Hearing aid woes

My right Oticon hearing aid stopped working yesterday…all of a sudden I could hear…tock, tock, tock in my ear. I knew that didn’t sound right, so I took it out and did my best to trouble-shooting the issue…I blew in it. Ha! That is the extent of trouble-shooting I do, I leave the fixing up to the professionals at Davidson’s Hearing Aid Centres.  

Imagine you are getting ready for work and discover something is wrong with one of your shoes…and you cannot wear it….I know, I know seems absurd to have only one pair, but stay with me here. You cannot function and go to meetings with only one shoe, well, you can but you will perhaps have a hard time getting around and people may give you strange looks, etc… 

Well, I cannot function with only one hearing aid, and now I’ll have to tell people in meetings (who may not even know I wear them) that my hearing aid is broken. For the record: I am still uncomfortable with the whole “Hey, I am hard of hearing” announcement during meetings. I am thankful that today was a quieter day at work with only one meeting and guess what? The sky didn’t fall when I made my announcement. #Thankful #Encouraging #SpeakUp #Deafgirl


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World Hello Day

Today is the 45th annual World Hello day! Anyone can participate in World Hello Day simply by greeting ten people. This demonstrates the importance of personal communication for preserving peace!

You can view letters from people ALL over the World, participating in World Hello Day over the years.

Here is how you say hello in American Sign Language (ASL)


Bonjour, Hola, Hello, Ciao xox

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7 Rules to Follow If You Want to Live a Life Without Regrets

This is an awesome article! #noregrets

1. Do ridiculous things = like diving! My first check-out dives were in the Saint Laurence in 2012, the following weekend I was diving in Miami. My favorite diving location so far is Grand Cayman (Ocean Frontiers). I am hoping to be diving in Costa Rica sometime soon. (Remember, I am totally afraid of water)!

2. Choose the job that will teach you the most = sometimes taking on new challenges stretches us a little, do it anyway! I have learned so much in my current role.

3. Steer clear of charlatans and the toxic = if you can’t stay away, try to limit your exposure and ensure you stay grounded!

4. Value the quiet moments = staying grounded is key…a walk in the forest will do it for me! (especially when I have George with me)

5. Have a philosophy = just be kind to others #kindnesswins

6. Don’t compare yourself with other people = just don’t

7. Think about death = because it happens to all of us…even our pets. Just lost my 15 year old service dog two weeks ago.


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Goodbye buddy!

Happy Puppy!

Walker 20 March 2002 – 27 October 2017

Today I said good-bye to my very best buddy. Walker and I have been together since September 27, 2003. For those who don’t know, Walker was my Hearing Ear dog (retired) from Lions Foundation of Canada Dogguides.

Even in these last few years where he was quite blind and deaf, he never faltered and always wanted to be by my side.

I will always, always cherish your love and devotion over these last 15 years! You were a true rockstar!

Thank you Aylmer Veterinary Clinic for providing a peaceful and loving environment for him.

RIP sweetie babes #RainbowBridge


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A little Kindness…goes a long way!

My friend Marcey posted this picture on Facebook the other day and it made me think about how a simple gesture can make a difference in someone’s day .

That same day I was talking on the phone with a colleague at work as we are collaborating on a project and his last comment before hanging up was” I really enjoy working with you Michèle”. This really made my day and made me realize that all those ‘little’ extra kind things  really do make a difference.

Now go make someone’s day….happier!

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2017 Pet Valu walk for Dog guides

This years walk is September 24, 2017 and the donation link is live:


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Home Sweet Home

There is no place like home!

Home can mean many things but is certainly not limited to a physical location. Home is where you spend time with those you love and cherish…Home is family.  To me,  Home is also where I feel grounded. 

One of my favourite movies of all time is The Wizard of Oz (which prompted me to buy that pillow)….but it also makes you think…what is home?

The best explanation of the English idiom “There’s no place like home” is “Home is unique” or “Home sweet home.”

The phrase originated in this poem:

Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam
Be it ever so humble, there’s no place like home

A charm from the skies seems to hallow us there

Which seek thro’ the world, is ne’er met elsewhere

Home! Home!

Sweet, sweet home!

There’s no place like home

There’s no place like home

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Welcome Spring!

