Why I Vote

I kind of can’t believe that I feel the need to write this post.

As some of you know we are having an election in Ontario.

For those of you who don’t know, Ontario is the province with the largest population in Canada.  We have a parliamentary system in Canada so we vote for our local representatives – in this case, Members of Provincial Parliament or MPP’s and the person who controls the majority of the seats in the legislature – typically the leader of the party that wins the majority of the seats – serves as the Premier until the next election. We have a multi-party system in Ontario and Canada, although typically there are only three that secure enough votes to win seats in the legislature, The Progressive Conservatives (Conservatives nationally), Liberals, and the New Democratic Party (NDP).

The outcomes of our current provincial election is a bit of a toss up. Polls are showing a virtual tie and depending on the pollster, the party in the lead varies. I have heard and read comments from a number of people stating that they are considering not voting or declining their ballots this time around because they don’t know who to choose.

This is a lazy position to take.

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Marking an X beside your preferred choice is the easy part. Making the decision about where to put that X requires some thought.
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Parenting Rob Ford

Some of you may have heard of this Rob Ford character.  He is the current Mayor of Toronto and the revelations coming out of and about him over the past few weeks have been astonishing and crazy and unbelievable.  I’ve attempted to write this post a few times and it has been a challenge because there were new developments every day.   

Mayor Rob Ford speaks to media after his meeting with Premier Dalton McGuinty , Police Chief Bill Bl

I read this post on Playground Confidential on How to talk to your kids about our crack mayor the day he admitted to crack use and ever since have been thinking about what kinds of parenting lessons we can take from this circus sideshow.

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Remembrance Day and Hope

I just got back from the Remembrance Day assembly at my kids’ school.  It is the first time since I was a kid myself that I have attended a school Remembrance Day assembly.  Typically I go for the big public ceremonies.  I live in Ottawa and so I typically go to the national service at the Canadian War Memorial.

National War Memorial on Remembrance Day

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Lest We Forget

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Today is Remembrance Day.  Today we pause our busy lives and we remember those who fought the wars and the peace to give us the countries and lives we have today.

Today I remember my grandfather who served in the British Merchant Marine, my grandmother who lived in London throughout WWII and survived the Blitz.  I remember my aunts and uncles and cousins who lived through the war in Britain.  I remember my uncles who went down with their ships.  I remember the Canadians who fought to defend my country and our rights and freedoms.  I remember the soldiers of all countries who fought for their countries. I remember the sacrifices made by current soldiers and especially their families.

Most of all I remember how important it is that we remember and that we teach our children about the horrors of war.  I remember how important and precious peace is and our responsibility to protect those who do have the luxury of peace.

In Flanders fields the poppies grow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

  • Col. John McCrae

Aviva Community Fund

My kids go to Vincent Massy Public School in Ottawa and our school could use a new playground for the 130 Kindergarten students.

This year we started full-day kindergarten and my five year old is enjoying her full days at school and learning lots of new things.  The playground which was never really a great playground is now quite inadequate for the five kindergarten classes.  They put up a new fence this year to enlarge the space.  The play structure is small and is really a toddler structure.

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