April 2017

Apr 29 2017
What is the first thing you do when you wake-up in the morning? Do you start the day fretting or […] more...

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Apr 28 2017
Here’s the replay of our master class…enjoy and be sure to check out the offer… more...

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Apr 27 2017
Have you heard about the rule of three?  It applies to several aspects in life, and certainly works well in business too.

I remember when I first started writing, my mentor told me that starting a sentence with the same words, three times in a row, helps to make a point.  It makes a powerful statement and I often use this strategy in my writing today.

The other week we heard from a speaker who was emphasizing the rule of three when you are making a presentation.  

As you are developing your talk, it helps to come up with three key messages as more than that, and it starts to get confusing for your audience.


And in working with authors, I also have them work through a template where they have to come up with three key messages.  In this instance, it helps you focus and keep true to what you want to say. 


But the rule of three expands beyond the written and verbal word.  In decorating for example, designers advise that you group objects in threes.  And I seem to recall doing an one-two-three countdown with my kids when I wanted something done or they were in trouble.


So what is the impact from a business perspective?  Good question. 


Jeremy Anderberg wrote about the rule of three in terms of productivity.  He quotes author Chris Bailey when he suggests that at the beginning of each day, before you start working, decide what three things you want to accomplish by the end of the day.  It’s a simple, but game changing concept.


If you only have three priorities to focus on, you are more likely to get the work done.  And maybe if you’ve tried three times to start something and haven’t, your procrastination is telling you that you really don’t want to do it.


Here’s some other interesting facts about the number three, according to Eric Walters in The Rule of Three:-

  •     you can last three minutes without air.

  •    you can go three days with water.

  •    you can last three weeks without food. 

It seems to be a pretty important number, and of course there is the fact that I was born on the 3rd month, March!  But I digress. 


Getting back to the rule of three, here's my three key points - 

  • pick three key messages when you have to make a presentation or write a book

  • select three priorities a day to focus your attention on. 

  • if you’ve tried to do something three times and not managed to do it, maybe you're not that interested. Take it off your list.

Try it.  You may find that it takes the pressure off, and helps you focus your energy and time. 


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Apr 27 2017
Sweet News! NFFTT is proud to announce that we have been selected as a grant recipient for the TDFEF Common Ground Project. Thanks to this generous support from TDFEF, we will be able to bring our cider pressing station to 10 events in Toronto’s parks this summer. You may have seen our press last year at […] more...

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Apr 27 2017
Sweet News! NFFTT is proud to announce that we have been selected as a grant recipient for the TDFEF Common Ground Project. Thanks to this generous support from TDFEF, we will be able to bring our cider pressing station to 10 events in Toronto’s parks this summer. You may have seen our press last year at […] more...

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Apr 27 2017
We’re recruiting for our lead picking volunteers: Supreme Gleaners! Position Summary:  Supreme Gleaners are specially-trained volunteers who go the extra mile to make the fruit harvest happen by leading picks and transporting fruit and equipment by cargo bike. Responsibilities: Lead fruit picks during Toronto’s fruit harvest season (runs from June to October). For each pick, […] more...

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Apr 27 2017
Learn Do, Can, Will, Why & Why Not in ASL! Check out other view question and answer videos here: http://bit.ly/2cSjQOd more...

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Apr 26 2017

By Sabrena Salahudeen Cucumbers are best eaten between May and July. The flesh of cucumbers is primarily composed of water and also contains ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and caffeic acid, both of which help soothe skin irritations and reduce swelling. Cucumber’s hard skin is rich in fiber and contains a variety of beneficial minerals including [...]

The post Cucumbers: Rich in Fiber and Beneficial Minerals appeared first on lisaliving.

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Apr 26 2017
  A lot of you have had questions about my personal schedule, lifestyle, motivation and how the HECK I do it. So instead of talking about it… I’m gonna show you! Check out my latest FB live that I just did in my Facebook Group This Brand Means Business. This is my exact personal weekly [...] more...

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Apr 26 2017

Just like the seeds I sow in my vegetable garden every spring, over the past 25 years, I have also forged some great relationships with clients. Women who have found my jewellery designs through meeting me at a craft show, or been lead by other women that wear my pieces – they all have “a […]

The post Do you have an LREJ Wish List? appeared first on Lisa Ridout Exclusive Jewellery.

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Apr 26 2017
Spirit of a Dove
 
The closest rival of Josephine Baker, British siren Evelyn Dove was an international star in the 1920s and 1930s. In his new biography, Evelyn Dove: Britain’s Black Cabaret Queen, featuring over 50 rare photographs, Stephen Bourne reviews a life marked by success, scandal, heartbreak and obscurity.
 
