Celebrating Differences – April 12 Meeting Recap

I say zee, and you zed.  Toastmaster Cara noted a few differences between Americans (including her) and Canadians.  Although there are differences in our language, and behaviours, we are more similar than we think.  And, remember what unite us is far more greater than what divide us.

With such diversity in our club, we certainly have lots to celebrate about.  This week is no exception.

Continuing our active schedule, we had an induction.  We welcomed our newest member, Catarina!

We had 3 speakers:  Alex, Sarah and James.

Alex spoke about having engaged employees. It is time for companies to stop wasting money in snack bars and ping pong tables and start investing in something that matters.  GROW employees in a way that will improve the individuals and companies they work for.  This will make companies more productive and successful.

Sounds like it is also time for spring cleaning.  After realizing that she has so many things, Sarah decided to declutter.  She shared us her experience of decluttering.  From it all, she learned that less is more.  She has gained back space, money and most importantly, her freedom.

While in the topic of decluttering, why not get rid of our cars? James persuaded us to stop parking cars in the busy streets.  Share a car, rent one, or choose an alternative transportation.  But don’t just park our cars in the already congested streets.  There is no such as thing as free parking!


Catarina led our tabletopics based on the theme of celebrating our differences.  It was Olga who won the table topics session. Congratulation Olga!


As Alex would say, wow deserves wow.  This meeting was full of wows in many ways.  This is because of our wow-derful and enaged members.  So lucky to be part of this club.

Next week, Sarah will be leading the meeting with 3 speakers.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Identity – April 5, 2017 Meeting Recap

No one is smarter than you!  Toastmaster Bob reminded us that we’re are all capable and intelligent creatures. Don’t be afraid to follow your instinct and be your own self.  You could just be ahead of your times.

A range of issues were discussed this week, from legalizing marijuana to finding flight deals to advocating for designated bus lanes.

We started off with inducing two of our newest members:  Nadaa and Megan.  Welcome Nadaa and Megan!

Our first speaker, Jueun with her expertise (in psychology), voiced her opinion about legalizing marijuana.  Is a social benefit or not? From the chart Jueun analyzed, there seem to be a positive relationship between legalizing marijuana and medical costs.  That is decriminalizing (legalizing) marijuana could possibly reduce our medical costs.  If we do it right, maybe there is a utopia world for both sides (as Mark would say)?

Speaker Camila, also using her expertise (as an pricing analyst), shared us a few secrets in getting flight deals: subscribe, book early, and book off season.  So dig in that junk mail, there might be a treasure in there!

Our third speaker, James, spoke about the much needed improvement in our  public transportation.  He proposed to have designated lanes for buses during peak hours. How does this benefit us? It is a simple and economical solution for our current congestion problem.

Amanda led our Table topics with the winner – Mireille, who proved to us that Cameroon is just not about the jungle and lions.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Changing Your Mindset – March 22 Meeting Recap

To ensure that we’re in the right mindset, toastmaster Alex launched the meeting by getting us to give high fives! Once we are refreshed and ready to learn, she shared us a lesson from her recent experience of her hair dye, which actually was a hair job gone wrong.  Although it was not what she expected, her new vibrant look gave her a new perspective of herself.  From her story, she encouraged us think about where we could change our mindset from our own daily activities.


It was another full meeting with three speakers and a new member induction.


Our VP of Education, Wes led the induction.  Welcome our new member, Amanda!

All speakers incorporated our theme, of changing our mindset, or at least provoked us to think.

3 speakers on different projects: Cara presenting how to say it, James on visual aid and Andrew hosting a workshop.

IMG_1070.JPGCara persuaded us to seek for the truth versus accepting ‘alternative facts’ or ‘truthfulness’.  When it comes to truth or facts, there should not any alternatives.  Alternative facts are especially dangerous in areas such as medicine, science, and justice, where truth and principle matters.  We agree completely.

IMG_4777James spoke about forming habits, using a nerf gun, a bag of chips, and apples as demonstration. Cue, action and rewards!  After his speech, we assimilated his speech by devouring the chips (cue: everyone was hungry, action: bag was easy to open and rewards: tasty!) I guess his experiment worked! But remember, we can use the same process to form good habits.

IMG_1074Andrew gave us a workshop on how to give speech introduction.  Introduction is like first impression.  Nail your introduction and you give yourself a head start.  His workshop was full of vivid languages, vocal variety and humor.  Relating to Martin Luther King Jr’s speech, ‘I have a dream’, to his own speech about hair and bacteria, Andrew showed us how to give powerful and memorable introduction.

IMG_1087Our meeting, as it always does, ended with a fun table topics.  This time, led by Luke, asking us questions on dealing with big changes.  It was our guest Saad who won us over, with a discovery of his cooking skills.  Congrats Saad!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Area 27 – International Speech and Evaluation Contests

A few weeks ago, we had our Area International Speech and Evaluation contests.   Special thanks to our volunteers, and organizers, notably, contest chair James Tran, Chief Judge John Kjarsgaard, and Area Director Mohan Gunarajah for a well organized event.

With such great volunteers and speakers, it was easy to see why the event was a success.  Congratulations to all our contestants for their admirable performances.

We were definitely proud to have Mark Pilkington and John Krissilas representing our club.

If you thought the Area contest was fun, check out our Division contest.

Come and support John Krissilas from our club and speech winner Lalita Dixit from Liberty Leaders.

Division C – International Speech and Evaluation contests.

When:       Thursday March 23rd, 2017

Time:         6:30pm – 9:00pm

Where:      Metro Hall, 55 John Street, 3rd Floor, room number 308 (corner of John & King)

James Tran, our Area Contest Chair.

Mark Pilkington, a lucky Canadian and speaker.

Our Area Director Gunarajah and John Krissilas (Evaluation contest winner!)


Lalita Dixit representing Liberty Leaders and winner of 2017 Area 27 Speech contest!

Voluteers (Alex, Bina, John, Be, James, Mohan, Olga, Wes and Luke).  Other volunteers were hiding behind the camera.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Meeting Recap March 15, 2017

Meeting Recap March 15, 2017

Reminder- our Division contests on Thursday, March 23, 2017 18:30 – 21:00, Metro Hall, 55 John Street, 3rd Floor, Room 308, Toronto, Contests commence at 6:30p.m., Be there 6:15p.m.

thumbnail_IMG_4736Our relocated meeting went off without any issues. Thank you Lillian H. Smith Library! The meeting was as wonderful as ever. Our first time Toastmaster Sarah Yang gave a great speech to start things off, and made sure the meeting had quick and smooth transitions, which ultimately made for a very productive meeting. Well done Sarah!


IMG_4737Our first speaker was Luke Talaba, shedding light onto the interesting topic of driver-less cars. Luke captured his audience with key phrases like “send a car to Ikea to pick up your order”. Thanks Luke for blowing my mind!

IMG_4732.PNGNext we had James Tran, giving us a speech about, and demonstrating, body language and both verbal and non-verbal language. Lots to take in with this one, thanks James.

IMG_4738Lastly in formal speeches, Bob Stewart gave a rousing speech on NOT waiting for life, and making things happen! You can’t wait for all your ducts to be in a row, you have to trust that they will fall in line, just like a Mother Duck. In a speech with life lessons and analogies, Bob was operating on all cylinders. Great work Bob!


Our Table Topics Master Olga had some interesting questions to challenge the club with, and ultimately it was John Krissilas who took the prize! Great job John!


See you next week, regular location of

Waterfront Neighbourhood Centre

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment