My laptop’s been getting a hell of a work out …

… you know that, of course, because I’ve been working so steadily on a new project for the last few weeks I haven’t had time to blog. I’ve been at it full days, I worked right through one weekend, a fair bit of the long weekend and part of last weekend. Which I’m fine with me, because I am loving this project. In fact, I’ll be sorry when I’m done — which I almost am (snivel).

I don’t want to jinx anything, so let’s just say my trusty old MacBook Air is hanging in. But I’ve gone Continue reading

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Goodbye Marianne …

We’ve been having a heatwave in Toronto. I’m not complaining. I promised myself, during the endless deep freeze that was our winter of 2019, that I would not complain of the heat ever again, no matter how bad it is. So I’m merely stating a fact.

This past Saturday was particularly oppresssive, with not even the merest hint of a breeze. My apartment is air conditioned so I could have busied myself at home. But I didn’t want to. I wanted to be out, doing something. “Ahhhh,” I thought to myself. This is a perfect day to go to a movie.

Much as I love movies, I tend not to see too many of them in summer, it’s too nice outside and we have Continue reading

The pause that refreshed …

Life is crazy and challenging and chaotic and uncertain. Not just for me, for everyone, everywhere. It’s important for our mental, emotional and physical well-being to shut the world out from time to time, to live in the light, to find joy.

Well, that certainly happened for me last Sunday … 

… when I was lucky enough to be one of about 35 people who attended a casual, intimate, private, classical music concert. Not in the evening, in a darkened concert hall, which is what you’d expect. This concert took place in the afternoon, in a sun-drenched living room.

And on this day the living room happened to belong to a friend and former colleague — Bryan Tenenhouse and his wife Cori Halpern. But it could take place in my living room or yours.

Have you ever heard of Groupmuse? I confess I had not, until Bryan posted on Facebook about a concert at a friend’s home he and Cori went to last Spring. At the time he wrote that he and Cori loved it so much they wanted to host one themselves. Which they did, over two glorious hours, on Sunday afternoon.

What an extraordinary idea it is. Anyone can host. Anyone can attend. That’s right, you don’t have to know Continue reading

Family …

My mother once told me that when she and my father got married there were 200-plus people at their wedding, most of whom were family. Like most children, I never thought about a time when our family would stop growing and start shrinking. Children assume everyone they love will be around forever.

In actual fact, I’m lucky. Most of my family lived long and full lives. I was 15 when my great grandfather passed away, in my 20s when my great grandmother passed. One grandmother lived to 98, the other to Continue reading

So how smart are you, eh?

We celebrated Canada Day this past weekend.  I’ve talked a lot about how proud I am to be Canadian, so I decided to spare you from hearing me blather on about it again. Then I saw this Historica Canada quiz yesterday in Huff Post Canada Weekend Digest and I thought I’d give it a try. I like quizzes anyway and it seemed like fun to see how much I know about this wonderful country I live in — or, conversely, how dumb I am.

I’m relieved to say that out of 30 questions, I only got four wrong. Yeah, yeah, I know. You’re sitting there thinking I should have known them all. Well it turns out I did better than most of the 1002 Canadians who Continue reading

Maria Shriver strikes a chord yet again …

If you follow my blog or regularly read my posts on my social media you know I’m a fan of Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper. She always blows me away because she consistently writes about issues that are on my mind. But just as important, if not more so, she also talks about matters that should be on my radar and should concern me — this past Sunday’s essay being a perfect case in point.

In it she talks about reactions to medication, women’s health in general and the gender gap in medicine —  and then she segues to the allergic reactions we also have to people, what those reactions tell us and how we should handle them. All of it very important, so here’s a link. While you’re there, take a minute and subscribe.

I know to some degree we all suffer from information overload, but trust me when I tell you that the Continue reading

As fathers and role models go …

… I hit the jackpot.

As wonderful a father as mine was, my love and admiration for him goes far beyond his parenting skills, good as they were. It’s also about the man he was, what he taught me just by being who he was.

He was the guy everyone turned to when they had a problem or needed advice of any kind. And by everyone, I mean family, friends, employees, even my friends. They knew he’d be objective, he’d listen Continue reading

Laughter really is the best medicine …

I can’t tell you how many times I ‘ve heard that over the course of my life and I’m pretty sure you’ve probably heard it more than a few times, too. Laughing has never been a problem for me, I’m blessed with a pretty good sense of humour and it’s stood me in good stead over the years.

Being able to laugh, especially at myself, has helped me get through the ups and downs that are part and parcel of all of our lives and I’m grateful for that. But it was when my mother passed away that I learned that it’s okay to smile and even chuckle during the most solemn of occasions.

After my mother’s funeral, the Rabbi came to the shiva to lead the evening prayer. When he was done, not Continue reading