93,951 Views Of My Open Letter And Still Receiving Hate Mail

News flash…….. the election is over. The votes have been counted, the decision has been made. Isn’t it amazing, the election has been over for days yet the hate mail continues.

As of 5 minutes ago my open letter had been viewed 93,951 times, and still continues to be viewed hundreds of times each day. The number of views is significant, however beyond the readership numbers I am getting an inside look as to the mentality of a certain portion of Canadian society.

Let me share what I am discovering. First, there is an absolute HATE by the political left for stay-at-home parents.

Evidently we are living in the lap of luxury, lounging on the couch eating bon-bons all day while our servants run around cleaning our house and dusting our bottoms due to our lack of activity. Unfortunately they are wrong. The fact is we bought our house for land value and renovated for years. We chose to stay at home after arriving to our baby sitter and finding our toddler had been left with her ten year old son while the babysitter went shopping. We choose to raise our own children and run our own lives rather than outsource all aspects of our lives. We choose to have a marriage that is a partnership. We choose to be responsible and self sufficient and hard working. We choose to make our own path for success rather than blame others for our lack of foresight, hard work or ambition.snowshoeing at riverbend - red deer, alberta, canada

When the election results came in my husband asked me my thoughts, so as I am still getting hate mail (clearly people have a lot more free time than I do) I may as well share them here:

The Environment – anyone who really knows me, knows we are environmentally conscious. Yes it is shocking, but not every person that leans to the right believes in raping the earth. Check back in the blog and you will find an ambitious fight (and win), spearheaded by us, to save a nesting ground, including door-to-door canvassing with our five children. We walk the talk on a daily basis. The other political parties were quick to point their fingers at the “nasty, nasty” Conservatives, yet all their environmental talk was nothing but babble. Neither the Liberals, Greens or N.D.P. had a firm plan in place, it was all political babble. These political parties are clueless. They like to blame the oil industry but emissions are an issue nationwide not just in Northern Alberta.

If these parties had any clue they would have promoted feasible plans, what they needed to do is so simple. The two nationwide polluters and users of fossil fuels are our homes and our cars. This is where the fight to improve the environment needs to start. It is so simple, kill the commute and put solar and wind in our homes. The solution isn’t a carbon tax, it is changing the way we live.

Killing the commute is quite simple. All that would be needed are government incentives to move industry and large employers to smaller towns and areas with dwindling populations. By moving industry and business into areas like this jobs are created in areas that are usually economically struggling, housing is affordable, and the drive to work is 5 or 10 minutes rather than an hour and a half. It is a winning situation. It is a simple situation to reduce vehicle emissions. However it takes a creative forward thinking government willing to work WITH business,  not a government that just wants to tax business.

Putting solar and wind in our homes is another concept that is beyond simple. The technology is there, and has been for decades. It is time for our homes to be run on cleaner power. Solar power has been an interest of mine for years, we have investigated the possibilities and walked away on numerous occasions. The price is too high to get your investment back and it is difficult to learn all the ins and outs of what is really needed to switch your home over to a sustainable form of clean energy. As long as it is only a minute fraction of the population using solar and wind, this will never change. For change to happen government needs to intervene and give incentives; incentives not to the homeowners, but to big business.

The place to start is with diversification of the energy sector. The energy sector is just big business. The government needs to talk to them about the form of power they produce. Would they be interested, with the aid of government incentives into moving into producing clean power options as well? Businesses diversify all the time, they don’t care about the product the produce, they care about guaranteed profit. If there is money at the end of a venture, business is interested. Building factories that produce solar panels, equipment for wind power and storage batteries. Retraining some of their staff for these factories and as installation technicians. All of this can be done up at Ft. McMurray just as easily as the tar sands operations are now. But a government promise has to go a bit farther to make this feasible, they need to provide a sure-fire need for the green technology produced. The federal government will have to work with provinces and municipalities to revise building requirements and building codes, and make all new builds powered by a certain percentage of green energy. This creates a demand for the product, and the demand for the product is what will bring the price down to an affordable level. As the price comes down homeowners will retrofit their homes. A whole new industry is born, new jobs are created nation-wide as installers will be needed coast to coast, and our country begins to wean off fossil fuels in our homes. So simple. So effective, but again it takes a creative forward thinking government willing to work WITH business,  not a government that just wants to tax business.

