A New Year is Here. Celebrate. Inspire. Appreciate!

SO it has been many months since i have had a new post. All I can say is that life happened. Now here we are all these months later and I wanted to update you on some of what was keeping me so busy and a promise for the future. More on that later…
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View More: http://endoftheroadphotography.pass.us/2014-02-02-valentine2

My life in a nutshell. Now back to that promise I mentioned. i can’t promise that I will post more because the truth is that my family will always come first.Because my life is about living and celebrating every day. The writing about it comes next. I also want to keep appreciating people for who they are and am going to often share some of those people with you all. The world we live in needs more KINDNESS. We need to inspire others with our actions and less with our words. I’m hoping to show you with my actions. Until then…..

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iPhone envy…

I haven’t posted in awhile and there’s no real reason other than I have had too much to do. I felt like I was being torn in a million directions.Even with the things I normally love and adore.Life has just been crazy. There is one thing that really has my stomach in knots about and that is the fact that my iPhone got stolen. Right out of DQ where I had decided to take my kiddos for a long, overdue sundae. In the span of about 37 minutes, I had my lifeline and then I didn’t!EEEEEEKKKKKS!It really really sucks. You never really know just how much you use your phone until you don’t have it anymore! I did all the things you’re supposed to do like report it to the police, call our cell phone carrier, stop by all our local pawn shops to no avail. Passwords aside, the hardest part has been realizing that all those photos are gone. Sure, some are saved to our home computer but many are not. How much time do you think I have? Aside from feeling violated by the whole experience, I am mainly super duper pissed. Sadly, I cannot afford to just rush out and buy another. Cash or credit. It just sucks. Plain and simple!

Here are a few of my photos that I managed to save (thank goodness).407c3734d14511e2a60b22000a9e06bc_5

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That’s it for now. I am going to go and dream about a new iPhone. That’s what it’s come to:(

I Did It!

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I did it!!

I made it without quitting.

I finished what I started.

It was one of the most amazing experiences I have had in a long time.But not for the reason I’m sure everyone thinks.It’s not that I don’t complete tasks (because I do) or even that it was super tough (it was!). In January,when my clinic was starting, my running confidence was lacking, or rather nonexistent. I was purely committing to training simply because It was something I didn’t think I could do….EVER!I had to prove myself wrong. What was funny about this whole journey was that all the while I was stammering over and over again about how I wasn’t a runner, I actually became one. Funny how that works? oakbayhalf

It was extremely difficult. There were moments when I thought I couldn’t make it. I used every mental game I could think of to keep me going in the moments when there weren’t strangers smiling and cheering me on. By far the best part of the race was that last half mile that I ran. It was in those final running moments as I looked around for my family, and heard the bells and whistles I saw something that caught my eye. It was my four-year old son and his orange fleecy coat busting a move across that same finish line.Somehow my past, present and future all came together in that glorious moment.As I held my little guy while runners came in behind us, I knew right then that I would always remember that day.My day.I’m so glad my family could share it with me!

Only 21 km?

Only 21km…

As some of you know, I have been training for a ½ marathon. My very first. And maybe last. Just kidding. We are nearing the end of our training, with most of us racing in the BMO Half Marathon in Vancouver next month. That is everyone except for me. I have chosen to participate in a slightly cheaper alternative race, right here on the island. The Oak Bay Half marathon, coincidentally, takes place in Oak Bay (an area in Victoria for those of you that don’t know). And lucky for me it is 3 weeks after the BMO race, which gives me a little extra butt kicking that I really need.

In our running clinic, (organized/instructed/ lead by Brad and Julie of Natural Edge Fitness) we do all of our long runs on Saturdays. Which brings me to this Saturday’s run. We are to treat it exactly like we would race day. Right down to the food we eat, the time we get up and clothes we will be wearing on our actual race day. I must say I am a little anxious. In the 3 months since I started this clinic, I have yet to experience that “runner’s high” that many people speak of. In all honesty, especially on the long runs, I am generally thinking about everything except running. That is unless you count the thoughts I have about being finished! I can appreciate my beautiful surroundings and the km’s my legs have run. But, no runner’s high to speak of. So why do I do it? To prove to myself that I COULD do it. Okay, there might be a few others that I need to prove that to as well. But that’s just my over-competitive self talking. All this running sure does have a few other perks to it.

