About Me

You may notice that some of the comments make no sense. I decided with the passage of time I should make my About Page reflect the person I have become rather than the person I was. Some of the comments are from long ago like over three years ago. When I started this blog I was on sick leave from my teaching job, newly disabled with MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivities), had just purchased a new camera and had no idea what I should blog about. I’m not sure what I’ll blog about on any given day but here are a few possibilities.

monarch butterfly flowers garden2


Having MCS makes it difficult being around toxic chemicals from car exhaust, dryer vents, humans wearing fragrances (the list goes on and on) … so I spend a lot of time walking on nature trails. I discovered along the way that I love nature photography. I have had no training. I use an automatic Nikon camera. And I have the philosophy if one takes enough photos then a few are going to be great. Here are a few of my current favorites. Not because they deserve awards but because I had fun taking them. (click to enlarge)


When I first became disabled I felt invisible. I blog about MCS so others who have been diagnosed know they are not alone. To raise awareness about the undisclosed legally used toxic chemicals in our everyday products — so that you can make an informed decision. For companionship. MCS is a very isolating illness. Some people are so ill that they cannot leave their homes at all.

fuzzy mouthed wood duck north bayLOVE AND PEACE

Having MCS I was left with two paths to choose from: anger and resentment or love and peace. I chose the latter. In fact, I wrote a blog post a day about love for an entire year.

beaver I think Lake NeatahwantaLAW OF ATTRACTION/MANIFESTING

I write about this because it is such an integral part of my life and because I really really wish someone had explained the basic rules of the universe to me when I was younger. It would have made life so much simpler if I’d known I had some real say as to how my life is going to unfold each day.

Sunset Lake Ontario3ACIM (A Course in Miracles) — Jesus — God — Infinite Intelligence….

I do touch on spiritual stuff on my blog. Please understand that I believe each and every person has their own spiritual path and I’m not trying to change your path. I’m sharing my journey.

Peace and Love,







32 thoughts on “About Me”

  1. Reminds me of a quote of Mr. Noyes,retired Industrial Arts teacher who lived on Lake Ontario and opened his grounds to college students like myself playing frisbee, swimming and enjoying his gardens. Noyes donated much of his land to the Audubon Society and left this engraved in stone marking his dog Elsies’ grave “there is so much beauty if you can see it”

  2. This professor likes the picture slideshows!

  3. I realized that I put the wrong link in to my blog post. http://allergictolifemybattle.wordpress.com/2013/11/26/dragons-loyalty-award/

  4. I’ve been reading quite a few MCS blogs over the last few months. I was wondering if you’ve done a post about how non-MCS-safe households could make a reasonably painless transition to low toxicity? My family doesn’t use perfume/aftershave, fabric softener, air fresheners or febreze but we use plenty of other everyday products that would probably curl your toes. I’m wondering how to prioritize what’s left – things like deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, bathroom cleaner, laundry liquid and incense. Our soap claims to be unscented but is that to be trusted? What are the biggest offenders? What do I replace them with, given that we’re on a very tight budget? I know this is a big topic but I thought you might be able to point me in the right direction…

    • I started a whole series of posts to answer this question — so far my first post is mostly general but I tried to answer about the priority part and other bloggers that have some great suggestions. The post was getting really long so I’ll do shorter posts with the different categories — personal care, cleaning… Most of the products I substitute with are a lot cheaper that what I used to use — however some are more expensive. Overall my dad says he is saving money with the switches I’ve had him make. It may take me a couple of days to get them all posted so keep the questions coming and I will adjust accordingly. I hope with this post maybe some people can make suggestions for some things that I would like to find cheaper alternatives for. Thanks 😀

      • I look forward to reading them. And I hope you get some suggestions too. I’m not sure whether the same commercial products will be available here in Ireland. I’m hoping you have recipes for homemade alternatives (or links to them).
        Thanks, I really appreciate it. I hope plenty of other people will benefit from the information too.

  5. I have nominated you for a Liebster Award. Here is the link that tells you what to do. Have fun!


  6. FYI – I saw an article in the paper about kids getting headaches when they go back to school. The article mentioned stress, lack of sleep, change of diet, etc. I wrote a letter to the reporter and told her about chemical sensitivity and how that could also be a cause of headaches and respiratory problems. She (the medical reporter) replied immediately and mentioned she understands because she gets headaches when she walks in department stores. She also mentioned AXE and what kids classrooms must smell like. She said she will keep this topic in mind for a future story. I hope she does do a story. Considering that she is a person who is affected by fragrance, I think there is a good likelihood that a story of some sort will appear in the future.

