2022 Gift Ideas for Runners Recommended by a Runner

Christmas is around the corner, what is that perfect Christmas gift for the runner in your life?

I always joke, running is one of the most expensive free sports there is. Sure, we can throw on our runners and hit the streets or the closest trail, however, what about $150 running shoes that get you 400 to 600 KM of use (not even enough miles to train for a 1/2 marathon), cold running gear, fall running gear, summer running gear, trail running gear, hydration belts, gels and electrolytes, not to mention our love for tech. Add races, coffee with friends after run club, and the odd race photo or two and then ask how free is our free sport?

Here are some of my favorite pieces of running equipment and would make for great Christmas gifts for the runner on your shopping list. What better way to tell your loved one that you support his or her running than that perfect running Christmas gift.

For convenience, I am including links to my Amazon Store for some of the items.

Running Gifts under $50 Dollars

SPIbelt Large Pocket Running Belt for Adults, Expandable Pocket, Adjustable Waist, No Bounce, Black with Blue Zipper
  • SPIbelt LARGE POCKET BELT FOR ADULTS: Provides a comfortable, expandable, secure and low profile pouch to carry your everyday essentials
  • POCKET: The pocket lies completely flat and expands to 8" x 4" x 2" inches to accommodate essential supplies such as larger phones, passport, exercise accessories, headphones, keys, ID, credit cards...
  • PHONE COMPATIBILITY: The Large Pocket Belt is compatible to many popular phone models including iPhone (11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, 12, 12 mini, 12 Pro, 12 Pro Max, 13, 13 mini, 13 Pro, 13 Pro Max);...
FREEMOVE Reflective Vest Running Gear + 2 Bands & Bag / Ultralight & Comfy Safety Vests with Front Pocket > High Visibility Reflector > for Men, Women > Running, Dog Walking or Cycling
  • ✅ BEST REFLECTIVE GEAR EVER! > The FREEMOVE is the original, best quality and top-quality reflective vest available on Amazon. The satisfaction of our customers speaks for itself! Show your dearest...
  • ✅ FEEL SAFER - DRIVERS CAN SEE YOU AND HAVE TIME TO REACT! > Your visibility and safety is no longer an issue. Provides 360° visibility as it's very bright and reflective which makes you very...
  • ✅ ULTRA LIGHTWEIGHT YET DURABLE > The reflector vest stands out with its nice unique ultralight, breathable and durable mesh fabric. The design offers adjustability and a good combination of bright...
Halo Headband Pullover, Team Halo Logo, One Size
  • MAXIMUM ABSORPTION-63% Nylon 23% Polyester 14% Lycra -Dryline fabric absorbs, wicks, dries quickly, and eliminates odors through the infusion of silver ions into the fabric
  • SWEAT STOPPING SWEATBAND-This headband doesn't just absorb sweat, our patented silicone SweatSeal channels sweat back and away from the eyes, face, and glasses
  • MEN OR WOMEN'S HEADBAND-This lightweight pullover headband features our newest, breathable, soft fabric making this the most comfortable athletic headband you will ever wear- Anatomical design tapers...
Yaktrax Walk Traction Cleats for Walking on Snow and Ice (1 Pair), Medium
  • Lightweight and affordable slip-on traction cleats to reduce the risk of falls when walking on snow or ice to work, school, or even to the mailbox
  • Made of abrasion-resistant 1.2 mm steel coils with zinc coating to prevent rust; secured to shoes with durable Polyelastomer outer band
  • Provides 360 degrees of traction on cold surfaces for all-direction stability

Winter Running Gloves

Bestseller No. 1
New Balance Lightweight Running Gloves (Black, Large)
  • These New Balance lightweight running gloves are the brand new staple of your running outfit! Not only are they technologically innovative, they are extremely stylish.
  • Made from high quality 86% Polyester, 14% Spandex to create an extremely smooth Fleece, with 150 GSM. Designed with grippers on the palm, you will have a firm grip no matter what weather condition you...
  • Marathon Black and Marathon Heather have the names of each of the 5 New York City Burroughs on the fingers: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx, and Staten Island
SaleBestseller No. 2
SIMARI Winter Gloves Men Women Touch Screen Glove Cold Weather Warm Gloves Freezer Work Gloves Suit for Running Driving Cycling Working Hiking 102
  • 【Touch Screen Design】With the Unique and Sensitive touchscreen Fingers Capability, the SIMARI touch screen gloves are compatible with iPhone, iPad, computer and other intelligent equipment. You...
  • 【Comfortable & Warm】The SIMARI winter gloves are made of 95% Polyester and 5% Spandex, with the warm Flannel lining and elastic cuff, enhancing the warmth and elasticity. When you go out, the...
  • 【No-slip & Humanized Design】Coming with enough silicone particles on the palm and fingers, which effectively increases the grip strength and abrasion resistance of the thermal gloves. Let you grip...
SaleBestseller No. 3
Unigear Lightweight Running Gloves, Touch Screen Anti-slip Warm Gloves Liners for Cycling Biking Sporting Driving for Men Women
  • Warm and Breathable: Unigear running gloves keep the maximum thermal protection for your body in cold by wicking moisture away from your skin effectively. They are featured the newest fiber material...
  • Touchscreen-friendly: Do you still tolerate the frozon fingers when running, walking and driving in winter? Wearing our touchscreen gloves, you can easily use your smartphone or other electronic...
  • Versatile Liner Gloves: You can layer up with skiing, cycling and other heavier gloves in harsher conditions. You also can wear them on their own as regular gloves. The palms are printed with...
SaleBestseller No. 4
Aegend Running Gloves Women Men Touch Screen Cycling Sports Mittens Liners Warm Gloves, Black, Small
  • 【Ultra Lightweight, Warm and Comfortable】The premium compression soft fabrics(88% polyester & 12% spandex) provide premium performance for Zero-pilling, Breathability, Durability, Wicking and...
  • 【Touch Screen with Sensitive Fingertip】Material on the thumb and index fingers is available for the touchscreen while you using your cell phone or tablet computer without taking off your gloves....
  • 【Compression Liner Gloves or Regular Gloves】Our gloves work amazingly as liner gloves can fit perfectly under your ski mittens, half-finger biking gloves and other bulky leather gloves. Also, it...

Running Gifts under $100

ROAD id – Sports Medical Alert

The top-shelf choice in wrist-worn identification. Never go for a run or ride alone again. ROAD id is a comfortable, rugged, identification bracelet that will help first-responders immediately contact family members and friends when you cant. Picture ROAD id as a medical alert bracelet on steroids.

Customize the name plate with names, medical information, and phone number. Also decorate the band with conquest tokens such as 5K, and 21.1K, or reminder to keep going such as “Shut Up Legs”.

Tracer360 Visibility Vest (Medium/Large)
  • ALL THE COLORS IN ONE – Change between 8 super bright solid colors - Green, Red, Blue, Pink, Yellow, Blue & Pink (mixed), Pink & Green (mixed) and Blue & Red (mixed) AND 8 eye-catching multicolor...
  • TRUE 360 DEGREE ILLUMINATION, REFLECTIVITY, & FLUORESCENCE – Unlike other reflective running vests and hi viz cycling gear, our flexible fiber optic cables, and 3M reflector chest belts actively...
  • LIGHTWEIGHT, BREATHABLE, & EXTREMELY COMFORTABLE – If it’s for a short jog in the morning with the kids, walking your dogs in the evening, or an all night solo ride, at only 6.5 oz – you’ll...
Night Runner 270 Shoe Lights - Rechargeable & Waterproof Battery Light for Runners, Dog Walking, Hiking - Best Safety Running Gear for High Visibility at Night Time or Low Light - Red
  • ROBUST & WEATHERPROOF - Built tough with long-lasting quality at the forefront, allowing you to focus on your training in all conditions. Tried and tested by athletes, for athletes, in even the...
  • THE PATENTED ORIGINAL - As seen and loved on Shark Tank, the Night Runner 270 shoe lights are the first of their kind, and the original hands-free or headlight-free lighting solution for runners,...
  • 360 DEGREE VISIBILITY - Light up your path with 150 lumens + 2 ultra light LEDs with a rechargeable battery which produce 360 degrees of lighted visibility. A forward-facing lightbeam of up to 30 feet...
Black Diamond Storm 400 Headlamp, Octane
  • Versatile waterproof LED headlamp, 400 lumens
  • unisex
  • One Size

Find more running lights at our Amazon Store. Search for more running lights here.


Running Gifts over $100

Hydration Vest For Running and Cycling

Looking to take your distance up a notch or tired of having your running belt hanging off of your hips. Step up to a Hydration Vest, capable of carrying up to 2 liters of water, extra storage for gells, your phone, weather gear and more Pictured here is the Salomon Adv Skin 12 Set Hydration Stretch Pack, Black, Large , recommended as best overall pack by Outdoor Gear Labs.

Check out popular hydration vests as that perfect gift for your running partner by Solomon, Nathan (I currently do all my trail running with the Nathan VaporAir), and more.

AfterShokz Aeropex Open Ear Headphones

Safety is our number one concern on the trails, road, and paths. Being able to hear the vehicles around us or someone approaching from behind on the trail is the first rule. Bone conduction technology allows you to hear both your music and the ambient sounds around you.

Available in bluetooth and corded versions, there is a model of AfterShokz for every budget. Unlike traditional headphones that send sound through the ear canals, our patented bone conduction technology delivers audio through the cheekbones. With nothing inside or over your ears, enjoy total awareness and comfort while you listen.

Men’s Extreme Balaclava Jacket

Running jack for extreme conditions.

