Cheryl Girard

Cheryl Girard

West Kildonan community correspondent

Cheryl Girard is a community correspondent for West Kildonan.

Recent articles of Cheryl Girard

June is MG month in Manitoba

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June is MG month in Manitoba

Cheryl Girard 2 minute read Thursday, Jun. 16, 2022

The Winnipeg sign at The Forks will be lit up in teal on June 24 in honour of June being Myasthenia Gravis Awareness month across Canada and the United States.

Appeals to the mayor’s office resulted in Mayor Brian Bowman approving the request to illuminate the lights to help raise awareness of this rare and little known disease.

Manitoba health minister Audrey Gordon also just recently proclaimed June as Myasthenia Gravis Month in Manitoba. Ontario is possibly the only other province to have done so.

Myasthenia gravis, commonly referred to as MG, is a neuromuscular and autoimmune disease that can cause weakness in certain muscles.

Thursday, Jun. 16, 2022

Tourism Winnipeg
The Winnipeg sign at The Forks will be lit up in teal on June 24 in honour of Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month.

Comfort food for uncomfortable times

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Comfort food for uncomfortable times

Cheryl Girard 3 minute read Thursday, Apr. 28, 2022

I remember that when times were difficult my dad would show up at our door on a Saturday morning with offerings of bread, Ukrainian sausage and sometimes his homemade cabbage rolls (holubtsi).

The cabbage rolls always came in a round, black-and-white pot which I still have and cherish to this day as it is a reminder of my dad and his heart-warming, supportive ways. Dad would cover fill them with rice and bits of ground beef and cover the neat green rows of rolls with tomato sauce.

Today, we are again going through difficult times with COVID-19 and its variants being allowed to spread throughout the province. Many have been hospitalized or have passed away during COVID. Many, including me, are waiting for surgeries, other medical procedures and treatments

We are also going through terrible times because of Putin’s devastating invasion of Ukraine. There are no words to describe the extent of his brutality.

Thursday, Apr. 28, 2022

Sometimes comfort food, such as homemade borscht, can be even more effective than a hug.

Weeping for Ukrainian relatives

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Weeping for Ukrainian relatives

Cheryl Girard 3 minute read Wednesday, Mar. 16, 2022

When I was a child, I used to doodle quite a bit. Sometimes it was a picture of me with a line drawn down the middle.

It was my way of trying to understand who I was, I guess. Being a child, I saw myself as half English and half Ukrainian – literally.

My dad was Ukrainian, and my mother was English. Both my parents went through the Second World War. Like many who went through the war years, they didn’t talk about it.

Today there is another war going on and I knew I had to write about this new war as I can think of little else, even though I write a week before this will be printed

Wednesday, Mar. 16, 2022

When I was a child, I used to doodle quite a bit. Sometimes it was a picture of me with a line drawn down the middle.

It was my way of trying to understand who I was, I guess. Being a child, I saw myself as half English and half Ukrainian – literally.

My dad was Ukrainian, and my mother was English. Both my parents went through the Second World War. Like many who went through the war years, they didn’t talk about it.

Today there is another war going on and I knew I had to write about this new war as I can think of little else, even though I write a week before this will be printed

A voice for the immunocompromised

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A voice for the immunocompromised

Cheryl Girard 5 minute read Monday, Jan. 31, 2022

I recently watched a documentary on U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and how he inspired, gave hope to and led the people of the United States during the Great Depression.“Great power involves great responsibility,” he said. Somehow, I don’t feel like this responsibility is being taken seriously by many of those in power in our current government.As someone who is immunocompromised, taking three medications for an autoimmune disorder that involves daily respiratory issues I feel it profoundly necessary to speak out, as others have done, for the vulnerable in our province. It feels like we have been largely ignored. It feels like we are invisible. It feels like we don’t exist.We have apparently been told by the government that it can’t protect everybody. We have to look after ourselves. We are on our own.It feels like very little has been done regarding the latest surging numbers of the highly contagious Omicron variant of COVID-19. Few restrictions have been put in place.Some say that this variant is milder — but milder for whom? Is it going to be milder for the elderly, those with health conditions, those who are undergoing chemotherapy, the immunocompromised?I, for one, feel extremely unprotected with the Omicron variant being allowed to spread like wildfire through the province. Though triple-vaccinated I get little protection. My husband has tried to protect me. We have had to sacrifice so much.Our kids have been sent back to school with the strong possibility that the numbers of COVID-19 will soar even higher. Contact tracing is not even being done with the result that teachers and students are even more anxious and weary.Many students recently walked out in protest, adding their voices to those calling to protect the most vulnerable in our community. These students stand out for their compassion and empathy.Hospitalizations, as I write this in late January, are higher than ever and positive case numbers are so high that the government  is not even trying to keep track anymore.We are told that hospitals and medical staff are overwhelmed. Yet there seem to few attempts to curb the virus. We are told everyone is going to get it and we have to learn to live with it.What about those who cannot “live” with it? People are still dying.Most of my family has contracted the virus. I feel surrounded and helpless.  For two years my life has been nothing but trying to keep myself and others safe. I know I am not alone.I have emailed polite letters of concern to the provincial Liberal, NDP and Progressive Conservatives. Guess which party I did not hear back from?Cheryl Girard is a community correspondent for West Kildonan. 

