My Temporary Leave of Absence and Whats been going on


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First an apology and an explanation. I kept wanting to come write, but my life over the past year was in such a state of uncertainty. And it still is, but lately I have gotten into enough of a routine that I’m hoping to get back to my own projects again. I guess if you were following my blog, or me on facebook, you’ve already gathered that it was me dealing with the aftermath of my moms stroke that brought everything here to a standstill.

My Mom, and her strokes

First a bit of background. I am very close with my mom, even though I moved away from my hometown on the east coast of Canada when I was young. My mom & I always kept in touch frequently. I felt she did everything right healthwise. She was vegetarian since I was young. She was peaceful. She prayed, meditated and wrote in a gratitude journal. She juiced, sprouted and even grew her own wheatgrass. We did the master cleanse together and even actually went raw together, over 10 years ago. I kept at it longer than she did, but she made the best ever green smoothies.

If she did everything right, why?  I believe it was due to congenital issues. She had lifelong health challenges (which got her into natural health in the first place) and discovered that she was born with a hole in her heart 25 years ago, when she was 50, at which time they did open heart surgery to repair it. From seeing a video of her heart there were still problems with blood whirlpooling and not going through a chamber correctly. She always had high blood pressure and when she was young it was bad migraines that led her down the natural health path.

2013 mom in moncton

After her 1st stroke in 2011, I flew to Moncton, NB, where she was and lived with her there for the following 3 years. After lots of rehab and therapy, physically she was doing great. She still had aphasia, communication problems, and that was quite a challenge, but she could do lots – like make green smoothies and go for walks. And I had time to build this website and blog.

Our move, and stroke #2

We packed up, put her house up for sale and moved to Toronto July 2014. In November, she had a 2nd stroke. We were out of town; I was working at a yoga retreat, and so mom got rushed to Belleville General Hospital. She was in ICU there for 11 days before being transfered to Toronto Western Hospital. It took 5 months before she could come home – and that was tough.

This stroke was quite severe. Mom was, and is paralyzed on the right side of her body. Shes up in a wheelchair for about 4 hours every day -and while she can’t even sit up on her own, or brush her own teeth or other basic things, she is not in pain and is very peaceful. She really is an inspiration.

With stroke #2, came move #2

Yes, just after getting all the boxes unpacked, we had to pack up again and move to a wheelchair access building. It happened, but I chose a very central place this time. If you know Toronto, we moved close to Spadina and Bloor. Great location: I can walk to Chinatown, Kensington Market (great food and markets!), Yorkville, Annex (love the strip walking over the Bathurst and Bloor). Ryo helped me with the vertical space planning, and speaking of Ryo..

Other Big Life Changes

I got engaged! Shortly after I moved to Toronto, I met someone. I wouldn’t go out with him for 2 weeks because we had just moved back to Toronto – and had boxes piled almost to the ceiling! When we did eventually go out, that was it.. we were together a lot. He’s an amazing artist also, and he was so great with my mom. That was a big one!  (I have a page of my mom’s paintings here)

When it came time to making decisions about mom, that was tough. I had people steering me to extreme different options and I felt Ryo really helped me make the ones I felt best about. He’s been my rock through this period. ..and did I mention an amazing artist?

Garber Iris1 Lily1 Secret Water-Lily1

You see? Wow, right?. He’s also an amazing chef. He’s Japanese, but has spent most of his life in Canada and the US. I’ve been learning how to speak Japanese and about their cuisine – delicious and healthy!

What else is new, and future plans

I woke up New Years Day inspired.  I bought a course that will help me learn how to do webnars, and more. I would love to do webnars and maybe even juice cleanses, or going raw webnars together online with those of you interested in doing that together. I miss my website and connecting here with you.

However, I am challenged with the time and energy that it takes to take care of my mom right now, and this is my priority at the moment. So while I want to be here, active on my site, I think my limited time is better spent at the moment learning and planning. Then when I do come back, I can do it really well. I welcome any ideas and suggestions you may have too!

And I hope to get back here posting more again soon. I will keep you updated via facebook and email. If you are not on my mailing list yet, sign up here, and you’ll get my raw recipe ebook too!

Thanks for keeping in touch and connected with me through this period.

Love and all best wishes,

Robin signature



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  • Zirah B L Hearn

    Thanks for the update. And, yes, Ryo’s artwork IS amazing! Best wishes to you, your mom, and Ryo.

    • Thanks Zirah, I will give them your best wishes Smiles and all best wishes to you too!

  • Ria

    An excellent illustration about life, the pain, struggles, tragedies but also the adventures and joys.

    All the best with your mom Robin, and congratulations on your engagement. He really is a fabulous artist! Wow!

    • Thanks so much Ria. appreciate hearing from you! 🙂

  • Carmen

    Hi Robin, it’s great to hear from you again. I was wondering what happened and I’m sorry to hear about your mom and hope she will be all right. I look forward to hear from you again and congratulations!
    All the best to you and your mom and your finance, his artwork is amazing.
    Love, Carmen

    • Thanks Carmen, I’m sorry it took me so long to update. Thanks for hanging in there with me. I appreciate hearing from you! All best wishes to you too!

  • Vibeke Kale Vale

    Thinking of you always, Robin. Give your mom a hug for me and give yourself and Ryo a huge pat on the back.

  • Lizzie Violet

    Hi Robin,

    You likely don’t remember me, but I use to come into Rawlicious when it was on Bathurst (not sure if that is what it was called then) and when it moved to the Junction. I had started out being raw when I use to visit you at the Bathurst location. Talking to you educated me and inspired me. I was raw for quite a while, but went off raw and a now returning to it. Today went into the location in Bloor West Village and being there made me think of you. I looked for you via google and found your website. I am glad I did.

    I am so sorry about your mother. Our parents are precious to us. Your mother is so very lucky to have an amazing daughter like you in her life to take care of her. I wish you both the best of luck and hope to one day chat with you about raw again. xoxo Lizzie

    • Hey Lizzie, Yes, I think I do. How wonderful that you are going back to raw. That is a path many of us take.. going off for a bit, and then returning. What an amazing eductaion it is to have exoerienced it at all, and you will never look at food the same again.

      Thanks for your warm wishes! So happy you came to find me. Best wishes on your journey. Hope to connect again, Peace and hugs! 😊

  • ann

    Hi Robin, I just was guided to return to your blog, so was able to catch up with your news. I was so sorry to hear that your mom had a 2nd stroke, especially when she (and with your help) was looking after herself so well. I trust that she’s doing better now. You have been a wonderful daughter and she must be so happy for you now that you’ve met Ryo, especially since he’s such a fabulous artist. You must both be a great comfort to her. Congratulations on your engagement and all the best wishes to you all <3

    • Thanks for the kind thoughts Ann! We are still here with mom, and she is stable now, not a lot of improvement, but she’s not in pain and and she’s happy and peaceful. Nice to hear from you!