  • Softshell Jacket with zip off dickie with adjustable hood & balaclava
  • 360 reflective sleeve taping details
  • 2 zip close storage pockets under welt
  • Back yoke with reflective seam sealed eyelets
  • Partially elasticized cuff

Hyperice Vyper 2.0 High-Intensity Vibrating Fitness Roller

  • Optimal self myofascial release tool to increase flexibility, circulation, and reduce muscle soreness
  • Three vibration settings transmit superior amplitude and vibration for physiological benefits
  • 2x more effective than regular foam rolling to warm up and actively recover
  • Increase range of motion by up to 40% (versus 18% increase with regular foam rolling)

Running Watches

Looking to take your running to the next level? Add a Garmin ForeRunner Running Watch to your training tool-kit. Train using heart rate, stride, or simply a run-walk training routine.

Track distance, heart rate, and prices for all budgets. I currently run with an older Garmin Forerunner 920XT, however, my next purchase will be a Fenix 6 or similar. Integrated heart rate, multi-sport, and more.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Garmin Forerunner 245 Music, GPS Running Smartwatch with Music and Advanced Dynamics, Black
  • GPS running smartwatch with music advanced training features, Lens Material:Corning Gorilla Glass 3, Bezel Material: fiber-reinforced polymer, Strap material:silicone
  • Battery life: up to 7 days in smartwatch mode and 6 hours in GPS mode with music
  • Evaluates your current training status to indicate if you’re undertraining or overdoing it; Offers additional performance monitoring features
Bestseller No. 2
Garmin Forerunner 735XT, Multisport GPS Running Watch With Heart Rate, Black/Gray
  • GPS running watch with multisport features.Special Feature:Bluetooth.Water Resistant: Yes
  • Estimates heart rate at the wrist so you can run freer on race day.Shock resistant. Battery life : Smartwatch Mode Up to 11 days. GPS mode Up to 14 hours. UltraTrac mode Up to 24 hours without wrist...
  • Provides advanced dynamics for running, cycling and swimming7, including ground contact time balance, stride length, vertical ratio and more (when paired with a Running Dynamics Pod, HRM Run or HRM...
SaleBestseller No. 3
Garmin Forerunner 45, 42mm Easy-to-use GPS Running Watch with Coach Free Training Plan Support, Black
  • Gps running watch with Garmin Coach training plan support.Supported Application:GPS,Fitness Tracker,Heart Rate Monitor,Sleep Monitor,Music Player. Connectivity technology:GPS. Wireless comm...
  • Easy to use running watch estimates heart rate at the wrist and features GPS to track your pace, distance, intervals and more
  • Works with free Garmin coach adaptive training plans that bring expert, personalized coaching right to your wrist
Bestseller No. 4
Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS Watch - Pink/White (Renewed)
  • High-sensitivity GPS receiver
  • Records position, speed/pace, distance and calories
  • Easy-to-use, button operated
SaleBestseller No. 5
Garmin 010-01689-00 Forerunner 35; Easy-to-Use GPS Running Watch, Black
  • Easy-to use GPS running watch tracks how far, how fast and where you run.Special Feature:Bluetooth.Water Resistant: Yes
  • Estimates heart rate at the wrist, all day and night, using Garmin elevate wrist heart rate technology
  • Connected features: Smart notifications, automatic uploads to Garmin Connect, live tracking and music controls (when paired with a compatible smartphone)

Special thanks to our title photo by Giftpundits.com from Pexels.

Freestyle Libre | Official Learning Videos and Quick Tips

Abbott, the makers of the Freestyle Libre diabetes glucose monitoring system, has released a series of education and learning videos to help us get the most out of our continuous glucose monitoring system (CGM).

The official learning videos from Abbott Canada cover a variety of diabetes topics including:

#phone-reader(opens in a new tab)

Check out the Abbott Canada YouTube channel and the official freestyle Libre videos from the links below.

Video: Introducing | The FreeStyle LibreLink Mobile App

[youtube https://youtu.be/Mi_FUgTOXtU]

A video introducing the FreeStyle LibreLink Mobile App! Now you can use your phone to monitor your glucose – anytime, anywhere – without lancets. Instantly see where your glucose is at, where it’s headed, and where it’s been over the last 8 hours. Now, you can manage your diabetes and live life on your terms.

Video: How to use your Libre Sensor | Wash, Clean, Dry, Install

[youtube https://youtu.be/7Pxd6WRHrFI]

Wash, clean, dry – before you apply. See how easy it is to optimally prepare your skin in just 3 simple steps before applying your FreeStyle Libre sensor.

Video: Understanding Your Freestyle Libre Readings | Part 1

[youtube https://youtu.be/Thy5Web0bI4]

In part one of the Libre learning video series, Lori Berard (an RN, CDE, and Consultant in Diabetes and Clinical Research, Canada) explains how the FreeStyle Libre system uses sensor-based technology to monitor your glucose without lancets. See how you can benefit from the features of the FreeStyle Libre system and FreeStyle LibreLink app to gain insights from your scans and connect with your healthcare team remotely to easily share your glucose data.

Video: What is the difference between interstitial fluid glucose and blood glucose | Part 2

[youtube https://youtu.be/Ta48boW7Loc]

Libre learning video 2 explains the difference between interstitial fluid glucose and blood glucose, and highlights why it’s important to look at all 4 elements of a FreeStyle Libre scan: current glucose, trend arrow, glucose graph and glucose message. Watch this video to learn how you can use the information from your scans to act—instead of reacting—to your changing glucose levels.

Video: How to get your first Libre glucose reading | Part 3

[youtube https://youtu.be/jdcRK62pq2k]

Libre learning video 3 walks you through getting your first glucose reading by scanning your sensor with the FreeStyle Libre reader or FreeStyle LibreLink mobile app. You’ll discover what information you can expect from each scan— current glucose, trend arrow, glucose graph and glucose message—and what it all means.

Video: How to use your phone and Freestyle Libre reader together

[youtube https://youtu.be/-z-Ru0wkvk4]

This video demonstrates how you can conveniently use both your phone and your Libre reader with the same sensor, in just 3 simple steps.

Video: Scanning your Libre Sensor with an Android phone

[youtube https://youtu.be/5DNC2JHTupY]

See how easy it is to use your Android phone to scan your FreeStyle Libre sensor. A video w plaiting how to instantly see where your glucose is at, where it’s headed, and where it’s been over the last 8 hours.

Video: Nutrition and Diabetes

[youtube https://youtu.be/r57MYT7dDt0]

Diet and nutrition can be confusing especially when you have diabetes. Abbott diabetes collected your top 6 questions and our dietitian, Sarah Ware, answered them! Sarah Ware, BSc (Hons), RD, CDE Registered Dietician

Video: Food and Bloodsugar levels for people with diabetes

[youtube https://youtu.be/_kISHiREDkI]

Find out which foods make your blood sugars go up the most. Watch this video to learn more!

Fix: Safari Requires you to Always Login to Websites

Here is the solution to solve you needing to always login to websites on iOS 13 and above despite enabling Keep Me Logged In with iPhone, and iPad. This applies to iOS 13, 14, 15 and 16.

How do we solve Keep me signed in Isssues?

IMG: How to fix IOS Safari not remembering website login
How to have iPhone or Mac remember your login preference on websites such as Gmail or FaceBook.

One of the most annoying issues I had with my iPhone and iPad was that despite ALWAYS choosing, “remember this device”, or save login information, I needed to reauthenticate myself every time I tried to log in to any website. I noticed this in particular with websites such as Google, Gmail, and Microsoft Family settings that use 2-factor authentication (2FA).

ISSUE: When you enable “Keep Me Logged In” on any website using iOS Safari, you are required to log into the website as well as re-authenticate your 2-factor authentication (2FA).

Solution to iOS and Mac “Keep Me Logged In” not working

Step 1: Navigate to SETTINGS.

Step 2: Navigate to Safari (this should be located below iTunes & App Store and Wallet & Apple Pay section on your iOS device.)

Step 3: Scroll down the Safari Settings menu to the Privacy and Security Section.

Step 4: Disable (turn from green to gray) – Prevent Cross-site Tracking.

To fix: Keep me logged in issues with iPhone or Mac, follow these steps.
To fix: Keep me logged in issues with iPhone or Mac, follow these steps.

Step 5: Close Safari Settings and Log onto your favourite website.

Step 6: Be sure to enable “keep me logged in” or similar on the website.

Step 7: You should now be able to continue to log into the website without reconfirming your username and password. As a reminder, if you clear your cookies, log out of the website or surpass the websites normal login time limits you will be required to log into the website again.

What is Prevent Cross-site Tracking?

Every time you visit a website, it gathers data about your device—such as your system configuration—and uses that data to show you a webpage that works well on your device. Some companies use this data to try to uniquely identify your device—known as fingerprinting. To prevent this, whenever you visit a webpage, Safari presents a simplified version of your system configuration. Your Mac looks more like everyone else’s Mac, which dramatically reduces the ability of trackers to uniquely identify your device.

It appears that Safari looks at authentication websites for simplified logins like FaceBook Login, Google Login, or Microsoft Account as a cross-site and not saving any of the authentication / login information. This is requiring you to need to login in every time you visit the web site.

Shop Georgina’s Restaurants and Stores | Open during COVID-19


Welcome to Shop Georgina, your on-line directory of what restaurants, stores, and services are open, operating, and ready for business during the social-distancing and isolation restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Let’s continue to show our support to our amazing local businesses. Here is a list of restaurants and other stores in Keswick, Sutton, Pefferlaw, and the surrounding Georgina (Ontario) area that are open and ready for your business. Many of these locations are available through DoorDash so check them out there as well.

