Memories of Manon…

Memories of Manon…

To my absolute delight, Manon came to Vancouver

For those of you who do not recognize the name, Manon was one of my very first viewers. We have kept in touch over the years and this year I finally got to give her a hug!

Her amazing smile brightened every moment I spent with her

Manon was everything I had thought she would be and then more. She was so elegant, gracious and thoughtful. She touched my heart and soul.

Perhaps one of the most endearing memories I have of her visit is the way, each time I thanked her for something, this melodious “you’re welcome” would come singing back at me. It was just so darn charming and I will hear it each time I say “thank you” to anyone. It will stay with me for the rest of my life. It also reminded me of the value of such a small response.

I heard about the fact that her local friend had been unable to do some of the sightseeing that Manon had hoped to do so I made a plan to make few things happen for her. We spent one day here in my area of White Rock and then headed into Vancouver to take in some local sights and then Manon took me on a foodie tour of my own city! I am so glad she did.

An incredible pork belly tempura egg at TUCs Craft Kitchen

If you would like to see more of her visit, and some of the sights I took her to see, you will find the playlist here :–mKrsxAHf6v4z9UgGdUV7

I would not be honest if I didn’t tell you I will truly miss Manon, her smile and everything she brings to this world. I cried when I met her and I didn’t want to cry when we parted. I worked hard to put us both into our “rational” brains before we went our separate ways. She left me a truly magical note that I couldn’t read until I got home because I didn’t want to drive in tears.

As the tears streamed down my face reading the card I was overcome with the joy and gratitude that she came Vancouver and that I got to be part of her real world, even for a moment. As I closed the thank you card I fought to smile, nod my head and say…

“… you’re welcome”

May 10, 2015 – Happy Mother’s Day

Sometimes, being a YouTuber feel like being a mother. You are constantly watching over your little “baby”, DearMamaSal. Trying to steer it in the right direction – right for me and the brand. You deal with criticism and have to stay the course of the direction. Occasionally, you get to “play” with your baby.

Such was our recent trip to Vegas. Five of us rented a house and decided that we would become a “family” for a week. We had good days and some not as good but, overall, we shared and cared for and about each other. We adjusted to different situations and found out we had friends we didn’t really believe existed.

Living with five people for a week taught me a great deal about my baby! I realized I was fiercely protective of her. I didn’t know that before this trip. It is a strange feeling. My baby is nearly 3 years old now. She is growing up fast. I had to remember that she is still vulnerable and needs protection until she can stand on her own two feet. However, like any mother, I am learning more about myself through the process.

I am still so thankful for the friendships and support networks we have created for our various viewers in need. I am constantly amazed at the deep care and support I get. My recent bout of viral bronchitis on my return from Vegas showed me that the super fans would rather I take a week off (to get my strength back) than have me push myself to produce footage or broadcasts. I felt supported and loved for that.

Mother’s day is very special to me this year. My baby is growing and our extended family continues to nuture and support her. I am blessed and truly thankful.

YouTube Update – Week 141
Subscribers 6906
Views 380,000
Blog views 27,493
849 days non smoking  $9,084.09 saved
Weight down – 5 lbs  

60. With apologies

I know, it’s been a while since I wrote and I hate excuses as much as you do!

So I am not going to waste your time with excuses – I will just apologize to those of you who enjoy the written word as much as the vlogs. In the past couple of months I have done a lot of learning and a lot of looking at the world around me. As usual, I have come out of the time stronger than before. I have learned that people can just drop you in a heartbeat when it suits them, others can give you hours of unexpected time, some can hit incredibly hard times and still have a sense of humour.

