Bold opinions and unnecessary apologies

I added to my anxiety today and it was my own fault. At this moment I am waiting for a bus and the sun is beaming down on the back of my legs. This long awaited warmth is not eclipsing my overwhelming feel of regret and embarrassment.

I learned a very big lesson today: I don’t ever have to apologize for offending people in regard to my strong, personal beliefs. 

Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com
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Birch + Fog Review

I was provided me with a gift card to put towards the products of my choice and the opinions are my own.

Birch + Fog is a rising star in the online cannabis space. They provide the ease of shopping at home and having it delivered to your doorstep in a very quick fashion. They are Vancouver based and have a very luxe feel to their website and marketing strategies. There are lots of unique products I have never seen before.

With that being said, there are a few things they can work on. I’m not sure what legal grey area they operate in. I don’t believe they have any government licensing. At this point, their location of operation is untracable. The packaging is very vague and there is no certification on the products i’ve seen.

In terms of flower being sold, The Roll Model CBD Mango Haze says it’s 60% Sativa/40% indica and lab tested. It does not indicate what dispensary has grown the flower. I have purchased this same strain from the government and the percentages of CBD & THC are different and it indicates it’s a Sativa. Perhaps each individual grower comes out with different statistics on their products when they are tested? I’m not sure.

The customer service is very friendly, but they do need to work on their communication time. I found that the facebook discussions I had left something to be desired and the auto-reply becomes very redundant. Probably best to contact them directly.

I’m not saying it’s all bad but I wanted to write a realistic view of the experience I personally had. Some people want to support indie companies and NOT the Government and I completely understand. I wish we, as a whole, would embrace these small businesses so that they can grow, flourish, hire more people and continue to improve.

If you’re interested in purchasing from them and testing it out for yourself, the website is www.birchandfog.com and you can use my coupon code NAVIGATINGLIFE for $20 off your very first order!

#Puppetgate

Please Support Autistic People and STOP misrepresenting us.

Our voices are so incredibly important and we should not be invalidated. If you are a Neurotypical representing Autistics, please consult with us first. Consider our voices. Don’t exploit us for profit or speak about us in an incorrect or disrespectful fashion. If we call you out, don’t utilize it for your own personal gain. Listen. Respect. Consider. Consult. There’s plenty of things you can do to show us that you care.

Sensory Goods!

Sensory Goods was kind enough to send me a Weighted Neck Wrap!

Product can be found here

Here’s my previous review on their weighted blanket.

Influential enough for you?

Consume Media or Create Media?

I have been seeing the term “micro influencer” used more frequently and I have come to realize it’s the perfect label.

Micro Influencers have a smaller reach and are focused on a specific topic, which perfectly explains what I do. I have been trying to build up my audience but it’s slow and steady, not as fast as I thought it would be.

I always have the hope that someone will reach out to me and offer me a great opportunity without me being the first to contact and in the last couple days I have received emails for 2 potential collaborations.I got frustrated about those messages. One was in regards to a business that is run by a Neurotypical person who used all the wrong language about Autistic People and it seems to be based on that whole inspiration porn format. The other one is a supplement that apparently helps adults and children “with Autism” and they want to get in front of my audience. Regardless of the efficacy, it’s not something i’m comfortable peddling. There’s no financial agreement I would make to sell you all something like this. With that being said, I am NOT seeing any monetary gain from my website.

I felt like I hit a dead end yesterday. I contacted one of the largest tech companies around and I had a great idea to pitch. I received an email back from the PR company representing them and was told they only deal with the press. That made me feel very defeated and frustrated. The first thought that popped in my head was “do I need certification to prove i’m press?”, I posed this question on my facebook and A fellow blogger said it’s all about building those connections and that specific press certification does not exist. I’m confused that none of my collaborations that i’ve successfully initiated are worthy of me being considered press. I attempt to find other ways to contact different companies and I end up reaching their customer service support and they don’t know where to direct me. If they do direct me somewhere, it’s a telephone number, which is not an accessible option (that’s a whole other problem) and I can’t form proper thoughts when i’m speaking on the phone. I’ve been called “honey” or “sweetie” in a condescending fashion before, i’ve called and been told they don’t know what to do with my questions or requests or I end up catching someone completely off guard and I get very confused. I still have a hard time with regulating the tone of my voice and having “normal” conversations.

I believe when given the chance, I can create pretty engaging content. I’m getting more comments on my YouTube channel each day and it really lifts my spirits.

I’m Neurodiverse, I’m AUTISTIC and I think differently. I just hope people take note that if someone wants to talk through email or text messages that it’s not an inferior form of communication. This is who I am. I don’t want people to get the wrong idea about me, although i’m very used to it.

Whether I influence you or not, that’s okay. If you’ve interacted with me, thank you. If i’m feeling low–writing, creating art and connecting on social media are things that are vital to my wellbeing and personal expression. I hope you continue to join me on my unique journey.

My list of “rules”

This is a pretty personal list. I haven’t had the wherewithal to actually create a decently written post so instead this is what you get.

What rules would you have on your list?

Etsy Store>>>Art Sale

I’ve lowered my prices on my etsy store because I would REALLY like to generate some sales! That has not transpired yet.

My etsy is: https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/retrophiliac

Furthermore, if there’s something you see and you like but you don’t want to use etsy, just contact me on here and I can process you through paypal.

Please share if you can. Thanks!

