Saturday, June 23, 2012

Today, we had a Council training session from 9AM until 12:30 at which point, we were taken on a bus tour of the City, including several stops.

The first stop was at the Millidgeville Fire Station where we were given a fascinating demonstration of the Hazmat services that our Saint John Firefighters are able to provide. We then watched the firefighters use their equipment to take a car apart in order to get an injured person out without further injuries. (The “person” was, of course, a dummy…..)

From there, we went on to the Carleton Community Centre where we were given a tour, which include a cheerleading demonstration, a tour of their food bank, a demonstration of Zoomers exercise routine, and a look around the health care facilities. Did you know that you could have your blood taken over there? I had no idea. They have so many things going on in there. It was amazing.

We drove around the South End and then headed over to the new Waste Water Treatment Centre on Red Head Road. This is a state-of-the-art facility and very interesting to see.

This evening, a group of us who had graduated from Millidgeville North High School in the years 71, 72, 73 and 74, met for dinner at SPLASH before going on to LEGENDS for a social evening. Not being too comfortable in bars, I didn’t know what to expect at Legends, but it was very nice, with big leather chairs, and several of us sat around chatting for about an hour. Most people stayed longer, but I must admit, it had been a long day, so I went home to bed!!! (Hope nobody thought I was a party pooper…  I was just pooped!!)

Friday, June 22, 2012

I had a meeting at City Hall from 1PM until 3PM, followed by another meeting there at 3PM, a reception at 4PM and another reception/ceremony at 5:30PM.

There were a number of Diamond Jubilee medals awarded and I was happy to be on hand to congratulate all the recipients!

In addition, Mrs. Erminie Cohen was awarded the Order of New Brunswick medal at the same ceremony. I was happy to be there and pleased to be on hand to see my friend retired Senator Cohen receive her special award.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Catch Up Day

This morning, I got caught up on paperwork and emails. The emails seem to “breed” and I am afraid to delete them without going over them once again. I have them on my Council blackberry, and when I need to print them, I email them from there over to my desktop computer, and then I print them and file them. It is quite a process. I am sure that other people do things much more efficiently!!

I had the chance to catch up with my friend Eva, to have lunch. It was the first time we had gotten together since the election, so it was great to see her. She has a very demanding work schedule and does not get a lunch hour, so we have to get together when she has a day off.

My mom came for supper and brought Lemon Squares!

This evening, I had the opportunity to meet with a former City employee who was kind enough to give me some direction and education on the pension issues from the point of view of an employee. I learned a lot.

It was a good day.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Old North End Woes

I was up doing paperwork and computer work from about 6AM. Still rushing to get it done. I will start earlier tomorrow. Really need to get caught up!!

I had received a phone call yesterday from a Property Manager to ask me what the City could do for her client who had properties in the Old North End and had experienced some vandalism etc.

I checked with the City, and there is really not a lot that the City can do. The police cannot post a 24 hour guard on a building, of course, and so the landlord/owner must take responsibility for ensuring that his/her building is secure.

Regardless, the property manager really wanted me to come and meet with her client, so I went. We had a nice chat, and I made a lot of suggestions, although the suggestions take money and I don’t know if he will consider doing them or not.

I wish that the Old North End could go back to how it was there when I was a kid. Victoria Street, in particular, was such a beautiful street.

Main Street and Bridge Street are some of our few remaining waterfront streets. We need a wealthy visionary to go in there and buy up the waterfront homes and gentrify them. A lot of them are Victorian homes and have so much potential. Once the perimeter of the Old North End is cleaned up, the gentrification will spread inward, I think……. Victoria Square is so nice……

Following that meeting, I had lunch with a favourite guest of Chipman Hill Suites.

From there, I went on to the Kennebec Nursing Home to discuss some plans that they have. I had received an email this morning asking if I could stop by some day next week, but no time like the present, so I asked if I could go this afternoon, and they said “yes”, so I went. It is a very nice place and they have some great ideas, which I heartily support.

I got an appointment with my podiatrist, Dr. Stephen Johnson, this afternoon at 3PM. It was a cancellation. I love to go to Dr. Johnson’s office as they always let me have cancellations which is great for them, as they have the spot filled, and great for me as I don’t have to make the appointment weeks in advance and then worry that I am going to forget to go!!

I do, of course, have a paper schedule book, and I SHOULD take advantage of the scheduling feature on my blackberry, but I am not confident enough that what I put there will still BE there…….I am really going to have to move into the present day IT-wise in the near future. (Oh me of little faith!!)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Sewer Lessons!

The amount of paperwork and computer work that goes with being a Councillor is truly daunting. I am sending emails and other information that come in on my blackberry over to my desktop computer from whence I print and file them. I know that 95% of what goes into a file is never looked at again, and someday, I am going to learn to file on the computer and not print at all, but I am always afraid that I am going to lose something or forget about it if I don’t have a hard copy.

I have a large bulletin board beside my desk and I print the invitations/appearances etc. that I am planning to attend, and line them up, highlighted, in chronological order! I am so afraid that I am going to get busy and forget something I had promised to do or forget to go somewhere I had promised to go!

There has been some flooding in the Millidgeville area (basements) and it has been extremely upsetting and costly for many people. The City had a presentation this afternoon at the RKYC to tell everyone their plans for separating the storm sewers from the sanitary sewers and doing some other work in hopes of stopping the flooding.

Of course, I wanted to know HOW MANY and HOW MUCH and WHEN and WHAT IS WORST CASE SCENARIO and WHAT IS BEST CASE SCENARIO and not all of these answers were available.

 Councillor MacKenzie was there as well.

The Citizens seemed pleased that we attended.

I was so tired after the endurance test last night, that I couldn’t go out again. I had really wanted to attend Joshua Thompson’s meeting on Partridge Island. Sorry, Joshua.

Monday, June 19, 2012

Happy Birthday Edward!

Today is my husband’s birthday. We celebrated it yesterday with family and friends. Sixteen for dinner on our deck. Lots of cards and nice gifts for Edward. It is always tough when your birthday and a special occasion fall together. (Like the person whose birthday is on Christmas Day……..). I feel badly that most fathers  get a celebration for Father’s Day and then another for their birthday, but Edward only gets one, so I try to make it extra special.

I went to an announcement at the Community Garden in Crescent Valley this afternoon. Councillor MacKenzie was there, also. Minister Trevor Holder came and made an nice funding announcement to support Community Gardens and other initiatives to reduce the amount of worry that people have about getting enough food. It was a great idea, and I hope that people will get on board!

Council was today.

It started at 4PM and we got out JUST BEFORE MIDNIGHT! We really need to make some changes as it should not be an endurance test every Monday!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

WEDDING SHOWER, SHOPPING, FAMILY COMING = BUSY DAY
STILL COUGHING = MISERABLE

I woke up to the sound of the birds at 5AM, but didn’t venture out of bed until just before 6AM

Edward had a gentleman coming for a Saturday morning meeting, so I made some blueberry muffins and some raspberry muffins to serve hot when he arrived.

I have a wedding shower at 1PM. I will stop by and take my gift, but I won’t stay to cough on people!

I think that they will appreciate the gift and my ABSENCE!!

I have been sooooooo busy with Council, I hardly have any food in the house.

Tomorrow is Father’s Day, and we also celebrate my husband’s birthday (as it is on Monday). The family is coming from Nova Scotia (arriving this evening), so I had better get out and get some food!! Fortunately, the gifts are here and hidden away in the basement where he would never think to look, and he does not read my blog!!!

Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers out there. Wish I could say “Happy Father’s Day” to my own dad.

Miss you Daddy.

Friday, June 15, 2012

REST IN PEACE, EDWINA WILCOX

When I was younger and single, I had an older lady who kept house for me. She was one of those “other mothers” that some of us are fortunate enough to have. In addition to keeping house for me, she “convened” the dinners which accompanied some of our music recitals, and kept us all in line.

Edwina started becoming forgetful and moved into Kennebec Manor a few years ago. I saw her twice in the last few weeks, and although she didn’t know me now, I think that perhaps she knew that she had known me well in the past.

She passed away on Wednesday, and her funeral was this morning. It was a very nice funeral, at Brenans, with Rev. Walter Perry of the First Wesleyan Church officiating, and Mrs. Nancy Chedore giving a wonderful eulogy. I cried buckets.

I was supposed to be attending a BBQ at Key Industries at noon, but the funeral had just gotten out, and I really didn’t feel like attending the event with red eyes and red nose, so Councillor Donna Reardon attended and passed along my regrets. Thank you, Donna.

Do you remember that Dinner Club I mentioned to you earlier in my blogs? Well, tonight was the neighbours’ turn. They put on a wonderful dinner, we were so happy to attend.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

HOW FUN WAS THIS??

As Councillors of the Week this week, Councillor Donnie Snook and I had the honour and pleasure of being able to hand out cheques to a number of community organizations who are doing great work here in Saint John.

I was just in my element! I had a wonderful time.

These people do so much with so little money, it was just wonderful to hand them these cheques.

The event was held in the Ludlow Room on the 8th Floor. (It used to be called “The Red Room”, but they changed the colour and the name a few years ago…..I have a hard time not to call it “The Red Room”, but I will do better!!)

One thing I would like to change for next year is that this event started at noon and we did not offer lunch to the participants. I don’t know if I was “supposed” to do this or not, but I promised them lunch the next time we have one of these events!!

This evening, I had a BBQ at our home for 12 people. It was fun. Edward made a new table for our deck and this was the first time we used it. (I hope they felt suitably honoured to be the first people to sit at Edward’s new table!)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

THE EARLY BIRD CATCHES THE WORM…..OR AT LEAST SHE GETS A PARKING SPOT AT CITY HALL!!

Mayor Mel, Councillor MacKenzie, Councillor Farren and I make up the Nominating Committee for Associations, Boards and Commissions (ABC’s) for the City from now until the end of the year.

We were a little surprised (at least Councillor MacKenzie and I) to be told that the first meeting was at 7:30AM!!! We arrived, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed (me with wet hair) and did our new job to the best of our ability.

I have a LOT of ideas on how the A, B, C’s should be dealt with going forward.   Hope I can get some of them to “fly”.

After the meeting, I stopped off to see one of the Planners on the 10th floor regarding a Citizen’s issue, and stopped at the Building Inspector’s office to pick up some documents that I had mistakenly assumed were going to be sent to me yesterday. They weren’t ready, but it only took a few minutes for them to be printed off for me.

From 4:30 until 6:30, there was a “Mixer” sponsored by Enterprise Saint John at Lily Lake. Lots of places to park this time, thank goodness! The mayors of Grand Bay/Westfield, Rothesay, Quispamsis and Saint John were there with many of the members of their Councils. All of us were introduced and pictures were taken. They had a very nice spread of cheese and crackers etc, as well as, hot appetizers and platters of sweets. My husband, Edward, accompanied me, and we had a very nice time. I was happy to meet some of the Councillors from our neighbouring communities.

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