Learn and explore 

Baby A spent the afternoon with Gran so momma could have some alone time and we had so much fun. Continue reading

Set the Date

You could be forgiven if the title made you think of a wedding. I do have one of those in my near future but I also have something else to look forward to!

I’ve set the date of my retirement from being a full time orthopaedic resource nurse. My work mates, collectively across the board, are like “no you can’t” and I’m like “You’re Gonna Me Miss When I’m Gone “. My singing skills are pretty bad but I do enjoy the first few lines and the tempo of this song. It’s interesting to note everyone’s reaction borders on the no but for one young colleague. She’s excited for me and wanted to know how I planned to spend my days.

I know the answer to that question easily. The days will be full and busy but the priorities will be different. The 5 km’s a day will occur when I want and not at last light on a cold winter’s night. The to do list won’t get any smaller but there will be time for lunch with a friend or an afternoon playing with Annabelle. I also still intend to work but it’s yet to be written in stone what I will do for a 24 hours a week for 5 years.

In the meantime I can’t spend all my time focusing on 01/18/19. I need to remember to Finish Strong and go out at the top of my game.

I find it highly ironic that I’m posting this blog on my coffee break at work this evening. After 10 years of a hiatus from evenings as the “perk” to being a resource nurse we are back on full shifts. So evenings and midnight call on my monthly weekend instead of days. Although I understand the why, so short of seasoned nurses in the OR, I can’t say I’m particularly thrilled about it. I suspect my insomnia won’t be happy with the bouncing around of sleep cycles either. But hey it’s only for 13 more months which compared to 35 years in the OR is a drop in the hat.

Bernie

Sunday Snuggles

It’s been a long week in my life professionally (that’s a story for another day maybe) and combined with the lack of sunshine it’s been totally exhausting. So when I was asked to provide some time today for a special cause I did hesitate for a second.

But then I realized that what could be exhausting could also be seen as invigorating so I said yes. My heart expanded and rested as it seemed that the only nap to be had was going to be on me. Dreadfully hard to get asleep she awoke all full of giggles.

Nap time was followed with play time with Gramps and the puppy. She climbed the stairs, practised walking and delighted our hearts with her “kisses”.

Her wardrobe always keeps us smiling. Today’s shirts were no exception although it was hard to get the photo as she was determined to grab the phone. 5 shots later. Her earlier pink shirt was our present to her from our trip away.

All in all I’d have to say that Sunday snuggles were just what I needed. Alas though that the only sunshine of the day was while she slept on me in a darkened room but I used technology to capture the light!

Bernie

Pukaskwa National Park

At long last a return to the Canada 150 series. These have been stock piling so even though winter has descended I will post them to remind us all of the beauty of Canada. It will inspire summer places to explore. Continue reading

Cold Turkey

Cold Turkey and I’m not talking about the turkey in the freezer, waiting for a special supper. I’m talking cold turkey, the event in my life for the past ten days ((due to technical difficulties it’s actually been more than two weeks since I initially wrote this)).

I have in the past given up chocolate and beer, both seen as empty calories really, but this time it has been something different. For me the concept has been coming for a while but recently a morning blurb on CBC Radio highlighted an issue in my life. So I delved deeper and watched the Marketplace episode called  Are You Addicted to Your Phone? . Trust me, this is worth 22 minutes of your time.

I saw in the show, myself,  with the constant cycling from one social media app to the next one. The never-ending stream of new feeds in all my loops; scanning for information and not wanting to miss anything. The tech companies are competing to keep us on their sites for marketing purposes. They are influencing our brains, emotions and behaviours without our ever being aware of it.

In July on #MyCanadaDay150 I poached my cell phone in the pocket of my rain jacket. I was out of the loop for a few days and realized how much time I spent on it. I can say it doesn’t rule my life but if I uploaded the device that tracks time spent I think I’d be appalled. I’m very productive at home and only check it on breaks at work. I set it aside easily when loved ones and friends are around. But I also reach for it as my camera,  alarm clock, fitness recorder and my work schedule and ….. but the truth is I spend a lot of time with it. I blog and read blogs, I connect via Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. So truly it never seems very far away. I have restricted myself to absolutely no use between 11 pm and 6 am even if I have wicked insomnia because I have read the reports of the havoc it causes with sleep cycles and I struggle enough without adding that element in.

Recently during a difficult period I was having trouble writing. That, tied along with a couple of comments about how everyone knows what I’m up to, made me really stop and think about the use of social media. I don’t post what I had for supper or that I am running late again but obviously I post enough that people feel they have adequate info about me and don’t need to ask how I really am. Key in the Marketplace episode and I feel like I’m in the deep end, not connected even when I am connected.

Which leads me to a poll which I created inside the blog post called Mixing it up a Little. A social experiment so to speak. It had, from my point of view, very interesting results. Let me share why.

First off the blog post was read 46 times and yet the poll only had 7 responses. The time to read and do the poll rounds out to about 7 seconds. Yet only roughly 15% of the readers responded which seems like a particularly low rate of return for something that is quick, simple and easy to do.

The poll asked two questions about potential reasons. The first question was about why I was struggling to write. The red herring option about having nothing left to write about    garnered more votes than anything else. The real reasons, sad and tired, got none. The other options about being a sandwich generation grabbed a few votes. The other question is about why one would or would not leave a comment. The answer to this one did not surprise me at all. The most responses was that people like to read but keep their thoughts to themselves although one lovely person did leave me a comment stating how much she likes reading my blog.

