It has been too long since I have written in this category. It is Tuesday, right? With everything that is happening in the world right now, I felt the need to write a new blog post. The Tishspiration posts will be on my new website when it is ready.
I was a little disgruntled this morning while I listened to the local radio station. It seems that while I decided not to listen to Prime Minister Trudeau’s daily news briefing (it is a little surreal to even write that bit) he talked about trying to help more people who were falling through the cracks of the current emergency benefits program the Canadian Government is putting into place.
Great, man. Way to steal my thunder. I had this title since last week, thank you very much.
As I contemplated the idea of choosing another title, I decided to keep it. It is timely and relevant. More than I thought it was when I first began working on the concept for this post.
The Canadian Government is helping people.
They are working hard to help Canadians maneuver through the world which is very different than it was only three weeks ago. Three weeks. Has it only been three weeks since we were all told to stay home? It seems like longer to me. Maybe that is because I have spent more than a year at home, working on building my own businesses.
I had unemployment insurance until November of 2019. The government, because of many years of being a part of the workforce in Canada, offers this while people are in between jobs. I was an employee, of several different companies for most of my adult life. I am not lazy, but I have been selective in which jobs I have applied for since the pogey (unemployment insurance) ran out. When things started happening three weeks ago, our Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, started holding daily press conferences on his front lawn. He said we would all be okay, and that the government was working on emergency benefits to help Canadians weather this storm called COVID-19.
I had hope. He said people who were self employed would be able to apply for this benefit, to help cover the bills while our businesses were unable to run normally at this time. I thought things were going to get better for me, at least for a short period of time.
I do not qualify for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.
In my business, in the last 12 months, I did not earn the minimum of $5,000, needed to qualify. While I do not expect a free ride through this crisis, I was led to believe that there was hope for me. Although I am not surprised that the Representatives of The House Of Commons added stipulations to what the Prime Minister was offering to help Canadians, I am disappointed.
I am not alone. There are people in this country who also do not qualify for what is being offered. Thankfully, my husband is still able to work at his full-time job from home, and able to continue working at his part-time job, outside of our home. I am not able to look for employment outside of our home at this time. I am a person with a chronic disease and therefore considered immunocompromised. To stay healthy, I need to stay home, and to be honest, I haven’t gotten any calls for interviews in the last month.
We made the decision to take advantage of the offers available to us while we weather this out. Deferrals do not help us in the long term, but they do help us right now, and like many other Canadians, we will take all the help we can get.
Where is the Tishspiration in this article?
It is here. With me. I am also writing to tell people to not sit quietly in anticipation of the worst possible outcome. I am my own best advocate, and you are your own best advocate. Speak up. Do so with intelligence. If you whine and complain, nobody will listen. If you look for one thing to be grateful for every day, share it. Give others hope.
Follow the guidelines, but if you, like me do not qualify, don’t apply for the benefit. It wastes your time, and it takes time and energy away from people who qualify for it. Tying up the system for no good reason doesn’t help you or anyone else.
I know things are wild out there. People are yelling at people about the safe distance and who should or should not be out and about. Remember that they are not intending to be ignorant, they, like you, are scared of what is happening, because they, like you, have no control over things they normally would have control over. Like going to work and getting a paycheck. Going to the mall. Seeing their friends and family.
Get creative. I know, a lot of people do not think that they have any creativity in them. We all do, to varying degrees. Ask for help if you need it, but don’t just give up when technology decides to be uncooperative. I haven’t told my husband, yet, but I am considering painting the link for this website on my living room window, to see if I can generate more followers, but even more importantly, more book sales. I wanted to paint a picture, and I think I will incorporate it into a white, fluffy cloud, so it can be easily read from the street, and snapped in a picture on a cellphone by the people in my neighbourhood who, like me, are walking more as it is something we can still do.
If you have ever considered working from home, the time is now!
Stick with me for a moment. People are at home. They need things. Network Marketing has the answer for the needs of many people, worldwide, right now. You can support someone you know by purchasing the products they sell, and they will be delivered to your door, to avoid leaving the house to get the things you need. I am currently offering makeup and books for sale, and I do make jewellery. Jewellery designing has taken a back seat for now. It is more of a hobby than a business, and I am okay with it as it is. My supplies will be there when I am ready to play with beads again, or if there is an order I need to create.
