Humour is very important. In my life and in our house, we use humour a lot. Especially when it come to my learning.

A number of years ago my mom asked me “why don’t you look people in their eyes”. I told her that “eyes look like olives and they are disgusting”. A few weeks later we we had a big family dinner. When I sat down everyone had their head down and would not look up. I thought this was odd. Finally I asked “What’s going on?”. All at once everyone looked up and had an animal nose on. I was told that I had to look each person in their eyes. By using humour, I now have a much easier time looking people in their olives, I mean eyes!

I enjoy many different styles of humour. Slapstick and dry humour are my favourite. I am not a big fan of pranks that could hurt or embarrass someone. That is awful. Laughing at myself or at the people I love can be a pretty good fun because from time to time we all get too serious.

Our world can be stressful. I ask all of you to please take time to laugh. It is the best medicine!

Be Inspired,


Letting It Go


When I watch a movie I try to find the lesson. Many Disney movies can teach us about life. The Lion King is full of lessons to learn.

A big one for me is getting stuck on the past. Sometimes I have a hard time letting things go. I have to remind myself the past is the past. I can learn from it but need to move on. There are days that I can move past these feelings all on my own, I am a problem solver.  Then there are times where I need help. Getting how I am feeling off my chest is a good thing. My feelings then become less overwhelming. Sometimes the people I trust have ideas about how I can move forward. This is a good thing.

This year I am going to continue to be aware of when I might be getting stuck on something that is behind me. I will work on turning it around just a little bit faster and if I can’t, thats ok too.

Be Inspired,


The Next Happy

My friend Sydney and I had a wonderful discussion after I read the book “The Next Happy”. We wrote this blog together.

“Let go of the life you planned and find a new way forward”.

“The next happy is like the friend you call when your car is stuck in a ditch on a journey you never expected to take. From the moment you begin to open up, you begin to feel unstuck, and by the end you will find yourself moving forward in the right direction”.

I felt joy by reading this book. Learning is important to me. Sometimes I don’t understand all of the ideas and concepts that are in the books I read. This is ok because I have many people around me that are able to help me understand. I enjoy these discussions.

This book taught me that we can get stuck in life and sometimes we cannot get to the exact place we want to be. This can be frustrating and disappointing. Sometimes we have to have these feelings to grow. All we can do is our best.

I challenge all of you to get up everyday and be your best! Even if you have a hard day you will know in your heart you gave it your all!

Be inspired,


3 Months Into 2016…


I thought to myself on New Years Day that this is going to be am amazing year. Now here we are in March and I still feel this way. For the past three months I have been working hard at achieving my goals for 2016. One of my biggest goals is staying fit and healthy.

I am very lucky that I have people in my life who help me stay on track with my health. One of these special people is my trainer Janey. She can be one tough lady. She pushes me to work hard and get stronger.  It is not always serious business. We laugh a lot at the gym and talk about life. She reminds me that I am beautiful on the inside and out.

Our relationship started in 1998. I was heavy and didn’t like the way I looked. When I was really ready to do something about it my mum took action. I started working out with Janey and with her help and guidance I lost over 30 pounds. Here we are 17 years later, I have kept the weight off and I feel great about myself.

My trainer has become a very important part of my life. She has become a life coach and a wonderful friend. She is the one that showed me that life really does reward action. I am grateful everyday that she is a part of my life!

Do you have someone in you life who pushes you to be better?

Be Inspired,




I’m Back – What a Summer!

Well, it has been a long time since I have shared with all of you. I have mentioned before that I am still getting the hang of this blogging thing. Thank you for sticking with me.

It has been a busy few months. Let me get you caught up on the exciting things happening in my life…

During the long weekend in May the Canadian Down Syndrome Society’s conference was held in Edmonton. My mom helped to plan the conference and get things organized here. When we arrived at the hotel to move in for the weekend my mum and Michelle could not find me in the car! Good thing I am small!

On the Thursday night I meet with my VATA friends and I helped prepare the SWAG bags that all people coming to the conference would receive. It was cool that we got to host families from all over Canada and even some of our favorite friends from the USA in our city.

Saturday was fun! I attended a session by Dr. McGuire and then I went to the film festival. I was able to see three great films that featured people born with Down syndrome. Later in the afternoon my sister and I led a Yoga class for the young adults. What an interesting experience. I got to see once again that while there are similarities between people born with Down syndrome we are all very unique too. That evening my friends and I got all dressed up and went to a Red Carpet event just for us. We walked the red carpet and had our pictures taken. We were all stars!

Sunday was Soul Sister Sunday! My sister Michelle and I presented our session called Soul Sisters. We had over 40 people come and listen to us. I gave people a lot to think about and made them laugh. Humour is the best medicine! Michelle did pretty well too. After our presentation we went for brunch with our good friends Gail and Blair from Los Angeles. Blair is like our brother. We call him “Knucklebean” or “Burger Boy”. I was sad to say good-bye to them but I knew we would be seeing each other in a few weeks in Phoenix. Sunday night we closed the conference with a big dinner and dance. There was lots of food, yummy dessert and dancing! It was a wonderful weekend!

Please stay tuned for my next blog so you can get caught up even more on my life.

Be Inspired,



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“You don’t buy a friend, you earn a friend”. Richard Pryor

What is friendship?







My friend Sydney moved to Edmonton from a small town called Lyndhurst, in Ontario. She moved here to participate in the Ascend Leadership Project.

We first met at the Anglican Parish of Christ Church. The church hosts a Community Dinner once a month and I help by setting tables. I invited Sydney to join me, A few days later my friends from PULP came to film my promotional video. We invited Sydney to come by and be apart of it. During that day we had a great time talking, laughing and learning about each other.

