Normally my posts are peppy and upbeat.  I pride myself on trying to find the positive in any situation.  But there is no sugar coating this one.  There should be no joy when one hears the words, “Looks like you need glasses.”

There was something about glasses as a kid that seemed exotic. Before the whole “four-eyes,” “geeky” stereotype sets in. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that not too many people had them; feeding into one’s desire to be different. Our maybe it just made you feel smart and intellectual. In a cool way. More Daria than Millhouse.

I just want to make it clear. I want to debunk the myth. There is NOTHING cool about having glasses. NOTHING that should make anyone want these spectacles of pain and torture. I wouldn’t wish these things on my worst enemy! Let’s just say it: having glasses sucks!

Not convinced that this great invention is really a gift from someone with a horribly sick sense of humour?   I’ll start with Seven reasons- and I’m sure you could add many more.

  1. Having glasses sucks in the winter… and the rain. There is nothing worse than heading into somewhere warm and wonderful after being in the cold to have your glasses fog up in front of you. Not only do you look horribly uncool and have to deal with insane condensation, but it’s just really inconvenient. I just want to see! And then there’s dealing with being in the rain… imagine driving a car in a rainstorm with no windshield wipers. Being devoid of sight is no first world problem- seeing should be a basic necessity and right of all!

  2. Having to actually need glasses sucks when choosing a pair of glasses. Those people who don’t really need glasses or have a tiny prescription don’t quite get this. Why not get two or three fun frames to match any outfit or mood? Or go online and get the 2 for 1 special. Here’s the deal. If you pretty much can’t see more than an inch in front of your face, there’s no way you are getting your glasses from anywhere but your eye doctor. There are too many modifications, thinning of lenses etc that go into it. So, I pair costs at least $500. And if you are paying more than your benefits cover in two years on one pair- you are going sensible all the way. As cool as it would be to have some Ray Bans, or funky, jeweled out cat eye glasses, Plain Jane has to win out.

Also, when you wear contacts you really are stuck. You know when the union has that vote every year for what our biggest concerns are? Most people pick salaries or sick days. I always pick eye coverage. Contacts, plus needing a pair of glasses, plus your now pay out of your pocket eye doctor appointment adds up! I don’t understand why OHIP won’t cover that one anymore…. I’m sorry that my sight isn’t a priority…

  1. Having glasses stinks when you fall asleep. Us glasses wearers have all been there. Putting on a
    NBC Studios

    NBC Studios

    pair of old, too weak lenses to read in bed or watch a movie for fear that we will fall asleep and warp our frames. And speaking of old glasses….

  2. Having to wear old, outdated, too weak lenses when your usual pair are either lost or broken. “Hey, Em. 2002 is calling- they want their frosted tips, low rise jeans, the tramp stamp and your glasses back.” That’s when my old pair is from. I changed out the lenses a few times.
  3. Having glasses sucks when you can’t find them. And they are right under your nose.
  4. I could have been an Olympic swimmer- I had all my levels finished by the time I was 11, but then not being able to see put a real damper on things. Forget being a lifeguard. Sure you could get prescription googles- but then you forget how cool you would look walking around with those on your face all day… And don’t get me started on sports. The one time I attempted volleyball for fun I had my glasses knocked off my face… and then I couldn’t see for days until they could get fixed. Awesome…

    I see you...

    I see you…

  5. Waking up and not seeing anything. What I wouldn’t give to wake up and see! You can’t even check the alarm clock until you find your glasses to check… and at that point you are already half awake. To those who have been blessed with this gift- you have no idea how blessed you are!

And don’t tell me. “Well, if glasses suck so badly, why not just get contacts?” If I have another contact rip on my eyeball…. Lol, the rant for that is way better (or worse) than this one. It’s decided I’m saving up to get my eyes zapped. If I started a gofundme, would anyone contribute to the cause?

What do you think?  Are glasses that bad?  What would you add to the list?  What is WORSE than wearing spectacles?   Click on the SPEECH BUBBLE and leave a comment!  

Maybe they aren't so bad...

Maybe they aren’t so bad…


WE’RE NOT OUT TO GET YOUR KIDS- often you’ll hear “Mr. So-in-so doesn’t like me, that’s why I got that grade.” Or “Why are you centering out my kid? You must not like him” Here’s a fact. Teacher’s get into teaching because they love kids and want them to be successful. Even more so now that is the case. To land a teaching gig now, you’re looking at a 7 year wait, if you’re lucky. People who don’t love the job don’t stay with teaching. The amount of crap from parents and students, paper work, time and effort needed is only worth it if you love it.

Something I found interesting was sharing a prep period with the “meanest teacher on staff.” Students were always saying how she didn’t like them etc. Throughout the semester I got to know this teacher well and I was amazed in talking with her how much she cared for her students. She was a little old-school and strict, but she really wanted these students to be successful. Sure, she demanded full sentences and handing in assignments on time, and the reason that was is because she wanted them to be prepared not just for later education but expectations in life as well.

So, as a parents always assume that the teacher is on your side and loves your kid and wants them to do well. We see things that you don’t- think of us as another set of loving eyes that can offer advice to help your child grow.

I’m going to post this in seven parts over the next two weeks!

Back to school is almost upon us! So, this blog post has to do with school. Now, I’m a teacher, not a parent, so this is why this post comes from the teacher perspective. I would love to hear what parents would like teachers to know!

One thing is clear, teachers and parents both play an integral part in shaping a child’s mind. Both serve as guides and examples of how to navigate this journey that is life. And, with the ultimate goal to create independent people by the time they graduate, it is imperative that both parent and teacher do everything they can to support, encourage and guide our future adults.

I’m going into my eighth full year of teaching this September and I think I’ve seen it all. I have met some wonderfully supportive parents and I have been raked over the coals by others. Here are seven things as a teacher I (and my teaching friends) wish parents knew and understood about teaching/the education system. Again, I’m sharing this to help facilitate a partnership between teachers and parents. Because ultimately we want what you want-for your child to be successful, both at school and at life.

1. Every teacher is different- Teachers, like people, are different. They have different personality types, they have varied interests and strengths, have had different experiences and communicate in different ways. That is what makes teaching so great- when you are dealing with a variety of children and a variety of subjects, you need more than a cookie-cutter definition of what a good teacher is. There are always a few funny and vivacious teachers on staff that all the kids love and clamour to get in that teacher’s class. That being said, there are some amazing teachers who are quieter and all around good at delivering solid teaching. They may not be one of the “cool” teachers, but your kids will learn so much from them.

Teachers are like shoes…

Comparing teachers is like comparing shoes. You just can’t. Some are instantly comfortable, and others hurt your feet. But, each has their purpose and even those high heels that pinch will help you with your posture! Each teacher you have will teach you something if you are open to it. Sure, some teachers you will connect more with and you’ll enjoy their teaching style more. But, there are others that you shouldn’t just write off because you don’t like them as much as another teacher. Encouraging your child to see the good in whatever teacher they have will help them to be successful.

I remember teaching an academic English course where the kids were constantly complaining that I wasn’t as fun as their teacher from the year before, mainly because I made them do some serious reading and writing. It’s hard not to take comments like that personally, because as humans we all have a desire to be liked. I told my kids, “I don’t care if you like me. My goal is to make you better readers and writers and to have you rock the essay form. I care that when you are at college or university you have a moment where you think, thank you Ms. B.” And, it’s been cool to have kids come back and share how a skill or strategy we worked was useful to them in other courses and later on in life and post secondary studies. My job as a teacher is not to make friends.  My job is to teach your kids.

A word about technology and communication here. Every teacher’s experience with technology is different. Every classroom is equipped with different technology and every subject is different. I’ve taught English in a computer lab, but I’ve also taught it with limited computer access. Some teachers are able to do a weekly email update to parents. Some teachers have all their lessons online on a website. Others still break out the overhead projector. Some have classes where there are a lot of difficult students, so you may never get a phone call if your kid is one of the ok ones. All of these scenarios can allow for good teaching, if you have one thing: a good teacher. A teacher’s merit should not be placed on how many smart board lessons use, how many foldables they create, or how many lights and special effects they put into their lessons. Sure, when used effectively- they breed great results. But, I’ve seen some amazing teacher led pencil and paper activities. The worst thing you can do is say, “Last year, Mr. So-in-so did this,” or “Ms. So-in-so was so much more engaging.”