Evelyn Dove was one of the true pioneers of the booming cabaret age of the 1920s. She thrilled audiences around the world and her exquisite stage costumes helped to make her one of the most glamorous women of her time. Evelyn was a black British siren who toured Europe throughout the 1920s and 1930s, courting admirers and fans wherever she performed. Her mesmerising movie star looks and grace captivated those in her presence. The public and press couldn’t get enough of the rising star who went on to replace Josephine Baker as the star attraction in a revue at the famous Casino de Paris. In 1936, amidst a frenzy of public interest, she became the first black British singer to try and conquer America, 25 yearsbefore Shirley Bassey. Evelyn headlined a cabaret show at New York’s popular Connie’s Inn. This rivalled the Cotton Club as a showcase for the best in black talent.
 
However, Evelyn was unsuccessful at winning over American audiences. Black and white American audiences did not take to a sophisticated black Englishwoman who sang a repertoire of songs in French, German and Italian. At that time they expected a black woman to sing either upbeat jazz numbers, or tear their hearts out with the blues. In fact, Evelyn was disadvantaged from the start. At Connie’s Inn she had to follow the enormously popular Billie Holiday who had scored a big success with her show Stars Over Broadway in which she co-starred with the legendary Louis Armstrong. The personalities and singing styles of Evelyn and Billie could not have been more different.
 
Evelyn’s career was one of many highs and lows, but at the height of her fame in the 1920s and 1930s she was a young adventuress who refused to be constrained by her race and English middle-class background.
 
 
 
 
 
Evelyn was mixed-race, born into privilege in London in 1902 to a West African father and English mother. Her father, Frans Dove, was born in Sierra Leone into a wealthy family and in the 1890s he spent time in London studying law. He married Evelyn’s mother, Augusta, in 1896. Evelyn was educated privately until she studied singing, piano and elocution at the Royal Academy of Music. As a trained contralto, in the early 1920s she hoped for a career on the concert platform, but this was almost impossible in Britain for a black singer at that time. So Evelyn worked in London cabaret shows instead and the all-black cast jazz revues that toured Britain and eventually took her to Europe where she was a sensation.

 
 
Evelyn spent several years in Italy where she proved to be enormously popular with audiences and then, in 1932, she travelled to Paris to replace the legendary Josephine Baker as the star attraction of the Casino de Paris. For the revue, Evelyn wore Josephine’s flimsy, revealing costume. Consequently the prim and proper middle-class English girl scandalised her family by appearing semi-naked on stage in Paris and it was said that her respectable and strait-laced West African father disowned her.
 
 Following her disappointing trip to New York, Evelyn took off to India in 1937 where she triumphed in cabaret at the popular Harbour Bar in Bombay (now Mumbai). One newspaper, The Evening News of India, introduced her as “an artist of international reputation, one of the leading personalities of Europe’s entertainment world” and “the closest rival of the great Josephine Baker”. The review of her cabaret show was rapturous: “Evelyn Dove is very easy on the eye with her splendid, tall figure, and her pleasant face and flashing eyes.”
 
When Hitler’s war clouds appeared over Europe, Evelyn couldn’t go back to France or Italy. Instead she returned to Britain. Throughout World War II she enjoyed the same appeal as the ‘Forces Sweetheart’, Vera Lynn. The BBC employed Evelyn all through the war, and she proved to be one of radio’s most popular singers, appearing in a wide range of music and variety programmes. Many of these appearances were broadcast to the forces, while others could be heard on the BBC’s West African and Caribbean airwaves. In fact, as early as 1925, Evelyn had the distinction of becoming the first black woman to sing on BBC radio.
 
Starting in 1939, for almost a decade Evelyn made radio broadcasts, including over 50 editions of the series Serenade in Sepia in which she was featured with the Trinidadian folk singer Edric Connor. The series was so popular that, in 1946, the BBC transferred it to their television service. Evelyn and Edric became household names and they were among Britain’s first television stars in the early post-war years when the medium was still in its infancy. Regrettably, none of their appearances exist, having been transmitted live before technology was invented to make recordings of television shows. 
 
 In the 1940s Evelyn enjoyed another decade at the top of her profession, with numerous radio broadcasts, concert appearances, and by becoming the first black woman to star in her own television series. The following decade her career took an unexpected downward turn. Work became scarce and, in 1955, desperate, she applied to the post office for a job as a telephonist. But even more humiliating was the fact that she had to ask the BBC for a reference. In 1956 the tide began to turn when she landed an acting role on BBC television as Eartha Kitt’s mother in the playMrs Patterson. Two years later she was back on stage, in London’s West End, as one of the stars of Langston Hughes’s musical Simply Heavenly. Evelyn then joined one of Britain’s first black theatre companies, the Negro Theatre Workshop, founded by her former co-star Edric Connor and his wife Pearl. The Workshop staged its first major production A Wreath for Udomo in London in 1961, with a memorable cast that included Earl Cameron, Lloyd Reckord and Evelyn. The Workshop also gave opportunities for a new generation of young black British actors to learn their craft, including Rudolph Walker and Nina Baden-Semper. In 1965 Evelyn made one of her last stage appearances in the Workshop’s acclaimed production The Dark Disciples, a blues version of the St Luke Passion.
 
