I was up and at MaryHolme at 6:30 a.m. (still helping out there) - what a blessing it is just to be there (photo below)! Then I find out that I am going to the artist retreat!!! Sunday I leave my bags are packed! "
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Every now and then I have to step back from what ever it is I am doing. Take a break.
My botox is wearing out and my twitch grows stronger once again.. I realize when it gets stronger I get quieter. Quiet is good some times. Food for the spirit - quiet time. I am reminded of life and all that we can NOT control. I regain my focus on what I want to accomplish while here ;-)
Lot's going on this month still, the EXPO which I still have so much to say about.. especially the artists! hee hee - in a day or two. The newest issue of Treating Yourself Magazine - #29 which I have yet to see because of the mail strike. It is out and has Storm's story in it. After I get it I will blog about it.. also coming soon. Always stuff going on. Contrary to popular belief I do NOT sit around and draw all day - I have all the domestic bliss, chores (including picking up dog pooh) and much more. I am blessed to be able to do them all. Really. I complain about the floor that needs to be vacuumed - but I am later reminded of homeless who have no food never mind floor!
I have a friend who said this life gets so hard to carry sometimes. It does, I think of everything.. perhaps there is a pill that will make it go all away - yes in my mind. BUT it does not go away in reality. The only way to make it go away is to deal with it. What ever it is. If you can make it better it is an obligation to try to do so.
Not pop a pill. Not get drunk, not get stoned, not stuff your face.
Learn how to deal with it. Talking helps.. I have a few good friend I talk to.
A friend recently said to me she can NOT help me, but if by listening and a tiny amount of the burden has been lifted then she want's to listen as long as I will keep talking.
I'm trying. What ever it takes. One thing that works for me is praying and meditation. Praying is easier. I have a chant I especially like Nam Myoho Renge Kyo (google it) It calms my mind. I opened my eyes today while chanting and saw my girls all around me and realized I was blessed. Inspiration for todays toon.
Inspiration is all around us. ALL the time.
See the Good,
Forget the bad and FOCUS on the NOW
WHAT EVER IT TAKES!? EH? XOX
So much for my next day blog, Stuff happens and one thing leads to another I try to squeeze in a few drawings and the day is gone.. so better late than never.
Women at the EXPO.
Last year fate brought me a new friend. Our booths happened to be across from each other and we were laughing the at the first sentence. We both had Lotus flowers on our booths .. it just continued from there. My friend Candice is one of the best memories I have experienced from the Treating Yourself EXPO. The second we spotted each other this year we smiled from ear to ear! We were lucky enough to get to have diner at this EXPO and shared more than a few giggles. I can not believe we again did not get a photo together! I'll have to draw us again. She also has a fantastic product & incredible HEMP paper - which I have been drawing on and enjoying BIG TIME. http://www.quintessentialtips.com but never mind her product It is her smile and attitude and laughter that I already look forward to next year!
SO many wonderful women! They make me all proud to be a woman! Where do I begin?
Oh, LOL - although I like the women I only mostly got photos with men - tee hee hee something never change;-) Amy! My baking friend who made the cotton candy that everyone is talking about. She is talented and tiny and has a HUGE heart.
I see it every time I look at her. http://www.amyanonymous.ca
I finally got to meet Laurentine .. as sweet as can be and funny. One of my biggest fans and inspiration. Another friend I look forward to getting to know better.
"The" Jodie Emery came over to say hello to Storm and I and we were very happy to finally meet her, I watch Jodie's blog all the time and think that Cannabis culture is one of the best informative sites out there. Mark is the Prince of Pot - Jodie is the princess. She works very hard at trying to make a difference and is very educated on the subjects, sadly a little too close to home for her. She is very strong. Angie bought one of my originals I had planned for a friend that could not make it ( Yoda), so I figured it was fate. I am so happy that it went to Angie, it means a lot to me. Mary Jane - let's not forget her! Friends who I have met through FaceBook and came up to say hello! Patti, Cat, Jen, Marie... I was overwhelmed and think of someone different several times a day- I know I can't possibly remember everyone and many just faces! The Yoga lady - who is getting married! She was so nice, as was her mom. That mom from Texas... The older classy woman with her hubby who is tired of all the mixed medications! ALL EDUCATED.
