a peek inside the fishbowl

01 Dec, 2015

Community.

Posted by andrea tomkins in: - Westboro|Ottawa

I heart my coffee!

Shop the Neighbourhood went down on Saturday. (I wrote about it right here if you need the backstory.) It was a WHIRLWIND. Although I was the Ottawa representative of the campaign I was assigned to cover Westboro. And so, on Saturday morning, I laced up my sneakers and walked down to the village. I saw, I shopped, I chatted, I tweeted and Facebooked and Instagrammed my heart out until early Saturday afternoon, at which point I went home with sore feet and an iPhone that was almost completely drained of battery life. It was a fun gig – so cool to see the sea of #ShoptheHood-themed yellow – and I was reminded of how much I love this city we live in, and how many passionate people there are out there: shoppers and shop owners alike.

Retail opportunities, a good cup of coffee, and a good beer is definitely a part of what makes a great community, but it’s also about the people, isn’t it? It’s the people who live here that ultimately make the difference. It makes me so happy when I’m walking the dog and a fellow dog walker stops for a moment for a sniff (that is, the dogs do the sniffing!) and a chat. It makes me happy to loan our lawn mower to a neighbour needs it, and when that person takes in the garbage can knowing we’re away. It makes me happy to chat with the barista at the coffee shop, when someone holds open the door for me at the pharmacy, or to exchange a quick nod and smile when passing a stranger on the sidewalk as I’m walking home.

I don’t write a lot about my work here, but this feeling of community extends into the stories we share in the newspaper about our neighbours. These stories make me doubly glad to live here, whether it’s about a neighbour who is going to great lengths to help refugees coming to Ottawa or an accomplished rapper who tours Ottawa elementary schools with a motivational message and has been drumming up community pride with series of videos he’s produced for the Ottawa Senators.

Friends, neighbours: your are doing great things, both big and small, and every action you take in your community makes our neighbourhoods more vibrant, happy, and prosperous. And for that, I thank you.

 

 


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  • SJM: My father sent epic care packages when I was at Uni - one per term. It included a 6 pack of beer and lots of food. This was when postage was much chea
  • andrea tomkins: I KNOW. It's crazy that we are now the parents of an adult. I can hardly believe it myself most days! :)
  • Allison: What!!??!! How is your daughter in university?!! That just cannot be!!! So glad to hear she is adjusting well and having fun and enjoying her classes
  • andrea tomkins: Great ideas Joy! Especially the POST-its! They're actually an expensive purchase for a student, so they'd make a nice addition to a care package.
  • joy: cute and fun - I would love to receive things like this! How about notebooks, magazines, post-it notes, seasonal treats, lip balms, gift cards for fav
  • andrea tomkins: Ooh! Good one Alison! A good (long!) phone charge cord could be welcome as well.

The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our two daughters Emma (18) and Sarah (16). I am the managing editor of our community newspaper, the Kitchissippi Times. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger, and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999... which makes me either a total dinosaur or a veteran, I'm not sure which! The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

If you'd like to contact me, please use this form. If you're so inclined, you can read more about me here. Thank you for visiting!

 


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