Bits and Bites of Everyday Life


Dare to be silly! Dare to have fun! (It's good for you)

“A laugh is a smile that bursts” Mary H. Waldrip

True North Perspective

Alberte Villeneuve-Sinclair is the author of The Neglected Garden and two French novels. Visit her website to learn more

  And a child shall play with them: Spencer holds Captain America.

The past two weeks have been a bit of an emotional rollercoaster. The loss of my beloved sister-in-law, Arline, had me seesawing between wonderful memories shared together and being deeply aware that she is gone forever. After sending my article last week, I cried.

Jacques called a few minutes later and asked, “How are you?” I redirected the question: “How are YOU?” He answered “Fine!” and asked if I was crying. Afraid to open the dam, I just said, “Talk to me!” He did! I don’t recall what he said but the first thing I knew we were laughing and I felt good again.
Life is an endless series of challenges. One problem solved, another one presents itself … and you didn’t see it  coming. Your best intentions are often sidetracked by more urgent matters. For example, now that my veranda is repaired, I need to rebuild some of my flowerbeds but lately my daughter has had to take little Jessie to see the family doctor, dermatologist and allergist a few times. Jessie has developed severe eczema and has been diagnosed with milk allergies. This has required that I be available for babysitting and chauffeur services at short notice. I know first hand how it feels to be left alone to cope with everything and I wouldn’t dream of letting my daughter and grandchildren down but at one point, one needs to relax and have some fun.
In an interesting article in the June issue of Good Housekeeping Gretchen Rubin admits that many people don’t know how to have fun, many people feel as though they don’t have any time for fun. My dad was a bit like that! His favourite saying was, “There’s work to be done!” I remember having to hide in order to read during the summer. I would switch jobs with my brother or sister, supervising the cows in the summer pasture along the river, in order to read. Mind you, I would sometimes find the cows had strayed and I’d have to round them up again, but it was worth it.
Fun isn’t complicated nor does it cost a lot of money. I marvel at the way children have fun with just about anything. I babysat Spencer yesterday afternoon. He immediately went to the toy box, pulled out a few toys and imagined a story that had him laughing and telling me about the knight and the bad guys and everything else.
I agree with Gretchen when she says that a happy atmosphere is not merely created by the absence of nagging and yelling, it includes making time to be silly. She goes on to talk about the phenomenon called “emotional contagion” where we unconsciously catch emotions from others – good moods and bad moods. So taking time to be silly and creating genuine fun is important because we literally infect each other with good cheer.
Michael J. Fox who, incidentally, turned fifty says that an important part of his life is saving some time to be “goofy”. Act like a teenager or a child again! Sing and dance! Enjoy a tease, play games! Do something out of the ordinary! My grandchildren are pros at being goofy and I love it! Jacques has retained a wonderful, boyish laughter that I truly enjoy.
Last Sunday morning, as I recalled dreaming of losing my two front teeth, I told Jacques I immediately checked my teeth when I woke up. He replied, with a devilish smile, he had checked his teeth too and had found them on the night table. We burst out laughing! A good start to a day that led us to Merrickville where the biggest car show I’ve ever seen was held! We had a terrific time! We had fun!
Robert Fulghum once said: “Be aware of wonder. Live a balanced life – learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.” I agree!
Blessings! Have fun!
I leave you with another image from the Merrickville auto show, this one by Catherine Ivory, a local photographer. She can be reached via email at Her website is


There is a man in Alfred, I believe...that has a gift for curing eczema and I do, believe in gifts.  I can try to find his name.  He cured a friend's child and the mother was amazed.

Dear Angela,


That would be wonderful! I believe in special gifts... I believe in miracles! Please send the information along.

Merci Alberte!

It's important, if we want to attain our goals, to give place to laughter. Healthy and necessary. Thank you for reminding us to play all the notes on our piano of life. No symphony possible if we always play the same tune.

Bonne journée, un brin de folie avec ça? Spencer is a beautiful child.

I see her on Tuesday and shall ask.

Hi Alberte,

I am finally at Kiwi...

If you are interested in the sculpture show at the KIWI Gardens this summer, you might want to visit

Merci, Lysette!

You are so right! When life takes you down a rough road, don't get bogged down. Whistle while you travel on your way to a better spot and bring a true friend who understands where you are and where you're going.

P.S. We are truly blessed with wonderful grandchildren. Yours are a baker's dozen strong, if I recall!





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