And you know what- they were all there for the same reason! They all believe.
Male, female, straight, gay, doctors, stoners, lawyers, mothers and fathers! EVERYONE you can imagine was there at the EXPO! HOW can I not be inspired! I think I have to draw!
I have been lucky - The Green Reefer came back too! Decided to hang out in Canada a bit longer! We have had so much fun two completely different cartoonists also working together, literally with our comic strip for the GREATER GOOD! LOL had to laugh when we came back to reality (after the EXPO) and My hubby had The green Reefer cutting the grass! LOL I am blesses.
So not only do you get educated at the Treating Yourself EXPO if your lucky you meet some pretty amazing new people and they become friends. A few photos.
One night Storm and I walking back from the hard rock we both had mentioned how much we missed Michelle. Just the presence of Michelle. We knew her briefly compared to most so I am sure we were not the only ones thinking about her. I heard that a friend won the Michelle Rainey award! - I do not know the details (will find out more) - I am sure it is an award for cannabis awareness and compassion beyond what others only speak about. Al who is P.A.C.E is another hard working gentleman, as is his wife and his good friend Mike. I really enjoy when I see them and look forward to our talks. I am learning the EXPO is not the place for that to happen. So once again I am inspired by Michelle... and continue to draw for change.
Also missing Marc Emery.
His giant banner and his t-shirts and buttons and beautiful wife Jodie all there. All there for Marc. I have never met the man, but with most things I try to do a little research -I have educated myself to know that he is a very determined and educated man with strong opinions and is not afraid of making waves for what he believes in. For that I admire anyone. I told Jodie, it was a moment when I am normally a very proud Canadian... I was a little ashamed. I cannot believe that we (as a Country) sent Marc to the U.S.A and for what - in all reality .. A PLANT. A PLANT grown from a seed planted originally here by GOD. I shake my head just thinking about it.
You never know what tomorrow may bring! It may bring Marc home. AT least back to Canada to serve the remaining time. It is cruel and unusual punishment to be taken so far away. I also told Jodie I saw a documentary about Jack Herer, he created his best work in jail! The Emperor wears no clothes. http://www.jackherer.com/thebook/chapter-two
I can only imagine with Marc will come out with. That and a wicked guitar Duo coming up with Tommy Chong! ;-))) I am excited about that.
Well, I think that was the only thing about the EXPO that I felt was missing ... of course Jack.. but we know people leave us, some we will never forget or stop missing.. for me it will be Michelle.
Tomorrow... ladies of the EXPO!
I always say everything and everyone we meet happens for a reason.
I have been Blessed to now meet a few of the best. ;-)At the EXPO I met many men, it is clearly a male run industry. The amazing thing about being in a trade show is watching it come together. I have to say how impressed I was watching the pro's at work. I commented to my son Storm that I noticed Franco - from Green House seeds is there first thing setting up, it is a lot of work! I also saw for the first time one of the Strain Hunter videos and am amazed at all these guys do. They are fine examples of hard workers. I admire the energy. I am so tired of people thinking that everyone who smokes cannabis is nothing but a lazy stoner. I have witnessed the opposite in a huge room full of many who smoke Cannabis daily - these guys are far from stoners. They are very HARD working business men (and a few women). They are professional and educated with what they do. They are also passionate and there passion has gotten them where they are today. They are some of the best in the industry. As we say in Canada Eh.. The Union ;-)
Mr. Birzle: I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Birzle from ROOR. His passion has him producing some of the best glass in the industry - you can see him make some of the Cups for the treating Yourself EXPO on the ROOR website: http://www.roor.de
I have to say I was honored when Mr. Birzle asked me a few questions and then returned with my very own ROOR picked by the master himself! It is a beautiful collection for my studio and I am thrilled to own a ROOR. Now if I can just keep Storm away from it hee hee hee (me and Martin Below) I also met one of his colleague's Laszlo, another person who never stopped working each time I saw him. From what I saw it is no wonder they are a successful business.
