It's hard to believe that we moved to Thorndale from London in late April 1996. As both of my children eventually attended Leesboro PS, I found myself volunteering a fair bit. I helped with facilitating the Chess Club, supported our son in participating in school plays and created graduation videos for both the children's grade 8 graduation class. We were so happy with the school and community and to this day feel blessed that they had a happy, safe environment to grow up in.
My husband was a Scouts leader when there was one in Thorndale, and often he couldn't make it back from Toronto to attend a Scouts meeting. I often stood in for him and will never forget being greeted at those meetings by all the cubs as "Mrs. Rusty". My husband and I have always believed in the fact that it takes a village to raise a child and were there for many kids who we felt needed an extra hand.
I was also a member of the Thorndale Revitalization Committee, where we were headed by Ralph Stephens and Bill Ross who fought to separate our needs from the whole of Thames Centre. Through the RED grant, we were able to implement the light standards on main street as well as all the trees planted there. I designed and created the banners on the light standards as well as design and supervision of the making of the Wye Creek Park sign next to the hardware store. I have had one of my paintings over the fireplace at the Thorndale Library since it was expanded from it's former self.
I remember being on lots of Christmas and Fall Fair floats representing either the Scouts or Leesboro PS. Going tobogganing in the winter with the Cubs and supporting the Sparks with their fundraising efforts.
As my children attended university, I have been less involved but I am very proud of I Love Thorndale and how it is offering a real community connection to all residents. From my days with the Thorndale Revitalization Committee, I know how important it is for Thorndale to set itself apart from Dorchester. I hold no ill will to them in any way as they have a vibrant business community. It's just that I feel Thorndale needs to stand on own. When I first heard of the start of ILT, I told them that they were an important part of the community and wanted them to be very successful.
I have started advertising my company with ILT and offer my help in any way to continue to make it a vital part of the community. It is exciting to know that Thorndale is growing and it is becoming more feasible for me to focus on Thames Centre and area to grow my business.
This local focus will also allow me volunteer again and be more active in the community.
I am a very blessed person. Throughout my life I have always been allowed to follow my creative dreams. It is difficult for me to think that we have been in our dream home for over 5 years now. We took 2 years to design and almost 2 years to build our home that essentially was placed in the middle of a corn field with no water or electricity. We were the general contractors on the build and it was definitely a labour of love.
Within this past month, I was speaking to my good friend and neighbour Sharyl, and I was thinking about the work that I wanted to do. She spoke up and reminded me that when we built our home, I created an art studio above the garage with lots of light and double sink for cleaning brushes to teach art from home. I have been looking beyond my backyard and as the book The Alchemist states, sometimes you don't need to look further than that.
The other part of me misses teaching. I taught for 10 years from design foundations to digital design. I not only taught but was a curriculum developer, creating courses from scratch. I still have a lot of passion for teaching and so I have started to position myself to teach art/design and computer graphic software from my home. I live in Thames Centre, just north east of London which has a population of about 17,000 people. Thorndale itself, where I live, has 2 new subdivisions slated to be built within the next 1-3 years. These are all other reasons to focus in my backyard.
I am still a designer and artist, two things that I will always be doing because I am passionate about them. Being on my own since 2002 from a work perspective, I realize that an office job outside my home is not the best option for me because I am used to being on my own and I really enjoy it.
Our home also lends itself to be a bed and breakfast and could be a location for art retreats. My husband and I have agreed that we want to leverage this beautiful location.
So now I look forward to this next year as my business grows. It is interesting that Paint Nights are so popular right now. I have already hosted one and have 2 more in November that are booked. Diversification is something that I thrive on and love the fact that I am often doing very divergent things.
I thank my family for their constant support. Without them, like many other entrepreneurs, I would not be able to follow my interests and passions.
I am so excited for the future. Wish me luck!
Moving forward with offering classes from my studio, I considered what the best method would be for my clients to make payments. I myself, have been paid through email cash transfer this past year and I thought on just how simple it is and wanted to share the process. .
"Interac e-Transfer is a convenient way to send and receive money directly from one bank account to another. All you need is access to online or mobile banking through a participating financial institution, and you can send money to anyone with an email address or mobile phone number and a bank account in Canada — without sharing any personal financial information".- Interac website
There is also a great article from the Globe and Mail.
I realize that this could be a real mind shift for many who haven't taken advantage of this process. It could help your payment options in general in your life for whatever you need to pay for. The part that I like the most is the ease and security. Have a look for yourself!
I have provided links below of some of the major banks.
If your bank isn't listed, just check online to see how it is done.
This blog is to showcase my ongoing work.