Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Proud Proud Mama!

My kids have brought home awards before but never have I been as proud as I was yesterday when I learned they BOTH won the 'Citizenship Award' for their grade levels. It means they show respect, are deemed as being trustworthy and show concern for the well being of others. Carter was absolutely glowing as he told me that his teacher did a speech at the School Assembly (my god, I'm welling up just typing this!) about Carter being a good citizen globally, how he is a member of PETA and gave examples on how he and his family live a compassionate lifestyle. Callum's teacher spoke of him showing sympathy towards his peers and told the school he is a friend who can be counted on. This is so wonderful for me as a mother because as different as my boys are in personality, appearance & interests, it goes to show that what values you foster and instill in children will mean something and will make a difference in the type of people they are in this world. Celine Dion once said on an episode of Oprah, "it's not what you give them, it's how you raise them" and this rings true for me as a parent who admits to being guilty of materialistically giving far too much to my kids. It goes to show that them 'having' stuff doesn't mean they 'lack' goodwill. They are not spoiled brats, they are learning to pay forward with both sharing possessions & doing things for people with heart & soul in their efforts.
Callum struggles with reading and Carter is easily frustrated with mathematics (he comes by that honestly) but overall my children get fairly good grades. Had they brought home an award of any kind, academically or for participation, I would have showered them with congratulations for their efforts. This particular award however speaks to our core values as a family, .... I am absolutely beaming with pride. I am very thankful to those special teachers who have brought awareness of these traits forth and made my sons shine!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, June 24, 2011

More Reasons To Vote Green

Animal welfare | Green Party of Canada

Animal welfare

While everyone is against cruelty to animals, factory farming has been allowed to create systematic and routine cruelty to livestock production.  Chickens are packed tightly in cages their whole lives, cattle crowd in feedlots, and pigs are kept indoors in cages on slatted metal floors all their lives. Most people believe that animals, including domesticated animals, have the right to be treated humanely. The current Federal laws protect animals from cruelty under the Criminal Code, but animals fall into the property section.  Thus, cruelty to animal offences are among the very few offences that can only be convicted as summary convictions (minor offences, with limited penalties). As well, the Criminal Code uses the term ‘willful intent’, making it very hard to prove a person has violated the code.

Our Vision We believe that animals should be treated humanely and with respect at all times. Farming practices must allow animals to live without undue stress and in conditions where they are able to exercise normal behaviours. Many animals that live in intensive farming systems show signs of stress such as stereotypies (repetitive behaviours with no purpose) and aggression. Some animals, such as chicken breeder broilers and sows (mothers of pigs used for meat), are kept in a state of starvation in order to keep them at healthy weight, despite their bred-in genetic predisposition to gain weight. Mortalities, disease and injuries from long transport are a common occurrence, since abattoirs are often long distances from farms.

Green Solutions Green Party MPs will:

Adopt animal welfare legislation to prevent inhumane treatment of farm animals including intensive factory farming methods. The Act will set minimum standards of treatment and have a timetable for the phase-out of intensive factory farming and other inhumane animal husbandry practices. It will set standards for distances live animals can be transported, conditions of animals in slaughterhouses, auctions, and entertainment, and it will prohibit trade in exotic animals.

Update Canada’s criminal code as it pertains to animal protection, moving crimes against animals from the property section, and recognizing animals as sentient beings. The Green Party of Canada will, furthermore, invest resources in the development and training of police officers to deal with cruelty cases.

Establish a Parliamentary Committee on Animal Welfare tasked with examining legislation affecting animal concerns and dealing with the animal welfare community, creating a setting in parliament where animal welfare issues can be properly researched and debated and recommendations made as required.

Work to improve conditions for animals during transport.

Sponsor legislation that:

Makes the acts of cruelty to animals an offence under the criminal code instead of a property offence.

Clearly defines an animal as ‘a vertebrate other than a human being’.

Changes the term ‘willful neglect’ of animals used in the current legislation to simply ‘neglect’  with the term ‘neglect’ being defined as ‘departing markedly from the standard of care that a        reasonable person would use’ so as to make convictions under the Act more achievable.