Embrace differences and encourage your children to so as well.

Don’t believe me?  Check out this post:


After almost a year hiatus, Em’s Top 7 is back in operation! The past year has been crazy, in a good way, but super busy. I set out to write a top 7 for my friends going off to university/college and I never quite finished, so once I missed that week- it was all downhill from there! Stay tuned as I’m going to finish that post soon and have a few other back to school ones on the go!


Today, I hung out with two of my girlfriends. We took a random road trip to try a find a decent restaurant that is actually open on a Monday, and thankfully our summer brains were on and teacher talk did not take over. The three of us are single and in our 30s and the conversation turned to an interesting subject.

Now, this post is meant to shed some light into what it’s like to be a single girl whether by choice or by circumstance. It’s not meant to create an “us vs. them” divide, this is completely meant to offer some insight and clear up some misconceptions of what it is like to be a woman on her own, because a life without a partner is not without it’s struggles.

I believe that God has all of us, single or not, in the right place at the time. I believe that whether you are married or not, a parent or not, you can be completely satisfied and have a full understanding about life and what it has to offer. No matter where you are, no matter what your life circumstance is, there are going to be challenges. It is so important to be someone who is in tune with what is going on in your friend/family members’ lives, because we all struggle in different ways and need support and love in whatever those circumstances are. So, hopefully this post will be a reminder of that.

That being said- if you know me, you know that even when I’m serious, I usually say things with a bit of humour, so keep that in mind…

So with that long preamble- I present to you, “Seven Phrases Every Single Gal Is Dying NOT to Hear.”

Myth #1- Single Gals are rolling in the dough…

1. “It must be nice to have such a disposable income.” We don’t know where this one comes from, because even though we have decent jobs, we never seem to have any extra money. Think about it. As a single person, you still have to make full payments for rent/mortgage, a car, insurance- all on one salary. Not to mention trying to pay off student loans and any other crazy unknown expenses that come up. At the rate I’m going, I’m looking to have my schooling paid back by the time I’m 37- if I stick to a strict budget. Now, that being said, my debit card does get a decent workout at both the Clinique counter and Victoria Secret, and I do get my hair done regularly but I figure those purchases really are necessities on the quest to land a man.

You just sent me what?!

2. “Have you tried online dating?” I have very limited commentary for this one. People usually offer this not as a piece of advice, but as a solution to the problem. Most single women would concur that getting married is more than a box to be checked, and not a problem to be solved. And sure, online dating is a good way to meet single guys, especially if your circles have dried up of prospects. But, online dating sucks. Sure, there may be a gem of a guy on there somewhere- but it’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Some people strike gold right away, while others have to deal with the many men (or boys) who are usually separated from their wives, socially inept, or seriously perverted. And that’s just on the Christian sites… That could be a whole blog post in itself. And usually the response to the lack of viable options online is another favourite phrase, “Maybe you’re being too picky…”

I have to schedule time in to shave my legs?!

3. “Being single is less responsibility…” Another misconception about being a single person is the hours of time we must seem to have on our hands. Think about it. Groceries still need to be bought, laundry to be done, all the bills to pay, the grass to cut, waiting for the repair guy to show up, taking the car in to be fixed, the house to be cleaned, dinner to be cooked, etc. Think of all the jobs that have to be done in life and as a single person, you are responsible for them all. There is no one to ask to pick up a few things on their way home for you, or someone to sort the recycling when you are busy. There is a reason why a marriage is considered a partnership. Why do you think single people love takeout/frozen dinners so much? (Lol- and why do you think I’m having Cheerios for dinner? Awesome, yes. But I would rather have the energy/company to make something way more fabulous.)