Remember: Public health agencies are recommending we stay home as much as we can. However, I know myself, I need a change. Restaurants and stores are doing their part to attempt to keep us safe. It is everyone responsibility to shop with caution, wash our hands regularly, disinfect touched services, transfer your food to clean containers, and stop the spread of COVID-19. Stay safe everyone.

Did I miss someone? Want your business listed? Feel free to list your shop with the form at the bottom of the page. I will review the entries as quickly as possible (within 24 hours).

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Why did I make this page?

Hey Honestly, I am not sure what is open. It was as plain and simple as that. You drive through town and see the big chains, but what about the small places in plazas and nooks that we do not drive by regularly.

I wanted to eat something other than a home-cooked meal this past weekend to celebrate one of those events we call a birthday and was not sure where to go, where to look for what is open, or who to call besides what I have on my DoorDash app. When I finally tracked down a few locations through google or by randomly calling around, they were either closed for the night or closing shortly – it was leftover supermarket pizza for me, and a loss for our small business.

So maybe this little list will help my friends and neighbours? After all, this little website is just sitting there, so what is another page or two to help Georgina navigate Covid a little easier?

Add your business to our list

This page was created to help inform the great residents of Georgina what business and restaurants are open during the COVID-19 pandemic to serve the community.

Listing on the page is free while we go through this challenging time. Submit your business information below and we will add you to our list – I will review and approve your listing asap. For faster service, consider sending a donation to support the Georgina Food Bank and this website.

What to include in your listing? We recommend you include a description of your business (help new customers out), as well as your hours of business, location and services provided – call-in recommendation, pick-up, do you offer delivery? We reserve the right to edit all entries.

To make changes to a listing – feel free to contact me, or submit a new listing and I will update make the changes ASAP.

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DISCLAIMER: This is a free service offered to our residents and businesses. The situation is changing around town daily and businesses are responding accordingly. As much as I would like to ensure this information is 100% correct, I cannot be held responsible for missing businesses, incorrect or expired information.

Cases, Patches, Stickers, and Diabetic Supplies for Dexcom G6

Here is a list of helpful diabetic accessories for your Dexcom G5 / G6 sensor, receiver, transmitter and system. As a Canadian diabetic, I am well acquainted with being prepared. From glucose tablets for hypoglycemic events to alcohol wipes, our page gives you recommendations on these diabetic suppoles and more for your Dexcom G6.

Many of the items come highly recommended in the Type-1 and Type-2 diabetic communities that use their Dexcom CGM system to manage their diabetes. A CGM, like a Dexcom G6, is a great way to help reduce your A1C. Did you know that studies have shown that the more frequent you test your blood glucose the better your HbA1c? Read more here on the benefits of using a Continuous Glucose Monitor like a Dexcom G6 or a FreeStyle Libre.

Note: These items are listed in my Amazon Retail Store. Most are also available through your local pharmacy. Click on the image to see the Amazon Listing. Amazon pays a small commission for items purchased through my store.

Search Our Online Amazon Store for Dexcom Accessories

Use the search box below to search for the millions of items available through Amazon. Or check out our sections below on Running, Diabetes, and More.

How to Keep Your Dexcom G6 / G5 Safely attached to your arm

Here are a few items that help keep your Dexcom G5 / G6 affixed to your body and help it last / survive the 10 days without falling off or coming loose. Use these patches to help keep your Dexcom sticking to your tummy for 10 days.

Last update on 2023-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API.

SIMPATCH – Dexcom G6 Adhesive Patch (25-Pack) – Waterproof Adhesive, CGM Patches (Beige)
  • EASY TO USE - Our applying method ensures applying Simpatch as easily as Band-Aid
  • BREATHABLE, INNOVATIVE MATERIAL - Our innovative material dries quickly and keeps the sweat and water from loosening your device
  • HYPOALLERGENIC ADHESIVE - Latex free, Waterproof, 100% acrylic adhesive
TORBOT Group Skin-Tac-H Adhesive Barrier Wipes, 50/Box
  • Home diagnostics
  • Pack of 50 wipes
  • Does not contain benzoin
KT Tape Pro Synthetic Kinesiology Therapeutic Sports Tape, 20 Precut, 10” Strips, Jet Black
  • WHAT IS KT TAPE? Elastic sports tape used by pro athletes to support muscles, joints, tendons, and ligaments. It’s drug-free, latex-free, hypoallergenic, lightweight, breathable, comfortable,...
  • HIGHEST QUALITY KT Tape PRO is the only sports tape with 100% synthetic-engineered, performance fabric that maintains elasticity twice as long (up to 7 days) as cotton tape. It wicks moisture instead...
  • HOW DOES IT WORK? It helps reduce tissue pressure, support muscles and joints. Studies show it helps you recover faster from pain. Our sports tape is used for knee, shoulder, back pain, and more....
FixiC – Adhesive Patches for G6 – 25 Pack Premium Waterproof Adhesive Patches – Pre-Cut Back Paper – Adhesive Patch for G6 – Long Fixation! (Tan)
  • ✌️ IS IT DIFFICULT TO KEEP YOUR DEXCOM G6 ON THE SKIN FOR A LONG TIME? The newest WATERPROOF ADHESIVE PATCHES for Dexcom G6 by FixiC will keep your sensor for 10 days!
  • ✌️ FORGET ABOUT PROBLEMS WITH STICKING THE PATCH TO THE SKIN – the backing paper of FixiC Premium adhesive patch for Dexcom G6 consists of THREE PARTS TO PEEL IT OFF EASILY.
RockaDex Dexcom CGM Patches Mix Pack, Fits G4/G5 & G6.
  • Dexcom CGM.Hypoallergenic.Latex Oxide Free.Available for Medtronic,Omnipod & Libre
  • Suits the NEW G6
  • Manufactured and designed by a Type 1 family.
GrifGrips Wrap Grip Sports Adhesive Patch for Dexcom G6 - Pack of 15 (Camo)
  • Dimensions: 5" x 3.8"
  • Signature Comfort Stretch Material
  • Cotton/Spandex Material Lets Skin Breathe

Find More Dexcom G6 and Dexcom G5 Patches Here

IMPORTANT: Find more Dexcom G5/G6 protective patches in our Online Store – Search Here to buy Dexcom adhesive patches

Protective Cases for your Dexcom Reader or Touch Screen Receiver

Looking for a case to protect or carry around your Dexcom G5 / G6 reader? Here area few options for you to choose from. Search Here for more case options.

Genuine Leather Protective Carrying Case with Clip and Carrying Handle for Dexcom G6 Receiver Touchscreen New Black
  • 100 % new unique high quality design, for complete protection and convenient use.
  • Designed for use in any conditions (in everyday life, at any time of the day, suitable for wearing on any clothing, in a bag, in your hand)
  • It has a transparent touchscreen window inside, does not close the power button and charging port.
Classic Premium Pouch Case with Metal Belt Clip for Dexcom G6 CGM System (Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitoring) -SNK Retail Packaging (H1-Black/VE)
  • Magnetic closure.more convenient.
AGOZ Rugged Insulin Pump Belt Case, CGM Device, Glucose Meter, Inhaler Case, Belt Clip Pouch with Belt Loops, Vertical Protective Cover Insulin Pump Holder
  • ✮✮ AGOZ Heavy Duty Rugged Vertical Insulin Pump Belt Case with Belt Clip and Loops for Insulin Pumps, CGM Device, Glucose meters, and Inhalers
  • ✮✮ For insulin pumps, CGM devices, glucose meters and inhalers up to 4" x 2.2" x 1" such as Tandem TSlim X2, FreeStyle Libre 2 and Dexcom G6
  • ✮✮ STRONG METAL BELT CLIP and two belt loops (to use vertically and horizontally)
New Premium Pouch Case with Belt Clip for Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM System (Display Device Receiver)-SNK Retail Packaging (V2/Black)
  • Hook and Loop closure. No magnetic material does not interfere with your device.
  • 3 ways belt clip. You can easily adjust the angle when you sit down or bend over.
CLIPNSTOW Horizontal Clip case,Black is Compatible with The DexcomG5/G6 CGM/Receiver
  • Holds Dexcom G6 Mobile Receiver
  • This case does not fit the tiny G4/G5 Receiver
  • Comes in a sturdy Black Leatherette fabric double insulated for dropping mishaps
UBELT Insulin Pump Belt Pouch Diabetic Waist Pack Case Clip Accessories Band Holder Men Women
  • Fits Most Insulin Pump Types: Soft fabric, light-weight buckle,Tandem and so on . It is a good Diabetes Insulin Pumps
  • Waist Size: Adjustable length fits from 27 inches to 45 inches Fits most waist size. Stay in place and non-bounce
  • Other Use: Can use as running belt waist fanny pack Keep your iPhone XR XS MAX 8 plus X or other cell phones in hand Enjoy your walking fitness gym workout
A1C WEAR - 9H Flexible Glass Screen Protector For Dexcom G6 Receiver PDM - Won't Crack or Chip - Anti-Scratch Anti-Fingerprint - 2 Pack
  • A1C WEAR has a mission: To provide the Highest, Premium Quality diabetic care products at value prices - because Diabetes is already too expensive. A1C WEAR products are created by diabetics, for...
  • A1C WEAR has a mission: To provide the Highest, Premium Quality diabetic care products at value prices - because Diabetes is already too expensive. A1C WEAR products are created by diabetics, for...
  • Our Screen Protector is a newer technology known as Nano Flexible Glass. It is a PET and TPU film 0.30mm thick, layered with Glass fibers so it provides the same benefits of tempered glass, with the...

Find More Dexcom G6 Case Here

IMPORTANT: Search for more carrying cases for your Dexcom Reader / touch screen receiver here – Search Now to find the perfect case for your Dexcom Reader.

