw neat! We just call timbits donut holes!! LOL!! Hope you're having a great holiday!!!

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SJTEBB 12/26/2010 1:05PM

    Hey I am Canadian so we know timmies very well. Have fun today

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APIRLRAIN888 12/26/2010 1:02PM

    lol! my daughter said me if I knew Santa's number?
I said "why?" because I needed context to answer the question

she said "oh Miss Shannon does, she calls him all the time, especially when connor is in trouble"

I said: "YES, YES YES I do have Santa's number, Miss Shannon gave it to me"

she (7) said "Oh....." and ducked away

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LADYRAVEN1963 12/26/2010 12:59PM

    Happy Boxing Day!

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Merry Christmas SparkFriends

Saturday, December 25, 2010

I'm sitting here in my living room with a full tummy, two happy but tired dogs, a napping husband, and so much to be thankful for! The gifts are all unwrapped but even if there wasn't a single thing under the tree, I'd still be content.

I think this is contentment stems from Spark and the many, wonderful friendships I have made over the fall. When I started Spark, I was very anxious most of the time, was definitely not happy, was sleeping either too much or two little, loathed working, and basically only dressed myself to avoid being nude in public!

My brother called from Australia this morning and we were talking about gifts. Both Gary and his partner got on the phone and told me that they think the best gift I could ever receive is the one I am giving myself....a healthy makeover. That really meant something to me as they are both physically in shape and are loving their lives to the fullest.

Over the past months, I love myself more. I take my time getting dressed....for my own sake rather than anybody else, I am more aware of what I eat, I notice how my skin responds when I drink lots of water, I'm able to enjoy the outdoors more and I can't wait for each day to begin. I generally am much more relaxed, I'm sleeping better, I play with my dogs more, I am more in love with my husband than ever before.

So, it looks like I was already handed the perfect gift....no wrapping, no cost.....I received the gift of Spark!


P.S. On a side note, I think I really did pull the wool over Santa's eyes this year by the looks of the wonderful presents I received. My husband and I bought ourselves Blackberries which we are still trying to turn on (!), but which I think will be dandy keeping me more in touch with Spark. I also received the DVD 30 Day Shred and some stuff from the Spark store.....including the 2011 calendar!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LESLIES537 12/26/2010 3:51PM

    Awesome, awesome, AWESOME! What a nice compliment, and it's so true! You are really doing something wonderful for yourself. You have made some amazingly great strides in your life....just think of what 2011 has in store for you! I'm honored to be on this journey with you. Not only are you turning your life around and doing something wonderful for you, you are helping other people to do the same thing. Your friendship, advice, and overall support is so valuable to Spark and I'm so glad you are here...and that we are in this together. Here's to our friendship and a Sparktacular 2011! Just think of the possibilites! Let's do this thang, girl!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

p.s. I'm soooo proud of you! :)

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HOPEFULANGE 12/26/2010 1:50PM

    Sounds like you had a good day! I just wish we were having a white Christmas! Good luck with those blackberries...I got my palm pre phone in June and still haven't figured it all out!

Merry Christmas!!

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JLITT62 12/26/2010 5:27AM

    Sounds like a wonderful Christmas all around!

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I'm so glad that things have worked out for you as they should. Sparks is a wonderful place filled with wonderful people.

Glad as well I am that you spoilt yourself with a Blackberry. It's good sometimes to think of yourself.

Here's looking at an even better 2011 for you

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S3XYDIVASMOM 12/25/2010 11:40PM

    You're right. I've followed your blogging since early on, and you really are a much more upbeat person than when you started. If you never lose another pound YOU ARE a success story.

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    Merry Christmas, to you, too! I know just what you mean about that free gift! emoticon

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APIRLRAIN888 12/25/2010 5:57PM

    happy holiday

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JHADZHIA 12/25/2010 5:01PM

    HI Susan! That is so wonderful the effects of healthy living have! I am so glad you found Sparks and so very glad you found me! Thanks for being a good Spark friend!
Wishing you and hubby all the happiness of Christmas!
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The Siege of Leningrad

Friday, December 24, 2010

Well, I'm sure if you are wondering why in the world I have my blog entitled that on this one of the most important days in the Christian calendar.

For those who are unaware the Siege of Leningrad began back in the early fall of 1941 and lasted for 900 days. It was during this period that the Russian city lost over 1 million of its residents to starvation. There are reports that on Christmas Day alone in 1941 that over 4000 people succumbed to the lack of food and lack of heat.

Again, you are wondering what this has to do with you. Well, when you sit down this holiday season with your loved ones I am asking that you pause and thank God or whomever you believe in, for the food you take for granted. There is so much starvation on this planet and so much blatant waste and over indulgence.

I'm not lecturing you. I mean, I didn't get this big from facing food shortages (smile) but I am becoming more aware of eating sensible servings and not being a total glutton!

Happy Holidays to all!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LESLIES537 12/26/2010 3:41PM

    Makes you really appreciate what have and what you take for granted sometimes, doesn't it? Thanks so much for this blog--I didn't know that about the Seize of Leningrad...I must've slept through that class, lol emoticon

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S3XYDIVASMOM 12/24/2010 11:22PM

    I truly am grateful that I have never been hungry, except as a choice.

