By Jill Smith for Jody Smith - Merry Christmas!
‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the store,
Jody sold whistles on sausages, and dive lights and more .
When it was finally closing and he turned off the light,
He heard a strange noise and it gave him a fright.
Under the work-bench an elf did appear,
He was tangled and caught up in all of the gear.
He was an odd little fellow, dressed in trunks and a lei,
and Jody knew in a moment, he should just run away.
For the night was not going to be simple, he thought,
He knew it would bring headaches, more likely than not.
The elf scrambled out with alacrity and grace,
And was hopping and chattering all over the place.
“My name is Stinky, I’m a good little elf,
I love water, and diving, and gassing myself!”
“Stop!” Jody shouted, his good mood eroding,
Each minute accruing a sense of foreboding.
Stinky was jumping and farting, making far too much noise,
“Make me a Divemaster, I’m done making toys!”
“I told Santa to stuff it, I won’t work anymore,
I hate building and singing and sweeping the floor.
I wish to see dolphins, and turtles and pretty little fishes,
And I’m here to demand that you grant all my wishes.
“Good grief” Jody said for it was worse than he thought,
“I cannot just do that, there’s too much to be taught,”
“Becoming a Divemaster is a great deal of work,
Now be a good little elf and stop being a jerk.”
“You don’t understand,” said the elf as he tooted,
This dream’s always plagued me, it’s indelibly rooted.”
“Fine!” Jody yelled as he picked out some books,
“But I’m telling you elf, it’s harder than it looks.
The manuals must be studied for each specialty you choose,
I’m warning you now - DO the knowledge reviews!"
“Hooray!” shouted Stinky, passing gas in the store,
“I get to go diving, and swimming, and more!”
“I’ll be free as a fish, and as happy as a lark,
And nobody can tell me I can’t dive in the dark!”
“For I can do anything I decide I can do,
And nothing can stop me, neither Santa nor you!”
While Stinky sat reading and studying the text,
Jody had an idea about what to do next.
He made a quick call to the distant North Pole,
and begged Santa to come help him fulfill his new goal.
Ridding himself of Stinky, he could close for the night;
Santa agreed right away, and rerouted his flight.
Once Santa arrived, they met to confer,
devising a plan that they all might prefer.
Stinky was angry and nearly stormed out,
but stayed as he was feeling a little self-doubt.
Although he was vexed, and feeling grossly misled,
he sat in the corner flatulating loudly instead.
Jody and Santa sighed to see where he sat resolute,
then declared he was promoted with benefits to boot!
Stinky lit up with delight, and was jumping for joy!
He was ready to be boss-elf and rejoin Santa’s employ.
In addition to that, Jody and Santa agreed,
Santa could do more to fill each little need.
Discover Scuba Courses were purchased for every single elf,
And then Santa added some dive gear just for himself!
Jody was happy as he opened the door,
and he wished his friends well as he locked up the store.
But Stinky could be heard as they flew out of sight,
“Merry Christmas to all, and dive safely tonight!”
By Maddy VanCamp
Maddy is a new Open Water diver this year with a passion for our oceans and our Earth; please take a moment to read her message!
Our world is facing one of the most serious pandemics in history: The pandemic of plastic pollution. Since the 1950’s approximately 8.3 BILLION tons of plastic have been produced worldwide. With a meager 9% of those plastics being recycled, the rest has been left on our planet to decompose, a process which can take up to a thousand years.
Plastic is responsible for the death of over 1.1 million animals per year, and these numbers are growing. For the animals that do escape the fate of death by plastic, the majority will still spend a life with a stomach full of micro-plastics. And as we work our way up the food chain these micro-plastics work their way up to humans, as we consume food contaminated with plastic particles. At the rate that our society is increasing its plastic consumption, most of these statistics are set to nearly double by the year 2050.