Glucose Management and Hypoglycemic Recovery

Here are some recommended tools to help deal with our hypoglycemia. Hypoglycemia is a condition caused by a very low level of blood sugar (glucose).

Hypoglycemia, also known as low blood sugar, is when blood sugar decreases to below 4 mmol/L.  Dex 4 glucose tablets are my first choice when managing a hypoglycemia episode and gives me a precise amount of glucose.

My Treatment: I take 4 DEX 4 tablets; wait 15 minutes and then retest.

Bestseller No. 7
YumVs Complete Glucose Gummies, Fruit Flavors, (60 Ct); Chewable Nutritional Supplement for Men and Women, Gluten Free, Vegan, Kosher, Halal …
  • YumVs Complete Glucose Gummies, Fruit Flavor, (60 Ct); Chewable Nutritional Supplement for Men and Women, Vegan, Gluten Free, Kosher, Halal
  • Yum Vs Complete Glucose Gummies are a great tasting fruit-flavored way to raise blood sugar levels and boost energy. 2 grams of carbohydrate per gummy lets you control your carb intake. Gummies are...
  • Features: We believe in using high-quality, natural ingredients for all of our products, and maintain a nut-free production facility. Formula is vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free, gelatin free, caffeine...
SaleBestseller No. 8
Lifeable Glucose Gummies - Great Tasting Natural Flavor Gummy - Gluten Free GMO-Free Chewable - for Adults and Kids - 90 Gummies
  • GREAT TASTING MIXED BERRY FLAVOR GUMMY: These glucose gummies have a fruity mixed berry flavor everyone loves; they are pleasant and easy to chew; you will find yourself reaching for more.
  • HELP RAISE LOW BLOOD SUGAR: These glucose gummies may help raise your blood sugar if you suffer from low blood sugar.
  • 4 G PER SERVING: This bottle contains 90 gummies. Each serving consists of 2 gummies, equaling 45 servings. Adults are recommended to take 2 gummies to raise blood sugar, or as recommended by your...
SaleBestseller No. 9
Relion Glucose Tablets - Tropical Flavor - 50 Counts (2 Pack)
  • 2 Pack Bundle Of 50-Count ReliOn Glucose Tablets
  • Caffeine-, Fat-, Gluten- And Sodium-Free
  • 4g Of Fast-acting Carbohydrates
Bestseller No. 10
TRUEplus® Glucose Tablets, Orange Flavor - 10ct Tube (1)
  • Contains 4 grams of Fast-Acting Carbohydrates per Tablet
  • Fat Free, Gluten Free, Sodium Free
  • Convenient 10-count tube, ideal for taking on-the-go

Emergency Contact Information – Medical Alert on Steroids

Road ID – My RoadID is my comfort blanket against the what if. Never had to use it however, good to know that my chronic illnesses, contract information, and who I am is easily accessible to anyone that may need it. RoadId comes in a variety of styles from bracelets, necklace, and as a band attachment of FitBit, Garmin, and Apple watches and smart devices.

Much like carrying my insulin, plenty of water while out for a run or my helmet riding – I would never go for a run or a ride without Road ID; even just a quick 5KM around the block. Honestly, I wear it 24/7/365.

Diabetes Books and Education

SaleBestseller No. 1
The Diabetes Code: Prevent and Reverse Type 2 Diabetes Naturally
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Dr. Jason Fung (Author) - Dr. Jason Fung (Narrator)
  • English (Publication Language)
Bestseller No. 2
Choose Your Foods: Food Lists for Diabetes
  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 65 Pages - 06/01/2019 (Publication Date) - Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (Publisher)
SaleBestseller No. 3
Diabetes For Dummies
  • This refurbished product is tested and certified to work properly. The product will have minor blemishes and/or light scratches. The refurbishing process includes functionality testing, basic...
  • Rubin, Alan L. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
Bestseller No. 4
Diabetes Meal Planning and Nutrition For Dummies
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Smithson, Toby (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
Bestseller No. 5
Diabetes Head to Toe: Everything You Need to Know about Diagnosis, Treatment, and Living with Diabetes (A Johns Hopkins Press Health Book)
  • Kalyani, Rita R. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 344 Pages - 12/18/2018 (Publication Date) - Johns Hopkins University Press (Publisher)
SaleBestseller No. 6
Dr. Neal Barnard's Program for Reversing Diabetes: The Scientifically Proven System for Reversing Diabetes Without Drugs
  • Barnard, Neal (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 288 Pages - 02/27/2018 (Publication Date) - Rodale Books (Publisher)
Bestseller No. 7
Quick Diabetic Recipes For Dummies
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • American Diabetes Association (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
SaleBestseller No. 8
Managing Type 2 Diabetes For Dummies
  • American Diabetes Association (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 336 Pages - 02/13/2018 (Publication Date) - For Dummies (Publisher)
SaleBestseller No. 9
Diabetic Cookbook and Meal Plan for the Newly Diagnosed: A 4-Week Introductory Guide to Manage Type 2 Diabetes
  • Zanini RD CDE, Lori (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 272 Pages - 06/12/2018 (Publication Date) - Rockridge Press (Publisher)
Bestseller No. 10
The Practical Book On Diabetes: A diabetic guide to understanding diabetes and everything you need to know about type 1 and 2 diabetes
  • Green, Dorothy (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 104 Pages - 05/14/2022 (Publication Date) - Independently published (Publisher)

Other Recommended books and education on diabetes

In addition to Amazons top 10 books on diabetes. Here are a few other great reads for you to consider.

Decorative Stickers, and Other Items

Looking to make your Dexcom G5 / G6 more stylish. Let’s all agree – white is a bit, well White. Here are a few links to help you pimp up your sensor and scanner. Word of caution – I can not speak to if the stickers reduce how well we can scan the sensors – my other curiosity is if the sensor itself can still disperse heat. However, those that love the stickers swear by them.

Your input is important!

I would love to hear from you. What has worked well with your daily use of your Dexcom G6, what has not? Send me s message and some link suggestions and I will be sure to add them to the list. ->> Contact me here!

Review: Ambrosia NightRider BluCon for Abbott Freestyle Libre CGM

This post is a review of the Ambrosia NightRider BluCon Bluetooth reader for the Abbott FreeStyle Libre Glucose System.

The NightRider BluCon converts your Libre into a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) by automatically reading the NFC signal from your Libre sensor every 5 minutes and sending it to your phone or watch via Bluetooth. This allows you to automatically receive notifications such as when your sugars are going to high (hyperglycemic) or too low (hypoglycemic). You can also set alarms to notify you of these changes in your blood glucose.

As full disclosure: Ambrosia sent me the latest version of the Waterproof NightRider BluCon in January 2020, free of charge, to test and provide an open and honest review of the Bluetooth CGM reader for the FreeStyle Libre. I have continuously used the BluCon for the last two and a half months and have become a strong supporter of the system.

The review you are going to read is an unprejudiced review of the Ambrosia BluCon and in no way influenced by Ambrosia. For convenience, I have also included links to my Amazon Store. Amazon pays a small commission for any sales from these links.

My review of the Ambrosia BluCon for the Libre CGM will focus on the following areas:

What is the Ambrosia NightRider BluCon Device?

The flagship product of Ambrosia, the NightRider BluCon is a re-usable Bluetooth reader for your Abbott FreeStyle Libre (FSL), Libre US 14 day, Libre 2 sensor and FreeStyle Libre Pro sensor, that reads the Libre NFC signal and transmits the glucose readings from your Libre to a mobile app every 5 minutes, enabling Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) on the similar to what you would have with Dexcom. Ambrosia officially describes the BluCon, as an NFC (Near Field Communication) to BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) electronic transmitter for the Abbott FreeStyle Libre.

Ambrosia NightRider BluCon works with FreeStyle Libre, Libre 2, Libre US 14 day, Libre Canada 14 day and Libre Pro sensors. The BluCon is compatible with iPhone’s, Android phones, iPod and Apple/Android watches.

To hear my thoughts about the benefits of using a Libre or Dexcom CGM to manage your diabetes, give this blog post a read. For more information on the FreeStyle Libre read my review here.

The NightRider BluCon is available in two versions:

  • the original non-waterproof BluCon and
  • New IP67 waterproof NightRider BluCon. I have been using the waterproof NightRider BluCon reader.

Reminder: Ambrosia apps and device are not FDA approved or your local equivalent. Hence, do not use the glucose readings to make any medical decisions.

What is included with the Ambrosia BluCon NFC Reader?

My Ambrosia WaterProof NightRider BluCon was shipped with:

  • BluCon NFC Reader.
  • Rest / Power pin – to turn on the device and reset Bluetooth as needed
  • One piece of 2-sided tape
  • 10 waterproof stickers as added protection of waterproof battery compartment
  • One replacement door for the battery compartment
  • Instruction manual

How do you attach the Ambrosia BluCon Reader to your Freestyle Libre?

The Ambrosia BluCon Bluetooth Reader is conveniently positioned directly on top of the FreeStyle Libre sensor. This allows for a very secure device and reliable readings of the NFC (Near Field Communication) of your FreeStyle Libre Device.  As the BluCon is positioned immediately on top of the Libre Reader, I have never experienced any dropped or missed readings, with the exception of when the battery needed to be replaced. 

However, as the BluCon reader sits on top of the Libre, this results in a much larger footprint for your Libre to get caught on clothing, door jams, and other common ways we knock, bang, pull and abuse our FreeStyle Libre sensors over its 10 to 14-day lifespan.  That being said, you do get use to the increased size of your sensor and it quickly becomes a null issue.