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JHADZHIA 12/24/2010 2:55PM

    Sadly, there are people starving everywhere, even in your own city. Homeless are everywhere, as are panhandlers. You get a constant reminder every time you go out anywhere. When my Mom and I hike the river trails in the summer, we are always finding 'camps'. It does certainly make you appreciate what you have, but also saddens you that there has to be such suffering..
I actually have my government to give thanks to. Without it, I would not have a disability pension, I would not have my expensive medications, my health and surgical care, my subsidized apartment. I would be one of those 'street people'
Canada is a compassionate nation and I am thankful to be living here..

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JLITT62 12/24/2010 12:44PM

    A very good reminder!

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    Amen, sister. People right here in our little town are starving, and it just shouldn't be. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TWOTIMESS 12/24/2010 9:27AM

I couldn't have said it better myself! Waste not!

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NANADERRICK 12/24/2010 8:28AM

    you are so right and I thank you for posting this blog. I had no idea of the seige back in 1941, but I am aware of hunger here in my small community. We on this planet have enough resources for everyone to have enough to eat, we just don't do a very good job of taking care of ourselves, others or even our planet. I for one will pause and give thanks that my family is not facing starvation and try to include my grandkids more next summer in my gardening so that they will appreciate all that they have to eat. Merry Christmas!!

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Let the stress subside and the relaxation begin

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hello SparkFriends~

As of yesterday afternoon I am off work until January 4th and boy, am I ready to be off. I know I don't have half the troubles or the stressors in my life that most of you have but I think that each of us has their own stress limitations. Maybe is is because I have faced mental illness throughout much of my life that I can say that.

Don't get me wrong, some stress is good for me but I can tell when things are rapidly getting out of control. It is then that I really need to step back and have a good talk with myself. Unfortunately, I don't always listen to myself and try to push myself and push myself. One of these days I'm going to push myself off a cliff!!!! Ha!

Last week I let my whole Spark Plan slip by the wayside. I walked once and used the excuse that the time I was walking could be better spent on the tasks that really needed to get done. I ate a lot of take out for the same reason and deep down I think I gave up drinking so much water because heaven only knows how much time I could save by not spending it in the bathroom....please say you are laughing when reading this....

Anyway, it was 9:00 last night and I looked at my husband and said, "I'm going for a walk in the woods...are you game" Thankfully he was, so off we went armed with our flashlights. There was a heavy mist falling, we couldn't see the road to save ourselves but boy was it nice! The dogs, of course, just loved it although we've discovered that Louisa is afraid of the dark while Maddy would take on the devil! I felt cleansed after I arrived home.....probably because that morning's makeup was probably washed off my face by the mist.....but regardless I felt great.

So here is to making exercise a priority and not something I only do when I'm feeling good! Lesson learned....I hope!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HOPEFULANGE 12/22/2010 9:47AM

    Enjoy your time off - you deserve it! And you deserve time to keep yourself energized and happy with lovely walks in the woods. emoticon emoticon emoticon

I know what you mean about the bathroom!!! I find myself scheduling my water intake based on when I'm going shopping or to a meeting! emoticon

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MEMARE 12/21/2010 1:26PM

    Enjoy your time off and take many romantic healthy walks in the woods! emoticon

Merry Christmas!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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NEWFIEGIRLHERE 12/21/2010 10:54AM

    WEll Susan, I can totally relate to this blog. It appears that I have let spark take a step to the side. I have eaten more molasses and spice cookies or banana bread with tea or coffee in the past week than I have in the last 20 years. I found everytime that Rebecca was reaching into the cookies jar so was I. I can sit hear and tell you every way that I have gone wrong but yesterday , as much as I had to do, I put it all to the side and took the time I needed for me.
I am so glad that you did the same and even happier that your dh was game, especially that time of night...and yes, once again you had me laughing. You are so witty...I love it. emoticon emoticon
what a great way to spend time together.
emoticon emoticon X2

Comment edited on: 12/21/2010 10:55:23 AM

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S3XYDIVASMOM 12/21/2010 9:01AM

    Sometimes procrastination pays off. The pay-off here was a delightful time in the woods after dark. It sounds very Christmas-y. Like others, I envy you the opportunity to do so.

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    A walk in the woods at night! That sounds fun! Only, I'd be too chicken to do it alone! I just wish we had some WOODS here in the South Plains! emoticon emoticon

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JHADZHIA 12/21/2010 8:45AM

    Good for you getting out there! We could never take Bendix out at night, he would be off chasing something in no time, not that he hasn't given us a few over nighters..
I so know the feeling of biffy breaks :(( I prefer to get a lot of my water drinking first thing in the morning (easy with my workouts -I feel thirsty) because there is nothing worse then having to use the facilities when you are out walking somewhere and there is no relief in sight!!
Enjoy your time off to recharge and re energize, and exercising can help with that, you only feel good doing it!

