What are you doing this summer? Will you be away on holidays? Are you vacating at the cottage on the week-ends? Or are you looking for things to do in the city? We haven't planned out our summer yet, but I imagine it will be a bit of a mix.

I took a creative journalling class soon after my first baby was born. One writing exercise that was suggested to me was finishing the phrase "A great summer would mean..." Think a little outside the box--write everything that comes to mind without censoring. Once you've got your list of ideas, you can leave it as that, simply ideas, or you can go through the list and pick the things that are most important and focus on those. That way, you're less likely to get to the end of August and wonder where the time went.

"Do one thing every day that scares you" ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

How's that for a goal this summer? Okay, maybe it doesn't need to terrify you, but have you thought of summer as a time to try new things, be a little more adventurous, or just do something especially for you. Last summer, I flew to Ottawa with my sister. Being away from our kids for five days was actually quite a scary idea! But it was so invigorating and fun to get away, explore someplace new, and just be sisters.

What would you like to try? What summer festival have you never attended? What beautiful Manitoba destination have you never visited? Maybe you could make a point of visiting every ice cream or gelati spot in Winnipeg...or farmer's market...Or maybe you'd like to try outdoor yoga (see for places to try it for free) or perhaps something like tai chi. I'm thinking of heading to Fort Whyte Alive tomorrow to celebrate the birthday of a friend by taking a photo-nature walk. Might even bring a sketch book.

By the way, if you're thinking that the scary thing you need to do this summer is to show yourself how beautiful you are, you're in luck! For the months of July and August, we are doing all sessions at 75% off (a savings of $150 for studio and $225 for location). It's a little crazy maybe, but you'd be crazier not to do it at that price!

And just so you know, if you or someone you know wants to do a family portrait or is expecting a new addition to the family, the discount applies for all types of sessions.

Have a great summer!


What to do??

I was watching TV yesterday and saw that this weeks lotto jackpot is 50 million with around 50 additional prizes of 1 million each up for grabs and I started thinking… What would I do with 1 million (Let’s dream small right.)

For quite a while now I’ve been dreaming of the day when I can go to sleep without wondering if I’m going to loose my studio and home next month or the month after that so I guess I would start by paying off all of my debt, then put a little bit away for old age. Now comes the good stuff; I’ve also spent a lot of time in the past few months dreaming of being able to build and fund an orphanage in India, a school in Nepal and funding a local guy who does work with inner city at risk youth. As I thought about these things I was amazed by how little money they all require although after doing all of them my million would actually be a much smaller number.

I have to admit I would spend some of the money on other things as well, My studio still needs some roofing work done and In the neighbourhood we live in a garage would be a real asset and of course I would claim back the insurance money from My classic truck that was torched last year (Again, a garage would have been helpful) which went to pay for the first book we published (Just As I Am) and buy a used convertible “Date car” for me and Sonya or the kids.

I’ve been reading a book on living the life of your dreams and one of the suggestions is to live like you are there already; so I’m planning on doing that. I have no money to support anything but I can take more of my time and support charities and causes within my community more than I am currently doing, that is step one, step two is if any of you have a million and are wondering what to do with it, feel free to steal a few of the items on my list starting with India, Nepal, or the youth worker, feel free to contact me for more info on these things.

We have all been blessed with so much, lets all start living like it and we can change the world, one million at a time.



My Grandmother was Right

As I think of Father's Day approaching, a day when we honour some very important men in our lives, I am reminded of the advice my Grandma passed on to each of her five daughters:

"Never put down your husband in public".

If her daughters started complaining about her son-in-laws, she didn't want to hear about it. If they had a problem, they should discuss it with their husbands, not the rest of the world.

The more I know about men, and the more I've lived with one, the more I love my Grandma's advice. Men need respect and affirmation in the roles they play in life, as much as we need to know we're beautiful and wanted. Where our question is "Am I lovely? Am I captivating?", a man's question is "Am I capable? Am I enough for the job?" I don't think we realize how we are actually attacking his strength/his core, when we put him down, especially in front of others.

Here's another quote I just recalled, from a book I perused once (it won't be exact, and I can't remember the author):

"Too often we end up serving our children and training our husbands, when it should be the other way around"

So, let's all take a few minutes and figure out some ways to show the men in our lives how we see them accomplishing good in their workplace, their family relationships, and their world.

The Real way to Prevent Bone Loss

Just read an excellent article on how to prevent osteoporosis with more effectiveness than calcium supplementation (from my favorite women's health author, Christiane Northrup). Read it here...



Some of you may know that on May 1st I went out and bought a pair of running shoes with the intention of doing something good for my body.

Just over 10 years ago I went for my last run; I needed to because I was applying for a job that had a physical requirement so I trained for two weeks and did my testing….and never ran again. It wasn’t always this way, in high school I was one of the best in the city in my age group in distance running; I was lean and loved to run. Now in my mid to late thirties and 60 or so pounds heavier than in high school I felt the need to start running again.

I actually starting running for two reasons, one was that in the last year I was feeling my weight run away from me; I had put on about 20 pounds in just over twelve months and it wasn’t looking or feeling good. The second reason was that my wife was starting to get concerned with my overall health, and I was finding myself hiding health concerns from her (Always a bad sign).

My goal as of May 1st was to loose 10 pounds in the month of may but I changed that goal after talking to a doctor friend who suggested that a healthy level of weight loss was 1.5 pounds per week or 6-7 pounds a month. As of June 1st I now weigh 207 lbs and my waist looks and feels better as well as the side benefits of my skin looking great and heart liking me a lot more.

My first run was a killer, I think I let my left lung on the sidewalk at the 1 km mark but continued on for another 1.5 kms. Now a month later I can run 4.5 km in about 22.5 mins and I have a goal to get that time down to 20 mins.

I have learned many great lessons in the running process; put one foot in front of the other, put the other foot back in front of the first, now repeat the last two movements again, and again, and again. If Oprah and I can do it, you can too.

Have a great day.