WCW meets WSW

Hey all! Last week had me MIA again, because of a terrible case of strep throat – or as I like to call it: mini mono. Because it knocked me flat out! And I am not entirely healed up yet, so this is going to be a quick, but oh-so-needed shout-out post going out to… the WOMEN who have been stepping up, speaking out, and bringing representation into the political sphere where their (our) presence has been so needed.

I got thinking about this while listening to today’s episode of The Daily where they discussed the similarities and differences between Anita Hill accusing Judge Clarence Thomas in 1991 vs. today’s accusations by Christine Blasey Ford (and now two other women) of Judge Brett Kavanaugh. So, today’s first shout-out goes to each of these accusers. Because, while we will wait and see how much has changed (or not changed) in 27 years, one thing is for sure: these accusers are incredibly brave to speak up, considering the amount of sh*t (ie, disrespect, ruined lives, death threats) these accusers have to go through during and after this process.

During the podcast, they mention that in the trial of 1991, the surrounding politicians were oh-so male (and white)… which led to The Year of Women in 1992, when American voters elected more new women to Congress than in any previous decade. (Heck ya!) If this statistic sounds reminiscent of our current political climate, it is because there are currently more women running for public (in the US) than ever before. So, the second shout-out goes to all of them!

The final three shout-outs to women (outside the US) making news this week:

  • New Zealand’s PM, Jacinda Ardern, bringing her 3-month old daughter with her to the UN General Assembly earlier this week.
  • Memramcook-Tantramar’s newest Green Party MLA, Megan Mitton, winning her seat over the incumbent by 11 votes!
  • New Brunswick’s Lieutenant Governor, Jocelyne Roy-Vienneau, who is key to solving who our premier will be after a very exciting – yet confusing – few days in this province…

Thank you to all of the women out there getting involved, or supporting those getting involved. Our voices and lived experiences represent half the population, so it is important that they are brought to the table when decisions are being made. So, thank you again.

Now, to sleep. Stay healthy, all!! ❤


On Being

And I’m back again… later than planned. But as my dad always says:

Better late than never.

For a few reasons, the last couple of weeks of summer were a bit bumpy, so I thought I would start fresh the week after Labour Day. Get back into the blog, get back into a that post-summer routine of activities. For me, the week after Labour Day will forever be the “first week of school” and for that reason, always holds so much excitement and potential. However, unfortunately, those bumpy reasons mentioned above didn’t quite resolve themselves on my planned timeline… so the fresh start didn’t feel so fresh last week. But that’s ok. Things are slowly, but surely starting to sort themselves out now. And I’m grateful for that. So, as I ease back into this week’s World Saving Wednesday, let me present something for you to ease into…

The On Being Project. If you are a fan of podcasts, and do not yet know On Being with Krista Tippett, this is one you’ve got to check out. I do not know when I started listening to this podcast — and I actually don’t even listen to it as often as I listen to others on my list — but when I do, I am almost always glad for it. Because in the (observably) wild world we are living in these days, the discussions found in this podcast are the calm reprieve we are needing right now. Said in their own words:

The On Being Project is an independent non-profit public life and media initiative. We pursue deep thinking and social courage, moral imagination and joy, to renew inner life, outer life, and life together.
We make audio, digital, live event, and other offerings towards the generative possibilities of a tender, tumultuous global moment. We look behind and beyond the news cycle, attending to the human change that makes social transformation possible across generational time.

So, if you find yourself having a bumpy week, be sure to discover for yourself the calm amongst the chaos that this podcast brings. Or for the readers out there, they’ve also got a blog. Enjoy! ❤


Family & Community: IRL

Hey all! Apologies for the two-week hiatus, but #WSW is baaaaack. ((Into the final minutes of Wednesday night, as per usual.)) And this week’s World Saving Wednesday is dedicated to the reason I had a mini-hiatus: I was reconnecting with family and community.

Over the past two weeks, I was reminded of how amazing it is to spend quality time with people… in-person! I know this sounds slightly redundant, but as you know, our lives have been more and more taken over by technology ((*as I write this on my laptop..)). There are obviously innumerable advantages to it, but one of the disadvantages is that we’re becoming more accustomed turning to screens rather than face-to-face family or community members. And during the past two weeks, three separate experiences reminding me of the importance of connecting with people in real life:

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Catching up, relaxing, and sharing quality time with my family in PEI


Seeing friends and listening to incredible music with a community of people that come from all over the country for Sappyfest (follow @CoreyIsenor for best photos)


Feeling the comfort, connection, and compassion with community after a painful incident happened here in Fredericton

So, my message to you this week:

Get out there and connect with your family and community!

Standing up

ICYMI: On Monday, Elin Errson, a 21-year-old student in Sweden stood up on an airplane, and refused to sit down until action was taken. This simple act of standing up, and standing her ground stopped the deportation of a 52-year-old asylum-seeker to Afghanistan, where his life was at risk.