The only way I have available to me right now to earn an income is through my online businesses. I am working very hard to grow my entrepreneurial dreams, and it is a way for me to lay a plank across the path to hold myself up, to keep me from falling through the cracks. What I do isn’t going to be what everyone else should do, but I want to encourage you to be open to what your friends and family are offering, and even a stranger might have the opportunity that will help you stay on top of the path. Do your own research, like I did, before taking the leap, and jump in with both feet when you find something that you could see yourself promoting as something you love. Whatever that is for you!
To the Extroverts and to people who suffer with mental illness:
This is not an ideal situation for anyone who falls into these two categories. If you are a people person, call a friend, every day. Schedule a video chat with your family. Write a letter to someone you love. When is the last time you got a letter in the mail? It is something that ALWAYS puts a smile on my face, to open the mailbox to find something there that is from someone I know, and someone I want to get mail from.
To anyone who is suffering from mental illness, my heart goes out to you. Things were hard before COVID-19, and they are likely to get worse before they will get better. I want you to know that someone out there cares about you, even if that someone is only me, a stranger trying to spread a little hope into the world. Please reach out if you need help to get through the next second, minute, hour or day. You are not alone, the world is struggling with you. The world may not have the same struggles that you do, but we are all struggling in our own way right now.
One last thing.
Things will get better. It can and it will. It has to because every roller coaster has its ups and downs. We are in a down right now, but we will be going up, maybe even stronger than we ever have before, if we just keep on working on the things we can control, and not getting lost in the fear of what might be. Focus on what will be, and make it a reality.
Please don’t ever give up hope. It is all we have to hold on to in times like this. I am going to grab on and pull myself up out of the cracks I am falling into, and when I am on solid ground, I will reach out to see who I can help up to stand beside me.
When we support each other, we rise together. I believe this with my whole heart and soul.
Have you ever heard people saying that women hide behind their makeup like it is a mask? I remember in high school a guy said you shouldn’t wear makeup because then you will look like her. (I might have been influenced by this statement.) When I think back, I was listening to a friend talk badly about another friend. As a teenager, I did not understand what was actually happening as I experienced being a part of this conversation.
The balance of a light touch versus being heavy-handed can be very noticeable.
As an adult, I might have a thing or two to say to that guy who was expressing his opinion. For starters, he was wrong to make fun of someone for their makeup application. If he didn’t like how our classmate looked, he didn’t have to share his opinion. Secondly, the person he was being so critical of was indeed a friend of mine, and I remember that she was kind to me. I don’t know if either one of them will read this blog post, so to minimize any further damage that could be caused by remembering this conversation, I am purposefully keeping this part vague. It was about 30 years ago, and I am sure we have all grown up to be better people than we were as teenagers.
For instance, I have broadened my own thoughts exponentially since those days. I stand up to bullies; I defend myself, and I will speak up to be heard. Speaking my mind has given me confidence in my own intelligence. It has also allowed me to explore things as my sense of humour, and my writing. I am very grateful to the experiences which have led me to the person I am today.
Is Putting On Your Face Hiding Yourself Behind A Mask?
Not in my opinion. There are times and situations when this does apply, but not on the average person or day. If you are using face paint, for example, as an actor or for Halloween, it can be considered a mask.
The other way this happens is when you use a skin treatment, called a face mask. I never used them often over the years, but I am now using one or two on a weekly basis now. Why the change?
If you want your makeup to look flawless, then you need not only a good foundation in place to wear it on, but a good skincare routine to make sure it looks natural. Growing up three decades ago, I didn’t have a skincare routine. Maybe this friend of mine had been taught to apply makeup by a friend or a relative, or even worse, maybe there was nobody to teach her so she taught herself how to apply it. These days we can use Google or Youtube to learn how to do anything, but 30 years ago, we did not have these options. We had TV and magazines. Times have changed, and so have the styles. I have older habits in my own application which I am learning don’t work today. I am using new to me products and having fun while I am doing it.
Skincare is important.
The brightening mask is new to me, and really cool. You apply it, let it sit for 10-15 minutes, and then you peel it off! I have done a live video with it, but only peeling it off once. I am improving my skills with makeup, but it takes time and practice.
I pair this mask alternately with an exfoliating mask. My next mask purchase will be the hydrating mask. I look forward to trying it out.
Adventures with makeup can be a lot of fun. I do enjoy creating different looks on different days. I am also fielding questions about products, and I have even found some instructional videos for friends to help them in their adventures.
Makeup can enhance your natural beauty. When you take the time to learn about different products and techniques, you can grow in your own confidence. Learning what different brushes are for and how to use them is also something new for me. Keeping the makeup brushes clean is important, and I have gathered quite a collection. Once a week is recommended for cleaning makeup brushes, and in between cleanings I use a kleenex to remove the product from the brush bristles.