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“Generation Entitlement” – “Generation Entitlement” was my second thought regarding the election results. They are the new generation of voters, and the left wing parties recognized the fact and ran with the concept. Undoubtedly the generation that thinks that their parents should pay for their college educations, their cars, their vacations, and a coat “when they are sad” (true story!) are going to need to vote in a government who will “take care of them”. Mommy and Daddy have been giving “hand outs’ all their life, and now they want the government to do the same. This is the same generation that still think of themselves as “kids” at the age of 30. This is the same generation that feel they deserve the big house and fancy car “right now” rather than work for it. This is the same generation that is on CBC Radio every few weeks complaining that there are no middle management jobs for when they get out of college, and that the older generation is staying in their jobs for too long and not retiring. Newsflash “kids”……..the old folks are staying in their jobs longer to pay for your education, holidays, cars and coats when you are sad. They will be staying in their jobs even longer if they are taxed higher by a government with a “hand out” mentality. The tactic may have voted in the Liberal’s, but I suspect four years from now “Generation Entitlement” will be exactly where they are now, complaining with their hand out.

A Campaign of Hate – Hate is what ran this election. “Harper Hate”. Hate for people who blog their opinion. Even after the election the hate continues, which is quite remarkable. I’m still receiving hate mail. hate mail is everywhere on social media. We live in a hateful society. We have made a few observations through people we know in person and have interacted with online. Generally the “hate” seems to be a way people either respond in jealousy to other people’s success, or is a reaction regarding their own lack of ambition or regretted choices. I am not talking about people who have truly had unfortunate incidents happen to them in their lives, in fact I have not received or witnessed “hate” from a person in this circumstance.

We personally know a person full of “Harper Hate”. This is an educated person from a comfortable upbringing with a lot of emphasis placed on material items; a person who migrated to Alberta a few years ago from an easterly province. Interestingly  this person’s employment  is somewhat dictated by the oil industry in Alberta. They are a one income family, his hours were cut, yet he still spouted “Harper Hate”. His livelihood is hanging in the balance yet he would prefer to spout hate and vote in a government where their energy policies could leave him unemployed. He would prefer to be jobless and homeless. The “hate” is blinding people.

I find it amazing that the hate continues after the election. What is the point? The votes have been cast, the decision has been made. We watch and see what happens. The “haters” too have cast their votes, they should be happy, but the hate continues. This is troubling. It shows the election results do not reflect an informed population, it just reflects a hateful society. If the hate had been in an effort for change, the haters would now be silent, but they are not. They continue their personal attacks. They continue their social media attacks. The Liberal’s may have won the election, but evidence shows (and continues to) that they won on hate and not policy, and that is pretty sad.

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Yesterday my husband commented how quickly I have moved on from the election. I said to him “It’s a done deal. This is the vote. This is the decision. Now we watch.” ( I also may have said “Thank goodness our oldest has a job and by the time our second oldest needs a job another government will have been voted it.” …..but back to the post.)  He also asked “Are you not angry?”, and I replied that I am not angry at all but rather amused.

I am amused. Year after year all we have heard in the media is people blaming Harper and the Conservatives for everything that has gone wrong with their lives. Now I get to sit back and watch. Now I get to sit back and watch the same people, continue to live the same lives, with the same problems under a different government. Now I get to watch the circumstances, that these people blamed on “Harper”, remain under Trudeau. What these people do not understand is that hand outs do not move people forward, added taxation does not help a country, and legalized pot does not make everything better. The fact of the matter is that the only thing that can truly improve one’s plight in life is to make wise choices, be responsible, self sufficient and hardworking. Each person  chooses to make their own path for success, and blaming and hating others for their own lack of foresight, hard work or ambition will get them nowhere.

I am amused because four years from now the “haters” will be exactly where they are now. However it will no longer be “Harper’s fault”, it will be their own.

