Time Flies!

Here is a pictorial update of the last few weeks. Enjoy!

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Less than 4 weeks till departure day!

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When did beer pong become a kit?

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Happy Canada Day!

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Gone GAGA!

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Sunday was a drag (in a good way)

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Ease on down, ease on down the road

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The Green Machine

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Can things get too sparkly?

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Even the flowers were Proud

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TPD Blue (and red and orange and yellow……)

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Who doesn’t love a man (or woman) in uniform?

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Auntie Harvey

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Remembering Granny Neva xo

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Bert and Ernie got a little more R E S P E C T

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Did you order your dog tag/wine charm/drain chain/earing…?

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Team Trouble in training

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And it rained, and rained, and ….

“Can you hear it?” “It’s getting closer”

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The final countdown!

Is your front wheel going backwards?

Is your front wheel going backwards?

What’s getting closer? The Bike Rally of course. That and, the fundraising deadline! Thought it was going to be easier to get the donations required, than the actual ride itself, but fundraising is harder than I thought.

Paste-ee whiteness

First training ride start minus 6 degrees!

First training ride start minus 6 degrees!

So far I have completed the required attendance to several seminars and training rides in the last little while but I’m still struggling with the fundraising side of things. Not sure what it is that has led me to this but, hopefully things will pick up soon. I have a minimum level of $2500.00 to be able to participate. But, set my goal higher to $6000.00 after seeing what the Toronto People With Aids Foundation does with the little money that is raised each year through this event. I was surprised to learn that half of the foundation operating budget comes from the Bike Rally itself.

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My new team name

I have been pleasantly surprised though, that the people I thought wouldn’t be interested, were my biggest contributors! Just goes to show you, ya never know.

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Nutrition Seminar

Anywho, an update. Since I last wrote, two months ago, I have purchased a new bike (actually my parents bought me a bike, thank you Mom and Dad) which was a $1500.00 donation from my parents. Then there is other items to participate. Shorts $175.00 x 3, Jersey $60.00 x 4, Shoes $175.00 Helmet $50.00, Tools and Extra gear $50.00. I still have to purchase a tent, mattress, sleeping bag etc, but that will have to wait till next pay cheque. I originally saw the list of suggested items to have for the duration of the 660km, 6 day event and thought, I should just donate the money I would spend on equipment, to the bike rally. This was met, from the participants from previous years, by a resounding, ” No, you won’t have as much fun! We’ll see how I feel on Day 4

Soakin me weary bones after 40kms

Soakin me weary bones after 40kms

New ow-ee for the ride

New ow-ee for the ride

Fix a Flat Seminar

Fix a Flat Seminar

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Is this covered by the Automobile Club?

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Jersey try on sizing

Today was the Bike Rally Expo, an afternoon of information and hands on demos to prepare us for the big event. Lots more information for my head to absorb and more friendships  have begun.

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Urban camping mock up

The journey continues…

Big Wheels Keep on Turning, Proud Mary’s Legs are Burning!

Hello Again! Happy Family Day! (if you live in Ontario)

Remember Me? All of my tens of followers! It’s been over three months since my last confession and I thought I’d fill you in on what’s happening.

Let’s see, family is doing fine as can be expected and have all gone back to their routine. Parents are settled but,  adjusting to the changes of the last few months.15th Annual Friends for Life Bike Rally

15th Annual Friends for Life Bike Rally

I’ve just finished my first official workout of my training and only have about 3000 kilometers to go. I’ve stuck to my Primal/Paleo eating plan for about 5 months now and as of today, dropped 50 pounds. Glad to be rid of that extra baggage before the Friends for Life Bike Rally, as this mornings one hour ride on a stationary bike, felt like, to heck and back. Hey, that would be a great name for a blog.

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The only thing I’m freaking about is the fund-raising side of it. I went to a meeting at the Toronto People with Aids Foundation and was really surprised how much they offer their clients with the tight annual budget that they have. I had originally thought that they were just providing counselling but, they cover the whole gamut of services from, housing, legal aid, medical care, food bank, and financial aid to those in need and living with HIV/AIDS.

Many people have forgotten about AIDS and that it is still a real threat to thousands of people. Over 19,000 people have been diagnosed in Toronto alone. For some, it is not the quick death sentence that it first was but, living with the disease is no picnic either. Biggest obstacle that I see is the stigma and discrimination that people are still dealing with. Next is the costs associated with treating the disease. I was surprised to learn, some of the medications can run as high as three thousand dollars a month!