There are several ways to attach your BluCon NFC reader to your Libre. Here is a quick overview of some of the options available to help secure your BlucCon reader to your FreeStyle Libre sensor:

  • Double-Sided Tape – My BluCon came with one small piece of double-sided tape to secure the BluCon reader to my Libre Sensor.  A tape similar to the Scotch Adhesive Mounting Squares may be a good option. My biggest concern with the double-sided tape was that I needed to temporarily remove my BluCon to replace the battery and it was difficult to remove the BluCon reader without disturbing my Libre. 
  • Velcro Strips – A reusable alternative to double-sided tape are round Velcro or hook and loop fasteners.  My only concern with hook and loop fasteners is that they raise the BluCon from your Libre Sensor making the overall height or size of the BluCon reader that much higher.
  • Put Tape overtop of both your Libre and BluCon Sensor – as Libre users we are well acquainted with using kinesiology tape, Patchabetes, or Tegaderm to secure our Libre and help it stay on for the full 14 days.  Any of these options work equally as well for the BluCon. For more tips on keeping you Libre Secure for the 14-days see my Libre Adhesion Hints and Tips.
  • BluCon Arm Band – Available from Ambrosia, the armband available in multiple sizes and colours helps protect both your FreeStyle Libre and BluCon.

What is the Battery Life of the Ambrosia NightRider BluCon Libre Reader

The replaceable battery in the Ambrosia BluCon uses a common CR2032 watch battery that can be conveniently purchased at any electronics, grocery, or pharmacy.  I wear my BluCon 24/7 to allow me to get hi and low glucose warnings all day and night. Typically, I get about 2 and a half weeks of continuous use from my Ambrosia BluCon Libre reader before the battery needs to be replaced.  The battery is easy to replace, requiring a small twist off of the waterproof cap. However, I would recommend that you replace the battery with each new sensor as the cap is challenging to remove while you are wearing the BluCon. After all, as the BluCon sits on top of our Libre, the number of times we need to disturb our Libre’s the better.

I admit, at first, I found the battery life disappointingly short, expecting more than two weeks of use out of a disposable Sony CR2032 battery. However, in comparison with other Libre Bluetooth readers on the market, this is typical. After all, increased battery storage would result in an increase in the size of the BluCon.  A review of other devices in the market like MiaoMiao, one battery per 14-day Libre cycle seems typical.

Area for Improvement: My only area for improvement related to the Battery Life of the Ambrosia BlueCon Libre Reader is that it does use a disposable CR2032 battery. An improved version of the BluCon would have a rechargeable battery over the existing disposable CR2032. HINT: Amazon is the best place to buy CR2032 batteries in bulk, however, Ambrosia specifically recommends SONY CR2032 batteries for longest performance.

Bluetooth Reliability of the Ambrosia NightRider BluCon

I have had little or no connectivity issues with my NightRider BluCon. As of March 2020, I am using iOS version 1.1.21 of the official Ambrosia LinkBluCon app. Like other CGM readers for the FreeStyle Libre, the Ambrosia App needs to be continuously running on your iOS or Android device to be able to read your Libre Sensor.  When the Ambrosia App is running, it reads your Libre Sensor every 5 minutes and sends the information via Bluetooth to your phone, watch, or tablet. The latest version also has a function to force the NightRider reader to send the latest reading to your phone without waiting for the 5-minute timer to elapse.

What happens if the Ambrosia App is not Running?

As I noted, the Ambrosia LinkBluCon app needs to be running for the BlucCon to read your Libre.  This is a common requirement for all devices in the market.  If your Ambrosia LinkBluCon App has not been running, the next time you start up the App, much like your Libre App and Reader. The BluCon will send the 15-minute Readings from your Libre to the App.  Your Nightrider will continue to read your sensor every five minutes thereafter (as long as the App remains running).

HINT: It is important to remember, you will not receive any glucose warnings or notifications if your Ambrosia LinkBluCon app is not running.

Improved Bluetooth Reliability, Kudos to the App Development Team

If you read other reviews on the BluCon, connectivity issues are commonly listed. I need to give the Ambrosia App development team kudos.  When I first received my Nightrider BluCon, I had serious concerns over the Bluetooth reliability of the BluCon and the LinkBluCon app. If you read other reviews, this was a common concern.  Bluetooth reliability has been significantly improved since late 2019. More on the app list listed below.

Can I Share my BluCon Readings with a Family Member?

In addition to the LinkBluCon app for your iOS or Android device, you can share your BluCon readings with Caregivers to help them continuously monitor the glucose levels of their loved ones using their mobile phones – iPhone or Android using the FollowBluCon. The app provides Caregivers with data from patients who have invited them to follow their glucose readings through the LinkBluCon app.

Caregivers can view readings and notes pertaining to the last 30 days of a LinkBluCon user. To view the readings, the Caregiver needs to tap Readings on the home screen of the FollowBluCon app and then four horizontal lines displayed on the screen. The Caregiver can also view the LinkBluCon user’s daily graph and readings through this link.

Features in FollowBluCon include:

  • Provides Caregivers with data from patients who have invited them to follow their glucose readings through the LinkBluCon app.
  • Caregivers can see each patient’s readings, Notes, battery and connection status of NightRider, daily graphs as well as their target glucose range.
  • Caregiver can modify target range for a patient so that he can receive notifications if the glucose readings are outside defined range
  • Caregiver can stop following readings of a LinkBluCon user by turning OFF the follow option on the settings screen for that particular LinkBluCon user.

Is the Ambrosia NightRider BluCon Waterproof?

The Ambrosia NightRider BluCon comes in two versions, the original non-waterproof NightRider BluCon and the new IP 67 waterproof NightRider BluCon.

The FreeStyle Libre is designed to be water-resistant and worn while bathing, showering, swimming and exercising. The Libre website describes the Libre as water-resistant in up to 1 metre (3 feet) of water for a maximum of 30 minutes.  The waterproof NightRider is defined as IP 67 waterproof.

What does IP67 mean?

The IP Code (or International Protection Rating, sometimes also interpreted as Ingress Protection Rating*) consists of the letters IP followed by two digits and an optional letter. As defined in international standard IEC 60529, it classifies the degrees of protection provided against the intrusion of solid objects (including body parts like hands and fingers), dust, accidental contact, and water in electrical enclosures. The standard aims to provide users with more detailed information than vague marketing terms such as waterproof.

The first digit of IP67, refers to how well the BluCon is protected from solid foreign objects – 6 representing DUST TIGHT: No ingress of dust; complete protection against contact. The second digit, 7 representing protection against immersion up to 1M in depth. 

In other words, the BluCon is protected from dust and meets the same standards as the Libre sensor for up to 1 meter of water. This allows you to swim, shower, and play in the water with your waterproof Ambrosia BluCon.

The Ambrosia BluCon comes shipped with two waterproof features – the first one is a small o-ring around the battery compartment.  The second waterproof feature is a clear adhesive sticker that you place on top of the BluCon reader and the batter compartment – my BluCon was shipped with 10 reusable stickers.  This is recommended if you are going to be using the BluCon routinely submerging the Nightrider such as in a hot tub or swimming.  I have not found any need for the sticker in day to day use showering with my BluCon.

The Ambrosia LinkBluCon App is available for iOS, Android, and Fitbit

I am an iOS user, so most of my comments are related to my experience with the iOS version of the LinkBluCon App. However, LinkBluCon is available for both Apple iOS and Android through the Apple and Google Play Stores. Ambrosia’s NightRider BluCon and LinkBluCon app users can also use Fitbit Ionic, Versa and Versa Lite watch to monitor their glucose levels and receive notifications when glucose readings are outside the target range.

The main reason Libre Users add an NFC reader such Ambrosia NightRider BluCon to their FreeStyle Libre system is to receive alarms or notifications of high or low glucose readings so that we can respond quickly with insulin correction or glucose to protect us from a potential severe hypoglycemia event.  The app has the ability to give is visual notifications as well as audible as an alarm or even speech notification of our glucose readings. 

The app also gives us a tabular display of our glucose readings and great export functionality.

My favourite feature is the quick glance of my glucose in on the app scream.  Those familiar with iOS notifications, the app uses the typical notification number in the top right of the app to display your latest glucose reading. 

Continued Development of the App

I need to give the Ambrosia App development team kudos.  They are continuously updating and improving the iOS version of the app and are very responsive to user comments and suggestions. 

If you feel there is a user experience design change that is needed or you are missing a feature, send the design team a quick note.

HINT: The Ambrosia team also has a beta program through Apple’s TestFlight where you can download the latest version of the App, provide comments and recommendations.

What is the cost of the Ambrosia NightRider BluCon

The NightRider BluCon is available in both a waterproof and non-waterproof version.  The cost of each is:

  • Non-Waterproof Night Rider BluCon – $110 USD (view here)
  • Waterproof NightRider BluCon – $145 USD (view here)

At the time of this review (March 2020). the NightRider is also being shipped for a limited time, with an armband holder, a $30 USD value.  Check with their online Support Chat for any specials.

In comparison, the MiaoMiao retails for $199 USD and Bubble retails for $140 USD plus shipping (March 2020).

What is the Warranty Period of the Ambrosia BluCon?

The NightRider comes with a 12-month warranty.

Does Ambrosia NightRider BluCon Connect to Apple Watch

Linking your phone to your Libre or NightRider BluCon is great, however, in many situations we are unable to carry our phones at work, school, or playing sports.  The NightRider has two watch modes available for iOS devices: Display mode and Connect Mode.

Apple Watch Display Mode: In display mode, your installed Apple Watch App receives updates from the LinkBluCon app running on your phone.  This requires your watch to be within Bluetooth range of your phone.

Connected Apple Watch Mode: After the initial setup of Ambrosia’s NightRider and LinkBluCon app on the iPhone, the user can change the mode to Apple Watch on LinkBluCon’s settings screen, this will switch the NightRider connection from the iPhone to Apple Watch and will start displaying glucose readings on Apple Watch without the phone. Note, currently this requires a cellular connection on your iWatch.