Hello Treasure Seekers, this week I am stopping to reflect on what is good in my life right now. I recently got some bad news, and I am discouraged. I am taking a breath, and thinking again about what I have to be grateful for in my life. If I dwell on the negativity, it will not bode well. I have to deal with what happened, and then I need to move on from it. Reflections on what I have that I am grateful for; that is what I am going to dwell on, instead.
I am not going to share the details here, it was not life-altering news, just run of the mill bad news. Something I wanted didn’t work out. It happens. Being on the receiving end of bad news is not something that you can control. But how you react to it and move on after the fact is absolutely in your control. I choose to feel what I need to feel for a few, quiet moments, and then I have to move on.
There is no point in dwelling on it. If I did, I would slip into a deep depression, if I let the negativity win. What you put out into the world is what you get back, and I am trying so hard to stay positive and keep moving forward. Sometimes I slip and catch my footing. Sometimes I fall down. But I get back up. I am trying to look at the big picture, and remember that things happen for a reason. I wish I know what the answer was, so I could just get things to be better than they are now. What they are now is good.
I have a home, with a mortgage. I have a car. I have a loving husband, who supports me in most of my crazy adventures. I have friends and family that cheer me on, both in my real life and in the online world. I have the bills under control. I have food, clean drinking water, heat and electricity. I have cable TV and the internet. I have a medical plan which helps me to maintain my diabetes. I have a brain, and I am able to use it for good. I am writing a book. I have this blog and this website. I have my jewellery business. I have dreams and hopes that reach way farther than anyone can imagine. I have faith.
Sometimes, even I don’t really know what I am truly capable of. I am still learning so many new things that I amaze myself. This is what I am holding on to, that things will get better and if they don’t go the way I want them to, well I am going to keep pushing, and praying and trying different things until I do get something to go in the right direction. I am the woman that picks up and goes in a slightly different direction than the flow because when I make up my mind, ANYTHING and EVERYTHING are possible. I just have to continue working towards my goals, and never give up.
I am seeking my own treasures in this life, and I am going to keep working on my goals until I achieve them. I have to. It is why I am here. To write, and shake things up along the way, while laughing and spreading as much joy and optimism as I can. To create beautiful, quirky, funky, whimsical jewellery, and share my gifts with the world. I am feeling better already. Time to go tackle something while I am in the right frame of mind. I know that I am in charge of what direction I am going in, and sometimes I veer to the left, but I am always on the right path. Mine.
Happy Valentine’s Day, Treasure Seekers. If you are alone, treat yourself to something nice, and count the blessings that you have, whatever they may be. Share them below in the comments, and we will keep the positivity going from our hearts and minds out into the world at large. I believe in myself, and I believe that if we stand together, change can happen, and it can be for the right reasons. Try something new. Surprise yourself. I am glad that I did, and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.
Once upon a time a man was introduced to his granddaughter, Patricia MacLellan. When he met her, he called her Tish. It stuck. Tish MacLellan grew up in Cape Breton, in a house that used to be a church, on the world famous Cabot Trail. She spent her summers at local beaches and at a place she calls The Cabin. She learned to swim, and spent a lot of time rock hopping along the shores and coastlines of Cape Breton Island. She had a wild imagination, and dreamed of owning a horse someday. She still has her walkman with the best mixed tape ever, and it still works, even after putting all of those years and miles on it.
She loved to read, and began writing. Creative writing is one of many hobbies that she spent her spare time on. She kept a diary and when she got older, she called it a journal. She enjoyed cross stitching and embroidery. She learned to knit and to crochet. In high school, she wrote her first song.
Her love for animals made her decide to take a pre-vet program at NSAC. She was ill during her first year, and this delayed her completion of her B.Sc in Agriculture, majoring in Animal Science. While studying at NSAC, she met her future husband, Roy Webber. They dated, fell madly in love, and made it official with a wedding. The same day they got married, there was a hurricane. It was all very memorable, and all who attended the celebration of their marriage had a wonderful time, despite the weather.
Before the wedding happened, Tish was thinking about the name she wanted after she married Roy. She thought it would be a fun thing to create a new last name, and they could both become the first MacWebber Clan. Roy did not agree to this idea, and did not want to make any changes to his last name. Not even when Tish told him that she would create a brand new tartan for the new name. Tish decided to go the traditional route and take his last name, and legally became Patricia Webber. It didn’t take her long to adapt to her new name.