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JLITT62 12/21/2010 8:17AM

    Wow, I am in bed by that time so I am totally impressed. Plus DH won't even walk the dogs when he gets home around 5 pm cause & it's dark & cold, so I'm even more impressed that DH readily agreed to go with you!

Lola is a bit afraid of the dark, as well. Chester has never seemed to mind it. Cold & wet is a different story!

Actually, the dogs in are in bed with me by 9 pm . . . altho they do go out for last call with DH later on.

Comment edited on: 12/21/2010 8:23:24 AM

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Would you choose yourself to be a friend?

Saturday, December 18, 2010


I'm writing this blog today to talk about something that has really been bothering me lately. A lot of you have made comments on my SparkPage that they consider me a good friend, etc. Well, while I really appreciate the votes of confidence it made me pause for thought.

If ,for example, I was given the opportunity to go back to just being a soul, would I choose the same physical and personality characteristics that I have now?

Several years ago, I would have screamed a resounding "NO" because I was under the impression that if this or that was different about me I would finally be happy. If I was taller, if I was thinner, if I was smarter, if I didn't have depression, if I didn't quit university, if I didn't date so and so, if I had studied this subject, if I had been more disciplined...you get the picture!

At the heights (or should I say bottom) of my depression, I was referred to a wonderful no-nonsense psychologist. In the first six months, I'm sure all I did was complain about things that had happened in my life until finally one day she stopped my "pity party" (her expression) and was told to rethink the past. These things were all in the past and yet I was dragging their memories along for the ride much to the detriment of my mental well being.

It was like a light bulb went off in my head and slowly I became to accept those things about me that I didn't like and realize that those very experiences made me into the person I had become. I could have continued to berate myself for quitting university (I eventually went back and graduated), for not being smarter, for not being at the stages that my friends were all at, but for what? I would have developed into a self-loathing individual and that very self-hatred would have eventually destroyed me.

One of the very first things I was told to do was to write down things a good friend would like about me. This was very eye opening and allowed me to see me as others would and not as my inner critic. Believe me, this journey didn't happen overnight and I continued to see the psychologist for three years until she retired this past spring.

But now, if I had to go back in time and could start life over, I really think I would choose the same physical and psychological characteristics that I was born with.

I'm not perfect, I'm not great, I'm just me! I have come to appreciate my rich inner life because my mind is always active. I have come to know my limitations and I view them as self-preservation rather than excuses. I've come to realize that I'm not very important in the grand scheme of things but I am very important to me!

It is funny how the more laid back I am becoming with myself that my urge to take care of myself is becoming more pronounced. I thought it would be the opposite but that isn't the case. I've recycled my "all or nothing" attitude into one of "every bit counts" and it is working.

Hopefully I haven't bored you with my ramblings!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEMARE 12/21/2010 2:31PM

    Great blog! Didn't bore me at all! emoticon

I like your closing paragraphs. emoticon

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Friends take you as you are, warts and all. I'm at an age now where, if someone doesn't like something about me and makes a big deal about it, they're written off the list. Life's too short to worry about things like that. I'd like to think that someone likes me because I'm honest, funny and caring and those who do, well they're the friends I want to be with. You have become and honest, caring and funny friend to me and although we have never met, Internet/Spark friends are just as important and the ones I can lay hands on.

Have a wonderful Christmas Susan and a great New Year

Comment edited on: 12/19/2010 2:51:48 AM

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TEMPEST272002 12/18/2010 6:16PM

    You've come a long way, baby. Like you, I've also discovered that the less hard I am on myself, the better I do. I lesson I would do well to remember as I get angry again & again at my difficulties around snacking/smoking. Another wonderful blog.

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HOPEFULANGE 12/18/2010 2:30PM

    I would choose myself as a friend and I'm glad you would choose yourself too!

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JLITT62 12/18/2010 12:56PM

    Not the least bit bored, in fact I think your last few blogs have been wonderful & thought provoking.

What a great question . . . and one I'll have to ponder. I think I'm a good friend, yet I have few friends. Hmmm.

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PANFRIEDTROUT 12/18/2010 11:48AM

    not bored at all ~ quite the contrary!

when i saw your blog title on a friend feed, my very first thought was "probably not" ...even though I make a good friend to others.

I'm glad you posted a part of your personal insights because I'm still struggling with that self*loathing you mention as well as the "all or nothing" thinking.

your blog makes me feel that if I just keep persisting, eventually I could answer your question with a resounding Heck yeah!

thank you

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 12/18/2010 10:42AM

    Your ramblings are beautiful! What a great way to step back and look at how wonderfully you've been made, and how worth it you are to love yourself! emoticon emoticon

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LIBBYFITZ 12/18/2010 9:53AM

    Fantastico! A great heading! emoticon I agree with what you said. We are, the experiences of our life! If I had not have a depressive illness I would not be able to empathise in the way that I can with my clients, family and friends. emoticon

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JHADZHIA 12/18/2010 9:29AM

    Part of living a healthy lifestyle is accepting yourself as you are, warts and all. You need to be able to love yourself to want to take care of yourself and treat your body and yourself with respect. Its sounds like you have your head around this concept! Well done!
Have a Super Sparking Saturday!!

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