I have watched this video twice today, and both times, it got me emotional. Because, again, like so many of the stories highlighted already — in the face of these major global crises, the actions of individual people standing up for humanity, is so powerful. For the full story, and brief version of the video, see the New York Times coverage here. And for her full live-streamed video, here.

To read what you can do, in terms of helping those around you in your travels, especially when it comes to ICE in the US, please check out this list of possible life-saving options.

And if you need a reminder of the traumatic effect that ICE has had on asylum-seeking families — especially those who were separated at the border — a reporter from the Atlantic (aired on this American Life) shares with you the experience of one mother and her 5-year-old son being separated.

Thank you, Elin, and thank you in advance to all those willing to stand up ❤

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Together Victoria

As I mentioned in my very first post of #WorldSavingWednesday, life has seemed a bit heavier for most of us since November 2016. For 20 months, it has felt a bit like watching a car crash in slow-mo; a maniac at the wheel, plowing down the progressive, inclusive society we had spent decades building up. And for most of us, we have felt pretty helpless. But as this blog has focused on, there are so many people out there doing their part in keeping this beautiful world afloat. In fact, the one good thing about the maniac-led car crash has been that it actually has inspired folks to step up and take action like they may had never done before.

So, to compliment last week’s post about keeping governments accountable for their actions, this week, I want to introduce you to the folks taking their action inside government.

First, because the sh*t going on is primarily happening South of the border (though is felt by almost everyone), I want to give shoutouts to two (of many) badass women who are running for congress in the US: Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and Jahana Hayes. As many of you likely know by now, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez is the 28-year-old who ousted a longterm incumbent in New York. To see why she ran, check out this interview. You may also remember Jahana Hayes showing up on your feed two years ago when she was voted America’s Teacher of the Year. Check out her campaign video to see why she is running ❤

Now, something closer to home: these three wonderful humans are running for city council in the upcoming municipal elections in Victoria, BC. Sarah Potts, Sharmarke Dubow and Laurel Collins are all first-time candidates, running together under the banner of Together Victoria, a grassroots organization focused on “creating an affordable, inclusive Victoria” — and it makes me so happy!

Between 2004 and 2017, Victoria was a home-base for me. It’s where I graduated from high school, started my career in immigration, and while I was very bi-coastal during that time, it’s where I always went to visit my parents. Victoria is an incredible city — it has the Pacific Ocean, big trees, a mild climate, views of the Olympic Range, bike lanes, craft beer, perfect cafés, and a great mix of hipsters, activists, elderly, intellects… and lots of tourists! But it is hella expensive. Although I was working full-time, the cost of living on my own and trying to pay off my student loans was nearly impossible. And the stress of it impacted me everyday. So when a job opportunity came up in my other (East Coast and much more affordable) home-base of New Brunswick, I jumped at it, and sadly sad goodbye to Victoria.

There are so many young people who also love Victoria, but have had to make the same decision I did, or are still dealing with that daily financial stress. This is why I am so happy that these three *young-ish* candidates are running with affordability as one of their priorities. With my passions for immigration and the environment pretty evident, I am also obviously stoked that inclusivity and the environment are also main priorities. So, if you are reading this from Victoria, be sure to read more about these awesome candidates. Better yet, meet up with them, and see how you can help out with their campaign. If you’re not in Victoria, I hope all of these candidates have at least given you some inspiration on this Wednesday evening!

Sharmarke, Laurel & Sarah

The Steadfast Environmental Activists

Happy Wednesday, all! I was all set to write about a completely different topic this evening — and am going to leave this link here so that I’m reminded to come back to it in a future Wednesday — but instead, today I want to give a shout out to all of the steadfast environmental activists out there.

As you know, last week, I told you about the awesome environment-loving group A for Adventure. While they are evidently environmentalists, and are doing a huge part in reconnecting folks to the environment, this week, I wanted to promote a complimentary group of environmentalists — those who are consistently holding our governments to the task of creating projects and policies to conserve our environment.

With an endless number of other stories going a mile-a-minute in our news these days, holding governments focused on our environment/changing climate is quite the task. So, I am so grateful to anyone out there doing this steadfast work. It was drawn to my attention this evening, thanks to a group of environmental activists from Sackville (NB) who wanted to chat with their local MP (and Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard), Dominic Leblanc, about the federal government’s purchase of Kinder Morgan’s Trans-Mountain pipeline. As this pipeline is happening in Alberta and BC, I had been seeing quite a few protests to the pipeline out West, however, there has not been much action out East. The message that I really appreciated from Tina Oh (on behalf of the group) was that, even though it’s being built out West, all Canadians are now owners of it, and we believe the money could be better spent on other priorities*. And in a comment from Shannon in an earlier video: As Dominic is also the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, how could he move forward in supporting this project when it clearly poses such a risk to the oceans and the people’s livelihood in that area.