I recently watched a documentary on U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and how he inspired, gave hope to and led the people of the United States during the Great Depression.

“Great power involves great responsibility,” he said. Somehow, I don’t feel like this responsibility is being taken seriously by many of those in power in our current government.

As someone who is immunocompromised, taking three medications for an autoimmune disorder that involves daily respiratory issues I feel it profoundly necessary to speak out, as others have done, for the vulnerable in our province. 

Monday, Jan. 31, 2022

Dreamstime.com
Community correspondent Cheryl Girard lives with an autoimmune disorder that makes her more vulnerable than others during the COVID-19 pandemic. The provincial government’s response to the wildfire spread of Omicron left her more stressed than ever.

Mmm, mmm… tourtière

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Mmm, mmm… tourtière

Cheryl Girard 3 minute read Thursday, Dec. 23, 2021

This is going to be a difficult holiday season for us for many reasons. And I think it will be hard for many others.

So here is something different. A recipe from our home to yours. Even if you’re spending the holiday alone you can try to make this and hopefully enjoy the traditional aromas and flavours of this splendid dish.

My husband is French-Canadian and when he was growing up in rural Manitoba one of his family’s traditions was to have tourtière and bouillon at réveillon (the Christmas feast) on Christmas Eve after they went to midnight mass.

When the kids got home from mass, each was allowed to open one gift from Père Noël. There would also be Japanese oranges and all kinds of nuts that you would have to crack open with a nutcracker.

Thursday, Dec. 23, 2021

Dreamstime.com
Alone this Christmas, or maybe a little down because we’re still living with public health restrictions? Try lifting your spirits with by making a traditional French-Canadian tourtière.

Aah… the soothing power of music

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Aah… the soothing power of music

Cheryl Girard 3 minute read Friday, Nov. 26, 2021

Music has always been an amazing comfort to me. I didn’t know that this would change so profoundly for me in later years.

I grew up listening to music played in the house often and when I was a teenager my parents bought me my own little round, white turntable shaped like a flying saucer. This was the ’60s, after all.

And so my collection started — Simon and Garfunkel, The Guess Who, Neil Diamond and so many others. I love many types of music.

I taught myself how to play the chord organ when I was little so that I could belt out tunes to my heart’s delight. I’m glad the neighbours didn’t move away… or my family.

Friday, Nov. 26, 2021

Supplied photo
Music has been a huge part of correspondent Cheryl Girard’s life, and Murray McLauchlan, above, is one of her favourite performers.

Saturday breakfasts with Dad

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Saturday breakfasts with Dad

Cheryl Girard 3 minute read Friday, Oct. 29, 2021

My father used to make us a special breakfast on weekends. And when he did he used a secret ingredient that I did not discover until many years later.

Almost every Saturday morning, when we were kids, we’d rise to the sounds and smells of Dad clanging around in the kitchen with frying pans, pots and teapot. Usually, the oven fan would be roaring away in a feeble effort to vanquish the smoke and other odours which filled the house, pulling us from our beds.

At the time, I barely appreciated Dad’s magnificent efforts. Saturday’s breakfast did beat the porridge, however, we ate the rest of the week.

As we stumbled into the kitchen one at a time and sleepily sat down, I’d watch somewhat warily as Dad would begin frying. First he’d fry eggs, which always came out on the extremely crispy side.

Friday, Oct. 29, 2021

Dreamstime.com
It took correspondent Cheryl Girard years to figure out the secret ingredient of her father’s full English breakfasts.

A pleasant distraction in difficult times

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A pleasant distraction in difficult times

Cheryl Girard 3 minute read Friday, Oct. 1, 2021

It’s hard to believe we are still dealing with COVID-19 - 19 months after it first hit Winnipeg, in March 2020.