Which turns me inward towards my writing and blogging. The house blog (www.1918eatonseager.wordpress.com), which is a diary of our progress, and the daily haikus lead me into a personal blog where I challenged myself to write daily. I’ve always had a love of words but is that why I write now? Or do I write for the stats and the comments and the invisible connection? Because it is quite invisible. Social media has made us more connected (hey I mean who doesn’t want to look at travel pictures) but are we actually becoming more disconnected through our increased uses of personal devices?Our parents were warned about too much television being bad for their children. Will the next generation of parents even realize how bad personal device time is for themselves let alone their children?

I’ve gone cold turkey because I’ve been away from my usual source of easily accessible internet. This has cut my ties to social media and put me out of the loop. Which begs the question: what will I return to? I had, in July, shut off all notifications from Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Should I be like one or two of my young friends and nix my Facebook account? Will I stop sharing quite so many photos on Instagram because it makes me look like a floucy even if I do it because it’s a wonderful creative outlet. Nix  Twitter because I still don’t “get it” and it seems like a waste of time? I did that to Pinterest a couple of years ago. It sucks you in to a vortex of a “perfect” world that is hard to replicate in real life. I had, very briefly, SnapChat, but never returned the app to my new phone because I couldn’t get into the filters.

A friend my age suggests that social media is used differently for our age group than the younger age groups. It’s perhaps like they use it to replace real interactions with cyber ones. We use it more to supplement our face to face but even that can suffer when we forget to focus on the person we are with and spend more time looking at our phone than looking at each other.

I had an honest conversation with a friend of mine who seems to have escaped most of the social media connections. Her time is spent more altruistically and on a deeply connected level to everything that she does. She was traveling with friends and one of her group connected with someone via Tinder. His phone also buzzed constantly with Bumble conversations. This defied her scope of a relationship and connections. The number of people connecting via on-line is growing and isn’t necessarily restricted to the millennial generation.

Which brings me to the crux of the entire matter. The endless loop of social media and what “we” are addicted to. Because I am 100% certain I am not alone here but just rather more visual in giving an opinion and documenting my thoughts about this and other issues.

I suspect, as with everything else in life, there is a balance to be achieved.

Between the fact that I like to write and know that people do seem to enjoy reading it, I will go onward.

Bernie

PS I’ve been having word press issues for about 10 days and just finally solved it. It’s interesting to note that no one even seemed to notice my absence or if they did never reached out to see why so maybe I am writing more for myself.

PPS Social media certainly has down sides. One hears about cyber bullying and stalking. The power is real and can be unseen until the attack comes. It can happen closer to your own home that you’d think. Being behind a screen seems to shield these people and they say things you wouldn’t probably say to the recipient face to face. Check out comments on any controversial news feed and see the amount of venom that is spewed out. Moral of this — apply the golden rule.

#Eatthecake #Takethetrip

#Eatthecake — even if it’s a brownie cooked in a pot. Hm tasty. 


#Takethetrip — even if it’s cloudy still relish the opportunity to venture from your everyday. 


#findyourbalance — #findabalance or #findyourbalance or #balance — whatever hashtag you use find what works in your life. It’s not all work and it’s not all play. 

Bernie 

Something from Nothing 

There is a wonderful children’s book called Something from Nothing. It’s by one of my favourite Canadian authors of that genre, Phoebe Gilman. I was reminded of this book recently when I decided to create something from nothing. Once the Continue reading

#fencepostfriday

Yes I post to Intragram too often, yes I spend a lot of time connecting in social media. While doing just those things today I discovered a new hashtag that I love!

It’s a time sensitive one though as like a throw back Thursday you can only publish it one day a week. In all reality I’m quite sure I can only do one blog post about it as I don’t have that many photos of them.

That said I have a few that are my favourites. 





AND that’s why I keep thousands (yes thousands) of photos on my phone. So I can blog all favourites from one spot. But alas I couldn’t find my favourite two nor the newest one I would like to have shared. So I guess you’ll have to check back next Friday. 

Bernie 

I’ll Huff and I’ll Puff 

I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll try to blow your house down said the big bad wind. And try he did. I felt it shaking in the timbers but I’m happy to report it stood another go around.

Not quite so successful with a few items outside though. There are watering cans and dog water dishes spread around in the hay-field. The trees don’t break as they are all still little so that’s a blessing I guess. We don’t have a lot of leaves to blow away either but I hear in the city that was an upside to the crazy wind.


There were loads of tired people at work today due to noise. The list of items that kept us all awake were varied but included a neighbor’s gate, tin shingles or tree branches. In my case it was the screen window but I did hear a couple of stellar bangs.  The new hot tub lid went up and over — yikes. Then the gate took a hit and cracked up.

The unfortunate but minor part is that all that fabulous fall colour is gone from our property. So glad we had our stellar photos done while the trees were wearing their glory coats.


Mother Nature makes her own rules. Nursery rhymes just play along.

Bernie 

Black and White

Once upon a time in a land near here there was only one option. That was kind of like when dinosaurs roamed the prairies and I was just born or at least that is how old they all think I am at work. But I digress because really I am here comparing what was and what is.  Continue reading