After her star began to fade, Evelyn suffered from depression and in 1972, at the age of 70, she was admitted to a nursing home in Epsom, Surrey. In the 1950s Evelyn had befriended a young singer and actress called Isabelle Lucas who later found fame as Lenny Henry’s mother in the television sitcom The Fosters. Isabelle later explained what happened to Evelyn: “I felt very sorry for her because she had so much talent, so much to give. I stayed in touch with Evelyn until she died in 1987. She was still a lovely woman when she was old. I went to her funeral, but no one else did, apart from one or two members of staff from the home. It made me very sad.”
 
In the 1920s and 1930s many African American expatriates settled in Europe including Josephine Baker, Adelaide Hall and Elisabeth Welch. They captivated audiences with their songs, beauty, elegance and style. Evelyn stood alone as a black Briton who joined these trailblazers. They were women who created a glamorous new image for black women in show business, far removed from the bandanna-wearing mammy.
 
Evelyn Dove was a trailblazer who was a head of her time, forging new barriers and facing up to her own personal struggles with determination and defiance. Her spirit remains alive in all of us.
 
Stephen Bourne’s Evelyn Dove: Britain’s Black Cabaret Queen is published by Jacaranda books ($18.95). For further information about Stephen’s books go to www.stephenbourne.co.uk
 
 
 
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Apr 26 2017

What happens when a therapist gets triggered? Well laughter ensues. Billable Hours is a new short film by Laurel Brady. Yes it was a family affair. My daughter wrote,  starred in and co-produced her first short film Billable Hours.https://vimeo.com/198707685 Her brother Brendan directed and c0-produced it. And they hired their Mama, aka moi, to be in Read the full article...

The post Big Laughs When A Therapist Loses It! Watch our new film! appeared first on One Funny Lady.

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Apr 23 2017
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Apr 21 2017
I thought I had  read the entire Trollope corpus, but I keep discovering  more. I just finished `He Knew He Was Right` .   I recommend the marvelous worlds of Trollope to anyone who loves character and language. more...

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Apr 18 2017
Immunize Canada wants to make sure you #getvax and celebrate a healthy tomorrow. 100 years ago, infectious diseases were the leading causes of deaths worldwide.  In Canada, they now cause lets than 5% of all deaths, thanks in part to immunization programs across the country. However, diseases don’t go away.  They are held at bay […] more...

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Apr 18 2017

Celebrate Earth Day in Toronto, and help your family go green, with these 20 suggestions. Or make a suggestion of your own and spread the enviro-love!

The post Go Green for Earth Day in Toronto appeared first on Toronto Mom Now.

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Apr 16 2017
Proceeds of Powerful New Song to Be Donated to Syrian Refugees Belleville, ON, Canada April 2017 Two acclaimed Canadian singer-songwriters, Jeanette Arsenault (Belleville, ON) and Marie-Lynn Hammond (Cobourg, ON), have collaborated on a moving and powerful song inspired by the Syrian refugee experience called “Welcome to Canada.” “Welcome to Canada” is now available on iTunes,... more...

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Apr 14 2017
I've been a member of the Historical Novel Society since 2011 and I have attended conferences both in the US and in London.  Recently, I joined the board planning the 2017 conference in Portland, Oregon.  In the run-up to the conference, I recently had the chance to talk to Faith L. Justice who is the current co-chair of the New York Chapter of HNS. Long-time readers of the blog may remember that Faith wrote a guest post a few years ago about Hypatia.

Q) Faith, thank you so much for taking the time to answer a few questions about the New York chapter of HNS.  How did the chapter come about?

According to legend (I didn’t join the local chapter until a couple of years ago) there was a Yahoo list serve that was fairly active. Around 2011, someone on the list suggested they get together in person. The first meeting was in a restaurant, the next in a public atrium. They continued to get together in semi-regular fashion with people joining and dropping out until they found a regular meeting space at the office of one of the members. Patricia Rich and Lisa Yarde took over as co-chairs and held meetings quarterly for several years. We’ve recently upped our game. More about that below.


Q) How does the chapter interact with HNS?


We were pretty much left to our own devices. Whenever Richard Lee got an inquiry about a local organization in the NYC area, he passed it on to Pat who reached out, but other than that, not much interaction at all. Several of the members are also active in the national and frequently attend the conferences. There is usually a “conference report” to the membership in the fall where those who attended talk about their experiences and what they learned in presentations. Just recently the parent HNS group reached out about cross-promoting. We’re looking forward to that.