Area for Improvement: As great as this feature is, I would not recommend it as the primary mode to read your BluCon sensor.  From experience, it draws heavily on the Apple watch battery.  Using my Apple Watch 4, I needed to recharge my watch after 18 hours, where my typical usage is about 1 and ½ days between charges. However, it is a great feature if you are out for a ride, cycle, or playing sports.

GOOD TO KNOW: If your son/ daughters Apple Watch has a cellular connection, parents can install Ambrosia’s FollowBluCon app on their phone and after setup, will be able to see glucose readings updates of their child every five minutes even if they do not have a mobile phone. 

How is Customer Service with the Ambrosia BluCon

I have had mixed feelings about Ambrosia Customer Service, although I have to give them kudos as they have improved significantly.

When I first set up my Ambrosia BluCon reader I had some connectivity issues with my iPhone (note, these have since been resolved with an update to the App). I sent an email to customer service / technical support and after about 36 hours, the only response was a request to join their beta app program without any explanation of what the program was or acknowledgement of my technical issue.

However, in the course of writing this review, I visited the Ambrosia Website searching for information on the latest cost and warranty information. The website has an integrated live chat program connecting to a customer service agent.  I had a great chat with “Amy” in the chat app. Her responses were quick and concise.  If I had to base my experience with Ambrosia on this experience alone, I would give them 4/5 stars (I rarely give anyone 5 stars). 

Final Thoughts and Room for Improvement

Overall, I have had great success with using the NightRider BlucCon system to convert my FreeStyle Libre to a full CGM and would recommend the BlueCon to any FreeStyle Libre User that want to convert their sensor to full CGM capable of reviewing high and low glucose alarms.  As a reader, the BluCon is reliable and provides me with continuous readings from my FreeStyle Libre every 5 minutes (as long as the BluCon software is running). The visual and speech readings of my glucose readings and warning when my numbers are out of my target range or approaching hypo or hyper ranges are noticeable and draws attention to me as use and those around me if needed. 

The LinkBluCon app development team is responsive and continuously working to make the best app possible for Android, iOS, and FitBit Ionic and Versa.  Overall, I would recommend the BluCon to anyone that is looking to add continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) features to their FreeStyle Libre. 

Where can the BlueCon Be Improved

Better Plastic for the Battery Cover

In 2 and a ½ months, I have already damaged the cover to the battery.  It was stuck/jammed and trying to remove it with various coins and other devices to get to the battery literally stripped the slotted area.  Fortunately, the BluCon was shipped with two covers.  I would recommend that they look at making this piece with a harder or more rigid piece of plastic than the rest of the device.

Better Battery Life or Rechargeable Battery

The replaceable battery needs to be replaced about every two weeks.  Although CR2032 can be purchased through online retailers like Amazon (Buy CR2032 Batteries Here) for about $0.60 (60 cents) a unit, it does feel like a waste.  A rechargeable battery would be helpful for the BluCon. Improved battery use would also be helpful, this would limit how often we need to replace the CR2032 battery.

Special Offer From Ambrosia

As a bonus to our readers and as a thank you for me taking the time to test and review their product, Ambrosia is offering $10 off the price of a BluCon for any purchase through Are We “Making you think?”. Use this special link to check out BluCon.

What are your thoughts about NightRider BluCon?

I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences about the Ambrosia BluCon?  How long have you been using the system?  Have you used your BluCon to loop your insulin pump?  Be sure to provide your comments below.

Song: Harmonica tune Corona Corona (COVID-19) by Derek Hanlon


Enjoy the indie COVID-19 (coronavirus) influenced harmonica song “Corona Corona” by Derek Hanlon. A lot has changed in my community since the Province of Ontario declared a Declaration of Emergency on March 17, 2020 in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic and North America has started to tackle the Coronavirus. We have gone from planning on enjoying March Break to schools and business being closed and life of self-isolating and reducing social interactions and social distancing.

A great #indie artist from Georgina just north of Toronto, Canada, who also just happens to be my dad, took to his blues heart and harmonica and crafted this fun song called Corona Corona that speaks to today’s stresses and societal changes influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Derek “Jangles” performs his indie song Corona Corona with harmonica solo an homage to the COVID-19 virus and life today.

Enjoy this harmonic infused corona virus song by Derek and be sure to check out his out blue vibes and harmonic tunes on his YouTube channel. Be sure to subscribe.

FreeStyle Libre Adhesion Guide for Canada and United States

Everyone’s skin is different, as a result, keeping your FreeStyle Libre from falling off can be a challenge for some diabetics. Abbott has released an official FreeStyle Libre Adhesion guide with tips and tricks to help keep your Libre sensor safe and secure to your arm for up to the 14-day life of the glucose sensor.

For more HINTS AND TIPS read our post on How to Help Stop Your FreeStyle Libre Sensor From Falling Off and our Questions and Answers about using the FreeStyle Libre Glucose System for your diabetes glucose control.

Making You Think has sponsored the delivery of this important guide to our diabetic community. Please consider clicking on one of our advertising links to help cover the cost of hosting this important content or donate here.

The Guide covers topics such as:

  • Showering and Bathing
  • Bumping into Objects
  • Getting Dressed
  • How to properly prepare your skin
  • Products to assist in adhesion
  • Products to help you remove the sensor

Click this link to download a PDF version of the Freestyle Adhesion Guide.

Looking for Additional Tips to Keep Your Freestyle Libre Lasting 14 Days?

What tips do you use to keep your Freestyle Libre CGM from falling or being knocked off before the 14-day expiry of the Continuous Glucose Monitor?

Leave a comment below and share your tips. For more HINTS AND TIPS read our post on How to Help Stop Your FreeStyle Libre Sensor From Falling Off and our Questions and Answers about the FreeStyle Libre Glucose System.

What I Have Learned While Being Diagnosed as an Insulin-Dependent T2 Diabetic

After a 10-year long battle as a Type 2 Diabetic, I was diagnosed as insulin-dependent Type 2 Diabetic (T2D) at the age of 46. This sudden change in my health has had me feeling lost and confused more times than not. What is a carbohydrate? When should I take insulin? How can I help my Type 2 body better use the insulin it produces?  How different is life for a Type 2 diabetic on insulin than a Type 1 diabetic (T1D)?  What resources are available to help me learn to treat this new disease? In this article, I will explore life as a T2 diabetic on insulin and what I have learnt during this journey.

AS A QUALIFIER: The following should be considered as personal experience and observations. However, I am not a medical professional and any information or questions you have should be discussed with your healthcare team. With that in mind, I hope this will be of some use to you. I would also like to extend my thanks to Lilly Canada for sponsoring this education article.

According to research lead by the Public Health Agency of Canada, in 2013–2014, close to 200,000 Canadians were newly diagnosed with diabetes (5.9 per 1,000 population). This represented 0.4 new cases per 1,000 population among children and youth and 7.6 new cases per 1,000 population among adults.  At least I know I am in good company.  When I was diagnosed in 2008, I was one of the 4 per 1000 of the lucky Canadian population in my age group that shared the disease.

What is the difference between Type 1 Diabetes, Type 2 Diabetes and Gestational diabetes?

The government of Canada’s Chronic Disease Surveillance System (i) defines diabetes as a chronic condition that occurs when the body loses its ability to produce or properly use insulin, a hormone that controls sugar levels in the blood. There are three main types of diabetes: type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes. Other types are uncommon.

What is Type 1 diabetes (T1D)?

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. The immune system destroys the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas, leaving the individual dependent on an external source of insulin for life. Type 1 diabetes typically develops in children and youth, but it can also occur in adults.

What is Type 2 diabetes (T2D)? 

Type 2 diabetes is a metabolic disorder. Type 2 diabetes occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin and/or when the body does not properly use the insulin produced. Individuals who are overweight or obese, physically inactive, or of certain ethnic origins, and those who have a family history of diabetes are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. T2 typically appears in adults older than 40 years, but it can also occur at a younger age, for me I was in my mid-thirties.

What is Gestational diabetes? 

Gestational diabetes occurs in pregnant women if high blood sugar levels develop during pregnancy. Although it usually disappears after the delivery, it increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes later.

It has been estimated that 90% of diabetes cases among Canadian adults are Type 2, 9% Type 1, and less than 1% of a different type, while the large majority of diabetes cases among children and youth are Type 1. Moreover, gestational diabetes is reported in about 5.5% of births.

The Typical Progression of Type 2 Diabetes

Unlike Type 1, whose bodies suddenly begin destroying insulin-producing cells, Type 2 diabetes, like me, is a progressive disease that can lead to a lifestyle that echo’s Type 1 diabetes and the risks and dangers associated to hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia in addition to the progressive long term risks of diabetes including Eye damage, heart disease and stroke, high blood pressure, kidney disease, mental health issues, and nerve damage and amputation

Dr Vivian A. Fonseca (2), describes the progression of Type 2 diabetes as 5 stages. Dr Fonseca notes that the path to pre-diabetes can begin as early as 12 years before diagnosis, with the progression in a decline in βcell function, and continues throughout the disease process. The primary function of the βcell or Beta Cell is to produce and release insulin and amylin. Both are hormones which reduce blood glucose levels.

Stages of Progression of Type 2 Diabetes

  • Stage 1: Pre-Diabetes Diagnosis
  • Stage 2: Progression from pre-diabetes to overt diabetes.
  • Stage 3: Acute insulin response
  • Stage 4: Progression to medication
  • Stage 5: Loss of glycemic control on medication – Insulin Dependence

The speed and rate of progression are dependent on many influences, however, include High BMI (body mass index), Weight gain, age of progression, High plasma insulin, Decreased insulin response to glucose, Dyslipidemia, Hypertension, Poor β-cell function and choice of treatment.