    • Excellent. I wonder how much pain and medical cost for treatments of that pain could be saved just by kids leaving off the synthetic fragrances? I tried to walk through the park today by the high school. I had to turn around. One teenager was loaded with “fragrance” and the other was smoking. Maybe the reporter might even do an interview with you about your issues with MCS to raise public awareness?

      • I just think it would be great to get some information in a place that the average joe citizen will see it. We see a lot of MCS stuff because we have looked for it. We need information to get to people who aren’t looking for it.

        I think teenagers and little old ladies are the worst fragrance offenders. The hair products many teenagers use on top of their fragrances really clobber me.

      • With no stats to back me up — I think the biggest increase in “fragrance” wearers are teenage boys. I base this on my childhood and when I first started teaching. I agree on the getting the info out — even though an increasing amount of people seem to know about it when I mention my issue with chemical sensitivities.

      • People are more aware that people are sensitive to stuff but it does surprise them what people are sensitive to. I’ve seen the surprised looks when I mention air fresheners, laundry products, etc. You know what I mean. They thought perfume was the only offending chemical. I like to see the light go on when they start processing the information and then they say something like “everything has added fragrance”. Yep! Don’t we KNOW it. 🙂

      • So true. A neighbor was discussing with disbelief that at the place he works they are required to add a warning sticker to their permanent markers. The comment went something like: “Isn’t that ridiculous? Who would get sick from a marker?” My parents immediately pointed to me.

      • It’s a whole new thought to some people that chemicals can literally make people sick. The latest I ran into is scented toilet paper. Who in the world needs or wants scented toilet paper. And who in the world would want to expose a sensitive part of their body (or their children’s bodies) to petroleum products and hormone disrupters. I wrote a letter to the toilet paper company. I am switching brands because their unscented tp was contaminated from the scented stuff.

      • I am grateful for all those letters you are writing on behalf of those of us — choosing to not expose ourselves to toxic chemicals but continue to be exposed from second, third or fifty-third hand cross contamination from other products or people touching or near the unscented stuff. It would be lovely if stores were open where NO SCENTED products were sold at all so we didn’t have to worry if the unscented paper towels were picking up the scent from the fabric softener two aisles over.

      • To me it is starting to feel like there are the “lets put scents in everything” people and “I don’t want anything scented” people. The research says the latter is healthier but those in the former group aren’t listening and refuse to give up their smelly chemicals.

      • It seems like how some people quit smoking. Some just it is bad for their health and walk away and others pick a date and then smoke as much as they can in anticipation of having to give it up.

    • Isn’t Invisible Illness Awareness Week coming up — that would be great timing for the reporter to do an article?

      • Yes, you’re right. That would be a great time for a story. I often wonder how many illnesses would be a lot less severe if we just eliminated or at least reduced the toxic chemicals in our world.

      • As more research is being done it seems to be a lot of them. Even if the toxic chemicals aren’t the direct cause image you have a virus or say cancer your body is fighting off and and then a poison was introduced into you body. It would seem logical that your body is now fighting on multiple fronts to get rid of foreign substances thereby reducing it’s chances of being successful at eliminating any of them. I’ve no proof of this but it does seem to be logical to me.

      • I understand that logical thinking. Many people think that just walking away from the offending chemical makes me all better. They don’t realize that there is a recovery time. In fact, sometimes I forget that too and wonder why I’m not functioning well or why I am always exhausted.

      • Wow. Do I understand that. Sometimes it can take hours or days before the symptoms show up and then it can take equally as long for the toxic chemicals to work out of my body. This makes it obviously very difficult to know exactly what the offending exposure was.

      • I was curious so I looked it up. FYI Invisible Illness Awareness Month this year is Sept 28 – Oct 4.

  7. Ms Colleen – We were wondering if your kitties would like to be interviewed for the April edition of Cat Forum. They would need to answer a few questions and send in a few pictures. We apologize for not using their names (Mom’s memory isn’t working today.) If they are not interested, it isn’t a problem. Thank you. Snoops and Kommando Kitty from Cheeseland

  8. Happy Holidays Colleen! I hope everything is well with you!
    It has been so long since you’ve shared anything.
    I think about you often!

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