• Red Velvet Cupcakes. What dreams are made of. Well, mine are anyways!RedVelvet
• New leg muscle. Who knew that my tired and 40-year old legs could still sort of impress. I might have to take up wearing high heels again.
• Red Velvet Cupcakes. I would drive to Victoria to get some from my favorite cupcake store. Need I say more?
• Our kids being proud of me. I love that our kids see me committing to exercise and recognizing how happy it makes me.
• Clothes fit.
• Can openly daydream about celeb crush. Okay, this one is a bit of a stretch. But if thinking about super hot Adam Levine helps me run faster/keep running/or running at all then the fact that some of you think I’m creepy doesn’t bother me.Adam+Levine+levine+1
• Meeting cool people. It’s so nice to meet extraordinary people who share similar goals. It actually ROCKS!

I am so thankful to have started this running clinic, for whatever reason. I am happy at how far I have come too. It’s funny how my attitude and tone has changed. Three months ago my thoughts would have been, “You want me to run 21 km’s?” Now it’s, “We’re only running 21km?
Awesome!

Why I Wouldn’t Want to be A Celebrity Mom!

Why I wouldn’t want to be a Celebrity Mom/Parent!

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AS far back as I could remember, Hollywood and all it’s goings on has always fascinated me. It started when I was a young teenager and would pour over all the 16 and BOP magazines I could get my hands on. Back in the 80’s when Johnny Depp was on 21 Jumpstreet and Duran Duran was popular. I lived for what all those celebs were doing and even aspired to be a part of that world. How quickly some of those things change…

The world we are living in now is WAY different. The word C-E-L-E-B-R-I-T-Y has risen to a new level and one that definitely doesn’t seem as appealing as it did when I was a pubescent teenager growing up in a small town. Now that I am raising my own kids and seeing much of the world through their little eyes, a lot of what is going on bugs me. Makes me see red. Or tense up just thinking about it. To shed some light on some of these things, here are some of the reasons why I’m glad I am not a famous, celebrity mom:

-I can raise my voice at my kids, without the fear that my nosy neighbor(s) will call the paparazzi on me and have them stake out my home.

-That I can leave the house sans makeup and in comfy, non-designer sweatpants that I bought at Target. Depending on the day, they might even be stained from my kid’s earlier meal!

-Not having to be all things to all the people. I’m a role model for me…for my family. That’s it. Nobody is going to cry or go completely nuts and have a breakdown if I don’t visit their city. Or if I dance like an idiot (my family might be embarrassed though). The amount of pressure that some of those moms are under would be excruciating and lame. Not for me.

-Having to be “on” all the time. Some days I just want to relax, watch Duck Dynasty and play Words with Friends on my iPhone. You know, the simple life!

-You could never ever do the gross things we all do. May not admit to. But definitely wouldn’t want anyone to see us do it in public. Burp, fart, pick/itch our nose, adjust our underwear so it’s not completely up our lady parts or any and all bathroom business. Some things should never be photographed. EVER!

-Seeing your photos, the good and incredibly bad ones, everywhere you went. You could never get away from it and after awhile it would be annoying to see your own face at the local grocery store. Incognito wouldn’t exist in your vocabulary anymore.

-Everyone, including people that you don’t like/can’t stand would know everything about you and your life. Your money. Your sex life. Parenting mistakes. Everything! Even some of those deep, dark secrets, you’d forgotten about come back into play when you’re famous. Human nature, especially to the rich and famous.

-Being lonely. For as famous as some as these women are and for the amount of people they have around them on a daily basis, they seem quite lonely. They have a good life, so many of them like to put on a happy face. But let’s not kid about how many of those “friends” would be around if they weren’t collecting a pay cheque.

Don’t get me wrong. These celebrity mama’s lead amazingly full and exciting lives, but it all comes at a cost. Freedom, anonymity, friendships, and even love. For me, that cost is just too high. The only bubble I want to live in is my own!