It has definitely been a rocky road with lockdowns, the resulting isolation and seeing the numbers of COVID cases go up and down through three waves.

It’s been reported that some surgeries and medical treatments have been cancelled. I have been waiting for a medical treatment for many months.

We lost a cousin along with her husband to COVID-19 and a good friend lost her brother. My husband recently lost a brother to an aggressive brain cancer - so it has been a rough time.

Friday, Oct. 1, 2021

Wikimedia Commons
Richard Thomas (above) played John Boy on The Waltons, the long-running NBC and CBS series of the 1970s and early 1980s. The show’s homespun values have been a comfort for Cheryl Girard throughout the hardships of COVID-19.

There’s still a long way to go — stay safe

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Preview

There’s still a long way to go — stay safe

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Friday, Jul. 16, 2021

this horrible COVID-19 pandemic. Here in Manitoba it’s been about 16 months that we’ve been on a rollercoaster of locking down and opening up repeatedly.

Recently we have opened up once again so that restaurants are partly open, patios are open and people are finally allowed to see other people outside. It is a huge relief to finally be able to see some of our family, even if it’s only outdoors.

However, not everyone is vaccinated and that is creating a huge problem and stress for a lot of people. There are warnings that the delta variant may surge in the fall and, according to many news reports, it is surging in other countries as I write this.

The delta variant, it is reported, is quickly becoming the dominant strain and has been found in at least 85 countries. Vaccination is reported to be the answer to stopping the surge of this more contagious variant.

Friday, Jul. 16, 2021

Photo by Daniel Crump / Winnipeg Free Press
Those who have yet to be vaccinated should go ahead and get their shots as soon as they can, Cheryl Girard writes.

June is Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Preview

June is Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Tuesday, Jun. 15, 2021

Since June is Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month in Canada and the U.S., I thought I would write a little something to help bring a little more awareness to this disease. There is so much research needed.

It has been about five years since I was diagnosed with MG and I have to say that the struggle is ongoing. I have been waiting to try a different, stronger medication but the wait has been months now.

All of the fears and worries surrounding this COVID-19 pandemic have only increased in the last few weeks and they exacerbate all kinds of illnesses for people, making them that much difficult to deal with.

MG is a rare, neurological autoimmune disease that causes weakness in muscles that we normally take for granted. Although it varies, the muscles involved usually include those used for breathing, speech, swallowing, vision and often arms and legs.

Tuesday, Jun. 15, 2021

Since June is Myasthenia Gravis Awareness Month in Canada and the U.S., I thought I would write a little something to help bring a little more awareness to this disease. There is so much research needed.

It has been about five years since I was diagnosed with MG and I have to say that the struggle is ongoing. I have been waiting to try a different, stronger medication but the wait has been months now.

All of the fears and worries surrounding this COVID-19 pandemic have only increased in the last few weeks and they exacerbate all kinds of illnesses for people, making them that much difficult to deal with.

MG is a rare, neurological autoimmune disease that causes weakness in muscles that we normally take for granted. Although it varies, the muscles involved usually include those used for breathing, speech, swallowing, vision and often arms and legs.

The Kildonans should have a pedestrian bridge

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Preview

The Kildonans should have a pedestrian bridge

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Thursday, Apr. 22, 2021

Being outdoors and being able to walk outside has become more and more important during the COVID-19 pandemic.

And there is so much more that can be done to make our city easier and more enjoyable to walk in, while at the same time making it more beautiful.

I’ve written about this before but it definitely bears repeating. One place that always comes to mind is the historic but sadly neglected Bergen Cut-Off Bridge that spans the Red River near our popular Kildonan Park.

The old steel structure was built in 1913 for the Canadian Pacific Railway and has sat basically unused since about 1928.

Thursday, Apr. 22, 2021

Being outdoors and being able to walk outside has become more and more important during the COVID-19 pandemic.

And there is so much more that can be done to make our city easier and more enjoyable to walk in, while at the same time making it more beautiful.

I’ve written about this before but it definitely bears repeating. One place that always comes to mind is the historic but sadly neglected Bergen Cut-Off Bridge that spans the Red River near our popular Kildonan Park.

The old steel structure was built in 1913 for the Canadian Pacific Railway and has sat basically unused since about 1928.

