Tuesday, March 31, 2009

What's your fairy name?

Boho mom posted this and I LOVE it!!!

Your fairy is called Gossamer Cornglitter
She is a creator of bounty and harvest.
She lives in spiderwebbed wonderlands and insect grottos.
She is only seen in the light of a shooting star.
She wears tiny black spiders on her dresses. She has butterfly wings the colour of yellow corn.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The Mounties are gonna kick yer ass!!


Has anyone else seen this? Do Americans REALLY think this way??? Seriously? For real? Cuz dude, really....you honestly think we have men in red coats and big brown hats roaming around on horses chasing our bad guys down????? Wow. Time for school little buddy!

I do beleive we are owed an apology...especially considering we've lost 116 soldiers in a war that was not ours to fight to begin with.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

In my home town

We've lost a young soldier. I always get misty when I hear on the news about another Canadian soldier being lost in a war that we didn't start, that we shouldn't be fighting in...but when that soldier is from my home town...oh my God, I am speechless. I didn't know him, but our little town is only 19,000 people...several of my friends did know him. He went to my highschool. He's the same age as my little brother. I'm so sad today.

From the Welland Tribune
Port Colborne soldier killed in Afghanistan
Posted By MAGGIE RIOPELLE AND JOHN VESSOYAN/mriopelle@wellandtribune.ca
Updated 4 hours ago

PORT COLBORNE — Niagara is mourning the loss of its second soldier killed this month by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan.

Cpl. Tyler Crooks of Port Colborne was one of four Canadian soldiers killed in two separate incidents in Kandhar province, Friday Afghanistan time.

Crooks and Master Cpl. Scott Vernelli, 28, of Sault Ste. Marie, were killed by an improvised explosive device while on foot patrol in the Zhari district.

Both were of November Company, Royal Canadian Regiment, based in Petawawa. Crooks was in the 1st Batallion; Vernelli from the 3rd Batallion.

Trooper Jack Bouthillier of Hearst, Ont., and Trooper Corey Joseph Hayes, of New Brunswick, were killed just hours later when a roadside bomb exploded in the Shah Wali Kot district, a region northwest of the city that is seeing an increase in Taliban activity.

Eight other soldiers were injured in the blasts.

On March 3, Warrant Officer Dennis Brown of St. Catharines, a member of the Lincoln and Welland Regiment, was killed by a roadside bomb northwest of Kandahar.

At a Port Colborne Remembrance Day ceremony in 2007, Crooks, dressed in his fatigues, stood among civilians at the local legion branch.

Then preparing in Petawawa to ship out to Afghanistan the following year, Crooks said the Nov. 11 event is becoming more relevant these days because of the number of Canadians dying overseas.

"It's a day to remember and reflect on all the people who served in the armed forces and helped keep Canada free," he said.

Capt. Scott Costen, public affairs officer for 31 Canadian Brigade Group, said his family plans to issue a written statement today. “Until then, the family asks for privacy,” he said in an e-mail.

Things were coming together for Crooks, who was to turn 24 yesterday. He and beloved fiancée, 23-year-old Kelly Maxwell of Niagara Falls, were planning their wedding and their future together. Crooks was to return from his tour in Afghanistan in one month.

Alex Maxwell, the father of Crooks’ fiancee, called the fallen hero “the son I never had.”

“He was a wonderful kid,” an emotional Maxwell said. “I've got three beautiful daughters, and I just loved him to death. He loved my daughter more than anything in the world.”

Maxwell said yesterday was Crook and his fiancée’s sixth anniversary as a couple.

Kelly worked as a border services agent at the Rainbow Bridge before being transferred to Ottawa.

“They were going together for six years and were planning their life up in the Ottawa area.”

He said Crooks was also a “tremendous hockey player.” He played junior B hockey in Port Colborne and was a star player for the Canadian Army.

Crooks’ picture was shown Feb. 14 on Coach’s Corner, the popular weekly Saturday show that’s part of CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada broadcast. Crooks’ image was also shown on the scoreboard during a Toronto Maple Leafs game.

“He was supposed to meet Don Cherry when he was to come home,” said Maxwell.

“He was always smiling, always laughing. He ribbed me and I ribbed him, always in fun. He never had a bad word about anyone.”

Maxwell continued: "(Crooks) loved being in the army. He loved the outdoors, loved fishing, hunting with his father. He was just an incredible, incredible kid.”

An emotional Port Colborne Mayor Vance Badawey called the death of Crooks “a tragic loss for this community.”

“To lose a young man like this, on his 24th birthday, is hard to take. This was a young man who put his community and his country above himself.”

Badawey, a friend of the Crooks family, said Tyler Crooks was “a great young man, who will be sorely missed by his community.”

“Cpl. Crooks accepted his mission in Afghanistan to contribute to the freedom of democracy that we, as Canadians, enjoy every day,” the mayor said.

A book of condolences will be at city hall for the public to sign.

Niagara Regional Police Sgt. Tim Welychka coached Crooks as a member of the Dunnville Terriers Junior C hockey team from 2001 to 2003.

Welychka said Crooks at one point considered a career in policing but decided instead to pursue a life with the military.

“I was just floored when I found out this morning. Tyler was a great, great kid.”

He said Tyler was well-liked by his teammates.

“People took a shine to him. He was always a pleasure to have in the room. You wished you had 17 more guys just like him, any coach would say that."

Welychka said hockey players and coaches become part of a family. Coaches get to see their young players grow up, excel in their personal and professional lives.

It's a close connection that is hard to put into words, he said.

"Hockey people are like a family. You watch these kids grow up ... and they go out of their way to see how they’re doing (years later). That friendship is always there, that's what makes it so hard. It's a brotherhood, it's family. My heart goes out to his family. It's way too sad."

Before becoming a soldier, Crooks also played junior B hockey for the former Port Colborne Sailors, currently known as the Pirates.

Team owner Tim Toffolo said he recalls Crooks as somebody who had lots of friends and was well-respected by those who knew him.

“Tyler was a very well-liked individual in town. He was dedicated to what he was doing. It’s a sad loss for the city of Port Colborne. He sacrificed his life for a great cause.”

Lakeshore Catholic High School athletic director Dino Germano taught Crooks.

Germano remembers the young man as an avid weight lifter who was very serious about getting into the military.

“He loved to workout — he worked out hard.”

The teacher was deeply saddened that one of his former students had lost his life.

“He was a good kid.”

Germano remembers Crooks seeing the bright side of everything.

“He was always optimistic. He was well-liked.”

Germano said Crooks never forgot where he came from and visited Lakeshore last year to tell his teachers what he was doing with his life.

“He was happy to see the teachers who taught him,” he said. “He was so proud to be in the military.”

Master Cpl. Vernelli and Crooks were both well-known and popular with other soldiers in their company, which is on the cusp of finishing a six-month tour.

Both men were close with the commander of November Company, Maj. Rob McBride, who often joked with Crooks over the radio about sports.

“They were close friends of his,” said Capt. Chris Reeves, the deputy commander of November Company.

Such was his respect for the young soldier that McBride supported Crooks as a candidate for officer training.

“He was getting ready to (be) on that path to be commissioned from the ranks,” Reeves said. “He would have been good.”

Welland MP Malcolm Allen and St. Catharines MP Rick Dykstra said the loss will be deeply felt by the community.

Welland MPP Peter Kormos said while the death of Crooks is tragic for his family and friends, the reason he was in harm’s way in the first place should be a matter of pride.

“We need to remember these young men and woman are not there protecting Canadian turf. They are there to serve human kind,” Kormos said.

“We are saddened by the death of Cpl. Crooks, but we can be proud of the sacrifice he chose to make.”

Brig.-Gen. Jonathan Vance, the commander of Canadian troops in Afghanistan, is urging Canadians not to consider the deaths a failure on the part of anyone, or of the mission itself.

The deaths bring to 116 the number of Canadian soldiers who have died as part of the Afghan mission since it began in 2002.

Crooks’ death marks the third Niagara resident killed in the war-torn country.

Corp. Albert Storm, 36, of Fort Erie died Nov. 27, 2006, after a suicide bomber attack. He was a member of the 1st Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment, out of Petawawa.

No information regarding funeral arrangements for Cpl. Crooks were made public Friday.

— with files from the Canadian Press and Sun Media

RIP Tyler.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

So I'm not the only one who feels this way??

I know this is a controversial subject but I can't help but feel like someone FINALLY spoke my mind for me...

Welland Tribune, March 10, 2009

Vatican lives in a vacuum

Another International Women's Day has passed and the Roman Catholic Church has started the year badly, predictably, by condemning an abortion for a nine-year-old Brazilian rape victim.

The Vatican is having a difficult time forcing women to have unwanted children, particularly in developing countries.

In Brazil, for example, there are an estimated 1.4 million illegal abortions a year. (The procedure is only allowed in cases of rape or to save the life of the mother). One in four pregnancy-related deaths in the heavily Catholic country is due to complications from an unsafe abortion.

But that hasn't stopped the Catholic church from continuing to place the fetus above the health and economic needs of women.

The Brazilian girl, allegedly raped by her stepfather, was pregnant with twins and was given a legal abortion last week because doctors concluded that continuing the pregnancy could have killed her.

Since the Catholic Church couldn't stop her from having an abortion, the local archbishop spanked the family with a religious penalty -- excommunicating the girl's mother and the doctors.

Memo to the Vatican: They don't care. They made what they felt was the right call under the circumstances. And they undoubtedly believe God is on their side.

Tellingly, the archbishop didn't excommunicate the stepfather, who is now in custody. While he allegedly committed a crime by molesting the girl for years, abortion is the more serious offence, according to the church.

"Human law has no value" when it's contrary to God's law, the archbishop explained. How convenient, of course, that old, rich men who are completely out of touch with the harsh realities of people's lives take it upon themselves to interpret God's will.

And so it goes. The Vatican continues to oppose abortion and millions of women around the world -- many of them Catholics in developing countries -- continue to have them because they don't give a hoot about church teaching on this issue.

About one in five pregnancies worldwide ends in abortion, according to the Guttmacher Institute. Furthermore, it doesn't matter whether abortion is legal or not. Women will still undergo the procedure.

The lowest abortion rates in the world are in western Europe and North America, where birth control is widely available and abortion is overwhelmingly safe and legal.
In contrast, the abortion rate is staggeringly high in Africa and Latin America, where abortion is either illegal or severely restricted.

The Vatican lives in a dream world where every child is a wanted child. You naughty Catholics shouldn't be having sex unless you're planning to procreate! No birth control for you!
In fact, according to the Guttmacher Institute, more than one-third of pregnancies in developing countries are unintended and many of those end in illegal abortions.

The result? About five million women a year are hospitalized for complications due to unsafe abortions.

The police raided a medical clinic in Brazil a while back and seized patient records and the authorities are attempting to prosecute 1,000 women who had illegal abortions. Meanwhile, complications from unsafe abortions are the fifth leading cause of maternal mortality in Mexico.

If given the choice, most women would have a couple of kids -- not six or eight. If the Catholic Church really cared, it would be handing out condoms and birth control pills all over the Third World.

It's almost like the church gets off on female suffering.

That said, I don't believe in abortion as a form of birth control but, come on, seriously, a 9 year old who was raped by her step father, pregnant with twins that could kill her and she is excommunicated????? PLEASE. And the stepfather is NOT excommunicated???? PUH-LEASE! How can they accept someone who has committed a crime on a child, one who just so happens to NOT be in the womb anymore, but not accept someone who had an abortion at the age of NINE, someone who shouldn't even know what abortion or rape is, because she may have DIED if she didn't? I don't understand that backwards thinking!!!! It's appalling!!

More on this case http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/americas/03/11/brazil.rape.abortion/index.html ...