Type 2 Diabetes: The older we get, the more complicated the treatment. 

What is clear is that Type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease whose treatment requirements increase in complexity, from management with diet and exercise, to medication, and eventually to insulin dependence.  This is even more important when you consider there is typically a positive correlation between age and the progression of Type 2 Diabetes.  The older we get, the more complicated the treatment.

Histogram showing the incidences of diabetes in Canada per 1000 people by age group and gender aged 1 to 85+.
Histogram showing the incidences of diabetes in Canada per 1000 people by age group and gender (i)

While less than 1 in 1000 Canadians under the age of 30 are diagnosed with diabetes each year. This increases to over 10 in a 1000 Canadians by age 55 and over 20 in a 1000 Canadian men, and nearly 15 in a 1000 Canadian women over the age of 70 are diagnosed with diabetes each year. What age-appropriate resources are available to Type 2 diabetics? Where can we learn about how to change our habits and lifestyle to slow the progression of the disease, diet tips, eating tips?  Truth be told, I don’t think I could even tell you what a carbohydrate was when I was first diagnosed.

Here are some of the great diabetes education resources I have used over the years:

Local Diabetes Clinic

Without a doubt, the endocrinologists, diabetes nurses, dietitians, and kinesiologists at my local diabetes clinic rock.  Don’t get me wrong, my endocrinologist gives me a 5-minute lesson on counting carbs and insulin dosing, however, my diabetes nurse is where the real education begins. I highly recommend any diabetic ask for a referral to their local diabetes clinic.

When I was first diagnosed as a Type 2 diabetic the diabetes clinic had a half-day class on what it means to be a diabetic.  I admit, at 36 I was by far the youngest in the class.  However, I walked away with valuable lessons on portion control, low-glycemic foods, and that exercise doesn’t need to be the gym.  They also offered separate classes on bodyweight exercises, cooking and shopping classes and more.

Speak to your family physician, endocrinologist, or nurse practitioner for a referral. You can also check with the clinic to see if they have a self-referral process.

Diabetes Instagram and Facebook Groups

We talk about invisible illness all the time. Looking at a recent trip to the pharmacy, the pile of medications is not as invisible
A recent Instagram Post on Invisible Illness (Diabetes and Crohns Disease)

One of the reasons I write in my blog is to extend the knowledge and experience I have gained as a diabetic. Everyone takes away different experiences when it comes to life, and in my case dealing with diabetes and Crohn’s disease.  If nothing else, it is great to know we are not alone.  Although, we can usually walk away with so much more.  User groups and forums, and more recently Facebook Groups on Diabetes (Diabetes Canada and Type 2 Diet and Support Canada – Type 2 Diabetes) can be great resources to get firsthand information.

Surprisingly enough – Instagram has been another great resource for both motivation but as well as knowledge.  Much like the posts on my IG Account, many members of the diabetes community post about their lessons, successes, and failures. It is great to know we are not alone. A special shout out to Jessie Inchauspe (GlucoseGoddess), although she isn’t a diabetic her playful use of Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGM) like the Freestyle Libre, give us a great visual reminder of how a normal person body responds to a balanced diet. How close can I get my diabetic body?

Diabetes Websites and Recommended Books

Much like you are doing now, self-help is the last of my resources, although maybe one of the most important.  Self-help equates entirely to ownership, which is the first tool in transitioning our lifestyles to be diabetic friendly.  Don’t get me wrong, I have my cheat days – that’s what keeps me sane.  After all, two chronic diseases can be a bit of an emotional roller coaster at times.

Some of my favourite sources are as follows: 

Type 2 Diabetic Diagnosis and Seniors

As I touched on earlier – I started my diabetes journey in my mid-thirties. I am educated, research and internet savvy, although stubborn, not completely set in my ways, I exercise, although eat out a bit too often.  However, all in all, I had my whitts to be able to help understand what it meant to my lifestyle to be diagnosed as a diabetic. 

Embed from Getty Images

Don’t get me wrong – I hated the diagnosis and constantly tested my life and body without the dependence on medicine to manage my blood sugars.  The reality is, I am a diabetic and in my case, an insulin-dependent Type 2 diabetic.  As my readers also know, I also have Crohn’s disease. 

Much like a Type 1 Diabetic (T1D), I need to test my glucose before each meal to determine how much bolus (fast-acting) insulin I need to take to balance my carbohydrates, and basal insulin at bedtime.  As a Type 2 diabetic, I also benefit from oral medications that boost my body’s ability to naturally manage my glucose.  Even after over 10 years of being a diabetic progressing through the stages of Type 2, I am still learning and more importantly still making mistakes, some of which can have serious and life-threatening consequences like hypoglycemia.

In my defence, it has been a moving target on how to manage my diabetes as I progressed from a Stage 2 Type 2 Diabetic to a to Stage 5 T2 Diabetic (see the stages above).  My newest struggle, what does it mean to be insulin-dependent?  This also has me wondering, If I am struggling as an adult learning how to manage daily life needing to take insulin, how well would senior citizens manage the same progression of their Type 2 Diabetes?  What is even of bigger concern – how well would a senior citizen with progressive cognitive impairments such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD) or Dementia cope with managing sever Type 2 diabetes, or even more importantly their caregivers? 

What resources are available, to learn, educate, and survive our diabetes journies that is age-appropriate? If I can use my parents as examples, I certainly learn much differently than they do in their 70’s.

Lessons I have had the Learn the Hard Way as a Type 2 Diabetic on Insulin

If you read any forum or newsgroup about Type 2 Diabetes, two of the biggest concerns expressed are:

“I don’t like needles, I never want to be on Insulin”, or

“I am very afraid of my sugars going too low”, a situation otherwise known as hypoglycemia. In fact, research shows that 60% of Type 2 Diabetics modify their insulin doses after a hypoglycemic event. Not a good statistic!

Insulin Dosing Mistakes by a Type 2 Diabetic and Hypoglycemia Scares

I have made tones of mistakes in my short time living with insulin.  How much insulin should I take, when should I take it, should I take insulin if I have a snack. I was literally given a prescription for Humalog (Fast-Acting Insulin), a sliding scale based on what my pre-meal glucose was, and fingers crossed, sent on my way. 

I admit it was overwhelming, scary, and naturally, a bit of a pain to suddenly be dependent on carrying around diabetic supplies: insulin, needles, my glucometer or CGM, and snacks for low sugar events such as Dex4 glucose tablets. I made mistakes!  As much as I have amazing things to say about my diabetes clinic, when it comes to suddenly being thrown into the lifestyle of a T1 Diabetic – I feel that insulin-dependent Type 2 Diabetics seem to bet missed in the shuffle, with resources for parents of recently diagnosed T1D children, and traditional diet and medication dependent T2D.  However, as recently diagnosed T1D adults (or equivalents) – we seem to need to depend on asking our own questions and answers and do not have the right appreciation of the risks.

Severe Hypoglycemia Experiences

What is Hypoglycemia?

Hypoglycemia, also known as low blood sugar, is a condition caused by a very low level of blood sugar (glucose), your body’s main energy source.

Immediate treatment of hypoglycemia is necessary when blood sugar levels are at 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or 3.9 millimoles per litre (mmol/L) or below. Treatment involves quick steps to get your blood sugar level back into a normal range either with high-sugar foods or drinks or with medications. Long-term treatment requires identifying and treating the underlying cause of hypoglycemia.

The signs of hypoglycemia - mood swings, dizziness, lack of coordination, difficult thinking, shaking or sweating, loss of consciousness
Signs of Hypoglycemia (Source: Baqsimi Nasal Glucagon)

For Canadians who have diabetes and who are treated with insulin, the fear of going ‘low’ (hypoglycemia) never goes away. When an individual has a severe low (severe hypoglycemia), they are unable to treat themselves, and they need help. For people with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes who are on medications like insulin, there can be countless causes of severe hypoglycemia. These include not eating enough, over-exercising, drinking alcohol, or even using diabetes medications incorrectly.iii  

There are different levels of low blood sugar: mild, moderate, or severe. If your blood sugar drops low enough that you need help to recover, it is considered to be a low blood sugar emergency or severe hypoglycemia.

My Pre-Bolus (Fact Acting Insulin) Oops

It is recommended that diabetics pre-bolus our fast-acting insulin 10-30 minutes before eating in order to most accurately mimic the insulin response of a non-diabetic.  This will help assist in your blood sugars not spiking before out insulin starts to work. 

What I ended up learning by mistake – pre-bolusing requires a guaranteed eating time and carbohydrate amounts. This past summer (about 6 months into being insulin-dependent) my pre-bolusing at a restaurant created a very scary and escalating problem when our food was delayed due to a technical issue in the kitchen. Within about 30 minutes of my insulin injection and my insulin started to rapidly react to the pre-meal sugars in my body to frightening results – feelings of hunger, severe sweating, shaking, and a mild progression to difficulty thinking. I was experiencing my first moderate Hypoglycemic event.

Fortunately, I was able to consume the recommended dose of DEX4 glucose tablets, and a dose of maple syrup from my running bag, however, not before literally sweating through my clothing and spoiling our dinner out. A moderate to severe hypoglycemia event is truly a #daychanger.

Fortunately, I was able to navigate away from a severe hypoglycemic situation where I was may not able to consume glucose to stabilize my body needing 3rd party assistance such as an emergency Glucagon injection, the recently approved Baqsimi Nasal Glucagon, or even worse emergency medical services.