To Sell Online or Not??

These days I find myself buying a great deal of things second hand. I have always loved garage sales, and would often plan a whole Saturday around which sales my mom and I were going to peruse. I still love garage sales, but in the winter it’s very limited. They tend to consist of the junk your neighbor leaves on the curb hoping someone will take and the craft sales at your local community hall. Not my favorites. But nowadays, especially with Facebook, you can buy and sell things without having to wish for good weather or get change at the corner store.
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I’m certain that no matter where you live that there are Facebook groups that you can “join” to allow you to sell all the crap you no longer want, the sweaters that don’t fit or the fitness equipment that didn’t get used! It’s perfect. But be prepared for the annoyances that come when dealing with strangers ONLINE. And there are many….

1. All of these Groups have etiquette that you must follow. Generally speaking, much of it is the same from group to group. However, what I have come to realize, is that often the people running the group, or ‘Admin’ as they are called on Facebook, are people that feel the need to be in control of something. For whatever reason. It could be that their personal life is hectic and out of control. Maybe they are pushed around in their own jobs. They might even be just an annoying person. Whichever it is, if you don’t follow the rules they will let you know…IMMMEDIATELY! Seriously?!

2. People will always, always, ALWAYS be cheap. If they can get it cheaper, they will try. Doesn’t matter if it’s new in the box or still has tags on it. If it could have your cooties on it, then they will want a discount. Lululemon, Gap, Seven for all Mankind, and Juicy. You can find it all. But, it comes at a cost, and I don’t mind price either!

3. People will try and steal your sale. Intentionally or not. This has happened to me a few times. Someone will comment within your post that they have the same or a similar item and try to poach your potential customers. Generally, if it’s a popular item, there will always be lots of people wanting it. But people flake out, so having a few people on the list, kind of guarantees that at some point you will sell those purple Uggs. It’s totally lame when someone hijacks your post instead of creating one of their own. “Oh, I’m sorry. I wasn’t trying to steal your sale. I just wanted to let them know I had some too. You know for the people that didn’t get them.”
“Yah okay. Here’s an idea. MAKE YOUR OWN DAMN POST and get out of mine unless you plan to buy my purple Uggs!!”

4. Just because you sell something, don’t consider it sold until it’s been picked up. Like stated earlier, people can be flaky. Sometimes they forget. Sometimes they change their minds. Heck, sometimes you just never hear from them again and you don’t know why. I generally leave the photo up for about a day (usually it’s because I forgot) and by that time you have since given it to it’s new owner and have moved on to something else. Less work is always better.

5. People you don’t know now have your home address. There are definitely creepy people among us. They look like you and me but are very disturbed. I’m not saying that everyone out there is a serial killer or out to get you. But if having people that you don’t know come to your house makes you feel uncomfortable, then this is NOT the way to sell your stuff!

6. There is more Drama in these groups on a daily basis then in a Grade 9 musical. Seriously. Just when you thought you had grown up, right? What I have come to realize is that some people thrive in all that drama. They live for it. They get out of bed for it. But for most of us it’s just that. Drama. Personally, the only drama I need is the kind I watch on an episode of Homeland. What about you?
7. People will often seek answers to things they should be asking their friends, family or even medical doctors about…

My baby won’t breastfeed what should I do? Just the thing you should be asking strangers, right? Maybe that’s what your family doctor is for.
Does anyone know where diapers are on sale right now? Umm, yah and you would too if you looked in a newspaper!
My back hurts. Does anyone know why? Oh yah, I’m pregnant. Again, isn’t that what you should be asking a medical doctor? There are clinics all over town, so wouldn’t it be better to get information from them then a bunch of people on Facebook?!

Every time I read these sorts of questions and comments, especially the ones relating to possible medical issues or conditions, I am astounded that this is where they are looking for answers. It is completely unfathomable to me. I will leave it at that.

8. Clearly people can’t spell. Everybody makes mistakes. Typos happen. And With everyone having iPhones, autocorrect takes over. Totally get that. But when you can’t even spell the word because, maybe it’s time to get yourself a dictionary! Here are the most misspelled and incorrectly used words I have ever seen by adults: their, there and they’re, too, two and to; by, bye and buy; your and you’re. These are just a few that I see regularly. C’mon people, this is elementary school English. Once again, get out your Oxford Dictionary and study up a few things would you!