Q) What do the meetings entail and how many meetings are there a year?


For several years the group met quarterly and talked about general interest kinds of topics. The attendance varied from ten to twenty people and a lot depended on the weather. A few blizzards and the occasional hurricane disrupted the schedule. Last year we surveyed the membership, restructured the organization, and got more people involved in leadership. Pat and Lisa presided over the transition and Lisa Yarde is still co-chair with me.


We now have an active Steering Committee that works on programming, promotion, social media, and membership outreach. This past year we met monthly from August through May with outside speakers (agents, editors, authors) at most of the meetings. Attendance is up, especially when we have outside speakers, but we still have to contend with the weather—four of our last five meetings have been during Biblical-style deluges. Our members have to be dedicated hardy folk. We usually take the summer off, but we’re looking into some local trips we might take to museums or lesser known historical sites.


Q) Is the chapter mainly a way to network with other Historical Fiction writers? Do members get together to critique each other’s work?


We’re still working on our mission but the majority of our members are writers who want to advance their careers. There is a lot of formal and informal networking going on. Programming is geared to providing information and resources to writers. We’ve had critique groups in the past and hope to have some again in the future. That said, we want to expand to readers as well. We’re going to experiment with a readers’ group this summer and see if we can make it a more permanent part of the mission.


Q) What has been the most beneficial thing for you as member of HNS?


Personally, the best thing about HNS-NYC is that it gets me out of the house. As a full-time writer, I spend way too much time alone. It’s a delight to get out, meet fellow writers, hear what they’ve been up to, mentor folks who are new to the game, learn from those who have tried something new, and just be with delightful creative people.


As to the parent organization, I’ve attended all the North American conferences but one (coincided with my daughter’s graduation). I initially went for the pitches. Now I go for the friends I’ve met along the way—and the great content, of course! So here’s my shameless plug for a presentation I’m giving in Portland in June with Mary Ann Trail—join us for “HOW FAR CAN A HORSE WALK IN A DAY and Other Questions of Accurate Historical Travel” If you can’t make it to the workshop, button-hole me at a meal or mixer and we’ll talk research—my favorite topic!


Thanks, Elizabeth, for allowing me to represent our chapter HNS-New York City in the run up to the North American conference. Anyone who wants more information can contact me at HNS-NYC@gmail.com


Faith L. Justice writes award-winning fiction and articles in Brooklyn, NY. Her novels and short story collections are available at all the usual places. You can sample her work, follow her blog, or ask a question at www.faithljustice.com. For fun, Faith likes to play in the dirt—her garden or an archaeological dig.

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Apr 13 2017

With Easter falling just two days before Earth Day in 2014, why not honour both holidays by following our tips for a green Easter celebration?

The post Green Living: Tips for an Earth-Friendly Easter appeared first on Toronto Mom Now.

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Apr 11 2017
Have you ever heard the expression that “Life is Just an Illusion?” Humans have always searched for meaning and longed for the truth on why we are here and where we actually came from and go to. I remember as a child having some disturbing dreams about this unknown territory, yet thankfully have come to accept that for me - I know for sure that I am here now! This life feels very real. more...

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Apr 08 2017
Massey College in the University of Toronto in an extraordinary collegial community. Modelled on All Souls Oxford, it elects Senior Fellows from across the Academy and also from the broader Community.   My friend Ken and I were elected to … Continue reading more...

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Apr 07 2017

Judy's One Minute Shelf Help Video Pick: One of the ingredients from my keynote, ‘Relieving Stress with Humour’ is healthy mental activity. Check out this month's selection: Eckhart Tolle's The Power of Now. Definitely, one of my top five of all time!   The Power of Now - Eckhart Tolle   Published in the 90’s, [...]

The post Judy’s 1 Minute Shelf Help Book Review – The Power of Now appeared first on Judy Croon.

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Apr 05 2017
While the collective voice of women - and men - is greatly needed, we still need organizations to lead the charge and set the agenda to advance gender equality and take action for any meaningful transformation with real staying power. more...

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Apr 04 2017

By Crystal Mortley With the arrival of spring, it is time again to get rid of all your clutter, fix that peeling paint on the outside of your house and do a little bit of cleaning. In addition to fixing up things around your home, this is also a perfect time to do a little [...]

The post Detox: Spring Cleaning for the Body appeared first on lisaliving.

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Apr 04 2017

I’ve been sharing traditional indigenous teachings for a few weeks here in Toronto and I thought I’d share with you about the power of gathering together, and especially in a circle. There are some very important reasons why when I’m giving teachings, or going deep with subject matter, I prefer to hold a circle instead […]

The post Traditional Indigenous Teachings – power of the circle #TruthbyBrenda appeared first on Medicine Song Woman, Brenda MacIntyre.

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