Every November, I embark on Bazaar-o-Rama, my annual tour of church bazaars. If you haven’t been to a bazaar, you’re missing out. You can find cheap gifts, form friendships with women named Beatrice and Irene, and buy percolated coffee for next to nothing.
Over the next few weeks, I’ll post some of the treasures I find. Join me on my bazaar journey, won’t you? Read More
Many famous writers seek out inspiring environments to fuel their creativity. Hemingway had his home in Old Town Key West. J.K. Rowling wrote Harry Potter at The Elephant House. And Virginia Woolf had her own room.
Me? I had the Bay cafeteria. Read More
Recently, I was on CBC Radio's The Next Chapter, chatting about beauty books with host, Shelagh Rogers. Reading beauty books got me thinking. I know quite a bit about beauty (obviously) and I'm pretty creative. So why not start my own beauty empire? But instead of telling people to buy things, I'm giving beauty DIY tips. After all, being beautiful doesn't have to mean breaking the bank. Read More
A few months ago, I was in a charity bowl-a-thon. Bowling is the only sport I’ve ever been good at because it involves minimal physical activity and there’s a snack bar within arm’s reach. So imagine my surprise when I won the raffle grand prize – airline tickets to anywhere WestJet flies! Read More
I was at the Pride parade the other day and was reminded of my own coming out journey and how I sometimes remember it and sometimes I forget. I’m posting this letter so I don’t forget.
When I was 22, I wrote a coming out letter to my university roommates. At the time, it was the scariest thing I’d ever done. I’d been living a double life, the stress was weighing me down and I needed to come clean. I just had no idea how they’d react. Read More
I’m a big believer in emotional eating. Do you come home at the end of the day and want nothing more than to work your way through a container of Duncan Hines Whipped Vanilla Frosting? Go right ahead. And don’t forget those Pizza Pockets in the freezer. Recently, I got to thinking – why not make some cookies with my letter press that really let you eat your emotions? Read More
I grabbed a set of Tupperware cookie cutters when we moved my mom out of the family home a number of years ago. She kept them in an old Ziploc bag. They’re a seasonal set, made for birthdays, Christmas, Halloween, etc. I don’t think she ever used them, though. I don't recall ever getting a cookie for my birthday. Not that anyone remembered. Read More
This past Christmas, my brother-in-law gave me a cookie letter stamp. At first I thought, what the hell am I going to do with this? But then I got playing with it and a lightbulb went off in my head. I like to bake. And I’m an author. That means I’m a frickin’ Shakespeare when it comes to words. Read More
Have you ever said goodnight to your pantyhose? Or thanked your mock turtleneck? Ever tangoed with your bathrobe? If yes, chances are you’re either lonely or you’ve read The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. She believes that possessions have feelings. Read More
Saturday mornings throughout November, I roll out of bed early, put on my Tilley hat, fire up the Chevette and head out to Christmas bazaars. If you’ve never been to a bazaar, you’re missing out on one of life’s richest experiences. Bazaars are free, you can find great deals, and, if you’re under 50, you’ll feel like the youngest person there.
I get it. You want to be a writer. And you know you need to polish your skills. Find more time to write. Take yourself seriously. Signing up for a writing class seems like a good idea. But you put it off. And put it off. And put it off. I was once like you. I came up with all kinds of reasons to not sign up for a class. Here were my top excuses. Any of these sound familiar? Read More
Recently, I was on CBC Radio’s The Next Chapter talking with host Shelagh Rogers about what trends are due for a comeback. (Think adult colouring books.) One thing I predict will be huge in the coming months is the renaissance of homemade birthday cakes. I’ll even take that one step further and say homemade cut-up cakes will be the next big trend. Read More
Every couple of years, I go in search of a new lunch bag. It’s a horrific, painful and depressing journey. I don’t want polka dots or stripes or superheroes or anything that I’d be embarrassed to carry while reading my V.C. Andrews novels on the subway. All I want is a masculine lunch bag. And if you think that seems like a pretty simple request, have I got news for you, folks. Read More
Recently, I went on a vacation to England and learned a number of interesting things about British life. For example, if you value your life, always look before crossing the street. You can also buy single-serve gin and tonics at the grocery store. (They come in handy if you’re travelling with the same person for 10 days straight.) Read More
My 1922 Sarnia cookbook culinary adventure continues with another tasty installment! Today’s recipe hits close to home because my grandmother was Norwegian. And while I didn’t see very her often (she lived in Saskatoon), she taught me important lessons about food. Namely, that Norwegians eat some pretty gross stuff. Read More
I know that my readers have been wondering, “What happened to that 1922 Sarnia cookbook adventure Brian started?” I admit I haven’t been as regular recently what with making wedding fruitcake and stealing my mom’s china. Read More
Recently, we moved my mom out of her apartment and into a retirement residence. There’s a valet service for walkers. Folks, I can’t make this stuff up. Read More
If you’ve seen male homosexuals with low standards and lonely ladies with no sense of gaydar walking around crying, here's the reason: I recently got married. Yep, it’s true. I finally found someone to love me for the person I’m pretending to be. Read More
If you’re like me and living the glamourous life of a Canadian fiction author, you’ve probably been invited to a book club or two. While I always appreciate the request, book club visits can sometimes be weird experiences Read More
Look, all of us can lose our spark at times. There you are in your curlers, a tub of No Name Neapolitan ice cream in your lap and a Golden Girls marathon on TV, wondering, “Why isn’t life turning out the way I want it to?” Read More