Posted Apr 2, 2014
What an amazing day Saturday was at the Simcoe branch of the Norfolk County Public Library! I was just blown away by the number of people that showed up! It’s so nice to see everyone all the time! I loved reading my couple of pages out of my book…what a weird yet incredible feeling! The most unbelievable thing though was when Bob Graczyk and his son showed up from the U.S.! You see, Mr. Graczyk is a Supervisor with the US Dept of Homeland Security and he is working closely with my team to make sure things go right on the other side of the border! We met the Graczyks at the Rotary International “SlapShot” Youth Conference last year and he offered to help me if I ever did another swim! Well, here he is and he came all the way to Simcoe to get a signed book Saturday! Now that is overwhelming to say the least! As time goes on we will fill everyone in on all the incredible things he has done for us already on the US side of the border! To say the least, I will be VERY safe from Erie to the border on my swim ! Another highlight was having the swimmers I coach at NHAC come and have me sign their books! I bet I was excited by that as they were! And don’t kid yourself, these kids are getting VERY good!!! Thanks to Heather and all her staff for hosting the launch and having me as this year’s ambassador for “Norfolk’s Teens Write For Fun!” contest! It’s such an honour to represent something that allows us to share or dreams and hopes with others!! Also, a HUGE thanks to Duane Rutter for playing for me the entire time Saturday! I hope that warmed you up for the Lake Erie marathon ! This week’s events include an appearance on CHCH Morning Live on Friday at 8:20am so I hope you can tune in for that! Also, I will be hitting Norfolk Library #2 of my Norfolk Library Signing Tour in Port Dover during the Norfolk Authors’ Book Fair! I will be signing and selling books, as well as some of my Radical Crossing Swag :), from 1 to 3pm Saturday afternoon! Hope to see you all there at the NEW Port Dover Branch of the NCPL!! My book is also available at the Annaleise Carr Aquatic Centre, the Simcoe Branch of the NCPL, and the Waterford Museum! Training! I am really starting to focus and settle in now! Trent, my coach, has sped me up considerably, and I even feel it when I’m running! I had an amazing run tonight, after practices before and after school in the pool! I am now putting 13 to 15 hours in the pool each week plus my running and other exercises! As well, I’m also trying out for my school’s soccer team, so lots of running there too! I’m very happy with where I’m at, but I can’t wait for the lake to thaw and warm up! I just want to get out there soooo bad!!! Next blog I want to look at my sponsors, as without them, I just can’t do this! Same with my team!! They are so dedicated and determined and they need to be recognized and that’s why very soon you will see a new page on this website that has a short profile on everyone of them! So one last story before I go to bed! There is a school group that swims before me on Tuesday afternoons and they’ve learned now that I will be showing up after school for my training each week! So each week there is always something that will happen that’s very cute and very humbling! This week some of the kids had my book there for me to sign! I just love doing this for the kids and hope they are encouraged by it and want to help other! The first half hour of my workout is always kind of funny too as I spend much of it waving at the kids as they stay around to watch me swim! If any of you are reading this, thank you so much for making me feel so good and making me want to try even harder to be prepared to swim across the lake …for Camp Trillium, and for my home…Norfolk County!! Good Night EVERYONE! xo
Posted Mar 28, 2014
Well, we finally got our books on Tuesday and Wednesday for the book signing this Saturday from 1-3pm at the Simcoe Branch of the Norfolk County Public Library! It’s so weird to hold this book that has your name on it! I’m very happy with it though! It says what I want it to say…I hope it inspires others to do what they love and use it to help others, kinda’ like my crew helped me! I also hope the book will encourage yet others who may be going through a tough time to keep on battling and know that nothing is impossible! Award winning author, and my friend, Deborah Ellis was amazing to work with! She made the entire process so easy really! It was fun to tell her my stories and work on getting my message out on paper! I have to thank another of my very good friends, His Honour, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, David Onley (whose wife, Ruth Ann, was originally from Simcoe and went to school with my grandma), for agreeing to write the forward for the book! I am incredibly honoured that he agreed to take the time to do this for me! It’s incredible when I read it just how well it suits the entire book! I also have to thank all my crew and my family! All the work everyone is doing to promote this book and my upcoming swim is incredible! It all fits so perfectly with my logo and the AC water drop hitting the water and making ripples! The more of us that do good things for other people, the better place this world will be to live! I’m just a 4’10” little 16 year old girl who was able to accomplish something incredible because of all the help I’ve had for my 16 years of life! However, from that we’ve been able to raise thousands of dollars for Camp Trillium, for kids and families who fight a way harder battle than a 27 hour swim across Lake Ontario! THEY are HEROES!! They never give up, and sometimes people don’t really care! But I do, and I want to continue to help people! God did bless me with this ability to swim for a long time, and He blessing me with a sister who help me come up with the idea and convince my parents to start marathon swimming for others! Not everyone can do this, but everyone can do SOMETHING! My very good friend, Shane Feldman, who is the founder of Count Me In Canada and is one of the top 20 under 20 year olds in Canada (and I’m honoured to have him on my crew as part of my Media & Promotions Group), uses a saying that youth are not only the future, youth are the present! I want to challenge all youth out there to find something they love, work hard at it, don’t stand for the word “NO”, and use it to help out others!! The same goes for anyone else! Do something you love and find a way to help others with it!
Okay, I’ll move on to something else. Don’t want to be too bossy ! I’m doing my grade 10 literacy testing at school right now. It really isn’t that bad! I like to write (obviously with writing a book) so it was pretty good! It’s funny how nervous we all get for testing and this like this. I know I get SOOOOO nervous right before I do speaking engagements! That may sound silly because I do so many, but I can’t help it! One thing I’ve found is that I can control it better and it does go away as I start speaking about my message! Next though is the drivers test…can’t wait!
So it’s only 4 months until the Lake Erie attempt! I really want to thank my Norfolk Hammerhead teammates that keep coming out and training with me on my extra training days! I really wasn’t expecting it, but I sure do love it!! Trent has been so amazing and he is really working on my speed too! Anyhow, speaking of the Hammerheads…5:30am practice comes fast so I’d better sign off for now! Thanks again for reading and I hope to see EVERYONE at my book launch Saturday!!
Posted Mar 19, 2014
Costa Rica was amazing! It was an experience I will never forget! Spiders! Monkeys! Sea Turtles! Snakes! Zip lining through the rainforest! White water rafting! What a place! Even got to see Meagan in Texas on our long long layover ! Now I’m so tired though! But it’s back to workouts and training for my Lake Erie swim!
Also today was the long awaited release of my book which I wrote along with award winning author, and fellow Norfolk Countian, Deborah Ellis!! Another very cool thing about the book is that the forward was written by the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, David Onley!!! What an honour to have such amazing people involved in this project, kind of like the amazing crew/team I have for my attempt at Lake Erie and for spreading my message about the water drop and ripple effect!!!! I really hope everyone likes the book!? It does look at my journey across Lake Ontario, but there is a lot of other things too!
I know this is a very short post, but I am just exhausted still from the Costa Rica trip! We didn’t get to Simcoe until 4am on Monday! So, I’m going to sign of, but don’t forget to come to my official book launch Saturday, March 29th from 1-3pm! Duane Rutter will be providing some music and a prelude to his marathon guitar concert on the Port Dover beach while I swim toward him across Lake Erie! Pick up a copy of my book and I’ll even sign it if you’d like! Anyhow, good night everyone !
BOOK LAUNCH INVITATION (2)
Posted Mar 6, 2014
I got my braces off yesterday!!!! WOW does it ever feel weird!! But my teeth look great and I really have to thank Dr. Fard of the Simcoe Dental Clinic, and he also comes on as a sponsor for my swim this coming summer!!! He’s so awesome!! It’s been very busy!! Last Friday morning on CityTV’s Breakfast Television was so much fun…even though it was very early!! If you missed it here is the link: Today I was on Peace Fund Radio on LA Talk Radio with John Bierly, Adrian Paul and Ethan Dettanmaier and was their “Hero of the Week” for a second time!! I was on their show back in January 2013 as their very first “Hero of the Week”, so today was very cool!! I love that I get the chance to tell others about Camp Trillium and why I continue to do these swims!! Here is the link to my segment:
So, I’m still training and trying to put on weight (I lost over 10 pounds on my last swim). I’m heading off to Costa Rica on Saturday with my school and I even have workouts from my coach for my time down there! I can’t wait to go!! My book got delayed a bit, but it will be out March 18th and the big book launch at the Norfolk County Public Library in Simcoe is March 29th from 1-3pm and I hope to see you all there!!! There are a lot of other events I will be a part of or speaking at or signing books at and it’s going to be busy and fun! PLEASE help Camp Trillium and help sponsor my swim!! I’ll fill you in on Costa Rica when I get back!! There are so many incredible things happening that I will fill everyone in on in the coming weeks!!! It’s so exciting and I thank everyone for supporting me and Camp Trillium!! Good night for now!!!
Posted Feb 24, 2014
So, this morning I got to watch the Canadian Men’s hockey team show their absolute dominance in hockey!! Between that and the Women’s game, what a way to end another great Olympics for CANADA! As a national ambassador for Canadian Tire Jumpstart I have to congratulate all my fellow ambassadors! I was even blessed to be featured in Sportsnet Magazine’s Jumpstart Edition with a couple of multiple gold medalists!!
Special thanks to Canadian Tire President Martha Billes for having me as a part of this amazing group!!!
As for me, I’m really getting back into the swing of things now! Back to running with the North Shore Runners and working hard with Trent and the Norfolk Hammerheads aquatic Club! Thanks to Norfolk County for the extra hours I am now getting to train!!
My book gets released next Saturday and that is going to be a weird feeling I’m sure when I get to hold a copy! I just can’t believe the time is almost here, and I hope everyone can join us for the book launch on March 29th at the Simcoe Branch of the Norfolk Public Library!!
In the near future I’m going to start doing some video blogs, which will be different! I’m a bit nervous about it, but it will likely be better than typing !
I’m going to sign off for tonight, but I’ll be back with another blog/update very soon!