Married club= Singles not welcome

4. “You’ll understand when you’re married.” Without going into a rant about this one, this is the most frustrating statement a single person can hear. Especially when they are past their late 20s. What if I never get married? Will I never understand? Will I never be fulfilled? When I get married does the world suddenly make sense and have meaning? This statement sucks. I have been on the receiving end of this, and even though the intention is not mean-spirited, the feeling of not being a part of a group or not being a fully formed human being is.

Hmm.. budget allows for a road trip to “Akron, Ohio”- anyone?

5. “You must travel all the time!” Three things that make this untrue. Firstly, people don’t want to travel with you. And, well in theory it sounds great to travel alone and go where the wind takes you, part of the fun of a vacation is sharing it with someone. Most of my friends are married or have kids and will not travel, some even for a weekend. Secondly, have you ever seen how expensive it is to travel as a single? Often it’s double the cost of what it costs a couple. And, travelling with someone is an intimate experience- you have to choose a travelling companion wisely. Sure, you may save a chunk of cash, but you may be giving up your sanity at the same time…. And thirdly- see point number 1.

There is a reason he’s still single…

6. “Wait… I THINK I know a single guy….” As if being single is the only criteria one has for finding a man. Yes, the number of single guys is dwindling, but hopefully standards aren’t dwindling also! Again, see the online dating rant about checking a box. That being said, if you know someone who is single and who your single friend would get along with, please introduce them!

I’m aaaaall aloneeeee… all by myseeeelf…

7. “I won’t be able to make it; I need to spend time with my husband/We have to __________.” Ok. I get this. I really do. Marriages take work and there are times where you need to make time to be with your husband/family. That being said I cannot tell you how incredibly lonely it is and how pathetic one feels when you have everyone cancel on you or not be free to do something because of this reason. While you are out at a family BBQ or cozy-ing up to your man, the poor single girl is opening a can of tuna and bottle of wine alone.

And, since it’s been so long (and I have one more) here’s number 8.
8. “Just be patient. You’ll find him. God will bring him into your life at the right time…” This may be a true statement (or maybe not). But, honestly this is THE WORST thing you can say to someone who is single. Why? Because it implies that you haven’t been patient, you aren’t fully ready to be in a relationship, that there is something wrong with you that needs to be sorted out before you are “blessed” with a mate. And, when someone much younger than you (and usually married) says this (and usually shares the story about how they waited so long and the man of their dreams just appeared) it honestly makes the single person want to either crawl into a hole and die or punch the advice giver in the face. Just be a good friend. Being a friend means listening to your friend’s struggles and just being there for that person. Throwing a blanket statement out there and assuming you know how that person feels isn’t being a good friend. Take them out for coffee, include them on your wild family adventures- make an effort to check in with them.

So thankful for the handful of amazing friends I have!

To sum up: Being single is not all fun and games as it appears, but single people are usually pretty content with their lives. Yes, most single people would love to be un-single but, only if that means being with someone who is going to make their lives better. Single people want to be remembered and loved by their married friends because we love and remember you too! (And I am so thankful for the ones who go out of their way to include/love me!)


7 Tips for Teaching Applied Students 

I think it’s the fact that marks are due this week and I’ve been marking English stuff like a vandal, so this week’s post is a teaching post. I’ll post to my teaching blog too, which sadly, I have not done a super great job keeping up.

 For those who have been out of the school system for awhile, high school students can pick from three streams in their courses: academic (which is quite, well, academic), applied, and essentials/modified. Sortof, like the advanced, general, and basic we had when I was a student.

 Applied students are interesting. You always have an “interesting” makeup of students. Students who are constantly late or non-attenders, really intelligent kids who are too lazy to do academic work, lazy students in general, weak students, students with learning disabilities, students who don’t want to work, are all put together in a class, usually at max, usually all boys. There are usually a few hard working/wonderful kids, but sometimes they get overlooked because of the rest of the clientele. So, a mixed bag that’s for sure. How do you teach a class full of those students and still keep your sanity?