Confident?

There’s been times where I have had my confidence mistaken for cockiness. It’s not intentional and I feel as though a lot of it has to do with my tone of voice. My tone of voice has to do a lot with an attempt to mask and be like everyone else when I speak. It’s apparent that I don’t do the best job.

Photo by Mikes Photos on Pexels.com

I had this one instance, about 8 or so years ago where I was getting interviewed for this live painting thing and it was on camera. One of the other participants from another team kept looking at her friend, wide-eyed and probably threw in a couple eye rolls as well. I’m pretty sure this was because she thought I was conveying myself in a fashion that made me seem as though I was very full of myself. Of course, that wasn’t my intention. I just felt confident at the time.

How does an Autistic Individual convey confidence and not seem self absorbed? Honestly?! I don’t know. Maybe I need to change my tone, change my walk, change everything about me? It’s an assumption, clearly. I believe neurotypical people will perceive me in one way and neurodiverse people will perceive me in another way and there’s nothing I can do about that.

There are times I feel really down on myself and feel like I missed an opportunity. My Art went viral on imgur and I didn’t make a single sale on my etsy store. It wasn’t my intention to sell art, I didn’t even include the link initially, but I do have to say that it was a bit of a blow to my confidence level. I still haven’t sold anything on there, this time around.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

It’s one of those things where there’s such a fine line and you have to teeter between the two to figure out where it is you stand. Sometimes, I have to remember to remind myself that it doesn’t matter what people think of me and that I make sure to stay true to who I am.

Align Entertainment Presents Annie

(I received complementary tickets in exchange for my review)

Annie has always been one of my favourite musicals. I watched both versions on VHS religiously as a child, had a chance to be in a production in school and saw it at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre many moons ago.

Photo taken by Emily Cooper

This version seemed different to me and I learned that it’s not uncommon for the scripts to change and get rewritten. There were songs I didn’t remember and scenes that seemed off to me. I also didn’t know why they said “always” instead of “only” during Tomorrow. It’s actually because the movie version changed it. Who knew?

Camryn McDonald plays Annie and brings a very unique approach to her performance. She’s incredibly animated, professional and focused, much like all the seasoned professionals around her! I see a bright and successful future for Camryn.

The whole ensemble had great chemistry and I really enjoyed the choreography. A Hard Knock Life was a great display of the talent of the young ladies playing the orphans. It was really mesmerizing and one of my favourite songs.

The sets were beautiful but it was hard for me to not pick out pieces that didn’t fit the depression-era that the musical is set in. I don’t blame them, it’s not easy (or cheap) to completely retrofit the set to be 100% accurate. Same thing can be said for some of the costumes. There’s a scene where President Roosevelt is seated at a table with his staff and two of the ladies look like they came right off the set of Laverne & Shirley, but again, there’s only so much you can do with budget restraints. I also can’t help that I have an innate attention to detail.

Photo taken by Emily Cooper

This is the second Align Entertainment production i’ve seen, the first one being Legally Blonde which I was SO excited to review.

Align has an incredibly dedicated team, committed to providing experiences you and your family will enjoy. It’s so important for the soul to immerse yourself in some arts and culture. Clearly i’m a big proponent of this!

Align Entertainment presents:

Annie: The Musical
Dates: February 1–16, 2019
Preview: February 1, 8pm
Family Matinee: February 2, 2pm
Opening Night: February 2, 8pm

Ticket Prices: Regular: $29–$42

Special Preview Pricing: $20
Thrifty Thursdays: $25
Family Matinee: $15
Address: Michael J. Fox Theatre
7373 Macpherson Ave
Burnaby, BC V5J 2B7

Tickets: http://alignentertainment.ca/tickets or vtixonline.com
Website: alignentertainment.ca

The Hustle, The Grind

My latest piece!

I never created art with the intention of sale. I create art because of the natural process and the welcome distraction it brings. Although, the more interest I get, the more i’ve felt like it would be the perfect opportunity to put some pieces up for purchase. I am a terrible closer. I actually have sold some pieces through instagram, but I am having a difficult time getting any finalized sales through my Etsy store. I will fully admit that pricing my work is a difficult feat. I want it to be accessible for people but I also don’t want to undervalue the work and materials i’ve put in to each and every one. With that being said, i’m completely willing to work with any budget if someone truly desires to acquire some of my art.

I’ve e-mailed different venues and now i’m waiting to hear back. Not only physical venues, but print as well. There’s no “one size fits all resource” that can tell me of places to submit my art or local cafes’ that display it, i’m completely reliant on google at this point and some kind people on reddit who have given me some great suggestions. I’m very thankful.

I want to mention I have seen the call to artists on Opus’ website and Alliance for Arts, but a lot of those are juried shows and/or require a fee and that’s not something that I am financially able to do. I just paid Etsy six dollars and change in fees – with no sale to recoup those funds. (Fingers crossed)

If you have any ideas for me-I would absolutely love to hear them!

I did hear a suggestion to have prints for sale but it’s kind of hard to scan my art. If you see the image in this post, that’s what a 9×12 looks like scanned. You can see all the bumps from the canvas board and it’s not attractive. If I take a physical photo, there’s always lighting problems and issues with the dimensions or taking a perfectly straight photo, where the canvas isn’t warped.

I would love a mentor or an artistic partner but right now I am pretty self-reliant. I wouldn’t even know how to go about that.