Makes it an offence to kill any animal without a lawful reason.

Makes it an offence to train an animal to fight and receive money for animal fighting and training, and prohibit all spectacles, animal shows and presentations that involve injuring, baiting, fighting, intimidation, harassment, causing fear and/or other negative actions that are potentially harmful to the animals involved; including bullfights, cock fights, and dog fights.

Bans the use of animals as experimental objects in military research and cosmetic testing.

Bans importing animals for zoos, except where importing will assist the overall conservation of that species.

Prohibits the use of wild animals in circuses, novelty acts, traveling shows and other temporary spectacles.

Requires all zoos to be licensed, to operate at a professional standard, be subject to strict animal welfare and public safety regulations, and subject to regular reviews and inspections.

Prohibits importing marine mammals for public display in zoos, marine parks and aquariums.

Prohibits the captive breeding of animals in zoos and marine parks, except for verifiable conservation purposes.

Establishes strict animal welfare and public safety regulations for the use of wild animals in film and television productions.

Establishes retirement/sanctuary facilities for wild animals seized by federal, provincial and municipal law enforcement agencies.

Strives for the reduction and ultimate replacement of animal use for research, testing, and educational purposes.

Makes the use of animals for research, testing and educational purposes unlawful where a non-animal method or approach is reasonably or practicably available (consistent with EU Directive 86/609).

Establishes a coordinated approach to identifying alternatives to replace or reduce the use of animals for testing and research, and commits resources to developing and validating non-animal test methods in coordination with parallel efforts elsewhere.

Ensures the automatic regulatory acceptance of every non-animal test method deemed scientifically valid by the European Centre for the Validation of Alternative Methods (ECVAM) and the automatic prohibition of the animal-based test method it replaces.

Ensures that all new or revised animal and non-animal toxicity test methods are scientifically validated before their use is required, recommended or encouraged by regulatory authorities.

Enhances the current system of oversight consisting of voluntary guidelines and peer review administered by the Canadian Council on Animal Care, a federally regulated licensing program, whereby prospective animal users must apply to a federal Animal & Alternatives Research Review Board, which will be responsible for:

Evaluating the costs and benefits of the proposed research.

Rigorously assessing the availability of non-animal methods or approaches.

Granting or denying a project license.

Where a license is granted, monitoring compliance with animal care standards; and improving government and industry accountability and public access to information regarding the use of animals for research.

Outlaws the mandatory surrender of dogs and cats from municipal pounds and animal shelters (known as “pound seizure”)

for research use.

Bans all use of non-human primates for genetic manipulation and cloning, invasive psychological and behavioural research, substance abuse research, and warfare research.

Bans the use of animals to assess the safety of personal care and household cleaning products, as defined by the Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics; animal-based tests for skin corrosion, skin irritation, skin absorption, phototoxicity, pyrogenicity, genetic toxicity to be replaced by scientifically-validated non-animal methods.

Bans “lethal dose” toxicity studies on vertebrates.

Prohibits any industry involving single organ trade.

Increases monitoring and enforcement budgets.

Includes provisions to facilitate promotion of alternatives to use of wild animal ingredients by traditional medicine practitioners.

GREEN PARTY OF CANADA PO Box 997, Station B Ottawa, ON K1P 5R1 Green Party of Canada | Important information and privacy policy | Terms of Service Authorized by the Green Party of Canada Fund, Chief Agent for the Green Party of Canada.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Meaning Of Peace

I've seen this before but I can't find it on my blog and it's a must have quote, so.... it's been added!

“peace: it does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. it means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.” — unknown

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Geneen Roth

“The way you eat is inseparable from your core beliefs about being alive. Your relationship with food is an exact mirror of your feelings about love, fear, anger, meaning and transformation.”
~Geneen Roth

- Posted from Jennifer's iPhone

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

PETA's Accidentally Vegan List

PETA put out a list of products that Accidentally Vegan and although not all of them are the most healthy, it's still very cool that they are animal free!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Farewell But Not Goodbye, Oprah!