This is where you come in, by making some small lifestyle changes, it isn’t too late to make our world better! Plastic straws are one of the most common single use plastics being washed up on ocean shores. This month I have teamed up with a company called “The Starfish Straw” to try and make a difference. The Starfish Straw is a company that sells reusable straws. They work to raise awareness and reduce the use of single use plastics with their products! To show their support for conservation, a portion of their profits are donated to the “Save The Sea-Turtle Foundation”. Their goal is to save marine life and our oceans from plastic pollution.
The Starfish Straw company has generously provided me with the discount code “SeaSaver” that will give you 30% off of your purchases for the month of December. I’ve decided to share this code with those who cherish our beautiful planet as much as I do. If we all work together I believe we can one day go diving in an ocean that is free of plastic and garbage, and switching to reusable products like the Starfish Straw is a simple first step that can be taken towards saving our oceans.
Thank-you to everyone who came out to make our Christmas party a huge success! We are very happy to report that we were able to donate over $1900 to Marjorie's toy-box at the Southlake hospital for the children that must go to endure ongoing treatments for cancer and other serious illnesses. Marjorie, we are very grateful to have you doing all the special and loving things you do for these children, thank-you from all of us - we hope that our contribution continues to help you to help them every day.
Prizes and Winners:
Blackbeard's Liveaboard trip donated by Allstar Liveaboards: Craig Martion
Amphos dive computer donated by Adventure Sports: Martin Kluchert
Aqualung dive computer donated by Aqualung: Charlene Suchy
Mask, snorkel, and fins package donated by Sherwood: Brenda Kellett
Beautiful gift basket created and donated by Dawn and Pierre Belley: Scuba John
Those were the bigger prizes, and there were many other winners too, so congratulations to all of them, and many thanks to all of the donors! We would also like to say thank-you to Hannah, our bartender, who decided to donate all of her tips for the night to Marjorie's toy-box too! What big hearts we had in that room Saturday night; we could feel the love, and it was very touching. So proud to be a part of this group. Please have a safe and happy Christmas - if you are celebrating other holidays, then we wish you happiness in them too. xo Be safe.
Whale Shark Painting Class
All of us ocean enthusiasts had a great time painting whale sharks with artist Catherine Farquhar at her One Sketchy Art Studio last Saturday night!
Catherine has donated her framed canvas painting for raffle, so that the proceeds can go to the ongoing ocean conservation efforts of the Project Aware organization. Thank-you Catherine!
We will be drawing the winner on Tuesday, November 13 at our monthly club meeting. Good luck, everyone!
Artist Catherine Farquhar
One Sketchy Art Studio
"If you've got the party, we've got the time...and the studio and gallery and the paint and brushes and the one-on-one professional art instruction for every party guest. Catherine has formal training in drawing and painting. Her work appears in local shows and in private collections. She approaches teaching art as a form of creative mentoring, encouraging the imagination and confidence of the beginner while challenging the experienced artist with the insights of a collaborator."
Last Paint Night News: September 22, 2018
Artist Judy Horan
provides art for social change in Ontario Canada
Judy has been creating art most of her life,
through a variety of mediums.
~ INK ~ ACRYLIC ~ WATERCOLOURS ~ PENCIL ~ PHOTOGRAPHY ~
22 September 2018
It started with a dive trip reunion being planned, spearheaded by Tracey, one of our divers that lives the farthest away from the rest of us, followed by Dawn suggesting a paint night. From there, Annie found Judy, a local artist who was willing to take us all on a paint-night adventure, and Andrea secured the venue as her friend owns The Patrick House Art Gallery in Aurora.
We had such a wonderful time, and make no mistake, not a one of us is a professional artist! And it t didn't matter. Our subject matter on September 22, 2018, was a colourful jellyfish.
Now we have a million ideas for underwater art that we would like to try our hands at! Whale shark? Yes! Fill out our super, duper short survery below if you are interested in us organizing another paint night featuring an underwater theme (where we long to be).
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More photos from our September 22 2018 Painting Adventure: