Diane Laplante - In Memoriam
It is with sadness that we are letting you know of the passing of Diane Laplante.
She was a member of VAWBN with different businesses for a few years. She was the Norwex representative.
She was a positive woman with a great outlook on life and always happy and helpful.
She was strong and positive even throughout her illness. We have all been blessed to know her.
She will be missed and will remain in our hearts.
Our condolences to her family.
For those of you wishing to pay your respects, the details for the visitations and funeral service can be found at
Julie Daoust Top Dream Board
It is May 1998, I step off the plane in Hawaii, my all-time dream vacation destination and I realize that it was through the power of visualization that I earned this prestigious incentive trip awarded to only 2% of consultants for their party plan business development. "WOW! I will never miss another incentive trip, after this experience," I say to my husband who has accompanied me on this fabulous trip I earned.
This was the beginning of my new belief in myself and my potential to do, be and have more, which launched my journey and began my mentorship with our leader, Melanie Hayden-Sparks.
The #1 Success Tip I learned from Melanie was to spend time thinking and visualizing what I want by writing it down! Just wishing or dreaming of something will not make it a reality, so I choose to spend time annually in December to write out a letter to myself clearly detailed with my expectations of what I see for myself in the coming year as if it has already happened.
Once I know what I want I begin the creative process of cutting pictures and words that support my vision. I add a strong emotional why factor to keep me motivated which allows me to move beyond my fears to accomplish amazing things.
It is through the use of tools like affirmation cards and dream boards that has allowed me to realize many goals that would have remained dreams without a clear vision or purpose to focus on daily.
Today, I am so thrilled that I have the opportunity to observe many of our GradUit Network members move their dreams into reality through clear, focused goal setting and accountability to "Make IT Happen".
You too will become unstoppable when you take time to practice the power of visualization using the tools and techniques that create clarity, focus and drive.
Penny Lee Prevost
GradUit Network Chapter Coordinator www.graduitnetwork.comG+FacebookTwitter
Cell : 613-296-4078 Top Good Enough
According to Dmitry Fedotov, (author “Wedding Photography Guide”), the minimum equipment set for a decent photographer consists of two cameras with a full frame as a minimum– which can cost anywhere from $7,000 USD to $ 20,000 USD; four to five lenses of a professional series, covering the necessary focal ranges, from wide angle - for shots of large groups of people in an enclosed space; to the telephoto - capable of making an average, or large, portrait from 10-20 meters away (in excess of$10,000); and computer hardware (about $ 5,000). That’s a total cost of at least $ 30,000. And in practice, you can safely increase this amount five to fifteen times, depending on the different additional equipment needed, such as the studio, lighting, etc…
All this is not to mention that this person has studied, and gained experience, over a number of years. They have done a huge number of shoots, and have been able to perfect their unique, recognizable style of shooting and post-processing. Most
importantly, they have constantly grown in their professional plan, on an everyday basis improving the quality of their services! The main difference between the professional artist, and everyone else, is the irresistible desire to provide clients genuine, quality results even if the photographer needs to spend more time to
make it so.
Shooting wedding photography is a not only the process of taking the photos, which occupies only 5-10 per cent of the total time a photographer spends on his work. Final selection of photos, and creating the wedding book and CD can also
consume a lot of time. Post-processing work for one wedding can
take up to 4 to 30 weeks (speaking here of good wedding
Nevertheless, recently, I overheard a “photographer wannabee” extolling the virtues of using an IPad for their photo sessions. This “photographer wannabee” was stating that with the IPad, it was sooo….. simple as you did not have to remember or apply photographic concepts and that you simply took the photo and that the result was ‘good enough’ for a sale!
I don’t know what unsettled me more….the fact that this person was not interested and displayed disdain in learning concepts of photography or the fact that the photos, in this individual’s eyes, were considered ‘Good Enough’ and had no qualms about selling it to a customer directly from the IPad.
While surfing photographic websites recently, I came across a site discussing the subject of using an IPad for photographic work. It quickly became obvious to me when reading the various comments/remarks that this phenomenon is not going away anytime soon and that the professional photographer will soon be required to deal with this ‘competition’ in some manner.
After scouring through the comments, I came across a photographer, who displaying a great sense of humour, (yes there are some J) stated that using an IPad for photography is like ‘hammering an iron nail with a frozen banana..’’ OK maybe that's a bit extreme but why, I wondered, do people use an IPad for photography work, and even expect to be paid?
Could it be because as one photographer wrote, ‘’like most products available today that consumers clamor over, quality is no longer appreciated, understood or cared about’’...? It seemed to him that for the majority of the casual snapshot photographers, and even for those who expect to be paid for their work, that ‘’convenience significantly outweighs performance’’. Or as another photographer commented, ‘’today's age is all about doing things faster and easier rather than doing it better’’. In my opinion, these photographers seemed to have stumbled upon a troubling movement in the world of photography.
Furthermore, I also noted a perception by some of the photographers who think that there are fewer people interested in art of photography today, or own a camera as a large population base currently carries phones with built in cameras. It seems that for these people, there is no point in buying a separate camera because, as one individual put it, “a photo is a photo and nothing else”. According to this photographer, for this population group, the phone/IPad is their life, it has everything they need; it lets them use social media and google things; they can hear their music, play videos and games; and it will take photos and video as required. So why should they have the hassle of carrying along a separate camera? In further substantiating the comment that fewer people are interested in photography today, another photographer related to an experience he had when he participated at a recent photography convention where it seemed that it looked more like a 50th high school reunion.
When it comes to cameras and lenses, again, it seems that it's all about convenience over quality. Along with the assumption that there are fewer photographers today, it also seems that fewer photographers now own prime lenses as well as a tripod or a separate flash unit. Today, the perception by some professionals is that more and more photographer wannabees who have bought a camera, simply want to “sling a DSLR over their shoulder” with a supposedly ‘’all singing all dancing’’ zoom attached!
So, in conclusion, the rhetorical question for you the reader is this: How would you like your precious photography session accomplished? A photo session that was taken by a photographer who has invested considerable time in his/her education and also spent a substantial amount of money in top quality equipment; or a photo session taken by a fauxtographer with an IPad or other minimal low quality equipment and a ‘Good Enough’ attitude?
Finally, and in closing, I chuckled when reading about the photographer who was setting up a tripod and camera to take a long exposure of a waterfall when an “IPadder” promptly stood in front of him to film the waterfall that he had setup his equipment for. Being polite, he asked her to please move, upon which she said that since he was spoiling the shot for her, she would spoil it for him. It must have been funny to see this person, as she went to lean forward to take a different shot, fell into the river …IPad and all. So much for her computer and camera and whatever else was stored on her IPad. I wonder what the other photographers were thinking to themselves when they fished her out of the water? (Note: Except for the IPadder’s ego, there were no injuries).
On April 21st, Google changed the method it uses to rank websites in search results. The change commonly referred to as “Google’s Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update”, gives predominance to websites that are Mobile-Friendly.
What’s a Mobile-Friendly Site?
A mobile-friendly site is simply a website that is optimized for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Mobile-friendly sites are built to load quickly. They display only essential content and require minimal scrolling. The navigation and images automatically re-size based on screen sizes thus making it easy to read and easy to navigate. Mobile-friendly sites do not load animations created Adobe Flash or large videos that are slow in loading.
How are our Businesses Affected?
Thankfully for the business community, Google provided tools enabling us to assess our websites and make the required changes. The most commonly used tool; “Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test” allows us to simply enter our URL (web address) to receive our mobile-friendly status results. This tool can be found at: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/
In many non mobile-friendly sites, some issues encountered include: content that is too wide, text that is too large, links that are too close together, versions of Content Management Systems (CMS such as WordPress) that are outdated, missing security updates, poorly designed custom themes and navigation, re-directed links, etc. Google provides relevant technical notes on what the issues are and in some cases how the issues can be eliminated.
If your site is not currently mobile-friendly, you will be somewhat happy to hear that the algorithm change currently only affects mobile search rankings. In other words, your site will not appear in the list of sites found for someone searching with a mobile device BUT your site will keep its current ranking for everyone searching from a Desktop PC/MAC. There is a lot of speculation though that Google will apply its new algorithm for desktop ranking in the future.
With the proliferation of hand-held devices, mobile-friendliness is quickly becoming a priority for businesses seeking to be found on the web. Now’s the time to get to it and make our websites mobile-friendly. :)
3/4 cup (175 mL) butterscotch caramel sauce, divided
2 tbsp (30 mL) all-purpose flour
1 pkg (350 g) refrigerated pie crusts (2 crusts), softened according to package directions
12 caramels, unwrapped
1. Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C). Chop peanuts using Food Chopper; set aside. Cut peeled apples
lengthwise into quarters using Utility Knife. Lay each quarter cut side down; angle knife, cut out and
discard core. Coarsely chop apples with Food Chopper. Combine apples, 1/2 cup (125 mL) of the
caramel sauce and flour in Classic Batter Bowl; mix well using Small Mix ‘N Scraper. Microwave
on HIGH 5-6 minutes or until bubbling and thickened; stir and set aside.
2. Meanwhile, unroll one pie crust onto lightly floured Cutting Board. Spacing closely together, cut 12
disks from crust using outer tube of Measure-All Cup (nine around outside edge and three in
center). Press disks into wells of Deluxe Mini-Muffin Pan using Mini-Tart Shaper, ruffling edges.
Repeat with remaining crust.
3. Cut caramels in half; place one piece into each tart shell. Spoon apple mixture into tart shells;
sprinkle with peanuts. Bake 14-16 minutes or until edges of tartlets are golden brown. Remove
tartlets from pan to Stackable Cooling Rack. Drizzle with remaining 1/4 cup (50 mL) caramel sauce.
Yield: 24 servings
Per serving: Calories 120, Total Fat 4.5 g, Saturated Fat 1.5 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Carbohydrate 18 g, Protein
1 g, Sodium 125 mg, Fiber 1 g
Cook's Tip: To easily drizzle caramel sauce over tartlets, place resealable plastic bag into Measure-All Cup.
Pour caramel into corner of bag. Twist top of bag; secure with Twixit! Clip. Cut corner off tip of bag to allow
caramel to flow through.
Intergenerational Conflict at Work
Workplaces are facing many challenges. Not least of which is the fact that there are four generations working together in the same workplace. The traditionalists are the workers who lived through the depression and World War II. They created the post-war boom of the 1950s and 1960s. Having experienced the hardships of the Depression and the Second World War, Traditionalists are detail oriented, dislike conflict and prefer hierarchical structures. The Baby Boomers are those who were born in the post-war era – usually considered from 1943 to 1961. The Baby Boomers brought in the significant cultural changes in the 1960s and 1970s. As such Baby Boomers were at the forefront of change in the marketplace for decades. As a generation they are very optimistic. The Generation Xers are those who were born between 1962 and 1980. Gen-Xers adapt very quickly to technology and change. As a generation they value flexibility in the workplace as well as having a say in decision-making. The Gen Y’s are those who were born from 1981 to 2000. General Y’s or Millennials expect individual and regular feedback, clear direction at work, and expect a well-designed workplace that allows for both individual and team work. All of these generations have different expectations from their employers, ideas about work-life balance and general habits of getting the work done.
With so many different expectations on employers, how can employers and managers create an environment that will enhance meaningful participation of all employees? Set clear expectations of behaviour at work: define professionalism, define what you mean by providing excellent service, define acceptable attire and so on. Be consistent in enforcing these standards. Have different avenues of communication: some individuals prefer face to face communication regardless of age. Some individuals expect regular updates through social media. Set up private pages on Facebook or similar social meeting for teams to keep updated regularly. Communicate with your employees in different ways to appeal to different expectations. Feedback: Feedback is crucial to ensuring a person and a team’s performance. Create regular opportunities to provide everyone with feedback, not just once during their annual review. Negotiate workflows: There are different expectations of workflows and impacts. Negotiate with the team the roll out of their work to smooth out differences between members of the team and between the team and the organisation.
Above: Anne Warburton showing and selling her fibre art pieces at the 5th Annual Navan Fine Arts Exhibition and Sale held in April.
This event showcases original works by 14 artists, and this year's event also included 4 authors selling their books.
Above: Alison Finlayson of ACEmbroidery Plus, Jennifer Picard of Pampered Chef, Cindy Shea of Jamberry Nails, and Christine McIntonsh of Signature Home Style, supporting the Russell Public School's Spring Bazaar. All proceeds go to the school.