Now Sydney and I see each other at least once a week. When we spend time together we like to make art, go out for tea, be active and tell each other about the important things that happened in our week. The most important part of our friendship is that we encourage each other to be the best we can be.

I believe friendship is about helping, it is about listening and it is about ensuring that your friends are appreciated for who they are.

Be Inspired,


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Education is very important to me and mine started at a young age. I was a part of the first integrated early education program at Mayfield Elementary School. At the age of 3 I would get picked up in a cab and off I would go. This program gave me my start and showed me that I was capable of learning. From there I attended Montessori where I learned to read, write, count and many other life skills. I was very lucky because I had teachers who believed in me and were patient. This type of school worked really well for me and set me up to continue my learning.

I was able to attend the same junior/senior high school as my sister. I went to regular class with an aid. Many times I asked her to sit at the back of the class…I wanted to sit with the other kids. I participated in choir and was able to go on many trips. I made a very good friend in homeroom and we are still friends to this day even though she is a busy mom. My experience was good and I was able to learn many lessons in and out of the classroom.

My mum had to open peoples eyes sometimes and ask then to take a chance on me. I think people find it hard to say “no” to her but in the end they never had to because prove their outdated perception wrong.

I know that some people with disabilities haven’t had similar experiences with education. I think that we are all individuals and that each of us should be set-up for success in all areas of our life. To parents out there…help your children have the most positive educational experience they can even if it doesn’t look the same for each child.

If it wasn’t for my family and my teachers I would not be where I am today. I am a lifelong learner…lucky for me the people in my life think I’m a great student!

Be inspired,


Being a “Folkie”

Hi Friends,
I had a new experience on the weekend of August 9th. My sister Michelle took my mum and I to the last day of Folk Fest. I wasn’t too sure how I felt about going. Michelle has always made is sound fun but I felt uneasy beacuse I’ve never done it before. On Sunday Morning, I put on a cute sun dress while mum and Michelle packed up everything we would need for the day. I thought they were nuts!
We set out on our adventure. When we arrived, there were lots of people but everyone seemed like they were having a good time. After putting all of our stuff down on the tarp Michelle had gotten earlier we went to get some lunch. I had Chicken Adobo. It was yummy.
At 2pm we sat on our tarp to hear a band from Cuba called Septeto Santiaguero. Their music made me want to dance and reminded me of Desi Arnaz. It was a very, very hot day so it almost felt like we were someplace tropical.
From there we walked to another stage to hear the Masters of Hawaiian Music. This brought back many memories of my trips to Hawaii.
The rest of our day was filled with music, food and a trip to the beer garden. I even got ID’d.
Later in the day we went back to our tarp and Michelle explained to me that the evening on the hill is very special because everyone comes together in friendship and to listen to the music. Many people were holding candles. They also had a parade of lanterns that were carried by volunteers. The lanterns were so pretty and creative. The last band was Blue Rodeo. There music was beautiful to me.
My favourite memory of the day was sharing something new with my mum and sister.
 P.S. I do have to share that my least favourite part was using the outhouses. They are disgusting!!!! I do not like germs so this was not the place for me. Somehow I think they need to make this better.
Be Inspired,
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On The Road Again

Summer has been very busy and interesting.
A few weeks ago I travelled to Indianapolis, Indiana to attend the National Down Syndrome Conference. If you are a sports fan you already know Indianapolis is famous for the  Indy 500 Car Race. This year is the 98th running of the race. On the conference floor they had a car which we sit in for fun and pictures. I am happy that they didn’t start the car – too much noise!

On our way to the conference we had a delayed flight out of Toronto. When we arrived in New York we had to rush to catch our next plane. I do not walk very quickly so my Mum explained that I needed to ride in a wheelchair to get to the next terminal. WOW that was embarrassing!! Mothers! My mum always has a plan! We did make the flight…barely.

The weekend was all about families and friendship while learning new idea’s. My American friends and I spent time catching up on what we are busy with in our home towns. There was lots of time for fun,  laughter, eating, and course dancing.

Part of the conference is a film festival. We viewed many new  films staring actors born with Down Syndrome. My favourite was, Produce: Where Hope  Grows. This movie tells a story of how a young man working in a grocery store helps a stranger turned friend how to deal with the struggles of his life. Everyone should see this movie. Next year they should think about giving everyone Kleenex. This was a wonderful and real story line.

Friends are so important to me even if I only see them in person once a year. I know I am blessed to have such good friends. Smile and think of all the amazing people in your corner.

Be Inspired,


My Thoughts on Travel

Hi Friends,

Looking outside and seeing the sunshine makes me think about many memories that I have of travelling. Edmonton is lovely in the spring, summer and fall but the winter makes me feel blah!

I feel very lucky that I was able to go to Honolulu with my mum and sister this year. It is beautiful and warm. When I spend time there my favourite thing to do is hang out by the pool, have a cute guy bring me drinks and then walk to Yogurtland.  Those are the best days!

Another thing I love to do there is see my friends who live on the island. It is a wonderful thing to be able to have friends in different parts of the world.  My Hawaiian friends are doing some wonderful work on behalf of people with Down syndrome.  As a family we have been able to help them and the families they support.  I have been able to show people that their child with Down syndrome will grow up to have hopes, dreams and goals.

I have had the opportunity to travel quite a bit. Some of my favourites places have been Scottsdale, Grand Cayman (not during Hurricane season), and to visit family in British Columbia.

As much as I like to travel I feel that it can throw off my routine. What this has taught me is that when I am away, if I need something, that I need to speak up for myself. This way people can understand me a little better.

One day I really hope to visit Jamaica because that is where “Cool Running’s” was filmed, Greece and Italy. Hopefully, if I get the chance to visit these places I can spread my message of hope for people with developmental disabilities.

Be Inspired,