I learned that one viewer visiting the broadcast can give us a great idea but if I do nothing with it it is just that… an idea. I am going to start our Free Bay page today! Free Bay is for viewers who have a sense of humour/humor and a post office box. Put your screen name and your post office box address (no real names) and then put what you would like to “collect” from fellow viewers. We have heard about fridge magnets, key rings, wines, cheeses and, of course, licorice!! To name just a few things that made us smile. We just thought it would be a fun thing to be able to send someone a ‘gift’

I have learned that even my hard-working camera can give up the ghost and die on me. When I thought of how many hours it had given me over the past year I cannot say I was surprised. I also didn’t feel like it was a lessor product. In fact, I bought the upgrade of my previous camera. It was fun to use and gave me a lot of good vids. I reward good behaviour! Even if the product dies of hard work. Pity it did it the month after the warranty ran out.

I always knew that the fall and winter would be harder on dear BeanBean. He is struggling a little more and I have had to increase his meds to compensate. It is a heartbreaking thing to do because each time I increase it I am equally lessening his time with me for there is a limit to how much I can give him. I am up to close to 3/4 of his total allocation, based on his weight. I am hoping that this dosage will hold him over the fall and winter because, if it does, then we might be able to stay together for  another year. Obviously, if I have to keep increasing it over the winter we will be running out of time together. So sad. We have come so far.

We have seen some wonderful growth from various members of the broadcast club. Lesley overcame her fear of the outside world enough to walk down her garden and close the gate. She looked over the fence and gave us the greatest smile! Roseann showed us a rare moment of total vulnerability as she struggled with a diagnosis of glaucoma over and above everything else she copes with every day. Jen is just weeks away from being married and found that the ability to make decision suddenly was missing.

I sit in awe of how this group of people have supported one another. How they, through their support of others, have grown. They have new understanding of each other, of their previous judgments and their coping skills. We are beginning to have a lot of people visit the broadcasts and thanking us for the positive contribution we are making.

For my part, I am amazed at how much difference we can make in our little world. One person at a time. We know people are paying it forward. We hear the stories.


YouTube Update – Week 60

Subscribers             3,882
Views                        126,698 from 171 countries
Blog views                7318
Non-Smoking Days    282 with a saving of $3,017.47

59. The battle of the bulge begins!

Yesterday I joined Jen and Jamie and signed up for MyFitnessPal (no cost). I trembled as I typed in my real weight. I cringed when I saw how far into the obese range I had moved. Reality is reality. Enough is enough. Yes, “the devil” in me says that going back to smoking would help me drop over 20lbs in a couple of months but we know that is not the way I am going to do it.

The process is interesting. The whole thing is automated and it works out what your ideal input is for the weight you want to lose. My goal is to lose a pound a week. Consistently. That would mean I could drop 50lbs I the coming year. That said, it does a clever psychological thing… it tells you that this is what you can eat without doing any exercise! If you add exercise you can add more things to eat AND STILL REACH YOUR GOAL. Clever!! I like that thinking.

It also doesn’t tell you what to eat. Freedom, is a good thing! It just calculates whatever you put into the system. Updates everything from calories to sodium. The only discipline I need is to put the truth in and be more aware. Aware, for example that a small apple has way more sugar than I knew. Education is another side benefit, apparently!

The one thing that surprised me yesterday was that I made it through the day without attacking the snacks – the super sugary, delightful indulgences!

I have just finished my 15 minute workout and asked myself what was different? Why did I made it through the day without eating the cookies or marshalmallows? Oh, I struggled in the last 40 mins but I hung in there. I then had a small eating need, just after midnight, but managed to just eat half a piece of bread with marmite – savory rather than sugary. Was it because I had a more balanced diet? One that I created because the system showed me where to be mindful? Interesting.

I also set up todays eating schedule before I went to sleep. Didn’t want to not know what to grab for because that is where the “quick” snack comes in to play. I have had the second half of my piece of bread this morning and will start the “breakfast” list in about an hour. It is not what time of day it is, it is about knowing I still have that much food available to me and STILL be under the goal. Good feeling!

I was surprised that I had incorrectly caculated the coffee situation. I had clicked on a store latte and last night I found out that the homemade version is way less. I had to go back and change the figures for yesterday.

I thought I would struggle to drink the eight cups of water. I decided that I would drink I cup every time I sat down at the computer. I needed to finish it before I started the next task. That made it easy to drink.