Supporting our local restaurants

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Supporting our local restaurants

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Tuesday, Mar. 23, 2021

Last month I wrote about Santa Lucia Pizza on Main Street as a way of encouraging people to support restaurants in the area.

It’s so important to patronize local businesses, as we have all been struggling through this past year and need to help each other out. So, here are two more local restaurant recommendations you may want to check out.

(There are many more great options in the area, of course, but space limits me to just a couple.)

Salisbury House is a Winnipeg institution. Founded by Ralph Erwin in 1931, the tiny restaurant made it through the depression years, expanded to many locations and the rest, as they say, is history.

Tuesday, Mar. 23, 2021

Winnipeg Free Press photo archive
The Salisbury House on Leila Avenue is open now for limited-capacity dining.

Time to support our local restaurants

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Time to support our local restaurants

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Friday, Feb. 19, 2021

Our options for going out have been restricted for months now. It seems like it’s been an eternity. But, of course, it’s all been necessary to reduce the number of COVID-19 cases in Manitoba.

We’ve mostly been cooking at home. Since my husband retired he seems to have taken a liking to cooking more and more.

To take our minds off the beastly cold winter, my bouts with illness and the continuous isolation, we have started to order takeout once in a while from local restaurants. We are also trying to support local businesses as they have been going through their own struggles.

With that in mind, here is just one recommendation for a local restaurant we have ordered from. Next month I will try to include a few more.

Friday, Feb. 19, 2021

Our options for going out have been restricted for months now. It seems like it’s been an eternity. But, of course, it’s all been necessary to reduce the number of COVID-19 cases in Manitoba.

We’ve mostly been cooking at home. Since my husband retired he seems to have taken a liking to cooking more and more.

To take our minds off the beastly cold winter, my bouts with illness and the continuous isolation, we have started to order takeout once in a while from local restaurants. We are also trying to support local businesses as they have been going through their own struggles.

With that in mind, here is just one recommendation for a local restaurant we have ordered from. Next month I will try to include a few more.

Reasons to be hopeful

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Reasons to be hopeful

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 2 minute read Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021

Here we are, saying farewell to January which is usually one of the coldest, greyest and bleakest months of the year. Many suffer from the January blues just because it is post -January, never mind winter.

With COVID-19 code red restrictions still in place as I write this, winter has been made even more difficult. We have had to stay home and away from family and friends for over two months now.

We have not been able to gather for the holidays. Pandemic fatigue is very real. We miss our family and friends. We are stressed, weary and lonely.

However, we know that focusing and dwelling on these negative aspects of our lives only hurts us and affects our mental health even more.

Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021

Here we are, saying farewell to January which is usually one of the coldest, greyest and bleakest months of the year. Many suffer from the January blues just because it is post -January, never mind winter.

With COVID-19 code red restrictions still in place as I write this, winter has been made even more difficult. We have had to stay home and away from family and friends for over two months now.

We have not been able to gather for the holidays. Pandemic fatigue is very real. We miss our family and friends. We are stressed, weary and lonely.

However, we know that focusing and dwelling on these negative aspects of our lives only hurts us and affects our mental health even more.

Wishing you health and all good things

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Wishing you health and all good things

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Monday, Nov. 30, 2020

As I write this during our most recent lockdown in November I am, like most people, missing family and friends and trying to cope.

Forgive me for offering up some more ideas, hopefully different ones this time, on how to get through this. But it feels like the pandemic is top of mind for all of us.

I am not a professional but, like many of us, I’ve had my share of difficult times and I have found these helpful.

These are certainly not my ideas but they are tried and true tips from many sources. Use what you like and leave the rest.

Monday, Nov. 30, 2020

As I write this during our most recent lockdown in November I am, like most people, missing family and friends and trying to cope.

Forgive me for offering up some more ideas, hopefully different ones this time, on how to get through this. But it feels like the pandemic is top of mind for all of us.

I am not a professional but, like many of us, I’ve had my share of difficult times and I have found these helpful.

These are certainly not my ideas but they are tried and true tips from many sources. Use what you like and leave the rest.

How to get through this winter

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Preview

How to get through this winter

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Friday, Nov. 13, 2020

As I write this in late October, the trees are bare, we’ve had our first snowfall, it is cold out and our pandemic numbers are on the rise again.

With the cold months approaching and many of us not able to travel or, harder yet, unable to see our families, I thought I’d offer up some tips on how to get through winter as this is probably going to be one of our most difficult winters yet.

I’ve always been a list maker and, because I have health issues and am not a fan of winter anyway, my list has helped me over the past few winters.

I don’t pretend to imagine these are unique or that they will help everyone; use these as a starting point and feel free to make up your own list of ideas.

Friday, Nov. 13, 2020

As I write this in late October, the trees are bare, we’ve had our first snowfall, it is cold out and our pandemic numbers are on the rise again.

With the cold months approaching and many of us not able to travel or, harder yet, unable to see our families, I thought I’d offer up some tips on how to get through winter as this is probably going to be one of our most difficult winters yet.

I’ve always been a list maker and, because I have health issues and am not a fan of winter anyway, my list has helped me over the past few winters.

I don’t pretend to imagine these are unique or that they will help everyone; use these as a starting point and feel free to make up your own list of ideas.

Coping during the pandemic

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Coping during the pandemic

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Monday, Oct. 5, 2020

The lineup into the hospital is long but it moves quickly.

The people in line are wearing masks. The health care workers wear masks and gowns, too.

They ask me the usual questions. I sanitize my hands and am then allowed to go through to the ward where I will get my treatment.

This is where I go now. Twice a month for treatments. On top of immune-suppressing drugs and other medications.

Monday, Oct. 5, 2020

Dreamstime.com
Health-care workers who continue to help patients with other issues while COVID-19 rages on deserve our thanks and support.

Back to school during a pandemic

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Back to school during a pandemic

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Tuesday, Sep. 8, 2020

With the kids going back to school this fall during these difficult times many people are worried.

There are a lot of concerns. One major concern is that our numbers of COVID-19 cases have been rising in Manitoba.

Another major worry is that schools are opening up during what is the regular flu season in Manitoba. Add to that, the fact that the coronavirus symptoms are similar to regular flu symptoms and you have a host of other problems.

How are parents, many of whom are already anxious, going to tell the difference between a regular flu and the coronavirus should their child come down with symptoms?

Tuesday, Sep. 8, 2020

Dreamstime.com
Parents, students and teachers will need to take it one day at a time this school year, as everyone adjusts to the new rules.

Thinking of venturing out in the world?

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Thinking of venturing out in the world?

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Monday, Aug. 10, 2020

Our recreation choices have been limited for months now, owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, and many activities are still limited.

As I write this in late July, however, some restrictions have loosened up and there are now more options open to us. Things could change again, I imagine, if our numbers go up.

Everything depends on your own comfort level. If you have health issues you may only be comfortable with some of the suggestions listed below.

Here is just a tiny list of possible activities in, around and not too far from our northwest area of the city. It is by no means a complete list.

Monday, Aug. 10, 2020

Winnipeg Free Press photo archives
If you’re itching to get out of the house and rejoing the world, the Half Moon Drive In on Henderson Highway would make an excellent destination.

Pandemic has been rough for many

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Preview

Pandemic has been rough for many

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Monday, Jul. 13, 2020

Our COVID-19 numbers are low. Manitoba seems to be doing better than some other provinces.

Yet in the U.S., at the time of writing, the number of cases are approaching horrific levels among our neighbours to the south. And if you’re still feeling anxious, confused or out of sorts, you are not alone.

An associate and friend of mine has been struggling through a dark period after losing her only two brothers and her beloved mother within a two-year span. This has left her without immediate family while dealing with overwhelming grief.

When COVID-19 hit Manitoba in mid February while she was still mourning, the solitude of lockdown magnified her grief and made it much harder to navigate.

Monday, Jul. 13, 2020

Our COVID-19 numbers are low. Manitoba seems to be doing better than some other provinces.

Yet in the U.S., at the time of writing, the number of cases are approaching horrific levels among our neighbours to the south. And if you’re still feeling anxious, confused or out of sorts, you are not alone.

An associate and friend of mine has been struggling through a dark period after losing her only two brothers and her beloved mother within a two-year span. This has left her without immediate family while dealing with overwhelming grief.

When COVID-19 hit Manitoba in mid February while she was still mourning, the solitude of lockdown magnified her grief and made it much harder to navigate.

Be kind to each other

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Be kind to each other

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Monday, Jun. 22, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken many lives around the world.

The United States, at the time of this writing, has the highest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases; Brazil, Russia and the U.K. have the next highest numbers.

It is a cruel disease that has forced many to shutter themselves up in their homes, to isolate from others, from family, friends and from their workplaces.

It has been especially hard for older people in nursing homes, assisted living buildings and other seniors, for they have not been able to see their families. At this point, however, some are now able to visit outdoors.

Monday, Jun. 22, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken many lives around the world.

The United States, at the time of this writing, has the highest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases; Brazil, Russia and the U.K. have the next highest numbers.

It is a cruel disease that has forced many to shutter themselves up in their homes, to isolate from others, from family, friends and from their workplaces.

It has been especially hard for older people in nursing homes, assisted living buildings and other seniors, for they have not been able to see their families. At this point, however, some are now able to visit outdoors.

Looking for the silver linings

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Preview

Looking for the silver linings

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Monday, May. 25, 2020

My husband and I travelled to Arizona to visit family and to enjoy some sun in February. Little did we know that when we came back our lives would never be the same.

Things escalated very quickly in March. Schools closed, businesses shut down. And we found ourselves, like the rest of the world, suddenly having to stay home.

Because I have a compromised immune system, I have to be even more careful. My husband is the one who stands in the long lineups at the grocery store in order to buy our groceries.

It has not been easy for any of us and we are grateful to those who must go out and work on the front lines. We hardly see our kids or our step-kids unless some of them happen to drop by and stand six feet away outside. We miss everyone.

Monday, May. 25, 2020

Times
Painting rainbows in windows has become a sign of support for front-line workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

There are many ways to lift your spirits

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There are many ways to lift your spirits

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Monday, Apr. 20, 2020

As I write this on Easter weekend I do not know how much longer the pandemic is going to have us isolating in our homes. No one does.

These are definitely difficult and anxiety-provoking times. And so I thought I’d make a list of things that hopefully might help people lift their spirits a wee bit. Maybe as a result they might even boost your immune systems too.

These are far from unique ideas but it doesn’t hurt to be reminded in these times. I know many of these have helped me:

Move. Go for a walk if you can. Any exercise. Or just dance — with your partner or by yourself. Turn the music up loud;Take deep breaths. A minimum of 10. Meditate. Rest;Tune out the constant anxiety streaming into your home. Listen to music; it’s so calming;Read a good book. Try to make it an uplifting one if you can;Connect with others by texting or through FaceTime or other technology. Or just pick up the phone;Get some fresh air. Even if you can only open a window;Eat healthy. Lots of fruits and vegetables. Drink water;Distract yourself with a new hobby, crossword puzzle, board game, a good movie, cooking, decluttering, and so on;Reframe your thoughts when they are negative. Instead of thinking, “I have to do this,” say “I get to do this.” For example, “I have to stay home,” can become “I get to stay home.” Many don’t;If you have little ones, focus on them. It will distract you and keep you busy. And of course, they need your love even more during these days;Plan your garden or just pots on a balcony or a window sill. Connect with nature somehow.Write down three things you are grateful for each day. Even if it is just a cup of coffee or a relaxing cup of tea;Put a teddy bear in your window for the kids to see when they walk by;And, of course, be kind. When this is all over we will be happier knowing that we have been above all else, kind. Call someone. Help someone. Cheer someone up.Soon, it will be warmer and we will at least be able to enjoy the sun on our doorsteps, in our yards or on our balconies. Or we can hopefully go for a little walk under blue skies, breathe in the smell of fresh cut grass, hear the birds singing and watch the trees blossoming.

Monday, Apr. 20, 2020

Photo by Cheryl Girard
Put a teddy bear in your window for kids to say as they walk by. Their reactions will make you feel good, too.

The importance of a healthy planet

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Preview

The importance of a healthy planet

Cheryl Girard - Community Correspondent 3 minute read Friday, Jan. 24, 2020

So many people are sick these days. It seems that I often bump into people who tell me about somebody new coming down with a rare autoimmune disease or some other chronic or serious illness.

People around my age and younger are being diagnosed with cancer. Some of these are children and young people just starting out in life.

I, myself, still struggle with an autoimmune condition. Despite taking three different types of medication I still fight a daily battle with my symptoms.

I dread eating as it is difficult to swallow and it is extremely frustrating. Not to mention the serious side effects from some of the medications.

Friday, Jan. 24, 2020

So many people are sick these days. It seems that I often bump into people who tell me about somebody new coming down with a rare autoimmune disease or some other chronic or serious illness.

People around my age and younger are being diagnosed with cancer. Some of these are children and young people just starting out in life.

I, myself, still struggle with an autoimmune condition. Despite taking three different types of medication I still fight a daily battle with my symptoms.

I dread eating as it is difficult to swallow and it is extremely frustrating. Not to mention the serious side effects from some of the medications.