As a result of my visit, I went home and pledged another one hundred dollars and raised my fund-raising goal to $6000 dollars. Not only do I get a snazzy jersey, I can help a lot more people.

I have been placed in the as yet unnamed, Team #9 and look forward to meeting my fellow team members at our upcoming pot luck. One of the things I’ve noticed about this charity is, that they really look after the riders and crew. I was worried how I was going to figure everything out on my own but, they really help us through the process and that has put my mind at ease. Well, almost. How the heck am I going to raise 6000 dollars? Then, the bi weekly spinning classes, the 15 weekends of training rides, and the 660 km big event in July? One step, or revolution, at a time I guess.

Now, what I need from you, is help with fundraising ideas. Do you know of any novel ideas to really get people to participate and donate? I want some events that will really make an impact and stand out from the usual bake sales etc. Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated.

If you yourself would like to support my cause, please click on the link provided and give what you can. Every little bit helps so, give what you can, and don’t forget to send me your fundraising ideas.

 

Now, I need to go stretch my 48-year-old body before it seizes up.

Next stop, Happytown

It’s 11:15am and I’m still lying in bed at my parents house. I ended up here a week and a half ago to help out both them through a rough patch. My Mom had a retina detach and my Dad had a stroke.

This has happened to both of them previously but, this time it’s different. I think mainly because of their age now compared to the first time. The stroke hit my Dad a lot harder this time and he has ended up in a rehab hospital and my Mom can not see in one eye and lost a lot of sight in the other.

Finger crossed, they will both make great strides in recovering and be able to enjoy the winter together. They were to leave for their winter home last week and then this all happened on the same weekend.

This is the most time I have spent with either of them in a long time and I really notice how much time has affected us. It has made me realize how important it is to take full advantage of every moment you have been given.

Dad has always been a very active man who loved gardening, reading, banking and endless tinkering around the house. He has always been the guy in the neighbourhood to help everyone else when they needed it. He has a wealth of knowledge in a lot of things and was always willing to give advice when they needed it. He always enjoys a good laugh and although shy when first meeting people, easily carries on a conversation.

Mom is someone who has always wanted to do so many things but hasn’t always been able to. Whether it was for financial reasons or health problems, she has had to pass on a lot of wishes and dreams in her life. Always a great listener and like myself, a great talker. She is a caring ear to your problems and concerns and a voice of reason with advice to give you. Whether it was what you wanted to hear or not, her heart was always in the right place. She is ever supportive of my sisters and I and just wants us to be happy in our lives, whatever we choose.

The events of the last week have continued to make me more aware that as I approach my 50th birthday, ugh, that I need to make the most of every day.

The bike rally commitment was my first step towards doing things to enrich my soul and not just live each day counting the minutes till my day off. I want to make the most of my work day, because its 40 hours of my week and I unless I win the lottery, I have to be there so I might as well make the best of it.

I especially want to make the most of my free time and not waste what little I have, stressing about things that don’t really matter in the end. My husband and I get to spend very little time together due to his 60 hour a week work habit and our ever changing schedules that continually screw with our plans. I want to really enjoy our time together and find friends that we can both depend on and give as much as they get from mostly my hubby but also from me.

Next I want to make a better me, both physically and mentally. I’ve got to take better care of myself physically and I’m the only one who can make that happen. I also want to stop wasting time on people and things that don’t mean anything in the end. No more worrying about what I don’t have and enjoying what I do have. No more poison personalities to use up my time and, feeling guilty about not being more understanding to the reasons they are the way they are. I don’t have time to waste.

Look out world, here I come! (Picture me spinning around in the middle of the road in Minneapolis throwing my handmade knit tam in the air, a la Mary Tyler Moore) But first, I have to take the garbage out.

Baby steps…….

Originally posted on Jules' Fuel:

“The good news is that food connects us. The bad news is that food can divide us.

The highly personal and cultural food preferences discussed in Part 1 have set the stage for an even deeper delve into the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde role that food plays in our lives.

As if dealing with food disparities in public wasn’t enough, many of us have our own, private battles with food going on underneath our very own skin.

Our Greatest Battle: The Private Wars Within?

Like a bi-polar tennis match, one day, we confidently continue on a path of eating well; the next, triggered by some event or emotion, we spiral downward, justifying our gluttony, or for others, harsh deprivation.

Silence. Defeat. Embarrassment. Shame.

Can you relate?

The stronghold of guilt that food can play in our lives can be paralyzing. I’ve been there, and I’ve seen it firsthand.

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