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A New Bridge For The Park (Red Deer, Alberta)

We had excitement in our neighbourhood today, a new bridge was installed just around the corner from home. Of course having a five year old boy who is intrigued with construction, we just had to check it out.

blog bridge 1Its always fun to take a look at the diggers, what they are up to and what they have done.

blog bridge 2As we neared the bridge we were pleasantly surprised by the choice of style. A nod to modern while keeping the traditional white of the bridge that has been located at this spot for decades.

blog bridge 4Whoever chose the final decision for the bridge has made a great design choice. It looks beautiful, but also has higher railings and closer together slats which making crossing with children a little bit safer.

blog bridge 3The slight curve to the bridge is going to add a bit more fun for those riding bikes in the park too. (Note to self: remind the kids to slow down!)

blog bridge 5We are pretty thrilled with this new improvement to our neighbourhood. This bridge we walk over everyday. Now it isn’t just functional, but also quite a nice design to look at.

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(iPhone photography by Debra Hunter)

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Blue

blog indigo

Blue. Yes everyone we are back to our regular programming. Back to wool, silk and cotton. Back to art, fine craft, and handmade.

The last two weeks have been indigo intensive. It is an outside endeavour that needs to be completed before it gets too cold. This week I attacked the scrap pile, small pieces of fabric that I had been dyed colors I didn’t love, pieces of selvedge edge, and remnants that were awkward shapes and sizes. Into the vat they went and out of the vat they came in shades of blue, green and everything in between (with a little shibori thrown in for good measure!). That is except for the brown piece of silk on the left hand side.

I have yet to figure out what has happened with this piece of silk fabric. It is either dyed in cutch or arbutus and it seems to be resisting the indigo dye. It has been dyed three times more than every other piece shown here and it shows just a mere haze of indigo dyeing. I will have to test this in the future to see if it happens again or if it is one of those strange “one off” dyeing experiences.

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Are Canadian Women Allowed An Opinion Outside Of Their Own Home?

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Are Canadian women allowed to truly have an opinion beyond the walls of their home? This is a thought that has been on my mind over recent days.

The last month has left me contemplating  how equal women truly are in Canadian society, not how it reads in theory on paper, but how equal we are in real life. Back in mid September I wrote an open letter expressing my feelings on how the discussion of eliminating two policies affected me. The elimination of policies was  discussed by  a couple of  party leaders running in Canada’s 2015 federal election, and the attitudes of these two political parties surrounding the elimination of these policies  made me feel worthless. These were policies that for the most part gave a sense of recognition to parents at any level of income across Canada. It was an inclusive policy. Policies that included every single family in the country. Somehow the letter was shared on social media and it has now had over 85,000 views. It is great to have an opinion piece read, it was meant to give insight as to how an everyday person felt about issues involved in our upcoming federal election.

However this is where it becomes interesting, the piece reflected my feelings and my opinion, yet other Canadians, primarily male Canadians, took issue to tell me I was wrong. I was told my opinion and my feelings were wrong. How can this be? How can a male Canadian know how a female Canadian feels? How can they know how a mother feels? Honestly how can anyone know how another person truly feels, yet vicious attacks were made regarding how I personally felt and my personal experience. I had no right to an opinion.

Now Facebook banter is one thing, it is an insignificant lowbrow mudsling, but when an individual tracks you down and sends a hateful, lie filled email to you personally, because you dared to share your opinion, we have a problem. We have a further problem because one has to decide how to deal with the correspondence. Clearly this person is unstable, as who sends a toxic email to someone who has written an open letter about their personal feelings. This person also posted their hateful email filled with lies about me on their blog. However, if I had taken the email to our local R.C.M.P. my feeling is that I would have been seen as an overreacting female. So the situation is interesting. We have an unstable person trespassing into my life by writing a toxic email and posting libelous statements about me on his blog, the authorities are not going to take me seriously, and I do not know what this male is going to do next. What do I do? I protect myself the only way I can, I post his email online.

Now in my blog I posted that I would let this gentleman have his say. In reality the email address was put out there to point to who this person was if he chose to escalate things further. If my children were threatened, if my house was set on fire, if our tires were flattened, his email was out there to point to the possible motive. Clearly this person was not stable, what normal person reacts in such a toxic manner to a complete stranger having a personal opinion over political policies and programs? We have to protect ourselves, and that is what I did.