My bigger concern?  What did I do wrong?  How could I be better prepared? No one told me about the risks of pre-bolusing. How serious could the situation have escalated if I didn’t have glucose tablets on hand, and more importantly would my girlfriend have known how to have helped if I had not been able to treat myself? Even if I had known about Glucagon, the standard treatment for Severe Hypoglycemia, would she have known how to mix the syringe, or had the confidence to even try?

As Donald Rumsfeld said “there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we don’t know we don’t know.” The simple risks associated with a life relying on insulin was one of them.

Hypoglycemic Education

Recently I was asked by Lilly Canada to represent the T2D community at an education summit on Severe Hypoglycemia held in Toronto.  It was an honour to share the room with a handful of some of the most influential diabetics from across Canada, and Lilly spokesperson Crystal Bowersox, a strong T1D and advocate for diabetes education and awareness. 

Attendees of the Lilly Canada Severe Hypoglycemia Summit 2020, Toronto, Ontario
Amazon diabetics and Lilly Staff from across Canada that attended the Lilly Canada Severe Hypoglycemia Summit 2020, Toronto, Ontario

The day with Lilly Canada covered education on hypoglycemia, existing treatment options for moderate and severe hypoglycemia, discussions and panel presentations with some very inspirational T1 Diabetics, information by medical professionals and medical officers from Eli Lilly, and the day ending with an amazing demonstration and discussion with the founders of a recently Health Canada approved treatment of Severe Hypoglycemia called Baqsimi.

Baqsimi: is a new rescue treatment for severe hypoglycemia, demonstrating Lilly’s commitment to simplifying diabetes management through medicines and patient solutions. The formulation was discovered in Canada and is changing the lives of people with diabetes around the world. Baqsimi™ (glucagon nasal powder 3 mg) was approved by Health Canada (Approved January 2020) with ethical status, making it available at the pharmacy with or without a prescription. Baqsimi is indicated for the treatment of severe hypoglycemic reactions when impaired consciousness precludes oral carbohydrates, which may occur in the management of insulin-treated patients with diabetes mellitus, whether Type 1 or Type 2.i Baqsimi is a compact nasal spray that is portable and does not require reconstitution. It is now widely available in pharmacies across Canada.

Lilly Canada, Ready for Rescue – New Nasally Administered Glucagon for Severe Hypoglycemia Available in Canada

What I see as the Benefits of Baqsimi

Baqsimi is a nasal version of Glucagon. Simple, no injection safety for sever hypoglycemia
Baqsimi Nasal Glucagon – Non-injection of glucagon for severe hypoglycemia

I was amazed by the simplicity of Baqsimi – where traditional Glucagon emergency kit requires the medication to be mixed with a saline solution, then drawn into needle and then injected (See complete instructions here); Baqsimi is a simple nasally administered Glucagon. Anyone, no matter of age, medical experiences, or panic level, should be able to assist their diabetic loved one or stranger through a severe hypoglycemic incident. This is even better for coaches, schools, and all of our diabetes emergency kits.

Learning the Diabetes Ropes from T1D Community

I was honoured to have been able to consult at the Lilly Severe Hypoglycemia Summit, and the topic of hypoglycemia was as engaging as it was informative. More than anything else, and what instantly jumped out at me surrounded by this powerhouse of diabetics; who had travelled from as far as British Columbia and Montreal to attend; is that even as adults living with Type 1 diabetes, individuals who have had decades of experience managing their diabetes (ts all they have known, its a way of life) – yet, even with decades of being insulin-dependent, even diabetic experts make mistakes and need to treat for hypoglycemic events and in some cases have needed medical assistance due to a severe hypoglycemic event.

As a new T1 “like”, T1.5, insulin-dependent T2 diabetic, I have a lot to learn about managing my diabetes, managing my glucose, improving my A1C, and managing both my glucose highs (hyperglycemia) and my glucose lows (hypoglycemia). I hope I will never have to use Baqsimi to treat a severe hypoglycemic event – however, now have the knowledge on how to teach my friends, colleagues, and loved ones, including my 10-year-old, what to do.

As I mentioned a few times over this post – Type 2 diabetes (T2D) education is a challenge and from my perspective still has many holes. However, as a community, we will continue to provide resources and opinions and hopefully give our peers a place to start their own diabetes education journey.

i  Diabetes in Canada, Highlights from the Canadian Chronic Disease Surveillance System (11-14-2017). https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/publications/diseases-conditions/diabetes-canada-highlights-chronic-disease-surveillance-system.html

ii  Defining and Characterizing the Progression of Type 2 Diabetes. Vivian A. Fonseca, MD (vfonseca@tulane.edu) Diabetes Care 2009 Nov; 32(suppl 2): S151-S156.https://doi.org/10.2337/dc09-S301

iii Diabetes Canada – Severe Hypoglycemia – Last accessed on January 17 – ttps://www.diabetes.ca/health-care-providers/clinical-practice-guidelines/chapter-14#panel-tab_FullText

Canadian Politics: A Coalition Government and its Strengths for Minority Government

Much like the 2006 and 2008 elections, Canadians have spoken loud and clear this past October 2019 with the election of a minority Liberal Government.  It is not that we are indecisive, it is not that we are confused, or simply do not care about the future of the country.  It is simply that we want a political system that is accountable, that reaches every Canadian – an opportunity for real, genuine, and healthy governing for the country.

When it comes to politics in general, I admit I am the furthest from an expert as anyone can be. To be brutally honest, within the first weeks of University I ran away from my declared “Poli-sci” major with my tail between my legs and switched to something far less philosophical and much more interesting, the environment.  Nonetheless, sitting from the sidelines as a person in sound body and mind; well sort of, it is questionable about the sound body (Crohn’s disease, diabetes); you begin to wonder “to what degree our Canadian political representatives have a clue?”  This was a post I originally wrote in 2009 after the Harper Government won its second minority government in a four year period – however, holds very much as true today, with a bit of an update.

Between 2000 and 2011, Canadians have visited the polls on five occasions – three of which were 2004, 2006 and 2008, and twice since then. In a political system that structures federal elections every four years, having six visits to the polls over the same time period seems dumbfounded.  What is characteristically more interesting was the repeat result of the 2006 and 2008 elections, a minority, Conservative, government.  This does not speak specifically to the governing party, as the same could be said to be true for any party, but does question the need and purpose of going to the polls.  This is even more profound as in a perpetual sphere of a looming no-confidence vote, and yet a fourth federal election. 

What is a Minority Government?

Wikipedia defines a Minority Government as an “a cabinet of a parliamentary system formed when the governing political party or coalition of parties does not have a majority of overall seats in the parliament”.  Wikipedia continues to define a minority government as less stable and less arrogant as it (often) requires a “compromise between the different parties to ensure the passage of legislation“.  I would argue that the later may be the most, yet comical descriptor of the current breed of Canadian Politician, but decidedly the single most critical aspect of a minority government.  More importantly, I believe that critically, this is where, as Canadians, we are failing time and time again. 

Is it naive to think that the goal of Canadian politics, and politician as a whole, can simply be more than a battle of whose belt buckle is the largest, is it naive to think that as “professionals”, our political representatives actually want to play a critical part in helping the country prosper and not simply participants in an adult game of king of the castle at the measly price of about $450 million dollars around?

Varying Political Opinions, one goal

Much like the 2006 and 2008 elections, Canadians have spoken loud and clear this past October with the election of a minority Liberal Government.  It is not that we are indecisive, it is not that we are confused, or simply do not care about the future of the country.  It is simply that we want a political system that is accountable, that reaches every Canadian.  Unfortunately, Ottawa appears too blinded in its own fight to become “the King” to realize the strength in our representation in the house.  With our current 338 member caucus made up between the four primary parties (Le Bloc Québécois, Conservative Party of Canada, Liberal Party of Canada, and New Democratic Pary of Canada), the Green Party and one independent you will always have fundamentally different opinions on how to govern the Country. 

Source: https://thecanadianpress-a.akamaihd.net/graphics/2019/federal-election/election-night/english/map/index.html

Similarly, even within a party, governing or not, there are fundamentally differing opinions on how to govern north vs. south, east coast vs. west, urban vs. rural.  It is ignorant to presume that one governing model fits all Canadians, and the election of a minority government is a true indication of such, and in turns its strength.  A minority government does not represent a weak government, but an opportunity for a united Canada where a balanced agenda can be achieved, a government that offers opportunity for all voices to be heard, and all parties working together for change, and most importantly it is a government where the politicians will be held accountable to the people and to themselves.

An Opportunity for Political Change in Canadian Politics

The sign of a true leader is not how well the lemmings follow in perfect formation, “Yes Men”, but how well they manage and communicate change.  A minority government provides an opportunity for sanctioned ‘negative thinking” or “devils advocacy”.  Carol Kinsey Goman notes in her article, “The Power of Negative Thinking“, that organizations should build constructive conflict into your decision-making processes by developing organizations with a diversity of thinking styles, skill levels, and backgrounds. Kinsey-Goman continues by acknowledging that “the most successful organizations will be those who can harness the power of creative collaboration without falling victim to “group think.” Perfecting this delicate balancing act is going to take leaders who understand how to foster constructive conflict”.

Fostering a New Future for Canada Politics

On January 20, 2009, the Bank of Canada announced that we, much like the rest of the world, are in a recession.  Retirement portfolios have declined sharply, and business and citizens are concerned over their finical well being, and in turn that of the Countries.  The 2008 minority Government steered the country through this economic hiccup.  Its time to continue that time of cooperation among all parties, now is the time positive change.   The answer is not with who’s flag is flying high at 24 Sussex Drive, but how well that leader can build upon the ideas and vision, of all parties, and in turn the country.

Note: Originally published, January 21, 2009. Republished, October 26, 2019