To keep up to date with this rad group of students and community members, check them out at Divest MTA. And thank you!

Awesome humans protecting our environment.

*Other priorities such as universal pharmacare, senior support services, etc… but we could also be investing in clean energy. As Elizabeth May pointed out on June 26: The Liberals are buying Kinder Morgan’s old pipeline for $4.5 Billion. The world’s largest solar plant cost $679 Million.

A is for Adventure

Kicking off the weekly edition of #WorldSavingWednesday are the awesome folks behind: A for Adventure!

What exactly is A for Adventure, you ask? It’s actually a lot of things, including: a children’s book, some swag, a bi-weekly podcast, some beautiful photos and videos… but at the heart of it, it’s a group of wonderful guys with a mission of “inspiring people to connect with nature.”

I have had the awesome pleasure of getting to know these four guys during our shared mission of introducing international students in New Brunswick to the great outdoors! Back in early March, we took 40 students to hike around Fundy and another 40 students to snowshoe/ski around Mactaquac for a weekend event called “How to Winter”. Now for the summer, we’ve got two “Learn to Camp” events with two different groups of students; again in Mactaquac (with far less snow) and Kouchibouquac. And each event so far has been… magical.

The last 24hrs in Mactaquac, for example, was a perfect combination of: being outside (even during a heatwave), watching students get out of their comfort zones, chatting with new friends around a campfire (IRL>social media), playing soccer (or random musical odes on a ukulele/harmonica) with those new friends, swimming in the lake, and learning something new… like setting up a tent or trying s’mores! In such a short period of time, these group of students gained new experiences, new friends, and certainly a new appreciation of nature. So for that, I want to thank A for Adventure for getting us out there!! And I hope this inspires you get out more this summer, too 🙂


All the senses w/Sense8

In stark contrast to Trump’s self-interested, exclusionary rhetoric, Sense8 demonstrates the incredible power of diversity and inclusivity.

I feel it is only right that I complete my #WorldSavingWeek (and pride-themed posts) with an anti-dote to what was depressing me initially — the heartless sentiments and decisions coming from the current White House. In contrast to Trump’s “America first”/go-it-alone/build-a-wall mentality, Sense8 shows you how 8 strangers, from 8 completely different walks of life, transcend borders, and are so much better together.

This mind-bending Netflix series does not only give you beautiful cinematography from different corners of the world, with different cultures, languages, and lovers, but it shows you the opposite of what Trump is currently spewing. It shows what humanity would look like if we were more interconnected; not only stronger because of our added skills, but more empathetic, because of our added emotional connections to each other.

So, if you are needing a dose of a counter-narrative, check out Sense8. Or better yet, step outside your comfort zone and strike up a conversation with someone across the hall, across the street, across a political line, or across a border to feel that human connection in-person. ❤


Nancy & the Heart

Looking to get more LGBTQ into your podcast line-up?

In today’s addition of pride-themed #WorldSavingWeek, I bring you two podcasts focused on the Queer experience: Nancy and the Heart.

Both are excellent, but each has a different style. Nancy is hosted by two best friends who dive into queer stories and conversations each week. As they describe: It’s a podcast about how we define ourselves, and the journey it takes to get there. The Heart, on the other hand, defines itself as “an audio art project about intimacy and humanity” where their creators “make personal documentary work about their bodies and their loves“. Sadly, the Heart wrapped up at the end of 2017. However, I would still recommend checking out one of the many episodes from 2015-2017. A personal favourite, which will resonate with anyone who grew up in the church: god + the gays.

So, if you are in need of a couple of good podcasts to keep you going beyond pride, be sure to check them out!

The Power of Music & Media

Wrap up your Monday with a bit of (powerful) music.

We all know that music has a very strong emotional power to it, and so I want to give a shout-out in this pride-themed #WorldSavingWeek to Macklemore, Ryan Lewis, and Mary Lambert for their beautiful song Same Love. When this song came out in 2012, same-sex marriage was not yet legal in all 50 states. I feel that the lyrics of this song and Macklemore’s fame, made an impact in reaching out to millions of Americans.Screen Shot 2018-06-25 at 23.35.22

Flash forward to March 2015, the Ad Council came out with a brilliant ad on Diversity & Inclusion — putting Same Love to a heart-warming Valentine’s Day social experiment. If you have not yet seen it, click on the image below, and you will likely have tears in your eyes like the nearly 60 million (!!) other people who have seen it by now. Again, I feel that the lyrics of this song, paired with the video below may have changed the hearts and minds of a lot of folks in the US… and hopefully opened their hearts for the Supreme Court’s decision to recognize same-sex marriage across all 50 states on June 26, 2015

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