This male sent me a second email citing “privacy issues” with my blog post. I knew this gentleman had no issues with “privacy”, his Whosis profile even lists his phone number. If he had “privacy issues” he wouldn’t have used his real name or real email address which included his name. He was just mad that I didn’t succumb to his cyber-bullying. That I didn’t issue a retraction for having an opinion. That is correct, this person thought I should issue a retraction for having an opinion. When males of our Canadian society think that women should have to issue retractions for having an opinion we have a very problematic situation happening in our supposedly equal society.

blog house graphicNow one could say I am basing this on one “looney leftie” , a term popularized out in social media, but the attitude was verified as the situation escalated. When this rather unstable male went to the Saskatoon police to complain about the “privacy issue” I was again treated with a less than equal attitude. It was curious. To begin with I called the officer back after receiving the message, was transferred through to her line, then she said immediately that she would have to call me back on another line. That was odd; I actually did a screen shot of the phone numbers and call times. I tried to go through the emails with her to see just what this gentleman had said. She wouldn’t go through them with me piece by piece. When I asked how many emails she had,  she said “lots” . The answer should have been four. When I asked for her to forward the situation to the R.C.M.P. in our home town in order to talk to someone in person so I could verify the situation was legitimate, the officer got all funny with me and said I could just call the switchboard back to verify. That wasn’t my request. ( It was starting to feel like one of those scam telemarketer calls by this stage of the discussion, something was off.)  Not once did she even cite any part of the privacy act or what had been violated, she just said that I needed to take down the email address (or at least implied it). To this day I still do not know if I actually violated any portion of the privacy act; never was any aspect of the act cited to me. The officer then said she was too busy and would call me back; days later there has yet to be a phone call.

Now one has to wonder how the police can do this? How can they just call you up and say to take something off your personal blog, an item put up to protect yourself, because they said so.  Remember earlier when I said there was no point in taking the original toxic email to the police, the handling by this police officer proved my gut feeling. Women are not treated equally or fairly or taken seriously. The police officer would not listen to what I had experienced, she would not go through the documentation, she would not even verify the number of emails, I was just to “take it down” because she said so.

The unstable gentleman who sent me the toxic email thought I should issue a retraction on my open letter because “he said so”.

The police officer thought I should take down information on my blog because “she said so”.

Could someone please tell me why women in Canada have no right to an opinion?

Could someone please tell me why women in Canada have no right to have their side of the story heard?

Could someone tell me why women in Canada are supposed to change their opinions and ways simply because someone else tries to oppress them?

Could someone please tell me why Canadian women are not allowed to protect themselves the only way they can, as social biases prevent us from being protected through proper channels?

A woman is supposedly equal in Canada, but we aren’t. Evidence is everywhere. Women are abused and murdered by spouses. Women are underpaid. A strong man is a leader in our country, while a strong woman is a bitch. Now society is also trying to strip us of having personal opinions. It is a strange version of equality, isn’t it?

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Handmade in Canada – The Collections – www.handmade-canada.com

Handmade in Canada http://handmade-canada.com/

Seeing as my blog is 15,000 to 35,000 views a day at the moment I’ve decided to have an opportunistic moment, after all there is a little capitalist in me at times! It seems like a complete waste to let all this traffic go by and not introduce my new project. After all now all the left-leaning hate-mailers who have said “get to work woman” can now put their money where their mouth is, buy my products, make me work, and allow me to pay tax to the government to support their desired social programs (yes that was a dig!).

The project is Handmade in Canada.  The site’s focus is on hand made items and eventually art will also be added to the site. The current items are all hand knits made of 100% Canadian produced wool milled in heritage style mills in Alberta and P.E.I.. I hand dye my wool in micro batches in natural dyes including marigold from my garden, tansy that grows by rural roads, and arbutus bark from trees of the west coast.

Items listed for sale include tax and shipping within Canada; I like to keep things simple. I also deal with small scale wholesale such as boutiques, museums, coffee shops and gift shops; please email me if you have wholesale inquiries.

Below are the collections. Check back on the site often as I have many items that are just about to be listed on the site.

o canada collection 4x6_0974

The O’Canada Collection

beach house collection 4x6_0939The Beach House Collection

salish collection 4x6_0912

The Salish Collection

woods collection 4x6_0965

The Woods Collection

cottage garden collection 4x6_0986

The Cottage Garden Collection

wearable collection 4x6_1438

The Wearable Collection

Feel free to email me through the site regarding sizes, dimensions and any other details, as I draft the patterns by hand, customization is also available.

www.handmade-canada.com