Here’s to warmer weather and hopefully no more snow! Continue reading

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Then & Now: Happy Retirement Walker

I wanted to take a moment and talk about Walker’s retirement this year. Walker is my Hearing Ear Dog guide from Lions Foundation of Canada Dogguides. He just retired earlier this year after 13 years of service!

When I first got walker in 2003, he was full of life, happy and eager to please. In September of 2003, I spent 2 weeks at the National Training School in Oakville, Ontario, bonding with him, learning how to make him work (he had already spent 6 months with a trainer there).

When I first got home, I had to stick to the original sounds he’d been trained for: Doorbell, door knocking, alarm clock, fire alarm, name calling before introducing new sounds.  After a while, Walker would alert to most sounds in the home, including: babies crying (I had a daycare), microwave, kettle, sizzle (when stuff boils over on the stove) etc… I felt so safe knowing that when I went to sleep at night (and took out my hearing aids) that Walker would alert me to sounds I could not hear.

During these past 13 years Walker’s been on a several train rides, flown to Vancouver & Toronto, taken the bus to work with me, taken the Voyageur bus to Kingston (when Kristine was at Queens), attended a birth with @domesticdoula, been to the Blue Mountain Spa (the folks were real nice there, they even gave him his own bowl of water), been in the paper (a few times), met Spartacat, camping with family, volunteered for many activities.

Fast forward 13 years…he’s been an absolutely amazing worker and my bestest buddy! We’ve had a lot of fun times!!  We’ve gone everywhere together but in the last few years, I chose to start leaving him at home as the cold Ottawa winters would take its toll on him.  I have also seen a decline in his work but he still tried to kept at it. Today, his hearing is not so good and his cataracts really hinder his ability to see well (especially at night). I have since adopted him and am giving him a very comfortable retirement with me.

I am quite thankful for everything the Lions Foundation of Canada has done for us over the years! I sure hope you can join us in this years Ottawa Purina Walk for Dogguides on September 25th, 2016, if not would you consider making a donation?


2015 Ottawa Purina Walk for Dog Guides


Michèle & Walker & George paw prints 2

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One always has to know when a stage comes to an end. If we insist on staying longer than the necessary time, we lose the happiness and the meaning of the other stages we have to go through.
Closing cycles, shutting doors, ending chapters – whatever name we give it, what matters is to leave in the past the moments of life that have finished.

Did you lose your job? Has a loving relationship come to an end? Did you leave your parents’ house? Gone to live abroad? Has a long-lasting friendship ended all of a sudden?
You can spend a long time wondering why this has happened.

You can tell yourself you won’t take another step until you find out why certain things that were so important and so solid in your life have turned into dust, just like that.
But such an attitude will be awfully stressing for everyone involved: your parents, your husband or wife, your friends, your children, your sister.
Everyone is finishing chapters, turning over new leaves, getting on with life, and they will all feel bad seeing you at a standstill.

Things pass, and the best we can do is to let them really go away.

That is why it is so important (however painful it may be!) to destroy souvenirs, move, give lots of things away to orphanages, sell or donate the books you have at home.

Everything in this visible world is a manifestation of the invisible world, of what is going on in our hearts – and getting rid of certain memories also means making some room for other memories to take their place.
Let things go. Release them. Detach yourself from them.

Nobody plays this life with marked cards, so sometimes we win and sometimes we lose.
Do not expect anything in return, do not expect your efforts to be appreciated, your genius to be discovered, your love to be understood.

Stop turning on your emotional television to watch the same program over and over again, the one that shows how much you suffered from a certain loss: that is only poisoning you, nothing else.

Nothing is more dangerous than not accepting love relationships that are broken off, work that is promised but there is no starting date, decisions that are always put off waiting for the “ideal moment.”

Before a new chapter is begun, the old one has to be finished: tell yourself that what has passed will never come back.
Remember that there was a time when you could live without that thing or that person – nothing is irreplaceable, a habit is not a need.
This may sound so obvious, it may even be difficult, but it is very important.

Closing cycles. Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because that no longer fits your life.

Shut the door, change the record, clean the house, shake off the dust.

Stop being who you were, and change into who you are.

Here’s to an amazing 2016!

Paulo Coelho

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