Four thousand, five hundred and sixty-one episodes of Oprah aired over the years. Some may say "good riddance" but I have a deep appreciation for what Oprah  has brought to this world. I watched her on TV with my Mum and my Gran when I was a child and have always been inspired by her. She has been a force in so many of our lives. I feel like I understand her messages. We are all connected in a spiritual and divine energy and in order to appreciate this, you would have to be on that wavelength, tuned in, in sync, connected....however you want to envision it! Wisdom emanates from the heart while knowledge comes from the mind and Oprah possesses both. Every true Oprah fan would have seen the Farewell show by now. I was a mess watching it, and I watched it alone, late at night the way I wanted it to be. Just me, Oprah and a glass of white. The episode summed up the entirety of what she has been doing all these years..... her main lesson 'you are responsible for the energy you bring to yourself and to others as well as to every space you enter.'  What we do with our energy matters. What you put out in the world, returns to you.

About a month ago a long time friendship I had with a girlfriend was severed and I feel like I was broken up with. She'll never read this blog but to be fair I'll change her name.... for the this purpose I'll refer to her as 'Lisa' and if she does read this blog she'll know why I chose 'Lisa'! I knew in the weeks leading up to the night it happened that her energy was different. I tried to over compensate with energy I was pulling from other sources like my family and other friends but I could feel her deflecting it. Instead of validating the people in my circle, I stole from them to give to her. She wasn't open to receiving it and I was draining myself trying to connect to her. It was wasted energy. I even asked other friends to do what they could to open her up, ....I was desperate to save something that I couldn't reach. Our connection disappeared before I knew it. This was very new for me. Not often, but I've felt similar before in a few other relationships in my life. I eventually get to a point where I'm so drained from trying that I pull my energy back and give up....and when I do I often feel a sense of peace and calm, and grateful to myself for identifying that I needed to do that for my soul. When I begin to accept certain people are fading out of my life I'm ok because of that process. When I come to realize how much energy I put into keeping it together I have to re-think where I can spend that energy elsewhere and do good with it instead. And things usually come full circle for me when I do that.  As if there was a reason for needing to re-direct it. This friendship with 'Lisa' was different. I never pulled back. I was shut out instead. We spent sixteen years being friends and there was a lot of great energy swapped throughout that time.  She chose to re-direct her focus on a man who knows this energy concept, even if he doesn't realize he knows it, and has used it to pull her in. I'm sick about it. I miss her. When a picture of her pops up on my computer, I cry, and I don't want to but I do. When I drive past the restaurant we 'broke up' in I cry, and I can't make myself not cry. It happens to my heart before I can tell my head to just stop thinking about her.
I've been sad and drained about this for weeks but when I watched Oprah's Farewell show the other day, she reminded me I should be taking responsibility for how I'm spending that energy. It's not my fault she wasn't open to receiving it from me anymore, it's not my fault that it doesn't seem to bother her that we don't know what is going on in each others lives and it's not my fault that she can't balance her energies enough to make it all work. But it is my fault for holding onto the excess energy she deflected and not re-directing it. It's too much to hold onto and has been weighing me down.  It's full of anxiousness and desperateness right now, so I'll give it a detox then give it away to someone or something in this universe where it'll have a positive impact. It's what is right.
I'm going to miss watching the weeks worth of my PVR'd Oprah shows on the weekends, but her wisdom, knowledge that she's shared, vibes she's sent, empowerment, inspiration and more than I can even describe with words will stay with me forever and will always be felt in my heart.
Farewell, but not Goodbye, Oprah! xo

About Me

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Life-long Vegetarian and proud to be Canadian. Really, I'm a little bit of everything, all rolled into one. I'm a bitch, I'm a lover, I'm a child, I'm a mother, I'm a sinner, I'm a saint (I do not feel ashamed) I'm your hell, I'm your dream (I'm nothing in between) You know, I wouldn't want it any other way..... (I'd like to think that song was written about me! lol)