9. People overprice their items. Just because you paid $600 for your BOB stroller, three years ago, doesn’t mean it’s worth that now. Yes, there are many brands that tend to hold a lot of their value. But when people can go out and spend a few extra dollars to get that particular item new, chances are they’ll do that. Like selling rare hockey cards on EBay, your item (i.e. BOB stroller, bumbo etc.) is only worth what people are willing to pay for it. Especially big-ticket items. When I want to make money, I DON’T sell on Facebook.

Well, there you have it. A few of the really annoying and super common pitfalls of selling on Facebook…Well, things that annoy me. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. Haha. It won’t be long before you too have a list of your very own. It’s human nature.

A Few Faves of 2012…

The ending of 2012 bring with it a great deal of things that I loved.Products I couldn’t live without, television shows I HAD to watch, catchy lyrics that made doing the dishes fun, and even yummy celebrities that made me blush…These are some of my favorites. (In no particular order)

Granted Sweaters. The modern-day version of the “Cowichan” sweater.These hand-knit creations adorned with Horses, Mountain ranges and Spouting whales will blow your mind like they did mine.My personal favorite is the one with Skulls on it.I had hoped to receive  it from the hubby at Xmas but no such luck:(  I visit the site almost two or three times a week, just to check in on “my” sweater.Dreaming about the day I will own one of these luscious creations. $$$

whale_ft3_largeSarita Baby Dresses.My friend Sarah designs and creates these unique dresses. My little gal, Charlie, has had/has many of these hanging in her closet. Currently we have 4 and it;s always super hard to pick which one we want to wear. What Charlie likes about these creations (or rather me) is that these dresses don’t look like what every one else is wearing. Sarah has an incredible eye for modern and playful fabrics while remaining true to what we all want for our little girls.Style and comfort while looking pretty.Having never met her in person yet, I expect that she is just as lovely and inspiring as her dresses are! $il_570xN.358211891_exf3 Republic of Doyle.The Newfoundland set show about a father and son P.I. business captured my attention late in the year. After being sort of irritated at CBC since they cancelled Tom Stone many years ago, I wasn’t in any hurry to watch any of their network series.But along with December bringing holiday specials and Christmas presents, it also brought a whole lot of nothing to watch on the t.v. For us die-hards, it means we can check out all the other television programs we missed….when we were busy watching other shows. (lol) Totally doesn’t hurt that the star of the show, Jake Doyle, is portrayed by Newfoundland’s resident hottie, Allan Hawco.Throw in car chases, love triangles, awesome guest stars and you got yourself a good time!$$

republic_of_doyle_ca-showAdam Levine. Double dose of Maroon 5’s front man as The Voice premiered twice in 2012. (yummmy!) It’s no secret to anyone who knows me that I have loved this guy forever.Gosh, one my bootcamp instructors/friends even bugs me about it while I work out on the TRX. Hearing him say things on the voice like “I want to make a baby…” only makes my heart pitter-patter even more. Bring on the next season of The Voice!! $$$$

Adam+Levine+levine+1All things cards, stationary and notecards.Being that 2012 was my Thank you card year, I seemed to go through a lot of these. Etsy, was the mecca for finding the unusual, delicious and most beautiful cards.Nothing pleased me more then discovering the newest cards that I could send out to the people in my life. I especially loved the witty, sarcastic stationary.You know the ones that I mean.We all have at least one person in our lives that totally deserves the card that says “you suck” or “Douchebag“.Gee, I have stacks of those cards, and am looking forward to the day when I can slap one of those puppies down!

Carly Rae Jepsen’s Call Me Maybe.“Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy, But, here’s my number, So Call Me Maybe?” This is the catchy flipping song that I sang over and over again.When I discovered that my teenage son and hubby were annoyed by this, I sang it even more!