 I think out of the 21 or so English classes I’ve taught, only 2 or 3 have been academic. So, I have a lot of experience, especially with Grade 9/10 Applied English. Also, I’ve worked with some rockstar teachers when I was working at Eastview as a classroom tutor (Mr. Welch literally is a rockstar- and, did you know our beloved OAC English teacher said his favourite course to teach was Grade 9 Applied English?) I think I have a little bit of insight to share. That’s not to say my period 2 class isn’t a bit of a gong show on occasion (I’m still learning too!), but hopefully I can offer some insight to those teachers starting out.

 And this is going to be good, solid pedagogical advice. It’s not going to be “airy-fairy” advice like “make a foldable” or “here’s a cool app,” which all could be all good things, but with the absence of good teaching, they won’t save you!

"Dude, you going to English?"

“Dude, you going to English?”


1.  Your thinking about teaching has to shift- Think about it. Any teacher has gone to university, which means they took academic courses in high school. What motivated you in school and what you found interesting is NOT going to work with these guys.

 Applied kids are DIFFERENT than academic students. As a teacher you have to realize this to teach this students. They are not fans of homework, they aren’t driven by marks, and they will shut down if you are mean or scare them. With these classes it has to be about giving students opportunities to gain marks, not about taking away marks. I always collect their work on the due date or the end of the period. I don’t care if it’s incomplete. I will mark what they have done to give them some marks. Also, we recently had a quiz, and I had students come up while I marked it to go over the answers with me. Questions that were left blank, I asked them about to see if I could get them a few more marks. More often then not, they didn’t understand the question. These are good kids that are trying and they were so thankful to have the chance to demonstrate what they knew. Also, it was a nice reward for them since 8 other students skipped that day. They won’t get the Ms. B special treatment when they return.

Again, all these things are DIFFERENT than our traditional academic upbringing and some of you won’t agree with these examples. But, I assure you this shift in thinking saves you a lot of headaches, breed better results and relationships with these kids, and honestly, saves you a lot of paperwork in the end!

 2. Keep them organized! You have to go a little old school. Tomorrow we are having a binder check (you know where you fill in the organizer with the worksheet at the front?). I use checklists for assignments and for units. I have a slide show on the board reminding them of the tasks to complete and hand in for the day. I’ve even tweaked assignments I’ve used for years to make them more clear, chunk down the expectations, and usually have an organizer to make it easier to complete the writing task later. Also, the rubric is very clear and we always work up to big assignments.

 For example: It took us two weeks of small little lessons and filling in organizers to complete our five paragraph personal essays in my 2P English class. But we did, and they were quite good. But it wasn’t just: here’s the assignment- go. Each step in the process was chunked down. The first day we did a guided brainstorm about ourselves, the next day we filled in an organizer with 3 points and supporting examples, the next we worked on topic sentences in general, and then different types of introductions etc. As we did this, everyday we filled in a part of our graphic organizer and continued our study on paragraphs. We even did a lesson on formatting- and behold- perfectly double spaced, centred, and titled essays. But, this only happened because that was a separate lesson one day before we spent the rest of the period typing up our essays.

 3. Talk less and let them do more/Keep them busy and working. This was life changing for me when I realized this. I was so frustrated that I would explain the task and expectations and then almost every student would ask, “What are we suppose to do?” Now, I just give them brief instructions and direct them to the slide show/instruction sheet to figure it out. One on one conversation to explain things yield better results. I spend most of the class going around and helping students, checking in, and marking their organizers on the spot. You cannot sit at your desk and mark with these kids. You have to prompt them, encourage them, and assist them.

4. Be proactive. Give these students no excuse not to work. Anticipate the “problem” (or in this case excuse) before it happens. If I see a student arrive without a pencil, I keep talking and just hand them one of the many golf pencils I keep at the front. I also always collect work that we will be working on for multiple days, especially if it’s group work. (Why is it, whenever one group member is away, they are the one who always has the hangout?) Also, if I know Johnny needs help getting started on a task, I’ll go straight to him and make sure he’s clear as to what he’s suppose to be doing. If I know Sally is going to fly through a worksheet, I’ll have another task ready for her. If kids are busy, you’ve just eliminated most of your behaviour problems, guaranteed!