They moved around the Maritimes so much, that Roy’s family joked about them being gypsies. After living all over Nova Scotia, they moved to New Brunswick, shortly after a brief time living in Prince Edward Island. In Fredericton, New Brunswick, they made new friends, had roommates, and eventually bought their own mini home. They had cats constantly as pets for many years. After living in apartments for the majority of the years they were together, Tish decided that it was time, now that they have a home of their own, to get a dog. She looks forward to that. She still has no horse of her own, yet, the baby barn is not quite big enough for a horse.
When Tish decided one day that it was time to take a chance and share her songwriting with the world, she thought about creating a blog. Little did she know that it would build itself into a bigger project than she had imagined. She had also always wanted to write a fantasy trilogy, being a fan of reading them, herself. She asked her friends online what the best options were, and decided to go with a Blog page here, on WordPress. Then another new friend stepped up and made her think beyond the surface of what she was building. She revisited an old idea of hers to write her novels under a pen name, and she remembered wanting to become the first MacWebber. So, there it was. Tish MacWebber became her pen name.
Her beginner attempts at creating a blog page were good, but they weren’t great. So she asked again for help, and her new friends helped her some more. One of them took her page and changed it, and this was her new and improved starting point. Tish absorbed all the information this friend had shared with her, and thought long and hard about the next steps. She is very grateful for all of the help her new friends have given her, and she plans to return the favour, even if it is just by paying it forward. When she asked about her colours, branding and logo, people liked it for different things, but it wasn’t what she needed it to be. She kept thinking. After about three weeks of mulling it over in her mind, things clicked into place, simultaneously.
She searched through hundreds of colour palettes, picking her favourites. She found one that she kept referring back to, and decided that it was the one she would choose. Then she made a tartan design. She got her friends and family to give opinions on her progress as she tried to put the pieces all together. Her father told her that a circle would not be wrong on a tartan, rather that it would be the french connection. Her mother is french, so it fit. The motto for Clan MacLellan is, “Think On.” Her logo was developed with the phrase “Always Thinking…” because she is a dreamer that does think a lot; but also to honour her ancestors. Her cousin helped her pick the final design, and through their online chat the “…” was added to the logo. So that explains the colour, logo, and the circle. But the circle is made up of diamonds. The diamonds symbolize the marriage of all these things together, and connects all of the dots.
Tish does tend to overthink things at times. However, when she does this in terms of being creative, and it works, it makes her feel amazing. Being creative is her passion. She is going to share it with the world, and see how far it will take her.
A part of my New Healthy Lifestyle that I have been working towards for more than two years now has been adding physical activity into my routine. At my current job, there was a team for the local Relay for Life Charity event, and I joined. I have gone to a few Relay Events in the last five years, and that is where I found the Zumba Crew. The group size ranges from year to year, and class to class. The core group has remained, for the most part, the same. It is a private group, not that we don’t accept new members, but that it is not based out of a gym. We meet twice a week, and I have been working at it and getting better all the time.
The featured picture above was from Relay For Life 2016. This is just a few of us. The photo bomber Storm Troopers in the background looking like they want to be a part of the Zumba Crew really were there. They were in another group for Relay, and they gathered a lot of attention. But if you look past the Zumba Crew, you can see it. They want to join in. That happens around our Zumba Crew. We have a lot of fun!
As you can see, one of the Storm Troopers joined in for Zumba at Relay 2016. It was really fun! I have come a long way in my healthier lifestyle goals. I have always finished class. Not always doing the same thing as everyone else, or keeping the same pace, but I am there until the end. The first time I did Zumba at Relay, I had two; not one but TWO charlie horses in my calves. I wanted to quit. But I thought about where I was, and what I was participating in. Thought about how it was to raise money to cure cancer, and if you have cancer, and need to go through treatments, you can’t just quit in the middle if you want to beat it. So I toughed it out.
Since then, I have never had an experience quite like it. I am grateful for that. I have had health issues in the past year that forced me to take a break from Zumba. I am happy to report that I am back, and getting stronger again. I am keeping pace better, and trying harder at doing the same moves as everyone else. I have to do my own thing, sometimes, because I still have a long journey ahead of me to becoming a healthier version of myself. Something I want people to take away from reading this is that it doesn’t have to be Zumba, and it doesn’t have to be perfect. But if you pick something you enjoy doing and work at it on a regular basis, you will improve, and you will be a better person for it.
So go out there and try something new. Or get involved in something you used to like doing. Make friends. Have fun. It might be the best thing you can do for yourself! Trust me, the best part of my Mondays and Wednesdays is rushing out of work to go join my friends at Zumba Class. Find your Zumba, and start becoming the best version of you that you can be!