Call-Me-Maybe-500x500-e1337384662361Sons of Anarchy. Jumped on the Son’s of Anarchy bandwagon about this time last year often watching back to back episodes with my hubby cozied up on the couch.Before I knew it we had watched all 4 seasons and then had to wait 8 + months for the 5th season to begin. (that really really sucked!) Just couldn’t get enough of those bad-ass bikers. What will Jax do next??Oh yah, we have to wait until September 2013 to find out. Love the show, despise the wait!#*

Sons-of-anarchy3Holiday Tradition.Happily started a precious holiday tradition. Coffees for us, cocoa for the kiddies, popcorn and a whole lot of Christmas lights to look at tour…DAVIS style! WHich also includes a few U-turns, handful or curse words and sleeping kids, because you know, it’s dark out and all.Priceless

I guess a great one of my favorites this year was just realizing and appreciating my own time and how valuable it is. By recognizing that what I do is important and matters, made me aware of the stuff that isn’t.End result…I’m a great mom, good person, loyal friend and a loving wife.That’s good enough for me!

A Year of Many…

A Year of Many….

This past year for me (us) has been a year of many things…Some of them good, some of them bad. Some have been life changing. Eye opening also comes to mind a few times. Some have even shaken me to my core. Boring…definitely not. Emotionally challenging…YES!

2012 was the Year of Many… (in no particular order)

1. Set fitness goals and was heavily rewarded for my consistency with inches and pounds lost….

2. Got lazy and gained some of that poundage back.Grrrrr.

3. Celebrated a monumental birthday with friends and family. Followed by a monumental f—ing hangover that even Poutine and a Diet Pepsi couldn’t fix.Seriously sick that day!

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4.Sent my teenage son to live with his “real”dad after an extremely challenging year.Sad with a capital S. Could also stand for shithead which is how I felt about myself for the first week after he left.There goes winning mother of the year 2012 edition!

5. Got a part-time job to actually leave the house and visit with grown ups.And of course, make a little moolah. Obviously,  my inner voice was also telling me I needed to meet some people who actually talked in you know…sentences.Ones that didn’t start with “mommy i have to poop”

6. Met lots of new peeps in my work/parent/home business travels.Some blossomed into friends and some did not. That’s life I am told.

7. Took a Road trip to my little brother’s wedding sans two children. Need I say more?

The Happy Couple

The Happy Couple

251912_10151973433860398_19930199_n8. Planned my hubby’s surprise monumental birthday party.Guests didn’t show up.Friends didn’t RSVP.Drama ensued.Regular birthday antics i believe?!DSCN3888

9. Ran my first “race” and actually did okay.Hated it almost the entire time and the only thing that kept me going was the blasting music i had to listen to while on that race/run. Oh well, we all have to start somewhere, right?

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10. Camped and survived with my WHOLE family plus the in-laws and my brother and sister-in-law.Campground was lovely.Kids were well enough behaved and there was plenty of alcohol.Camping fun with brother abd sister

So, just a few of my Year of Firsts.Let’s say, the highlights. Kinda glad that this year is coming to a close.I am ready to see what 2013 has in store for this gal!

~Jess

Sick.WTF!

It seems that weeks have gone by without my usual ramblings.Let me explain.Our household has been S-I-C-K. It was gross too!It started with our kiddies, but for right now I will refer to them as walking germs.If that wasn’t bad enough.Our little turds couldn’t even make it easier on us parents, who am I kidding, make it easier on me, by getting sick at the same time.We had to deal with the pukey, stinky, clingy and let’s not forget, whiny toddlers back to back for about 2.5 weeks.It was like taking a drunken shot of tequila and chasing it with a whiskey.No better, no worse just bad whichever way you looked at it.

Then, I thought things were looking up.That is until I managed to catch their bug.Luckily for everyone in my family, it wasn’t the flu variety illness.What a piss off though! Now we are almost at one month later and sickness has reared its ugly f–king head again.It’s decided it hasn’t punished me enough with all the sleepless nights, vomit, whiny and crying kiddies, coughing fits and frequent trips to the toilet.It has infested my husband.GREAT! Because we all know what happens when the men in our lives come down with the sniffles….

Someone is seriously pissed at me!