5. Be clear in your expectations and follow through. Don’t be a tyrant, but be clear. This is what you are to accomplish today, and I will collect it at the end of the period. If you talk once more, I will move you beside me. And always, always follow through. But, as the Great Wendy Jackson said, always focus on their success “I think you will be more successful working over here away from your friends who are distracting you from your success.” Even better when you give them a warning, “Do I need to move you to a more successful seat?,” usually gets them working, because they don’t want to move. Or sometimes they just do because they know they will be more successful there. But you’ve now made it their choice, and you’ve made it about them. These kids want to be successful and they want to have someone take an interest in them and their success. Actually, if that’s the one thing you take from this blog, it’s that point right there. That was my mind shift moment and that’s driven my teaching ever since!

What your students would rather be doing...

What your students would rather be doing…

6. Tap into their interests/Get to know them- I love teaching 2P right now; we’re doing the hero quest and looking at superheros. It gives me an excuse to wear my Batman t-shirt! It’s perfect because I have a lot of boys in that class who are into that sort of thing. To hear the debate one group had as we ranked superpowers was amazing. It was deep. Students who would barely write a sentence are now coming up with epic projects. We also did a graphic novel assignment where they found examples and cut and pasted them into a project. Almost silence for 3 days. I’m not saying everything you do should be about their interests- even having conversations with students and getting to know them is such a great thing for behaviour and willingness to work.


But give them meaty tasks. Don’t just pick something because they’ll like it. Make sure it has value. This is key. Often, we want to engage our students by giving them “cool things to do” but kids see through that, if there isn’t something “meaty” to it. Like, we did a Hero Quest foldable, which I explained would be used on a few tasks, and our exam. They took it very seriously and they all did a great job with it. It was the same with our Batman movie (which I explained was going to be used as our example in our foldable as an intro to the Quest). We don’t just watch movies for fun. These kids are up for the challenge and want to complete something meaningful.

 7. Always be kind, patient and respectful. Choose your battles- who wants to fight with a kid when they are late? Sometimes I’m happy they’ve shown up to class at all! Let’s just get down to business. Remember, you are the adult and always give second chances.

As much work as these kids are, I love teaching them. To see the excitement on their faces when they get something, or do a great job, or like today, when they get a Star Wars sticker on their assignment for handing it in on time, is the best feeling in the world. And these students have personality- class is never dull or quite what you’d expect!

What are your tips/challenges for applied students? Share your thoughts in the speech bubble at the top of this post.

Aside  —  Posted: April 15, 2014 in Education, Teachers, Teaching
Tags: , , , ,

Facebook is probably the number one way people communicate now a days. “Call me” has since been replace by, “Facebook me!” and instead of asking for someone’s number, you merely ask, “Are you on Facebook?” And, it’s always exciting when someone adds you to Facebook: the instant connection you feel as you declare, “Yay, we’re Facebook friends!” is the best feeling in the world.

ID-10055791But there is a dark side to this community. Sometimes it is worse than the playground at school. If people can add friends, then they can also get rid of them.  Or in Facebook speak, “de-friend” them. I’ve gone through my list occasionally to look for someone, who I knew I had been friends with to see the dreaded “add friend+” button. Sometimes I understand; I too de-friend every once in a while. I clean up my list, getting rid of people I don’t talk to, and can’t see myself interacting with them ever again. Nothing personal, but your account is a personal thing, and the things you share are meant for your followers/friends only.

Other times though, the de-friending is hurtful and feels like a personal attack and you can’t help but ask yourself, “Did I do something?,” “Do you really not like me enough anymore?” or, “I thought we were friends…. 😦

De-friending someone, is almost as big of a deal as adding them.  So, when is it necessary to hit that “unfriend” button?  Here are seven friends you most certainly should delete.