RUSS: Russ was a great guy, he informed us about Graves disease. His eyes buldge (photo below) I have to say when Storm and I looked at this photo we giggled. I was worried how I now appear but here is this guy who has lived most of his life with this condition. It was an awakening moment. I am not making a face on purpose and Russ - his eyes not so bad as he was medicated. He showed us what he looks like when he is not medicated and said he has had difficulty all his life with even children being frighteneed of his appearance. If you had the pleasure of talking to Russ, he was informative and funny. A nice guy. Sad he is having such a difficult time finding a Dr. to prescribe Cannabis for him.
He made us laugh and educated us.. watch for a toon soon about Russ.
Mark: Mark gets a lot of attention for the Cannabis movement in a completely different way. He is out there making people smile every event. I don't want to say WHO Mark is you'll have to figure that out on your own. HE works very hard, is non stop and I also am impressed with his energy and dedication. He is very creative and I am please to have got to know him.
THREE very different men.
ALL use Cannabis NONE of them - what I would consider a "stoner".
Did I see any stoners at the EXPO ? Well I could say I did see the 'stereo typical' stoners -I think really they were mostly young guys, not educated on the whole cannabis industry - just out for a good time. They were all laid back, none of them nasty... I had a few comments same as last year - "your sons legal? That's cool man!" To which I relpy
"Really? Which part is 'cool' the part he is legal to use cannabis for his medicine or the fact that he has a terminal illness?" I am NOT saying this to be mean, just expressing the fact hoping they realize that not everyone is about getting stoned sitting on the sofa eating munchies playing video games. All in all, I saw VERY few stoners at the Treating Yourself Medicinal Marijuana EXPO. Change is in the air and its all good ;-))
Below: Just a few of my favorite men I met at this years EXPO. Can't wait to see them again next YEAR!!
Compassion Clubs. THIS is the place to find a compassion club! When Storm first became legal we did not know which way to turn. A couple of clubs I called never returned our calls and one did not take me seriously when I told them my son was 15. Luckily one did it was C.A.L.M. We were blessed to have an orientation and all other meeting with our now friend Gabe. He quickly realize how smart Storm was and educated him and continues to do so to this day. We were not there to get high - we were there to help control my sons pain and learn about his medicine. I still am amazed at the many strains for so many pains!
As we learn we continue to share our experiences with our Dr. and educate him on the process of compassion clubs. Actually, I tell every Dr. I see. ;-). Looking back I think how amazing it would have been (hopefully will be) when one day Health Canada includes a brochure that educated more on the different strains and how Cannabis works, also nice would be a package with brochures for compassion clubs. The last thing you should have to do when you are already sick is start to have to figure all this out. IF you want to be educated on Compassion Clubs the EXPO was the place to be.
At one point during the expo I turned a corner and there they all sat having a serious conversation - the main guys from several clubs! Just seeing them all working together I could feel my heart swell - I could feel HOPE. I have had the pleasure now of meeting several of them personally. They are all wonderful, professional and compassionate men themselves. **from time to time you will hear about someone who went to a club and had shady dealings, was treated poorly, received poor medicine. DO YOUR research- talk to other patients - find out who they deal with, then simply - avoid the clubs that do not have a good reputation. There are always going to be clubs like that - just like there is always going to be a car dealership to sell you lemons! I am adding a page to my website called EDUCATE yourself. Documentaries, Compassion clubs, web sites etc.. I will try to list only those I know or have heard good things about but again you have to be responsible for your own actions and experiences. I hope it will make it a little easier - *now I just need to find all the business cards from all the wonderful people I met.
