Tag Archives: charity

Happy Monday – weekend craziness

Happy Monday all! We had a wonderful, warm weekend – but the kind of weekend that feels like you need a weekend to recover from it!

Friday was all nostalgia, as I went back to high school! I took a slightly longer route to get there so I could walk down the street I used to live on and see the house I spent the first 13 or 14 years of my life in. It seems like they added a nice deck to the back but the front looked a lot like it did 35 years ago.

On the street where I lived

I was on the left even as a child

I went and found my grad photos (yes, photos, I actually kinda love saying “when did I graduate? Oh, 1992. And ’93” lol)

Grad ’92

Grad ’93 – Harry Potter specs long before HP 😉

It’s such a great entrance too!

Saturday involved getting Q to drama class and me cross-stitching while waiting around. Then hockey school and a pit stop for ice cream afterwards

First he ate his

then he ate mine

Toby took Q off to gymnastics in the afternoon and then, with my folks in charge of Q for the night, Toby and I went off to the west end for a pub night for the high school. So lovely to see everyone that I did see but I missed a lot of people too because, well, I was volunteering Sunday morning!

Sunday is usually the day we have nothing so that we can recover from the week and the usual Saturday madness but instead I volunteered with EGALE running some water tables at the Scotibank Toronto Waterfront Marathon and then headed out to the wilds of Etobicoke to help my mom, an uncle, and a couple of cousins work in my babcia’s garden. Whew. 

I’m hoping for less craziness this weekend but I dunno!


NOTE: yea, I know, this went up on Tuesday but only because I couldn’t get the photos to upload on the blog. The very helpful admin for my host fixed it all overnight for me – well overnight for me, day time for him, he’s in the UK.

Donations to help animals and their helpers

Sometimes my kid kills me. He might test my patience from time to time but he is a kind and gentle and loving kid.

For the last two years, he and I have picked a charity for my monthly donation. (Toby always picks MSF so Q and I try to do something different).

In 2015 he wasn’t so into it but last year he really helped narrow down choices and in the end we did an organization (Canadian Veteran Service Dog Unit – link) that trains dogs to help veterans with PTSD. Q called it “dogs for super heroes.”

He wanted to do animals again this year and we settled on WWF-Canada (same as his birthday charity). Then we saw the stuff about the adoptions you can do. Q insisted we each adopt an animal. Plus he wanted to chose a helper.

There were six options for the helpers – male and female for each of: polar researcher, wildlife ranger and marine biologist. I showed him the page with all of their pictures on it. None really looked like him but there are boys and girls and one has long blond hair and another has short brown hair and so on and it it turns out it just didn’t seem to matter to him at all what they looked like.

So, our African elephant (mine), polar bear (Toby’s choice), and giraffe (Q’s) are now being cared for by a “Female Wildlife Ranger” because that “sounds like a fun helping job” and she’s who he pointed at.

Our January 2017 WWF-Canada adoptions

In keeping with Q’s love of animals and his interest in helping them and the environment we’ve signed him up for a local camp on the next school break that focuses on our local critters and their habitats. I can’t wait until he goes!

Oh and one day I might write a post about Toby and bears and his name….

Dogs for super heroes…

One of the more random things we do is to pick a different charity each year to donate to monthly for the next year. Toby and I have each picked a main charity (His is MSF. Mine, well, I don’t have one right now sigh) so this is in addition to that. CanadaHelps is the website we use to help with this. I can’t remember now how I first found it (although I probably could log in and see what my first donation there was) but it makes donating easy – they take your credit card info and send the donation where you direct it.

CanadaHelps takes <2% to help run everything and you get a tax receipt for the total amount AND if you donate to more than one charity through them you get a single, easy to use receipt for tax purposes. And no, I haven’t gotten anything from them to do this. I hope they’ll be pleasantly surprised to find out they’ve been mentioned on some random whisky/baking/mom blog!

Anyway, Toby and I thought it’d be interesting to let Q choose the charity this year. I read him the big categories – animals, arts & culture, education, environment, health, international, public benefit, and social services. (note there’s also religion, but hey, I’m me, he didn’t get that option)

He picked animals. Then we went and looked at what was listed there. We all decided that something local would be great. And we found this: the Canadian Veteran Service Dog Unit. We explained to Q about how some people decide that serving their country – all of us – is the best thing they could do and they go and join the army or the navy or the air force (or help by being police officers or firefighters or EMS people) and that often it’s really hard if they have to go away and fight against other people and then come home. Sometimes the friends they went with don’t come back from fighting because it’s very dangerous and everything is just very different when they come home. And we explained that this charity helped to get trained dogs to veterans who came home and needed help.

Q was quiet but clearly thinking about something. Then he turned to us and said “super hero dogs? I want the money to go to the dogs for super heroes.”

So there we go. Money for dogs for super heroes

And happy holidays to you!