 1. Inappropriate Friend- this is the friend who posts such scandalous things, that you are always worried to open your newsfeed with anyone around, for fear they’ll think you are perv. It’s usual pictures, sayings, and sometimes status updates of a sexual, racist, or just social unacceptable nature. I think there is a way to make sure his/her posts don’t end up in your newsfeed, but if it’s a constant thing, one starts to reevaluate that friendship. Are they a perv? A racist pig? Or just plain creepy, serial killer material? Could be de-friend worthy.

2a. TMI Friend- I don’t get this friend. Something personal and private is going on in your life and you’d like to rely on your friends for support. So why not inform all 700 of them at once? Surely, there will be an outpouring of love and support for you… or not. What do you say to someone who posts a status like, “thanks for leaving me alone and pregnant, jerk” (true story) or “just got over my bout with hemorrhoids!”?  Better to PM the 10 or so of your closest friends who truly care and will be inclined to do something for you. Remember, you have people who potentially could employ you, date you, be future family members, co workers etc on this thing. Careful what you tell the world! Too many of these posts and you end up in my de-friend pile. Lol, or on my list of people to creep when I’m bored and need a laugh…

Just got the broccoli out of my teeth- check it out!

Just got the broccoli out of my teeth- check it out!

2b. Too Many Updates- going along the same vein with too much information is the person who updates their status too many times.

“Just got up, going to be a great day!” “Bagel or Toast: The great debate” *pic of me eating my toast* “Ugh, first period is dragging on forever” “I love my best friend, she’s so awesome!” “Has anyone noticed that Mr. Brown has a striking resemblance to Mr. Potato Head?” “Oh. My. Wow. Just got a wink from Sweater Vest Boy…. swoon! #Mrs.SweaterVest?” “Hey, anyone want to meet me for lunch? I’ll be sitting on the north side of the caf, you know the table beside the vending machine, the one with the Pespi, not the chips… “

And it’s only lunchtime! I often wonder if I’m going to get the play by play of every bowel movement as well. I mean, I am concern about your gastro-intestinal well being, but how could I ever keep up? By far the number one reason people de-friend is because of too many updates.

 3. Incessant Game Requests- I do have to admit this allowed me to discover the amazingness that is Candy Crush though… but a lot of people voted this as the biggest reason.

4. My life is so amazing friend- I’m all for positivity but people like this: “Just got back from an amazing vacation with my amazing family. Amazing pics to follow!” “My job is so amazing!” “My husband is so amazing! Look at the amazing roast he made today! And he did an amazing job cleaning up the house!” “My kids are amazing, they are so well behaved and amazing!” either make me feel horrible about myself, or wish something horrible would happen to him/her…. just to see if he/she would post about it. I’m all for cutting out the negativity in your life, but this over the top display of positivity, turns me into a Negative Nelly. Lol, I should start posting the opposite version of these status updates and see how people respond.

Going on that vein. Anyone who makes you feel negative, angry and upset needs to go. You don’t need that negativity/drama in your life!  

Say goodbye to those negative influences!

Say goodbye to those negative influences!

5. The Cryptic update friend/Needy friend- I’ve had to defriend a few over this. I’m not a counsellor or a shrink. Sure I love helping people out, but scary Emo updates and cry for help messages are beyond me and my scope of training.

6. The Preacher Friend- whether it’s politics, religion, heath debates, mommy issues- if you are posting very one sided articles and comments on the same thing over and over and over again, you’re getting the de-friend. I’m all for sharing your opinions, but in a way that creates dialogue and discussion, not judgment.  And, what better place for that then Facebook when you have so many diverse and interesting opinions and thoughts?

7a. No, “Hey how’s it going?” in over a year friend

7b. Old co-workers/people won’t talk to again/contacts you added for business at a time friends

7c. People you just aren’t friends with and don’t deserve to have that much insight into your life. Friendships grow over the years, and sometimes they come to a natural close. I’ve gotten rid of a few people who I just wasn’t friends with anymore and didn’t desire to be.