The main thing I heard from people visiting the EXPO was "my Dr. said no -" then I ask them how did you ask.. they said I just asked. If you want to use Cannabis then educate your Dr.
Go prepared. Have a file folder with all the proof on how Cannabis would benefit your condition, THERE is all kids of documentation, sites and information you can print and present to your Dr. If after that they say no ask them WHY.
Ask them about the Hippocratic Oath they took. What ever it takes...
IF you believe Cannabis helps you then be prepared to explain why. Be educated.
Below is one of the best examples I have met of an educated man who can tell you why Cannabis is medicine! He inspires and motivates. He has worked very hard to be where he is today. It was an honor for Storm and I to meet him. His name is Irvin Rosenfeld
He is LIVING Proof ;-) to learn more bout him - click here:
one note: I look at these photo and at first I got a bit sad about my face and my twitch- I met so many people with things going on, some you could see some you could not - I was educated and I thought to myself... when I took these photos I was smiling in my mind!
That is all that matters. Not what the camera catches but what we feel inside. xox
I felt the love ;-)
I say PART ONE because there was just so FRICKEN much stuff going on! It's going to take me a few and I met so many amazing people I want to thank them properly so here is what a Treating Yourself Medical Marijuana Expo is like:
First I want to get right to it and thank Marco Renda. I met Marco after I started drawing for the magazine Treating Yourself. A few times over the past 2 years, I can say Marco and I become friends. ;-) If you get to know Marco you quickly realize he does not bother with bullshit. Last year, with short notice he presented us with Treating Yourself Expo 2010. I was concerned because I have heard of Marijuana Expos with girls dancing from poles with boobies and bud, nude fashion shows and more and that is not the direction I want to go. This is my son's medicine. Well last years Expo was great but this years was fantastic!
So many venders. Seeds, grow, compassion clubs, bakeries, clothing, glass art, activists, patients, KNOWLEDGE and EDUCATION. If you want to learn about Medicinal Cannabis THIS is the place to be!! Thank you Marco for making it HAPPEN! Marco is also a patient, I think many people forget that. He knows how important his medicine is to him. I know how important it is to Storm.
Below are photos of my booth, when I came up that escalator and saw my booth I started to cry - which made Norman and Storm laugh. WOW! This is the only event we attend and the only time I really show my work. I am determined more than anything to share with others what we know to be true! Especially parents with terminally ill children or children suffering with chronic pain. I have dreams that if you take your child to the hospital with a broken arm.. before they pump chemicals into them they offer a natural plant cannabis brownie! IMAGINE!! THE Safer alternative! Well, I was honored. I still sit here and shake my head and thank God for people like the people I met at the EXPO and Marco. I came home STRONGER and even more determined! - LOL -also extremely tired ...the show went from 9 to 8 and I wanted to be able each day to give my best so I was in bed each night at 10 * I will admit I wanted to party a few nights = especially with my friend Candice, but remembering why I'm here I did not. The EXPO was professional, educational and fun. I met so many wonderful people, other venders and patients and just people curious. I will be speaking about them all, Jodie Emery, Irvin, Friends, fans, ROOR, Grow bot, Russ, Todd, Sean, Laurentine, Benny, Kevin, Dean, Adam, CALM, AMY - that cute guy from montreal, Franco from green house, stuff!- and posting photos. On the drive home Storm and I talked all the way - we had the best time... Laughs at the Hard Rock, manning the booth, sharing a SMALLl room! Josh and chairs.. Candice and cookies and COTTON candy! But right now I must go to bed!
Marco - THANK you for giving me - giving Toronto the best opportunity to be educated about medicinal Cannabis and help making this ONE step closer to reality. Once people are educated they can not deny. So I hope you stay tooned and learn a little more about what a medicinal marijuana EXPO is all about. Can't wait for EXPO 2012.
Georgia... On My Mind.
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