7d. The ex-boyfriend/friends/family of the ex- (including friend/families exes). Without getting ranty, Facebook is unnatural. In olden days, you would break up with someone and never talk to him or her again. You (or your friends) wouldn’t be able to keep tabs on them. It’s creepy to know what your best friend’s ex husband’s daily status is, or that your ex’s brother met up with your ex and his new girlfriend for dinner. It doesn’t allow anyone to move on at all. I even know friends who have divorced and have an amicable relationship with each other who chose not to be facebook friends, and I know that’s what’s allowed them to be good parents.  It’s called closure people.  And, as a friend/family member, it’s important that you value your family member/friend over your attachment to his/her ex and his/her family and friends.  That probably means doing a little de-friending.

I love Facebook; it’s allowed me to connect with so many people, find lost friends and make new friends. The ability for networking (as a teacher and musician) is amazing. I can post questions about anything and get such a variety of answers. I’ve been able to keep in touch with students, campers, and old friends from elementary school. The important thing to remember is this, “Social media is a relational tool, but it’s not a relational reality.”* Knowing that can keep your Facebook list in check, and keep you from being de-friended!

So, who have you de-friended?  Or, who has de-friended you?  Comment at the Speech Bubble at the top of the post!


I came across some old camp photos, and was feeling a little nostalgic.  I have so many good memories of camp- both that I’ve worked at, but especially GBC.  The last three weeks of the summer were always the overnight camps, and Youth Camp was amazing because it fell at the end of the summer, after I had spend a whole 9 weeks there as a counsellor.

Now, when I went to camp we didn’t have any of these fancy digital cameras; we had film cameras where you might get 24-27 shots a roll.  And, when you have a roll to last a week, you have to use the pics sparingly.  Going through my banquet pics, I kept seeing essentially the same pic, over and over.  I found lots of other great pics, but I can’t post because, even narrowing down the banquet pics into 7 categories was hard enough!

So, here are SEVEN SHOTS you have to GET at the CAMP BANQUET:

J1.  Well, first you have to get a pic with your date:  Before the days of IMG_0604Facebook/texting, a pic is all you would have of your “special someone” to tide you over for the year.  Or, if you didn’t have a date, you could work really hard to get a pic of your crush. I would post some of those ones, but then my secrets would be revealed!  Your date can include anyone who you went with to the banquet, it didn’t have to be a cute boy.  But, it’s oh so much better when it is!




2.  You’re Special to Me- Aside from your date,IMG_0612 there are probably many people who played a big part in making your week awesome.  That could be  friend, a camper, a staff member, your team, your dorm room- people who you would want to remember.  I used to have all my camp pics in my planner at school and spent many nostalgic moments looking back at those people with such fondness.  In fact, most of the pics I have of my best friend and I together are camp pics!

IMG_05753. The Girls- I loved counselling overnights.  I always got my polyester fix!  Pics of large groups of your friends are always awesome- and it usually seems like one or more will default to the Charlie’s Angels pose. IMG_0582

4. The Boys- Who wouldn’t want a pic of all the swoon-worthy guys from the summer.  Lol, or at least to make the boys feel swoon worthy… There is something about guys dressed up that is surprising and exciting to the female race.  Add a pensive hand gesture… and we’re yours!  Aw- and the guy counsellors don’t disappoint.  Look how daper they look!  IMG_0662

IMG_05735. The Leg Pic- for some reason this became a tradition- although scandalous for Bible Camp!  Here are several variations of this trend over the years…   IMG_0627IMG_0590

IMG_05866.  Awkward Group Shots- Again, since you had one camera with one roll of film, most shots would be a one time deal.  You didn’t stop, check the flash, look to see if everyone is smiling.  You take one shot and hope for the best.  This makes for some great awkward shots!  I love the big pic- you have a few girls unimpressed, a couple trying to look cute, friends gathered around, Charles in the back by himself, and Adam and I looking cute up front.  IMG_0618

7. Boy Shinnanigans- Boys will be Boys- and on banquet night, they tend to want to show off for the ladies…  IMG_0596IMG_0581

What are your favourite camp memories?  CLICK the SPEECH BUBBLE to add your COMMENT above!